Common Design vs. Common Descent

I promised John Harshman for several months that I would start a discussion about common design vs. common descent, and I’d like to keep my word to him as best as possible.

Strictly the speaking common design and common descent aren’t mutually exclusive, but if one invokes the possibility of recent special creation of all life, the two being mutually exclusive would be inevitable.

If one believes in a young fossil record (YFR) and thus likely believes life is young and therefore recently created, then one is a Young Life Creationist (YLC). YEC (young earth creationists) are automatically YLCs but there are a few YLCs who believe the Earth is old. So evidence in favor of YFR is evidence in favor of common design over common descent.

One can assume for the sake of argument the mainstream geological timelines of billions of years on planet Earth. If that is the case, special creation would have to happen likely in a progressive manner. I believe Stephen Meyer and many of the original ID proponents like Walter Bradley were progressive creationists.

Since I think there is promising evidence for YFR, I don’t think too much about common design vs. common descent. If the Earth is old, but the fossil record is young, as far as I’m concerned the nested hierarchical patterns of similarity are due to common design.

That said, for the sake of this discussion I will assume the fossil record is old. But even under that assumption, I don’t see how phylogenetics solves the problem of orphan features found distributed in the nested hierarchical patterns of similarity. I should point out, there is an important distinction between taxonomic nested hierarchies and phylogenetic nested hierarchies. The nested hierarchies I refer to are taxonomic, not phylogenetic. Phylogeneticsits insist the phylogenetic trees are good explanations for the taxonomic “trees”, but it doesn’t look that way to me at all. I find it revolting to think giraffes, apes, birds and turtles are under the Sarcopterygii clade (which looks more like a coelacanth).

Phylogeny is a nice superficial explanation for the pattern of taxonomic nested hierarchy in sets of proteins, DNA, whatever so long as a feature is actually shared among the creatures. That all breaks down however when we have orphan features that are not shared by sets of creatures.

The orphan features most evident to me are those associated with Eukaryotes. Phylogeny doesn’t do a good job of accounting for those. In fact, to assume common ancestry in that case, “poof” or some unknown mechanism is indicated. If the mechanism is unknown, then why claim universal common ancestry is a fact? Wouldn’t “we don’t know for sure, but we believe” be a more accurate statement of the state of affairs rather than saying “universal common ancestry is fact.”

So whenever orphan features sort of poof into existence, that suggests to me the patterns of nested hierarchy are explained better by common design. In fact there are lots of orphan features that define major groups of creatures. Off the top of my head, eukaryotes are divided into unicellular and multicellular creatures. There are vetebrates and a variety of invertebrates. Mammals have the orphan feature of mammary glands. The list could go on and on for orphan features and the groups they define. Now I use the phrase “orphan features” because I’m not comfortable using formal terms like autapomorphy or whatever. I actually don’t know what would be a good phrase.

So whenever I see an orphan feature that isn’t readily evolvable (like say a nervous system), I presume God did it, and therefore the similarities among creatures that have different orphan features is a the result of miraculous common design not ordinary common descent.

5,163 thoughts on “Common Design vs. Common Descent

  1. Entropy:
    It’s just astounding that some guys rely on stories in some fantasy old books, and then turn to people who rely on scientific findings, and mock them by likening the scientific findings to the very fantasies that they believe to be true.

    Yes, it is astounding.. but it all depends on what you would like to view as truth…if you make up your mind early on to resist facts that alter your “truth”, you are wasting your time.. you are wasting your life…

  2. if you make up your mind early on to resist facts that alter your “truth”, you are wasting your time.. you are wasting your life…

    Scrawl that on your bathroom mirror, J-Mac. And leave it there.

  3. stcordova:
    http://www2.cnrs.fr/en/1305.htm

    I don’t think the lake varve explanation will help you hear Rumraket.And why the cretaceous period?

    But here is a problem for you:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amber

    So much for phylogenetic progression.Chemical evidence puts that in doubt, but like the way John Harshman ignored the bacteria in amber results, he’ll just write this off as another “minor” anomaly.

    You would expect that a 12 year old gets this point by now…why can’t someone with Phd get it? You don’t think people like Harsh are retarded, do you? So, what’s the problem Sal?

  4. J-Mac:
    Yes, it is astounding.. but it all depends on what you would like to view as truth…

    Well, you’re the one who prefers the fantasy books over science, and then mocks the science by likening it to your fantasy books, so no wonder you’d have this excuse.

    J-Mac:
    if you make up your mind early on to resist facts that alter your “truth”, you are wasting your time.. you are wasting your life…

    Sure you are. As you said above, you decided that fantasies is what you like to view as truth, and it’s you who resists the facts and who mocks science by likening it to your fantasies, thus shooting yourself in the foot. You don’t need to tell me that you’re wasting your time and your life.

  5. stcordova: You mean like this bird that is dead as a dead duck?How will the feathers and soft tissues sink and fossilize with the skeleton?

    Is that a serious question? You think a picture of a dead floating bird somehow means an organism can’t be buried in sediment under water?

    Well then how DID those fossil birds come to exist in marine sediements? It seems to me your picture, if you really mean that as a serious argument, is just as much a problem for the explanation you seek to replace all of geology with. But you’ve just argued that birds can’t sink.

  6. J-Mac: You would expect that a 12 year old gets this point by now…why can’t someone with Phd get it? You don’t think people like Harshare retarded, do you? So, what’s the problem Sal?

    The problem is that neither you, nor Salvador, can read for comprehension. Once you take those texts of out context you’re happy enough. But if this was about your biblical eisegesis, you’d read as much as possible to make it fit your preferred “meaning.”

    For example, right after that article about marine stuff trapped in amber describes the apparent paradox, they explain how this could have happened (trees close to the coast). Not only that, they had mentioned previously that amber with marine plankton is very, but very, rare, which makes sense, since we don’t expect it to be an every-day event. The whole ends up being clear to any reasonable person.

    But you don’t care about that because you’re committed to a fantasy book. If I say that the fantasy book said “in the beginning god created the heavens and the earth,” and that this is incorrect because the earth appeared much later than the beginning, you’re answer is a stupid excuse that the earth is mentioned after the heavens. But for the science, you stop at the word “paradox,” and could not care less for an explanation. That is called hypocrisy, and it’s mixed with plain old stupidity. Your stance is that the biblical fantasy must be true, no matter how nonsensical your excuses, and the science must be wrong, no matter how reasonable the explanations.

  7. J-Mac:
    Rumraket,

    Lookslike Rum really believes it or he is just relating us a so story that he was brainwashed to recite because he really sounds like he was there…

    Are you telling me YOU were there? Is that your standard of evidence? Somebody must have been there, or we can say nothing?

  8. Rumraket,

    Of course he’s serious. They think that the “quality” of their “arguments” increases with the amount of time they can leave you speechless, even though you’re left speechless because you’re thinking that they cannot really be that stupid.

  9. stcordova: Not a good mechanism for T-Rex burial nor bird burial

    I didn’t say it was.

    You seem to have confused a general explanation for how stratified sedimentary rocks form, with an account of how (some) species get into sediments and fossilize.

    I don’t know of many Birds (except maybe penguins) that are swimming down at the bottom of lakes, and besides if they die, their feathers and soft tissue need to sink down and be preserved without being scavanged.

    Regardless of how it happens, it must happen, after all there are fossils of terrestrial animals in otherwise aquatic sedimentary rock.

    How the heck do you explainflowering plants FOSSILIZED down there with the sea shells?

    There are many ways that can happen. A landslide where a large landmass slides into the ocean, or into a lake, or a river. Or seasonal and annual variations in the water-levels by a flood, or a flood-delta, or a beach, or shallow bank, and so on and so forth. None of this is particularly unusual.

    Do you think your lake Varve explanation explains this?Seriously, some of your thinking about this is obviously superficial:

    You’ve once again confused an explanation for how stratified sedimentary rocks can form, with an explanation for how you can end up with a mix of fossils from different environments.

    How do most stratified sedimentary rocks form? =/= How do birds or other terrestrial animals get buried and mixed in with marine sediments?

  10. Rumraket: Is that a serious question? You think a picture of a dead floating bird somehow means an organism can’t be buried in sediment under water?

    Well then how DID those fossil birds come to exist in marine sediements? It seems to me your picture, if you really mean that as a serious argument, is just as much a problem for the explanation you seek to replace all of geology with. But you’ve just argued that birds can’t sink.

    You’re counting on the WHOLE bird sinking to the bottom of a lake. That doesn’t make sense. However, a powerful cataclysm that throws up tons of mud from where there are sea creatures will bury a bird whole. How do you explain soft tissue preservation in the fossilization process. That won’t work in the scenarios you propose.

    I’m being serious, but don’t take my laughing at you as me not being serious, I’m just laughing at you.

  11. stcordova:
    http://www2.cnrs.fr/en/1305.htm

    I don’t think the lake varve explanation will help you hear Rumraket.

    I don’t think you understood what the lake varve explanation was supposed to be an explanation of.

    In what way are those marine plankton inclusions in amber any problem at all for the general process of stratification? And what does it have to do with common descent?

    Actually I think that article is more a problem for you:

    Carried out together with researchers at the Muséum national d’histoire naturelle, the study of diatoms pushed back by 10 to 30 million years the known date for the appearance of certain marine forms of this type of algae. This new information, taken together with recent data on molecular phylogeny, marks a huge advance in our understanding of the complex evolutionary history of diatoms.

    Of course, that pushes the date back by three orders of magnitude older than you think the entire universe is.

    But here is a problem for you:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amber

    How is that a problem, at all?

    So there were plants that produced resins chemically closer to flowering plants, before flowering plants evolved. And? I don’t see the problem. In fact it seems to me we might just be seeing evidence for the existence of resin-producing ancestors of flowering plants. That would explain why the resins are chemically more similar to flowering plants.

    So much for phylogenetic progression.Chemical evidence puts that in doubt

    How? It makes sense to me.

    In fact even the abstract of the paper reporting the finding confirms this: “This result demonstrates that preconifer gymnosperms evolved the biosynthetic mechanisms to produce complex polyterpenoid resins earlier than previously believed and that the biosynthetic pathways leading to the types of polylabdanoid resins that are now typically found in conifers and those now typically found in angiosperms had already diverged by the Carboniferous.”

    but like the way John Harshman ignored the bacteria in amber results, he’ll just write this off as another “minor” anomaly.

    Then allow me to top Harshman here and state outright that I don’t think this 320 million year old pre-angiosperm but chemically angiosperm-like amber even IS an anomaly. It actually lends further support to our understanding of the gradual evolutionary history of life and the chronology of the geologic column.

  12. More from Tim Clarey. I hope to see him at ICC 2018 International Conference on Creationism in July/August 2018.

    http://www.icr.org/article/8769

    The Hell Creek Formation in eastern Montana has yielded many T. rex specimens, including well-documented dinosaur soft-tissue fossils. Surprisingly, in two volumes of papers published specifically on the Hell Creek discoveries, little is mentioned of the five species of shark and 14 species of fish fossils that are indicative of marine influence.1,2 Secular scientists either ignore these findings or dismiss them as all freshwater sharks and freshwater fish, in spite of the more likely conclusion that they represent marine organisms.

    Other authors have studied the fauna of the Hell Creek Formation since the 1950s and found ample evidence of a mixture of marine and non-marine fossils.3,4 As Joseph Hartman and James Kirkland stated, “Although previously reported, knowledge of the continuation of marine conditions above the Fox Hills Formation [in the Hell Creek Formation] is not well or widely known.”1

    It is now becoming obvious that the mixing of terrestrial and marine environments is not a rare occurrence in the rock record. Recent discoveries in Morocco and Europe have shown that most dinosaurs are found with marine fossils or buried in marine sediments.

    ….
    Their survey of the upper two stages of the Cretaceous also showed nearly all dinosaur fossils were located in marine rocks. …

    Dinosaur fossils found in rock strata with marine fossils are commonplace, not the exception. The mounting empirical evidence cannot be ignored or simply explained away as a rare occurrence. The fossil evidence supports a catastrophic and global flood that mixed the marine realm with the terrestrial realm as tsunami-like waves spread ocean fauna and sediments across the continents. Genesis 7 and 8 describe this process better than any secular scientist could imagine.

    Rumraket’s VARVE explanation won’t explain the fossilized soft tissues.

    So, we’re still stuck with those birds being dated by sea shells they are buried with or even buried below the sea shells!

  13. stcordova: You’re counting on the WHOLE bird sinking to the bottom of a lake.

    The bird doesn’t really need to sink, it can get buried in sediment by being taken down with a strong current and getting caught in something on the bottom, or something landing on top of it (again, minor land/mudslides near bodies of water are very common). Or by dying at low tide, or a dry season in a flood delta, getting buried in sediment that subsequently dries and hardens, then later gets washed over again when the sea level rises. There are literally millions of ways this can happen.

    That doesn’t make sense. However, a powerful cataclysm that throws up tons of mud from where there are sea creatures will bury a bird whole.

    Sure, that could do it too. I’m pretty sure lots of local terrestrial animal and plant life got mixed up with marine organisms and sediments during the 2004 Indian ocean tsunami.

    How do you explain soft tissue preservation in the fossilization process.

    What soft tissue preservation? Are you talking about Mary Schweitzer’s findings?
    Has it been replicated by other laboratories and research teams?

    How do the authors that document such findings suggest the preservation happens?

    That won’t work in the scenarios you propose.

    Are you saying that birds have been found in marine sediments, with preserved soft-tissue? Citation please.

    I’m being serious, but don’t take my laughing at you as me not being serious, I’m just laughing at you.

    Of course you’re not being serious, you’re being deliberately obtuse and ridiculous.

  14. stcordova: Rumraket’s VARVE explanation won’t explain the fossilized soft tissues.

    Why would it? Who claims it would? What a stupid comment.

    The fact of seasonal variations in Denmark’s climate also doesn’t explain craters on the moon.

    So, we’re still stuck with those birds being dated by sea shells they are buried with or even buried below the sea shells!

    What do you mean “stuck with”? You must explain what the problem is.

  15. stcordova: The fossil evidence supports a catastrophic and global flood that mixed the marine realm with the terrestrial realm as tsunami-like waves spread ocean fauna and sediments across the continents. Genesis 7 and 8 describe this process better than any secular scientist could imagine.

    Or, earthquake-prone zones under the sea cause local tsunamies. Like constantly happens in the pacific and indian oceans.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_historical_tsunamis

    It’s almost like they happen frequently on the century-timescale, all over the world. Wait, it’s not just almost like it. That IS what happens.

  16. stcordova: So much for phylogenetic progression. Chemical evidence puts that in doubt, but like the way John Harshman ignored the bacteria in amber results, he’ll just write this off as another “minor” anomaly.

    What?

  17. stcordova: You’re counting on the WHOLE bird sinking to the bottom of a lake. That doesn’t make sense.

    Sure it does. The dead bird in your picture is probably floating because of gases from internal decomposition. Once those are out, i.e. once the balloon pops, the bird will sink.

    However, a powerful cataclysm that throws up tons of mud from where there are sea creatures will bury a bird whole.

    Might. But of course a catastrophe like that won’t form layers, just a massive mud stratum.

    How do you explain soft tissue preservation in the fossilization process. That won’t work in the scenarios you propose.

    Why not? Have you read any of the taphonomic literature?

  18. John,

    Below is from the US Geological Survey:
    https://pubs.usgs.gov/gip/geotime/fossils.html

    Keyed to the relative time scale are examples of index fossils, the forms of life which existed during limited periods of geologic time and thus are used as guides to the age of the rocks in which they are preserved.

    So what index fossils are generally used to date the strata where fossil bird lay. Rumraket doubts that they are marine fossils. It’s almost never mentioned in the literature what specifically was the index fossil was used to date the strata.

    Some are micro fossils, many of the marine variety.

    So are you admitting then, for the most part the fossilized birds are with marine fossils since marine fossils are usually used to date the strata where the birds lay?

  19. John Harshman: Sure it does. The dead bird in your picture is probably floating because of gases from internal decomposition. Once those are out, i.e. once the balloon pops, the bird will sink.

    Might. But of course a catastrophe like that won’t form layers, just a massive mud stratum.

    Why not? Have you read any of the taphonomic literature?

    Below are fossilized eggs (maybe from dinos). Do you think the creature in question took a swim and decided to dump them to the bottom of the ocean or lake?

  20. stcordova: So are you admitting then, for the most part the fossilized birds are with marine fossils since marine fossils are usually used to date the strata where the birds lay?

    No, you’re misunderstanding how it works. Bird fossils are mostly in terrestrial deposits, and index fossils are mostly marine, as are the bulk of sedimentary rocks. The marine index fossils are generally in marine deposits above or below or the other side of a facies change from the terrestrial deposits. There are exceptions, but they are indeed exceptions. And there are in fact terrestrial index fossils, and one can correlate terrestrial deposits using the fossils found in them.

    Below are fossilized eggs (maybe from dinos). Do you think the creature in question took a swim and decided to dump them to the bottom of the ocean or lake?

    No. That Oviraptor nest (and yes, it’s a dinosaur) was probably buried in a sandstorm; not water at all. The environment was desert at the time.

  21. John Harshman:

    The marine index fossils are generally in marine deposits above or below or the other side of a facies change from the terrestrial deposits.

    So there are marine fossils on top of the layers where birds are found?

    The terrestrial index fossils are things like insects. But I don’t see a lot of actual reports on the dig sites and inferences as to how a dates were arrived at. It would be helpful to know the density of marine micro fossils, for example, around the birds.

    Given that Clarey has pointed out the marine fossils around dinos, it seems as a matter of principle we could see the same around birds. Most likely it would be the marine microfossils.

    Nonetheless, it seems you are saying we identify land fossils by the sea creatures in the strata ABOVE them.

  22. John Harshman:

    No. That Oviraptor nest (and yes, it’s a dinosaur) was probably buried in a sandstorm; not water at all. The environment was desert at the time.

    So how would it get marine fossils around it if they are there. Though I don’t know if that is the case for those eggs, but then how do you explain the soft tissue dinos with marine fossils around them? If you argue they sunk to the bottom of marine ocean (T-Rex’s swim to the middle of the ocean for no good reason), why didn’t the soft tissue decay or get scavenged.

  23. J-mac,

    Since you like quantum mechanics, this is a diagram of how a molecular device in plants exploit quantum mechanics (which is reason I doubt this could just mindlessly evolve by common descent).

    The diagram is of Photosynthesis System I (PSI). Light strikes the system and the energy of the photon creates an Exciton. An Exciton is quantum mechanical quasiparticle:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exciton
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quasiparticle

    Click to Enlarge Image from Lehningher Principles of Biochemistry:
    http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/exciton.png

  24. …this is a diagram of how a molecular device in plants exploit quantum mechanics (which is reason I doubt this could just mindlessly evolve by common descent).

    Sal,

    J-Mac has already made that mistake, in two different contexts.

    Evolution doesn’t need to understand the theories behind the phenomena it exploits. It just uses them.

  25. stcordova: Since you like quantum mechanics, this is a diagram of how a molecular device in plants exploit quantum mechanics (which is reason I doubt this could just mindlessly evolve by common descent).

    Why? Evolution does not need to “understand” quantum mechanics to exploit it.

  26. stcordova: Though I don’t know if that is the case for those eggs, but then how do you explain the soft tissue dinos with marine fossils around them?

    How do you explain why *all* fossils don’t have soft tissue, if they are *all* young?

  27. stcordova: So there are marine fossils on top of the layers where birds are found?

    Marine and terrestrial deposits are interspersed throughout the column. Sea level rises, sea level drops, sea level rises again.

    The terrestrial index fossils are things like insects.

    Mammal teeth and pollen are quite common. Insects, not so much.

    But I don’t see a lot of actual reports on the dig sites and inferences as to how a dates were arrived at. It would be helpful to know the density of marine micro fossils, for example, around the birds.

    Have you looked?

    Nonetheless, it seems you are saying we identify land fossils by the sea creatures in the strata ABOVE them.

    It seems that to you because you only read for what you want to see. Strata are correlated by all manner of information: index fossils, fossil assemblages, lithology, erosional surfaces, etc., and dated radiometrically. Index fossils, which you concentrate on solely, may be above, below, or inside the strata being correlated.

  28. stcordova: So how would it get marine fossils around it if they are there.Though I don’t know if that is the case for those eggs,

    So you are assuming facts not in evidence to argue your point. Even you should realize that isn’t valid. I know of no marine fossils associated with that nest.

    but then how do you explain the soft tissue dinos with marine fossils around them? If you argue they sunk to the bottom of marine ocean (T-Rex’s swim to the middle of the ocean for no good reason), why didn’t the soft tissue decay or get scavenged.

    Please cite publication of the particular specimen you’re talking about here. Taphonomy is a big subject, and there’s lots of literature on it, none of which you seem to have ever looked at.

  29. stcordova: Since you like quantum mechanics, this is a diagram of how a molecular device in plants exploit quantum mechanics (which is reason I doubt this could just mindlessly evolve by common descent).

    No, it isn’t.

  30. stcordova: So what index fossils are generally used to date the strata where fossil bird lay. Rumraket doubts that they are marine fossils.

    Wait a minute, I doubt what in particular? That marine fossils are marine fossils, or that fossil birds are marine fossils?

    Yes for the most part I would doubt that a fossil bird was a marine fossil. Because it’s a bird, doh. But that doesn’t mean a bird can’t be buried in a marine sediment and the fossilize. For all the reasons already discussed.

  31. OMagain,

    Why? Evolution does not need to “understand” quantum mechanics to exploit it.

    So evolution can build a system that exploits the quantum property of atoms without understanding how that property works. Nifty 🙂

  32. John Harshman:

    Please cite publication of the particular specimen you’re talking about here. Taphonomy is a big subject, and there’s lots of literature on it, none of which you seem to have ever looked at.

    I cited Tim Clarey.

    As far as your accusation of confirmation bias, yours is far more on display. You don’t even deal with the Faint Young Sun Paradox. Nor the C-14 traces found in fossils or the racemization state of the proteins. You just dismiss them as minor anomalies, you don’t explain the mechanics nor physics of the problem.

    Mammal teeth and pollen are quite common. Insects, not so much.

    Thanks.

    John Harshman:

    Have you looked?

    No. What should I look for. How will I search for “mechanisms of how marine fossils get buried with T-Rex’s and Achaeopteryx”. How will it be anything but speculation. I would be interested in a physical experiment or an direct observation (like those Hurricane Papers that Kurt Wise cited).

    But as far as Taphamony, why should a paper argue a dead creature like a dinosaur didn’t get scavenged after it died or have its soft tissue decayed. You are saying the literature is large on it? Like what, how dead things don’t decay. Some vague reference to speculations isn’t going to cut it. If you have a specific reference, I’m willing to look, but just a swipe at me and insinuating I’m unwilling to learn isn’t going to cut it, and pretending there is some answer in the literature isn’t going to cut it.

    You could of course provide a paper that says something to the effect “explanation of how marine fossils got buried with T-Rex”. C’mon John, be straightforward and say whether or not you actually found a paper that gives a plausible explanation for the phenomenon Clarey is pointing out. Just saying there are piles of literature on Taphamony is about as good as saying their are piles of literature on the evolution of spliceosomal introns (but then no real mechanistic explanation of their origin).

    I’ll tell you what are some plausible taphamony phenomenon. How does a wooly mammoth get preserved with undigested food in its stomach. Well, if something FREEZES it rather quickly. So it’s a quasi tropical environment one day and then in below freezing temperature the next. How does that happen?

  33. stcordova: You mean like sea shells on top of birds?🙂

    You mean kind of like what we will see in Florida or South Louisiana with a rise in sea level? Marine, terrestrial,marine?

  34. stcordova: As far as your accusation of confirmation bias, yours is far more on display. You don’t even deal with the Faint Young Sun Paradox. Nor the C-14 traces found in fossils or the racemization state of the proteins. You just dismiss them as minor anomalies, you don’t explain the mechanics nor physics of the problem.

    The problem with that logic is you have to treat all the things that even you cannot contort as evidence for a unspecified old young Earth as the anomalies. Every objection you have is more damning for your position than an old earth because you have to explain major anomalies not minor ones. All unknowns as evidence for your position.

  35. newton:

    You mean kind of like what we will see in Florida or South Louisiana with a rise in sea level? Marine, terrestrial,marine?

    With soft tissues being preserved? I don’t think so. And well, if we see hundreds of thousands of square miles of this, that doesn’t suggest a minor rise in sea level, but AT BEST global level ecological changes.

    But you gave me an idea. Michael Oard points out living fossils that appear and disappear in the intervening layers of strata. Thanks for your response.

    He’ll be at ICC 2018 I don’t know that I’ll be able to get around to talking to him. Usually what happens in these conferences is we introduce ourselves to each other and then we follow up some day…

  36. stcordova: I cited Tim Clarey.

    Tim Clarey is a secondary source. Please cite the primary source.

    As far as your accusation of confirmation bias, yours is far more on display.You don’t even deal with the Faint Young Sun Paradox. Nor the C-14 traces found in fossils or the racemization state of the proteins.You just dismiss them as minor anomalies, you don’t explain the mechanics nor physics of the problem.

    Not my field. You, on the other hand, have no explanation for those either, nor do you have an explanation for the great bulk of geological and biological data. Let’s think about that. I have mentioned a few points, but you have consistently ignored them.

    No.What should I look for.How will I search for “mechanisms of how marine fossils get buried with T-Rex’s and Achaeopteryx”.

    First you have to establish that it’s true. Original publications, not secondary sources. Then you might consult sources on the geology of the fossils, most likely cited in those publications.

    How will it be anything but speculation.I would be interested in a physical experiment or an direct observation (like those Hurricane Papers that Kurt Wise cited).

    What “Hurricane Papers”? He’s talking about unspecified talks at unspecified meetings. And there you go again, rejecting most of science because it doesn’t happen in a lab.

    But as far as Taphamony, why should a paper argue a dead creature like a dinosaur didn’t get scavenged after it died or have its soft tissue decayed.You are saying the literature is large on it?Like what, how dead things don’t decay. Some vague reference to speculations isn’t going to cut it.If you have a specific reference, I’m willing to look, but just a swipe at me and insinuating I’m unwilling to learn isn’t going to cut it, and pretending there is some answer in the literature isn’t going to cut it.

    The fact that you are unaware of the literature whose absence you attempt to criticize is telling. I have suggested some ways to get into it, and that should suffice.

    You could of course provide a paper that says something to the effect “explanation of how marine fossils got buried with T-Rex”.

    Still waiting for that citation.

    I’ll tell you what are some plausible taphamony phenomenon.How does a wooly mammoth get preserved with undigested food in its stomach.Well, if something FREEZES it rather quickly.So it’s a quasi tropical environment one day and then in below freezing temperature the next. How does that happen?

    It wasn’t a quasi-tropical environment; that’s a creationist distortion that has been propagated unthinkingly. Bet you can’t find an actual primary source for that claim. And if you will look at the literature on frozen mammoths, there are generally explanations of how they got frozen.

  37. stcordova: Michael Oard points out living fossils that appear and disappear in the intervening layers of strata.

    Whatever are you talking about there?

  38. John Harshman:

    Tim Clarey is a secondary source. Please cite the primary source.

    Fair enough, I’ll try to develop a working relationship with him when I see him at ICC 2018. I expect Kurt Wise and Marcus Ross to be their too. They are both paleontologists, and I have a good working relationship with Marcus Ross. I can take up the issue of the primary sources with them.

    Wise was interested in developing databses of extracted cores or something when I saw him at the Baraminology/Creation Biology/Geology conference in 2012, so some of the data I’m showing interest in is of interest to others, and there is an interest in integrating and networking the availability of the data.

    John Harshman:

    Not my field.

    Exactly. You’re view that these are minor anomalies then is your view, it’s not God’s truth. I don’t think they are minor, and these topics are more my field than yours and I know some of the whispered and not so whispered dissent among the faculty about mainstream theories…

    Anyway, thank you for the discussion. Since a thread with 5000+ comments is getting unwieldy, I am looking into the forum Alan Fox put together. That might be a better way to deposit and discuss technical issues more methodically including publicly authorized (by the author) interviews and correspondences. Since some issue may remain open for months (if not for a lifetime) the forum can at least be a repository of followup data. For example, a list of discovered primary source may take a while to gather. That list would be valuable to me…

    Thanks John for your participation in this discussion.

  39. stcordova: With soft tissues being preserved? I don’t think so. And well, if we see hundreds of thousands of square miles of this, that doesn’t suggest a minor rise in sea level, but AT BEST global level ecological changes.

    You asked how does one get marine fossils above bird fossils. That is the mechanism we see today in coastal regions and which we observe historically from human habitations which are now underwater.

    Yes and we account for those global effects by known mechanisms. We can measure the movement of the tectonic plates and observe the effect that changes of global temperature has on sea levels.

    But you gave me an idea. Michael Oard points out living fossils that appear and disappear in the intervening layers of strata. Thanks for your response.

    They all lived in South Louisiana?

    He’ll be at ICC 2018 I don’t know that I’ll be able to get around to talking to him. Usually what happens in these conferences is we introduce ourselves to each other and then we follow up some day…

    Networking is good,

  40. stcordova: Thanks John for your participation in this discussion.

    What’s Harshman going to do now? You’re breaking his heart …

    I kept touching my heel that you would hit 10.000 comments… 😉

  41. J-Mac: What’s Hirschman going to do now?You’re breaking his heart …

    I kept touching my heelthat you would hit 10.000 comments… 😉

    Who is Hirschman?

  42. stcordova,

    I don’t think they are minor, and these topics are more my field than yours […]

    They are even more the field of the people whose actual field it is. Is there a rigorous analysis of this anywhere, by someone actually in the field, beyond the pages of AiG or suchlike, who have a curious habit, which by complete coincidence you share, of reporting only the anomalies?

    I would be genuinely interested in a thorough analysis of coals globally – and of the limestones with which they are often interleaved, which to my knowledge show no such anomalies, a curious fact demanding explanation on an earth young enough to preserve C14 signal (of unknown origin; presumably the atmosphere was ‘created old’!).

  43. The C14 nonsense basically comes down to contamination. Creationists who pick the samples just declare it isn’t contaminated. Yet scientists who analyze their samples routinely find evidence of contamination in them. Creationists then scream and cry that it’s excuses the scientists make up (some creationists have gone so far as to claim that coal samples close to uranium mines, which are routinely bombarded with neutrons that convert adsorbed nitrogen to C14 in the coals, arent’ contaminated. LOL).

    But the scientists can nevertheless demonstrate when proper testing procedures are followed, that uncontaminated coal and diamond samples (which are not dug out of uranium mines) measure C14 levels at machine background.

  44. Allan Miller:
    stcordova,

    They are even more the field of the people whose actual field it is. Is there a rigorous analysis of this anywhere, by someone actually in the field, beyond the pages of AiG or suchlike, who have a curious habit, which by complete coincidence you share, of reporting only the anomalies?

    I would be genuinely interested in a thorough analysis of coals globally – and of the limestones with which they are often interleaved, which to my knowledge show no such anomalies, a curious fact demanding explanation on an earth young enough to preserve C14 signal (of unknown origin; presumably the atmosphere was ‘created old’!).

    If I may point out, biology isn’t my field, but I falsified Ohno’s Nylonase hypothesis, and still people are going around citing it in their peer-reviewed papers and Ken Miller and Dennis Venema are citing it.

    Yes there are experts in Accelerator Mass Spectrometry, but their expertise doesn’t explain why there are C14 traces not attributable to instrument error. It’s anyone’s guess as to why.

    But to your question, for a more orderly and focused repository on the topic (one than can be sporadically updated), you or I can set up something at Alan Fox’s forum, TheSketpicalForum. I’m already posting on specialized topics there, maybe not of much interest to those here like:

    http://theskepticalforum.org/index.php?topic=346.msg379#new

    That’s a place where we discuss this more methodically…

    And yes, I’ve met with radio chemists studying this, and even though Hugh Miller is one of them and is a YEC, he never said, “hey Sal, this is how we fudge the data, we gotta tell lies and use bad methods and materials to prop up our story.”

  45. Rumraket:

    The C14 nonsense basically comes down to contamination

    Not true. Talk Origins points out the problem of C14 popped up when physicists were trying to get C14-free carbon for their neutrino experiments. They couldn’t find enough coal that was free of the darn thing.

    The other thing, C14 has a half life, so the C14 contamination can’t happen a long time ago because C14 contaminant itself will decay. This leads to what I called the compounding interest problem.

  46. stcordova: Not true.Talk Origins points out the problem of C14 popped up when physicists were trying to get C14-free carbon for their neutrino experiments.They couldn’t find enough coal that was free of the darn thing.

    The other thing, C14 has a half life, so the C14 contamination can’t happen a long time ago because C14 contaminant itself will decay.This leads to what I called the compounding interest problem.

    Why don’t you explain it in a coherent framework of young coal and diamonds, that also explains the kerogen in the earth that would require several atmospheres’ worth of oxygen to turn into CO2 and H2O, the cooling of massive amounts of rock in a few thousand years, and of course all of the non-carbon radiometric dating?

    No, you don’t explain, you just try to spread confusion while ignoring anything that you don’t like. Destruction is all that IDists/creationists are capable of doing.

    Glen Davidson

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