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Author Topic:   Transitional fossils and quote mining
Coragyps
Member
Posts: 5050
From: Snyder, Texas, USA
Joined: 11-12-2002
Member Rating: 5.1


Message 136 of 210 (525718)
09-24-2009 11:33 AM
Reply to: Message 130 by Arphy
09-24-2009 8:20 AM


Re: Worldviews vs The World
Many would have survived outside the Ark.

Hmm. Your source, the only source for that particular tale of disaster, indicates otherwise:
"Every living thing that moved on the earth perished—birds, livestock, wild animals, all the creatures that swarm over the earth, and all mankind. Everything on dry land that had the breath of life in its nostrils died. Every living thing on the face of the earth was wiped out; men and animals and the creatures that move along the ground and the birds of the air were wiped from the earth. Only Noah was left, and those with him in the ark."


This message is a reply to:
 Message 130 by Arphy, posted 09-24-2009 8:20 AM Arphy has not yet responded

    
Blue Jay
Member
Posts: 2612
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008


Message 137 of 210 (525743)
09-24-2009 12:56 PM
Reply to: Message 124 by Arphy
09-24-2009 4:07 AM


Focus on the Topic!
Hi, Arphy.

Arphy writes:

In reply to bluejay (sorry, this post gets a bit harsh on you)...

Don't make it personal: neither I nor my personal beliefs have ever been the topic of this thread.

That you've focused your posting on me and my beliefs indicates that you have not been paying attention to my arguments.

-----

Arphy writes:

However, this would seem incorrect because you say you are a christian and therefore i ASSUME that you believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ as well as his other supernatural works. It seems that you like to jump between the two worldviews, which i think is an illogical position.

emphasis mine

Really, Arphy!?

-----

Arphy writes:

To just say god-did-it to everything until the naturalists reach a consensus on the issue, I find unreasonable.

Please show me anywhere where I use the "god-did-it" argument.

-----

Back to my argument:

quote:
Paleontologists have tried to turn Archaeopteryx into an earth-bound, feathered dinosaur. But it's not. It is a bird, a perching bird. And no amount of 'paleobabble' is going to change that.

-Dr Alan Feduccia


Feduccia claims that Archaeopteryx is not a dinosaur.

quote:
But we say and believe and have taught, and do teach, that the Son is not unbegotten, nor in any way part of the unbegotten; and that he does not derive his subsistence from any matter... We are persecuted, because we say that the Son has a beginning, but that God is without beginning.

-Arius


Arius claims that Jesus is not God.

Feduccia's comment lends support to the idea that "evolutionism" is false.

Thus, Arius's comment lends support to the idea that Christianity is false.

Agreed?

-----

Arphy writes:

I want you to recognise what you believe and why you believe it.

Don't be a condescending prick.

-----

Arphy writes:

If not why not? I really don't see how common descent and long periods are NOT the hard-core issues. Believeing these seem vital if you want to be called an evolutionist.

We've been over this twice already: why do you consistently repeat this without acknowledging my explanations for it?

Please explain to me why a person who believes that life did not evolve from a single common ancestor, but from 100 different ancestors, could not be an "evolutionist."

The reason you see this as the hard core is because this is your major point of contention with it. If it weren't for this little hitch, your worldview would be identical to ours. So, naturally, you think this is the basis for everything we do.

But, it simply isn't true: my worldview would only be minorly shifted if I discovered that the Tree of Life actually consisted of a dozen separate Trees of Life. But, if ToE were false, my entire worldview would collapse and I would have to start completely over.

Contrast this with your worldview: if you discovered that ToE was false, how much would your worldview be changed? Very little: you would shrug and say, "I guess things haven't changed all that much since the Flood," or whatever your particular belief is exactly.

That is the primary difference.

But, please, you don't have to get into all these detailed discussions about what every individual person's belief system is: the only point in all of this is that a victory for Feduccia requires only a small shift in a little detail of an overall worldview, and will not require any significant alterations of the views on ToE or universal common descent.

Please tell me that this is sinking in.

Edited by Bluejay, : A "a little" is generally sufficient.

Edited by Bluejay, : New subtitle


-Bluejay (a.k.a. Mantis, Thylacosmilus)

Darwin loves you.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 124 by Arphy, posted 09-24-2009 4:07 AM Arphy has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 138 by NosyNed, posted 09-24-2009 1:35 PM Blue Jay has responded

  
NosyNed
Member
Posts: 8561
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003
Member Rating: 4.7


Message 138 of 210 (525752)
09-24-2009 1:35 PM
Reply to: Message 137 by Blue Jay
09-24-2009 12:56 PM


other trees
But, it simply isn't true: my worldview would only be minorly shifted if I discovered that the Tree of Life actually consisted of a dozen separate Trees of Life. But, if ToE were false, my entire worldview would collapse and I would have to start completely over.

I don't actually see why it would shift at all (ok, maybe 0.00001 %).

A recent suggestion for finding alien (not us) life forms is fascinating. Instead of the struggle to find them on Mars or Europa it has been suggested that we look here on Earth. If they are alien enough (not DNA based or a DNA pattern for coding that is very diffent from ours (ours being all life we have looked at so far)) we might not recognize them if we tripped over them. ("tripped" is an exaggeration -- they would be unicellular almost for sure).

The idea of a single LCA (last common ancestor) has nothing at all to do with worldviews as I see it. It is simply what we see from our examinations of life forms so far. I would be delighted if we stumbled over a separate lineage!!! It would be wonderful and exciting!!!! And it would change nothing at the "worldview" level.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 137 by Blue Jay, posted 09-24-2009 12:56 PM Blue Jay has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 139 by Blue Jay, posted 09-24-2009 4:27 PM NosyNed has not yet responded

  
Blue Jay
Member
Posts: 2612
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008


Message 139 of 210 (525789)
09-24-2009 4:27 PM
Reply to: Message 138 by NosyNed
09-24-2009 1:35 PM


Re: other trees
Hi, Ned.

NosyNed writes:

I don't actually see why [the worldview] would shift at all (ok, maybe 0.00001 %)...

...And it would change nothing at the "worldview" level.

My concept of "worldview" comes from:

Brown JS. (2001). Ngongas and ecology: on having a worldview. Oikos 94(1):6-16.

Brown considers the "worldview" to refer to the entire assemblage of things that one accepts. "Worldview" isn't treated as a "level," per se. Like you say, it would be nothing devastating or even particularly significant; but it would change how I think about at least something, so it seemed prudent to grant the technicality.


-Bluejay (a.k.a. Mantis, Thylacosmilus)

Darwin loves you.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 138 by NosyNed, posted 09-24-2009 1:35 PM NosyNed has not yet responded

  
Granny Magda
Member
Posts: 2283
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007


Message 140 of 210 (525816)
09-24-2009 7:55 PM
Reply to: Message 130 by Arphy
09-24-2009 8:20 AM


Re: Worldviews vs The World
Hey Arphy,

Your first part i have addressed in my reply to bluejay.

Yeah, I saw. You got him so riled that he you to stop being a prick. Wow. Bluejay is a real nice guy and not the type to go slinging that kind of language around casually. You might like to ratchet down the condescension a little bit. You actually made a Mormon swear.

Just because you have been debating it longer doesn't mean i have nothing to bring, you saying that I should just give up?

No. It's just that you keep telling me that don't understand creationism. I think I do. I think I understand it only too well.

Also there are many creation scientists who have been in the debate longer than you, do you claim to have a better understanding of evolution than them as well?

Frankly, yes. A kid with a standard high school biology textbook understands evolution better than most of those bozos.

Linnaeus: Just because you classify an animal based on its characteristics does not mean that they are related.

No it doesn't. When viewed in the light of the genetic relationships which confirm an evolutionary model, the fossil record, biogeography and all the rest of the mountains of pro-evolution evidence however, it can only be viewed as another nail in creationism's coffin.

The more important point here though is that by undermining something as essential as taxonomy, you are actually attacking the essential tools of science. Taxonomy is important. you seem to want to throw it out where it contradicts your religious dogmas. That's unacceptable.

You guys often object to being described as apes, but you never seem to object to us being classified as vertebrates.
This is because this is used as an attempt to further propagate the idea that we are related to actual apes.

Gah! We are actual apes!

We are also actual vertebrates. That doesn't contradict the Bible though, so that's OK. Tat is no way to organise a system of taxonomy. It is not science.

I also have to reiterate that Linnaen taxonomy is not some conspiracy to persuade people of evolution. It pre-dates the ToE by a wide margin. Linnaeus never knew of the ToE, so how could his system represent an effort to bolster the ToE? The truth is that his observations, made completely independently of evolutionary theory, have matched the expectations of the ToE, not because they were rigged that way, but because both systems are describing the same reality.

Firstly i said YEC not just creationist, and I don't think there are too many groups like that.

Both AiG and ICR are young Earthers. Both are major players. They disagree on a major matter, just as I said.

And for the record, one such group is too many for my liking.

Henry morris: In the article just below your quote there is a quote from colin Patterson. Did patterson really believe that no new "species" have been produced by natural selection?

I have no idea. I don't have the original context.

While i agree it is confusing, i think that the word species was used in a "fundamentally different species" sense.

If Morris is using the word "species" in any sense other than that which might be reasonably expected to be understood by his readers, without making any gesture toward explaining that he is effectively using separate terminology, then he is lying. It's no surprise. He's a big, fat, stinky liar as liars go.

Here on the same website they explain this.

So you've demonstrated that ICR's website contradicts itself? Nice one. Good work. Another triumph for creation science.

Syngameon: While the word "kind" is the preferable. I used the word syngameon as the closest description to kind, and possibly what you might accept as "scientific".

Using sciencey-sounding terminology doesn't mean you are doing science.

This word has been used in YEC literature, however while syngameons are the general case for defining a kind, i (and YEC groups) think it is possible that some creatures have "devloved" far enough that they can no longer even form a hybrid.

Or to put it another way, to make this theory work, you need to imagine a miraculous get-out-clause. Creationists have no evidence for this, they just made it up and throw it out there. Hey, maybe it will persuade someone right? Even if it does, it blows your comparison to syngameons out of the water. The definition of "syngameon" is not "animals-that-we-think-might-possibly-have-been-able-to-breed-at-some-unspecified-point-in-the-past".

Woodmorappe puts the figure of clean animals at around <1%. This leaves the figure at around 16000 animals on the ark.

No it doesn't. Using 1% clean animals as our base, that still leaves us with 6040 mammals. That's just the mammals! Do you have any idea how much looking after they would take? I'm sorry, but this just sounds like crazy talk to me. this is no less absurd than the classic kid's image of a little boat with a smiling giraffe poking out of it.

Everything outside the ark was supposedly killed. Have you given any thought to where that leaves the countless genera of invertebrates?

Our genome is degenerating and this is a physical process. While there are many mechanisms that slow down this process the overall effect is degenerative.

Feel free to back this claim up in a dedicated thread. I think you ought to, since you rely on it quite heavily.

You are wrong though. That's why you are unable to demonstrate it. Nothing in that excerpt is evidence. It's all just exaggerated claims, with no back up.

Okay, onto forams.

Just take a look at what the experts are telling you Arphy,

quote:
Drs. Tony Arnold (Ph.D., Harvard) and Bill Parker (Ph.D., Chicago) are the developers of what reportedly is the largest, most complete set of data ever compiled on the evolutionary history of an organism. The two scientists have painstakingly pieced together a virtually unbroken fossil record that shows in stunning detail how a single-celled marine organism has evolved during the past 66 million years. Apparently, it's the only fossil record known to science that has no obvious gaps -- no "missing links."

"It's all here -- a complete record," says Arnold. "There are other good examples, but this is by far the best. We're seeing the whole picture of how this organism has changed throughout most of its existence on Earth."


quote:
"There's a nifty passage in Darwin in which he describes the fossil record as a library. The library has only a few books, and each book has only a few chapters. The chapters have only a few words, and the words are missing letters.

"Well, in this case, we've got a relatively complete library. The 'books' are in excellent shape. You can see every page, every word."


quote:
"The forams may not be representative of all organisms, but at least in this group we can actually see evolution happening. We can see transitions from one species to another," Parker said.

Source

Take a lok at this image;


Click to enlarge

From Pearson et al., 1997, p. 297: "Planktonic foraminifera from ODP site 871, Limalok Guyot, illustrating the Globigerinoides-Orbulina transition. 1. Globigerinoides trilobus, spiral side, showing supplementary aperature. . . 2. G. trilobus, umbilical side. The primary aperature is hidden in the central umbilical depression. . . 3. G. bisphericus, showing enlarged final chamber. . . 4, 5. Praeorbulina sicana (two views of same specimen). Four small aperatures are present in the suture around the base of the final chamber. . . 6. Another specimen of Praeorbulina sicana . . . 7. Praeorbulina curva. Note spherical morphology and multiple slit-like aperatures. . . 8. Praeorbulina globerosa, showing bispherical morphology . . . 9, 10. Praeorbulina glomerosa- circularis transitional specimens. . . 11-14. Praeorbulina circularis, showing variation in the proportion of the test occupied by the final chamber. . . 15. The end-form of the lineage, Orbulina universa, with entire sphere . . . scale bars are 100 µm."

Now that looks a lot like a smooth series of transitions to me. I don't know what it looks like to you.

You claimed that there were no complete records showing transitions. You were wrong. The foram record does exactly that.

Granny writes:

In fact, it doesn’t even propose a mechanism to provide evidence for. Lame.

Excuse me???

What I said. They provide only sound-bites. They offer no substance. They throw out terms like "the sorting of organisms during the Flood" without ever expaining how that is supposed to work.

The fact is that records of microfossils like forams, radiolarians and such show every sign of being layed down in exactly the same way they are today; gradually, by seabed deposition. They were not put there by some improbable "hydrological sorting". Such terms are vacuous, having no evidence, no model, not even a hint of what might constitute evidence. All they are is a post hoc attempt to explain away the fossil record.

The evolutionary model is woven around the animals and fossils we see.

If this is the case, then why do the plants and animals discovered in the fossil record exactly concur with the ToE?

Would evolution have had the same model before transitional fossils were found?

Early evolutionists suggested that man was related to the great apes before transitional fossils were found, so yes.

Just to back that up;

quote:
The first debates about the nature of human evolution arose between Thomas Huxley and Richard Owen. Huxley argued for human evolution from apes by illustrating many of the similarities and differences between humans and apes and did so particularly in his 1863 book Evidence as to Man's Place in Nature. However, many of Darwin's early supporters (such as Alfred Russel Wallace and Charles Lyell) did not agree that the origin of the mental capacities and the moral sensibilities of humans could be explained by natural selection. Darwin applied the theory of evolution and sexual selection to humans when he published The Descent of Man in 1871.

A major problem was the lack of fossil intermediaries. It was only in the 1920s that such fossils were discovered in Africa. In 1925, Raymond Dart described Australopithecus africanus. The type specimen was the Taung Child, an Australopithecine infant discovered in a cave. The child's remains were a remarkably well-preserved tiny skull and an endocranial cast of the individual's brain. Although the brain was small (410 cm³), its shape was rounded, unlike that of chimpanzees and gorillas, and more like a modern human brain. Also, the specimen showed short canine teeth, and the position of the foramen magnum was evidence of bipedal locomotion. All of these traits convinced Dart that the Taung baby was a bipedal human ancestor, a transitional form between apes and humans.


ht.../Human_evolution#History_of_ideas_about_human_evolution

was the dino to bird link announced before finding "transitional forms" or after?

In the case of birds, I believe that archaeopteryx was the catalyst that started the theory. However, many more bird-like dinosaurs have been found since. No fossil has been found that supports any lineage for birds other than from reptiles.

The basic evolutionary story was woven after the "transitional fossils" were found.

You seem to be upset that scientists, as well as making predictions, also like to wait to see where the evidence leads them. This is not a failing, it is an asset. Scientists don't just make things up as they go along. they make predictions only to test them against the emerging evidence. they may also reserve their opinions pending relevant evidence. This is how science works and a good thing too.

So much for predictive power. Yes, some new finds are often forced into the already accepted story, however this doesn't prove evolution's predictive power.

Nonsense.

Please explain to me in detail how Tiktaalik was "forced" to fit the theory.

NZ: Yes even kiwis.

Wow. You DO believe in evolution! In fact, you believe in unbeleivably rapid evolution! For the kiwi to have diversified so much as to have entirely lost its flight in a mere few thousand yeasr is way beyond what any regular evolution proponent would suggest.

You are not an evolutionist Arphy, you are a super-evolutionist!

Care to provide some evidence for this case of super-duper-evolution?

WHAT????? My comments about Archaeopteryx were a direct response to greyseal. When someone brings up an argument FOR Evolution (i.e. if anything, it seemed more like throw a few transitional fossils at a creationist and that will disprove creationism) then shouldn't i reply to this?

You should reply, but you should reply with relevant material. the Feduccia quote is not relevant to the question of whether transitional fossils exist. it is not even relevant to the question of whether archaeopteryx was a transitional or not, as I have explained numerous times.

Here is the exchange, starting with Message 68;

greyseal writes:

archaeopteryx:... tiktaalik:...
...two "transitional fossils".

Greyseal is saying that Archaeopteryx is a transitional fossil.

Arphy writes:

it isn't a transitional form. But then again Archaeoptreyx "missing link" claims are a bit old school, yip its in the textbooks but most scientists studying bird evolution have moved on.

You are saying that it's not.

greyseal writes:

Archaeopteryx is NOT a bird - it has teeth, three fingers with a claw and a long bony tail. It's also not quite a classic dinosaur (it has feathers and other changes that are "bird-like").

Greyseal is saying that it is too a transitional fossil.

Arphy writes:

Archaeopteryx: There is a quote in the article by Dr Alan Feduccia, an expert saying “Paleontologists have tried to turn Archaeopteryx into an earth-bound, feathered dinosaur. But it’s not. It is a bird, a perching bird. And no amount of ‘paleobabble’ is going to change that.” This was also the conclusion reached at the International Archaeopteryx Conference in 1984.

You come back with the Feduccia quote.

You are clearly a) using the quote to suggest that Archaeopteryx was "just a bird" and b) using the quote to throw cold water on the idea that Archaeopteryx is a transitional fossil.

That is not what Feduccia was saying and it is not what Feduccia thinks.

Nowhere in any of those messages do you address the real topic of Feduccia's quote. Instead, you use it to bolster an opinion that is the opposite of Feduccia's. I'm not saying that you were doing this knowingly, but you were not using the quote in its correct context. you were using it as a blunt instrument against evolution.

If you want a Feduccia quote that is specifically related to the topic of whether Archaeopteryx is a transitional fossil or not, you have this;

quote:
...The creature thus memorialized was Archaeopteryx lithographica, and, though indisputably birdlike, it could with equal truth be called reptilian.... The Archaeopteryx fossil is, in fact, the most superb example of a specimen perfectly intermediate between two higher groups of living organisms--what has come to be called a "missing link," a Rosetta stone of evolution....

Will deal with tetrapod evolution tomorrow.

When you do, please explain in detail how Tiktaalik is anything other than a combination of fish and tetrapod features. You might also like to explain in detail exactly how (if the ToE is false) it came to be found in exactly the place that the ToE predicted it would be found.

Mutate and Survive

Edited by Admin, : Reduce image width.


"A curious aspect of the theory of evolution is that everybody thinks he understands it." - Jacques Monod
This message is a reply to:
 Message 130 by Arphy, posted 09-24-2009 8:20 AM Arphy has not yet responded

    
Arphy
Member (Idle past 713 days)
Posts: 185
From: New Zealand
Joined: 08-23-2009


Message 141 of 210 (525871)
09-25-2009 4:31 AM


perdition writes:

For example, it is technically a possibility that fossils are the result of aliens placing them in the ground, but if we accept that as the probable answer, we are left trying to explain these aliens, and since we have no evidence for them, we're kind of up a creek.


Exactly. Which is my point. We make assumptions as to which view points are dismissable.

The most parsimonious answer is that it's a natural process
Not necessarily.

and that the patterns we see are real and are an indicator of what really happened
Yes!

I've put this quote up before and i'll put it up again.

It’s important to note that all reasoning really starts with presuppositions (axioms, i.e. certain things that are taken for granted without being able to prove them). And there’s nothing inappropriately “biased” about that, it’s inevitable, but the question is then whether the presupposition leads to conclusions which support it sufficiently to justify trusting it further, and so on

If you guys think that this does not apply to evolution, that it is somehow exempt from any presuppositions then this just becomes undebateable. You guys see this debate as facts vs superstition, right? And that these facts are not interpreted according to an presuppositions, right? this just seems totally illogical and sorry i just don't buy it. It becomes undebateable because we are no longer comparing two worldviews to see which worldview is supported by the evidence, instead of comparing for example apples with apples, we are trying to compare apples with a tricycle. It just doesn't work. It is undebateable. No wonder people like Archangel come and leave so quickly and it looks like I might not remain much longer either. I'll have a look at the response from this post and decide from there.
See ya.


Replies to this message:
 Message 142 by PaulK, posted 09-25-2009 4:50 AM Arphy has not yet responded
 Message 143 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-25-2009 5:29 AM Arphy has not yet responded
 Message 145 by Percy, posted 09-25-2009 7:20 AM Arphy has not yet responded
 Message 147 by Blue Jay, posted 09-25-2009 11:22 AM Arphy has not yet responded
 Message 148 by Perdition, posted 09-25-2009 1:36 PM Arphy has not yet responded
 Message 149 by Granny Magda, posted 09-25-2009 3:32 PM Arphy has not yet responded

    
PaulK
Member
Posts: 10477
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 142 of 210 (525872)
09-25-2009 4:50 AM
Reply to: Message 141 by Arphy
09-25-2009 4:31 AM


quote:

If you guys think that this does not apply to evolution, that it is somehow exempt from any presuppositions then this just becomes undebateable

What you are not dealing with is the question of what the presuppositions actually are. But that is a critical question - some presuppositions bias the interpretation far more than others.

quote:

No wonder people like Archangel come and leave so quickly

You mean because nobody shared his presupposition that evolutionists should be considered guilty unless proven innocent ?

If you don't see what a problem THAT presupposition is in a thread dealing largely with unsupported allegations of fraud then you need to think more.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 141 by Arphy, posted 09-25-2009 4:31 AM Arphy has not yet responded

    
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 12052
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 5.8


Message 143 of 210 (525880)
09-25-2009 5:29 AM
Reply to: Message 141 by Arphy
09-25-2009 4:31 AM


If you guys think that this does not apply to evolution, that it is somehow exempt from any presuppositions then this just becomes undebateable. You guys see this debate as facts vs superstition, right? And that these facts are not interpreted according to an presuppositions, right? this just seems totally illogical and sorry i just don't buy it. It becomes undebateable because we are no longer comparing two worldviews to see which worldview is supported by the evidence, instead of comparing for example apples with apples, we are trying to compare apples with a tricycle. It just doesn't work. It is undebateable.

But you have it completely the wrong way round.

Leaving aside "worldviews" we have two different claims as to how we should try to know the world.

Epistemology #1: Scientific Epistemology

The scientific method of knowing the world is this. We can take any proposition, whether we believe it or not, and we can then use formal logic to figure out what we should observe if that proposition is true. We can then observe reality, and if reality is contrary to the logical consequences of the proposition in question, then we must abandon that proposition as being contrary to the evidence.

Epistemology #2: Faith-Based Epistemology

We can decide, as a presupposition, that some proposition is true, and then we can interpret every datum in the light of that belief.

---

Now, it is the second method that is "undebatable". You refer to your pal Archangel. He has written that nothing can be considered "true science" if it conflicts with a literal reading of the book of Genesis. No data can change his mind about his beliefs, because any scientific facts that threaten to do so can be interpreted, according to his presuppositions, as being not "true science". It can't be true science if it conflicts with his interpretation of Genesis. That's the final word on it.

Consider his further behavior. We were discussing a minor, trivial question: was "Orce Man" a fraud. He claimed that it was, but he could find no evidence of fraud with respect to "Orce Man".

So, what did he do? Did he admit that since there was no evidence that "Orce Man" was a fraud, he had no basis for alleging fraud?

No. He interpreted reality on the basis that he was right --- by alleging that the evolutionist "cult" had destroyed all the evidence that he was right! That's why he has no evidence that he's right ... it's because an evil conspiracy of liars has hidden all the evidence, by using our strange magical powers to delete stuff from the Internet.

And you see, if you start with the proposition that you're completely right about everything, and interpret every datum on that basis, then you can defend your beliefs against any facts. You need never give up your interpretation.

Whereas the scientific method allows every proposition to be debatable. Show me "rabbits in the Cambrian" (in Haldane's famous words) and I shall concede that everything I ever thought about evolution was bollocks.

The scientific method allows every proposition to be debatable. The faith-based method allows every proposition to be protected from debate. And yet you say that evolution is "undebatable" unless and until we adopt a faith-based epistemology instead of the epistemology of the scientific method.

Evolution is debatable only because it rests on scientific epistemology, which says that a piece of contrary evidence could smash it down. The reason that I think that it is true is that so far no-one has produced such evidence. Whereas Archangel's nonsense is undebatable because it rests on the faith-based epistemology of interpreting every piece of evidence according to the presupposition that whatever he says is true.

And you claim that we should be like him? I'd rather hang myself.

Edited by Dr Adequate, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 141 by Arphy, posted 09-25-2009 4:31 AM Arphy has not yet responded

  
greyseal
Member (Idle past 142 days)
Posts: 464
Joined: 08-11-2009


Message 144 of 210 (525887)
09-25-2009 6:55 AM
Reply to: Message 130 by Arphy
09-24-2009 8:20 AM


two small things, arphy
Our genome is degenerating and this is a physical process.

remains unproven, I don't see any evidence. I don't think you or anyone else has any.

The evolutionary model is woven around the animals and fossils we see. Would evolution have had the same model before transitional fossils were found?

yes, Darwin predicted they'd be found before they were.

e.g. was the dino to bird link announced before finding "transitional forms" or after?

Archaeopteryx, I believe, was found 2 years AFTER his book was published - I'm not sure what they thought about dinosaurs and birds before this find.

I do know that the image of dinosaurs changed from big, ponderous slow beasts to quick, intelligent creatures as our knowledge improved.

I don't think that's a problem that the viewpoint changed - it doesn't change the evidence and it doesn't change the facts. It does change the supposition (and that, dear friends, is why you don't put the supposition before the facts).

Edited by greyseal, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 130 by Arphy, posted 09-24-2009 8:20 AM Arphy has not yet responded

    
Percy
Member
Posts: 12821
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 4.3


Message 145 of 210 (525889)
09-25-2009 7:20 AM
Reply to: Message 141 by Arphy
09-25-2009 4:31 AM


Arphy writes:

No wonder people like Archangel come and leave so quickly...

As Admin I posted this over at the EVOLUTION'S FRAUD HAS CONTRIBUTED TO ITS PUBLIC ACCEPTANCE: thread:

Admin writes:

I would like both sides to ratchet it down and focus on the topic.

...

Continued ad hominem will begin resulting in suspensions soon. I've just started moderating this thread, so let's reset our passions to zero and focus on the topic.

I stood ready to keep discussion focused on the topic and away from the rhetoric so that Archangel could make clear his points, but the only participant who failed to follow the request to tone things down was Archangel.

Moderators are here to help move discussion forward, not to promote any particular point of view. If you examine the Forum Guidelines you'll see that there is nothing restricting any particular viewpoint. The primary requirements are to be civil, to stay on topic, and to support your position with relevant arguments and evidence.

From the beginning of his participation here Archangel had an enormous chip on his shoulder that placed a significant strain on civility, and incivility is always one of the primary barriers to productive discussion. He saw every slight as a significant offense and never seemed aware that they were primarily reactions to his constant barrage of accusations of dishonesty, ignorance, and lies.

The moderator position is that all people involved in the debate are sincere and honest until they demonstrate otherwise. If Archangel wants to engage in discussion on a level playing field where the only requirements are reason and evidence then he will stick around.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 141 by Arphy, posted 09-25-2009 4:31 AM Arphy has not yet responded

    
Richard Townsend
Member (Idle past 1012 days)
Posts: 103
From: London, England
Joined: 07-16-2008


Message 146 of 210 (525933)
09-25-2009 9:23 AM


Dino bird transition
Discovery of a new transitional fossil in China, a very early one.

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v461.../nature08322.pdf


    
Blue Jay
Member
Posts: 2612
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008


Message 147 of 210 (525975)
09-25-2009 11:22 AM
Reply to: Message 141 by Arphy
09-25-2009 4:31 AM


Hi, Arphy.

Arphy writes:

quote:
It’s important to note that all reasoning really starts with presuppositions (axioms, i.e. certain things that are taken for granted without being able to prove them). And there’s nothing inappropriately “biased” about that, it’s inevitable, but the question is then whether the presupposition leads to conclusions which support it sufficiently to justify trusting it further, and so on

If you guys think that this does not apply to evolution, that it is somehow exempt from any presuppositions then this just becomes undebateable.

I certainly don't believe there aren't assumptions involved in studying evolution.

But, I don't see the relevance of this quote or of your point about it to this particular discussion. Whether or not evolution is based on certain assumptions, a quote about the clade to which Archaeopteryx belongs does not contribute to a pro-Creation argument.

I sincerely hope you stay: there are so few creationists here with your knowledge, reason and eloquence. It would be even better if you could somehow coax EvC member Wumpini (I'd even take AlphaOmegakid) to come back and participate with you in some debates.

But, whatever you decide, it's been a pleasure debating with you.


-Bluejay (a.k.a. Mantis, Thylacosmilus)

Darwin loves you.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 141 by Arphy, posted 09-25-2009 4:31 AM Arphy has not yet responded

  
Perdition
Member (Idle past 151 days)
Posts: 1592
From: Wisconsin
Joined: 05-15-2003


Message 148 of 210 (526011)
09-25-2009 1:36 PM
Reply to: Message 141 by Arphy
09-25-2009 4:31 AM


Not necessarily.

Since a natural explanation neither requires nor assumes any extraneous entity or agent, then by definition, it is the most parsimonious. If you assume gods or aliens or time travellers, you then have to define those entities, find evidence of them, explain from where they came and how. Considering a complete lack of evidence in them, it seems premature, at best, to accept a proposition as true that requires their presence.

Can this lead to an incorrect idea being held as true? Sure, and in fact it has. However, more often than not, it leads to the correct answer. So, for me (or most "evolutionsists") to change our minds and accept a theory that requires some agent or entity for it to work, we will ask for evidence that this entity or agent exists, or at least some evidence that our current non-entity requiring theory can't be right. We've been asking for 150 years collectively, and myself for at least 20, and I have not been shown any.

If you guys think that this does not apply to evolution, that it is somehow exempt from any presuppositions then this just becomes undebateable.

You're right, evolution rests of presuppositions and axioms. These presuppositions are:

1) What we see in the world is, in fact, an accurate reflection of reality.

2) Logic is a valid method for deriving conclusions.

3) The scientific method is a valid method for deriving conclusions where pure logic does not work. (The scientific method itself rests largely on premise 2, but that's sort of beside the point.)

4) Occam's Razor is a valid method for determining which, of competing explanations, is most worthy of looking into. (Again, this rests largely on 2, but there it is.)

If you have a problem with any of these presuppositions, please feel free to debate them...though a new thread may be called for.

If you believe that there is a premise I missed that evolution requires, please feel free to add it. Again, it may cause debate, so a new thread may be required.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 141 by Arphy, posted 09-25-2009 4:31 AM Arphy has not yet responded

    
Granny Magda
Member
Posts: 2283
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007


Message 149 of 210 (526034)
09-25-2009 3:32 PM
Reply to: Message 141 by Arphy
09-25-2009 4:31 AM


Hi Arphy,

I would be disappointed if you were to walk at this point. There's still so much left to discuss. I hope you're not put off by the rambling length of my posts. Feel free to reply only to what you consider important. Certainly there are another of side discussions going on that are not relevant to the topic.

No wonder people like Archangel come and leave so quickly and it looks like I might not remain much longer either.

I think there is a big difference between your approach to this site and Archangel's. When I communicate with you, I feel like I'm involved in a dialogue. With Archangel I don't get that feeling. I either get ignored, insulted or shouted at.

I may not agree with your claims or the evidence you present, but at least you make the effort to engage in an adult conversation about it. It would be a shame to see you go, not least because I think that this board has a lot to gain with you here. Without reasonable creationists who are willing to engage honest debate, this site would just be called "E".

Mutate and Survive


"A curious aspect of the theory of evolution is that everybody thinks he understands it." - Jacques Monod
This message is a reply to:
 Message 141 by Arphy, posted 09-25-2009 4:31 AM Arphy has not yet responded

    
Arphy
Member (Idle past 713 days)
Posts: 185
From: New Zealand
Joined: 08-23-2009


(2)
Message 150 of 210 (527681)
10-02-2009 6:50 AM


Hi Guys

I'm back. Went away over the weekend and then spent the week slowly writing out my reply, but I think the break was good and helped cool things down. As Magda said “there's still so much left to discuss” and maybe I have caught the EvC bug, so if things get a bit heated don't mind me if I go off and pout for a few days. From your replies it seems like I am not just a complete walk over, which is good .

Also an apology to bluejay, maybe I was a bit hasty with my assumptions (as my brother likes to say “when you assume you make an “ass” out of “u” and “me”), these assumptions can be made with many evangelical christians, also to be fair I am not an expert on mormonism. I still maintain that I find evangelical christian evolution compromises very illogical and unreasonable but that might be another debate.

Worldviews: Natural causes the most parsimonious?
Let's take the example of abiogenesis, where no consensus opinion really exists on how it happened. Now if no consensus is reached in 100 years will science somehow no longer try to find a sufficient natural explanation? No probably not. If you take the attitude that natural explanations are the most parsimonious, and are constantly hoping for that elusive naturalistic explanation for abiogenesis, then i don't think this is exactly a good example of occam's razor. I think the answer is obvious (intelligent design), and it takes just as much faith, maybe even more, to believe that one day a sufficient naturalistic explanation, with good supporting evidence will somehow replace a supernatural explanation. And even if a consensus is reached does this automatically make it the most parsimonious just because it is a naturalistic explanation?

perdition writes:

You're right, evolution rests of presuppositions and axioms. These presuppositions are:

1) What we see in the world is, in fact, an accurate reflection of reality.

2) Logic is a valid method for deriving conclusions.

3) The scientific method is a valid method for deriving conclusions where pure logic does not work. (The scientific method itself rests largely on premise 2, but that's sort of beside the point.)

4) Occam's Razor is a valid method for determining which, of competing explanations, is most worthy of looking into. (Again, this rests largely on 2, but there it is.)


Well that's just great. You do realise from where these presuppositions historically come from? That's right, from scientists who had a biblical worldview.

Loren Eiseley stated:

‘The philosophy of experimental science … began its discoveries and made use of its methods in the faith, not the knowledge, that it was dealing with a rational universe controlled by a creator who did not act upon whim nor interfere with the forces He had set in operation… It is surely one of the curious paradoxes of history that science, which professionally has little to do with faith, owes its origins to an act of faith that the universe can be rationally interpreted, and that science today is sustained by that assumption.’

http://creation.com/biblical-roots-of-modern-science

So yes there are some presuppositions that you have left out. Unfortunatly, you don't seem to want to talk about those.

In message 137 bluejay you attack me again on saying that common descent is not hard-core yet there is no mention of my comment that long ages are also hard-core. So what happens when you lose both?

As for mechanisms that we see working today like natural selection, genetic drift, etc, yes, i make the assumption that these mechanisms operated in the past, as shown above creationists believe that there is an order to the universe and that God has put natural laws in place to maintain this order, and if God does interfere with this it is for a specific purpose not just on whim.

Now on to Magda's post (140)

Frankly, yes. A kid with a standard high school biology textbook understands evolution better than most of those bozos.
Well thank you (sarcastic comment)!

The more important point here though is that by undermining something as essential as taxonomy, you are actually attacking the essential tools of science. Taxonomy is important. you seem to want to throw it out where it contradicts your religious dogmas. That's unacceptable.
What? Read what I actually said
arphy writes:

These classifications do have value for practical purposes, however similar characteristics doesn't immediatly translate to being related.


And anyway it depends on what sort of taxonomy you are talking about. If Rank-based classification (linnaeus' classification system) then this makes no evolutionary claims. Cladistics is toxonomy according to phylogeny which is different and I do not agree with this type of taxonomy.

As for apes you are arguing from a cladistics viewpoint

I used the word syngameon as the closest description to kind, and possibly what you might accept as "scientific".

Using sciencey-sounding terminology doesn't mean you are doing science.


Great, so creationists are not allowed to come up with any terminology (again sarcastic). Also maybe a better way of saying it is that syngameon-ity is a qualifier for classifying which animals belong to a kind. Probably the best qualifier to be used on living species.

No we can't perform hybridization experiments on fossils, so no we are not just make up a phylogentic classification system based on the species we think might have hybridized. We might point to evidence that suggests that two species might have been syngameons, however we don't present this as conclusive proof. I don't see why you have a problem with this, after all animals are often reclassified. I'll just add this as well

Based on the Biblical criterion for kinds, creationists deduce that as long as two creatures can hybridize with true fertilization, the two creatures are (i.e. descended from) the same kind. 6 Also, if two creatures can hybridize with the same third creature, they are all members of the same kind.7 The hybridization criterion is a valid operational definition, which could in principle enable researchers to list all the kinds. The implication is one-way—hybridization is evidence that they are the same kind, but it does not necessarily follow that if hybridization cannot occur then they are not members of the same kind (failure to hybridize could be due to degenerative mutations). After all, there are couples who can’t have children, and we don’t classify them as a different species, let alone a different kind.
.../response-to-pbs-nova-evolution-series-episode-1-darwins-dangerous-idea

Using 1% clean animals as our base, that still leaves us with 6040 mammals. That's just the mammals!
"Genus" does not equal "kind".
As for the feasibility of the ark, maybe we could discuss it some other time as we have quite a few topics already. Yip, there really is much to discuss, and I'd preferably like to discuss everything at once. Unfortunatly though this is somewhat impractical as well as annoying the mods and anybody trying to follow the debate However if you really want to discuss the feasibility of Noah's ark, we can.

As for who was on the ark:
genesis 7:21-23
21 ¶ And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man:
22 All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died.
23 And every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven; and they were destroyed from the earth: and Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark.

Note it says the the things on the ground, also insects are not included on the ark because animals with "the breath of life" generally refers to animals who breath air through nostrils.

Granny writes:
In fact, it doesn’t even propose a mechanism to provide evidence for. Lame.

Excuse me???

What I said. They provide only sound-bites. They offer no substance. They throw out terms like "the sorting of organisms during the Flood" without ever expaining how that is supposed to work.

hmm...You said that they didn't propose any mechanisms. They did, they even included breif descriptions of some of them. If you want to go into how these mechanisms work then sure we can do that too if you want.

Humans: So out of all the animals apes morphologically are closest to humans. However the transitional fossils for ape-like to human-like are again another thing that we could debate.

The basic evolutionary story was woven after the "transitional fossils" were found.

You seem to be upset that scientists, as well as making predictions, also like to wait to see where the evidence leads them. This is not a failing, it is an asset. Scientists don't just make things up as they go along. they make predictions only to test them against the emerging evidence. they may also reserve their opinions pending relevant evidence. This is how science works and a good thing too.


Sure, but i still think that the basic story follows findings of animals that have an unusual set of attributes that are not commonly found together. These can't be predicted, and that these animals exist speak as much to a creator working in modules as to a common descent evolutionary model.

kiwis: Ahhh, I'm a super-evolutionist!
Your surprise at things like this to me show that maybe you can still learn a few things from me about the creation model.
And I did give evidence!!! Two articles!! A note in the references of the 2nd article particularly caught my eye.

Evolutionists have invented a unit called the ‘darwin’ for measuring the speed of change in the form (body size, leg length, etc.) of a species. In the case of the Anolis sagrei lizards, the rate of change ranged up to 2,117 darwins—whereas evolutionists had only ‘measured’ rates of 0.1 to 1.0 darwins over the ‘millions of years in the fossil record’. For the guppies in Trinidad, the rates were even higher: from 3,700 to 45,000 darwins. Artificial selection experiments on laboratory mice show rates of up to 200,000 darwins.

As for feduccia, I see it like this: It does throw cold water on its status as a transitiona fossil, because if birds didn't evolve from feathered dinosaurs but some other reptile as Feduccia says. Then the only other prominent evolutionary theory is Feduccia's theory which really doesn't have much backing in evidence at all. So, yes, I learnt a bit more about his quotes through this debate and maybe I didn't quite use it as appropriatly as i should havunderstand them as well as I first thought, however when i look through the articles it seems if there was a fault it was more with me than the articles.

forams: Even if it is at the superorder level, so what? The argument still exists that they are still forams and distinictively so. Your picture shows forams from the families Globigerinoides and Orbulina which shows what? That there is little difference between the two families and which may be a kind"? Also forams are highly adaptable or "plastic" i.e. are easily able to mold to their environment. Will continue to research this but for the moment am happy with above.

You might also like to explain in detail exactly how (if the ToE is false) it came to be found in exactly the place that the ToE predicted it would be found.
The researchers didn't just search in one place. They located fish fossil graveyards (why they exist is another question that you might want to ask yourself). What they found was a fish (yah, yipee) With some more unusually features to be sure but not anything worthy of saying that it was an ancestor of tetrapods (fins which are not connected to the body which allows very little weight being put on them and some other unusual features somewhat reminescent of lungfish).
Replies to this message:
 Message 151 by PaulK, posted 10-02-2009 7:52 AM Arphy has not yet responded
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 Message 153 by Granny Magda, posted 10-02-2009 9:22 PM Arphy has not yet responded
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