Skip to comments.DARWIN THEORY IS PROVED TRUE
Posted on 03/31/2007 1:09:59 AM PDT by Ethan Clive Osgoode
DARWIN THEORY IS PROVED TRUE!
That headline is from the New York Times. Have you seen similar headlines? I have. Many. "New Fossil Find Bolsters Evolution"... "DNA Proves Camels took to the Seas"... "Darwin Vindicated: Top Scientist evolves Yeast into Yeast", and so on.
I have seen many such headlines in the media, in the last few years alone. But this is, to the best of my knowledge, the original "Darwin Proved True" headline. One can say, in a sense, that all subsequent "Darwin Proved True" articles evolved from this one, the common ancestor of them all, dated (by carbon dating) to Sept 22, 1912.
This is an important fossil find. You will note the similarities to modern-day "Darwin Proved True!" reports, clearly indicating common descent with little modification. The ingredients of a fine modern "Darwin Proved True" tale are all here, of course - the waffling, the exaggeration, the impressive buzz-words, the fantastical embellishments, the self-contradictions, the fairytales. Such as...
A race of ape-like and speechless man, inhabiting England hundreds of thousands of years ago, when they had for their neighbors the mastodon and other animals now extinct is the missing link in the chain in man's evolution, which leading scientists say they have discovered in what is generally described as "the Sussex skull." To this Dr. Woodward proposes to give the name of "eoanthropus," or "man of dawn."
Yes sir, upon this fairytale, the New York Times put the headline "DARWIN THEORY PROVED TRUE", even though the article ends with the lines
There is, he thinks, a point of doubt as to the jawbone. It was not found in the same place as the skull, and he holds it possible that it does not belong to the skull. It is unquestionable apelike and it is not impossible that further examination may show that it does not fit the skull at all.
In other words, it is all nonsense, but nevertheless, DARWIN PROVED TRUE!! And thus began the classic genre of reporting on evolutionary matters, a trend which continues to this day.
This is an important archeological find, of special interest to participants and spectators of the ever-entertaining Darwin wars. But in case you are not familiar with this news article (you should be), I'll tell you what the punchline is. Scroll down to the end of the article...
And this great discovery, upon which it was announced that "DARWIN THEORY PROVED TRUE"! is also affectionally known as...
PILTDOWN MAN !
Before you reply to this, ponder carefully this quote from Scott "Dilbert" Adams:
I should add that the first person to explain that science continuously revises itself -- and thats what makes it so great! -- has no free will.
What? You have no confidence in revisionist science? Oh ye of little faith.
If it came from the NYT, it is suspect.
How was Piltdown Man DISproved by the way? Answer: Science, right? So you're using what, exactly, to prove your point?
Ah, the Piltdown Man. How was that proven to be a fake, btw?
The main thing I get from this article is that reporting of science often suffers.
There is no reputable scientist I've ever seen who say something like he had "proved Darwin true." They'd take away his scientist license at the next meeting.
Scientists are human and we all want to do something worthwhile but time after time I've seen a scientist make a careful statement about the possible implications of his work if they are confirmed by other scientists.
Then a science publication gets the story right but tacks on a headline or tries to make the story interesting because they want to sell copies too.
Then a newspaper picks it up and takes a phrase or two out of context, draws an over reaching conclusion and adds an exploitive headline and a science urban legend is born.
The giveaway in this story is that "proving a theory" is a math term not a science term. So we are never gonna "prove Darwin," first because Darwin said lots of things and some of them were wrong. But second because a theory in science if the best available and generally accepted explantion to fit the facts - you can disprove a theory but you can't prove one.
We can both agree that it was not accomplished by the weaving-of-fairytales method.
That not to say that scientist don't suffer from all human flaws and often get an extra helping of arrogence.
I recently spent couple of torturous hours at a hideously expensive restaurant with non-existent service trapped between two junior professors trying to the women that a few of naively brought with lines like "Fortunatley I had written just such a super-computer compiler that very week and was able to save the day."
When we were alone in the car, my wife said "You owe me more for tonight than you can ever repay so I'm just going to write it off under wifely duties."
Didn't want you to think I was arguing that scientists never exaggerate or believe their own hype- its just that they tend to be very careful about career ending false claims of grandeur.
Yeah, I agree, they didn't look it up in the Bible.
Maybe it was that crazy "science" stuff I keep hearing about. Some sort of strange process known as "peer review".
Apparently, neither you nor Darkwolf377 has any free will. So then, the question is, what curious mechanistic process compells you to post those comments?
Piltdown Man: Fake but accurate.
Because you say so?
I can't speak for Darkwolf, but not believing in a god makes me more likely to accept the notion of free will, not less.
No becaise Evolution says everything happens by random chance (It's right there somewhere in Oriole of Specie)
Not random, per se, more based on environmental pressures.
Because Scott "Dilbert" Adams says so. Do you guys read posted articles before commenting? It's a good habit. Try it.
I just find it funny when someone uses the progress of accumulated knowledge, leading to an inevitable discarding of something proved untrue, as "proof" that science is somehow invalid as a field of endeavor. Anti-intellectualism is always so riddled with ignorance and inconsistency that it's amusing to watch its adherents in action.
So the theory goes.
Isn't it amusing how one man's opinion becomes another man's theory...and a fact is born?
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