One of the more interesting pretenses of modern Darwinism is the “ghost range” of transitional fossils. Even Nature honestly believes that these ghosts exist: Members of a group should have been present, according to Darwin’s theory, but have not been found are the ghosts. If so, there may be many more ghosts in paleontology than in the tourist trade’s “Ye Olde Haunted Inn.” In both cases, they must exist, so it doesn;t matter whether they do or not.
David Berlinski who, despite being agnostic, offers to pray for Darwin’s man Nick Matzke, who has been busily attacking Steve Meyer’s book on the Cambrian explosion, Darwin’s Doubt, offers, with respect to one of Matzke’s sources, which uses ghost lineages, …
Ghost lineages are often defended, rarely extolled. Like much in cladistic analysis, they represent the withdrawal of a theory from any very robust confrontation with the evidence. They simply cannot be used to defend a view of the Cambrian that begins by questioning whether there is anything behind these ghosts beyond the cladist.
A man who believes in ghost lineages is demonstrably inclined, after all, to believe in ghosts.
* For use of the term “ghost range,” see Philippe Janvier & Gaël Clément, “Muddy tetrapod origins,” Nature, 463:40-41 (January 7, 2010); ; Grzegorz Niedzwiedzki, Piotr Szrek, Katarzyna Narkiewicz, Marek Narkiewicz & Per E. Ahlberg, “Tetrapod trackways from the early Middle Devonian period of Poland,” Nature, Vol. 463:43-48 (7 January 2010).