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Author Topic: Science Disproves Evolution  (Read 435979 times)
Pahu
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« Reply #2370 on: 13 March 2018, 2:13:19 AM »

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  Please provide references to scientific journals.

As far as I know, there are none, nor are they necessary. The facts speak for themselves.
   

Yes, if they are facts. The whole reason for peer review is to prevent false stories getting credence.

No "reputable, peer-reviewed journal" dares to publish evidence like this which destroys evolution. Entire books have been written on this subject, not to mention the recent movie "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed." There are peer-reviewed creation journals out there, and this track will be included in our upcoming article on the Paluxy track research. However, evolutionists will simply reject such an article out of hand anyway, because it's not an evolutionary journal.

Go figure - evolutionary journals won't publish anything that knocks evolution, therefore because evidence like this won't be published in evolutionary journals, it is rejected by evolutionists.

I'm not even going to waste much time with this very silly argument that has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not the tracks are authentic.

More on stone age surgery:
Stone Age Surgery
Monday, September 01, 1997
RELATED TAGS: PREHISTORIC CULTURE
21
To relieve pressure from bleeding after a blow to the head, surgeons often drill or cut into the skull to allow fluids to drain. But people figured out the advantages of the procedure long before the advent of modern surgery. Trepanation, the removal of bone from the skull, is the most ancient surgical technique known. Archeologists have found trepanned skulls dating from the late Neolithic, some 5,000 years ago. Now a team of French and German researchers has suggested that the procedure goes back even further, to at least 7,000 years ago.

The evidence comes from the French village of Ensisheim. To date, archeologists there have unearthed 45 graves containing 47 individuals. One grave held the remains of a 50-year-old man who had two holes in his skull. Both holes were remarkably free of surrounding cracks and were clearly the result of surgery, not violence. One hole, in the frontal lobe, is about 2.5 inches wide; the second, at the top of the skull, is about an inch wider.

Most questionable trepanations are rather small, and with some you cannot tell the shape of the original hole that was made within the skull, or whether it was a fracture, says archeologist Sandra Pichler of Freiburg University in Germany, a member of the team. But in our case you can still see the very straight, slanting edges of the larger trepanation, and this is artificial. There is no natural explanation for a hole like that.

Both holes had time to heal before the man died--the smaller hole is completely covered over with a thin layer of bone; the larger is roughly two-thirds covered--and neither shows signs of infection. So they must have had a very good surgeon, and there must have been some way or another of avoiding infection, Pichler says. Pichler and her colleagues estimate that it would take at least six months, and perhaps as much as two years, for such extensive healing. Since the two holes did not heal to the same degree, it’s likely they were made during two separate operations.

The team doesn’t know why the man was operated on. Nor can they be sure exactly how the trepanations were performed, although the cut marks indicate that the bone was removed by a mixture of cutting and scraping. Stone Age tools were certainly up to the task: flint knives are actually sharper than modern scalpels.

The trepanations were done so perfectly that this can’t be the oldest one, Pichler says. They must have practiced somehow, and the knowledge of how to do this kind of operation must have been passed down, Pichler says. The fact that there are two trepanations is further corroboration: if there had been just one, you could say that they were lucky. But if you survived two such operations, your surgeon must have known what he was doing.

These operations were carried out around 7000 years ago.
But, according to Bishop Ussher, who studied the bible, the earth was formed in 4004 BC.
ONCE AGAIN, CREATIONISTS USE FACTS, AND PUT IMPOSSIBLE INTERPRETATIONS ON THEM.

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« Reply #2371 on: 13 March 2018, 3:55:27 AM »

Quote
  Yes, if they are facts. The whole reason for peer review is to prevent false stories getting credence.

No "reputable, peer-reviewed journal" dares to publish evidence like this which destroys evolution. Entire books have been written on this subject, not to mention the recent movie "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed." There are peer-reviewed creation journals out there, and this track will be included in our upcoming article on the Paluxy track research. However, evolutionists will simply reject such an article out of hand anyway, because it's not an evolutionary journal.

Go figure - evolutionary journals won't publish anything that knocks evolution, therefore because evidence like this won't be published in evolutionary journals, it is rejected by evolutionists.

I'm not even going to waste much time with this very silly argument that has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not the tracks are authentic.
 
 

This is merely your assertion.
Scientists welcome conflicting evidence. In fact no theory is accepted as scientific unless it is capable of being disproved.  We have only creationists word that these things are authentic.
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« Reply #2372 on: 13 March 2018, 4:05:51 AM »

Quote
  Yes, if they are facts. The whole reason for peer review is to prevent false stories getting credence.

No "reputable, peer-reviewed journal" dares to publish evidence like this which destroys evolution. Entire books have been written on this subject, not to mention the recent movie "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed." There are peer-reviewed creation journals out there, and this track will be included in our upcoming article on the Paluxy track research. However, evolutionists will simply reject such an article out of hand anyway, because it's not an evolutionary journal.

Go figure - evolutionary journals won't publish anything that knocks evolution, therefore because evidence like this won't be published in evolutionary journals, it is rejected by evolutionists.

I'm not even going to waste much time with this very silly argument that has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not the tracks are authentic.
 
 

This is merely your assertion.
Scientists welcome conflicting evidence. In fact no theory is accepted as scientific unless it is capable of being disproved.  We have only creationists word that these things are authentic.

The evidence shows the Delk Track to be authentic.
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« Reply #2373 on: 13 March 2018, 4:09:39 AM »

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The evidence shows the Delk Track to be authentic.   

At the risk of being repetitive, please post the reports of independent investigators confirming you assertion.
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« Reply #2374 on: 13 March 2018, 13:01:47 PM »

http://talkorigins.org/faqs/paluxy/mantrack.html
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« Reply #2375 on: 13 March 2018, 18:39:19 PM »

Here is a link to a detailed examination of the tracks. 
http://www.asa3.org/ASA/PSCF/1988/PSCF9-88Hastings.html

It contains numerous citations of other papers.
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« Reply #2376 on: 13 March 2018, 23:07:27 PM »

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The evidence shows the Delk Track to be authentic.   

At the risk of being repetitive, please post the reports of independent investigators confirming you assertion.

My assertion is backed by the evidence:

The Alvis Delk Track:


New fossil human with dinosaur footprint



This spectacular fossil footprint was found in July of 2000 by amateur archaeologist, Alvis Delk of Stephenville, Texas and is now on display at the Creation Evidence Museum, Glen Rose, TX. Mr. Delk found the loose slab against the bank of the Paluxy River, about one mile north of Dinosaur Valley State Park. He flipped over the rock and saw an excellent dinosaur track, so he took it home where it sat in his living room for years, with hundreds of other fossils.

Early in 2008 he had a devastating accident. He fell off of a roof incurring damage that required months of hospitalization. He still has a dangerous blood clot in his brain.

When he returned to his home, he decided he would sell the dinosaur track, thinking Dr. Carl Baugh of the nearby Creation Evidence Museum would pay a few hundred dollars for it. He began to clean the rock, and that was when he discovered the fossil human footprint underneath the dried clay!

The human footprint had been made first, and shortly thereafter (before the mud turned to stone), a dinosaur stepped in the mud with its middle toe stepping on top of the human track. You can actually see the displaced mud from the dinosaur's middle toe inside the human footprint.

Spiral CT scans are used to generate images of the inside of an object from a large series of two-dimensional X-ray images taken around a single axis of rotation. This technology provides an effective means of analyzing fossil footprints without physically destroying them. It allows us to see inside the rock, specifically, under the footprint.



The slab was taken to the Glen Rose medical center where spiral CT scans were performed on the rock. Over 800 X-ray images document density changes within the rock that correspond precisely with the fossil footprints. Of course, carvings would show no corresponding structures beneath them. The existence of following contours beneath the fossil footprints dramatically demonstrate the authenticity of both tracks.



According to evolutionary theory, the dinosaur tracks at Glen Rose, TX were made at least 100 million years before humans were supposed to have evolved. Of course dinosaurs and humans cannot be stepping in each other's footprint if they are millions of year apart. These footprints provide profound evidence refuting the evolutionary myth.

http://www.bible.ca/tracks/delk-track.htm
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« Reply #2377 on: 13 March 2018, 23:09:17 PM »


The author shares your anti-creation bias.
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« Reply #2378 on: 13 March 2018, 23:16:18 PM »

Here is a link to a detailed examination of the tracks. 
http://www.asa3.org/ASA/PSCF/1988/PSCF9-88Hastings.html

It contains numerous citations of other papers.


The author shares your anti-creationist bias.
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« Reply #2379 on: 14 March 2018, 3:11:37 AM »

If the tracks are real, humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time.
I am aware of thousands of dinosaur fossils, but, so far as I know, none of them are found mixed up with human bones. Why is this?
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« Reply #2380 on: 14 March 2018, 4:19:13 AM »

If the tracks are real, humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time.
I am aware of thousands of dinosaur fossils, but, so far as I know, none of them are found mixed up with human bones. Why is this?

Although human and dinosaur fossils have never been discovered together, this in no way refutes the biblical account. Fossilization is a rare event in which vertebrates such as dinosaurs and humans comprise less than 0.0125% of the entire fossil record.3 In the case of the coelacanth, tuatara, and rock rat, observational evidence demonstrates that creatures can easily coexist without leaving a record of such coexistence in the fossil record.

https://creation.com/dinosaurs-humans-and-the-fossil-record

Here is evidence humans and dinosaurs lived together:

Proof Man and Dinosaurs lived together

Various Indian drawings on rock walls tell us the Indians actually saw living dinosaurs.  They drew on rock walls what they saw with their eyes.  The Anasazi Indians of the American southwest made pictures on rocks showing dinosaurs and men.  A thick coat of "desert varnish" on these images proves that these pictures were created many hundreds of years ago. Desert varnish (windblown pollen and dust) slowly accumulates on rocks in the desert; the varnish on the Anasazi pictures is so thick that they must have been drawn many hundreds of years ago. Therefore,
these art works are not frauds perpetrated by mischievous European newcomers (who had no motive for such a fraud), but were made by natives long ago, showing men and dinosaurs living together.  In the ancient city of Angkor in Cambodia, we can see a stegosaurus carved in one of the temple walls.  In Mexico, many hundreds ancient dinosaur figurines have been unearthed, some even with men riding them! (see below)


This is not just accidental similarity between the Indian artwork and what we believe the edmontosaurus looked like!


This remarkable pictograph can be seen etched into the canyon walls of the Grand Canyon.  Other animals show the same clarity.  The people living there not too long ago saw reptiles that we only see in books.  They painted what they observed.  Dinosaurs did not become extinct 65 million years before the "evolution" of man.  They were obviously created at the same time!


Cave drawing to the right of a long neck dragon. Bottom picture is outlined in white to show it's shape better.


Ica Stone, found in the Ica valley in Peru. The people lived there about 3,000 years ago. How did they know what dinosaurs looked like?


More Indian artwork from Canada.  The evolutionary time-table has been proved entirely wrong.


This carving was found on a Cambodian temple wall. It is an excellent depiction of a stegosaurus, many hundreds of years old.  How could they have known about stegosaurs if they had never seen one?

Thousands of Indian clay figurines have been unearthed in Acambaro, Mexico.



This pottery is several thousand years old. Remember we aren't supposed to know what dinosaurs looked like until the late 1800's really the mid 1900's. This Pottery is dated back to between 800BC and 200 AD.





The Alvis Delk Track
[/B]

This spectacular fossil footprint was found in July of 2000 by amateur archaeologist, Alvis Delk of Stephenville, Texas and is now on display at the Creation Evidence Museum, Glen Rose, TX. Mr. Delk found the loose slab against the bank of the Paluxy River, about one mile north of Dinosaur Valley State Park. He flipped over the rock and saw an excellent dinosaur track, so he took it home where it sat in his living room for years, with hundreds of other fossils.

Early in 2008 he had a devastating accident. He fell off of a roof incurring damage that required months of hospitalization. He still has a dangerous blood clot in his brain. When he returned to his home, he decided he would sell the dinosaur track, thinking Dr. Carl Baugh of the nearby Creation Evidence Museum would pay a few hundred dollars for it. He began to clean the rock, and that was when he discovered the fossil human footprint underneath the dried clay!  The human footprint had been made first, and shortly thereafter (before the mud turned to stone), a dinosaur stepped in the mud with its middle toe stepping on top of the human track. You can actually see the displaced mud from the dinosaur's middle toe inside the human footprint.  Spiral CT scans are used to generate images of the inside of an object from a large series of two-dimensional X-ray images taken around a single axis of rotation. This technology provides an effective means of analyzing fossil footprints without physically destroying them. It allows us to see inside the rock, specifically, under the footprint.



The slab was taken to the Glen Rose medical center where spiral CT scans were performed on the rock. Over 800 X-ray images document density changes within the rock that correspond precisely with the fossil footprints. Of course, carvings would show no corresponding structures beneath them. The existence of following contours beneath the fossil footprints dramatically demonstrate the authenticity of both tracks.

According to evolutionary theory, the dinosaur tracks at Glen Rose, TX were made at least 100 million years before humans were supposed to have evolved. Of course dinosaurs and humans cannot be stepping in each other's footprint if they are millions of years apart. These footprints provide profound evidence refuting the evolutionary myth.  Of course, evolutionists do everything they can to refute findings like these, I guess simply because it doesn't agree with their religion.  How much better would their time be spent seriously looking into all of the archaeological finds around them, instead of discounting them!

Precambrian Trilobites are supposed to be separated from man by millions of years, yet fossils appear in "recent" strata and even within a fossil sandal print.  There are thousands of fossils that are "out of order" and even sophisticated man-made artifacts in "ancient" rock. There are fossil clams on the highest mountains and human tracks in supposed ancient layers of volcanic ash.


A fossil footprint was discovered in June 1968 by William J. Meister on an expedition to Antelope Spring, 43 miles west of Delta, Utah. The sandal that seems to have crushed a living trilobite was 10 1/4 inches long and 3 1/2 inches wide; the heel is indented slightly more than the sole, as a human shoe print would be.


This photo was taken by the late Dr. Cecil Daugherty, in the 1970's. It shows a human footprint within a trail of dinosaur tracks in the bed of the Paluxy River in Glen Rose, Texas.

http://www.6000years.org/frame.php?page=dinosaurs
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« Reply #2381 on: 14 March 2018, 12:55:30 PM »

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  Although human and dinosaur fossils have never been discovered together, this in no way refutes the biblical account.   

Although creationists assert that there are no transitional fossils, this in no way invalidates the Theory of Evolution.
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« Reply #2382 on: 14 March 2018, 16:29:21 PM »

As drawings of things we interpret as dinosaurs are proof that humans and dinosaurs coexisted, I attach a link to a number of thins that humans have drawn. By the same reasoning, these must have existed too.
https://imgur.com/gallery/2dYLS2w
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« Reply #2383 on: 16 March 2018, 3:29:04 AM »

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  Although human and dinosaur fossils have never been discovered together, this in no way refutes the biblical account.   

Although creationists assert that there are no transitional fossils, this in no way invalidates the Theory of Evolution.

If there are no transitional fossils in the millions of fossils that have been catalogued, how can there be any evolution?

The disciplines of science prove creation and disprove evolution. For example:

FOSSILS AND STRATA



Here you will learn the truth about the evolutionary hoax in the fossils (paleontology) and the sedimentary rock strata (historical geology). Evolutionary theory is a myth. The truth is that God created everything; the evidence clearly points to it. Nothing else can explain the mountain of evidence. This is science vs. evolution—a Creation-Evolution Encyclopedia, brought to you by Creation Science Facts.

CONTENT: Fossils and Strata: 1

Time to Tell the Truth: It is time to expose the fossil and strata hoax
Background of the Theory: Some facts you should know
Is Enough Evidence Available?: Literally millions of fossils have been found and identified—yet all are distinct species
Dating the Strata and Fossils: The circular reasoning used to date the rocks by the fossils and the fossils by the rocks—and all of it by a theory

Page numbers without book references refer to the book, FOSSILS AND STRATA, from which these facts are summarized. An asterisk ( * ) by a name indicates that person is not known to be a creationist. Of over 4,000 quotations in the set of books this Encyclopedia is based on, only 164 statements are by creationists.

TIME TO TELL THE TRUTH

It is time to expose the fossil and strata hoax.

It is astounding that the evolutionists dare to trumpet the statement that the fossils in the rock strata prove that evolution has occurred over millions of years in the past—when the truth is that researchers have not found one evidence that any evolutionary changes in plants and animals has ever occurred!

In addition, another startling fact is that neither the rocks nor the sedimentary strata support the theory that long ages of time have existed on our planet!

The public must be told the true facts. Here is a brief overview of those facts. Far more will be found in our book, Fossils and Strata.
The evolutionists' problem is to explain away the fact that what we learn from the strata points to the Genesis Flood, and the fossils themselves clearly disprove species evolution.

The evolutionists' solution has been to invent a timing sequence that is pure theory and has no relation to reality. Consider these facts:

BACKGROUND OF THE THEORY

Some facts you should know.

Fossils and strata. Fossil remains provide evolutionists with their only real evidence that evolution might have occurred in the distant past. Yet there is an astounding amount of evidence to disprove their claims.

Fossils are the remains of living creatures, both plants and animals. These fossil remains may include shells, teeth, bones, entire skeletons, footprints, bird tracks, tail marks, or rain drops. They are found in sedimentary rock. Sedimentary rock is composed of compacted sediments (sand, gravel, clay, etc.) laid down by flood waters, which have hardened into layers of stone piled up like a layered cake. Sedimentary rock is fossil bearing or fossiliferous rock.—pp. 13, 15.

Extremely important. Fossils are extremely important because they ought to provide evolutionists with all the evidence needed to show that one species has evolved into another.

Fossil evidence reveals whether evolution has occurred in the past. Genetic and mutational facts reveal whether it can occur now. (Genetics was discussed in DNA and Cells, and mutations in Mutations.)

Evidence from genetics and mutations shows that no evolution is occurring today.

Evidence from fossils is all the evolutionists have left! And, in this present article, we will find that no animals have changed into others at any time in the past.—pp. 15, 17.

Uniformitarianism. This, a basic theory of evolution, teaches that everything has occurred in the past just the way it occurs today. In other words, evolutionists maintain there have never been any catastrophes in the past, i.e., no great Flood which caused the strata and buried the plants and animals fossilized within it. But the evidence shown in this article clearly disproves that theory.—pp. 17-18.

The Cambrian explosion. This is a key factor. At the very bottom of the strata (which is presumed to be the oldest) is the Cambrian level. Many types of fossils are suddenly found there. Many of them (including the trilobite, which is quite common on that level) are very complex. The trilobite has a very complex lens system in its eye.

Evolutionary theory requires that there only be one or two species in the bottom fossil level, yet what we find agrees instead with the Genesis Flood.—p. 18.

The Genesis Flood. The solution to the mystery of the rock strata, and the fossils in them, is to be found in the first book in the Bible: Genesis, chapters 6 to 9. A sudden, worldwide Flood occurred which laid down the mud and sediment and buried the plants and animals in it.

First, in the lowest strata, the slow moving creatures were buried; then, in higher layers, faster moving creatures. This explains why larger, stronger creatures are in the upper levels. It also explains why remains of humans are rarely found in the strata: They were able to run to the tops of the mountains and were drowned above the laid-down sediments.—pp. 18-19.

IS ENOUGH EVIDENCE AVAILABLE?

Literally millions of fossils have been found and identified—yet all are distinct species.

This is a crucial question: Is enough fossil and strata evidence available to enable us to definitively arrive at answers?

Yes there is! According to *Kier, there are over 100 million fossils housed in museums and other collections! Geologists have been digging them out of the ground since the early 19th century.

If the evidence supporting evolutionary claims existed, it ought to have been discovered by now!

By the present time, the transitional forms (the halfway species between one species and the other it evolved into) ought to have been found. But such evidence does not exist.

Gish says that evolutionists maintain that it takes 100 million years to evolve a fish. Therefore, there ought to be thousands of transitional forms, halfway between the fish and what it evolved from.

For example, evolutionists teach that a land animal, such as a cow, went into the ocean and changed into a whale. (Don't laugh; that is what they believe.) But that would mean we ought to have thousands of halfway species between the two—but such creatures are not to be found in the fossil record or in the oceans today.—pp. 19-20.

DATING THE STRATA AND FOSSILS

The circular reasoning used to date the rocks by the fossils and the fossils by the rocks—and all of it by a theory.

How are the rocks and fossils dated? Read anything on the subject by evolutionists, and you will quickly learn that the one obvious proof that the strata and fossils must be so ancient—is the fact that the strata all have dates going back into the multimillions of years!

Okay, but now let us go deeper into the matter: Exactly how are the strata and fossils dated?

Let me tell you in just one sentence: Evolutionary scientists dated the rocks from the fossils, and then dated the fossils from their theories! And they decided on nearly all those dates over a century ago—when only a few fossils had been found!

That may seem astounding, but it is true.—p. 20.

Real history. Real history only goes back about 4,500 years. Everything before that is guesswork. We know that to be true because the various ancient dating methods (C14, radiodating, etc.) have severe inherent dating flaws. (See Dating of Time in Evolution and The Truth about Archaeological Dating.)—p. 20.

Not dated by appearance. The strata are not dated by appearance, for various types of rocks, of all levels and "ages," may be found in strata. They are not dated by their mineral, metallic, or petroleum content.—p. 20.

Not dated by location. The strata are not dated by where they are found or by their structure, breaks, faults, or folds.—p. 20.

Not dated by vertical location. The rocks are not dated by their sequence in the strata, for "younger" strata may be below "older" strata.—pp. 20-21.

Not dated by radioactivity. To anyone familiar with the fact that radiodating dates are wildly inconsistent, it should come as no surprise that strata dates are not obtained by radiodating. (See Dating of Time in Evolution for more on that.)—p. 21.

Are the rocks dated by fossils? That is about all that is left,—yet the same fossils are found in many different strata! A full 99.8 percent of the fossils are useless for dating, because they are in so many different strata.

How then are the rocks dated?—pp. 21-23.

Rocks are dated by index fossils. It may seem incredible that all evolutionary geology is keyed to a few fossils, but it is true. In every strata, there are a few fossils which are mainly found in that one strata. The strata is then dated according to those index fossils.

That may seem like going out on the limb quite a bit, but it does seem sort of scientific. Okay, everything is dated by a certain few fossils.

But, wait a minute! How did the evolutionists decide what dates to apply to those index fossils?

They are dated by a theory!—p. 21.

Fossils dated by a theory. There is no way to tell the age of a certain fossil—any fossil. No possible way. The evolutionists do not even try to do so. Instead, they date the fossils by their theory of how old they think the fossils and those strata should be!

The whole idea of "index fossils" is a charade to hide the fact that each strata, and everything in it, is assigned an arbitrary date—according to what men imagine it ought to be!

(It is revealing that, every few years, another "index fossil" is found to be alive today! Then it must be removed from the "index fossil" list, since index fossils are supposed to have died out at a certain ancient date. Many of the index fossils are trilobites, tiny ancient sea creatures, generally less than an inch in length.)—pp. 21, 23.

Circular reasoning. Although it is called "fossil evidence," circular reasoning is the basis of the evidence used to prove evolution to be true.

Every thinking person knows that fossil evidence is supposed to be the primary basis for evolution. Yet we find that it is based on circular reasoning: They use their theory of rock strata to date the fossils, and then use their theory of fossils to date the strata!

Although it is called "survival of the fittest," circular reasoning is also the basis of the means, or mechanism, by which evolution is supposed to occur.

The fittest survive because they are fittest or, to say it another way, the survivors survive because they survive; therefore they are the fittest. But all they do is survive; they do not evolve into something different!—pp. 23, 25.

http://www.pathlights.com/ce_encyclopedia/Encyclopedia/12fos02.htm
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« Reply #2384 on: 16 March 2018, 20:39:34 PM »

The Fossil Fallacy
Creationists' demand for fossils that represent "missing links" reveals a deep misunderstanding of science

By Michael Shermer on March 1, 2005
The Fossil Fallacy
Credit: BRAD HINES
Nineteenth-century English social scientist Herbert Spencer made this prescient observation: "Those who cavalierly reject the Theory of Evolution, as not adequately supported by facts, seem quite to forget that their own theory is supported by no facts at all." Well over a century later nothing has changed. When I debate creationists, they present not one fact in favor of creation and instead demand "just one transitional fossil" that proves evolution. When I do offer evidence (for example, Ambulocetus natans, a transitional fossil between ancient land mammals and modern whales), they respond that there are now two gaps in the fossil record.
This is a clever debate retort, but it reveals a profound error that I call the Fossil Fallacy: the belief that a "single fossil"--one bit of data--constitutes proof of a multifarious process or historical sequence. In fact, proof is derived through a convergence of evidence from numerous lines of inquiry--multiple, independent inductions, all of which point to an unmistakable conclusion.

We know evolution happened not because of transitional fossils such as A. natans but because of the convergence of evidence from such diverse fields as geology, paleontology, biogeography, comparative anatomy and physiology, molecular biology, genetics, and many more. No single discovery from any of these fields denotes proof of evolution, but together they reveal that life evolved in a certain sequence by a particular process.

One of the finest compilations of evolutionary data and theory since Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species is Richard Dawkins's magnum opus, The Ancestor's Tale: A Pilgrimage to the Dawn of Evolution (Houghton Mifflin, 2004)--688 pages of convergent science recounted with literary elegance. Dawkins traces numerous transitional fossils (what he calls "concestors," the last common ancestor shared by a set of species) from Homo sapiens back four billion years to the origin of heredity and the emergence of evolution. No single concestor proves that evolution happened, but together they reveal a majestic story of process over time.


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We know evolution happened because of a convergence of evidence.
Consider the tale of the dog. With so many breeds of dogs popular for so many thousands of years, one would think there would be an abundance of transitional fossils providing paleontologists with copious data from which to reconstruct their evolutionary ancestry. In fact, according to Jennifer A. Leonard, an evolutionary biologist then at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History, "the fossil record from wolves to dogs is pretty sparse." Then how do we know whence dogs evolved? In the November 22, 2002, Science, Leonard and her colleagues report that mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) data from early dog remains "strongly support the hypothesis that ancient American and Eurasian domestic dogs share a common origin from Old World gray wolves."

In the same issue, molecular biologist Peter Savolainen of the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and his colleagues note that even though the fossil record is problematic, their study of mtDNA sequence variation among 654 domestic dogs from around the world "points to an origin of the domestic dog in East Asia" about 15,000 years before the present from a single gene pool of wolves.

Finally, anthropologist Brian Hare of Harvard University and his colleagues describe in this same issue the results of a study showing that domestic dogs are more skillful than wolves at using human signals to indicate the location of hidden food. Yet "dogs and wolves do not perform differently in a nonsocial memory task, ruling out the possibility that dogs outperform wolves in all human-guided tasks," they write. Therefore, "dogs' social-communicative skills with humans were acquired during the process of domestication."

No single fossil proves that dogs came from wolves, but archaeological, morphological, genetic and behavioral "fossils" converge to reveal the concestor of all dogs to be the East Asian wolf. The tale of human evolution is divulged in a similar manner (although here we do have an abundance of fossils), as it is for all concestors in the history of life. We know evolution happened because innumerable bits of data from myriad fields of science conjoin to paint a rich portrait of life's pilgrimage.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)
Michael Shermer is publisher of Skeptic (www.skeptic.com) and author of The Science of Good and Evil.
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