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Thread: Genetic Similarity and Lifestyle Disparity: Peeling and Archangel

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    Genetic Similarity and Lifestyle Disparity: Peeling and Archangel

    I've been itching to return to this particular topic, and would like to take advantage of this new forum feature to pursue it unimpeded, if Archangel is willing.

    From another thread:

    ..if evolution was real, then there is no way that no other animals would have attained higher reasoning right along side of us after 4 billion years since simple celled life supposedly first appeared. I mean, first of all, how naive is it to believe that only we would evolve to this level after the same 4 billion years to evolve as all other life?
    The fundamental error in your reasoning here is the assumption that incrementally greater intelligence always pays for itself. It doesn't. It's a trade-off. If, as a species, the economics of your survival don't accommodate the additional mass and energy consumption of a larger brain, and the delayed reaction times that a more thoughtful response necessitates, you're out of luck.
    Now look at these beautiful chimps. <snip> according TO YOUR OWN PHILOSOPHY OF EVOLUTION, THEY CRAWLED OUT OF THE PRIMORDIAL OOZE AT THE SAME EXACT TIME THAT WE DID.
    This is false. Actually, misleading is the better word.

    Imagine the human race speciates ten thousand years from now - could you point to the 'us' and 'them' within the human race today? No: interbreeding between now and the year 12008 would make most people alive today ancestral to both sub-species. This is a crucially important point for you to remember. Every species has only had the time since it diverged from a sister species to evolve the characteristics unique to it.

    When discussing the differences between human and chimp, therefore, all we need concern ourselves with is the time since our lineages diverged, a few million years ago.

    WE EVOLVED SIDE BY SIDE WITHIN THE SAME ECOSYSTEMS AND FACED THE SAME ENVIRONMENTAL PRESSURES AS THEY DID.
    No, we didn't. For as long as human/chimp ancestors (let's call them 'himps') lived and interbred within a single ecosystem, they remained one species. But patterns of interbreeding change; ecosystems change; they grow and shrink. We are descended from himps that gradually left the jungle and colonised the plains. The himps who stayed where they were - and there's nothing wrong with that; it's a perfectly good place to be - evolved into chimps. A chimp is an evolved himp. So are we. We just evolved in different directions to accommodate different environmental requirements.
    If evolution was real, and consistent as it is proposed to be, then there is absolutely no reason why these other primates which we obviously didn't out survive due to competition as is suggested regarding the extinction of our early competitors, then they too should have evolved and in a worst case scenario we would have a Planet of the Apes type existence with a World with multiple intelligent creatures on the evolutionary ladder.
    And that's almost certainly how things were at least once in the past: several hominid species migrating, competing, evolving - we're the descendants of the ones that won. That's what you fail to appreciate by continuing to insist that 'science says' fossil hominids are our ancestors. Science says no such thing. Science says this was Planet of the Apes - and we won.

    Why are there still chimps, then? Because they weren't competing with us. Think: the same ecological reasons why chimps couldn't evolve our level of intelligence made it not worth our while to fight them for that territory. Doesn't that make beautiful, perfect sense? Only since we've started exporting our ecology, cutting down jungles and so on - only since then have we come into competition with them, to their cost. If we're not careful, the answer to the fatuous question "If we evolved from chimps, why are there still chimps" will be "there aren't".

    It's silly to attach significance to the fact we're the 'only' intelligent species. For a start, we're not the 'only' - we're the first. Intelligence - our 'level' of it - was never inevitable; it's not some ultimate goal, any more than swimming or flying. But assuming it happens, someone has to be first, and we're it. Secondly, we're not the 'only' - we're the most. So far. And we're getting smarter - so don't be so quick to declare us the pinnacle; you have no idea what peaks are hidden in the clouds ahead. If we're lucky, in a million years the smartest creature will be one of our descendants, but it could just as easily be whatever creature emerges to claim the territory we leave behind when we become extinct.

    THREAD REVIEW

    Why are we the only species of life on Earth that has developed the skill to adapt the World to meet our needs rather than have to adapt to the World around us or become extinct like every other animal on Earth?
    Answered: we're not. Other hominid species paralleled our own development, and chimps create and use tools.
    Hominid tool use.
    More hominid tool use. Also, chimps making leaf sandals.
    More chimp tool use
    Chimps hunting with crude spears
    Which begs the question as to why, with 98.6% of our genetic make up shared, are chimps still living in trees and not replicating the same or similar advances as we strive for, at what ever level mind you.
    Answered part of 'why' (our divergent evolutionary history) in considerable length and detail. Other part of 'why' (title of this thread) still waiting for a reply to my question: are you saying genes can't explain brain size or brain size can't explain intellectual differences?
    Actually it might be more like 95%...
    ...although some differences are more important than others. Also outlines some examples of chimp creativity.
    Science does say these hominid fossils are our ancestors
    Please, please, please let the excruciatingly detailed explanation here suffice
    Dictionary definition of 'ancestor', including the loose 'forerunner' form used when describing fossils that does not imply a direct lineage.
    We weren't competing with chimps?
    Answered: different ecosystems.
    Chimp/human divergence
    Very detailed analysis of different ecosystems in relation to primate evolution
    When you say humans migrated to other Continents and the Plains leaving jungles to the Apes, are you assuming that every single human left at once?
    Answered: Evidence and evolutionary theory says some 'himps' left the jungle, not humans, so no, such an assumption is not necessary.
    That particular hypothesis may need to be revised - however, it's quite possible these remains are from a later chimp migration; a kind of 'second coming' to the plains of the descendents of jungle himps, which failed because hominids were already dominant there.
    Todays tiger has evolved in no documentable way beyond what its ancestor was regarding its potential or capabilities.
    Answered: clearly it has because at one point there were no tigers.
    Outline of tiger evolution hypotheses
    A more in-depth treatment of same.
    he Great Apes which evo considers to be the closest living relatives to us are defined as Primates which don't have tails on one source I saw. Yet it's the bonobos which have long tails and are defined as true monkeys that don't have sex according to cycles like other animals do, but when ever the urge hits them just as humans do. How do you explain such an inconsistency,
    Answered.
    And the size of our brains isn't convincing evidence of anything because human children's brains are smaller than adult chimps, yet their capacity for learning, retaining and applying knowledge is so much greater than chimps.
    Answered: children's brains are much bigger than any adult chimp brain, almost from birth.
    Large article on brain size analysis
    Wouldn't you think that with that capacity to survive without guidance that they would also have the capacity to learn new things from one generation to another as humans do, resulting in true intellectual evolution over the past 100 million years or so?
    Answered: the opportunity to learn from a parent is a prerequisite for learning from one generation to the next, making such creatures the worst possible candidates. This is straightforward logic, so no links.
    Why only us, when we all allegedly started in the same environment with the same ecosystems putting the same pressures on us.
    Answered: different environments, not the same. See above for links.
    What I'm saying is that in every place where our alleged primate ancestors fossils have been found, so haven't the fossils of animals described as lower primates been found.
    Answered: it was himps that left the jungle, not humans, so this is to be expected.
    Hominid fossil patterns.
    Are you trying to say that a bigger brain must translate into higher intellect? Then how do you explain the elephant or whales, or even Dolphins which have a larger craniul capacity than humans?
    Answered: size of brain features.
    Also, whales bear the hallmarks of intelligence, including collaborating to devise hunting strategies
    Lucy was embraced as this missing link, as is every newer discovery that evo can claim is closer to fitting their assumption. But until the next primate fossil is found, the last one will be held up as that evidence. Evolution doesn't actually ever prove anything real at all. It just fills the gaps with whatever so called evidence is found until the next so called discovery looks better to them and replaces it.
    Answered: Lucy was the best candidate but was never assumed to be directly ancestral.
    Oh how that word keeps tripping us up...
    My point is that with all of the same basic tools to start out with such as fingers, opposable thumbs and walking upright, there is no reason why only our line evolved to the level that human beings have attained with the same hundreds of millions of years, and the same pressures pushing us all forward, or towards extinction.
    Answered as before: evidence shows we weren't the only species to progress, we're just the only one left. See links above.
    If evo is real, then it seems only right that it should touch all species equally and that all species that weren't forced into extinction, but survived and overcame the pressures they faced should have ended up in a similar evolved place that man has attained in 4 billion years.
    Answered in detail: himps had the right evolutionary prerequisites, supported by the evidence that multiple hominids did subsequently progress toward greater intellect and sophistication.
    If one chimp kills another during a power struggle by attacking him unprovoked, does the rest of the troop try him for murder? Of course not. Because they are animals, and nothing more.
    Answered: inaccurate characterisation of chimp society.
    The socialist chimp, including a mention of the very chimps I've trekked to see in the Mahale mountains, Tanzania.
    Now, if just ONE other species of animal on Earth, from any genus at all had evolved higher function, then my claim would be made null and void.
    Proved null and void: Neanderthals.
    if modern man has been around and reproducing for between 45,000 and 100,000 years as evo claims, then we should have a World population of between 18 billion and 40 billion people? How do you rationalize that mathematical fact away?
    Answered: fallacious extrapolation of constant population growth.
    Notice the brow ridge. Have we de-evolved that very distinguishable feature over such a short time?
    Answered: we're not descended from Neanderthals.
    With DNA analysis to support that.
    You can't prove, to save your life that any of the evidence that evolutionists use to tie us to our so called ancestors is evidence at all that we are actually related to them in any real biological way.
    Answered: In law, proof requires the elimination of reasonable doubt. There is no requirement for any particular kind of evidence (such as eyewitness testimony) to be forthcoming, only that such evidence as there is admits to only one plausible explanation. Shared broken genes, atavistic features during gestation, transitional fossils, the tree of life - all these facts and more admit to only one plausible explanation: common descent. Thus, common descent is considered a proven fact.
    Evidence for common descent, none of which assumes or requires any particular evolutionary mechanism.
    So no real fossils are found in 4 billion year old rocks, nor are 4 billion year old rocks even found. These are chemo fossils in graphite fine residue. Nothing close to what you say above, be it the proper age or the info retrieved.
    Answered: apologised and amended to 3.2 billion years.
    But it never occurs to you that it should have been also ground to dust from the sedimentary upheavals it went through over that 65 million years? Or even 20 million years, or even 2 million years?
    Answered: of course this happens, but it doesn't alter the pattern of fossils we have found, since all of them were subject to that risk of annihilation.
    You still haven't supported your claim from our last debate that all of the fossils that support evo were found at just the right strata that fit your so called predictions.
    Answered: apologised and amended the claim prior to this debate even starting. All fossils ever found fit an interpretation of common descent. Some (eg Tiktaalik) were very much 'played for and got', while others have overturned existing theories about the precise shape of the evolutionary tree. However, none have ever been found which are incompatible with an evolutionary tree.
    <re neanderthal ancestry> So which is it? How can a subject be debated when you don't really agree with the link you post as evidence of your beliefs?
    Answered: ancestor used as shorthand, detailed reading of link clearly indicates no interbreeding and thus no true ancestry of modern humans.
    f you're right Peeling about intelligence presenting itself when the necessary prerequisites presented itself, then I submit that those same prerequisites presented themselves for any untold number of creatures through out the past 5 million years.
    Answered: requested justification for that claim. None forthcoming. Highlighted again the evidence showing that several hominid species did develop larger brains and more sophisticated technology in that time.
    No; I'm saying that every primate that ever lived face the same or similar challenges as any other primate in order to be sufficiently challenged to move forward, just as we did. It isn't as though we face super predators that they never faced that forced us to think about building houses rather than them.
    Answered: plains predators, plains prey.
    Up to this point I have debated this issue from the evo perspective exclusively. But I will produce valid evidence of the questionable results you rely on to support your beliefs. Here's a link with excerpts that are solid reasons why much of what you claim is asserted to be very questionable at the very least.
    Answered in detail, with reference to the link provided. You haven't reached that post yet.
    Why aren't double blind tests done with every sample being tested if reproducible and repeatable testing is claimed to always be done before any conclusions are accepted as FACTS?
    Answered in post 29.
    Link to comprehensive refutation of Plaisted's second-or-third-hand criticisms of dating methods.
    Here are more links that expose real concerns about the accuracy and reliability of the conclusions that evolution science relies on.
    Answered in detail. You have not reached those posts yet.
    Link to comprehensive refutation of Plaisted's second-or-third-hand criticisms of dating methods.
    And every claim you make rests upon the accuracy of the dating methods you use to come to the conclusions that you both rely on and promote as evidence of what you believe to be true.
    Answered: most of the evidence and logic I've put forward does not rely on dating methods.
    In our last debate I posted passages from the bible of descriptions that describe Dinosaurs that are believed to have been extinct for 65 million years. My question is, how did primitive man describe long extinct creatures that we didn't even know existed until we had a greater understanding of biology and how muscle, cartilage, sinew, and flesh made up the mass of a body?
    Answered in detail. Passage describes a hippo, with 'tail' an established euphamism for 'penis'.
    Update: Just checked out the AIG page, where they too concentrate exclusively on the 'tail' verse, and amusingly enough say the following:
    "There is absolutely no philological justification <ed: wrt the translation of 'hang'> for the ‘hardness’ or ‘stiffness’ idea!"
    and go on to say
    "Finally, note that the Septuagint (LXX), as quoted above, translates the key verb as ‘erects’,"
    which I think nails the lid shut on that one.
    Anyway, my question is, how do scientists determining the actual size of the frontal lobes of animals they estimate lived 3.2 million years ago? And how do they determine for certain the size of the cerebral cortex?
    Answered with links.
    Analysis of endocast accuracy
    how do scientists know that the Cerebrospinal fluid that surrounds the brain wasn't a thicker layer than modern man evolved
    Answered with links: we know what effect a thicker layer has on endocasts from species with that characteristic today.
    And notice how all of these creatures are considered our ancestors based on their being referenced to and catalogued as Genus Homo. Doesn't that claim fly in the face of everything you have been claiming about these early animals and me being wrong in claiming the evolution believes we evolved from, or through them?
    Answered in detail. Genus Homo does not imply human ancestry, only recently shared ancestry.
    Consider this evidence that shows for example, a series of snail shells. many different alleles exist that control color and shape. This is an example of a polymorphic or variabile population; yet they are still snail shells that have never evolved into anything different or superior to the original snail shells that they started out as.
    Answered in detail: recombination.
    that this link shows just how little we actually know regarding DNA,
    Answered: our ignorance regarding the subtleties of DNA's function is no more contra-indicative of common descent than our earlier ignorance of DNA's existence. Plus, this weakens your case viz. this thread's title by effectively widening the genetic gap between humans and chimps.
    So the assumptions that are good for the goose, are also good for the gander. In other words, assuming intelligent design is true and that God created everything; there is no reason to not allow that He created all life with the same physical evidence you assume proves common descent.
    Answered in considerable detail. Evidences that support common descent do just that - uniquely support common descent rather than special creation.
    Now here, from National Geographic News is the admission that in only 30 years, finches have adapted to their surroundings and radically changed their appearances in complete contradiction to the generally accepted rules of evolution.
    Already answered: not all evolutionary processes operate on the same timescales.
    Notice how it describes the level life on Earth had attained around 270 million years ago, yet I just watched a documentary on Nat. Geo that very clearly showed that 270 million years ago, the Earth was basically engulfed in volcanic flames. Another example of contradictory evidence within the scientific community regarding the different stages of evolution the Earth experienced in order to get where we're at today.
    No contradiction; the Permian extinction was the most severe in history and noted as such in the page linked.
    We see from the supposed fossil record that humans evolved from Cro-Magnon and neanderthals with big brow ridges and excessively hairy bodies as recently as only 30 thousand years ago
    Untrue. Cro-Magnon man was largely modern in appearance, and we are not descended from Neanderthals.
    nd if you say that this is just my opinion; my response is that because the reality of human accomplishments over the last 10,000 years is so well documented compared to the documentable evidence supporting what you claim, makes your perspective more opinion and assumption than mine is.
    Technological advancement is not the same as biological evolution, so why assume they should progress at the same rate - if you can even define 'rate' in a meaningful way that applies to both.
    I submit they are attempting to pass these APES off as transitional ancestors of modern man when they are nothing of the sort, but are merely different species of long extinct Apes which are no more closely related to modern man than is the current chimpanzee
    Species that just happened to appear and then vanish in the right period of time to make us think they are related to our own evolutionary path. This is not a reasonable or plausible hypothesis, a fact compounded by genetic evidence of common ancestry (eg pseudogenes).
    Last edited by Peeling; 03-14-2008 at 01:21 PM.

  2. #2
    Archangel Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Peeling View Post
    I've been itching to return to this particular topic, and would like to take advantage of this new forum feature to pursue it unimpeded, if Archangel is willing.
    OK Peeling, I'll play since these other trolls can't hijack the thread and twist my arguments around to imply things I never said. Just one clarification though, stop responding by saying that I don't understand. Because I do understand evos claims, I just don't agree with the conclusions it makes. With that said, let's go forward.

    The fundamental error in your reasoning here is the assumption that incrementally greater intelligence always pays for itself. It doesn't. It's a trade-off. If, as a species, the economics of your survival don't accommodate the additional mass and energy consumption of a larger brain, and the delayed reaction times that a more thoughtful response necessitates, you're out of luck.
    The error in your reasoning is that you can't prove that by any standard other than assuming it based on how you interpret how MAN fits in with the rest of the chain of life on Earth. Let's take the smartest and most sophisticate Alpha creatures in the Oceans; We can understand why they never evolved a written language or a need to use pencils or paper underwater. But why hasn't even one species gone on to form a higher order of intellect with a need for Governments, councils, order of any type so as to develop Social continuity? Why is every single form of lower life on Earth founded in a completely NATURAL ORDER OF EXISTENCE except MANKIND?

    Why are we the only species of life on Earth that has developed the skill to adapt the World to meet our needs rather than have to adapt to the World around us or become extinct like every other animal on Earth?

    Imagine the human race speciates ten thousand years from now - could you point to the 'us' and 'them' within the human race today? No: interbreeding between now and the year 12008 would make most people alive today ancestral to both sub-species. This is a crucially important point for you to remember. Every species has only had the time since it diverged from a sister species to evolve the characteristics unique to it.
    Peeling, with all due respect, we have allegedly had 4 billion years of evolution on Earth since the first simple life supposedly appeared. Why must we make more assumptions based on what will happen in the next 10,000 years? Why are you unable to prove your point by using the allegedly overwhelming existing evidence that exists from our past? That is what this debate is intended to do, right?

    When discussing the differences between human and chimp, therefore, all we need concern ourselves with is the time since our lineages diverged, a few million years ago.
    On the contrary Peeling. The first thing to consider is if in fact our lineage's ever in fact diverged at all. So far, all we have are unproven conclusions that assume a lot of alleged facts not in evidence. This debate must prove if your beliefs have any merit at all. Or at least that's the goal of it.

    No, we didn't. For as long as human/chimp ancestors (let's call them 'himps') lived and interbred within a single ecosystem, they remained one species. But patterns of interbreeding change; ecosystems change; they grow and shrink. We are descended from himps that gradually left the jungle and colonised the plains. The himps who stayed where they were - and there's nothing wrong with that; it's a perfectly good place to be - evolved into chimps. A chimp is an evolved himp. So are we. We just evolved in different directions to accommodate different environmental requirements.
    This sounds very nice and neat from an evolutionists point of view, but it isn't nearly so simple a conclusion when you consider the actual facts involved. Namely, the very same genetic similarities you will use to claim our familial relationship with chimps also makes absolute claims about how our genetic material defines our intelligence, imagination, creativity, reasoning ability and our hunger to grow intellectually and seek to continually improve our World to suit our personal needs.

    Which begs the question as to why, with 98.6% of our genetic make up shared, are chimps still living in trees and not replicating the same or similar advances as we strive for, at what ever level mind you. I'm not demanding they be just as we are, but just striving to be more like us in sophistication since they are almost genetic mirrors of us. Science demands after all that within our genetic DNA is the answer that explains why we are so far ahead of the lower life forms on Earth. You can't have it both ways Peeling. But that is exactly the way you are defining it. while relying on our genetic similarities as evidence of evo, you are also ignoring that with the same genetic similarities, chimps are so far below us on the intellectual ladder.

    And that's almost certainly how things were at least once in the past: several hominid species migrating, competing, evolving - we're the descendants of the ones that won. That's what you fail to appreciate by continuing to insist that 'science says' fossil hominids are our ancestors. Science says no such thing. Science says this was Planet of the Apes - and we won.
    Science does say these hominid fossils are our ancestors in that it claims we evolved from them through intermingling by whatever method that it took. I have shown where Lucy was proclaimed as our oldest living ancestor by a scientist from the Smithsonian Institute. So you evos need to get your story straight, because when I post evidence from one scientific site that someone here doesn't like, they can invariably find opposing info from another scientific site. For me, it just confirms that it's all a bunch of cr*p.

    If Java Man, Peking Man, Neanderthal Man and Cro Magnon Man are just lower Apes and not our Ancestors, then why oh why are they referred to as MAN according to evolutionists?

    Why are there still chimps, then? Because they weren't competing with us. Think: the same ecological reasons why chimps couldn't evolve our level of intelligence made it not worth our while to fight them for that territory. Doesn't that make beautiful, perfect sense? Only since we've started exporting our ecology, cutting down jungles and so on - only since then have we come into competition with them, to their cost. If we're not careful, the answer to the fatuous question "If we evolved from chimps, why are there still chimps" will be "there aren't".
    We weren't competing with chimps? Oh really? Doesn't evo claim that the first humans and hominids appeared in Africa? And isn't the dark Continent also the natural and original ecosystem where the Great Apes are from? So how do you claim we never competed if evo is true? When you say humans migrated to other Continents and the Plains leaving jungles to the Apes, are you assuming that every single human left at once? And isn't such an assumption naive? I mean, I have never heard that there was a time when no humans occupied Africa, or higher primates for that matter. Your conclusions make no practical sense Peeling.

    It's silly to attach significance to the fact we're the 'only' intelligent species. For a start, we're not the 'only' - we're the first. Intelligence - our 'level' of it - was never inevitable; it's not some ultimate goal, any more than swimming or flying. But assuming it happens, someone has to be first, and we're it. Secondly, we're not the 'only' - we're the most. So far. And we're getting smarter - so don't be so quick to declare us the pinnacle; you have no idea what peaks are hidden in the clouds ahead. If we're lucky, in a million years the smartest creature will be one of our descendants, but it could just as easily be whatever creature emerges to claim the territory we leave behind when we become extinct.
    Semantics and wishful thinking Peeling. Don't play that game because it's a losers game. You keep wanting to look into the future and claim the evolution that is yet to come like it's some glorious future that awaits us. But I'm here to tell you that life on Earth has allegedly had FOUR BILLION YEARS TO EVOLVE, and all we have is us and them. We who have learned to conquer almost every physical challenge life and this Worlds environment can throw at us, and the lower animals who you will be hard pressed in this debate to prove are any more advanced or sophisticated than their oldest relatives that you claim they are evolved from.

    One example to make my point. A Tiger is an Alpha animal that exists at the top of his ecosystems food chain today. Now go back one or ten million years if you like. I don't care how far back you go. But to the earlier version of todays Tiger. It may have been larger and more powerful because its prey was larger and more powerful. But it still hunted and raised its young just as todays tiger does. Todays tiger has evolved in no documentable way beyond what its ancestor was regarding its potential or capabilities. So of what value is evolution if the only species of life on Earth that it has really improved upon is Humanity? And if that's the case, how can evolution be real at all.

    And here's a question for you to consider Peeling. The Great Apes which evo considers to be the closest living relatives to us are defined as Primates which don't have tails on one source I saw. Yet it's the bonobos which have long tails and are defined as true monkeys that don't have sex according to cycles like other animals do, but when ever the urge hits them just as humans do. How do you explain such an inconsistency, and this is just one among many that evo just ignores in order to believe as you do.

    I must repeat my original contention also so it's on the record from the beginning here.

    For evo to claim that it is true, you must explain to me with EVIDENCE how we can accept that the very sketchy evidence that leads you to conclude that we evolved from the Ancient Apes that evo claims are allegedly the genetic contributors to what is the modern, so called Homo Homo Sapien, when we currently live side by side with chimpanzees which carry between 98.4 and 99.6% of our genetic material and we can plainly see that they are lower animals in all respects except for the fact that they are also primates.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel View Post
    Just one clarification though, stop responding by saying that I don't understand. Because I do understand evos claims,
    Ok, so what do you want me to say if you make a statement that clearly demonstrates you don't understand? Or are we in deadlock at that point?
    But why hasn't even one species gone on to form a higher order of intellect with a need for Governments, councils, order of any type so as to develop Social continuity?
    Again, we differ only in degree. I've trekked to see chimps in the wild, and listened to people who've studied them for years, and they have a social structure every bit as complex as your average high school.

    As I said further down, though, it's premature to say we're the only species ever to elevate those things to such a degree. Currently we're the first. For there to ever be any, there had to be a first. We're it. So what?
    Why are we the only species of life on Earth that has developed the skill to adapt the World to meet our needs rather than have to adapt to the World around us or become extinct like every other animal on Earth?
    Same answer: so what? There was a first animal to fly, a first mammal to take to the water, a first multicellular creature. Of course, the first multicellular creature was too stupid to realise it couldn't exist because otherwise some other cells would have done it first...

    Peeling, with all due respect, we have allegedly had 4 billion years of evolution on Earth since the first simple life supposedly appeared. Why must we make more assumptions based on what will happen in the next 10,000 years?
    Oh, we don't have to - sorry, I wasn't clear enough there. What I'm trying to do is correct your misapprehensions concerning common descent. You said this:
    according TO YOUR OWN PHILOSOPHY OF EVOLUTION, THEY CRAWLED OUT OF THE PRIMORDIAL OOZE AT THE SAME EXACT TIME THAT WE DID.
    This is not true. The wording is highly misleading, because it implies that according to evolutionary theory there were human-ancestors and chimp-ancestors side by side in the primordial ooze; there were 'us' and 'them'. That is absolutely and categorically not the case. I know you insist you understand what evolutionary theory claims, but statements like this demonstrate otherwise. I don't know what to do except try to help you understand better.

    The reason I asked you to consider hypothetical speciation of the human race ten thousand years from now is that it gives you a fresh perspective on speciation that occurred in the past, no other reason. I'm trying to help you think about speciation as the ToE actually describes it. Whether or not you believe it happens is another issue.

    Consider how much interbreeding takes place over such a period. Ten thousand years is about 500 generations. One mother and father, four grandparents, 8 great-grandparents, that's three generations. Go back 32 generations, and if no inbreeding at all occurred you'd have over four billion unique ancestors. That's nearly as many people as are alive today.

    The upshot of all this is that if you picked any two people 10,000 years from now and traced their lineage back 500 generations, somewhere along the line you'd almost certainly reach a common ancestor. It's inevitable; there just aren't enough people - or indeed atoms - in the universe for their family trees not to overlap.

    Now imagine speciation has occurred within those 500 generations. It doesn't matter. You can still pick any two members of either subspecies and trace their lineage back to a common ancestor. Now do you understand why it's meaningless to talk about human ancestors and chimp ancestors emerging from the ooze? Human ancestors and chimp ancestors are the exact same individual creatures - how can you have a race against yourself?

    Now imagine one of those subspecies has evolved a unique feature since the split. Perhaps it migrated - geographical isolation is one contributor to speciation - and encountered a new ecological pressure to which the parent species was not exposed.

    Now you come along and say 'Those two species can't be related: look, one has this feature and the other does not, yet they've both had four billion years to evolve'. Can you see now why that's totally the wrong way to look at it? They haven't both had the same time to evolve that feature, because until they split, there was no 'both'. There was only one species, evolving and interbreeding.

    That's what the ToE states regarding humans and chimps. It took four billion years or so for 'himps' to evolve, and a few million more years for both chimps and humans to evolve from them.
    Why are you unable to prove your point by using the allegedly overwhelming existing evidence that exists from our past? That is what this debate is intended to do, right?
    I can hardly start to prove evolution correct if your understanding of what evolutionary theory says is wrong. None of my arguments will make sense because you'll be applying them to a distorted image of the theory.

    On the contrary Peeling. The first thing to consider is if in fact our lineage's ever in fact diverged at all.
    And I'm addressing your counter-arguments in that regard. One of those counter arguments has been that both chimps and ourselves had four billion years to evolve to our level of intelligence and that during all that time we were subject to the same ecological pressures. Neither of those statements is accurate. The first is misleading for the reasons outlined above, and the second is simply false: humans have experienced greatly different ecological challenges since we diverged from chimps.

    I'll finish up tomorrow - battery dead.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel View Post
    the very same genetic similarities you will use to claim our familial relationship with chimps also makes absolute claims about how our genetic material defines our intelligence, imagination, creativity, reasoning ability and our hunger to grow intellectually and seek to continually improve our World to suit our personal needs.
    No, it doesn't. Our genotype (together with other epigenetic modifiers) gives us a much bigger brain than chimps, although it is structured very similarly.

    On top of that, what we accomplish with our bigger brain is, as I've already demonstrated in other threads with reference to feral children, greatly dependent upon the accumulated wisdom imprinted upon the brain during infancy. We teach our children to problem-solve. We teach them language and abstract thought - we train the various parts of the brain to do their job properly. We aren't born 'complete'. Even as adults, not everyone is equally quick-witted, not everyone has an equal facility for logical thought - and this has a lot to do with how their brain has been trained during its development.

    Other apes can also be taught these same concepts - to a more limited degree, sure, but then the related parts of their brain are smaller and less capable.
    Which begs the question as to why, with 98.6% of our genetic make up shared, are chimps still living in trees and not replicating the same or similar advances as we strive for, at what ever level mind you.
    No, it really doesn't beg anything of the sort. A chimp brain and a human brain are not comparable in terms of functional capacity.
    you are also ignoring that with the same genetic similarities, chimps are so far below us on the intellectual ladder.
    I'm not ignoring that. You're ignoring the plain and simple observable fact that those genetic differences translate to a tremendous difference in cranial capacity. Are you trying to say that a 2% genetic difference (plus epigenetic factors) can't translate to bigger brain features? Are you trying to say that bigger brain features can't translate to greater potential intellect? What's your point?
    I have shown where Lucy was proclaimed as our oldest living ancestor by a scientist from the Smithsonian Institute.
    I seriously doubt he used the word 'living'
    So you evos need to get your story straight, because when I post evidence from one scientific site that someone here doesn't like, they can invariably find opposing info from another scientific site. For me, it just confirms that it's all a bunch of cr*p.
    The fact remains that whenever you look beyond the for-public-consumption headlines at the actual science, you invariably find clarification of the use of the general term 'ancestor'. Lucy is (or rather was) the best candidate for a direct ancestor. We can't know for sure. Nobody's trying to conceal that fact, least of all me.

    I don't understand, again, what point you think you're making here. I - along with pretty much all scientists - am fully and openly cognizant of the nature of the evidence we have, and I still understand and agree with its value with regards to the theory of evolution. If it were impossible to 'believe' in evolution without dumbing down the concept of 'ancestral' hominid fossils, you'd have a case for the practice being suspicious. As things stand, though, I gotta ask again: so what?
    If Java Man, Peking Man, Neanderthal Man and Cro Magnon Man are just lower Apes and not our Ancestors, then why oh why are they referred to as MAN according to evolutionists?
    Because they're judged to be derivative of the branch that led to us rather than the branches that led to the other apes.
    We weren't competing with chimps? Oh really? Doesn't evo claim that the first humans and hominids appeared in Africa? And isn't the dark Continent also the natural and original ecosystem where the Great Apes are from? So how do you claim we never competed if evo is true?
    Because Africa isn't one big homogeneous ecosystem. There are jungles, plains, deserts, swamps. Himps living in the jungle weren't in competition with himps that started migrating out onto the plains. Their food sources are different, their territories are different. The more suited to plains-dwelling we became, the less attractive a prospect it was to return to the jungle. Pretty straightforward, really.
    When you say humans migrated to other Continents and the Plains leaving jungles to the Apes, are you assuming that every single human left at once? And isn't such an assumption naive?
    Again, you're trapped in an erroneous 'them and us' mindset. Humans didn't migrate out of the jungle at all: some of the himps did. See how that works? We don't need to picture all humans upping sticks and leaving for the plains at the same time; that's absurd. Some himps left the jungle, and (to cut a long story short) the ones that did interbred and evolved into us. Their membership of the human race was determined by the fact they left the jungle; they didn't become human and then leave.

    It's as if we're talking about the sinking of the Titanic, and you're saying "Do you seriously expect me to believe only survivors 'just happened' to get into the lifeboats, while only doomed ones 'just happened' to be left behind? Isn't that a pretty huge assumption? Not one survivor stayed behind, and not one doomed one got on a lifeboat?"
    Semantics and wishful thinking Peeling. Don't play that game because it's a losers game. You keep wanting to look into the future and claim the evolution that is yet to come like it's some glorious future that awaits us.
    No, I'm just demonstrating the flaw in your reasoning. There was a 'first' multicellular creature, a 'first' flying creature, a 'first' land animal. And at any given time in the past there was a 'best' flying creature, a 'best' adapted land animal - and, yes, a 'most intelligent' creature. That crown now belongs to us. So what?

    I can't recall the name of this particular fallacy, but if I were to name it it would be the "If it were possible, someone would have done it already" fallacy, the consistent application of which leads one to believe it is impossible for anything to happen for the first time.
    One example to make my point. A Tiger is an Alpha animal that exists at the top of his ecosystems food chain today. Now go back one or ten million years if you like. I don't care how far back you go.
    Ok, I'd like to go back to before there were mammals, please.
    But to the earlier version of todays Tiger. It may have been larger and more powerful because its prey was larger and more powerful. But it still hunted and raised its young just as todays tiger does.
    Sorry, there aren't any tigers yet where I'm standing. There aren't even any mammals yet. There is nothing even remotely resembling a tiger.
    Todays tiger has evolved in no documentable way beyond what its ancestor was regarding its potential or capabilities.
    Clearly it has, because back then we didn't even have mammals, let alone tigers
    So of what value is evolution if the only species of life on Earth that it has really improved upon is Humanity? And if that's the case, how can evolution be real at all.
    I can't help you understand what evolutionary theory has to say until you give up on this misconception of what common descent means. You're seemingly locked into picturing a history of life where all modern species evolved side by side in parallel right from the year dot. That isn't evolutionary theory.
    And here's a question for you to consider Peeling. The Great Apes which evo considers to be the closest living relatives to us are defined as Primates which don't have tails on one source I saw. Yet it's the bonobos which have long tails and are defined as true monkeys that don't have sex according to cycles like other animals do, but when ever the urge hits them just as humans do. How do you explain such an inconsistency, and this is just one among many that evo just ignores in order to believe as you do.
    From here:
    The bonobo is lacking a tail, as are all extant apes.
    Last edited by Peeling; 02-26-2008 at 10:18 AM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peeling View Post
    No, it doesn't. Our genotype (together with other epigenetic modifiers) gives us a much bigger brain than chimps, although it is structured very similarly.
    All you are saying here Peeling, is that evolution categorizes every aspect of the differences between us in order to explain why chimps are so inferior to us intellectually. And the size of our brains isn't convincing evidence of anything because human children's brains are smaller than adult chimps, yet their capacity for learning, retaining and applying knowledge is so much greater than chimps.

    On top of that, what we accomplish with our bigger brain is, as I've already demonstrated in other threads with reference to feral children, greatly dependent upon the accumulated wisdom imprinted upon the brain during infancy. We teach our children to problem-solve. We teach them language and abstract thought - we train the various parts of the brain to do their job properly. We aren't born 'complete'. Even as adults, not everyone is equally quick-witted, not everyone has an equal facility for logical thought - and this has a lot to do with how their brain has been trained during its development.
    And yet, many animals survive by instinct only, having been abandoned by their mother at birth. Wouldn't you think that with that capacity to survive without guidance that they would also have the capacity to learn new things from one generation to another as humans do, resulting in true intellectual evolution over the past 100 million years or so?

    Other apes can also be taught these same concepts - to a more limited degree, sure, but then the related parts of their brain are smaller and less capable.
    Yes Peeling; you say this with such assurance, yet what you can't explain with any assurance is why only one offshoot of the Primate genus evolved into what human beings are today. Why only us, when we all allegedly started in the same environment with the same ecosystems putting the same pressures on us.

    What I'm saying is that in every place where our alleged primate ancestors fossils have been found, so haven't the fossils of animals described as lower primates been found. So your explanation that one species evolved while another stagnated or died out rings hollow with me. Especially since you can actually prove absolutely none of this. Can't you see that Peeling? None of this is provable.

    I'm not ignoring that. You're ignoring the plain and simple observable fact that those genetic differences translate to a tremendous difference in cranial capacity. Are you trying to say that a 2% genetic difference (plus epigenetic factors) can't translate to bigger brain features? Are you trying to say that bigger brain features can't translate to greater potential intellect? What's your point?
    Are you trying to say that a bigger brain must translate into higher intellect? Then how do you explain the elephant or whales, or even Dolphins which have a larger craniul capacity than humans? It isn't the size of the brain, but its ability to organize and prioritize information in order to more efficiently apply what is observed in practical application that separates us from the animals. A 5 year olds brain is smaller than most adult primates yet his intellectual capacity is still greater than the primates.

    I seriously doubt he used the word 'living'
    So true. That was my mistake as i was envisioning Lucy as she was when she existed.

    The fact remains that whenever you look beyond the for-public-consumption headlines at the actual science, you invariably find clarification of the use of the general term 'ancestor'. Lucy is (or rather was) the best candidate for a direct ancestor. We can't know for sure. Nobody's trying to conceal that fact, least of all me.
    You must admit Peeling that the holy grail of evolution has always been finding the missing link that proves that that magical transitional link between Ape and modern Man exists. This has always been considered the most important discovery in evo and Lucy was embraced as this missing link, as is every newer discovery that evo can claim is closer to fitting their assumption. But until the next primate fossil is found, the last one will be held up as that evidence. Evolution doesn't actually ever prove anything real at all. It just fills the gaps with whatever so called evidence is found until the next so called discovery looks better to them and replaces it.

    I don't understand, again, what point you think you're making here. I - along with pretty much all scientists - am fully and openly cognizant of the nature of the evidence we have, and I still understand and agree with its value with regards to the theory of evolution. If it were impossible to 'believe' in evolution without dumbing down the concept of 'ancestral' hominid fossils, you'd have a case for the practice being suspicious. As things stand, though, I gotta ask again: so what?
    Using every evolution scientist on Earth to support your contentions holds absolutely no weight at all with me Peeling. Because my point that you are completely ignoring, and evading here that is completely legitimate, is that for you to use these primate fossils as any actual evidence at all that a REAL chain of lineage from those ancient primates to modern man exists is impossible to prove.

    Especially since we coexist with primates that share so much of our human DNA and are obviously, by any standard of measure lower animals. So by what stretch of the imagination can you possibly discern from the flimsy evidence obtained by these ancient fossils make any reliable or sustainable conclusions that they are IN FACT our evolutionary ancestors?

    Because Africa isn't one big homogeneous ecosystem. There are jungles, plains, deserts, swamps. Himps living in the jungle weren't in competition with himps that started migrating out onto the plains. Their food sources are different, their territories are different. The more suited to plains-dwelling we became, the less attractive a prospect it was to return to the jungle. Pretty straightforward, really.
    But himps living in the jungle were in competition with other himps which didn't migrate to the plains. And pressures from predators, climate and changes in the ecosystem should have continued to force the need or desire to control their environment as our line of himp grew to do.

    My point is that with all of the same basic tools to start out with such as fingers, opposable thumbs and walking upright, there is no reason why only our line evolved to the level that human beings have attained with the same hundreds of millions of years, and the same pressures pushing us all forward, or towards extinction.

    Again, you're trapped in an erroneous 'them and us' mindset. Humans didn't migrate out of the jungle at all: some of the himps did. See how that works? We don't need to picture all humans upping sticks and leaving for the plains at the same time; that's absurd. Some himps left the jungle, and (to cut a long story short) the ones that did interbred and evolved into us. Their membership of the human race was determined by the fact they left the jungle; they didn't become human and then leave.
    I understand that I struggle with that mindset because I don't actually see us as ever being in that original lower form. So I do have problems staying focussed on that perspective. But I was actually jumping ahead to between 100,000 and 300,000 years ago when evo claims that early homo sapiens were first appearing, migrating and encroaching into the habitats and mixing with Neanderthal and or Cro Magnon Man.

    No, I'm just demonstrating the flaw in your reasoning. There was a 'first' multicellular creature, a 'first' flying creature, a 'first' land animal. And at any given time in the past there was a 'best' flying creature, a 'best' adapted land animal - and, yes, a 'most intelligent' creature. That crown now belongs to us. So what?
    This paragraph is completely subjective and avoids the reality that only humans have over come all of those natural limitations within us and become the best at all of them over the animals that have those skills naturally. And if the Eagle is considered the best flyer, it would surely die if required to fly in place as a humming bird does so effortlessly. Why has no animal ever evolved the ability to survive outside its natural habitat through artificial means as Man has? Only Man can create new ways of solving problems caused by our physical limitations. In 4 billion years, why is that?

    I can't recall the name of this particular fallacy, but if I were to name it it would be the "If it were possible, someone would have done it already" fallacy, the consistent application of which leads one to believe it is impossible for anything to happen for the first time.
    No Peeling, it would be, "We proved it was possible to evolve as humans have, so why can only we do it?" Why hasn't one other creature on Earth ever evolved to our level of sophistication in the same alleged 4 billion years that we have had to attain our level of evolution? If evo is real, then it seems only right that it should touch all species equally and that all species that weren't forced into extinction, but survived and overcame the pressures they faced should have ended up in a similar evolved place that man has attained in 4 billion years.

    Unless of course that the science of evolution is a humanistic justification to explain our origins but has no basis in fact what so ever. And that is my claim and belief.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peeling View Post
    Ok, so what do you want me to say if you make a statement that clearly demonstrates you don't understand? Or are we in deadlock at that point?
    You can say, I know you interpret it that way, but evo makes a different claim which it interprets this way. Because you know as well as I do that there are different schools of thought within evo that see the same issues very differently, and just because I don't see, or define some situations like you do doesn't mean I don't understand. It just means I don't see it the same way.

    Again, we differ only in degree. I've trekked to see chimps in the wild, and listened to people who've studied them for years, and they have a social structure every bit as complex as your average high school.
    I understand they have a definite social structure and hierarchy within their troop. But what you all fail to acknowledge is that compared to a civilized society they are still animals who live as animals. And in hundreds of millions of years they have remained tree dwelling animals with the same basic hierarchy that exists today. If one chimp kills another during a power struggle by attacking him unprovoked, does the rest of the troop try him for murder? Of course not. Because they are animals, and nothing more.

    As I said further down, though, it's premature to say we're the only species ever to elevate those things to such a degree. Currently we're the first. For there to ever be any, there had to be a first. We're it. So what?
    After 4 billion years I don't think making an assumption that I am making is premature at all Peeling. I think you can safely be accused of wishful thinking at this point to even think that these lower animals will ever catch up to or surpass what humanity has attained. Now, if just ONE other species of animal on Earth, from any genus at all had evolved higher function, then my claim would be made null and void. But since only humanity is what we are in this World of lower life forms, You find yourself with an uphill battle proving evolution is true at all.

    Same answer: so what? There was a first animal to fly, a first mammal to take to the water, a first multicellular creature. Of course, the first multicellular creature was too stupid to realise it couldn't exist because otherwise some other cells would have done it first...
    And again, but no other animal that can fly has also conquered breathing under water as we have, or has learned to travel on land faster than the fastest mammal can run. But we fly, breathe underwater and travel faster than a cheetah as if it was second nature. No other animal in creation has attained what we have, or even come close. As I said, only humanity has evolved past having to survive in the natural World as all other animals on Earth do.


    This is not true. The wording is highly misleading, because it implies that according to evolutionary theory there were human-ancestors and chimp-ancestors side by side in the primordial ooze; there were 'us' and 'them'. That is absolutely and categorically not the case. I know you insist you understand what evolutionary theory claims, but statements like this demonstrate otherwise. I don't know what to do except try to help you understand better.
    I know, because I don't believe there was any primordial ooze at all. But you do. And you also believe that simple celled life formed in that ooze, then evolved into bacteria to enzymes then amino acids,(not necessarily in that order) leading to more complex life forms which eventually crawled out of that ooze and breathed air as amphibians, then to reptiles which some how evolved wings to become birds, and through all of this alleged conglomeration of life came mammals after the Dinos were forced into extinction by that big ole comet. And don't bother telling me that they believe birds came from Dinos because I'm aware of that belief too. But none of it can be proven at all when all is said and done.

    The reason I asked you to consider hypothetical speciation of the human race ten thousand years from now is that it gives you a fresh perspective on speciation that occurred in the past, no other reason. I'm trying to help you think about speciation as the ToE actually describes it. Whether or not you believe it happens is another issue.

    Consider how much interbreeding takes place over such a period. Ten thousand years is about 500 generations. One mother and father, four grandparents, 8 great-grandparents, that's three generations. Go back 32 generations, and if no inbreeding at all occurred you'd have over four billion unique ancestors. That's nearly as many people as are alive today.

    The upshot of all this is that if you picked any two people 10,000 years from now and traced their lineage back 500 generations, somewhere along the line you'd almost certainly reach a common ancestor. It's inevitable; there just aren't enough people - or indeed atoms - in the universe for their family trees not to overlap.
    Not to change the subject, but have you considered that based on your math, which I totally agree with; that if modern man has been around and reproducing for between 45,000 and 100,000 years as evo claims, then we should have a World population of between 18 billion and 40 billion people? How do you rationalize that mathematical fact away?
    Now imagine one of those subspecies has evolved a unique feature since the split. (You mean like a brow ridge which both Cro Magnon and Neanderthal had as predominant features?) Perhaps it migrated - geographical isolation is one contributor to speciation - and encountered a new ecological pressure to which the parent species was not exposed.

    Now you come along and say 'Those two species can't be related: look, one has this feature and the other does not, yet they've both had four billion years to evolve'. Can you see now why that's totally the wrong way to look at it? They haven't both had the same time to evolve that feature, because until they split, there was no 'both'. There was only one species, evolving and interbreeding.

    That's what the ToE states regarding humans and chimps. It took four billion years or so for 'himps' to evolve, and a few million more years for both chimps and humans to evolve from them.

    I can hardly start to prove evolution correct if your understanding of what evolutionary theory says is wrong. None of my arguments will make sense because you'll be applying them to a distorted image of the theory.

    And I'm addressing your counter-arguments in that regard. One of those counter arguments has been that both chimps and ourselves had four billion years to evolve to our level of intelligence and that during all that time we were subject to the same ecological pressures. Neither of those statements is accurate. The first is misleading for the reasons outlined above, and the second is simply false: humans have experienced greatly different ecological challenges since we diverged from chimps.
    I understand your argument Peeling but I'm not impressed. Do you admit that the so called homo homo sapien/modern man has evolved to the degree that we look as we do, and possess our intellectual capacity as it is over the past 45,000 to 100,000 years? I mean aren't we, modern man connected to Neanderthal and Cro Magnon Man as recently as 45,000 years ago and some say 30,000 years ago?

    Here is a picture of a Neanderthal skull replica. But you will agree with its accuracy, I'm sure. http://cgi.ebay.com/Neanderthal-Skul...ayphotohosting And here's another: http://cgi.ebay.com/Neanderthal-Skul...ayphotohosting

    Notice the brow ridge. Have we de-evolved that very distinguishable feature over such a short time? Or take Cro Magnon; we are some sort of evolved blend between the two of them, right? http://webspace.ship.edu/ajames/ant121/H.sapCro1.gif How do we explain such huge, or quick evolutionary leaps in so short a time?

    Doesn't that bother you at all? You will say we bred the ridge out through interbreeding right? But if both of the ancestors we came from had predominant brow ridges, then why wouldn't interbreeding have made it more distinguishable rather than less as it is? And in such a short amount of time, evolutionarily speaking of course where changes take place over millions of years rather than thousands, or tens of thousands of years.

    And if you're even partially right, and different migrations effected how evolution occurred in different parts of the World, then shouldn't we have some segment of the modern human race that more resembles the increased brow ridge of that branch of our evolutionary tree? I'm just saying Peeling, rather than insisting that I don't understand in every response, why don't you consider some of the questions I ask?
    Last edited by Archangel; 02-26-2008 at 07:14 PM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel View Post
    And the size of our brains isn't convincing evidence of anything because human children's brains are smaller than adult chimps, yet their capacity for learning, retaining and applying knowledge is so much greater than chimps.
    An adult chimp's brain weighs in at circa 400g. A human baby's brain typically reaches around 650g by the time it is six months old, and has attained 90% of its adult size by the time the child is eight.



    And yet, many animals survive by instinct only, having been abandoned by their mother at birth. Wouldn't you think that with that capacity to survive without guidance that they would also have the capacity to learn new things from one generation to another as humans do, resulting in true intellectual evolution over the past 100 million years or so?
    That's completely backwards Why would a species abandoned at birth develop the facility to learn things from one generation to the next? The potential to learn something from a parent needs to be there before the facility can gain a foothold.
    Yes Peeling; you say this with such assurance, yet what you can't explain with any assurance is why only one offshoot of the Primate genus evolved into what human beings are today. Why only us, when we all allegedly started in the same environment with the same ecosystems putting the same pressures on us.
    Who do you mean by 'we all'? If you're still talking about himps, I've explained that: we're the himps that left the jungle.
    What I'm saying is that in every place where our alleged primate ancestors fossils have been found, so haven't the fossils of animals described as lower primates been found. So your explanation that one species evolved while another stagnated or died out rings hollow with me.
    When you say 'every place', what do you mean?

    Consider again what I've said: we're the himps that left the jungle. That means at first, there were himps out on the plains, dying and potentially becoming fossilized.
    Especially since you can actually prove absolutely none of this. Can't you see that Peeling? None of this is provable.
    Ok, let's talk about proof for a moment. What does it mean for a hypothesis to be proved? I don't mean how you get to that point, I mean what's the upshot? In mathematics, working with raw logic, a proof is the demonstration that nothing else can be true. In real-world situations and in law, a hypothesis is considered proven if no other - or no significantly different - hypothesis is plausible. The elimination of reasonable doubt. In some states people are put to death on that standard of proof.

    The situation with common descent (leaving the ToE aside for a second - that deals with mechanisms) is that we have millions upon millions of consillient facts that common descent, and only common descent, plausibly explains. As Dobzhansky said, nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution. If Life were on trial, accused of having evolved from a common ancestor, it would be going straight to the chair.

    Our understanding of how it happened is expressed in the ToE, and like any theory it's a work in progress, subject to revision as new facts, mechanisms and evidence come to light. Our understanding of our own ancestry is similarly - and rightly - subject to revision as new fossil evidence emerges. Opinions differ, and that's a good thing because it increases the chances that someone is right. But the fact of common descent is so plainly spelt out we have no choice but to try and explain it as best we can, being as clever as we can and scouring the earth for as much evidence as we can.

    Can I prove my story about the himps that stayed in the jungle and the himps that migrated to the plains? Well, it certainly fits the facts. Other stories fit the facts too, but they're all variations on the same theme: speciation and divergent evolution through population isolation. My goal here isn't to prove one specific hypothesis regarding our ancestry, it's to demonstrate the undeniable fact of common descent and debunk your protests as to why it's impossible by providing plausible explanations that fit the facts.
    Are you trying to say that a bigger brain must translate into higher intellect?
    No, which is why I was (mostly) careful to stress the importance of the size of brain features.
    A 5 year olds brain is smaller than most adult primates yet his intellectual capacity is still greater than the primates.
    A 5 year old's brain is around three times the size of an adult chimp's, and twice the size of an adult gorilla's.
    You must admit Peeling that the holy grail of evolution has always been finding the missing link that proves that that magical transitional link between Ape and modern Man exists. This has always been considered the most important discovery in evo
    I think you're confusing 'important' with 'sensational'.
    But until the next primate fossil is found, the last one will be held up as that evidence. Evolution doesn't actually ever prove anything real at all. It just fills the gaps with whatever so called evidence is found until the next so called discovery looks better to them and replaces it.
    I'm not sure what you're asking for here. Lucy was, for a time, the best candidate - the closest to an ape/human common ancestor. Then we found a better candidate. So what? Should we have tossed it back into the ground and ignored it so that we could carry on being 'right' about Lucy?

    There's no doubt, none at all, that an ape/human common ancestor existed. To return to the 'crime' analogy, it's like we've got a body on the floor that's been shot, stabbed, beaten and burned - a murder has unquestionably been committed. We find the guy with the gun and charge him - then later we find the guy with the knife and establish that he stabbed the victim before the victim was shot. Nothing changes the fact that the victim is dead and he was shot and stabbed.
    is that for you to use these primate fossils as any actual evidence at all that a REAL chain of lineage from those ancient primates to modern man exists is impossible to prove.
    See above regarding the nature of proof. What other plausible explanation is there? We have transitional fossils from so many strata between so many species, genetic markers in extant species indicating common ancestry - all life on earth dances to the common-descent beat. Yet you want us to make a special exception for humans, despite the exact same consillience between fossil evidence, genetic evidence, everything. You want us to hold in abeyance the conclusion that we share a common ancestor with the other apes, yet you can provide no remotely plausible alternative explanation.

    There comes a point where a thing not only looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, but swims, lays eggs, gets gang-raped by drakes and has 'DUCK' tattooed on it in large, friendly letters. At which point, continuing to insist that there's no proof it's a duck is starting to sound just a little bit silly.

    Especially since we coexist with primates
    Where?
    But himps living in the jungle were in competition with other himps which didn't migrate to the plains. And pressures from predators, climate and changes in the ecosystem should have continued to force the need or desire to control their environment as our line of himp grew to do.
    Now who's making a huge assumption?

    Seriously, though, it's nice to have you on board and asking proper questions about a realistic view of evolution.

    Where we are now is questioning the assumption that incremental increases in intellect always pay for themselves - and it's incremental increases in that environment we have to consider the value of, not the observable value of large accumulations of those increases such as accrued in humans in a different environment. Ok?

    Your implicit assumption in the statement above is that an incremental increase in chimp/himp intellect would unlock the ability to control their environment. But the ability to control our environment to any significantly greater degree only emerged much later when our brains were already larger - something else had to be driving that cranial expansion before then.

    My point is that with all of the same basic tools to start out with such as fingers, opposable thumbs and walking upright, there is no reason why only our line evolved to the level that human beings have attained with the same hundreds of millions of years, and the same pressures pushing us all forward, or towards extinction.
    Ten million years max, not hundreds of millions, and with different pressures. Different environment, different pressures.
    But I was actually jumping ahead to between 100,000 and 300,000 years ago when evo claims that early homo sapiens were first appearing, migrating and encroaching into the habitats and mixing with Neanderthal and or Cro Magnon Man.
    Sorry, I can't follow from the previous posts what point this refers to. Can you clarify?

    Why has no animal ever evolved the ability to survive outside its natural habitat through artificial means as Man has? Only Man can create new ways of solving problems caused by our physical limitations. In 4 billion years, why is that?
    Apart from chimps using tools to dig up tubers, birds pushing into higher, colder latitudes by developing migratory patterns, crabs using discarded shells as armour... Yes, we're the best at exporting our environment into new places - tiny little bubbles of our environment somtimes, like when we go scuba diving or up in an aeroplane. So what?

    You keep bringing up this '4 billion years' as if it's significant, as if we've been clever all that time and are just waiting for someone else to catch up. That's simply not true.

    Try thinking about it this way: could you have spiders without, say, insects? Generally speaking, that is. Answer: probably not. Spiders only work as an evolutionary solution if there are insects (or something similar) to feed on. So right away, you have to delay even the possible evolution of spiders until there's something appropriate for that phenotype to eat. It doesn't matter how long the potential precursors of spiders are around - ten million years, a hundred million, whatever - if the environment they're in can't support a spider-like creature, spider-like creatures won't evolve.

    The basic point is this: particular evolutionary solutions can only arise once the appropriate evolutionary problem exists to solve.

    Similarly, the evolution of a hypercephalic primate like ourselves requires a suitable environment, one that favours the incremental development of such a creature. Once we (and by we, I mean the himps) encountered that environment, there was an explosion of primate development down multiple avenues, and we emerged victorious. But until and unless that favourable environment exists, those avenues are closed.
    If evo is real, then it seems only right that it should touch all species equally and that all species that weren't forced into extinction, but survived and overcame the pressures they faced should have ended up in a similar evolved place that man has attained in 4 billion years.
    What, you mean alive?
    Smarter is not the same as better. Alive is the same as better. Smarter is better in some circumstances. More to the point, a bit smarter is not always better, and you have to get a bit smarter, over and over again, before you can be a lot smarter, like we are, and start exporting your ecology all over the planet. Brains are expensive and plenty of creatures get along just fine without much of one at all.

    What the human race has shown is that if the right species (himps) has the right environmental opportunities, in that getting slowly smarter is rewarded, that species can achieve a kind of intellectual escape velocity and become more or less all-conquering. But it's a mistake to think it's all about us, all about our magical, special, inherent potential. It's not. Himps had a lot of the right tools, a lot of the right potential, but it's at least as much about the opportunities that fell before some of them and not others.
    If one chimp kills another during a power struggle by attacking him unprovoked, does the rest of the troop try him for murder? Of course not. Because they are animals, and nothing more.
    You really ought to investigate chimp society in more detail. You'd be amazed how little what you just described resembles reality. In the troop I trekked to visit, the scientists observed fascinating psychological power-plays in action, with the current Alpha deferring to and grooming this grizzled old chimp who was the king-maker, the power behind the throne who had, through various manouevrings, installed or toppled three previous alpha males. Then there was the deposed alpha on the fringes of the troop, slowly reconstructing a power base by wooing females the alpha had upset or ignored. Your vision of chimps as brutal, mindless animals where might makes right is completely inaccurate.
    Not to change the subject, but have you considered that based on your math, which I totally agree with; that if modern man has been around and reproducing for between 45,000 and 100,000 years as evo claims, then we should have a World population of between 18 billion and 40 billion people? How do you rationalize that mathematical fact away?
    Um, people die? Often more than are being born? Right now, the population of the UK and much of europe is in decline because fewer births than deaths are occurring. If I were to extrapolate that trend backwards, wrongly assuming it was constant, I'd conclude that a hundred thousand years ago the population of europe was umpteen billion.

    What's factual about an arbitrary extrapolation of population growth ignoring all constraints?
    Notice the brow ridge. Have we de-evolved that very distinguishable feature over such a short time?
    No, because we aren't descended from Neanderthals. We split from them anything between 250,000 and 500,000 years ago, and there's no evidence much if any gene flow occurred between us since.

    Note that I'm not just saying we 'de-evolved' that distinguishing feature over a longer period. If you think I am, you need to recognise that once again you're assuming that when we split from Neanderthals, Neanderthals looked like they did 30,000 years ago. You're forgetting to let everything evolve.
    I'm just saying Peeling, rather than insisting that I don't understand in every response, why don't you consider some of the questions I ask?
    I'm really sorry if that's how I've made you feel. I'm not trying to be like that or make you in any way frustrated or uncomfortable. The trouble I'm having is that at least some of the questions you're asking are a bit like: "Tell me, Peeling, yes or no: is it true that you no longer beat your wife?" I can't answer that question the way you want me to because the question itself presupposes an erroneous fact.

    Looking back at my other posts, the only ground not covered is the tiger (not much to be gained from revisiting that one, I think) and the bonobo. The less said about that, the better, eh?

    Shall we just continue from here then?
    Last edited by Peeling; 02-27-2008 at 08:45 AM.

  8. #8
    Archangel Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Peeling View Post
    Who do you mean by 'we all'? If you're still talking about himps, I've explained that: we're the himps that left the jungle.
    I'm talking about every different species of chimp, ape and primate that has every walked the plains or lived in the jungles of Pangea prior to, and since the Continental shift Peeling. You seem to have this pretty little picture of all these pieces falling into place so perfectly without even bothering to consider that no matter what primate fossils we dig up, they will undoubtedly show some connection to modern man just as every other primate does. Simply on the basis that they too are primates just as we are.

    This is the crux of my whole argument which every evolutionist around here refuses to acknowledge, including you. You can't prove, to save your life that any of the evidence that evolutionists use to tie us to our so called ancestors is evidence at all that we are actually related to them in any real biological way. Just as we share 98+% of our DNA with chimps yet we can plainly see that they are lower animals with nothing real in common with us in reality. Why can't you get that very real problem with your belief system?

    So let's stop this back and forth repeating ourselves and deal with what really separates us from the lower life forms, and that is our intellectual capacity; our ability to reason, to create and to imagine new and better tools and complex machines that make our existence easier and richer too.

    Your only response to that reality is that smarter isn't necessarily better, or even the goal of evolution. Some might even say it isn't essential to the continuance or propogation of life. Well that is a cop out and a non answer to the question. It's an evolutionists excuse to justify why their so called science can't answer the question. Because we humans are solid evidence that our level of sophistication is the ultimate goal of evolution since no other creature has evolved beyond our level, or at least one of the valid potential goals of it. And it is up to you to prove rationally why I'm wrong in my claim?

    Why can't you explain why NOT ONE OTHER SPECIES OF ANIMAL LIFE HAS ATTAINED HIGHER BRAIN FUNCTIONS AS MAN HAS IN THE SAME 65 MILLION YEARS THAT IT ALLEGEDLY TOOK FOR US TO REACH THIS LEVEL OF SOPHISTICATION SINCE MAMMALS FIRST APPEARED?

    And just saying it wasn't necessary isn't an answer, nor is it reasonable or rational. By evolutions own claims you must admit that literally millions of species of life have existed and gone extinct in that time period. How do you confidently claim that it is reasonable, with us as clear and convincing evidence that our level of intelligence is not only possible, but probable, rational and also a reasonable expectation with our very existence and accomplishments as exhibit A, that absolutely no other species has attained our level of intelligence, however that intelligence is expressed by them?

    So as the title of this thread is "genetic similarities and lifestyle disparities"; try and explain that very real problem with the biological theory of evolution without all of the convoluted unprovable mumbo jumbo that usually goes along with it. Especially a rational explanation as to why with all of the species to have ever existed did only ONE attain our level of intelligence in the allegedly 4 billion years since the earliest simple celled life first appeared on Earth. And please don't get caught up with the desparity between 4 billion years and the 65 million years since the alleged extinction of the Dinosaurs. I understand that that begins the supposed rise of Mammals.
    Last edited by Archangel; 02-28-2008 at 12:32 AM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel View Post
    You seem to have this pretty little picture of all these pieces falling into place so perfectly without even bothering to consider that no matter what primate fossils we dig up, they will undoubtedly show some connection to modern man just as every other primate does. Simply on the basis that they too are primates just as we are.
    If I were less charitable I'd make something of the fact you just said we're all primates

    I know what you're trying to say, though, and the answer is no, it's not true that any old hominid fossil could be connected to modern man.

    For a start, there are about four billion years of strata in which finding any hominid fossil would be catastrophic to the theory of common descent. According to you, all species have lived side by side since the very beginning. Your prediction, therefore, is that we could find hominid fossils in any strata at all. It doesn't even matter if you dispute the 4 billion year estimate: any strata in which we find fossils could, according to you, contain any fossil. Yet all hominid fossils are found within the last few million years of strata - just 0.2% of the total. Can you conceive of the odds against that happening if Special Creation were right?

    Then there's the question of morphology. Common descent can't just accommodate any old primate-ish fossil. Something midway between orangutan and human would again be catastrophic.

    In short, it's you who is lacking consideration. You insist these finds have no significance and that all species could have existed side by side from the start, without ever bothering to consider how stupefyingly unlikely it would be that we would find the patterns of fossils we do if you were right.
    This is the crux of my whole argument which every evolutionist around here refuses to acknowledge, including you. You can't prove, to save your life that any of the evidence that evolutionists use to tie us to our so called ancestors is evidence at all that we are actually related to them in any real biological way.
    Please don't accuse me of refusing to acknowledge your arguments. I think I've gone to a great deal of trouble to respond point by point to everything you've said so far.

    In the spirit of that same thoroughness, then, perhaps you could acknowledge my response:

    If common descent isn't proven, then logically there must be other, equally plausible explanations for the evidence. That's what 'unproven' means. So let's hear these alternatives, with justification for why they are as good a candidate for explaining what we see. Let's hear a 'simultaneous creation of all life' hypothesis that explains why hominids only appear after early primates in the last 0.2% of the fossil record. Let's hear a 'species are not related through a branching tree of common ancestry' hypothesis that explains the complete absence in the fossil record or in the natural world today of any species that could not be related to others through a branching tree of common ancestry. Let's hear a 'no common descent' explanation for the presence of identically broken genes in chimps and humans, or the discovery, where we predicted and with the features we predicted, of fossils like pakicetus and tiktaalik.

    Come on; if common descent is as specious and unproven as you say, this ought to be easy.
    Just as we share 98+% of our DNA with chimps yet we can plainly see that they are lower animals with nothing real in common with us in reality. Why can't you get that very real problem with your belief system?
    Again, I'd ask you to acknowledge my existing response to this criticism:

    Are you saying that 2% difference cannot explain our bigger brains, or are you saying that our bigger brains (plus the increased accumulation of wisdom they permit) cannot explain the discrepancies in our lifestyle?

    Your only response to that reality is that smarter isn't necessarily better, or even the goal of evolution. Some might even say it isn't essential to the continuance or propogation of life. Well that is a cop out and a non answer to the question.
    It's not a complete answer, which is why I went to such lengths to help you think about how evolutionary solutions require evolutionary problems to solve before they can be successful. If there aren't any problems around that require you to be smart to solve them, why would a bigger, heavier, costlier brain be a good thing? Isn't that a reasonable question to ask?
    Because we humans are solid evidence that our level of sophistication is the ultimate goal of evolution since no other creature has evolved beyond our level or at least one of the valid potential goals of it.
    What goals? Sexual selection can cause the goals of individuals to be reflected in the direction evolution takes - and I'm sure that's contributed to our own development once we were smart enough to recognise intelligence as beneficial - but evolution is about results, not goals.
    And it is up to you to prove rationally why I'm wrong in my claim?
    Logically it's not, but I'll give it a try anyway.
    Why can't you explain why NOT ONE OTHER SPECIES OF ANIMAL LIFE HAS ATTAINED HIGHER BRAIN FUNCTIONS AS MAN HAS IN THE SAME 65 MILLION YEARS THAT IT ALLEGEDLY TOOK FOR US TO REACH THIS LEVEL OF SOPHISTICATION SINCE MAMMALS FIRST APPEARED?
    But I can:

    You say that our level of intelligence 'should' have arisen elsewhere. My contention, on the other hand, is that it arose when, and only when, the opportunity presented itself - when a number of necessary prerequisites were in place. You've mentioned yourself, earlier, that a lack of manual dexterity could be an impediment. To that I'd add weight considerations in birds, energy conservation issues in reptiles (the whole point of a reptile, being cold blooded, is that it doesn't use much food energy; a large costly brain would be catastrophic). I'd also factor in the slower reflexes a more thoughtful brain necessitates. I'm pretty sure we'd agree, up to a point, that there are many phenotypes and successful survival strategies that are plain and simply incompatible with greatly increased brain size.

    Anyway, the fundamental point remains: you're saying it should have happened elsewhere, and I'm saying it happened when, and only when, the opportunity presented itself: the amenable-to-cleverness primate phenotype encountering an amenable-to-cleverness plains environment. So who's right?

    The evidence says I am.

    Remember all those fossil hominids? Remember how I struggled to get you to accept that they aren't assumed to be ancestral? Here's why that's important: the fossil record shows not one, but many hominid lineages diverging and developing larger brains post-chimp-divergence. Neanderthals, for instance. They're not our ancestors, yet they too continued to develop larger brains after they split from our branch. The evidence shows that it was the hominid form in general, probably encountering a non-jungle environment, and not specifically our branch of it, that finally put all the pieces in place to support encephalisation.

    Neanderthal brains reached a similar capacity to ours and evidence suggests they weren't much different from ourselves in terms of technological advancement. Humans lived alongside them in northern climes for thousands of years, until (the evidence suggests) a fresh wave of human migrants from Europe, seemingly the first to really cotton on to tool use, arrived on the scene and pushed them into extinction.

    In short, then, my answer to this:
    Why can't you explain why NOT ONE OTHER SPECIES OF ANIMAL LIFE HAS ATTAINED HIGHER BRAIN FUNCTIONS AS MAN HAS
    is that until 30,000 years ago there was at least one other species that had. We killed them. And before that, when we were a little less smart, there were even more parallel hominid species on the same path as us. We're just the ones that won.

    So take your pick: you can either insist that these other species parallelling our brain development were our ancestors after all, or you can agree with me that they weren't - and in the same breath demolish your argument that we were the only species to develop intelligence.
    Last edited by Peeling; 02-28-2008 at 10:47 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peeling View Post

    I know what you're trying to say, though, and the answer is no, it's not true that any old hominid fossil could be connected to modern man.

    For a start, there are about four billion years of strata in which finding any hominid fossil would be catastrophic to the theory of common descent.
    How about if I respond to you as you do to me and quote only what you say that I perceive to be in error, and respond to that. How far will this debate be forwarded then? For example, you say above that there is four billion years of strata as a statement of fact, and then conclude that if hominid fossils were found in them that it would be catastrophic to the common descent theory, as if that is even a rational statement based on what actually exists in reality. Here's what I mean, first a link:

    http://rds.yahoo.com/_ylt=A0geu_UeAM...icle%26sid=293

    Then an excerpt to make my point:

    Rocks of this age are not likely to contain conventional fossils -- to date, the oldest undisputed fossils appear in rocks from 3.2 Ga. Fossils in older rocks would have long since been destroyed by eons of heat, pressure and deformation. In searching for the oldest life, Mojzsis observes, "you have to look to the chemical record, on the principle that life changes the chemistry of its surroundings in a predictable way."

    The chemical record of ancient life, found in so-called "chemofossils," is reflected in the ratio of isotopes, with carbon being particularly useful. Carbon exists in nature in more than one form. Normally, carbon-13 (C-13, with atomic weight 13), is much rarer than C-12. However, biological processes concentrate C-12, so when organic debris falls to the ocean floor, the C-12 to C-13 ratio rises still further in the sedimentary rock that forms. That ratio is preserved even in rocks that formed billions of years ago.

    So no real fossils are found in 4 billion year old rocks, nor are 4 billion year old rocks even found. These are chemo fossils in graphite fine residue. Nothing close to what you say above, be it the proper age or the info retrieved.


    According to you, all species have lived side by side since the very beginning. Your prediction, therefore, is that we could find hominid fossils in any strata at all. It doesn't even matter if you dispute the 4 billion year estimate: any strata in which we find fossils could, according to you, contain any fossil.
    But I have proven above that none of what you claim, can be proven because any evidence that hominids existed have been ground into finely ground carbon powder by now. And by you even arguing the point you're focussing on above is evidence of you wanting to concentrate on a perceived error rather than actually forward this debate because I said below that my real argument is based on dealing with the rise of mammals since the extinction of the Dinosaurs 65 million years ago.

    Yet all hominid fossils are found within the last few million years of strata - just 0.2% of the total. Can you conceive of the odds against that happening if Special Creation were right?
    This is more of your imagined pipe dream Peeling because you can't prove it at all. You must agree that for any fossil to survive for millions of years, much less hundreds of millions of years, it must first be buried immediately upon dying and under perfect circumstances. And even then we have no real explanation for explaining or justifying that fossils are really the age assumed. Egyptian mummies which were the best preservation techniques in the Ancient World are like paper in their fragility after just 5000 years, and that is after being stored in perfect environments.

    But you believe that 65 million year old bones that were originally deposited at their proper strata but through eons of Planetary upheavals t was pushed upwards to where it was found in a modern dig. But it never occurs to you that it should have been also ground to dust from the sedimentary upheavals it went through over that 65 million years? Or even 20 million years, or even 2 million years?

    If common descent isn't proven, then logically there must be other, equally plausible explanations for the evidence. That's what 'unproven' means. So let's hear these alternatives, with justification for why they are as good a candidate for explaining what we see. Let's hear a 'simultaneous creation of all life' hypothesis that explains why hominids only appear after early primates in the last 0.2% of the fossil record.
    There is another answer that explains our origins and I believe it's much more rational than evolution. But it's a spiritual answer rather than a scientific one. And for the life of me, I can't understand why some take such offense at the prospect of it, nor do I understand why they believe one must be simple or ignorant to believe we were created by a loving God rather than just spontaneously appear through abiogenesis by way of random mutation.

    Let's hear a 'species are not related through a branching tree of common ancestry' hypothesis that explains the complete absence in the fossil record or in the natural world today of any species that could not be related to others through a branching tree of common ancestry. Let's hear a 'no common descent' explanation for the presence of identically broken genes in chimps and humans, or the discovery, where we predicted and with the features we predicted, of fossils like pakicetus and tiktaalik.

    Come on; if common descent is as specious and unproven as you say, this ought to be easy.
    The bottom line is that you can't prove that any of these claims are in fact real at all. You still haven't supported your claim from our last debate that all of the fossils that support evo were found at just the right strata that fit your so called predictions. And I would personally be much more comfortable if evidence was found that fit together to add up to proving evolution, rather than making predictions of what should have happened and then finding evidence to prove it. That seems more like assuming pre conceived notions than actually proving anything to me.

    More to come:

  11. #11
    Archangel Guest
    Are you saying that 2% difference cannot explain our bigger brains, or are you saying that our bigger brains (plus the increased accumulation of wisdom they permit) cannot explain the discrepancies in our lifestyle?
    I'm saying that the genetic similarities are used by evolutionists to claim that we are related somehow to the great apes, just as the chemical markers found in the early primates lead you to believe they too are ancestors of ours.
    Quote Originally Posted by your link
    The Neanderthals are the best known and least understood of all human ancestors.
    And yet in your prior post you have said that Neanderthal is not an ancestor of ours here:
    Quote Originally Posted by Peeling
    Neanderthals, for instance. They're not our ancestors, yet they too continued to develop larger brains after they split from our branch.
    So which is it? How can a subject be debated when you don't really agree with the link you post as evidence of your beliefs?

    You say that our level of intelligence 'should' have arisen elsewhere. My contention, on the other hand, is that it arose when, and only when, the opportunity presented itself - when a number of necessary prerequisites were in place. You've mentioned yourself, earlier, that a lack of manual dexterity could be an impediment. To that I'd add weight considerations in birds, energy conservation issues in reptiles (the whole point of a reptile, being cold blooded, is that it doesn't use much food energy; a large costly brain would be catastrophic). I'd also factor in the slower reflexes a more thoughtful brain necessitates. I'm pretty sure we'd agree, up to a point, that there are many phenotypes and successful survival strategies that are plain and simply incompatible with greatly increased brain size.
    If you're right Peeling about intelligence presenting itself when the necessary prerequisites presented itself, then I submit that those same prerequisites presented themselves for any untold number of creatures through out the past 5 million years. You refuse to accept that, or answer in an acceptable way why no other creature ever evolved higher brain functions such as humans did. By brain size determining intelligence, how do you explain the size of a woman's brain being more than 10-12% smaller than a mans brain at adulthood and 10-20% smaller at birth?

    My problem with your science is that there is just so much about what we already know that you must ignore in order to accept what you don't know for sure at all.

    Anyway, the fundamental point remains: you're saying it should have happened elsewhere, and I'm saying it happened when, and only when, the opportunity presented itself: the amenable-to-cleverness primate phenotype encountering an amenable-to-cleverness plains environment. So who's right?
    No; I'm saying that every primate that ever lived face the same or similar challenges as any other primate in order to be sufficiently challenged to move forward, just as we did. It isn't as though we face super predators that they never faced that forced us to think about building houses rather than them. It isn't as though only we had a reason to figure out how to go 65 mph.

    Your link:
    Neanderthal

  12. #12
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    So no real fossils are found in 4 billion year old rocks, nor are 4 billion year old rocks even found. These are chemo fossils in graphite fine residue. Nothing close to what you say above, be it the proper age or the info retrieved.
    You are right, of course, and it was sloppy of me. Although I'm not sure introducing such convincing evidence of an old earth was entirely wise
    Let's use your figure, then, of 3.2 billion years. Our 0.2% figure becomes 0.22%. I think I'm happy to apply the same argument with those new numbers: if humans and other hominids lived side by side from the beginning rather than descending from a common ancestor, why do we only find their fossilised remains after primates in the most recent 0.22% of strata?
    And by you even arguing the point you're focussing on above is evidence of you wanting to concentrate on a perceived error rather than actually forward this debate because I said below that my real argument is based on dealing with the rise of mammals since the extinction of the Dinosaurs 65 million years ago.
    You're going to have to explain to me how you want this to work. You want to proceed based on the premise that common descent is true for everything except... hominids? Primates? Humans?
    But it never occurs to you that it should have been also ground to dust from the sedimentary upheavals it went through over that 65 million years? Or even 20 million years, or even 2 million years?
    Oh, unquestionably the majority of fossils have met their end that way. The fact remains, however, that we have recovered millions of fossils from many strata and hominids are unambiguously confined to the most recent 0.22%. Is it your contention that random chance is responsible - that by pure chance no hominid fossils survived in the other 97.8% of strata?
    There is another answer that explains our origins and I believe it's much more rational than evolution. But it's a spiritual answer rather than a scientific one.
    Forgive me, but isn't that a contradiction? More rational, yet spiritual not scientific? I hesitate to put words in your mouth, but aren't you really describing an answer that you find more personally pleasing? That would certainly go some way toward explaining your occasionally expressed... distaste for people who accept evolution: I imagine you believe we are selecting the most personally pleasing answer too.
    And I would personally be much more comfortable if evidence was found that fit together to add up to proving evolution, rather than making predictions of what should have happened and then finding evidence to prove it. That seems more like assuming pre conceived notions than actually proving anything to me.
    I do appreciate the difficulty you're having with this, which is why I tried to elaborate earlier concerning the nature of proof. You've said several times that I can't prove common descent, that none of it is provable. But think about what 'proven' actually means: the only plausible explanation. When you claim that common descent is not proven, you are claiming that other, equally plausible explanations for the facts have not been eliminated. So what are they?

    Let's look at a few facts and compare how snugly common descent and special creation fit them:

    1. Shared dysfunctional genetic material.

    Common descent explicitly predicts this: if certain non-functional genetic material is endemic prior to speciation, both daughter species will inherit and carry those useless genes.

    Special creation doesn't predict this at all, and has tremendous difficulty contriving any kind of explanation. Why fill the genomes of two seperate species with the same broken crud?

    2. Temporary atavistic features during gestation.

    Here I'm talking about the tail human embryos first grow and then (usually) reabsorb in the womb - identical in every respect to the embryonic tails that go on to be tails in monkeys. Also the gill-slits we form and reabsorb earlier in the process; the leg-buds that dolphins grow and then reabsorb.

    Common descent-with-modification implicitly predicts this. Evolution is about results and doesn't care about keeping things neat. The reabsorption of an embryonic tail is par for the course from a process of modification atop modification atop modification, accumulating over millions of years.

    Special creation can't explain these features at all. Why grow a tail if it's not part of the design?

    3. Patterns of living creatures

    Common descent predicts that all modern species are products of a branching ancestry, and that we should never see features evolved down one branch replicated on a distant one. While similar environmental problems and opportunities will inevitably tend to favour similar solutions, those solutions ought to be similar at the conceptual level only, not in detail. Example: bat wings and bird wings accomplish the same conceptual result but via quite different methods.

    Special creation says anything goes. We shouldn't expect to be able to construct any kind of hierarchy of categorisation based on phenotype.

    What we actually see can therefore be explained by both, but Common Descent makes the more specific claim and which snugly fits the facts. Special creation has to throw up its hands and say that the pattern is just pure chance - billions upon billions to one against.

    4. Patterns of fossils

    Common descent makes strong claims about what we should and should not find. We ought to find transitional fossils linking species together, and the more closely related two species seem to be today, the more recent those fossils ought to be. We can also use genetic clocks to predict when species ought to have diverged, and these predictions have borne fruit in the form of fossilised remains in the right strata exhibiting transitional features.

    Special creation has all sorts of trouble here. There's no reason, if special creation were true, to expect us to find any transitional forms, let alone the outline of a date-ordered converging tree of them. It predicts we should find a random selection from all species in all strata with no pattern at all, and that the pattern we do see must be random chance - again, billions upon billions to one against.

    We can continue if you like, but the point remains the same: common descent is the only plausible explanation for the facts, and it fits them extraordinarily well. When we only have one remotely plausible explanation for millions of consillient facts, we call that explanation proven. That's not a practice unique to evolutionary studies.

    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel View Post
    I'm saying that the genetic similarities are used by evolutionists to claim that we are related somehow to the great apes, just as the chemical markers found in the early primates lead you to believe they too are ancestors of ours.
    ...and?

    We're talking about the objection you raised concerning that inference: that genetic similarity cannot be an indicator of common ancestry because we are only 2% genetically different from chimps and yet our lifestyles are very disparate.

    In response, I've asked you, a few times now, to qualify that objection: are you saying those genetic differences (plus epigenetic factors) cannot be responsible for our larger brain, or that our larger brain, plus accumulated wisdom, cannot be responsible for our more advanced lifestyle?

    If you can't provide clarification, there's little I can do but conclude that your objection is unfounded.
    So which is it? How can a subject be debated when you don't really agree with the link you post as evidence of your beliefs?
    As before, you (and consequently I) are falling foul of the 'ancestor' shorthand used to describe closely related species descending from the same branch of evolution. Indeed there has been considerable debate about whether Neanderthals interbred with humans and thus contributed to our present-day gene pool. Best evidence thus far is that they did not. If you read the whole article end-to-end the full scope of the issue is nicely presented.
    If you're right Peeling about intelligence presenting itself when the necessary prerequisites presented itself, then I submit that those same prerequisites presented themselves for any untold number of creatures through out the past 5 million years.
    Ok, let's have some examples of these 'untold numbers of creatures' you believe met the same criteria in that timescale. The ones with dexterous manipulative limbs, complex (himp-level) social structures, himp-sized brains...?

    Meanwhile, in support of my hypothesis, we have clear evidence of multiple hominid species developing larger brains post-plains-migration, with us emerging as dominant. Unless, of course, you want to claim that all those hominid fossils are in fact ancestral to humans.
    By brain size determining intelligence, how do you explain the size of a woman's brain being more than 10-12% smaller than a mans brain at adulthood and 10-20% smaller at birth?
    10-12% on average, and still three times the size of any chimp's.

    No; I'm saying that every primate that ever lived face the same or similar challenges as any other primate
    Plains living is exactly the same as jungle living?
    It isn't as though we face super predators that they never faced
    Like lions, cheetahs... you know, plains-dwelling predators? And don't forget the new opportunities for us to prey on other creatures. In the jungle canopy chimps round up, kill and eat monkeys, but they don't form a big part of the chimps' diet. Out on the plains there are vast quantities of mobile protein ready and waiting for the himp smart enough to catch them.

    To summarize:

    Common descent is the only explanation that snugly fits millions of consillient facts across multiple disciplines. It is therefore considered proven, and claims that it is not proven must be substantiated by reference to alternative, consistent, plausible explanations for the same facts.

    Contrary to the claim you have made several times now, not all primates were exposed to the same evolutionary pressures.

    Contrary to the claim you have made several times now, humans were not the only species to develop more advanced brain function - we are merely the only one left. Other hominid species exhibited the same sort of development, strongly supporting my contention that the hominid form encountering a plains environment was the everything-in-place confluence of circumstance required for intellectual development to accelerate.

    NB: just to clear up a potential misunderstanding before it gets out of hand: you'll notice I'm talking here about us being the only such species remaining, whereas earlier I was talking in terms of us being the first. I should clarify that by saying we're the first to reach our current level of intelligence and wisdom, while at the same time, upon the extinction of the Neanderthals we were the only species remaining out of the encephalic hominids. Sorry about that.
    Last edited by Peeling; 03-04-2008 at 09:57 AM. Reason: spelling

  13. #13
    Archangel Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Peeling View Post
    You are right, of course, and it was sloppy of me. Although I'm not sure introducing such convincing evidence of an old earth was entirely wise
    Let's use your figure, then, of 3.2 billion years. Our 0.2% figure becomes 0.22%. I think I'm happy to apply the same argument with those new numbers: if humans and other hominids lived side by side from the beginning rather than descending from a common ancestor, why do we only find their fossilised remains after primates in the most recent 0.22% of strata?

    You're going to have to explain to me how you want this to work. You want to proceed based on the premise that common descent is true for everything except... hominids? Primates? Humans?

    Oh, unquestionably the majority of fossils have met their end that way. The fact remains, however, that we have recovered millions of fossils from many strata and hominids are unambiguously confined to the most recent 0.22%. Is it your contention that random chance is responsible - that by pure chance no hominid fossils survived in the other 97.8% of strata?

    Forgive me, but isn't that a contradiction? More rational, yet spiritual not scientific? I hesitate to put words in your mouth, but aren't you really describing an answer that you find more personally pleasing? That would certainly go some way toward explaining your occasionally expressed... distaste for people who accept evolution: I imagine you believe we are selecting the most personally pleasing answer too.

    I do appreciate the difficulty you're having with this, which is why I tried to elaborate earlier concerning the nature of proof. You've said several times that I can't prove common descent, that none of it is provable. But think about what 'proven' actually means: the only plausible explanation. When you claim that common descent is not proven, you are claiming that other, equally plausible explanations for the facts have not been eliminated. So what are they?
    So you want to know why I reject evolution and the alleged evidence it provides? First off, I have said in the past that most all of the so called evidence requires massive assumptions to be made in order for one to accept evo. But the real elephant in the room of this pseudo science is the wild speculations that is the dating processes that allows this belief system to persist.

    At this point I'm going to start using Creationist links which support my claims. Up to this point I have debated this issue from the evo perspective exclusively. But I will produce valid evidence of the questionable results you rely on to support your beliefs. Here's a link with excerpts that are solid reasons why much of what you claim is asserted to be very questionable at the very least. Feel free to question the conclusions of my sources but let's not derail the debate by attacking the sources as I haven't attacked yours.

    http://rds.yahoo.com/_ylt=A0geu6FEFc...ce/dating.html

    Why methods in general are inaccurate

    I admit this is a very beautiful theory. This would seem to imply that the problem of radiometric dating has been solved, and that there are no anomalies. So if we take a lava flow and date several minerals for which one knows the daughter element is excluded, we should always get the exact same date, and it should agree with the accepted age of the geological period. Is this true? I doubt it very much. If the radiometric dating problem has been solved in this manner, then why do we need isochrons, which are claimed to be more accurate?

    The same question could be asked in general of minerals that are thought to yield good dates. Mica is thought to exclude Sr, so it should yield good Rb-Sr dates. But are dates from mica always accepted, and do they always agree with the age of their geologic period? I suspect not.

    Indeed, there are a number of conditions on the reliability of radiometric dating. For example, for K-Ar dating, we have the following requirements:

    For this system to work as a clock, the following 4 criteria must be fulfilled:
    1. The decay constant and the abundance of K40 must be known accurately.

    2. There must have been no incorporation of Ar40 into the mineral at the time of crystallization or a leak of Ar40 from the mineral following crystallization.

    3. The system must have remained closed for both K40 and Ar40 since the time of crystallization.

    4. The relationship between the data obtained and a specific event must be known.

    Why K-Ar dating is inaccurate

    Since K-Ar (potassium-argon) dating is one of the most prevalent techniques, some special commentary about it is in order. Potassium is about 2.5 percent of the earth's crust. About 1/10,000 of potassium is K40, which decays into Ar40 with a half-life of 1.3 billion years. Actually, only about 1/8 of the potassium 40 decays to argon, and the rest decays to calcium. Thus after n half-lives, (1/2)^n of the original potassium 40 will remain. Of the 1 - (1/2)^n which has decayed, about 7/8 will have decayed into calcium, and the remaining 1/8 will have decayed into argon 40. Argon is about 3.6 x 10 ^ -6 of the earth's crust. We can assume, then, that the magma is probably about 1/40 potassium and about 1/400,000 K40. After 570 million years, about 26 percent of this potassium will have decayed, so that there will be about 1/3 as much decay product as K40. About 1/8 of the decay product will be Argon 40, so there will be about 1/24 as much argon 40 as K40. Thus we should expect about 1/9,600,000 of a rock having an average concentration of potassium, to be argon, if the rock is really 570 million years old. This is about one ten millionth of the mass of the rock, a very tiny percentage. And yet, with a large amount of argon in the air and also filtering up from rocks below, and with excess argon in lava, with argon and potassium water soluble, and argon mobile in rock, we are still expecting this wisp of argon to tell us how old the rock is! The percentage of Ar40 is even less for younger rocks. For example, it would be about one in 100 million for rocks in the vicinity of 57 million years old.

    To get one part in 10 million of argon in a rock in a thousand years, we would only need to get one part in 10 billion entering the rock each year. This would be less than one part in a trillion entering the rock each day, on the average. This would suffice to give a rock having an average concentration of potassium, a computed potassium-argon age of over 500 million years!

    We can also consider the average abundance of argon in the crust. If we assume that a rock has 1/400,000 K40, that is, 2.5 x 10 ^ -6 K40, and 3.6 x 10 ^ -6 Ar40, then eight times this much K40 must have decayed, thus about 28.8 x 10 ^ -6 parts of K40 have decayed, so there is less than 1/10 of the original K40 left. This implies a radiometric age of over 4 billion years. So a rock can get a very old radiometric age just by having average amounts of potassium and argon. It seems reasonable to me that the large radiometric ages are simply a consequence of mixing, and not related to ages at all, at least not necessarily the ages of the rocks themselves. The fact that not all of the argon is retained would account for smaller amounts of argon near the surface, as I will explain below. This could happen because of properties of the magma chambers, or because of argon being given off by some rocks and absorbed by others.

    I don't see how one can possibly know that there are no tiny cracks in rocks that would permit water and gas to circulate. The rates of exchange that would mess up the dates are very tiny. It seems to me to be a certainty that water and gas will enter rocks through tiny cracks and invalidate almost all radiometric ages.

    Let me illustrate the circulation patterns of argon in the earth's crust. About 2.5 percent of the earth's crust is believed to be potassium, and about 1/10,000 of this is K40 which decays to Ar40 with a half life of 1.3 billion years. So argon is being produced throughout the earth's crust, and in the magma, all the time. In fact, it probably rises to the top of the magma, artificially increasing its concentration there. Now, some rocks in the crust are believed not to hold their argon, so this argon will enter the spaces between the rocks. Leaching also occurs, releasing argon from rocks. Heating of rocks can also release argon. Argon is released from lava as it cools, and probably filters up into the crust from the magma below, along with helium and other radioactive decay products.

    All of this argon is being produced and entering the air and water in between the rocks, and gradually filtering up to the atmosphere. But we know that rocks absorb argon, because correction factors are applied for this when using K-Ar dating. So this argon that is being produced will leave some rocks and enter others. The partial pressure of argon should be largest deepest in the earth, and decrease towards the surface. This would result in larger K-Ar ages lower down, but lower ages nearer the surface.

    How Errors Can Account for the Observed Dates

    Thus there are a number of sources of error. We now consider whether they can explain the observed dates. In general, the dates that are obtained by radiometric methods are in the hundreds of millions of years range. One can understand this by the fact that the clock did not get reset (if one accepts the fact that the magma "looks" old, for whatever reason). That is, we can get both parent and daughter elements from the magma inherited into minerals that crystallize out of lava, making these minerals look old. Since the magma has old radiometric dates, depending on how much the clock gets reset, the crust can end up with a variety of younger dates just by partially inheriting the dates of the magma.

    Thus any method based on simple parent to daughter ratios such as Rb-Sr dating is bound to be unreliable, since there would have to be a lot of the daughter product in the magma already. And Harold Coffin's book Creation by Design lists a study showing that Rb-Sr dates are often inherited from the magma.

    Even the initial ratios of parent and daughter elements in the earth do not necessarily indicate an age as old as 4.5 billion years. Radioactive decay would be faster in the bodies of stars, which is where scientists assume the heavy elements formed. Imagine a uranium nucleus forming by the fusion of smaller nucleii. At the moment of formation, as two nucleii collide, the uranium nucleus will be somewhat unstable, and thus very likely to decay into its daughter element. The same applies to all nucleii, implying that one could get the appearance of age quickly. Of course, the thermonuclear reactions in the star would also speed up radioactive decay. But isochrons might be able to account for pre-existing daughter elements.

    Furthermore, some elements in the earth are too abundant to be explained by radioactive decay in 4.5 billion years (such as calcium, argon, and, I believe, strontium). Some are too scarce (such as helium). So it's not clear to me how one can be sure of the 4.5 billion year age, even assuming a constant decay rate.

    Excuses for anomalies

    Another issue is that sometimes the geologic periods of rocks are revised to agree with the ages computed. This also makes data about percentages of anomalies less meaningful.

    It sometimes seems that reasons can always be found for bad dates, especially on the geologic column. If a rock gives a too old date, one says there is excess argon. If it gives a too young date, one says that it was heated recently, or cannot hold its argon. How do we know that maybe all the rocks have excess argon? It looks like geologists are taking the "majority view" of K-Ar dating, but there is no necessary reason why the majority of rocks should give the right date.

    The following quote is from the article by Robert H. Brown, cited earlier:

    What is a Radioisotope Age?
    The relationship of a radioisotope age with real-time must be based on an interpretation. A discussion of rubidium-strontium ages in the Isotope Geoscience Section of the journal, Chemical Geology, specifically states that a radioisotope age determination "does not certainly define a valid age information for a geological system. Any interpretation will reflect the interpreters presuppositions (bias).

    Why aren't double blind tests done with every sample being tested if reproducible and repeatable testing is claimed to always be done before any conclusions are accepted as FACTS? And you must admit that the dating of rocks or fossils is accepted as accurate by evolutionists.

    Need for a double-blind test

    Concerning the need for a double blind test, it would seem that there are many places where human judgment could influence the distribution of measured radiometric dates. It could increase the percentage of anomalies, if they were regarded as more interesting. It could decrease them, if they were regarded as flukes. Human judgment could determine whether points were collinear enough to form an isochron. It could determine whether a point can justifiably be tossed out and the remaining points used as an isochron. It could determine whether one should accept simple parent-to-daughter K-Ar ratios or whether some treatment needs to be applied first to get better ages. It could influence whether a spectrum is considered as flat, whether a rock is considered to have undergone leaching or heating, whether a rock is porous or not, or whether a sample has been disturbed in some way.

    Since one of the main reasons for accepting radiometric dates (at least I keep hearing it) is that they agree with each other, I think that geologists have an obligation to show that they do agree, specifically on the geologic column. Since we do not know whether or how much human judgment is influencing radiometric dating, a double blind study is most reasonable. And it should not be restricted to just one or two well-behaved places, but should be as comprehensive as possible.

    Here are more links that expose real concerns about the accuracy and reliability of the conclusions that evolution science relies on.

    http://rds.yahoo.com/_ylt=A0geu6muI8...ating-game.asp

    This link questions why: Dinosaur Bone
    (Illium bone of an Acrocanthosarus)
    Radio carbon dated at 19,000 years old!


    And why: Wood embedded in "110 million year old limestone"
    Radio carbon dated at 890 years old!

    or why: Carbonized stick embedded in "110 million year old limestone"
    Radio carbon dated at 12,900 years old!

    http://rds.yahoo.com/_ylt=A0geu4ucJM...adiometric.htm

    And why are these results ignored in favor of the preferred outcomes that support evos preconceived notions?

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archangel View Post
    So you want to know why I reject evolution and the alleged evidence it provides?
    Dating methods are a huge topic to cover, so before we start I'd like to make sure we're both clear about the basis on which we're proceeding. Bear with me

    Concerning 'proof' of Common Descent


    I've posted several observations independent of the fossil record (shared broken genes, atavistic features during gestation, and patterns of living species) which CD explains and Special Creation does not. In addition, the fossil record remains indicative of a pattern of extinct, intermediate species, even if we disregard their measured age. There are no anomalous orang-human intermediates, no bird-mammal intermediates, etc etc.

    From the wording of your rhetorical question above, I'm inferring that you do not presently have any rebuttal to those points - if I'm wrong about that, I apologise.

    Concerning the other objections you have raised


    Primarily:

    1. A claim that genetic similarity cannot be used to infer common ancestry, backed up by the observation that chimps share much of our genome but live very different lifestyles.

    I've asked a few times whether you think genes can't explain brains or brains can't explain lifestyle, but thus far you haven't committed yourself to either. If this isn't an argument you're interested in pursuing further, can we lay it to rest?

    2. A claim that evolution, if true, should have produced more species with our level of intelligence.

    I've responded that, unless you want to insist that all hominid fossils are ancestral to humans, evidence suggests several hominid species started to develop larger brains during that time, and we are merely the survivors of the ensuing competitive situation. This suggests that it was the hominid+plains environment combination in general which supported encephalisation, rather than something unique and special to our species.

    Again, if you aren't interested in pursuing this line of argument by presenting and justifying examples of other species which 'should' have developed human-levels of intelligence in the last 5 million years, we could perhaps lay it to rest.

    Apart from that, there are a few minor points (relative brain sizes of adult chimps/human children, bonobo tails etc) which I think we can agree are pretty much dead.

    Going Forward


    What I'm trying to establish is, as I said, the basis upon which we're proceeding into a discussion of dating methods. I've said that Common Descent is the only plausible explanation for millions of observations, including the fossil record. Rather than provide a competing explanation for those same observations (thus demonstrating CD is not the only plausible candidate), your stated angle of attack is to undermine the validity or accuracy of the methods used to date fossils.

    Let us be clear in that case: it will not be sufficient for you to show that there are alternative explanations for the fossil record. You must show that CD is incompatible with the fossil record to achieve your goal of debunking it. If CD remains a plausible explanation for what is found in the ground, and you cannot address the other points in its favour (1, 2 and 3 from my previous post), you will not have achieved your goal. CD will remain a - and in the absence of any competition, the - plausible explanation.

    If you're ok to proceed on that basis, say the word and I'll dive into the dating issue.

  15. #15
    Archangel Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Peeling View Post
    Going Forward


    What I'm trying to establish is, as I said, the basis upon which we're proceeding into a discussion of dating methods. I've said that Common Descent is the only plausible explanation for millions of observations, including the fossil record. Rather than provide a competing explanation for those same observations (thus demonstrating CD is not the only plausible candidate), your stated angle of attack is to undermine the validity or accuracy of the methods used to date fossils.

    Let us be clear in that case: it will not be sufficient for you to show that there are alternative explanations for the fossil record. You must show that CD is incompatible with the fossil record to achieve your goal of debunking it. If CD remains a plausible explanation for what is found in the ground, and you cannot address the other points in its favour (1, 2 and 3 from my previous post), you will not have achieved your goal. CD will remain a - and in the absence of any competition, the - plausible explanation.

    If you're ok to proceed on that basis, say the word and I'll dive into the dating issue.
    Regarding the bolded above in both paragraphs, I agree that this is the meat of what separates our opposing belief systems. But the problem we have is that you believe that you have somehow PROVEN Common Descent has actually happened, when we have so far been giving our opinions about what we believe to be true. You haven't actually proven anything. And every claim you make rests upon the accuracy of the dating methods you use to come to the conclusions that you both rely on and promote as evidence of what you believe to be true.

    That is why I raised this issue this morning. So we could discuss the very real problems with the reliability and accuracy of the dating methods upon which you base all of your beliefs. After all, If I could convince you that your dating methods are so unreliable that the (Illium bone of an Acrocanthosarus) actually Radio carbon dated at 19,000 years old is the accurate age of that fossil! or that A Carbonized stick embedded in a "110 million year old limestone rock" actually Radio carbon dated at 12,900 years old is also true and accurate! Then that would completely XXXX all of your assumptions about evo into the dumpster, and ultimately your complete World view into chaos.

    And if you could actually prove to me that these dating methods are perfectly reliable as you interpret them then I would be forced to seriously reconsider how evo fits in with my beliefs about Creation. And here's the thing Peeling, I have no real investment in the outcome other than a sincere desire to know the Gods honest truth. If evolution is true and works in tandem with Gods Creation, then I can accept that. But my common sense cry's out that this science is greatly flawed mainly because of all of the questions one is not allowed to ask. And if you have actually taken classes in College, then you know what I'm talking about.

    One of our other problems is that Creationists believe that Dinos walked with early Man. In our last debate I posted passages from the bible of descriptions that describe Dinosaurs that are believed to have been extinct for 65 million years. My question is, how did primitive man describe long extinct creatures that we didn't even know existed until we had a greater understanding of biology and how muscle, cartilage, sinew, and flesh made up the mass of a body? They must have seen the living creatures in my opinion, unless someone can explain in a rational way how they were described by so called bronze age primitives who had no reason to believe that such creatures ever existed unless they actually saw them.

    I realize this evidence flies in the face of everything you believe, but that in no way nullifies its value to me. The chasm between us is based on what separates scientific understanding from spiritual awareness. This is why I think that dealing with the accuracy of the dating methods may in fact get to the core of the problem with evolutions assumptions. Although I'm not convinced either one of us will change our views in the end of this debate. But lets give it a try.

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