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moakley
SFN Regular

USA
1888 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  06:22:29   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send moakley a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Starman

Patric J Buchanan wants to show how ignorant he is and WorldNetDaily is the perfect forum for ignoramuses.

Nothing new at all...

How do we effectively respond to this onslaught on non-sense? I'm looking for suggestions.

Life is good

Philosophy is questions that may never be answered. Religion is answers that may never be questioned. -Anonymous
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Starman
SFN Regular

Sweden
1613 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  06:31:20   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Starman a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by moakleyHow do we effectively respond to this onslaught on non-sense? I'm looking for suggestions.
Maybe "a replies to stupid editorials" page?

"Any religion that makes a form of torture into an icon that they worship seems to me a pretty sick sort of religion quite honestly"
-- Terry Jones
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  09:23:26   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message
Intelligent design is not a valid scientific theory. It is currently pure philosophy. The reason it isn't a scientific theory is because proponents of ID have yet to propose a single scientific experiment which could prove or disprove the theory (see Kil's first post on this thread).

ID is also not necessarily an alternative view that disputes evolution in a way that they could be taught along side each other with students deciding which is right and which is wrong. Serious proponents of ID do not dispute the scientific fact of macro-evolution (which Creationists do). ID deals with the origins of life on earth. The theory of evolution deals with the origin of species. While they do overlap and conflict sometimes, in general they are not in absolute conflict with each other.

The scientists who endorse ID are very few and far between. It's biggest proponent is a philosopher/theologian/mathematician. One of the scientific leaders being Michael Behe, who wrote “Darwin's Black Box” which argues that some things on the microbiology level are “irreducibly complex”. (Behe isn't referring to large organs like eyes.) Tons of the examples Behe gave in his book of things that were irreducibly complex were actually already found to be not so (because he didn't do his research thouroughly enough), and other were found to be not irreducibly complex soon after he published the book. The book was a laughing stock amongst the scientific community (exactly because it advocated a theory that isn't falsifiable), but embraced heartily by creationists, who don't even seem to realize that Behe is not arguing against macro-evolution.

In short, to a serious proponent of ID, man still evolved from apes.

ID is not creationism. It is used by creationists, but in reality, it is a valid academic philosophy. Since when do we teach philosophical ideas as science in public schools? The reason ID should not be taught in schools is because the only reason anyone wants it taught is because they think it disputes evolution and advances crackpot Christian creationism.


"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

Edited by - marfknox on 08/08/2005 09:30:24
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Fripp
SFN Regular

USA
727 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  09:59:30   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Fripp a Private Message
Excellently stated, marfknox. Eloquent and succinct.

May I quote you?

"What the hell is an Aluminum Falcon?"

"Oh, I'm sorry. I thought my Dark Lord of the Sith could protect a small thermal exhaust port that's only 2-meters wide! That thing wasn't even fully paid off yet! You have any idea what this is going to do to my credit?!?!"

"What? Oh, oh, 'just rebuild it'? Oh, real [bleep]ing original. And who's gonna give me a loan, jackhole? You? You got an ATM on that torso LiteBrite?"
Edited by - Fripp on 08/08/2005 10:00:33
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26020 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  10:11:33   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox

ID is also not necessarily an alternative view that disputes evolution in a way that they could be taught along side each other with students deciding which is right and which is wrong. Serious proponents of ID do not dispute the scientific fact of macro-evolution (which Creationists do). ID deals with the origins of life on earth. The theory of evolution deals with the origin of species. While they do overlap and conflict sometimes, in general they are not in absolute conflict with each other.
Perhaps you're unaware of the recent goings-on in Kansas and elsewhere. In Kansas, ID advocates were put on the stand to defend their positions, and most of them denied the common descent of apes and man. If all you're familiar with is Behe's work, then yes, it might look like ID in general doesn't conflict with evolution, but it's not the case in the wider world of ID advocacy. Hell, most of the vocal proponents of ID won't even answer when asked how old the Earth is, or, as at the Kansas hearings, they say things like "between five thousand and five billion years old."

Besides which, since ID claims that life was designed, it most assuredly is a form of creationism. ID specifically states that life couldn't have arisen naturally, that it (or specific parts of it) were created. For this reason, many evolution advocates have taken to calling it "intelligent design creationism," or IDC for short.

And Dembski has been more than clear that his devotion is to see God get proper credit for His Creation. Reverend Moon commanded Jonathan Wells to go get his PhD in order to discredit evolutionary science. ID proponents who aren't Christian creationists are few and far-between (one of them in the Kansas hearings was an Islamic creationist). One ID proponent who showed up here on the SFN turned out to be an "ex" Christian fundamentalist (and I put the term in quotes because it was hard to believe).
quote:
It is used by creationists, but in reality, it is a valid academic philosophy.
Since when is "we don't understand how it could happen naturally, therefore it must be designed" - a clearly pathetic argument from ignorance - a "valid academic philosophy?"
quote:
Since when do we teach philosophical ideas as science in public schools?
The (incorrect) argument used by IDCs is that we're already teaching philosophical materialism in schools as science.
quote:
The reason ID should not be taught in schools is because the only reason anyone wants it taught is because they think it disputes evolution and advances crackpot Christian creationism.
And all the vocal and public proponents of ID want people to think that ID disputes evolution and advances Christian creationism. That's its entire reason for being. Such was made clear by the "Wedge" document, which states, in part:
Discovery Institute's Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture seeks nothing less than the overthrow of materialism and its cultural legacies. Bringing together leading scholars from the natural sciences and those from the humanities and social sciences, the Center explores how new developments in biology, physics and cognitive science raise serious doubts about scientific materialism and have re-opened the case for a broadly theistic understanding of nature.
- The Wedge Strategy
The fact of the matter is, is that if ID proponents are speaking to an audience of creationists, they make sure to let them know that ID attempts to put God back into the science classroom. One of the DI's largest financial backers is a Christian Reconstructionist who'd like to see the Bible replace the Constitution. Hell, ID's root idea was first expressed by the Reverend William Paley as a "proof" of God's creation.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  10:24:56   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message
Let's not confuse theistic evolution with ID. The former says that god acts through natural processes, the later says that natural processes are insufficient to account for life on Earth--therefore goddunnit. Theistic evolution is compatible with science and the Theory of Evolution and is the official stance of the Catholic Church. ID is pseudoscience offered with the sole intention of discrediting the Theory of Evolution and redefining "Science" to include unsupportable and unprovable metaphysical assertions.

ID isn't compatible with any scientific theory since it is unabashedly anti-science.


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
Edited by - H. Humbert on 08/08/2005 10:44:52
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  12:02:16   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message
To Fripp - quote anything I've posted.

To Dave W.

I wrote that serious proponents of ID do not dispute the scientific fact of macro-evolution (which Creationists do). The people on the stand in Kansas sound like Creationists masquerading as Intelligent Design proponents.

I have not just read Behe. The biggest proponent of ID as a cohesive theory is William Dembski, and I've read a lot by him and seen him in interviews. He is what I'd call a “serious” proponent of the theory.

From Wikipedia:

“Despite ID sometimes being called Intelligent Design Theory, the National Academy of Sciences has said, intelligent design "and other claims of supernatural intervention in the origin of life" are not science because their claims cannot be tested by experiment and propose no new hypotheses of their own, instead they find gaps within current evolutionary theory and fill them in with speculative beliefs.” (emphasis added)

and

"Although Intelligent Design may have been born out of opposition to the theory of evolution, it does not oppose the concept of evolution as a mechanism for directed, intelligent creation, nor even for limited, apparently undirected natural change."

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

Edited by - marfknox on 08/08/2005 12:05:55
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  12:18:37   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message
Dave W. wrote: Since when is "we don't understand how it could happen naturally, therefore it must be designed" - a clearly pathetic argument from ignorance - a "valid academic philosophy?"

ID has its roots more in the Design Argument than in crackpot creationism that depends on naive literal interpretations of the Bible. http://www.iep.utm.edu/d/design.htm#H1


From Wikipedia's entry on ID:

“Philosophers as far back as Plato have reasoned that the complexity of nature shows grounds for believing in supernatural design. The most notable forms of this argument were expressed by Thomas Aquinas in his Summa Theologica (thirteenth century) and William Paley in his book Natural Theology (nineteenth century) where he makes the famous watchmaker analogy. According to intelligent design proponents, Intelligent Design is different from the design argument in one important respect: ID says nothing about who did the designing. It only seeks to know whether object X was designed, and pleads agnosticism on all questions of identity, purpose, or intent.”

Contemporarily, Dembski's book on ID was published by Cambridge University Press has received peer reviews from mathematicians and philosophers from Ivy League schools. If that doesn't validate it as an academic philosophy, I don't know what does.

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  12:49:20   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox
Contemporarily, Dembski's book on ID was published by Cambridge University Press has received peer reviews from mathematicians and philosophers from Ivy League schools. If that doesn't validate it as an academic philosophy, I don't know what does.
Dembski's work has been totally discredited by those mathematicians who have examined it. His ideas have been roundly rejected by the bulk of the scientific community. They certainly have not validated his work.


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
Edited by - H. Humbert on 08/08/2005 13:58:56
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26020 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  13:26:11   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox

ID has its roots more in the Design Argument than in crackpot creationism that depends on naive literal interpretations of the Bible.
Yes, I understand that, but it doesn't matter since crackpot creationists are, currently, the leading proponents of ID.

In interviews and lectures to diverse audiences, IDCists refuse to lay any claim towards knowledge of the designer, but when speaking to creationist audiences they make it clear that their idea of the designer is the Christian God. Examples of this two-faced promotion of IDC abound.

Besides which, if ID claims that life couldn't possibly come about naturally, then the only possible designer is one which can circumvent the laws of physics and chemistry: a deity of some sort.
quote:
Contemporarily, Dembski's book on ID was published by Cambridge University Press has received peer reviews from mathematicians and philosophers from Ivy League schools. If that doesn't validate it as an academic philosophy, I don't know what does.
Frankly, I'm not even sure how an "academic philosophy" differs from any other sort of philosophy. If it's just some philosophy which is only discussed by philosophers in an academic sense, then sure, it may be a "valid academic philosophy," but then who cares (besides academic philosophers, of course)?

Behe, Wells, Johnson and Dembski do not promote ID as pure philosophy, they promote it as a better scientific theory than evolution. And The Design Inference was published as a book about detecting design in general, and its conclusions have been refuted many times, despite peer review. Can an invalid basic argument still be a "valid academic philosophy?"

Furthermore, given that IDCists lay claim to scientific and mathematical evidence supporting their non-existant theory, it's much more than just a philosophy (even though the math is wrong and the evidence is interpreted badly). Philosophies in general don't require supporting evidence.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  14:15:13   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message
Humbert wrote: Dembski's work has been largely discredited by those mathematicians who have examined it. His ideas have been roundly rejected by the bulk of the scientific community. They certainly have not validated his work.

The rejection from the scientific community doesn't dispute what I said, since I argued that ID is in no way legitimate science. My point was that it is philosophy being discussed among professional philosophers. I have clearly said that it is not science.

I find it interesting that mathematicians have discredited his work. Can you direct me to an article about the response from that academic branch? I'm genuinely curious about it. I'd love more ammo against Dembski since I do think he's a twit.

Dave W. wrote: Yes, I understand that, but it doesn't matter since crackpot creationists are, currently, the leading proponents of ID.

Then why did you take issue with my post in the first place? I wrote that “The reason ID should not be taught in schools is because the only reason anyone wants it taught is because they think it disputes evolution and advances crackpot Christian creationism.”

You seem to define ID by how it is being used politically. Certainly a practical definition. I was defining it in academic/encyclopedia terms. But we both agree that ID has no business being taught in public schools because it is not scientific and is used to promote crackpot Christian creationism.

Dave W. wrote: Behe, Wells, Johnson and Dembski do not promote ID as pure philosophy, they promote it as a better scientific theory than evolution.

That is not true of Behe or Dembski. They both do blur the line between philosophy and science, and indeed, would like to build an inappropriate bridge between the two. But both Behe and Dembski have argued that ID more completes what is missing from the theory of evolution. Not to say these guys don't have hidden motives or that they don't change how they word things depending on which audiences they address. Given such inconsistencies, I think both cater to crackpot creationists either to promote their own ideas/careers or because they secretly agree with them. I tend to suspect the former more than the latter with both of them, but no one can know for sure.

Dave W. wrote: IDCists lay claim to scientific and mathematical evidence supporting their non-existant theory, it's much more than just a philosophy (even though the math is wrong and the evidence is interpreted badly). Philosophies in general don't require supporting evidence.

Philosophies do take objective reality – which can only be described through science – into consideration. One cannot reason about nothing, so I'm not sure what you mean here.

Some physicists dismiss string theory as “just philosophy” because so far it is not falsifiable, and I tend to agree with that assertion. When describing reality, science has more credibility than philosophy, even though both are respectable academic pursuits. That's all I was trying to say about ID.

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

Edited by - marfknox on 08/08/2005 14:21:33
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  15:02:35   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox
I find it interesting that mathematicians have discredited his work. Can you direct me to an article about the response from that academic branch? I'm genuinely curious about it. I'd love more ammo against Dembski since I do think he's a twit.
This is one of the more extensive critiques of Dembski's ideas that I know of. http://www.talkorigins.org/design/faqs/nfl/


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
Edited by - H. Humbert on 08/08/2005 15:03:17
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Hawks
SFN Regular

Canada
1383 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  15:52:28   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Hawks's Homepage Send Hawks a Private Message
I too find ID VERY scary. Actually, anything that actively encourages people to stop thinking and just accept [insert whatever here] is truly frightening. This has happened a few times throughout history, and the consequences have not always been that great.

METHINKS IT IS LIKE A WEASEL
It's a small, off-duty czechoslovakian traffic warden!
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26020 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  19:33:20   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by marfknox

The rejection from the scientific community doesn't dispute what I said, since I argued that ID is in no way legitimate science. My point was that it is philosophy being discussed among professional philosophers. I have clearly said that it is not science.
But it's supposed to be science. Dembski's The Design Inference is allegedly a practical method of determining whether or not some thing has been designed or not. It is supposed to be empirical.
quote:
I'd love more ammo against Dembski since I do think he's a twit.
Just take any one of his own Web pages, and they'll be plenty of "whoppers" to be found. Also, you can turn to The Panda's Thumb for timely pieces responding to Dembski's proclamations.
quote:
Then why did you take issue with my post in the first place? I wrote that “The reason ID should not be taught in schools is because the only reason anyone wants it taught is because they think it disputes evolution and advances crackpot Christian creationism.”
I took issue with it because you're giving the modern-day formulation of ID way to much credit as something existing apart from its political use. Dembski, Behe, Wells, etc. are parts of the political machinery pushing ID on society today. There hasn't been a non-political public proponent of anything resembling ID for 100 years or more. Modern ID was born in 1992 with Johnson's book, Darwin on Trial.
quote:
You seem to define ID by how it is being used politically. Certainly a practical definition.
I define ID that way because that's all that today's ID is.
quote:
I was defining it in academic/encyclopedia terms.
And not addressing the political aspects makes ID seem far more pleasant and unthreatening than it really is.
quote:
But we both agree that ID has no business being taught in public schools because it is not scientific and is used to promote crackpot Christian creationism.
Yes, on these things we agree.
quote:
Dave W. wrote: Behe, Wells, Johnson and Dembski do not promote ID as pure philosophy, they promote it as a better scientific theory than evolution.

That is not true of Behe or Dembski.
Oh? Take Dembski's June 30th article, "In Defense of Intelligent Design" as one example:
This consensus trance needs to be broken, with scientific alternatives to conventional evolutionary theory welcomed into biology curricula. One such alternative is intelligent design.
[<

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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marfknox
SFN Die Hard

USA
3739 Posts

Posted - 08/08/2005 :  22:01:42   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit marfknox's Homepage  Send marfknox an AOL message Send marfknox a Private Message
And not addressing the political aspects makes ID seem far more pleasant and unthreatening than it really is.

I DID address the political aspects.

What you quotes from Dembski is exactly what I was referring to about slippery wording that changes for different audiences. He didn't just say “evolution”. He said ”conventional evolutionary theory”. The average person will think he means to be anti-macroevolution, but because he's used this slippery wording, if he debates someone who knows about science, he'll turn around and say he was simply opposing theories about the origin of life and such.

I relent to you concerning the second quote where Dembski says ID is “a science in its own right”. Clearly he's lost credibility there. I agree with you that they are a pack of liars. But the character of the proponents doesn't change the characteristics of ID as a philosophical idea.

just because something can be described as a philosophy in no way makes it valid

I didn't mean valid that way, and I think it's obvious that I couldn't have meant it that way since I've made it clear that I don't personally agree with ID as a philosophy or a science.

If you are so convinced that ID only exists connected to its political use (which is not true at all. It is used by theologians who are not anti-evolution) then you should go to wikipedia.com and fix their article.

"Too much certainty and clarity could lead to cruel intolerance" -Karen Armstrong

Check out my art store: http://www.marfknox.etsy.com

Edited by - marfknox on 08/09/2005 07:05:25
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