Cars, Biology and Evolution

@scd has argued that because self-reproducing cars cannot evolve into submarines, evolution must be false. As far as I know, in a world with self-reproducing cars, maybe they can evolve into submarines. That world is fantasy right? So doesn’t anything go?

Seriously though, I understand that you do not agree with common descent @scd. These arguments though are totally unconvincing. This forum is not for arguing for or against evolution.

In my view, science is not up for public debate. Arguments on the internet between non-professionals have absolutely no bearing on how mainstream science progresses. This is just not how science works.

Science is not intuitive. It is very mathematical and technical. Science requires very careful adherence to specific logical rules and standards. There are a multitude of rhetorically strong points (that convince the crowds) that are totally false scientifically. The rules and conclusions of mainstream science, therefore are not up for debate in the public square in any meaningful sense. Therefore, I usually avoid public debates about science.

Do not mistake this as an “appeal to authority.” Science can certainly be wrong. At times it is. Even when it is right, science’s certainty and scope are sharply limited. If you feel the need, go ahead and disagree with science. You might even be right. Let’s just not fantasize that public debate affects scientific opinion at all. It does not.

Instead of debate, my goal here is to offer a clear explanation of how mainstream science understands about our world. In what way, using the rules of mainstream science, is the evidence for common descent so clear? What, exactly, is the scientific definition of evolution, and why do scientists include theistic evolutionists? What are the rules of science? What are the limits and strengths of science?

Perhaps you will disagree strongly with what you learn of mainstream science. My aim is not to change your mind. Rather, I hope that you might understand what you reject, and that, perhaps, I might understand you too.

You are welcome to continue to reject evolution. Why not try to understand what you are rejecting?

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actually its not, since we have many problems with this model. also: unless you believe in a theistic evolution, there are no small steps between many different creatures.

as for the age of the earth: first: i never said i believe in a young earth. i just say that we dont know what is the real age of the earth. but i will try to deal with your points:

we have two possibilities: human population was to small to leave fossils, or human was created after dinos (mean several creations events).

actually i think that the opposite is true. for instance: we have empirical evidence that speciation may take about less then 100 years:

so lets assume a tipical speciation event= 100 years.

one of the largest family on earth is the curculionidae which contain almost 100,000 species. so if we start with 2 species then after about one generation of a speciation event (100 years) we will get 4 different species. and after another generation of speciation we will get 8 and so on. so we only need about less then 20 generation of speciation to get more then 100,000 different species (2^20) . or about 2000 years.

so we can explain your main two objections without an old earth.


Your position is akin to magic. You appear to believe that chromosomes magically know when to stop mutating, in order to avoid unintentional speciation.

Once a person accepts that mutations can lead to reproductive incompatibilities, Evolution by means of Common Descent becomes inevitable and virtually unavoidable.

its like saying that the position that a robot need a designer is akin to magic. i also give you at least one possible objection to stepwise evolution- minimal complexity. you cant just change a car stepwise into an airplane. so what make you think its possible by evolution?


The evolution from terrestrial mammal to ocean-going whale, while not thoroughly understood, is remarkably well understood by evolutionists.

So, what would You challenge as the impossible change?

You know that whales have one nostril leading to a completely different part of the head than an ordinary mammal. Would you say that this is impossible?

Or is there something else in the hypothetical evolution that you think is much more impossible?

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i gave here an interesting analogy: a self replicating car for instance cant evolve stepwise into an airplane. so we cant change a land mammal stepwise into a whale.


Your analogy is, frankly, preposterous.

If DNA is a living blueprint for how a living thing is “built” … and DNA can mutate for lots and lots of different reasons… there is every reason to think that it is easier for a mammal to become adapted to the open seas than it is to imagine a car (without robotic or even living workers) to change into anything at all.

The problem with your objection, and your inapplicable attempt at refutation, is that you offer no mechanism for how chromosomes would know when to stop allowing phenotype changes.

We know a kind of animal can become larger or smaller, or hairier or less so, adapted to one kind of climate, or another … and so on. And given enough time, there seems no limit to how many changes can aggregate in an ongoing population of any kind of plant or animal.

Below is a diagram of how one branch of whales has a specialized nostril path… I can’t remember which one is blocked off… I can’t remember if it is the long-route (colored green) or the short route (colored red). But with God leaving clues like this … pretty much daring any human to conclude that whales were a completely separate creation, even though traces of its former anatomy are literally littered throughout its body - - well, you can fantasize about your car metaphor, but it’s a dog that just doesn’t hunt compared to the DNA-supported anatomy of a hair-covered, warm-blooded, placenta-bearing mammal that has become one of the most specialized creatures of the ocean.

The only way you could disprove this most impressive case of Evolution is to show that whales and giant aquatic reptiles of the Dinosaur ages lived and died together … both examples of unique and special creation.

In fact, however, whales don’t appear in the fossil stacks until other large mammals appeared first.

And these large mammals don’t appear until the large dinosaurs have been wiped out by the asteroid 65 million years ago.

There is no way to explain any of these oddities by means of the flood, or biblically, or by God’s will. Everything about the fossil stacks indicate a unique timeline where the larger carnivorous dinosaurs put a severe limit on how big mammals could get before they drew the hungry eyes of the swarms of hunter dinos!

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i actually do. lets take a theoretical self replicating mulecule. there is no way that such a molecule will evolve into something like a robot or a car. this is because there are no small steps to evolve a car. a minimal car need at least several parts like wheels, engine etc. so the car cant evolve stepwise. the same is true for a living thing. many complex biological system need at least several parts for their minimal function. therefore they cant evolve stepwise.

you claim about fossils is also problematic, since its also possible that the designer just made different creatures at different time period.


Your comparison to a car is a bankrupt comparison. Car parts are not known to change, even when bombarded with heat, light or other forms of energy.

In contrast, DNA for living organisms are known to change when bombarded with various kinds of energies.

Since the only thing that constrains a life form for how big or how small it will become is DNA, plus the natural pressures of natural selection, there is no limit to how much a population can change in color, size, shape, diet and reproductive strategies…

And if you accept the idea that God guides DNA changes, then there is no limiting factor.

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but i do talking about an organic car that may even has DNA. so in this case the comparison is great since it has a living traits.


So you have gone from a real car with parts that we know cannot reassemble themselves… to an imaginary car with parts that can (like DNA). To what end? You imagine this imaginary car with imaginary limits.

I can show you the history of the whale, starting with a terrestrial mammal, that over millions of years became an increasingly aquatic population of mammals. And those bones are real. So did God really create all these life forms with the intention of fooling scientists? He would not need all these temporary and now extinct intermediate forms … unless he used them to help create the modern whale, or to intentionally fool us all.

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Ha. @scd

Which is why I reject all your automobile hypotheticals!

The multi-million year history of terrestrial mammal to fully marine mammal does prove Evolution. And if you claim that it doesn’t, it is because you think we can only do this once. We have interlocking patterns of fossils around the world that all converge on the same reality: natural selection (God-guided) and mutations (God-guided) appear to be the main origin of virtually all animal and plant life on Earth.

So your car stuff is a complete red herring.

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I’ll get back to the rest of what you wrote … but are you saying you believe that Speciation IS possible through genetic change and natural selection? That would eliminate a large section of terrain that typically becomes part of the dispute.

Please confirm.

sure. why not? but its only variation of the same family (“kind” under creationists meaning). so its not realy a new kind of creature.

sure, but i actually do aware about evolutionery claims.


You need to re-read Genesis.

Any population of animals that can reproduce itself is a Kind. “Kind” is mis-translated to suggest “a general type” - - like a Tuna swimming in the sea is the same “kind” of creature as a “Sail Fish”. But not according to Genesis. Tuna and Sail Fish cannot reproduce a new generation “according to their kind”. So they are two kinds.

If by speciation you can get Red-Bellied Fungus Eater and a Blue-Bellied Fungus Eater, and mating pairs made up of one from each group are not fertile (or produce infertile offspring)… then we have two KINDS.

Welcome to the Evolution Revolution!

@swamidass, that’s what we do with Kind!

So when driverless cars and trucks become available in the not too distant future, you can say that an Intelligent Designer both design the vehicle and is doing the driving. I wonder if people will still put a cross or saint’s medals in their car for protection? And if the car crashes, will the insurance company say it was an “act of God”?

Boring boosterism.


It’s a little pathetic when someone spends time venting antagonism… while ignoring the novel approach to analyzing the meaning of “kind” in Genesis.

My guess is that it’s the refuge when a person knows far more about what they’re against than what they’re for. Engaging exploration on the part of others feels like boring boosterism to the one who’d rather not. Don’t mean that as an insult; just as an explanation, based on trying other peoples shoes on.

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