Denial of Evolution V

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by Hercules Rockefeller, Mar 7, 2012.

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  1. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Please don't tell me you're drawing conclusions about evolution based on this one article that gives a short biography of Gould. In the linked bio, I see no details other than the ones you have already quoted, which are unhelpful.

    Gould wrote an entire book titled The Panda's Thumb, you know.

    And so your answer to my questions is ... what? You don't know?

    I'm glad you're trusting paleontologists now, leopold. But you'd be better off trying to actually learn something about evolution so you can judge things for yourself.

    You need to get out of this bad habit of trying to find authorities that you like the sound of, which appear superficially to support your preconceived notions.

    Given the lack of any useful discussion from you, I can only reiterate that Gould never disputed the fact of evolution. He wrote an entire book (at least one!) on transitional fossils (Wonderful Life). So, attempting to use him as a poster boy for your Creationism is a really bad choice.
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  3. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    This summarizes:
    These were consecutive, from the same post by the same poster.

    Supposing you were capable of following Gould's arguments and implications in the first place: How would his being a paleontologist imply infallibility in the biology of herbivorous bears, the biomechanics of browsing on bamboo, or the techniques of object manipulation by creatures with paws?

    If you spend some time watching cats, say, handle oddly shaped things they have an interest in, you may notice that a rudimentary bump or brace on their wrists would come in handy now and then. Gould had a cat, apparently.
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  5. leopold Valued Senior Member

    you know as well as i do that i am not drawing conclusions based on a single source.
    yes, i know.
    apparently gould was popular science writer
    it isn't my problem you don't like what gould proposed and why he proposed it.
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2012
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  7. leopold Valued Senior Member

    first rule of debate when you don't like what your opponent puts forth is to "attack the messenger".
  8. leopold Valued Senior Member

    no they aren't.
    this is nothing but a flat out lie by you.
  9. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    I thought you were trying to argue that Gould wasn't an evolutionary biologist, or something, based on a brief bio of him that you found on the internet somewhere.

    So, are we done with your claims about Gould? Are we clear that Gould was an "evolutionist" through and through?

    Yes. I own a number of his books. How many of his books have you read?

    What do you think I don't like, that Gould proposed?

    I'm certainly not at all flustered by his idea of punctuated equilibrium, if that's what you're referring to. That's a theory about the details of evolution. In other words, to believe in punctuated equilibrium (or even for it to make sense), you first have to accept the reality of Darwinian evolution.

    Of course, since you, leopold, don't have the first clue as to what punctuated equilibrium is, you probably think that it is somehow a disproof of evolution.

    Am I right?
  10. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

    Leopold, are you referring to the concept of spandrels as defined by Gould?
  11. leopold Valued Senior Member

    i have no idea what he was.
    his bio says he was a paleontologist among other things.
    you know how these closet burlesque dancers are.
    why do you keep insisting these are MY claims?
    for the record, i am not claiming ANYTHING.
    i am simply pointing out the discrepancies i find and asking questions about those discrepancies.
    all i am willing to say about gould is what i've read about him.
    i have not knowingly read any of his books.
    i have no idea what you are thinking (care to give me an infraction for that hercules?), i am not a mind reader.
    you must admit james that the ONLY thing you can state with certainty about evolution is that species adapt.
    all the rest is mere speculation.
    there is no evidence that the adaption process can be applied to macroevolution. not in the lab nor in nature itself.
  12. leopold Valued Senior Member

    i have never heard of spandrels.
    is that short for "my mommy and daddy were chickens but i seem to be a tree"?

    gould only gives one evolutionary example of this concept and states that even that one is inferential.

    plus, for a 3rd source:
    This principle of quirky and unpredictable functional shift underlies much of evolution’s contingency (21)

    only window into the past in this regard is the fossil record.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2012
  13. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    You're being disingenuous again.

    Then why do you rely on him as an authority for your Creationist views?

    I know how these closet fundamentalist Christan Creationists are.

    What discrepancies?

    Aren't you lucky that I'm here to better inform you about Gould? You can add my posts to the (very short) list of things you know about Gould.

    But that's not what you said before, is it? You said this, only a couple of posts above this one:

    So, one minute you're telling me what I like and don't like, and the next you're claiming that you have no idea what I'm thinking. So, which is it?

    You're making yourself look shifty and dishonest in this thread, leopold - as you do every time you raise this topic of conversation.

    I'm actually prefer to talk to an honest Creationist who is upfront about his views, rather than one who tries to hide his views under a thin veneer of objectivity.

    Knowing as little about evolution as you do, I'm sure you can't comprehend just how many things I can state with certainty about evolution. Suffice it to say, you couldn't be more wrong with your statement I have quoted here.

    But then again, you're not actually interested in learning anything about evolution, are you?

    Such evidence has been presented to you over and over again.

    Your continued dishonesty is a bad look, leopold.
  14. leopold Valued Senior Member

    what's up?
    don't like the idea the fossil record looks like scatter shot?
    well homie steve said it, not me.
    go tell him about it.
    like i said before i am not relying on a single source.
    yes, i believe you told me all about it.
    a least you got this right.
    i know 2 things about gould.
    he was born.
    he died.
    take your pick.
    yes, i always seem to do that when i give links to respected sites that back what i say.
    let me guess, something in the pnas link is cramping your crotch.
    i am not interested in word salad james.
    not my fault the fossil record looks like scattershot.
  15. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    Is this you reading my mind again about what I like and don't like? I thought you said you had no idea what I'm thinking.

    I'm actually not sure what you mean with the "scatter shot" comment. The fossil record is in nice neat geological layers. No rabbits in the precambrian. Modern humans only in the last million years or so. Dinosaurs all stop 65 million years ago. And so on and so on.

    How old do you think the earth is, by the way, leopold? Let me guess: you'll tell us you have no idea at all, but you secretly believe it's no older than the bible will allow - say 6000 years or so.
    You've never read any book Gould wrote, by your own admission. You don't know what he said, except via your second-hand Creationist quote-mining sources.

    But really, who cares? Let's say that Gould was actually a closet Creationist pretending to be a legitimate paleontologist. And let's say that he let slip that evolution is all nonsense and really God made us all in a single act of Creation. What would follow from that? I'll tell you: we'd add Gould to the List of Nutty Creationists and move on with our lives.

    As a matter of fact, of course, Gould was a 100% supporter of evolution. He wrote books explaining (even promoting, if you like) the explanatory power of evolutionary theory. How you imagine that anything he wrote would ever support your Creationist views I find difficult to work out.

    Then you admit that you are woefully underequipped to debate any view that Gould expressed on anything.

    Doesn't it worry you that you come across as a flip-flopper who won't stand by his own statements and who contradicts himself from one post to the next? (You've done it again here, too - see below.)

    But you said you aren't making any claims. Remember? So, there's nothing to back up. Here's you in your previous post:

    And, I note, of all the comments in my last post, the ONE that you choose to ignore was the on-topic, most-relevant one: the one where I asked you "what discrepancies?"

    That's you reading my mind again.

    Rather than guessing, why don't you try asking me directly?

    Better stop reading all those Creationist sites, then.

    Not my fault that you know next to nothing about the fossil record. Actually, you fault. And your shame.
  16. leopold Valued Senior Member

    don't bother responding to any more of my posts or asking me any more questions because they will go unanswered.
  17. wellwisher Banned Banned

    One way I resolved the conflict between creation and evolution was to work under the assumption that the bible is only talking about a particular aspect of human evolution. It is talking about the tipping point when biological evolution takes the back seat to conscious evolution via civilization and willpower. Creation describes the tipping point when the human mind began to lead biology, in terms of the pace of human evolution. By altering the environment, many parameters of evolution come under the influence of willpower. Once you add clothes there is no benefit in having fur. In fact, bare skin will be preferred.

    Before the tipping point, biology was leading evolution and had slowly evolved life from single cells, up to the pre-humans, who were advanced animals. They had a few tricks but were natural and therefore under the process of biological evolution. The bible describes a transition or tipping point; Adam and Eve, where the bliss of biological evolution is altered by conscious choice; will power. A choice was made that caused departure. After that transition something else is the mover of human change, with biological evolution becoming slower in side-by-side comparison.

    The transition human brain, since it could act apart from nature, was now following a different set of rules compared to biology. This changed the status quo was therefore assumed created as separate. Technically it was created separate since it never existed before.

    For example, one will not find abortion in nature. That change in the status quo was created by the brain and not the DNA. This is connected to the tipping point and is not connected to the trends found in biological evolution. This is not a moral judgment just a contrast between biological and neural in origin, with neural able to depart from biological evolutionary precedent.

    That being said, the tipping point created a situation where the mind via choices could either extend the natural or become bestial or both. The ancient writers of creation were a witness to this change and had a better sense of extrapolation from what they witnessed from their natural past. But since the mind was new and cultural knowledge thin, you need to interpret what they said using the transitional language which is symbolism.

    An analogy is talking to an old timer who fought in WWII or relying on a 35 year old historian. The older timer has direct observations. The historical has books to sell and will try to make it market better for a modern audience. The old time could give a crap and will shoot from the hip based on memory. The historian may have to PC sterilize it first, I tend to prefer the old timer accounts. You may need to know what question to asks and get the answers you need.
  18. AlexG Like nailing Jello to a tree Valued Senior Member

    Another way is to work under the assumption that the bible is a work of mythology and fiction, and has nothing to do with actual existence.
  19. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member


    "Since we proposed punctuated equilibria to explain trends, it is infuriating to be quoted again and again by creationists—whether through design or stupidity, I do not know—as admitting that the fossil record includes no transitional forms. Transitional forms are generally lacking at the species level, but they are abundant between larger groups."

    Gould, S. J. (1981). "Evolution as Fact and Theory," Discover 2 (May): 34-37.

    "Here I report some of the first detailed evidence of phyletic gradualism in benthic macroinvertebrates, based on a study of ~15,000 trilobites from central Wales.
    The apparent success of earlier Linnean nomenclature (with its implications of discrete species) could easily have been misinterpreted as evidence of punctuation and stasis, and it is probable that detection of many other gradualistic patterns has been hindered by ready application of binominal taxonomy to fossils."

    Peter R. Sheldon, "Parallel gradualistic evolution of Ordovician trilobites", Nature 330, 561 - 563 (10 December 1987); doi:10.1038/330561a0​

  20. leopold Valued Senior Member

    There are many transitional fossils. The only way that the claim of their absence may be remotely justified, aside from ignoring the evidence completely, is to redefine "transitional" as referring to a fossil that is a direct ancestor of one organism and a direct descendant of another. However, direct lineages are not required; they could not be verified even if found. What a transitional fossil is, in keeping with what the theory of evolution predicts, is a fossil that shows a mosaic of features from an older and more recent organism.

    this doesn't happen at the species level.
  21. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    The post is #163 in this thread. The poster was you. Read for yourself.

    You said the one, you immediately said the other, you never noticed.

    It doesn't. It is rigorously patterned in itself, without exception correlated with its embedding geology and all those patterns, and without exception correlated with current biological and ecological patterns.

    If you take it as scattershot, the situation you face is a shotgun charge that has formed a portrait of Marilyn Monroe on the target, with not a single BB out of place.

    Then you have no idea what Gould was talking about, in those quotes you posted.
  22. leopold Valued Senior Member

    it was bells that said "you have the raw data available to you. prove it", not me.
  23. iceaura Valued Senior Member

    And the quote marks show that you were then replying, and what you were replying to.

    Both of those consecutive replies from you were replies to other people's posts. I quoted only as much of the motivating post as was needed to establish your meaning.

    Do you understand why anyone reading such posts, one right after the other, would tend to dismiss everything you say on this topic? Your failure to understand simple and common things, your inability to "believe" what most people simply see whenever they look, including in your very own posting, appears to be willful when it is so inexplicably obtuse.
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