Fossils by Faith

first_imgFossils are real artifacts you can hold in your hand.  The stories behind them are not.  How does science connect the one with the other?  Sometimes, it requires faith in incredible stories.Stay, sis:  Darwin portrayed a world in flux, with natural selection continually sifting and amplifying minute changes over time.  Why, then did Science Daily title an article, “Rare Insect Fossil Reveals 100 Million Years of Evolutionary Stasis”?  Sure enough, the article claims that a certain splay-footed cricket in rock alleged to be 100 million years old “has undergone very little evolutionary change since the Early Cretaceous Period, a time of dinosaurs just before the breakup of the supercontinent Gondwana.”  But is a phrase like evolutionary stasis an explanation, or just a term providing protection from falsification?Goldilocks and the 3 Dinos:  According to PhysOrg, computer models show that dinosaurs can only leave footprints in strata that are “just right” for the mass of the animal.  “Now we can use this ‘Goldilocks’ effect as a baseline for exploring more complicated factors such as the way dinosaurs moved their legs, or what happens to tracks when a mud is drying out.”  But even if the model allows the scientist to tweak all the parameters in a computer, what happened to good old-fashioned field experiments?Titanoceratops the granddaddy:  Analysis of a partial skeleton from New Mexico “could be the new granddaddy of horned dinosaurs,” National Geographic News teased.  It’s a big one, the biggest horned dinosaur found in North America, dated at 74 million years old, but hold on; they gave this bone a new name when they are not sure it isn’t a member of a previously-identified species called Pentaceratops.  No sooner was it given a titanic name but paleontologists were describing its Darwinian pedigree: “If indeed a new species, Titanoceratops’ discovery could also mean that triceratopsins—members of a family of giant horned dinosaurs—evolved their gigantic sizes evolved [sic] at least five million years earlier than previously thought, the study says.”    It’s not clear why this specimen had anything to do with ancestry.  Does the smaller evolve from the larger?  Sometimes, perhaps, but clearly, much of Darwin’s story had to get things bigger than the last universal common ancestor, a cell.  A Yale paleontologist remarked, “It’s pretty surprising—I would have not have thought something this big and this advanced was living in this time period.”  But have faith: “I would like it to be real,” a paleontologist at Cleveland Natural History Museum said, struggling with his doubts.  Another brother helped his unbelief: “After all, Triceratops must have had ancestors in this earlier time, and this individual does show specialized traits that we see in the Triceratops complex.”If paleontologists unfamiliar with the consensus views on age, origin, ancestry and evolutionary mechanisms were to examine these fossils, it’s interesting to consider what stories they might come up with. Pardon, your assumptions are showing.  Did you catch the slips?  The specimen must have ancestors during this earlier time – says who?  Darwin, that’s who.  The evidence may not show it, and claiming it may require willing suspension of disbelief, but the Bearded Buddha asks for unfeigned faith.  But then why not apply the same faith to Titanoceratops (if such a species even existed) that was applied to the splay-footed cricket, saying it showed “incredible stasis” for 100 million years?    Evolutionists have come up with the perfect crime.  No evidence will ever convict Darwin, because he bought out the police, the researchers, the politicians, the teachers, and the judges.  Will any magistrate in his totalitarian regime ever pay attention to a citizen’s arrest of these scientist impersonators? (see 09/30/2007 commentary).  If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?  Tell the unvarnished truth to whoever will listen, that’s what.(Visited 22 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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AU celebrates 50th anniversary

first_img23 May 2013The African Union (AU), previously the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), marks its 50th anniversary this week with a series of events aimed at building a common identity and sense of belonging among all people on the continent.On Monday, the Scramble for Africa Conference, involving academics from the continent and the diaspora, started in Pretoria. On Wednesday, a gala dinner pitched as a networking session with African embassies took place in Pretoria, and on Friday Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile will open the exhibition “Cultural Brokerage: Africa Imagined (Act1)” at the Pretoria Arts Museum.The activities will culminate in the Africa Day celebrations planned for Saturday, when President Jacob Zuma will unveil an artwork at the AU’s headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia as South Africa’s cultural contribution to the organisation’s 50th anniversary.The Department of Arts and Culture, the City of Tshwane and the Africa Institute of South Africa are celebrating the anniversary under the theme “2013, Year of Pan-Africanism and African Renaissance”.According to Mashatile, the anniversary will encourage South Africans to see themselves as part of an African movement for change, while acknowledging the role of the OAU in bringing an end to apartheid.“As the government, we are particularly interested in pursuing a social cohesion programme that will help the people of the country and continent to redefine their social, political and cultural identity in a manner that will give them a sense of belonging and ownership to determine their own future and destiny,” Mashatile said.Promoting African unityIt has been 50 years since the emergence of the OAU and a decade since the formation of the AU.Comprising 54 member states, the organisation brought the continent together to collectively address its challenges, including conflict, social upheaval, climate change and poverty.It seeks to promote an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa that is people-centred and represents a dynamic force on the world stage.Significantly, during the 2008-09 global economic crisis, Africa’s economies continued to expand, and growth forecasts for the continent remain positive.However, the benefits are not reaching all Africans. Poverty, hunger and disparities in health, education and social participation are preventing the continent’s people from fully realising their full potential.Africa Day will enable the continent to take stock of its assets, capabilities, opportunities and challenges and to look forward and define the pan-African values that will underpin the African agenda over the next five decades.Source: SAnews.gov.zalast_img read more

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Bloom Carroll FFA’s Smith makes Extemp Speaking top four

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest At the 89th National FFA Convention currently underway in Indianapolis, Evan Smith of the Bloom Carroll FFA Chapter made the top four of extemporaneous public speaking, one of the more unique and challenging of the public speaking events. He finished third in the nation.Ohio Ag Net’s Joel Penhorwood spoke with Smith about the honor and his preparation for the finals in this video.last_img

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6 Assam communities enforce 2-day shutdown

first_imgA forum of six communities demanding Scheduled Tribe status enforced a 48-hour shutdown affecting normal life in parts of Assam since Monday.The police reported sporadic incidents of violence and disruption of communication in eastern, central and western Assam where the six communities — Moran, Muttock, Tai-Ahom, Kock-Rajbongshi, Chutia and Adivasi (‘tea tribe’) — are in the majority.These communities currently enjoy Other Backwards Class status. The OBCs’ share in Assam’s quota pie is 27%, while the STs (plains), Scheduled Castes and STs (hills) have 10%, 7% and 5% share respectively.Two-decade-old issueThe ST status demand by the six communities has been a major issue for more than two decades now. The Bharatiya Janata Party had promised them tribal status before the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.The last meeting between the Centre and the representatives of the six communities was held in April 2017. Leaders of these communities said they are still awaiting a report that was to be submitted by June 2017.The trigger for the two-day shutdown from 5 a.m. on Monday was the alleged snub by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh during a meeting with leaders of the six communities in New Delhi on July 20. “The Minister came and went without saying much except that our issue would be resolved soon,” said Aswini Chetia, adviser of All-Assam Tai-Ahom Students’ Union, adding that neither Mr. Singh, nor Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju “seemed interested in knowing about our demands”. The six communities would organise a rally on July 30 demanding the intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to fulfil the BJP’s commitment to grant them ST status. Other tribes waryThe existing ST communities in Assam are opposed to the move to grant tribal status to the six ethnic groups. The Coordination Committee of the Tribal Organisations of Assam (CCTOA), representing Bodo, Rabha, Tiwa, Karbi, Dimasa, Mising, Sonowal, Hajong, Garo and Deuri tribes, had in 2011 written to the Singla Committee that the proposal to grant ST status to six “advances and populous OBC communities” was “a conspiracy to destroy/exterminate the existing STs of Assam”.The Centre had set up the committee headed by Mahesh Kumar Singla, then Special Secretary (internal security) in the Home Ministry, on March 1, 2011, to look into the demand of the six communities and its fallout.The CCTOA had said that the Registrar General of India had rejected the demand of the six communities eight times between 1981 and 2006. The Centre did grant ST status to the Koch-Rajbongshis for six months in 1996, but it was revoked after it was found that 33 of 42 medical seats and 17 of 21 engineering seats apart from other courses reserved for STs had been taken away by the Koch-Rajbongshis.Tribal-majority State?Social scientists say granting ST status to the six communities would make Assam a tribal majority State and would entitle it to special safeguards that might help in solving complications arising out of alleged illegal influx into the State affecting its demographic balance.If granted reservation, the number of Assembly seats reserved for tribal people is expected to jump from the existing 16 to about 85-90 in the 126-seat House by way of fresh delimitation of constituencies.last_img read more

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World Cup final: Dhoni may pick Sreesanth in place of Nehra

first_imgPacer S Sreesanth may be brought into the Indian team in place of injured Ashish Nehra for the summit clash against Sri Lanka in the World Cup cricket final in Mumbai on Saturday.Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni also issued a veiled warning to the Sri Lankans saying the home team has not played to its fullest potential and “there is plenty to come” and was prepared to take on veteran spinner Muttiah Muralitharan.With swing bowler Ashish Nehra virtually ruled out of the grand finale due to a multiple finger fracture he suffered in the semifinal clash against Pakistan, Dhoni appeared to indicate his preference in the toss up between S Sreesanth and off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin.”Ashish is most likely ruled out he’s got multiple fracture on one of his fingers,” he said adding that the choice could be between Sreesanth and Ashwin.”If you see the Mumbai track there’s a bit of pace and bounce for the seamers initially and there is a bit of reverse swing going. The third seamer can have an impact on the game.An extra seamer means I am able to manoeuvre the bowlers,” the skipper said at the pre-match press conference,” Dhoni said.The skipper, who had surprised everyone by keeping Ashwin out of the Mohali encounter after his good performance in two matches, said “With a spinner, if you have three spinners along with a part-timer you don’t have room for manoeuvre. But whatever opportunity Ashwin has got, irrespective of where he has fared, he has done really well.advertisement”We have confidence in him but we are not clear about whether to go with three seamers or two seamers and one extra spinner,” he said.Sreesanth had not played after the tournament opener on February 19 against Bangladesh at Mirpur, and asked how he can slip into his groove after such a lengthy absence from the middle, Dhoni said it can be done if one looked at tomorrow’s final as just another game.”Don’t look at it as the final but as another game. Sree has done well for us most of the games he has played, he has done well. He’s one character who can definitely swing the ball and get you early wickets. Choosing one individual over other is difficult but let’s hope whoever gets chosen will perform at his best,” he said.”Unfortunately, we have not been able to give him more chances to play. Even in the first game, he played I thought he did not bowl badly. After that we gave chances to other individuals which I think were needed at that point of time.It’s more about who suits the condition more. Let’s hope whoever plays just performs,” said Dhoni.- With PTI inputslast_img read more

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