Is Creationism Science?

Discussion in 'Creation vs. Evolution' started by Administrator2, Jan 21, 2002.

  1. Administrator2

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    DOUGI
    For creationism to be scientific it must be testable and falsifiable. Since it is the central assumption of creationism that the Christian god as perceived by Protestants created the universe 10,000 years ago and the Earth 6,000 years ago we should assume that the creationists have developed a model for testing this assumption as well as proposed models that would render this assumption false.

    Since the assumption is considered scientific there can be no use of religious texts and miracles to make up for missing data. So throw out all the notions that God is supernatural (since he must be testable and tangible, therefore he must be a part of nature), and throw out all the notions that things just happen as a result of miracles, scripture saying so, angels, demons, smurfs and Harry Potter conspiracies.

    I ask the creationists to provide their scientific data with the methodology used to form such conclusions. Also provide what sort of evidence would be required to make the creationist assumption falsifiable.


    JHAPPEL
    It is falsifiable. Creationists believe God created kinds of animals. Don't ask me define every kind but clearly birds, mammals, reptiles, fish, plants, insects are separate kinds. So if common ancestry can be proven creationism collapses. But guess what there is no evidence of common ancestry. The question is can evolution be falsified? I say no. Since the current dogma is science must be naturalistic evolution will never be dethroned because nobody has a better naturalistic theory. Cambrian explosion should have done away with evolution years ago.


    Since it is the central assumption of creationism that the Christian god as perceived by Protestants created the universe 10,000 years ago and the Earth 6,000 years ago we should assume that the creationists have developed a model for testing this assumption as well as proposed models that would render this assumption false.

    The 6,000-10,000 years is a different issue and would be difficult to falsify because we believe God created the universe fully formed.

    How about some evidence of macro-evolution?

    We do not deny a young earth is religous and would be difficult but not impossible to falsify. Fortunately there is a lot of evidence for a young earth. http://www.answersingenesis.org/home/area/faq/young.asp


    JOE MEERT
    I fail to see a problem with the “Cambrian Explosion.”
    What evidence would convince you of common ancestry?


    DOUGI
    Your attempts to attack evolution are irrelevant since the topic is the validity, testability and falsifiability of creationism.


    TGAMBLE
    Creationists believe God created kinds of animals. Don't ask me define every kind but clearly birds, mammals, reptiles, fish, plants, insects are separate kinds.

    Amazing. Mammals include humans, apes, rats, dogs etc. Are all mammals (including humans) a single kind?


    So if common ancestry can be proven creationism collapses. But guess what there is no evidence of common ancestry.

    guess what? There is plenty of evidence for it. The fossil record, embryology, molecular biology etc. http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/


    The question is can evolution be falsified? I say no.

    Creationists claim that all the time.
    In any case, a precambrian rabbit would do the job nicely.

    It's [YEC] been falseified by radiometric dating methods. Not to mention the fact that there's no evidence to show a young earth.


    DANEEL
    Creation science is "science in reverse"

    First: You reach a conclusion based on what you already know is true.

    Second: You look for anything that will support your conclusion.

    Third: If you find anything that doesn't support it. You ignore it.

    Fourth: If there is evidence against it that you don't understand you declare it impossible.

    Fifth: If there is any evidence that supports any other theory you try to make it false even if you have to make things up.

    This method is far superior to the actual scientific method because you are always right! Cool.


    JOHN WELLS
    Show me in the fossil record all the in between species. There should be millions of them. There should be more in between species than the species that are alive today. Where are they? I'm not interested in one freak mutant or minor cellular anomalies. Bring me box loads of half this, half that species.


    HELEN
    Folks,
    We have a problem with lies on both sides. That is just the honest truth. I have literally spent the day today tracking down some of the evidences creationists use and there are a number which run somewhere between outright frauds and those which are simply not validated scientifically. Personally, I am disgusted by untruth on both sides.

    Evolution, however, especially having so many more scientists working within that paradigm, certainly should clean up its own act. There are still knowingly fraudulent 'evidences' being presented in texts all the way up to the graduate level as well as to the general public. This has been well-documented by Jonathan Wells' in Icons of Evolution.

    So it's, first of all, a matter of where the evidence itself actually lies.

    Now, is creationISM a science? Of course not. No 'ism' is a science! That's why evolutionists love to use that word. Any 'ism' is a philosophy. Evolutionism included. Both creationism and evolutionism are ways of looking at the evidence and interpreting it. BOTH have the tendency to come at the data with presuppositions regarding the truthfulness of their position. There is circularity on BOTH sides regarding the arguments. Let's just be honest about that!

    However, Doug, are there qualified and highly skilled scientists who believe creation is the correct interpretation?
    You bet! And there are highly qualified and skilled scientists working full-time in the field as well. So no, 'creation science' is not an oxymoron -- it is a term used to indicate a particular way of looking at science, just as evolution science is another way of looking at science.

    And both are based on essentially unprovable beliefs! Both are, in that sense, religious. Creationism implies and requires a creator. Christian/Jewish creationism identifies the Creator as the God of the Bible. Evolution does not specifically deny a deity but marginalizes one to the extreme, since all processes that are acceptable are naturalistic and material. That is basically a religious statement and belief! There is certainly no way of proving it! "All" of just about anything is a mighty hard thing to deal with, and if you are referring to all time, then it is impossible to deal with. Therefore it is a presupposition unsupported by evidence.

    We know a great number of causes are quite natural. We see them everyday. But that says nothing about ALL causes. It can't.

    So both sides are based on belief systems. You can call that religious or just belief systems, but neither has an essentially scientific foundation.

    In other words, evolution is no better than creation where that is concerned.

    As I have said before here, the concept that God must be testable to be real is bizarre. Man is not the pentultimate of all time and space and mass, let alone anything outside that continuum! Something does not have to be testable and manipulable (I think I just made up that word?) to be real. That is a statement so arrogant as to be unbelievable.

    [Administrator: Cambrian Explosion material removed from this post and the responses in this thread and moved to the Cambrian Explosion thread]

    To Daneel – Your description of what happens in ‘creation science’ is absolutely the best I have ever heard – concerning EVOLUTION SCIENCE. I’m serious about that! Evolutionists always presume evolution happened before they even look at the data. The claim is "we have overwhelming evidence" and then they interpret the latest whatever in light of the evolutionary presuppositions and, lo and behold, look -- there's more evidence for evolution!

    Both sides have a tendency to do this very thing, actually, and involve themselves in way too many circular, or self-referencing arguments. Where evolution is concerned, there couldn't be a more perfect example than the entire field of cladistics. It is predicated from the start on the idea that common ancestry is true and goes from there. This presupposition on the part of this entire field totally invalidates the objectivity of any conclusions they may draw from their work. The work is interesting, but different presuppositions can really alter the conclusions...

    And if the evidence still does not fit evolutionist presuppositions, then you make up new 'reasons' (read 'excuses') like 'convergent evolution' which is, as I have mentioned recently, where the sublime meets the ridiculous in evolutionary propaganda.


    TGAMBLE
    There is plenty of evidence for it. The fossil record
    --- Show me in the fossil record all the in between species. There should be millions of them. There should be more in between species than the species that are alive today.


    You don't know much about fossilization do you? How rare and difficult it is.

    If a scientist falsifies data, they are shunned like a leper.



    JOHN WELLS
    You don't know much about fossilization do you? How rare and difficult it is.

    No, I'm not an expert by any means, but if you sent me a dump truck load of jackelope, horsedog, and salapanther fossels you'd make a believer out of me!


    TGAMBLE
    Originally posted by Helen:
    Folks,
    We have a problem with lies on both sides. That is just the honest truth. I have literally spent the day today tracking down some of the evidences creationists use and there are a number which run somewhere between outright frauds and those which are simply not validated scientifically. Personally, I am disgusted by untruth on both sides.


    It's good to see you make that admission. The question is, what problem is there with lies on the evolution side?


    Evolution, however, especially having so many more scientists working within that paradigm, certainly should clean up its own act. There are still knowingly fraudulent 'evidences' being presented in texts all the way up to the graduate level as well as to the general public. This has been well-documented by Jonathan Wells' in Icons of Evolution.

    His claims are mostly bogus. You just said above that creationists use a lot of misinformation to support their claims. How willing are you to trust one without checking his claims out? http://www.cs.colorado.edu/~lindsay/creation/icons_of_evolution.html http://fp.bio.utk.edu/skeptic/Debates/Wells%20guide.htm


    So it's, first of all, a matter of where the evidence itself actually lies.

    That would clearly be with evolution.


    Now, is creationISM a science? Of course not. No 'ism' is a science! That's why evolutionists love to use that word.

    Oh please! give us some credit! A rose by any other name and all that.


    Any 'ism' is a philosophy. Evolutionism included. Both creationism and evolutionism are ways of looking at the evidence and interpreting it.

    Simply untrue. Evolutionism refers to the fact and theories of evolution. It's not a philosophy.


    BOTH have the tendency to come at the data with presuppositions regarding the truthfulness of their position. There is circularity on BOTH sides regarding the arguments. Let's just be honest about that!

    please do. Demonstrate where bias is used on the science side. Keeping in mind that many scientists are, in fact, christians. Keeping in mind that (for example) the old age of the earth was first discovered by Christians. Rather unlikely that they set out to prove the bible wrong! So where's the bias?


    However, Doug, are there qualified and highly skilled scientists who believe creation is the correct interpretation? You bet!

    problem is, they also insist that evidence doesn't matter. If the bible says something, it's true. End of story. Now that's bias! Scientist on the creationist side are a very low minorty.


    And there are highly qualified and skilled scientists working full-time in the field as well. So no, 'creation science' is not an oxymoron -- it is a term used to indicate a particular way of looking at science, just as evolution science is another way of looking at science.

    "evolution science" is not a way of looking at science. there's no such thing. Evolution is a part of science. It's as silly as reffering to relativity science.
    Creation "science" is an oxymoron because it doesn't follow the rules of how science works.


    And both are based on essentially unprovable beliefs! Both are, in that sense, religious. Creationism implies and requires a creator. Christian/Jewish creationism identifies the Creator as the God of the Bible. Evolution does not specifically deny a deity

    Good grief! First time I've seen a creationist admit that!


    but marginalizes one to the extreme, since all processes that are acceptable are naturalistic and material.

    You could say the same thing about chemistry, physics, geology, astronomy or any other field of science.


    That is basically a religious statement and belief! There is certainly no way of proving it!

    First, it's the way science operates. Does a pretty good job that way. 2nd of all, of course there's no way to prove there isn't a god. You can't prove a negative.


    We know a great number of causes are quite natural. We see them everyday. But that says nothing about ALL causes. It can't.

    If a god exists, you can't know that ANY causes or processes are natural. God could be doing it and explanations that are natural could be totally false.


    So both sides are based on belief systems. You can call that religious or just belief systems, but neither has an essentially scientific foundation.

    On the contrary, what you describe for evolution IS the foundation of science.


    As I have said before her, the concept that God must be testable to be real is bizarre. Man is not the pentultimate of all time and space and mass, let alone anything outside that continuum! Something does not have to be testable and manipulable (I think I just made up that word?) to be real.

    Maybe (through I doubt you could name something known to exist that isn't testable in anyway.


    That is a statement so arrogant as to be unbelievable.

    I have an invisible pink unicorn in my garage. If you couldn't test for it in any way, would you accept that it exists?


    These are just two quotes from sources from "your side" out of, literally hundreds, of references to the problems posed evolutionarily regarding the Cambrian explosion.

    I beg to differ, neither one shows that the so called explosion is a problem. They don't even say it's a problem.
    Why is it a problem? You haven't shown that.


    To tgamble -- no, there is no EVIDENCE of common ancestry. There is only the INTERPRETATION of common ancestry from the evidence!

    No, there is evidence for common ancestory. http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/


    Tell me, if you will, why should the interpretation be made from the evidence of a common ancestor instead of a common designer?

    Like I said, that's a question creationist needs to answer. Mainly because you have things like psedugenes that have no fuction. Maybe because you have similar structures for dissimilar function. etc. etc.


    To Daneel -- evolutionists always presume evolution happened before they even look at the data.

    Not so. Science doesn't work that way. Evolution is tested all the ttime. They look at the data with "if evolution is true we should see this, or shouldn't see that"


    Where evolution is concerned, there couldn't be a more perfect example than the entire field of cladistics. It is predicated from the start on the idea that common ancestry is true and goes from there.

    This is simply untrue. Cladistics does NOT assume common ancestory at all.



    JOHN WELLS
    When evolutionists talk fossils, they talk about cambrian age worms and then ones with feet at a higher layer. Let's fastforward to a much later geologic time. What did horses, antelopes, and panthers evolve from? Send me a truckload of their fossils. There would have to be many. They can't just disappear.
     
  2. Administrator2

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    JHAPPEL
    Amazing. Mammals include humans, apes, rats, dogs etc. Are all mammals (including humans) a single kind?

    Thats not what I meant. My point creationists deny common ancestory.


    So if common ancestry can be proven creationism collapses. But guess what there is no evidence of common ancestry.
    **guess what? There is plenty of evidence for it. The fossil record, embryology, molecular biology etc. http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/


    All those you mention contradict evolution soundly! Also the non-universality of the genetic code will eventually falsifiy common descent.
    http://www.arn.org/docs/nelson/pn_darwinianparadigm061593.htm


    In any case, a precambrian rabbit would do the job nicely.

    They would just cry leak like so many other out of place fossils.

    Since there is no other better naturalistic theory evolution will never be dethroned no matter how much evidence is against it.


    DOUGI
    At least Helen was able to admit creation science really isn't science.
    With that sort of conclusion I wonder why the creationists bother with their crusade anyway.
    Perhaps I'm being too harsh as it has only been one day, but with the excuses presented so far I doubt tomorrow will be any different.


    JHAPPEL
    Young Earth Creationism is not science because the only way the age of the Earth is determined is by the Bible. I think intelligent design is science. If we find an arrow head I think we can conclude it was designed not came about by natural processes. So in biology we must decide if living things are intentionally designed or the result of natural processes and both should be considered science and the one which fits the evidence the best should be the dominant theory.


    JOHN PAUL
    DougI: At least Helen was able to admit creation science really isn't science. With that sort of conclusion I wonder why the creationists bother with their crusade anyway.

    Wow! Go back and read what Helen posted. It soiternly wasn't the what you just said.
    This is what Helen DID say:

    "Now, is creationISM a science? Of course not. No 'ism' is a science! That's why evolutionists love to use that word. Any 'ism' is a philosophy. Evolutionism included. Both creationism and evolutionism are ways of looking at the evidence and interpreting it. BOTH have the tendency to come at the data with presuppositions regarding the truthfulness of their position. There is circularity on BOTH sides regarding the arguments. Let's just be honest about that!"

    I hope that is clear to you DougI. We wouldn't want you to misrepresent what a Creationist has said now would we?


    DOUGI
    Irregardless a creationist has yet to show me how creation science is actually science. So far two pages have been created avoiding the issue. The lack of support for the claim that creation science is scientific is surely evidence that it cannot be validated scientifically. Of course I have welcomed the chance for creationists to say that I'm wrong but playing on semantics is irrelevant.


    JOHN PAUL
    Science is science Doug. Whether it is done by an evolutionist under the 'materialistic naturalism' framework, under the "Intelligent Design' framework or under the 'Biblical' framework. You seem to think that just because you attribute all we observe to nature (and some as yet unknown natural processes) it is somehow raised to a different level than if one attributes all we observe to an Intelligent Designer or the Lord our God.

    Science is a quest for knowledge and as such we should be able to follow that quest to wherever it leads us. By excluding certain plausible paths from the outset you place unnecessary constraints upon the objectivity required by science. By doing so you are limiting the possible conclusions and are as guilty of funneling the evidence towards a specific PoV as the Creationists you (evolutionists) accuse of doing the same.

    Fact: Creationists can do science.
    Fact: Creationists can do science under a Biblical framework.

    From my PoV Creationists are more open to the evidence than evolutionists are. We look at the evidence from both sides whereas evolutionists exclude one right off the bat.

    Hope that helps clear up your problem.


    DOUGI
    You are still avoiding the issue. Sure science is science, that wasn't the question, nor was the question of whether or not creation scientists can do science, the question is do they and how do they do it. That is not what you have answered.

    Science is not merely a quest for knowledge, it is a method for acquiring knowledge. Certainly reading a book is a quest for knowledge but there is nothing scientific about it.


    JOHN PAUL
    The answer is YES. My point was you don't have to put the word 'Creation' in front of science as if that has some kind of significance, unless you are comparing it to 'evolutionary' science. That way you would have the correct differentiation required. Baraminology is a relatively new science that you would consider a 'Creation' science. Yes it involves research, observations, experimentation, hypothesis etc.

    Now if you want a more defined answer I would suggest you seek out a person you deem a 'Creation scientist' and ask. I cannot speak for how someone else does research.

    So to answer your question, again, yes Creation science is science.


    DOUGI
    Your unsupported statements don't answer the question. I could say cricket is a science but without support it doesn't mean anything.


    JOHN PAUL
    Any claim that 'Creation' science isn't science would be the unsupported statement. Look up Baraminology and tell me why it is not a science. Can Creation be falsified? Sure, by the same method one would use to falify ID- show that purely natural processes ARE enough to account for all we observe. To date that has NOT been done.

    The best people to answer your question about methodology are Creation scientists themselves. Your refusal to seek one out and ask the question tells me you are not looking for an answer.


    TGAMBLE
    Any claim that 'Creation' science isn't science would be the unsupported statement.

    On the contrary, it's supported in many ways.
    1) creationists never publish their work. They claim censorship but that's just nonsense.
    2) They do very little, if any, field work. Perhaps that's because in the past when creationists have done field work, they realized creationism was a load of rubbish.
    3)They start with a conclusion and dismiss all evidence that doesn't agree with it. They admit this themselves.


    JOHN PAUL
    1) creationists never publish their work.

    That is not true. Creationist have a peer-review process as well. Their work is published in their refereed magazines.


    They claim censorship but that's just nonsense.

    Actually it's been proven by Dr. Humphreys.


    2) They do very little, if any, field work. Perhaps that's because in the past when creationists have done field work, they realized creationism was a load of rubbish.

    And you can support this claim how?


    3)They start with a conclusion and dismiss all evidence that doesn't agree with it. They admit this themselves.

    I can say the same for 'evolutionary' scientists. No matter how absurd the story, as long as it leaves the supernatural out, it is acceptable.


    TGAMBLE
    It's the nature of science that it can only deal with the natural world.


    And you can support this claim how?

    With examples of course! http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/Hangar/2437/whoare.htm
    http://www.glenn.morton.btinternet.co.uk/person.htm


    JOHN PAUL
    The theory of evolution is a fairy tale not a predefined conclusion. Is it also the nature of science to exclude other possibilities? Do you ever think that maybe it is our definition of 'science' that is wrong?

    [regarding censorship]"In the summer of 1985 Humphreys wrote to the journal Science pointing out that openly creationist articles are suppressed by most journals. He asked if Science had a “hidden policy of suppressing creationist letters.” Christine Gilbert, the letters editor, replied and admitted, “It is true that we are not likely to publish creationist letters.” This admission is particularly significant since Science’s official letters policy is that they represent “the range of opinions received” (e.g., letters must be representative of part of the spectrum of opinions). Yet of all the opinions they receive, Science does not print the creationist ones."


    [Meanwhile,] Glen Morton has a bone to pick with YECs but I would bet if you asked this question directly to the scientists they could give you ample proof you are mistaken.

    Here is one article that shows field work: http://www.trueorigin.org/cfjrgulf.asp


    DANEEL
    Originally posted by Helen:
    To Daneel -- evolutionists always presume evolution happened before they even look at the data. The claim is "we have overwhelming evidence" and then they interpret the latest whatever in light of the evolutionary presuppositions and, lo and behold, look -- there's more evidence for evolution! Both sides have a tendency to do this very thing, actually, and involve themselves in way too many circular, or self-referencing arguments. Where evolution is concerned, there couldn't be a more perfect example than the entire field of cladistics. It is predicated from the start on the idea that common ancestry is true and goes from there. This presupposition on the part of this entire field totally invalidates the objectivity of any conclusions they may draw from their work. The work is interesting, but different presuppositions can really alter the conclusions...

    And if the evidence still does not fit evolutionist presuppositions, then you make up new 'reasons' (read 'excuses') like 'convergent evolution' which is, as I have mentioned recently, where the sublime meets the ridiculous in evolutionary propaganda.


    I don't know to which specific convergent evolution event you refer but there are lots of examples in the plant kingdom that seem to fit this idea. As you probably know in classifying plant species some characters are more useful in showing genetic relationships than others. Similarity in flower structure is usually a good indication of family relationships where stem and leaf morphology are not.

    It has been observed that species from two or more different families may look very similar. Plant species from dry habitats will often show thick ribbed stems with no leaves and the presence of thorns. There are also species that may have very small leaves for a few months out of the year.

    Plants that are found in old and new world deserts will look alike even though they may be from completely different families. Cactuses are only found in the new world and belong to their own family. A number of Euphorbia species (poinsettia family) and Milkweed family plants which come from the deserts of the old world will show striding similarities to cactuses. Now how do you explain these similarities. Natural selection makes more sense to me and a lot of other people than any other mechanism. As environments became drier plants with smaller leaves and thicker stems that could store more water were able to produce more seeds than plants that were not. These characteristics were passed on to their offspring.

    A similar scenario can be used to explain why aquatic plants generally have large air spaces for gas exchange.

    Evolution by natural selection works for me. If it doesn't work for somebody else, well so be it but I don't know why anybody would go to the extent to lie or get hostile about it.


    QXR37
    from John Wells: What did horses, antelopes, and panthers evolve from? Send me a truckload of their fossils. There would have to be many. They can't just disappear.

    Most any animal group you can name does have a fossil record which stretches back and links it to other groups. I'm not sure what the antelope fossil record is like, but I know that felines have a fossil record which eventually converges with other members of the Order Carnivora (which also includes canines, bears, racoons, etc.) Horses have one of the best fossil records of any mammal--modern horses can be linked through a series of intermediate forms to dog-sized, three-toed animals (called either Eohippus or Hyracotherium) which closely resemble the ancestors of other groups of hoofed mammals.

    Horse Evolution Over 55 Million Years http://chem.tufts.edu/science/evolution/HorseEvolution.htm

    Fossil Horse Cybermuseum http://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/natsci/vertpaleo/fhc/firstCM.htm

    Fossil Record of the Artiodactyla http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/mammal/artio/artiofr.html
    (Artiodactyls are the cloven-hoofed mammals, which include antelopes; horses belong to the Perissodactyla, mammals which walk on one or three hooves)

    Taxonomy, Transitional Forms, and the Fossil Record
    [Administrator: this link was listed as unavailable]
    --this is a good general page on transitional fossils, with a lot of info and pictures of fossil horses; see especially figures 7-9, where they show how the earliest ancestors of horses converge with the earliest members of other hooved mammals groups. A quote from the page:

    The significance of the fossil record of horses becomes clearer when it is compared with that of the other members of the order Perissodactyla ("odd-toed ungulates"). The fossil record of the extinct titanotheres is quite good (Fig. 7), and the earliest representatives of this group are very similar to "Eohippus" (Stanley, 1974; Mader, 1989). Likewise, the earliest members of the tapirs and rhinos were very "Eohippus"-like. Thus, the different perissodactyl groups can be traced back to a group of very similar small generalized ungulates (Radinsky, 1979; Prothero, et al., 1989; Prothero & Schoch, 1989) (Fig. 8). But this is not all; the most primitive ungulates (hoofed mammals) are the condylarths, which are assemblages of forms transitional in character between the insectivores and true ungulates (Fig. 9). Some genera and families of the condylarths had been previously assigned to the Insectivora, Carnivora, and even Primates (Romer, 1966). Thus, the farther you go back in the fossil record, the more difficult it is to place species in their "correct" higher taxonomic group. The boundaries of taxa become blurred.

    Moving further up the taxonomic hierarchy, the condylarths and primitive carnivores (creodonts, miacids) are very similar to each other in morphology (Fig. 9, 10), and some taxa have had their assignments to these orders changed. The Miacids in turn are very similar to the earliest representatives of the Families Canidae (dogs) and Mustelidae (weasels), both of Superfamily Arctoidea, and the Family Viverridae (civets) of the Superfamily Aeluroidea. As Romer (1966) states in Vertebrate Paleontology (p. 232), "Were we living at the beginning of the Oligocene, we should probably consider all these small carnivores as members of a single family." This statement also illustrates the point that the erection of a higher taxon is done in retrospect, after sufficient divergence has occurred to give particular traits significance.
     

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