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Fossils Bridge Gap in African Mammal Evolution
Reuters to My Yahoo! ^ | Wed Dec 3, 2003 | Patricia Reaney

Posted on 12/03/2003 4:53:26 PM PST by Pharmboy

LONDON (Reuters) - Fossils discovered in Ethiopia's highlands are a missing piece in the puzzle of how African mammals evolved, a team of international scientists said on Wednesday.

Little is known about what happened to mammals between 24 million to 32 million years ago, when Africa and Arabia were still joined together in a single continent.

But the remains of ancestors of modern-day elephants and other animals, unearthed by the team of U.S. and Ethiopian scientists 27 million years on, provide some answers.

"We show that some of these very primitive forms continue to live through the missing years, and then during that period as well, some new forms evolved -- these would be the ancestors of modern elephants," said Dr John Kappelman, who headed the team.

The find included several types of proboscideans, distant relatives of elephants, and fossils from the arsinoithere, a rhinoceros-like creature that had two huge bony horns on its snout and was about 7 feet high at the shoulder.

"It continues to amaze me that we don't have more from this interval of time. We are talking about an enormous continent," said Kappelman, who is based at the University of Texas at Austin.

Scientists had thought arsinoithere had disappeared much earlier but the discovery showed it managed to survive through the missing years. The fossils from the new species found in Ethiopia are the largest, and at 27 million years old, the youngest discovered so far.

"If this animal was still alive today it would be the central attraction at the zoo," Tab Rasmussen, a paleontologist at Washington University in St Louis, Missouri who worked on the project, said in a statement.

Many of the major fossil finds in Ethiopia are from the Rift Valley. But Kappelman and colleagues in the United States and at Ethiopia's National Science Foundation (news - web sites) and Addis Ababa University concentrated on a different area in the northwestern part of the country.

Using high-resolution satellite images to scour a remote area where others had not looked before, his team found the remains in sedimentary rocks about 6,600 feet above sea level.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: africa; archaeology; crevolist; evolution; ggg; godsgravesglyphs; history; links; mammals; multiregionalism; neandertal
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To: whattajoke
Please try to make your sarcasm more entertaining.
301 posted on 12/04/2003 12:59:27 PM PST by Doctor Stochastic (Vegetabilisch = chaotisch is der Charakter der Modernen. - Friedrich Schlegel)
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To: Doctor Stochastic
Please try to make your sarcasm more entertaining.

Gee, thanks, Doc...you pompous ass.

Was that any better? ; )
302 posted on 12/04/2003 1:04:16 PM PST by whattajoke (Neutiquam erro.)
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To: Junior
Basically, you either have to accept the reality of other observers, or conclude that reality is simply a figment of your imagination and that your time might be better spent doing something other than conjuring such a complicated fantasy.

This decision cannot be made on an empircal basis, wouldn't you agree?

303 posted on 12/04/2003 1:05:34 PM PST by Tares
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To: js1138
What does intelligent design have to do with divine creation. All of the people who are in court trying to get intelligent design into the school curriculum say it has no religious implications.

Actually, I do not think that Biblical studies should be part of public school curriculum (so I have no idea about any of these cases). I think religion should be taught in Sunday school. What I find objectionable is the way evolution is presented to the public (including freshmen biology students). Evolution, itself, has a fairly narrow focus and it is a stretch to present it as an explanation (let alone the explanation) for Creation.
304 posted on 12/04/2003 1:07:53 PM PST by bluejay
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To: Tares
...yet the consenus now is that the basis of his theory was 180 degrees dead wrong.

Oh pure BS! Newton's equations are quite sufficient to navigate our satellites and space probes. There is nothing at all in our everyday experience that can distinguish Newtonian physics from relativity.

If you are referring to some assumptions made by Newton you might have a case, but things still behave pretty much the way Newton described them.

Moving on to evolution: it may be proven that space goats from another galaxy designed our life forms, each and every one from scratch. But evolution still occurs under our noses, and strong varieties are still capable of interbreeding, as are closely related species. The difference between so-called microevolution, which we can observe, and so-called macroevolution, is a phantom.

305 posted on 12/04/2003 1:12:30 PM PST by js1138
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To: whattajoke
It's getting better, you supercilious onager.
306 posted on 12/04/2003 1:15:37 PM PST by Doctor Stochastic (Vegetabilisch = chaotisch is der Charakter der Modernen. - Friedrich Schlegel)
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To: bluejay
Evolution, itself, has a fairly narrow focus and it is a stretch to present it as an explanation (let alone the explanation) for Creation.

I agree. Now find someone among the evolution proponents on this thread who disagree with that statement.

307 posted on 12/04/2003 1:15:40 PM PST by js1138
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To: js1138
I find your reply to be a good thought provoking one. Thanks for taking the time to post it.

This is the clearest and cleanest distinction that can be made, whether a belief system can be put to the test.

This test you refer to---sounds like you've slipped the naturalist position in whole hog right there. Only empirical evidence can satisfy this test you're refering to, no?

308 posted on 12/04/2003 1:16:30 PM PST by Tares
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To: bluejay
Quite frankly, I interpret it as an attempt to reason that living creatures were not created based on divine design.

I interpret it to mean that if bat wings were specially designed, they were designed by an incompetent designer. I don't see any implication that no gods exist. You seem to be limiting the notion of "god", requiring that if a god exists, it must follow that this god specifically and individually designed each life form on the planet, thus if someone even suggests that each life form was not individually and specially created, the are effectively saying that no gods exist. Apparently the problem is in definitions, because I'm intelligent enough to realise that there are far broader definitions for "god" than what you have posited, thus ruling out special creation for each species on earth is not the same as ruling out "gods" in general.
309 posted on 12/04/2003 1:17:12 PM PST by Dimensio (The only thing you feel when you take a human life is recoil. -- Frank "Earl" Jones)
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To: Tares
sounds like you've slipped the naturalist position in whole hog right there.

Science is pretty much the assumption that natural laws don't change. There are lots of other ways of viewing the world, but that is what science is and does.

310 posted on 12/04/2003 1:19:59 PM PST by js1138
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To: Pharmboy
Gee, we found some fossils. How exciting!! How can we force this into our predetermined theory?

Yep, that's about how it went out at the dig.

311 posted on 12/04/2003 1:20:42 PM PST by MEGoody
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To: Doctor Stochastic; Junior
Note that the Creationism-PostModernDeconstructionism philosophy seems to imply operational solipsism (not to mention solecism.)

What empirical evidence does naturalism use to escape solipsism?

312 posted on 12/04/2003 1:21:07 PM PST by Tares
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To: Tares
No I wouldn't. Empiricism implies observation. I observe others exist.
313 posted on 12/04/2003 1:21:22 PM PST by Junior ("Brillig and the Slithy Toves" would be a great name for a band.)
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To: Dimensio
I would have said that but I'm on a strict word count diet. ;^)
314 posted on 12/04/2003 1:21:40 PM PST by js1138
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To: MEGoody
Gee, we found some fossils. How exciting!! How can we force this into our predetermined theory?
Yep, that's about how it went out at the dig.


You mean creationists made the find? I didn't realize that, thanks!
315 posted on 12/04/2003 1:27:01 PM PST by whattajoke (Neutiquam erro.)
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To: Agamemnon
The Cardiff Giant was a cheap publicity stunt.

Interesting to see what you evolutionists will say about your frauds now when you just couldn't get 'em past the public then.

Oh, brother. You're serious. Incredible.

316 posted on 12/04/2003 1:27:25 PM PST by Stultis
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To: Junior
Empiricism implies observation. I observe others exist.

The use of the term "others" for your observations---do you observe "others", or are you generalizing your own internal experience of consciousness to your observations and coming up with "others exist"?

317 posted on 12/04/2003 1:33:30 PM PST by Tares
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To: whattajoke
"You mean creationists made the find? I didn't realize that, thanks!"

I'm sure you thought that was clever, but let me help you out - it wasn't. Keep working on that sense of humor though. (Or maybe you'll just 'evolve' one.)

318 posted on 12/04/2003 1:37:57 PM PST by MEGoody
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To: js1138
Newton's equations are quite sufficient to navigate our satellites and space probes. There is nothing at all in our everyday experience that can distinguish Newtonian physics from relativity.

Yes. Newtonian physics is useful for now, though false.

319 posted on 12/04/2003 1:40:36 PM PST by Tares
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To: Hunble
Next to your empty glass jar for the spontaneous creation of life should be another glass jar with various elements (your choice) to watch for one celled forms being created. You may pass electricity trough the jar at intervals of your choosing.

Over the hundreds of crevo threads, both evolutionists and creationists have spent the balance of their energies proving each other wrong. They have both succeeded.

Time to theorize another explanation for life on Earth. I favor materialization of thought forms myself.

320 posted on 12/04/2003 1:42:41 PM PST by William Terrell (Individuals can exist without government but government can't exist without individuals.)
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To: MEGoody
Keep working on that sense of humor though. (Or maybe you'll just 'evolve' one.)

Actually, if you had the first clue what evolution actually entails (your post clearly shows you don't), you would have found my post not only funny, but enlightening as well. Cheers.
321 posted on 12/04/2003 1:45:21 PM PST by whattajoke (Neutiquam erro.)
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To: Tares
Yes. Newtonian physics is useful for now, though false.Science does not deal in the truth or falsity of ideas, only their utility. An assertion of fact can be true or false; an observation can be accurate or inaccurate; people can be truthful or deceitful -- but theories are useful or not useful. They are not true or false.

There is nothing false about Newtonian physics; it simply fails to map to observation in extreme cases. Ultimate, all physical theories meet this fate.

But you have cleverly led the discussion away from your original misstatement, whis was the assertion that scientific statements are based on belief rather than objective evidence.

I am waiting for you to find the equivalent of religious sects within the scientific community. Find me a body of scientists who do not "believe" that Einstein's equations don't map to observation better than Newton's. Yet religious believers are at each other's throats constantly over such fundamental concerns as what is permitted to eat, drink, wear, and boink.

322 posted on 12/04/2003 1:54:54 PM PST by js1138
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To: Dimensio
I interpret it to mean that if bat wings were specially designed, they were designed by an incompetent designer. I don't see any implication that no gods exist.

I think I understand. You do not object to the notion that God may exist, you just think he is incompetent. OK.
323 posted on 12/04/2003 1:55:37 PM PST by bluejay
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To: Tares
I sees 'em, I hears 'em, I smells 'em, I posts to 'em. If they (and you) don't exist, I ain't the one in trouble.
324 posted on 12/04/2003 1:55:59 PM PST by Junior ("Brillig and the Slithy Toves" would be a great name for a band.)
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To: Tares
Yes. Newtonian physics is useful for now, though false.

Not false, just not broad enough to cover all the bases. Newtonian physics works great for the macro universe of planets and suns and spaceships (though not Star Trek spaceships) -- it simply breaks down at the micro scale of subatomic particles.

325 posted on 12/04/2003 2:00:03 PM PST by Junior ("Brillig and the Slithy Toves" would be a great name for a band.)
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To: Michael_Michaelangelo
If you choose to go into the evolutionist profession, here is some advice. Never question anything that seems to positively assert evolution.

LOL! Obviously you've never been to a scientific conference or symposium in your life.

HINT: There are two main ways to make a big reputation in science. Come up with your own major discovery or theory; or shoot down somebody else's. The second option is the easier and invariably pursued with gusto given the slightest hint of an opening.

Most scientists are highly intellectually aggressive. Evolutionists are no exception. You would have us believe that they put some supposed nefarious ideological cabal above their own critical instincts and their personal interests in career advancement and prestige. This is silly.

326 posted on 12/04/2003 2:00:10 PM PST by Stultis
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To: Stultis
Most scientists are highly intellectually aggressive. Evolutionists are no exception. You would have us believe that they put some supposed nefarious ideological cabal above their own critical instincts and their personal interests in career advancement and prestige. This is silly.

The current ruling science cabal is silly? Silly? The combined intellectual enforcement arm of Darwin Central, the Trilaterist Commission, the Bilderbergers, the International Communist Movement, and the Flat Earth Society is silly?? Well, harrumph! Harrumph, I say!

327 posted on 12/04/2003 2:12:20 PM PST by balrog666 (Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.)
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To: VadeRetro
mmmmm. I find myself in your shoes when you object to dividing evolution into "microevolution" and "macroevolution". You maintain that there should not be any separation because they are both contiguous subsets of the same thing. I will turn your own arguments back on you in this case. Methodological naturalism is simply applied philosophical naturalism. There should not be any real separation because they are both continguous subsets of the same thing.

You may not be able to study the "supernatural" but you can rule out natural causes. The more certain you are that all natural causes have been ruled out then the more certain you can be that the supernatural hypothesis is the correct one. Can one ever be 100% sure of the supernatural hypotheses? Probably not, but the same is true of natural hypothesis. We just have confidence levels.

There is no fundamental scientific reason to exclude consideration of the supernatural hypothesis "a priori". It is a PHILOSOPHICAL decision appled to a METHODOLOGY, substantiating my contention that they ought not to be considered as separate and thus non-intersecting entites.
328 posted on 12/04/2003 2:24:21 PM PST by Ahban
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To: Leonine
The primitive (Oh, no! I used the word "primitive!") earth never had any NH3, CH3, or H2. Instead, NASA (in the 1980s) found that it was composed of H2O, CO2, and N2. And as one scientist put it, "you absolutely cannot get the same experimental results with that mixture."

If you're going to just copy and paste material from a creationist website (with minor changes to conceal the source, like dropping "Strobel discovered" and changing molecular names to molecular formulas) instead of using your own words, it's considered plagiarism if you don't cite the source.

Freepers are invited to compare Leonine's passage above with:

But in the 1980s, NASA scientists proved "that the primitive earth never had any ammonia, methane, or hydrogen," Strobel discovered. Instead, NASA found it was composed of water, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen. And as one scientist put it, "you absolutely cannot get the same experimental results with that mixture."
-- from "Pre-biotic Soup"?: The Case for Faith
And you even managed to mess up one of the formulas -- methane is CH4, not CH3. CH3 is ethane.

Meanwhile, let's compare the website's version with Strobel's original:

"From 1980 on, NASA scientists have shown that the primitive earth never had any methane, ammonia, or hydrogen to amount to anything," he said. "Instead, it was composed of water, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen--and you absolutely cannot get the same experimental results with that mixture.
-- from "The Case for Faith" by Lee Stobel, pp. 300
Note how the creationist website changed "never had any...to amount to anything", into "never had any...". The original admits the existence of those compounds but implies that there weren't enough to matter, whereas the website (and Leonine's plagiarization of it) alters that to "never had any" at all, period. That's a significant and misleading difference.

Also note that it carefully removed any reference to who was speaking and reduces him to an anonymous "one scientist". That was probably wise (albeit not very honest), because the speaker was Walter L. Bradley, who is not (as the altered passage tries to imply) either a "NASA scientist" or a respected organic chemist stating mainstream knowledge in his field. He is instead a creationist MECHANICAL ENGINEER. Organic and environmental chemistry is *way* out of his field.

In fact, I often amuse myself by tracking down the credentials of the various folks that creationists put forth as "experts" supporting their beliefs. About nine times out of ten it's either someone with no relevant background whatsoever (like a lawyer turned "science expert") or someone in a technical field working outside of their field of expertise (like say a mechanical engineer dabbling in organic chemistry, *cough*). Even the creationist sources seem to realize what a stretch this is, and often go to ludicrous lengths to try to explain why their out-of-field "experts" are actually appropriate authorities on the subject at hand. For example, one creationist website makes this claim about Bradley: "His work in polymer science gives him a background suitable to address origin of life questions." Ooookay.... Whatever you say, guys.

Evolutionary science, on the other hand, most often relies on primary sources, consisting of scientists working within their own field of expertise.

This of course doesn't mean that laymen or people working outside their field can't properly understand something in another field. But one has to wonder why creationist writers so often seem to rely almost *exclusively* only such "amateurs". And it doesn't inspire confidence when their hand-picked "experts" so often get even the easy stuff dead wrong. Bradley, for example, just two paragraphs before the above quoted passage, makes the following howler: "Oparin was smart enough to know that if you start with inert gases like nitrogen and carbon dioxide, they won't react." ROFL! Neither nitrogen nor carbon dioxide are "inert" gases. Carbon dioxide undergoes decomposition under a variety of conditions present locally on the prebiotic Earth, including high temperatures or high pressures (e.g. volcanoes), electrolysis (lightning, cosmic rays), ferrite mediated reactions (present in tidal pools), etc. Nitrogen likewise undergoes decomposition under various conditions, including alkaline ferrite reactions (again, prebiotic tidal pools) which results in the production of ammonia (!). Hey, I thought Mr. Creationist Expert Bradley claimed that there *was* no ammonia on "primitive Earth"?

Hmm, I guess that's what happens when you rely on a mechanical engineer to do an organic chemist's job... But then, the mechanical engineer gave the (incorrect) answers that the creationist writer was looking for, so I suppose that's what really matters.

And yet many textbooks still reference the Miller (nee Soviet) experiment--sounds like an agenda.

"Soviet"? What are you smoking? Harold Urey was born in Walkerton, Indiana, and was third-generation American.

As for textbooks referencing the Urey-Miller experiment, of course they do. It was a seminal experiment in organic chemistry, and proved for the first time that complex organic molecules could be formed by simple processes acting on basic inorganic compounds. At the time this was an enormous surprise and an eye-opening discovery. Prior to that it was thought that only the mechanisms of life could synthesis such compounds. The reviewer at the first science journal the paper was submitted to simply set it aside and ignored it, since he considered it too preposterous to be true. The findings of the Urey-Miller experiment revolutionized the understanding of organic synthesis and led to countless subsequent experiments and discoveries, and as such deserves to be covered in textbooks just as the Wright brothers' first short flight is covered in textbooks on aeronautics, and for exactly the same reason -- they proved what was possible and consequently created new fields of study, no matter how humble the beginnings or how modest the results compared to further developments (like jet fighters, etc.)

Creationists like to imply (or actually are misinformed enough to believe) that all abiogenetic research still relies on only the Urey-Miller experiment, but this is poppycock. Although Urey-Miller's original "soup" was likely not representative of Earth's actual early atmosphere, countless further developments have been made in the last 50 years advancing the field, which creationists seem blissfully unaware of (or unwilling to address). Instead, they just keep pounding on their straw man of "the 1953 Urey-Miller experiment didn't completely reproduce Earth's early atmosphere, therefore the entire field of abiogenesis relies on a lie and is bunk, so there, those evolutionists are so stupid, what's wrong with them". It's like trying to discredit McDonnell-Douglas engineers by harping on how inappropriate the Wright brothers' wood-and-fabric flier would be at Mach 2.5 (F-15 speeds).

Nice try, but no cigar.

For a taste of how the field has progressed since Urey-Miller half a century ago, check out for example On the origins of cells: a hypothesis for the evolutionary transitions from abiotic geochemistry to chemoautotrophic prokaryotes, and from prokaryotes to nucleated cells, or any of its five pages of references, or The emergence of life from iron monosulphide bubbles at a submarine hydrothermal redox and pH front.

329 posted on 12/04/2003 2:26:17 PM PST by Ichneumon
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To: Dimensio
I suppose my #328 would address most of your post to me as well.

Here is the Lewontin quote ref... http://www.answersingenesis.org/home/area/tools/Quotes/lewontin.asp
330 posted on 12/04/2003 2:29:40 PM PST by Ahban
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To: Ichneumon; Leonine
Leonine,

Since you undoubtedly have already scrolled through Ichneumon's wonderful post without reading it, this is a plea to you to go back and please do so.

Ich,

Once again, I am very impressed with your thoughtful, thorough, erudite, factual response... I, too, enjoy tracking down the origins of creationist nonsense and too often find them to be of nefarious origins. Onward scientific soldiers!
331 posted on 12/04/2003 2:41:32 PM PST by whattajoke (Neutiquam erro.)
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To: Ahban
The more certain you are that all natural causes have been ruled out then the more certain you can be that the supernatural hypothesis is the correct one.

How, exactly, does one formulate a supernatural hypothesis?
332 posted on 12/04/2003 2:45:37 PM PST by Dimensio (The only thing you feel when you take a human life is recoil. -- Frank "Earl" Jones)
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To: Just mythoughts
What exactly make them transitionals?

Gee, I don't know, maybe because they're a transition species between two known species?

Come on it is a group of "humans" who have gotten together to prove a theory

Please educate yourself and don't make ignorant statements like this. People don't prove theories. No theory in science is ever proven.

Thus far not one of you have presented anything more than an artist rendition of what "might be" a transitional bones.

Once again, your willful ignorance of the evidence does not negate the evidence. Fossils have been found. Your "artist rendition" claim is wishful thinking: you don't want there to be transitional fossils, you pretend that there aren't any. There are transitional fossils, however, and your claim to the contrary is either based on total ignorance or it is an outright lie.

Now it is not possible for the "flesh human eye" to see that spirit dimension, simply because they are "flesh".

So how would one provide evidence for this alleged "spirit dimension"?
333 posted on 12/04/2003 2:48:21 PM PST by Dimensio (The only thing you feel when you take a human life is recoil. -- Frank "Earl" Jones)
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To: Stultis
Most scientists are highly intellectually aggressive. Evolutionists are no exception. You would have us believe that they put some supposed nefarious ideological cabal above their own critical instincts and their personal interests in career advancement and prestige. This is silly.

Scientists, as a group, are no less inclined to hubris than anyone else.

It's a human malady, and keen intellects are poor predictors of an absence of pride.


334 posted on 12/04/2003 2:49:23 PM PST by Sabertooth (Credit where it's due: saveourlicense.com prevented SB60, and the Illegal Alien CDLs... for now.)
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To: Ahban
Methodological naturalism is simply applied philosophical naturalism.

Even many people who suspect philosophical naturalism maybe be empty or even false will admit that methodological naturalism is necessary for science. It's basically what science is about, the study of nature.

You may not be able to study the "supernatural" but you can rule out natural causes.

As a practical matter, it's never happened so far. "Natural causes" in the investigation of a death does not mean the same as "natural causes" as opposed to "unnatural causes." Maybe if God popped out from somewhere, said "Here I am!", and started doing sufficiently wonderful magic we could eliminate "natural" causes. Or maybe we would just be discovering more than we had known before about what "natural" includes.

Anyway, we don't have anything like that problem. Science has to do its job and will. People who think the world runs some other way are simply not interested in science and would be more honest to butt out rather than pretend they have the real facts.

335 posted on 12/04/2003 2:50:40 PM PST by VadeRetro
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To: Ahban
There is no fundamental scientific reason to exclude consideration of the supernatural hypothesis "a priori". It is a PHILOSOPHICAL decision appled to a METHODOLOGY, substantiating my contention that they ought not to be considered as separate and thus non-intersecting entites.

And I've always said that the governing philosophical presuppositions of science are determined by the theoretical content of science, rather than the other way around. (Historically these presuppositions have always been modified to accommodate genuinely successful theories, as for instance with Newton's "occult" force of gravity. It violated the classical dictum of materialism: that force could only be transmitted by physical impacts between bodies.)

All you need is one important and manifestly successful scientific theory incorporating a "supernatural hypothesis" to change the ruling assumption of methodological naturalism. So go ahead and do "then a miracle happens" science. No one is stopping you. On the other hand no one will follow you in such pursuit either, unless and until you can show that it works. Ah, there's the rub.

336 posted on 12/04/2003 2:51:32 PM PST by Stultis
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To: balrog666
...the Bilderbergers

Mmmmm... burgers...

337 posted on 12/04/2003 2:52:44 PM PST by Junior ("Brillig and the Slithy Toves" would be a great name for a band.)
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To: Ahban
I looked up the quote. It's missing the end piece, where he justifies and qualifies his statement:

"The eminent Kant scholar Lewis Beck used to say that anyone who could believe in God could believe in anything. To appeal to an omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the regularities of nature may be ruptured, that miracles may happen. "

In other words, he's saying that we must assuming only the natural and reject the supernatural (within scientific experimentation) because once we start assuming a "god", we throw out any chance of objectivity -- if you allow explanations outside of known properties of the natural universe, then you can just make anything up for your reasoning and justify it as a "miracle".

Thing is, he's right.
338 posted on 12/04/2003 2:53:51 PM PST by Dimensio (The only thing you feel when you take a human life is recoil. -- Frank "Earl" Jones)
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To: bluejay
You do not object to the notion that God may exist, you just think he is incompetent. OK.

Wrong.

The statement implies that if a creator specially designed each species individually, then there's a lot in the work that seems unprofessional or incompetent. Once again, you refuse to accept a "god" definition outside of your rigid demands, insisting that either the "god" that you want to exists, or none exist at all. You ignore the possibility of a creator that did not individually and specially design each individual species, but rather allowed evolution to bring about the species that we see on Earth today. In this case, the "god" would not necessarily be incompetent, because the "inefficiency" of the makeup of various species would simply be a consequence of the creator allowing the species to come about as they did.

It's also presumptious for you to claim to know my point of view with respect to gods. So that you do not make the mistake in the future, I'll spell it out for you. While I cannot claim absolute knowledge that no gods exist, I also have not seen any evidence for any gods. In abscence of such evidence, I withhold belief, for I find it foolish to believe in things for which I have no justification.
339 posted on 12/04/2003 2:59:07 PM PST by Dimensio (The only thing you feel when you take a human life is recoil. -- Frank "Earl" Jones)
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To: js1138
I agree. Now find someone among the evolution proponents on this thread who disagree with that statement.

Those guys are fun! Next time you are talking to one try to get him to explain homosexuality from evolutionary perspective.
340 posted on 12/04/2003 2:59:12 PM PST by bluejay
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To: Dimensio
The statement implies that if a creator specially designed each species individually, then there's a lot in the work that seems unprofessional or incompetent.

OK, so God is not just incompetent, but unprofessional also.
341 posted on 12/04/2003 3:02:38 PM PST by bluejay
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To: bluejay
OK, so God is not just incompetent, but unprofessional also.

You completely ignored everything after the line that you quoted. It's clear now that you're so dead-set in your insistence that a "god" match certain attributes that you demand be present that you're willing to deliberately lie about what I've said to achieve that goal.

Once again, you're completely wrong. I explained why you were wrong, but you ignored it as you are too dishonest to engage in intelligent debate. I'm not going to spell it out again, because I know that you'll just dishonestly ignore it all over again. I don't have time for liars like you.
342 posted on 12/04/2003 3:04:48 PM PST by Dimensio (The only thing you feel when you take a human life is recoil. -- Frank "Earl" Jones)
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To: Just mythoughts
Check out Job starting in chapter 38

Will do

343 posted on 12/04/2003 3:10:48 PM PST by null and void (The meek shall inherit the Earth. The Stars belong to the bold.)
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To: VadeRetro
What bothers me isn't just that creationism/ID is wrong. It's wrong-headed. It's anti-knowledge, anti-thinking.

It won't be a FR Evolution debate without the man of science VadeRetro spewing insults.

Does "science" support insult spewing?

344 posted on 12/04/2003 3:11:03 PM PST by Last Visible Dog
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To: Last Visible Dog
All you ever do, you are doing here. No one is allowed to notice that creationists post non-factual, non-responsive arguments. You'll be there to scream "police brutality!" It's a farce.

Wait'll you read ahead to where Justmythoughts screams for real fossils, then pretends he/she can't see them. You'll probably think I said some mean things there, too.
345 posted on 12/04/2003 3:17:42 PM PST by VadeRetro
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To: Dimensio
Darwin is dead, and has been for over a century. No one will be "meeting up" with him.

Care to provide evidence to support this belief?

Your fingers are typing checks your science can't cash.

346 posted on 12/04/2003 3:17:43 PM PST by Last Visible Dog
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To: Last Visible Dog
Care to provide evidence to support this belief?

I could dig up his corpse, but I'd be arrested.

Are you suggesting that the burden of proof is upon me to show that Darwin faked his death and that he's somehow still alive after over a century?
347 posted on 12/04/2003 3:20:30 PM PST by Dimensio (The only thing you feel when you take a human life is recoil. -- Frank "Earl" Jones)
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To: Last Visible Dog
To Dimensio:

Care to provide evidence to support this belief? ["Darwin is dead, and has been for over a century. No one will be 'meeting up' with him."]

Why? Did you see him with Elvis at a Burger King last week?

348 posted on 12/04/2003 3:21:05 PM PST by VadeRetro
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To: bluejay
You do not object to the notion that God may exist, you just think he is incompetent.

If he won't say it I will!

I feel in in my sinuses, my 'S' curved back, the charming way the bile duct and pancreatic duct are so close to each other that a gall stone in the bile duct can cause the pancreas to explode, the way small kidney stone won't drain out of the kidneys because the duct isn't on the bottom, the clever positioning of the prostate - a little swelling and ruptured bladder, the appendix, the slick way food has to pass over the airway to get to the esophagus, and putting the sewage disposal facilities right next to the playground...

If He was a designer working for me I'd fire Him!

349 posted on 12/04/2003 3:25:55 PM PST by null and void (The meek shall inherit the Earth. The Stars belong to the bold.)
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To: Sabertooth
Scientists, as a group, are no less inclined to hubris than anyone else.

It's a human malady, and keen intellects are poor predictors of an absence of pride.

True enough. At the same time the social structure of science mitigates very strongly against the kind of mewling conformism my correspondent was attributing to "evolutionists". Indeed it arguably does so as much or more than any other human intellectual institution. Whatever the individual failings of scientists, which certainly will be broadly the same as found among any comparable group of humans, science is highly competitive, and it does lavishly reward rigorous dissent.

You can confirm this for yourself, and not just by reading journals. There are many scientific conferences that you can attend as a layman, and even as a non-member of the relevant organization. (For instance the annual AAAS conventions.) Go and listen to a few papers being read. You'll note that time set aside for Q&A is invariable as long as that for the presentation, and often longer, and that the questions are predominantly critical and sometimes almost rudely aggressive.

(BTW, although I've only attended one creationism conference, it was exactly the opposite: 45 minutes for presentation and 15 minutes for questions. There was only one creationist at the conference -- Kurt Wise who was hosting at Bryan College in Dayton, Tennessee -- that I heard to ask critical questions of the presenters.)

350 posted on 12/04/2003 3:30:14 PM PST by Stultis
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