To : ARTHUR BIELE Subj: Nilsson ARTHUR BIELE to MARTIN GOLDBERG on 090594 14:36 re: TRANSI

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From: LARRY SITES 8 Sep 94 22:02 To : ARTHUR BIELE Subj: Nilsson ARTHUR BIELE to MARTIN GOLDBERG on 09-05-94 14:36 re: TRANSITIONALS, PART 2 2/ AB>N. Heribert Nilsson laments that his 40 years trying to demonstrate AB>macro-evolution by finding such evolutionary transitions ended in total AB>failure. He goes on to state (1984): AB> "The fossil material is now so complete that it has been possible to AB> construct new classes, and the lack of transitional series cannot be AB> explained as being due to scarcity of material. The deficiencies are AB> real, they will never be filled." You sure he said that in 84? Here's a little more info on this, er, expert: Message # 8927 Area : 53 BIOGENESIS From : Scott Faust 05-03-93 00:00 To : Dave Horn Subj : Nilsson Quote --------------------------------------------------------------------------- --- DAVE HORN to KEITH MCMANUS, 05-01-93, re: "Fossils" > > KM> The scientests would seem to disagree with you Steve: > KM> > KM> "It is not even possible to make a caricature of evolution > KM> out of palaeobiological facts. The fossil material is now so > KM> complete that the lack of transitional series cannot be > KM> explained by the scarcity of the material. The deficiencies > KM> are real, they will never be filled." > KM> (Synthetische Artbildung by Prof. N. Heribert-Nilsson, Lund > KM> University, Sweden) > > I'd like a source for this quote. My bet is that it is > misrepresented. It looks to me like the good Professor is > referring to real deficiencies, which none of us will deny. But > it hardly seems likely that we are seeing a complete denial of > transitional forms. Actually, we were. But we nevertheless find in this case (as we have in others) the hazards of the blind use of the argument from authority: Nils Heribert Nilsson. 1953. _Synthetische Artbildung [Synthetic Speciation]: Grundlinien einer exacten Biologie_. Lund, Sweden; C.W.K. Gleerup. 2 Volumes. Tom McIver has an entry on this book in his _Anti-Evolution: An Annotated Bibliography_. Nilsson was a geneticist, and apparently worked as a botanist. McIver reports that he was director of the "Botanical Institute" of Lund, Sweden. But Nilsson also seems to have been a bit of a loon! He had some weird ideas about genes (even for the time), including the claim that enzymes were also genes. In this book he also advocated Hans Horbiger's "cosmic ice theory", a pseudoscience of repeated planetary catastrophes which obtained a cult following in Germany and Austria under the Nazis. The cosmic ice theory is similar in flavor and evidentiary basis (though not in specifics) to Velikovsky's planetary pinball scheme. It involves the claim that the orbits of the planets and moons are gradually slowing down. The earth has had a number of different moons -- small planets that the earth has sequentially captured and which eventually disintegrate and fall to the earth. Mythological evidence (supposedly) indicates that our present moon was captured 13,500 years ago. One of the past moons was made of ice (thus "cosmic ice"), and its disintegration caused Noah's flood. As with Velikovskism, "cosmic ice" theorists were often big on "proving" the accuracy of the bible. Nilsson's views on "synthetic speciation" were even stranger. Here is McIver's summary: During these catastrophic periods, new organisms are created by "emication" -- a drastic alteration or production of gametes. A few survive as totally new forms. Inspired by Oparin's theory of spontaneous origin of life, Nilsson argues that these gametes, of entirely new organisms, could form spontaneously and polyphyletically, out of the mix of biocatalytic substances engendered during the catastrophic episodes. "During paleobiological times whole new worlds of biota have been repeatedly synthesized." Nilsson declares that organisms such as orchids and elephants were "instantly created out of non-living material." Of course, I think we can be pretty confident that Keith has no more read Nilsson's original work than you or I have. He has picked up the quote second hand from the creationist literature. But its pretty funny that Keith would (as other sources of the quote have) try to leave the impression that a crank like Nilsson was speaking with the authority of main stream science. Peace, Larry =================================================================== From: LARRY SITES Posted: 8 Sep 94 22:09 To : ARTHUR BIELE Subj: Sources? ARTHUR BIELE to MARTIN GOLDBERG on 09-05-94 14:36 re: TRANSITIONALS, PART 2 2/ AB>N. Heribert Nilsson laments that his 40 years trying to demonstrate AB>macro-evolution by finding such evolutionary transitions ended in total AB>failure. He goes on to state (1984): AB> "The fossil material is now so complete that it has been possible to AB> construct new classes, and the lack of transitional series cannot be AB> explained as being due to scarcity of material. The deficiencies are AB> real, they will never be filled." AB>Evolutionist Neville George stated as far back as 1960: AB> "There is no reason to apologize any longer for the poverty of the AB> Fossil record. In some ways it has become almost unmanageably rich." Where do you guys get this crap from? Another creationist made almost a verbatum quote apparently from this book: [from...The Creation-Evolution Controversy by R.L. Wysong 1976 pp.355,356] ...GEORGE NEVILLE REMARKS: "There is no need to apologize any longer for the poverty of the fossil record. In some way it has become almost unmanageably rich, and discovery is outpacing integration...The fossil record neverthess continues to be composed mostly of gaps." (Neville, George T., "Fossils in Evolutionary Perspective," Science Pogress, Vol. 48, Jan.1960,pp.1,3) Professor N. Heribert-Nilsson of Lund Univ. Sweden, has studied the subject of evolution for over 40 years and has commented on this problem of missing links: "It is not even possible to make a caricature of evolution out of paleobiological facts. The fossil material is now so complete that the lack of transitional series cannot be explained by the scarcity of the material. The deficiences are real, they will never be filled." (Hitching, Francis, "Was Darwin Wrong?", Life Magazine, Vol.5, No.4, April 1982, pp. 48-52) At least he gave the sources. Why didn't you? Peace, Larry

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