Is the variation in traits seen in the bones between modern humans and Ardi more or less than the variation seen in dogs?
Inquiring minds want to know.
RAZD, I would say this question might be unwittingly incorrect. You seem to be asking if the anatomy of the skeleton, comparative anatomy between skeletons of primates like chimps and humans have more or less variation than, "seen in dogs".
To remain logically correct you must ask, "than seen in dog skeletons".
You full well know that none of the great apes can speak, write, do complex mathematics, pray, be spiritual, have sophisticated morality, etc...so a large part of what makes a human a human, is NOT comparative skeletal anatomy. And that is the error in your argument.
I would say your argument is a compositional error. You take SOME of the anatomy of humans and apes, and compare it to ALL of the anatomy of dogs, presumably. (I am sorry if I misunderstood you in some way but that's how it seems.)
I appreciate your point that the anatomy of the skeleton seems close. I would argue that for an ape of a certain size it is beneficial to have that type of anatomy similar to humans, by reasons of design. But there is no way to test if there is a common ancestor, IMHO.
Sure, you can make a theoretical case. I would have to ask Bonedigger about the specific bones as he's an expert in studying them (EFF) but I would say the mistake in your argument is that you fail to see that any dog you take is a typical example of a dog in pretty much every way, but if you include humans as "apes" then obviously if you take a human being, a human isn't a typical example of an ape, with features of brachiation, and the inability to speak, etc...but to take a dog, well no matter what species it is it seems at least plausible they could stem from a common ancestor as they all have the same abilities. (i.e. baraminology isn't as simple as going from anatomical closeness, as with the example of the differing cauliflowers)
As for the diagram of, "Ardi" those statements about what Ardi could do, you full well know require an anatomist expert in that field to carefully delineate each and every subtle difference and if the skeleton is not complete and part of the evidence could change those conclusions, then this could affect the validity of the argument.
Diomedes, I amnot arguing why are there still monkeys but on your diagram it seems that all of the common ancestors are represented as dots, and the real-life lifeforms are represented.
Can you perhaps show the evidence of the quadruped ape-ancestors and how they transitioned to an arboreal type? (quadruped to more biped) I would dearly love to see these ancestors - please don't tell me that all of those ancestors I have to assume existed.
Note I am asking for direct evidence of evolution not DNA comparisons or conjecture of any king - where are those ancestors on the picture? Can you also show me the ancestors for pre-bats, pre-pterosaurs, pre-pterodactyls, pre-Ichthyosuars, pre-dugongs, pre-manatees, pre-seahorses, please, to name but 0.00000000000000000000000000000000000000001% of the ancestors of evolution which it seems we have to believe because you put some dots on a page representing them.