August 8, 2018 | David F. Coppedge

More Confusion in Human Ev-Illusion

They can no longer say “everything you know is wrong” when nothing they thought they knew was right in the first place.

We joke about paleoanthropologists upending their previous beliefs every few months when we suggest that their headlines announce, ‘everything you know is wrong.’ That phrase, of course, is self-refuting, because it would be wrong itself, and you couldn’t know it was wrong if everything you know is wrong. Outsiders, though, can say it about paleoanthropologists, by excluding themselves from the word “you” and claiming “everything they know is wrong.” Is that an apt criticism, given recent news?

Another Big Upset: Out of Time, Out of Place

An early hominin arrival in Asia (Nature). Evolutionary anthropologists used to have a coherent story when they could claim that humans arose in one area, Africa, and spread out from there. Maybe some mutation in the brain of an ‘anthropoid’ (human-like) ape turned it into the first ‘hominin’ (anything on the way to Homo sapiens). The belief set many contented anthropologists looking for stone tools and skulls in southern Africa. But then those things started turning up in the wrong places.

Skulls in a cave in Dmanisi, Georgia, overturned beliefs by showing human-like skulls in southern Russia dated 1.78 million Darwin Years ago. Now, a cache of stone tools has turned up farther east in central China, dated 2.1 million Darwin Years ago. If these tool-makers came from Africa, they had significant smarts to migrate long distances and live in successful populations. John Kappelman tries to put a good spin on this find, but for someone accustomed to think in terms of millions of years, how does a few thousand years sound? We add some questions in brackets:

The roughly 14,000-kilometre trek from eastern Africa to eastern Asia represents a range expansion of dramatic proportions. The dispersal of hominins was probably facilitated by population increases [where are the bones?] as they moved into new territories and filled empty niches, and could also have been driven by the phenomenon of resource depletion that underlies the high mobility of today’s hunter-gatherers [all over the world?]. Yet even with a dispersal rate of only 5–15 kilometres per year, a value well inside the daily foraging range of modern hunter-gatherers, the distance between Africa and Asia could have been covered in just 1,000–3,000 years. The present record of hominin sites and the dating techniques that are currently available to researchers are not sufficient to resolve a dispersal event of such potential speed, or to determine its exact form, but we can surely look forward to more finds that will help to solve this migration mystery. [If you’ve been this wrong so far, why should anyone trust you?]

Hominin occupation of the Chinese Loess Plateau since about 2.1 million years ago (Nature).  This is the paper that details the find mentioned above. “This discovery implies that hominins left Africa earlier than indicated by the evidence from Dmanisi,” they say.

Tools from China are oldest hint of human lineage outside Africa (Nature). “2.1-million-year-old stone tools suggest hominins reached East Asia much earlier than thought.” Than thought by who? Not by creationists, who say people were created on Day 6 a few thousand years ago and migrated quickly around the world after the Flood. To secular scientists, such talk is pure folly, worthy of mockery and dismissive shunning. Collin Barras has this to say about the Asia tools found earlier than expected (watch for the ‘everything you know is wrong’ admission):

Other scientists are convinced that the tools were made by hominins and are confident that they are as old as claimed. And although the tools’ makers are unknown, the discovery could force researchers to reconsider which hominin species first left Africa — and when. “This is a whole new palaeo ball game,” says William Jungers, a palaeoanthropologist at Stony Brook University, New York.

A map in this article shows various finds scattered around Europe and Asia up to 1.85 million Darwin Years ago. This new one puts tool-making human ‘ancestors’ in China 250,000 years earlier. Two hundred fifty thousand years! That’s a long time to be in China with nobody else to trade with. If they could make tools, don’t you think they also built cities and invented things? Was it really going to take another two million years to figure out agriculture? Doesn’t it seem more reasonable that the toolmakers were not alone out there, but were indeed contemporaneous with other intelligent beings over a far shorter, more recent time period? Which view seems more ripe for mockery?

Earliest evidence of humans outside Africa (BBC News). What does secular reporter Paul Rincon think of this? He just accepts every yarn the evolutionists tell him about hobbitses and Chinese toolmakers and variable rates of evolution, never questioning the high perhapsimaybecouldness index in the stories or the expertise of the storytellers.

Clueless experts rearrange facts any way they want. Here were two versions in a 2003 book. Everything has changed several times since then.

Earlier Chapters of the Human Evolution Story Unravel

The competitive edge: Dietary competition played a key role in the evolution of early primates ( Lest anybody think Darwin has no place left in modern biology, look at this storyteller praise Charlie as he or she pictures a squirrel-like lemur deciding to eat a nut, thereby entering a long path that would lead to the reporter:

Since Darwin first laid out the basic principles of evolution by means of natural selection, the role of competition for food as a driving force in shaping and shifting a species’ biology to outcompete its adversaries has played center stage. So important is the notion of competition between species, that it is viewed as a key selective force that resulted in the split of the lineage leading to modern humans from that of our early ape ancestors.

If that’s all it was—a change of diet—why do we still have lemurs? There were apparently enough nuts to go around. There are today, too. File this story in your brain uncritically and you’ll have it in a nutshell. Just don’t take the idea of competition too far, or you might start World War III. Whatever happened to cooperation, game theory and all the nice politically-correct views?

Human evolution: back to the trees? ( A flurry of yarn-spinning tales last month revolved around a foot bone said to be evidence that our long-lost grandmother Lucy came down out of the trees only to return out of nostalgia. This won’t be on the quiz, because it is probably going to be swept into the bin during the next round of ‘everything you know is wrong.’ The authors apparently didn’t hear about the hominin tools in China dated at 2.1 million Darwin Years.

Fossils from east Africa dated to around 3.5 million years ago belonging to Australopithecus afarensis (Lucy’s species) and from Homo erectus between 1.8 and 1.5 million years ago are a match for those of modern-day humans, suggesting that these extinct hominins had already evolved our dedication to terrestrial locomotion.

A nearly complete foot from Dikika, Ethiopia and its implications for the ontogeny and function of Australopithecus afarensis (Science Magazine). To get the gist of this claim about the foot of Lucy’s baby (actually, according to the storytellers, 200,000 Darwin Years before mommy), see what Science Daily says about it: “Our human ancestors walked on two feet but their children still had a backup plan: Most complete foot of ancient human child ever.” Did they use intelligent design in their backup plan? Did the children intentionally keep their bones retarded to stay in the trees? The storytellers have to get Lucy’s adult relatives in time to walk like people, so that they can leave human-like footprints in Laetoli, but the kids, according to the new yarn, still had a longing to climb trees. Or maybe they needed to sleep in the trees for safety (don’t snakes climb trees?). Whatever; it’s a fun tale, especially when told by an expert shaman using big words.

Placed at a critical time and the cusp of being human, Australopithecus afarensis was more derived [evolved] than Ardipithecus (a facultative biped) but not yet an obligate strider like Homo erectus. The Dikika foot adds to the wealth of knowledge on the mosaic [i.e., mixed-up] nature of hominin skeletal evolution” explained Alemseged.

If this tale were credible, their kids would have kids and kids and kids for 200,000 years until they got their feet right for following Mama Lucy on the ground. Two hundred thousand years. That’s twenty times the history of civilization. Why didn’t she tell them, “Evolve or perish!”

Later Chapters of the Human Evolution Story Unravel

Early Humans Probably Didn’t Evolve from a Single Population in Africa (Live Science). The mainstream media runs along with the story, never asking hard questions or critiquing how anybody could know such things when the story keeps changing. Reporter Yasemin Saplakoglu would probably never consider the Bible’s eyewitness account of what happened as humans spread, but he is perfectly willing to hear evolutionists spin yarns about things they never saw. The new yarn is that “mounting evidence suggests the first humans were even more different from one another than we are today.” He listens with rapt attention as storyteller Eleanor Scerri spins the natural selection variable speed dial:

“Which means, of course, that evolution probably progressed at a different speed and tempo in different regions of Africa as different groups came into contact with each other at different times,” Scerri said. Though it’s not clear when most humans on the planet had these modern features, by about 12,000 years ago, when hunting and gathering gradually shifted to agriculture, archaic features such as an elongated head and large robust faces had all but disappeared in humans, Scerri said. (In any case, these archaic features, it should be noted, don’t correspond to how “culturally backward” a culture was, Scerri added.)

In other words, human beings show less diversity than before, but it doesn’t mean they were stupid. Is that what Darwin predicted? No, in fact, he did not: and they admit it. Look at how one anthropologist joins in chopping down Darwin’s tree of life (see 8/06/18): Jon Marks is not surprised that everything he thought he knew was wrong!

“Who was arguing the contrary?” said Jon Marks, a professor of anthropology at University of North Carolina, Charlotte, who was also not part of the study. Though the findings didn’t come as a shock to Marks, he thinks they point to an important problem in the field — we might be using the wrong metaphors to describe evolution, namely, Darwin’s branching tree.

“What we’re seeing is a tree is not necessarily the most appropriate metaphor to apply to recent human ancestry,” Marks told Live Science. The more appropriate metaphors would be something that branches and then comes back together, rather than branches on a tree, he said.

These could include the roots of a tree, braided streams or capillary systems, he said.

Rethinking Homo sapiens? The story of our origins gets dizzyingly complicated  (The Conversation). Darren Curnoe is all mixed up. He doesn’t know what to believe any more, after so many rounds of ‘everything you know is wrong.’ An ill wind blows no good.

But as someone who’s kept a keen eye on developments in, and indeed actively researching, our evolution, it’s clear to me that there’s something’s going on here. Change is in the wind!

So profound is the shift underway in human origins science that it’s seen the unusual step of a team of 23 researchers (led by Eleanor Scerri of the University of Oxford) publish today’s new synthesis of the evidence – and in doing so embrace the emerging picture of complexity and ditch the old simplistic ideas. Among their ranks are archaeologists, anthropologists, geneticists and climate specialists.

After he puzzles over what this means, he throws up his hands:

Despite all the progress we’ve made [Tontology: who’s “we, Paleface?”] over the last decade in teasing apart our origins, the manifesto of Scerri and her team has more than a hint of “back to the future” about it.

As bold and ambitious as it is, it leaves me with far more questions than answers, and a lingering feeling that the issues are far more complicated than we’ve been prepared to admit until now.

Always Wrong but Never Ashamed

Neuroscience: Brain Mechanisms of Blushing (Current Biology). This story calls on Charlie D. again to add to his speculation about why humans blush:

How many times have we experienced the sensation of heat rising to our face, accompanied by the hallmark reddening of our cheeks, when we are embarrassed or ashamed, in response to emotional situations or when we are angry? Darwin called blushing the “most peculiar and most human of all expressions”. Its purpose remains unclear, but likely reflects the social transmission of a physiological cue that indicates discomfort…. Little is known about the brain mechanisms of blushing….

So here is a well-known, observable phenomenon with which all humans (including paleoanthropologists) are familiar, and science cannot explain it after 158 years since Darwin turned biologists into storytellers. How much less can they explain things that happened millions of mythical Darwin Years ago? As Mark Twain quipped, “Man is the only animal that blushes. Or needs to.”

There’s only one thing that evolutionists know for certain: Creationism is stupid! Creationists must be punished!

But wait; if everything they know is wrong, then that is wrong, too.

Let’s review what the Bible says about human history. Doesn’t this have the ring of truth? Doesn’t it portray human beings the way they really act? From Genesis 10: notice the details, and names that can be corroborated against historical sources.

10 These are the generations of the sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Sons were born to them after the flood.

The sons of Japheth: Gomer, Magog, Madai, Javan, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras. The sons of Gomer: Ashkenaz, Riphath, and Togarmah. The sons of Javan: Elishah, Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim. From these the coastland peoples spread in their lands, each with his own language, by their clans, in their nations.

The sons of Ham: Cush, Egypt, Put, and Canaan. The sons of Cush: Seba, Havilah, Sabtah, Raamah, and Sabteca. The sons of Raamah: Sheba and Dedan. Cush fathered Nimrod; he was the first on earth to be a mighty man.[a] He was a mighty hunter before the Lord. Therefore it is said, “Like Nimrod a mighty hunter before the Lord.” 10 The beginning of his kingdom was Babel, Erech, Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar. 11 From that land he went into Assyria and built Nineveh, Rehoboth-Ir, Calah, and 12 Resen between Nineveh and Calah; that is the great city. 13 Egypt fathered Ludim, Anamim, Lehabim, Naphtuhim,14 Pathrusim, Casluhim (from whom[b] the Philistines came), and Caphtorim.

15 Canaan fathered Sidon his firstborn and Heth, 16 and the Jebusites, the Amorites, the Girgashites, 17 the Hivites, the Arkites, the Sinites, 18 the Arvadites, the Zemarites, and the Hamathites. Afterward the clans of the Canaanites dispersed. 19 And the territory of the Canaanites extended from Sidon in the direction of Gerar as far as Gaza, and in the direction of Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboiim, as far as Lasha. 20 These are the sons of Ham, by their clans, their languages, their lands, and their nations.

21 To Shem also, the father of all the children of Eber, the elder brother of Japheth, children were born. 22 The sons of Shem: Elam, Asshur, Arpachshad, Lud, and Aram. 23 The sons of Aram: Uz, Hul, Gether, and Mash. 24 Arpachshad fathered Shelah; and Shelah fathered Eber. 25 To Eber were born two sons: the name of the one was Peleg,[c] for in his days the earth was divided, and his brother’s name was Joktan. 26 Joktan fathered Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, 27 Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, 28 Obal, Abimael, Sheba, 29 Ophir, Havilah, and Jobab; all these were the sons of Joktan. 30 The territory in which they lived extended from Mesha in the direction of Sephar to the hill country of the east.31 These are the sons of Shem, by their clans, their languages, their lands, and their nations.

32 These are the clans of the sons of Noah, according to their genealogies, in their nations, and from these the nations spread abroad on the earth after the flood.

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