Geological calibration of molecular clocks
Thomas G. Lammers
lammers at UWOSH.EDU
Mon Jul 11 08:28:30 CDT 2005
At 08:07 AM 7/11/2005, John Grehan wrote:
>I have not read the entire article although I have seen the abstract.
>Their concluding statement as cited by Robert is quite telling. If there
>is incongruence between two historical narratives (in this case the
>geological story and the molecular clock story) and the authors cannot
>make up their mind between them what value is the study?
"Value"? Well, as a test of a hypothesis? The geological story is a
hypothesis, and we test it with the molecular clock story. If we get
congruence, we can accept the hypothesis; if we don't, we get more
hypotheses and test them. I *thought* that was how science works ...
I must say, that last sentence of yours sounds as though it was written by
a scientific creationist, the sort who expects every study to "prove"
things conclusively and without doubt, so they can "believe" it or not
"believe" it. Maybe I'm wrong, but I just don't think that's how science
Thomas G. Lammers, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Curator of the Herbarium (OSH)
Department of Biology and Microbiology
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54901-8640 USA
e-mail: lammers at uwosh.edu
Plant systematics; classification, nomenclature, evolution, and
biogeography of the Campanulaceae s. lat.
"Today's mighty oak is yesterday's nut that stood his ground."
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