Wife of Tesla crash victim speaks out: ‘I just want this tragedy not to happen again to another family’

first_imgiStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The family of the victim in a deadly Tesla crash in Northern California is speaking out about the crash for the first time as they plan to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the luxury car company.Walter Huang died on March 23 after his Tesla Model X, which was on autopilot, slammed into a barrier on Highway 101 in Mountainview, California. When the 38-year-old Apple engineer’s wife, Sevonne Huang, saw the crash on the news, she told ABC affiliate KGO in her first interview since the fatal accident that she knew right away it was her husband.Sevonne said she not only recognized his car but knew right away that her husband was involved when she saw where the crash happened. Walter had complained about the car moving towards that same barrier while on autopilot before the crash, she said.Will Huang, Walter’s brother, told KGO that Walter brought the car to the dealership to address the issue, but they could not duplicate it at the time.After the crash, Tesla said in a statement on March 30 that Walter’s Model X gave him several visual warnings and one audible hands-on warning earlier in the drive, and his hands were not detected on the wheel for 6 seconds before the crash.However, the family disputes the claim that Walter’s hands were not on the wheel.“He’s not the type who would not have his hands on the steering wheel, he’s always been [a] really careful driver,” Will said.In response to the Huang family’s interview with KGO, Tesla made a statement Wednesday apologizing for the family’s loss.“According to the family, Mr. Huang was well aware that autopilot was not perfect and, specifically, he told them it was not reliable in that exact location, yet he nonetheless engaged autopilot at that location,” according to Telsa’s statement. “The crash happened on a clear day with several hundred feet of visibility ahead, which means that the only way for this accident to have occurred is if Mr. Huang was not paying attention to the road, despite the car providing multiple warnings to do so.”There were more than 200 successful autopilot trips per day on that exact stretch of road where Walter’s car crash occurred, according to an earlier statement from Telsa on March 27.Walter’s accident was so severe because a highway safety barrier — designed to reduce the impact of a concrete barrier — was not repaired after a previous accident, according to Tesla.“Tesla autopilot does not prevent all accidents — such a standard would be impossible — but it makes them much less likely to occur,” Telsa stated.“Tesla’s autopilot feature is defective and likely caused Huang’s death, despite Tesla’s apparent attempt to blame the victim of this terrible tragedy,” Minami Tamaki LLP, the law firm the Huang family has hired to sue Tesla, said in a press release.“[The car] took [Walter] out of the lane that he was driving in, then it failed to break, then it drove him into this fixed concrete barrier,” Mark Fong, the family’s lawyer, told KGO. “We believe this would’ve never happened had this autopilot never been turned on.”He went on to add that the car’s “sensors misread the painted lane lines on the road and its braking system failed to detect a stationary object ahead.”Sevonne wants to prevent an accident like this from happening to others.“I just want this tragedy not to happen again to another family,” she said. “I’ve not just lost my husband, I lost my best friend.”Walter leaves behind his wife and two children, who are 6 years old and 3 years old.“I just try not to cry in front of my children because they feel afraid,” Sevonne said.The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is investigating the crash.The Huang family does not expect to file a complaint, according to Fong, until the NTSB completes their investigation.Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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Istrian winemakers again this year at one of the most exclusive wine fairs in Europe

first_imgFrom 10 to 12 November 2018, Istrian winemakers will once again present their offer at one of the most exclusive wine fairs in Europe – Merano Wine FestivalThis is the result of close cooperation between the Tourist Board of the Istrian County and the Gourmet’s International agency from Merano, ie its owner Helmuth Köcher, and Istrian winemakers. It will be the 27th edition of the Festival, which will be attended by over 500 wine houses, among the best in Italy and the world, 200 taste artists, 15 famous chefs, that is, it is about presenting the best that the country has to offer.The positioning of Istrian quality wines has been constant for many years  qualitative increase. This is best evidenced by the data on eminent world awards won by Istrian wines, especially extra virgin olive oils, as well as the number of individual visitors whose primary interest is Istrian gastronomy, and who visit the best addresses in Istria.In addition, when we talk about the success of the Istrian gourmet scene, the unavoidable topic is certainly the numerous recognitions and awards that the Istrian destination wins every year either as the best region of extra virgin olive oil or, when it comes to wine, as the top 10 best wine destinations in the world. “The greatest credit for our status goes to our esteemed winemakers who have high quality products, and the inevitable contribution is given by large reports that are often published in specialized international magazines and magazines after numerous journalists, experts, influencers and opinion makers visit the region with the support of the Istrian Tourist Board. counties. ” stand out from the Tourist Board of Istria.The Merano Wine Festival is – among the first in Europe – an event that, since its inception in 1992, has promoted and focused exclusively on selected product quality. It is not only an event held in an elegant and elite environment, but it has become an expert forum designed to enable the exchange of ideas and experiences among producers, opinion leaders, influencers, experts and consumers. Over the years, it has become a reference point for enogastronomic excellence, so the visibility and worldwide reputation of the Festival are unique.Also, the Merano Wine Festival It is especially important because it does not gather a mass audience that wants to spend the day tasting wines out of curiosity or just enough to spend it in a slightly different way, but because it is a well-organized event with a lot of professional buyers, importers, hoteliers and caterers. . ” This is an extremely important market for visitors who come from the German-speaking area and part of the Italian area, and who are, as is well known, the best guests-consumers in Istria. That is why the united and well-organized performance of gourmet offer holders, professional experts, was a logical choice. Being at such an important event is of special importance for Istria, so these are the reasons why the Istria County Tourist Board decided to appear at such an international showcase. investing in the image and gaining even greater visibility of a recognized wine and gourmet destination, and thus strengthening the Istrian brand. ” conclude from the Tourist Board of Istria.last_img read more

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Twisters Grounded By Jets In Baseball

first_imgThe Hauser Jets won 13-3 over The Oldenburg Academy Twisters in Varsity Baseball action.OA 000 210 3 3 5Ha 037 201 13 5 2OA Hitting:  Nick Bischoff 0-2, bb; Corey Schuman 0-3, 2 runs, reached on E; Josh Kinker 1-1, run, double 2 bb; Drew Kloepfer 1-3; Matty Hurm 0-1, 2 bb; Tyler Hesselbrock 1-3, double, 2 rbi.OA Pitching:  Corey Schuman 2.2 IP, 10 runs, 3 earned, 2 K, 6 bb; Nick Bischoff 1 IP, 2 earned runs, 1 hit, 1 k, 2 bb; Drew Kloepfer 1.1 IP, 1 earned run, 1 hit 1 bb.Varsity record: 7-4Next game: (5-2) vs. WaldronSubmitted by OA Coach Doug Behlmer.last_img read more

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New-look Dodgers get 12 hits in win over Pittsburgh Pirates

first_imgFor now, the offensive plague that caused the Dodgers to lose five of eight games around the All-Star break appears to be in remission. For the second straight day, the Dodgers never trailed against former teammate Edinson Volquez (8-7) and three relievers. This time, they did it without two of their star players.“It shows that we’re not based around Puig or around Hanley,” Mattingly said of the win. “We’re based around team. … We’re not a one-man show.”Another solid outing from starter Hyun-Jin Ryu (11-5) allowed the five runs to hold up. Ryu scattered five hits and two runs over seven innings. He walked one and struck out five. “When the offense helps me like that,” Ryu said through an interpreter, “I feel much more comfortable.” PITTSBURGH >> The Dodgers did not field their usual lineup Monday, and not by choice.Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig were still having trouble gripping a bat without pain in their sore left hands. Neither was able to take batting practice. When Don Mattingly made out his lineup card, he was still waiting for a second X-ray to confirm that Puig and Ramirez didn’t break any bones over the weekend.So, Matt Kemp was penciled into right field for the first time since October 2009. Justin Turner started at shortstop for the first time since May 1. The Dodgers’ 80th different batting order of the season cranked out 12 hits and beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-2 at PNC Park. It’s not just Ryu. The Dodgers would like to continue the trend when Josh Beckett returns from the disabled list to start today.“In a perfect world, I want my pitchers to think in their head it’s a 0-0 game,” Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis said. “In reality, there is a difference (in pitching with a lead). A few guys really excel in it.”Brian Wilson and J.P. Howell combined on a scoreless eighth inning. Kenley Jansen pitched a scoreless ninth inning, his second save in as many days.Dee Gordon, Juan Uribe and Turner went 2 for 5. Adrian Gonzalez went 3 for 3 with a pair of doubles, and Kemp also hit a double. The Dodgers had at least one runner on base in every inning but the ninth.Kemp’s move to right field is certainly temporary. The Dodgers aren’t expecting Puig will be out much longer.But Kemp acquitted himself well to his new (old) position. He had no trouble running down the three fly balls hit his way. In the fourth inning, Kemp charged a ground ball and threw a strike to home plate in the sixth inning — too late to nail Neil Walker, but that wasn’t Kemp’s fault.Andre Ethier played center field and Carl Crawford was in left field for the first game of the three-game series.“The best situation is if guys are pretty steady in one spot,” Mattingly said. “I look at Matt as a great athlete, capable of playing in multiple spots. It takes a little work sometimes. I think when you haven’t had the time to really work and it’s something a little bit new, he hasn’t been out there in a while, we have to live with the results that we get. As long as we get everybody’s best effort, that’s all we ask for.”The effort wasn’t necessarily the problem when the Dodgers began their current road trip with back-to-back losses in St. Louis. But something clicked Sunday, when they collected 11 hits — their most in two weeks — in a 4-3 win.The win column is starting to mean a bit more these days.The Dodgers remained in a virtual tie for first place in the National League West with the San Francisco Giants, who beat the Philadelphia Phillies 7-4.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

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Army extends troops’ tours

first_imgWASHINGTON – Stretched thin by four years of war, the Army is adding three months to the standard yearlong tour for all active-duty soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, an extraordinary step aimed at maintaining the troop buildup in Baghdad. The change, announced Wednesday by Defense Secretary Robert Gates, is the latest blow to an all-volunteer Army that has been given ever-shorter periods of rest and retraining at home between overseas deployments. Rather than continue to shrink the at-home intervals to a point that might compromise soldiers’ preparedness for combat, Gates chose to lengthen combat tours to buy time for units newly returned from battle. The longer tours will affect about 100,000 soldiers currently in Iraq and Afghanistan, plus untold thousands more who deploy later. It does not affect the Marine Corps or the National Guard or Reserve. “Our forces are stretched, there’s no question about that,” Gates said. “Extending the tours of all active-duty Army personnel is an unacceptable price for our troops and their families to pay,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. Rep. Ike Skelton, D-Mo., chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said the longer tours will have a “chilling effect” on recruiting and the Army’s ability to keep soldiers from quitting the service. “We also must not underestimate the enormous negative impact this will have on Army families,” Skelton said. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who supports the troop buildup, said of the affected soldiers, “They’ll be disappointed, but they’ll do it.” Indeed, at Fort Bliss, Texas, home of the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, some Army families took the news in stride. Carol Frennier, whose husband, Command Sgt. Maj. Steve Frennier, is in Iraq, said she had prepared herself and her family for a longer deployment. “They kind of told us to expect 12 months to 18 months,” she said. “We were already prepared to have them extended.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! The extended tours are a price the Army must pay to sustain the troop buildup that President Bush ordered in January as part of his rejiggered strategy for stabilizing Baghdad and averting a U.S. defeat. Troop levels are being boosted from 15 brigades to 20 brigades, and in order to keep that up beyond summer the Army faced harsh choices: Either send units to Iraq with less than 12 months at home, or extend tours. The decision also underscores the political cost the administration has had to pay in order to keep alive its hope that higher troop levels in Iraq, combined with a push for Iraqi political reconciliation, will finally produce the stability in Baghdad that experts say is needed before U.S. troops can begin going home. In recent days, the Pentagon has notified National Guard brigades from four states that they are in line to deploy to Iraq for a second time, eliciting complaints from governors. Also, the Pentagon poured more than $1 billion into bonuses last year to keep soldiers and Marines in the military in the face of an unpopular war. At a Pentagon news conference, Gates said that it was too early to estimate how long the troop buildup would last but that his new policy would give the Pentagon the capability to maintain the higher force levels until next April. Democrats in Congress, and some Republicans, oppose the buildup and are trying to force Bush to change course. In January, the administration indicated the buildup might begin to be reversed by late summer or fall. Reaction on Capitol Hill to Gates’ announcement was harsh. last_img read more

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Donegal welding company to showcase its ‘Compact Gangway System’ to US markets

first_imgA Killybegs-based engineering and manufacturing company is travelling with six other businesses from the North West region to the US this month as part of a joint trade mission between the Councils in Donegal and Derry City and Strabane.MMG Welding are experts in coded welding and fabrication providing services to those working in the Marine, Off Shore Energy and Renewable industries.The company are also the manufacturers of their patented Compact Gangway Systems which features a unique folding mechanism designed for safe vessel access and the provision for storage solutions for vessels with limited space. The Trade and Investment mission will run from 11-15 November and be led by Donegal County Council and Derry City and Strabane District Councils and will include third level and further education providers and development organisations including the Ulster University, Letterkenny Institute of Technology, the North West Regional College, Donegal ETB and Udaras na Gaeltachta.Speaking ahead of the trade visit the company director Martin McGuinness said it’s a fantastic opportunity for him to promote their patented gangway systems solution to a new market and to build on the company’s strong reputation on delivering the high-quality work.“We are a unique business and believe this trade mission will really allow us to showcase our products to those interested in finding unique safety solutions for vessels.“Our patented Compact Gangway Systems launched in 2017 is fast becoming an essential part of the safety equipment on vessels.  What is unique about this product is that it adjusts automatically with tide/pier levels– features drainage perforated tread plate steps for maximum safety, and collapsible handrails making it an ideal safe solution for vessels with limited storage space. “Gangways can be custom-built, with a range of accessories available, they are light in weight without compromising on strength hence they are easily put in place with assembly taking only five minutes.“The range includes a new innovative design the Vessel to Vessel Gangway (V.T.V.) which is the first of its kind in the market enabling personnel to safely cross over from one vessel to another. This particular product won a European Commercial Marine award at an Innovation Showcase held at Seawork Southampton, Europe’s leading commercial marine and workboat exhibition.”MMG currently employs 12 people at its plant in Killybegs and has enjoyed success since it was established in 2005. Not only has it developed a strong sectoral reputation, the company has also secured significant contracts with Shell Oil, Svitzer and Furgo Offshore.Martin is confident the trade mission will assist in making new business contacts and help develop the company to the next stage.“We are really positive about the way our company is growing and hope that this visit can really assist us in bringing our products to new markets. We are looking forward to gaining first-hand valuable knowledge on the American market and to learn specific client requirements and needs, which hopefully may lead to successful contracts in the future.” The trade mission is part of the region’s strategy to promote inward investment and provide local businesses access to potential export opportunity as well as build on the strong political, economic and cultural linkages already established in Boston and Philadelphia with the North West City region and will be an opportunity to further reach out to the Irish diaspora.Eibhlin McGuinness, MMG Welding who will travel to the US this month as part of a high-level trade and investment delegation led by Donegal County Council and Derry City and Strabane District Council.The US trade mission takes place from 11-15 November and is funded by The Executive Office and the Irish Government.During the visit, the participating businesses will meet with key contacts, explore and understand opportunities in the US market, develop in-market networks and develop relationships with potential customers. The civic delegation led by the two Mayors, will meet with Congressman Brendan Boyle, engage with Philadelphia Council and attend a Philadelphia Diaspora event.While in Boston they will visit the Irish Immigration Centre, meet State representatives at the State House and attend the official launch of the Harvard GSD Visit Atlas for a City Region project. In addition to attending bespoke business to business meetings and engaging with potential investors and business connections, the delegation will attend a reception hosted by the Irish Consulate in Boston and be guests at the Golden Bridges Conference.Donegal welding company to showcase its ‘Compact Gangway System’ to US markets was last modified: November 4th, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Grand Canyon: How Do You Get a River Over a Mountain?

first_imgOne would think that the Grand Canyon, one of earth’s most prominent geological features, studied by geologists for 140 years, would be well understood.  Wrong.  “The Colorado River’s integration off the Colorado Plateau remains a classic mystery in geology, despite its pivotal role in the cutting of Grand Canyon and the region’s landscape evolution.”  That’s how Joel Pederson (Utah State) began the cover article in GSA Today this month,1 a bimonthly journal of the Geological Society of America.  The mystery he investigated is how the Colorado River ran over a mountain: the Kaibab uplift.    The Kaibab uplift is the broad southern end of the Colorado Plateau through which the Grand Canyon has been carved.  Rivers do not normally flow uphill.  The upper Colorado River, roaring from Rocky Mountain snow melt, faces this obstacle; yet here the Grand Canyon cuts right into the plateau at a steep monocline that extends north-south through Utah, and manages to run westward through the high province till emerging from the Grand Wash Cliffs at the west edge of the plateau.  There, at modern Lake Mead, the river suddenly enters the Basin and Range province of Nevada.  It flows onward to the southwest, emerging at the Gulf of California (a nice tour to take in Google Earth).    Of the many theories to explain this phenomenon since John Wesley Powell ran the river for the first time in the 1870s, three have survived.  (Powell’s own idea that the river cut downward as the plateau raised upward did not last long, because of dating discrepancies: the plateau was thought to rise much earlier than the river.)  If there had been an antecedent river, where is the huge delta that should have formed at its terminus?  His own study showed that the Muddy Creek Formation (Google Earth, 36°42’45” N, 114°19’40” W) looks more like drainage from the ancestral Virgin River, not the Colorado.  If the early river had exited through the Little Colorado, why is there no evidence at that location?  The least-likely explanation had been the “precocious gully” theory of Charlie Hunt.  Beginning in 1956, Hunt imagined a southwestern river cutting headward into the plateau and joining up with the ancestral Colorado river.  “Hunt’s hypothesis (b), that the river arrived in the central-western Grand Canyon area and simply infiltrated and terminated, never gained traction—and was not well loved even by Hunt himself,” Pederson said.    Surprisingly, that is exactly the theory Pederson tries to resurrect in this paper.  It’s not so much that it is a good hypothesis; it is just the best of the worst.  His last sentence makes that clear: “For now, Hunt’s dissipation and infiltration hypothesis is the last one left standing against the geologic evidence in the region.”  Pederson knows the problems with Hunt’s theory: “How could the head of a single drainage along a desert escarpment have the necessary stream power or mass-movement activity to erode headward and shift its divide hundreds of kilometers, when none of its neighbors could lengthen measurably at all?”  He tried to dress it up by suggesting that karst topography in the plateau (underground rivers and springs) made it easier for the precocious gully to work its way uphill, but his conclusion did not make it sound like he felt confident about it.    Much of Pederson’s predicament seems to come from two factors: (1) dates for formations based on the standard geological column, and (2) processes assumed to be slow and gradual.  He did not reference Karlstrom’s paper in the November issue that came to a surprising conclusion (11/30/2007): the Grand Canyon is much younger than previously thought.  He also completely ignored the work of creationist geologists who have proposed catastrophic formation models for the canyon.Update 03/07/2008: No sooner had this article gone to press when Science published a paper claiming the Grand Canyon is old again.2  Radiometric dates of cave formations in the Redwall limestone led a team to propose a new date of 16-20 million years, rather than 5-6 million as lately believed.  They also held to the precocious gully theory, “a fully integrated Colorado River that accelerated the headward erosion of the eastern Grand Canyon.”  They admitted, though, that “our interpretation assumes no structural or hydrologic complexities” – just a framework for dating the canyon.    Tim Atkinson and Mike Leeder, in the same issue of Science,3 triumphantly announced that since Hutton’s first conception of “the immensity of geologic time” in 1788, “we now understand Earth’s sedimentary history in remarkable detail.”  They claim this new paper demonstrates the older age firmly for the first time.  It required, however, juggling incision rates with plateau erosion rates and tectonic uplift rates.  The authors noted a number of inconsistencies in their data.  They appealed to ad-hoc processes to explain them and hoped for answers in the future: e.g., “Structure, hydrology, or headward erosion history … might resolve these differences when additional data are available.”  Their method only offered “potential for a reconstruction of the canyon’s history” with all its complexities.  It seems presumptuous, therefore, for Atkinson and Leeder to say older age has been firmly demonstrated.    Whether incision rates can be extrapolated backward in time depends on one’s assumptions  At Mt. St. Helens, for instance, a remnant stream flows through the bottom of a canyon system resembling Grand Canyon on a 1/40 scale.  A casual observer in 2008 might think the stream carved the canyon.  We know in this case, however, that the stream neither cut the canyon nor deposited the sediments.  Observers in 1980-81 watched the layers deposited catastrophically during three explosive episodes.  Later, the entire canyon system was carved in one day through the layers when a mudflow spilled out of the crater.1.  Joel L. Pederson, “The mystery of the pre-Grand Canyon Colorado River—Results from the Muddy Creek Formation,” GSA Today Vol 18, Issue 3 (March 2008), pp. 4-10.2.  Polyak, Hill and Asmerom, “Age and Evolution of the Grand Canyon Revealed by U-Pb Dating of Water Table-Type Speleothems,” Science, 7 March 2008: Vol. 319. no. 5868, pp. 1377-1380, DOI: 10.1126/science.1151248.3.  Tim Atkinson and Mike Leeder, “Canyon Cutting on a Grand Time Scale,” Science, 7 March 2008: Vol. 319. no. 5868, pp. 1343-1344, DOI: 10.1126/science.1155286.The lesson of J Harlen Bretz has not been learned by the secular anti-creationist, uniformitarian geological community represented by the GSA.  Bretz was ridiculed and ignored for nearly 50 years when he proposed a catastrophic origin for the Channeled Scablands of east Washington (see quote, top right of this page).  Fortunately for him, he was eventually vindicated.    The secular geologists are trapped in their old-age, uniformitarian box and cannot think outside it.  What if that is where the solutions are?  Creationist geologists and scientists like Walt Brown and Steve Austin have done extensive work, both hands-on field work and mathematical modeling, showing how the Grand Canyon can be explained by a catastrophic dam-breach event from impounded lakes northeast of the canyon that remained after the Flood.  These models explain why the river cut through the Colorado Plateau but left no delta in Nevada (most of the erosional load went all the way to California and the ocean).  They explain many details of the canyon’s structure, such as the vast sheet erosion of sediments above the canyon with its remnants at Cedar Mountain and Red Butte (for an excellent short article on this topic, see Bill Hoesch’s March entry in ICR’s ’s Acts and Facts newsletter).  Brown first suggested the dam breach theory and has traveled throughout Arizona and Utah, finding firsthand evidence for a vast upstream lake system that could have cut the entire canyon (just like the Scablands flood), in a matter of days.  Austin found a 1/40th scale model canyon system that formed at Mt. St. Helens when a mudflow breached a dam.  There is both a large-scale, real-time exemplar for the catastrophist model and a good deal of on-site fieldwork throughout the Colorado Plateau to support it.  (Incidentally, Austin, PhD in geology from Penn State, discusses the “precocious gully” theory and the other gradualist theories in his richly-informed book, Grand Canyon: Monument to Catastrophe.)    The secular geologists completely ignore all this.  It’s not that Pederson and the GSA crowd are smarter or more knowledgeable about geology and science in general than the creationists.  They are a clique.  When the science of geology was young, the majority of influential persons, who were theologically liberal and philosophically progressivist in outlook, made a decision: they would not consider the Bible as a historical source.  They would go the route of Comte du Buffon and James Hutton and would trust their own opinions within a paradigm of vast ages of time.  This decision was cemented in the 1830s.  Prior to any examination of evidence, and in spite of evidence for youth and catastrophism, this was the paradigm into which all evidence would be molded.  The trend was strongly denounced by a vocal minority of “scriptural geologists” some of whom were highly learned and knowledgeable (documented in Terry Mortenson’s book, The Great Turning Point), but the progressivists won the day.  Their views fed perfectly into Charles Darwin’s gradualist, progressivist views.    The secular geological crowd has clung to their paradigm with a vengeance ever since.  And we mean vengeance.  J Harlen Bretz got a taste of it, but he didn’t propose a young earth or suggest that the Bible might contain some trustworthy historical records that could inform geology.  Try that point of view and you will not believe the denunciations and ostracism you will get – even though the father of geology, Nicolas Steno, was a creationist.    So we are left with a steep divide in geology – a grand canyon – between two paradigms.  The majority secularists, possessing most of the prestige and money, are scratching their heads over the most prominent geological feature on earth with only a best-of-the-worst explanation for it (see 09/16/2005, for instance).  On the other hand, the creationist geologists feel very confident they have a reasonable catastrophic model for the Grand Canyon that fits the evidence from all angles.  The secular crowd completely ignores them.  If Pederson had referenced Steve Austin’s Grand Canyon: Monument to Catastrophe or Walt Brown’s In the Beginning, or even mentioned these with intent to refute them, it would have been a one-way ticket to GSA Purgatory.  Before the evidence and arguments would have even been considered on their merits, Pederson would have been condemned, ostracized, marginalized and disfellowshiped for life for even bringing heretics into the discussion.  One could imagine the same reaction occurring even if Pederson had “independently” proposed a Bretz-like dam-breach theory, without any theological baggage at all.  This would certainly be possible.  The dam-breach theory stands entirely on well-known physical processes.  It contains no necessary links to the Biblical Flood (other than that the Flood is the most reasonable explanation for the vast inland lakes and for the strata themselves).  No matter.  Sounding too much like a creationist is reason enough for condemnation.  The creation geologists, by contrast, freely examine and reference the GSA literature in addition to their own field work and have no hesitation going to GSA meetings (when they can) and discussing their views.    If you think modern geology is done by an unbiased, neutral, open-minded community that will cheerfully follow the evidence wherever it leads, get over it.  If you think geological theories distil the best thinking from all quarters, get a life.  (Check out this list of examples of suppression of new ideas and innovation by scientists and self-proclaimed experts.)  Many individual geologists are honest people doing the best work they can within their paradigm.  By honest, we mean that they are not intentionally lying, but they are so brainwashed to think only in terms of the Standard Geological Column and all of its reified evolution-based dating schemes that alternative points of view never enter their thinking.  With few exceptions, they have been trained like Pavlov’s dogs to bark “religious fundamentalist alert!” when a creationist appears on the scene.  Some GSA types are brave enough to be mavericks, within limits; but this is like moving away from the crowd inside a corner of the box – never thinking outside of it.    How about an outside-the-box look at the evidence with your own eyes?  Creation Safaris leads 3-day rafting trips down the Grand Canyon in conjunction with Canyon Ministries.  On these fun and educational adventures, you can witness huge features that make perfect sense in terms of a global flood and catastrophic formation of the canyon – features that present major problems for slow, gradualistic theories.  This year’s trip is sold out, unfortunately, but you can send a message to the Feedback line to tell us you are interested in a future opportunity.(Visited 176 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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News About Bird Evolution

first_img(Visited 56 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 We’ve just heard about some amazing birds.  Now, what to secular scientists say about how they evolved?Secular scientists are chained to the idea that birds evolved from dinosaurs.  Many say that birds are dinosaurs.  Under that conviction, they cannot, and will not, consider any alternative, no matter how surprising the observation.  Here are some examples of paradigm-driven explanation.Survival of the shrinkest A press release from Oxford announces confidently, “Shrinking helped dinosaurs and birds to keep evolving.”  We are told:A study that has ‘weighed’ hundreds of dinosaurs suggests that shrinking their bodies may have helped the group that became birds to continue exploiting new ecological niches throughout their evolution, and become hugely successful today.The question is: did the birds decide to shrink, or did nature do it to them?  If the latter (as it must be in neo-Darwinism), why didn’t the same rule apply to mammals?  Evolutionists believe the first mammals were small, shrew-like creatures, long before they evolved into giraffes and elephants.  Weren’t they under the same selective pressure to succeed at the same time, and in the same circumstances, in which birds were shrinking?The Oxford experts tell us that the birds didn’t decide to shrink.  It was their lineage that decided that for them:The evolutionary line leading to birds kept experimenting with different, often radically smaller, body sizes – enabling new body ‘designs’ and adaptations to arise more rapidly than among larger dinosaurs. Other dinosaur groups failed to do this, got locked in to narrow ecological niches, and ultimately went extinct.This is very odd reasoning; inconsistent, too.  First, it personifies an “evolutionary line,” turning it into an experimenter.  But then it attributes the success of birds to downsizing.  Surely the successful diversity of large dinosaurs never put a premium on smallness.  It wasn’t for evolutionary reasons the big dinosaurs went extinct.  According to the most favored theory for the extinction, they got hit with a happenstance meteor strike.A Smithsonian expert likes the new idea, but confessed that “we’ve understood very little about how size was related to their overall evolutionary history.”  It’s not apparent by what quantum his understanding has been increased with this new idea.The Early Burst Gets the EvolutionIn a review of the paper in PLoS Biology referenced by the Oxford press release, Daniel Moen and Helene Morlon think they have the idea figured out:In this issue, Benson et al. test the idea of a “deep-time” adaptive radiation in dinosaurs, compiling and using one of the most comprehensive phylogenetic and body-size datasets for fossils. Using recent phylogenetic statistical methods, they find that in most clades of dinosaurs there is a strong signal of an “early burst” in body-size evolution, a predicted pattern of adaptive radiation in which rapid trait evolution happens early in a group’s history and then slows down. They also find that body-size evolution did not slow down in the lineage leading to birds, hinting at why birds survived to the present day and diversified. This paper represents one of the most convincing attempts at understanding deep-time adaptive radiations.But merely stating that a lineage did not slow down does not explain why it did not slow down.  A similar fallacy in another subject was discussed in The Conversation by two lecturers, who pointed out that merely observing differences does not explain the differences.  Moen and Morlon give a cameo appearance to Darwin’s finches in their review, as they mumble over why the “early burst” pattern is so rare in phylogenetic trees.  In those discussions, “poorly understood” and “little explored” provide context for their praise of Benson’s paper that at last provides “one of the most convincing attempts at understanding” the subject.  Clearly, this paper had an easy contest among weak contenders.They point to the key insight that Benson et al. made explains why the bird lineage succeeded where the other dinosaur lineages failed:Benson et al. suggest that this last result connects deep-time adaptive radiation in the dinosaurs, which quickly exhausted the possibility of phenotypic space, with the current radiation in extant birds, which survived to the present day because their constant, high rate of evolution meant that they were constantly undergoing ecological innovation. This gives a glimpse into why modern birds have so many species (an order of magnitude higher than the nonavian dinosaurs) and so much ecological diversity.Once again, this is an observation masquerading as an explanation.  It begs the question why the bird lineage, and not the other lineages, kept exploring phenotypic space with their innovations.  Worse, the language employs design language to refute design: birds innovate while dinosaurs get exhausted.   Ironically, Moen and Morlon end by saying that Benson et al. give a “new spin” on a mystery posed by George Gaylord Simpson 60 years ago: the causes of early-burst adaptive radiation.What to Benson et al. themselves have to say about it?  In the PLoS Biology paper‘s abstract is this conundrum:This raises the possibility that the uneven distribution of biodiversity results not just from large-scale extrapolation of the process of adaptive radiation in a few extant clades, but also from the maintenance of evolvability on vast time scales across the history of life, in key lineages.Questions pour forth from this sentence.  Is this just a possibility, or a scientific theory?  Is it a law of nature?  Is it descriptive or normative?  Are they saying that adaptive radiation occurs by the process of adaptive radiation, and that it happens except when it doesn’t?  Is this a reformulation of the Stuff Happens Law?  What is a “key lineage” compared to a non-key one?  What makes a lineage maintain its evolvability?  Did birds maintain theirs on purpose?  There is no explanation here.  There is only technical verbiage masquerading as explanation, concocted out of phylogenetic trees they created, that assume evolution to explain evolution.  Future philosophers unchained to this paradigm could have a lot of fun with this “explanation.”Experts Weigh InFortunately, we have the experts at the American Association for the Advancement of Science to come in, like cops, and arrest the pretenders.  In a piece in Science Magazine called “How Birds Survived the Dinosaur Apocalypse,” they will surely set the record straight on why dinosaurs went extinct, but birds survived:When nearly every dinosaur went extinct 66 million years ago, the only ones that survived were those that had shrunk—that is, the birds. Today, there are 10,000 species of these feathered fliers, making them the most diverse of all the four-limbed animals. A new study reveals why this lineage has been so successful: Birds started downsizing well before the rest of the dinosaurs disappeared.“This is a very impressive piece of work and by far the most comprehensive analysis of dinosaur body size that has been conducted,” says Stephen Brusatte, a paleontologist at the University of Edinburgh in the United Kingdom, who was not involved in the research.This means trouble.  The cops have joined the orgy.Evolution of FlightThe Science Magazine piece adds a toast the the ideas of a California museum curator.  He not only likes the vacuous explanation by Benson et al.; he expounds on it, describing what happened next in the Survival of the Shrinkest saga:This size reduction was essential for the evolution of flight, says Luis Chiappe, a paleontologist at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County in California, who was not involved in the study. “Flight is easier for smaller animals” because it is “a lot less energetically demanding,” he says. And during all those millions of years when maniraptorans were changing body size more quickly than other dinos, Chiappe says, “they were experimenting with various degrees of birdness.”Velociraptor Chicken FeedRemember the big claws on those velociraptors in Jurassic Park?  Some of the dinosaurs that sported those mean, sickle-shaped claws may have used them for sap, not blood.  Live Science aired the new idea that some dinosaurs, like the enigmatic therizinosaurs, were vegetarian, despite sporting huge claws:However, despite gigantic claws that might seem like ideal weapons for killing prey, therizinosaurs were herbivores. To understand how these plant eaters might have used their claws, Lautenschlager digitally scanned the claws of 65 theropod species and generated computer models to simulate how the dinosaurs might have used such talons. He also compared those reptile talons with claws from 40 mammal species, which scientists know the function of.Lautenschlager discovered therizinosaurs may have used their giant claws for digging, grasping or piercing.“The grasping function can roughly be compared with a rake or grappling hook,” Lautenschlager said. “These claws were probably used to grasp a branch and pull it closer to the animal to reach parts of the vegetation otherwise out of reach.” The dinosaurs may have used digging claws to unearth tasty roots.It would be like future archaeologists looking at a man-made grappling hook and assuming it was used as a weapon of war.  Even with this reinterpretation, the evolutionists maintained their confidence that birds are evolved dinosaurs.  “These findings might shed light on the evolution of modern birds from ancient theropods.”Readers can decide whether laughing or puking are appropriate responses to the above links.  (If you answer both, perform them sequentially, not simultaneously, for your own safety.)  The number of fallacies is astounding.  If future philosophers of science are not appalled about what passed for science in 2014, it will be a sad commentary on the human race.  Perhaps it could also be considered prima facie evidence for human devolution.For your own sanity, follow this up with another viewing of Flight: The Genius of Birds.last_img read more

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Sakkari bows out of the Australian Open

first_imgMaria Sakkari bid farewell to the Australian Open on Saturday succumbing to in-form Croatian Mirjana Lucic Baroni in the third round of the Grand Slam tournament.The 20-year-old Greek champion won the first set 6-3 but lost the other two 6-2, 6-3 to bow out of Melbourne after reaching the third round for the first time in her career.Her advance to the last 16 of the women’s singles draw is certain to boost her WTA rating, after breaking into the top-100 just a few months ago.TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

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UHaul crash shuts down county building

first_imgU-Haul crash shuts down county building KUSI Newsroom, Posted: March 18, 2019 March 18, 2019 SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – A U-Haul truck rammed into the front entrance of a county Health and Human Services building in Kearny Mesa Monday morning in what police believe could be an intentional act.The office of the Housing and Community Development Services at 3989 Ruffin Road was shut down after the rental truck crashed into the building at about 6 a.m., according to the county’s Twitter account. No injuries were reported.The driver fled on foot, according to the county. Expletives were spray-painted on one side of the truck, and that police are investigating the incident as a possible intentional act.The county said the Housing and Community Development Services offices will be closed until further notice. The North Central Family Resource Center, also on Ruffin Road, will be available for anyone in need of immediate assistance.Calls to a county spokeswoman were not immediately returned. Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom last_img read more

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