I think it doesn’t address DNA sequences because (as I mentioned above) it just doesn’t work at that level. It’s zoomed out to such a low resolution that the noise starts to swamp the signal. We think that’s a bug; others think it’s a feature. As an analogy, it’s like those old, low-resolution pictures that seemed to show a face on Mars. Higher resolution images showed it was an artifact.
You can’t use DNA (or protein) sequences. That’s the problem. By using sequence data, you are prefiltering to using only sequences that are present in all the species in the data set. Hence it isn’t accurate. Depends on whether you are interested in realism or not. If you are, then you cannot merely use sequence data.
Hello Dr. Hunter,
You already made this argument in another thread, and I have addressed it in this post. I would suggest that we focus discussion on this issue to just one thread for the sake of readers, and perhaps even fpr our own sanity.
Here’s another way to interpret Ewert’s data: ignore it. Go outside sit on the grass, watch the robins, contemplate oxygen, reproduction, rocks and time. This should lead you to at least this conclusion: the earth is older than 6000 years and evolution is obvious.
How is that relevant?
Evolution requires more time than 6000 years.
Agreed, but Ewert is not proposing anything regarding a 6000 year old earth. If you want to disagree, it would be reasonable to disagree with what is actually in the paper.
Nonsense. Hyper evolution is an integral part of most YEC models these days (just don’t call it that) and that took only a few hundred years of hyper evolution after Noah’s bottleneck:
You’re absolutely right, but let’s keep the discussion focused on Ewert’s paper. As others have said, the paper doesn’t claim anything about the age of the earth (at least, to my knowledge).
Apologies. I did indeed wander off topic.
I have also only read it once, but in my opinion as a statistician I am in general agreement with your review. Further, there are existing methods Bayesian phylogenetic analysis which do not require creating a questionable new methodology to test this controversial hypothesis (See Theobald, 2010, “A formal test of the theory of universal common ancestry”).
Besides prominent I.D.ists like Behe and Denton who admit common ancestry makes the most sense there are also prominent young-earth creationists who admit that the evidence appears to favor (it looks like) humans and apes share a common ancestry. Below are some of their admissions:
Dr. Kurt Wise (Ph. D. in paleontology from Harvard as a student of Dr. Stephen Jay Gould, the nationʼs most famous evolutionist; Wise is a young-earth creationist who has spoken at many creationist conferences). At a creationist conference Dr. Kurt Wise showed a slide of a fossil sequence that moved from reptile to mammal, with some transitional fossils in between. He veered suddenly from his usual hyperactive mode to contemplative. “Itʼs a pain in the neck,” he said. “It fits the evolutionary prediction quite well.”
In various macroevolutionary models, intermediate [species found in their expected evolutionary order relative to one another in the geological strata]…It is a Very Good Evolutionary Argument…Evidences for Darwinʼs expectation of stratomorphic intermediate species include Baragwanathia [intermediate] between rhyniophytes and lycopods, Pikaia [intermediate] between echinoderms and chordates, Purgatorius [intermediate] between the tree shrews and the primates, and Proconsul [intermediate] between the non-hominoid primates and the hominoids. Darwinʼs expectation of higher-taxon intermediates has been confirmed by such examples as the mammal-like reptile groups between the reptiles and the mammals, and the phenacdontids between the horses and their presumed ancestors. Darwinʼs expectation of [fossil] series has been confirmed by such examples as the early bird series, the tetrapod series, the whale series, the various mammal series of the Cenozoic (for example, the horse series, the camel series, the elephant series, the pig series, the titanothere series, etc.), the Cantius and Plesiadapus primate series, and the hominid series. Evidence for not just one but for all three of the species level and above types of stratomorphic intermediates expected by macroevolutionary theory is surely strong evidence for macroevolutionary theory. Creationists therefore need to accept this fact. It certainly Can Not said that traditional creation theory expected (predicted) any of these fossil finds.
Dr. Todd Wood (Ph. D. in biochemistry. His advisor was developed a suite of computer programs used for DNA analyses; Dr. Wood works at the Center for Origins Research at Bryan College):
Evolution is not a theory in crisis. It is not teetering on the verge of collapse. It has not failed as a scientific explanation. There is evidence for evolution, gobs and gobs of it. It is not just speculation or a faith choice or an assumption or a religion. It is a productive framework for lots of biological research, and it has amazing explanatory power. There is no conspiracy to hide the truth about the failure of evolution. There has really been no failure of evolution as a scientific theory. It works, and it works well…I say these things not because Iʼm crazy or because Iʼve “converted” to evolution. I say these things because they are true. Iʼm motivated this morning by reading yet another clueless, well-meaning person pompously declaring that evolution is a failure…Creationist students, listen to me very carefully: There is evidence for evolution, and evolution is an extremely successful scientific theory. That doesnʼt make it ultimately true, and it doesnʼt mean that there could not possibly be viable alternatives. It is my own faith choice to reject evolution, because I believe the Bible reveals true information about the history of the earth that is fundamentally incompatible with evolution. I am motivated to understand Godʼs creation from what I believe to be a biblical, creationist perspective. Evolution itself is not flawed or without evidence. Please donʼt be duped into thinking that somehow evolution itself is a failure. Please donʼt idolize your own ability to reason. Faith is enough. If God said it, that should settle it. Maybe thatʼs not enough for your scoffing professor or your non-Christian friends, but it should be enough for you.
See also Woodʼs admission that the chimpanzee and human genomes are as near as those of different species of cats, yet creationists admit cats all share a common ancestry, so why not chimps and humans?
Dr. Gerald E. Aardsma(Ph. D. in nuclear physics from the University of Toronto, conservative Christian, young-earth creationist): I think there is enormous evidence of biological evolution (meaning extensive changes to flora and fauna)—again, in virtual history.
Also see these admissions from creationists:
`I was surprised to find that instead of enough fossils barely to fit into a coffin, as one evolutionist once stated [in 1982], there were over 4,000 hominid fossils as of 1976. Over 200 specimens have been classified as Neandertal and about one hundred as Homo erectus. More of these fossils have been found since 1976.
—Michael J. Oard [creationist], in his review of the book, Bones of Contention : A Creationist Assessment of Human Fossils, in the Creation Research Society Quarterly, Vol. 30, March 1994, p. 222
`The current figures [circa 1994] are even more impressive: over 220 Homo erectus fossil individuals discovered to date, possibly as many as 80 archaic Homo sapiens fossil individuals discovered to date, and well over 300 Neandertal fossil individuals discovered to date.
—Marvin L. Lubenow [creationist], author of Bones of Contention, A Creationist Assessment of Human Fossils, in a letter to the editor of the Creation Research Society Quarterly, Vol. 31, Sept. 1994, p. 70
Let me add, in summation:
The evidence for common ancestry coheres in ways that creationism does not. We get the same tree of life with the same relative branches and order of species succession when we line up the relative geological order in which fossils of species are found arising over time(from fish to amphibians to reptiles and mammals though evidence on much finer scales also exist), and again when we compare the most likely morphological changes such as starting with fish leaving the sea partially to become amphibians, then wandering from the sea more to lay hard eggs on land as reptiles, and finally developing better hearing as in mammals and full warm bloodedness with limbs aligned vertically beneath the torso supporting it directly from below instead of legs splayed out to the side as in amphibians and reptiles. Early mammals then moved from egg-laying echinoderms to being able to rear their young internally. But a third line of evidence dovetails with the fossil and morphological evidence, namely the evolutionary trees of life based on the comparative biochemistry and comparative genomes of living species.
How does the Dependency graph deal with ERVs? https://www.facebook.com/groups/1458869121047362/permalink/1653509504916655/
The bulk of science is based on the majority of cases, not the exceptions.
Explain how the Deoendency graph model is based on the majority of cases rather than the exceptions.
OK, sure. Ewert’s development of the DG model is based on nine different gene databases, including about two and a half million gene families. No one would describe it as being based on “exceptions.”
I have to ask, what followed from that comment? Did he then go on to show why he rejected it? Do you have a link to the complete presentation so I can review it myself?
The theory of evolution does not predict a nested hierarchy of shared gene families, so I still don’t know why Ewert thinks this is a valid comparison. The theory of evolution involves the inheritance of DNA sequences, not gene families. A rather small change in sequence can cause a gene to be put in a different gene family while there can be large sequence differences between genes in the same gene family. Gene families are also human constructs, so they are quite subjective to boot. Then add on the false assumption that annotation is complete for all of these genomes. It is starting to get into “it’s not even wrong” territory.
6 days and no reply. I’ll assume then it was just quote mining.
I found it in 10 seconds by googling, but maybe that just means the World Wide Web signal is stronger at my house.
First, I wouldn’t call an off the cuff comment a quote mine. Freudian slip maybe.
And the conference which was referenced in the story can be found, after another 5 seconds of googling, here, but there is no mention made of Dr. Wise so I don’t know which presentation is the one mentioned in the NY Times story.
Happy now @aarceng ?