User:AK/Objections to evolution

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According to J.Behe evolution is a flexible word with different meanings.[1]

[2]


Kant was perceived as a forerunner for later Darwin's evolutionary thought.[3]

Contents

The Objection of correlated adaptation

The objection is that, to get an improvement in species, several correlated adaptations have to occur together.[4]

Violation of the second law of thermodynamics

It has been objected that if the living world has come about by undirected natural processes as proposed in evolutionary theories, the thermodynamic problem needs to be overcome. The objection is that the principles of thermodynamics do not allow a new function using raised free energy levels to be achieved without new machinery. And new machines are not made by simply adding energy to existing machines. The whole point is that without information in a system for a machine it is not possible to form a machine. Without machines already available it is not possible to form a machine and this establishes the problem for the abiogenesis.[5]

[note 1]

In response to criticism that evolutionary scenarios for origin of life or for new functions would be violating the second law of thermodynamics the evolutionists like Jason Rosenhouse often assure that natural forces routinely lead to decreases in entropy:

Water freezes into ice and fertilized eggs turn into babies. Plants use sunlight to convert carbon dioxide and water into sugar and oxygen, but [we do] not invoke divine intervention to explain the process [...] thermodynamics offers nothing to dampen our confidence in Darwinism. [7]

This is however refuted with following argument:

The ice example is thermodynamically irrelevant to the origin of life. When ice freezes, it releases heat energy into the environment. This causes an entropy increase in the surroundings. If the temperature is low enough, this entropy increase is greater than the loss of entropy in forming the crystal. But the formation of proteins and nucleic acids from amino acids and nucleotides not only lowers their entropy, but it removes heat energy (and entropy) from their surroundings. Thus ordinary amino acids and nucleotides will not spontaneously form proteins and nucleic acids at any temperature. Also we should distinguish between order and complexity. Crystals are ordered; life is complex. To illustrate: a periodic (repeating) signal, e.g. ABABABABABAB, is an example of order. However, it carries little information: only ‘AB’, and ‘print 6 times’. A crystal is analogous to that sequence; it is a regular, repeating network of atoms. Like that sequence, a crystal contains little information: the co-ordinates of a few atoms (i.e. those which make up the unit cell), and instructions ‘more of the same’ x times. If a crystal is broken, smaller but otherwise identical crystals result. Conversely, breaking proteins, DNA or living structures results in destruction, because the information in them is greater than in their parts. A crystal forms because this regular arrangement, determined by directional forces in the atoms, has the lowest energy. Thus the maximum amount of heat is released into the surroundings, so the overall entropy is increased....proteins and DNA are also non-random aperiodic sequences. The sequences are not caused by the properties of the constituent amino acids and nucleotides themselves. This is a huge contrast to crystal structures, which are caused by the properties of their constituents.[8]


Further on, evolutionists often try to make a point that this objection is based on a manifestation of the law only applicable to isolated systems thus evolutionary scenarios for origin of the life would not be a subject to to it. This however contradicts the understanding of this law outlined in the scientific literature: "… there are no known violations of the second law of thermodynamics. Ordinarily the second law is stated for isolated systems, but the second law applies equally well to open systems. … There is somehow associated with the field of far-from-equilibrium thermodynamics the notion that the second law of thermodynamics fails for such systems. It is important to make sure that this error does not perpetuate itself."[9]


File:Chloroplast.svg
In plants and algae, photosynthesis takes place in organelles called chloroplasts. Chloroplast ultrastructure:
1. outer membrane
2. intermembrane space
3. inner membrane (1+2+3: envelope)
4. stroma (aqueous fluid)
5. thylakoid lumen (inside of thylakoid)
6. thylakoid membrane
7. granum (stack of thylakoids)
8. thylakoid (lamella)
9. starch
10. ribosome
11. plastidial DNA
12. plastoglobule (drop of lipids)
A.McIntosh as creationist however declares that the decrease in entropy is generally possible, but there are nanomachines (which he differentiates from natural forces and attributes to outcome of design thus intelligence) necessary to achieve for that effect. He even tries to demonstrate the point with examples including the chemical bonds between nucleotides in DNA requiring an extra so called Gibbs free energy to take part in the process, an this extra energy can be provided in his view only by means of these molecular machines. He argues that if, for example, guanine and cytosine, i.e. nucleotides paired in DNA, would be placed in a Petri dish, they would refrain from bonding together as there is no machine (such as Molecular tweezer) to provide a free energy in a specific way to enable that bond to take place. Further on he points out that after living organism dies and these machines cease working, the DNA starts falling apart even while still being exposed to extra energy. Thus, he believes natural selection has no power to create new functional structures such as DNA or information biopolymer, respectively, without which fertilized eggs would not turn into babies. Likewise, he refers to photosynthesis as to process that again requires functional machine (biological mini-factory) for which he holds the leaf containing photosynthetic membranes and organelles as a whole capable to raise locally a Gibbs free energy, thus effectively catalyzing the chemical reaction and enabling photosynthesis to happen.[10]

Genetic entropy

Francis Crick

I well remember something that Francis Crick said to me many years ago, when my own functionalist biases were strong. He remarked, in response to in an adaptive story I had invented with alacrity and agility to explain the meaning of repetitive DNA: ‘Why do you evolutionists always try to identify the value of something before you know how it is made?’ Stephen J. Gould, Adam’s Navel, p.57

A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism

http://www.dissentfromdarwin.org/

Notes

  1. cf."Entropy can be forced to decrease in open system by applying enough external energy and information in an organized form."[6]

References

  1. Michael J.Behe (2006). Darwin’s black box, the biochemical challenge to the evolution. P.X Preface. Free press. ISBN 9780743290319. “Evolution is a flexible word. It can be used by one person to mean something as simple as change over time, or by another person to mean the descent of all life forms from a common ancestor, leaving the mechanism of change unspecified. In its full-throated, biological sense, however, evolution means a process whereby life arouse from non-living matters and subsequently developed entirely by natural means. That is the sense that Darwin gave to the word, and the meaning that it holds in the scientific community.” 
  2. Michael Ruse (Prof. Philosophy &zoology at Uni of Gelph, Canada), How evolution became a religion: Creationists correct? Darwinians wrongly mix science with morality, politics, National Post, May 13, 2000.
  3. Jozef Rohacek (1936). Evolucionizmus vo svetle pravdy alebo čo má každý vzdelaný človek vedieť o evolucionizme (Evolutionism in the light of truth or what should every literate person know about evolutionism). Bratislava, now Slovakia: Svetlo, Library of Blue Cross, 6-11, 48-50. 
  4. Lee Spetner (1998). Not by Chance! Shattering the modern theory of evolution. New York: The Judaica Press Inc., 272. ISBN 978-1-880582-24-4. “The objection was that, to get an improvement in species, several correlated adaptations have to occur together. These requirements are far too unlikely for theory to work. ...Evolutionists have given only a vague answer to the objection of correlated adaptation.” 
  5. McIntosh, Dawkins and thermodynamics.
  6. Per A. Larsen. Darwins lære faller (in Norwegian), 127. ISBN 82-7199-2228. 
  7. {{{author}}}, How Anti-Evolutionists Abuse Mathematics (published letter to the editor), The Mathematical Intelligencer, [[{{{date}}}]].
  8. Jonathan Sarfati. The Second Law of Thermodynamics:Answers to Critics.
  9. John Ross, {{{title}}}, Chemical and Engineering News, 7 July 1980.
  10. McIntosh, A.C.: Functional Information and Entropy in living system, pp.115-126, Design and Nature III: Comparing Design in Nature with Science and Engineering , Vol 87 of WIT Transactions on Ecology and the environment, Editor Brebbia C.A., WIT Press, 2006.
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