Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Evidence against evolution - part 10000000.....

DaveScot at uncommondescent (Nov 28th) thinks he has found some compelling evidence against evolution. Under the headline "The sound of a nested hierarchy shattering" he writes:

Chromosomal sex determination in the platypus discovered to be a
combination of mammal and bird systems. The resemblance to birds is now more
than just superficial.


From this he seems to want to claim that there is a problem with the idea of common descent. Why? I have no idea. DaveScot, how about this for possible explanation: birds and mammals shared a common ancestor and modern mammals retained certain genes, modern birds retained some other genes and the platypus retained a combination of genes. Why not? Mammals diverged from birds 300 million years ago and montremes diverged from other mammals 150 million years ago.

How desperate do IDists have to get?

Edit: a couple of comments were added to the above thread, and I felt compelled to address these as well.

"J" adds a list of five reasons under the headline "Refutation of the Dinosaurian Origin of Birds" from Mayr's "What evolution is" and "Jehu" responds with "What? Ernst Mayr doesn’t believe birds evolved from dinosaurs? ". "J" and "Jehu" are doing the old wedge strategy where "if scientists are not in complete agreement over something, then science is wrong" argument. In this case, the impression one is left with is that either birds evolved from dinosaurs OR evolution is wrong.

But , the reason that list was in Mayr's book was because there has been a debate whether birds evolved from archosaurian reptiles or from theropod dinosaurs. Scientists supporting the reptile connection supplied the list as evidence for their position. "J" and "Jehu" of course want to see this as some form of confirmation that evolution is in trouble, when it in fact is just part of the normal scientific process. In fact, more recent evidence has shed light on the debate and in a National Geographic interview, Mayr stated:

Archaeopteryx, therefore, is closely related to the theropods. This in turn means that theropod dinosaurs are the ancestors of the modern birds that followed Archaeopteryx.
The find, according to Mayr, "not only provides further evidence for the theropod ancestry of birds, but it blurs the distinction between basal [the earliest] birds and basal deinonychosaurs," their fearsome-clawed ancestors.
"I do think that the question of a theropod
ancestry of birds can now be considered settled once and forever," Mayr said.

So, there you go. The evidence does seem to point to a dino-bird connection.

One last point, and though it might seem minor, I think it is actually quite important. After detailing the five objections mentioned, "J" states the reference as: (Ernst Mayr, What Evolution Is: Now Everyone Please Stop With This Dinosaurs-Became-Birds Nonsense. (2001), p. 68.). The "Now Everyone Please Stop With This Dinosaurs-Became-Birds Nonsense" is NOT in Mayr's book. "J" made that up. It is NOT there. "J" effectively told a LIE. (All in the name of the wedge, no doubt).

Again, How desperate do IDists have to get?


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