Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – The Illegible Post, Part 4 – On population bottlenecks and honesty

your brain might jump out and run awayIn this installment of “just how silly can this get”, we have our Christian making some claims about science in some detail and in general. 

“#11 This population bottleneck is a matter of genuine science and the excuse for it not being true is probably just as valid as any second rate blogger’s posts can be against the science magazines that published it. Yes, scientists have proven we all come from one female.” 

We start right off with the usual creationist tactic of making a claim and offering no support for it.  Many Christians want to claim that “genuine science” (and I can only say that with a broad southern US drawl “gen-u-wine science!”) supports them.  As we have seen, that is not the case and has never yet been the case.  For all of the claims of how science supports creationists, they never come up with scientific discoveries on their own that demonstrate how their god exists.  No, they take legitimate scientific discoveries and misrepresent them through their personal ignorance as something they can glom onto when their faith flags.  From what we know about creationists throughout the ages, the ones now would be heretics to their brethren who were sure that genetics weren’t true, geology wasn’t true, etc.  Many creationists have indeed evolved, disbelieving what their forefathers claimed and now grudgingly accept at least some of the science that they continue to decry when it shows their myths are pure nonsense. The myths pick up more claims of scientific truth in a vain attempt to keep them appearing valid in the fact based reality of the 20th and 21st centuries.  

Population bottlenecks are indeed known facts thanks to the scientific method.  We know them because of work with cell biology and genetics, all sciences that creationists hate until they want to run to them for “evidence” for their god.  Essentially, a population bottleneck is when a population’s gene pool is severely diminished by the widespread and relatively sudden death of much of the population. This website has a very nice illustration of how this occurs.

If there is a limit to the gene pool, there isn’t as many possible combinations to appear in the population and the population is limited in the attributes it displays, attributes that are selected for and against by environmental pressures.  For example, if one of Darwin’s finches, let’s say the heavy beaked seed eater, had a major population decline and the environment changed so that there were few of the seeds it eats around (but there were more bugs deep in tree back)  The population would not have the genetic grab bag that a larger population would to have. They would not be able to adapt as easily to the environment with fewer of those individuals who had those slightly different attributes that favored getting the bugs to survive and pass on their genetics to another generation. 

Our Christian claims that all humanity came from one woman.  We see from our prior posts about the Noah myth, that he disagrees with other creationists in that they wish to claim that we are from at least a few more (Mrs. Noah and the wives of Noah’s sons).  Unfortunately, both variants of Christian are wrong because they haven’t a clue what they are talking about.  Many Christians have decided that the concept of the “mitochondrial eve” is the Eve from the Bible.  Unfortunately, this shows ignorance on their part and the usual attempts at looting science: 

  • the ME was very likely not “human” as they would define it.
  • the ME is dated to around 200,000 years ago
  • the ME is separated from the y-chromosome Adam that they also glom onto by centuries if not hundreds of centuries 

The wiki entry does a good job at showing how wrong creationists are in their false claims and has lot of sources supporting this information.  You can also read about the Most Recent Common Ancestor of humans here.  At the moment, we have competing hypotheses that have the MRCA being as recent as 2000 years which would make them wrong in a whole new way!  That’s the problem with having a book that has no dates, vanishingly few ways to determine dates and then trying to shoehorn reality into this pile of nonsense. Creationists are shown wrong using the same facts and method that scientists use to allow us to breed better food crops and critters, defend against antibiotic resistant bacteria, etc. Molecular genetics isn’t something you can just decide applies one place and not another.     

“#12 Show me any two evidences that support evolutionism (the only counter for creationism that is generally used). This kind of stuff is believed by creationists to be pseudoscience. They, thus demonstrate no “hypocrisy” in accepting scientific supports for creation. This would only be if we rejected all science as bring anti-God, which I am afraid no one but a lone nut who is embarrassing to call a brother in Christ because he is too lazy to equip himself against oppositions of science, falsely so called. 

Again, tell me two places where I’ve falsified information or used outdated science. I’m anything but willfully ignorant, name one time that you know I’ve ignored a claim you’ve made to have science behind you. Honestly I cannot believe that evolutionism is even still taught in our schools. How hard did you try to find evidence to support the Bible’s claims when you were a child? Not too hard, I reckon, because even a nominal YouTube search will direct you to ministries and men that defend the Bible and answer the claims against it and the arguments they use to support it.”

I have shown our Christian evidence for evolutionary theory (transitional forms, genetic similarities, speciation, etc here: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/  ) and shortly thereafter, our Christian suddenly had no more time to spend on actually defending his claims.  This is nothing new, of course.  There are certain types of theists that will attempt to appear as if they are willing to consider evidence. However, as we have seen before, it is never up to their constantly changing “standards”.  Moving the goalposts is a common sport with Christians and it is an exemplary sample of the dishonesty inherent in creationism. 

Creationists may indeed declare that anything that does not agree with them to be “pseudoscience”. However, calling an orangutan an elephant doesn’t make it so.  As above, we see that creationists accept science when convenient for them and only reject those parts that show that they are wrong as “anti-God”.  This is hypocrisy, for one cannot get past hypocrisy by falsely declaring something that you use already as “pseudoscience”.  It is not hypocrisy, but it is a lie, to claim that there is any evidence gained from the scientific method for creationist claims. 

It’s entertaining to see our Christian use the classic “TrueChristiantm” excuse when pointing to his brethren as “lone nuts” and them being “embarrassing” to acknowledge as fellow Christians.  Alas, our Christian is just as “nuts” as those he would attack, with the same lack of any evidence for his claims and indeed evidence against what science has discovered.  He asks where he has falsified information or used outdated science.  Well, we have one right in this post, #11 in all of its glory.  “This population bottleneck is a matter of genuine science and the excuse for it not being true is probably just as valid as any second rate blogger’s posts can be against the science magazines that published it. Yes, scientists have proven we all come from one female.”  I know this is not true and I suspect he does too since he has not presented any documentation for it.  He has attempted to claim that this article reviewed by Dr. Coyne over at Why Evolution is True doesn’t have anything to do with population bottlenecks.  That’s quite a denial of reality. 

We also have this bit that will be coming up later in the juicy geological finale for our series on this particular Christian.  Our Christian uses the Encyclopedia Britannica for a quote.  The problem is that the EB is from 1949 *and* the quote is out of context.  The quote is “It cannot be denied that from a strictly philosophical standpoint geologists are here arguing in a circle.” And one can see just how badly the Christian lies when you see the rest of the article: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/quotes/mine/part5.html  and look at #5.4.  The quote goes on:

“It cannot be denied that from a strictly philosophical standpoint geologists are here arguing in a circle. The succession of organisms has been determined by a study of their remains embedded in the rocks, and the relative ages of the rocks are determined by the remains of organisms that they contain.

Nevertheless the arguments are perfectly conclusive. This apparent paradox will disappear in the light of a little further consideration, when the necessary limitations have been introduced. The true solution of the problem lies in the combination of the two laws above stated, taking into account the actual spatial distribution of the fossil remains, which is not haphazard, but controlled by definite laws. It is possible to a very large extent to determine the order of superposition and succession of the strata without any reference at all to their fossils. When the fossils in their turn are correlated with this succession they are found to occur in a certain definite order, and no other.

Consequently, when the purely physical evidence of superposition cannot be applied, as for example to the strata of two widely separated regions, it is safe to take the fossils as a guide; this follows from the fact that when both kinds of evidence are available there is never any contradiction between them; consequently, in the limited number of cases where only one line of evidence is available, it alone may be taken as proof.”

We’ll see more quote-mining later when I have fun with our Christians lies about geology in further detail. It’s so bad, there’s large portion of Talk Origins devoted to it: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/quotes/mine/project.html  One can see just how some Christians have no problem with lying about their religion at all.  Pity for them that we have such nifty things like computers that can help find plagiarism and quote-mining.  

Our Christian has done his best to ignore the facts about the city of Tyre and how his bible is entirely wrong about what it claims.  We certainly can find that city, being that there are hundreds of thousand of people living there and we know where the ancient parts are too. So much for our Christians claim that the bible is inerrant and literal. We also have our Christian ignoring a direct question where I have asked him, that since other myths mention real places and people, how that makes his myths any different.  

He may honestly not be able to figure out why evolutionary theory is taught in schools.  But I suspect that it is more his disbelief that people can and do disagree with his religion and his personal interpretation of it.  If you believe that you are a special snowflake, and believe that you have some ultimately powerful being standing behind you, then I suppose it is hard to accept that people aren’t impressed.  I’m sure that the emperor was shocked that there were those who didn’t like his new invisible clothes either. 

Finally, we end back up in our Christian trying his best to “reckon” what I’ve done in the past and being entirely wrong about it in so many ways.  As always, the Christian will try to claim that an atheist didn’t look for evidence “enough”, with the implicit.claim that if you did, of course you would agree with them.  This allows the Christian to do their best at ignoring any evidence an atheist has, by telling themselves a lie that the atheist has not been acting honestly.   

I am told to go to find evidence on YouTube that supports his claims, then I will agree with him.  Yes, the argument is: watch videos that the Christian likes and believes agree with him and then blindly accept those claims.  I have seen those video of those ministers who attempt to make the same claims that our Christian does here; video does not make it any more believable.  No matter how many pretty pictures that Hovind makes with dinosaurs with bridles, they will become no more true.  These ministers use the exact same nonsense we have been treated to here so far since creationists cannot agree on what the “really true honest” answer is amongst their various competing ideas *and* they cannot come up with anything new that they have discovered on their own.  Josh McDowell, Ken Hovind, et al are painted into the same corner that their theist ancestors found themselves in.  As humans investigate things, we find that myths are not real.  They may have had a kernel of truth at one time and may have been a just-so story where humans made up why something happened. But, as we find out more and more, those stories are left behind in favor of facts. Most modern humans no more believe that elephants’ long trunks were created by the pull of a crocodile than we think some god sends demons to afflict someone with tuberculosis and that holy water should be as good as antibiotics.      

Next up, geology time!  More on geology in general, the flood and where the Christian claims that “Father of Geology” believed in the Noah flood, it must be true.  Funny how he can’t name who that is and tell us the name of the book that this “father” wrote that has such “indelible evidence” for the flood.  You see, most geologists would say that James Hutton (1726-1797) can be considered the father of modern geology but alas for this Christian, Hutton did not believe in the bible flood.  Who knows how far back our Christian has gone to find this agreement and appeal to authority?

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6 responses to “Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – The Illegible Post, Part 4 – On population bottlenecks and honesty

  1. Boss how you made sense of this statements still baffles me! I have reread his statements twice and gave up. You do us good with your patience and teach us lots of geology.
    You know we have not so much problem with architecture, we know the Egyptians built, the Azteks, the Greeks but Abe and his family of minions didn’t leave anything for us to look at if you know what am getting at 🙂

  2. Excellent post, again! I’m glad you’re actually taking the time on this nutter. I’m sure he doesn’t know what to do with you 🙂

    I had a beauty this morning. The claim was something called “fringe science” has discovered there’s a soul. I couldn’t let it go and had to ask. Turns out this “fringe science” is conducted by one person, a lawyer named Victor Zammit. Facepalm doesn’t even begin to describe it.

  3. Pingback: Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – Part 10 – and I’m done …. for now | Club Schadenfreude

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