From: Jim.Foley@symbios.com To: email@example.com In-reply-to: <firstname.lastname@example.org> (email@example.com) Subject: Re: Foley's reply to Milton Reply-to: Jim.Foley@symbios.com --text follows this line-- >>>>> On Sun, 07 Dec 1997 18:49:05, firstname.lastname@example.org (Richard >>>>> Milton) said: >Jim Foley wrote:- >>Because Richard Milton's last message was getting quite long, I will >>respond to it in parts. This first part responds to his claims about >>Java Man. >I agree with Jim Foley that this correspondence is getting long and >I'm happy for it to be broken up into more manageable parts. However, >I'm concerned that some readers, including Jim himself, have lost >touch with the original point at issue and I'd like to restate it. >Jim Foley, and all Darwinist scientists, believe that humans and modern >apes have evolved from a common ape-like ancestor by Darwinian processes >of mutation and natural selection. Jim and his colleagues believe that >they have presented strong evidence for this theory in the form of fossil >remains of creatures intermediate between the hypothetical ape-like >ancestor and humans. >I have rebutted this second belief by saying that the evidence offered is >not strong but weak for two reasons. First the evidence is ambiguous and >Darwinists have misrepresented the evidence as being stronger than it is. >Second much of the evidence can be explained more economically by >explanations other than Darwinian evolutionary processes. >An important point to note here is that it is Jim and his colleagues who >are making an extraordinary claim and I who am questioning Jim's claims. >In his last two messages, Jim has cleverly attempted to reverse our >positions, suggesting it is incumbent on me to produce evidence to support >my position (he talks above, for instance, of _my_ claims for "Java man".) >This is nonsense. As noted skeptic Carl Sagan said: "extraordinary claims >demand extraordinary evidence". Human descent from an apelike ancestor is >an extraordinary claim: so Jim and Darwinists have to convince us that >they have produced extraordinary evidence -- not merely an argumentative >interpretation. I shall refer back to the "Sagan Principle" at >appropriate points in what follows. >>> > RICHARD MILTON >>> > > Glen [Kuban] is becoming confused again. FACT: Java "man" was a >>> > > gibbon (see any competent authority). >>> > > >>> > JIM FOLEY >>> >>Glen is correct. *Every* competent authority I'm aware of (Leakey, >>> >>Johanson, Walker, Trinkaus, Wood, Day, Tattersall, Brace, Campbell, etc) >>> >>considers Java Man to be a member of Homo erectus. Richard, which >>> >>competent authorities do you have in mind? >>> > >>> > RM >>> >>> For a clear resume of the real facts see John Reader _Missing Links_, >>> >>> 1981, [details of discovery of Java Man followed ...] >>> > >>> > JF >>> > I don't dispute any of his facts about how Java Man was discovered. But >>> > does he give any evidence that Java Man is a gibbon? I'll bet he says, >>> > as I do, that Java Man is Homo erectus. >>> >>> RM >>> If you consult the reference I gave, you will find that John >>> Reader explains how Eugene Dubois' 'discovery' is entirely bogus and >>> consists of an ape-like skull cap that was found in a different place and >>> at a different time from a human thigh bone. >> >>I did consult it, and I found that: >> >> "The new specimens [the Sangiran and Peking skulls] matched what there >> was of Dubois' fossils, and suplied enough of what was missing to satisfy >> everyone that the Java and Peking fossils all represented an early form >> of man, with almost nothing of the ape about him." >> >>This is meant to support your claim that Java Man was a gibbon? >Jim already knows that I was referring to the discovery of "Java Man" >by Eugene Dubois, not to the discovery of human fossils by others. The above quote clearly refers to Dubois' Java Man fossil as well as these others, and states that later fossil finds showed it to belong to a primitive human. This from the source that *you* gave as support for the claim that Java Man was an ape. >Dubois was responsible for neither the Sangiran nor the Peking fossils >(which have been assigned to Homo because they are human). The Sangiran and Peking fossils are assigned to Homo erectus, as is the Java Man skullcap. The close resemblance of the Peking Man skulls to Java Man has been recognized ever since they were discovered and is well documented. >>> RM >>> >>> The leg bone was almost certainly that of a modern human. It is my >>> >>> understanding that the skullcap is now regarded as that of an extinct >>> >>> gibbon-like creature. >>> > >>> > JF >>> > On what is this understanding based? Do you know of *any* scientists >>> > qualified in paleoanthropology who believe this? >>> >>> Dr Rudolph Virchow, Director of the Berlin Society for Anthropology and >>> founder of the science of pathology in its modern form, examined Dubois' >>> fossils and wrote: In my opinion this creature >>> was an animal, a giant gibbon in fact. The thigh bone has not the >>> slightest connection with the skull." (See H. Wendt, From Ape to Adam, >>> 1972, pp 167-168). >> >>This quotation dates from 1896 (i.e. over a century ago) when only one such >>fossil was known. >In what way does the passage of time invalidate scientific data or the >methods of scientific enquiry? Are you suggesting that human anatomy has >changed since Virchow enunciated the principles by which modern pathology >is conducted? Or that ape anatomy has changed since his day? And if not, >what are you saying? Anatomy of living creatures has not changed, but it is better known than in Virchow's day, and our knowledge of the fossil record has improved immensely, both in quantity and quality. Modern scientists also have the benefit of many more decades of study on Java Man and similar fossils. >Remember that Virchow didn't merely offer an opinion on the Dubois >skullcap, he gave a scientific reason why it was that of an ape, and not >human (a reason which you have deleted): - "The skull has a deep suture >between the low vault and the upper edge of the orbits. Such a suture is >found only in apes, not in man. Thus the skull must belong to an ape." >Tell us why this reason is no longer scientifically valid, Jim. This reason is no longer scientifically valid because the same features are found on skulls, such as Sangiran 2, that are definitely not apes. (Even in 1896 Virchow's argument was hardly conclusive, for the reason that if Java Man was an ape-human intermediate, we would expect it to have some features only known in apes and not in humans. If it didn't, obviously it would have been classified as a human. Virchow's opinion was not generally accepted even 100 years ago, for the reason that although Java Man certainly had some ape-like futures, including the one mentioned, in other respects it seemed to many other authorities to be too human-like, and too large-brained, to be an ape.) >The real truth is that the scientific authority I quote doesn't suit >you because he is one of the most eminent anatomists who has lived in >the modern era and because his conclusion contradicts your Darwinist >beliefs. No, I reject his view because it was based on one partial specimen. We have many more and better specimens of Homo erectus now, and they tell us that his argument was incorrect. Isn't rejecting scientific authorities who don't suit you exactly what Richard is doing? Except that instead of rejecting one second-hand and out-of-date reference, he rejects the entire modern paleoanthropogical community as being not only wrong but so incompetent that their opinions don't even need to be considered! ><snip -- details of debate regarding views of Marcellin Boule deleted> I >have deleted this in the interests of brevity. However, if Jim wants me to >respond to his representation of Boule's views in detail I will do so >separately. Please do. I would like to know why his 1923 opinion you quoted (that Java Man was a large gibbon) should be preferred over his later opinion, based on much better evidence, that it was intermediate between apes and humans. >>> My final reference is that of Eugene Dubois himself, the discoverer of >>> so- called "Java Man", WHO EVENTUALLY DROPPED HIS HOMINID CLAIM [my >>> emphasis-JF] and in 1932 wrote, "_Pithecanthropus_ was not a man, but >>> a gigantic genus allied to the gibbons on account of its exceedingly >>> large brain volume and distinguished at the same time by its faculty of >>> assuming an erect attitude and gait." (Quoted by Stephen Jay Gould in >>> "Eight Little Piggies, 1993, p 135.) Gould quotes this with the >>> bizarre aim of proving that Dubois did _not_ think Pithecanthropus was >>> a gibbon! Dubois did believe Java Man had similarities to gibbons. That could mean either that he thought it was an ape-like creature that had nothing to do with human evolution (the interpretation of Richard Milton and of many creationists), or that he thought it was an ape-like creature which was intermediate between apes and humans. As Gould clearly shows, the latter interpretation is correct, and Dubois never dropped his claim that Java Man was a human ancestor. >>But the above quote doesn't say Java Man was a gibbon, only "allied to a >>gibbon", which is consistent with also believing that it was evolving >>towards humans. >None of the palaeontologists I quoted said that Dubois's skull _was_ a >modern gibbon as Jim knows perfectly well. I didn't say a "modern gibbon". I used the phrase "a gibbon" because that is what you used, about twenty lines up. >They said that it was a >"gigantic" gibbon (Virchow) "possibly a large gibbon" (Boule) and "a >gigantic genus allied to the gibbons" (Dubois). Their meaning is >crystal clear as Jim also knows: they are saying the most likely >explanation for the skullcap is that it belonged to an extinct ape >ancestral to, or related to modern gibbons. But as I have repeatedly >stated, the kind of ape the skullcap belongs to is scientifically >irrelevant. As it is _not_ evidence to support Darwinism then it >doesn't matter what kind of non-evidence it is. >For you to say that Dubois's quote is "consistent with also believing that >it was evolving towards humans" is a perfect example of how Darwinist >thinking is infinitely flexible and so explains every observation. I fail to see the relevance of this. A fossil with a mixture of ape and human features is hardly an anomaly, but exactly the sort of observation evolutionists would expect to find. >If you are a Darwinist then the statement that the skullcap belonged to >_any_ living organism is consistent with believing it is partway towards >evolving into humans -- whether it is that of an aardvark or a zebra. Not true. If evolution occurred we are indirectly related, however distantly, to those animals, but no-one has ever said they are evolving towards us in the sense that Homo erectus is claimed to have done (i.e. being our ancestor). >>The same Gould article also quotes Dubois as saying: >> >> "... I still believe, now more firmly than ever, that the Pithecanthropus >> of Trinil is the real 'missing link'." >No-one is disputing that Dubois claimed he had found a missing link. Excuse me? The above quote dates from the mid 1930's, but you said in a previous post, included above, that in 1932 "Eugene Dubois ... eventually dropped his hominid claim". >That is why he used the name _Pithecanthropus erectus_. The question we >are discussing here is, was the creature to whom the Trinil skullcap >belonged human-like (Homo) or apelike (eg a gibbon or gibbon-like animal). Are you a priori excluding even the possibility that it might be an intermediate with characteristics of both? >>The following report is from Nature, 136:234, Aug 10, 1935: >> >> E. Dubois: On the gibbon-like appearance of Pithecanthropus erectus. >> While possessing many gibbon-like characteristics, P. erectus fills the >> previously vacant place between the Anthropomorphae and man as regards >> cephalic coefficient. (Amsterdam Royal Acad., Proc 38, No 6, June 1935) >> >>This and Gould's article make it quite clear that Dubois was continuing to >>claim Java Man as an ape-man (albeit a gibbon-like one) and still >>considered it a human ancestor. >Your parenthetical remark "albeit a gibbon-like one" is disingenuous. The >whole point of this discussion is what kind of creature the Trinil skullcap >belonged to. You challenged me to support my statements that it was a >gibbon-like creature and I have done so. No, the whole point of this discussion is whether Dubois supported your contention that Java Man had nothing to do with human evolution ("[Dubois] eventually dropped his hominid claim"). He didn't, as you now admit above ("No-one is disputing that Dubois claimed he had found a missing link"). >>To remind everyone, Milton said that it was a "FACT" that Java Man was a >>gibbon, accepted by "any competent authority". I listed 9 living, >>recognized paleoanthropologists who all say it was Homo erectus (I could >>easily find more). Richard countered with three quotes, 101, 74, and 65 >>years old, the second of which is from Boule who later changed his mind, >>and the third of which is from Dubois, who always considered Java Man an >>ape-man and a human ancestor. >> >>Since Richard later said: >> >> "It is my understanding that the skullcap is NOW regarded as that of an >> extinct gibbon-like creature." >> >>surely it's not too much to ask for a *living* qualified scientist who >>agrees with him? Instead, he had to go back to the last *century* to >>find one, and even then it was a minority view that was refuted by later >>evidence, as his own sources document. >You seem to have not noticed that you _yourself_ just quoted the Trinil >skullcap's discoverer Eugene Dubois describing it as "gibbon-like". But Dubois died 60 years ago. Richard has dodged around the fact that his statement that "the skullcap is NOW regarded as that of an extinct gibbon-like creature" is blatantly false, and he has not even attempted to defend it. >But since Jim feels uncomfortable with authorities such as professor >Rudolph Virchow and Eugene Dubois because Virchow and Dubois agree with >me and contradict Jim, let's examine the evidence rationally. >To remind everyone of what Jim Foley is claiming here, he is saying that >the skullcap found by Eugene Dubois can justifiably be called "Java Man" >and described as ancestral to human because of A) Jim claims it has a >capacity of c900cc and B) Jim's belief that humans have descended from >apelike ancestors. (Everything else here is essentially irrelevant). I have certainly never claimed that Java Man's hominid status _relies_ on a prior belief that humans evolved. I think it is good evidence for that, regardless of one's prior beliefs. >Let's examine that proposition analytically. First the skullcap's >capacity. In reality, the Trinil skullcap represents a tiny fraction of >the skull of the individual from which it came (perhaps as little as 10 >percent or as much as 20 per cent) 10 or 20 *PERCENT*? Anyone can look at a picture of this fossil (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/java.jpg) and see that it is quite a bit more than 20 percent of the entire skull. If you're only interested in the brain size, it probably consists of about 60% of the braincase. More than enough to calculate the brain size fairly accurately. >and the total capacity of the skull from which it came depends entirely on >the assumptions you make about the creature from which it came. If you >assume it came from an apelike creature then it has a capacity of around >700-800cc. If you assume it come from a human ancestor, with an enlarged >skull to accommodate its superior humanlike brain, then it might have had >a capacity of 800-900cc as Jim asserts. Such assumptions are unnecessary, because the braincase is over 50% complete. Since the entire top of the skull is there, we know how "enlarged" it was. Only the base of the skull is missing. >There are at least three possible scientific explanations for the finding of >a 700cc-900cc capacity ape-like skull in Java:- >1. The skullcap is that of a modern great ape, such as a gorilla. Except for the inconvenient facts that it is 80% larger than the skull of an average gorilla, 20% larger than the largest gorilla ever measured, and doesn't look anything like a large gorilla skull (no huge crests, for example). In other words, you don't need to be a competent anatomist to rule out this option: a 2 year old child could tell the difference. >2. The skullcap is that of an extinct great ape of larger size than modern >apes (such as a gibbon). This possibility is supported by the fact that >there has been a tendency to gigantism among mammals (and indeed reptiles) in >the geological past (for example the extinct giant sloths and armadillos of >South America and the giant tortoises and elephants of the Siwalik Hills >beds). >3. The skullcap is that of an extinct species transitional between an >apelike ancestor and modern humans. No. 2 might have been a legitimate possibility once. But no ape fossil has ever been found with a skull which matches that of Java Man, whereas similar fossils _have_ been found which belong to Homo erectus. That makes option 2 more hypothetical than option 3. >Who has made his case scientifically here, Jim? You and your fellow >Darwinists or me? I think that should be obvious to anyone reading this debate. >>> RM >>> If the ape skullcap is _not_ legitimately associated with any human >>> remains, as Jim himself now admits, then perhaps Jim can tell us how the >>> skullcap can justifiably be described as 'Java Man' or any other kind of >>> man? What _scientific_ reason is there for thinking it human or ancestral >>> to human? >> >> Anatomy. Because the Java Man skullcap had a capacity of >> around 900-940 cc, far larger than any ape. >Both these claims are categorically and unambiguously false. As I show below, they are true and Richard's arguments against them are totally specious. >To begin with, you have deliberately chosen a high estimate for the >capacity of the complete skull (about 10 per cent of which was found). I defy anyone to look at a picture of the Java Man skullcap and say with a straight face that it is only 10% complete. >You yourself later quote Wendt as estimating the skullcap's capacity >as only 775cc. Nope. The Wendt quote (included later) says that it was the *2nd* Java Man skull, Sangiran 2 (which you say is human), which was 775 cc. I have not chosen a "high" estimate; 900 and 940 cc are the current best measurements, calculated by Tobias and Holloway. If you have a lower figure that you think is accurate, let's see a reference for it. >But even if your high estimate were correct, a capacity of around 900cc >is consistent with being a large ape like a gorilla, (or an extinct >gibbon-like creature of large size). Both of these explanations are >millions of times more probable than a Darwinian explanation and do not >require the creation of elaborate unnecessary hypothetical processes of >mutation and natural selection, Hypothetical? Natural selection and mutation have been observed in both nature and in laboratories. >or hypothetical apelike ancestors. Homo erectus is not hypothetical either, and it looks a lot more like the Java Man skullcap than a gorilla or any other ape does. >> Because we have found later similar skulls that are more >> complete and are obviously not from apes. >This is totally false. What evidence is there that the later and 'more >complete' skulls are anything whatever to do with Eugene Dubois's 'Java >Man'? The evidence is that they are very similar anatomically, as can be verified from many sources including the following: von Koenigswald and Weidenreich (Nature 144:926, 1939), Day's "Guide to Fossil Man", Klein's "The Human Career", Boule and Vallois' "Fossil Man". For example, von Koenigswald and Weidenreich state: "[Sangiran 2], preserved up to the basal region, conforms in every respect as to size, shape and details to Dubois' Trinil specimen". It is slightly smaller, 835 cc instead of 914, and "resembles the Trinil skull as closely as one egg another". If Richard thinks Sangiran 2 and Java Man belong in different species, upon what _evidence_ is he basing that opinion? Clearly not Virchow's opinion, since he died 35 years before Sangiran 2 was discovered. >You are trying to fudge together two completely unconnected sources of >evidence to lend the Dubois skullcap a spurious validity but that is a >bogus scientific procedure. If you wish to maintain that Dubois's skull >is hominid or ancestral to humans, you must prove it by reference to the >anatomy and geology of the skullcap itself, not to evidence found >elsewhere and with no provable link other than in your imagination. I >repeat, where is your proof? If you are so certain the Dubois skullcap is >human-like, show us your evidence for this belief. Already done. Sangiran 2. You dismissed it without even trying to find out about it. I have told you about it, and given you references from the scientific literature to find out more. I can't do any more; I have no way of forcing Richard to look at the evidence if he refuses to do so. It is now up to Richard to show evidence why it is invalid to assign both the Java Man skullcap and the Sangiran 2 cranium to Homo erectus. >>For example, from Wendt's "In Search of Adam" (you might also find this >>in the Wendt book you quoted), about the discovery of the Sangiran II >>skull: >> >> "The skull of Sangiran and that of Trinil, in the words of the >> anthropologist Weidenreich, "were as like as two eggs." It only >> differed in being much more nearly complete. The structure of the >> temporal sections and the position of the gap at the back of the head >> showed unmistakably that the owner had been no ape but a human being, >> an "early" specimen, to be sure, with a brain volume of 775 cc." >> (p.301) >The fact that the Dubois skullcap is so incomplete is the key objection >against it. Note also Wendt's estimate of the capacity of the skullcap -- >775cc is _less_ than the capacity of a modern gorilla. False. Gorillas average about 500 cc. Tobias (Nature, 202:3-4, 1964) says that the largest gorilla _ever_ reported is 752 cc. Holloway in the Handbook of Human Symbolic Evolution (1996) did not use that value because he was unable to find that skull; his maximum value based on a sample of 283 male gorillas was 715 cc (p.113). (Also, 775 was the size of Sangiran 2, not the Java Man skullcap) Richard's reply has ignored my main point, which was that the Sangiran 2 skull is not an ape, and is extremely similar to (but slightly *smaller* than) the Java Man skullcap. >>There is also the extreme similarity between the Java Man skullcap and the >>Turkana Boy skull (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/java15000.html). >>Is the Turkana Boy skull a human or an ape? If human, how can you then >>claim that the very similar Java Man is an ape? >It is your claim that there is an extreme similarity between 'Java Man' and >the Turkana Boy, not mine. You are asking me to substantiate your own wild >surmises for you. No, I am asking you to _look_ at the evidence, which is sitting on the web, and evaluate it, something you seem to be remarkably loath to do. Are you saying Java Man is *not* similar to the Turkana Boy? What are the differences? How can Turkana Boy be human, when it is of the same size and has the same characteristic (a 'suture' (actually a sulcus) between the vault and orbits) which you claim proves that Java Man is an ape? I would ask readers to compare my claim (that Java Man and Turkana Boy are similar) with Richard's claim that Java Man might be a gorilla, and see which is most plausible. You can find images of gorilla skulls to compare with Java Man at http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/gorilla.html and the Java Man and Turkana Boy fossils can be compared at http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/java15000.html >>> RM >>>>>> It was in recognition of these facts that the restoration of Java 'man' >>> >>> paid for by Ernst Haeckel was removed from the Leiden Museum to its >>> >>> basement and in the mid 1980s, the exhibit of Java 'man' was removed >>> >>> from public display in the American Museum of Natural History. >>> > >>> >JF >>>>References? This seems *highly* unlikely, given that Ian Tattersall, head >>> >of the Dept. of Anthropology at the AMNH, and curator of their human >>> >evolution exhibit, discusses Java Man prominently in his books "The Human >>> >Oddyssey" and "The Fossil Trail". In these books it is clear that both >>> >Tattersall and the scientific community accept Java Man as Homo erectus. >>> >>> There is nothing at all inconsistent with Dubois' "Java Man" being proved >>> bogus, removed from the AMNH yet Darwinist scientists continuing to speak >>> and write as if it were proven true. That is how Darwinism works. >>> Its power as a scientific urban myth is so great it transcends factual >>> evidence. This is the central point my book makes. >>> >>> Perhaps Jim will tell us _where precisely_ today in the American Museum of >>> Natural History we can see the casts of Eugene Dubois' "Java Man" fossils >>> that were on show until the 1980s? >> >>Sure. I emailed Ian Tattersall to ask him, and here is his reply: >> >> Dear Jim: In the mid-1980s the entire ageing "Hall of Man" (including a >> Java cast) at the AMNH was removed, to make way for the new Hall of Human >> Biology and Evolution, in which casts of Homo erectus from Java as well >> as elsewhere are prominently displayed. Hope this helps. Good luck, >> Ian. >> >>Since he did not specifically mention Dubois' skullcap, I asked him about >>it: >> >> >Ian, thanks for that info. Can you confirm that the original Trinil 2 >> >skullcap discovered by Dubois is one of those casts? >> >> I sure can. Best, Ian. >> >>So I'm curious about why you claimed that Java Man is no longer in the >>AMNH. >I am willing to accept in good faith your assurance that the cast of Dubois's >'Java Man' skullcap, having been removed in the mid-1980s as I said, has now >been put back again and, accordingly, I now withdraw my statement that it can >no longer be seen. Richard did not answer my question about why he originally claimed that Java Man was no longer in the AMNH. Whatever source made that claim is obviously unreliable, and I wonder how much of Richard's other information comes from the same place. >It is, however, disappointing to learn that, having done the scientifically >honest thing in removing Dubois's fossil, the AMNH has now gone back on its >decision and restored a bogus exhibit to its displays. I shall be making >representations to the Museum to ensure that this bogus fossil is correctly >labelled as that of an apelike creature, and making clear that there is no >scientific evidence linking it to humans. And what evidence were you planning to present to justify this? A 100-year old quote by someone who never saw more recent evidence? That'll impress them. How do you plan to show that Java Man and Sangiran 2 belong to separate species? >> JF >> By the way, I know Richard is familiar with the British Museum of >> Natural History exhibits. What do they say Java Man is? >To its credit, the British Museum is sufficiently embarrassed by Dubois's >fossils that it removed the cast of Dubois's leg bone when it was discredited >by Day and Mollison and the bogus association became no longer scientifically >tenable. (I notice you didn't ask the AMNH about the femur and they didn't >volunteer anything). Sadly, however, the museum continues to display a cast >of Dubois's skullcap in its human palaeontology exhibit, although they have >at least had the good grace to drop the discredited "Java Man" tag and have >instead now labelled the skullcap as "Trinil Man". Dubois' skullcap was found at Trinil, so "Trinil Man" is a reasonable name. I don't know why they use it instead of Java Man, but it is not a name that indicates that it belongs to an ape. >I suspect that they are trying to pull the same gypsy switch as you >attempted to pull here -- that is, trying to fudge the bogus Dubois >skullcap with the human skull found at Trinil to make them seem part of >the same evidence. (I assume you mean the 2nd Pithecanthropus skull, which was found at Sangiran, not Trinil.) I'd be interested to know why you claim this skull is bogus. >>> JF >>>>I don't know anything about the Leiden reconstruction or why it might have >>>>been removed. Any references on this? >>> >>> I've already given you the reference to this. See John Reader, 'Missing >>> Links', 1981. If you consult it you will see the photograph of >>> "Java Man" standing forlornly in the basement on page 53. >> >>So he is. Doesn't mean Java Man is a gibbon, of course. As Reader points >>out, Java Man is now thought to be more human-like than Dubois' >>reconstruction, not less. >This is an example of Foleyism that I shall treasure and will certainly >quote in my next book, if Jim will give his permission. First Jim >challenges my statement: it seems to him improbable. I did not challenge your statement. I *asked* about it because I was curious. If I had thought it was false, I would have challenged it, as I successfully did with your incorrect claim that Java Man had been removed from the AMNH. >I prove my statement with uncontestable evidence, so Jim shifts his >ground. OK so my statement is true, but now it is suddenly unimportant. I did not shift. The statement that the statue had been moved to the basement was correct (I never said otherwise), but, as I point out, Reader does not say that Java Man is an ape. (you may certainly use my statement if you include my response to your statement) >>> > JF >>> > Not a single scientist I am aware of would call Homo habilis a modern >>> > human or an ape. (I gave 5 quotes above showing differences from modern >>> > humans). Not a single scientist says that Java Man is a gibbon, something >>> > Richard claims is a "FACT" accepted by any competent authority. Not a >>> > single scientist disputes that Homo erectus is morphologically more >>> > primitive than Homo sapiens. >>> >>> Here Jim has once again grossly overstated his case when he makes >>> statements like 'Not a single scientist ...' However one can make his >>> statement approximately true by a simple change to 'Not a single Darwinist >>> scientist...' when it at once becomes tautologically true and is merely a >>> statement about ideological interpretations of ambiguous data. >> >>Would you be happier if I said "Not a single recent qualified >>paleoanthropologist" thinks Java Man is a gibbon? Now do you know of any >>exceptions? >I've already explained to you in my last post how to change this quote >to make it true. You simply restrict it Darwinists. I don't restrict it to Darwinists. I open it to *anyone* who has some expertise in the field of paleoanthropology. Does any qualified living person claim that the Java Man skull belongs to an ape? >Living or dead makes no difference, because it is ideologically-motivated >not scientifically based. I notice it's always the people who disagree with you who are ideologically motivated, and never the ones who agree. >>Since you now seem to agree that no evolutionary scientists thinks >>Java Man was a gibbon, why did you say earlier that "any competent >>authority" would accept that statement as true? Do you use some >>strange definition of "competent authority" that excludes the entire >>paleoanthropological community? >I certainly do _not_ agree. In that case, which evolutionary scientists consider (note present tense) Java Man a gibbon? >Your re-phrased statement is not equivalent to mine at all. There are >plenty of scientists (including professional biologists) who are >evolutionists but who are not Darwinists. Dr Rupert Sheldrake is a >good example. Professor Brian Goodwin is probably another. Professor >Fred Hoyle is a third. Whether Sheldrake et al. are Darwinists has nothing to do with my question. >If you wish me to I will circulate the membership of the Scientific and >Medical Network with the question: "Do you consider yourself a Darwinist?" >and let you know the result. No need. The question is irrelevant to this discussion which is about the fossil evidence. >My definition of competent is the usual one. I think it is fair to >exclude ideologically-motivated beliefs from what is competent. You appear to apply this criteria very selectively, however. You exclude all modern authorities because they are Darwinists and hence biased, but Virchow's opinion is accepted without question even though he was strongly biased against the theory of evolution. It seems to me that you pick and choose the opinions that agree with what you want to believe, and then proclaim that they are the only competent opinions. >For instance, in fifteenth century Italy it was true to say that "all >competent authorities agree that the solar system is heliocentric" even >though the majority of physicists then asserted it was terracentric. And >in eighteenth century Europe it was true to say that all competent >authorities agree that stones can fall from the sky, even though the >majority of scientists concurred with Antoine Lavoisier that "Stones >cannot fall from the sky because there are no stones in the sky." >You continue to insist on equating competency with the majority >opinion. I equate it with adherence to scientific knowledge. When Richard says "any competent authority" would say Java Man was a gibbon, any normal person would assume that this included contemporary experts. Instead, we find that *every* reference source used by Richard (Reader's "Missing Links", Johanson's "Lucy", Wendt's "From Ape to Adam") clearly states that Java Man belonged to Homo erectus, for reasons that are often explained even in the popular literature, including some of Richard's sources. Richard's "competent authorities" are so dated and obscure that you would never even find them in most libraries. Richard apparently feels qualified to dismiss all modern experts as incompetent because they are wrong, but whether they are wrong or not is what we are arguing about. Richard has not demonstrated that they are wrong, let alone incompetent. How could he, when he has not even addressed the evidence such as Sangiran 2 on which modern opinions are based? It seems obvious to me that Richard's judgement of incompetence is made solely based on whether a scientist makes statements he agrees with or not. >Getting back in touch with our objectives >========================================= >[snipped a recapitulation of Richard's arguments] >If Jim wants me, or any thinking person, to take his claims for Darwinism >seriously, he is going to have to produce some evidence that stands up to >even casual scrutiny. There is plenty of such evidence. It is waiting for Richard to give it even casual scrutiny. -- Jim Foley Jim.Foley@symbios.com In theory, theory and practice are the same, in practice they're not.
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