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Re: Not Enough Data

Subject: Re: Not Enough Data
From: "Jim McGinn"
Date: 29 Oct 2006 12:53:51 -0800
Newsgroups: sci.anthropology.paleo
Gerrit Hanenburg wrote:
> [email protected] wrote:
> >So, you're saying that my supposition that human intelligence,
> >consciousness, and communicativeness evolved gradually over millions of
> >years is speculative but that your supposition, for which there is no
> >positive evidence, that these abilities evolved instantaneously is not
> >wildly speculative?  Right
> I never maintained that "these abilities evolved instantaneously".

Yes, but that's because you have no hypothesis at all.  It's always
easy for you to claim that you "never maintained," something since you
maintain nothing at all.

Face it Gerrit.  It doesn't make sense.  We have clear evidence of
intellect at 2 mya.  You antrhro bozos are incapable of anything but
pretense.  You can't answer any questions.

> >> >Science tells us to not let the evidence dictate conclusions.  (IOW,
> >> >don't let the evidence lead you by the nose.)
> >>
> >> Ultimately evidence is the answer to the questions posed by hypotheses
> >> (for example (simplified): was A. afarensis a biped? Answer: yes.
> >> Evidence: anatomy of postcranial fossil material and fossil
> >> footprints). In that sense the evidence does dictate conclusions.
> >
> >Is it not reasonable to assume that an animal that can construct tools/
> >weapons at 2.5 mya would also understand the basics of cultivation.  Is
> >this not a proper use of evidence?  Why not.  Be explicit.
> It's overinterpretation,

Over interpretation.  This is an excuse for when you have no dispute
with somebody elses thinking.

> inference beyond what the evidence can
> provide.

How do you supposedly know a priori what inferences a piece of evidence
can provide?  This is pseuso-science.  In contrast to how you were
trained evidence does not come with attached conclusions.

> I don't know what it required for Homo erectus to manufacture
> an Acheulean handaxe. I suppose they needed a certain intuitive or
> explicit knowledge of material properties, fracture mechanics,
> geometry.

It's because you anthropologists were trained to not apply reason to
the evidence.

> Rather specific knowledge that may have taken a long time to
> acquire and apparently went through a long period of stasis. There is
> no simple correlation between such a skill and other completely
> different abilities in an extinct species.
> The rather simple and static characteristics of the Acheulean toolkit
> does not exactly suggest a very creative, inventive and exploratory
> state of mind compared to the explosive development of toolkits in the
> upper paleolithic.
> >Is absence of evidence for a supposition evidence that the supposition
> >is wrong?
> No.

So, IOW, you really have no fact based dispute with anything I'm
saying.  Right.

Wouldn't it have been easier if you just admitted this from the start.

> >Think about it.  It's all just common sense here, Gerrit.
> >You can't dismiss the possibility of something that may or may not have
> >happpened in the past based on no evidence
> >
> >> Thus, until we find evidence of graves associated with Homo erectus,
> >> we may assume that they didn't bury their dead (negative state).
> >
> >Or we can assume that they did and that we haven't yet found this
> >evidence, right?

Answer the question you evasive twit.

> That position is impossible to falsify

That position/assumption is a position/assumption, it's not a
hypothesis.  There is no test being offered.  You're just confusing
yourself with your misapplication of scientific processes.

 because the discovery of
> evidence can be postponed indefinitely, whereas the opposite
> assumption can be easily falsified be a single piece of evidence.
> (the assumption that there are no black swans is falsified by a single
> instance of a black swan, wheras the assumption that there exist black
> swans can never be falsified by a lack of evidence for black swans).


> >> They may have, but there's not even any evidence to make them suspect.
> >
> >Sometimes we have no choice but to resort to common sense and reason.
> >Is it reasonable to assume that an animal that can fashion tools would
> >be unable to realize the common sense benefits of some form of
> >cultivation?  It does not seem reasonable to me.  Are you suggesting we
> >cannot apply reason to the data?

No response.

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