Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

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Digit
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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Digit » Wed Nov 11, 2009 4:29 am

Looks as though you missed my point!

Roy.
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

hardaker
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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by hardaker » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:24 am

"Because according to the theory of evolution, fire should have started out cold and got gradually hotter and hotter over time. And water should have started out as dry as a bone, and gradually got wetter and wetter over time."

This is one of the oddest interps of evolution I've probably heard. Evolution is biological. (Unless you are including its role in the social sciences and the gradual development of theories, which is a bad idea given the hellish track record of "social Darwinism" spawned primarily by bankers and robber barons.)

Evolution happens. In London you had both white and black moths. On the light colored building, black moths had a hard time because they stood out for birds to pick off. With coal smoke darkening up the buildings in the 1600s, black moths blended in, and it was white moths that started standing out. Same kind of thing is happening in Africa with the ivory trade. If you're a buck elephant, well-endowed with beautiful tusks, you're probably dead. This leaves small tusked or tuskless males, who were generally marginalized, to do the procreating, giving birth to a largely tuskless generation of elephants. This is a simplistic representation of evolution but nonetheless valid examples. What's the problem with that?

Or have I missed the point?
Chris Hardaker
The First American: The Suppressed Story of the People Who Discovered the New World [ https://www.amazon.com/First-American-S ... 1564149420 ]

Ishtar
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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Ishtar » Wed Nov 11, 2009 7:04 am

hardaker wrote: Or have I missed the point?
Yup!!!

It was a JOKE, Chris! I was pulling Digit's leg!

But don't worry ... he didn't get it either! :D

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Digit
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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Digit » Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:18 am

But don't worry ... he didn't get it either!
True!

Roy.
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

uniface

Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by uniface » Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:41 am

Missed something ? Arguably, that natural selection (undisputed) and evolution (in dispute) are not synonyms.

What people now call "industrial melanism" seems to have favored the survival of the darkest moth phase (of five), so it survived in greater numbers in heavily polluted areas. Today, with the abatement of coal smoke pollution, the light(er) phase(s) once again predominate, while the darker phases are disappearing. Net change = zero. IOW, Temporary conditions can favor the survival of one variety over another, but in the long run, no "improved" form results.

If change means re-arranging the furniture, then change is easy. But new furniture is another matter.

Further : in both of your cases, the changes noted are in response to (the result of) human intervention. Absent this (cause), absent change (effect). (I'm aware that this is a gross oversimplification, but the essential idea is clear enough).

Stripped of the tons of inessential baggage it's accumulated, the root concept of Intelligent Design is what ? That the activity of some higher intelligence underlies what is marketed as "human evolution" (I.e., that here, as everywhere, effects do not happen without causes).

In an admittedly inadequate analogy, the appearance of new furniture cannot be the consequence of re-arranging the old furniture (as with the moths and the elephants), no matter how many times this is repeated.

And further, that, however incomprehensible, these effects are in service of (tend toward, favor) some purpose. Both rooms and furniture are incomprehensible without it. Assuming purpose is not introducing anything NEW into the conceptual toolkit -- only insisting that it not be jettisoned to create a simpler picture, however satisfying the sense of being on top of things that results.

That no one can intuit (let alone, demonstrate) this purpose is no argument against it. I can more or less understand our cats, but not myself. How could I then comprehend an intelligence greater than mine ?

Idries Shah said he asked an ant about God and was told, "We have one sting. God has two !"

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Digit
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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Digit » Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:48 am

Net change = zero. IOW, Temporary conditions can favor the survival of one variety over another, but in the long run, no "improved" form results.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but you seem to be saying that if the pollution had continued the end result would have been the same as with it not continuing?
Further, if your answer is 'yes' then where does natural selection stand?
And what is the end result of NS if not 'evolutuion?''

Roy.
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

uniface

Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by uniface » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:09 am

But the pollution did continue -- for over 100 years. Certainly long enough (given the lifespans of the moths involved) to have effected lasting change if this were an available outcome. But there was none. Relieved of the un-natural pressure which had altered their circumstances, they reverted to form.

And even if a permanent colour phase change had resulted, the outcome of it would only be the continued existence of one variety of what was already there in a greater proportion -- not anything "new and improved."

What I am saying (or trying to) is that no amount of lateral movement (change due to natural selection) results in movement forward (evolution).

However many times the deck is shuffled, no new cards appear in it.

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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Minimalist » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:35 am

Those are two pretty good examples of natural selection though, Chris....even though I did get the joke!
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

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Digit
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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Digit » Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:42 am

But the pollution did continue -- for over 100 years.
That would be a very valid point, if we knew how long it takes to produce a permanent change, especially when the numbers of predators is also reduced by that pollution.
A variety only become a species when the two can no longer inter breed, and again we have no knowledge as to how long that might have taken.
So what is the end result of NS if not a new species, and if not that, then how does speciation occur?

Roy.
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

uniface

Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by uniface » Wed Nov 11, 2009 2:08 pm

The iterbreeding hurdle is more political than scientific, I think. None of the early taxonomists had different races lumped together. Linnaeus had, if I recall correctly, people broken down into six or seven (effectively) species.

I would venture the suggestion that, however it may be that speciation comes about, it isn't by "evolution" -- at least as this is widely conceived.

(Full Disclosure : Although, on many occasions I have disproven my own contention by doing my bankbook several times and coming up with a different balance each time. If nature works the same way, then I stand corrected :mrgreen: )

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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Digit » Wed Nov 11, 2009 3:13 pm

One of Darwinisms greatest successes is that no one has yet come up a comrehensive alternative, so using Occam, there might just be a slight chance, that he was correct?

Roy.
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Minimalist » Wed Nov 11, 2009 3:24 pm

Chris' two examples are perfect for natural selection [ moths being picked off because of the changing color of the buildings and tuskless elephants thriving because humans like to play the piano] but these are not mutation-driven changes and have little to do with evolution. The creatures had already evolved but changing conditions resulted in certain characteristics being rewarded or punished. What this has to do with Calico is beyond me. But what does was last night's Nova program ("Becoming Human, Pt II) which was virtually a love poem to Homo Erectus. While they did not address the probability of HE reaching the Americas they did put him all over the rest of the world and they did discuss the head lice thing. HE would have been around for 1.8 million years by the time of Calico.

More than enough time to build a boat or two.
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Digit » Wed Nov 11, 2009 3:30 pm

The creatures had already evolved but changing conditions resulted in certain characteristics being rewarded or punished.
Isn't that the manner in which evolution by natural selection works? The alternative is effect first, cause later. Without these changes being already available what would NS work on Min?

Roy
First people deny a thing, then they belittle it, then they say it was known all along! Von Humboldt

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Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by Minimalist » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:55 pm

I don't see where the genetic change comes in there.

My understanding was that a species was merrily living along...chomping on grass or grass eaters...when someone is born with a mutation. If the mutation results in a trait which increases grass or grass-eater chomping it gets passed on, if it doesn't it goes away. Who knows what triggers those mutations?

What Chris described was existing traits which suddenly, as a result of environmental changes, begin to confer an advantage. I learned of a third example, today.

Rattlesnakes developed the characteristic "rattle" as a warning.

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... 169447.DTL
But the most ominous development on the rattlesnake front is that they don't always live up to their name -- and frequently strike without any warning rattle.

One leading herpetologist believes that natural selection is at work. As humans encroach in rattler territory, he theorizes, the snakes are evolving and using their legendary rattles less frequently.

"The snakes that never rattle are more likely to survive human predators," said Joe Slowinski, an expert on venomous snakes at the California Academy of Sciences. "For decades in the American West, people have killed rattlesnakes. But if we don't hear them, then they usually go unnoticed."

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... z0WbdpzGVR

Snakes that "rattle" have to deal with guns. Not so the quiet ones. So is this another example wherein people have been exterminating the ones who are dumb enough to warn us allowing the others to breed more successfully?
Something is wrong here. War, disease, death, destruction, hunger, filth, poverty, torture, crime, corruption, and the Ice Capades. Something is definitely wrong. This is not good work. If this is the best God can do, I am not impressed.

-- George Carlin

uniface

Re: Calico Site (California, +/- 200K Ago)

Post by uniface » Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:47 pm

Min wrote:One of Darwinisms greatest successes is that no one has yet come up a comrehensive alternative, so using Occam, there might just be a slight chance, that he was correct?
For conceptual simplicity and intuitive (near) self-evidence, Creation (minus the -ism) certainly requires the least number of moving parts and suppositions (= 1).

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