The Flagellum is Not a Motor?


(Timothy Horton) #41

No, you didn’t. Had a motor and is a motor are two different things. Bjmiller said the entire flagellum is a motor.

That’s an amazingly weak attempt to get your foot from your mouth where you planted it earlier Mung, even by your low standards.

(Timothy Horton) #42

What prevents ID-Creationists from being honest and not equivocating over the definition of “motor”?


Where did he say it? Link please. It sure wasn’t in the text Joshua quoted in the opening post in this thread. The word flagellum doesn’t even appear.

(Dale Cutler) #44

Making some pretense to being a sculptor, I find the 3D intricacies involved to get rotory motion from conformational changes starting with ATP to be quite wonderful. (I avoided ‘design’ and ‘complexties’ – is everybody happy? :wink:)

(Timothy Horton) #45

Try real hard to not play your disingenuous word-twisting games for once Mung. Just once. Join the adults in the discussion.

(Dale Cutler) #46

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

(S. Joshua Swamidass) #47

Now go ahead and list out just as many differences. If you struggle to do so, there are large gaps in your biological knowledge that are central to this conversation.

(S. Joshua Swamidass) #48

@Mung this isn’t about word games. I don’t care about imprecise claims made here or there. @bjmiller can clarify what he means and we can go by that meaning. My point remains the same right now:

(Dale Cutler) #49

Well, I don’t suppose the bacterial flagellum has too many special alloys in its bearing surfaces. We could be pedantic and list thousands of differences if we were so inclined. But the essential characteristics and components is what we are talking about, is it not? What makes a motor a motor? The most obvious thing to me that make a bacterial flagellum not a motor is biologists objecting. :wink:

(Guy Coe) #50

Here’s the video clip at the source of this controversy. It ought to inform the discussion of how apt the terminology is.
There are definitely more than three basic parts, @swamidass , --the scanning electron microscope images clearly show that --and regardless of the semantic issues, it is worth examing at the molecular level. If we’re ever able to successfully nano-engineer anything like it, it will definitely take a lot of science, applied technology, and brainpower.
A biochemically propelled nano-drone? Who knows what we’ll try to make of it?

(Timothy Horton) #51

Are you going to jump on the Creationist bandwagon and start dishonestly equivocating over the definition of “motor” too?

(Dale Cutler) #52

I’ll try not to get on the insult wagon.

(Timothy Horton) #53

That would be a first.

(Dale Cutler) #54

What is dishonest and equivocating about nailing down the essence of a term?

(Dale Cutler) #55

Around and around and nobody gets off. At least you can’t claim that I started it. :slightly_smiling_face:

(Timothy Horton) #56

OK, you are going to jump on the Creationist bandwagon and start dishonestly equivocating over the definition of “motor” too. Thanks for the clarification.

(Dale Cutler) #57

You’re not welcome.

(Dale Cutler) #58

It is only “dishonestly equivocating” because you have declared it so, not because your accusation has any merit, and you cannot refuse to call a motor a motor just because it disagrees with your bias.

(Neil Rickert) #59

This discussion strikes me as mostly pointless.

To say that the flagellum is a motor is to stretch the meaning of “motor”. And I think that @swamidass was making just that point.

On the other hand, in natural language use we often stretch meanings, and that’s what some of the other respondents want to do here.

I’d say we should call it a tie, and move on to some other topic.

(Timothy Horton) #60

Me and virtually every other science professional who has heard the DI’s disingenuous “motors are designed, the flagellum is a motor, therefore the flagellum is designed!” argument. I know honesty doesn’t mean very much to those arguing against science for their religious beliefs but to the rest of us it means a great deal.