Subject: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' Date: Sun, 23 Jun 1996 05:00:50 GMT I wanted

---
Master Index Current Directory Index Go to SkepticTank Go to Human Rights activist Keith Henson Go to Scientology cult

Skeptic Tank!

======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) Date: Sun, 23 Jun 1996 05:00:50 GMT I wanted to say this some time ago but preferred holding off 'til now: Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata. For starters, why did he ever decide to put dinosaur bone in the picture in the first place? I've been saying all along that the petrified bones I've discovered between Pennsylvania's anthracite veins are human, hominid or of large mammals which established science maintains certainly didn't exist back then. Comparing the cell structure of my specimen (EC96-001) with bone from a human cadaver (mammalian bone) would've been the proper scientific route to follow. Another thing, there also is a drastic difference in geographical age between the two specimens which Andrew tested. I presented what I insist is petrified bone from the Carboniferous while Andrew's dinosaur is a spring chicken from the Cretaceous -- and, besides, it ISN'T petrified. Andrew has stated that he didn't want to use petrified bone for testing purposes because it is too valuable to be destroyed. Yet, the proper testing procedure would have been to compare my specimen with petrified bone. Non-dinosaur petrified bone of smaller mammals is certainly available. There's a small mountain of it at La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles and I'm sure officials of the museum there would've supplied a specimen for testing purposes. Getting back to Andrew's latest updated testing -- publishing microscopic photos using a thin section he says came from the specimen I sent him -- the set of three side-by-side photos leaves much, much to be desired. For one thing, Haversian systems CANNOT be seen at all powers of the microscope. This is the case when the magnification is too low or too high -- and not that far under or not that far over -- from the magnification range of visibility . Yet none of the photos of my specimen that Andrew published were in the neighborhood of the visibility range (approximately 105X) of the Haversian systems that I and many others have seen while viewing thin sections over the past few years. This includes Jeremy Dahl, a bone expert at the prestigious Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center in Atlanta, Ga.; Teledyne Isotopes, one of the world's largest independent testing laboratories; and others. But the most important reason than Andrew did not do the proper comparative testing is that my specimen is mammalian bone. A dinosaur is a REPTILE. And there's a distinct difference in cell structure between mammalian bone and reptilian bone. For these and other reasons, I insist my specimen was not properly tested and evaulated by Andrew. His procedures were well below established standards that MUST be followed if there is to be a fair, honest and impartial evaluation. I can only wonder if it's because Andrew is relatively new at this type of testing and made some honest, unfortunate mistakes or whether his primary objective was to deliberately do a half-ass job in order to try and protect many of his fellow scentists' self-interests. ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: craigm@bioch.ox.ac.uk (Craig Morton) Date: 23 Jun 1996 11:19:59 GMT [Newsgroups trimmed to something vaguely sensible.] Ed Conrad (edconrad@prolog.net) wrote: : I wanted to say this some time ago but preferred holding off 'til now: Why? Wouldn't it have been sensible to bring these points up early so that Andrew could have taken them into consideration while preparing his testing procedure? Anyway.... : Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the : proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is : petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata. : For starters, why did he ever decide to put dinosaur bone in the : picture in the first place? : I've been saying all along that the petrified bones I've discovered : between Pennsylvania's anthracite veins are human, hominid or of large : mammals which established science maintains certainly didn't exist : back then. : Comparing the cell structure of my specimen (EC96-001) with bone from : a human cadaver (mammalian bone) would've been the proper scientific : route to follow. OK, let us accept this for the moment. : Another thing, there also is a drastic difference in geographical age : between the two specimens which Andrew tested. I presented what I : insist is petrified bone from the Carboniferous while Andrew's : dinosaur is a spring chicken from the Cretaceous -- and, besides, it : ISN'T petrified. Woah now! You've just said that comparing the specimen to a bone from a human cadaver would've been the "proper scientific route to follow". Isn't there an even greater age disparity then? One or other of your two points so far has to be dropped. Which? : Andrew has stated that he didn't want to use petrified bone for : testing purposes because it is too valuable to be destroyed. : Yet, the proper testing procedure would have been to compare my : specimen with petrified bone. : Non-dinosaur petrified bone of smaller mammals is certainly available. : There's a small mountain of it at La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles and : I'm sure officials of the museum there would've supplied a specimen : for testing purposes. Can you enlighten us as to why petrified bone would be any better than the fossil bone used? Can you explain again how your first comment (the human cadaver one) and this (the petrified bone requirement) can be simultaneously met? : Getting back to Andrew's latest updated testing -- publishing : microscopic photos using a thin section he says came from the specimen : I sent him -- the set of three side-by-side photos leaves much, much : to be desired. : For one thing, Haversian systems CANNOT be seen at all powers of the : microscope. This is the case when the magnification is too low or too : high -- and not that far under or not that far over -- from the : magnification range of visibility . Why yes! This is why Andrew asked you for details of what you believe can be seen, so that he could inspect the sample under the appropriate conditions! For some reason you failed to supply him with any useful information - in fact I believe you derided his questions as irrelevant. : Yet none of the photos of my specimen that Andrew published were in : the neighborhood of the visibility range (approximately 105X) of the : Haversian systems that I and many others have seen while viewing thin : sections over the past few years. This includes Jeremy Dahl, a bone : expert at the prestigious Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center in : Atlanta, Ga.; Teledyne Isotopes, one of the world's largest : independent testing laboratories; and others. : But the most important reason than Andrew did not do the proper : comparative testing is that my specimen is mammalian bone. A dinosaur : is a REPTILE. And there's a distinct difference in cell structure : between mammalian bone and reptilian bone. Which you will, of course, now explain in detail. With pictures. It's so nice to have an expert actually provide a useful description of these things. : For these and other reasons, I insist my specimen was not properly : tested and evaulated by Andrew. His procedures were well below : established standards that MUST be followed if there is to be a fair, : honest and impartial evaluation. : I can only wonder if it's because Andrew is relatively new at this : type of testing and made some honest, unfortunate mistakes or whether : his primary objective was to deliberately do a half-ass job in order : to try and protect many of his fellow scentists' self-interests. Hmmmm. It strikes me that your complaints are that Andrew compared your specimen to a fossilized dinosaur bone from a later era, rather than a petrified mammalian (preferably human) bone from the Carboniferous. If only such a thing existed..... So Ed, what would you expect to see in your samples under the conditions that Adrew has used, and how would this differ from what would be seen in a piece of, say, sandstone under the same conditions? Cheers, Craig. Craig Morton ][ Research Assistant, ][ I've got an inferiority complex, Oxford Centre for Molecular Sciences, ][ But it's not a very good one. South Parks Road, Oxford. ][ ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: myers@netaxs.com (Paul Myers) Date: Sun, 23 Jun 1996 10:15:42 -0400 In article <4qij86$6vd@ns2.ptd.net>, edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) wrote: > I wanted to say this some time ago but preferred holding off 'til now: > > Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the > proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is > petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata. > > For starters, why did he ever decide to put dinosaur bone in the > picture in the first place? > I've been saying all along that the petrified bones I've discovered > between Pennsylvania's anthracite veins are human, hominid or of large > mammals which established science maintains certainly didn't exist > back then. > > Comparing the cell structure of my specimen (EC96-001) with bone from > a human cadaver (mammalian bone) would've been the proper scientific > route to follow. I've seen human bone in section. I assure you that if the structure were present, you would have clearly seen it in the sections MacRae has shown, at their magnifications. I can also say that the sections on MacRae's web page have no resemblance whatsoever to bone: there's no way I could change the magnification or focus of an image of bone and get the kind of appearance he shows. > > Another thing, there also is a drastic difference in geographical age > between the two specimens which Andrew tested. I presented what I > insist is petrified bone from the Carboniferous while Andrew's > dinosaur is a spring chicken from the Cretaceous -- and, besides, it > ISN'T petrified. > > Andrew has stated that he didn't want to use petrified bone for > testing purposes because it is too valuable to be destroyed. > Yet, the proper testing procedure would have been to compare my > specimen with petrified bone. > > Non-dinosaur petrified bone of smaller mammals is certainly available. > There's a small mountain of it at La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles and > I'm sure officials of the museum there would've supplied a specimen > for testing purposes. > > Getting back to Andrew's latest updated testing -- publishing > microscopic photos using a thin section he says came from the specimen > I sent him -- the set of three side-by-side photos leaves much, much > to be desired. > > For one thing, Haversian systems CANNOT be seen at all powers of the > microscope. This is the case when the magnification is too low or too > high -- and not that far under or not that far over -- from the > magnification range of visibility . NO! You can see them at _most_ mags -- you can bring out more detail in the osteons at higher mag, and you can also lose the big picture of the array of Haversian canals at too high a mag, but the structure of bone is so distinctive that you can be fairly liberal in the range of magnification and not be fooled. > > Yet none of the photos of my specimen that Andrew published were in > the neighborhood of the visibility range (approximately 105X) of the > Haversian systems that I and many others have seen while viewing thin > sections over the past few years. This includes Jeremy Dahl, a bone > expert at the prestigious Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center in > Atlanta, Ga.; Teledyne Isotopes, one of the world's largest > independent testing laboratories; and others. "105x"? I've got to ask again, what kind of scope are you using? How are you calculating the magnification? I mean, on my scope I have 10x eyepieces, and objectives that range from 4x through 100x, so if I were looking at something with the 10x objective I'd say we were looking at something with 100x magnification. I also have an optivar, a zoom lens I can swing in to fine tune the magnification, but it doesn't have the accuracy for me to say that I've increased the mag by 1.05 times, for instance. Also, the eyepieces are irrelevant if I'm using my video camera. For that matter, I have several different cameras I can put on my scope, and each one yields a different magnification output image. The way I _always_ state magnification when it counts is to say, for instance, that I'm using a 1.0NA/40x water immersion objective. Could you please state the equivalent for your equipment? If you are using a variable zoom dissecting scope, tell us that, too. When I publish figures, I rarely bother to state the mag in the figure legend -- it's usually irrelevant. I calibrate by photographing a slide micrometer with the same settings and superimpose a scale bar on the figure. That's because there are other optics between the film and the specimen than just the objective lens, and final processing can change the enlargement further. Anyway, the bottom line is: if you are going to continue to berate MacRae for using improper magnification, you have to explain more precisely what kind of scope and lenses you are using. I have no idea how you are calculating magnification, and resolution (as determined by NA) is more significant than simple mag, anyway. Also, if you do someday post some images showing your Haversian systems, don't just paste the label "105x" on them. Again, that doesn't help because we don't know how you calculated that and a lot of factors affect the final magnification. Always place a scale bar on the image. > > But the most important reason than Andrew did not do the proper > comparative testing is that my specimen is mammalian bone. A dinosaur > is a REPTILE. And there's a distinct difference in cell structure > between mammalian bone and reptilian bone. Yes. But consider this a little quiz: can you tell us what those differences would be? Which has larger canals, and how much larger? What kind of optics could possibly resolve reptilian Haversian canals, but make mammalian bone look like sandstone? > > For these and other reasons, I insist my specimen was not properly > tested and evaulated by Andrew. His procedures were well below > established standards that MUST be followed if there is to be a fair, > honest and impartial evaluation. Your reasons boil down to a bizarre dependency of these "canals" to require a magnification of 105x (whatever that means) to be seen, and that MacRae's comparison image is a reptile, not a mammal. Your reasons don't make sense. The canals in human bone can be seen over a wide range of magnifications -- I can look at bone sections with the full range of objectives on my scope and be able to tell that I'm looking at bone. MacRae is not trying to say that your specimens must look exactly like his dinosaur bone sections, but they do show he is competent to image bone structure, and your sections should look very approximately like those, with _some_ differences in size. However, there is absolutely no resemblance between your specimens and real bone. > > I can only wonder if it's because Andrew is relatively new at this > type of testing and made some honest, unfortunate mistakes or whether > his primary objective was to deliberately do a half-ass job in order > to try and protect many of his fellow scentists' self-interests. You know, if you learned how to use a microscope properly the cabal would send you a secret decoder ring, too. -- Paul Myers Department of Biology myers@netaxs.com Temple University http://fishnet.bio.temple.edu/ Philadelphia, PA 19122 ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: mkluge@wizard.net (Mark D. Kluge) Date: 23 Jun 1996 15:14:08 GMT In article <4qij86$6vd@ns2.ptd.net>, edconrad@prolog.net says... >Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the >proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is >petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata.

>I can only wonder if it's because Andrew is relatively new at this >type of testing and made some honest, unfortunate mistakes or whether >his primary objective was to deliberately do a half-ass job in order >to try and protect many of his fellow scentists' self-interests. So Ed, what's stopping you from getting someone else to do the tests more competently? You sent Andrew the specimens. Why did you send them to someone "relatively new at this type of testing?" And why insinuate against the man's honesty? Andrew has provided a summary of his testing procedures and results, so the interested reader can know what Andrew did to obtain his results. The weight of Andrew's results will be determined by the confidence the reader can place in his testing. If he did an inept job testing, then no one will believe his results. You can quite properly point out any errors or defficiencies in his testing. But you have no calling in questioning his honesty in his reporting. Mkluge ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) Date: Mon, 24 Jun 1996 12:47:33 GMT mkluge@wizard.net (Mark D. Kluge) wrote: >You sent Andrew the specimens. Why did you send them to someone >"relatively new at this type of testing?" ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Mark: Just for the record, I DID NOT select Andrew Macrae to do the testing. Ted Holden inaugurated this connection by sending Andrew a specimen which I had never even seen. Ted had picked it up while at one of the sites during his first visit to Pennsyvlania's coal fields back in March. It was ONLY after I learned of this -- that Andrew Macrae was going to perform some testing on a specimen which I had never seen or examined microscopically -- that I got involved. Consequently, I mailed Andrew one of my specimens that I knew, unquestionably, was petrified bone. The specimen (EC96-001) has "tested" twice by Andrew Macrae, with the same erroneous conclusion. Just for the record, EC96-001 is a specimen which the late Wilton Krogman, author of "The Human Skeleton in Forensic Medicine," had personally examined and, based on his great expertise in comparative anatomy, concluded was a portion of a tibia. ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: k_mcguinness@bligh.ntu.edu.au (Keith A. McGuinness) Date: Tue, 25 Jun 1996 05:39:57 GMT edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) wrote: [snip] >Consequently, I mailed Andrew one of my specimens that I knew, >unquestionably, was petrified bone. This is, of course, the fundamental problem: Ed *knows* that his specimens are petrified bone, so any other conclusion *must* be wrong. Just *how* Ed knows is another problem... >The specimen (EC96-001) has "tested" twice by Andrew Macrae, with the >same erroneous conclusion. And what is required here is an appropriate definition of "erroneous". In Ed-speak this is: "erroneous adj. contrary to the beliefs of Ed Conrad". Keith A. McGuinness School of Biological Sciences, Northern Territory University +++ This was my opinion when I wrote it. +++ ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: barroux@licancabur.Corp.Sun.COM (Juan Carlos Barroux R. - SunService) Date: 26 Jun 1996 01:01:36 GMT In article lhu@ns2.ptd.net, edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) writes: > > Just for the record, EC96-001 is a specimen which the late Wilton > Krogman, author of "The Human Skeleton in Forensic Medicine," had > personally examined and, based on his great expertise in comparative > anatomy, concluded was a portion of a tibia. The only question I have is: why the late Wilton Krogman did not rush to publish a paper with this earth shatering scientific discovery and this way get his name recorded in history as a great scientist? You know, this is the opportunity of a lifetime to leave a lasting legacy. No scientis worth of his/her name would give up this kind of opportunity. Inquiring minds want to know... j.c. ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: steeg@qucis.queensu.ca (Evan Steeg) Date: 23 Jun 1996 16:39:02 GMT In article <4qij86$6vd@ns2.ptd.net>, Ed Conrad wrote: > >I wanted to say this some time ago but preferred holding off 'til now: > >Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the >proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is >petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata. > [...] >I can only wonder if it's because Andrew is relatively new at this >type of testing and made some honest, unfortunate mistakes or whether >his primary objective was to deliberately do a half-ass job in order >to try and protect many of his fellow scentists' self-interests. Hello again, Ed. With all due respect, I have to say that you still just don't get it. "Protect each other's self-interests"? Obviously you never attended a group meeting for any cutting-edge research group. And never heard of the epic battles, fought in journals' "Letters" sections and occasionally in the NY Times and in courtrooms, over who gets credit for the big discovery just made. If I were an expert in microscopy and/or paleontology or geology, and if I thought you really had what you think your specimens represent, I would beg you to send me samples, do whatever tests you think are necessary (in addition to the one's _I_ think necessary), and then push you pretty hard to let me write and submit the resulting paper to _Science_ or _Nature_. Piss on "other scientists' interests"! It's in _my_ interest to publish groundbreaking work and win sufficient acclaim to guarantee me a life-time of good funding. And it's in science's interest, and humanity's interest, to take one step closer to understanding our biological origins. (And, like many scientists, I'm already a theist so have not joined any "conspiracy" to promote "atheism" or suppress "religious truth"). This conspiracy thing does _not_ help your cause, let alone the cause of knowledge and truth. It's nonsensical from the get-go. -- Evan ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) Date: Mon, 24 Jun 1996 12:46:45 GMT Evan Steeg (steeg@qucis.queensu.ca) posted the following two paragraphs from Ed Conrad's "Flagrant Flaws in Andrew's Testing": >>Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the >>proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is >>petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata . . . >>I can only wonder if it's because Andrew is relatively new at this >>type of testing and made some honest, unfortunate mistakes or whether >>his primary objective was to deliberately do a half-ass job in order >>to try and protect many of his fellow scentists' self-interests. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ A portion of Steeg's response to Ed Conrad: > "Protect each other's self-interests"? Obviously you never attended >a group meeting for any cutting-edge research group. And never heard >of the epic battles, fought in journals' "Letters" sections and >occasionally in the NY Times and in courtrooms, over who gets credit >for the big discovery just made. ------------------------------------------- Ed Conrad replies: I stand behind EVERY WORD in the two paragraphs you've quoted. If you were openminded and fair, Evan, you would raise your voice and your criticism -- not against me but against Andrew Macrae for having done the extremely sloppy job that he did. As a scientist (of any discipline), you cannot possibly deny that Andrew DID NOT PEFORM comparative testing in the honest, fair and unbiased manner it should've been done -- and the way true science DEMANDS that it be done. For want of a better expression, it could be said that Andrew was trying to compare apples with oranges. Nowthen, Evan: I like what you say when you've said: > If I were an expert in microscopy and/or paleontology or geology, >and if I thought you really had what you think your specimens >represent, I would beg you to send me samples, do whatever tests >you think are necessary (in addition to the one's _I_ think necessary), >and then push you pretty hard to let me write and submit the resulting >paper to _Science_ or _Nature_. Piss on "other scientists' interests"! >It's in _my_ interest to publish groundbreaking work and win sufficient >acclaim to guarantee me a life-time of good funding. And it's in >science's interest, and humanity's interest, to take one step closer >to understanding our biological origins. (And, like many scientists, >I'm already a theist so have not joined any "conspiracy" to promote >"atheism" or suppress "religious truth"). ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Evan, how does the following sound? Accept my cordial invitation to pay a visit to Shenandoah, Pa. (as Ted Holden has done twice) and, when you do, come with an Open Mind. Within about five minutes of your arrival, I will prove to you -- beyond doubt -- that the Haversian systems visible in one of my specimens are absolutely similiar to the Haversian systems found in one of the most intriguing specimens that I've discovered between anthracite veins. We'll use the specimen that the late Wilton M. Krogman, author of ~The Human Skeleton in Forensic Medicine," examined personally and concluded bears a distinct resemblance to a human calvarium (a portion of a human skull with the eye sockets broken off). Only after peering through a microscope and seeing these Haversian systems in this particular specimen will you realize why I have been fighting so long and so hard. ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: stephens@math.ruu.nl (Bruce Stephens) Date: 24 Jun 1996 17:02:18 +0200 >>>>> "Ed" == Ed Conrad writes: > Accept my cordial invitation to pay a visit to Shenandoah, Pa. (as > Ted Holden has done twice) and, when you do, come with an Open Mind. > Within about five minutes of your arrival, I will prove to you -- > beyond doubt -- that the Haversian systems visible in one of my > specimens are absolutely similiar to the Haversian systems found in > one of the most intriguing specimens that I've discovered between > anthracite veins. And similar to those seen in flakes taken from random stones in your driveway? -- Bruce Stephens | email: B.Stephens@math.ruu.nl Utrecht University | telephone: +31 30 2534630 Department of Mathematics | telefax: +31 30 2518394 P.O. Box 80010, 3508 TA Utrecht | The Netherlands | ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: steeg@qucis.queensu.ca (Evan Steeg) Date: 24 Jun 1996 15:15:15 GMT In article <4qm2tv$lhu@ns2.ptd.net>, Ed Conrad wrote: > ... >~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ >A portion of Steeg's response to Ed Conrad: > >> "Protect each other's self-interests"? Obviously you never attended >>a group meeting for any cutting-edge research group. And never heard >>of the epic battles, fought in journals' "Letters" sections and >>occasionally in the NY Times and in courtrooms, over who gets credit >>for the big discovery just made. > >------------------------------------------- >Ed Conrad replies: > >I stand behind EVERY WORD in the two paragraphs you've quoted. >If you were openminded and fair, Evan, you would raise your voice and >your criticism -- not against me but against Andrew Macrae for having >done the extremely sloppy job that he did. Ed, you might recall that I posted a note a week or two ago in which I did suggest that Andrew perform the thin-slice tests and use the illumination methods that _you_ demanded. I also posted a note suggesting that you comply with Andrew's request to formulate specific scientific hypotheses regarding what you expect the tests to show. Andrew mostly complied with "my" suggestions, while you did not. Not that anyone need listen to anything I suggest, since, I _repeat_, I am _not_ an expert in the fields relevant to your discovery. Not even close. >As a scientist (of any discipline), you cannot possibly deny that >Andrew DID NOT PEFORM comparative testing in the honest, fair and >unbiased manner it should've been done -- and the way true science >DEMANDS that it be done. I am not in a position to know what kinds of tests ought to be done, Ed. From my "layman" position, I _did_ make suggestions regarding openness, real hypothesis-testing, and general "fair play". Andrew has done more to comply with my suggestions than you have, thus far. Again, though, I urge you strongly to talk to geologists and paleontologists and microscopy experts. I don't think anyone has ever done this before on usenet, but I am asking you and everyone else to _ignore me_ on this issue, and deal with each other and with experts! Please, ignore me! :-) >For want of a better expression, it could be said that Andrew was >trying to compare apples with oranges. Perhaps. I'm not in a position to know. But that theory is more plausible and polite than the implication that Andrew is involved in a conspiracy and cover-up! >Evan, how does the following sound? > >Accept my cordial invitation to pay a visit to Shenandoah, Pa. (as Ted >Holden has done twice) and, when you do, come with an Open Mind. > ... Ed, I thank you again for your invitation. I might well take you up on it around summer's end. But I must insist (one last time) that I would not be in a position to make any scientifically-valid judgements on your samples. Better you should invite some experts. Regards, Evan PS Emailed and posted. Evan W. Steeg Department of Computing and Information Science Queen's University Kingston, Ontario K7L 3N6 CANADA *************************************************************************** ** Official Computational Molecular Biologist of the 1996 Olympic Games *** *************************************************************************** ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: gibgric@mailbag.com (Michael Grice) Date: Tue, 25 Jun 1996 01:11:59 GMT edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) blessed us with the following wisdom: [Much deleted] >We'll use the specimen that the late Wilton M. Krogman, author of ~The >Human Skeleton in Forensic Medicine," examined personally and >concluded bears a distinct resemblance to a human calvarium (a portion >of a human skull with the eye sockets broken off). >Only after peering through a microscope and seeing these Haversian >systems in this particular specimen will you realize why I have been >fighting so long and so hard. Let me share with you a relevant passage from a book by Dr. Douglas Ubelaker and Henry Scammell. Ubelaker is curator of anthropology at the National Museum of History at the Smithsonian; he also consults regularly in forensic anthropology for the FBI. "One of the first things we ask on examining alleged forensic evidence is whether it is of human origin. This may seem like the kind of question that could be answered by any competent medical examiner far earlier in the process, but that often isn't the case. Physicians expect to deal with people, not animals, and very few of them, even pathologists and medical examiners, have ever been trained in distinguishing human body parts, especially bones, from those of other species. "Between 10 and 15 percent of the presumed human skeletal remains sent to the FBI turn out to be something else. Most of the non-human referrals are quite obvious to a properly educated eye, but some are more subtle...." I don't find Dr. Krogman's testimony convincing. I don't find your testimony convincing, especially since you haven't told us the magnification *you* see the Haversian canals under. Michael Grice P.S. The quote is from _Bones: A Forensic Detective's Casebook_, Edward Burlingame Books, New York, NY, 1992, page 76. ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: chris brochu Date: 25 Jun 1996 04:46:02 GMT In article <4qnp1q$7k0@ns2.ptd.net> Ed Conrad, edconrad@prolog.net writes: >Are Haversian canals in mammals the same as Haversian canals in >reptiles? I beg to differ. >Although there is no significant difference in canal morphology, there >indeed is a difference in the size of the canals because the bone of >the large reptiles -- such as a dinosaur -- is much coarser. Do you have a reference to back yourself up on this? From what I've seen, there is very little difference, and the papers I've read seem to agree with me. chris ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: jamie@dcd00745.slip.digex.net (Jamie Schrumpf) Date: 24 Jun 1996 03:48:56 GMT In article <4qij86$6vd@ns2.ptd.net>, edconrad@prolog.net says... > > >I wanted to say this some time ago but preferred holding off 'til now: > >Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the >proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is >petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata. > >For starters, why did he ever decide to put dinosaur bone in the >picture in the first place? >I've been saying all along that the petrified bones I've discovered >between Pennsylvania's anthracite veins are human, hominid or of large >mammals which established science maintains certainly didn't exist >back then. > >Comparing the cell structure of my specimen (EC96-001) with bone from >a human cadaver (mammalian bone) would've been the proper scientific >route to follow. Drat! I had predicted in email to Andrew back on June 13th that Ed's "rebuttal" would have been just as irrelevant as this, but I selected the wrong approach. Well Andrew, I was at least in the ballpark. Ed, tell us why comparing dino bones to your samples is wrong. Never mind that you claim these are human bones; explain to us how human and dino Haversian systems are so different that comparing them amounts to a "flagrant flaw." Are the canals a different shape? Are they vastly larger? Smaller? You *still* haven't yet made any kind of prediction as to what Andrew should have seen in his photomicrographs -- which I suppose you did on purpose so that you could pull just this act. No matter what Andrew sees or does, you can claim that his testing was insufficient to detect it. This is called weaseling. And you are doing it so well, you must have vast experience at it. > >Another thing, there also is a drastic difference in geographical age >between the two specimens which Andrew tested. I presented what I >insist is petrified bone from the Carboniferous while Andrew's >dinosaur is a spring chicken from the Cretaceous -- and, besides, it >ISN'T petrified. I assume you mean "geological" and not "geographical" age? So. You think that comparing your sample from the Pennsylvanian with modern human bones (age difference ~ 250 m.y.) is a "good" test, but comparing your sample with a dino that is much, much closer in time (age difference ~ 125 m.y.) is *not* a "good" test? Exactly why do you think this is so? Specifically, why do you think a 250 m.y. age difference is negligable, but a 125 m.y. difference is a "flagrant error"? > >Andrew has stated that he didn't want to use petrified bone for >testing purposes because it is too valuable to be destroyed. >Yet, the proper testing procedure would have been to compare my >specimen with petrified bone. > >Non-dinosaur petrified bone of smaller mammals is certainly available. >There's a small mountain of it at La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles and >I'm sure officials of the museum there would've supplied a specimen >for testing purposes. Andrew has returned your samples (or is in the process of doing so); why don't YOU ask for samples for your purposes. I think Andrew has done enough of your work for you. The burden of proof is on you, not anyone else. > >Getting back to Andrew's latest updated testing -- publishing >microscopic photos using a thin section he says came from the specimen >I sent him -- the set of three side-by-side photos leaves much, much >to be desired. > >For one thing, Haversian systems CANNOT be seen at all powers of the >microscope. This is the case when the magnification is too low or too >high -- and not that far under or not that far over -- from the >magnification range of visibility . Bald assertion. Prove it, with pictures. > >Yet none of the photos of my specimen that Andrew published were in >the neighborhood of the visibility range (approximately 105X) of the >Haversian systems that I and many others have seen while viewing thin >sections over the past few years. This includes Jeremy Dahl, a bone >expert at the prestigious Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center in >Atlanta, Ga.; Teledyne Isotopes, one of the world's largest >independent testing laboratories; and others. Andrew has already stated that at those magnifications you would be seeing the void between the grains in the sandstone. And you have provided no evidence that any of the names you dropped above *ever* saw any Haversian systems in your samples. At most, the authors of the letters you posted said that you *might* have fossil bones, BUT THAT YOU SHOULD HAVE A PALEONTOLOGIST LOOK AT THEM TO BE CERTAIN. You have. He says no. So have others, at your own admission. What more do you need? > >But the most important reason than Andrew did not do the proper >comparative testing is that my specimen is mammalian bone. A dinosaur >is a REPTILE. And there's a distinct difference in cell structure >between mammalian bone and reptilian bone. What would those differences be? Vast enough to totally refute Andrew's testing? Show us, with pictures -- you ought to be able to scan those out of textbooks. > >For these and other reasons, I insist my specimen was not properly >tested and evaulated by Andrew. His procedures were well below >established standards that MUST be followed if there is to be a fair, >honest and impartial evaluation. You've also claimed that rocks have cell structures. Why should we think you know anything about "established standards" as regards paleontology? > >I can only wonder if it's because Andrew is relatively new at this >type of testing and made some honest, unfortunate mistakes or whether >his primary objective was to deliberately do a half-ass job in order >to try and protect many of his fellow scentists' self-interests. Such arrogance. Andrew is a grad student and has no doubt done far more of this kind of work than you have. I would say that Andrew's only mistake is presuming that you really wanted the truth about your samples; it's far more obvious that you want affirmation of your beliefs, and you will go to any extreme to vilify those who will not do so. Let's see who might be at fault here: a graduate student in geology with modern equipment and techniques at hand, and who is obviously familiar with them -- or a self-admitted amateur who thinks all rocks have cellular structure and knows nothing about optical artifacts in inferior microscope lenses. I'll take door number two. -- ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Jamie Schrumpf http://www.access.digex.net/~moncomm "It is morally as bad not to care whether a thing is true or not, so long as it makes you feel good, as it is not to care how you got your money as long as you have got it." --- Edmund Way Teale, "Circle of the Seasons" ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: Graham Shields Date: 24 Jun 1996 07:21:23 GMT edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) wrote: > >I wanted to say this some time ago but preferred holding off 'til now: > >Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the >proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is >petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata. > >For starters, why did he ever decide to put dinosaur bone in the >picture in the first place? >I've been saying all along that the petrified bones I've discovered >between Pennsylvania's anthracite veins are human, hominid or of large >mammals which established science maintains certainly didn't exist >back then. > >Comparing the cell structure of my specimen (EC96-001) with bone from >a human cadaver (mammalian bone) would've been the proper scientific >route to follow. > >Another thing, there also is a drastic difference in geographical age >between the two specimens which Andrew tested. I presented what I >insist is petrified bone from the Carboniferous while Andrew's >dinosaur is a spring chicken from the Cretaceous -- and, besides, it >ISN'T petrified. If someone out there has a bone from the Cretaceous that isn't petrified, Michael Critchen would like to get to know you. > >Andrew has stated that he didn't want to use petrified bone for >testing purposes because it is too valuable to be destroyed. >Yet, the proper testing procedure would have been to compare my >specimen with petrified bone. > >Non-dinosaur petrified bone of smaller mammals is certainly available. >There's a small mountain of it at La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles and >I'm sure officials of the museum there would've supplied a specimen >for testing purposes. As far as I know, the bone from La Brea is not petrified. It was found in a tar pit. How could it get petrified in tar? Please get your facts right. You say you held off until now. How can you can you wait and deliberate so long and still come up wth such jibberish. > >Getting back to Andrew's latest updated testing -- publishing >microscopic photos using a thin section he says came from the specimen >I sent him -- the set of three side-by-side photos leaves much, much >to be desired. However you have come up with precisely nothing after decades of 'research' > >For one thing, Haversian systems CANNOT be seen at all powers of the >microscope. This is the case when the magnification is too low or too >high -- and not that far under or not that far over -- from the >magnification range of visibility . This is not true as many practising palaeontologists have stated > >Yet none of the photos of my specimen that Andrew published were in >the neighborhood of the visibility range (approximately 105X) of the >Haversian systems that I and many others have seen while viewing thin >sections over the past few years. This includes Jeremy Dahl, a bone >expert at the prestigious Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center in >Atlanta, Ga.; Teledyne Isotopes, one of the world's largest >independent testing laboratories; and others. > >But the most important reason than Andrew did not do the proper >comparative testing is that my specimen is mammalian bone. A dinosaur >is a REPTILE. And there's a distinct difference in cell structure >between mammalian bone and reptilian bone. And what is this difference? Look it up in text book? Does it say that that reptilian bone consists of rounded quartz grains? > >For these and other reasons, I insist my specimen was not properly >tested and evaulated by Andrew. His procedures were well below >established standards that MUST be followed if there is to be a fair, >honest and impartial evaluation. Insist all you like, the onus is on you to produce more than boring and very poorly thought out rhetoric ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: gator@mail.utexas.edu (chris brochu) Date: 24 Jun 1996 16:54:56 GMT In article <4qij86$6vd@ns2.ptd.net>, edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) says: > >But the most important reason than Andrew did not do the proper >comparative testing is that my specimen is mammalian bone. A dinosaur >is a REPTILE. And there's a distinct difference in cell structure >between mammalian bone and reptilian bone. > There's actually quite a good body of literature comparing various types of tetrapod bone, both from modern and fossil taxa. You might look for classic papers by Enlow and Brown back in the 1960's, or more recent work by Armand de Ricqles, Anusuya Chinsamy, or David Varricchio. Most are well- illustrated, and you should be able to test your hypothesis that a dinosaur is not a valid benchmark with which to compare your material. The upshot is that haversian canals are haversian canals. Mammals and nonavian reptiles do not show any significant difference in canal morphology. There are differences in the numbers of canals between some mammals and some reptiles, but archosaurs generally - including dinosaurs - tend to have large numbers of them, as do mammals. Andrew's comparison was a wise and valid one. I think the time has come to show us your scientific colors by graciously rejecting a falsified hypothesis. chris ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: christw@lexis-nexis.com (Christopher C. Wood) Date: 24 Jun 1996 18:18:12 GMT More evasion from Ed, just like I predicted. The game will continue until Andrew refuses the ante, whereupon Ed claims victory. In article <4qij86$6vd@ns2.ptd.net>, edconrad@prolog.net (Ed Conrad) writes: [ Ed wants comparisons against mammalian bone, preferably petrified bone, because it's rare and valuable. Which is a significant new assertion by Ed. ] |> Comparing the cell structure of my specimen (EC96-001) with bone from |> a human cadaver (mammalian bone) would've been the proper scientific |> route to follow. Not at all. A human cadaver is not millions of years old. Dinosaur bones are. How old are you claiming your sample was? [ trimmed ] |> Andrew has stated that he didn't want to use petrified bone for |> testing purposes because it is too valuable to be destroyed. |> Yet, the proper testing procedure would have been to compare my |> specimen with petrified bone. Last time you were asserting that a transmission-light thin specimin was proper testing procedure. [ trimmed ] |> Getting back to Andrew's latest updated testing -- publishing |> microscopic photos using a thin section he says came from the specimen |> I sent him -- the set of three side-by-side photos leaves much, much |> to be desired. Andrew asked you how big you thought the Haversian systems you were claiming existed, and you made a big point of not telling him. Now you say you used the wrong magnification. Are others are seeing why I ought to try very, very, very hard to just ignore Ed. Chris -- Speaking only for myself, of course. Chris Wood christw@lexis-nexis.com cats@CFAnet.com ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: globoy@vcn.bc.ca (Stephen Coulson) Date: 24 Jun 96 00:15:46 -800 On 22-Jun-96 21:00:50, Ed Conrad spake unto All on the matter refered to as "FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING'"! >I wanted to say this some time ago but preferred holding off 'til now: >Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the >proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is >petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata. Followed by gibberish mercifully snipped. Ed, even you yourself know that what you have said here is a pile of ... well, something brown and steaming. The real problem with Andrews tests is that they confirm all the other tests and bring you one more step closer to being stoned by the good folks of you home town who have invested so much faith in their local hero, Ed "the toppler of the established order" Conrad. Hey, I understand. It's difficult enough when your own illusions are shattered, but when you are the custodian of the delussions of others then it can be down right embarrassing, not to mention dangerous. It's been too many years now for you to publicly admitt your mistake. So, keep up the bluster. It doesn't really fool anyone but you. + _ /^^ ( Stephen B. Coulson ) + |(_ [_ _ _ [_ _ _ |OO O ( e-mail: ) | |,_)[_ (-'[_)[ )(-'[ ) @ \ o ( globoy@vcn.bc.ca ) | + ~ [ ~ |o~ . (_________________________________) + -- All opinions herein have been quality tested and aged in oak vats. ======== Newsgroups: talk.origins,sci.bio.paleontology,alt.fan.publius,sci.skeptic,alt.catastrophism,alt.christnet Subject: Re: FLAGRANT FLAWS IN ANDREW'S `TESTING' From: mcc@thunder.watson.ibm.com (Mark Chu-Carroll) Date: 26 Jun 1996 14:56:16 GMT In article <4qij86$6vd@ns2.ptd.net>, Ed Conrad wrote: > >I wanted to say this some time ago but preferred holding off 'til now: > >Andrew Macrae, the nice guy that I'm sure he is, has not conducted the >proper comparative testing to determine if the specimen I sent him is >petrified bone found in Carboniferous strata. > >For starters, why did he ever decide to put dinosaur bone in the >picture in the first place? >I've been saying all along that the petrified bones I've discovered >between Pennsylvania's anthracite veins are human, hominid or of large >mammals which established science maintains certainly didn't exist >back then. If you understood how science works, you'd realize that *before* you start working on problems like what *kind* of bone it is, you first check to see if it's bone. How do you check if it's bone? You look for the haversian canal structure. Your rock doesn't have haversian canal structure, ergo it isn't bone. The dinosaur bone complaint is a complete non-sequiter, since its entire purpose is to demonstrate what the canal structure should look like. It has *no* bearing on the results of the analysis - it's an expository example. >Comparing the cell structure of my specimen (EC96-001) with bone from >a human cadaver (mammalian bone) would've been the proper scientific >route to follow. Bullshit. Like I said above, in real science, you start by checking the most general hypothesis. If that test succeeds, then you test the next most general, spiraling inwards. The tests of specifics are a waste of time until the general hypotheses have been verified. In your case, the most general hypothesis is that your sample is a bone. So you test that first. And there isn't any doubt about the results: your sample does not have the structure of bone. Therefore, it is NOT bone. Comparisons have nothing to do with it. >Another thing, there also is a drastic difference in geographical age >between the two specimens which Andrew tested. I presented what I >insist is petrified bone from the Carboniferous while Andrew's >dinosaur is a spring chicken from the Cretaceous -- and, besides, it >ISN'T petrified. That doesn't matter. What matters is that there is a *specific* test that you use to determine if something is bone. That test was performed. The results were clear. End of story. > ... more babbling along the same line. Deleted to cut repetition ... > >Getting back to Andrew's latest updated testing -- publishing >microscopic photos using a thin section he says came from the specimen >I sent him -- the set of three side-by-side photos leaves much, much >to be desired. > >For one thing, Haversian systems CANNOT be seen at all powers of the >microscope. This is the case when the magnification is too low or too >high -- and not that far under or not that far over -- from the >magnification range of visibility . That's gibberish to anyone who understands optics or microscopy. If something can be seen clearly under a microscope at 150X, you'll be able to see it at 100X. If you find something that you can only see at a very narrow range of magnifications, then without a doubt, you've encountered an optical illusion, an artifact of flaws in your microscope. And further: Andrew specifically asked you what size you thought the canals would be, so that he could make an effort to look specifically for something that size. You *refused* to do so. And now you're whining that he didn't look for something of the correct size. Gee, Ed. With behavior like that, I wonder why no one takes you seriously. It *must* be a conspiracy. >Yet none of the photos of my specimen that Andrew published were in >the neighborhood of the visibility range (approximately 105X) of the >Haversian systems that I and many others have seen while viewing thin >sections over the past few years. This includes Jeremy Dahl, a bone >expert at the prestigious Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center in >Atlanta, Ga.; Teledyne Isotopes, one of the world's largest >independent testing laboratories; and others. > >But the most important reason than Andrew did not do the proper >comparative testing is that my specimen is mammalian bone. A dinosaur >is a REPTILE. And there's a distinct difference in cell structure >between mammalian bone and reptilian bone. But they both have the canals, and those canals would have been visible. Your claim, essentially, is that the structure of the canals was somehow preserved within crystals that are *larger* than the structures that they replaced. Do you have any idea of how utterly idiodic that sounds? If you don't, then you should really try doing some background reading, because you're ravingly ignorant of the subjects that you're trying to discuss. >For these and other reasons, I insist my specimen was not properly >tested and evaulated by Andrew. His procedures were well below >established standards that MUST be followed if there is to be a fair, >honest and impartial evaluation. > >I can only wonder if it's because Andrew is relatively new at this >type of testing and made some honest, unfortunate mistakes or whether >his primary objective was to deliberately do a half-ass job in order >to try and protect many of his fellow scentists' self-interests. This is particularly humorous when you realize how much ignorance of the subject matter is reflected in your post. You're the last person in the world who should be making judgements about Andrew's work. -- Mark Craig Chu-Carroll || "I'm not dumb, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center || I just have a command of thoroughly useless mcc@watson.ibm.com || information." --- Calvin

---

E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank