Evillution, Intelligent Design, The Science of it All

Ahh…ahhh…ahchoo, dang Precambrian pollen

The Bible tells us that the creation of plants (including flowering plants) on Day 3 of Creation Week actually predated the creation of dinosaurs on Day 6. Unfortunately the rock strata with its variety of fossils do not follow the order generally accepted appearance of extinction over billions of years as the evolutionary paradigm would claim, instead it more closely reflects the order of burial during and since the global Flood of Noah’s day (Genesis 6–9; cf. Luke 17:26–27), only about 4,500 years ago. Now as usual we will not deal with the inaccuracies of the evolutionary concept of Millions of Years Ago (mya), because in this instance it helps us to point out how far wrong their thinking is.

England’s Sir Walter Raleigh, who introduced tobacco and potatoes to Europe (best known for having supposedly used his expensive cloak to cover a mud puddle to protect the feet of Queen Elizabeth 1). He was beheaded by her successor, James I (of KJV Bible fame) in 1618, but not before he had become the first European to discover South America’s Mount Roraima. Its peak, some 9,219 ft above sea level, is in Venezuela.[i]

In the 1940s and 1950s, the discovery of fossils outside the accepted evolutionary position in biostratigraphy was usually honestly reported and discussed. In the following years, examples that could not be explained were simply ignored, never being mentioned again.

Now the question is how I am going to tie the three topics above into a coherent theme- just watch or rather read on. In addition, you may want to take a side trip because have you ever seen a fossil plant series in a museum display or textbook on evolution? Nope. Here you may find out why:

Mount Roraima is one of a group of table-top mountains (or mesas) made of quartz arenite (medium-grained detrital-loose material such as rock fragments or organic particles- that results directly from disintegration ) rock sandstone. By all orthodox geological methods, including radiometric ‘dating’, this rock is supposed to have been laid down no less than 1.7 (most say 1.8) billion years ago.

On the standard evolutionary geological column (Fig. 1), this was the Precambrian, well before there was supposed to be any multi-cellular life on Earth—only bacteria and algae. It is certainly long, long before there were supposed to be any plants on Earth capable of producing spores or pollen. The very earliest that evolutionists would tolerate anything even remotely like a seed-bearing plant is the late Devonian, around 380 million years ago.

8072geologic-column

The very earliest that evolutionists would even consider anything remotely like a seed-bearing plant is the late Devonian, around 380 million years ago. Yet fossils of spores and pollen have been found in the Roraima formation, as reported in a 1966 article in the prestigious journal Nature.[ii] That means they are at least 1,300 million, or 1.3 billion years ‘out of date’.

Researchers have reported finding several types of pollen from flowering plants in ‘dinosaur rock’ (Middle Triassic).[iii] On the evolutionary timeline this puts the origin of flowering plants ‘100 million years earlier’ than previously accepted.

Although such extensions in fossil ranges happen quite often,[iv] this one negates a long-held dogma of the evolutionary storyline. That is because these fossils would mean that flowering plants were present even at the beginning of the supposed dinosaur era.

No wonder that one finds pollen all the way down in Precambrian strata (supposedly more than a billion years before dinosaurs!).[v] Pollen, and many other fossils dramatically ‘out of place’ in relation to evolution’s supposed ‘timeline’, present a major problem to defenders of Darwin’s ideas.

There is a rationalization commonly used by evolutionists that can accommodate practically any fossil pattern into the evolutionary story—ghost lineages:[vi]

Any cladogram[vii] can be placed in a temporal framework that agrees with the stratigraphic record if sufficient ghost lineages are invoked [emphasis added].”[viii]

Ghost lineages are fossil lineages extended millions of years before the oldest find of a particular fossil. This occurs when fossils pronounced ‘ancestral’ based on morphology are thought to be much older than the evolutionary fossil dating indicates.

The colored items are the animals we know about, the uncolored ones are the ghosts filled it to make the leap from one to another.   I’m a Believer aren’t you.

(the Monkees https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfuBREMXxts )

Usually, a ghost lineage is assumed to have undergone ‘evolutionary stasis’ during the period for which there is no fossil evidence for its existence. But evolutionary stasis is itself a vacuous oxymoron seemingly designed just to keep people thinking that evolution explains all change, including no change.[ix]

Sometimes, however, some gaps are so large that filling it with one species is not enough. Though the concept of ‘ghost lineages’ is kept, the ‘evolutionary stasis’ assumption is thrown out. This constitutes inventing a whole ghost cladogram of unobserved species out of thin air when evolutionists think it is necessary:

“Short of extending the stratigraphic range of T. neglectus[x] across this stretch of time, it is more likely that the gap represents a ghost lineage partitioned by successive, but yet undiscovered species. Given the species longevity values calculated by Dodson (1990) it is clear that there must be considerable species diversity masked by the ghost lineage leading to T. neglectus, perhaps much more than the known diversity of the entire hypsilophodontid clade as presently recognized [emphasis added]!”[xi]

It has long been clear that the evolutionary/long-age framework of understanding is a powerful philosophical paradigm that resists falsification. Evolutionists have protested that it would be ‘easy’ to falsify evolution and its associated long-age system—just produce a substantially out-of-place fossil, e.g. pollen in the Cambrian.

Paleontology seeks to describe the location and history of fossils observed in the rocks. The spatial relationship between the fossils can be described directly as far as we can observe them—it is observational science. However, describing the distribution of fossils in time is completely different—it is natural history. Natural history is unrepeatable and unobservable. Reconstructing said history involves more than just what we directly observe in the rocks. Natural history is also bound up with the starting assumptions (or axioms) one brings to the investigation. One’s axioms determine what types of evidence are relevant and what could have happened in the past.

Auxiliary hypotheses, a concept coined by philosopher of science Imre Lakatos[xii], are an integral part of almost any core theory, such as evolution. They are used to explain evidence that at first glance appears contradictory to the core theory. Evolution, as a core theory, relies on many such auxiliary hypotheses to maintain its validity. This is not in and of itself a problem, but one needs to look at the evidential validity of the auxiliary hypotheses to see if the core theory can survive the claim of contradiction.

Ghost lineages (that is, lack of fossil evidence for lineages that evolutionists believe existed) are usually explained as resulting from the fluctuation of fossilization and evolutionary stasis. Nobody denies that fossilization is subject to many destructive conditions, and the fossils may create more gaps in our understanding of biology than they close. However, we have seen that ghost lineages are usually applied to essentially any discrepancy between the cladistics and stratigraphic ‘timelines’. Therefore, it is not an explanation per see; it is inherently an argument from silence—if there was evidence, ghost lineages would not need to be used.

Seems somebody was upset that I was using a piece of internet art without granting appropriate copyrights.  You can read the intelligent discussion that followed, The individual impresses me, he did not turn out to be the same “type” of individuals who normally respond to my posting with a litany of labels that are vile and vulgar.  Therefore, I was happy to discuss with him and point out a few items where I thought I was right.  He did seem to get upset over my describing his as materialistic.  If you do not believe in a supernatural cause to the universe then you are a materialist.  Proponents of methodological naturalism argue that science has been so successful precisely because it has assiduously avoided invoking creative intelligence and, instead, searched out strictly material causes for previously mysterious features of the natural world. However, he either didn’t consider a decision worth continuing or he could not respond to my counterpoints.

I will produce a series of articles on how the concept of cladogram (while once a useful tool) has been proven as useless as well as the so-called evolutionary family tree.  It will probably take until mid-November until I will have the time to write it and finish it up.

Paleontology seeks to describe the distribution pattern of fossils observed in the rocks, both spatially and temporally. The spatial relationships can be described directly—it is observational science. However, the temporal distribution of fossils is inescapably tied up with the presuppositions one brings to the historical investigation. One’s axioms determine what types of evidence are relevant and thus admissible to the paleontological discussion. Fossil patterns can’t give a history because they offer no description of themselves.

Back to the pollen. http://creation.com/roraima-pollen will provide you with far more information about the rock strata than you or I (unless you are a geologist) would care to know. I had to read it 5 times before I could finally understand what it was discussing. The basic conclusion is this: “Based on what has been published thus far and the established geological and mineralogical facts, the presence of pollen in Paleoproterozoic metasediments in the Roraima Supergroup remains a paradox. It can only be explained away through contamination if a whole range of improbable and contrary to sedimentological and hydrogeological tested facts are invoked.” In other words, the evolutionists are creating fairy tales to describe the inconsistencies

Oh, and that is not the only instance. Geologist Dr Clifford Burdick, was the first to report finding fossil pollen grains of seed plants in the so-called Hakatai Shale, a layer of the Grand Canyon classified as ‘Precambrian’. After extensive studying and testing accounting for all kinds of possible contamination and false positives, they came to this conclusion: “The weight of evidence favors the conclusion that fossil pollen is contained in ‘Precambrian’ shale.” This is contrary to expectations based on the accepted geological column.

The Bible tells us that the creation of plants (including flowering plants) on Day 3 of Creation Week actually predated the creation of dinosaurs on Day 6. And the rock strata with fossils do not represent the order of appearance and extinction over billions of years as the evolutionary paradigm would claim, but instead reflect the order of burial during and since the global Flood of Noah’s day (Genesis 6–9; cf. Luke 17:26–27), only about 4,500 years ago.

[i] The extent of the mountain (12 sq. miles) includes the triple border point of Venezuela, Brazil and Guyana (previously British Guiana).

[ii] Stainforth, R.M. Occurrence of pollen and spores in the Roraima Formation of Venezuela and British Guiana,
Nature 210(5033):292–294, 16 April 1966.

[iii] Hochuli, P. and Feist-Burkhardt, S., Angiosperm-like pollen and Afropollis from the Middle Triassic (Anisian) of the Germanic Basin (Northern Switzerland), Frontiers in Plant Science, 1 October 2013 | doi: 10.3389/fpls.2013.00344.

[iv] Oard, M.J., Further expansion of evolutionary fossil time ranges, Journal of Creation 24(3):5–7, 2010; creation.com/fossil-range-expansions.

[v] Stainforth, R., Occurrence of pollen and spores in the Roraima Formation of Venezuela and British Guiana, Nature 210(5033):292–294, 1966. However, evolutionists have steadfastly refused to allow that chronological extension to the ‘fossil range’.

[vi] Doyle, S. and Nethercott, P., Ghosts in the rocks, 14 July 2011; creation.com/ghost-lineages.

[vii] An approach to biological classification in which organisms are categorized based on shared unique characteristics that can be traced to a group’s most recent common ancestor and are not present in more distant ancestors.

[viii] Geiger, D.L., Fitzhugh, K. and Thacker, C.E., Timeless Characters: a response to Vermeij (1999), Paleobiology 27(1):177–178, 2001

[ix] Doyle, S., Oldest fossil shrimp? J. Creation 25(1):3–4, 2011

[x] Thescelosaurus neglectus, “marvelous lizard,” was a moderately sized herbivorous dinosaur reaching lengths of up to 12 feet. Sometimes referred to as the “sheep of the dinosaur world,” Thescelosaurus appears to have had no defensive weapons and only a few dermal scutes for protection.  This would suggest speed was its natural defense. For some reason, the toe bones are the most often reported fossil from Thescelosaurus-maybe the feet out ran the T. Rex’s after it.

[xi] Weishampel, D.B, Fossils, phylogeny, and discovery: a cladistic study of the history of tree topologies and ghost lineage durations, J. Vert. Paleontol. 16(2):191–197, 1996; p. 196

[xii] A philosopher of mathematics and science, known for his thesis of the fallibility of mathematics and its ‘methodology of proofs and refutations’ in its pre-axiomatic stages of development

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6 thoughts on “Ahh…ahhh…ahchoo, dang Precambrian pollen

  1. I will not deal with the countless inaccuracies or misconceptions I found in this article, others have done this to great lengths. But I would like to point out that the cartoon evolutionary tree you are using here is a product of the Deviantart user Albertonykus and that it isn’t public domain. No credit was given to the artist and obviously it wasn’t asked for a permission to use it. I recommend you to take it from your site or to ask for the permission to use it.

    1. It is so nice to be able to state that their are “inaccuracies or misconceptions” and then not have the ability, knowledge or courage to point them out or engage in a debate. The reason I write this is the fact that “others have done this to great lengths” and have been as would be expected wrong. I am sorry if your materialistic view of Neo-Darwinism prevents you from learning other alternative viewpoints.
      I found the image by using Bing to search for “cartoon tree of life” among many others and I selected that one. Viewing his site I do see that there is a copyright notice in the footer. However, due to the fact that it is on a web-site and the individuals sells copies of it makes it more likely to be ruled in the public domain than to be highly protected. It is not an original but an alternative to the any others that are out there. I did go ahead and place an identifying line for it. Hope you get to colonize that planet of yours sometime in the next century or so. LEM

      1. “It is so nice to be able to state that their are “inaccuracies or misconceptions” and then not have the ability, knowledge or courage to point them out or engage in a debate”. How do you want to know that I lack ability and knowledge? I don’t think we know each other enough so that you could value how much I know and what I can.
        I just consider my time too precious than to engage in a discussion with someone who can’t be convinced in a debate which only exists in his mind.
        “The reason I write this is the fact that “others have done this to great lengths” and have been as would be expected wrong.”, We must have read different papers then (the article you link to- for example- never mention the ultrasonic cleaning van der Hammen did).
        “I am sorry if your materialistic view of Neo-Darwinism prevents you from learning other alternative viewpoints.”, Actually the quite opposite is the case, since serious science enthusiasts always need to keep a open mind for different view points,it has more to do that most what creationists do is not science or at least produces no new data but rather nit picks through the work of others… and I never understood what creationists always have with their ‘materialistic point of view’, this is science, not philosophy.
        But sure,if you insist: The picture of Albertonykus you use here is, for example, completely misinterpreted since it shows no ghost lineages but the relationships between all known vertebrate clades, the uncolored animals are just extinct members of these clades and not unknown taxa (In addition they aren’t taxa which are there to fill in the leap from one ‘known’ species to another, instead two ends of a branch represent two taxa with a common ancestor. A ghost linage isn’t just a made up line, we simply have point A and point B and often nothing in between yet, so a time span in which we don’t know what happened, this can have several reasons: the animals in question could be very soft bodied and rarely fossilize or are really small which can also be a problem since smaller bones have a proportional larger surface than large bones, so we speak about a taphonomic bias. Then it can happen that members of the clade chose a new habitat were fossilization is nearly impossible (for example rain forests) or were the strata aren’t accessible (Latimeria left for example no accessible fossils for us because it’s ancestors moved into the deep sea, a real when paleontologists can hardly work). ‘Evolutionary stasis’ can be involved but is rarely.
        “This constitutes inventing a whole ghost cladogram”, This sounds scarier than it is. The cladograms you are maybe referring too are consisting of few fossils but non the less aren’t just made up, instead are based on the most likely relationships figured by phylogenetic analyses. And these ‘ghost cladograms’ rarely stay the same over time, when new fossils are added to the matrix or new analyses of the material add new characters, ghost lineages parish or change.
        Here a example: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ghost_lineage#/media/File:Ichthyosauria_phylogeny.jpg
        (at this point I will end, I can’t write these comments the whole day)

        “However, due to the fact that it is on a web-site and the individuals sells copies of it makes it more likely to be ruled in the public domain than to be highly protected.” I’m not sure I understand you right here. Because it is on the Internet and because Alb sells it this makes is more public domain? First: that someone is online is no free ticket to use it, artists here have the same rights than in the ‘analogue’ world. Second: the fact that he sells this picture as a poster, so makes money with it, makes it even more important to follow the copyright laws, at least asking for the authorization to use the picture should be the least of courtesy you could have.
        There is no ‘half public domain’, some would call your practice here art theft at its finest.

  2. I have a lot of respect for Christians… no one respects Christians more than me… but you’re a nasty Christian with that kind of arrogant response and lack of both knowledge and respect for copyright law.

    1. I do apologize for coming off as arrogant. It was not intentional- just an attempt to defend myself againt the vast number of vile, vicious and vulgar responses I get. Your two responses have definately decided I should go back to bein me. Please read my response to colonistalpha

  3. How do you want to know that I lack ability and knowledge? I don’t think we know each other enough so that you could value how much I know and what I can.

    I just consider my time too precious than to engage in a discussion with someone who can’t be convinced in a debate which only exists in his mind.

    “The reason I write this is the fact that “others have done this to great lengths” and have been as would be expected wrong.”, We must have read different papers then (the article you link to- for example- never mention the ultrasonic cleaning van der Hammen did).
    <You are correct that I never did mention it. I generally look at both sides of the argument and try to select the one with the greates weight of evidence on its side. For this particular argument stated succinctly: The discovery of pollen in samples of the Proterozoic Roraima Formation falsifies the theory of evolution. I used both http://creation.com/roraima-pollen and http://www.debate.org/debates/The-Roraima-Pollen-Paradox/1/. While the Con won the debate, I found the answers not as forthcoming or as extensive as in the creation.com article- of which they have 9 that provide further information that questions van der Hammen’s use of the ultrasound. I read two articles on the Con side and must admit I did not understand it- I will probably have to study for a couple of months before I will be able to. The other one just did not present the technique in a manner that would provide the results expected. The Creation.com article mentions “Then in 1966, Stainforth announced the discovery of pollen and spores (henceforth called ‘microfossils’) in the same formation at Paruima.” Therefore, I think due to the age of the work done, I would have to change my position to neutral. Certainly this controversy should be ripe for an expedition to get some more bore samples for testing.)

    "I am sorry if your materialistic view of Neo-Darwinism prevents you from learning other alternative viewpoints.", Actually the quite opposite is the case, since serious science enthusiasts always need to keep a open mind for different view points,it has more to do that most what creationists do is not science or at least produces no new data but rather nit picks through the work of others… and I never understood what creationists always have with their 'materialistic point of view', this is science, not philosophy.

    But sure,if you insist: The picture of Albertonykus you use here is, for example, completely misinterpreted since it shows no ghost lineages but the relationships between all known vertebrate clades, the uncolored animals are just extinct members of these clades and not unknown taxa (In addition they aren’t taxa which are there to fill in the leap from one ‘known’ species to another, instead two ends of a branch represent two taxa with a common ancestor. A ghost linage isn’t just a made up line, we simply have point A and point B and often nothing in between yet, so a time span in which we don’t know what happened, this can have several reasons: the animals in question could be very soft bodied and rarely fossilize or are really small which can also be a problem since smaller bones have a proportional larger surface than large bones, so we speak about a taphonomic bias. Then it can happen that members of the clade chose a new habitat were fossilization is nearly impossible (for example rain forests) or were the strata aren’t accessible (Latimeria left for example no accessible fossils for us because it’s ancestors moved into the deep sea, a real when paleontologists can hardly work). ‘Evolutionary stasis’ can be involved but is rarely.
    “This constitutes inventing a whole ghost cladogram”, This sounds scarier than it is. The cladograms you are maybe referring too are consisting of few fossils but non the less aren’t just made up, instead are based on the most likely relationships figured by phylogenetic analyses. And these ‘ghost cladograms’ rarely stay the same over time, when new fossils are added to the matrix or new analyses of the material add new characters, ghost lineages parish or change.
    Here a example: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ghost_lineage#/media/File:Ichthyosauria_phylogeny.jpg
    (at this point I will end, I can’t write these comments the whole day)
    <You are basically describing a version of the Artifact Hypothesis From a great book, from both an Intelligent Design and evolutionary perspective is “Darwin’s Doubt” by Stephen C. Meyer. . He writes: “Some scientists claimed, though for different reasons, that the expected Precambrian fossil ancestors had simply not yet been found— that missing fossils were an artifact of the incomplete sampling of the fossil record.” (ebook version Location 1042) and “sedimentary rocks had not preserved the missing fossils— that the incomplete preservation of the Precambrian animals meant the missing fossils were no longer there to be found” (ebook version Location 1049) and “…well-developed, clearly ancestral animal forms were not preserved, when tiny sponge embryos51 were, strongly indicates that such forms were simply not present in the Precambrian layers.” And “case. Precambrian strata include many types of sediments that can preserve— and in the case of the Doushantuo formation in China, have preserved— animal remains in fine detail, including small and vulnerable sponge embryos.” Finally “Contemporary paleontologists, such as Michael Foote at the University of Chicago…. has shown, using statistical sampling analysis, that as more and more fossil discoveries fall within existing higher taxonomic groups (e.g., phyla, subphyla, and classes), and as they fail to document the rainbow of intermediate forms expected in the Darwinian view of the history of life, it grows ever more improbable that the absence of intermediate forms reflects a sampling bias.” (ebook version Location 1315)
    "However, due to the fact that it is on a web-site and the individuals sells copies of it makes it more likely to be ruled in the public domain than to be highly protected." I'm not sure I understand you right here. Because it is on the Internet and because Alb sells it this makes is more public domain? First: that someone is online is no free ticket to use it, artists here have the same rights than in the 'analogue' world. Second: the fact that he sells this picture as a poster, so makes money with it, makes it even more important to follow the copyright laws, at least asking for the authorization to use the picture should be the least of courtesy you could have.
    There is no 'half public domain', some would call your practice here art theft at its finest.
    <Let me explain, I have written 4 software programs that are copyrighted, one with 9 separate modules. I have ten trademarks in my name, and I have had many, hour’s long conversations with a copyright attorney at way too much money per hour. What I was trying to point out (and apologize for apparently again being not articulate enough) was that recent decisions by The World Court in the Hague have diluted some of the rights of “derivative works”. His drawing while unique and somewhat different, would not qualify under these definitions as original. Being posted on a page which has many hits would also dilute its claim to originality as well as the selling of copies. I would disagree with a number of their interpretations and we (a consortium of developers) have been able to prevent Congress from including those definitions in a new Copyright and Internet law that thankfully will not be considered again for a while.

    <I know graphic images and software change rapidly (I have several tools to take them apart layer by layer and pixel by pixel if I needed to- but I am not a graphics person. With all that I have available to me I still draw stick figures. I did not find a copyright notice embedded in the image. You might instruct your friend to do so on past and future works that he produces. I have no desire to engage in any controversy so I will remove it ad post another one that conveys the point I wish to make.

    <I’m not so sure about colonizing another planet. I prefer to try to fix what is wrong here. However, I imagine if I was younger I would have a different attitude. I really enjoyed reading Isaac Asimov, Robert C. Clark and Robert Heinlein –especially The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.

    <I hope I have cleared some things up and look forward to hearing from you again in the future if possible.?

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