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The Selfish Gene Theory

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The Selfish Theory... Whoa... now thats an interesting read. I have heard about the cell theory, but never about the selfish theory. The very thought of the word sends funny thoughts into my head. Wow... there are alot of things about science i am yet to learn. Thanks to this website, my little knowledge of science will grow immensely.

 

Quote From Qued

 

"there is no purpose of anything in evolution, just mechanisms.

did i miss something important to understand the theory?"

 

You point about the selfish biomass makes alot of sense, but slefish theory is something i am hoping someone will explain in good detail for me. The concept seems so similar to that of cell theory. And like you Qed... i believe i missed something out somewhere... someone care to explain?

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how does one evolve to change colors and blend into the environment? I want that one. :(

 

The amount of life forms that employ such is actually rather large, and yes I would like to have it also.

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The enigmatic conception of evolution, depicts even the most profound poetic extenstions of existence. Overexposure of such conceptions will not destroy the psyche, only fortify already existing constructs on evolutions simplistic beauty. Allow me to compose a poem in the honor of your forum......

 

The Psyche's elaborate microscopic

Fissures constructed on a

Foundation of incalculable

Environmental experiences are

Primarily influenced by life's tendency

To discover an absolute-equilibrium of

Entropic dissolution.

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I know this is a science forum, but this is a topic has been covered for centuries by most major religions. Catholics for example call it Concupiscence.

 

--------------------

Concupiscence is defined as follows:

The propensity of human nature to actual sin as a result of the original sin, which darkened our intellects and weakened our wills.

 

Specifically, concupiscence is the spontaneous movement of our sensual appetite toward what we imagine as pleasant and away from what we imagine as painful.

---------------------

 

Richard Dawkins is therefore only providing a scientific explaination for the origin of our selfishness. I bit like Darwin in that way.

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I know this is a science forum, but this is a topic has been covered for centuries by most major religions. Catholics for example call it Concupiscence.

 

--------------------

Concupiscence is defined as follows:

The propensity of human nature to actual sin as a result of the original sin, which darkened our intellects and weakened our wills.

 

Specifically, concupiscence is the spontaneous movement of our sensual appetite toward what we imagine as pleasant and away from what we imagine as painful.

---------------------

 

Richard Dawkins is therefore only providing a scientific explaination for the origin of our selfishness. I bit like Darwin in that way.

 

So much is instantly expected from biology I think its a bit silly. When we try to explain our nature its not easy to do this, I mean has every last aspect of our biology as it would apply to behavior been explained scientifically, how would you even go about such, remove a chunk of genes and see what you get? Cut some enzyme out and see what you get? How about a cofactor or two? I mean they do this in some animals, and of course they get results but the idea I am trying to put forward here is that such is very complex because we are ignorant of so much. Ethically such might be impossible save for when such may be open to study in people born with day a health problem that is possible germline in origin for example, or somatic. We then can look for relations biologically in evolution to attempt to help explain, being so many other angels to study evolution in terms of relationship such as what the term phylogeny exists from also exist, but its no easy task and nothing that is going to be complete tomorrow. In the meantime like with so much, our ignorance of what an x and a y in an equation is typically leaves room for whatever save the sentence “we don’t know currently”.

 

This becomes a little more complicated when you then extend nature(biology in my frame) to nature, or behavior, more so when it starts to take in individuals. Watching films and reading on various mammals besides humans, there even exists a great deal of complexity in explain that behavior, in which to date we have not fully explained, and to what level for any particular specie I don’t know, how about a mongoose.

 

This then turns out to some mad rush of sorts for people to try and explain, for instance evolutionary theory applied to psychology. I think such is probably the most promising field among many to explain a great deal about human behavior but in reality its pretty far from being completed, evolution and then its application to explaining human behavior in terms of nature and nurture.

 

The selfish gene idea may not encompass in total a biological reality, but currently I don’t know of any eukaryotic organisms that are not based on DNA, so you cut that out and what do you have left? DNA plays a prime role or has a high degree of functionality in total when related to biological processes. A frog is a frog because of its genes, so is an ungulate(there are disputes to the ungulates still). DNA is a sort of way is a current manifestation of what something is, open to change or mutable, in which change can be studied by, because DNA encodes for lack of better words the various physiochemical realities of a specific organism.

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You've made a simple process far to complex. Genetic mutations arise either because of environmental insult (radiation, carcinogens, etc) or a copying error. DNA copying protiens are accurate, but not *perfect*, and they screw up about 1 in a million time (more in particular instances like microsatelite repeats).

 

There are no "quantum genetic changes" or any such thing. Just damage and copying errors.

 

Mokele

By the way you spelled proteins wrong....you=protiens lol and micro-satellite wrong you= microsatelite lol

In regards to psychology, a relevant topic of evolution, you would be denoted as a radical behaviorists.... i.e a fool. sorry but this is a news flash.

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I'm a paleontologist and new to this forum.

 

just an aside: The concept of 'mutation' is always in flux. Some have proposed that 'mutation' has too often become equated with 'mistake' or 'accident'. In reality it's been postulated that mutations are more of an insurance policy. Part of natural selection itself is built in susceptability to mutations in genetic material to take advantage of niches when the arise. For example, a fish may lay 10,000 eggs and they need water temperature of a minimum of 18c to hatch. something quirky happens and temperatures only reach 17c and no offspring survive. BUT...a % of those 10,000 eggs were 'slightly' different...2 of the eggs were particular mutations and could hatch in 17c water temperature..99.999% of the genetic material continues through these offspring.

 

Of course it's all a numbers games. Odds as finely tuned as those in a casino. Thousands of slight mutations are going on all the time. Species have strategy for protection of genetic material from radiation, chemicals, etc. but not 100% protection and nor do they want 100% protection. The ever so slight manipulation (what is called 'damage') of genetic material is a strategy itself. It's a bit like a bunch of anti-aircraft guns shooting flak into the sky with the chance that one may hit its target. The overwhelming majority hit nothing but every so often one is successful....the random but not quite unplanned mutation.

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Some have proposed that 'mutation' has too often become equated with 'mistake' or 'accident'. In reality it's been postulated that mutations are more of an insurance policy. Part of natural selection itself is built in susceptability to mutations in genetic material to take advantage of niches when the arise. For example, a fish may lay 10,000 eggs and they need water temperature of a minimum of 18c to hatch. something quirky happens and temperatures only reach 17c and no offspring survive. BUT...a % of those 10,000 eggs were 'slightly' different...2 of the eggs were particular mutations and could hatch in 17c water temperature..99.999% of the genetic material continues through these offspring.

 

However, it's still an "accident" that some fish have the variation/mutation to hatch at 17°C.

 

Natural selection is a two step process:

1. Variation

2. Selection.

 

Mutation is one component of variation. Sexual recombination is a bigger component.

 

Now, there are times when mutability is itself selected for. That is, defects in faithfully replicating DNA, with its resultant large number of mutations, is itself advantageous:

3. D. Grady, Quick-change pathogens gain an evolutionary advantage.Science, vol.274: 1081, 1996 (November 15). The primary research articleis JE LeClerc, B Li, WL Payne, TA Cebula, High mutation frequencies among Eschericia coli and Salmonella pathogens. Science, 274: 1208-1211, 1996 (Nov.15).

 

Of course it's all a numbers games. Odds as finely tuned as those in a casino. Thousands of slight mutations are going on all the time. Species have strategy for protection of genetic material from radiation, chemicals, etc. but not 100% protection and nor do they want 100% protection. The ever so slight manipulation (what is called 'damage') of genetic material is a strategy itself. It's a bit like a bunch of anti-aircraft guns shooting flak into the sky with the chance that one may hit its target. The overwhelming majority hit nothing but every so often one is successful....the random but not quite unplanned mutation.

 

Sorry, but the mutation is "unplanned". You act like evolution is a conscious process. It's not. It happens to populations, not individuals. "Species have a strategy" is not accurate. The individuals of a species do not get together in a meeting an plan anything, much less a "strategy".

 

In general, faithfully reproducing DNA is more advantageous than having a large number of errors. However, complete fidelity is impossible to achieve. It would take more entropy than the entire universe possesses to have a complete error-free system of copying DNA.

 

Notice that: it takes more energy and effort to have a more error-free process. So there is always a trade-off going on: error-free DNA replication or use of resources. Natural selection is always doing a cost-benefit analysis for every trait, including the trait of faithful replication of DNA. At some point the cost overwhelms the benefit. No "strategy" involved. Just natural selection sifting thru the offered designs and picking the best one for current conditions from those available.

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I once considered to E.O. Wilson's, and others such as C.S. Lewis theories of altruism and sociobiology to be the mundane ramblings of (bad) philosophy.

 

It seems a premature attempt to strip the world of logic, or humans of logic, or the world from humans, or monkeys of logic and bananas.

 

Justice, value of beauty and the free market economy may not explain the welfare state. But they play integral part.

 

Still I find the subject to be trite. Never-the-less.

 

The cat understands neither the value of money, nor the value of food to the other cat (or it does not care for it). It knows how to ask for food and it knows how to avoid being kicked across the room. Biology has explanations for this.

 

A human may understand the value of money, and it may understand the value of food to another. It understands how to avoid getting kicked across the room and it understands the value of this. So might animals. Animals often feed their mates. Biology has explanations for this.

 

To say one is bound to success or failure is not a so much a question of gentic tendency but that of capability. Perhaps a human is more able to comprehend and analyze.

 

Lizards may be far less able. Perhaps Evil.

 

The conceptualization of mankind is mammalian. It can not be both good and evil.

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I once considered to E.O. Wilson's, and others such as C.S. Lewis theories of altruism and sociobiology to be the mundane ramblings of (bad) philosophy.

 

Let's separate Wilson's studies on evolution and altruism and the speculative application of those studies to the formation of human governments.

 

Wilson's studies on altruism in social insects were scientifically and mathematically rigorous. He demonstrated that the "altruistic" sacrifice of an individual drone for the colony was actually a selfish act when viewed from the perspective of the genes.

 

From those observations has come a large amount of speculation on altruism in humans and its possible source in natural selection -- sociobiology.

 

In the last 10 years sociobiology has turned into "evolutionary psychology", which tries to determine how much human behavior has been shaped by natural selection and is, therefore, genetically determined.

 

A human may understand the value of money, and it may understand the value of food to another. It understands how to avoid getting kicked across the room and it understands the value of this. So might animals. Animals often feed their mates. Biology has explanations for this.

 

There are quite a few studies showing "moral" behavior in other species. For instance, monkeys can understand the relationship of their eating food and another monkey receiving a painful electric shock. The monkey with the food will refrain from eating so as to avoid the other monkey getting the electric shock.

 

Humans seem to have a genetic "module" in the brain to detect cheating. Such a module would be necessary in a social animal in order to 1) cooperate with others for survival but 2) avoid being cheated.

 

Lizards may be far less able. Perhaps Evil.

 

:confused: Where did "evil" come into this?

 

The conceptualization of mankind is mammalian. It can not be both good and evil.
'

 

Again, where did this "good and evil" come from? Those are human moral concepts. Are you aware of the "naturalistic fallacy"? This fallacy is looking at what happens in nature and trying to say what moral human behavior ought to be. The Social Darwinists were committing the naturalistic fallacy, for instance.

 

We cannot read "good" or "evil" in nature.

 

"Kellogg properly taught in his textbook (with David Starr Jordan) that Darwinism cannot provide moral answers:

"Some men who call themselves pessimists because they cannot read good into the operations of nature forget that they cannot read evil. In morals the law of competition no more justifies personal, official, or national selfishness or brutality than the law of gravitation justifies the shooting of a bird." "

Stephen Jay Gould in the essay "William Jennings Bryan's last campaign" in Bully for Brontosaurus, 1991, pp. 429-430.

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'Good', .... 'bad', .... 'mistake' .... 'accident', ....... gene mutations are like beauty, ....... it is all in the eye of the beholder.

 

Me thinks too much intelligence is being bestowed upon an inanimate object.

 

SC

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how does one evolve to change colors and blend into the environment? I want that one. :(

 

You have evolved that ability. Its called a brain, and it can help you to apply camoflage!

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'Good', .... 'bad', .... 'mistake' .... 'accident', ....... gene mutations are like beauty, ....... it is all in the eye of the beholder.

 

Not quite. Some mutations shorten the life of the individual -- like Duchenne's muscular dystrophy. These are "detrimental" by the terminology used in evolutionary biology. However, only 0.002% of mutations fit this category. The rest are either "neutral" -- having no effect on differential reproduction -- or "beneficial".

 

Have you ever heard of the Hardy-Weinberg Principle? Using that principle derived from Mendelian genetics you can objectively determine whether a mutation is detrimental, neutral, or beneficial.

 

Now, in terms of what is needed by the individual or the population, mutations are random. Are they really random? We don't know because, as Dawkins points out, it is possible that an entity can specify a few mutations that it desires. Such manipulation would be lost in the noise of the random mutations.

 

Me thinks too much intelligence is being bestowed upon an inanimate object.

 

I don't see how you can say that. PCR is one of the most useful tools ever to be introduced in biology. It's applications are numerous and of tremendous importance.

 

how does one evolve to change colors and blend into the environment? I want that one. :(

 

This one is actually very easy. Any small variation that allows an individual to blend into the background and avoid predation (or sneak up on prey) is advantageous. The addition of the ability to change colors within a range by sensing and then dispensing pigments is simply another addition. It's straight direct Darwinian evolution.

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Originally Posted by SamCogar

'Good', .... 'bad', .... 'mistake' .... 'accident', ....... gene mutations are like beauty, ....... it is all in the eye of the beholder.

 

Not quite. Some mutations shorten the life of the individual -- like Duchenne's muscular dystrophy. These are "detrimental" by the terminology used in evolutionary biology. However, only 0.002% of mutations fit this category. The rest are either "neutral" -- having no effect on differential reproduction -- or "beneficial".

 

True, but it is that individual who "sees it as being detrimental", ..... not the gene itself.

 

Have you ever heard of the Hardy-Weinberg Principle? Using that principle derived from Mendelian genetics you can objectively determine whether a mutation is detrimental, neutral, or beneficial.

 

I am peafamiliar with Mendelian genetics but not the Hardy-Weinberg Principle.

 

And again, it is the "you" who "sees it as being detrimental".

 

Now, in terms of what is needed by the individual or the population, mutations are random. Are they really random? We don't know because, as Dawkins points out, it is possible that an entity can specify a few mutations that it desires. Such manipulation would be lost in the noise of the random mutations.

 

Now it is one thing to assign a “personality” to something ….. but that in no way implies intelligence. At least it shouldn’t, but I guess too many people take such comments literally. Now whether or not Dawkins is commenting literally or figurally, I do not know.

 

Now in reference to Dawkins’s statement, …. I do know that there are a few people desperately searching for a “queer gene”, which if found, is already assumed to be a mutation. Now I wonder what “entity” within one’s body would desire such a trait as homosexuality? :doh: :doh: Ya see whatta mean.

 

Now assigning something a “personality” is oftentimes a good “teaching aide” because many students can more readily “associate/relate” to the subject, but one should insure they don’t take it literally. Such is the cause of the Evolutionist’s major problem. Too many people are being taught that “man evolved from a monkey”.

 

Originally Posted by SamCogar

Me thinks too much intelligence is being bestowed upon an inanimate object.

 

I don't see how you can say that. PCR is one of the most useful tools ever to be introduced in biology. It's applications are numerous and of tremendous importance.

 

If the DNA had any intelligence it wouldn’t be hanging around to be collected. It is the lab person executing the PCR that has the intelligence. Now the ingredients for “creating” aspirin, eosin dyes or a birthday cake do not have the intelligence to do so. But if said ingredients are subjected to “the right things” at “the right time” in “the right environment” then that is what they will become. aka - PCR

 

Lucas, now this is “hot” off the presses, so read it and then tell me, wherein do you “see” intelligence.

 

HELSINKI - Scientists in Finland said they had replaced a 65-year-old patient's upper jaw with a bone transplant cultivated from stem cells isolated from his own fatty tissue and grown inside his abdomen.

 

Suuronen and her colleagues — the project was run jointly with the Helsinki University Central Hospital — isolated stem cells from the patient's fat and grew them for two weeks in a specially formulated nutritious soup that included the patient's own blood serum.

 

In this case, they identified and pulled out cells called mesenchymal stem cells — immature cells than can give rise to bone, muscle or blood vessels.

 

When they had enough cells to work with, they attached them to a scaffold made out of a calcium phosphate biomaterial and then put it inside the patient's abdomen to grow for nine months. The cells turned into a variety of tissues and even produced blood vessels, the researchers said.

 

The block was later transplanted into the patient's head and connected to the skull bone using screws and microsurgery. Then doctors connected arteries and veins to the vessels of the neck.

 

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22952871/

 

“the right things” at “the right time” in “the right environment”

 

 

Intelligent Design is Creationism in drag.

 

 

.

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True, but it is that individual who "sees it as being detrimental", ..... not the gene itself.

 

In Dawkins' language, the "gene itself" would consider it being "deleterious". Because the individual would not live long enough to breed and keep the allele going.

 

I am peafamiliar with Mendelian genetics but not the Hardy-Weinberg Principle.

 

Hardy-Weinberg says, basically, that in any large population without outside effects, the frequency of an allele will remain constant.

 

And again, it is the "you" who "sees it as being detrimental".

 

No, in this case "deleterious" would be an allele that is eliminated from the population. Since you are looking at the gene's (allele's) view, an allele that decreased in frequency to the point that it was eliminated entirely would be "deleterious" or "detrimental". After all, the allele ceases to exist, right? Wouldn't that be "detrimental" from the allele's point of view? If non-existence is not detrimental, what could possibly qualify?

 

Now in reference to Dawkins’s statement, …. I do know that there are a few people desperately searching for a “queer gene”, which if found, is already assumed to be a mutation. Now I wonder what “entity” within one’s body would desire such a trait as homosexuality?

 

1. We were talking about an entity outside the organism introducing a few mutations into the population.

2. There are at least 3 genes that, if changed, cause homosexuality. Homosexuality is a polygenic trait. Sorry, but the search isn't "desperate", it has been sucessful. These alleles are kept in the population because in one's, two's, or three's, they confer survival value. It's just when all the alleles are together that you get full homosexuality and it's detrimental. I have an article at the end of the post about this.

 

Lucas, now this is “hot” off the presses, so read it and then tell me, wherein do you “see” intelligence.

 

I'm not sure where you are going with this. On the part of the researchers or the part of the stem cells? The stem cells are responding to molecular cues. No "intelligence" involved. The researchers are using intelligence to isolate them, grow them, determine an appropriate scaffold, and then attach the correct blood vessels at the correct positions.

 

Sam, let's go back to PCR. PCR is duplication of particular DNA sequences. Having a PCR machine represents intelligence because the reverse transcriptase enzymes are not used in nature the way we do in PCR. Also, the correct timing of introducing the enzymes and isolating the products requires intelligence.

 

However duplicating DNA, itself, is not evolution. What IDers are imputing "intelligence" to is the designs in plants and animals. That is the result of the instructions in the DNA when the DNA is translated to proteins and then, by means of development, forms an organism.

 

What IDers overlook is that Darwinian (natural) selection is an unintelligent process that gives design. In mathematical terms, it is an algorithm to get design. Darwinian selection is very good at producing designs. So good that humans use Darwinian selection when the design problem is too tough for them. IOW, when the going gets tough in design, humans turn to Darwinian selection.

 

Now, that paper on homosexuality and why the alleles are still in the population:

 

Arch Sex Behav 2000 Feb;29(1):1-34 Homosexuality, birth order, and evolution: toward an equilibrium reproductive economics of homosexuality.Miller EM.Department of Economics and Finance, University of New Orleans, Louisiana 70148,USA. emmef@uno.edu

 

"The survival of a human predisposition for homosexuality can be explained by sexual orientation being a polygenetic trait that is influenced by a number of genes. During development these shift male brain development in the female direction. Inheritance of several such alleles produces homosexuality. Single alleles make for greater sensitivity, empathy, tender mindedness, and kindness. These traits make heterosexual carriers of the genes better fathers and more attractive mates. There is a balanced polymorphism in which the feminizing effect of these alleles in heterosexuals offsets the adverse effects (on reproductive success) of these alleles' contribution to homosexuality. A similar effect probably occurs for genes that can produce lesbianism in females. The whole system survives because it serves to provide a high degree of variability among the personalities of offspring, providing the genotype with diversification and reducing competition among offspring for the same niches. An allele with a large effect can survive in these circumstances in males, but it is less likely to survive in females. The birth order effect on homosexuality is probably a by-product of a biological mechanism that shifts personalities more in the feminine direction in the later born sons, reducing the probability of these sons engaging in unproductive competition with each other."

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I'm a big follower of Dawkins, even way before he got famous for this Atheist beliefs. Dawkins is not only a brilliant man, he's a great speaker. I can listen to him talk all day:D

 

The "selfish gene theory" makes all the sense in the world considering the behavior of almost everything living thing on the planet. Jared Diamond has a great book out there called "Why is Sex Fun? The Evolution of Human Sexuality" that I highly recommend, which supports this theory (though I don't believe he mentions the selfish gene theory specifically).

 

~Cathy~

Edited by Cap'n Refsmmat

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I'm a big nonfollower of Dawkins, and I like to remind people that he invented the name "selfish theory", but the theory itself was invented by George C. Williams :)

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When one thinks of it, the poor countries would have an advantage if there was a global catastrope. These people an dtheir bodies are used to living in a very rarified world. They would have the best chance of survival thereby being one of the primary gene pools for the future of humanity. People in the richer countries are like beautiful flowers than require very specific cultural conditions to thrive.

 

I don't see how this is applicable at all, they are not MORE evolved to coping with less food or resources, their bodies may be less healthy than hours if they didn't get enough nutrition in childhood, and they also could have less body fat to consume when resources become even scarcer, since you say this is a global catastrophe it obviously affects all pats of the world.

They may have the education, experience etc to live off the land, or to gather food from nature, though to be honest they probably don't more than anybody else. I fail to see the logic used here.

Have I missed the point?

 

 

Anyway, about the Selfish Gene theory: I really think reading the book is a complete must for anybody. I read it the first time I think when I was around 16 and it really opened my eyes to Dawkins and genetics, biology, human behaviour etc.

It's an inspiring book, though I sometimes, after reading almost all of Dawkins books, find the way he writes slightly annoying. I love his ideas and the man himself and agree most of the time with him, but he does sometimes go on and on without progressing with the book.. meaning basically that he could sum up a lot of the things in much fewer words still getting the message across fully, has anybody else noticed this?

Edited by TrickyPeach

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I'm a big follower of Dawkins, even way before he got famous for this Atheist beliefs. Dawkins is not only a brilliant man, he's a great speaker. I can listen to him talk all day:D

 

The "selfish gene theory" makes all the sense in the world considering the behavior of almost everything living thing on the planet.

 

Being a great speaker doesn't mean having correct ideas. As I noted with the writings of Ernst Mayr and others, Dawkins' ultimate reductionism of the "selfish gene theory" has some real problems with the data.

 

One of those is the fact that most traits are polygenic and most genes are pleiotrophic (used in several traits). This means that a purely selfish gene can't work. An allele has to be able to play well with others because it is not the allele that is the unit of selection, but the whole genome.

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To add you have to look at many things, like evolutionary developmental biology. I think that is what brings epigenetics into more of a factor. Then you also have gene transfer events that are not entirely understood I am sure. I mean the genome in itself does not guarantee some 100% determined organism just from DNA as is. What I mean is things like post translational events, or the existence of the phenotype. I think some gross error with biology is the make some idea that everything like the ability to generate an internet post is coded for somewhere in my cells. That its some perfect mechanism like that producing some perfect organism. I think this is the idea behind ID really.

 

Not to try and drag the point off topic, but is trying to produce some perfect mechanism a fallacy in regards to say biological reality at the molecular scale of it? Just because sight exists in species, does it have to have some perfect genetic correspondence? I don't think evidence affords it, and I furthermore don't think the evidence affords a gene centric view to be much more then genetics as a evidence of evolution, not some absolute mechanism of control. Genetics of course can reveal evolution through the fact of biological inheritance and reproduction, natural selection gives/drift and all that stuff. I don't think that states something of the selfish gene as is used to often, you have to think of genes and genomes as open to selection, some particular pocket of gene in a pool might get stepped on more then others, its so much stuff to calculate, and in what in terms of time, ten years, ten million. Its the genes that carry in sex, but it still has to occur, the sex part at least I think in many cases at least.

 

So that its, I think to often issues like selfish gene, the advances in biosciences and such portrays the gene as some absolute mechanism of control, I don't think that completely grasps biological reality though. I think if the gene centric view of life is correct, the phenotype should not exist, nor variation into any species that would become extinct.

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Regarding Eugenics:

 

I hate that when you bring this type of stuff up people immediately bring up Hitler, so eugenics must be evil.... Hitler also painted, so that must be evil as well?

 

sorry I just wanted to vent. I saw someone mention this on a creationist forum I was recently banned from for having too much evolutionary evidence :mad:

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can anyone helpme please. I have to write an essay on animals and the question is - Does selfish gene theory make intelligence and thought an irrelevance ? this is to do with animals and not humans.

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can anyone helpme please. I have to write an essay on animals and the question is - Does selfish gene theory make intelligence and thought an irrelevance ? this is to do with animals and not humans.

 

I'd say that, no... selfish gene theory does not make intelligence and thought irrelevant. The selfish gene is one which finds methods to maximize its chances at moving forward into future generations. Intelligence and thought have proven themselves to be very effective methods of surviving an environment and passing on genes to future generations, therefore selfish gene theory has made intelligence and thought not only relevant, but vital.

 

See if that helps. Maybe it will get the ball rolling for you and you can run with it.

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