Re: AAT Theory

Gerrit Hanenburg (
Wed, 4 Oct 1995 11:57:59 GMT (H. M. Hubey) wrote:

>>You should know that in empirical science nothing is ever proved.

>I already know it. I was wondering why you bring up "testable
>theories" and things for AAT when you are now admitting that
>such things can't exist fro empirical sciences.

I don't admit that there are no testable theories in empirical science.
When I said that nothing in empirical science is ever proved I simply meant
that it cannot match the rigour of proof in mathematics/logic.
Evidence in empirical science will allways have an aspect of uncertainty
but that doesn't mean these sciences are inferior are deficient.
You give me the impression that you think paleoanthropology *is* inferiour
and that in order to be a genuine science it should match mathematics in
its rigour.
One of your main concerns seems to be a lack of
quantifcation.Quantification is important,but if you're dealing with
hisrorical processes/events,it isn't allways possible to obtain that

>>proposition follows from the axioms/definitions).In empirical science there
>>is (if we are lucky) evidence,either falsifying are corroborating.
>>Evidence in this sense are observable facts/events which confirm/disconfirm
>>predictions made by a theory.

>Do you still want proof of AAT?

I would like to know how it can be tested.What kind of an observation would
falsify the AAT?

>The crux of the matter these days hangs on falsifiability.


>IF what is being said is falsifiable then at least we have a chance to
>prove that it's wrong. Otherwise it just stands.

Well,is the AAT falsifiable?Is the "evidence" in favor of the AAT
corroborating evidence or just the kind of confirmation which in the sense
of Popper is so easily obtained?

>So far it seems that neither standard theory nor AAT has been
>falsified. Is it because neither is falsifiable or is it because
>we haven't been able to find what would falsify such a reasonably
>loose bunch of statements. Let's face it; it's verbal.

It's only verbal to somebody who's not familiar to the field,who gets most
of the info on human/primate evolution from this newsgroup (or popular TV
programmes) and who doesn't take the effort to do some study of the
literature on the subject.