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Author Topic:   Darwinism Cannot Explain The Peacock
Arriba
Junior Member (Idle past 1083 days)
Posts: 22
From: Miraflores, Lima, Peru
Joined: 01-24-2013


Message 106 of 165 (689591)
02-01-2013 9:58 AM
Reply to: Message 93 by Dr Adequate
01-30-2013 1:42 AM


Re: Unprovable Postulates
It never ceases to amaze me the bad examples that people come up with in fora like these.

We got to the moon, you claim, because of science. I suppose you're going to say that it's because of Newton's Law of Gravity that we got there.

You ignore, of course, the fact that the Law of Gravity has been falsified. It is not merely the fact that it couldn't predict the precession of Mercury, or that the gravitational lensing observed during the eclipse of 1919 validated Einstein's theories far more than Newton's, or that quantum mechanics has also similarly abandoned the law in favor of gravitons, but also the point that the Law of Gravity cannot explain the movements of galaxies without resorting to a liberal sprinkling of "dark matter" at conveniently located places in order to make the numbers work.

No, more to the point I want to point out this: Sir Isaac Newton was a mathematician, alchemist, philosopher, and theologian. Yet when he formulates a (wrong) law science gets the credit. Why is that? Why not math? Why not alchemy? Why not philosophy? Why not theology? Why should science get the credit when Newton wasn't a scientist?

P.S. Georg Ohm, the inventor of Ohm's law, was a high school teacher and mathematician. He was fooling around with an electrostatic generator, which was first invented by Johan Wilcke, whose father was a pastor in the German Church in Stockholm. He became a Thamian lecturer and similarly was not a scientist. Again I ask: Why does science get the credit? Why not math? Why not the German Church in Stockholm? In fact, history tells us that scientists called Ohm's Law "a tissue of naked fantasy." Perhaps it would be more appropriate to say I have the computer in spite of science and not because of it.


"...nobody to date has yet found a demarcation criterion according to which Darwin can be described as scientific..." - Imre Lakatos

This message is a reply to:
 Message 93 by Dr Adequate, posted 01-30-2013 1:42 AM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 107 by Panda, posted 02-01-2013 10:34 AM Arriba has not yet responded
 Message 112 by Dr Adequate, posted 02-01-2013 11:46 AM Arriba has not yet responded
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 Message 114 by NoNukes, posted 02-01-2013 1:59 PM Arriba has responded

    
Panda
Member (Idle past 1185 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 107 of 165 (689593)
02-01-2013 10:34 AM
Reply to: Message 106 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:58 AM


Re: Unprovable Postulates
Arriba writes:

We got to the moon, you claim, because of science.


So, if not using science, how do you think we got to the moon then?

Edited by Panda, : No reason given.


"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 106 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:58 AM Arriba has not yet responded

  
Taq
Member
Posts: 6827
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.9


Message 108 of 165 (689598)
02-01-2013 11:21 AM
Reply to: Message 104 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:47 AM


Re: The story is not complete.
It's not that tautologies are often true - tautologies are always true they're just not very useful.

Are you saying that Algebra is not useful?

Scientists have found the observation of natural selection to be very useful. It allows them to detect sequences in genomes that are under selection, just as one example. Another example is SIFTER, an algorithm that uses the tautology of natural selection and speciation to determine the function of proteins:

http://www.ploscompbiol.org/...0.1371%2Fjournal.pcbi.0010045

The algorithm has a 96% success rate in predicting protein function. I would call that useful.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 104 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:47 AM Arriba has not yet responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15946
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.7


Message 109 of 165 (689601)
02-01-2013 11:28 AM
Reply to: Message 103 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:45 AM


Re: And May God Have Mercy On Your Soul
Accordingly his a priori odds are 10/100,000 or 0.0001 but when I start by granting you 0.01 - a number 100 times more generous than the one he uses you whine about it like a little bitch.

But Ioannidis had a reason for producing his figure --- that the results in his hypothetical example were based on data-mining. Your reason is simply that you're biased against a conclusion you don't like. The idea that peacock attractiveness is related to the display qualities of their tails was not produced by making 100,000 measurements of different bird species and different morphological features and seeing what correlations appeared in the data; it was the hypothesis to be tested.

What you didn't notice is that I assumed P(E|H) was 1 during the last step, even though I had previously assumed it was only 0.95.

OK, let's add that.

(5) You used two different and inconsistent values for P(E|H), both of which you made up.

The rest of your pretentious blather seems to be designed not so much to justify your halfwitted blunders as to convey your delusion of competence. After the little exhibition you've made of yourself, this is hardly a delusion you will persuade anyone to share.

Why would you when you already know the truth as though it were revealed to you from on high? Your real goal is to stamp out the heresy you see before you. Like the rest of your fellow cult members, you have a mind like concrete: All mixed up and permanently set.

And yet curiously enough it falls to me to point out your fatuous footling blunders; whereas it is you who have explicitly taken your own bias as a datum. These facts would be suggestive to a keener thinker than yourself.

Edited by Dr Adequate, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 103 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:45 AM Arriba has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 117 by Arriba, posted 02-05-2013 9:02 AM Dr Adequate has responded

  
Taq
Member
Posts: 6827
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.9


Message 110 of 165 (689602)
02-01-2013 11:28 AM
Reply to: Message 103 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:45 AM


Re: And May God Have Mercy On Your Soul
Now let us suppose that the investigators manipulate their design, analyses, and reporting so as to make more relationships cross the p = 0.05 threshold even though this would not have been crossed with a perfectly adhered to design and analysis and with perfect comprehensive reporting of the results, strictly according to the original study plan.

I have read papers where the statistics are very strained. Those papers are not well received by the scientific community. Also, any statistical correlation will need to be followed by further research that actually demonstrates a causal link. That's how it works. It's not as if a P value of 0.05 means that scientists are forced to accept the conclusions. It merely means that the data has met the lowest standard for being considered.

Using your example, there are hundreds of thousands of potential targets for research in schizophrenia, and this assumes that there even is a genetic risk factor. So which ones do you focus on? First, you need to whittle down the numbers. That is what these studies are doing. They are looking for potential candidates for further research. The strength of these targets is predicated on the strength of the correlation.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 103 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:45 AM Arriba has not yet responded

  
Taq
Member
Posts: 6827
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.9


Message 111 of 165 (689603)
02-01-2013 11:30 AM
Reply to: Message 105 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:51 AM


Re: The story is not complete.
You greatly mistake the situation. If you had bothered to read the post (or been capable of understanding it) you would realize that we are saying that only one person took the exam and got a positive result. We then took a calculator and worked out the likelihood that this positive result was false and got a number well over 90 percent. Then we concluded that a test that was 99.5 percent accurate was not a panacea to all problems involving false positives.

If the test is 99.5% accurate this means that only 5 people out of 1000 who were positive for HIV tested negative, and only 5 people out of 1000 who were negative tested positive for HIV. That's what those numbers mean.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 105 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:51 AM Arriba has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 118 by Arriba, posted 02-05-2013 9:04 AM Taq has responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15946
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.7


Message 112 of 165 (689605)
02-01-2013 11:46 AM
Reply to: Message 106 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:58 AM


Re: Unprovable Postulates
It never ceases to amaze me the bad examples that people come up with in fora like these.

We got to the moon, you claim, because of science. I suppose you're going to say that it's because of Newton's Law of Gravity that we got there.

You ignore, of course, the fact that the Law of Gravity has been falsified. It is not merely the fact that it couldn't predict the precession of Mercury, or that the gravitational lensing observed during the eclipse of 1919 validated Einstein's theories far more than Newton's, or that quantum mechanics has also similarly abandoned the law in favor of gravitons, but also the point that the Law of Gravity cannot explain the movements of galaxies without resorting to a liberal sprinkling of "dark matter" at conveniently located places in order to make the numbers work.

No, more to the point I want to point out this: Sir Isaac Newton was a mathematician, alchemist, philosopher, and theologian. Yet when he formulates a (wrong) law science gets the credit. Why is that? Why not math? Why not alchemy? Why not philosophy? Why not theology? Why should science get the credit when Newton wasn't a scientist?

P.S. Georg Ohm, the inventor of Ohm's law, was a high school teacher and mathematician. He was fooling around with an electrostatic generator, which was first invented by Johan Wilcke, whose father was a pastor in the German Church in Stockholm. He became a Thamian lecturer and similarly was not a scientist. Again I ask: Why does science get the credit? Why not math? Why not the German Church in Stockholm? In fact, history tells us that scientists called Ohm's Law "a tissue of naked fantasy." Perhaps it would be more appropriate to say I have the computer in spite of science and not because of it.

Am I to suppose that this heap of crap was really intended to be a reply to my post? Or were you trying to reply to someone else?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 106 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:58 AM Arriba has not yet responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 13326
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.1


(1)
Message 113 of 165 (689612)
02-01-2013 12:44 PM
Reply to: Message 106 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:58 AM


Re: Unprovable Postulates
Arriba writes:

You ignore, of course, the fact that the Law of Gravity has been falsified.


None of your examples "falsifies" the Law of Gravity. New observations often require the theory of gravity to be tweaked. That's how science works.
This message is a reply to:
 Message 106 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:58 AM Arriba has not yet responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9735
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 3.1


(1)
Message 114 of 165 (689617)
02-01-2013 1:59 PM
Reply to: Message 106 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:58 AM


Re: Unprovable Postulates
Yet when he formulates a (wrong) law science gets the credit. Why is that? Why not math?

Math is just a formal method of expressing Newton's law of gravity. Math is how we know whether Newton's law actually predicts what is actually observed. Math, when used in such a role, forms part of the scientific method.

Math can play other roles, including formulating the actual hypothesis. Newton was indeed one of the greatest mathematicians of any era, but that doesn't mean he wasn't a scientist as well.

We got to the moon, you claim, because of science. I suppose you're going to say that it's because of Newton's Law of Gravity that we got there.

Newton's theory of universal gravitation is sufficient to navigate space craft between planets in the solar system. Do you believe that General Relativity was used for the task of travelling to the moon, or are you just blowing smoke?

P.S. Georg Ohm, the inventor of Ohm's law, was a high school teacher and mathematician. He was fooling around with an electrostatic generator, which was first invented by Johan Wilcke, whose father was a pastor in the German Church in Stockholm. He became a Thamian lecturer and similarly was not a scientist.

As best as I can tell, your claim is that Ohm could not have been a scientist, because of his lack of formal education in physics, and that Ohm's contribution was simply finding an application for long division.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead. William Lloyd Garrison.

If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass


This message is a reply to:
 Message 106 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:58 AM Arriba has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 119 by Arriba, posted 02-05-2013 9:04 AM NoNukes has responded

    
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 3428
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006


Message 115 of 165 (689629)
02-01-2013 8:17 PM
Reply to: Message 105 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:51 AM


Re: The story is not complete.
we are saying that only one person took the exam and got a positive result. We then took a calculator and worked out the likelihood that this positive result was false and got a number well over 90 percent.

This is exactly the thing I was speaking about. You invent a scenario that you can twist to falsely invent a failure that is not there just like every mathematical idiot without a viable argument is want to do.

Take 100,000 people, give them the test. How many received a correct result? Regardless of your attempts to lie with numbers, in this case, that is the only statistic that matters.

Take 1 person, give them the test. The test comes up negative. Even without any mathematical smoke and mirrors I can show that in this case the test had a 100% accuracy. Useful isn't it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 105 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:51 AM Arriba has not yet responded

  
Blue Jay
Member (Idle past 170 days)
Posts: 2843
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008


(1)
Message 116 of 165 (689655)
02-02-2013 3:09 AM
Reply to: Message 103 by Arriba
02-01-2013 9:45 AM


Re: And May God Have Mercy On Your Soul
Hi, Arriba.

Arriba writes:

Accordingly his a priori odds are 10/100,000 or 0.0001 but when I start by granting you 0.01 - a number 100 times more generous than the one he uses you whine about it like a little bitch.

I don't understand where you came up with this 10/100,000 figure: it seems like is was a figure specific the schizophrenia-gene-polymorphisms example, so I'm not clear on how those odds are relevant to our current discussion.

Arriba writes:

What you didn't notice is that I assumed P(E|H) was 1 during the last step, even though I had previously assumed it was only 0.95.

No, actually what I didn't notice is that your math formula was Bayes' theorem: it was a math equation, so my eyes just glazed over when I came to it. My apologies for my failure, and for my subsequent sarcasm about it.

Arriba writes:

Let's analyze this simple study design for the possible reasons why it worked:

Reason 1. Maybe she's right. Maybe peahens really do like cocks with lots of eyes.
Reason 2. She was biased and consciously or subconsciously created the result she sought.
Reason 3. The peacocks that had been mangled were traumatized and spent less time seeking out hens and more time hiding - especially when they saw their former assailant lurking in the bushes.
Reason 4. The peahens didn't care about the number of tail eyes, per se but discriminated against the mutilated cocks because of the mulilation alone.
Reason 5. The peahens had grown accustomed to the males having a certain number of eyes in their tails due to long associations whereas had they grown up around males with lower numbers of eyes they would have been accustomed to that and would have rejected males with "excessive" numbers of eyes as out of the norm.

I have reason to contest several of these reasons:

Reason 3: Peacocks from both groups were handled in the same fashion (minus the clipped feathers), so we can almost certainly rule this one out (or at least weight it very low).
Reason 4: This still suggests that females select mates based on feather-train attributes, doesn't it?
Reason 5: You're slicing your hypotheses really thin here; I see no reason no distinguish this from Reason 1.

So, the way I see it, you only really have 2 possible explanations, or 3 if you let Reason 4 stand.

Arriba writes:

Perhaps there are even more reasons that I just can't think of right now. Be that as it may a simple application of the principle of insufficient reason suggests that we assign a 20 percent probability to her claim in light of her study. Even if we assume that her study being replicated ruled out reason 2 (something I am prepared to dispute) we might be able to get the chance up to 0.25 but not more.

I'm a little confused as to what you think you're doing here. Aren't you just using the principle of insufficient reasoning to do the same thing that you already did with Bayes' theorem, i.e., estimate P(H|E)?


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

Darwin loves you.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 103 by Arriba, posted 02-01-2013 9:45 AM Arriba has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 120 by Arriba, posted 02-05-2013 9:06 AM Blue Jay has responded

  
Arriba
Junior Member (Idle past 1083 days)
Posts: 22
From: Miraflores, Lima, Peru
Joined: 01-24-2013


Message 117 of 165 (689837)
02-05-2013 9:02 AM
Reply to: Message 109 by Dr Adequate
02-01-2013 11:28 AM


Re: And May God Have Mercy On Your Soul
You state: "But Ioannidis had a reason for producing his figure --- that the results in his hypothetical example were based on data-mining." This only proves that you have no reading comprehension ability.

Let's take a simple example of a person who is doing a test on 100 chemicals believed to treat some disease. Only 1 of those chemicals is actually effective. He will find that 1 effective treatment 95 percent of the time and will find, on average, 5 of the ineffective treatments to also be effective. That's because 1 study out of 20 will reach a 95 percent confidence interval by chance alone. So right out of the gate we have 83 percent of his published work as wrong. This has nothing to do with data mining.

Imagine, however, that unknown to the first researcher there is a second researcher who is also studying the same 100 chemicals. He will also find the 1 workable treatment and 5 ineffective treatments. It is unlikely that they will coincide on any of the false positives. Accordingly we will see 10 false positives and 1 true positive assuming that all of these results get published.

Going further, what would happen if one of the researchers decided to double test each compound? Do you think such a thing couldn't happen? A simple look at http://www.reuters.com/...ience-cancer-idUSBRE82R12P20120328 reveals this tidbit: "We went through the paper line by line, figure by figure," said Begley. "I explained that we re-did their experiment 50 times and never got their result. He said they'd done it six times and got this result once, but put it in the paper because it made the best story. It's very disillusioning." Yes, that's right, some researchers do the same experiment multiple times and only report the one time that it works. That's what we call selection bias. Believe me, it happens.

In this case the double-testing researcher will then show up with 10 false positives, one of which will coincide with one of the 5 false positives of the other researcher. So we will have:

1 true positive found by both
1 false positive found by both
4 false positives found by researcher 1
9 false positives found by researcher 2

So that means that even if we only take those positives found by both researchers that 50 percent of the time it will be a false positive. This doesn't include bias, bad study design, or data mining.

This is not brain surgery. It's simple math - something you're supposed to be good at.


"...nobody to date has yet found a demarcation criterion according to which Darwin can be described as scientific..." - Imre Lakatos

This message is a reply to:
 Message 109 by Dr Adequate, posted 02-01-2013 11:28 AM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
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Arriba
Junior Member (Idle past 1083 days)
Posts: 22
From: Miraflores, Lima, Peru
Joined: 01-24-2013


Message 118 of 165 (689838)
02-05-2013 9:04 AM
Reply to: Message 111 by Taq
02-01-2013 11:30 AM


Re: The story is not complete.
You're missing the point.

Imagine that you are feeling sick and you go to a doctor. The doctor draws some blood and you see him again in a few days. He says, "We ran a bunch of tests, but everything came back negative." So you go to another doctor. He tells you the same: that he'd run some tests, and they all came back negative. The third doctor, however, tells you that you've tested positive for HIV. Now it's entirely possible that the other doctors also did a standard test for HIV and you came back negative twice but they didn't tell you. They just said they'd run some tests and they'd all come back negative. You didn't get an in-depth report on exactly what tests had been run because you didn't think that negative results were important. Well, they are important - very important.


"...nobody to date has yet found a demarcation criterion according to which Darwin can be described as scientific..." - Imre Lakatos

This message is a reply to:
 Message 111 by Taq, posted 02-01-2013 11:30 AM Taq has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 121 by Taq, posted 02-05-2013 10:47 AM Arriba has responded

    
Arriba
Junior Member (Idle past 1083 days)
Posts: 22
From: Miraflores, Lima, Peru
Joined: 01-24-2013


Message 119 of 165 (689839)
02-05-2013 9:04 AM
Reply to: Message 114 by NoNukes
02-01-2013 1:59 PM


Re: Unprovable Postulates
I can tell you for a fact that Newton wasn't a scientist. All you need to do is pick up a dictionary (try dictionary.com) and you'll see that the word "scientist" got added to the dictionary in 1834. Since Sir Isaac Newton died in 1727 we know that he was not a scientist. Those people who claim that he was are simply trying to revise history in such a way as to promote their own prejudices.

Some people, for example, will argue that before they were called scientists they were called "natural philosophers" pointing to things like Sir Isaac's publication of The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy. Be aware, however, that if you take that claim you are excluding Galileo as a scientist as he wasn't a natural philosopher. In fact, those people who opposed him most bitterly and refused to look through his telescope because it "gave them a headaches" were the natural philosophers of their time.

Galileo was a devout Catholic and medical school dropout turned amateur mathematician and astronomer. All of his discoveries were verified by Jesuit priests. Perhaps Catholicism is more responsible for us getting to the moon than science, eh?


"...nobody to date has yet found a demarcation criterion according to which Darwin can be described as scientific..." - Imre Lakatos

This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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 Message 127 by ringo, posted 02-06-2013 11:45 AM Arriba has responded
 Message 128 by Theodoric, posted 02-06-2013 12:05 PM Arriba has responded
 Message 130 by Dr Adequate, posted 02-06-2013 3:33 PM Arriba has not yet responded

    
Arriba
Junior Member (Idle past 1083 days)
Posts: 22
From: Miraflores, Lima, Peru
Joined: 01-24-2013


Message 120 of 165 (689840)
02-05-2013 9:06 AM
Reply to: Message 116 by Blue Jay
02-02-2013 3:09 AM


Re: And May God Have Mercy On Your Soul
According to evolutionary theory once, a very long time ago, peacocks had normal, small tails. However, by chance, a certain peacock had a larger, more ornate tail and the peahens just creamed their little non-existent panties for him and he had greater reproductive success. Over time and further similar incidents the peacock tail has evolved into what it is nowadays. This belief has been widely preached among the evolutionist faithful since 1859.

However, it had never been scientifically tested. Why bother? Faith should be enough for the acolytes, shouldn't it?

Anyway in the 1980s someone finally decided to "test" it. First of all, Petrie took groups of feral peacocks and captured them in order to trim their tails. The control group was not captured. Accordingly she observed that peacocks with mutilated tails had lesser chances of success.

In 2008 Japanese ecologists observed feral peacocks without plucking their tails and found no relationship between tails and reproductive success - rather they found that peacocks who had deeper, throatier voices, were more adept at seducing the hens.

Dakin, whose own studies were underway in 2008 when the Japanese study came out, noted that males had the same success regardless of eyespots (which varied between 165 and 170) but plucked males had markedly lower success.

From http://www.nature.com/...2011/110418/full/news.2011.245.html : Petrie admits that traits such as the number of eyespots are only rough measures of tail quality, and probably mean more to scientists than to peahens. "At the end of the day, we will never know what peahens are looking at and how they select their mates. You can't ask them."

So what do we really know? Only that plucked males have less success for some reason. This is nothing more than bad study design.

A proper study would have four groups.

1. Uncaptured, unaffected males (the control group).
2. Captured males who experienced several close passes of the electric razor (complete with sound) but whose tails were not altered in any way (the traumatized group).
3. Captured males whose eyespots were shaved out.
4. Captured males whose tails were shaved without affecting eyespots.

The peacock groups should be randomized and the researchers observing the copulations should not know which group each male they are observing fits into (hard to do with those whose spots have been butchered, but at least they should go through the motions).

My additional questions: How were the males captured? Did researchers simply resolve to capture half of the males and then mutilate their tails? Couldn't that imply that the males who got mutilated were the ones who were the easiest to capture? Or had they specifically set out to capture certain pre-selected males? We may never know since the study in question is paywalled.

In my opinion, the study is chintzy. I also believe that Petrie's pathological need to publish a rebuttal to the Japanese study (also paywalled) shows that she is heavily emotionally invested in the outcome - a bad sign.


"...nobody to date has yet found a demarcation criterion according to which Darwin can be described as scientific..." - Imre Lakatos

This message is a reply to:
 Message 116 by Blue Jay, posted 02-02-2013 3:09 AM Blue Jay has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 122 by Taq, posted 02-05-2013 10:52 AM Arriba has responded
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