I think this debate does indeed cover Evolution vs Gods creations, but doesn't that suggest the same thing, the belief in an unproven entity, God, against the belief in Alien Intervention, again, unproven entities, in an effort to explain our origins and many other aspects of our world.
Again I disagree, in the traditional creation accounts God creates man therefore there could be no evolution. To my mind for an intervention theory to be acceptable it would have to fit in with what we understand at present and would in fact support evolution. I realise Fuzoid has another theory for creation. If I understand it correctly rather than God creating man, God created evolution which results in man as per a preconceived plan. Thought provoking and certainly no less valid but again im not sure that it would be relevant to this particular alien life theory. I believe the existence of God to be a spiritual or philisophical debate as opposed to the existence of an alien race being a scientific one. God would operate outside of space and time, an alien race would be firmly within their constraints.
Your comment of "I dont believe there is any proof that they (aliens) dont exist" is a valid point, but, equally there is as yet no proof that they do.
This is exactly my point, as we agree that the answer to this question is as yet unknown I would suggest we should explore all possibilities. Unfortunately I see only one resolution to this question. That is to prove that it DOES exist, proving that it doesnt would involve exploring the entire universe which would be impossible. As long as one planet remains unexplored the possibility is always there.
The earth is, as you state, approx 4.5 Billion years old, and throughout this time it had to go through it's own evolution before any lifeforms inhabited it, and when life did emerge they were insignificant single celled creatures, but due to the wonder of the evolutionary cycle, these creatures evolved into a myriad of species, early land animals, Dinosaurs, early mammals and man, it took millions of years of evolution before the evolutionary nirvana was reached, with man being the product. It is because of the very nature of how evolution works that it wasn't possible that Man could have evolved a million years earlier.
I accept man couldnt have evolved earlier here on earth but it would be unlikely to follow the same timeline if it were to happen on another habitable planet. There would be varying influences and events which would surely cause differences in the process, in much the same way, as you say, it wouldnt happen in the same way if we were to go back and begin again.
Your next comments are very telling, "The only thing that stops us visiting other planets is our technological limitations". That statement alone proves without doubt that we are not a product of Intelligent design/Alien intervention. If it is believed that aliens have visited us, they had to come from somewhere, some far flung corner of the universe, and had to get here somehow, via some fantastical spacecraft, far too advanced for our understanding and way beyond our technological capability. If these beings handed down their knowledge, technologies etc... why would they not provide us with the means to space travel. If these beings could help us build Pyramids, and other ancient monuments as many believe, why would they not allow us into their world.
The only way you would be right is if you knew the mind of God or the aliens, if any.
I also dont think this statement proves anything but I think we can gain a little insight into what an advanced alien race may do. In the absence of an alien to question or use as reference we can examine the closest species we do know of... us, after all to a primitive alien race we would be exactly what we are discussing. If we were to discover an intelligent but primitive species on another planet what would we do? Would we give them the wheel, teach them to read and write, show them how to irrigate and grow crops? Possibly. Would we take their hunting spear and give them an assault rifle, show them the combustion engine as a means of transport or the nuclear reactor to power their village? Almost certainly not. If (and yes I know its a big if) we gained our early knowledge from an outside influence they would still be unlikely to give us what would be the pinnacle of their own achievements.
I was specifically referring to the much maligned Drake Equation. Again, while not proof, since we live in a mathematical universe it stands to reason the probability for Drake's equation is quite high, in my opinion.
I deliberately didnt refer to the Drake Equation because it can essentially give any answer you want it to. It was never intended to give an answer and was created as a topic of debate. However there are variants of this and other formula which give varying estimates for the number of habitable planets and are deemed more appropriate. What they all tend to agree upon is that the answer is greater than 0.
I dont think for one minute you believe the aliens did it, although it is an enticing thought.
You're right I dont and yet I seem unable to disprove the basic theory, but yes I find it interesting. I believe theories like these are often dismissed too quickly simply because many of their supporters make totally outlandish claims. We dismiss these claims believing it disproves the whole theory. For example I read an interesting story about the Dropa Stones, after a little research on the subject it reads like a conspiracy theory with witnesses and artefacts disappearing. The supporters of this refer to a witness who the author admits was a fictional character. From this I conclude the account is false so i dismiss this particular evidence however I dont believe we should use this as reason to dismiss all accounts.