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Re: Selected quotes from Qiang et al......

>>Jonathan wrote:
>> To which I counter-reply:
>> You are right (to some degree), people like Martin and Feduccia
>> do actually encourage more thorough analysis of data and do deserve
>> some credit as scientists (although I do have doubts about
>> them knowing more comparative anatomy than just about
>> all the people on this list).  It is a bit frustrating
>> however, because unfortunately the media likes controversy
>> and the only reason the general public is not more aware of
>> the "extreme probability" that birds ARE dinosaurs is because these
>> two gentlemen refuse to accept it.  Their hypotheses are mainly
>> based on negative evidence and they don't use comparative methods,
>> is that really such good science? Until they come up with some "actual
>> data" to support their conclusions, I will find it difficult to respect
>> their opinions on bird evolution on the same level as others.  The digit
>> homology thing is inconclusive.

Josh wrote:

> WE have only recently begun to get "real" data to SUPPORT the
>bird-dinosaur hypothesis, as well.  We need to remember that many of our
>interpretations of many avian anatomical characters are just
>that--interpretations-- based on our ASSUMPTIONS that we understand which
>characters are primitive and which characters are derived and which bumps
>on skulls are, in fact, significant. We think we know what is going on,
>but then they thought they knew what was going on when they described
>_Trachadon_, too.

No, actually I believe we have had "real" data for quite some time,
at least 20 years or so.
On the other hand, as I plainly stated, Feduccia and Martin have
exactly, NONE, zilch, zero.  You are correct about one thing though,
as humans we do have to make assumptions but in general, common
sense usually wins out (of course there are always exceptions).