Re: [asa] historical versus experimental sciences

From: Dave Wallace <>
Date: Sat Aug 08 2009 - 10:17:53 EDT

Cameron Wybrow wrote:
> Dave:
> I've explained my point more fully in two follow-ups to David
> Campbell. My main point in *this* thread is not about the evolution
> of complex biological changes, but about the gratuitous nature of
> evolutionary theory in relation to much work that is actually done in
> the life sciences.
I was hoping that their was a deeper reason that I had not understood.

> Sure, Behe would grant that if you know (a) that two creatures are
> evolutionarily related, then you could predict (b) that they will have
> many of the same base sequences, and therefore (c) that they will
> generate many of the same proteins. But the first step is
> gratuitous. If you know they have the same base sequences, the
> information that they are evolutionary relatives is irrelevant to
> predicting the proteins. You can get to (c) from (b). You don't need
> (a).
I tend to think of (a)
1. As shorthand for all of the details of (b). Maybe it is possible to
have a strong hunch that (a) is true without having all the details of
(b), I don't know maybe David C does?

2. As advertising to the great number of people who do not accept even
common descent.

3. As propaganda just like I viewed YEC when I attended fundy churches.

I agree if you have (b) then (a) is redundant.

> If a physician knows that a patient has cancer of the liver, and if
> (let's say) it happens that cancer of the liver, once begun, always
> proceeds in certain ways, and can only be arrested by certain means,
> does the physician need to know whether the person got the liver
> cancer from an inherited genetic defect, from working in a certain
> chemical factory, or from fallout from Chernobyl? How will that help
> with prediction or treatment? The answer is that (if the facts are as
> given) it won't help at all. And if a bone is broken, when a doctor
> decides how to re-set it, is the X-ray not a sufficient guide for his
> work? Does it help him to know that it was broken by falling off a
> skateboard rather than falling off a ladder? Are there separate
> textbook chapters in medical reference books for "how to mend breaks
> caused by falling off skateboards" and "how to mend breaks caused by
> falling off ladders"? How is the history relevant, if the doctor can
> clearly see the break, and there is in fact only one correct way to
> re-set a bone that is fractured in exactly that way?
Sure although I think that some kinds of breaks are mainly associated
with certain sports like skiing, skateboarding, roller blading etc. I
would think it reasonable that such sports might be mentioned in the
description of the fracture and at least warning the individual not to
engage in that sport in the near future as a second break would be
unwise. Or consider tennis elbow, sure it occurs for other reasons than
tennis, as it did in my case from racket ball but the lay medical name
at least associates the condition with racket sports.

Dave W

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Received on Sat Aug 8 12:46:27 2009

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