Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Human Evolution


[Neanderthal man; a biological dead end]

According to today’s New York Times, there is no fossil evidence that humans evolved from apes. This is in spite of 150 years of intensive fossil hunting. Human fossils are found, ape fossils are found, but nothing in between. I wonder why?

11 comments:

badrabbi said...

"According to today’s New York Times, there is no fossil evidence that humans evolved from apes"

Having read the same article JP has read, I am frankly astounded that JP's take on the article is characterized by the above sentence.

JP, have you no shame?

Josh said...

I'm also really confused by your take on the article after having read it. Did we read the same article? From what I understood they can't pinpoint an exact date of when Homo Sapiens popped up from Hobo Habilis and what not around 1.9 million years ago or something like that. How this has anything to do with humans not evolving from apes I'm not really sure. I'm already pretty certain how you're going to respond to our comments. Needless to say I understand your "interpretation," but it is wrong to attribute it to the New York Times when that is clearly not their conclusion.

jewish philosopher said...

What I understood from the article is as follows:

The fossil evidence includes several species from the genus Homo. These species were little different from humans and I think they were humans. Dress them in a suit, give them a haircut and any of these “cavemen” could walk around New York City unnoticed today.

There are also a few fossils of from the genus Australopithecus. They were little different from chimpanzees and I think they were chimpanzees. Put them in cage in the Bronx zoo, and no one would notice anything very odd.

So, according to the Times, the most intensive study of fossils possible, a 150-year search for the origin of man, has discovered that Africa in the distance past was little different than Africa today. Today there are chimps and people; long ago there were chimps and people. There is no clear, detailed chain of fossils demonstrating gradually improvement (AKA “evolution”) from monkeys to apes to men.

The Times spin on this is “Of course it’s out there somewhere; it just has not yet been discovered.”

And it never will be.

david said...
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Cameron said...

"William H. Kimbel, a paleoanthropologist at the Institute of Human Origins at Arizona State University, said that the million-year period “has long been the source of frustrating gaps” in the hominid fossil record. “It’s not that sites containing rocks this age are particularly rare, or that the time period in eastern Africa has not been searched by several groups,” Dr. Kimbel said. “The problem is that the fossil yield has thus far been low or poorly preserved, compared to the time periods on either side of this interval.”

- This doesn't say 'no fossil evidence', but rather 'poor fossil evidence compared to the periods on either side of this interval'.

I should add that if you accept the fossil evidence that does exist (and that is referrenced extensively throughout the NYT article you link to), you'd be forced to admit the truth of human evolution.

We share ancestors with apes - not angels.

jewish philosopher said...

Cameron, considering the huge effort which has been spent searching for the missing links between man and ape and very few bits of fossils which have been found, the argument for evolution seems very weak.

Africa in the past just doesn't seem to have been much different from Africa today. That's not what Darwin expected.

jewish philosopher said...

To me, hearing paleontologists say “We’ve got some good evidence” rings about as true as President Bush assuring us that we’ve made “some progress in Iraq”.

Cameron said...

JP: considering the huge effort which has been spent searching for the missing links between man and ape and very few bits of fossils which have been found, the argument for evolution seems very weak.

CH: The fact though is that we do have excellent evidence of evolution, and that we have exactly zero material evidence of supernatural beings. Easy for me to make a decision as to which is more reasonable.

badrabbi said...
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badrabbi said...

It is interesting that JP has quickly pounced on an article in NY Times in which frustrations in finding homo fossils are mentioned. Yet he does not mention a similar article published also in NY Times, in which a number of Homo fossils have in fact been found. Why is that?

jewish philosopher said...

Human evolution seems to be a great deal of speculation based on very little evidence by researchers who have a preconceived agenda.

The fact is that the current evidence points overwhelmingly to a series of special creations - the Big Bang, the Cambrian Explosion, the Permian–Triassic extinction event, the Cretaceous–Tertiary extinction event and others. We don't hear much about this because creation implies a creator. A creator implies God. God implies sin. Sin implies hell. Hell implies guilt, and we certainly don't want to go there. So let's just sweep everything under the rug and say "It evolved", which is a lie but avoids the slippery slope to religion.