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https://groups.google.com/group/talk.origins/browse_frm/thread/3fe0478e1d2d2649#

Post.nr 6 Edit

> On Monday, September 10, 2012 4:13:05 PM UTC-4, Ray Martinez wrote: > > Peter: "Natural selection is not falsifiable." > > Ray: "Why then do you accept the scientific validity of an

> > unscientific concept?"

> > In addition: Why haven't the Darwinists dog piled on Peter?

> > Professor of Mathematics Peter Nyikos defends the ToE tooth and nail,

> > yet he maintains natural selection not falsifiable.

> > Ray

> Natural selection *is falsifiable* and *testable*. Witness the > role of counter-intuitive examples like the elaboration of > sexual selection traits like male guppy tails. The less predation, > the more elaborate the tails of future generations of males > become (tail size and color is highly hereditary); the more predation, > the duller and smaller the tails of future generations become.


And if it had been the other way around, what then? Perhaps the environment could furnish clues; long tails might blend in with vegetation with long stalks, etc. and there is no falsification of natural selection, but an "additonal confirmation." The popular literature is full of alleged counterexamples to natural selection that get shot down with more sophisticated arguments.

In other words, the alleged falsifications themselves get falsified.

> All due to the relative reproductive success of males in the > face of differing levels of predation.

This says nothing about how it could possibly be falsified. Nor have I seen anything on this thread that says how it could be falsified.

> Natural selection has not *been* falsified despite *being* > falsifiable.

So, let's see a hypothetical observation that you would consider as falsifying it. And, since you seem to be a lot more precise about things than most people here, Howard, you might want to begin with a definition of natural selection that goes beyond what I call the "Darwin of the Gaps" definition:

"The __________ that did/could/are __________ had a survival advantage over the ones

that didn't/couldn't/weren't

and so they are the ones we see today."

When I introduced this, Howard, I called it "The default, one-size- fits-all, totally unfalsifiable naturalistic explanation for any and all biological phenomena."

[I should add that there are other explanations, like genetic drift, for some biological phenomena. But a sufficiently gung-ho devotee of natural selection might confine himself to just the above kind of argument.]

You participated on the thread where I introduced it, but I had boycotted you for so long that you may have stopped reading my posts, so you may have overlooked this one.

Had the thread been started two months later, I would have responded

to your first post on the thread, because your old buddy PZ Myers was the focus of attention.

> That makes NS similar to observations of the action > of gravity on objects with more mass density than air. Falsifiable > (since, in principle, the lead ball could float upward rather than down > toward your foot), but not falsified.

Now HERE, you give a very simple way gravity could be falsified. Can you do it for natural selection? > IOW, NS is a good description > of what happens in the world of empirical reality. As opposed to > a fantasy world where bodies with higher density than air can ascend > upward (in the absence of magnets, mirrors, wires or other magician's > or fraud's tricks)

Gosh, you allege a tight link here ("IOW, NS...") but you suddenly revert to talking about gravity and never make a real connection.

Peter Nyikos

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