excuses from Hubey

Alex Duncan (aduncan@mail.utexas.edu)
7 Oct 1995 20:42:45 GMT

In article <hubey.813025885@pegasus.montclair.edu> H. M. Hubey,
hubey@pegasus.montclair.edu writes:
>>Since complex math seems to be able to solve all of our problems, perhaps
>>you should go ahead and apply some of it to the problem of human origins.
>Who say's I'm not working on it? PS. It's not "complex math".
Well then, it shouldn't take you long, should it?
>>Dr. Holloway's suggestion should be taken very seriously. You clearly
>>have a wide and deep ignorance that needs fixing before you presume to
>>lecture anthropologists about the shortcomings of our field. I continue
>I'm an admitted amateur but one thing for sure, I'd never make
>such cocksure statements as those made by some when the evidence
>for it is so little. It's like trying to measure the thickness
>of a human hair with a ruler.

Please demonstrate for us that you are aware of what the evidence is. So
far I've seen no indication that you've ever read anything but E. Morgan
and a math text or two. And frankly, I doubt Ms. Morgan is glad to have
your support, as you take her already shaky hypotheses and render them
absolutely idiotic, in large part due to your gargantuan ignorance.

>>Evolution and American Journal of Physical Anthropology. I strongly
>>concur. I also would recommend Klein's "The Human Career" as a good
>Yeah.. I've had people recommend that I read blah blah blah before.
>Usually they're the ones who need to read..

Based on this statement, I assume you believe that arguing from TOTAL
ignorance is the best position? (See, e.g., statements about backwards
knees in other tetrapods. One would think that in addition to not
reading anything, you had never actually bothered to observe anything
about the real world around you.)

>I won't go any further. I'm in the middle of something else and
>can't afford to take much time out for [...]

What a convenient excuse.

>>all sciences) has dramatic shortcomings. However, you don't seem to know
>>what they are, and you won't until you educate yourself a little bit.
>Unfortunately, it seems to be the reverse. I know exactly what the
>shortcomings are. It's the verbiage school that needs to read.
>It can't hurt them except to take away some of their glibness.
>One thing for sure, they'll learn to appreciate the complexity
>and the magnitude of the task that lies before them.

Other than your general statement that anthropologists need to use more
math, I have seen no indication that you know what the shortcomings in
the field are. Would you please enlighten us?

Alex Duncan
Dept. of Anthropology
University of Texas at Austin
Austin, TX 78712-1086