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Author Topic:   Fact Theory Falacy
TrueCreation
Inactive Member


Message 1 of 136 (2636)
01-21-2002 9:03 PM


There has been some discussion on what you would consider a Fact, and it seems that it is, I ask the more of specifics on what they would call a fact, that it resembles the relevance of a theory rather than a factoid. What is the definition and views on the differences of fact and theory?
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Replies to this message:
 Message 2 by nator, posted 01-22-2002 3:11 PM TrueCreation has replied
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nator
Member (Idle past 2286 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 2 of 136 (2668)
01-22-2002 3:11 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by TrueCreation
01-21-2002 9:03 PM


quote:
Originally posted by TrueCreation:
There has been some discussion on what you would consider a Fact, and it seems that it is, I ask the more of specifics on what they would call a fact, that it resembles the relevance of a theory rather than a factoid. What is the definition and views on the differences of fact and theory?

Here is a good place to start:
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/evolution-fact.html
quote:
"In the American vernacular, "theory" often means "imperfect fact" - part of a hierarchy of confidence running downhill from fact to theory to hypothesis to guess. Thus the power of the creationist argument: evolution is "only" a theory and intense debate now rages about many aspects of the theory. If evolution is worse than a fact, and scientists can't even make up their minds about the theory, then what confidence can we have in it? Indeed, President Reagan echoed this argument before an evangelical group in Dallas when he said (in what I devoutly hope was campaign rhetoric): "Well, it is a theory. It is a scientific theory only, and it has in recent years been challenged in the world of science - that is, not believed in the scientific community to be as infallible as it once was."
Well evolution is a theory. It is also a fact. And facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty. Facts are the world's data. Theories are structures of ideas that explain and interpret facts. Facts don't go away when scientists debate rival theories to explain them. Einstein's theory of gravitation replaced Newton's in this century, but apples didn't suspend themselves in midair, pending the outcome. And humans evolved from ape-like ancestors whether they did so by Darwin's proposed mechanism or by some other yet to be discovered.
Moreover, "fact" doesn't mean "absolute certainty"; there ain't no such animal in an exciting and complex world. The final proofs of logic and mathematics flow deductively from stated premises and achieve certainty only because they are NOT about the empirical world. Evolutionists make no claim for perpetual truth, though creationists often do (and then attack us falsely for a style of argument that they themselves favor). In science "fact" can only mean "confirmed to such a degree that it would be perverse to withhold provisional consent." I suppose that apples might start to rise tomorrow, but the possibility does not merit equal time in physics classrooms.
Evolutionists have been very clear about this distinction of fact and theory from the very beginning, if only because we have always acknowledged how far we are from completely understanding the mechanisms (theory) by which evolution (fact) occurred. Darwin continually emphasized the difference between his two great and separate accomplishments: establishing the fact of evolution, and proposing a theory - natural selection - to explain the mechanism of evolution.
- Stephen J. Gould, "Evolution as Fact and Theory"; Discover, May 1981
Edited by Adminnemooseus, : Put quote in a quote box and removed a bunch of extra line feeds.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by TrueCreation, posted 01-21-2002 9:03 PM TrueCreation has replied

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TrueCreation
Inactive Member


Message 3 of 136 (2775)
01-25-2002 6:23 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by nator
01-22-2002 3:11 PM


Ok Great, now how is this definition consistant with Evolution?
What part of Evolution is Fact, what part is Theory? Why is it so.
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Late_Cretaceous
Inactive Member


Message 4 of 136 (3495)
02-05-2002 11:34 PM


Here are the FACTS:
Organisms are related to each other to a greater or lesser degree (this is obvious, a zebra is more closely related to a horse then to a dandylion).
Organisms demonstrate that they have common descent (morphology, genetics, fossil record).
Allele frequencies in populations can and do occur in response to envrinmental changes (the famous peppered moths).
Organisms reproduce, and have more offspring then can possible survive. THe offspring had inherited genes from their parents, so that they are very similar but also unique. The expression of some of these genes may improve certain individuals' chances of survival given current conditions.
Mutations can and do occur that are beneficial, or can even endow an organism with something totally new (like the bacteria that was observed to have developed an enzyme capable of digesting nylon due to a missing base pair in a DNA sequence for an existing gene).

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KingPenguin
Member (Idle past 8000 days)
Posts: 286
From: Freeland, Mi USA
Joined: 02-04-2002


Message 5 of 136 (3497)
02-06-2002 12:16 AM



Replies to this message:
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joz
Inactive Member


Message 6 of 136 (3511)
02-06-2002 8:35 AM
Reply to: Message 5 by KingPenguin
02-06-2002 12:16 AM


quote:
Originally posted by KingPenguin:
1 + 1 = 2
I don`t doubt 1 + 1 = 2 for a second but as an exercise in understanding the nature of proof can you prove it?

This message is a reply to:
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gene90
Member (Idle past 3939 days)
Posts: 1610
Joined: 12-25-2000


Message 7 of 136 (3513)
02-06-2002 8:40 AM
Reply to: Message 6 by joz
02-06-2002 8:35 AM


Something outside of mathematics can be proven?

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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joz
Inactive Member


Message 8 of 136 (3517)
02-06-2002 9:31 AM
Reply to: Message 7 by gene90
02-06-2002 8:40 AM


hows 1 + 1 = 2 outside mathematics?

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Replies to this message:
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mark24
Member (Idle past 5311 days)
Posts: 3857
From: UK
Joined: 12-01-2001


Message 9 of 136 (3538)
02-06-2002 1:48 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by KingPenguin
02-06-2002 12:16 AM


And how can you prove ID in the same way you can 1+1=2. If you can't it's not a valid comparison.
------------------
Occam's razor is not for shaving with.

This message is a reply to:
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gene90
Member (Idle past 3939 days)
Posts: 1610
Joined: 12-25-2000


Message 11 of 136 (3540)
02-06-2002 5:19 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by gene90
02-06-2002 8:40 AM


I'm not challenging Joz, I'm questioning the original comparison.
[This message has been edited by gene90, 02-06-2002]

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TrueCreation
Inactive Member


Message 12 of 136 (3544)
02-06-2002 5:43 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by Late_Cretaceous
02-05-2002 11:34 PM


"Here are the FACTS:"
--Lets see what we got.
"Organisms are related to each other to a greater or lesser degree (this is obvious, a zebra is more closely related to a horse then to a dandylion)."
--To a degree yes this is fact.
"Organisms demonstrate that they have common descent (morphology, genetics, fossil record)."
--No, this is not fact, this is interperetation of the evidence in contrast with the un-observable past.
"Allele frequencies in populations can and do occur in response to envrinmental changes (the famous peppered moths)."
--Yup, natural selection.
"Organisms reproduce, and have more offspring then can possible survive. THe offspring had inherited genes from their parents, so that they are very similar but also unique. The expression of some of these genes may improve certain individuals' chances of survival given current conditions."
--To a degree this is true.
"Mutations can and do occur that are beneficial, or can even endow an organism with something totally new (like the bacteria that was observed to have developed an enzyme capable of digesting nylon due to a missing base pair in a DNA sequence for an existing gene)."
--You almost had it right, untill you said that it created something new, and then contredicted yourself when you said 'due to a missing base pair', something was missing for this to take place it seems.
--So would these be the potential facts?
------------------

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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KingPenguin
Member (Idle past 8000 days)
Posts: 286
From: Freeland, Mi USA
Joined: 02-04-2002


Message 13 of 136 (3551)
02-06-2002 6:08 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by joz
02-06-2002 9:31 AM


quote:
Originally posted by joz:
hows 1 + 1 = 2 outside mathematics?
i meant that it is easy to observe and it doesnt have any parts left to be filled in. those parts cannot be filled in by opinions, assumptions, beliefs, etc.
------------------
"Overspecialize and you breed in weakness" -"Major" Motoko Kusanagi

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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 Message 15 by joz, posted 02-06-2002 7:38 PM KingPenguin has replied

  
gene90
Member (Idle past 3939 days)
Posts: 1610
Joined: 12-25-2000


Message 14 of 136 (3563)
02-06-2002 7:33 PM
Reply to: Message 13 by KingPenguin
02-06-2002 6:08 PM


[QUOTE][b]i meant that it is easy to observe and it doesnt have any parts left to be filled in. those parts cannot be filled in by opinions, assumptions, beliefs, etc.[/QUOTE]
[/b]
It is the role of science to not just "observe" natural phenomena but to explain it. That means that assumptions and opinions and sometimes even beliefs are part of the process so long as the scientific method is followed and these are allowed to be questioned and rejected if the data requires it.
"Proof", as you define it, does not exist in science, there is only tentativity.

This message is a reply to:
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joz
Inactive Member


Message 15 of 136 (3565)
02-06-2002 7:38 PM
Reply to: Message 13 by KingPenguin
02-06-2002 6:08 PM


quote:
Originally posted by KingPenguin:
i meant that it is easy to observe and it doesnt have any parts left to be filled in. those parts cannot be filled in by opinions, assumptions, beliefs, etc.
Actually you replied to something I said to gene if you look up 2 posts you will find that I asked you if you could prove 1+1=2.
So can you?

This message is a reply to:
 Message 13 by KingPenguin, posted 02-06-2002 6:08 PM KingPenguin has replied

Replies to this message:
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KingPenguin
Member (Idle past 8000 days)
Posts: 286
From: Freeland, Mi USA
Joined: 02-04-2002


Message 16 of 136 (3568)
02-06-2002 7:48 PM
Reply to: Message 15 by joz
02-06-2002 7:38 PM


i dont fully understand what your asking
-----------------
"Overspecialize and you breed in weakness" -"Major" Motoko Kusanagi
[This message has been edited by KingPenguin, 02-06-2002]

This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by joz, posted 02-06-2002 7:38 PM joz has replied

Replies to this message:
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