Re:Ev. method

Robin Mandell (
Mon, 11 Jan 1999 22:17:33 -0600

At 10:10 PM 1/11/99 -0600, Keith B Miller wrote:
I guess I may seem to rehash old talks due to my inability some times to
ask the question that would scratch the particular
itch I have. I think I still do not express what is flying in my heart well
with this e-mail bit. Also I am no scientist so I am way behind the rest of
the class. The reason I have even intruded onto this list is mild
desperation. This is not my occupation this is who I am and who my little
girl is. For good or ill believing does not come easy to begin with and a
untouchable naturalistic evolutionary
with clear phylogeny (new word for me hope it is correct) and reasonable
cold spiritless mechanisms would not make hope any easier. I have seen
articles and messages from some like Pattle Pun
for instance who seem to feel differently than those who feel complete
evolution is a done deal. I am suprised at how all parties in this seem so
certain that the same data is easily on their side.
The only way I can make a call is to keep digging out opinions and
discoveries from each side and hurling them at the other. The responses
help me to see who really has a better case. Again I am trying to ask
better questions. If I ask something redundant forgive me.

>Just a note to say that the list has been over the issue of the fossil
>record and macroevolution before. I have stated that it is on the basis of
>the fossil record that I accept common descent as a persuasive description
>of the history of life. New discoveries have continually closed previous
>gaps in formative history of the biological world. Such discoveries
>continue apace. My web article on transitional forms (see the ASA webpage
>or my personal webpage - URL below) written only two years ago is already
>out of date, in that several significant new fossil discoveries have been
>made in those two years.
>BTW: Yes, I do believe that common descent and evolutionary mechanisms are
>separable questions. Science often accepts a descriptive paradigm of the
>phyiscal world before fully understanding underlying mechanisms.
>Keith B. Miller
>Department of Geology
>Kansas State University
>Manhattan, KS 66506