Re: A smug, insulting and offensive reply

Mike Muller (
Sun, 14 Jul 1996 14:55:32 -0400

> Are you proposing that anthropology,
> paleoanthropology is obsolete and that geochemistry and biochemistry
> are "cutting edge fields" that must find the answers for the fumbling
> field researchers in paleoanthropology?

I never characterised field researchers as "fumbling" those are your words I never
directed any comments to field workers. I have been in the field. What I am suggesting
is that paleoanthropology will lag behind if it is not willing to subject it fossils and
theories to inspection and testing by other means.

> It is hard for me to
> believe that you conduct scientific research.

I'll send you reprints when I get them.

> When I said that paleoanthropologists "did this" I can see how you
> might have thought that I meant the Devonian work. I meant the
> isotopic analysis. Sorry that was unclear. I should have said
> forensic anthropologists anyway. Does that make you feel better?

Only if you do.

> Who have you contacted that wouldn't undertake this
> research? Did you talk to them the way you write things to this
> newsgroup?

I will not drop names on the internet as regards to research ideas. My contacts are

I corresponded with them as respected researchers not as amorphous opinions on the
internet. I cannot determine a persons credentials from an e-mail address. For example
yours. Forensics is challenging and smelly from what some of the forensic students here
say. Have fun!

> You are insulting and offensive.

Don't forget smug.

> Your posts are full of self-important rantings.

A quaility I find throughout the scientific communtiy...and a quality I find
necessary...if the researcher doesn't think his work is important them no one else will
either. It also helps the negative criticisms of others to roll-off my back.

>You have dismissed credible professional
> fieldworkers as obsolete morons who don't have enough sense to know
> that what you are doing is far superior to anything the field of
> paleoanthropology has seen.

Not at all... I never called anyone a moron....once again those are your words. Nor did
I dismiss their clarify what I was saying was that morphology is limited in
what it can tell us.
And I never said I was superior...but it sounds good to me. Only you seem to be so
greatly distraught. My research is only minimal compared to what is going on elswhere.
But none-the-less it is mine and important to me.

>If you expect cooperation from field researchers you will have to work on your communication skills with humans.

Thank you for the unsolicited but sound I communicating better now?

> I am a field researcher. Your work can't be done without the work of
> people like me. If you haven't spent any time in the field, perhaps
> it would be to your benefit to do so.

I spent the '96 field season here in Florida at Thomas Farm collecting Parahippus and
Archaeohippus remains. It was quite enjoyable and I will be there in the field next
season also. After that who knows.

My sincerest apologies for the upset that my opinions seem to have created in your life.
Your post was unclear as to your background..too simplistic and general. I misread it
for being that of a general undergraduate (which in iself is prejudicial). And it is
hard to discern the tenor of a comment from typed words..people read into them what they
choose. I will choose my words more carefully in the future. But I cannot guarantee
that my opinions will not be offensive to someone out there...and wouldn't want to.