UPDATED: Species appear to change? Evolution! Species didn’t change? More proof of evolution!

UPDATE: This is one of those posts that reminds me why I don’t write on Intelligent Design (ID)/ Darwinian evolution very often.  It isn’t that there aren’t tons of great defenses for ID and seemingly endless problems with the (ironically) constantly evolving claims of Darwinian evolution (or whatever term they prefer), it is that any post on it brings the blind faith defenders out in force.  They are zealous, all right, but tend to visit from Stereotype Land (TM) with one erroneous comment after another and are so immune to correction that I don’t think they ever listen (all the while claiming the same about ID proponents).

This post is a perfect example.  At least three Darwin defenders didn’t just misstate my views, they made things up completely and, most ironically, didn’t realize they were mocking the evolution position and not mine.  Examples:

1. This post says that evolution states how much or how little an organism will change over time. It doesn’t say that. It has never said that.

2. I’m interested, Neil, in the reference you use to ascertain that evolution posits constant change among all species.

3. You still didn’t say why “living fossils” is detrimental to evolution – which I believe was the intent of your original post.

For the record, I believe that micro-evolution exists, is well supported by evidence and does not require constant change.  I have never stated otherwise, but my elite visitors know better, eh?

I’ll elaborate on the irony of their comments: My main point was about the scientists at the aquarium who “knew” how a particular species had evolved . . . until they realized it hadn’t evolved at all.  Their original claims weren’t science, just speculation.  They were the ones assuming that macro-evolution posits constant change, not me.  I’ll type that again, slowly ;-), for effect: They were the ones assuming that macro-evolution posits constant change, not me.  I was the one mocking them for always assuming constant change until — oops! — they realize they were wrong.  Again.

But despite multiple reminders that they were putting words in my mouth, they continued to use the “type comments first / (maybe) read the post later” approach.  That’s pretty irritating.

I also find the commenters’ “just so” explanations amusing.  Again, I never claimed that evolution involved constant change among all species.  But watch how quick they are to confirm that their theory supports zero evolution as readily as it does the evolution from lifeless chemicals to birds, caterpillar / butterflies, elephants, humans, etc.  They have a catch-all excuse: Uh, if it didn’t evolve, then the environment didn’t change.  But they don’t know that, they assume it, and they can’t explain why the same environment caused massive changes for other species but not for those that allegedly didn’t evolve.  And they ignore that they are just one fossil find for having to give up another series of drawings showing the alleged stages of evolution.

So if the Darwin defenders want to get all uppity about assumptions of constant change, their objection is not with me, but the scientists who draw cute little pictures of how things “must” have evolved.  Sadly, my guess is that they’ll still miss the irony of the aquarium scientists and their own prejudices that led them to vilify me here and elsewhere.  That’s OK, I’m used to it.

I always like to remind them that even if their nothingness-to-molecules-to-life-to-Angelina Jolie worldview was true, it would select for survivability, not truth.  They would have no reason to have such confidence that they are capable of discerning what is really true.  That bit of logic never seems to occur to them.

Also, they seem most certain that my claims were not only wrong but that it was a bad thing for me to make them, and that it was a very bad thing for me not to approve all their comments.  But they can never ground their morality.  And apparently, for most evolutionists I’ve come across, things like killing innocent but unwanted human beings in the womb is morally benign or even good, and does not conflict with Darwinian evolution (yes, they actually make tortured defenses of how it helps save the species).  But they know that comment moderation is a universal evil and that if you practice it you are really, really bad!  I could quintuple my traffic here if I didn’t moderate ID / Evo posts, but it isn’t worth it.  I mainly post these to share with open minded people who know they’ll never see these things in the mainstream media or academia.

A couple thoughts on a recent comment.

If I may be frank (and I’m doing my best not to be rude), I’ve read quite a bit on this subject, and when you become familiar with a subject there are certain fallacies that stick out like sore thumbs.

I assume that there are certain things that people say about the Bible that make you want to scream. Things that demonstrate that the person making the statement is either repeating something they heard, or didn’t read the passage in context.

Yes, I spend a lot of  time ensuring that I’ve read the Bible (and everything else) in context and like to teach others to do the same.  Sadly, this commenter didn’t read my post or my comments carefully and, as noted above, reached the opposite conclusion of what I said.  He should be angry at the evolutionists, not me.

Please tell why my pointing out this absolute fact is bothering you so.

Because it is a predictable and massive waste of time.  I’m thinking of closing comments on future ID / Evo posts.  It just gets tiring correcting all the fallacious, overzealous Darwin defenders.

Finally, even if I am wrong, all my errors are 100.00% due to their Darwinian evolution.  My conversion from atheism, my faith in the evidence for the life, death and resurrection of Jesus and more were solely due to their beloved evolution.  [Thanks, btw, because I wouldn’t trade a life in Christ for anything.]  So why are they so angry at the outcome of their process?  Seems kinda irrational.

Note: Comments will be moderated, so I wouldn’t invest too many keystrokes in them, especially if they are going to repeat the tired and fallacious points made thus far.  —–

P.S. BTW, if people wonder why I give a shorter leash to evos / atheists, it is because I’m very experienced with their tactics and arguments. I can spot time wasters a mile away. A “raiding party” came from Richard Dawkins’ website once and it was quite amusing. They had decided to pick 5 religious blogs to attack and I was one of the lucky ones. Oh noes!!!

One of the best parts was pointing out to them that in their efforts to root out the evils of religion from the world that they had only picked Christian blogs. While some hemmed and hawed the standard lines about “Jihad envy” (whatever that really means) and how they just knew Christianity better, I appreciated that their leader ‘fessed up about their bias.  Here is some fun reading if you are interested.

Raiding parties

Comments on comments

Dawkins’ acolytes

—–

The tautology of Darwinian evolution never seems to embarrass its proponents.

Following up his comments on the stunning half billion years of changelessness (stasis) demonstrated by the pterobranch, David Tyler now addresses the unchanging cricket, one of whose fossils was found from 100 million years ago: He comments on howthe fact that many life forms seem motionless in time is handled in the science literature . . .

via Life forms that never change are telling us something about evolution. Why avoid it?, David Tyler asks | Uncommon Descent.

It reminds me of an aquarium we visited (in Boston, I think).  The original sign for one species noted how it had evolved over the years.  It was all speculative, of course.  Then they found an ancient fossil of the species and — oops! — realized it hadn’t evolved at all.

Did they question their presuppositions?

Nope.

They concluded that it was proof of evolution.  Because, after all, in their worldview Darwinian evolution is  true or Darwinian evolution is true.  Now that’s science!

46 thoughts on “UPDATED: Species appear to change? Evolution! Species didn’t change? More proof of evolution!

  1. Can’t argue with athiest/evolutionists, Neil. It’s like wrestling with a pig; after awhile you realize they enjoy it, and all that’s happened is that you smell just as bad as them.

    • what amazes me is the self righteous anger that accompanies their arguments. There’s clearly more at play here than science. Religion perhaps?

      • Yes, they have all the trappings of stereotypical blind religious dogma. And they can’t live consistently with their worldview for three sentences. Just watch. If they really thought their worldview was true they’d know that morality was a fiction. Oh, people have a thing they call morality, but the (sort of) intellectually honest atheist philosophers concede that their morality is merely an illusion.

        They also know that their beloved Darwinian evolution, with which they draw groundless and silly conclusions, was the “real” cause for our trusting in the evidence for the life, death and resurrection of Jesus and for our disdain and mockery of their worldview and bad science. So why do they get so irritated? Evolution must have caused it. We have no choice!

        Yet the author of life died for their sins and would gladly adopt them if they would repent and believe. Hopefully they will turn before it is too late. Eternity is a mighty long time to regret foolish pride.

      • So you would rather scientists only pick and choose evidence so that their conclusions are molded into something they can “live with”?

        Do you really think that scientists are worried about the moral implications of evolution? Isn’t it you that criticized Dawkins for speaking about morality and theology when it is not his area of expertise? Yet now you are using arguments of philosophy to tar biologists.

        Morality is a fascinating area of study. It does not, however, have the privilege to supersede evidence in other fields.

      • So you would rather scientists only pick and choose evidence so that their conclusions are molded into something they can “live with”?

        That’s the opposite of what I said. They are doing that to conform to their worldview.

        Isn’t it you that criticized Dawkins for speaking about morality and theology when it is not his area of expertise?

        My issues with Dawkins are his lousy critical thinking, inconsistency with his own worldview, serial deceptions, etc.

        Morality is a fascinating area of study. It does not, however, have the privilege to supersede evidence in other fields.

        More straw. Please don’t waste my time like that.

      • Is the “morality is not consistent with evolution” concept you’ve made up in your head all you’ve got?

        I’m just wondering, because you slip into that as soon as the evidence seems stacked against you. I’m not making a moral claim. I’m telling you the evidence (all of it) points conclusively to one common ancestor, and that everyone in the field of biology agrees with me. You can’t possibly be so obtuse as to think that all the biologists are desperately making up evidence to put the screws to religion.

        Back up your scientific claims, or concede defeat, as Glenn did.

      • Back up your claim, or stop pretending you know what you’re talking about.

        I’ve offered numerous bits of evidence over the past few days, and none of you have anything to say to dispute any of it. If you want a scientific discussion, this is how it’s done.

        I think when the numbers are in the 99.9% range, I’m permitted to say that everyone agrees. Almost every “anti-evolution” claim is from one single group of scientists working for one very well funded lobby group.

      • Oh yeah, all the opponents are part of a single group. And even if they were, would that really make them not true scientists? I hear that all the time when I give a name of a real scientist who refutes the very idea of evolution and then I’m told that he isn’t a real scientist because he disagrees with evolution! Real logic there.

      • Is the “morality is not consistent with evolution” concept you’ve made up in your head all you’ve got?

        You’re done for today as well. Evolution made me not want to waste time with people who can’t follow a simple argument without trying distort it. Evolution can’t ground real morality, period. I didn’t make it up, that’s a fact. It is fun watching evos try to spin that.

        And of course, I’ve got much more than that: The serial deceptions and bullying of evos, your endless straw men here, the continuing stream of about face moves of the Darwin community (Junk DNA? Did we say junk DNA was evidence of evo? We meant the fact that it isn’t junk is evidence of evo!) the incredible evidence and logic of ID, etc. Seriously, the complexity of creation just mocks you all further and further every day. I almost feel sorry for the Romans 1 poster people. Vast amounts of highly specified information, operating systems more complex than Windows 7, and more — and you all think they self-replicated from slime and that we evolved from fish. Yeah, I’m very interested in hearing more . . .

      • I never conceded any defeat. I simply said that the ability to give me convincing evidence for evolution is as impossible as convincing me that 2+2=7 – there is no such evidence available.

        So now you know every biologist in the world! Why is it I have read many biologists who disagree with you, as well as many, many other scientists?

        No, nothing points to a common ancestor – it all points to a common designer. But you want to deny that designer exists and therefore all you have left is your religious faith of evolutionism.

  2. Can someone point me to a biology textbook that states evolution must involve constant change? For animals with massive population sizes it actually takes quite a bit of outside pressure or environmental change for adaptations to propogate.

    Here’s the thing – you read these articles and laugh at how each outcome supports evolution. Supporting evolution is not the point of any article, or the goal of any scientist. Convincing people of common descent is no more necessary than convincing people that the Roman Empire once existed. Both are facts to anyone in the field, and for good reason.

    Finding one of millions of species that hasn’t evolved much (in body structure, anyways) does no more to prove evolution wrong than finding a person alive in rubble and saying there must not have been an earthquake.

    • The Roman Empire did exist and we have empirical evidence.

      Common descent does indeed have evidence if we are talking one type of dog descending from another type of dog. But I believe you mean all creatures and mankind descended from a common starting point. There is no evidence at all for this.

      What we have are commonalities and similarities in creatures because they have a common designer.

      • I gave you many examples in our past discussion, which you abandoned. You also admitted that there is no evidence that would convince you.

        Unless you wish to retract that statement, you’re in no position to discuss anything related to science.

      • Yes, they are claimed examples. You cannot dismiss them without good reason.

        I gave you examples of specific animals exibiting characterists directly in between two animals you view as different species.

        I then asked you for a specific theoretical example of a “transition” that you would accept as such. You could not think of one, or declined to try.

      • My good reason is that they are not transitions. You can’t prove they are because no one was around to see them alive and the fossils do not say, “Hey, I’m a transitional form!” It is bias that looks at a fossil with common designs and then says it is common descent. The only reason you do that is to eliminate the designer so you don’t have to be accountable to Him!

        I did not say I couldn’t think of a “theoretical example,” nor did I decline to try. I stated that there is no such thing, just as there is no such “theoretical example” to prove 2+2=7. It’s like asking what “theoretical example” I could give to prove a circle is a square!

  3. I fail to see how this is mere tautology. The preponderance of “living fossils” has been known for quite some time and does not disprove evolution at all. It coincides with what the theory states quite nicely. I will give an analogy:

    A misinformed atheist says that the “problem of evil” disproves the concept of God. You correct said atheist by pointing out ‘free will’ and other explanations. The atheist then says, “There’s always an explanation!”

    I’m sorry that you don’t like the theory, but the existence of “living fossils” does nothing to contradict the theory of evolution. If a species is able to survive in its environmental conditions with certain characteristics, then there is no evolution. This is why humans probably won’t evolve either, because we have invented medicine and so there is no need for humans to evolve.

    Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that “living fossils” did disprove one aspect of evolution. So what? Anyone who claims that they are 100% certain that every aspect of a certain theory is correct is being intellectually disingenuous. Science can only thrive with criticism of existent theories – that’s how we learn! When articles are up for peer-review, the intent of other scientists is to disprove the article. It is by this “trial by fire” method, that we can start to become certain of scientific principles. To say that evolution is merely one big conspiracy is to be accusing people from the vastly different fields of biology, genetics, geology, physics, etc. of all conspiring together to promote a single theory. Do you really think this is what happening?

    • The issue is the “just so” stories where they fill in the “facts” of evolution until proven wrong (i.e., “junk” DNA, the being that had evolved via blah blah blah – oops! We mean it didn’t evolve!). Such “scientists” deserve to be mocked.

      Science can only thrive with criticism of existent theories – that’s how we learn!

      Agreed, which is why I take issue with the Darwin lobby and their stifling of dissent.

      To say that evolution is merely one big conspiracy is to be accusing people from the vastly different fields of biology, genetics, geology, physics, etc. of all conspiring together to promote a single theory. Do you really think this is what happening?

      Yes, because their worldview trumps their science, over and over.

      • “The issue is the “just so” stories where they fill in the “facts” of evolution until proven wrong (i.e., “junk” DNA, the being that had evolved via blah blah blah – oops! We mean it didn’t evolve!). Such “scientists” deserve to be mocked.”

        Scientists deserve to be mocked because they were wrong? Really? Scientists have been wrong for hundreds of years and will continue to be wrong. For some reason, it is only Creationists who expect the same infallibility in scientists that they expect from their God.

        “Agreed, which is why I take issue with the Darwin lobby and their stifling of dissent.”

        What dissent? There is no dissent. If you are talking about Creationism Intelligent Design, then that is a completely different thing. ID is not dissent because ID proponents do not proffer any arguments. ID proponents merely cherry pick complications within the theory and try to use the complications to disprove the entirety of the theory, all the while forgetting about the inordinate amount of evidence in favor of evolution.

      • Scientists deserve to be mocked because they were wrong?

        Not because they were wrong because of why they were wrong: bias. Please read more carefully.

        ID is not dissent because ID proponents do not proffer any arguments.

        Oscar, feel free to try again and comment on another topic. You aren’t qualified to discuss this with adults if you say things like that.

    • The proper term is moderate, and I did what I said I would do. You “know” that I did it because I’ve evolved to this state and could do nothing else. You also “know” that you have no rational grounding to complain about it, so please don’t go off whining . . . unless deep down you doubt your worldview.

      I “know” that I did it because as a Christian I am under no obligation to endlessly converse with people who can’t have simple conversations without multiple logical fallacies. Just like I don’t have to talk with every neighbor or co-worker as long as they like and regardless of what they say, neither do I have to on my blog. There is nothing un-Christian about it. In fact, it is good discernment.

      • If you can’t discern the meaning of the post from the post or my comments thus far, then you are beyond my assistance.

        P.S. I glanced at your post with your “gotcha” about God’s will in wanting all to be saved. Let me save you some time: When “skeptics” resort to literalism so extreme that it would make a stereotypical fundie blush — because there’s no way that “God’s will” could possibly be used in more than one context out of 31,173 verses!!!! — then they are not to be taken seriously. I wish that oxymoronic “ex-Christians” would study their Bibles enough before leaving the faith to know what they are criticizing (and if they don’t know what passage I’m referring to that says they weren’t Christians to begin with, then that proves my point). I know they don’t have the Holy Spirit, but many of the passages are not that hard for anyone to understand.

      • You didn’t come close to answering the question. How does the fact the some species seem to to have evolved much discredit evolution?

        I’m not sure you could begin to answer that, since you have demonstated a lack of understanding and interest in science.

        You’re not allowing discussion. You don’t answer direct questions, and you delete comments that are direct answers to your friendly readers’ questions.

        Stop kidding yourself. This is not an open discussion,

        Wait, I forgot. People who believe in evolution have no grounding to complain about anything right? Makes it really easy to ignore us. Just tell yourself that our viewpoint is self refuting. Whatever helps you sleep at night.

      • You didn’t come close to answering the question. How does the fact the some species seem to to have evolved much discredit evolution?

        I see you either have no reading comprehension skills or are being dishonest again. Your pick. The three of you repeatedly — and, apparently, deliberately — set up a straw man argument to criticize me. I reeled you in then did a full length post demonstrating why your arguments were all fallacious and actually oppose the evos, not me. And I specifically noted this, which you ignored: “For the record, I believe that micro-evolution exists, is well supported by evidence and does not require constant change. I have never stated otherwise, but my elite visitors know better, eh?”

        But in your pride (the root of all sins, btw), you just ignored the facts and repeated the fallacy. Clever.

        I’m not sure you could begin to answer that, since you have demonstated a lack of understanding and interest in science.

        Except that I did answer it and explained your straw man fallacy. But you refuse to admit you are wrong because you are too prideful. Here’s a tip: When you’ve been clobbered like that, either point out that you misread the posts or just don’t reply. Don’t come back and embarrass yourself further.

        You’re not allowing discussion. You don’t answer direct questions, and you delete comments that are direct answers to your friendly readers’ questions.

        And your behavior is exactly why I moderate. I have atheists here with full commenting privileges, but they don’t behave like you. Deliberate straw men aren’t friendly.

        Wait, I forgot. People who believe in evolution have no grounding to complain about anything right?

        Yes, if you want to be consistent with your worldview. You can complain all you like, you just don’t have logical reasons for me to care about it.

      • I addressed this in the updated post. Cheers. Now perhaps you’ll see why you are getting moderated and skip the martyr routine.

  4. Can I be informed of the rules to post here?

    I’ve levied some science-based questions to your claims, none of which have been answered.I spent a while gathering evidence for Glenn, only to be ignored. I’ve been told by Glenn that there is not even any theoretical evidence that could exist for evolution (I know that’s not you, Neil, but you are highly critical of other poster’s comments, yet let this insane statement slide.).

    Can you point out where I’ve been out of line? Or is this blog just a Christian propoganda machine?

  5. I’m interested, Neil, in the reference you use to ascertain that evolution posits constant change among all species. I don’t recall ever reading this, and I have spent the last two years waist deep in the evolution “debate”. Could you helpfully point me to the scientific paper that makes this prediction?

    I find that the bulk of the creationists objections to evolutionary theory are due to a complete misunderstanding of the theory itself. I am sure, intelligent as you are, that you have not allowed yourself to commit that kind of sloppy logic.

    If you could just, as I said, give references to some scientific literature concerning this particular claim, I would gladly read it….

    • I find that the bulk of the creationists objections to evolutionary theory are due to a complete misunderstanding of the theory itself. I am sure, intelligent as you are, that you have not allowed yourself to commit that kind of sloppy logic.

      Why, yes, intelligent as I am, I have not done that. Thanks for noticing.

      I’m interested, Neil, in the reference you use to ascertain that evolution posits constant change among all species

      Being the logical, intelligent and highly efficient person that I am, I make it a habit not to back up claims I never made. Therefore, I won’t be attempting to back that up.

      I also make it a habit to read carefully before putting faux polite, extended play straw men on other people’s blogs. I encourage you to adopt that practice.

      Please feel free to read here all you like and try another time with a serious comment.

      • Well that’s does it for me. Not sure if you’ll even see this, since you seem to have blocked me now as well.

        That was incredibly rude.

        It’s now completely obvious that you have no interest in debate, discussion, science, logic, or any remaining respect for your fellow man.

        A pleasant Easter to you.

      • How was it rude to see through a condescending, time wasting comment? Seems like good discernment to me. I don’t pretend people are sincere when they obviously aren’t.

        I love logic, science, reasoned debate, etc., but wasting time is not a Christian virtue. I think the original post and all my comments were quite clear, so after a time I see no value to repeating myself. I make no apologies for moderating.

        All the best to you. I hope you truly keep an open mind and find the truth someday. Remember, if you seek God on his terms you will find him. If you make up your own god, or pretend that the real God doesn’t exist, you have a dismal future ahead of you.

      • You can pretend to be fair and open mide all you like. You deleted my direct and polite answers to questions posed by your readers.

        If you view a commenter as rude, the best way to deal with it is with kindness. If you can back up your argments, and you take the high road, you will win every time, even when you are wrong. Being wrong is the only way to learn, but it seems like you have put “being wrong” in your past.

      • I learn new things all the time. I realize there is a lot I don’t know, which is why I study so much.

        Your comments weren’t deleted, they were in moderation. You were making some petty insults in addition to the reasonable questions, so I was debating whether to post any.

        I’ll concede that you are right about the comment by George W. I should have just ignored him.

      • I’m very glad to hear that.

        If I may be frank (and I’m doing my best not to be rude), I’ve read quite a bit on this subject, and when you become familiar with a subject there are certain fallacies that stick out like sore thumbs.

        I assume that there are certain things that people say about the Bible that make you want to scream. Things that demonstrate that the person making the statement is either repeating something they heard, or didn’t read the passage in context.

        Well that is how I feel when I read certain claims about evolution. It honestly has nothing to do with the fact that you disagree with me. I’m not upset about that at all. What bothers me is when people criticize the theory of evolution by “disproving” claims not made by the theory.

        This post says that evolution states how much or how little an organism will change over time. It doesn’t say that. It has never said that.

        Please tell why my pointing out this absolute fact is bothering you so.

  6. BTW, if people wonder why I give a shorter leash to evos / atheists, it is because I’m very experienced with their tactics and arguments. I can spot time wasters a mile away. A “raiding party” came from Richard Dawkins’ website once and it was quite amusing. They had decided to pick 5 religious blogs to attack and I was one of the lucky ones. Oh noes!!!

    One of the best parts was pointing out to them that in their efforts to root out the evils of religion from the world that they had only picked Christian blogs. While some hemmed and hawed the standard lines about “Jihad envy” (whatever that really means) and how they just knew Christianity better, I appreciated that their leader ‘fessed up about their bias.

    I could quintuple my hits if I didn’t moderate things like this.

    Here is some fun reading for you all:

    http://4simpsons.wordpress.com/2008/01/07/more-on-raiding-parties/

    http://4simpsons.wordpress.com/2007/12/16/comments-on-comments/

    http://4simpsons.wordpress.com/2007/12/19/dawkins-acolytes/

  7. Evolutionists claim that religion has no place in science, yet they’ll go out of their way to attack, demean and criticize religion — particularly Catholicism/Christianity, their preferred target — every chance they get, which raises the question: if evolution is science and not religion, why then do its proponents orchestrate attacks on religion? The answer is that evolution is in fact a competing faith, albeit a blind faith, created and fostered by the secular-atheist community. Macro-evolution’s “evidence” consists of drawing an ‘evolutionary model’ of how they [I]imagine[/I] species evolved and then make the bold, scientifically-invalid claim that “time did it.” Sorry, that’s not science. Ditto for the “big bang.”

    Matthew 10:28 ~ “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”

    Yes, I believe in God. He is loving, merciful and just. God commands us to love Him, to love others, including our enemies, to show mercy, to be charitable and compassionate, not to judge others, and to avoid sin. Which moral value do you atheists oppose so much that you feel the incessant need to hate God and target His followers with your faux-science?

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