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Thread: Tyson: U.S. science illiteracy a serious threat

  1. #151
    Radical Centrist BigLeRoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OlGuy View Post
    After five extinction events there should be a theory of catastrophism but anyway Darwin's slow evolutionary explanation is made off target by catastrophic events. I still think that under evolutionary theory perhaps the most successful adaptation of life could well be defined by the dinosaur age and therefor the pinnacle of evolution. Who says successful evolution has to be intelligent? Dinos did it for 60 million years and they were dumb as, well, dinosaurs.
    The pendulum swung too far from the catastrophism of the 18th century to the uniformitarianism of the 19th century. But it then swung back again, ESPECIALLY after Luis Alvarez showed that a major asteroid impact occurred at the end of the Cretaceous period some 65 million years ago. Now we are quite comfortable with the notion that the Earth's geological history has frequently been witness to catastrophes. It is NOT incompatible with Darwinian evolution. The theory itself has evolved.....

    SOME of the dinosaurs may have been getting pretty clever before they went out so abruptly.....in particular, the group known as velociraptors. Haven't you seen ANY of the Jurassic Park movies??

  2. #152
    Master political analyst Dittohead not!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigLeRoy View Post
    Our descendants are likely to be around 60 million years from now ONLY if we become, first, an interplanetary species, and then, an interstellar one.
    The dinosaurs weren't an interstellar species. We would have to learn to deflect the occasional asteroid, and perhaps refrain from blowing ourselves up in a nuclear holocaust.
    Thanks from BigLeRoy

  3. #153
    olguy OlGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigLeRoy View Post
    The pendulum swung too far from the catastrophism of the 18th century to the uniformitarianism of the 19th century. But it then swung back again, ESPECIALLY after Luis Alvarez showed that a major asteroid impact occurred at the end of the Cretaceous period some 65 million years ago. Now we are quite comfortable with the notion that the Earth's geological history has frequently been witness to catastrophes. It is NOT incompatible with Darwinian evolution. The theory itself has evolved.....

    SOME of the dinosaurs may have been getting pretty clever before they went out so abruptly.....in particular, the group known as velociraptors. Haven't you seen ANY of the Jurassic Park movies??
    Clever maybe but more like a used car salesman than a inventor. Still how smart do you have to be to be a successful life form, I'm still going with dinosaurs as evolution's greatest feet and humans as God's biggest butts.

  4. #154
    olguy OlGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dittohead not! View Post
    It does remain to be seen whether humans can last 60 million years. I'd bet against it, as we haven't even been around one million yet, and we still haven't learned to get along without slaughtering each other. We have become a lot more efficient killers, however.

    I'm not sure how catastrophic events make evolution "off target." Such events cause mass extinctions, then the survivors once again begin to evolve new species. We're actually in the midst of a catastrophic event right now, at least from the point of view of biological diversity. Lots of species are going/have already gone extinct. Perhaps once humans go the way of the dinosaurs, new species will once again evolve.
    Would you except something more like this? If evolution was like a game of cards, than catastrophes are like the joker in the deck.

  5. #155
    Radical Centrist BigLeRoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OlGuy View Post
    Clever maybe but more like a used car salesman than a inventor. Still how smart do you have to be to be a successful life form, I'm still going with dinosaurs as evolution's greatest feet and humans as God's biggest butts.
    The jury is still out on the human race......

  6. #156
    Master political analyst Dittohead not!'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OlGuy View Post
    Would you except something more like this? If evolution was like a game of cards, than catastrophes are like the joker in the deck.
    Catastrophes and jokers are definitely game changers.

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