It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


10 popular fallacies and misconceptions about evolution

page: 9
<< 6  7  8    10 >>

log in


posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 01:10 PM
a reply to: Masterjaden


I admire that kind of skepticism. It's what modern science is founded on, after all. I mean, a good scientist should always read the Methods and Results sections of the data (possibly multiple times) and only then move on to the Discussion and Conclusion sections. See, in a scientific paper, the methods show how data were produced and the results shown are said data. The researchers then discussed the data and drew conclusions, sometimes faulty, but in order to become established science, those methods and conclusions must be deemed sound and reflective of the data.

I do think you have valid reason to say that sometimes faulty conclusions are drawn from limited data. This is indeed why I disagree with you that more overlapping data is a bad thing and does not support one hypothesis. Of course, you are also correct in stating that all data are merely evidence and support, but there must be a point where compilation of data (if independently found and based on good scientific methodology) offers a strong enough case to support the theory. I really don't like discussing the philosophy of science (not my area of study, don't want it to be...), but perhaps you should consider the following?

Not all scientific knowledge is derived in the same method, no matter how rigidly the researcher follows methodology. The human element will always change the general thoughts of an experiment, the derivation of a hypothesis, but the methods and data ensure that even slight derivations from the norm can be traced. Now, in geology, it is often hard to look at a rock and say "Ah, it formed in X conditions." Too many rocks can be formed in too many different ways for a glance to tell you what you need to know. So, the method of of multiple working hypotheses is often employed, encouraged, and favored.

Let me give you an example of why this needs to be the case... Say I find a granite. Great, I know it must be an igneous rock. Okay, but there are several different ways the granite could have formed. Was the melt generated by sedimentary rock? Was the melt evolution such that other, mafic minerals were separated via density (sinking or floating of crystals), sieving, or perhaps did a granitic melt mix with a smaller basaltic melt? Well, a geologist knows to look at the evidence offered by rocks in the field and laboratory studies to make multiple predictions on what one would find based on where and how the granite were emplaced. The following (less than scientific source that I do believe might have been "borrowed" from some textbooks...) source has some criteria with which to determine the hows and wheres, but each one of those criteria were once a tested hypothesis, and each one was certainly observed in multiple samples.

Sincere regards,

posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 02:40 PM
a reply to: hydeman11

I didn't say that overlapping data is a bad thing. I said it is not as substantially a better thing or as additionally supportive of a conclusion as it is commonly given credit for and it introduces more possibilities of logical fallacy or incorrect premises when compared with a single subject. Any time you can get corroboration from multiple sources it's a good thing. The problem I have is when people attempt to use that as a definitive answer to a question and claim that it leads to fact where there is none.

edit on 26-8-2014 by Masterjaden because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 03:08 PM
a reply to: Masterjaden

Any time you can get corroboration from multiple sources it's a good thing. The problem I have is when people attempt to use that as a definitive answer to a question and claim that it leads to fact where there is none.

and then you have people who use that as the sole reason to disregard any facts they dont agree with.

posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 03:38 PM
a reply to: Masterjaden


Perhaps we are merely quibbling over semantics here... I agree that the only thing in science that could be considered a fact are data. Theories are compilations and explanations of facts supported by data. Perhaps you object only to the laymen's (not scientists) speech using imprecise words that approximate what scientists try to communicate? I certainly agree that clearer communication is always important to consider, but the way you made it sound seemed like you disregarded evidence entirely... I mean, sure, sometimes extrapolation is faulty, but that doesn't change the facts the extrapolation was based on.

I do think that when considered logically, two independent hypotheses that rely on the same principles (theories and facts/observations in science) to explain different yet related phenomena support one another does create a more complete understanding of nature. I do think you are understating the usefulness and accuracy of interrelated studies. What you seem to be indicating is a situation where one scientist might cite the (un-reviewed and unverified) work of another person, thus creating a potential problem of substantiating one's claim with potentially false information. I don't think that's usually found to be the case in peer reviewed journals of science...

In essence, I do think an answer with substantial evidence is more likely than an answer with very little evidence, and I do think the grounds of more evidence is sufficient to say a theory is well supported. If a layman wants to say that a theory is proven, take it as a semantic difference in speech between those versed in science and those not. I don't claim to know much about mechanics, so I would hope a mechanic could infer what I meant by a layman's description, should a problem arise with my car.

Really though, I generally agree with your sentiment.

Sincere regards,

posted on Aug, 26 2014 @ 03:39 PM
a reply to: Masterjaden

Whether you wrote it yourself or it came from someone else is irrelevant. From my vantage point, it is indeed a second hand source and simply saying you write it doesn't mean you actually did. It lacks support and you still have yet to show any sort of reference for the information at hand. If its your own writing then great. But your level of mocking condescension is awfully telling when instead of supporting your statement you turn to an ad hominem attack on me.

Without supporting your statement it is exactly what you claim it is not, supposition and personal anecdote. It's got nothing to do with thinking for yourself vs. letting someone else do my thinking for me. It's because I insist on source material to check the veracity of someone's claims that I am fully aware of things like the minuscule amount of physical evidence for Gigantipithicus Blacki whereas your mother I law took someone else's second hand claim as authentic. I'm not sure what textbooks you've been reading that claim and of the various members of the Gigantipithicus family had a complete skeleton but I've never seen it described as such in my entire life.

The simple fact that I'm asking for source material is proof that I am indeed thinking for myself because I am unwilling to take your word for something as truth. Due diligence and research are the hallmarks of independent thinking. Writing a blog or post on Facebook...not so much. It's great that you want to put your own version out there but if someone can't see what led you to that conclusion you're part of the problem not a solution.

posted on Sep, 5 2014 @ 05:09 PM
a reply to: hydeman11

Wrong... Science is not an ever changing thing... It resists change vehemently... In fact, the more that you use overlapping theory and conclusions in the way that they are used, the more resistant to change it becomes. If you have a faulty theory this exacerbates the problem, it doesn't help it.

The people from the other field were taught with the same false paradigms that the people in the other field were. They use each other to bolster their own beliefs and conclusions, each becoming more resistant to change.

As new evidence comes about, it is rejected because it flies in the face of the accepted paradigm, so the increased resistance causes data to be excerpted as extraneous or outliers and you end up with flawed results and false resistance to change.

As the rabbit hole that is created from this gets deeper, you get a more ingrained paradigm than the greatest caused by religion in the middle ages, because it is not only hiding under the guise of authority, it creates more niche fields that then rely on an appeal to authority fallacy because of the inability for people to be considered cross field experts.

That is the main danger that is created from attempting to use overlapping fields as additional evidence for conclusions.

Anyone from one field questioning the conclusions is written off due to an appeal to authority fallacy. Especially when that authority is hopelessly and usually irrevocably trapped within their own paradigm.

Western medicine is a a perfect example of that. You will never get the paradigm to accept a cure for a disease, because the people that control the paradigm don't want cures, they want symptom abatement so that people will be forced to purchase their symptom abatement drug or method.

So they control education, they control the paradigm. They write off anyone that doesn't agree with them and support a belief in the niche field, appeal to authority, overlapping field conclusion fallacious logic that ends up with them in control of the paradigm and the typical scientist is either too stupid, or too reliant on the paradigm controllers money to care, or too small in numbers to affect any changes in the paradigm and the paradigm control structure.

So go on keeping thinking that way, I don't expect the majority to stop thinking that way, they never have and they likely never will.

The sad thing is that it is a self defeating structure. It can only be maintained until it creates a level of stupidity so rampant that no more progress can be made and then it collapses.


posted on Sep, 5 2014 @ 05:14 PM
a reply to: hydeman11

I truly wish that scientists WEREN'T also doing the same thing. I wish it were only laymen arguing the point. Unfortunately, people like yourself that are willing to look at science honestly are few and far between. The ones that aren't are the ones supporting the paradigm and disregarding counter evidence out of hand.

edit on 5-9-2014 by Masterjaden because: (no reason given)

posted on Sep, 5 2014 @ 06:17 PM
a reply to: Krazysh0t

I don't have problems with them making guesses. I have problems with them obfuscating what they are claiming and or calling it likely, fact, etc... which is often done.


posted on Sep, 5 2014 @ 09:41 PM
a reply to: Masterjaden


Well, I simply disagree. Science itself is(should be) an unchanging method, certainly, but scientific knowledge (to be more clear) does change. Did you learn about the land bridge hypothesis for explaining fossil fauna locations, or did you learn about plate tectonics theory when you were in high school?

I assume you are aware that that plate tectonic theory is a recent adoption by the scientific community (happening in the fifties...), but are you aware that it was proposed some forty years before that? The problem was simply one of evidence... There was detailed evidence of land bridges that do and did exist. On the other hand, there was little that could be directly linked to or directly support plate tectonics (for example, a mechanism by which continent-sized blocks of rock could move was missing). It was only later when enough evidence from paleomagnetic studies and a detailed understanding of oceanic basalt and geology that plate tectonics finally became an accepted theory, thus breaking what you might call a "paradigm."

See, I agree that science makes it difficult for new, perhaps better, theories when they are first proposed, but this is not a bad thing. This is necessary skepticism until enough evidence has been gathered to show sufficient support for a theory. The problem which I think you are seeing is one of evidence... In order to support a new theory (differing from one already proposed and supported by evidence) you need AS MUCH OR MORE evidence to support the new theory or refute the old. Rather, I should say, before entirely refuting a theory, you need to show a better theory with more evidence and predictive capabilities than the old theory. The fact that some theories reach into multiple disciplines and do increase predictive capabilities means that they must be falsified and replaced in each respective discipline (consider gravity something of this nature). Why create something new (a force of nature that is not gravity) when gravity works consistently in geology, physics, astrophysics, and chemistry? I know, we've discussed that there are legitimate overlapping theories, but how can you tell which ones are not legitimate when so many are? Can you give me a specific example?

Again, I am telling you that I disagree with your assessment. Skepticism of new claims is necessary for proper science (method) to be done, and skepticism needs to be quelled before new theories can be accepted. If the evidence is not up to par, then the evidence is not up to par, and thus the hypothesis presented is not acceptable. Even if it were correct, we cannot merely assert it so without evidence, and as I said, you need a lot of evidence to truly shift paradigms (and yet it has happened several times in recent history).

As for crossing fields, I certainly don't want advice about geology from 9/10 psychologists. I certainly don't want to have a surgical operation performed by 9/10 geologists (being generous here...). Would you want to take the advice of 9/10 sociologists on how to fix a mechanical problem with your car's engine? See, there certainly exists the fallacious argument from authority, but there also exists true argument from true authorities.

I cannot speak with direct experience of the medical field (I took what I believed to be the easier field of the sciences...), but I do have an opinion on such matters. It is my opinion that some diseases have no cure. Let me clarify, there is no one cure, and there might certainly never be "a" cure. Cancer, for example, is not the same for every patient. What might "cure" one person of cancer might not cure another, simply because of the differences in the cancers (forgive my generalities here, I'm certainly no expert). More simply, there are many (varied) mutations that lead to what we call "cancer," and no one treatment will be effective for all... (Again, I suggest you do seek the experts' explanations on this, as I'm sure I'm not doing the best job here, I have no medical expertise, merely a few biology classes).

If I may ask, have you ever considered the possibility that scientists are not ignorant, unintelligent, or involved in a conspiracy to "privatize" niches in knowledge? Have you ever once questioned if you were being overly critical of this system, or perhaps questioned why you were so critical of it? I'm curious to know, as I see a world of evidence pointing against your claims, which in my opinion you have provided little evidence to back up (but I am young and naive, so do forgive me my inexperience here). If I am truly so blind to the reality of my world, the usefulness of my scientific methodology (as suggested by the claims you made), I certainly want to know the truth. I am an idealist when it comes to the method, but I certainly understand the imperfection of the human element.

Sincerest regards,

posted on Sep, 8 2014 @ 06:57 AM

originally posted by: Masterjaden
a reply to: Krazysh0t

I don't have problems with them making guesses. I have problems with them obfuscating what they are claiming and or calling it likely, fact, etc... which is often done.


How are they doing that? Can you please list some instances where this is occurring or articles that present certain evidence that presents a different conclusion? As I noted in point 10, hoaxes DO happen, but once they are exposed they are stricken from scientific study. So I am going to have to see some convincing evidence that this is a widespread occurrence and not just your word as a random forum poster. From the way it appears to me, you are just making that up because you cannot accept that something science says contradicts your world view.

posted on Feb, 18 2015 @ 02:26 PM
Great thread OP.

I personally think that the "creation" is life itself.

And "evolution" is an adequate explanation for the process of adaptation that life uses to survive.
Life is all about survival, mostly at the expense of the life of another living organism.
We all eat (ex) living things.

Every living thing is a different expression of the same "life" program... DNA.
I dont think that evolution interferes with the creation principle in the slightest.
It only interferes if you take the Bibles literal explanation of what the creation was as gospel.
A literal interpretation of the Bible doesnt stand up to the slightest critical thinking.
Whereas on the other hand the moral guidance and wise stories with a moral at the end or with much deeper meanings that explain the human condition in story form is and has been a good tool in founding the freedoms based in the Magna Carta that many of us share today.

DNA is an intelligent construct. Which proves to me at least that an intelligence created it.
We are in the image of god, we have intelligence, we are all creators, we shape the world to suit our needs, and destroy it in the process too.
As above so below.

posted on Feb, 19 2015 @ 12:51 PM
An adaptation should not be confused with a change of kind. Every organism adapts, humans, E. Coli, Galapagos birds, etc. But, there is no observable evidence that a change of kind has ever occurred. Rather, each organism was made according to its own kind, and is incapable of birthing viable offspring (hybrid lines eventually, if not immediately, become completely inviable) that is unlike its kind:

"The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds." (Genesis 1:12)

"So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living thing with which the water teems and that moves about in it, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind." (Genesis 1:21)

Adaptations happen all the time, but a change of kind has never been observed despite efforts from the scientific community. I am not trying to prove or disprove anything, but rather point out that evolution requires faith just as much as a Bible does. Without observable evidence of a change of kind, we are only left to believe in evolution.

posted on Feb, 20 2015 @ 11:02 AM

originally posted by: cooperton
An adaptation should not be confused with a change of kind.

Unfortunately there is no classification of organism known as "kind" plus long term adaptation IS EVOLUTION, so your entire point is invalid. You are making the common mistake of separating micro from macro evolution and not understanding the terminology and mechanisms involved. Can you explain why multiple micro evolution events cannot accumulate over time to eventually lead up to bigger change? Or are you just another denier that doesn't even understand how evolution works?

edit on 20-2-2015 by Barcs because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 21 2015 @ 07:42 PM
a reply to: Barcs

It is no surprise that you haven't actually read Darwin (just like most Christians haven't read the bible). Darwin mentions "kinds" frequently. I opened to page 321 and found a couple quotes.

"...and seeds of many kinds in
the crops of floating birds long retain their vitality..."

" I could give
many facts showing how frequently birds of many
kinds are blown by gales to vast distances across the

p. 321 origin of species

I understand "kind" is not a part of kingdom phylum class order family genus species. Kind is a term that means a group having similar characteristics, i.e. birds. Science has never observed a bird give birth to something viable that is not a bird. The chicken or the egg conundrum is probably the most vexing rebuttal against the theory of evolution.

in Chapter 6 Darwin goes over the following incongruencies:

"Difficulties on the theory of descent with modification
— Transitions —Absence or rarity of transitional
varieties — Transitions in habits of life — Diversified
habits in the same species — Species with habits
widely different from those of their allies — Organs
of extreme perfection — Means of transition —
Cases of difficulty — Natura non facit saltum —Organs
of small importance — Organs not in all cases
absolutely perfect —The law of Unity of Type and
of the Conditions of Existence embraced by the
theory of Natural Selection."

it is a theory, and has yet to be proven by science. Adaptation is undeniable, but until scientific experiment demonstrates that, for example, a unicellular organism can aggregate into a viable multicellular organism, we are left to only believe in evolution. In my opinion, there has to be some sort of intelligence behind the creation of life, and evolution may have been the mechanism by which life was formed through some sort of ethereal power. Regardless, Time is an illusion, so I try not to get too caught up on this matter.

edit on 21-2-2015 by cooperton because: (no reason given)

edit on 21-2-2015 by cooperton because: forgot "family" in the 7 classifications

posted on Feb, 22 2015 @ 12:04 AM
a reply to: cooperton

I don't care what Darwin said. His book isn't the "bible" of evolution, and certainly isn't the final authority on the subject. It was the very first book about a brand new concept in science. The theory of modern evolutionary synthesis has come a LONG way since Darwin as has taxonomy, not to mention the entire field of genetics that didn't exist at the time it was written. Scientists do not refer to "kinds" of animals today when classifying them, so referring to evolution as it was back in the late 1800s is a fallacy.

You may want to check this link out. As you can see, the word "kind" has no place in scientific classification of organisms. The modern classification of organisms came out after Darwin died, although most of it is influenced by evolution.

it is a theory, and has yet to be proven by science.

A scientific theory is based on facts and hard evidence. Sorry, the "just a theory" excuse is so old and outdated, it shows you know zilch about evolution. Do you think gravity is unproven by science?

Adaptation is undeniable, but until scientific experiment demonstrates that, for example, a unicellular organism can aggregate into a viable multicellular organism, we are left to only believe in evolution.

Here's a scientific experiment that demonstrates exactly that. Good to see you're on board now. Knowledge is power.

posted on Feb, 22 2015 @ 12:21 AM
a reply to: Barcs

I was playing Devil's advocate, but great find! That is interesting. The article you gave didn't cite Ratcliff's document but I was able to find it in a research search database, it is called "experimental evolution of multicellularity".

Although technically there still was not a change of kind, they are still yeast cells which adapted to their environment by aggregating together. Ratcliff stated they presented the yeast with an environment that would promote multicellularity, so this is still technically an adaptation. But, when does adaptation become "evolution"?

edit on 22-2-2015 by cooperton because: added the second paragraph

posted on Feb, 22 2015 @ 08:22 AM
a reply to: cooperton

Maybe you should start with the definition of evolution -- evolution is a change in allele frequency within a given population over time. Does the observed adaptation represent a change in allele frequency within a given population over time? If yes, then the adaptation is evolution.

posted on Feb, 22 2015 @ 06:59 PM

originally posted by: cooperton
Although technically there still was not a change of kind,

Did you completely disregard what I said previously about "kinds"? Evolution has nothing to do with "kinds".

they are still yeast cells which adapted to their environment by aggregating together.

Um, did you read the article? They did far more than aggregate together, plus they had multi cellular offspring, which shows it isn't just a clump of single cells.

Ratcliff stated they presented the yeast with an environment that would promote multicellularity, so this is still technically an adaptation. But, when does adaptation become "evolution"?

It would help if you stopped misusing terminology. Adaptation is not separate from evolution. Adaptation becomes evolution the second it covers multiple generations. Please do us all a favor and learn what terms mean before using them.
edit on 22-2-2015 by Barcs because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 2 2015 @ 01:29 PM

originally posted by: Krazysh0t
3. Evolution violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics (Entropy)

First off, here is the Second Law of Thermodynamics written out:

The entropy of an isolated system never decreases, because isolated systems always evolve toward thermodynamic equilibrium, a state with maximum entropy.

There is a key word in this definition that should be taken note of. That word is "isolated", in other words "closed". This means that a system without any new energy being added to the system will eventually settle in a state of equilibrium through entropy. The reason I bring this up is because Earth, is NOT an isolated or closed system. The Earth receives most of its energy from the sun, so if you want to discuss the Second Law of Thermodynamics in relation to the earth, you need to include the sun to close it, and frankly that wouldn't even completely close it since the Earth also gets energy from distant stars and galactic events as well.

This argument doesn't work, but not for the reason you specify.

The "closed system" you speak of isn't just the Earth, it's the Solar System, and further, the Universe. The Sun will continue to provide the same amount of energy to the Earth, basically until it burns itself out.

That's really the whole point of physics... to determine the constants in our closed system. The argument doesn't work because the laws of physics are not meant to explain biology and biochemistry. We have fields of study for these specific fields for a reason.

posted on Apr, 2 2015 @ 01:36 PM
a reply to: theCheddar

What are you talking about? Are you suggesting that physics can't be used to explain biology and chemistry, because that is absurd. Physical Biology is a scientific journal that focuses on JUST that.

And physical chemistry is an actual field of study.

But if I got interpretation of what you are say wrong, then like I said. I don't know what you are talking about.

top topics

<< 6  7  8    10 >>

log in