Ann Gauger's Recent Talk at Biola

Thanks for the mention @agauger.

If she is willing, I’d be up for discussing the case she made here about common descent.


Now I’d sign up to see that on Pay-Per-View. I think you should have a thread where just the two of you are allowed to post for the first two days, then another thread where we can all hop on to talk about it.


I haven’t watched the talk yet but does she actually argue against common ancestry? What David mentions in this evolution news post just seems to be questioning naturalistic common ancestry. @swamidass

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I watched the video. It is rather weak. She cherry-picks the huge database of genetics to find nuggets of data that supports her pre-ordained conclusions. I would recommend distancing yourself from this. You do real science on a daily basis. You may want to retract most of what she attributes to you.

It is nice that she cites me. I do need to be sure my work isn’t being misrepresented (accidentally or otherwise) by anyone. I won’t retract anything just because she cites it though, that wouldn’t make sense. Rather at some point I need to get a published study out that gives my full analysis.

I didn’t find that anything she cited was misconstrued; just that what she thinks she needs to find, as an alternative, may not be strictly necessary. Her main point is that there’s simply not enough time to go, in six million years, from chimps to humans. She may be right, if nothing but gradual happenstance is invoked as sufficient cause… and yet, that may overlook the creative ingenuity and marvelously adaptive potential buried deep inside the genetic code, the origin of which is metaphysically up for grabs, based more upon philosophical, rather than evidentiary, considerations.

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Based on the comments here and just what I’ve learned along life’s way perhaps the best way to do it is to frame what the discussion is going to be about in advance and very specifically. For example the proposition “Known and currently observed evolutionary mechanisms as un-remarkable rates can fully explain the evolution of chimpanzees and humans from a common ancestor.” With you taking the affirmative and she the negative side of that proposition.

The same series of Biola talks included another which could start us down this road.

It’s worth mentioning that the genetic code operates more like a quantum computer than a digital one, wouldn’t you agree?

Not really.

Oh geez, no thanks. I’m holding off the Crossway TE book till my review comes out next month in Themelios. One thing at a time.

Quantum computers use qbits, whose entanglement, on occasion, with other qbits, sometimes holds their mutual binary values in tension; that seems a bit more like the type of coordinated variability inherent in gene-mediated regulatory networks. Just a thought…

To be fair to Ann, she’s assuming at this point only what mainstream science assumes - that there are no such marvels of that nature buried in the code. Venema, for example, takes the evolutionary interval from common ancestor to man as easy, given mutation rates etc. He doesn’t say it will work only if we assume hidden potential in the genome.

As I mentioned previously, the “single pair at 500,000 years ago” notion has been noticed by the secular gatekeepers, (Coyne, Dawkins Society, Letts to name a few). There is no chance of publication in a peer-reviewed journal. It is already deemed “creationism”.

Not nice at all. It taints you. Being labeled a ID or “creationist” of any flavor, (YEC, OEC, or EC) will not help your career in science.

That’s not what I mean.

I’m the Francis Collins flavor and clearly not ID.

Yes, stay like Francis Collins. Collins doesn’t endorse ANY model of creation. He is very ethereal, sort of a deist on the big three - start of universe, start of life on Earth, start of humanity. He does add in the Jesus story. But nothing Collins says or said taints his science. His standing among secular scientists is one of extremely high regard.

Censure and censorship via such undeserved “guilt by association” is hardly the kind of thing to support against valid science, @Patrick , much less brag about. Just thought I’d address the elephant in the room.

@patrick isn’t censoring me, he is warning me that others might. He is right. I have to trust that my colleagues will be fair.

I’m far more neutral than Collins. I do not endorse EC, and I do not promote any view of origins. My work, from the scientists viewpoint, is public engagement for the purpose of bringing accurate science to religious communities. This is a difficult to reach group, and there is a history of hostilities here. I’m seeking peace, with an honest and accurate account of science. If I’ve made an error in the science anywhere, let me know, and it will be immediately retracted.

I’ve been encouraged that most scientists recognize all this and affirm the high value of my work, even if they personally are atheists.

Agreed. I just want it to be clear whose back the onus is on not to be merely and indefensibly prejudicial, with regards to good science. The fact that you so willingly engage religious communities with the historical limits which inhere from good science is not to be taken as “tainting,” but as correcting. That is in EVERYONE’S best interests.

I watched her presentation and thought it quite good. If she can be refuted, I would be interested in seeing that also.

The peer review process is not about censure and censorship. It is about trust and the integrity of scientific investigation and inquiry. Let say that Dr. Swamidass completes a full analysis that he feels gives new scientific insights and he wants it to be published and acknowledged as such. He sends his work to a journal of his choice. That journal editor wants to maintain the highest standards of publication so the editor sends the paper to three reviewers for their review. The reviewers are chosen based on who will be most effected professionally by the new works publication. In this case, if I were the editor of the journal, would send Dr. Swamidass’ paper to Coyne, Letts, and David Reich for review. Then, as editor, I would publish Dr. Swamidass’ paper along with the reviewers comments and reviews. I assure you that reputations will be tarnished, name calling and labeling will ensue. Although this is the way that peer-review is suppose to work, there is a much more damaging process. Let’s say that Dr. Swamidass chooses to publish in a “christian” magazine. Well then the secular scientific journals go in for the kill. It becomes a shark feeding frenzy as Coyne, Letts, Reich and many many others start attacking form every possible angle. It is not pretty, not fair but the way it works.

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