Friday, August 08, 2008

How Blind Lizards Make Nonsense of Darwinist Claims

I guess there are some creationists and ID people out there who maintain that the complexity of the eye is one of the strongest arguments against random mutation. I have no idea of the current state of that argument, only to say that it is ongoing.

I imagine that much of the debate is based upon intuition rather than cold logic, although the coldest logicians always imagine they are nearest to the flame. But there are some people who just refuse to believe that a thousand Kerouacs typing on a thousand typewriters while swallowing millions of amphetamines could ever produce the works of Suzanne Somers, let alone Rod McKuen or the bitter and pudgy cat lady with the tragic comb over, JAMES WOLCOTT.

But that argument doesn't really interest me, being that it takes place so far below the laughty peaks of the coonosphere. It's like watching a bunch of squares and moldy figs argue over whether cubop or thelonious spheres exist. If you're already spherical, the whole disrespectacle is simultaneously silly and insulting, since they would have us believe that our existence depends upon the outcome of the debate. But of course, we exist irrespective of what these easily soph-satisfied flat earthlings can prove to themselves with mere logic.

Likewise, suprasensible realities exist regardless of the outcome of a debate between, say Christopher Hitchens and Dinesh D'Souza, or Petey and Queeg for that matter. A debate is quintessentially a linear exercise. I don't wish to debate. Rather, I want to demonstrate. Like Suzanne Somers, I would like to touch you, to help you change your life and show how fallen mankind can pick itself up, dust itself off, and start all over again.

Is this grandiose? Perhaps. But one cannot evolve spiritually in the absence of alignment with an unreachable star, and mine happens to be Suzanne Somers. For me, every day is a chance to somersize my brain and to be eternally slim and sexy. No, this is not a knock on Deepak. It is just that for me, Suzanne is the image of truth and the conveyer of the secrets hidden since the foundation of the world, or at least since Three's Company was cancelled.

Now, a month or so ago, I remember Queeg linking to another BREAKING STORY that proves the truth of Darwinism. I don't remember the details, but it had something to do with a lizard that lived in the dark for so long that it "unevolved" its eyes. What were once eyes were reduced to mere virtualities -- just a couple of empty sockets in the lizard melon. Now now, don't laugh at the irony. Not yet.

As if we didn't know that lizards who live in darkness will forget how to see! For Hitchens -- who is quite obviously frightfully intelligent but who is just as frightfully intellectually blind -- this qualifies as a Big Deal, even a MOMENT OF EUREKA and AN ORIGINAL THOUGHT ON A CONTESTED SUBJECT! But if Hitchens were actually capable of having an original thought about Truth, it would only prove that Truth exists and that reductionistic Darwinism therefore cannot be true.

A much more interesting question is how Darwinist creatures can devolve their eyes -- how, in Hitchens' words, "denizens of the underworld" can "lose the eyes they had once possessed." No, not physical eyes, but the spiritual eye that "sees" suprasensible realities.

You see -- and I know you do -- Hitchens, or Queeg, or Dawkins, or all the rest of the anti-spiritual hucksters, frauds and shills, aren't really hucksters, frauds, or shills at all. Rather, they are merely blind. Somehow they have devolved to the point that they cannot see what the vast majority of human beings have always been able to see and know. After all, this is why a blind human being can see infinitely further than a Lizard with perfect vision. It is why Ray Charles or Lennie Tristano are artists who could not ride bicycles, while Queeg is a bicyclist who can play a guitar. Indeed, it is why Beethoven had such fine hearing even without functioning ears.

Seriously. I mean, art does exist, right? Or are we going to argue that point as well? I suppose we could. In Hitchens' piece, he claims that the nature program that prompted his EUREKA moment also had some beautiful images that should "redefine art." He doesn't explain how, but I don't think it qualifies as a new insight to point out that the world is inexplicably beautiful in such a way that it defies any Darwinian explanation. After all, if Darwinism is correct, nothing is beautiful, precisely.

As I have mentioned before, when Future Leader is on the cusp of puberty, I'll let him in on the Darwinian secret to sexual happiness and harmony, which is to say that women aren't actually beautiful, so that there's no need to waste a lot of energy as I did, idealizing and pining over Suzie Campbell in biology class (of all places!). You see, their "attractiveness" is simply a trick of the genes designed to get you to reproduce. So ignore all that. It's just a ruse. Certainly don't "fall in love," love being another one of those tricks of the genes to make you think that lust has some higher purpose.

So the Darwinist is able to make quick work of anything that transcends the animal state, and thereby knock humans off their pedestal. It's not that we actually "fall" back to earth, since we never actually left it to begin with. To the extent that we imagine that things like beauty, or truth, or virtue, or justice, or dignity, are real, they are actually reducible to some genetic advantage that was conferred upon some furbear lost in the mists of our random walk through the morphic space of biological possibility.

But why on earth is there so much sublime beauty in all these random products of nature that we can't even have sex with? I mean, Darwin explains the physical beauty of Suzanne Somers, but what accounts for the beauty of her poetry? Or, if you are one of those smug sophisticates who thinks that her poetry is on the same level as, say, Nancy Pelosi's meager literary gifts, how did you arrive at that aesthetic judgment?

True, Pelosi's ugly, shrill, and tasteless book stinks, and I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole. But I did not arrive at this conclusion with eyes, ears, hands, tongue, or nose. In fact -- and I'm sure this will be a controversial statement to non-Raccoon readers -- I didn't even have to read the book to know that it is devoid of truth and beauty. There, I've said it. My cOOnvision can "see" into a book without even reading it. This is in contrast to a blind lizard who can read a book without ever actually seeing - much less hearing -- it.

In yesterday's comments, I mentioned what amounts to a banality for Raccoons, that.... hmm, I see that Petey and I made a number of banal comments and quips that are relevant to today's post. For example, I mentioned something that never ceases to amaze, which is that "no matter where I go theologically, I find that some lofty Christian thinker has preceded me there." But not only Christian; also Jewish, Taoist, Buddhist, Vedantic, and yes, even Sufi. I won't rehearse all of the evidence here, since it would take 1044 pages to do so, and Perry has already done it anyway.

Now, the reason why such a book is possible is because spiritual evolution is convergent, not divergent. Just as eyes evolved through wildly diverse means toward a similar end result, the same is true of our psychic eye. The proof is there for anyone with eyes to see. Which, unfortunately, a priori excludes blind Lizards who see what they see and that's all they see. But they shouldn't presume to see for the rest of us. They may have stopped evolving, but for us the evolutionary adventure continues, 24/7/365.

152 Comments:

Anonymous Niggardly Phil said...

Clearly the work of the thighmaster is of a higher mind.

The first and most manifest way is from thighmastering.

8/08/2008 08:48:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Yes. Don't even talk to me about mastering esoteric doctrine if you haven't mastered the thighs. Trust me, you don't want to see Hitchens' thighs.

8/08/2008 08:54:00 AM  
Anonymous Niggardly Phil said...

But why on earth is there so much sublime beauty in all these random products of nature that we can't even have sex with?

I have not laughed that hard in a while.

"He treats objects like women, man."

8/08/2008 08:54:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Phil, it's a great day that starts off with quote from the Big L.

Bob, I thought you were already slim and sexy? Dupree and Lafayette could probably use a bit of thighmastery, though...

8/08/2008 09:03:00 AM  
Blogger walt said...

I lost a certain amount of eyesight just following all the *links* in the post!

And, speaking of evolution:
In the '70s, the gravely-voiced Rod McKuen, writer of such all-time favorite love poems as Stanyan Street, actually lost favor with his San Francisco "audience" when it became known he was gay. Compare to SF today. You see: things have evolved there!

And Pelosi, who is criss-crossing the USA on her book tour, has sold approximately 2500 books to date, so she's gotta be feeling pretty good . . .

8/08/2008 09:10:00 AM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

. Trust me, you don't want to see Hitchens' thighs.

Man, I hope that's the cOOnvision talkin' and not a declaration of anecdotal evidence.

8/08/2008 09:28:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bob wrote:

"...we imagine that things like beauty, or truth, or virtue, or justice, or dignity, are real, they are actually reducible to some genetic advantage that was conferred upon some furbear lost in the mists of (time)."

I think you've got something here.

All of the things you mention are processed in the brain, which is definitely under the pressures of natural selection. Any artifact of consciousness must be evolved via the aegis of sexual selection.

The other thing you postulated, a "spiritual eye," is very likely linked to a brain structure as well, in particular where intuition is processed. It too is under the pressure of natural (sexual)selection.

There's no getting around it. God uses natural selection, and matter in the form of brain tissue, for spiritual effects He wants to create.

This partially explains the prominent role of sex in the spiritual struggle, usually as an aid but mostly as a bar.

Darwin and Godwin are both correct. The Master is truly there, and He wields the Darwin stick in His own hands, and He seems to have a firm grasp around the nads of his people.

8/08/2008 09:29:00 AM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

In fact -- and I'm sure this will be a controversial statement to non-Raccoon readers -- I didn't even have to read the book to know that it is devoid of truth and beauty. There, I've said it. My cOOnvision can "see" into a book without even reading it. This is in contrast to a blind lizard who can read a book without ever actually seeing - much less hearing -- it.


Heh, so funny but so true. Wonderful having cOOnvision it keeps you from wasting your time reading a lot of books when you see the ugly soul that writes the book. Not only is Queeq blind, but he is developing eyes that only see the grotesque. Like his current post right now...just the beginning implications that "Christians," are trying to smear Obamma as being the anti-Christ.

Right now it is just the "Evangelical Type" of Christian, but Queeg's newly evolved eyes will see the hidden cords that tie, Evangelical, to Islam, to all forces of darkness, and ultimately (and this is the point of such evolutionary organs) to all COONS...yep.

8/08/2008 09:47:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Progressive Myopia. Is there any other kind? Of progressiveism, I mean,

8/08/2008 09:50:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Anonymous,
not quite sure what you're getting at, but I think Bob pretty clearly stated the raccoon position on sex the other day. Of course, I can't find it right now, but Mushroom also provided a very enlightening link, here.

8/08/2008 09:51:00 AM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

anon said: The Master is truly there, and He wields the Darwin stick in His own hands, and He seems to have a firm grasp around the nads of his people.

The Master is truly there, and He wields the Darwin stick in His own hands, and He seems to have a firm grasp around the nads of his people.


Until proven otherwise I take what you said as Irony...right? You know like God is just like you, envious of other people's Nads.

8/08/2008 09:51:00 AM  
Anonymous Zophiel said...

Anon @ 9:29--

"The other thing you postulated, a "spiritual eye," is very likely linked to a brain structure as well, in particular where intuition is processed"

I think the key difference between Darwin(ism) and most of those here, would be that the former reduces the spiritual to a mere matter of chemicals and firing synapses, while the latter would posit that the chemicals and synapse-firing was a physical side effect of of the "spiritual." Or maybe not even a side-effect, as the physical part of the process, but not the whole of the process.

. . . Perhaps why so many traditions try to quiet the synapses as much as possible. Mmm, non-thoughts. . .^_^

8/08/2008 09:54:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

The Obama/Anti-Christ issue is hardly a new story. We broke it six months ago.

8/08/2008 09:57:00 AM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

it had something to do with a lizard that lived in the dark for so long that it "unevolved" its eyes.

*raising hand in class*

Okay, jessa minute here. Did these lizards evolve in the dark as a separate species? There are so many scenarios that one can depict. I mean, because we don't actually know which species of lizard came first, do we?

Isn't it possible that said lizards had a genetic dispostion toward evolving into sighted critters, but, never being persecuted or preyed upon in their dark echo-chambers, just never had to get up the moxie to develop sight?

Mighn't it be that they are UNevolved and not DEvolved? Last I heard, evolution moves forward, just like time.

If DEvolution (not just entropy) becomes a science, then all bets are off. It's more of the "fitting the world into my idea" scenario.

8/08/2008 10:00:00 AM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

It's not like I coulda asked that question over at LGF.

8/08/2008 10:01:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

What does your vision tell you about that book I mentioned? You can get a somewhat-relevant taste here... or read a lot of papers and essays here for free.

8/08/2008 10:05:00 AM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Suzanne has the thighmaster, Bob has the highmaster. :^)

8/08/2008 10:08:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Joan--

For what it's worth, the Discovery Institute responded to Hitchens' essay. (I didn't read it, so I can't say whether or not I agree.)

8/08/2008 10:08:00 AM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

"If DEvolution (not just entropy) becomes a science, then all bets are off. It's more of the "fitting the world into my idea" scenario."

Good point, Joan!
Or we can call it the "Queeg Method" (or unmethod, but who cares since it's all relative anyway?).

8/08/2008 10:11:00 AM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

Bob, I went and skimmed that 6 month old post and how terrible, how unlizardlike that you would call the GREAT ONE a possible anti Christ. When Queeg is only just now realizing that some may be "intimating," that he may be "a" anti Christ. (Actually they are just pointing out he is a Megalomaniac) but since horrid Christians are involved, it must mean they see him as the anti Christ, or at least as Henry Kissinger.

And the problem is not that he could be an anti Christ (how could he since there is NO Christ) The problem is those that think of such things. I have a feeling that these sorts are driving the hapless protesting Queeg into the arms of his beloved, if only to protect him and of course the 1st amendment meant to specifically protect Lizard and Pedophile alike.

(sound of ball bearing, upon ball bearing)

8/08/2008 10:13:00 AM  
Anonymous Skully said...

Waitaminnit! Pelosi can write?

8/08/2008 10:14:00 AM  
Blogger erasmus said...

Math Fact of the Day:

I just wanted to point out that not only does 2+2=4, but 2+2=100.

8/08/2008 10:19:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

That Obama follows a false and evil form of Christianity can have no meaning to one who regards any form of Christianity as false and evil.

8/08/2008 10:19:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Zophiel:

Yes, you're comment hits the mark. I see what you're getting at: the contents of thought and feeling, i.e. truth/beauty and all other quanta of the human experience, require two elements.

The first is the non-material content, of which we know little about the source.

The other is the neurosynaptic machinery on which the non-material content must be received/conceived and played/processed.

One must have a brain genetically equipped to process the spiritual content of consciousness which infiltrates into the brain via unknown mechanisms.

It must be recognized that each of these two elements of experience are essential.

The God-lover must be given his due. She controls the province of spirit.

The Darwinist must be given her due as well. She controls the province of the physical brain.

God Itself must be given the nod as controlling both and all provinces and the background field on which they exist.

So, per relevance to this blogsite, the Darwinist needs to be given room at the table. She has a legit. voice because she controls knowledge of the hardware applications that make God-knowledge possible.

8/08/2008 10:20:00 AM  
Anonymous Tex Taylor said...

Color me an Evangelical that is highly skeptical of Obama rating as the anti-Christ {snicker}...

And I base that on the intuition that the anti-Christ will be articulate and spell-binding without the aid of a teleprompter.

I know for a fact that Satan knows Hillary didn't win Kentucky in the Democratic election by 50 points because Arkansas was in closer proximity. Especially being that the the son of the prophet Jeremiah's (Wright) home state adjoins Kentucky.

Besides, I give old Lucifer far more credit than that about his ability to deceive. Give the devil his due and all.

Maybe this is just a satanic trial balloon?

8/08/2008 10:20:00 AM  
Anonymous cousin Dupree said...

Darwinist amps can all be turned up to 11.

8/08/2008 10:21:00 AM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

Right on queue Ray (because he hates beauty for what it points to) posts links to PROVE that beauty is just a mind fuck...to get him to fuck. (Sorry all cOOns for the crudeness, but alas some minds leave you nothing else but primitive grunting and clicks for communication).

8/08/2008 10:21:00 AM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Cooncur, Kepler!
The number of comments at LGF have dramatically dropped, particularly on Queegs banal ID threads, so he continues to expand his 1984ish quest to show how dangerous Christians are.
Plus, he's hoping for more hits on his blog, no doubt.

8/08/2008 10:21:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

I didn't mean to imply "the" anti-Christ, only "anti-Christic," which shouldn't be controversial, given his clearly anti-Christic church.

8/08/2008 10:23:00 AM  
Blogger Warren said...

This recent quote from Dinesh D'Souza has absolutely nothing to do with today's discussion, but I thought it was good, and it underscores a point often made by Dear Leader:

"Nietzsche argued that if you want to get rid of the Christian God, at least have the honesty and the guts to repudiate the Christian ideals of human dignity, human equality and human liberty. Yet our village atheists want to have it both ways. They want to reject God but preserve at least certain core aspects of the Christian legacy. Nietzsche would have had nothing but scorn for these little men of unbelief, Lilliputians hurling their tiny javelins at the Christian God while they continue to live off His inheritance."

8/08/2008 10:25:00 AM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Anone said-
"So, per relevance to this blogsite, the Darwinist needs to be given room at the table. She has a legit. voice because she controls knowledge of the hardware applications that make God-knowledge possible."

The Darwinist already has her doo.
And she can keep it, 'cause it stinks.

8/08/2008 10:26:00 AM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

anon said:

So, per relevance to this blogsite, the Darwinist needs to be given room at the table. She has a legit. voice because she controls knowledge of the hardware applications that make God-knowledge possible.

Wait a minute! How can all Darwinists be female? How do they reproduce so the idiot genes, mutated by cosmic rays recombine to give us Suzanne Somers? Eh...O, I get it God squeezed some of those NADS to tightly...never mind.

8/08/2008 10:27:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

I think Queeg's spiritual blindness explains Pajamas Media. The reason why I quit is because it's mostly a bunch of mediocrities (with some notable exceptions) with whom I didn't want to be associated. Also, whenever they would link to me it would generate traffic, but only maybe one in a thousand would really get the point.

8/08/2008 10:27:00 AM  
Blogger erasmus said...

Anon 10:20 says:

"The God-lover must be given his due. She controls the province of spirit.

The Darwinist must be given her due as well. She controls the province of the physical brain."

I'm placing this one under "Missing the Point"

8/08/2008 10:28:00 AM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Warren-
Yes, they wanna throw out the baby but keep the bath water.

8/08/2008 10:29:00 AM  
Anonymous Tex Taylor said...

Bob,

I didn't mean to imply "the" anti-Christ, only "anti-Christic," which shouldn't be controversial, given his clearly anti-Christic church.

But it did provide a great opening for a cheap shot across the Obama bow...

I knew what you meant and agree.

8/08/2008 10:29:00 AM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

Well, thanks for the link, Bob. I think I have to hunting for something else, as that does not address the question. In mutative aspects, timelines are important, but location, location,location is still the #1 factor in selling real estate or swamp lands.

I remember having this same question in high school go unanswered. Kids with overactive imaginations (cOOnvision) are eventually told to, "shush".

I don't mind studying evolution in any way that it's presented. I just have questions that don't fit the narrative. I grew up Catholic, being allowed to believe in evolution as long as I could embrace the Vertical intersection of the process.

But I'm still having trouble with the convenient leaps in the dark and grandiose "somehows" that have allowed science fiction to drive the evolutionary bus, instead of sound logic, strong questions, and a healthy dose of "we can't really know, we weren't there." None of these trustworthy attributes are displayed by the True Believers who have ruined the scientific process in favor of a Narrative.

8/08/2008 10:32:00 AM  
Anonymous Skully said...

Who needs pajamas anyway? Bloggin' in the buff is way more comfortable!

8/08/2008 10:34:00 AM  
Anonymous cousin Dupree said...

Yes, so long as you have a thighmaster.

8/08/2008 10:36:00 AM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

You know in the old days we could have just called Obamma a ruthlessly ambitious asshole, that would throw his grandma under the bus, or anyone else that got is his way of SAVING us all. But now the Christians have mucked it all up trying to make him out as the anti Christ. And now Obamma is sure to capture 99% of the Queeq vote...STUPID Christians! He won't get MY vote...because, well I am a racist, that is why.

(walking over to stand under the statue of Nathan Bedford Forrest)

8/08/2008 10:39:00 AM  
Blogger mushroom said...

Indeed, it is why Beethoven had such fine hearing even without functioning ears.

OK, I can see evolution giving us a few blind piano players. But I'll have to wait for Ray to return from the mountain where he has gone to commune with the lingering mathematical effulgence of Ch-rl-s D-rw-n to explain a deaf composer.

8/08/2008 10:40:00 AM  
Anonymous slim pickens said...

Damn, Skully, and just as I was sittin' down ta scones and kidney pie fer lunch.

8/08/2008 10:41:00 AM  
Anonymous suzanne said...

Organic girl dropped by last night
For nothing in particular
Except to tell me again how beautiful and serene she feels
On uncooked vegetables and wheat germ fortified by bean sprouts--
Mixed with yeast and egg whites on really big days--She not only meditates regularly, but looks at me like I should
And lectures me about meat and ice cream
And other aggressive foods I shouldn't eat.

8/08/2008 10:43:00 AM  
Anonymous suzanne said...

Touch me
Not like a cat
Or a tree
Or even a flower
For I am more than all of these
Yet akin to them: a woman

8/08/2008 10:44:00 AM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

suzanne, The best defense against militant vegetarians is to reek of Tommy's (world famous) Chili Cheeseburgers, to bad they don't have a spray you could use when you see one coming.

8/08/2008 10:47:00 AM  
Anonymous Skully said...

How come no one wants to touch me?

8/08/2008 10:48:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Joan, if you're following a line of serious inquiry, I'll rephrase my original reply (which I deleted, because I thought it was possible you were being facetious).

I think using the word "devolve" to describe the loss of certain attributes within a species, such as sight for cave lizards or weight-bearing limbs in whales, is perhaps a bad way to describe it. The phrase "use it or lose it" applies just as much to species as it does to individuals. The trouble with evolution as a scientific concept is that animals aren't really moving toward becoming some kind of Archetypal creature, a pinnacle of its species. It's really more about adaptation to the circumstances in which they find themselves. Attributes which are useless will, over time, shrink and practically disappear, freeing up resources to be used in more beneficial ways. Though it does beg the question as to why the lizard's eyes don't evolve to see heat instead of light, or something just as useful.

I have yet to see a circumstance in which a cave fish becomes a cave lizard or a cave bat. The lizard is still clearly a lizard, with or without eyes. If the lizard had become a mammal, that would be truly astounding.

8/08/2008 10:50:00 AM  
Anonymous Tex Taylor said...

I've grown quite fond of the militant organics and their gaunt look. I wish there were many more of them.

It keeps the price of hamburger down for me and the Mrs.

8/08/2008 10:51:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Mushroom - explain a deaf composer.

Okay.

8/08/2008 10:59:00 AM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

Yes, Julie.

But the whole idea of the mutation is that it is random: accidental advantages, if you will. The whole explication of the "survival" position is all about happy accidents that lend a superior edge in competition.

Just listening to the "they evolved for themselves helpful stumps that later turned into feet." Seriously, if they hate ID so much, why do they ascribe it in their language?

They want it all to be random selection, but if eyes are not a hindrance to the process, why lose them? I still have a damn appendix, after all!

And really, what little kid hasn't wished for a prehensile tail? Why did that have to go?

:o)

8/08/2008 11:08:00 AM  
Anonymous homer simpson said...

Is there anything Ray can't explain?

8/08/2008 11:09:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

The coldest logicians always imagine they are nearest to the flame.

8/08/2008 11:12:00 AM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

You could drag through Ray's links...

Or listen to this... instead. Our priest/man-of-the-wild gets to the interesting stuff later.. to the tune of Maximos the Confessor!

The book is this.

8/08/2008 11:12:00 AM  
Blogger mushroom said...

Hint: Beethoven was not born deaf.

8/08/2008 11:12:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Julie - "The trouble with evolution as a scientific concept is that animals aren't really moving toward becoming some kind of Archetypal creature..."

The question is, why should they? I've mentioned 'ring species' before - there's a lot of ways to get along in the world, even within a species. Many frogs use mating calls. Male frogs croak, and when a female hears a nice, deep call, she answers, announcing her position. But to make a deep, Barry White call, a frog needs to be large... and that often means slow. Sometimes, a smaller but faster male gets there first, and, well, takes advantage of the Barry White music.

So, which is the 'archetype' of the male frog? A certain proportion of each are stable... at least, so long as the environment is stable, which it isn't over evolutionary timescales.

We look at collections of organisms and abstract an 'archetype' from them. Like with viruses - there's the notion of the 'wild type' in viruses. Viral genes mutate a lot, there's usually plenty of variation... but some variants are more common than others. Drugs and treatments are aimed at the 'wild type', the virus with the most common set of genes... even though there might not exist a single virus with that exact collection of genes.

I have yet to see a circumstance in which a cave fish becomes a cave lizard or a cave bat.

Fortunately, only people who don't understand (or don't want to understand) evolution think that evolution is supposed to work that way. :-/

8/08/2008 11:12:00 AM  
Blogger Warren said...

Re Beethoven, I should point out that he started to get hard of hearing in his late 20s, which slowly progressed to total deafness in his mid-40s. But he was composing long before he started to lose his hearing.

8/08/2008 11:13:00 AM  
Blogger Warren said...

(D'oh! Mushroom beat me to it.)

"Is there anything Ray can't explain?"

Ray's miraculous genius cannot possibly be explained by random mutation and natural selection.

8/08/2008 11:15:00 AM  
Anonymous Petey said...

The Ray is not the sun, and yet it is not other than it.

8/08/2008 11:17:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Losing traits previously acquired is easy to explain, as per my above (perhaps badly worded) comment. I can't tell you why in the world fins became feet, or how feathered wings came about along with hollow bones and other requisite features for flying. Of course, I don't think those major changes were particularly random. But clearly, they did happen.

Speaking of specialized environments, one thing about the Galapagos, for instance, is that while there are all kinds of signs of adaptation, even big variations from one generation to the next depending on weather patterns (I had to read "The Beak of the Finch in college), it's pretty clear that no matter what changes were made, finches remained finches, turtles remained turtles, jellyfish remained spineless, and lizards remained lizards, regardless of the unusual environmental niches they might be filling.

8/08/2008 11:18:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

"In fact -- and I'm sure this will be a controversial statement to non-Raccoon readers -- I didn't even have to read the book to know that it is devoid of truth and beauty. There, I've said it. My cOOnvision can "see" into a book without even reading it. This is in contrast to a blind lizard who can read a book without ever actually seeing - much less hearing -- it."

Aplaying that forward to Ray's enthighastic set of links, the last one "read a lot of papers and essays here for free"

boasts at its bottom (...ahem...):

"I'M A BLOGGER NOW! See my blogs for the Huffington Post at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-sloan-wilson/#blogger_bio "

There you go.

8/08/2008 11:18:00 AM  
Anonymous ximeze said...

Adolf H was really into that non-aggressive foods gig & we know how well that turned out for the planet.

Say... maybe that's why militant vegetables are often such A-wholes.

8/08/2008 11:20:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

It becomes increasingly clear that Ray will also remain Ray.

8/08/2008 11:21:00 AM  
Anonymous cousin Dupree said...

Anyone who would associate with Huffpo is so beyond the pale in terms of taste, judgment, and decency, they they can be safely ignored. Or only unsafely paid attention to.

8/08/2008 11:22:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Julie - Though it does beg the question as to why the lizard's eyes don't evolve to see heat instead of light, or something just as useful.

Because natural selection has no foresight. It works with what it's got, and if a change isn't advantageous or at least neutral, it'll tend to get 'weeded out'. The initial steps that might lead in the direction of infrared eyes weren't as advantageous as the 'cost-saving' changes of getting rid of the eyes.

That's what the 'irreducible complexity' types are looking for. Examples of things that have to be there 'all at once', with no gradual set of 'beneficial or neutral' steps leading to it. A "you can't get here from there" structure. So far, no dice, though.

8/08/2008 11:22:00 AM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

Ray & Julie, in terms of Natural Selection it is certain that creatures are not moving towards their 'archetype', but Maximos seems to have a conviction that in general they are. That is, Maximos the Confessor believed in Evolution before Darwin was a gleam in the eye of his papa.

8/08/2008 11:24:00 AM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

Evolution explanations are always couched in human terms, being that man is the crown of creation.

8/08/2008 11:25:00 AM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

Ray: How about the soul?

8/08/2008 11:28:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

What a breathtaking jackass is Sloan-Wilson. How about this for a gem of Darwinist wisdom applied to poltiics:

"Liberals place a high value on individual autonomy and decision-making. Individuals are expected to internalize the norms of their culture and do the right thing on a case-by-case basis after thinking about it. This strategy can be highly successful but can also be costly in the time required for information processing, in making mistakes, and in ignoring successful behaviors winnowed by tradition that work without anyone knowing why they work. Conservatives place a high value on obedience to authority. This strategy might stifle creativity but has a number of advantages, such as easing the burden of information processing, retaining successful behaviors winnowed by tradition, and coordinated action. Even liberals sheepishly acknowledge that they are like cats when it comes to herding."

8/08/2008 11:28:00 AM  
Blogger Van said...

Skully said "Who needs pajamas anyway? Bloggin' in the buff is way more comfortable!"

cousin Dupree said "Yes, so long as you have a thighmaster."

Watch the Nads.

Just sayin'

8/08/2008 11:30:00 AM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

Or, there's this.

8/08/2008 11:30:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Julie - We've seen new species forming, and even new structures forming in historical time. Big changes (like, say, the lizardlike therapsids to mammals) take more than even thousands of years, though. For that, you need the fossil record - and if you don't "attack the connections", as Bob puts it, it's very clear.
Add in the molecular evidence that's only been available in the last few decades, and it's, well, awfully convincing.

8/08/2008 11:32:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

River,
I believe humans must be evolving toward some type of divine archetype. I don't know as much about animals, although one thing that has occurred to me lately is that there are an awful lot of living things that benefit tremendously when humans (in general) give them positive attention. Plants produce bigger and better fruit, livestock become healthier, pets (especially dogs) become, well, whatever it is we need for them to become. So maybe in that sense, when humanity is guided by loftier goals we can pass on a kind of true Evolution that surpasses mere random selection?

But this is all pure (and probably useless) speculation. And really, as Bob put it in today's post,

"But of course, we exist irrespective of what these easily soph-satisfied flat earthlings can prove to themselves with mere logic (that includes little ol' me).

Likewise, suprasensible realities exist regardless of the outcome of a debate..."

8/08/2008 11:32:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

What a painfully naive man -- or arrested adolescent is more like it:

"What do I mean by a stealth religion? I clearly define a stealth religion as any belief system that distorts the facts of the real world (yes, there is a real world out there, and it does not include people sitting on clouds) for the purpose of motivating a given suite of behaviors. Beliefs in supernatural agents are a particular distortion of factual reality and I want to broaden the discussion to include all distortions of factual reality."

8/08/2008 11:33:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

*sigh*
Ray, at this point I can only repeat what I said earlier today on yesterday's post:

"Personally, I'm just fine with the idea of natural selection; in fact, I think it's one of those things which can't not be. It is an elegant system and an amazing process. This does not change the fact that some impetus, some strange force beyond mere sunlight and chemical mixing, was necessary to get it all started, and so far I haven't seen anything resembling conclusive evidence as to quite how we went through the major periodic changes without some ?? popping in some programming directives here and there.

Show me a sterile pool of chemicals spontaneously producing any form of life, and then I'll truly be surprised.

But even that, wondrous and amazing as it would be, would not make me question the existence of God."

8/08/2008 11:38:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blog comment referee sez:

Ray is beating the pants off you guys. Either he's good at rhetoric or he's commenting from a stronger theoretical position, or both.

The 'coons will have to concede on natural selection, or ban the subject,or hope it dies away. Because the 'coon position (and what is that exactly? That's part of the problem) just ain't cutting the mustard.

8/08/2008 11:38:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Bob - Let's include the very next sentence: "These are just cartoons of cultural species and their niches, but they illustrate the value of thinking of humanity as more like an ecosystem than a single species, thanks to cultural diversification--not only worldwide, but in our midst."

You yourself, when making a blog post, say things like "Now, I'm oversimplifying here..." It sure seems like Wilson did the same.

8/08/2008 11:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Niggardly Phil said...

Well, I for one am glad the liberals are finally going to do something about men sitting in clouds. I am so sick of those guys messing up our country.

8/08/2008 11:45:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

River - The soul is more or less what Van and I spar about from time to time.

8/08/2008 11:49:00 AM  
Blogger erasmus said...

Ray certainly doesn't bother me in the least. Reading Ray is kind of like reading what I said back when I was in high school.

I used to do what Ray does here to my Pentecostal friend in high school all the time.

It was lots of fun at the time. Ah, memories...

8/08/2008 11:50:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Dang it. Here's the actual link to the new digestive structures formed in just a few decades.

8/08/2008 11:52:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Yes, I used to be Ray when the JWs came to my door!

8/08/2008 11:55:00 AM  
Blogger julie said...

Bob, I see that he subscribes to the "poor folk clinging to religion and guns" explanation for religious beliefs.

Obviously, this guy isn't a feminist either:

"...religiosity is stronger in the more vulnerable segments of the population, such as women, poorer households, the less educated, and the unskilled working class."

So whatever I have to say on the matter, my belief is just 'cause I'm a poor, vulnerable and frightened wee thing.

*snork*

8/08/2008 11:56:00 AM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

Name-checked today by the cat lady with a bad comb-over, James Wolcott. The fool's reproach is a kingly title!

8/08/2008 11:58:00 AM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

@ Ray's anonymouse referee friend:

You haven't comprehensively read a bit of this thread of this blog.

At least Rayn Man obsessively does his homework. Sure, it's the same homework over and over, but you gotta love that sort of OCD. It's a safe place for Ray, and keeps him from getting hurt. It's harmless.

Most here have done more a study of evolution than detractors have ever studied logic. I have, over the years been exposed to tons of the Darwinism mindset. I'm at the point where I can't listen to it for the way the language surrounding it has evolved into a religion.

So, I have no further interest in rehashing the linguistic difficulties that Darwinists have in maintaining a scientific objectivity, and I'm rusty on the details, I'll admit. But the very language of their communication exposes their intellectual short-cutting.

Words mean things, even in science.

8/08/2008 11:59:00 AM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Julie - "But even that, wondrous and amazing as it would be, would not make me question the existence of God."

Exactly. The people who have such problems with evolution are like the ones who had such problems with heliocentrism way back when. They will be regarded as equally misguided... eventually.

8/08/2008 12:02:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Erasmus, I too, was Ray for a little while. But it wasn't much fun being that much of a know-it-all.

I've said it before, if your metaphysic can't handle real scientific discoveries, then you should maybe re-evaluate your metaphysic. Me, I have nothing but a sense of wonder at scientific discoveries, including the things which we can learn about how mankind came about horizontally. This doesn't - can't - change the vertical truth, since it is a declension from the absolute.

8/08/2008 12:03:00 PM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

Ray said: Because natural selection has no foresight. It works with what it's got,...

So it must have had all it needed in the first multicellular organism...by your definition

...and if a change isn't advantageous or at least neutral, it'll tend to get 'weeded out'.

I see, like a present day Tiger is so much a better killing machine than a Sabre tooth tiger? And buffalo are better suited to survival than Mastadons? Gee you Darwin guys sure know a lot from bones!

The initial steps that might lead in the direction of infrared eyes weren't as advantageous as the 'cost-saving' changes of getting rid of the eyes.

How do you KNOW such things? O, you mean it is OBVIOUS because there are no infra-red eyes? Nothing like having a theory that is a tautology.

Certainly these observations are a relief, it would be depressing to think you came about for some purpose, but you are just some electro-chemical process, obsessively focused that other electro-chemical processes STOP thinking they are NOT electro-chemical processes.

8/08/2008 12:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Niggardly Phil said...

Ya know, lefty blogs are a hornet's nest of nasty, mean, angry, four-lettery incivility, proof that liberalism is the godless faith of the permanently aggrieved.

{said while fondling my pearls} (not a euphemism).

8/08/2008 12:07:00 PM  
Anonymous ximeze said...

Ray is certainly beating something, but it's not anybody's pants.

8/08/2008 12:08:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Interesting...Lizards are turning on A. Van Hilten, however, they don't seem to have a clue that Charles commended Hiltens rat-finking in another thread.

LGF AntiChrist

Also, Queeg seems to be somewhat miffed that most Lizards don't take his "Evangelicals think Obama is the anti-Christ and somehow convinced McCain to use that in an ad" idea seriously.

Heh!

8/08/2008 12:09:00 PM  
Blogger Gagdad Bob said...

I wonder why an important man like James Wolcott would condescend to mention my little blog? Dupree and I will have to follow his work more closely.

8/08/2008 12:10:00 PM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

All structures are simply an elaboration of the underlying principles of the universe itself. However, the bridge between matter and life, life and mind, and mind and spirit are going to be... difficult.

Or how about, impossible? Considering that the first is sidelined in favor of low hanging fruit (biting sheep does not kill the sheepdog, though) and the second two are more or less denied out of existence.

8/08/2008 12:10:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Heh - I wonder why Wolcott gave you a link, when he didn't the others? It must be some kind of sign of anti-respect.

Also, he obviously missed this news item.

8/08/2008 12:12:00 PM  
Anonymous cousin Dupree said...

Well, lefty blogs are twelve times more fucking likely to use profanity.

8/08/2008 12:12:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Doh!

I swear, I'm not copying Dupree, I was looking for links :)

8/08/2008 12:13:00 PM  
Anonymous cousin Dupree said...

Jinks!

You owe me a yahoo!

8/08/2008 12:13:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Okay, Dupree, that's getting a bit weird.

8/08/2008 12:13:00 PM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

Sloan-Wilson:

Conservatives place a high value on obedience to authority. This strategy might stifle creativity but has a number of advantages, such as easing the burden of information processing, retaining successful behaviors winnowed by tradition, and coordinated action. Even liberals sheepishly acknowledge that they are like cats when it comes to herding."

Yes, of course the self-same people that think George Clooney is a good actor, that Clinton was the best President since Lincoln, that hopelessly project their fantasies upon other empty human beings, who hate the Judeo-Christian ethic so much they are busy chainsawing the tree that shelters them.

Yep independent Michael Moore movie watching paragons of independent thought. Never catch them with a bumper sticker, or their progeny rushing herd-like to worship the next gangsta-rapper or drug addled socialite.

Never see them appealing to authority like the (majority of scientists agree our farts are warming the earth). Yeah what free-wheeling intellects all! Look at Al Gore, not even a scientist and he is sooo...smart he wins a Nobel Prize.

8/08/2008 12:16:00 PM  
Anonymous cousin Dupree said...

I meant Yoo-hoo, the delicious chocolate beverage.

8/08/2008 12:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Zophiel said...

*Cousin Dupree and Julie demonstrate convergence for the class*

Class: Ooohhhhh, cool!

8/08/2008 12:17:00 PM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

I wonder why an important man like James Wolcott

Did you mean to put that "r" in there? Because the other way doesn't make sense.

8/08/2008 12:18:00 PM  
Anonymous Niggardly Phil said...

heh, Kepler, they're so individualist they need big government to tell us whether to eat fast food or not. Sheesh.

8/08/2008 12:19:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Isn't Vanity Fair vain?

BTW, I love yoo-hoo's.

8/08/2008 12:20:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Do they still sell yoo-hoo's? I haven't seen any for quit some time.

8/08/2008 12:21:00 PM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

And Ray: what I'm trying to tell you is that your claims, whether true or false, are useless. You can go around disabusing believers with various 'facts' (some of which will turn out to be wrong inevitably) about 'evolution' does nothing more than to shuffle the cards around, or so to speak. Realms which are - for whatever reason - ontologically unavailable to you are what is at stake. Prefigured from the beginning of Christianity is the uselessness of the Darwin-Atheist project: the realm of direct experience of the divine overrides and cancels evidence to the contrary, as it is on a different level entirely. Men may use language incorrectly in trying to explain what they see (See: Ezekiel for a great example...) but unless you see it there is no point at all. There are really two ways, and it's a secret that's not a secret. You either, like me, have had the grace to simply understand from the outset for whatever reason, or you elect to decide to understand - to believe that God is real, that the Christ is indeed a historical figure and very God himself.

Until you do this you can win or lose as many debates here about various manifestations of the cosmos and it won't make a whit of difference.

Why believe this particular thing instead of say, the Flying Spaghetti Monster? That's a question you have to answer for yourself, sir. It is sufficient to say that 'one leads everywhere' and 'the other leads nowhere'. Find out for yourself.

8/08/2008 12:24:00 PM  
Anonymous LaFayette said...

Dupree has an ice box full of Yoo-hoos. Keeps 'em locked up with his pork rinds.

8/08/2008 12:25:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Yoo-hoo's n' grog...good mixer!

8/08/2008 12:28:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Maybe if I do a Yahoo search for Yoo-Hoo's I'll find 'em in Washington State. :^)

BRBIALW (be right back in a little while).

8/08/2008 12:30:00 PM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

Also, to the dim anon from earlier who sought to comparmentalize the 'darwinist' and the 'spiritual person'

Angels are not merely spirits or merely invisible. The messengers may become solid, tangible, audible, visible, if they desire. They are not 'flesh' because there is not some kind of dualistic relationship between spirit and matter - matter proceeds from spirit and spirit transcends it. So there is a difference between 'seeing the angels' and 'angels permitting that they be seen.'

Thus the rightly spiritual person is the master of any house of Darwinists. Being that spirituality is higher than science and contains it.

8/08/2008 12:31:00 PM  
Anonymous LaFayette said...

Ben--

Believe it or not, he mixes the Yoo-hoos with Kahlúa... Says it gives him "air shocks," whatever that means.

8/08/2008 12:35:00 PM  
Anonymous cousin Dupree said...

Welcome James Wolcott fans! Now say something stupid so that we may mock you!

8/08/2008 12:37:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Oh, Yoo-hoo! yes, I do yoo-hoo every once in a while. Mmmm, chocolatey cold beverage...

Although I gotta say, mixed with Kahlua it sounds somewhat less appealing; there might be some odd flavor-clashing going on.

Only one way to find out, though.

8/08/2008 12:45:00 PM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Kepler - I see, like a present day Tiger is so much a better killing machine than a Sabre tooth tiger? And buffalo are better suited to survival than Mastadons? Gee you Darwin guys sure know a lot from bones!

Yup - they are better, for the environment that they're adapted to. Saber-toothed cats evolved independently a few times (check out this one, which isn't a cat at all). Saber-toothed types are good for taking down big prey, and are found in conjunction with large herbivores, e.g. Mastodons and such. They aren't cost-efficient when hunting smaller prey. If the big herbivores go extinct (which they do from time to time) the saber-toothed types die off, too.

(Ironically, there are a few "archetypes" in evolution, of a sort. That's where you see convergent evolution, like the above Thylacosmilus.)

The last Smilodons and Mastodons disappeared roughly around the time humans made it into the Americas. Many believe this wasn't a coincidence.

8/08/2008 12:54:00 PM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

Wolcott doesn't allow comments. The most a target can do is reply in their own blog and link to his article, thus assuring him of traffic and $$.

I think, Bob, he may be a Deepak fan and you've touched his anointed one. Or he doesn't like you mackin' on Suzanne Sommers.

8/08/2008 01:00:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

I meant to ask earlier, where'd the lizard graphic come from?

8/08/2008 01:07:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

Ray Ingles said "River - The soul is more or less what Van and I spar about from time to time."

Meaning more or less... Everything!.

Once again, not only missing the point, but the entire arrow.

8/08/2008 01:09:00 PM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

"Once again, not only missing the point, but the entire arrow."

A living Zeno's Paradox...

8/08/2008 01:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, Julie, do you, ah, gitchy gitchy ya ya?

8/08/2008 01:21:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Only when nobody's looking ;)

8/08/2008 01:24:00 PM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Kepler - How do you KNOW such things? O, you mean it is OBVIOUS because there are no infra-red eyes?

Not exactly. That's a prediction of the theory, and we haven't found counterexamples. And yeah, these get tested. For larger morphological features like bone size, surface area, etc. we've often been able to do the biophysics and show that. Nowadays we're also getting a handle on the molecular-level stuff, and the predictions work there, too. They're particularly helpful in classifying potential antibiotics, so that we can tell what kind of mutations would be needed to resist a particular candidate, and how likely it'll be for such mutations to arise.

In terms of infrared eyes, we know, in fairly good detail, the chemistry involved in terrestrial vision. It's highly tuned for visible light; shifting the frequencies would not be trivial. The lenses and other features of the eye aren't particularly suited to passing IR light, either.

Pit vipers do have some IR 'vision', but they use different chemistry entirely, and developed this independent of their eyes.

8/08/2008 01:25:00 PM  
Anonymous son of a preacher man said...

Kepler said:
"Gee you Darwin guys sure know a lot from bones!"

It's called necromancy.

River said:
"Men may use language incorrectly in trying to explain what they see (See: Ezekiel for a great example...) but unless you see it there is no point at all."

Obviously Ezekiel saw aliens from another planet.

8/08/2008 01:31:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

The world (and, as an essential part of the world, evolution) is not only stranger than we imagine, it is stranger than we can imagine.

And that's a wonderful thing, imho - if you're paying attention, it never gets boring.

How much more strange and wonderful, then, is the 99% that we only know is there because it can't not be?

8/08/2008 01:37:00 PM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

River - If those claims are irrelevant, why do so many harp on 'em?

8/08/2008 01:38:00 PM  
Blogger Van said...

LaFayette said "Dupree has an ice box full of Yoo-hoos. Keeps 'em locked up with his pork rinds."

Hey, did Dupree ever play drums and call himself "The Da!"? Used to have a drummer who'd buy the cheapest alleged beer when we played states with closing times (read 'anywhere but Nevada'), lock em' up in an ice box, then back at the band house seek out the thirsty with a 'Yoo-hoo! Buck a beah!'

The guy cleaned up. We discovered he was diabetic after he downed a fifth o'jack, did his "I'm the DA!" dance, and fell through a glass table and nearly bled to death. But that's another story.

8/08/2008 01:40:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Van, I wonder if that guy's any relation to The Dude?

8/08/2008 01:50:00 PM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

Because they do not understand the difference between the faith of hearing and the faith of seeing. This is what the Desert Fathers say.

If they knew this distinction (which is scriptural) they would understand that arguing about eyes is pointless. What point there is, is to be holy and know God.

All else - on the scale of things which matter eternally, and of first things as well - is either gilding or dross.

8/08/2008 01:51:00 PM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Oh, and BTW - there's a difference between "beautiful" and "sexually attractive"... and even evolution types recognize that. (Bob does seem to have a tendency to paint "just cartoons" of anyone whose ideas he disagrees with, of course.)

"Sexiness" is very much in the eye of the beholder and not the beholden. Beauty is a bit more universal, though a lot more complex.

8/08/2008 01:54:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Golly, Ray, I don't know if I could have figured that one out.

Your programmer didn't give you much of a funnybone directive, did he.

Pity, that.

8/08/2008 01:57:00 PM  
Blogger erasmus said...

Mr. Cocytus says:

"If they knew this distinction (which is scriptural) they would understand that arguing about eyes is pointless. What point there is, is to be holy and know God.

All else - on the scale of things which matter eternally, and of first things as well - is either gilding or dross."

Well, that is certainly well outside of Ray's metaphysic.

I know the appropriate Raysponse!

Mu!

Wait.

You didn't ask a question. That was an answer.

Hmmmm.

Nope, the answer is still Mu!

8/08/2008 02:59:00 PM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Julie - If you're going to make fun of an opponent's position, you have to include the actual position somewhere. Otherwise you're just mocking strawmen. I'm sure it has amusement value, but little educational value.

8/08/2008 03:12:00 PM  
Blogger walt said...

Ray provides a summary of his s'plainin':

"I'm sure it has amusement value, but little educational value."

8/08/2008 03:18:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

That's why we depend on you, Ray. Without your brilliant insights, I'd be pretty sure that Bob had already explained the position a time or two before, somewhere in the thousand-plus posts, and thus didn't feel the need to spell out the humor.

But now I realize I couldn't possibly have learned where he was coming from (since this blog isn't educational), and I understand that the joke is retroactively unfunny.

Thank you, Ray, for that little nugget of clarity.

8/08/2008 03:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Kepler Sings said...

Ray regurgitated from some dusty evolution tome the following conclusions "on faith!"


Saber-toothed types are good for taking down big prey, and are found in conjunction with large herbivores, e.g. Mastodons and such. They aren't cost-efficient when hunting smaller prey.

You mean like Moose and Elk you teakwood dense sycophant spouter of Darwinian imaginations? Yeah,I suppose those would just be appetizers.

If the big herbivores go extinct (which they do from time to time) the saber-toothed types die off, too.

I get it Mr. Time-Life Diorama of man becoming apes, or a past believer in such ABSOLUTE PROOF OF EVOLUTION LIKE:

Nebraska man was going to be used as proof of evolution in the 1925 trial in Dayton, Tenn. Later it was discovered that the entire “man” had been scientifically built from one pig’s tooth.

Piltdown man was an ape’s jaw filed down to fit a human skull as a deliberate fraud. Neanderthal man was just an old man with arthritis.


Course the large predators dying off when the large herbivores or other species that may NOT be herbivores but are still really, really big like Whales, what happened to the great predators of the sea? We know they existed but went extinct, plenty of Whales around. Or maybe this was when Whales had legs and were skateboarding around the swamps, soon as toothy lizard thing with long necks died off, they dropped their skateboards, and legs and grew fins...all working out pretty happily I guess. And on it goes with the theory of Gumby that can assume any shape, answer any question about what happened millions of years ago.

The last Smilodons and Mastodons disappeared roughly around the time humans made it into the Americas. Many believe this wasn't a coincidence.

Yes, yes, proudly recite some Darwinian nostrums, replete with faux-facts, all happy in your nerd-world of dead bones, and distorted facts, I-will-join-you-as-soon-as-I-get-
away-from-this-Scientology-cult.

Does it escape your notice when you throw out these utter speculations of saber tooth tigers and Mastodons disappearing (maybe because primitive man hunted them to extinction) we still have cougars, bears, etc and there are far more humans with far deadlier weapons, now?

It is like Evolution is the thesis of the feces...if you throw enough B.S. at the wall, some is bound to stick. No scientific discipline does this...NONE.

8/08/2008 03:58:00 PM  
Blogger River Cocytus said...

ow, that was what we call a shotgunning. Incendiary rounds.

8/08/2008 04:43:00 PM  
Blogger Joan of Argghh! said...

Mr. Time-Life Diorama of man becoming apes,

::snort!::

You know, Ray deserves that. He's found a few comrades in today's thread and he's getting downright uppity with Julie.

Now Julie needs none to defend her fine mind and lucid arguments, but it's just that... it's Bob's blog, but... maybe, guys, it's time to take the tiresome turd out back for a little Raccoon Reckonin'.

Just sayin'...

8/08/2008 04:46:00 PM  
Anonymous Petey said...

Makes you wonder if anyone would believe it if there were any other rational alternative but the Divine Intellect.

8/08/2008 04:46:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

Probably not, since any rational alternative would still be, well, rational.

8/08/2008 04:55:00 PM  
Anonymous cousin Dupree said...

Ace reviews the first page of James Wolcott's dreadful novel.

8/08/2008 05:43:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

From the DI site:
" In his debate against Jay Wesley Richards, Hitchens reportedly argued against God by alleging that God would not create certain features we observe, to which Richards aptly replied, "A sneer is not an argument." Unfortunately, Hitchens is still using sneers as arguments. What’s more, it now seems that it is Hitchens who prefers myths about caves."

The sneer is the Darwinian Reductionists greatest weapon.
They give evolution a bad name.

8/08/2008 05:47:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

And this was also interesting, from the same article, and I believe this is what Joan is talking about (correct me if I'm wrong, Joan):

"Hitchens, Dawkins and Carroll can have all the evidence they want that the neo-Darwinian mechanism can mess things up, turn genes off, and cause "loss-of-function." No one on any side of this debate doubts that random mutations are quite good at destroying complex features. Us folks on the ID side suspect that random mutation and natural selection aren’t good at doing very much more than that. And the constant citations by Darwinists of "loss of function" examples as alleged refutations of ID only strengthens our argument.

Meanwhile, ID proponents seek to explain a far more interesting aspect of biological history: the origin of new complex biological features. Despite his quotation of Michael Shermer on the evolution of the eye, Hitchens has yet to do that."

8/08/2008 05:50:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

And this is kinda funny: now we got Darweenies sayin' that complexity actually means that there is no intelligent design 'cause there's no one intelligemnt enough to create something so complex.

Complexity Equals No Intelligence?

Man, that's just plain dumb.

8/08/2008 06:01:00 PM  
Blogger julie said...

The last line of the review (which, btw, is more interesting than the entire first page of that book. That's supposed to be chick-lit? It's only allowed to be that bad if there's going to be all kinds of crazy shagging going on. And if that much time is spent on a dude coming home to his cat, there may be all kinds of crazy shagging, but it won't be the kind most women want to read about):

"All in all, it's like a sexually-frustrated sasquatch making snow-cones with a water-ski."

It took me a minute, but the mental picture conjured up is truly hilarious.

8/08/2008 06:32:00 PM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Kepler - That was, indeed, a shotgun approach. Lots of different innuendoes, not so much on the support.

For example, you ignored the emphasis on the word "big". Moose and Elk top out at a little over a thousand pounds. Mastodons weighed up to twenty times that... and couldn't run as fast as a moose or elk. Saber-tooths weren't built for speed, they were built to be strong and powerful quick-kill specialists. They could outrun something the size of an elephant, not smaller animals.

As to the hoaxes that get mentioned from time to time - who was it who uncovered the deception? Creationists, or scientists doing science?

As to the paragraph starting with "Course the large predators"... well, sorry, I can't even tease out what you're trying to say there. Whales didn't arise until well after the Jurassic - we have some really good fossils of their development.

(If you're going to dispute the dating of fossils, I have a question for you. How come oil companies, who spend tens of billions of dollars a year on oil exploration, exclusively use conventional geology? Only con men seem to be able to make money with young-Earth geology. Why is that?)

8/08/2008 06:41:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Like I said, run of the mill baiter.

8/08/2008 07:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Q-Burn said...

Well, the Queeg chronicles have taken a truly bizarre turn for me. This afternoon I heard that some friends were being discussed on that Obama-Antichrist thread. I cut and pasted some of the comments and sent them to one of those people via e-mail. Then I went to run some errands. When I got back, I found out Charles said this about me:

It gets even creepier, folks.
I just noticed a certain IP that was trying to download everything in this thread with some kind of automated tool. Turns out that the IP belongs to banned poster "Q-Burn."

Well Charles, if by "everything" you mean "some comments", and by "automated tool" you mean "cut and paste" combined with "e-mail", this is absolutely true. Otherwise, you're a fucking liar.

And then someone sent me this:

#855 Charles 8/08/08 3:36:24 pm
That's why the online visitor count is so high right now. It's all the hits from whatever crawler Q-Burn was using. It should start going down in a few minutes as those sessions expire.

Charles, you're a fucking liar. I wouldn't know a "crawler" if it bit me. And my visitor count amounted to "one" at its highest.

There are probably plenty more lies, but I can't tell for sure because when I try to access LGF I get this:

Forbidden

You don't have permission to access /weblog/ on this server.

Additionally, a 403 Forbidden error was encountered while trying to use an ErrorDocument to handle the request.

Apache/1.3.41 Server at littlegreenfootballs.com Port 80

So apparently Charles has blocked my IP. Just wanted to set the record straight. We unhinge, you decide.

Q-Burn

8/08/2008 08:39:00 PM  
Blogger Deborah said...

Dang it Bob. Where I come from, potting birds on the ground is considered unsporting.

8/08/2008 09:05:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Q-Burn-
Aye! Charles is a liar, and anyone who bothers to do their own research instead of taking his word for everything would know that.

He even claimed you had 11 sock puppets at LGF.

I don't believe him because he lied about Mama winger, and he's using A. Van Hilten and others to monitor any Lizard or prior Lizard comments on other blogs, and banning them arbitrarily.

I covered some of his underhanded antics here at my blog:
>a href="http://onecosmosatsea.blogspot.com/2008/08/lying-lizards.html">Lying Lizards>/a>

Charles has repeatedly lies and deceives and then shifts the focus to himself by crying that he is a victim in all this.

Queeg is, literally, an unhinged malignant narcissist.

8/08/2008 09:08:00 PM  
Anonymous hoarhey said...

Q-burn,

Are you ABSOLUTELY SURE that you're not a jihadist mole? That crawler shit sounds awfully suspect. ;*)

8/08/2008 09:08:00 PM  
Blogger USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Lying Lizards

Try this again. Sorry.

8/08/2008 09:11:00 PM  
Blogger Ray Ingles said...

Actually, Hoarhey, you're right. I promised not to debate evidence for evolution per se here, but I gave in to temptation w/Kepler. I'll try harder in the future, mea culpa.

8/09/2008 08:33:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Q - You can change your IP Address. Just google it and learn how.

But why bother? We know of the lies and the altering of comments, Queeg's own as well as various commenters, the vile hate speech against anyone of faith which he has both engaged in and allowed on his blog.

It's not worth the bother anymore. It has transformed from what was once a fairly decent aggregator of news of the war and the Middle East into an echo chamber of G-d hate. Queeg has destroyed his own blog, his own livelihood. He has made his bed with liars, name-callers, vicious haters, satanists, pagans, etc ... let him "lie" in it.

8/09/2008 10:21:00 AM  
Blogger Susannah said...

"...but can also be costly in the time required for information processing, in making mistakes, and in ignoring successful behaviors winnowed by tradition that work without anyone knowing why they work."

Duhhh...maybe the public schools just need more money pumped in and more God pumped out.

And maybe the government will do a better job making our medical choices for us than it has making our educational choices for us.

And maybe marxism will work here, even though it's resulted in nothing but horrific oppression everywhere else in the world.

The difference will be that *we* would be "nuanced," beneficent rulers.

*******

Bob says:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oXMQ0XEIG0Y

Ray replies:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=--szrOHtR6U

8/10/2008 08:00:00 AM  

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