RE: Logic

From: Philip Jonkers (
Date: Thu Jul 26 2001 - 16:03:32 BST

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    Philip said:

    > <Sorry, but no for you too Wade. Evolution might not be
    > > perfectly logical with respect to a perfect intelligent
    > > design, but it is logical the some degree nonetheless.
    > > Also it does `separate wheat from the chaff' if I correctly
    > > understand your niche. Natural selection means specific
    > > adaptation. A species adapts or perishes. During the competition
    > > between species only the fittest survive.>
    > >

    Vincent said:
    > How come there are millions of species then, that cohabit the same
    > environments? How come there isn't just one species? Survival of the
    > fittest is a tautology which doesn't adequately describe what goes on
    > in
    > evolution. (Why? think about what it means to be fit- of course only
    > the
    > fit survive).

    Philip says:

    Survival might relate to accidental events. A species might accidentally
    survive regardless of its possible maladaptative state. The addition of
    the word `fittest', makes sure that survival applies only to the most
    vigorous and best equiped, best adapted and most successful species. Even
    if it's tautological, that still doesn't diminish its significance of the
    success in explaining nature. Let's not waste our energy on petty syntactic
    matters, shall we. I say we stay focused on the more important issues
    of semantics instead!

    Why there's a myriad of different species and not one dominant?
    Suppose there's only one, to be antropocentric let's say the human species.
    We run into obvious trouble at feeding time: Where do we obtain our food?
    We necessarily have to resort to cannibalism then.
    The point is this: There's enough space on earth, enough resources and
    plenty of positions on the food-chain for a multitude of different species
    to thrive. Nature seizes on such possibilities through mutability of species
    via natural selection. Then there's symbiotic relationships. Often,
    one species cannot live without the existence of the other. To take it to
    the extreme, there are ample examples (bacteria, shit-flies) around of
    species living off of other species' feces!
    Vincents says:

    > Another basic error is to see evolution as a kind of a ladder, with
    > species fighting each other to get to the top of it, and with us on top.
    > It
    > is not like that. If it was, then humans could not be wiped out by
    > bacteria
    > or viruses because they are so much further "down the ladder".

    I know... If this interpretation is still entertained by the masses,
    popularizing evolution has still a long way to go. A sorry state of affairs
    then, but this can be overcome.

    Anyway, I don't know about you guys in the UK and US, but the weather here
    in Holland is too good to stay inside. I'll be working on my tan as of
    now (while reading about evolution, of course!).

    Au revoir and cheers!

    Philip Jonkers.

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