Re: Crowley posts again

Paul Crowley (
Tue, 21 Nov 95 17:38:55 GMT

In article <48pnr8$> "Phil Nicholls" writes:

> >> >>> > > - when hands are need to carry food.
> >> >>> > > - to obtain a better view of the surrounding area.
> >> >>> > > - jumping across small brooks
> >> >>> > > - treat displays.
> >> >>> > > - when watching an unusual part of the surroundings
> >> >>> > > - when locating another member of the group
> >> >>> > > - greeting and courtship displays.

All this stuff about who said what and when must be very tedious
to non-participants. But actually it's a nice case-study of state
of the science.

a) Phil attacks Elaine - outlining a fairly standard "savannah" theory
b) Jim quotes Phil
c) Paul quotes Jim quoting Phil
d) Alex flames Paul - for demonstrating ignorance
e) Paul refers Alex to Jim's original
f) Alex, Jim and Phil flame Paul for ignorance (again) and for
quoting out of context
g) Phil posts his original original - showing that there was no
quoting out of context, and the "ignorance" was all in the
original original.

The source of the whole problem is that *part* of Phil's thesis
is true (that bipedalism could develop from a higher frequency of
chimp-like bipedal behaviour). But it cannot be the whole truth.
He does not provide any sensible explanation of how ten percent
bipedalism becomes 100% bipedalism. Nor is there one in all PA

Increased frequency of "jumping over small brooks" and the like
*is* the right explanation. But it has to take place in an
environment where (a) the territory is criss-crossed by innumerable
"small brooks" (*or* the like) and (b) there are NO trees - so the
protohominids must have had another safe refuge at night.

All you have to do is to identify the niche satisfying these
conditions (and providing a source of food) and you're home and