Like us on Facebook


Follow us on Twitter





Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 56
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    38,229
    vCash
    1500

    The Evidence Against Evolution Part 1: Second Law of Thermodynamics

    So I had an idea to both take advantage of this forum, spark some discussion, and lay out in length and detail the arguments for and against The Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection.

    I thought I would start first with the counter-arguments, usually laid out by Creationists, as to why the TOE is either not true, not complete, or simply not science. Once these have been broken down one-by-one, as I assure you they can and will be, then we will move on to the evidence for the TOE, and build that case from the ground up.


    A couple of things I'd like followed in these threads:

    1. Stay on topic. I will have threads for various other evidences for and against - the fossil record, genetic evidence, biogeography, irreducible complexity, etc. Please keep the discussion of those subjects to the threads they belong in. Too often discussion gets bogged down by simply switching from subject to subject, and I hope to avoid this by splitting each bit of evidence up.

    2. Leave religion out of it. This is a scientific topic, and I'd like to keep it as such. I also don't want threads getting deleted because people can't control themselves.

    3. Try to avoid logical fallacies. I'm going to try to do it when presenting these arguments, I'd like others to do the same, whether agreeing or disagreeing with what I've presented. If it is the truth you are interested in, as opposed to simply your belief being confirmed, then you should want this as well.

    4. If you have a suggestion for other lines of evidence, please feel free to toss them in here or on my wall. Let's just try not to run off on a tangent about them when someone brings them up.

    5. Keep it civil. People are going to disagree with you. If you can't handle that, it's probably best you call and cancel your internet service now.
    Visit my Blog.



    "Glad the GOP finally came out with an Obamacare alternative. Can't wait to see their alternative to the Iraq War." - @LOLGOP

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    38,229
    vCash
    1500
    So, first, what is the Second Law of Thermodynamics?

    The Wikipedia summary states:

    In classical thermodynamics, the laws of thermodynamics are basic postulates applicable to any system involving measurable heat transfer. In statistical thermodynamics, the second law is a consequence of unitarity in quantum theory. In classical thermodynamics, however, the second law defines the concept of thermodynamic entropy, while in statistical mechanics entropy is defined from information theory, known as the Shannon entropy. In such instances, the second law of thermodynamics is an expression of the tendency that over time, differences in temperature, pressure, and chemical potential equilibrate in an isolated physical system so as to result in the natural entropic dissolution of the system itself. From the state of thermodynamic equilibrium, the law deduced the principle of the increase of entropy and explains the phenomenon of irreversibility in nature. The second law declares that perpetual motion machines are impossible.

    The second law may be expressed in many specific ways, but the first formulation is credited to the French scientist Sadi Carnot in 1824 (see Timeline of thermodynamics). The law is usually stated in physical terms of impossible processes.
    In short, a closed system will naturally progress from order to disorder. This has been used, quite often unfortunately, to attempt to show that evolution is not possible since organisms have grown more complex over time, instead of descending into disorder.

    All this actually does is show a complete misunderstanding of the actual Second Law.


    The key part that those trying to use the Second Law to disprove the TOE ignore is the closed system. The universe as a whole is a closed system, as far as we know, which leads us to believe that there will be an eventual Heat Death of the Universe. But you are not a closed system, a tree is not a closed system, and the earth is not a closed system.

    There is a ton of detail that can go into this, and we can further discuss that in this thread if people so desire. But, the main and simple point in this:


    The sun is continually, every second of every single day since the Earth first formed, pumping energy into it. When it was a hot and barren wasteland it was being bombarded by energy continually, and when it is a hot and barren wasteland after the sun is a Red Giant and has baked it beyond recognition, it will still be bathed in energy every second of every day. It is this process that allows life to flourish, and to grow more complex over time.


    There is a very good writeup at Talk Origins regarding the Second Law and the TOE, including a discussion of entropy and probability as it related to the Second Law, which you can find here:

    http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/thermo/probability.html
    Visit my Blog.



    "Glad the GOP finally came out with an Obamacare alternative. Can't wait to see their alternative to the Iraq War." - @LOLGOP

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Shakedown Street, Japan
    Posts
    30,275
    vCash
    1500
    Great post Nate, and an ambitious project. Dawkins also has a great explanation of this topic in The Greatest Show On Earth.

    I may not have my facts straight on this, but IIRC the only life on earth which doesn't get its energy from the sun is some kinds of oceanic bacteria whose energy derives from lava coming up through the crust. I should probably review that, though. Others here probably have a better understanding of that than I do.
    I blog basketball at Roundball Mining Company///Twitter: @denbutsu

    Atheists Of PSD

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    38,229
    vCash
    1500
    Quote Originally Posted by DenButsu View Post
    Great post Nate, and an ambitious project. Dawkins also has a great explanation of this topic in The Greatest Show On Earth.

    I may not have my facts straight on this, but IIRC the only life on earth which doesn't get its energy from the sun is some kinds of oceanic bacteria whose energy derives from lava coming up through the crust. I should probably review that, though. Others here probably have a better understanding of that than I do.
    At least indirectly, yeah. We get Vitamin..E?.. I believe from the sun, but I think we can get it via supplements and still be okay. And while we don't really have the ability to directly turn sunlight into energy, without the injection of that energy into plants, which we eat, and which other animals eat and we in turn eat, then the whole chain would collapse.

    So... while cows, for example, don't get the energy directly from the sun, indirectly they do, because the grass and such that they eat does.

    But yeah, things near vents on the oceanic floor live so deep that sunlight cannot and does not reach, and so they get their energy from the vents instead. It's why we hope there may be live on Europa.
    Visit my Blog.



    "Glad the GOP finally came out with an Obamacare alternative. Can't wait to see their alternative to the Iraq War." - @LOLGOP

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Central Europe
    Posts
    1,167
    vCash
    1500
    So if Religion has to stay out of here we will not discuss Creationism, because it's inherently religious, there is no base to stand for Creationism outside of religious dogma.

    But to get to the 2nd law, the only thing that needs to be said is the Earth is not a closed System, our Solar System and Galaxy are not a closed system. With that the whole "logic" falls apart.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    38,229
    vCash
    1500
    We're not discussing Creationism, just the ideas Creationists put forth in an attempt to "poke holes" in the TOE.
    Visit my Blog.



    "Glad the GOP finally came out with an Obamacare alternative. Can't wait to see their alternative to the Iraq War." - @LOLGOP

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    26,803
    vCash
    1500
    Quote Originally Posted by natepro View Post
    At least indirectly, yeah. We get Vitamin..E?.. I believe from the sun, but I think we can get it via supplements and still be okay. And while we don't really have the ability to directly turn sunlight into energy, without the injection of that energy into plants, which we eat, and which other animals eat and we in turn eat, then the whole chain would collapse.

    So... while cows, for example, don't get the energy directly from the sun, indirectly they do, because the grass and such that they eat does.

    But yeah, things near vents on the oceanic floor live so deep that sunlight cannot and does not reach, and so they get their energy from the vents instead. It's why we hope there may be live on Europa.
    I think you might mean Vitamin D.

    And vitamin D is actually misclassified as a "vitamin". Vitamins are defined as a necessity to the body but something the body doesn't make on it's own. And we obviously make it.

    Sorry a bit off-topic...just some general knowledge.

    Pure Sex.

    you have fun with your properly evaluated medical studies....i'll believe my garbage. you believe yours.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    26,803
    vCash
    1500
    So how is "order" and "disorder" defined here? Just because organisms are becoming more complex, it automatically means that it's not disorder?

    Pure Sex.

    you have fun with your properly evaluated medical studies....i'll believe my garbage. you believe yours.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    1,141
    vCash
    1500
    For all my biology background, I'm near clueless on thermodynamics (though I do know of entropy). That said, am I wrong in saying that if thermodynamics supposedly results in a zero-sum game ending in disorder, is life itself not a counterexample?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Baltimore now, but born and raised on the south side of Chicago.
    Posts
    6,769
    vCash
    1500
    Quote Originally Posted by giventofly View Post
    So how is "order" and "disorder" defined here? Just because organisms are becoming more complex, it automatically means that it's not disorder?
    One could see the constant diversification and destruction of species as a disordered process. It's really a stress to put these two things ideas together in the same room together. This is one of the problems with examining multiple realms of science. They don't play nice with one another. Especially as you move into biology, psychology, anthropology. But there is difficulty linking the movement of the smallest particles with that of the larges and that's just in physics alone.

    Quote Originally Posted by MrPoon
    man with hair like fire can destroy souls with a twitch of his thighs.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Baltimore now, but born and raised on the south side of Chicago.
    Posts
    6,769
    vCash
    1500
    Quote Originally Posted by blueman2424 View Post
    For all my biology background, I'm near clueless on thermodynamics (though I do know of entropy). That said, am I wrong in saying that if thermodynamics supposedly results in a zero-sum game ending in disorder, is life itself not a counterexample?
    This is the crux of the argument for creationism as I understand it. But to take a law of physics and apply it to a anthropological and genetic science is just not right.

    Quote Originally Posted by MrPoon
    man with hair like fire can destroy souls with a twitch of his thighs.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    7,885
    vCash
    1500
    Maybe I'm misreading something, what does order going into chaos have to do with proving/disproving evolution?

    One thing I've wondered, if an ape with 24 chromosomes can produce a human with 23 (due to the fusion of two) is considered an evidence for evolution, then can a break in that chain when retracing our ancestory be considered an evidence against evolution? How important is genetics anyways? Do we know enough about it to make any conclusions from this?

    If we should expect patterns to reveal themselves when looking at life thru the glasses of TOE (such as reptiles laying eggs vs mammals having live birth), can anything be drawn from the fact that lets say whales have avg litter size of 1, as do humans, while lemurs (which I'm assuming are a lot closer to us on the evolution table) have avg litter size of 2-3?

    trivial, but just a couple things I've wondered.
    Last edited by nastynice; 10-09-2012 at 11:02 PM.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    7,885
    vCash
    1500
    Here's a website that points out some inconsistancies.

    http://www.whyevolution.com/chimps.html#chimp

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    38,229
    vCash
    1500
    I'm not really sure what either of those have to do with Entropy or the Second Law of Thermodynamics. And that website is kind of... goofy, at best. Lots of attempts at logical arguments instead of scientific ones, lots of analogies, seems to be little real discussion of any evidence.

    But, as I said, it's not really related to the Second Law.

    As to your question about it, the ID argument goes that without something keeping everything from descending into chaos, the Second Law says that instead of everything going from single-celled organisms to multi-celled organisms with multiple organs and complex biological systems, it would basically descend into chaos. Obviously we all know what they think it is keeping that from happening, but the point - and the point of this thread - is that they get the basic premise wrong, and nothing "extra" is needed to keep life from falling into disorder.
    Visit my Blog.



    "Glad the GOP finally came out with an Obamacare alternative. Can't wait to see their alternative to the Iraq War." - @LOLGOP

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    38,229
    vCash
    1500
    Quote Originally Posted by giventofly View Post
    I think you might mean Vitamin D.

    And vitamin D is actually misclassified as a "vitamin". Vitamins are defined as a necessity to the body but something the body doesn't make on it's own. And we obviously make it.

    Sorry a bit off-topic...just some general knowledge.
    Yeah, Vitamin D. I didn't think E sounded right, but I was completely blanking on what it was.
    Visit my Blog.



    "Glad the GOP finally came out with an Obamacare alternative. Can't wait to see their alternative to the Iraq War." - @LOLGOP

Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •