"New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#441  Postby Calilasseia » Jul 15, 2014 7:56 pm

Oh look, more predictable apologetic bullshit. Let's take a look at this shall we, and see WHY it's bullshit?

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Rumraket wrote:Atheist on an internet forum takes up an argument in a strong tone and suddenly we're being compared to "medieval times"


Is this below just in a “strong tone”?

“..visceral hatred of everything that does not genuflect before those beloved doctrinal assertions, but has the additional malign side effect of instilling a singularly venomous notion in adherents,tedious brand of discoursive criminality oozing from the pores of your posts so often, that we can recognise the stench thereof across astronomical distances..... The wholly bogus tactics you routinely employ, in order to try and hand-wave away proper objections to your manifest fantasies and fabrications...

I’d call it intemperate.


Only because it points to the manner in which your asserted fantasies ARE fantasies, and does so in strong language because you've been peddling these fantasies repeatedly, after thorough schooling in the facts.

Jayjay4547 wrote:But I wasn’t comparing the “strong tone” to medieval times, I was comparing the intent to completely obliterate dissenting voices, to medieval times.


And once again, I demonstrated in my previous post why this assertion of yours was total and utter bollocks. Because [1] the mediaeval mindset was characterised in large part by superstition and a belief in magic, whereas I have made it abundantly clear that there is zero evidence for magic, let alone a magic man, and [2] despite your duplicitous attempt to characterise robust dissection of ideas, as being purportedly "symmetric" with the ruthless enforcement of conformity to doctrine we saw during, for example, the Inquisition, the evidence says that this assertion of yours is total horseshit.

I don't mind dissenting voices, when those dissenting voices have something positive to offer, and have evidence to support their hypotheses. What I do mind, on the other hand, is endless regurgitation of known, manifest and previously destroyed canards, in the pretence that those canards equal established fact, despite said past demolition demonstrating amply that this is not the case. Your whole "atheist ideology" canard has been carpet bombed back to the primaeval slime so often, that most reasonable people would look at the smoking crater, and conclude that your canard was well and truly dead as an idea. The FACTS tell us that your canard IS a canard, JayJay, and your continued peddling of this canard, despite it having been reduced to its constituent quarks by said FACTS, has long since left the territory of mere discoursive incompetence, and is now well and truly camped in the land of discoursive malfeasance. THAT is what I and others who care about the integrity of discourse cannot stand, JayJay, rampant discoursive criminality of the sort that your posts are redolent with. The mere fact that you had to invent this farcical caricature of my discoursive modus operandi, as a smokescreen to try and distract from the fact that you have NO substance to back your assertions, is wonderfully informative here.

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Rumraket wrote:So let's get this straight. When it is argued, with mere words, on the internet, that some ideas are terrible ideas and need to be (figuratively) destroyed, this is equal to centuries of torture, rape, murder, disease, theft, poverty, war, corruption and superstition almost all of which was instigated by fundamentalist abrahamic religious zealots?

It doesn't get any more stupid than this.


Speaking of centuries, the one that poses the greatest puzzle to us here and now is the last one, when godless totalitarianisms, all of which saw science as man’s escape from the blind superstitions of the past, loosed the most terrible genocidal destruction on mankind.


OH NOES ITS THE HITLER/STALIN/POL POT WAS AN ATHEIST CANARD!!!!1111ELEVENTYONE

Yawn fucking yawn, JayJay. Have you any idea how often this bullshit is dredged up from the slimy depths of the apologetic abyss by supernaturalists, only to be destroyed every time they try and peddle it?

Quite simply, JayJay, the assorted dictators of the 20th century were enforcing conformity to doctrines, the same way that supernaturalists did in the past. Doctrines that, just like supernaturalist doctrines, were founded upon unsupported assertions treated as fact. Moreover, these doctrines had completely fuck all to do with science, JayJay, because all too frequently, the implementors thereof indulged in pseudo-scientific nonsense. Such as Stalin's support for the ludicrous Trofim Lysenko and his "vernalism" nonsense, which, oh wait, saw evolutionary biologists being thrown into the Gulags and murdered. Nonsense such as the illiterate and infantile bilge peddled by Julius Streicher, who wrote a series of crude, racist fabrications, documented in some detail in my copy of Airey Neave's account of the Nuremeberg Trials (Hodder & Stoughton, ISBN 0 340 18128 1). Here is what Neave has to say about Streicher on pages 93-94 of Nuremberg:

Airey Neave wrote:In 1945, Streicher seemed less horrible than the shaven Gauleiter marching with his Brownshirts over the tramlines of Nuremberg. Before his fall, the citizens did not show their disapproval of his character in public. They stood obediently at the Nazi salute. in 1945 he looked older, less sadistic. It was not till he looked up at me, and his little eyes caught mine that I realised the heartless savagery of this man. No amount of pleas for compassion, no logic, no reason would have swayed him. I again thought of a mediaeval torturer bared to the waist, pitiless and enjoying the smell of burning flesh.

For years before 1940 he had been in some disgrace. He was not deterred. He continued his cunning appeal to the illiterate and superstitious. He opposed progress in medical science and aroused suspicion and hatred against Jewish doctors. In 1934 he founded a new periodical. This was Deutsche Volksgesundheit aus Blut und Boden (German National Health from Blood and Earth). It lasted twenty months.

Streicher wrote articles attacking Koch, Ehrlich and Wasserman. He accused Wasserman of inventing the test for syphilis by a blood reaction. The Jews needed the blood of Christians for their rituals! The most fantastic article appeared in the New Year of 1935. This was called 'alien albumen':

It is established for all eternity: alien albumen is the sperm of a man of alien race. One single cohabitation of a Jew with an Aryan woman is sufficient to poison her blood forever. Never will she be able to bear purely Aryan children even when married to an Aryan ... Now we know why the Jew uses every artifice of seduction in order to ravish German girls at as early an age as possible, while the Jewish doctor rapes his patients under an anaesthetic. He wants the German girl and the German woman to absorb the alien sperm of a Jew.


He then attacked vaccination, claiming that the products of 'sick animals' were introduced into the bloodstream of unsuspecting Aryans. The Nazi medical authorities while supporting him in 'his fight against the cross-breeding of races and racial degeneration' did not approve of 'all race-political and race-hygienic conceptions and theories advanced by Party Member Streicher'.

No more was heard of Streicher's anti-vaccination movement but as late as 1939, he addressed university professors at Nuremberg about a special divining rod to determine whether a person was Jew or Aryan. All purely Aryan blood belonged 'to the gold-platinum group, all Jewish blood to the tin-lead group'.

There were no doubt many Germans who doubted Streicher's sanity after reading this rubbish, with its evil humour, its appeal to the lowest.


Then of course we have Pol Pol and "Year Zero", which had nothing to do with science, and everything to do with enforcing conformity to a political doctrine once more. A doctrine that resulted in almost the entire intelligentsia of Cambodia being exterminated.

Meanwhile, returning to Hitler, because I happen to have delved into this example in somewhat more detail, let's have a look at the EVIDENCE, shall we?

I decided to perform a word search on copy of Mein Kampf, downloaded from the Gutenberg Project (English translation by James Murphy), and the results were as follows:

Number of occurrences of "Darwin" : ZERO

Number of occurrences of "God" : 37

Number of occurrences of "Almighty" : 6

Number of occurrences of "Creator" : 8

Now I've already posted several times on the subject of Hitler and Mein Kampf, when dealing with assorted other posters who wished to promote the entirely specious "Darwinism=racism" meme, or the equally specious "Hitler was an atheist" canard, but sadly, the posts over at the old Richard Dawkins Forums are now defunct, so I will have to bring the requisite material here in more detail. First of all the REAL source for much of Hitler's ideology, as determined by actual historical research as opposed to supernaturalist assertions, was the anti-Semitic and pseudo-scientific rantings of one Lanz von Liebenfels, whose journal Ostara was the principal means of disseminating anti-Semitic ideas in Vienna during Hitler's tenure there. Hitler was a subscriber to this journal, and actually visited Liebenfels at his home to request back numbers, which Liebenfels supplied.

The nonsense that Liebenfels peddled in this journal combined the weird racial theories of Madame Blavatsky and the Theosophical Society with several extremely weird ideas of his own, most of which arose from the totally lunatic work Liebenfels wrote at the beginning of the 20th century. This work, whose title alone deserves some sort of award for Pythonesque humour, is:

Theozoology, or the Account of the Sodomite Apelings and the Divine Electron

In this bizarre work, which included a rewriting of the Crucifixion scene (Liebenfels was a former Cistercian monk, defrocked in 1899 for his heretical views on the relationship between race and religion), Liebenfels provides the reader with a truly pathological example of the thinking that a warped mind can indulge in. This page provides an insight into this which I now quote from:

Lanz von Liebenfels, the famous German racial-occult theorist and publisher of "Ostara" wrote this pamphlet in 1904 and this English translation appeared in 2004, published by a group called Europa House. When one looks it up in Nicholas Goodrick-Clarkes "The Occult Roots of Nazism", a seminal work on the subject, we find the work discussed in detail on p. 94 - 98 where Clarke provided his own translations of passages from the text. Cognates of these two passages can be found, albeit in different translation, in the present pamphlet. So I think we can surmise that this is an authentic translation of the German original.

Briefly, Theozoology is a work of biblical exegesis, in keeping with Lanzs background as a Cistercian monk (defrocked in 1899). Lanz displays an impressive familiarity with a range of Biblical and apocryphal texts, as well as the Talmud, the Church Fathers, Koran, and even medieval Arthurian romances, to advance his thesis that many Hebrew and Greek words translated as "wood, water, stones, wind, etc." are actually euphemisms for various, what one might call cryptozoological creatures, "sodomite" appelings, mer-people and birdmen. He postulates that these creatures are the second Adamites, who God created from dust in Genesis 2, and are distinct from the true humans who God created in his own image in Genesis 1. The latter have the "Gotter-Elecktron" or Divine Electron and are pure Aryans; the only reason that "lower" or "dark" races came into being is through acts of bestiality with the non-human creatures created in Genesis 2. Pictures of these creatures in their true form (including dinosaurs) are displayed as an appendix at the end of the text.

The dramatic high point of the book comes with Lanzs radical re-interpretation of the Crucifixion. In Lanzs narrative Christ was held down and brutally raped by hordes of these creatures in revenge from spreading the gospel of the Aryans divine origins.

The program for action at the end makes heady reading. Lanz informs us that the last pure bred monster died out in the 900s and the only trace of them is in the non-Aryan half-breeds known as colored races. He proposes physical separation of the divine and cthonic races and the death penalty for anyone who would make the ultimate sin of mixing Holy Blood with that of the subhumans; the purity of which is supposedly the central tenet of the original teachings of Christ. He notes that women are more prone to do this than men. He also advocates a vigorous sterilization, eugenical and, in some case, euthanasia program for the upliftment of the Aryan race.


Now, let's take a look at some of this in detail, shall we? Some direct quotes from Mein Kampf to illustrate the requisite points? Let us begin ... first, one of Hitler's monotonously frequent anti-Jewish jibes (p. 161 of my electronic copy):

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:Do the Schwabing [artistic quarter] decadents look upon Germany's lot to-day as 'aesthetic'? Of course, one doesn't discuss such a question with the Jews, because they are the modern inventors of this cultural perfume. Their very existence is an incarnate denial of the beauty of God's image in His creation.


Next, a succinct and fairly chilling encapsulation of observational psychology that, despite its source (whom most people would not consider to be of reliable provenance) is actually fairly astute, and part of which describes Pharisaic religiosity to a tee (pages 216-217):

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:There are many ways of becoming resigned to this unpleasant and terrible fact. Many people go about seeing nothing or, to be more correct, not wanting to see anything. This is by far the simplest and cheapest attitude to adopt. Others cover themselves in the sacred mantle of prudery, as ridiculous as it is false. They describe the whole condition of affairs as sinful and are profoundly indignant when brought face to face with a victim. They close their eyes in reverend abhorrence to this godless scourge and pray to the Almighty that He - if possible after their own death - may rain down fire and brimstone as on Sodom and Gomorrah and so once again make an out standing example of this shameless section of humanity. Finally, there are those who are well aware of the terrible results which this scourge will and must bring about, but they merely shrug their shoulders, fully convinced of their inability to undertake anything against this peril. Hence matters are allowed to take their own course.


Next, a remark following his exhortation to strive to combat syphilis (which, needless to say, he laid at the door of "Jewish controlled" prostitution - some historians have one or two interesting theses about the connection between Hitler and syphilis by the way) which are found on page 223:

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:But if for reasons of indolence or cowardice this fight is not fought to a finish we may imagine what conditions will be like 500 years hence. Little of God's image will be left in human nature, except to mock the Creator.


And then, we have this nice passage, which should lay to rest any idea that Hitler was an atheist (relevant part highlighted in bold), which appears on pages 265-266:

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:The religious teaching of the Jews is principally a collection of instructions for maintaining the Jewish blood pure and for regulating intercourse between Jews and the rest of the world: that is to say, their relation with non-Jews. But the Jewish religious teaching is not concerned with moral problems. It is rather concerned with economic problems, and very petty ones at that. In regard to the moral value of the religious teaching of the Jews there exist and always have existed quite exhaustive studies (not from the Jewish side; for whatever the Jews have written on this question has naturally always been of a tendentious character) which show up the kind of religion that the Jews have in a light that makes it look very uncanny to the Aryan mind. The Jew himself is the best example of the kind of product which this religious training evolves. His life is of this world only and his mentality is as foreign to the true spirit of Christianity as his character was foreign to the great Founder of this new creed two thousand years ago. And the Founder of Christianity made no secret indeed of His estimation of the Jewish people. When He found it necessary He drove those enemies of the human race out of the Temple of God; because then, as always, they used religion as a means of advancing their commercial interests. But at that time Christ was nailed to the Cross for his attitude towards the Jews; whereas our modern Christians enter into party politics and when elections are being held they debase themselves to beg for Jewish votes. They even enter into political intrigues with the atheistic Jewish parties against the interests of their own Christian nation.


An insight into his arch-cynicism can be found on page 323:

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:And so, internally armed with faith in the goodness of God and the impenetrable stupidity of the electorate, the struggle for what is called 'the reconstruction of the Reich' can now begin.


Waxing lyrical about the Volk, we have, on page 331:

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:To undermine the existence of human culture by exterminating its founders and custodians would be an execrable crime in the eyes of those who believe that the folk-idea lies at the basis of human existence. Whoever would dare to raise a profane hand against that highest image of God among His creatures would sin against the bountiful Creator of this marvel and would collaborate in the expulsion from Paradise.


Here is Hitler's take on the mantra "charity begins at home", which provides more insights into his thinking on page 347:

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:How devoid of ideals and how ignoble is the whole contemporary system! The fact that the churches join in committing this sin against the image of God, even though they continue to emphasize the dignity of that image, is quite in keeping with their present activities. They talk about the Spirit, but they allow man, as the embodiment of the Spirit, to degenerate to the proletarian level. Then they look on with amazement when they realize how small is the influence of the Christian Faith in their own country and how depraved and ungodly is this riff-raff which is physically degenerate and therefore morally degenerate also. To balance this state of affairs they try to convert the Hottentots and the Zulus and the Kaffirs and to bestow on them the blessings of the Church. While our European people, God be praised and thanked, are left to become the victims of moral depravity, the pious missionary goes out to Central Africa and establishes missionary stations for negroes. Finally, sound and healthy - though primitive and backward - people will be transformed, under the name of our 'higher civilization', into a motley of lazy and brutalized mongrels.


Meanwhile, Hitler demonstrates once again the penetrating insight of Seneca, the Roman author who said "Religion is considered true by the foolish, false by teh wise, and useful by the leaders" ... the passage below appears on page 371:

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:Here the Catholic Church presents an instructive example. Clerical celibacy forces the Church to recruit its priests not from their own ranks but progressively from the masses of the people. Yet there are not many who recognize the significance of celibacy in this relation. But therein lies the cause of the inexhaustible vigour which characterizes that ancient institution. For by thus unceasingly recruiting the ecclesiastical dignitaries from the lower classes of the people, the Church is enabled not only to maintain the contact of instinctive understanding with the masses of the population but also to assure itself of always being able to draw upon that fund of energy which is present in this form only among the popular masses. Hence the surprising youthfulness of that gigantic organism, its mental flexibility and its iron will-power.


Here is the vision of destiny again, along with the usual lament about Mammon, which of course Hitler identifies with nauseating predictability as being "Jewish" in origin, found on page 374:

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:It may be that money has become the one power that governs life to-day. Yet a time will come when men will again bow to higher gods. Much that we have to-day owes its existence to the desire for money and property; but there is very little among all this which would leave the world poorer by its lack.


On the subject of dealing with left-wing opponents (page 409):

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:In 1919-20 and also in 1921 I attended some of the bourgeois meetings. Invariably I had the same feeling towards these as towards the compulsory dose of castor oil in my boyhood days. It just had to be taken because it was good for one: but it certainly tasted unpleasant. If it were possible to tie ropes round the German people and forcibly drag them to these bourgeois meetings, keeping them there behind barred doors and allowing nobody to escape until the meeting closed, then this procedure might prove successful in the course of a few hundred years. For my own part, I must frankly admit that, under such circumstances, I could not find life worth living; and indeed I should no longer wish to be a German. But, thank God, all this is impossible. And so it is not surprising that the sane and unspoilt masses shun these 'bourgeois mass meetings' as the devil shuns holy water.


Then, we have this, in which a crude diatribe on the crude and familiar Hitlerian theme of sexual corruption of young Aryan girls by 'inferior races' is followed by language that seems straight out of the apologetics playbook (page 475):

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:Look at the ravages from which our people are suffering daily as a result of being contaminated with Jewish blood. Bear in mind the fact that this poisonous contamination can be eliminated from the national body only after centuries, or perhaps never. Think further of how the process of racial decomposition is debasing and in some cases even destroying the fundamental Aryan qualities of our German people, so that our cultural creativeness as a nation is gradually becoming impotent and we are running the danger, at least in our great cities, of falling to the level where Southern Italy is to-day. This pestilential adulteration of the blood, of which hundreds of thousands of our people take no account, is being systematically practised by the Jew to-day. Systematically these negroid parasites in our national body corrupt our innocent fair-haired girls and thus destroy something which can no longer be replaced in this world.

The two Christian denominations look on with indifference at the profanation and destruction of a noble and unique creature who was given to the world as a gift of God's grace. For the future of the world, however, it does not matter which of the two triumphs over the other, the Catholic or the Protestant. But it does matter whether Aryan humanity survives or perishes. And yet the two Christian denominations are not contending against the destroyer of Aryan humanity but are trying to destroy one another. Everybody who has the right kind of feeling for his country is solemnly bound, each within his own denomination, to see to it that he is not constantly talking about the Will of God merely from the lips but that in actual fact he fulfils the Will of God and does not allow God's handiwork to be debased. For it was by the Will of God that men were made of a certain bodily shape, were given their natures and their faculties. Whoever destroys His work wages war against God's Creation and God's Will.


More rhetoric in the same vein (on the subject of asserting a powerful German nationhood and a call to arms against the Versailles Treaty - page 533):

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:Then, from the child's story-book to the last newspaper in the country, and every theatre and cinema, every pillar where placards are posted and every free space on the hoardings should be utilized in the service of this one great mission, until the faint-hearted cry, "Lord, deliver us," which our patriotic associations send up to Heaven to-day would be transformed into an ardent prayer: "Almighty God, bless our arms when the hour comes. Be just, as Thou hast always been just. Judge now if we deserve our freedom. Lord, bless our struggle."


This little discourse on Lebensraum is also illuminating, which appears on page 551:

Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf wrote:Against all this we, National Socialists, must stick firmly to the aim that we have set for our foreign policy; namely, that the German people must be assured the territorial area which is necessary for it to exist on this earth. And only for such action as is undertaken to secure those ends can it be lawful in the eyes of God and our German posterity to allow the blood of our people to be shed once again. Before God, because we are sent into this world with the commission to struggle for our daily bread, as creatures to whom nothing is donated and who must be able to win and hold their position as lords of the earth only through their own intelligence and courage.


However, when one turns to pages 245 and 246 of my searchable electronic copy of this book, we find the following really telling passage:

Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf wrote:Even a superficial glance is sufficient to show that all the innumerable forms in which the life-urge of Nature manifests itself are subject to a fundamental law - one may call it an iron law of Nature - which compels the various species to keep within the definite limits of their own life-forms when propagating and multiplying their kind. Each animal mates only with one of its own species. The titmouse cohabits only with the titmouse, the finch with the finch, the stork with the stork, the field-mouse with the field-mouse, the house-mouse with the house-mouse, the wolf with the she-wolf, etc.


Oh look. It's the creationist "kinds" view of species. Hitler's view of biology was manifestly more akin to creationism than to evolution.

So much for your assertions JayJay, which once again, are destroyed by the real world evidence.

Jayjay4547 wrote:It was believers in the faith of Abraham who were machine gunned into the pits. And not by religious zealots, but by zealots for the Fuhrer principle, the exaltation of human will.


Oh, these were the followers of a doctrine that contained numerous references to the same god? Which I've provided above?

Oh, and let's not forget some of Hitler's speeches. For example, here's an extract from one delivered on March 5th, 1922, at the Reichstag:

While the regime is determined to carry through the political and moral purging of our public life, it is creating and ensuring the prerequisites for a really deep inner religiosity. Benefits of a personal nature, which might arise from compromise with atheistic organisations, could outweigh the results which become apparent through the destruction of general basic religious-ethical values. The national regime seeks in both Christian confessions the factors most important for the maintenance of our folkdom.... The national regime will concede and safeguard to the Christian confessions the influence due them, in school and education. It is concerned with the sincere cooperation of church and state. The struggle against a materialistic philosophy for the creation of a true folk community serves the interests of the German nation as well as our Christian belief.


On 26th February, 1925, he uttered this:

It will at any rate be my supreme task to see to it that in the newly awakened NSDAP, the adherents of both Confessions can live peacefully together side by side in order that they may take their stand in the common fight against the power which is the mortal foe of any true Christianity.


On 27th october, 1928, in Passau, he uttered this:

We are a people of different religions, but we are one. Which faith conquers the other is not the question; rather, the question is whether Christianity stands or falls... We tolerate no one in our ranks who attacks the ideas of Christianity ... in fact our movement is Christian. We are filled with a desire for Catholics and Protestants to discover one another in the deep distress of our own people.


On 15th February,1933, in Stuttgart, he uttered this:

And now Staatspräsident Bolz says that Christianity and the Catholic faith are threatened by us. And to that charge I can answer: In the first place it is Christians and not international atheists who now stand at the head of Germany. I do not merely talk of Christianity, no, I also profess that I will never ally myself with the parties which destroy Christianity. If many wish today to take threatened Christianity under their protection, where, I would ask, was Christianity for them in these fourteen years when they went arm in arm with atheism? No, never and at no time was greater internal damage done to Christianity than in these fourteen years when a party, theoretically Christian, sat with those who denied God in one and the same Government.


On 26th April, 1933, during negotiations leading to the Nazi-Vatican concordat:

Secular schools can never be tolerated because such schools have no religious instruction, and a general moral instruction without a religious foundation is built on air; consequently, all character training and religion must be derived from faith.


On 24th October, 1933, in Berlin, he uttered this:

We were convinced that the people needs and requires this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out.


On 6th September, 1938, in Nuremberg, we have this:

National Socialism is not a cult-movement—a movement for worship; it is exclusively a 'volkic' political doctrine based upon racial principles. In its purpose there is no mystic cult, only the care and leadership of a people defined by a common blood-relationship.... We will not allow mystically-minded occult folk with a passion for exploring the secrets of the world beyond to steal into our Movement. Such folk are not National Socialists, but something else—in any case something which has nothing to do with us. At the head of our programme there stand no secret surmisings but clear-cut perception and straightforward profession of belief. But since we set as the central point of this perception and of this profession of belief the maintenance and hence the security for the future of a being formed by God, we thus serve the maintenance of a divine work and fulfill a divine will—not in the secret twilight of a new house of worship, but openly before the face of the Lord... Our worship is exclusively the cultivation of the natural, and for that reason, because natural, therefore God-willed. Our humility is the unconditional submission before the divine laws of existence so far as they are known to us men.


Godless? I think not.

Oh by the way, here's a little something interesting to factor into your apologetics, JayJay. Take a look at the following painting:

Image

The above work is none other than Mother Mary with the Holy Child Jesus Christ, oil on canvas, 1913, painted by ... Adolf Hitler. In other words, Hitler painted pieces of Catholic iconography.

Godless? Again, I think not.

Jayjay4547 wrote:Not that science is wrong. Though it can be wrong, as in Treves and Palmqvist’s introduction where they explain why “weaponry by itself does not nullify the risk posed by predators”


Bollocks., JayJay. You've had your apologetic fabrications exposed as such, and that's the real reason you erected your tiresome apologetic whinge about "mediaeval mindsets".
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#442  Postby Sendraks » Jul 15, 2014 8:05 pm

Sendraks wrote:I’m not going to go through JayJay’s waffle line by line any more, it is not worth it, especially when he keeps erecting the same fabrications again and again. I’ll just cover the key points.
1) I’ve still no idea what an atheist ideology is. The best I can work out is that it is anyone who disagrees with JayJay’s fantastical musings about the world or it is a disparaging term concocted by JayJay for people who base their views on the available evidence rather than make shit up.

2) A sharpened stick capable of wounding or deterring a predator is a sophisticated tool. It clearly cannot just be “any stick” as not all types of wood have the strength to be an effective weapon or retain a point for any length of time. The selection and retention of such a weapon is a task that requires a degree of mental sophistication and there isn’t the evidence to support australopiths having that kind of reasoning.

3) The Oldowan tools are also not evidence of sophisticated weapon tool making. If australopiths had, in the previous million years, been making effective sharpened sticks, it is surprising that the evidence doesn’t show much progress in tool making by the time of oldowan. Certainly none of the hand tools constitute effective weapons for deterring a predator. Indeed the absence of effective weapons for defence or offense

4) The whole point of the “ambush” approach adopted by the big cat family is so the prey doesn’t have a chance to escape. Ambush implies a significant element of surprise on the part of the predator. For the australopith defensive weapon with a stick to be correct, they would a) always have to be so armed, b) capable of reacting with sufficient speed with said weapon to deter the attack and c) also retaining the necessary composure to do so. We don’t have any evidence to support these points and indeed, the available of evidence doesn’t support the developments in weapon use that surely would have been present by the time of Oldowan tools.

5) By the time early homo sapiens was jogging prey to death across Africa, one has to wonder why, if its ancestors had been so adept at selecting weapons, that it was adopting the persistence hunting method. Either somewhere between australopiths and later hominid evolution, the development of weapons was abandoned or that weapon development didn’t properly come about until the time of homo sapiens. The available evidence supports the latter.

6) The available evidence on chimps harassing leopards shows, first and foremost, the advantage of numbers vs a single predator. The paper also makes clear in the latter stages that:

Tai chimpanzees do use weapons with leopards, as seen in example 2, but it is not clear if they could be able to kill or harm a leopard with such a tool?


The use of weapons by the chimps in the paper, which was limited to chimps in a jungle environ rather than the savannah, also showed the chimps engaged in actively trying to locate and harass a leopard they had determined was in their vicinity in order to drive it away. The paper doesn’t provide evidence that the chimps carried weapons around or supply further information to the extent to which chimps were overly discerning in which suitably heavy bits of wood they picked up.

The paper also shows that the smaller less aggressive chimp species, such as our closest living relative the bonobo, rely on moving in much larger party sizes than the larger more aggressive chimp species.

7) The paper which JayJay linked (which was interesting and I thank him for posting it), is about the different group size strategies adopted by chimps in differing environments, in varying levels of predation and food abundance. One of the central findings of the report is that chimps in the tropical forest suffer a higher rate of predation than those in the savannah, in part due to the density of the leopard population. This is a very telling piece of evidence about the survival of australopiths as a species, without recourse to any imaginings about weapons.

They. Moved. Into. The. Savannah.

Clearly the savannah being a less obvious food rich environment than the jungle required different strategies for gathering food. The challenge on the savannah was finding food and water, with predation being much less of a consideration because of the lower density of predators. Combine this with a nomadic lifestyle and you’re pretty much set for explaining how australopiths persisted and what drove the adaptions leading to homo sapiens as a savannah dwelling persistence hunter.

8) Trees on the savannah are not an abundant feature as they are in a tropical rainforest, therefore retaining an arboreal lifestyle would not have been advantageous for australopiths. Their biology shows an upper body strength that would have made them very capable climbers, which would have been sufficient for evading the most likely predation on the savannah in the form of Lions and hyenas, which are much less capable climbers than leopards. There is nothing about this that suggests australopiths were adapted for living in trees, just for climbing them as a short term measure of defense.

9) That the crab doesn’t understand symbiosis is irrelevant. The relationship between the crab and the anemone is not evidence of the kind of learned behaviour. JayJay’s presumption is that all such behaviours are the result of some sort of “one size fits all” approach to species defence.


In summary, the available evidence shows us that australopiths survival was largely due to their moving into a low predation environment, the savannah and physical adaptations to survive in that environment. There is no evidence to support the conjectures that australopiths had the necessary mental faculties to select suitable weapons to defend against predation, given that the apex predator of that environ (the Lion) would not be deterred by such items. Group size acts partially as a deterrant against predation, but principlally as a means of ensuring the survival of the group overally, as opposed to any specific individual.


Just in case you've forgotten JayJay - as I realise there has been a barrage of posts in the past few days. But pick this one up when you're ready. Don't worry, I won't let you forget.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#443  Postby Jayjay4547 » Jul 17, 2014 6:44 am

Sendraks wrote:
Sendraks wrote:

Just in case you've forgotten JayJay - as I realise there has been a barrage of posts in the past few days. But pick this one up when you're ready. Don't worry, I won't let you forget.


I really am pushed right now, can I keep you amused with a couple of pics I want to use in my reply.

This one is from Treves and Palmqvist's chapter on Hominin-Predator interactions, it shows what predators were sympatric with the australopiths and their relatives. Perhaps the most interesting thing the graphic shows is that around 800 000 years ago there seems to have some major event that wiped out all the predators and our own genus Homo. Gracious hey, every day Science shows us something new. But that isn't what I want to use the pic for.

Image

The next pic shows the predators from the Treves and Palqvist graphic. The first one Agriotherium wasn't contemporary with Australopithecus but apparently it did live in Africa and it was a bear- so Oldskeptic was right about that.

Image

I want to use those graphics to criticise your claim that the hominins moved into a low predator environment, after the forest. But more on that when I can.

Edit: typos
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#444  Postby Fallible » Jul 17, 2014 7:33 am

Wow, that painting is terrible. What the hell is going on with her arm?
She battled through in every kind of tribulation,
She revelled in adventure and imagination.
She never listened to no hater, liar,
Breaking boundaries and chasing fire.
Oh, my my! Oh my, she flies!
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#445  Postby Sendraks » Jul 17, 2014 9:02 am

Jayjay4547 wrote:I want to use those graphics to criticise your claim that the hominins moved into a low predator environment, after the forest. But more on that when I can.


I await your full response with interest. Although if it hinges on an assertion that the savannah during that time period was inexplicably a high density predator environment, simply because of predator variety, then you are not going to get very far.

And we've already established that sticks vs bears is very much a no win scenario for anyone, let alone 1.4m high australopiths.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#446  Postby Jayjay4547 » Jul 18, 2014 6:59 am

Sendraks wrote: I’m not going to go through JayJay’s waffle line by line any more, it is not worth it, especially when he keeps erecting the same fabrications again and again. I’ll just cover the key points.


I haven’t been talking waffle or fabricating. It’s characteristic of atheist posters here that you try to frame the opposition by using terms like those, instead of just sticking to the point. For one thing it’s grossly impolite but it also tends to stymie discussion.

Sendraks wrote: 1) I’ve still no idea what an atheist ideology is. The best I can work out is that it is anyone who disagrees with JayJay’s fantastical musings about the world or it is a disparaging term concocted by JayJay for people who base their views on the available evidence rather than make shit up.


If you still have no idea, that’s not for my lack of claiming that whenever a polarity of opinion develops as with creo/evo so each side develops a reactive set of positions (dialectic) and this set takes on a life of its own, with elements that reassure its adherents, giving them a mutually supporting set of beliefs that is called an ideology. One tool for mapping the ideology of western ex-Christian atheists is to look at the origin narrative they build and that’s what I’ve been doing.

One of the ways a ruling ideology might defend itself is to make out that it isn’t there at all, it is simply the air of reality we breathe. The doctrines of the Middle Ages were like that but today’s atheist ideology is if anything more extreme in its reaching for hegemony as witnessed on this forum.

Sendraks wrote: 2) A sharpened stick capable of wounding or deterring a predator is a sophisticated tool. It clearly cannot just be “any stick” as not all types of wood have the strength to be an effective weapon or retain a point for any length of time. The selection and retention of such a weapon is a task that requires a degree of mental sophistication and there isn’t the evidence to support australopiths having that kind of reasoning.


The term “sophisticated tool” is useful when it’s applied to tools that have enabled mankind to hunt and trap animals with minimal use of energy. The other day in an art gallery I saw some iron spears that would qualify as sophisticated tools. The spear heads were beautifully shaped and spigoted into wooden handles. But what was truly sophisticated was that the rear half of the spears were tapering iron rods. These would give the spears great kinetic energy when thrown by a vigorous arm.
A sharpened stick used for deterrence couldn’t usefully be called sophisticated, the predator’s own energy could drive the point into its flesh. Not that African prey would rely on such a passive mode of defence. In his book “On Aggression” Konrad Lorenz recalled a case where a colleague got into trouble with a tiny buck when he grabbed its horns in a zoo. i have experienced that myself when freeing a duiker from a snare. Modern humans don’t have the same level of muscular activity.

Sendraks wrote: 3) The Oldowan tools are also not evidence of sophisticated weapon tool making. If australopiths had, in the previous million years, been making effective sharpened sticks, it is surprising that the evidence doesn’t show much progress in tool making by the time of oldowan. Certainly none of the hand tools constitute effective weapons for deterring a predator. Indeed the absence of effective weapons for defence or offense

Agreed, the Oldowan tools are not evidence of sophisticated tool making. As i pointed ut, their makers used the least promising of all stones to flake; pebbles that had been selected by the river for their resistance to shock by other stones. That suggests evolution from non-worked stones and one can picture that ancestor tool as selected for high inertia (like the iron spears) at the palm end and a tight radius at the business end.

We can’t make progress so long as you continue to ignore my division of these tool-precursors into two types. The function that has been universally and stupidly ignored in building the established origin narrative is that of stopping a predator, taking the initiative from it and making it vulnerable to a stroke. A pointed stick can do that, as I have observed with dogs. The second function of striking can be ascribed to the hand axe, used to smash the predator’s skull once the initiative had been taken from it.

You or I, alone, might not be able to use a stick and a hand-held stone to pose a deadly threat to a hyena but twenty australopiths each weighting 35kg could. We have evidence of their fossils and those of their predators to prove it. Humans have inherited the ability to use improved versions of tools with the same functions to kill even the largest African predators 3 to 1 and sometimes 1 to 1.

Sendraks wrote: 4) The whole point of the “ambush” approach adopted by the big cat family is so the prey doesn’t have a chance to escape. Ambush implies a significant element of surprise on the part of the predator. For the australopith defensive weapon with a stick to be correct, they would a) always have to be so armed, b) capable of reacting with sufficient speed with said weapon to deter the attack and c) also retaining the necessary composure to do so. We don’t have any evidence to support these points and indeed, the available of evidence doesn’t support the developments in weapon use that surely would have been present by the time of Oldowan tools.


Felids don’t always rely on ambush. For example leopards predate on baboons at night, eg by climbing their roosting trees or by approaching them on cliffs, as I have witnessed. Yes a) the australopiths would have had to be always armed- and that habit would have high significance. Yes b) capable of reacting with sufficient speed to deter the attack. In the case of a night attack a group reaction would follow what baboons do. c) retaining necessary composure? – well composure might not be quite the right term. If you mean courage and determination then yes again, we have seen plenty of evidence that primates are brave where bravery might win the day- and even sometimes when it can’t.

Sendraks wrote: 5) By the time early homo sapiens was jogging prey to death across Africa, one has to wonder why, if its ancestors had been so adept at selecting weapons, that it was adopting the persistence hunting method. Either somewhere between australopiths and later hominid evolution, the development of weapons was abandoned or that weapon development didn’t properly come about until the time of homo sapiens. The available evidence supports the latter.


You are confounding defensive use of a tool with tool use in hunting. A species proficient at defending itself need not be in a position to extend that ability into hunting. Especially considering the utility of the stopper function against predation and its irrelevance in hunting. For example if the australopiths had purely vegetable digestions then defensive proficiency would still have given them access to savannah vegetable resources. The large ungulates are examples, well equipped with “stoppers”; they don’t hunt.

Sendraks wrote: 6) The available evidence on chimps harassing leopards shows, first and foremost, the advantage of numbers vs a single predator. The paper also makes clear in the latter stages that:

Tai chimpanzees do use weapons with leopards, as seen in example 2, but it is not clear if they could be able to kill or harm a leopard with such a tool?


Yes indeed, those chimps picked up sticks they found on the forest floor to probe a leopard that had been cornered- or that had found a defensible spot depending on which way you look at it. The same article reports a leopard fleeing from two chimps not carrying tools.
http://www.eva.mpg.de/primat/staff/boesch/pdf/behav_leopard_predation.pdf
Watt’s et al (2006) report on the damage chimps can do to each other by gripping and biting, using their strong arms and fangs, which explains why the leopard ran away.
http://sitemaker.umich.edu/mitani/files/watts_et_al_2006.pdf

Sendraks wrote: The use of weapons by the chimps in the paper, which was limited to chimps in a jungle environ rather than the savannah, also showed the chimps engaged in actively trying to locate and harass a leopard they had determined was in their vicinity in order to drive it away. The paper doesn’t provide evidence that the chimps carried weapons around or supply further information to the extent to which chimps were overly discerning in which suitably heavy bits of wood they picked up.

The paper also shows that the smaller less aggressive chimp species, such as our closest living relative the bonobo, rely on moving in much larger party sizes than the larger more aggressive chimp species.


Chimps are not our ancestors; the australopiths were and some of what distinguished them from arboreal apes was that they didn’t have fangs that would have enabled them to pose a deadly danger to predators. It’s a strong inference that they habitually carried around sharpened sticks and selected stones to defend themselves,. . They did have fangs in a sense, only one, that they prudently held at the end of their arm instead of in their mouth. Rather like the pom pom crab is adapted to carry around its defensive anemones

Sendraks wrote: The paper also shows that the smaller less aggressive chimp species, such as our closest living relative the bonobo, rely on moving in much larger party sizes than the larger more aggressive chimp species.


O course there is a play-off between troop numbers and individual defensive ability. The vector driving adaptation into defensive competence is towards giving protection to smaller groups. In the limit, a single sick australopith infant should have been able to enter a leopard cave and kill it. But that limit probably wasn’t approached.

Sendraks wrote: 7) The paper which JayJay linked (which was interesting and I thank him for posting it), is about the different group size strategies adopted by chimps in differing environments, in varying levels of predation and food abundance. One of the central findings of the report is that chimps in the tropical forest suffer a higher rate of predation than those in the savannah, in part due to the density of the leopard population. This is a very telling piece of evidence about the survival of australopiths as a species, without recourse to any imaginings about weapons.

Actually that was Boesch’s introductory suggestion why leopard predation on chimps might have less recorded earlier, because most earlier studies had been of savannah chimps, it wasn’t a central finding. Leopard density in forests might be 10 times higher than on the savannah because there are fewer predator niches in the forest. Forest predators there need to be able to climb trees as well as their prey and only the leopard can do that.
Sendraks wrote: They. Moved. Into. The. Savannah.

Our ancestors moved into the savannah from where? From living in trees? Maybe, but I keep that open.

Sendraks wrote: Clearly the savannah being a less obvious food rich environment than the jungle required different strategies for gathering food. The challenge on the savannah was finding food and water, with predation being much less of a consideration because of the lower density of predators. Combine this with a nomadic lifestyle and you’re pretty much set for explaining how australopiths persisted and what drove the adaptions leading to homo sapiens as a savannah dwelling persistence hunter.

Here I’ll drop in that pic I prepared of savannah predators identified by Treves and Palmqvist.
Image

What that pic demonstrates is the variety of predators that the australopithslived with, in an ecological context where they mostly ended up in predators tummies, just like savannah baboons do today. Prey species have a rule book for different predators. The rule book for savannah baboons-about the same size as the australopiths, and more adept in trees judging by their hind feet- doesn’t always involve shinning up trees for all predators. In the day time baboons surround and threaten leopards, attacking them when the leopard is busy with a victim.
See Cowlinshaw(1994)

http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/4535243?uid=3739368&uid=2&uid=4&sid=21101133436757
Cheney et al(2003)
Factors Affecting Reproduction and Mortality Among Baboons in the Okavango Delta, Botswana
http://www.ssc.ucla.edu/anthro/faculty/silk/PDF%20Files%20Pubs/Cheney%20et%20al%202004.pdf

Sendraks wrote: 8) Trees on the savannah are not an abundant feature as they are in a tropical rainforest, therefore retaining an arboreal lifestyle would not have been advantageous for australopiths. Their biology shows an upper body strength that would have made them very capable climbers, which would have been sufficient for evading the most likely predation on the savannah in the form of Lions and hyenas, which are much less capable climbers than leopards. There is nothing about this that suggests australopiths were adapted for living in trees, just for climbing them as a short term measure of defense.


The biology of australopiths doesn’t include having four hands like the quadrumana do, so that claim of “very capable climbers” is hollow, it’s just what others say. Even with four hands a baboon can’t escape from a leopard by climbing onto twigs- as we saw from that Youtube clip. You are obliged to confront the issue of what would an australopith troop do when it did face predation by leopard. The other hominoids have fangs that enable them to pose a deadly threat to leopard. The australopiths didn’t have fangs. The realistic scenario is that they didn’t roost in trees but in defensible places on the ground where they fought their predators using sticks and stones.
Sendraks wrote: 9) That the crab doesn’t understand symbiosis is irrelevant. The relationship between the crab and the anemone is not evidence of the kind of learned behaviour. JayJay’s presumption is that all such behaviours are the result of some sort of “one size fits all” approach to species defence.


The pom-pom crab demonstrates that a population does not need “smarts” to evolve a habit of selecting a foreign object from its environment for defense. The controlling parameters have nothing to do with smarts but the particular logic of situation. In the case of sticks and stones the highly particular situation needed can be sketched as a social bipedal mammal of at least 30kg size, with grasping hands, predated by mammals of roughly equal size. You don’t find kinetic weapons used much by insects, presumably because of some scaling effect. The narrow scope of conditions where such weapons are adaptive is shown by the fact that chimps aren’t adapted into it. The origin of mankind fits the opposite of a “one size fits all” approach to species defence, as you put it.

Sendraks wrote: In summary, the available evidence shows us that australopiths survival was largely due to their moving into a low predation environment, the savannah and physical adaptations to survive in that environment.

Ironically the human origin narrative built by atheists all but ignores the available evidence. The same story could have been written if the australopiths had never been discovered. It’s also the opposite of the truth that the savannah is a low predator environment. Savannah grasses support a large variety of herbivores, which in turn support a large variety of predators:
http://www.ucl.ac.uk/gashaka/savannah/
Compared to rainforests the widespread savannah areas of the park support a very different fauna. There are two main reasons for this contrast. Firstly, the open woodland and low shrub structure of the savannah is generally unsuitable for arboreal and other rainforest mammals. Secondly, extensive savannah grasslands provide food for large number of grass-eating herbivores, food which is absent from rainforests. Although savannah contains fewer numbers of different mammal species than does rainforest it nevertheless supports a higher biomass (or greater total number) of mammals

Added to the variety of savannah predators is the high standard of alternative prey and the simple physics of the savannah where animals can see hear and smell each other at much greater separations than within a windless forest. The savannah is supremely a domain of intense communication, notably between predator and prey. Just listen to the animals at night.

Sendraks wrote: There is no evidence to support the conjectures that australopiths had the necessary mental faculties to select suitable weapons to defend against predation, given that the apex predator of that environ (the Lion) would not be deterred by such items.

There’s no evidence that high mental faculties are needed for a species to acquire a weapon-selecting habit. The opposite is true, demonstrated by the pom-pom crab. It’s speculation that lions or similar predators would not be deterred by defensive weapons wielded by a troop of hominins. What is unevidenced is that a primate can exist without being able to pose a deadly threat to its habitual predators.
Sendraks wrote: Group size acts partially as a deterrant against predation, but principlally as a means of ensuring the survival of the group overally, as opposed to any specific individual.


What is a deterrent against predation is a group that is capable of maiming the predator, by inflicting blunt or sharp trauma. The smaller the group capable of doing that, the larger the scope of predators, and the broader set of climatic circumstances, the greater is the breeding success of the prey species
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#447  Postby Sendraks » Jul 18, 2014 9:36 am

JayJay – Thanks for the response, sadly you are fabricating when you make claims without evidence to support them. You appear to be stuck reiterating the same stuff over and over, without actually tackling the evidence based arguments against your claims. Your whole australopiths with weapons hypothesis hinges on your fabrications and an ignorance of the natural world, rather than any evidence.

Saying that you are "fabricating" isn't any sort of "atheist thing" it is a simple statement of fact that you are making claims without any supporting evidence. At the most basic level, I'm simply using words to describe what you are doing. This requires no ideological mindset, just a decent understanding of the language in use.

The sad thing here is that if you were talking about a later hominid, such as Homo Erectus, we wouldn’t be having this debate.

1) So basically your “atheist ideology” is a slander applied to anyone who sticks to a rigorous scientific method working with hypothesis supported by evidence and discarding those that are not.

2) Sophisticated Tool =/= complex or complicated tool. You are goalpost shifting here to try and pretend that your weapon selection hypothesis for australopiths is something it is not. This is intellectual dishonesty on your part. Stop it.

A sharpened stick is within the context of your hypothesis, a sophisticated tool for all the reasons I have stated. If you are claiming otherwise, then the tool would not perform the use which you claim it would and your hypothesis would fall apart.

Or to put it another way, I doubt many humans today could go out and select a suitable piece of word to sharpen into a stick. Never mind their actual ability to sharpen said stick using only naturally found resources. This sort of thing needs to be learned, practised and tested.


3) Your division of tool use is arbitrary and only exists to support the fiction of sophisticated weapon use. I say fiction, because you have no evidence for it. Many posters here have repeatedly pointed out your fallacy of deterring a predator with a pointed stick and the fact that you think a predator’s head can be smashed by a relatively innocuous stone tool, also shows how unfamiliar you are with the biology of the creatures in question. You are arguing from ignorance and your personal anecdotes are not admissible as evidence.

On the matter of 20 australopiths vs a hyena, keeping aside I’ve not seen any evidence to support such an scenario occurred, the salient factor here is weight of numbers, not weapon use. A group size of twenty individuals is a very large group.

4) You have yet to present any evidence that australopiths were always armed. The best available evidence does not support habitual use of weapons.

That felids do not always rely on ambush is largely irrelevant, given that they predominantly do rely on ambush. So basing your hypothesis around behaviour outside of the norm does not put your argument onto a strong footing.

5) I am not confounding anything in respect of tool use, instead you are trying to claim that somehow hominid tool use for hunting purposes is somehow completely unrelated to tool use for defensive purposes. Not only that, but also hominids habitually used tools for defensive purposes and yet somehow utterly failed to develop this tool use in any sort of meaningful way over a million years. Your claim makes no sense. None.

6) The only strong inference that australopiths carried weapons is the one you are asserting. The point regarding chimps is that they are closer to australopiths than we are to them and present the best living analogue for modelling australopith behaviour.

7) On the question of defensive capability being a factor driving towards smaller group size, why then does the evidence show that hominids have historically tended towards larger group sizes than small? After all, you were talking about a sizeable group of 20 australopiths earlier, something that most smaller predators, like a Hyena, would think twice about approaching.

8) So you’re claiming that the paper doesn’t have evidence to show savannah chimps experience a lower rate of predation, due to a lower density of predators? Despite the fact that this is what the paper says. Are you in fact in possession of evidence to the contrary or are you simply dismissing evidence that doesn’t fit with your preconceptions?

9) Right, so now you’re claiming that early australopiths didn’t live in trees. Despite the fact that the debate is still ongoing about their morphology in respect of how aboreal they were are not. Unless you’re going to make some truly radical claim at odds with evolutionary theory that australopiths suddenly appeared, as opposed to evolving from some earlier primate, the case regarding whether australopith ancestors lived in trees is well and truly closed.

One of the advantages of bipedalism, even if it secondary to the principle means of locomotion, is the ability to stand upright and scan the horizon. Something of limited use in a jungle, but in an open landscape is very useful for spotting food and potential predators.

10) Variety of predators =/= predator density.
Variety of predators = prey variety


11) The claims that australopiths were very capable climbers is born out by their morphology. That they were not as good at climbing as creatures adapted to an aboreal lifestyle is irrelevant.

12) I will say this again symbiotic relationship =/= tool use. You are not comparing like with like and instead operating under some sort of “one size fits all” belief, in how different animals in different environments, have different defensive strategies. Your argument might work on people who do not understand basic zoology, you might want to try it on them?

13) Your claim that “human origin narrative built by atheists all but ignores the available evidence” is a lie. The reason the narrative exists is because the evidence exists.

I will say again variety of predators =/= predator density.

You appear to very resilient to considering that australopiths were perfectly able to survive in Africa without recourse to weapons. The evidence, which I have summarised, shows no need for weapon use of the sort you describe to enable their survival. One of us is making stuff up. One of us is sticking rigidly to what the evidence shows to be true.

For the avoidance of doubt – you are the one making things up JayJay. Unless you start presenting some evidence, rather than conjecture, this will remain to be the case.

14) Again:
symbiotic relationship =/= tool use

Your example of the Pom Pom crab is not an example of tool use or weapon selection. It is evidence of a symbiotic relationship.

Your claim that “There’s no evidence that high mental faculties are needed for a species to acquire a weapon-selecting habit” is manifestly not borne out by the evidence of homind evolution and the existence of homo sapiens as the only creature on this planet which makes habitual use of tools as weapons. Indeed making this claim is to refute your own argument.

Your claim “What is unevidenced is that a primate can exist without being able to pose a deadly threat to its habitual predators” is easily refuted by the fact that savannah chimps survive without recourse to weapons and in an environ with a sizeable apex predator.

Interestingly I can’t find any evidence (yet) of chimps having altercations with the predator that has the highest successful kill ratio of any living land based creature (not including homo sapiens).

15) Finally, I am going to repeat what I said in my last post because, while you quoted it, you appear either not to have understood it or just chosen to ignore it. Group size acts partially as a deterrent against predation, but principally as a means of ensuring the survival of the group overall, as opposed to any specific individual. This is an established fact JayJay. It is not up for debate. The only way your whacky hypothesis works is if you ignore this fact.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#448  Postby Calilasseia » Jul 18, 2014 12:34 pm

Sendraks wrote:Group size acts partially as a deterrent against predation, but principally as a means of ensuring the survival of the group overall, as opposed to any specific individual. This is an established fact JayJay. It is not up for debate. The only way your whacky hypothesis works is if you ignore this fact.


Ignoring facts that refute his fabrications, along with duplicitous resurrection of the "atheist ideology" lie, is all he has. Take that away, and it's like taking the actual tissue paper away from a toilet roll, all you're left with is the perforations.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#449  Postby Sendraks » Jul 18, 2014 12:54 pm

The bizarre thing is that he feels the need to fabricate australopiths having weapons, because he feels that the evidence supporting how they did survive isn't enough for him.

Why make shit up? It's not necessary.
Next thing someone will be claiming a magical sky pervert created everything.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#450  Postby BWE » Jul 18, 2014 8:02 pm

Sendraks, that long post there is excellent. Just wanted to say that here.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#451  Postby Jayjay4547 » Jul 21, 2014 4:56 am

Sendraks wrote: JayJay – Thanks for the response, sadly you are fabricating when you make claims without evidence to support them. You appear to be stuck reiterating the same stuff over and over, without actually tackling the evidence based arguments against your claims. Your whole australopiths with weapons hypothesis hinges on your fabrications and an ignorance of the natural world, rather than any evidence.

Saying that you are "fabricating" isn't any sort of "atheist thing" it is a simple statement of fact that you are making claims without any supporting evidence. At the most basic level, I'm simply using words to describe what you are doing. This requires no ideological mindset, just a decent understanding of the language in use.

The sad thing here is that if you were talking about a later hominid, such as Homo Erectus, we wouldn’t be having this debate.


If we ignored the australopiths then we could all go with whatever human origin narrative that fancy suggests. But they did exist and they were our ancestors. The rest of what you claimed above is just an attempt to frame my position in pejorative terms. Please at least spare me your condescending hypocritical sadness..

Sendraks wrote: 1) So basically your “atheist ideology” is a slander applied to anyone who sticks to a rigorous scientific method working with hypothesis supported by evidence and discarding those that are not.


It’s not slander to argue that atheist ideology has influenced the human origin narrative; it’s just to suggest that scientists put their trousers on one leg at a time like the rest of us. But historians admit that about their discipline. You yourself don’t “stick to a rigorous scientific method”. For example, later in your post you assert that a hand axe couldn’t be used to smash a predator’s skull, by claiming that my contrary view “shows how unfamiliar you are with the biology of the creatures in question”. That’s not “rigorous science”, it’s just making an unevidenced claim about your status as expert.

Sendraks wrote: 2) Sophisticated Tool =/= complex or complicated tool. You are goalpost shifting here to try and pretend that your weapon selection hypothesis for australopiths is something it is not. This is intellectual dishonesty on your part. Stop it.

As I pointed ut before, it’s you who introduced the notion of a sophisticated tool as what supposedly relieved homo (not australopith) from the onerous function of exhausting prey animals by “persistence hunting”. Those tools include bows, arrows, slings, spear-with-throwing stick and so on. Now you claim that a sharpened stick used to ward off a predator, would be a “sophisticated tool” I have never claimed that a sharpened stick is is a sophisticated tool. So it’s you who is goal-shifting. You should not then accuse me of intellectual dishonesty.
Sendraks wrote: A sharpened stick is within the context of your hypothesis, a sophisticated tool for all the reasons I have stated. If you are claiming otherwise, then the tool would not perform the use which you claim it would and your hypothesis would fall apart.

I wouldn’t call use of a sharpened stick to ward off a predator, a “hypothesis”. Like I said it’s a function I’ve used myself against dogs, a number of times in my work as a surveyor. I have noticed how it presents them with a physical problem; they can’t approach directly and they can’t come around my side because being a biped I can turn more quickly to face that. The problem with even calling a sharpened stick a “tool” is the baggage of questionable assumptions from modern use that word brings with it. To avoid that I’ve tried other terms for it; “Em” and “tool precursor” It’s probably better to follow Robert Ardrey, who in the index of several of his books, for “tool” had “see weapons
Sendraks wrote: Or to put it another way, I doubt many humans today could go out and select a suitable piece of word to sharpen into a stick. Never mind their actual ability to sharpen said stick using only naturally found resources.

I haven’t shifted my position one inch, in refusing to concede that a sharpened stick is a sophisticated tool. I suggested that a stick could be sharpened by biting, singeing in a fire or rubbing on a rock. Those are just my armchair notions of how I might sharpen a stick. What I would need to apply that theory is time and attention. If a sunbird can come to devote the time and attention needed to build her nest out of cobweb, lichen and grass then I guess a primate species could come to sharpen a stick.

Sendraks wrote: This sort of thing needs to be learned, practised and tested.


A feature of natural objects suitable as a tool is that they often last longer than person. I had a friend whose family had Rudyard Kipling’s walking stick. Stone tools have lasted millions of years and a wooden stick habitually carried for defence might have lasted generations, being passed down within a troop and improved by the comparison with others and in the light of experience. From the play and competitive behaviour of other primates and our own, we can visualise habitually used sticks and stones being tested and compared in innumerable dry runs, battles and murders. Natural selection can take care of optimising an object used for defence against predation.

One should also take into account the value of instinct, intent and malice in optimising a weapon. My dogs seem to instinctively understand that when an Nguni cow flourishes her sharp horns they should move away. I have the same reaction, without having learned that at school. An australopith sharpening a stick wouldn’t be on some sort of absent-minded state, it would be thinking resentful thoughts probably about a particular leopard and how that stick would stick it to the enemy, knowing well from antelope that sharp points are dangerous.
Sendraks wrote: 3) Your division of tool use is arbitrary and only exists to support the fiction of sophisticated weapon use. I say fiction, because you have no evidence for it. Many posters here have repeatedly pointed out your fallacy of deterring a predator with a pointed stick and the fact that you think a predator’s head can be smashed by a relatively innocuous stone tool, also shows how unfamiliar you are with the biology of the creatures in question. You are arguing from ignorance and your personal anecdotes are not admissible as evidence.


Because you have chosen for the second time to respond to particular points I made, without quoting what they were, I have to re-establish that this “division” of tool use that you claim to be arbitrary, is between a “stopper” weapon and a “striker”. I do have evidence for a stopper, having often used one myself. And my experience is not that unusual. When I meet other people walking with dogs, I notice that they often carry a stopper, not with intent to hurt other dogs not on a lead, but just to keep them away.

On your claim of my ignorance and the inadmissibility of personal anecdotes, they are at least worth more than your own position that someone who thinks differently from you must be just showing how unfamiliar he is with biology of predators. I don’t trust my own perception and I doubt it’s been scientifically tested but my perception is that a leopard skull isn’t particularly thick and if one wanted reference to what a thick skull looked like, that would be a warthog skull. I asked a geologist friend with lots of bush experience and he said the same; a leopard skull (he owns one) is not very thick and the skull that tends to keep its integrity longest when lying around is the warthog skull. I guess we were both leaving out of consideration rhino and elephant. When I asked whether he thought an Oldowan axe could smash a predator skull my friend, being a good scientist, just repeated that the leopard skull isn’t very thick. To address that issue scientifically, one could take say a predator skull and an Oldowan axe to a civil engineering compression tester, measure the amount of work needed to break into the bone and calculate how fast the stone would have to be moving to have that kinetic energy. Then compare that with what a human can do with that stone. In the significant default of that scientific evidence, I just fall back on the observation that the traditional way to butcher a thick-skulled pig is to stun it with a sledge hammer blow to the head and then slit its throat.

As to the stopper, you find it used today whenever a person fights an animal that fights back:

Image
It’s notable that the importance of a stopper weapon isn’t appreciated in paleoanthropology, although African antelope use them extensively. I suggest that’s because the narrative focus has been on how our ancestors acted on the world, not how they reacted to the world acting on them.
A striker without a stopper might sometimes be less use than bare hands. Consider this account of a Kenyan farmer who dropped his panga to grab a leopard by its tongue:
http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Ageing_Farmer_Kills_Leopard_With_Bare_Hands_In_Kenya.html
The 73-year-old Daniel M'Mburugu was working in his potato garden near Mount Kenya in the centre of the country when the animal, apparently aggressive, hurtled from nearby grass and charged towards him.
"It let out a blood-curdling snarl that made the birds stop chirping. I froze for some seconds, then it dawned on me that death was staring at me on the face," he told the Standard Newspaper.
M'Mburugu, a peasant farmer, dropped the machete he was carrying and forced his hand into the leopard's mouth, pulling out its tongue in an act of self-defence, according to the report in the daily

"A voice, which must have been from God, whispered to me to drop the panga (machete) and thrust my hand into its wide open mouth, I obeyed," he said, explaining that the leopard sank its teeth into his wrist, but would not let go.


I’ve come across two similar reports of grabbing a predator’s tongue . In one a man who had wounded a panther saved himself that way. In the writer Stuart Cloete’s second volume of autobiography he recounts a similar case involving a lion and remarks, in an echo of the Kenyan’s hearing God’s voice, “That is in fact the right thing to do”. There are also cases of people strangling leopards, in my childhood the local butcher was held in awe from having done that as a young man- though getting badly injured. It’s possible that humans carry traces of an ancient instinctive knowledge of what to do in extremis.
Sendraks wrote: On the matter of 20 australopiths vs a hyena, keeping aside I’ve not seen any evidence to support such an scenario occurred, the salient factor here is weight of numbers, not weapon use. A group size of twenty individuals is a very large group.


Treves and Palmqvist cite 20-50 individuals for a baboon troop as a guide and suggest more than 20 would be unlikely. I’m not fussy, make it 15 or 10 . individuals if you like. I used 20 from the number of baboons that mobbed a leopard that started biting a human observer see Cheney et al http://www.ssc.ucla.edu/anthro/faculty/silk/PDF%20Files%20Pubs/Cheney%20et%20al%202004.pdf
To embed the australopiths in their natural context- rather than just tourists of it one has to visualise that their relations with sympatric predators were repeatedly tested and re-established thousands of times as are modern relations between species. Consider the super-prides of lion in Chobe and Kruger retesting their relation with elephant. And the episodic attacks of hyena, leopard and lion on modern humans It’s completely unrealistic to await fossil evidence about that dynamism.
Sendraks wrote: 4) You have yet to present any evidence that australopiths were always armed. The best available evidence does not support habitual use of weapons.


Like I said, the evidence is there in the australopith’s eyeteeth; their canines; their lack of fangs. And their lack of plausible other means than fighting, of avoiding predation by tree-climbing predators. All you have to do is model them as embedded in the savannah ecology, accept that predation happens when it best suits the predators and hey presto, out jumps the strong inference that they selected, optimised and habitually carried weapons capable of stopping and then of maiming predators, on the ground. Not all predators necessarily all the time, but certainly leopards.

Sendraks wrote: That felids do not always rely on ambush is largely irrelevant, given that they predominantly do rely on ambush. So basing your hypothesis around behaviour outside of the norm does not put your argument onto a strong footing.


You don’t explain why the variety of predation threats the australopiths faced should be irrelevant.

Sendraks wrote: 5) I am not confounding anything in respect of tool use, instead you are trying to claim that somehow hominid tool use for hunting purposes is somehow completely unrelated to tool use for defensive purposes. Not only that, but also hominids habitually used tools for defensive purposes and yet somehow utterly failed to develop this tool use in any sort of meaningful way over a million years. Your claim makes no sense. None.


The Oldowan culture did last between 2.6-1.7ma without obvious improvement, some of that associated possibly with homo. I guess the pom pom crab didn’t improve its use of anemones over a million years, or caddis worms their use of little sticks. Just because humans today are developing the internet rapidly doesn’t mean that a hominoid without human language and with a chimp-sized brain, should necessarily have developed the use of weapons selected from the environment at pace.

Sendraks wrote: 6) The only strong inference that australopiths carried weapons is the one you are asserting. The point regarding chimps is that they are closer to australopiths than we are to them and present the best living analogue for modelling australopith behaviour.


It’s not true in terms of historical path, that chimps are closer to australopiths than we are to australopiths.
Image
The gross difference between man and australopith is our facility for language and in that respect the australopith is closer to the chimp than to us. But major features of our body are inherited from the australopiths: bipedalism, no fangs, lack of branch-gripping feet, inability to sprint. If you put those together with the predators and alternative prey it becomes a strong inference that we also inherit our good ability to handle hand-held weapons at speed with accuracy and decision from them. For example, our ability to play golf. What is interesting about that from the point of view of narrative, is that sport playing doesn’t seem that relevant to “being human” To be human, especially for the atheist, is to be “smart”

Sendraks wrote: 7) On the question of defensive capability being a factor driving towards smaller group size, why then does the evidence show that hominids have historically tended towards larger group sizes than small? After all, you were talking about a sizeable group of 20 australopiths earlier, something that most smaller predators, like a Hyena, would think twice about approaching.


What evidence is that? I’d like to look at it then we can discuss. If hyenas thought twice about approaching a troop of australopiths that must be because they had tried it and found it a bad idea. In the long run.
Sendraks wrote: 8) So you’re claiming that the paper doesn’t have evidence to show savannah chimps experience a lower rate of predation, due to a lower density of predators? Despite the fact that this is what the paper says. Are you in fact in possession of evidence to the contrary or are you simply dismissing evidence that doesn’t fit with your preconceptions?

Boesch cites Myers(1987) that leopard density in a forest might be as much as 10 times higher than on the savannah. Myer’s monograph on leopard, on page 13 has this:
https://portals.iucn.org/library/efiles ... no-005.pdf

"Since the leopard appears to be the principal if not the sole large predator in some rainforest areas, this may account for the high densities which itreputedly attains. In exceptionally favourable conditions, densities are put as high as one to three square kilometres or even one to each square kilometre. Although little is known about the upper density limits for large felids (e.g. how intense are spacing mechanisms at different densities), high population levels are not unlikely in view of what is known of the number of large predators in certain savannah areas. In the 115 km2 of Nairobi Park, there are estimated to be, on a year-round basis, 25 adult lions, about 10 adult cheetah, and some leopards and hyenas. Ngorongoro Crater's 275 km2 contain at least 75 lions and 400 adult hyenas. In habitats with dense vegetation and an abundance of impala in Kruger Park, there may be two leopards per 3 km2. Schaller (1972) gives total predator biomass figures per square kilometre as 95. 7 kg in Ngorongoro, 44. 7 in Manyara National Park and 32. 4 in Nairobi Park. If the average weight of a leopard is put at 30 kg (viz. three-quarters that of an adult female), a rainforest density of one to one km2 is by no means out of the question when the leopard is the only large carnivore.

So here Myers doesn’t claim that the savannah has lower predator density than the forest which is what you claimed, just fewer leopards. The data suggests that the savanna has higher mammal predator biomass than the forest. (32.4 to 95.7 kg/km^2 in savannah, 30kg/km^2 in forest)

Sendraks wrote: 9) Right, so now you’re claiming that early australopiths didn’t live in trees. Despite the fact that the debate is still ongoing about their morphology in respect of how aboreal they were are not.

Unless you’re going to make some truly radical claim at odds with evolutionary theory that australopiths suddenly appeared, as opposed to evolving from some earlier primate, the case regarding whether australopith ancestors lived in trees is well and truly closed.

When I said my mind is open about the arboreal ancestry of the australopiths I’m just assuming that the origin of humanity will be full of surprises, as it has been so far. Here’s a pic of oreopithecus in Tuscany 7-9mya
Image
I’m claiming the australopiths fought leopards on the ground and their means for doing that would probably have been good enough to be preferable to keeping to places with climbable trees, with some other predators also.
Sendraks wrote: One of the advantages of bipedalism, even if it secondary to the principle means of locomotion, is the ability to stand upright and scan the horizon. Something of limited use in a jungle, but in an open landscape is very useful for spotting food and potential predators.


Sure. I’m not suggesting that defensive weapon use drove the australopiths or their ancestors into bipedalism. But bipedalism would have been a preadaptation for habitually carrying around defensive weapons.

Sendraks wrote: 10) Variety of predators =/= predator density.
Variety of predators = prey variety

Your notion that the savanna has relatively low predator density is wrong, as I showed above using Myer’s estimates- the originator of the information you cited.
Most mammalian predators would have been a threat to the australopith’s freedom to forage, repeatedly re-established. The fact that lions predate on buffalo doesn’t mean a baboon can safely forage where there are lions.



To place the australopiths in their ecological context is to recognise the importance of predators denying them access to foraging areas, or restricting the conditions of access.
Sendraks wrote: 11) The claims that australopiths were very capable climbers is born out by their morphology. That they were not as good at climbing as creatures adapted to an aboreal lifestyle is irrelevant.


Nothing about the morphology of chimps, gorilla, baboons or the australopiths is irrelevant for modelling australopith ecology. If they could not out climb a leopard and if they couldn’t threaten a leopard with the kind of biting damage that we know a chimp can inflict on another chimp, (and which Boesch’s leopard was evidently fleeing from “with its ears flattened against its head”) then the australopiths needed some other effective means for escaping predation.

Sendraks wrote: 12) I will say this again symbiotic relationship =/= tool use. You are not comparing like with like and instead operating under some sort of “one size fits all” belief, in how different animals in different environments, have different defensive strategies. Your argument might work on people who do not understand basic zoology, you might want to try it on them?


How does your understanding of zoology enable you to make out that calling the crab-anemone relation symbiotic, discounts that the crab has evolved to select particular objects and use them defensively?

Sendraks wrote: 13) Your claim that “human origin narrative built by atheists all but ignores the available evidence” is a lie. The reason the narrative exists is because the evidence exists.

I will say again variety of predators =/= predator density.

You appear to very resilient to considering that australopiths were perfectly able to survive in Africa without recourse to weapons. The evidence, which I have summarised, shows no need for weapon use of the sort you describe to enable their survival. One of us is making stuff up. One of us is sticking rigidly to what the evidence shows to be true.
For the avoidance of doubt – you are the one making things up JayJay. Unless you start presenting some evidence, rather than conjecture, this will remain to be the case.


All primates have a formidable ability to grab and bite, except humankind- and you can see from their teeth that we inherited that trait from the australopiths. Unlike apes and monkeys, we don’t like to bite. We like to hit and stab. We like to grab something to do those with. Watch a movie that involves a struggle in a kitchen. The camera flashes over a knife stand. What do you know? Someone is going to grab a knife from that stand. There will be blood. The film makers know you know.

Sendraks wrote: 14) Again:
symbiotic relationship =/= tool use

Your example of the Pom Pom crab is not an example of tool use or weapon selection. It is evidence of a symbiotic relationship.


Only if you use the word “symbiotic” as a voodoo doll.
Sendraks wrote: Your claim that “There’s no evidence that high mental faculties are needed for a species to acquire a weapon-selecting habit” is manifestly not borne out by the evidence of homind evolution and the existence of homo sapiens as the only creature on this planet which makes habitual use of tools as weapons. Indeed making this claim is to refute your own argument.

The pom pom crab picks up a weapon and uses it defensively:

Sendraks wrote: Your claim “What is unevidenced is that a primate can exist without being able to pose a deadly threat to its habitual predators” is easily refuted by the fact that savannah chimps survive without recourse to weapons and in an environ with a sizeable apex predator.

Interestingly I can’t find any evidence (yet) of chimps having altercations with the predator that has the highest successful kill ratio of any living land based creature (not including homo sapiens).

If you are talking about the leopard (as you should be, in connection with predation on chimps) then it’s strange you should fail to find evidence of altercations, after having actually cited Boesch’s study of leopard predation on chimps in the Tai forest.
http://www.eva.mpg.de/primat/staff/boesch/pdf/behav_leopard_predation.pdf

As to chimps not having weapons, they don’t have effective hand held weapons but they do have fangs which, used with their powerful arms (as I cited of FitzPatrick’s account of a dog-killing baboon) can maim and kill at least other chimps, as cited by Watts:
http://sitemaker.umich.edu/mitani/files/watts_et_al_2006.pdf

As to leopards being such successful predators, consider this pic of the American taxidermist Carl Akeley with the leopard he killed with his bare hands in 1986:
Image
Modern humans often survive leopard attacks, though those are not attacks by habituated predators- the examples of the Panar and Rudraprayag leopards in India show how formidable they must have been. To model the australopiths in their biomes as a species in the African food web optimised like other species to eat without being eaten, then one has to include being predated incidentally by large predators, being tested by non-habituated predators, and being regularly predated by highly skilled individuals.

Sendraks wrote: 15) Finally, I am going to repeat what I said in my last post because, while you quoted it, you appear either not to have understood it or just chosen to ignore it. Group size acts partially as a deterrent against predation, but principally as a means of ensuring the survival of the group overall, as opposed to any specific individual. This is an established fact JayJay. It is not up for debate. The only way your whacky hypothesis works is if you ignore this fact.


Frankly I see that as your shaking another voodoo doll in my face. I’ve got no interest in opposing the notion that survival of the group was adaptive. Rather, the impact of troop extinction is exactly what would have optimised the effectiveness of a smaller number, to defend an already damaged troop.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#452  Postby Calilasseia » Jul 21, 2014 3:04 pm

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Sendraks wrote:So basically your “atheist ideology” is a slander applied to anyone who sticks to a rigorous scientific method working with hypothesis supported by evidence and discarding those that are not.


It’s not slander to argue that atheist ideology has influenced the human origin narrative


Bollocks. It IS a slander, and a particularly egregious and duplicitous one at that, because what GENUINELY influences the "narrative", as you keep calling it, about human origins, is DATA IN ENORMOUS AMOUNTS. Data such as the thousands of hominid fossils, data such as the phylogenetic data arising from whole genome comparisons of humans and other primates, data which ALL not only flushes the fantasies you peddle here down the toilet and pulls the flush hard, but also points inexorably to your "atheist ideology" mantra being a fiction and a lie. With this mendacious and utterly morally bankrupt fiction you keep peddling, you traduce the thousands of hard-working, honest scientists who let the DATA shape their ideas, NOT your fictitious "atheist ideology". Now once and for all, JayJay, shove this duplicitous fiction back into the orifice you manifestly pulled it from, because it IS a fiction, and it IS a lie. Moreover, the only reason you're peddling this fiction and this lie, is because the DATA says that the assorted fantasies you're peddling here are fantasies, and that the only method open to you to hand-wave away the data, is to try and smear the scientists uncovering that data as operating in the same way as creationists, who are the REAL pedlars of ideology here.

This egregiously maleficent fiction you have been peddling has not only been demonstrated to be a maleficent fiction repeatedly, but is becoming more and more boring with every resurrection thereof on your part. This fiction of yours stinks, JayJay, it stinks with a foul odour of discoursive duplicity and criminality that makes numerous organoselenium compounds seem florally fragrant by comparison. It is long overdue for you to drop this fiction once and for all, JayJay, and continued peddling of this fiction after this post will be regarded by everyone here as suppuratingly dishonest.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#453  Postby theropod » Jul 21, 2014 5:38 pm

Calilasseia wrote:
...continued peddling of this fiction after this post will be regarded by everyone here as suppuratingly dishonest.


Will be? Ha, I've abandoned all hope of a course correction or intellectual honesty.

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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#454  Postby Jayjay4547 » Jul 22, 2014 5:59 am

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:
Sendraks wrote:So basically your “atheist ideology” is a slander applied to anyone who sticks to a rigorous scientific method working with hypothesis supported by evidence and discarding those that are not.


It’s not slander to argue that atheist ideology has influenced the human origin narrative


Bollocks. It IS a slander, and a particularly egregious and duplicitous one at that, because what GENUINELY influences the "narrative", as you keep calling it, about human origins, is DATA IN ENORMOUS AMOUNTS. Data such as the thousands of hominid fossils, data such as the phylogenetic data arising from whole genome comparisons of humans and other primates, data which ALL not only flushes the fantasies you peddle here down the toilet and pulls the flush hard, but also points inexorably to your "atheist ideology" mantra being a fiction and a lie. With this mendacious and utterly morally bankrupt fiction you keep peddling, you traduce the thousands of hard-working, honest scientists who let the DATA shape their ideas, NOT your fictitious "atheist ideology". Now once and for all, JayJay, shove this duplicitous fiction back into the orifice you manifestly pulled it from, because it IS a fiction, and it IS a lie. Moreover, the only reason you're peddling this fiction and this lie, is because the DATA says that the assorted fantasies you're peddling here are fantasies, and that the only method open to you to hand-wave away the data, is to try and smear the scientists uncovering that data as operating in the same way as creationists, who are the REAL pedlars of ideology here.

This egregiously maleficent fiction you have been peddling has not only been demonstrated to be a maleficent fiction repeatedly, but is becoming more and more boring with every resurrection thereof on your part. This fiction of yours stinks, JayJay, it stinks with a foul odour of discoursive duplicity and criminality that makes numerous organoselenium compounds seem florally fragrant by comparison. It is long overdue for you to drop this fiction once and for all, JayJay, and continued peddling of this fiction after this post will be regarded by everyone here as suppuratingly dishonest.


I count it as quite an achievement to have reduced you to this frustrated spluttering. There’s always a possibility that some members of the English intellectual elite might come here and whatever they think of my mangled sentences they won’t be impressed by your claim of almost papal authority for science. Those guys aren’t in your pocket Cali. The bias that I claim so see in the established human origin narrative is no more radical than they have been educated to accept in the respected discipline of History. Though the natural history bias I’m claiming is particularly interesting. I’m claiming that when Treves and Palmquist said “When considering hominin anti-predator behavior, many scholars looked first to material culture, such as fire or weaponry” they were representing as scientific progress a swerve away from an already biased approach to treating human ancestors as embedded within and "created" by the biome expressed through the trophic pyramid. The ideological background driving that swerve was partly reaction within the Evo/Creo polarity, let’s call it a dialectic. Atheist scientists aren’t looking good here Cali, this is a vulnerability in an unexpected quarter. You need to lift your game.

Anyway, what I mainly wanted to discuss was your long paste purporting to show that Hitler was Christian. That was all quote mining, let’s put it in the context of the very bones of 20th century history.

In 1917 Russia took herself out of the Great War in a Bolshevik revolution. The new government was internationalist, avowedly anti-Christian and pro-science. It sought to extend communism throughout the world.

In 1918 Germany surrendered after a revolution with a communist heart but the communists were beaten by right-wing capitalist reaction, ending with the compromise of the weak but democratic Weimar republic.

In 1933 the Nazis came to power in Germany as an explicitly anti-communist party. They made a concordat with the Catholic political party in which, in exchange for withdrawing from politics, the Catholics would be protected and funded by the Reich, as they still are.

In 1937 the Pope issued Mit Brennender Sorge, an encyclical smuggled into Germany and to be read to all Germans. He complained about a breach of contract by the Nazis and warned of the evil of the Fuhrer principle, of paying ultimate allegiance to a man and a State rather than to God.

Something important had happened to produce that encyclical. In spite of the brutal anti-Christian actions where communists had taken control in Russia, Mexico and Spain, involving the deaths of thousands of Catholic clergy, and in spite of the trial war in Spain between the Nazis and Communists, there had been a falling out between Nazis and Catholics in Germany. That is documented in Richard J Evans’ The Third Reich in Power. In spite of the Nazis having every strategic interest in an anti-communist alliance with the Catholics, Hitler’s government undermined the Catholics at every turn; trapping clergy using prostitutes and closing down schools and seminaries. At the same time the Protestants were undermined by building up a toady Lutheran faction from which the Confessing church broke away. The disaffection between Nazis and organised Christianity is symbolised by the facts that Stauffenberg who tried to blow Hitler up, was a Catholic and Dietrich Bonhoeffer the theologian who was hanged on piano wire for his role in that, was a Lutheran. Hitler reportedly had the plotters' pants pulled down, supposedly to show what sort of men they were, but really telling us something about Hitler.

There were no shortage of things Hitler said in public speeches, to align Nazism to the Anti-Communist Christian West. But the Fuhrer was no church-goer nor was his party of thugs. They were totalitarian. They explicitly freed their minds from the moral halters of the Lutheran and Catholic churches of their day, to wreak cruel havoc wherever their power spread.

Edit: formed changed to created, removed redundant sentence in last para, typos
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#455  Postby Calilasseia » Jul 23, 2014 12:31 am

Jayjay4547 wrote:
Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:
Sendraks wrote:So basically your “atheist ideology” is a slander applied to anyone who sticks to a rigorous scientific method working with hypothesis supported by evidence and discarding those that are not.


It’s not slander to argue that atheist ideology has influenced the human origin narrative


Bollocks. It IS a slander, and a particularly egregious and duplicitous one at that, because what GENUINELY influences the "narrative", as you keep calling it, about human origins, is DATA IN ENORMOUS AMOUNTS. Data such as the thousands of hominid fossils, data such as the phylogenetic data arising from whole genome comparisons of humans and other primates, data which ALL not only flushes the fantasies you peddle here down the toilet and pulls the flush hard, but also points inexorably to your "atheist ideology" mantra being a fiction and a lie. With this mendacious and utterly morally bankrupt fiction you keep peddling, you traduce the thousands of hard-working, honest scientists who let the DATA shape their ideas, NOT your fictitious "atheist ideology". Now once and for all, JayJay, shove this duplicitous fiction back into the orifice you manifestly pulled it from, because it IS a fiction, and it IS a lie. Moreover, the only reason you're peddling this fiction and this lie, is because the DATA says that the assorted fantasies you're peddling here are fantasies, and that the only method open to you to hand-wave away the data, is to try and smear the scientists uncovering that data as operating in the same way as creationists, who are the REAL pedlars of ideology here.

This egregiously maleficent fiction you have been peddling has not only been demonstrated to be a maleficent fiction repeatedly, but is becoming more and more boring with every resurrection thereof on your part. This fiction of yours stinks, JayJay, it stinks with a foul odour of discoursive duplicity and criminality that makes numerous organoselenium compounds seem florally fragrant by comparison. It is long overdue for you to drop this fiction once and for all, JayJay, and continued peddling of this fiction after this post will be regarded by everyone here as suppuratingly dishonest.


I count it as quite an achievement to have reduced you to this frustrated spluttering.


Only someone entertaining some seriously febrile delusions could describe the above presentation of facts as "frustrated spluttering".

Jayjay4547 wrote:There’s always a possibility that some members of the English intellectual elite might come here and whatever they think of my mangled sentences they won’t be impressed by your claim of almost papal authority for science.


Ah, more caricature. Quelle fucking surprise.

The mere fact that you describe allowing data to shape ideas as "Papal authority" speaks volumes about your own presuppositions here, JayJay. But that's the whole point - discarding ideas when the data says it's time for them to go, is the very antithesis of the sort of assertionist authority you're caricaturing science as with the above fatuous drivel. But I've long since ceased to be surprised at the manner in which supernaturalists resort to caricature of this sort.

Once again, what part of "the data shapes ideas in science, not unsupported assertions peddled as purportedly constituting fact", do you not understand?

Jayjay4547 wrote:Those guys aren’t in your pocket Cali.


They're not in yours either. Moreover, they'll almost certainly point and laugh at your above caricature if they happen to know how science actually works, as opposed to the caricature thereof you repeatedly peddle here.

Jayjay4547 wrote:The bias that I claim so see in the established human origin narrative is no more radical than they have been educated to accept in the respected discipline of History.


Pull the other one, JayJay, it's got fucking bells on. You're erecting your caricatures for one purpose and one purpose only, as I described above, namely, to try and erect a fake "symmetry" between evidence-based science and assertion-laden doctrine, for the purpose of dismissing any evidence that happens not to genuflect before your ideological presuppositions. It's a supernaturalist tactic that's been deployed so often here, JayJay, and not just by you, that it's transparently obvious to the point of having no refractive index. Your entire "atheist ideology" bullshit is erected for this specific purpose, just as it's erected for the same purpose by every other creationist who peddles it. No one who paid attention in science class is fooled by this discoursive elision.

Jayjay4547 wrote:Though the natural history bias I’m claiming is particularly interesting.


Only a creationist could possibly describe paying attention to the real world evidence as "natural history bias". Congratulations on exposing your own manifest ideological presuppositions once more, JayJay.

Jayjay4547 wrote:I’m claiming that when Treves and Palmquist said “When considering hominin anti-predator behavior, many scholars looked first to material culture, such as fire or weaponry” they were representing as scientific progress a swerve away from an already biased approach to treating human ancestors as embedded within and "created" by the biome expressed through the trophic pyramid.


Word salad. Not to mention more assertionist drivel.

Oh wait, those authors were referring to the fact that previous scholars did indeed examine these hypotheses as possible explanations for early hominin survival on a predator-rich savannah, and indeed, those previous authors had reasons for considering those hypotheses. Namely, animals have a habit of avoiding fire, courtesy of the fact that not doing so happens to be painfully fatal, and weapons, properly constructed and deployed, can give those in possession thereof an advantage, as the evidence from human conflict manifestly demonstrates. What the later authors set out to demonstrate in their paper, was that neither of these was significant enough an advantage to tilt the balance. Lo and behold, we have evidence supporting this later hypothesis, such as those two video clips I presented, in which large feline predators were perfectly willing to attack humans armed with modern firearms. As a corollary, it doesn't require any massive leap to conclude that any species exhibiting a willingness to attack humans armed with modern firearms, would be very likely to adopt a similar approach to humans armed with considerably inferior weapons. Only in the fantasy parallel universe you're trying to pass off as the real one, does this principle not hold.

Once again, from a previous post, I'll present relevant content that applies here:

Calilasseia wrote:Fact No 1 : Modern carnivores are indeed survivors of past attempts by humans to eradicate animals deemed problematic, or to plunder them for the fur trade. We have a large body of evidence supporting this statement.

Fact No. 2 : Pliocene carnviores would not have had a history of conflict with armed hominins, because, wait for it, no evidence that armed hominins existed at that time has ever been found.

Fact No. 3 : A large number of human casualites arising from predator attacks have been recorded in the 20th century, despite the fact that during that period, humans have had access to far more sophisticated weapons than sticks. Humans have had access to everything from large-calibre firearms to naval guns during that period, and from 1945 onwards, have had access to nuclear weapons. Not that any sensible person would deploy nuclear weapons for pest control, of course, but the conventional weapons we have had access to include bomber aircraft, tanks, mobile artillery, and more recently, such things as helicopter gunships deploying precison guided anti-armour missiles. Yet despite our species having access to this cornucopia of invincible weaponry against which animals such as big cats have no defence, and no hope of acquiring countermeasures, those same big cats are still able to subject the human species to attrition.

Fact No. 4 : The archaeological record of weapon acquisition post-dates the record of appearance of hominid species by something like two million years at least. More if one traces lineages back to the likes of Sahelanthropus tchadensis.

No fucking "ideology" involved.


Calilasseia wrote:Oh you think that scientists somehow decided that the observed data fitted presuppositions? Bullshit. I point you to those two video clips I provided above, one featuring a lion attacking hunters armed with fuck-off big guns, the other featuring a tiger attacking humans riding on the backs of elephants, and again deploying firearms. Now if you think a hominid with a smaller body mass than a typical modern day human, could face off those animals with sticks. then I suggest you need to get out more, and find out what actually happens in the world beyond your armchair. It was impressive enough for me to see Siberian Tigers at work in a zoo, let alone what they would be capable of in the wild. I'll remind you again, that in the case of this species, we're dealing with a nine foot long cat, with paws like excavator shovels, capable of turning both you and I into lunch with very little effort indeed. If you ever find yourself up against one, I recommend you have a fully loaded AK-47 to hand if you want to guarantee walking away with all your limbs intact.


Calilasseia wrote:If I have a spear, that spear may well be very effective at bringing down something like an antelope, provided of course that I deploy it competently. On the other hand, even if I'm a fucking virtuoso with that spear, that spear is going to be fucking useless against an M1 Abrams main battle tank.

In order to provide proper evidential support for the notion that early hominid weapons were a significant factor, one needs to ask several pertinent questions in advance. Namely:

[1] Did those early hominids have weapons?

[2] If so, what weapons did they have?

[3] How were those weapons deployed?

[4] On the basis of the answers to [1] and [3] above, how successful were said weapons likely to be against a particular species?

But then, scientists realise early on in the game, that you can't just make shit up and pass it off as fact, the way creationists do. That's why they engage in research.


Jayjay4547 wrote:The ideological background driving that swerve was partly reaction within the Evo/Creo polarity, let’s call it a dialectic.


Bollocks. What drove the authors in question was evaluation of the evidence. Plenty of which from that paper I quoted at length. But don't let this elementary fact stop you from continuing to peddle your "atheist ideologiy" bullshit and lies.

Jayjay4547 wrote:Atheist scientists


The mere fact that you posted this phrase, instead of merely referring to them as "scientists", once again points to YOUR attempts to peddle an ideology. But then the entirely proper ignoring of superfluous and unsupported assertions, is routinely characteristed as "ideological bias" by pedlars of creationist ideology.

Jayjay4547 wrote:aren’t looking good here Cali


They're looking a whole lot better than you are, JayJay. In fact, alongside you and your apologetic fabrications, they're making Scarlett Johanssen and Anne Hathaway look like bag ladies.

Jayjay4547 wrote:this is a vulnerability in an unexpected quarter.


Keep pretending that this wet dream is reality, JayJay. It's bullshit from start to finish. There is no "vulnerability" here, it's another figment of your imagination.

Jayjay4547 wrote: You need to lift your game.


HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

This from the person whose entire post content is littered with unsupported assertions, cheap ad hominems and blatant fabrications. Pot, kettle, black much?

Jayjay4547 wrote:Anyway, what I mainly wanted to discuss was your long paste purporting to show that Hitler was Christian. That was all quote mining


Oh now you're treading on dangerous soil here, JayJay. What I presented was NOT "quote mining", because I didn't attempt via those quotes to distort the author's intent. Retract this blatant falsehood NOW.

Jayjay4547 wrote:let’s put it in the context of the very bones of 20th century history.


Oh, you think I'm not aware of any of this? Oh this is going to be so fucking good.

Jayjay4547 wrote:In 1917 Russia took herself out of the Great War in a Bolshevik revolution.


What the fuck does this have to do with Mein Kampf, and the author's thoughts as he dictated the contents thereof to Rudolf Hess in their shared cell?

Jayjay4547 wrote:The new government was internationalist, avowedly anti-Christian


Yawn.

Jayjay4547 wrote: and pro-science.


Trofim Lysenko, anyone?

Jayjay4547 wrote:It sought to extend communism throughout the world.


Once again, what has this to do with Hitler's race theories, and the thoughts he presented in Mein Kampf?

Jayjay4547 wrote:In 1918 Germany surrendered after a revolution with a communist heart


Actually, that surrender was brought about by the realisation, on the part of the Imperial German high command, that they could not sustain indefinitely the level of attrition they were facing. But I suppose 3 million dead German soldiers had nothing to do with that surrender, did it? You do realise that the Axis Powers suffered a total of 16.4 million casualties?

Jayjay4547 wrote: but the communists were beaten by right-wing capitalist reaction, ending with the compromise of the weak but democratic Weimar republic.


So what? What has this to do with the relevant content I presented from Mein Kampf?

Jayjay4547 wrote:In 1933 the Nazis came to power in Germany as an explicitly anti-communist party. They made a concordat with the Catholic political party in which, in exchange for withdrawing from politics, the Catholics would be protected and funded by the Reich, as they still are.


Given the ruthlessness with which they exeterminated a range of political opponents from other parties, JayJay, one has to ask why they dispensed this largesse to the Catholic Party. Or why they signed a concordat with the Vatican, for that matter, which was signed in 1933.

Jayjay4547 wrote:In 1937 the Pope issued Mit Brennender Sorge, an encyclical smuggled into Germany and to be read to all Germans. He complained about a breach of contract by the Nazis and warned of the evil of the Fuhrer principle, of paying ultimate allegiance to a man and a State rather than to God.


Here's some words on that encyclical, written by Carlo Falconi, Catholic journalist and former ordained priest:

So little anti-Nazi is it that it does not even attribute to the regime as such, but only to certain trends within it, the dogmatic and moral errors widespread in Germany. And while the errors indicated are carefully diagnosed and refuted, complete silence surrounds the much more serious and fundamental errors associated with Nazi political ideology, corresponding to the principles most subversive of natural law that are characteristic of absolute totalitarianisms. The encyclical is in fact concerned purely with the Catholic Church in Germany and its rights and privileges, on the basis of the concordatory contracts of 1933. Moreover the form given to it by Cardinal Faulhaber, even more a super-nationalist than the majority of his most ardent colleagues, was essentially dictated by tactics and aimed at avoiding a definite breach with the regime, even to the point of offering in conclusion a conciliatory olive branch to Hitler if he would restore the tranquil prosperity of the Catholic Church in Germany. But that was the very thing to deprive the document of its noble and exemplary intransigence. Nevertheless, even within these limitations, the pontifical letter still remains the first great public document to dare to confront and criticize Nazism, and the Pope's courage astonished the world. It was, indeed, the encyclicals fate to be credited with a greater significance and content than it possessed."


Relevant parts in the above highlighted.

Jayjay4547 wrote:Something important had happened to produce that encyclical.


I refer you to Carlo Falconi above once more.

Jayjay4547 wrote: In spite of the brutal anti-Christian actions where communists had taken control in Russia, Mexico and Spain, involving the deaths of thousands of Catholic clergy, and in spite of the trial war in Spain between the Nazis and Communists, there had been a falling out between Nazis and Catholics in Germany. That is documented in Richard J Evans’ The Third Reich in Power. In spite of the Nazis having every strategic interest in an anti-communist alliance with the Catholics, Hitler’s government undermined the Catholics at every turn; trapping clergy using prostitutes and closing down schools and seminaries.


Actually, you'll find that much of this activity was a reaction to that encyclical.

Jayjay4547 wrote:At the same time the Protestants were undermined by building up a toady Lutheran faction from which the Confessing church broke away. The disaffection between Nazis and organised Christianity is symbolised by the facts that Stauffenberg who tried to blow Hitler up, was a Catholic and Dietrich Bonhoeffer the theologian who was hanged on piano wire for his role in that, was a Lutheran.


No kidding? I don't remember saying otherwise.

I'm still waiting for you to address the fact that on 24th October, 1933, Hitler uttered these words in Berlin:

We were convinced that the people needs and requires this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out.


Or that in 1938, nearly eighteen months after the encyclical was issued, Hitler uttered these words in Nuremberg:

National Socialism is not a cult-movement—a movement for worship; it is exclusively a 'volkic' political doctrine based upon racial principles. In its purpose there is no mystic cult, only the care and leadership of a people defined by a common blood-relationship.... We will not allow mystically-minded occult folk with a passion for exploring the secrets of the world beyond to steal into our Movement. Such folk are not National Socialists, but something else—in any case something which has nothing to do with us. At the head of our programme there stand no secret surmisings but clear-cut perception and straightforward profession of belief. But since we set as the central point of this perception and of this profession of belief the maintenance and hence the security for the future of a being formed by God, we thus serve the maintenance of a divine work and fulfill a divine will—not in the secret twilight of a new house of worship, but openly before the face of the Lord... Our worship is exclusively the cultivation of the natural, and for that reason, because natural, therefore God-willed. Our humility is the unconditional submission before the divine laws of existence so far as they are known to us men.


Oh, and how about addressing the fact that Hitler's racial theories originated with Lanz von Liebenfels, as I documented in detail in the relevant past post? Care to do that, JayJay, given that this is now considered to be accepted and evidentially supported by just about every historian studying the relevant period? And as a corollary, his racial theories had nothing to do with science, let alone evolution?

Jayjay4547 wrote:Hitler reportedly had the plotters' pants pulled down, supposedly to show what sort of men they were, but really telling us something about Hitler.


Actually, you're referring here to the manner in which the SS made the defendants at the so-called "People's Court", presided over by Roland Freisler, attend court without belt or braces for their trousers, to add to their humiliations, as documented in Airey Neave's Nuremberg. It does help if you get some facts right, JayJay.

Jayjay4547 wrote:There were no shortage of things Hitler said in public speeches, to align Nazism to the Anti-Communist Christian West. But the Fuhrer was no church-goer nor was his party of thugs.


There are plenty of people who don't go to church, but who adhere to the relevant doctrines.

Jayjay4547 wrote:They were totalitarian.


No kidding? did I ever assert otherwise? So were, for that matter, the executors of the Inquisition.

Jayjay4547 wrote:They explicitly freed their minds from the moral halters of the Lutheran and Catholic churches of their day, to wreak cruel havoc wherever their power spread.


Oh this would be the same Lutheran Church, whose founder wrote a 65,000 word anti-Semitic tract titled On The Jews And Their Lies in 1543, nearly 400 years before the Nazis began their programme? In which he advocated the burning of synagogues, the destruction of Jewish scriptures, the seizure of money and property from the Jews, and even the destruction of their homes? Sound familiar, does this lot?
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#456  Postby Jayjay4547 » Jul 23, 2014 4:16 am

theropod wrote:
Calilasseia wrote:
...continued peddling of this fiction after this post will be regarded by everyone here as suppuratingly dishonest.


Will be? Ha, I've abandoned all hope of a course correction or intellectual honesty.

RS

Explain to me the lack of intellectual honesty you have found in my posts.

theropod wrote: Ok JJ, let's go on safari. You and me. I get to take a deadly accurate bolt action high power rifle, hand made to exacting specifications by the worlds best professionals, and loaded with deadly partitioned spire tipped boat tail hollow point in .300 Winchester magnum. You get the sharpest, strongest, straightest, heaviest or lightest stick you can make or buy. We go walk the Serengeti until we find a hungry leopard, or it finds us, and it charges us. A third person is filming. Where do you think the camera operator is going to be standing? Behind you, or me? Be honest if you respond at all.


I don’t have to buy the silly choice you offer me. Your deadly spire tipped blah blah is a 21st century striker weapon. The stick is a 3 million year old stopper. A more sensible choice would be between modern rifle and modern armoured personnel carrier. The camera man is going to sit in the APC, with air conditioning and back issues of The New Yorker.

I’ve been on field trips in lion-harbouring nature reserves, protected by men with rifles. But I felt better when also carrying a survey rod. I call that atavistic instinct.

theropod wrote: You've seen a big cat attack in video. You've seen two such instances cited. Even folks with guns have serious trouble with a big cat that wants to kill you, and only if there were a bunch of you with sharp sticks smart enough to use group tactics will such a defense stand a chance of working, and then it would require bravery I don't know I have. I'm not going out where there are man killing beasts about without some form of serious weapon and hope my reaction time is up to the task. I'm not sure Mashonne's blade isn't a good idea in such a situation,, if one knew the techniques.


I’ve seen two videos of hunted and trapped animals dying heroically. Neither were forcing their way over a proffered defence, they were being shot at. Here’s a pic of a predator approaching a “stopper”, where it will lose the initiative and become vulnerable to a strike.
Image
theropod wrote: The point is, again, that a group of early homids might have used such a defense, but a single early hominid with just a stick is soon gonna be big cat turds, jackal turds, hyena turds vulture turds and bug turds in less than a week. A few bones might survive for a year or two before the nocturnal rodents gnawed them into rat-like turds.


No, the point is that a group of early hominins without means to hurt predators could not have existed. And, unlike all other primates they didn’t have fangs to bite.

theropod wrote: I saw what you posted that almost resembled a response, but I want you to address this. While my paleontological quests have been a little farther back than the study of hominids I do take interest, and mostly in the tools. I think I posted in the science writing competition about the early rise of science without any of those doing the science knowing it. I think defense with a stick really took off when some early hominid(s) broke a rock, or found one broken, noticed it was sharp then put 2 and 2 together, and affixed that rock to that stick.


OK, so what happened before “defense with a stick really took off”? Was there nothing? That’s impossible. The australopith physiology make it a strong inference that tools evolved out of weapons and the first weapon was probably something that stopped the predator’s approach, took the initiative from it and made it vulnerable. Striker weapons evolved to exploit that vulnerability. Your handled axe was a late evolution, when our ancestors had lived so intimately with weapons for so long, that the mental and social adaptations to enable and appreciate their effective kinetic use had progressed so far that they had struggled purposefully to attach a handle to a stone. If you have to bite a predator it's prudent to have your "fang" at the end of your arm rather than in your mouth. And it’s even more prudent to put it at the end of a stick. But Oldowan hand axes weren’t attached to sticks and being made from pebbles which are selected by rivers as unpromising material for flaking, it’s probable that the (barely) identifiable Oldowan tools evolved out of unworked pebbles.

Even today one sees essentially unworked objects used kinetically. In kwaZulu-Natal where I lived, rural men often screw a nut from a railroad tie onto a thin stick to make a man-killing kerrie. The nut was worked but by a process as extraneous as a river bed is in its pebble shaping.

theropod wrote: As it was then then as it is now it's matching an object to application by rejecting what doesn't work over that which does. Jump from those first crude stone tipped sticks to today where I'm able to use a weapon that throws a tiny little rock with enough force to blow the head of an attacking big cat into jello because it's a culmination of looking at the problem and keeping what works, trying improvements and rejecting what fails. Over and over and over.


Yes that’s the atheist origin narrative; we evolved tools because we started being smart. But the finding of Australopithecus points the other way: weapons taught us to think and then we developed the class of “tools”. We are taught beings, created things.

theropod wrote: Come on JJ, let's get a good look at your thinking as to what importance, if there was any, there may have been to group use of the crude weapons you espouse. Isn't the group the critical factor even IF other portions of your position concerning stick weapons is true? Humans tend to form into groups. It's a part of us. We instinctively know we are safer in a group than by our selves. Sardines?


That word “group” is a voodoo doll to sow confusion. A group without the ability to hurt is as helpless as the Indian contract labourers on the Uganda railway through Tsavo were. What is of importance is the ability to hurt at minimum cost, by the fewest individuals, to place as much initiative with the group as to where to forage, in what organisation, in what time and season and in the face of what predators and what alternative prey. And in the face of massive disturbance by chance. One can bet that australopith groups organised into forms to promote economical defense. It’s all the creation of logic, physics and the biome. Not about “smarts”.

Edit: removed redundant and deceptive "rural", also lion to predator, vehicle to carrier
Last edited by Jayjay4547 on Jul 23, 2014 10:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#457  Postby Sendraks » Jul 23, 2014 10:10 am

JayJay keeps rolling out the phrase "voodoo doll" in response to anything he doesn't understand, so there is little point in arguing with him. This isn't a discussion about zoology or hominid evolution, as JayJay is ignorant of the necessary knowledge to participate fully and only wants to peddle his ideology. Because he doesn't understand the difference between a "symbiotic relationship" and "tool use" he calls it a "voodoo doll" because it doesn't fit with his whacky ideology. Same for group size. That alone trumps his argument hands down and therefore it is a "voodoo dool."

I'd have responded sooner, but I've been ill. As it stands, I don't really have much to add beyond the above.

I will respond to a few points though, just to further demonstrate the levels of ignorance on JayJay's part.

Jayjay4547 wrote:You don’t explain why the variety of predation threats the australopiths faced should be irrelevant.


Because density matters more than variety, when we're discussing the density of the predators most like to predate on australopiths to which your stick hypothesis applies.

Unless you're going to give us all a good laugh by claiming a 1.4m high australopith is going to successfully deter a Lion with a stick, anymore than a juvenille impala would deter one?

Jayjay4547 wrote:So here Myers doesn’t claim that the savannah has lower predator density than the forest which is what you claimed, just fewer leopards. The data suggests that the savanna has higher mammal predator biomass than the forest. (32.4 to 95.7 kg/km^2 in savannah, 30kg/km^2 in forest)


A few points here.
1) We are talking about Leopard predation of chimps here, which appears to be our best existing analogue to demonstrate the relationship between australopiths and leopards. So leopard density is key.
2) The Ngorongoro Crater park is a singular environment and can not be consider an example of a.n.other savannah environment. I'll leave you to work out what that might be.
3) The density of predators in the crater is in correlation to the density of prey. And that prey in the crater is predominantly not chimpanzeees.

and finally.

4) Australopiths could climb trees. Almost certainly better than homo sapiens can.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#458  Postby theropod » Jul 23, 2014 12:02 pm

Jayjay4547 wrote:
theropod wrote:
Calilasseia wrote:
...continued peddling of this fiction after this post will be regarded by everyone here as suppuratingly dishonest.


Will be? Ha, I've abandoned all hope of a course correction or intellectual honesty.

RS


Explain to me the lack of intellectual honesty you have found in my posts.


I don't have the time, or the inclination, to spend several days collecting and presenting all the instances thereof. Besides you have displayed more of that same in the post to which I am responding.

theropod wrote: Ok JJ, let's go on safari. You and me. I get to take a deadly accurate bolt action high power rifle, hand made to exacting specifications by the worlds best professionals, and loaded with deadly partitioned spire tipped boat tail hollow point in .300 Winchester magnum. You get the sharpest, strongest, straightest, heaviest or lightest stick you can make or buy. We go walk the Serengeti until we find a hungry leopard, or it finds us, and it charges us. A third person is filming. Where do you think the camera operator is going to be standing? Behind you, or me? Be honest if you respond at all.


I don’t have to buy the silly choice you offer me. Your deadly spire tipped blah blah is a 21st century striker weapon. The stick is a 3 million year old stopper. A more sensible choice would be between modern rifle and modern armoured personnel carrier. The camera man is going to sit in the APC, with air conditioning and back issues of The New Yorker.

I’ve been on field trips in lion-harbouring nature reserves, protected by men with rifles. But I felt better when also carrying a survey rod. I call that atavistic instinct.


Sticks sticks sticks. Despite the fact that you have ZERO evidence for this sharp stick defense, and having this explained in detail you keep at it like a blood hound. Yet another example of the intellectual dishonesty on display for all to see.

theropod wrote: You've seen a big cat attack in video. You've seen two such instances cited. Even folks with guns have serious trouble with a big cat that wants to kill you, and only if there were a bunch of you with sharp sticks smart enough to use group tactics will such a defense stand a chance of working, and then it would require bravery I don't know I have. I'm not going out where there are man killing beasts about without some form of serious weapon and hope my reaction time is up to the task. I'm not sure Mashonne's blade isn't a good idea in such a situation,, if one knew the techniques.


I’ve seen two videos of hunted and trapped animals dying heroically. Neither were forcing their way over a proffered defence, they were being shot at. Here’s a pic of a predator approaching a “stopper”, where it will lose the initiative and become vulnerable to a strike.
Image


A picture of a carving? Really? The animal looks like it is continuing the attack. Note also that the human has a shield. Did these early hominids also have shields? Seems like a good idea. How about body armor. The depiction seems to show a helmet. I suppose they had those those too. Perhaps you could find some evidence instead of this picture since it neither matches temporally nor technologically what you are asserting. Finally the wings depicted must mean that if the shield, helmet and pointy stick didn't stop the attack he could just flit away like a skipper butterfly.

theropod wrote: The point is, again, that a group of early homids might have used such a defense, but a single early hominid with just a stick is soon gonna be big cat turds, jackal turds, hyena turds vulture turds and bug turds in less than a week. A few bones might survive for a year or two before the nocturnal rodents gnawed them into rat-like turds.


No, the point is that a group of early hominins without means to hurt predators could not have existed. And, unlike all other primates they didn’t have fangs to bite.


Yet you have been presented with evidence of humans killing other humans with biting. Lie much?

theropod wrote: I saw what you posted that almost resembled a response, but I want you to address this. While my paleontological quests have been a little farther back than the study of hominids I do take interest, and mostly in the tools. I think I posted in the science writing competition about the early rise of science without any of those doing the science knowing it. I think defense with a stick really took off when some early hominid(s) broke a rock, or found one broken, noticed it was sharp then put 2 and 2 together, and affixed that rock to that stick.


OK, so what happened before “defense with a stick really took off”? Was there nothing? That’s impossible. The australopith physiology make it a strong inference that tools evolved out of weapons and the first weapon was probably something that stopped the predator’s approach, took the initiative from it and made it vulnerable. Striker weapons evolved to exploit that vulnerability. Your handled axe was a late evolution, when our ancestors had lived so intimately with weapons for so long, that the mental and social adaptations to enable and appreciate their effective kinetic use had progressed so far that they had struggled purposefully to attach a handle to a stone. If you have to bite a predator it's prudent to have your "fang" at the end of your arm rather than in your mouth. And it’s even more prudent to put it at the end of a stick. But Oldowan hand axes weren’t attached to sticks and being made from pebbles which are selected by rivers as unpromising material for flaking, it’s probable that the (barely) identifiable Oldowan tools evolved out of unworked pebbles.


Stop misrepresenting what I posted. I made no mention whatsoever of handled axe. Another example of your intellectual dishonesty.

Even today one sees essentially unworked objects used kinetically. In kwaZulu-Natal where I lived, rural men often screw a nut from a railroad tie onto a thin stick to make a man-killing kerrie. The nut was worked but by a process as extraneous as a river bed is in its pebble shaping.


Like throwing stones?

theropod wrote: As it was then then as it is now it's matching an object to application by rejecting what doesn't work over that which does. Jump from those first crude stone tipped sticks to today where I'm able to use a weapon that throws a tiny little rock with enough force to blow the head of an attacking big cat into jello because it's a culmination of looking at the problem and keeping what works, trying improvements and rejecting what fails. Over and over and over.


Yes that’s the atheist origin narrative; we evolved tools because we started being smart. But the finding of Australopithecus points the other way: weapons taught us to think and then we developed the class of “tools”. We are taught beings, created things.


Nice empty assertion. Yawn. I also tire of the stupid "atheist ideology". You've been schooled on this point over and over and over, but you continue to display an intellectual dishonesty by clinging to this lie. Evidence is either valid or it isn't no matter how much you'd like it to be twisted into "just another theory". :nono:

theropod wrote: Come on JJ, let's get a good look at your thinking as to what importance, if there was any, there may have been to group use of the crude weapons you espouse. Isn't the group the critical factor even IF other portions of your position concerning stick weapons is true? Humans tend to form into groups. It's a part of us. We instinctively know we are safer in a group than by our selves. Sardines?


That word “group” is a voodoo doll to sow confusion.


Funny that sardines don't have sharp sticks and their voodoo seems to work or there wouldn't be any sardines. I am absolutely sure sardines face far more predators, both in numbers and diversity, than any hominid ever has.

A group without the ability to hurt is as helpless as the Indian contract labourers on the Uganda railway through Tsavo were. What is of importance is the ability to hurt at minimum cost, by the fewest individuals, to place as much initiative with the group as to where to forage, in what organisation, in what time and season and in the face of what predators and what alternative prey. And in the face of massive disturbance by chance. One can bet that australopith groups organised into forms to promote economical defense. It’s all the creation of logic, physics and the biome. Not about “smarts”.


Yawn.

Edit: removed redundant and deceptive "rural", also lion to predator, vehicle to carrier


What-the-fuck-ever.

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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#459  Postby The_Metatron » Jul 23, 2014 12:22 pm

theropod wrote:...

Jayjay4547 wrote:I’ve seen two videos of hunted and trapped animals dying heroically. Neither were forcing their way over a proffered defence, they were being shot at. Here’s a pic of a predator approaching a “stopper”, where it will lose the initiative and become vulnerable to a strike.
Image

A picture of a carving? Really? The animal looks like it is continuing the attack. Note also that the human has a shield. Did these early hominids also have shields? Seems like a good idea. How about body armor. The depiction seems to show a helmet. I suppose they had those those too. Perhaps you could find some evidence instead of this picture since it neither matches temporally nor technologically what you are asserting. Finally the wings depicted must mean that if the shield, helmet and pointy stick didn't stop the attack he could just flit away like a skipper butterfly...

Probably carved next to the last words of Joseph of Arimathea, carved into the very living rock of the Cave of Caerbannog...

He who is valiant and pure of spirit may find the Holy Grail in the Castle of Aaargh.


Chapman's Law for the win.
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Re: "New eye discovery further demolishes Dawkins"

#460  Postby Jayjay4547 » Jul 24, 2014 11:31 am

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:
Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:

It’s not slander to argue that atheist ideology has influenced the human origin narrative


Bollocks. It IS a slander, and a particularly egregious and duplicitous one at that, because what GENUINELY influences the "narrative", as you keep calling it, about human origins, is DATA IN ENORMOUS AMOUNTS. Data such as the thousands of hominid fossils, data such as the phylogenetic data arising from whole genome comparisons of humans and other primates, data which ALL not only flushes the fantasies you peddle here down the toilet and pulls the flush hard, but also points inexorably to your "atheist ideology" mantra being a fiction and a lie. With this mendacious and utterly morally bankrupt fiction you keep peddling, you traduce the thousands of hard-working, honest scientists who let the DATA shape their ideas, NOT your fictitious "atheist ideology". Now once and for all, JayJay, shove this duplicitous fiction back into the orifice you manifestly pulled it from, because it IS a fiction, and it IS a lie. Moreover, the only reason you're peddling this fiction and this lie, is because the DATA says that the assorted fantasies you're peddling here are fantasies, and that the only method open to you to hand-wave away the data, is to try and smear the scientists uncovering that data as operating in the same way as creationists, who are the REAL pedlars of ideology here.

This egregiously maleficent fiction you have been peddling has not only been demonstrated to be a maleficent fiction repeatedly, but is becoming more and more boring with every resurrection thereof on your part. This fiction of yours stinks, JayJay, it stinks with a foul odour of discoursive duplicity and criminality that makes numerous organoselenium compounds seem florally fragrant by comparison. It is long overdue for you to drop this fiction once and for all, JayJay, and continued peddling of this fiction after this post will be regarded by everyone here as suppuratingly dishonest.


I count it as quite an achievement to have reduced you to this frustrated spluttering.


Only someone entertaining some seriously febrile delusions could describe the above presentation of facts as "frustrated spluttering"


“odour of discoursive duplicity and criminality that makes numerous organoselenium compounds seem florally fragrant by comparison.” It’s fair to call that frustrated spluttering. Strange that you seem proud of it. That must be learned. Posters at Richard Dawkins.Net and now here have mutually groomed each other into treating spluttering as admirable. But like I said, if any outsiders do happen to come along, you won’t look so good to them. You can change and the quality of argument here would improve if you did.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:There’s always a possibility that some members of the English intellectual elite might come here and whatever they think of my mangled sentences they won’t be impressed by your claim of almost papal authority for science.


Ah, more caricature. Quelle fucking surprise.

The mere fact that you describe allowing data to shape ideas as "Papal authority" speaks volumes about your own presuppositions here, JayJay. But that's the whole point - discarding ideas when the data says it's time for them to go, is the very antithesis of the sort of assertionist authority you're caricaturing science as with the above fatuous drivel. But I've long since ceased to be surprised at the manner in which supernaturalists resort to caricature of this sort.

Once again, what part of "the data shapes ideas in science, not unsupported assertions peddled as purportedly constituting fact", do you not understand?


It’s true that data is used to support ideas in science as in History but historians appreciate that alternative narratives can be constructed by highlighting different data and that motivations at the social level guide that choice. Those motivations can derive from ideologies, for example atheism.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:Those guys aren’t in your pocket Cali.


They're not in yours either. Moreover, they'll almost certainly point and laugh at your above caricature if they happen to know how science actually works, as opposed to the caricature thereof you repeatedly peddle here.


That notion of “pointing and laughing” is used often here, it brings up an image of a jeering crowd which is your crowd; you-all act like a jeering crowd. But the danger you face is that an outsider will not join the jeering, but be put off.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:The bias that I claim so see in the established human origin narrative is no more radical than they have been educated to accept in the respected discipline of History.


Pull the other one, JayJay, it's got fucking bells on. You're erecting your caricatures for one purpose and one purpose only, as I described above, namely, to try and erect a fake "symmetry" between evidence-based science and assertion-laden doctrine, for the purpose of dismissing any evidence that happens not to genuflect before your ideological presuppositions. It's a supernaturalist tactic that's been deployed so often here, JayJay, and not just by you, that it's transparently obvious to the point of having no refractive index. Your entire "atheist ideology" bullshit is erected for this specific purpose, just as it's erected for the same purpose by every other creationist who peddles it. No one who paid attention in science class is fooled by this discoursive elision.


Nope, I’m arguing that the understanding and presentation of evolution has been influenced and damaged by atheist ideology. That influence has been greatest in the human origin narrative, where that presentation is a fuck up, built by air-brushing out fossil evidence of the australopiths, specifically, their eye teeth. Considered together with the rest of their physiology, their predators, alternative prey and the distinctive abilities of their descendants.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:Though the natural history bias I’m claiming is particularly interesting.


Only a creationist could possibly describe paying attention to the real world evidence as "natural history bias". Congratulations on exposing your own manifest ideological presuppositions once more, JayJay.


To even propose a bias is to be ipso facto wrong? Only in the mind of someone blinded by the assumption of the rightness of “science”

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:I’m claiming that when Treves and Palmquist said “When considering hominin anti-predator behavior, many scholars looked first to material culture, such as fire or weaponry” they were representing as scientific progress a swerve away from an already biased approach to treating human ancestors as embedded within and "created" by the biome expressed through the trophic pyramid.


Word salad. Not to mention more assertionist drivel.

They did depict a change as progress and arguably it wasn’t and I’m happy to press that argument. The already biased approach, of Dart and his populariser Robert Ardrey, was to neglect the physiological and mental impact of carrying and using weapons for antipredation, (the world acting on the ancestor) in favour of the “hunting hypothesis (the ancestor acting on the world) expressed extravagantly as “the killer ape”


Calilasseia wrote: Oh wait, those authors were referring to the fact that previous scholars did indeed examine these hypotheses as possible explanations for early hominin survival on a predator-rich savannah, and indeed, those previous authors had reasons for considering those hypotheses. Namely, animals have a habit of avoiding fire, courtesy of the fact that not doing so happens to be painfully fatal, and weapons, properly constructed and deployed, can give those in possession thereof an advantage, as the evidence from human conflict manifestly demonstrates.

What the later authors set out to demonstrate in their paper, was that neither of these was significant enough an advantage to tilt the balance.

To tilt what balance? Please identify the balance. There is something seriously wrong at a very basic level, with your visualisation of relationships between hominins and sympatric predators. It expresses itself as a teetering between treating predators as totally formidable and treating them as something that “the group” or “numbers” rendered insignificant

Calilasseia wrote: Lo and behold, we have evidence supporting this later hypothesis, such as those two video clips I presented, in which large feline predators were perfectly willing to attack humans armed with modern firearms. As a corollary, it doesn't require any massive leap to conclude that any species exhibiting a willingness to attack humans armed with modern firearms, would be very likely to adopt a similar approach to humans armed with considerably inferior weapons. Only in the fantasy parallel universe you're trying to pass off as the real one, does this principle not hold.

That evidence showed a hunted, trapped and probably wounded lion and a tiger dying with heroic defiance, which should be of no surprise to anyone. I don’t think Kortlandt and certainly not Brain, whom Treves and Palmquist cited as the scientists who “looked first to material culture, such as fire or weaponry”, did suggest that weaponry gave hominins immunity. Like I said, Brain spent much of his professional life just establishing that they were predated, not that they were immune from it. The fact that impala are highly adapted to avoid predation in particular ways, doesn’t mean they aren’t predated. The method of predation and their existing avoidance tactics creates a vector of direction for further adaptation..

Calilasseia wrote: Once again, from a previous post, I'll present relevant content that applies here ...:

That content comes from post #389, to which I replied in post #421. You replied in turn with one of your contentless vituperative spluttering posts #426. You seem quite proud of those.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:The ideological background driving that swerve was partly reaction within the Evo/Creo polarity, let’s call it a dialectic.


Bollocks. What drove the authors in question was evaluation of the evidence. Plenty of which from that paper I quoted at length. But don't let this elementary fact stop you from continuing to peddle your "atheist ideologiy" bullshit and lies.


A lie is a knowingly spoken untruth. Please identify a lie I have spoken. The evidence you cite was largely where Treves and Palqmvist undermined the points they had make in their introduction, where they had directed the reader’s attention away from “material culture” as they put it. Like I said in post 421.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:Anyway, what I mainly wanted to discuss was your long paste purporting to show that Hitler was Christian. That was all quote mining


Oh now you're treading on dangerous soil here, JayJay. What I presented was NOT "quote mining", because I didn't attempt via those quotes to distort the author's intent. Retract this blatant falsehood NOW.


Quote mining is extracting little veins of data that support one’s view, from an ore body that contains also data that points in other directions. For example, other things Hitler said make him seem anti-Christian. Your Hitler-was-Christian posting was made entirely from stuff gleaned by anti-Christians, copy and pasted by you to assemble a sort of Frankenstein-Monster. The way to move towards the truth isn’t to assemble counter-quote mining, it’s to place those quotes in historical context as I did. However egregiously selected, the mined quotes were real and they need explanation.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:let’s put it in the context of the very bones of 20th century history.


Oh, you think I'm not aware of any of this? Oh this is going to be so fucking good.


I think you don’t look at the historical context, which does explain the Nazi atrocities as arising from freeing themselves from the halters of the morality opf the Christianity of their day.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:In 1917 Russia took herself out of the Great War in a Bolshevik revolution.


What the fuck does this have to do with Mein Kampf, and the author's thoughts as he dictated the contents thereof to Rudolf Hess in their shared cell?


It sets the stage for presenting Nazism as primarily a reaction against communism, as I said later.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:The new government was internationalist, avowedly anti-Christian

Yawn.


Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote: and pro-science.


Trofim Lysenko, anyone?

The power that Lysenko wielded arose out of the inflated hope that Stalin placed that science would vindicate an analogy to communist “nurture” to revolutionise agriculture. A generation before the state had put its hope in Rasputin. Both Russia and Germany did see “science” as the new guiding light.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:It sought to extend communism throughout the world.


Once again, what has this to do with Hitler's race theories, and the thoughts he presented in Mein Kampf?


The expansionist aim of communism made it a threat to all the governments in Europe. I’m placing Hilter in his historical role as a champion of anti-communism. In Wikipedia’s entry on Political_views_of_Adolf_Hitler he is quoted in Mein Kampf:
InHitler's mind, communism is the primary enemy of Germany:
“ In the years 1913 and 1914 I expressed my opinion for the first time in various circles, some of which are now members of the National Socialist Movement, that the problem of how the future of the German nation can be secured is the problem of how Marxism can be exterminated.

By all means view the other quotes in Wiki. Seems he associated communism with a Jewish plot to subjugate the world.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:In 1918 Germany surrendered after a revolution with a communist heart


Actually, that surrender was brought about by the realisation, on the part of the Imperial German high command, that they could not sustain indefinitely the level of attrition they were facing. But I suppose 3 million dead German soldiers had nothing to do with that surrender, did it? You do realise that the Axis Powers suffered a total of 16.4 million casualties?


Wiki has a good entry on the German revolution, showing that it did have a communist heart. I’m at a loss about the significance of Axis casualties but it may be relevant that over 90% of those were caused by the Russians.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote: but the communists were beaten by right-wing capitalist reaction, ending with the compromise of the weak but democratic Weimar republic.


So what? What has this to do with the relevant content I presented from Mein Kampf?


I’ll get to that, read the whole argument instead of trying to bite off little bits every sentence leading up to it. The relevance is that communism was defeated in Germany in 1918 but remained a political threat.
Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:In 1933 the Nazis came to power in Germany as an explicitly anti-communist party. They made a concordat with the Catholic political party in which, in exchange for withdrawing from politics, the Catholics would be protected and funded by the Reich, as they still are.


Given the ruthlessness with which they exeterminated a range of political opponents from other parties, JayJay, one has to ask why they dispensed this largesse to the Catholic Party. Or why they signed a concordat with the Vatican, for that matter, which was signed in 1933.

I mentioned the concordat. It shows that in 1933 the Catholics were prepared to make a deal with Hitler. Hitler was a natural ally of the Catholics against the deadly enemy of atheist communism.
Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:In 1937 the Pope issued Mit Brennender Sorge, an encyclical smuggled into Germany and to be read to all Germans. He complained about a breach of contract by the Nazis and warned of the evil of the Fuhrer principle, of paying ultimate allegiance to a man and a State rather than to God.


Here's some words on that encyclical, written by Carlo Falconi, Catholic journalist and former ordained priest:

So little anti-Nazi is it that it does not even attribute to the regime as such, but only to certain trends within it, the dogmatic and moral errors widespread in Germany. And while the errors indicated are carefully diagnosed and refuted, complete silence surrounds the much more serious and fundamental errors associated with Nazi political ideology, corresponding to the principles most subversive of natural law that are characteristic of absolute totalitarianisms. The encyclical is in fact concerned purely with the Catholic Church in Germany and its rights and privileges, on the basis of the concordatory contracts of 1933. Moreover the form given to it by Cardinal Faulhaber, even more a super-nationalist than the majority of his most ardent colleagues, was essentially dictated by tactics and aimed at avoiding a definite breach with the regime, even to the point of offering in conclusion a conciliatory olive branch to Hitler if he would restore the tranquil prosperity of the Catholic Church in Germany. But that was the very thing to deprive the document of its noble and exemplary intransigence. Nevertheless, even within these limitations, the pontifical letter still remains the first great public document to dare to confront and criticize Nazism, and the Pope's courage astonished the world. It was, indeed, the encyclicals fate to be credited with a greater significance and content than it possessed."


I’d go along with all that. The Pope’s courage astonished the world. I find it myself an astonishing document today. In 1937 about the only other Westerner I know of who was prepared to speak bluntly about the moral weaknesses of Nazism was Churchill.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote: In spite of the brutal anti-Christian actions where communists had taken control in Russia, Mexico and Spain, involving the deaths of thousands of Catholic clergy, and in spite of the trial war in Spain between the Nazis and Communists, there had been a falling out between Nazis and Catholics in Germany. That is documented in Richard J Evans’ The Third Reich in Power. In spite of the Nazis having every strategic interest in an anti-communist alliance with the Catholics, Hitler’s government undermined the Catholics at every turn; trapping clergy using prostitutes and closing down schools and seminaries.


Actually, you'll find that much of this activity was a reaction to that encyclical
.

You think Mit Brennender Sorge could have been written without good cause?
Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:At the same time the Protestants were undermined by building up a toady Lutheran faction from which the Confessing church broke away. The disaffection between Nazis and organised Christianity is symbolised by the facts that Stauffenberg who tried to blow Hitler up, was a Catholic and Dietrich Bonhoeffer the theologian who was hanged on piano wire for his role in that, was a Lutheran.


No kidding? I don't remember saying otherwise.

I'm still waiting for you to address the fact that on 24th October, 1933, Hitler uttered these words in Berlin:

We were convinced that the people needs and requires this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out.


Or that in 1938, nearly eighteen months after the encyclical was issued, Hitler uttered these words in Nuremberg:

National Socialism is not a cult-movement—a movement for worship; it is exclusively a 'volkic' political doctrine based upon racial principles. In its purpose there is no mystic cult, only the care and leadership of a people defined by a common blood-relationship.... We will not allow mystically-minded occult folk with a passion for exploring the secrets of the world beyond to steal into our Movement. Such folk are not National Socialists, but something else—in any case something which has nothing to do with us. At the head of our programme there stand no secret surmisings but clear-cut perception and straightforward profession of belief. But since we set as the central point of this perception and of this profession of belief the maintenance and hence the security for the future of a being formed by God, we thus serve the maintenance of a divine work and fulfill a divine will—not in the secret twilight of a new house of worship, but openly before the face of the Lord... Our worship is exclusively the cultivation of the natural, and for that reason, because natural, therefore God-willed. Our humility is the unconditional submission before the divine laws of existence so far as they are known to us men.


Oh, and how about addressing the fact that Hitler's racial theories originated with Lanz von Liebenfels, as I documented in detail in the relevant past post? Care to do that, JayJay, given that this is now considered to be accepted and evidentially supported by just about every historian studying the relevant period? And as a corollary, his racial theories had nothing to do with science, let alone evolution?


Gosh what was Hitler talking about? Not about going to a house of worship, but “exclusively cultivation of the natural”. Sounds like a science-worshipper. But not of healthy science.
Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:Hitler reportedly had the plotters' pants pulled down, supposedly to show what sort of men they were, but really telling us something about Hitler.


Actually, you're referring here to the manner in which the SS made the defendants at the so-called "People's Court", presided over by Roland Freisler, attend court without belt or braces for their trousers, to add to their humiliations, as documented in Airey Neave's Nuremberg. It does help if you get some facts right, JayJay.

http://www.tracesofevil.com/search/labe ... eiligensee

Nope, you are referring to the trial, I was referring to the hanging. Here is an eyewitness report from the hangings:
http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1499&dat=19460114&id=NbUWAAAAIBAJ&sjid=KCMEAAAAIBAJ&pg=1975,4959547
“They hoisted Witzleben onto the first hook and tore off his trousers. There he hung completely naked, struggling ever more feebly, stifling, evidently suffering agonies. A thin streak of blood trickled down his left nostril. But he never shouted, never even groaned”.
Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:There were no shortage of things Hitler said in public speeches, to align Nazism to the Anti-Communist Christian West. But the Fuhrer was no church-goer nor was his party of thugs.


There are plenty of people who don't go to church, but who adhere to the relevant doctrines.


We could have a discussion about that. The fact is that Hitler, in spite of being the natural strategic ally of Christianity against the existential threat of communism and in spite of everything he said at rallies, positioned himself outside of any church discipline, undermined and suppressed the churches as far as he dared, bearing in mind his need to rally all of society in the war he had started.

Calilasseia wrote:
Jayjay4547 wrote:They explicitly freed their minds from the moral halters of the Lutheran and Catholic churches of their day, to wreak cruel havoc wherever their power spread.


Oh this would be the same Lutheran Church, whose founder wrote a 65,000 word anti-Semitic tract titled On The Jews And Their Lies in 1543, nearly 400 years before the Nazis began their programme? In which he advocated the burning of synagogues, the destruction of Jewish scriptures, the seizure of money and property from the Jews, and even the destruction of their homes? Sound familiar, does this lot?


The full horror of Nazism was played out against the Jews but the Nazis acted with amoral brutality almost wherever they set foot, which was over most of Europe. The Christian virtues of gentleness and mercy had no role in their polity. They considered themselves as the New Men, freed from the moral halters of superstitious Jew-instigated religion. This wasn’t something that happened 500 years ago but within the lifetimes of people still living today.
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