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Why the attempts to poison science by darwinism


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Initial post: Feb 25, 2011 8:53:15 PM PST
"Darwinism" stands for an entire range of evolutionary philosophies about both biology and society. One of the more prominent approaches was that summed in the phrase "survival of the fittest" by the philosopher Herbert Spencer, which was later taken to be emblematic of Darwinism even though Spencer's own understanding of evolution was more similar to that of Jean-Baptiste Lamarck than to that of Darwin, and predated the publication of Darwin's theory. What is now called "Social Darwinism" was, in its day, synonymous with "Darwinism" - the application of Darwinian principles of "struggle" to society, usually in support of anti-philanthropic political agendas.

While the term Darwinism had been used previously to refer to the work of Erasmus Darwin in the late 18th century, the term as understood today was introduced when Charles Darwin's 1859 book On the Origin of Species was reviewed by Thomas Henry Huxley in the April 1860 issue of the Westminster Review. Having hailed the book as, "a veritable Whitworth gun in the armoury of liberalism" promoting scientific naturalism over theology, and praising the usefulness of Darwin's ideas while expressing professional reservations about Darwin's gradualism and doubting if it could be proved that natural selection could form new species, Huxley compared Darwin's achievement to that of Copernicus in explaining planetary motion.

While the term has remained in use amongst scientific authors, it is increasingly regarded as an inappropriate description of modern evolutionary theory. For example, Darwin was unfamiliar with the work of Gregor Mendel, having as a result only a vague and inaccurate understanding of heredity, and knew nothing of genetic drift.

In the United States, the term "Darwinism" is often used by creationists as a pejorative term, but in the United Kingdom the term has no negative connotations, being freely used as a short hand for evolutionary theory.

(the above was adapted from an article I found on wiki)

Posted on Feb 25, 2011 8:55:53 PM PST
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Posted on Feb 25, 2011 9:15:25 PM PST
Would any intelligent, educated, rational person who chooses to respond to BAM's "science" drivel please tell me why you waste time and energy arguing with the willful ignorance of a bible-thumpin' creationist?

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 25, 2011 9:32:00 PM PST
Oh, and BAMmie
All that Wells's book proves is that it's possible to earn a PhD and still become a deluded lunatic and crackpot.
Moonie, indeed!

Posted on Feb 25, 2011 11:17:08 PM PST
Ehkzu says:
Amazon.com's forum community standards prohibit:

* Text or articles written by someone else, even with attribution for the author, except for brief quotations from a book, article or other product related to the discussion

Copying and pasting huge blocks of text, as was done here, flagrantly violates these rules.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 26, 2011 8:02:26 AM PST
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Posted on Feb 26, 2011 8:49:01 PM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Feb 26, 2011 9:28:55 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 27, 2011 6:59:30 AM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Feb 27, 2011 7:06:40 AM PST
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Posted on Feb 27, 2011 8:30:07 AM PST
G. Gerard says:
Religious fanatics will be the ruination of the United States...and they'll blame the devil, not themselves. Magic and blindness are the basis of their beliefs, yet they point at science and call the people who embrace it crazy. LOL

Posted on Feb 27, 2011 10:01:50 AM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Feb 27, 2011 10:40:25 AM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Feb 28, 2011 3:26:33 AM PST
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Posted on Feb 28, 2011 4:41:06 AM PST
A. Caplan says:
Does someone want to explain to BAM that there is no such thing as Darwinism, except in the minds of creationists and IDers? There is the theory of evolution which was first proposed as a valid scientific theory by a dude named Darwin, but that is not Darwinism.

By the way, BAM, repeating the same false information, misinterpretations of findings, and implying that nothing else will be found does not disprove evolution, It just shows your ignorance about science and how it works.

The scientist who can disprove the basics of evolution, that all life evolved over time from simpler organisms, would be praised as the greatest scientific mind since, well, Darwin. So, as you claim to have disproven the theory of evolution, we will need your actual name to submit to the Nobel Prize nominating committee.

Posted on Feb 28, 2011 6:10:06 AM PST
David D. says:
What do you mean there is no such thing as "Darwinism"? Of course there is. Just as "the force of attraction between all masses in the universe; especially the attraction of the earth's mass for bodies near its surface", is known as "Newtonism". Both names make equal sense.

Posted on Mar 1, 2011 12:34:47 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 1, 2011 9:52:26 AM PST
Ehkzu says:
Yes! And now we must call engineering "Archimedism," medicine "Hippocratism," Democracy "Athenism," Christianity "Judaism" (after all, Christ considered himself a Jew), and conservatism "Ooklook the Paleolithic Hunter-ism."

See, people who have double-digit IQs can't grasp abstract principles. So for them everything has to be personalized. They're quite consistent this way.

So instead of trying to grasp Wall Street's default credit swaps and other arcane financial manipulations, they just recite the mantra "Barney (psst! He's a ho-mo-sex-yew-all but we won't say it!) Frank, Nancy Pelosi, Barack HUSSEIN Obama" over and over, like members of that Krisha cult who chanted "Hare Krishna" and over.

It saves a lot of thought when you do it this way.

What's really sad, though, isn't the dolts who copy and paste these long passages of technobabble into their posts. It's the actual scientists who betrayed their scientific standards for money or ideology (I don't know which is more immoral) to give fake right wing "think" tanks the stuff for the dolts to copy--using technology developed by the same methods they're trying to replace with indoctrination.

Another irony is that these (if only they were actually) missing links see Fox News reports about the Islamofascists in Afghanistan etc.--and see no connection between what Islamofascists believe and what they themselves believe.

And of course the Taliban also use technology they're incapable of designing and manufacturing themselves to try to destroy the civilization that produced this technology.

Does anybody know whether these people were homeschooled? Arab Madrassas substituted memorizing the Q'uran for readin' writin' and 'rithmatic--extra amusing because the Q'uran is written in anceint Arabic and Amharic that, like 2% of Muslims can understand.

The Bible is written in clearer English than that, but a Pew survey last year revealed that a majority of American Christians--especially fundies/evangelicals--don't actually understand their own religion--and Jews, Mormons and Atheists do. Not just religion--Christianity too--better than the Bible-thumpers.

There's a scene in A Fish Called Wanda where Jaime Lee Curtis's character calls Kevin Kline's character an ape. Kline draws himself up and says "Apes don't read philosophy." She fires back "Yes they do. They just don't understand it."

It the shoe fits...

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2011 5:51:59 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 1, 2011 7:33:42 PM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2011 8:33:26 PM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Mar 2, 2011 12:47:36 PM PST
BAMmie says of "darwinism:"
"when I misspell it, it gets flagged by my spell checker."

Gee! Too bad you don't have a BS checker in what I'd hesitate to call "your brain."

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 4, 2011 6:00:58 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 4, 2011 4:15:50 PM PST
"Otherwise life evolved or it was designed. It logically follows that if life did not evolve it was designed. If it can be demonstrated that a complex organism could not have been formed by tiny gradual modifications (Darwinian evolution) then evolution of that particular organism is not possible, it must have been designed. Disproving evolution proves design."
=====
You are setting up a false dichotomy. It could also be a directed process by non-intelligent means, or periodic rapid accumulation of changes. You are also conflating a number of different theories (evolution, natural selection, common ancestry, abiogenesis, et al). Evolution is a demonstrated fact. The fact is that we can observe organisms change as a response to the environment. Even Wells, whom you quote, acknowledges this. Abiogenesis is a far younger and more tentative theory that will take time to prove. But it has the virtue of being naturalistic. Common ancestry is the best available theory since it fits the fossil record. What is your alternative? Natural selection again has the virtue of being naturalistic.

"ID could kill the philosophy of social darwinism. Thats good for something isn't it?"
=====
Appeal to consequences of a belief. The fact that atomic theory led to atomic weapons does not invalidate atomic theory. The fact that "darwinism" can be misused does not make it untrue.

"Another thing, it is an important philosophical question that shapes a persons world view: where did we come from? ID answers that."
====
Actually ID does not answer that. One of the primary tenets of ID is that it does not try to define the "intelligence" behind the purported design. Unless you are admitting what we all know to be true, that the "I" in ID is the Christian God.

"Either your ancestors were slime balls that crawled out of primordal ooze, and you are just one step above monkeys who fling poo and fornicate and thats about all they do, or you are the product of a super intelligent entity which gives life a whole new meaning now doesn't it? That's important to some people, apparently. What you think about from whence you came... changes everything."
====
Appeal to Emotion
Appeal to Flattery
Appeal to Ridicule

Personally I've never understood why religious folks felt this argument was a good one. Believing in evolution means believing that progress is possible. Our descendants will be better than us. The alternative seems quite nihilistic to me. How people think that believing that we are the "product" of some superior being is something to be desired is beyond me. A little digression here: Have you ever explored the ramifications of that relationship? Most religious folks believe that no matter what, humans can never equal never mind surpass God. Even if you believe that God loves you, what does that make you? What do you call an inferior creature that you love that can never hope to equal you? It sure isn't child. I believe pet is more appropriate.

"What you think about from whence you came... changes everything."
===
This I agree with. People who are obsessed with the accomplishments of the forebears as opposed to their own tend to those who who have the least to be proud of. Also, people who are focused on the nihilistic desire to see this world end so as to rush to the next one are probably not that invested in making this world a better one.

"
The marine iguana and the flightless cormorant which Darwin correctly observed are the result of natural selection, they adapted to their environment. But then Darwin takes a huge leap of faith when he asserted: "From so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved." Darwin concludes that small changes which have been observed are proof of something that has never been observed: the transformation of one kind of animal into another. Losing the ability to fly is a different kind of change than say... a fish evolving into a man. Again, what we observe is the opposite of evolution's grand claims. Is natural selection proof of evolution? Where is the empirical evidence that proves a man evolved from a fish? Which mutation was it? Let's see if we can reproduce it in a laboratory, remember empirical evidence? "
====
I agree there is a leap involved, but I don't see it as particularly huge.

1) Organisms change in response to the environment
2) Complexity diminishes as you go back in time
3) Organisms share traits that seem show commonality

What conclusion would you draw? Evolution makes sense. Are all the gaps filled in? No, but what alternative do you offer other than the supernatural?

Also, you commit the fallacy of shifting goalposts. You arbitrarily define the word "kind" to exclude any observed changes of evolution. Before speciation was observed, "kinds" were species. Now that speciation has been observed, "kind" has been redefined to be closer to family. In fact creationists can't even agree amongst themselves what "kind" means.

Also, evolution doesn't claim man evolved from a fish. Man evolved from an ape-like hominid.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 4, 2011 6:34:28 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 4, 2011 7:14:40 PM PST
Doc Johnny's post: "You are setting up a false dichotomy. "

I said "If anyone has any other possible scenarios please share" because I didn't want to be accused of setting up a false dichotomy. There are only two possibilities that I can think of. I even asked for other options, you have offered no other possible scenarios.

Doc Johnny's post: "It could also be a directed process by non-intelligent means"

Yes, that is Darwinian evolution, natural selection is non-random and non-intelligent.

Doc Johnny's post: "...or periodic rapid accumulation of changes."

That is rapid bursts of evolution, you have offered no other mechanism. So where is my false dichotomy?

Doc Johnny's post: "You arbitrarily define the word "kind" to exclude any observed changes of evolution."

Where?

Doc Johnny's post: "You are also conflating a number of different theories"

Evolution can mean a number of things: common ancestry, natural selection, chemical evolution (abiogenesis.) I am not conflating anything.

The rest of your attempt to refute me can be just as easily dismantled. But I'll give you credit for trying. I'm sorry that the truth hurts, but evolution is a fairytale. You didn't evolve from single celled organism, there is no evidence for it. Only imagination. If you know where we can go to see any empirical evidence of macro-evolution, please tell me, and I will pay your airfare and mine so we can go see it together, because I'd really like to see it.

DJ: "Evolution makes sense."

Yes, I believed in it once. On the surface it sounds good. In order to offer any substance as a scientific theory, you need to do more than play connect the dots with historical evidence (old bones.) Frankly, the fossil record is the only "evidence" you have. In case you forgot how scientific theories are proven, you perform experiments and produce data or empirical evidence that demonstrates how your theory is supposed to work. You don't have any experiments that show how a single cell evolves into a multicellular organism, or how a apelike creature evolves into a human. Your idea requires too many unexplainable leaps of faith. I know you think you have explanations, but you have no evidence to back up what you believe. ID on the other hand is based on EVERYTHING we observe.

Caplan couldn't answer this one, maybe you can Doc:

Evolution model: matter + energy + time = codes

ID model: matter + energy + time + intelligence = codes

Which one have we ever observed?

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 5, 2011 5:45:13 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 5, 2011 5:51:04 AM PST
"If it can be demonstrated that a complex organism could not have been formed by tiny gradual modifications (Darwinian evolution) then evolution of that particular organism is not possible, it must have been designed."

Your two options were tiny gradual modifications vs design. I offered 2 others, but you seem to have shifted the goalposts.

Also the whole false distinction between macroevolution and microevolution is based on the false category called "kinds". Before observed speciation kinds were defined as species, now they are broader.

"Evolution can mean a number of things: common ancestry, natural selection, chemical evolution (abiogenesis.) I am not conflating anything."

The only people who call abiogenesis evolution are creationists. They are distinct fields. I am surprised you don't include "stellar evolution" and "cosmic evolution".

"The rest of your attempt to refute me can be just as easily dismantled. But I'll give you credit for trying. I'm sorry that the truth hurts, but evolution is a fairytale."

You assert without evidence then condescend then assert again without evidence.

"You didn't evolve from single celled organism, there is no evidence for it. Only imagination."

More unsupported assertions.

"If you know where we can go to see any empirical evidence of macro-evolution, please tell me, and I will pay your airfare and mine so we can go see it together, because I'd really like to see it."

A false assertion based on the false distinction between "macro" and "micro" evolution. A working knowledge of evolutionary theory would tell you all so called "macro" evolution are composed of multiple stages of so called "micro" evolution. Not being able to see a process that takes millions of years is hardly grounds for dismissing it.

"Your idea requires too many unexplainable leaps of faith."

Seriously? And imagining a supernatural intelligence is easier? Where does the intelligence come from? What is it? By what process did it create life? You substitute small leaps for a giant plunge into the abyss of supernaturalism.

"ID on the other hand is based on EVERYTHING we observe."

That's the problem. The only example of intelligence you have is human. All of the examples and analogies used in ID are based on human design compared to nature. (Eg. Mt Rushmore, watch, mousetrap, blah). If you contend that nature itself is designed then everything is designed and the word becomes meaningless.

"Caplan couldn't answer this one, maybe you can Doc:

Evolution model: matter + energy + time = codes

ID model: matter + energy + time + intelligence = codes

Which one have we ever observed?
"

Your analogy is faulty.

A better one would be

matter+energy+time+process= complexity for evolution
matter+energy+supernatural agency= complexity for intelligent design

And we have never observed supernatural agency.

Your false analogy is just an attempt to beg the question. But again it depends on failing to realize that the distinction between human intelligence (design) and natural process (non design) becomes meaningless if you state all nature is designed. If everything is designed then there is no way to distinguish between design and non-design. ID is an attempt to transpose recognition of human design elements as compared to nature onto natural processes to arrive at a supernatural explanation. It is just a modern version of Paley's watchmaker analogy.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 5, 2011 10:03:17 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 5, 2011 7:34:54 PM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Mar 5, 2011 2:14:17 PM PST
Doctor says:
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/darwinism
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/darwinism
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/darwinism

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 5, 2011 3:10:33 PM PST
Doctor says:
This is a better description of what the Darwinist hypothesize;

How Life Began

Time (billions of years) plus matter plus energy plus chance (billions of random events) =
Primeval life = (eobiont, protobiont) a hypothetical primordial life-form or chemical precursor to a living organism. It that a miracle or chemical evolution or spontainious generation???
 
Primeval life plus time (billions of years) plus energy plus chance (billions of random events/mutations) plus natural selection =evolutive speciation or "evolution". Another Miracle??
 
Now we have single cell capable of consuming energy from its environment, repairing and maintaining itself, and reproducing. WOW!!! We now have a teleonimic von Neumann machine. Ain't nature wonderful. That surely is a miracle!

Now Natural Selection can weed out the unfit.

Now Evolution (Neo- Darwinism aka Modern Synthesis) can produce more complex forms of life.

Natural selection is the process by which the best-adapted individuals produce the most offspring, which in turn carry forward to their offspring the genes that gave their parents the upper edge.

Genetic drift is a random process in which chance plays a role in deciding which gene variants (alleles) survive.

Gene flow occurs when genes are carried from one population to another. Also called migration, an example of gene is when pollen gets blown to a region where it previously did not exist, transporting new genetic material to that population.

Mutations are also random. Changes to an organism's DNA can impact all aspects of its life, from how it looks and behaves to its basic physiology. Most are not detectedable in the phenotype and the rest are bad, affecting viability and the ability to produce offspring!
So much for Evolution
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Initial post:  Feb 25, 2011
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