Author Topic: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas  (Read 12711 times)

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Offline BibleStudent

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Even if this were accurate, why are you so opposed to it? What if IDT was actually capable of demonstrating that intelligence is a plausible explanation for the complexity we observe? What is it that motivates you and others to smear and discredit an effort that may someday provide insight into how life began? If you built a brick house (the ToE), would you be worried about a little wind (IDT) blowing it over?

Because the effort is a dishonest argument to show the existence of some intelligence that exists externally to nature. You simply cannot do it using observations of nature and methods based on natural cause and effect.
Perhaps it is a plausibele explanation. Perhaps there is a intelligence out there pulling levels and pushing buttons so that life, the universe and everything can exist, but you have no method for falsifying or testing that, and hijacking a naturalistic method to try and do that is wrong and at worst dishonest.

Oh, and why are you using the ToE as an analogy here if ID isn't against it? You're showing double standards by contradicting what you've previously claimed.

I am going to focus on this because it gets to the central issue of our present conflict and back to the topic of the OP.

What authority is it that limits me (or anyone else) from using the scientific method to establish and test a non-natural hypothesis?

And, yes, I am one of those babblers that employs ID as a negative argument against evolution. I am not a scientist, I didn’t take an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism, and, unlike the theory, which does not posit a God, I do.

Offline BibleStudent

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See if this provides a basis for the information sought out in IDT:

http://www.arn.org/docs/dembski/wd_idtheory.htm

I know it took longer than a day but here it is.  I was debating on not even writing a review, however since you insist on relying on "Complex Specified Information" i figured I'd debunk it.

My review of “Intelligent Design as a Theory of information” by William A. Dembski 1998

Debunking “Complex Specified Information” and “Intelligent Design”.

With this article, I will show why “Complex Specified Information” and “Intelligent Design” are in fact pseudoscience.  Note that the prefix pseudo- is derived from Greek and means false, fraudulent or pretending to be something it is not.  Now the obvious question one might ask is how can we identify pseudoscience?  I have found the easiest method is to note how words are defined and insure that the same definition is adhered to throughout the entire process of using the scientific method.  If the same definition is in fact adhered to, then the subject matter cannot easily be identified as pseudoscience.  If however, multiple definitions are used for the same word then we have an easy indication that the subject matter is pseudoscience. 

The next question that one might ask is, why is definition adherence so important?  The reason is that if someone proposes a definition in science which is not yet accepted, then they should show why the proposed definition is acceptable.  In the process of showing why a proposed definition is acceptable, the same proposed definition must be used in the process of showing why it is acceptable, otherwise the proposed definition cannot and should not be accepted. 

Pseudo-scientists will sometimes (if not typically) propose a definition which has not been accepted and in the process of showing why the proposed definition should be accepted will instead use an already accepted alternate definition.  The goal of the pseudo-scientist is to trick the intended audience into believing that the proposed definition should be accepted when all that was actually accomplished is showing why an already accepted alternate definition Is accepted.

For reference - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudoscience

WARNING: This is a rather long read.  Please forgive me.  Hopefully I made it as easy and interesting to read as possible.

Information

Dembski defines Information as “the actualization of one possibility to the exclusion of others”.  This definition appears to be more in line with “an event having occurred” within probability theory, and not information (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Probability).  Probabilities are given a value between 0 (0%) and 1 (100%) to indicate the likelihood of occurrence of an event.  The actualization of the probability is in fact stating that the “event has occurred”.  The way in which Dembski defines “information” is fairly useless as any event which occurs is by his definition, information.  A lightning strike is, according to his definition, information.  The Earth continuing to orbit the Sun is, according to his definition, information.

I say the definition that Dembski uses is fairly useless because it is a shallow method of disambiguation in regards to the word “information”, one which is not used within Information Theory.  Information, within Information Theory, is defined as “a sequence of symbols that can be interpreted as a message” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information).  This definition of information would be, contrary to what Dembski asserts, used by Information Theory which was developed by Claude E. Shannon as the transmission of signals across a communication channel.

In reality, “Information” as used in Information Theory, is caused by an intelligent agent and we know who the intelligent agent is.  The intelligent agent behind “a sequence of symbols that can be interpreted as a message” is human beings.  By redefining the word “information” to be an event which has occurred, Dembski associates something we know to be caused by an intelligent agent with all events that occur which will cause the reader to naturally assume that events that occur have to also be caused by an intelligent agent.

Complex Information

Here we see Dembski attempt to show how to measure information (an event having occurred) in an effort to make his definition useful, which is basically trying to prove my initial conclusion about his definition being useless as incorrect.  Dembski states “In measuring information it is not enough to count the number of possibilities that were excluded, and offer this number as the relevant measure of information”,  which seems to be a statement that we can’t simply calculate the probability of “an event having occurred” as relevant measure of information, so Dembski continues by stating “the problem is that a simple enumeration of excluded possibilities tells us nothing about how those possibilities were individuated in the first place.”   So apparently in order to measure “the actualization of one possibility to the exclusion of others”, we need to individuate the possibilities.

It is true that certain events have a higher probability of occurring than other events.  Dembski claims that events with lower probabilities contain more information than events with higher probabilities.  This claim by Dembski is also true, for instance learning that someone rolled a 2 after rolling a 6 sided die would be the acquisition of more information than learning that a fair coin flip landed tails, however he chooses an incorrect method of demonstrating his claim.   

The example provided by Dembski is being dealt a royal flush as opposed to everything else, when being dealt 5 cards out of a 52 card deck.  A royal flush however is individuated by humans, because humans invented the game of p oker.  In reality, a royal flush still has the same probability of occurring as any other random 5 cards being dealt, for instance a 2 of hearts, 5 of diamonds, 6 of clubs, jack of diamonds and king of spades, and thus has the same amount of information.  The only reason a royal flush would contain more information is if you consider that you’re playing p oker instead of just being dealt 5 random cards.  Dembski doesn’t explain how the fact that two sequences of 5 cards (one “random” and another a “royal flush”) with the same probability still somehow allows us to infer that one was designed but the other couldn’t have been designed.

Notice how Dembski returns to a traditional definition of information in this section.  The traditional definition of information being “a sequence of symbols that can be interpreted as a message”.  A 6 sided die has 6 symbols, if you roll it 6 times the sequence of symbols can be interpreted as a message.  A coin has 2 symbols, if you flip a fair coin 10 times the sequence of symbols can be interpreted as a message.  A 52 card deck has 52 symbols, if you are dealt 5 cards the sequence of symbols can be interpreted as a message.  Dembski has abandoned his definition of information which was “the actualization of one possibility to the exclusion of others”.

Things really start getting hysterical when Dembski attempts to justify his assertion that the obvious way to transform probabilities is with a negative logarithm by stating that the most convenient way for communication theorists to measure information is in number of bits transmitted across a communication channel.  I guess Dembski forgot that he himself stated that “The fundamental intuition underlying information is not, as is sometimes thought, the transmission of signals across a communication channel”.

Eventually, Dembski claims that information is a complexity-theoretic notion, and I am starting to feel like the word “information” is being abused worse than a 2 dollar crack whore.  Yes, somehow with all his mathematics, Dembski has redefined “information” to be “complexity”.  Actually, all Dembski has done with his mathematics in this section is define mutual information (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mutual_information) and conditional entropy (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conditional_entropy).

Dembski does define “complexity of information” when he states “Given an event A of probability P(A), I(A) = -log2P(A) measures the number of bits associated with the probability P(A).  We therefore <snip> say that the complexity of information increases as I(A) increases (or, correspondingly, as P(A) decreases)”.  This however is not the way in which complexity is defined in Information Theory (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Algorithmic_complexity_theory).  Granted there are many ways to define complexity, why Dembski chooses to not use the common definition of complexity in Information Theory when discussing “Intelligent Design as a Theory of Information” without showing why his definition is acceptable is intentionally deceptive.

As Wesley Elsberry and Jeffrey Shallit note in their article “Information Theory, Evolutionary Computation, and Dembski’s “Complex Specified Information”” (http://www.talkreason.org/articles/eandsdembski.pdf) –

“It is important to note that Dembski’s somewhat idiosyncratic definition of “complexity” is often at odds with the standard definition as used by algorithmic information theorists.  For Dembski the string – 111111111111111111111101111111111111111111 – if drawn uniformly at random from the space of all length-41 strings, has probability 2-41 and hence is “complex” (at least with respect to a “local probability bound”), whereas for the algorithmic information theorist, such a string is not complex because it has a very short description.”

What Dembski is doing is quite simply saying that the occurrence of an event with low probability is complex information, thus low probability is complex.  Of course, Dembski also acknowledges that more information also makes something complex.  I do not agree with Dembski in regards to low probability also being an indication of complexity, as he has failed to show why this is true.  In fact, Dembski has offered no examples at all showing why low probability infers complexity, which is contrary to accepted definitions of the word complexity in many other fields of science, including Information Theory.

Complex Specified Information

In this section, Dembski defines “Specified Information” as independently given patterned information.  “Unspecified Information” is pretty much everything else that isn’t a pattern or a “fabrication” (which is just a post hoc pattern read off already existing information). 

It is interesting that Dembski quotes Richard Dawkins as stating “Complicated things have some quality, specifiable in advance, that is highly unlikely to have been acquired by random chance alone.  In the case of living things, the quality that is specified in advance is . . . the ability to propagate genes in reproduction.” Note: I didn't put the ". . ." in the quote, Dembski did.  I have to ask, did Dawkins give Dembski the idea for “Complex Specified Information”?  It would seem so.  Of course, it is obvious that Dembski is quote mining Dawkins.  I suspect that Dembski has taken almost all of the individuals he has quoted in his article out of context.  In the case of the quoted Dawkins statement, I know Dawkins is referencing the fact that evolution is not random.  Dawkins is not talking about complex specified information.

So we’re clear, according to Dembski, “Complex Specified Information” is an independently given patterned occurrence of an event with low probability.  Of course, humans or some known cause are always the intelligent agent behind independent patterns.  I am willing to accept this definition of “Specified” provided by Dembski.  I do not however accept his definitions for “Complex” and “Information”.

One thing is for certain, CSI can apparently be used to prove that humans exist.  Dembski demonstrates this by stating that the 16-digit number on a VISA card is an example of CSI.  He states “the complexity of this number ensures that a would-be-thief cannot randomly pick a number and have it turn out to be a valid VISA card number”, however he abandons his previous definition of the word complexity and uses the traditional definition used in Information Theory.

In algorithmic information theory, the complexity of something is measured by the number of resources needed (such as bits) to specify or describe it.  It is the fact that a 16-digit number on a VISA card cannot be described any easier than the number itself is what makes it complex.  Probability has nothing to do with making a 16-digit number on a VISA card complex.  The same is true of his other examples such as a phone number, the numbers on bills, credit slips and purchase orders.  No, Mr. Dembski, CSI is not what makes the world go round.  CSI did not motivate the greedy Michael Douglas character in the movie Wall Street to lie, cheat and steal.  The total and absolute control of CSI was not the objective of the monomaniacal Ben Kingsley character in the movie Sneakers.  CSI is not an artifact of interest in any techno-thrillers.  CSI does not captivate anyone except for the gullible.

Intelligent Design

This section is useless as all Dembski does is attempt to show how CSI can indicate a human Intelligent Agent(designer) or other various animal Intelligent Agents(designers).  Low probability and the occurrence of an event have nothing to do with the indication however as the traditional accepted definitions of “Complex” and “Information” are far better indicators of human or known causes.   Is CSI found outside of human or other known causes?  No it isn’t, and Dembski doesn’t offer any examples in this article (although I know he does in his books, which has been debunked by others and myself already).

Still, even if Dembski was able to prove that CSI exists without human or other known causes, and the conclusion was that some supernatural being was the “Intelligent Designer”, we would be forced to ask, what designed the designer?  Subsequently, what designed the designer of the designer?  Etc.  Etc.  This ultimately makes ID self-defeating. 

CSI, as defined by Dembski, is not a reliable indicator of design.  If I myself were to define CSI - according to acceptable definitions - to make it a reliable indicator of design - I would define CSI as an independently given patterned sequence of symbols that can be interpreted as a message which is complex (as defined by algorithmic complexity theory).  Of course, Dembski has no interest in using my definition of CSI, he wants to use low probability of events that have occurred.  Proving that an “Intelligent Designer” exists with unproven definitions (simply because certain improbable events with an independent pattern have occurred) is incredibly easy to do.

For example, according to the definition of CSI proposed by Dembski, my finger prints exhibit CSI.  My finger prints are an independent pattern, the probability of my exact finger prints existing is unimaginably low and my finger prints exist therefore they are an event which has occurred.  I guess that means my finger prints were intelligently designed.  My definition of CSI would not prove an “Intelligent Designer” as the fingerprint itself is the symbol however it cannot be interpreted as a message and the symbol isn’t complex as it can simply be described as my fingerprint.  For reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fingerprint - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Finger - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Friction_ridge

Another example would be a snowflake, which according to the definition of CSI proposed by Dembski, exhibits CSI.  My definition of CSI however does not show a snowflake to exhibit CSI.  For reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snowflake - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_crystal

Notice how Dembski uses the words “general” or “generally” eight times in this section alone as opposed to 5 times in every other section combined.  I think even Dembski knows his definition of “Complex Specified Information” is pseudoscientific.  The reason Dembski uses the qualifiers “general” and “generally” is so he or anyone can selectively choose what exhibits CSI based on his incoherent definition of CSI.  All you have to do is sub in the accepted definitions or sub in the unaccepted definitions proposed by Dembski.

The Law of Conservation of Information

Of course in order for Dembski to come up with his new “Law of Conservation of Information”, he does exactly what can be expected when multiple distinct definitions are used for the same word.  Dembski is selectively subbing in accepted definitions for the words he’s defined in order to show what cannot exhibit CSI and is subbing in his unaccepted definitions to claim what does exhibit CSI.

The fact is, there is no “Law of Conservation of Information” at least not in how Dembski would define the word information. 

The only law regarding information that I am aware of is the one that state that information cannot be destroyed.  In that law, information is defined as physical information.  For reference:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_information - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No-deleting_theorem - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_information

My Conclusions

Dembski never actually supports his proposed definitions of the words contained within “Complex Specified Information” and instead uses acceptable definitions to try and distract the audience (or reader) from this fact. “Complex Specified Information” is garbage pseudoscience intended to prove “Intelligent Design” which is also – by extension – pseudoscience.

Neither “Complex Specified Information” or “Intelligent Design” can make any predictions, are not falsifiable, cannot provide a viable hypothesis and thus fail to use the scientific method.  All of these things make both “Complex Specified Information” and “Intelligent Design” not science.

If ID proponents can show how ID can be falsified, provide acceptable definitions, make meaningful predictions and actually use the scientific method, then perhaps it can be considered science and be taken seriously by the scientific community.

Ultimately, “Intelligent Design” should not, without any doubt, ever be taught to anyone, especially school students.  At least, not until it can prove to actually be scientific.

If you would like to read about how science actually works, you might as well start with one of my favorite topics - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_relativity

Accurate or not, this is a commendable effort. At the very least, I feel obligated to read through it...but....I must be honest...I do not know if I have the time to do a complete review and response. I will certainly try, though.

Online Dante

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I am not a scientist, I didn’t take an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism,

Well, at least we have something in common then.

Attention forum members! Anybody that has taken an oath to worship naturalism, please raise your hand!

*crickets*


Quote
and, unlike the theory, which does not posit a God,

Again, it's only because no gods are necessary for this scientific explanation.

Quote
I do.

That's your problem, not ours, nor is it the problem of science.

As I, and others have said before:

If science found evidence of a god, or any other supernatural phenomena, it would cease to be supernatural, and simply be natural. But science looks for causes and explanations, so if the cause and the explanation truly was some sort of god, science would accept that too. As would atheists, by the way.

The supernatural has never, let me repeat, NEVER been needed to expalin anything in our universe. Not even once.

Now, let me be point blank. Do you, BS, really think there is a global conspiracy to negate your god? Do you really think all those scientists from all over the globe, from all walks of life and culture, are covering up evidence of your god?

Really?
Actually it doesn't. One could conceivably be all-powerful but not exceptionally intelligent.

Offline SevenPatch

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What authority is it that limits me (or anyone else) from using the scientific method to establish and test a non-natural hypothesis?

I’m not sure that there is an authority other than the scientific method itself perhaps.  The scientific method is designed to allow for more accurate statements to be made about reality.  Does that mean 100% accuracy?  No it doesn’t, because there is so much more that we don’t know than we do know.  Actually, it is almost certain that what we currently know isn’t even 100% accurate as there is likely more to know.  What the scientific method does do however is attempt to eliminate as many factors that might make a statement less accurate.

The problem is, before you can form a non-natural hypothesis by using the scientific method, you must first observe the non-natural.  It is true there are two different ways to observe anything, one is to directly observe and the other is to indirectly observe.  Whichever way we observe the non-natural, the observation should be reproducible (a observation that has only happened once and never again will not be useful and could very well turn out to be a mistaken observation by the observer).

Next, once we have made enough observations of the non-natural, we should be able to form a hypothesis about the non-natural, from which we can make useful predictions about the non-natural.  For instance we could include in our hypothesis the following:

What the nature of the non-natural is. 
What behavior the non-natural exhibits. 
How we expect the non-natural to behave under different circumstances or conditions.
What various effects the non-natural has on the natural.

From the hypothesis we could make predictions about the non-natural which could be tested by various methods under various circumstances or conditions.  The predictions should be able to show whether the hypothesis is correct (verifiable) or incorrect (falsifiable).  If the hypothesis has been verified then the observations, hypothesis, predictions, tests and methods should be reviewed and confirmed by others (including experts in the specific fields of interest utilized during the process).  If the hypothesis has been falsified then it needs to be revised and all previous steps should be reviewed.

Observation is the first hurdle that must be overcome before a hypothesis can be formed.  How do we observe the non-natural?  Currently, we can only observe the natural.

And, yes, I am one of those babblers that employs ID as a negative argument against evolution. I am not a scientist, I didn’t take an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism, and, unlike the theory, which does not posit a God, I do.


I don’t think anyone takes an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism.  Nor do I think anyone worships methodological atheism naturalism.

That might be your biggest flaw, you think other people worship methodological atheism naturalism.  Another flaw might be that you think atheism and naturalism are somehow related when they’re not.

I have a few questions for you BibleStudent.

Do you think I worship atheism?

Do you think I worship methodological naturalism?

Do you think I want there to be no God?
"Shut him up! We have a lot invested in this ride - SHUT HIM UP! Look at my furrows of worry! Look at my big bank account, and my family! This just HAS to be real!" - Bill Hicks

Offline median

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I am going to focus on this because it gets to the central issue of our present conflict and back to the topic of the OP.

What authority is it that limits me (or anyone else) from using the scientific method to establish and test a non-natural hypothesis?

And, yes, I am one of those babblers that employs ID as a negative argument against evolution. I am not a scientist, I didn’t take an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism, and, unlike the theory, which does not posit a God, I do.


Since you've just admitted that you use ID as a negative argument, you've already lost. Science requires EVIDENCE to demonstrate claims - not blind assertions based on hear-say. Why on earth would you think it is a good thing to use negative arguments (which basically amount to the argument from incredulity fallacy)?

Did you know there are lots of practicing Christians who accept methodological naturalism as the way in which science must operate?? You are falsely attributing atheism (the lack of theism) to the scientific method. Now, if you'd like to have a debate about what science is, fine, but don't try to pretend that anyone who doesn't accept supernatural or miraculous claims as science is atheist - b/c that is just nonsense. I doubt that Old Church Guy (on this forum) for example, would agree with you and he professes Christianity (that, and he's actually honest and decent to discuss things with b/c he generally gives credit where credit is due).

You can "posit a God" all you want but until you can actually demonstrate your claim there is no reason to accept it is as anything other than superstition.
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Carl Sagan

Offline SevenPatch

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<snip>


Accurate or not, this is a commendable effort. At the very least, I feel obligated to read through it...but....I must be honest...I do not know if I have the time to do a complete review and response. I will certainly try, though.

If there is a specific point of my review you would like to discuss, please ask.  I'd be happy to discuss.

In short, my review identified that Dembski never provides acceptable definitions for "Complex" and "Information" and that Dembski attempts to trick the reader into believing he did provide acceptable definitions.
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Offline BibleStudent

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Now, let me be point blank. Do you, BS, really think there is a global conspiracy to negate your god? Do you really think all those scientists from all over the globe, from all walks of life and culture, are covering up evidence of your god?

Really?

Of course not. I guess I need to limit my use of hyperbole. Some of you all take everything quite literally.

Offline BibleStudent

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What authority is it that limits me (or anyone else) from using the scientific method to establish and test a non-natural hypothesis?

I’m not sure that there is an authority other than the scientific method itself perhaps.  The scientific method is designed to allow for more accurate statements to be made about reality.  Does that mean 100% accuracy?  No it doesn’t, because there is so much more that we don’t know than we do know.  Actually, it is almost certain that what we currently know isn’t even 100% accurate as there is likely more to know.  What the scientific method does do however is attempt to eliminate as many factors that might make a statement less accurate.

The problem is, before you can form a non-natural hypothesis by using the scientific method, you must first observe the non-natural.  It is true there are two different ways to observe anything, one is to directly observe and the other is to indirectly observe.  Whichever way we observe the non-natural, the observation should be reproducible (a observation that has only happened once and never again will not be useful and could very well turn out to be a mistaken observation by the observer).

Next, once we have made enough observations of the non-natural, we should be able to form a hypothesis about the non-natural, from which we can make useful predictions about the non-natural.  For instance we could include in our hypothesis the following:

What the nature of the non-natural is. 
What behavior the non-natural exhibits. 
How we expect the non-natural to behave under different circumstances or conditions.
What various effects the non-natural has on the natural.

From the hypothesis we could make predictions about the non-natural which could be tested by various methods under various circumstances or conditions.  The predictions should be able to show whether the hypothesis is correct (verifiable) or incorrect (falsifiable).  If the hypothesis has been verified then the observations, hypothesis, predictions, tests and methods should be reviewed and confirmed by others (including experts in the specific fields of interest utilized during the process).  If the hypothesis has been falsified then it needs to be revised and all previous steps should be reviewed.

Observation is the first hurdle that must be overcome before a hypothesis can be formed.  How do we observe the non-natural?  Currently, we can only observe the natural.

How does abiogenesis fit into this?


Quote
I don’t think anyone takes an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism.  Nor do I think anyone worships methodological atheism naturalism.

That might be your biggest flaw, you think other people worship methodological atheism naturalism.  Another flaw might be that you think atheism and naturalism are somehow related when they’re not.

I have a few questions for you BibleStudent.

Do you think I worship atheism?

Do you think I worship methodological naturalism?

Do you think I want there to be no God?

No, no, and I don't know.

Offline BibleStudent

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I am going to focus on this because it gets to the central issue of our present conflict and back to the topic of the OP.

What authority is it that limits me (or anyone else) from using the scientific method to establish and test a non-natural hypothesis?

And, yes, I am one of those babblers that employs ID as a negative argument against evolution. I am not a scientist, I didn’t take an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism, and, unlike the theory, which does not posit a God, I do.


Since you've just admitted that you use ID as a negative argument, you've already lost. Science requires EVIDENCE to demonstrate claims - not blind assertions based on hear-say. Why on earth would you think it is a good thing to use negative arguments (which basically amount to the argument from incredulity fallacy)?

Did you know there are lots of practicing Christians who accept methodological naturalism as the way in which science must operate?? You are falsely attributing atheism (the lack of theism) to the scientific method. Now, if you'd like to have a debate about what science is, fine, but don't try to pretend that anyone who doesn't accept supernatural or miraculous claims as science is atheist - b/c that is just nonsense. I doubt that Old Church Guy (on this forum) for example, would agree with you and he professes Christianity (that, and he's actually honest and decent to discuss things with b/c he generally gives credit where credit is due).

You can "posit a God" all you want but until you can actually demonstrate your claim there is no reason to accept it is as anything other than superstition.

I guess an apology is in order. As I mentioned a couple of posts above, I honestly didn't think some of my hyperbole would be taken so literally.

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I guess I need to limit my use of hyperbole. Some of you all take everything quite literally.
As I mentioned a couple of posts above, I honestly didn't think some of my hyperbole would be taken so literally.

I had the same issue. My advice would be to mark hyperbole as being such using [ nb][ /nb] (without the spaces).
The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
We choose our own gods.

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Offline SevenPatch

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What authority is it that limits me (or anyone else) from using the scientific method to establish and test a non-natural hypothesis?

I’m not sure that there is an authority other than the scientific method itself perhaps.  The scientific method is designed to allow for more accurate statements to be made about reality.  Does that mean 100% accuracy?  No it doesn’t, because there is so much more that we don’t know than we do know.  Actually, it is almost certain that what we currently know isn’t even 100% accurate as there is likely more to know.  What the scientific method does do however is attempt to eliminate as many factors that might make a statement less accurate.

The problem is, before you can form a non-natural hypothesis by using the scientific method, you must first observe the non-natural.  It is true there are two different ways to observe anything, one is to directly observe and the other is to indirectly observe.  Whichever way we observe the non-natural, the observation should be reproducible (a observation that has only happened once and never again will not be useful and could very well turn out to be a mistaken observation by the observer).

Next, once we have made enough observations of the non-natural, we should be able to form a hypothesis about the non-natural, from which we can make useful predictions about the non-natural.  For instance we could include in our hypothesis the following:

What the nature of the non-natural is. 
What behavior the non-natural exhibits. 
How we expect the non-natural to behave under different circumstances or conditions.
What various effects the non-natural has on the natural.

From the hypothesis we could make predictions about the non-natural which could be tested by various methods under various circumstances or conditions.  The predictions should be able to show whether the hypothesis is correct (verifiable) or incorrect (falsifiable).  If the hypothesis has been verified then the observations, hypothesis, predictions, tests and methods should be reviewed and confirmed by others (including experts in the specific fields of interest utilized during the process).  If the hypothesis has been falsified then it needs to be revised and all previous steps should be reviewed.

Observation is the first hurdle that must be overcome before a hypothesis can be formed.  How do we observe the non-natural?  Currently, we can only observe the natural.

How does abiogenesis fit into this?

Currently there are many different hypotheses within the abiogenesis hypothesis.  All are in the process of acquiring more observations, making predictions and testing those predictions but currently I don’t think science can make any accurate statements since there is a lot we still don’t know.  This is why abiogenesis is still a hypothesis and not a theory.

A hypothesis isn’t considered a theory until sufficient observation, evidence and testing has been made by the entire scientific community and the hypothesis is verified by the scientific community.

I suspect however you are specifically referring to a question “how can we observe the origin of life if we weren’t there”.

Well, obviously we can’t directly observe the origin of life that currently exists.  We might be able to indirectly observe the origin of life however by directly observing evidence for the conditions of Earth and the universe when life originated.  If we have sufficient evidence of what the conditions were when life originated then we can perform tests to see what happens under those conditions.  Does the necessary building blocks for life arise due to those conditions?  I would guess ultimately we might want to actually observe new life arise, however there is a large possibility (almost certainty) that the timescale for this to occur is beyond a human lifetime and might likely take millions of years under varying conditions.

I am personally doubtful that abiogenesis will ever be more than a hypothesis as it will be very difficult to come to a consensus about the origin of life.  Still, certain conditions have shown to produce necessary building blocks for life and it is not known to be impossible for life to arise from those building blocks, especially since we don’t actually know what early life was like.

Still, even if it can be shown conclusively that life can arise from the early building blocks, that will not mean that God does not exist.  It also won’t mean that was what actually happened either, it will only mean that it was certainly possible.

Additionally, even if we never figure out how life began, that won’t prove that God or an Intelligent Designer exists, it will simply mean that we don’t know how life began.


I have a few questions for you BibleStudent.

Do you think I worship atheism?

Do you think I worship methodological naturalism?

Do you think I want there to be no God?

No, no, and I don't know.

You are correct, I don’t worship atheism.  You are also correct that I don’t worship methodological naturalism. 

So you know, I actually would prefer there were a God.  First, I would assume all my questions about God would be answered wholly and would make perfect logical and rational sense to me.  Second, there are other questions about the universe and human history I would hope to learn about (which won’t be answered in my lifetime).

Maybe those two reasons are selfish (actually I’m pretty sure the second one is selfish) although one unselfish reason for me wanting there to be a God is so that other people (and animals) wouldn’t have to suffer.
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Offline SevenPatch

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I guess I need to limit my use of hyperbole. Some of you all take everything quite literally.
As I mentioned a couple of posts above, I honestly didn't think some of my hyperbole would be taken so literally.

I had the same issue. My advice would be to mark hyperbole as being such using [ nb][ /nb] (without the spaces).

I personally don't think BibleStudent is very good at using hyperbole as typically hyperbole is an exaggeration of a truth or at least partial truth, not something that is false.

For instance, if I were to say "Watching my brother run is like watching grass grow".  My brother may be a slow runner but it is an exaggeration to say he is as slow as grass growing.

EDIT:  Actually, what BibleStudent calls hyperbole might be more accurately be described as sarcasm as sarcasm can be an exaggeration of something that isn't true.  Still, that type of sarcasm is really hard to pick up on an internet forum.  BibleStudent, it might be useful to note your hyperbole/sarcastic statements as One Above All suggests.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 06:33:48 PM by SevenPatch »
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Offline BibleStudent

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I suspect however you are specifically referring to a question “how can we observe the origin of life if we weren’t there”.

Well, obviously we can’t directly observe the origin of life that currently exists.  We might be able to indirectly observe the origin of life however by directly observing evidence for the conditions of Earth and the universe when life originated.  If we have sufficient evidence of what the conditions were when life originated then we can perform tests to see what happens under those conditions.  Does the necessary building blocks for life arise due to those conditions?  I would guess ultimately we might want to actually observe new life arise, however there is a large possibility (almost certainty) that the timescale for this to occur is beyond a human lifetime and might likely take millions of years under varying conditions.

Tough to sell me on the rationale for excluding ID from the scientific method when we have hypothesis for abiogenesis which has also never been observed. The argument is rather weak.

Offline Nam

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Let's see...ID is made up Creationist bullshit and the scientific method can only determine that it indeed is Creationist bullshit. You're right! Woohoo! Pat yourself on the back! You did it!

You still sound stupid.

-Nam
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Offline BibleStudent

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I guess I need to limit my use of hyperbole. Some of you all take everything quite literally.
As I mentioned a couple of posts above, I honestly didn't think some of my hyperbole would be taken so literally.

I had the same issue. My advice would be to mark hyperbole as being such using [ nb][ /nb] (without the spaces).

I personally don't think BibleStudent is very good at using hyperbole as typically hyperbole is an exaggeration of a truth or at least partial truth, not something that is false.

For instance, if I were to say "Watching my brother run is like watching grass grow".  My brother may be a slow runner but it is an exaggeration to say he is as slow as grass growing.

EDIT:  Actually, what BibleStudent calls hyperbole might be more accurately be described as sarcasm as sarcasm can be an exaggeration of something that isn't true.  Still, that type of sarcasm is really hard to pick up on an internet forum.  BibleStudent, it might be useful to note your hyperbole/sarcastic statements as One Above All suggests.

I think you are really stretching it here in an effort to critique my use of hyperbole.

But, yes, I could see labelling it as saracsm, too.

I do think you are correct in your assessment that I am not vey good at being a smart a**. Need to be more obvious when I am.

Offline Nam

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See my post above as a good example of not only being a "smartass" but also an "asshole". ;)

-Nam
A god is like a rock: it does absolutely nothing until someone or something forces it to do something. The only capability the rock has is doing nothing until another force compels it physically to move.

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Offline SevenPatch

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I suspect however you are specifically referring to a question “how can we observe the origin of life if we weren’t there”.

Well, obviously we can’t directly observe the origin of life that currently exists.  We might be able to indirectly observe the origin of life however by directly observing evidence for the conditions of Earth and the universe when life originated.  If we have sufficient evidence of what the conditions were when life originated then we can perform tests to see what happens under those conditions.  Does the necessary building blocks for life arise due to those conditions?  I would guess ultimately we might want to actually observe new life arise, however there is a large possibility (almost certainty) that the timescale for this to occur is beyond a human lifetime and might likely take millions of years under varying conditions.

Tough to sell me on the rationale for excluding ID from the scientific method when we have hypothesis for abiogenesis which has also never been observed. The argument is rather weak.

I never said we should exclude ID from the scientific method.  I'm saying ID fails to use the scientific method.

Abiogenesis hypotheses on the other hand use the scientific method properly.  Did you even read my post?  I was going to write about this but I'd just be repeating myself.  Indirect observations can be made, direct observations can be made of tests made based on the indirect observations. 

Nothing is stopping ID proponents from using the scientific method properly, except for maybe neither direct or indirect observations can be made.  ID proponents can't even make observations based on testing.
"Shut him up! We have a lot invested in this ride - SHUT HIM UP! Look at my furrows of worry! Look at my big bank account, and my family! This just HAS to be real!" - Bill Hicks

Offline SevenPatch

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I think you are really stretching it here in an effort to critique my use of hyperbole.

But, yes, I could see labelling it as saracsm, too.

I do think you are correct in your assessment that I am not vey good at being a smart a**. Need to be more obvious when I am.

I only meant that it appears I view hyperbole as something different than what you view it as.  What you call hyperbole is what I would call sarcasm.

I don't necessarily have a problem with either, although they can be difficult to recognize.
"Shut him up! We have a lot invested in this ride - SHUT HIM UP! Look at my furrows of worry! Look at my big bank account, and my family! This just HAS to be real!" - Bill Hicks

Offline SevenPatch

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Imagine the Scientific Method is like an obstacle course.  Any idea which hopes to become a theory is like a person who has to complete the obstacle course.

For example we got 3 ideas, or three people. 

The first person, General Realitivity, got up earlier in the morning and started the course before the other 2.  This person made it past every obstacle, and completed the course successfully.

The second person, Abiogenisis, was up next later in the day.  This person made it by the first few obstacles but still hasn't finished the course yet and probably has a long way to go still.

The third person, Intelligent Design, is up next.  This person came to the first obstacle, said "Fuck It" and bypassed all the obstacles completely and is now claiming to have finished the course, without actually having finished the course.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 08:45:39 PM by SevenPatch »
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Offline Ataraxia

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Even if this were accurate, why are you so opposed to it? What if IDT was actually capable of demonstrating that intelligence is a plausible explanation for the complexity we observe? What is it that motivates you and others to smear and discredit an effort that may someday provide insight into how life began? If you built a brick house (the ToE), would you be worried about a little wind (IDT) blowing it over?

Because the effort is a dishonest argument to show the existence of some intelligence that exists externally to nature. You simply cannot do it using observations of nature and methods based on natural cause and effect.
Perhaps it is a plausibele explanation. Perhaps there is a intelligence out there pulling levels and pushing buttons so that life, the universe and everything can exist, but you have no method for falsifying or testing that, and hijacking a naturalistic method to try and do that is wrong and at worst dishonest.

Oh, and why are you using the ToE as an analogy here if ID isn't against it? You're showing double standards by contradicting what you've previously claimed.

I am going to focus on this because it gets to the central issue of our present conflict and back to the topic of the OP.

....and the vast majority of my post that you haven't responded to is what exactly?

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What authority is it that limits me (or anyone else) from using the scientific method to establish and test a non-natural hypothesis?

That's like asking what authority limits the use of plastic as a magnet. Methodological naturalism is intrinsic to science, therefore anything outside of nature cannot be investigated using the scientific method. I don't know many other ways I can state this simply.

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And, yes, I am one of those babblers that employs ID as a negative argument against evolution.

So when you said this:

That is substantially inaccurate. The mission of IDT is to demonstrate that an intelligence (be it one or many) caused life to begin. You are buying into the babbling of others that accuses IDT of being a negative argument against evolution. There are, likewise, babblers who claim that evolution is a theory to disprove God. Both may be accurate to a certain extent but the scientists testing both theories would deny that….as they should.

and this:

No. IDT explains how life originated.

and this:

Once again, you are conflating IDT and evolution. Please stop and think. Better yet, spend a little time examining the scientific work that is being done with IDT so you can gain a better understanding of what IDT is all about. You clearly have a distorted view of IDT.

...you were what? Forgetful? Indecisive? Lying?

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I am not a scientist,

No, you're not. You've demonstrated that rather well. However neither am I, but like everybody else on this plant, empiricism plays a crucial yet unnoticed part in everyday life, but you throw that out when evaluating something you probably consider to be the most important decision in your life. All we want to know is what is it that supercedes empiricism as a means to gauging what is real/true?

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I didn’t take an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism, and, unlike the theory, which does not posit a God, I do.


So effing what?

Please don't project onto others the concept of worship that you adhere to. Methodological naturalism is used by atheists and theists alike as a means of investigating the natural world we observe. If you're going to come on here and indirectly spout that science (and any other discipline that is intrinsically methodologically naturalistic) is atheist and there to say/show god doesn't exist then I am going to tell you that you are wrong and why you are wrong. I and others have done that, but you don't listen - you're not interested. You're too busy obsessing over a strawman that you have built up. Stop it, realise science isn't there to say/show god doesn't exist and learn to accept that it doesn't matter what hypotheses or theories science comes up with because it doesn't destroy the foundation of your beliefs. All it may do is alter some of the add-ons.
"God is a comedian playing to an audience too afraid to laugh." - Voltaire

Offline BibleStudent

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Even if this were accurate, why are you so opposed to it? What if IDT was actually capable of demonstrating that intelligence is a plausible explanation for the complexity we observe? What is it that motivates you and others to smear and discredit an effort that may someday provide insight into how life began? If you built a brick house (the ToE), would you be worried about a little wind (IDT) blowing it over?

Because the effort is a dishonest argument to show the existence of some intelligence that exists externally to nature. You simply cannot do it using observations of nature and methods based on natural cause and effect.
Perhaps it is a plausibele explanation. Perhaps there is a intelligence out there pulling levels and pushing buttons so that life, the universe and everything can exist, but you have no method for falsifying or testing that, and hijacking a naturalistic method to try and do that is wrong and at worst dishonest.

Oh, and why are you using the ToE as an analogy here if ID isn't against it? You're showing double standards by contradicting what you've previously claimed.

I am going to focus on this because it gets to the central issue of our present conflict and back to the topic of the OP.

....and the vast majority of my post that you haven't responded to is what exactly?

This is what the majority of your post was about….trying to demonstrate that methodological naturalism precludes ID because, in your opinion, it cannot be ‘observed’ or ‘falsified.’ If there are sections of your last post that you would like me to specifically address, I would be glad to do so.

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What authority is it that limits me (or anyone else) from using the scientific method to establish and test a non-natural hypothesis?

That's like asking what authority limits the use of plastic as a magnet. Methodological naturalism is intrinsic to science, therefore anything outside of nature cannot be investigated using the scientific method. I don't know many other ways I can state this simply.

You are doing a poor job of explaining “why” it is intrinsic to science. This argument that methodological naturalism is the only means for determining life’s origins is faulty… and debatable, even amongst some in the scientific community.
Perhaps you would like to explain how abiogenesis fits into your argument. How can it be ‘observed?’


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So when you said this:

That is substantially inaccurate. The mission of IDT is to demonstrate that an intelligence (be it one or many) caused life to begin. You are buying into the babbling of others that accuses IDT of being a negative argument against evolution. There are, likewise, babblers who claim that evolution is a theory to disprove God. Both may be accurate to a certain extent but the scientists testing both theories would deny that….as they should.

and this:

No. IDT explains how life originated.

and this:

Once again, you are conflating IDT and evolution. Please stop and think. Better yet, spend a little time examining the scientific work that is being done with IDT so you can gain a better understanding of what IDT is all about. You clearly have a distorted view of IDT.

...you were what? Forgetful? Indecisive? Lying?

Exactly how is it that I demonstrated dishonesty, forgetfulness, or indecisiveness? My posts seek merely to clarify the intent of IDT by explaining how it differed from the ToE.

How I use ID to determine the validity of the ToE and to support my own personal beliefs does nothing to eliminate the actual science behind either.

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I am not a scientist,

No, you're not. You've demonstrated that rather well. However neither am I, but like everybody else on this plant, empiricism plays a crucial yet unnoticed part in everyday life, but you throw that out when evaluating something you probably consider to be the most important decision in your life. All we want to know is what is it that supercedes empiricism as a means to gauging what is real/true?

It is a false charge to accuse me of throwing out empiricism. It has its place and is capable of providing us with a basis for establishing a certain level of realism and validity to what we hear, see, smell, taste, and touch. Yet, can we actually rely on it to be 100% accurate and/or are we correct in concluding that it precludes rational thinking? Consider the following, written by Dr Gordon H. Clark:

“Empiricism is perhaps a common sense view. It has also been the view of many philosophers. But it faces insuperable objections. In the first place, the senses of men and animals produce conflicting data. Dogs, for example, are supposed to be color blind, but they have sensations of sound when men hear nothing. For that matter, men differ among themselves. Esoteric artists see colors in grass that no common man finds there. Which of these sensations correctly represent the color of the object seen? In some cases the senses contradict each other, as when a stick half submerged looks bent but feels straight. Then there are mirages and other optical illusions. While they last, we cannot tell that they are illusions; and we cannot tell whether our present sensations are illusions. Again, are we dreaming or not? An elementary textbook on psychology will describe many of these phenomena, with the result that it is impossible to trust what we call sensory perception.” (The Trinity Review, September 1979)

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I didn’t take an oath to worship methodological atheism naturalism, and, unlike the theory, which does not posit a God, I do.


So effing what?

Please don't project onto others the concept of worship that you adhere to. Methodological naturalism is used by atheists and theists alike as a means of investigating the natural world we observe. If you're going to come on here and indirectly spout that science (and any other discipline that is intrinsically methodologically naturalistic) is atheist and there to say/show god doesn't exist then I am going to tell you that you are wrong and why you are wrong. I and others have done that, but you don't listen - you're not interested. You're too busy obsessing over a strawman that you have built up. Stop it, realise science isn't there to say/show god doesn't exist and learn to accept that it doesn't matter what hypotheses or theories science comes up with because it doesn't destroy the foundation of your beliefs. All it may do is alter some of the add-ons.

You must have missed my earlier posts concerning some of the hyperbole/sarcasm I used in this post. It was obviously received a little more literally than I had expected it to be.

Why? Why is science not there to say/show god does or does not exist? To say that it is incapable of doing so is ridiculous because you cannot possibly know that. Its utter nonsense to assert this. are you ignoring the fact that methodological naturalism uses circular reasoning as its construct and yet you and others will continue to cite it as the ONLY logical and valid means for establishing facts about our reality.

My position is that we should be allowing the door of science to be kicked open a little so we can investigate the ID argument. If IDT was blatantly and clearly distorting the scientific method as its means, I would be the first to criticize it.

Frankly, I am astonished at the level of resistance to explore ID using the scientific method when the method has provided a means for determining innumerable things. The objections that have been made bear an acute tone of atheistic maneuvering over anything else.




Offline Hatter23

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My position is that we should be allowing the door of science to be kicked open a little so we can investigate the ID argument. If IDT was blatantly and clearly distorting the scientific method as its means, I would be the first to criticize it.



The lie is so blatant here, you made me laugh out loud.
An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

And you should feel guilty for this. Give me money.

Offline Ataraxia

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This is what the majority of your post was about….trying to demonstrate that methodological naturalism precludes ID because, in your opinion, it cannot be ‘observed’ or ‘falsified.’ If there are sections of your last post that you would like me to specifically address, I would be glad to do so.

I also critiqued ID, alluding to complexity breeding less complex things which results in an intelligent designer requiring an intelligent designer ad infinitum.

I was also showing how contradictory you came across by saying ID isn't an argument against evolution when you'd previously made it clear that you treated it as if it was.

I was also explaining how ID can still be believed even if current hypotheses of abiogenesis and the ToE via natural selection were accepted in full.

I was also asking you for an alternative method for falsifying supernatural claims.

I was also asking you to acknowledge the difference between philosophical naturalism and methodological naturalism instead of lumping them both together.

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You are doing a poor job of explaining “why” it is intrinsic to science. This argument that methodological naturalism is the only means for determining life’s origins is faulty… and debatable, even amongst some in the scientific community.
Perhaps you would like to explain how abiogenesis fits into your argument. How can it be ‘observed?’

Perhaps I am doing a poor job of explaining, or perhaps you are doing a poor job of understanding because you start with a strawman assumption.

Please cite where I have claimed that methodological naturalism is the only means for determining life's origin? If you actually bothered to read and understand the point I'm trying to make, then you'd realise that methodological naturalism does not eliminate ID because ID can be the cause of the natural phenomena that causes life's origin.
I'd also like you to cite where amongst the scientific community it is debated that methodological naturalism is the only means to determining life's origin, because the thing is, when doing science, you do not start with the assumption that this method is the only way of determining anything. You would need another method that would determine whether methodological naturalism was the only way of determining things, which if successful, would obviously show it to be false due to that other method being able to determine something.

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Exactly how is it that I demonstrated dishonesty, forgetfulness, or indecisiveness? My posts seek merely to clarify the intent of IDT by explaining how it differed from the ToE.

Your posts are all over the place. One minute you're saying that you don't accept the ToE in full and that you see ID as a better explanation, then you're saying that ID isn't a negative argument against evolution, then you're saying that you employ ID as a negative argument against evolution, and now you seek to clarify the intent of ID by explaining how it differs from the ToE. Make your mind up because the bit I have bolded contradicts the rest.

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How I use ID to determine the validity of the ToE and to support my own personal beliefs does nothing to eliminate the actual science behind either.

There is no science behind ID because the conclusion is a violation of the scientific method.

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It is a false charge to accuse me of throwing out empiricism. It has its place and is capable of providing us with a basis for establishing a certain level of realism and validity to what we hear, see, smell, taste, and touch.

It is not false because you do throw it out. If you're not throwing it out you'd be able to present empirical evidence for the existence of god, but you've admitted you can't.

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Yet, can we actually rely on it to be 100% accurate and/or are we correct in concluding that it precludes rational thinking? Consider the following, written by Dr Gordon H. Clark:

“Empiricism is perhaps a common sense view. It has also been the view of many philosophers. But it faces insuperable objections. In the first place, the senses of men and animals produce conflicting data. Dogs, for example, are supposed to be color blind, but they have sensations of sound when men hear nothing. For that matter, men differ among themselves. Esoteric artists see colors in grass that no common man finds there. Which of these sensations correctly represent the color of the object seen? In some cases the senses contradict each other, as when a stick half submerged looks bent but feels straight. Then there are mirages and other optical illusions. While they last, we cannot tell that they are illusions; and we cannot tell whether our present sensations are illusions. Again, are we dreaming or not? An elementary textbook on psychology will describe many of these phenomena, with the result that it is impossible to trust what we call sensory perception.” (The Trinity Review, September 1979)

I'm not even arguing that we can rely on it to be 100% accurate. I'm asking you to present an alternative to empiricism that you use to gauging what is real/true.

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You must have missed my earlier posts concerning some of the hyperbole/sarcasm I used in this post. It was obviously received a little more literally than I had expected it to be.

Perhaps you should make it clearer that you are using hypberole/sarcasm as it is, more often than not, hard to pick up in written text alone.

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Why? Why is science not there to say/show god does or does not exist? To say that it is incapable of doing so is ridiculous because you cannot possibly know that. Its utter nonsense to assert this.

It is not an assertion. It is a description of what science entails. Also, if I told you again why, would you listen? If you posit god as natural then science has the potential to say/show god does or does not exist. Are you positing god as a natural phenomenon?

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are you ignoring the fact that methodological naturalism uses circular reasoning as its construct and yet you and others will continue to cite it as the ONLY logical and valid means for establishing facts about our reality.

Please cite where I have said that methodological naturalism is the only logical and valid means for establishing facts about our reality?

Methodological naturalism is not circular. It would only be circular if it took the philosophical approach to naturalism, which it does not. Also above, I have explained that you can't use methodological naturalism to determine whether or not it itself is the only way for determining what is real/true.

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My position is that we should be allowing the door of science to be kicked open a little so we can investigate the ID argument.

So you admit that currently the scientific method can't be used to investigate ID? Finally it's sunken in....

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If IDT was blatantly and clearly distorting the scientific method as its means, I would be the first to criticize it.

Well, as it can clearly be inferred from above that you do currently see it distorting the scientific method (otherwise why see the need to allow the door of science to be kicked open a little so we can investigate ID), then I'll look forward to you joining me in criticising it.
 
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Frankly, I am astonished at the level of resistance to explore ID using the scientific method when the method has provided a means for determining innumerable things. The objections that have been made bear an acute tone of atheistic maneuvering over anything else.

Yes, the scientific method has provided a means for determining innumerable things, but all those things had one thing in common - they were all based in nature. There is no atheistic maneuvering as this has nothing to do with atheism. This is strictly science we are discussing, whether you're atheist, theist or Australian. I suggest if you really have an issue with this, take it up with a theistic scientist and they'll tell you exactly what I'm telling you.
"God is a comedian playing to an audience too afraid to laugh." - Voltaire

Offline wheels5894

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For anyone who still thinks ID is a good explanation and for those who juts want to check, I present... tada!



Still sold on ID?
No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such that its falshood would be more miraculous than the facts it endeavours to establish. (David Hume)

Offline Nam

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You notice that female god's apple didn't actually hide anything?[1]

-Nam
 1. I'm such a perv
A god is like a rock: it does absolutely nothing until someone or something forces it to do something. The only capability the rock has is doing nothing until another force compels it physically to move.

The right to be heard does not automatically include the right to be taken seriously - Humphrey

Offline Graybeard

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Using taxpayer money to promote religion.

I take it you don't see any of that as a problem, BibleStudent?

No. They are using taxpayer money to present alternate theories and promote critical thinking.
Excellent! So you would support equal teaching of various other creation myths... say the Hindu myth or any of these: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_creation_myths ? Now there are quite a lot of them, so, say, 3 a week and the Judeo-Christian creation myth would be no more or less prominent than any of the others?

I agree. Teach the controversy! The controversy is that only one creation myth is taught.
RELIGION, n. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable. Ambrose Bierce

Offline Quesi

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I agree. Teach the controversy! The controversy is that only one creation myth is taught.

I agree!  I think that the creation stories provide us with amazing insight into the problem solving strategies implemented by ancient people throughout the world. 

Every single society asked the BIG questions.  How did our world come to be?  How did our people come to be? 

Not surprisingly, the protagonists in each story are representative of the folks telling the story! 

Online Boots

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I agree!  I think that the creation stories provide us with amazing insight into the problem solving strategies implemented by ancient people throughout the world. 

See the turtle of enormous girth!  Upon his back he holds the earth!
* Religion: institutionalized superstition, period.

"Many of my ultra-conservative Republican friends...have trouble accepting the idea God is not a Republican. " ~OldChurchGuy

"We humans may never figure out the truth, but I prefer trying to find it over pretending we know it."  ~ParkingPlaces

Offline BibleStudent

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Using taxpayer money to promote religion.

I take it you don't see any of that as a problem, BibleStudent?

No. They are using taxpayer money to present alternate theories and promote critical thinking.
Excellent! So you would support equal teaching of various other creation myths... say the Hindu myth or any of these: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_creation_myths ? Now there are quite a lot of them, so, say, 3 a week and the Judeo-Christian creation myth would be no more or less prominent than any of the others?

I agree. Teach the controversy! The controversy is that only one creation myth is taught.

How does teaching a Hindu myth have anything to do with teaching Intelligent Design? ID is not a religion. Strange analogy.