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More Creationist Nonsense

Creationism, for me, has always been the prototypical pseudoscience. It is a textbook of logical fallacies, misinformation, distortion of fact, half-truths, and outright deception. Creationists, however, are not very imaginative and tend to recycle the same old arguments over and over. It is rare that I come across a new ridiculous argument from a creationist.

Recently I was asked about this website: DarwinConspiracy.com. On it they make three main arguments that they claim prove Darwinian evolution false. They are (sort of) new arguments so I thought I would have some fun tearing them down.

Fatal Flaw #1: Evolution is Missing a Mathematical Formula

Mathematical formulae make up the VERIFICATION LANGUAGE of science. Formulae are the only reliable way to test a theory. Every scientific theory has a formula, except the Theory of Evolution. Darwinists have never been able to derive a working Evolution Formula because Evolution theory does not work.

This is a clearly false premise, based upon a gross misunderstanding of science. Not all scientific theories have formula. How about the germ theory of disease, the plate tectonic theory of continental drift, that DNA is the molecule of inheritence, or that the Earth’s moon resulted from an early large impact of the earth. There are endless theories that do not lend themselves to a mathematical formula.

There are mathematical descriptions of aspects of these theories – you can calculate the speed with which continents drift or the spread of germs through a populations, but these equations are not the theories themselves.

Similarly, there are mathematical formula that describe aspects of evolution. Population genetics, for example, is very driven by formula. For example, p2 + 2pq + q2 = 1 describes the frequency of combinations of gene alleles from one generation to the next.

They further repeat the old argument that theories in science are just guesses, and when they are proven they graduate to a fact or law that can be described by a formula. This is simply wrong. While laws are typically described by formula, a theory does not require one to be considered a confirmed scientific fact, as the examples I gave above indicate.

There is No Genetic Mechanism for Darwinian Evolution

Darwinists claim we evolved from the simplest form of bacterial life to ever more complex forms of life. The most basic bacteria had less than 500 genes; man has over 22 thousand. In order for bacteria to evolve into man, organisms would have to be able to add genes. But there is no genetic mechanism that adds a gene. (Mutations change an existing gene but never add a gene.) This means there is no mechanism for Darwinian Evolution and this is a fatal flaw in the Theory of Evolution.

OK, this is not a new one. This is another pathetic old one, debunked a million times, but here is a million and one. The mechanism for increasing the number of genes over evolutionary time is the duplication of genes, groups of genes, or even entire chromosomes. These can occur as mistakes in the process of DNA replication prior to mitosis, or the division of one cell into two.

The second copy of a duplicated gene is now redundant. Sometimes this causes disease, but not always. The redundant gene is now free to drift genetically as it is not critical for the function of the organism. This creates the possibility that the gene will produce a protein that, by chance, may serve a new function. Selective pressures can then optimize it for the new function.

Or, one gene may serve more than one purpose in different cells. Gene duplication of such a gene allows for the uncoupling of these functions, so that they can be optimized for each.

This is not just a theory, there is copious evidence that gene duplication has actually occurred in evolution. There are thousands of published papers relating to gene duplication.

Further, information theory shows how gene duplication and other forms of mutation combined with selectio increase genetic information over time (hey, there’s another formula).

Every Helpless Baby Born Proves Darwin Was Wrong

The Theory of Evolution in a nutshell is “Survival of the fittest.” But most mammals and birds give birth to helpless babies – instead of strong and fit ones. Neither Darwinism nor Neo-Darwinism can explain infantile helplessness. Every baby that is born contradicts Evolution Theory and this is a fatal flaw.

This one is just brain-dead, even for a creationist. Helpless babies have parents to take care of them – that is part of the environment to which they are adapted. Obviously many helpless babies survive to adulthood and then have children themselves – they survive, so how does this violate the notion of survival of the fittest?

In fact animals follow a strategy for survival of their offspring that lies somewhere along a spectrum from what is called r-selected to k-selected. R-selected species often given rise to numerous offspring which are independent very quickly, and grow fast. The survival strategy here is to have numerous offspring so that a few are likely to survive. Remember all those nature documentaries about the sea turtles? They lay hundreds of eggs, then the little turtles (who can walk at birth) have to brave numerous threats,  and only a few of the hundreds will make it to the sea and survive.

K-selected species take the opposite strategy – they have very few offspring but then invest a great deal of time and energy into those few to ensure their survival. Their children can be helpless at birth because they are there to take care of them – feed and protect them. This means that they are largely freed from selective pressures to become independent quickly. Such species can take their time and develop more slowly, and do nifty things like grow a large brain.

The terms “r” and “K” derive from Verhulst equation of population dynamics (egads! another equation)

dP/d}=rP ( 1 – P/K)

where the constant r defines the growth rate and K is the carrying capacity.

Conclusion

Creationists are really really dumb.

14 comments to More Creationist Nonsense

  • gridman

    “Creationists are really really dumb” …or duplicitous.

  • bigjohn756

    “But most mammals and birds give birth to helpless babies – instead of strong and fit ones.”

    So, that explains why there are no birds and mammals anymore. I always wondered where they went.

  • RickK

    It’s just amazing when the supporters of a “theory” that has absolutely no mechanisms whatsoever try to chip away at Evolution.

    I heard another funny argument today: That the Theory of Evolution says we are the product of our biology and environment, and therefore not responsible for our own actions. Therefore, Evolution is bad for society because it removes personal accountability.

    Sorry, but it’s not Darwin who can forgive my sins every Sunday!

    I think part of what drives the hatred for science and evolution is the fear that without an active, involved deity to save us, we may have to fix our own problems.

  • thenumberthirteen

    Steve can i ask you if you have ever met a creation proponent who’s argument has been debunked conclusively and actually stopped using the argument? What do creationists do when confronted with solid proof that their argument is wrong; as in they used an equation to prove something but the maths was wrong (like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=inES_eAexN8).

  • Never. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen – I just never encountered it. But I have encountered numerous creationists who continue to use demonstrably false arguments they have been publicly corrected on.

  • Hovind keeps using the “evolution says we evolved from rocks” even though it’s been pointed out to him time and time again that’s not at all way evolution says. Something that evolved on a rock does not mean it evolved from a rock. Geez.

  • alexjbutterfield

    At least this guy understands the claim of evolution:

    “Darwinists claim we evolved from the simplest form of bacterial life to ever more complex forms of life.”

    I’m always astounded by the argument that ‘I didn’t evolve from a damn monkey’. Even if I ignore the monkey-not-ape, and that it’s more a case of a common ancestor – I do love to say,

    actually it’s much worse than that, we evolved bacteria.

    The fact that you can throw an even worse/better argument their way and then prove it, is even more convincing than saying, actually it’s an ape and walking away.

    I mean, you must be onto something if you are willing to offer your opponent a stronger argument, right?

  • jfb4b8

    Which came first the chicken or the egg?
    If you are a Creationist, then the chicken came first. God created the chicken.
    If you believe in evolution, then the egg came first. It’s just that something other then a chicken laid it. Either way it takes a bit of faith to believe in the unknown

  • crappolio

    Listen you sticky male reproductive organ licker. Your mind is as weak as the arguments of some of the creationist. These are YOUR made up (fabricated) arguments. I do not believe that you got these debates from any creationist. What I do believe is you made them up so you could create this argument and make yourself look intelligent. Okay, I admit it. You are intelligent. But even a genius can be a damned fool. Oh, and before you *assume* that I am a creationist know that I am a firm believer in evolution. I do however despise people that don’t believe in others RIGHTS to choose their beliefs no matter how foolish it seems when it harms no others. It isn’t harming them personally either in believing in what they choose to believe. Apparently it harms you though. Deny this.. I dare you. No, I challenge you. Because you are irate and prove it by being obcessed in proving them wrong.
    -I am irate about neanderthal-minded people like you that has to stoop just as low by fabricating stories that ( they ) supposedly said. Sure creationist have some odd idea’s. But yours are not theirs. You are a liar. Nothing more. You should have your testicles removed to get you out of the human gene pool. I fear others spawned from you could cause the human race to DE-evolve. How? 1- Stooping low enough to think because you are right ( correct ) in that you can REMOVE others rights. 2- Either simply fabricating related context or altering what others said to make it fit your situation.

  • crappolio

    jfb4b8

    Glad someone has the balls to say that.. I’ve always hated that expression. I’d still call it a chicken though. It probably reproduced asexual before being able to lay an egg however.

    I think that comment is a bit like: Is the glass half empty or half full. I’d say did you fill it half way or did you have it full and empty half out. Nothing happens by accident. Regardless of creation or evolution. Law of Physics or Laws of God. Something happens for a reason. Cause and Effect anyone?

  • Haddon

    jfb4b8-
    that still isnt quite true. so, the first modern day chickens’ mother lays its egg, and the tiny mutation inside said egg occurs for whatever reason. the tiniest change from its parent happens inside the egg, meaning the egg came first. agreed.
    however, how genetically close to a modern chicken did the predecessor have to be to be considered a “chicken”. if chicken-x(x being the number of slight modifications removed from a present-day chicken) has to grow to adulthood to become a chicken, the chicken came first. but really, it is a debate of semantics.

    what i really wanted to say, however, was i have met a few creationists who have changed or dropped arguments when i have shown them to be completely absurd. they didnt come to the evolution side, but they dropped a fallible argument. but i think that is likely because i dont deal with creationists often. those i do are usually big into philosophy, and understand logic and reason.

  • Alec

    There is another mechanism by which numbers of genes are increased. It appears that viruses are cutting and splicing genes from and to their hosts all the time. The human genome contains the “wreckage” of a number of viruses which have been incorporated into our chromosomes. And conversely, viruses have been found to snip bits of host DNA and take them away.

  • cgmasson

    If you believe in evolution, then the egg came first. It’s just that something other then a chicken laid it. Either way it takes a bit of faith to believe in the unknown

    Not sure I take your point here. What is the unknown?

  • RickK

    Regarding creationists.

    I’ve come to the point where I actually have more respect for the Biblical Literalists than I do for the proponents of ID or Creation Science. The Literalists have a very straightforward view – every word of the Bible is fact, and they just don’t listen to anything that contradicts it. Their belief is simple, straightforward, and somehow seems more intellectualy honest to me. And many of them seem to avoid any cognitive dissonance by simply remaining ignorant of evolution. Also, the Literalists have clear mechanisms for creation: Adam & Eve, the Flood, etc.

    Creation science and IDers strike me as much more dishonest. They typically are people who have read enough to understand the theory of evolution. So they are living with the cognitive dissonance, and then using pseudoscientific logic or twisting evidence to erode evolution. But they never offer an alternative mechanism.

    It just seems to me that a person who just believes the Bible and ignores anything else could still be a basically honest person. But the people who try to twist science to validate the supernatural always conjure up the image of a sideshow barker or a dishonest car salesman.

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