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Main Discussion Zone => Evolution & Creationism => Topic started by: Willie on January 19, 2014, 08:43:08 PM

Title: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Willie on January 19, 2014, 08:43:08 PM

http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2014/01/creationism_in_texas_public_schools_undermining_the_charter_movement.html

From the article:
Quote
When public-school students enrolled in Texas’ largest charter program open their biology workbooks, they will read that the fossil record is “sketchy.” That evolution is “dogma” and an “unproved theory” with no experimental basis. They will be told that leading scientists dispute the mechanisms of evolution and the age of the Earth. These are all lies.

The more than 17,000 students in the Responsive Education Solutions charter system will learn in their history classes that some residents of the Philippines were “pagans in various levels of civilization.” They’ll read in a history textbook that feminism forced women to turn to the government as a “surrogate husband.”

...

Infiltrating and subverting the charter-school movement has allowed Responsive Ed to carry out its religious agenda—and it is succeeding. Operating more than 65 campuses in Texas, Arkansas, and Indiana, Responsive Ed receives more than $82 million in taxpayer money annually, and it is expanding, with 20 more Texas campuses opening in 2014.

My daughter attends a Texas charter school that is not one of Responsive Education Solutions' schools, and I've seen nothing like this, so not all Texas charter schools are guilty of this.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 19, 2014, 08:58:01 PM

My daughter attends a Texas charter school that is not one of Responsive Education Solutions' schools, and I've seen nothing like this, so not all Texas charter schools are guilty of this.

Guilty of what?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 19, 2014, 09:01:07 PM
Guilty of what?

"Lying", among other things, would be my guess.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 19, 2014, 10:35:15 PM
Guilty of what?
Attempting to force-feed its propaganda to students in lieu of actual science, among other things.

EDIT:  Though, the "Patriot's History of the United States" is actually worse.  It teaches that the West (meaning Europe) was quantum leaps ahead of "native peoples", apparently because of its possession of gunpowder.  It also teaches that Europe possessed republicanism and civic virtues which other cultures didn't, which is pretty much totally false, as no European nation had republicanism and any civic virtues possessed by Europeans were not qualitatively better than civic virtues possessed by other cultures.  It teaches that 16th century Spain had a form of republican government - again totally false.

This is just totally disgusting.  It replaces any semblance of attempting to teach in favor of indoctrination of so-called 'patriotism'.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Willie on January 19, 2014, 10:48:37 PM

My daughter attends a Texas charter school that is not one of Responsive Education Solutions' schools, and I've seen nothing like this, so not all Texas charter schools are guilty of this.

Guilty of what?

Using taxpayer money to promote religion.

Promoting bigotry.

Lying to students about "controversies" surrounding evolution and the age of the earth.

Lying to students about Hitler's atrocities being inspired by the Theory of Evolution.

Lying to students about feminism.

Lying to students about the credibility of vaccines being linked to autism.

Lying to students about what a scientific theory is.

Lying to students about the source of fetal stem cells used for research.


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


Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 08:27:01 AM

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

Maybe Biblestudent is in favour of teaching creationism instead of science...
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 08:44:43 AM
I just find it perplexing that some of you all don't show the same amount of passion for the lies being taught about evolution in the school system. When was the last time you picked up a high school or college biology text and critiqued it for accuracy?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 20, 2014, 08:47:24 AM
I just find it perplexing that some of you all don't show the same amount of passion for the lies being taught about evolution in the school system.

???
What is it that you think we're doing here? Oh, that's right... evolution isn't true, right?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 08:53:41 AM
I just find it perplexing that some of you all don't show the same amount of passion for the lies being taught about evolution in the school system.

???
What is it that you think we're doing here? Oh, that's right... evolution isn't true, right?

Your singling out the Responsive Ed school program that mixes in some alternate theories and critiquing it. I'm asking if you have ever picked up a biology text from the more conventional curriculum and critiqued it with the same passion?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 08:57:21 AM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:00:43 AM

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

Maybe Biblestudent is in favour of teaching creationism instead of science...

I see no harm whatsoever in teaching Intelligent Design Theory as an alternative to abiogenesis.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 09:02:29 AM
I just find it perplexing that some of you all don't show the same amount of passion for the lies being taught about evolution in the school system.

???
What is it that you think we're doing here? Oh, that's right... evolution isn't true, right?


Your singling out the Responsive Ed school program that mixes in some alternate theories and critiquing it. I'm asking if you have ever picked up a biology text from the more conventional curriculum and critiqued it with the same passion?

Passion? What are you talking about. the Theory of Evolution is a scientific theory backed by over 100 years of research i all sorts of areas of science and so far we haven't found anything that suggests the theory is unsound. We have even observed various species evolve. The theory is used in a vast arrya of things such as medical research to fisheries. We would not be able to understand how our antibiotics stopped working so well wihtou a grasp of evolution for example.

Against that we have Creationism - an idea based on an ancient book which clearly didn't know about a spherical earth orbiting the sun, the galaxies or anything. Since the idea come to prominence much more recently, despite so-called research institutes claiming to do research, there is no shed of evidence that evolution did not happen or that a god dropped all the species on earth as they are today. That's not a shred of evidence!

Now, Biblestudent, you tell me - which is science and which should be taught in another class?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 09:04:02 AM

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

Maybe Biblestudent is in favour of teaching creationism instead of science...

I see no harm whatsoever in teaching Intelligent Design Theory as an alternative to abiogenesis.



So, you have no idea about abiogenesis either? ID is supposed to compete with Evolution actually.

So far as the origins of life, watch the news for the probe to be landed on a comet quite soon. It might reveal where the building blocks of life came from - the amino acids.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:08:34 AM

Passion? What are you talking about. the Theory of Evolution is a scientific theory backed by over 100 years of research i all sorts of areas of science and so far we haven't found anything that suggests the theory is unsound. We have even observed various species evolve. The theory is used in a vast arrya of things such as medical research to fisheries. We would not be able to understand how our antibiotics stopped working so well wihtou a grasp of evolution for example.

Against that we have Creationism - an idea based on an ancient book which clearly didn't know about a spherical earth orbiting the sun, the galaxies or anything. Since the idea come to prominence much more recently, despite so-called research institutes claiming to do research, there is no shed of evidence that evolution did not happen or that a god dropped all the species on earth as they are today. That's not a shred of evidence!

Now, Biblestudent, you tell me - which is science and which should be taught in another class?

You didn't answer my question. Have you ever read through a high school or college biology textbook not of the Responsive Ed type and critiqued it for accuracy?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 09:25:59 AM
No. They are using taxpayer money to present alternate theories and promote critical thinking.
And that is what we call bullcrap.  I realize you're predisposed to think that evolutionary theory is a lie - not because it actually is, but because it so soundly contradicts the religious dogma and doctrine you believe[1] - but that doesn't give you any excuse for making false claims such as this.

Critical thinking isn't about presenting "alternate theories", especially when there isn't any real evidence to support any of them.  It's about teaching people to think, instead of just blindly accepting what other people tell them is true, and it's about teaching them to set aside their preconceptions about what they believe so they can make the best decision possible.  So you don't get to claim that your beliefs represent critical thinking, especially when the thought process you use to justify those beliefs is anything but critical.

When have you ever even tried to set aside your Biblical beliefs so you can examine the evidence as it actually stands, instead of viewing that evidence through the lens you call "God"?  I don't think you ever have.  Not because you disagree with me, but because you clearly aren't prepared to entertain even the slightest doubt about whether your beliefs are correct or not.  I can say this because I've met theists who are willing to be skeptical about what they believe - like OldChurchGuy, who continues to hold his beliefs, yet clearly recognizes that his understanding is not perfect and is willing to hear people out, and doesn't reject what they say merely because it contradicts what he already believes.  He's willing to acknowledge that he might be wrong in his understanding of things.

If theists were mostly like him, instead of mostly like the people who intentionally teach propaganda in lieu of science and history (never mind many of the other things that theists have done in the name of their beliefs), religion wouldn't be all that much of a problem.  Because then it wouldn't be about rejecting things that we discover merely because they contradict things that people believe are true.  You might want to think about that, because as far as I can tell, you fall into that latter category.  You're too caught up in the idea that what you already believe has to be right, and unwilling to even think about whether your existing understanding might be flawed or simply wrong.

Oh, and before you level an accusation like, "well, you're set in your beliefs too, so who are you to talk", you should understand that I don't simply think things like evolution are true because I was taught that they were.  I think evolution is true because the evidence that we get from examining the world all fits together, and even though we don't have anywhere near all the evidence, it isn't difficult to tell how the evidence we do have is clearly fitting together to support evolutionary theory.  That doesn't mean we might not discover something in the future that requires us to drastically reconsider how evolutionary theory works, but the point is to follow where the evidence leads, even if the conclusions are undesirable for us.
 1. I've met people like you in real life, who were so hopelessly blinkered by what they'd been taught by other people who didn't know any better either that it was impossible to even talk to them.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:26:48 AM
Attempting to force-feed its propaganda to students in lieu of actual science, among other things.


Science offers a few hypotheses on the origins of life but certainly nothing concrete enough to rule out intelligent design.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 09:28:56 AM
You didn't answer my question. Have you ever read through a high school or college biology textbook not of the Responsive Ed type and critiqued it for accuracy?
Have you ever actually read through a high school or college biology textbook in the first place, BibleStudent?  I mean, since you're very clearly trying to establish a case for him accepting evolutionary theory because of dogmatic belief rather than because it happens to be accurate, I figure it's worth seeing how the shoe fits on the other foot.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 09:33:50 AM
Science offers a few hypotheses on the origins of life but certainly nothing concrete enough to rule out intelligent design.
I'll certainly grant that intelligent design is a possibility.  I mean, what we're doing with genetic engineering pretty much fits that category.  But the key difference is that we have evidence of an intelligent species - us - which is causing changes in living creatures.  Where's all the evidence that supports that in regards to how life on Earth developed?  Some evidence far outweighs no evidence, which is what advocates of "intelligent design" (aka creationism, whether you're willing to admit it or not) have so far.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:34:25 AM
When have you ever even tried to set aside your Biblical beliefs so you can examine the evidence as it actually stands, instead of viewing that evidence through the lens you call "God"?
Yes. Extensively. Many, many, many hours.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:38:07 AM
You didn't answer my question. Have you ever read through a high school or college biology textbook not of the Responsive Ed type and critiqued it for accuracy?
Have you ever actually read through a high school or college biology textbook in the first place, BibleStudent?  I mean, since you're very clearly trying to establish a case for him accepting evolutionary theory because of dogmatic belief rather than because it happens to be accurate, I figure it's worth seeing how the shoe fits on the other foot.

Yes, I have. I have three children so I have had numerous high school and college biology texts come into my home that I have examined. Suffice it to say, there were numerous inaccuracies and, in some cases, blatant lies regarding the theory of evolution.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:45:13 AM
Science offers a few hypotheses on the origins of life but certainly nothing concrete enough to rule out intelligent design.
I'll certainly grant that intelligent design is a possibility.  I mean, what we're doing with genetic engineering pretty much fits that category.  But the key difference is that we have evidence of an intelligent species - us - which is causing changes in living creatures.  Where's all the evidence that supports that in regards to how life on Earth developed?  Some evidence far outweighs no evidence, which is what advocates of "intelligent design" (aka creationism, whether you're willing to admit it or not) have so far.

There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Quesi on January 20, 2014, 09:51:16 AM
My daughter attends a charter school here in NYC.  I have mixed feelings about charter schools in general, but I am THRILLED with my daughter's school.

Charters have control over the curriculum that public schools just don't have.  And parents really need to pay attention to each schools slant. 

My daughter's school has a "global" theme.  There are some here who might not approve of some of the curriculum, but it is fine with me.  In non-charter public schools, there are appropriate restrictions on the presentation of religious material.  In my daughter's school, the diverse religious practices and traditions of the student body are all presented.  And the religious practices and traditions of ancient cultures are presented as well.  My daughter knows a great deal about Christian practices, Jewish practices, Muslim and Hindu and Buddhist beliefs and practices.  She also has learned about Zeus.  They also focus on earth science, and world languages, providing instruction in Spanish, Mandarin and Arabic. 

From 1st grade on, they have been really diligent about teaching the scientific method.  Students "ask a question"[1] create a hypothesis, which they write down.  They then conduct experiments in groups, recording their observations.  Then the groups compare their findings, and discuss and discrepancies in findings.  I LOVE the way she is being taught science.  It is not about facts.  It is about the process of discovery.  And as she gets older, she will understand that the discoveries that have been made over the years used the very same process that she mastered at age 6.

But the religious stuff is a little non-traditional. 

A while back, in preparation for a playdate, she asked if the friend she was visiting celebrated various holidays.  Since I had no idea about the parents' beliefs, I said I didn't know.  My daughter suggested she could make a "Happy Eid" card, for which she would need play dough.  I was a little confused, because I don't think of play dough as a traditional part of Muslim celebrations.  But my 7 year old took a piece of play dough, rolled it into a little worm, shaped the worm into a crescent, and pressed it against a piece of colored paper, creating an image of the crescent moon.  She then decorate the card with stars in a night sky, and wrote "Happy Eid."

I'm ok with all of this.  But I did my research, and I knew what was going on in the school.  There are some parents who mistakenly believe that charters are just "better" and don't question what is going on in the school. 
 1. like Will this float or sink?  What will happen when we combine these two things, etc
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Mrjason on January 20, 2014, 09:52:32 AM
Science offers a few hypotheses on the origins of life but certainly nothing concrete enough to rule out intelligent design.
I'll certainly grant that intelligent design is a possibility.  I mean, what we're doing with genetic engineering pretty much fits that category.  But the key difference is that we have evidence of an intelligent species - us - which is causing changes in living creatures.  Where's all the evidence that supports that in regards to how life on Earth developed?  Some evidence far outweighs no evidence, which is what advocates of "intelligent design" (aka creationism, whether you're willing to admit it or not) have so far.

There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.

Accepting the possibility of a creator is not the same as balancing the probability of a creator.
If there is no need for a creator what is the probability that there is one?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 09:58:20 AM
Science offers a few hypotheses on the origins of life but certainly nothing concrete enough to rule out intelligent design.
I'll certainly grant that intelligent design is a possibility.  I mean, what we're doing with genetic engineering pretty much fits that category.  But the key difference is that we have evidence of an intelligent species - us - which is causing changes in living creatures.  Where's all the evidence that supports that in regards to how life on Earth developed?  Some evidence far outweighs no evidence, which is what advocates of "intelligent design" (aka creationism, whether you're willing to admit it or not) have so far.

There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.

No, you are quite right, Biblestudent, there is no reason to dismiss a creator. On the other hand, let's see if there is reason to admit there might be one? What's the evidence?

OK, let's see - if you or I have never seen any religious texts, never heard of religion, would we go out and say, 'Aha! This mouse must have been designed?' What do you think? You see, BS, the thing is the only facts about a creator come from ancient books which didn't understand science at all - they are written by people talking about the way they understood themselves. So that's the bible in favour, now what else? What single bit of evidence of a creator has been left behind?.... Yep, that's right NOTHING. There is no evidence for a creator at all but a book.

So now you see why we teach science in schools and not creationism of its other name of Intelligent Desing - because they have no evidence to present.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:59:40 AM
Science offers a few hypotheses on the origins of life but certainly nothing concrete enough to rule out intelligent design.
I'll certainly grant that intelligent design is a possibility.  I mean, what we're doing with genetic engineering pretty much fits that category.  But the key difference is that we have evidence of an intelligent species - us - which is causing changes in living creatures.  Where's all the evidence that supports that in regards to how life on Earth developed?  Some evidence far outweighs no evidence, which is what advocates of "intelligent design" (aka creationism, whether you're willing to admit it or not) have so far.

There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.

Accepting the possibility of a creator is not the same as balancing the probability of a creator.
If there is no need for a creator what is the probability that there is one?

Until the true origins of life are discovered (if they ever are), the "need" for a Creator remains a possibility.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 10:05:44 AM
So that's the bible in favour, now what else? What single bit of evidence of a creator has been left behind?.... Yep, that's right NOTHING. There is no evidence for a creator at all but a book.

Intelligent Design theory does not posit a specific God or creator so your "book" criticism is out of place.

So now you see why we teach science in schools and not creationism of its other name of Intelligent Desing - because they have no evidence to present.

That is your opinion and you are entitled to it....but there are many others who would disagree with you and until it can be demonstrated with 100% certainty that a Creator does not exist, no one has a right to exclude that possibility from a school's curriculum.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 10:07:41 AM

Until the true origins of life are discovered (if they ever are), the "need" for a Creator remains a possibility.

Why? This is a [wiki]god of the gaps[/wiki] style argument. Look, if we don't know something, we have to learn to say so - precisely - 'we don't know.' There's no problem with this and it is not an excuse for someone to drop a place-holder into the place while waiting for the answer. Just think of all the things gods were held to be responsible for - the sun's movements, storm, thunderbolts - you name it, gods were responsible, Over the years, science has found out the real answer to these points and gods have been squeezed out. Slip you god into abiogenesis and he will get squeezed out again.

As I mentioned, it is thought that amino acids might have been delivered by comets (we have found some in meteorites)and we will, with quite a lot of luck, land a lander on a comet in the next few weeks and find out. However life did develop - and there are a whole set of ideas how it might have happened - the ideas are bound to be better than a 'god-did-it' response.

However, try harder - find some evidence that a god did create life and then people might take you idea seriously but until then, remember, no evidence means it cannot be considered.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 20, 2014, 10:10:05 AM
I'll certainly grant that intelligent design is a possibility.  I mean, what we're doing with genetic engineering pretty much fits that category.  But the key difference is that we have evidence of an intelligent species - us - which is causing changes in living creatures.  Where's all the evidence that supports that in regards to how life on Earth developed?  Some evidence far outweighs no evidence, which is what advocates of "intelligent design" (aka creationism, whether you're willing to admit it or not) have so far.

There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.
Could you give a few examples of something that you feel you can 'fully dismiss' the possibility of?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 10:12:50 AM
So that's the bible in favour, now what else? What single bit of evidence of a creator has been left behind?.... Yep, that's right NOTHING. There is no evidence for a creator at all but a book.

Intelligent Design theory does not posit a specific God or creator so your "book" criticism is out of place.

Whoops - sorry, ID says designer doesn't it. If I remember the Dover trial correctly, the Creationism textbook was amended by changing the word 'creator' for designer'. That's why the Dover case lost. Judge Jones found that ID was just teaching religious creationism.

Quote
So now you see why we teach science in schools and not creationism of its other name of Intelligent Desing - because they have no evidence to present.

That is your opinion and you are entitled to it....but there are many others who would disagree with you and until it can be demonstrated with 100% certainty that a Creator does not exist, no one has a right to exclude that possibility from a school's curriculum.

Now you ought to know better than that! You ought to know one cannot prove a negative - or maybe you are trying to get that god of yours a look in science. Still let's look at the evidence again.

Evidence for god - an ancient book

Ability to demonstrate that the guy exists - nil.

Sorry, but with no evidence, no one needs to consider this god of yours who you think is  a creator. Bring some evidence and you might get somwhere but not till then.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 10:14:57 AM

However, try harder - find some evidence that a god did create life and then people might take you idea seriously but until then, remember, no evidence means it cannot be considered.

If you have truly studied and researched Intelligent Design Theory and have still come to the conclusion that there is no possibility for a Creator then you have reached a personal decision that everyone is entitled to. If the ToE is so convincing, then I fail to see why people get all torqued up when an alternate view is presented. In other words, why should ToE advocates have anything to be worried or concerned about?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 10:20:45 AM
I'll certainly grant that intelligent design is a possibility.  I mean, what we're doing with genetic engineering pretty much fits that category.  But the key difference is that we have evidence of an intelligent species - us - which is causing changes in living creatures.  Where's all the evidence that supports that in regards to how life on Earth developed?  Some evidence far outweighs no evidence, which is what advocates of "intelligent design" (aka creationism, whether you're willing to admit it or not) have so far.

There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.
Could you give a few examples of something that you feel you can 'fully dismiss' the possibility of?

Nope.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Mrjason on January 20, 2014, 10:24:33 AM

However, try harder - find some evidence that a god did create life and then people might take you idea seriously but until then, remember, no evidence means it cannot be considered.

If you have truly studied and researched Intelligent Design Theory and have still come to the conclusion that there is no possibility for a Creator then you have reached a personal decision that everyone is entitled to. If the ToE is so convincing, then I fail to see why people get all torqued up when an alternate view is presented. In other words, why should ToE advocates have anything to be worried or concerned about?

its the fact that ID is being posited as science. ID is religion, ToE etc is in a different realm at the moment.
If science does eventually point to god then so be it but at the moment it doesn't. So why try to force a square peg into what is at present a round hole?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 10:24:46 AM
Whoops - sorry, ID says designer doesn't it. If I remember the Dover trial correctly, the Creationism textbook was amended by changing the word 'creator' for designer'. That's why the Dover case lost. Judge Jones found that ID was just teaching religious creationism.

Do you consider every ruling that a judge makes to be correct and accurate? Judges make mistakes all the time.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 10:30:57 AM

However, try harder - find some evidence that a god did create life and then people might take you idea seriously but until then, remember, no evidence means it cannot be considered.

If you have truly studied and researched Intelligent Design Theory and have still come to the conclusion that there is no possibility for a Creator then you have reached a personal decision that everyone is entitled to. If the ToE is so convincing, then I fail to see why people get all torqued up when an alternate view is presented. In other words, why should ToE advocates have anything to be worried or concerned about?

its the fact that ID is being posited as science. ID is religion, ToE etc is in a different realm at the moment.
If science does eventually point to god then so be it but at the moment it doesn't. So why try to force a square peg into what is at present a round hole?

Why try and stifle people's curiosity to examine alternate theories and possibilities? Do you know how many inventions would have never been realized if people possessed your mindset.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 20, 2014, 10:32:42 AM
There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.
Could you give a few examples of something that you feel you can 'fully dismiss' the possibility of?

Nope.

Is it fair to say, then, that the statement:
"There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator."

provides no additional data in helping to determine the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed?"
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 10:36:01 AM
There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.
Could you give a few examples of something that you feel you can 'fully dismiss' the possibility of?

Nope.

Is it fair to say, then, that the statement:
"There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator."

provides no additional data in helping to determine the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed?"

How do YOU define "truth?"
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Mrjason on January 20, 2014, 10:38:13 AM
Why try and stifle people's curiosity to examine alternate theories and possibilities?

As I said, the alternative already has it's own subject i.e. religious studies.

Do you know how many inventions would have never been realized if people possessed your mindset.

which inventions have come about through ID, IR and the other creationist disciplines?
I would suggest 0.

Compare this to many discoveries have come about by questioning religious dogma, to shorten the list just name them from the time of Galileo


Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 10:45:38 AM
Do you know how many inventions would have never been realized if people possessed your mindset.

which inventions have come about through ID, IR and the other creationist disciplines?
I would suggest 0.

Compare this to many discoveries have come about by questioning religious dogma, to shorten the list just name them from the time of Galileo

Nice non sequitur.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Mrjason on January 20, 2014, 10:49:15 AM
Do you know how many inventions would have never been realized if people possessed your mindset.


Actually now that you mention it; nice ad hominem on your part
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 20, 2014, 10:51:46 AM
Is it fair to say, then, that the statement:
"There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator."

provides no additional data in helping to determine the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed?"

How do YOU define "truth?"
I don't.  Personal failing of mine.  But I don't see why you need my definition of 'truth' to answer the above question.

If my statement above is not fair, and the statement "There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator" does provide additional data in determining the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed," then your explanation of how that works may help me find a suitable definition for 'truth'.

If my statement above is fair, then perhaps an explanation of the other data points you use in evaluating the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed" as true would help me find a suitable definition for 'truth'.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: shnozzola on January 20, 2014, 10:54:25 AM
Bible student,
        If you picked a charter school curriculum, would you include the ToE?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 11:01:20 AM
Is it fair to say, then, that the statement:
"There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator."

provides no additional data in helping to determine the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed?"

How do YOU define "truth?"
I don't.  Personal failing of mine.  But I don't see why you need my definition of 'truth' to answer the above question.

If my statement above is not fair, and the statement "There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator" does provide additional data in determining the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed," then your explanation of how that works may help me find a suitable definition for 'truth'.

If my statement above is fair, then perhaps an explanation of the other data points you use in evaluating the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed" as true would help me find a suitable definition for 'truth'.

If you do not define "truth" then your question relating to the "truth-value" of something is nonsensical. In other words, how can anything have "truth-value" to you? The answer to your question relies on how the person being asked defines "truth" and no matter how they answer it, it will not and cannot make any sense to you since you have no definition of "truth."
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 11:06:09 AM
Bible student,
        If you picked a charter school curriculum, would you include the ToE?

Yes, but it would be limited to the facts along with an explanation about the many unknowns.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 11:09:31 AM
Do you know how many inventions would have never been realized if people possessed your mindset.


Actually now that you mention it; nice ad hominem on your part

Please explain how an ad hominem occurred.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 20, 2014, 11:16:55 AM
I don't.  Personal failing of mine.  But I don't see why you need my definition of 'truth' to answer the above question.

If my statement above is not fair, and the statement "There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator" does provide additional data in determining the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed," then your explanation of how that works may help me find a suitable definition for 'truth'.

If my statement above is fair, then perhaps an explanation of the other data points you use in evaluating the truth-value of the statement "A creator(s) exists or existed" as true would help me find a suitable definition for 'truth'.

If you do not define "truth" then your question relating to the "truth-value" of something is nonsensical. In other words, how can anything have "truth-value" to you? The answer to your question relies on how the person being asked defines "truth" and no matter how they answer it, it will not and cannot make any sense to you since you have no definition of "truth."

How about if I just concede that 'truth' means whatever it meant in the context of your declaration that "There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator."

Presumably, that can be rewritten as:
There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator as true.

Alternatively, you can provide the definition of 'truth' you were using when you made the statement and we can argue about that.

If you do neither, then my question is moot and can be dismissed.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Astreja on January 20, 2014, 11:21:48 AM
Coming as I do from a science-friendly family, and working in a field heavily dependent on science, this whole debate really hits close to home.

The reason that all competent school science classes teach science rather than religion is that science works.  It works for everyone regardless of what they believe, whereas any given religious viewpoint produces inconsistent results even for fervent believers.

This goes far beyond a mere difference of opinion.  At the risk of sounding alarmist, I think that choosing "creation science" over real science puts actual lives at stake.  It compromises the intellectual integrity of the students by causing them to accept or reject information not on its own merits, but on whether or not it supports their religious beliefs.I don't see much critical thinking going on in creationism curricula, either -- Unless one redefines the term to mean "critical of everything un-Biblical."
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 11:24:55 AM
Bible student,
        If you picked a charter school curriculum, would you include the ToE?

Yes, but it would be limited to the facts along with an explanation about the many unknowns.

Please tell us, Biblestudent, what are the 'unknowns' to which you refer?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Mrjason on January 20, 2014, 11:32:01 AM
Do you know how many inventions would have never been realized if people possessed your mindset.


Actually now that you mention it; nice ad hominem on your part

Please explain how an ad hominem occurred.

whatever. this adds nothing to the thread.

going back to this:

Do you know how many inventions would have never been realized if people possessed your mindset.

which inventions have come about through ID, IR and the other creationist disciplines?
I would suggest 0.

Compare this to many discoveries have come about by questioning religious dogma, to shorten the list just name them from the time of Galileo

Nice non sequitur.

Are you suggesting that the addition of religious doctrine into science aids scientific discovery?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 11:34:32 AM
Yes. Extensively. Many, many, many hours.
You'll excuse me if I find that exceedingly doubtful, especially given that you're repeating the same line about lies being taught in the science classroom that a lot of right-wing theists claim in this country.  Oh, I don't doubt that you've attempted that sort of self-reflection.  I just doubt that you've come anywhere near as close to achieving it as you clearly think you have.  What I think you've actually done is ask God, in the silence of your own mind, to reassure you that your beliefs are accurate - which is no different than self-reassurance, under the circumstances.

So instead of just telling me that you've done it extensively, for many, many, many hours, how about you give some details on just what it is that you've done?[1]

Yes, I have. I have three children so I have had numerous high school and college biology texts come into my home that I have examined. Suffice it to say, there were numerous inaccuracies and, in some cases, blatant lies regarding the theory of evolution.
How closely have you examined them?  What 'inaccuracies' and 'lies' are you referring to?  In case you haven't figured it out, I don't trust your judgment when it comes to evolution, not the least reason of which because I doubt you've ever taken the time to actually learn what evolution is really about (as opposed to what places like the Discovery Institute say it's about).  People who are not knowledgeable about a subject are prone to assuming they know it better than they actually do, and to paraphrase something I read recently, once you start making assumptions based on incomplete information, those initial assumptions tend to stay there and shape any further information you take in, directing you further and further away from accurate conclusions.

So I want to know specifics, instead of just generalities.  Don't just tell me that you've spent many hours trying to set aside your Biblical beliefs, don't just tell me that you've found numerous inaccuracies and blatant lies regarding evolution.  Give me details on things like this.

There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.
And when did I say that you, or anyone, should fully dismiss the possibility of a creator?  What I said is that some evidence, which evolution has, far outweighs no evidence, which is what intelligent design/creationism has so far.  That doesn't mean "there's no creator-god", that means there's no evidence, and without evidence, your chances of convincing someone who doesn't already believe in your god are practically nil.

Don't you get it?  If there were real, solid evidence supporting the idea of intelligent design in Earth's past, then evolutionary theory would already incorporate it, the way it incorporates artificial selection and genetic engineering.  The problem is, there is no such evidence.  That's why creationists have to resort to referring to creationism with euphemisms like intelligent design, and are now referring to "teaching the controversy" (which you alluded to with "alternate theories").  What creationists mean by both is an attempt to get their foot in the door - to say, essentially, that their beliefs haven't been disproved and should be taught too.  However, while your beliefs haven't been disproved, that is a very long way from saying that they have any supporting evidence whatsoever, and science requires evidence (and lots of it) before something is accepted as being true.

If you have truly studied and researched Intelligent Design Theory and have still come to the conclusion that there is no possibility for a Creator then you have reached a personal decision that everyone is entitled to. If the ToE is so convincing, then I fail to see why people get all torqued up when an alternate view is presented. In other words, why should ToE advocates have anything to be worried or concerned about?
Because when you start talking about "alternate views", you prove that you don't really understand how science works to begin with.  Science isn't something where a person can read up on it and decide what they want to believe in, just as you can't decide whether to believe in gravity or not.  It's a way to figure out how reality works, and reality doesn't care what an individual wants to believe, or what several billion people want to believe for that matter.

So, in one respect, it doesn't matter whether people like you want to believe in evolution or not.  But in other respects, it matters very much.  Take the example of deciding not to believe in gravity that I just listed.  Do you really think I want to see people walking off of cliffs or tall buildings because they'd convinced themselves that they could ignore gravity?  Or that I'd want to see people drinking poison because they'd been talked into believing that God would protect them from its effects?  Or that I'd want to see people dying from easily-preventable diseases because of hype about immunizations causing autism, despite there being no credible link between the two?

So there's your answer.  That's why I get all torqued up, as you put it.  The consequences of fooling people into thinking they can decide for themselves whether evolution is real may be less dire than those other things I mentioned, but they're basically the same thing - the idea that what a person believes overrides reality, even though this is most certainly not true.  Belief doesn't protect you from dying due to a fall, or from dying if you drink poison, or getting sick/dying from a disease, so it's foolishness to think that it can determine how reality works.
 1. See what I did there?  Even though I'm very doubtful of you, I'm acknowledging that I might be wrong and letting you take the opportunity to elaborate, rather than just blowing you off because of what I think happened.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 11:38:14 AM
Coming as I do from a science-friendly family, and working in a field heavily dependent on science, this whole debate really hits close to home.

The reason that all competent school science classes teach science rather than religion is that science works.  It works for everyone regardless of what they believe, whereas any given religious viewpoint produces inconsistent results even for fervent believers.

This goes far beyond a mere difference of opinion.  At the risk of sounding alarmist, I think that choosing "creation science" over real science puts actual lives at stake.  It compromises the intellectual integrity of the students by causing them to accept or reject information not on its own merits, but on whether or not it supports their religious beliefs.
  • If a medical student in a Biology class rejects evolution because it contradicts the book of Genesis, will this future doctor be competent to deal with a gay patient suffering from HIV, or instead stall antiretroviral treatment and let the patient die because Leviticus says he should die?
  • Will a physician force her beliefs upon non-believing patients, garnering censure from medical regulatory bodies when the patient complains, and possibly torpedo her own career?
  • Will a psychiatrist eschew antidepressants or antipsychotics in favour of spiritual warfare, attempting a twisted form of talk therapy wherein the conversation is between the doctor and Satan and God?  (We know how well that ended up for poor Job...)
I don't see much critical thinking going on in creationism curricula, either -- Unless one redefines the term to mean "critical of everything un-Biblical."

Kindly explain how Intelligent Design Theory in the classroom would interfere with a study of the ToE.

And, yes, IMO, the concerns you spelled out meets the criteria for being an "alarmist."
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Quesi on January 20, 2014, 11:42:21 AM
You know.  We do not know what happened in the milliseconds or the millennia or the billions of years before the Big Bang.  We don't even know that "time" existed.

So I think that it is perfectly appropriate to consider all possibilities for that which is unknown, including the possibility of a "creator."  A "creator" would, of course, raise even more questions.  Who created the creator?  How did the creator come to be?  Is this "creator" even sentient?  Mechanical?  Organic?  Was the Big Bang just another phase in a long cycle of creation and expansion and disintegration that is so large and huge that we cannot begin to comprehend it?  Is our universe, as many scientists speculate, one of many universes? [1]

There are many unanswered questions, and if you would like to throw your god into the pot in terms of possible explanations, worthy of exploration, that is fine. 

But let's not pretend that all of the stuff that happened AFTER the big bang is up for dispute.  That is just silly.   And it is certainly not something that belongs in our children's classrooms. 
 1. scientists here - please correct me if I am completely off on any of these questions
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 11:45:26 AM
Are you suggesting that the addition of religious doctrine into science aids scientific discovery?
No, I am not suggesting that. However, Intelligent Design Theory examines the biological machine work of living organisms so it certainly has scientific applications. It is a science after all.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 20, 2014, 11:47:56 AM
If the ToE is so convincing, then I fail to see why people get all torqued up when an alternate view is presented.

Because kids are stupid and impressionable.  And telling them ID is a reasonable alternative to evolution is like telling them it is reasonable to believe storks deliver babies. 

Plus, you and others of your ilk are trying to inject something that has nothing to do with science into a science class.  It is an apples and oranges.  Like trying to get Harry Potter into a history class. "It is an alternative explanation of WW2 that it was really an extension of the war in the wizarding world between Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelwald. Oh, yeah, and ID is a better explanation than evolution." 

In short, we get torqued up because ID only serves to confuse people and muddy the waters.  IF the goal is education, introducing ID is counterproductive.  Unless you want to use it as an exercise on how to not do things...



However, Intelligent Design Theory examines the biological machine work of living organisms so it certainly has scientific applications. It is a science after all.

It doesn't and it isn't.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Quesi on January 20, 2014, 11:50:24 AM
Here is the short version of Neil DeGrasse Tyson on ID:

http://youtu.be/oEl9kVl6KPc
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 20, 2014, 11:53:57 AM
But let's not pretend that all of the stuff that happened AFTER the big bang is up for dispute.  That is just silly.
Well, the stuff that happened AFTER the big bang can be up for dispute.

Caveat: The basis for the disputes should be new data, not old agendas.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 11:56:43 AM
Yes, I have. I have three children so I have had numerous high school and college biology texts come into my home that I have examined. Suffice it to say, there were numerous inaccuracies and, in some cases, blatant lies regarding the theory of evolution.
How closely have you examined them?  What 'inaccuracies' and 'lies' are you referring to?  In case you haven't figured it out, I don't trust your judgment when it comes to evolution, not the least reason of which because I doubt you've ever taken the time to actually learn what evolution is really about (as opposed to what places like the Discovery Institute say it's about).

So I want to know specifics, instead of just generalities.  Don't just tell me that you've spent many hours trying to set aside your Biblical beliefs, don't just tell me that you've found numerous inaccuracies and blatant lies regarding evolution.  Give me details on things like this.


Sure. I'll give you an example from one of my kids books that I had discussed in an earlier thread:

"Biology- Understanding Life" – Alters & Alters - copyright 2006.

As always, I no more than flipped it open to page 251 where a new chapter starts and am immediately drawn to strange claim made in the first paragraph. The chapter is titled “Beyond Darwinism: A Genetic Basis of Evolution.” The very first sentence in the chapter says “Scientists know that snakes evolved from ancient lizards.”

They know this ?? The next two paragraphs go on to explain the hypotheses that have been formed to explain how the ancient lizard lost its legs. Now, I have heard that there is supposedly fossil evidence to suggest that snakes evolved from lizards but to see a college level text declaring that scientists KNOW this is, to me, a good example of the dishonest claims that are often made.

And then you have this:
"Houssaye, however, does not think the case is yet closed as to whether or not snakes evolved from a marine or land-based lizard.
"The question of snake origin should not be resolved in the next 10 years," Houssaye said.
She is, however, hopeful that all of the separate teams working on this puzzle can one day pinpoint what species was the common ancestor of all snakes."  http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41463087/ns/technology_and_science-science/   February 7, 2011

This “story” (when examined carefully) claims that these alleged useless hind legs were present on this poor creature for anywhere from 4million to 22 million years !!! Was it a land based lizrd or a marine based lizard ? Don't know.  Not only that, this “snake” expert (or whatever she is) openly admits that the fossil record cannot pinpoint an ancestor.

But my kid’s biology book says that scientists know that snakes evolved from lizards. Nice.

 

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 12:02:20 PM
thanks for a great video, Quesi!
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 01:03:50 PM
Sure. I'll give you an example from one of my kids books that I had discussed in an earlier thread:

"Biology- Understanding Life" – Alters & Alters - copyright 2006.

As always, I no more than flipped it open to page 251 where a new chapter starts and am immediately drawn to strange claim made in the first paragraph. The chapter is titled “Beyond Darwinism: A Genetic Basis of Evolution.” The very first sentence in the chapter says “Scientists know that snakes evolved from ancient lizards.”

They know this ?? The next two paragraphs go on to explain the hypotheses that have been formed to explain how the ancient lizard lost its legs. Now, I have heard that there is supposedly fossil evidence to suggest that snakes evolved from lizards but to see a college level text declaring that scientists KNOW this is, to me, a good example of the dishonest claims that are often made.

And then you have this:
"Houssaye, however, does not think the case is yet closed as to whether or not snakes evolved from a marine or land-based lizard.
"The question of snake origin should not be resolved in the next 10 years," Houssaye said.
She is, however, hopeful that all of the separate teams working on this puzzle can one day pinpoint what species was the common ancestor of all snakes."  http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41463087/ns/technology_and_science-science/   February 7, 2011

This “story” (when examined carefully) claims that these alleged useless hind legs were present on this poor creature for anywhere from 4million to 22 million years !!! Was it a land based lizrd or a marine based lizard ? Don't know.  Not only that, this “snake” expert (or whatever she is) openly admits that the fossil record cannot pinpoint an ancestor.

But my kid’s biology book says that scientists know that snakes evolved from lizards. Nice.
You do realize that scientists never know anything with 100% certainty, don't you?  That means that Dr. Houssaye (http://www.steinmann.uni-bonn.de/institut/bereiche/palaeontologie/mitarbeiter/houssaye-alexandra) - who by the way is a paleontologist, thus why she's studying fossilized snakes - was saying that we don't know the exact fossil record of snakes very well yet.  However, that does not mean that scientists are not reasonably certain[1] that snakes are descended from lizards.  That's because scientists do not rely on one single source of knowledge.  Morphology, phylogeny, biochemistry, and genetics all point at snakes having a common ancestor in the lizard family somewhere.  We just don't know for sure which one it is, thus Dr. Houssave's comments.

While I'll grant that textbook manufacturers are not always very good at putting things the way scientists would put them, to pick something like this - a textbook saying that scientists knowing something, then trying to make the case that they don't know because all the holes haven't been filled in yet - as your example seems more than a bit ludicrous.  Honestly, it comes across as you trying to find excuses to justify what you already believe.
 1. close enough to say they know
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 01:07:29 PM
Biblestudent

Is that the only inaccuracy you think you found in the biology books? Let's see the others shall we?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Astreja on January 20, 2014, 01:17:59 PM
Kindly explain how Intelligent Design Theory in the classroom would interfere with a study of the ToE.

How does ID interfere with the teaching of the ToE?

For one thing, it's a religiously-motivated hypothesis demanding equal weight with a theory that has proven its value in the real world.  It teaches students the myth that wishful thinking and "what-if" scenarios are equal to cold, hard facts, and that they can choose one or the other with no hard consequences.

It muddies the waters.  It's analogous to saying "2+2=4, but in an alternate universe 2+2 might equal 5, or 6, or watermelons."

ID also cannot be considered a scientific theory until it starts to make accurate predictions based on known facts.  If it can't do that, why teach it at all?

A teacher's attitude towards the subject can strongly influence which viewpoint the student ultimately accepts.  Unless there is constant monitoring in the classroom, or a non-believing student complains, there's nothing to stop a teacher from waxing poetic that there must be a designer (because pussycats and flowers and lah-dee-dah), and "Oh, I have to teach you this evolution crap too but we'll just do that till recess."

Finally, this whole debate is apples-and-oranges.  Intelligent Design is all about origins, whereas evolution is about how existing organisms change over time.  ID is in the wrong science course from the start -- It should really be in a graduate-level Biochemistry unit on abiogenesis, where it would get the respect it truly deserves.  ;)
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 03:25:23 PM
You do realize that scientists never know anything with 100% certainty, don't you?  That means that Dr. Houssaye (http://www.steinmann.uni-bonn.de/institut/bereiche/palaeontologie/mitarbeiter/houssaye-alexandra) - who by the way is a paleontologist, thus why she's studying fossilized snakes - was saying that we don't know the exact fossil record of snakes very well yet.  However, that does not mean that scientists are not reasonably certain[1] that snakes are descended from lizards.  That's because scientists do not rely on one single source of knowledge.  Morphology, phylogeny, biochemistry, and genetics all point at snakes having a common ancestor in the lizard family somewhere.  We just don't know for sure which one it is, thus Dr. Houssave's comments.

While I'll grant that textbook manufacturers are not always very good at putting things the way scientists would put them, to pick something like this - a textbook saying that scientists knowing something, then trying to make the case that they don't know because all the holes haven't been filled in yet - as your example seems more than a bit ludicrous.  Honestly, it comes across as you trying to find excuses to justify what you already believe.
 1. close enough to say they know

The textbook did not contain Dr Houssaye's comments....if that's what you gathered from my post. Sorry, I should have been more clear. The reference to Dr Houssaye's findings was something I inserted in the post....it was not in the textbook.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 03:37:22 PM
Biblestudent

Is that the only inaccuracy you think you found in the biology books? Let's see the others shall we?

I could provide others but how many is necessary in order for the textbook to become deficient and misleading? Is it three, four, ten ? Some of the books I viewed had references to microevolution vs. macroevolution which the ToE community contends has no meaningful distinction. Many instances of 'origins of life' teachings mixed in with evolution as well. Archaeopteryx as the proven missing link between dinosaurs and birds? Claiming that it is well known that the first humans originated in Africa?....and on and on.

My point is that I do not see anyone barking about some of the false ToE teachings in the mainstream texts but God helps us all if there is a hint of Intelligent Design Theory being taught somewhere....then the wolves come out.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Astreja on January 20, 2014, 03:42:38 PM
Some of the books I viewed had references to microevolution vs. macroevolution which the ToE community contends has no meaningful distinction.

That sounds rather suspicious in itself, as if the textbook was trying to placate creationists.  It's been many years since I read a biology textbook, so can someone with more current knowledge of school textbooks add insight here?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 03:48:47 PM
Look, Biblestudent, you are looking at the school text book, These are books for teenagers not for graduates. There is no way the such a book can go into all the intricacies of assessing the details in the family tree of life. Your first suggestion of an error turned out to be nothing more than nit-picking. The snake is bound to be related to the lizard or something very like it even if we haven't the complete details yet. School text books have to make fairly short points and they haven't the space to be technical papers for science conferences.

The same applies to the other points you raise. I haven't see origins of life in a textbook on Evolution but if is conceivable that something might be included for completeness.The fact is that nothing is science is 100% sure so, if you had your way, the books would be empty but then,. of course, the bible classes would have empty books as that stuff is even less known. heck, we don't even know who wrote the various books in the bible!

All you mention are rough approximations to our present knowledge which  is enough for students of that age. If they choose to go further then of course they will get all the details.

As an aside, when I was at school in the 60's we were told that the proton, neutron and electron were the basic particles of matter and no mention was made of QED and we used merely wave theory for light. This is, in your terms, wrong but it wasn't so far wrong as to spoil our education. Those who went on to university will have had to learn the whole grizzly truth of the maths in QED and the zoo of basic particles but you could hardly expect school students to face that, could you.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 03:50:57 PM
Kindly explain how Intelligent Design Theory in the classroom would interfere with a study of the ToE.

How does ID interfere with the teaching of the ToE?

For one thing, it's a religiously-motivated hypothesis demanding equal weight with a theory that has proven its value in the real world.  It teaches students the myth that wishful thinking and "what-if" scenarios are equal to cold, hard facts, and that they can choose one or the other with no hard consequences.

That's nonsense. I have known and taught dozens of junior and senior high school students who have been taught the ToE and remain devout Christians. They are not as shallow as you perceive them to be.

Quote
It muddies the waters.  It's analogous to saying "2+2=4, but in an alternate universe 2+2 might equal 5, or 6, or watermelons."

ID also cannot be considered a scientific theory until it starts to make accurate predictions based on known facts.  If it can't do that, why teach it at all?

A teacher's attitude towards the subject can strongly influence which viewpoint the student ultimately accepts.  Unless there is constant monitoring in the classroom, or a non-believing student complains, there's nothing to stop a teacher from waxing poetic that there must be a designer (because pussycats and flowers and lah-dee-dah), and "Oh, I have to teach you this evolution crap too but we'll just do that till recess."

Finally, this whole debate is apples-and-oranges.  Intelligent Design is all about origins, whereas evolution is about how existing organisms change over time.  ID is in the wrong science course from the start -- It should really be in a graduate-level Biochemistry unit on abiogenesis, where it would get the respect it truly deserves.  ;)

With all due respect, I question the level of knowledge you possess about Intelligent Design Theory because it can and does make accurate predictions.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 20, 2014, 03:52:32 PM
Sure. I'll give you an example from one of my kids books that I had discussed in an earlier thread:

"Biology- Understanding Life" – Alters & Alters - copyright 2006.

As always, I no more than flipped it open to page 251 where a new chapter starts and am immediately drawn to strange claim made in the first paragraph. The chapter is titled “Beyond Darwinism: A Genetic Basis of Evolution.” The very first sentence in the chapter says “Scientists know that snakes evolved from ancient lizards.”
Minor point:
The chapter is actually called "Beyond Darwin: A Genetic Basis of Evolution"

Out of curiosity, did you at all go through chapter 2: How Scientists Do Their Work?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 03:58:22 PM
Look, Biblestudent, you are looking at the school text book, These are books for teenagers not for graduates. There is no way the such a book can go into all the intricacies of assessing the details in the family tree of life. Your first suggestion of an error turned out to be nothing more than nit-picking.

Nit-picking? The book clearly conveyed that snakes evolved from lizards. It was not stated as a likelihood or a possibility. It said it has been proven. That is false and misleading.....which seems acceptable to you yet you will take exception to Responsive Ed teaching alleged inaccuracies and lies? Do you see what I'm getting at here?

Quote
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 04:02:17 PM
Look, Biblestudent, you are looking at the school text book, These are books for teenagers not for graduates. There is no way the such a book can go into all the intricacies of assessing the details in the family tree of life. Your first suggestion of an error turned out to be nothing more than nit-picking.

Nit-picking? The book clearly conveyed that snakes evolved from lizards. It was not stated as a likelihood or a possibility. It said it has been proven. That is false and misleading.....which seems acceptable to you yet you will take exception to Responsive Ed teaching alleged inaccuracies and lies? Do you see what I'm getting at here?



You say false and misleading. How would you phrase the text to make it fit your view of things? It is going to have to be a very few changes but have a go.

While you are at it, please state some prediction made by ID theory.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 04:16:01 PM
Sure. I'll give you an example from one of my kids books that I had discussed in an earlier thread:

"Biology- Understanding Life" – Alters & Alters - copyright 2006.

As always, I no more than flipped it open to page 251 where a new chapter starts and am immediately drawn to strange claim made in the first paragraph. The chapter is titled “Beyond Darwinism: A Genetic Basis of Evolution.” The very first sentence in the chapter says “Scientists know that snakes evolved from ancient lizards.”
Minor point:
The chapter is actually called "Beyond Darwin: A Genetic Basis of Evolution"

Out of curiosity, did you at all go through chapter 2: How Scientists Do Their Work?

I may have but I don't recall for certain. It's been awhile.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 04:30:47 PM
Look, Biblestudent, you are looking at the school text book, These are books for teenagers not for graduates. There is no way the such a book can go into all the intricacies of assessing the details in the family tree of life. Your first suggestion of an error turned out to be nothing more than nit-picking.

Nit-picking? The book clearly conveyed that snakes evolved from lizards. It was not stated as a likelihood or a possibility. It said it has been proven. That is false and misleading.....which seems acceptable to you yet you will take exception to Responsive Ed teaching alleged inaccuracies and lies? Do you see what I'm getting at here?



You say false and misleading. How would you phrase the text to make it fit your view of things? It is going to have to be a very few changes but have a go.

I simply would have presented it as a popular hypotheses.

Quote
While you are at it, please state some prediction made by ID theory.

Predictions of Design (Hypothesis):
(1) Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information).
(2) Forms containing large amounts of novel information will appear in the fossil record suddenly and without similar precursors.
(3) Convergence will occur routinely. That is, genes and other functional parts will be re-used in different and unrelated organisms.
(4) Much so-called "junk DNA" will turn out to perform valuable functions.

http://www.evolutionnews.org
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 04:41:01 PM
The textbook did not contain Dr Houssaye's comments....if that's what you gathered from my post. Sorry, I should have been more clear. The reference to Dr Houssaye's findings was something I inserted in the post....it was not in the textbook.
I figured that out right away, actually.  You were complaining because the textbook authors said that scientists knew that snakes were descended from lizards, and used the article referencing Dr. Houssave and her work to undercut what the textbook wrote.  My actual point was that Dr. Houssave herself had no doubt that snakes were descended from lizards; what she wrote was that they didn't know all the details yet, such as whether it was an aquatic lizard or a land-dwelling lizard, and that she didn't expect scientists would nail down exactly which lizard species very quickly.

In other words, it didn't actually undercut the textbook's statement that scientists knew that snakes had descended from lizards - it just stated that we didn't know for sure exactly which lizard species was the forbear of snakes, and that we likely wouldn't know for some time.  As I stated, we have plenty of other evidence that supports snakes having descended from lizards.  We don't need every last detail in place to be able to figure out more general information, just as a person working on a puzzle doesn't need every piece in place to figure out what the puzzle is showing.

In short, it has been proven beyond any reasonable doubt - which is about as far as science can go - that snakes are descended from lizards.  What hasn't been proven is exactly what lizard species snakes descended from.  For you to claim that it is deficient and misleading for a science textbook to state that snakes descended from lizards by using a scientist's statement that we don't know for sure which lizard species it was (and aren't likely to know within the decade) is a lot closer to actually being deficient and misleading in my opinion.

In any case, two wrongs don't make a right.  Even if evolution textbooks were actually deficient and misleading (which neither you nor anyone else has actually shown), that wouldn't excuse or justify Responsive Education Solutions having written its own deficient and misleading textbooks for various charter schools.  That would just make matters worse for students.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 04:58:42 PM
Predictions of Design (Hypothesis):
(1) Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information).
(2) Forms containing large amounts of novel information will appear in the fossil record suddenly and without similar precursors.
(3) Convergence will occur routinely. That is, genes and other functional parts will be re-used in different and unrelated organisms.
(4) Much so-called "junk DNA" will turn out to perform valuable functions.

http://www.evolutionnews.org
First off, none of those really predict anything meaningful.  They're so general as to be practically useless - it's like saying that something predicts that the sun will rise and fall, without giving us a reason why that matters for your hypothesis.

Second, those are pretty much ad hoc - that is to say, off-the-cuff 'predictions' that aren't really related to each other, or anything else.

And third, they don't do a thing to advance your hypothesis.  Intelligent design is certainly not the only reason that those things could have happened, which means that as predictions, they are summarily useless for advancing intelligent design.

For a scientific prediction to be useful, you have to do what's referred to as "solving for" in math.  You have to isolate the thing you're trying to associate with the prediction - for example, if you were to predict that a certain flower would react to sunlight by opening its petals, it's not enough to show that it does open its petals when sunlight shines on it.  You would also have to show that it didn't react to bright lights (like moonlight, or a spotlight).  And then, you have to come up with the best reason why it does that.  That's where intelligent design inevitably falls short - because it invents the reason in advance, and tries to fit things into that already-existing reason, which makes it much too complicated to be useful, much like trying to describe the solar system orbits from a geocentric perspective.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 20, 2014, 05:13:22 PM

Predictions of Design (Hypothesis):
(1) Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information).
(2) Forms containing large amounts of novel information will appear in the fossil record suddenly and without similar precursors.
(3) Convergence will occur routinely. That is, genes and other functional parts will be re-used in different and unrelated organisms.
(4) Much so-called "junk DNA" will turn out to perform valuable functions.

http://www.evolutionnews.org

1. thanks for the copy n paste job. I read those on another website already.

2. Those are not predictions. A prediction is a statement that is not known to be true before experiments are set up to test it. You know, like Prof Higgs and the bosun - he predicted it in 1963 and it was found last year!  Those items are someone looking at what we know and working backwards. I take it you don't have any actual predictions (where the predicter didn't already know the outcome) do you?

incidentally, your No 1 has been disproved so successfully that I am amazed that it even figures in the list.

http://youtu.be/K_HVrjKcvrU
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: rev45 on January 20, 2014, 05:23:23 PM
That sounds rather suspicious in itself, as if the textbook was trying to placate creationists.  It's been many years since I read a biology textbook, so can someone with more current knowledge of school textbooks add insight here?
I just dug out my BIO 101 book from last semester.  It defines microevolution as change in allele frequencies in a population over generations.  Macroevolution is defined as large-scale evolutionary change, such as the formation of a new species.  The book never described it as micro vs macro, but rather that macroevolution is the result of microevolution's accumulation.  This comes from the 2013 McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc textbook.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 20, 2014, 06:29:09 PM

Predictions of Design (Hypothesis):
(1) Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information).
(2) Forms containing large amounts of novel information will appear in the fossil record suddenly and without similar precursors.
(3) Convergence will occur routinely. That is, genes and other functional parts will be re-used in different and unrelated organisms.
(4) Much so-called "junk DNA" will turn out to perform valuable functions.

http://www.evolutionnews.org

I find it odd that the article claims that ID is not a claim "that life is so complex, it could not have evolved, therefore it was designed by a supernatural intelligence" only to conclude that ID is a claim "that argues that the best explanation for some natural phenomena is an intelligence cause, especially when we find certain types of information and complexity in nature which in our experience are caused by intelligence."

All I see there is the author of the article saying ID isn't a simple logicical fallacy, it's a complex logical fallacy.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 07:39:41 PM
In short, it has been proven beyond any reasonable doubt - which is about as far as science can go - that snakes are descended from lizards. 

Really? Based on what evidence?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 20, 2014, 08:00:48 PM

Predictions of Design (Hypothesis):
(1) Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information).
(2) Forms containing large amounts of novel information will appear in the fossil record suddenly and without similar precursors.
(3) Convergence will occur routinely. That is, genes and other functional parts will be re-used in different and unrelated organisms.
(4) Much so-called "junk DNA" will turn out to perform valuable functions.

http://www.evolutionnews.org

I find it odd that the article claims that ID is not a claim "that life is so complex, it could not have evolved, therefore it was designed by a supernatural intelligence" only to conclude that ID is a claim "that argues that the best explanation for some natural phenomena is an intelligence cause, especially when we find certain types of information and complexity in nature which in our experience are caused by intelligence."

All I see there is the author of the article saying ID isn't a simple logical fallacy, it's a complex logical fallacy.


I also find it odd that the article at evolutionnews.org uses the word for word description of the scientific method from intelligentdesign.org.

From evolutionnews.org :

ID uses the scientific method to make its claims. This method is commonly described as a four-step process of observations, hypothesis, experiments, and conclusion.

From intelligentdesign.org :

The scientific method is commonly described as a four-step process involving observations, hypothesis, experiments, and conclusion.


I'm suspicious of why the scientific method is being simplified this way.  I'm also suspicious of the use of conclusions.  Conclusions are generally used to form another hypothesis which can lead to additional predictions that can be tested.
It appears that ID is simply ending at conclusions as if "that's it, all done". 

If ID were really using the scientific method, it would be able to make additional predictions.  Eventually, once ID gets to the conclusion of an intelligent designer or agent then suddenly observation, hypothesis and experiments stop.  If your conclusion leads to something that can't be observed or tested then something is wrong with the hypothesis or processes used during previous observation and experiments.

If you would like to learn about what the scientific method really is, I suggest reading the information found in the following websites:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method

http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_scientific_method.shtml?gclid=CJzgwPuAjrwCFe5lOgodhC0AgQ#overviewofthescientificmethod

http://www.sciencebob.com/sciencefair/scientificmethod.php

http://biology.clc.uc.edu/courses/bio104/sci_meth.htm


It appears that both evolution.org and intelligentdesign.org are misrepresenting the scientific method.

I wonder why?

Could it be that ID fails the actual scientific method?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 08:20:51 PM
Really? Based on what evidence?
I told you already.  Morphology, phylogeny, biochemistry, and genetics.  I'll give you some links for for your edification.

HOW LIZARDS TURN INTO SNAKES: A PHYLOGENETIC ANALYSIS OF BODY-FORM EVOLUTION IN ANGUID LIZARDS (http://euplotes.biology.uiowa.edu/web/IBS593/week6/Wiens.pdf)

Molecular Phylogenetics of Squamata: The Position of Snakes, Amphisbaenians, and Dibamids, and the Root of the Squamate Tree (http://www.naherpetology.org/pdf_files/728.pdf)

Molecular evidence and marine snake origins (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1626205/)

Happy reading!
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 08:26:31 PM
I also find it odd that the article at evolutionnews.org uses the word for word description of the scientific method from intelligentdesign.org.

From evolutionnews.org :

ID uses the scientific method to make its claims. This method is commonly described as a four-step process of observations, hypothesis, experiments, and conclusion.

From intelligentdesign.org :

The scientific method is commonly described as a four-step process involving observations, hypothesis, experiments, and conclusion.


I'm suspicious of why the scientific method is being simplified this way.  I'm also suspicious of the use of conclusions.  Conclusions are generally used to form another hypothesis which can lead to additional predictions that can be tested.
It appears that ID is simply ending at conclusions as if "that's it, all done". 

If ID were really using the scientific method, it would be able to make additional predictions.  Eventually, once ID gets to the conclusion of an intelligent designer or agent then suddenly observation, hypothesis and experiments stop.  If your conclusion leads to something that can't be observed or tested then something is wrong with the hypothesis or processes used during previous observation and experiments.

If you would like to learn about what the scientific method really is, I suggest reading the information found in the following websites:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method

http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_scientific_method.shtml?gclid=CJzgwPuAjrwCFe5lOgodhC0AgQ#overviewofthescientificmethod

http://www.sciencebob.com/sciencefair/scientificmethod.php

http://biology.clc.uc.edu/courses/bio104/sci_meth.htm


It appears that both evolution.org and intelligentdesign.org are misrepresenting the scientific method.

I wonder why?

Could it be that ID fails the actual scientific method?

Nothing that you have stated here demonstrates that the IDT is misrepresenting the scientific method. Perhaps you could be a little more specific.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: DVZ3 on January 20, 2014, 08:48:50 PM

In other news...

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140116190137.htm

Also related and more profound for human medicine let alone animal ancestry

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052970204124204577151053537379354

Science - because it works. Anything else is intellectually lazy and dishonest.

BS - One day you could potentially afford to know what to pray for in advance to try and fix in your body well before you're diagnosed with it. You can stick with ID all you want but the wave of science and knowledge is growing everyday. Why you accept willful ignorance as the status quo others will ride the wave of science.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: mrbiscoop on January 20, 2014, 08:53:06 PM
jaimehlers
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phrenology


Definitely  not phrenology.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:44:32 PM
Really? Based on what evidence?
I told you already.  Morphology, phylogeny, biochemistry, and genetics.  I'll give you some links for for your edification.

HOW LIZARDS TURN INTO SNAKES: A PHYLOGENETIC ANALYSIS OF BODY-FORM EVOLUTION IN ANGUID LIZARDS (http://euplotes.biology.uiowa.edu/web/IBS593/week6/Wiens.pdf)

Molecular Phylogenetics of Squamata: The Position of Snakes, Amphisbaenians, and Dibamids, and the Root of the Squamate Tree (http://www.naherpetology.org/pdf_files/728.pdf)

Molecular evidence and marine snake origins (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1626205/)

Happy reading!

These are hypotheses that I will concede make for a strong argument, no doubt. Still, I have concerns about going so far as to say that snake evolution is a settled matter and that we can conclude the morphology and DNA analyses PROVES "snakes from lizards." The origins of snakes is not a settled matter and some of the material in the links concedes that.

I appreciate you sharing the links. That is not easy material to read and understand.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 20, 2014, 09:49:43 PM

In other news...

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140116190137.htm

Also related and more profound for human medicine let alone animal ancestry

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052970204124204577151053537379354

Science - because it works. Anything else is intellectually lazy and dishonest.

BS - One day you could potentially afford to know what to pray for in advance to try and fix in your body well before you're diagnosed with it. You can stick with ID all you want but the wave of science and knowledge is growing everyday. Why you accept willful ignorance as the status quo others will ride the wave of science.

I fail to see your point. Your comments and the links you provided seem to imply that you think I am 100% anti-ToE....and that couldn't be further from the truth.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: DVZ3 on January 20, 2014, 09:56:44 PM
^^^ Good deal, I fail to see your defense for ID; with a name like BibleStudent I'm not surprised by your bias.

Are you trying to convince us or yourself with the OP?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: ParkingPlaces on January 20, 2014, 10:27:48 PM
I just find it perplexing that some of you all don't show the same amount of passion for the lies being taught about evolution in the school system. When was the last time you picked up a high school or college biology text and critiqued it for accuracy?

We haven't had time to fix anything because idiots keep us occupied with their stupidity.

Stop trying to ruin everything and then we'll have a chance deal with the details.

And by the way, about the only thing taught accurately in high school is math. And perhaps English. Everything else is simplified, watered down and basic, because the education system isn't designed to teach. It is designed to keep students busy until they can be assimilated into the employment world. Those of us against teaching non-subjects like creationism would be better utilized as fixers of a broken system. But fund's want to make it even worse, so we have to concentrate our energies there.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 20, 2014, 10:51:37 PM
These are hypotheses that I will concede make for a strong argument, no doubt. Still, I have concerns about going so far as to say that snake evolution is a settled matter and that we can conclude the morphology and DNA analyses PROVES "snakes from lizards." The origins of snakes is not a settled matter and some of the material in the links concedes that.

I appreciate you sharing the links. That is not easy material to read and understand.
They're more than just mere hypotheses.  The word hypothesis implies, if not strongly implies, that it isn't backed by evidence, and those articles - found off of the first two pages of a Google search - are backed by a lot of evidence.  If I had been so inclined, I could have found dozens of articles instead of just three.  And that's what really matters in science, how much evidence backs a proposed explanation.  If there's a lot of evidence in favor of something, and I believe there is plenty when it comes to snakes descending from lizards, then it doesn't work to try to dismiss it as a mere hypothesis, as if it were nothing but the author's conclusions.

The reason the question of snake evolution isn't fully settled is not because scientists seriously doubt that snakes descended from lizards, but because we don't have enough information (yet) to fully trace the line which that descent took.  We face a similar problem in tracing the line of our own descent from the primate family, but that doesn't mean that scientists seriously doubt that humans descended from primates.  So trying to hammer a science textbook because it says that scientists know that snakes descended from lizards, when in fact scientists do know that snakes descended from lizards, doesn't exactly strike me as reasonable.  And trying to suggest that the question of snake origins isn't settled - implying that they aren't actually sure of whether snakes are descended from lizards, even though that's not what the actual articles are saying - doesn't strike me as reasonable either.

There's nothing wrong with being skeptical of information that you aren't sure of, but trying to present the information that you do have in a manner that makes it look like it supports your skepticism when it really doesn't tends to undercut your argument.  You don't look like someone who isn't sure but is looking for more information, you look like someone who is bound and determined to draw specific conclusions from the information you do have regardless of how much you have to...'massage' it to make it fit those conclusions.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: RED_ApeTHEIST on January 20, 2014, 11:13:58 PM
Biblestudent, What standards do you hold for the teaching of a theory to students? Should we be teaching the fairy theory of sub atomic structure[1] and the gnome theory of gravity[2]?

All kidding aside, what standards would you propose that we use to determine which theories that we teach children? Should we use scientific consensus, or do you have some other criteria?
 1. All things are actually composed of thousands of tiny fairies putting on a very complicated and long term group role-play
 2. Gravity is in fact caused by tiny gnomes at the center of the earth with magnets that pull things towards them
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Astreja on January 21, 2014, 12:34:49 AM
That sounds rather suspicious in itself, as if the textbook was trying to placate creationists.  It's been many years since I read a biology textbook, so can someone with more current knowledge of school textbooks add insight here?

I just dug out my BIO 101 book from last semester.  It defines microevolution as change in allele frequencies in a population over generations.  Macroevolution is defined as large-scale evolutionary change, such as the formation of a new species.  The book never described it as micro vs macro, but rather that macroevolution is the result of microevolution's accumulation.  This comes from the 2013 McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc textbook.

Thanks for the info, Rev.  I wasn't sure if microevolution and macroevolution were indeed valid terms or just something the ID lobby made up.  Interesting that biology clearly recognizes that myriad small changes add up to big ones such as speciation, while many ID apologists and YECs expect speciation to happen in giant leaps with no intermediary stages.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: shnozzola on January 21, 2014, 06:45:28 AM
Bible Student,
           I'd like us to take a step back and look at this debate objectively.   I was going to post a video from Bill Nye of CNN where he gave a scathing lecture to folks that ignore evolution.  Beyond scathing really.  I was surprised how tough he was, wondering if he is one of the regulars at this website.  :)  Anyway, I am wondering if your position has moved from the posts in this debate, the links, the videos, etc., or if your position is steadfast, no matter what we present?

It is an interesting thing to watch, wondering if and when we quietly change our opinions, all of us not liking to admit we are considering new possibilities.  I certainly have changed mine, but I was never afraid of not believing, maybe more afraid of not searching for truth.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 21, 2014, 07:12:09 AM
Thanks for the info, Rev.  I wasn't sure if microevolution and macroevolution were indeed valid terms or just something the ID lobby made up.  Interesting that biology clearly recognizes that myriad small changes add up to big ones such as speciation, while many ID apologists and YECs expect speciation to happen in giant leaps with no intermediary stages.
It is, isn't it?  It's much like what BibleStudent is doing here, taking legitimate terms such as hypothesis and misapplying them to suit his biases (such as by using them on explanations which have a much higher level of certainty than the word hypothesis implies).  The main question in my mind is whether he's doing it intentionally or not.  If his biases are deep enough, he might not realize that he's doing it.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Quesi on January 21, 2014, 07:42:02 AM
This is just all so silly.  I'm sitting here trying to imagine the hoops that you need to jump through to support your scriptures in the face of such overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

Last night I was watching tv with my daughter.  They were talking about a star that is 6000 light years away.  I quizzed my 7 year old, and asked her if the scientists were seeing what was going on with that star right now.  She said "No!  They are seeing what happened to that star 6000 years ago!"  I asked her why, and she said that it took 6000 years for the light to travel to earth, so the scientists were actually seeing stuff that happened in the past.  I beamed. 

Of course 6 thousand light years is not very far.  Scientists can look back billions of years into the observable universe.

So what do monotheists need to do to maintain their faith, based on stories that were written by people who thought the earth was flat and who didn't even know that our sun was a star? 

Well, they basically fall into two camps.

The Young Earth Camp:

*  The scientists are lying because they hate god.
*  There is a global, multi-generational conspiracy of scientists who hate god who are trying to trick us.
*  The scientists are wrong and are not as smart as the believers are.
*  The devil is deceiving the scientists and making them think they see stuff that isn't real. 


The Science and Faith are Compatible Camp:

*  Look at how big and wonderful the universe is.  God sure is great, huh? [1]
*  It is a great mystery. 

Am I missing anything here?  Theists?  It seems like it is so much work to try and cling to these ancient myths.  And yet, theists have devised a whole bunch of strategies that allow them to do so. 
 1. God sure went to a lot of trouble to create a lot of stuff that we wouldn't find out about for a long time, didn't He?  What was his motivation?  And if he created this whole universe for us, why are we such a small, insignificant part of it?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Quesi on January 21, 2014, 08:03:34 AM
Oh.  And for the folks who fall into the Science and Faith are Compatible Camp, I have to re-post this wonderful video by Neil DeGrasse Tyson.

If I believed in a god, he would be a lot like Dr. Tyson.  Really smart.  Passionate.  But able to take incredibly complex concepts, and present them in such a clear and simple way, enabling everyone to understand.

I mean, if God presented his explanations this clearly, then there would be no reason to debate whether He wants us to kill homosexuals and disobedient children, or love them.  There would be no reason to have a Young Earth Camp and a Science and Faith are Compatible Camp. 


http://youtu.be/7pL5vzIMAhs

Why can't God be as clear as Dr. Tyson? 
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 21, 2014, 09:30:33 AM
http://www.evolutionnews.org

whomever runs this website are horrible people.  Truly Evil.  Liars of the lowest order.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 09:33:06 AM
They're more than just mere hypotheses.  The word hypothesis implies, if not strongly implies, that it isn't backed by evidence, and those articles - found off of the first two pages of a Google search - are backed by a lot of evidence.  If I had been so inclined, I could have found dozens of articles instead of just three.  And that's what really matters in science, how much evidence backs a proposed explanation.  If there's a lot of evidence in favor of something, and I believe there is plenty when it comes to snakes descending from lizards, then it doesn't work to try to dismiss it as a mere hypothesis, as if it were nothing but the author's conclusions.

The reason the question of snake evolution isn't fully settled is not because scientists seriously doubt that snakes descended from lizards, but because we don't have enough information (yet) to fully trace the line which that descent took.  We face a similar problem in tracing the line of our own descent from the primate family, but that doesn't mean that scientists seriously doubt that humans descended from primates.  So trying to hammer a science textbook because it says that scientists know that snakes descended from lizards, when in fact scientists do know that snakes descended from lizards, doesn't exactly strike me as reasonable.  And trying to suggest that the question of snake origins isn't settled - implying that they aren't actually sure of whether snakes are descended from lizards, even though that's not what the actual articles are saying - doesn't strike me as reasonable either.

There's nothing wrong with being skeptical of information that you aren't sure of, but trying to present the information that you do have in a manner that makes it look like it supports your skepticism when it really doesn't tends to undercut your argument.  You don't look like someone who isn't sure but is looking for more information, you look like someone who is bound and determined to draw specific conclusions from the information you do have regardless of how much you have to...'massage' it to make it fit those conclusions.

Let me ask you a simple question. Do you consider it possible, for example, that a new discovery in the fossil record could reveal that snakes actually evolved from different ancestors? The pylogenetic tree undergoes changes on a regular basis and it wouldn’t be the first time that science had to amend a hypothesis to recognize previously unknown information.   
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 09:37:47 AM
Thanks for the info, Rev.  I wasn't sure if microevolution and macroevolution were indeed valid terms or just something the ID lobby made up.  Interesting that biology clearly recognizes that myriad small changes add up to big ones such as speciation, while many ID apologists and YECs expect speciation to happen in giant leaps with no intermediary stages.
It is, isn't it?  It's much like what BibleStudent is doing here, taking legitimate terms such as hypothesis and misapplying them to suit his biases (such as by using them on explanations which have a much higher level of certainty than the word hypothesis implies).  The main question in my mind is whether he's doing it intentionally or not.  If his biases are deep enough, he might not realize that he's doing it.

I could insert jaimehlers where Biblestudent appears in your comment and be just as suspicious of your bias.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 09:40:04 AM
Bible Student,
           I'd like us to take a step back and look at this debate objectively.   I was going to post a video from Bill Nye of CNN where he gave a scathing lecture to folks that ignore evolution.  Beyond scathing really.  I was surprised how tough he was, wondering if he is one of the regulars at this website.  :)  Anyway, I am wondering if your position has moved from the posts in this debate, the links, the videos, etc., or if your position is steadfast, no matter what we present?

It is an interesting thing to watch, wondering if and when we quietly change our opinions, all of us not liking to admit we are considering new possibilities.  I certainly have changed mine, but I was never afraid of not believing, maybe more afraid of not searching for truth.

What exactly is it that you think I need to learn? Like others here, you seem to be taking the position that I am a denier of the entire ToE. Where does that come from?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 09:44:31 AM
This is just all so silly.  I'm sitting here trying to imagine the hoops that you need to jump through to support your scriptures in the face of such overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

Have you ever even completed an undergraduate course in theology? I am not attempting to antagonize you by asking that question…..I am genuinely interested to know.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 21, 2014, 09:55:02 AM
Let me ask you a simple question. Do you consider it possible, for example, that a new discovery in the fossil record could reveal that snakes actually evolved from different ancestors? The pylogenetic tree undergoes changes on a regular basis and it wouldn’t be the first time that science had to amend a hypothesis to recognize previously unknown information.

You are trying to disguise dishonesty as healthy skepticism.

Of course new information would change things.  That is the whole point.  But until that new tidbit of data appears, this is the best explanation we have. But rather than acknowledge that, you are trying to make that sound like what we know is so weak and so flimsey that it should not be taught. 

Try showing this level of skepticism for ID. That would be great.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 21, 2014, 10:03:37 AM
just a bit on the 4 "predictions" of ID, from 2010.
http://nondiscovery.wordpress.com/2010/03/23/intelligent-design-does-not-make-predictions-and-is-not-science/

Quote
Recently, Casey Luskin wrote a post discussing how ID proponents test their theory in real world situations.  Luskin provides a short list of four items (is that the most he could come up with?) that are supposed predictions of ID.  Lets take them one at a time:
(continues)
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 10:05:53 AM
You are trying to disguise dishonesty as healthy skepticism.

Of course new information would change things.  That is the whole point.  But until that new tidbit of data appears, this is the best explanation we have. But rather than acknowledge that, you are trying to make that sound like what we know is so weak and so flimsey that it should not be taught. 

Try showing this level of skepticism for ID. That would be great.

Then don’t you agree that those findings should be presented that way rather than as proof of something in a high school text book?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: shnozzola on January 21, 2014, 10:14:17 AM
What exactly is it that you think I need to learn? Like others here, you seem to be taking the position that I am a denier of the entire ToE. Where does that come from?

First, my question was just whether you were willing to change your position.  After posting here over time, my questions probably come across as more of a challenge than you like.  That's WWGHA.

Second, in your reference to snakes and lizards, and whichever way evolution changed species, you say -

Quote
This “story” (when examined carefully) claims that these alleged useless hind legs were present on this poor creature for anywhere from 4million to 22 million years !!!

Using the words "poor creature" and your quotation marks at the end of the sentence mean (to me) it seems you may be underestimating the time needed for evolution, that, like many creationists, you expect to see quick changes for evolution to make sense, or maybe more importantly for the idea of a creator to make sense.  Do you think god physically produced a lizard and a snake at one time during history?  I do not.

Here's a link with the top ten useless human body parts:
http://www.sciencechannel.com/life-earth-science/10-useless-organs.htm

This may not be as impressive as a species with useless or semi useless legs, but does give evidence for evolution.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 21, 2014, 10:18:09 AM
Then don’t you agree that those findings should be presented that way rather than as proof of something in a high school text book?

I agree that many highschool text books suck.  A large part of the reason for that is because of the political nature of how they are written.  Unfortunately, people sympathetic to ID have a huge say in that.[1]  And in most cases, they err in the opposite direction. 

So I am not going to get too torqued up over a nit-picky detail where they said "proved" instead of "best explanation so far" when they are so often saying absolutley false and borderline crazy things instead. Your example is accurate, but silly and pedantic in the greater scheme of things.

 1. buttholes in texas, for example.
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/23/education/texas-education-board-flags-biology-textbook-over-evolution-concerns.html?_r=0 (http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/23/education/texas-education-board-flags-biology-textbook-over-evolution-concerns.html?_r=0)
http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2012/jun/21/how-texas-inflicts-bad-textbooks-on-us/?pagination=false (http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2012/jun/21/how-texas-inflicts-bad-textbooks-on-us/?pagination=false)
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 10:21:36 AM
Do you think god physically produced a lizard and a snake at one time during history?

I do not know for certain how snakes and lizards came to be. They may have evolved just as the scientific literature indicates. That is a possibility.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 21, 2014, 10:23:44 AM
Do you think god physically produced a lizard and a snake at one time during history?

I do not know for certain how snakes and lizards came to be. They may have evolved just as the scientific literature indicates. That is a possibility.

Right, but evolution provides with the best explanation we have now and until anything turns up that changes that we do at least have some explanation.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 10:30:43 AM
Your example is accurate, but silly and pedantic in the greater scheme of things.

I agree that an isolated incident of inaccuracy in a high school text book does not necessitate the need to upset an entire curriculum. I used it as example to counter the OP and point out that naturalists will bark up a storm about inaccuracies in curriculums when it is perceived to somehow threaten their beliefs.....but remain ignorant and silent when the naturalistic teachings contain inaccuracies. It's not only hypocritical but it is highly suggestive of a militant mentality that seeks to use science as a means to invalidate God. That is NOT what science is about.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: shnozzola on January 21, 2014, 10:48:42 AM
   I agree, Bible Student, that is not what science is about.  Science is set up to not ever be closed minded like many human endeavors are.  I have no problem with a deist's type of being that set evolution up.  I disagree with the idea, but how would I know.  When it comes down to it, reality may have started the day before I was born, and god is spoon-feeding me everything like a computer game.  (Ridiculous, but...)

   Part of the computer game is my responses.  The response I have these days is despising the way atheists are treated - remember, most places on our little planet YOU have the numbers, and the death threats.  I've typed it a hundred times here - what really set me off is 9/11, and the danger theists are presenting to the world.  IMO, it makes the time spent here much more important than my wife can understand.  :)
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 21, 2014, 02:03:29 PM
Let me ask you a simple question. Do you consider it possible, for example, that a new discovery in the fossil record could reveal that snakes actually evolved from different ancestors? The pylogenetic tree undergoes changes on a regular basis and it wouldn’t be the first time that science had to amend a hypothesis to recognize previously unknown information.
Of course it's possible.  The question is not whether something's possible - meaning that you can quantify the chances of it happening as greater than 0%, no matter how minutely - but whether it's likely - meaning that the chances of it happening are meaningful.  For example, take a person being hit by a meteorite.  According to National Geographic (http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/02/130220-russia-meteorite-ann-hodges-science-space-hit/), there is only one person in human history who's been confirmed to have been hit by a meteorite.  As Michael Reynolds, an astronomer cited in that article, says, "You have a better chance of getting hit by a tornado and a bolt of lightning and a hurricane all at the same time."

So the question is not whether it's possible that someone might find evidence in the fossil record that shows that snakes evolved from a different ancestor, but just how likely it is that someone will.  However, that's not the reason you're bringing this up.  You're bringing it up so you can 'prove' that science textbooks are inaccurate, even though what you're referring to is pure semantics.  Your whole point was that the textbook said that scientists knew something was true, and to cast doubt on whether they knew it for sure.  That kind of anal retentive nitpicking doesn't really accomplish anything.

I could insert jaimehlers where Biblestudent appears in your comment and be just as suspicious of your bias.
No, you couldn't.  You know why?  Because there's a key difference between you and I.  You are not expressing this skepticism out of a genuine desire to improve science, at least as far as I can tell.  You are doing it so you can avoid having to seriously acknowledge that your beliefs - based on an ancient holy book written by people who knew a tiny fraction of what we know today - might not be correct.  I wouldn't be surprised if you gave lip service to that, but I don't think you've given it any real consideration.  In short, you're only interested in pointing out possible flaws so you can maintain the Biblical beliefs you were taught as a child with as little change as possible.  You have a vested interest in those Biblical beliefs being correct.

When I read something in science, I keep in mind that it's just the latest word.  Experiments or evidence next year, or next century, might show it to be wrong.  But until someone actually does show it to be wrong, there is no point in assuming it is.  That's why trying to insinuate that I'm just as biased as you isn't going to work - because I don't have a vested interest in a specific factoid of science being right.  Say someone were to find evidence that snakes weren't actually descended from lizards, sometime in the future.  If that happens, then as long as the evidence supports it, I'm okay with it.  It doesn't make the scientific process wrong, it just shows that we improved our knowledge.

For that matter, if someone were to come up with real evidence that showed that something came and tinkered with life on Earth in the past, designing it in some way, then as long as they have evidence, I'm okay with it.  But without the evidence, any such claim is nothing but speculation.  That's where intelligent design falls short and where it will continue to fall short - because it has no actual evidence of an intelligent designer.  We can't base knowledge on things that people would like to be true, or think might be true, or think might not be true - we have to stick to what the evidence actually shows is true.  So when we find additional evidence, we have to fit that in - and if it means coming up with new theories, so be it.

Before you respond, consider how actual genetic engineers work.  They take organisms that have desired traits and use something, usually tailored viruses, to transplant the gene for that trait into another, completely unrelated organism.  More to the point, it isn't a gradual change that occurs over hundreds or thousands of generations, the way evolution works.  That's the kind of thing I'd expect to see from an intelligent designer - making significant changes over a very short period of time (from one generation to the next), and continuing to make changes as needed over subsequent generations, as well as acting to conserve those changes so that subsequent generations aren't likely to wipe them out.  Yet in our own fossil history, we see nothing like that.  Instead, we see exactly what we'd expect of natural selection as predicted by evolution.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Willie on January 21, 2014, 02:05:08 PM
Then don’t you agree that those findings should be presented that way rather than as proof of something in a high school text book?

I agree that many highschool text books suck.  A large part of the reason for that is because of the political nature of how they are written.  Unfortunately, people sympathetic to ID have a huge say in that.[1]  And in most cases, they err in the opposite direction. 

So I am not going to get too torqued up over a nit-picky detail where they said "proved" instead of "best explanation so far" when they are so often saying absolutley false and borderline crazy things instead. Your example is accurate, but silly and pedantic in the greater scheme of things.
 1. buttholes in texas, for example.
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/23/education/texas-education-board-flags-biology-textbook-over-evolution-concerns.html?_r=0 (http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/23/education/texas-education-board-flags-biology-textbook-over-evolution-concerns.html?_r=0)
http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2012/jun/21/how-texas-inflicts-bad-textbooks-on-us/?pagination=false (http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2012/jun/21/how-texas-inflicts-bad-textbooks-on-us/?pagination=false)

They didn't say "proved". They said "know", which is not exactly the same thing.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 21, 2014, 02:51:13 PM
So now you see why we teach science in schools and not creationism of its other name of Intelligent Desing - because they have no evidence to present.

That is your opinion and you are entitled to it....but there are many others who would disagree with you and until it can be demonstrated with 100% certainty that a Creator does not exist, no one has a right to exclude that possibility from a school's curriculum.

Yes there is.  Because there is no evidence to support one.  If you honestly believe that any hypothesis with any possibility whatsoever should be taught in the schools, then you should also be advocating for the teaching of the hypothesis of alien life seeding earth (among many others).

Are you?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 21, 2014, 03:04:50 PM
Intelligent Design theory does not posit a specific God or creator so your "book" criticism is out of place.
Intentionally so, given that the people who crafted it all believe in a specific creator-god.  So let's drop the pretense, shall we?

Quote from: BibleStudent
That is your opinion and you are entitled to it....but there are many others who would disagree with you and until it can be demonstrated with 100% certainty that a Creator does not exist, no one has a right to exclude that possibility from a school's curriculum.
And since it just so happens that science can't demonstrate anything with 100% certainty - as I'm sure you were quite aware when you posted this - it's clear that you think that we should include the 'possibility' of a 'creator' in a school's curriculum.  However, this opinion of yours demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of science.  It is not about presenting things that are merely possible, because there are many, many things that are possible - including, I'm sure, any number of things that you would find utterly unpalatable[1].  It's about presenting things that have actual evidence to support them, which intelligent design "theory" does not.
 1. I can't help but wonder how you would react if American Hindus insisted that students should be taught about polytheistic 'creators', for example.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 21, 2014, 03:31:00 PM
Are you suggesting that the addition of religious doctrine into science aids scientific discovery?
No, I am not suggesting that. However, Intelligent Design Theory examines the biological machine work of living organisms so it certainly has scientific applications. It is a science after all.

this is such complete and utter bull-caca that I formally accuse you of lying.

One critical aspect of a scientific theory is falisifiabilty.  ID is not falsifiable.  It is NOT SCIENCE.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Truth OT on January 21, 2014, 03:47:59 PM

There is simply no reason to fully dismiss the possibility of a Creator.

I won't totally disagree with this conclusion. There is a possibility of not only a creator maker, but multiple makers. The issues with this possibility if one wishes to postulate a deity are as follows:

a. it's only a possibility
b. we have no way of identifying what the maker or makers are (were).
c. the maker may not be a who as opposed to some whats
d. the makers need not be sentient
e. the 'making' could very well have been an unintended or accidental consequence
f. we have no reason to invoke intelligent design and assume a purpose

To simplify it, if we make the assumption that there were makers or a maker, there is no reason to equate that substance or entity with any specific god that's ever been proposed.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 21, 2014, 03:49:29 PM
Yes but Biblestudent was supposed to be showing how it was science. Eventually he came up with 3 predictions that it makes but all three were arrived, by the look of, by looking to the science already done and saying their data predicted it. Except the flagellum of course, which we all know has been soundly shown to be a false idea.

So, Biblestudent, here's the thing. You say

Quote
No, I am not suggesting that. However, Intelligent Design Theory examines the biological machine work of living organisms so it certainly has scientific applications. It is a science after all.
which is true to the extent that biology does just the same. What your statement does not explain is why we need ID to do what biology already does? That only makes sense if you are saying that ID should be allowed to pretend to make scientific pronouncements on the the basis of what it calls science. Of course, then, it has gone too far.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 03:55:21 PM
Of course it's possible.  The question is not whether something's possible - meaning that you can quantify the chances of it happening as greater than 0%, no matter how minutely - but whether it's likely - meaning that the chances of it happening are meaningful.  For example, take a person being hit by a meteorite.  According to National Geographic (http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/02/130220-russia-meteorite-ann-hodges-science-space-hit/), there is only one person in human history who's been confirmed to have been hit by a meteorite.  As Michael Reynolds, an astronomer cited in that article, says, "You have a better chance of getting hit by a tornado and a bolt of lightning and a hurricane all at the same time."
So the question is not whether it's possible that someone might find evidence in the fossil record that shows that snakes evolved from a different ancestor, but just how likely it is that someone will.  However, that's not the reason you're bringing this up.  You're bringing it up so you can 'prove' that science textbooks are inaccurate, even though what you're referring to is pure semantics.  Your whole point was that the textbook said that scientists knew something was true, and to cast doubt on whether they knew it for sure.  That kind of anal retentive nitpicking doesn't really accomplish anything.

No. Science is not open to the kind of ambiguity you’re defending. Words have meanings and when arranged in a sentence they collectively convey a thought, an opinion, a fact, etc. One word out of place can have consequences and they are not open to personal meaning and interpretation. And, frankly, of all the places for someone to be advocating anything less than fully supported claims that have been accurately articulated, you should know that this forum tolerates very little of that….at least for us theists who participate here. I have experienced firsthand how one word or a short string of words can be turned against the person writing them because they were taken at face value.

You take the example I gave and add four, five, or six more instances of inaccurate claims made in the same textbook and what are the potential consequences? What occurs is that a student (or students) will begin to mentally develop an overall impression of the validity of the theory based on how all of the dots seem so well connected. Is that what you support? Feeding junior high, senior high, and college aged students lessons that contain proven claims that are really based on “close-to-being-true” findings? If so, that is rather disturbing.

I had asked my daughter to explain how she interpreted the snake-from-lizards claims in the book. She indicated that she took it to mean that science had proven snakes came from lizards. That’s just wrong. No one KNOWS how snakes came into being. I have read numerous articles and papers over the last several years that described how science had to radically alter its previous findings based on new discoveries and information….not specifically with regards to snakes but in other areas.

It is completely appropriate to indicate that science believes it has a strong case for snakes-from-lizards but to take it to the extreme that science KNOWS that snakes evolved from lizards is unverifiable with the information we have and thus it becomes a false claim. Period.

You can try and defend your position until the sun burns up but, frankly, I find it rather telling that you would condone errors and inaccuracies in a science text the way you are. It certainly doesn’t bode well for the scientific community to have people such as yourself promoting what many might label as deceptive and irresponsible.

Lastly, if you feel I am taking an isolated incident and blowing it way out of proportion then please do a Google search using combinations of the following words: “evolution” “textbook” “fraud” “science” and “lies.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 04:04:28 PM
So now you see why we teach science in schools and not creationism of its other name of Intelligent Desing - because they have no evidence to present.

That is your opinion and you are entitled to it....but there are many others who would disagree with you and until it can be demonstrated with 100% certainty that a Creator does not exist, no one has a right to exclude that possibility from a school's curriculum.

Yes there is.  Because there is no evidence to support one.  If you honestly believe that any hypothesis with any possibility whatsoever should be taught in the schools, then you should also be advocating for the teaching of the hypothesis of alien life seeding earth (among many others).

Are you?

No evidence? There is a ton of evidence that a ton of people have determined makes a reasonable argument for a Creator.

If you can provide evidence compelling enough to make a reasonable argument for alien seeds the please share it.

Abiogenesis is being taught as the likely origin-of-life hypothesis. Where is the evidence for that?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 04:06:02 PM
One critical aspect of a scientific theory is falisifiabilty.  ID is not falsifiable.  It is NOT SCIENCE.

Yes it is.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 04:09:17 PM
What your statement does not explain is why we need ID to do what biology already does?

Because IDT uses the same biology to determine if a Creator is possible....which is something the non-IDT science community wants to have anything to do with.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 21, 2014, 04:09:30 PM
Yes it is.

How is it falsifiable?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 21, 2014, 04:15:12 PM
One critical aspect of a scientific theory is falisifiabilty.  ID is not falsifiable.  It is NOT SCIENCE.

Yes it is.

still lying I see.

I challenge you to give a theoretical example of some evidence that would prove ID false.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 21, 2014, 04:23:33 PM
What your statement does not explain is why we need ID to do what biology already does?

Because IDT uses the same biology to determine if a Creator is possible....which is something the non-IDT science community wants to have anything to do with.

Why do you assume this position? Simply because you want it to be reality? It isn't reality.

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. Just because we don't yet know something doesn't mean that a god did it.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 21, 2014, 04:39:55 PM
One critical aspect of a scientific theory is falisifiabilty.  ID is not falsifiable.  It is NOT SCIENCE.

Yes it is.

Tell us how.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 21, 2014, 04:40:59 PM
What your statement does not explain is why we need ID to do what biology already does?

Because IDT uses the same biology to determine if a Creator is possible....which is something the non-IDT science community wants to have anything to do with.

True - but it fails!
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 21, 2014, 04:42:35 PM
So now you see why we teach science in schools and not creationism of its other name of Intelligent Desing - because they have no evidence to present.

That is your opinion and you are entitled to it....but there are many others who would disagree with you and until it can be demonstrated with 100% certainty that a Creator does not exist, no one has a right to exclude that possibility from a school's curriculum.

Yes there is.  Because there is no evidence to support one.  If you honestly believe that any hypothesis with any possibility whatsoever should be taught in the schools, then you should also be advocating for the teaching of the hypothesis of alien life seeding earth (among many others).

Are you?

No evidence? There is a ton of evidence that a ton of people have determined makes a reasonable argument for a Creator.

If you can provide evidence compelling enough to make a reasonable argument for alien seeds the please share it.

Abiogenesis is being taught as the likely origin-of-life hypothesis. Where is the evidence for that?

OK, let's see the evidence laid out in one post for a creator. No if or buts, just the evidence.

When you have done that, we can talk about abiogensis
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 21, 2014, 04:55:33 PM
OK, let's see the evidence laid out in one post for a creator. No if or buts, just the evidence.

When you have done that, we can talk about abiogensis

I point this out primarily to ensure that BibleStudent's presupposition (intentional or otherwise) isn't obscured from view...
...but he has pretty consistently typed Creator, not creator.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 21, 2014, 05:07:05 PM
And here's a scanned copy of some of the materials in question.

http://secondgiantleap.org/2014/01/19/responsive-education-solutions-science-curriculum/#.Utxes2Tn81_ (http://secondgiantleap.org/2014/01/19/responsive-education-solutions-science-curriculum/#.Utxes2Tn81_)
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 05:25:58 PM

OK, let's see the evidence laid out in one post for a creator. No if or buts, just the evidence.

When you have done that, we can talk about abiogensis

Are you seriously suggesting that you have never analyzed the substantial evidence used to make reasonable arguments for a Creator?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 21, 2014, 05:27:13 PM
Are you seriously suggesting that you have never analyzed the substantial evidence used to make reasonable arguments for a Creator?

How about you don't dodge and answer the question? Surely if the evidence is as "substantial" as you claim, it couldn't hurt your argument. You might be able to save a few souls.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 05:27:43 PM
OK, let's see the evidence laid out in one post for a creator. No if or buts, just the evidence.

When you have done that, we can talk about abiogensis

I point this out primarily to ensure that BibleStudent's presupposition (intentional or otherwise) isn't obscured from view...
...but he has pretty consistently typed Creator, not creator.

I was wondering how long it would take for someone to point that out that. It is intentional.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Truth OT on January 21, 2014, 05:30:47 PM
Are you seriously suggesting that you have never analyzed the substantial evidence used to make reasonable arguments for a Creator?

What are the arguments that you find to be reasonable ones that would lead to the conclusion that there is in fact a Creator that no only exists but is knowable and described accurately in religious texts?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 05:33:51 PM
Are you seriously suggesting that you have never analyzed the substantial evidence used to make reasonable arguments for a Creator?

How about you don't dodge and answer the question? Surely if the evidence is as "substantial" as you claim, it couldn't hurt your argument. You might be able to save a few souls.

That was not a dodge. It was intended to determine whether wheels5894 has even a basic understanding of what the evidence consists of.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 21, 2014, 05:35:53 PM
That was not a dodge. It was intended to determine whether wheels5894 has even a basic understanding of what the evidence consists of.

If he does, his question is pointless. If he doesn't, you're just stalling for time. If you simply answered the question, everyone would win.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 21, 2014, 05:46:11 PM
No. Science is not open to the kind of ambiguity you’re defending. Words have meanings and when arranged in a sentence they collectively convey a thought, an opinion, a fact, etc. One word out of place can have consequences and they are not open to personal meaning and interpretation. And, frankly, of all the places for someone to be advocating anything less than fully supported claims that have been accurately articulated, you should know that this forum tolerates very little of that….at least for us theists who participate here. I have experienced firsthand how one word or a short string of words can be turned against the person writing them because they were taken at face value.
This is nothing more than an attempt by you to justify the nitpicking and semantics games you've been trying to play through this whole thread, and it isn't going to work.  Frankly, it's exactly the reason you and other theists like you tend to get slammed so hard - because you insist on playing those sorts of games to begin with[1].  For you to claim that science has to have 100% accuracy before making a claim is beyond ridiculous.  The only thing that proves is that you aren't interested in actual science; you're only interested in trying to preserve your beliefs, no matter what.

Quote from: BibleStudent
You take the example I gave and add four, five, or six more instances of inaccurate claims made in the same textbook and what are the potential consequences? What occurs is that a student (or students) will begin to mentally develop an overall impression of the validity of the theory based on how all of the dots seem so well connected. Is that what you support? Feeding junior high, senior high, and college aged students lessons that contain proven claims that are really based on “close-to-being-true” findings? If so, that is rather disturbing.
What I find rather disturbing is your attempt to point at less than ten 'inaccuracies' - which assumes they are actual inaccuracies rather than the playing games with semantics you've demonstrated here - in a science textbook, and insinuating that it's some kind of conspiracy to prop up evolutionary theory.  You want to know what I support?  I support teaching actual science in the science classroom, which includes the understanding that our knowledge is not complete and that there's always room for surprises, as well as the need to reevaluate what we think we know on the basis of new evidence.  What I do not support and never will support is this idea that we should teach theistic beliefs - whether you call it "creationism", "intelligent design", "teaching the controversy", or whatever other term you want - as if they're actual science, when they aren't because of their lack of falsifiability and the lack of any evidence which unambiguously supports them.

Quote from: BibleStudent
Feeding junior high, senior high, and college aged students lessons that contain proven claims that are really based on “close-to-being-true” findings?
I'm calling this out specifically because it demonstrates one area where your understanding is clearly deficient.  Science is not about proof, or proving things.  It's about knowledge and evidence.  Scientists use evidence to gain knowledge - which is why we refer to scientists knowing things.

Quote from: BibleStudent
I had asked my daughter to explain how she interpreted the snake-from-lizards claims in the book. She indicated that she took it to mean that science had proven snakes came from lizards. That’s just wrong. No one KNOWS how snakes came into being. I have read numerous articles and papers over the last several years that described how science had to radically alter its previous findings based on new discoveries and information….not specifically with regards to snakes but in other areas.
You know what the actual problem is?  It's the idea that people have that science has to prove things in order to know things.  Except, as I just pointed out, that's not how science works.  Science is about knowing things by checking observations and evidence against predictions, then revising the predictions to account for what we find out.  That can happen with a brand-new hypothesis (indeed, that's where it mostly happens), or an established theory (such as physics, when Einstein's theory modified classical Newtonian physics).

That's really the greatest strength of science.  However, most people think in terms of proving things (like you would in a courtroom), and then once it's proved, you don't do anything with it.  So before you start choking on your daughter's misunderstanding, you should consider that the problem is in the tendency people have to conflate 'know' and 'prove'.  The textbook in question said that scientists know snakes come from lizards; it did not say that scientists proved that snakes came from lizards.

Quote from: BibleStudent
It is completely appropriate to indicate that science believes it has a strong case for snakes-from-lizards but to take it to the extreme that science KNOWS that snakes evolved from lizards is unverifiable with the information we have and thus it becomes a false claim. Period.
And that's what they mean by saying that scientists know that snakes evolved from lizards.  Because all the knowledge we have on the subject all points towards that.  There isn't any evidence that points to snakes having evolved from some other branch of the phylogenetic tree, therefore it would be false to say that scientists didn't know if snakes had evolved from lizards.  When all the evidence points towards something and nothing points away from it, then it's a reasonable conclusion to say that that something is true, regardless of whether it offends someone's sensibilities to say that scientists know that something.

In short, it is not a false claim, any more than it would be a false claim to say that scientists know that gravity universally attracts masses.  We couldn't know that with the 100% certainty you demand without being able to go everywhere in the universe to make sure.  But we've never once observed gravity do anything besides attract objects, so it'd be more than a bit silly to claim that we didn't know that - even though our knowledge isn't 100% certain.  Why are you so concerned about evolutionary theory and not about other branches of sciences that make similar claims of knowing things even though we not only don't but can't have the 100% certainty you claim we need?  Why is it only a theory which directly contradicts your theistic beliefs that bothers you, and not other theories that don't contradict them?

Quote from: BibleStudent
You can try and defend your position until the sun burns up but, frankly, I find it rather telling that you would condone errors and inaccuracies in a science text the way you are. It certainly doesn’t bode well for the scientific community to have people such as yourself promoting what many might label as deceptive and irresponsible.
I don't condone errors and inaccuracies in a science textbook.  I am challenging you over whether the one example you pointed out is an actual error or inaccuracy, rather than an example of you trying to throw up a roadblock because your theistic beliefs aren't compatible with evolutionary theory even though you apparently don't have the slightest problem with similar statements of scientific knowledge from other disciplines.

Unlike you, I won't waste time with weasel wording - I find your own attitude and actions to be both deceptive and irresponsible.  It's clear that you aren't really interested in whether or not the science behind evolutionary theory is accurate.  Instead, what you're interested in is trying to weaken evolutionary theory in any way you can, and at the same time trying to get theistic beliefs such as intelligent design introduced into science classes.  Not because it would actually advance science, but so you can try to enshrine your beliefs into scientific theory and practice so you no longer have to worry about defending them against the inevitable questions that science raises.

Quote from: BibleStudent
Lastly, if you feel I am taking an isolated incident and blowing it way out of proportion then please do a Google search using combinations of the following words: “evolution” “textbook” “fraud” “science” and “lies.
Oh, I don't doubt that you and other theists like you are perfectly willing to make a mountain out of any wording molehill that you can.  What matters is whether any of those so-called examples are worth the time it takes to read them, instead of simply being a big mess of fraud, deception, and lies on the part of you and theists like you.
 1. Don't even get me started on the utter nonsense that theists like you tried to play with the word 'theory'.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 05:47:48 PM
That was not a dodge. It was intended to determine whether wheels5894 has even a basic understanding of what the evidence consists of.

If he does, his question is pointless. If he doesn't, you're just stalling for time. If you simply answered the question, everyone would win.

Please don't play me for a fool. Let's be adults here, shall we? I have a good idea what most of you already know about the arguments theists make for a Creator. If you and wheels5894 were being honest, you would admit that the request is primarily born out of a desire to be antagonistic. You already know what I would offer, don't you? Be honest.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 21, 2014, 05:55:12 PM
Please don't play me for a fool.

I'm not doing that.

Let's be adults here, shall we?

I've been called childish many times, so that might be a little tough.

I have a good idea what most of you already know about the arguments theists make for a Creator.

Indeed, but those have all been thoroughly debunked. You claimed to be able to bring "reasonable" arguments. So either put up or shut up.

If you and wheels5894 were being honest, you would admit that the request is primarily born out of a desire to be antagonistic.

So now you can read minds? Cool! What number am I thinking of?

You already know what I would offer, don't you?

I know what kind of arguments I expect you to offer[nb]Flawed ones.[/b], but not what arguments you will offer.

Be honest.

Funny request coming from you, but whatever.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 21, 2014, 06:25:41 PM
I point this out primarily to ensure that BibleStudent's presupposition (intentional or otherwise) isn't obscured from view...
...but he has pretty consistently typed Creator, not creator.
Yep.  Pretty much what I expected.  This way, he can claim (however disingenuously) that he's not actually referring to creationism, because he isn't using the word 'god' or the name of a deity, even though he's capitalizing the word, which you only see in proper nouns - that is, a name or a direct reference to a specific person, place, or thing.  Also, referring to "a Creator" instead of "the Creator", implying that he doesn't have a specific one in mind, except that if he didn't, why keep capitalizing it?

And yet, he has the gall to accuse other people of not being honest.  Go figure.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 06:36:55 PM
This is nothing more than an attempt by you to justify the nitpicking and semantics games you've been trying to play through this whole thread, and it isn't going to work.  Frankly, it's exactly the reason you and other theists like you tend to get slammed so hard - because you insist on playing those sorts of games to begin with[1].  For you to claim that science has to have 100% accuracy before making a claim is beyond ridiculous.  The only thing that proves is that you aren't interested in actual science; you're only interested in trying to preserve your beliefs, no matter what.
 1. Don't even get me started on the utter nonsense that theists like you tried to play with the word 'theory'.

If science is going to claim that something has been 'proven' or if it presents a claim in such a way that clearly implies it to be a settled matter then you're darn right I expect 100% accuracy. If you are satisfied with "close enough" then so be it. Frankly, I find the fact that you settle for a lack of certainty in this instance to be beyond ridiculous. I do not share your acceptance for ambiguity and maintain that I have good reason for having the expectation that I do.....particularly when it involves teaching my children.

Quote
What I find rather disturbing is your attempt to point at less than ten 'inaccuracies' - which assumes they are actual inaccuracies rather than the playing games with semantics you've demonstrated here - in a science textbook, and insinuating that it's some kind of conspiracy to prop up evolutionary theory.  You want to know what I support?  I support teaching actual science in the science classroom, which includes the understanding that our knowledge is not complete and that there's always room for surprises, as well as the need to reevaluate what we think we know on the basis of new evidence.  What I do not support and never will support is this idea that we should teach theistic beliefs - whether you call it "creationism", "intelligent design", "teaching the controversy", or whatever other term you want - as if they're actual science, when they aren't because of their lack of falsifiability and the lack of any evidence which unambiguously supports them.

And I find you to be gullible and naive for dismissing the possibility that science is capable of producing fraud and deceit. In fact, it has been well documented and warrants every single one of us being skeptical and critical. But, again, if you are content to accept and hold onto the claims being made as though they were gospel, then so be it. I don't.

Quote
I'm calling this out specifically because it demonstrates one area where your understanding is clearly deficient.  Science is not about proof, or proving things.  It's about knowledge and evidence.  Scientists use evidence to gain knowledge - which is why we refer to scientists knowing things.

Then why do you and so many others use it as a means for invalidating God? Also, why do non-theists persist in asking for PROOF of God? If you are not expected to offer proof for your faith, why am I?

Quote
You know what the actual problem is?  It's the idea that people have that science has to prove things in order to know things.  Except, as I just pointed out, that's not how science works.  Science is about knowing things by checking observations and evidence against predictions, then revising the predictions to account for what we find out.  That can happen with a brand-new hypothesis (indeed, that's where it mostly happens), or an established theory (such as physics, when Einstein's theory modified classical Newtonian physics).

That's really the greatest strength of science.  However, most people think in terms of proving things (like you would in a courtroom), and then once it's proved, you don't do anything with it.  So before you start choking on your daughter's misunderstanding, you should consider that the problem is in the tendency people have to conflate 'know' and 'prove'.  The textbook in question said that scientists know snakes come from lizards; it did not say that scientists proved that snakes came from lizards.

This is ridiculous. If I say I "know that God exists" to a person who does not share my beliefs, what do you think they will ask of me to demonstrate how I know? The funny thing is, you are coming very close to rationalizing that the statement "I know that I know" constitutes valid evidence. 

Tell you what, though. I will share the wording from the textbook with a handful of other individuals and ask for their unbiased opinion on what they interpret it to mean.....just to see if there is any substance to your contention. I think I already what the outcome will be, though.

Quote
And that's what they mean by saying that scientists know that snakes evolved from lizards.  Because all the knowledge we have on the subject all points towards that.

Then it should be explained that way rather than making a statement that clearly implies to the vast majority of people that snakes definitely came from lizards. Sheeesh.

Quote
Why are you so concerned about evolutionary theory and not about other branches of sciences that make similar claims of knowing things even though we not only don't but can't have the 100% certainty you claim we need?  Why is it only a theory which directly contradicts your theistic beliefs that bothers you, and not other theories that don't contradict them?

If you desire additional examples from other sciences I am sure I can provide some.

Quote
I find your own attitude and actions to be both deceptive and irresponsible.

And i find the same to be true about you.

Quote
It's clear that you aren't really interested in whether or not the science behind evolutionary theory is accurate.
I don't care if that's what you think. It's simply not true.

Quote
  Instead, what you're interested in is trying to weaken evolutionary theory in any way you can, and at the same time trying to get theistic beliefs such as intelligent design introduced into science classes.  Not because it would actually advance science, but so you can try to enshrine your beliefs into scientific theory and practice so you no longer have to worry about defending them against the inevitable questions that science raises.

Since you have no way of "knowing" what my true intentions are, what my background is, and what the extent of my knowledge is, I will just chalk this nonsense up as a rather adolescent attempt to discredit me.
 

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 06:38:33 PM
I point this out primarily to ensure that BibleStudent's presupposition (intentional or otherwise) isn't obscured from view...
...but he has pretty consistently typed Creator, not creator.
Yep.  Pretty much what I expected.  This way, he can claim (however disingenuously) that he's not actually referring to creationism, because he isn't using the word 'god' or the name of a deity, even though he's capitalizing the word, which you only see in proper nouns - that is, a name or a direct reference to a specific person, place, or thing.  Also, referring to "a Creator" instead of "the Creator", implying that he doesn't have a specific one in mind, except that if he didn't, why keep capitalizing it?

And yet, he has the gall to accuse other people of not being honest.  Go figure.

You re beginning to show your desperation.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 21, 2014, 06:45:38 PM
If you and wheels5894 were being honest, you would admit that the request is primarily born out of a desire to be antagonistic.

So now you can read minds? Cool! What number am I thinking of?

666.

Be honest.

Funny request coming from you, but whatever.

This must the point in the thread when I start getting accused of being dishonest. This is a well known tactic and is very predictable.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 21, 2014, 08:12:14 PM
You re beginning to show your desperation.
When you acknowledged that you were intentionally capitalizing the word creator, that's what it signaled to me.  And when your only 'comeback' is that I'm beginning to get desperate with no attempt to rebut, no attempt to explain what you were really thinking, just "you're beginning to show your desperation", it doesn't leave a good impression.

If science is going to claim that something has been 'proven' or if it presents a claim in such a way that clearly implies it to be a settled matter then you're darn right I expect 100% accuracy. If you are satisfied with "close enough" then so be it. Frankly, I find the fact that you settle for a lack of certainty in this instance to be beyond ridiculous. I do not share your acceptance for ambiguity and maintain that I have good reason for having the expectation that I do.....particularly when it involves teaching my children.
The only thing expecting 100% accuracy does is suggest that you don't really understand science very well.  Worse, it suggests that you don't care about that same level of accuracy in other things that you do agree with.  Not to mention your own religious beliefs, since it's outright impossible to demonstrate that level of accuracy in something that relies so heavily on subjective, personal experience.  Seriously, have you ever held intelligent design to the same standard that you're holding evolution to, or even come remotely close?

Quote from: BibleStudent
And I find you to be gullible and naive for dismissing the possibility that science is capable of producing fraud and deceit. In fact, it has been well documented and warrants every single one of us being skeptical and critical. But, again, if you are content to accept and hold onto the claims being made as though they were gospel, then so be it. I don't.
I'm calling a strawman here, because I never said anything about this one way or the other.  And as far as accepting current science as gospel goes, I stated the opposite in the very post you quoted:  "which includes the understanding that our knowledge is not complete and that there's always room for surprises, as well as the need to reevaluate what we think we know on the basis of new evidence".  I would strongly suggest that you refrain from any further such attempts to attribute arguments to me that I didn't make.

Quote from: BibleStudent
Then why do you and so many others use it as a means for invalidating God? Also, why do non-theists persist in asking for PROOF of God? If you are not expected to offer proof for your faith, why am I?
I don't care in the slightest about your god, or about any god.  I really don't.  I care - very, very strongly - about people trying to make up fake science in the name of their religious beliefs, just so they can maintain those same beliefs.  If your beliefs were true, science would be useless, because your god could change the rules at any time and invalidate what we'd discovered.  Yet, what we see time and again is that we can make accurate, falsifiable predictions about the universe, and even when we discover new things, they fit with what we've already learned, expanding our knowledge and our understanding of things.

Also, understand this.  I do not have faith as you understand the term.  This is one thing I really wish theists would figure out - that just because you have religious faith, doesn't mean other people do.  I put my trust in things that are demonstrated, and the scientific method has demonstrated itself to be the most accurate way we have of discovering and demonstrating things.  Not only has religious faith failed to demonstrate anything like that, the fact that there are so many different religious faiths out there clearly demonstrates its fundamental unreliability as a meterstick for discovering anything.  How do you tell whether your particular religious faith happens to be the right one?  You don't - you just have to have faith that you picked right.

Quote from: BibleStudent
This is ridiculous. If I say I "know that God exists" to a person who does not share my beliefs, what do you think they will ask of me to demonstrate how I know? The funny thing is, you are coming very close to rationalizing that the statement "I know that I know" constitutes valid evidence.
It's not ridiculous at all.  A scientist can point to the evidence which forms the basis of their knowledge.  What can you point to?  Your own, personal, subjective experiences.  The only thing you can do is tell other people about those experiences, which doesn't do a whit of good unless they decide to believe you.  But with evidence, you don't have to depend on what a scientist personally and subjectively experienced.  He can show you that evidence, repeat the experiments he did in front of you, show you how to do them yourself so you get the same result he did, and demonstrate the validity of the conclusions that he came to.  That's how the whole concept of peer review works.

Quote from: BibleStudent
Tell you what, though. I will share the wording from the textbook with a handful of other individuals and ask for their unbiased opinion on what they interpret it to mean.....just to see if there is any substance to your contention. I think I already what the outcome will be, though.
"A handful of other individuals"...probably meaning people you know in person.  You do know I could ask "a handful of other individuals" on my end for their unbiased opinion of what they interpret it to mean, and probably get the exact opposite outcome that you expect, right?  It's too easy for a person to shade the questions they ask (often unintentionally) and get the answers they expect, especially when they're asking people they know in person about it.  That's why science isn't a popularity contest or an opinion poll.  It's also why science doesn't depend on semantic arguments such as what someone means by the word 'know' or the word 'theory'.

Quote from: BibleStudent
Then it should be explained that way rather than making a statement that clearly implies to the vast majority of people that snakes definitely came from lizards. Sheeesh.
Have you seen legal contracts?  That's the cost of the kind of precision you're demanding - something that's turgid, difficult to read, and leaves you going "huh?" after you've managed to wade through all the precise wordings in order to make sure that there's no confusion as to what they meant.  What you're complaining about is the result of trying to make sure the information is present while making sure that it's comprehensible.  Sometimes you end up with less-optimal word choices, but the way to deal with it is to contact the textbook manufacturer about your concerns, not to kick up this kind of outrageous fuss because you think it's to cover weaknesses in evolutionary theory, or whatever.

Quote from: BibleStudent
If you desire additional examples from other sciences I am sure I can provide some.
If you have examples - ones that you actually care about, not that you're bringing up for the sake of argument - then I would like to see them.

Quote from: BibleStudent
And i find the same to be true about you.
Since we both feel the same way, how about instead of snarling at each other over what amounts to a line in the sand, we try to discuss it like two rational adults?

Quote from: BibleStudent
I don't care if that's what you think. It's simply not true.
Then what do you think?  All I can tell is what's coming across to me through your words, and that's the definite impression I've been getting.  I don't know if you're aware of this, but it's common for people to misunderstand each other in text-only conversation.  It loses all the subtext - body language, tone of voice, and everything else - so what you intend to say can very often be lost with it.

Quote from: BibleStudent
Since you have no way of "knowing" what my true intentions are, what my background is, and what the extent of my knowledge is, I will just chalk this nonsense up as a rather adolescent attempt to discredit me.
All I can go on is what you say here.  I value honesty, so I say what I honestly think is true.  If it isn't true, then consider that you may not be expressing yourself as well as you think you are.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 21, 2014, 08:21:47 PM
Nothing that you have stated here demonstrates that the IDT is misrepresenting the scientific method. Perhaps you could be a little more specific.

Nothing?  Really?

So you think the way in which Casey Luskin represents the scientific method is accurate?  Why would you think this?  It is clear that he is misrepresenting the scientific method.  I’ll break it all down for you since you don’t have time to, I don’t know, think.

For reference, here is his article at http://www.evolutionnews.org/2013/08/what_is_the_the075281.html and a pdf that he wrote http://www.discovery.org/f/986

It is odd that Luskin attempts to claim ID is not a negative argument against evolution yet insists on using terms like “Darwinian biologists” and “Darwinists”.  There is no such thing as a “Darwinian biologist” or “Darwinist”.  He seems to be implying that those who accept the ToE as the best explanation of the natural world are somehow cultists that follow Darwin idea’s as if they were dogma.  This is the same old trick attempted by creationists to equate Darwinism with Creationism as if they were equal theories in science.  The trick is to add a derivational suffix to Darwin or Evolution to try to cast unwarranted doubt on the ToE.  Doubt may be warranted, but you have to actually justify the doubt, not play word games.

Same old tricks, different name, oh but supporters of ID will claim that ID has nothing to do with creationism.  I digress, let’s get back to the topic of the scientific method.

The four essential elements of the scientific method are iterations, recursions, interleaving or orderings of the following:

Characterizations (observations, definitions, and measurements of the subject of inquiry)
Hypotheses (theoretical, hypothetical explanations of observations and measurements of the subject)
Predictions (reasoning including logical deduction from the hypothesis or theory)
Experiments (tests of the characterizations, hypotheses and Predictions)

OBSERVATION: (which I guess are the characterizations plus general observations made by Luskin or someone else who may or may not be identified by Luskin)

Luskin attempts to define “Intelligent Agents”, however the terms used to do this are not used in any scientific way.  He fails to define the terms used to define “Intelligent Agents”, for example when he states that “Intelligent agents can rapidly infuse large amounts of information into systems:” the concept of information are not standard in information theory (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information_theory ).  He never actually properly defines “intelligence”, thus never providing any indication of how much “intelligence” can be expected to either prove the hypothesis or disprove it.  Luskin also never defines “specified complexity” or “End Goal”.  What exactly is the “End Goal” of biology?  This is just absurd.  On the very first step of the scientific method, ID has failed, and we haven’t even gotten to his misrepresentation of the scientific method.

In the evolutionnews.org article, Luskin does quote a definition for “complex and specified information” which was provided by William Dembski.  “Complex and specified information” is defined as a rare or highly unlikely event which conforms to an independently derived pattern.  This is basically “Irreducible complexity” which is worthless as evidence and is in fact a negative argument against the ToE (oops, so much for the claim that ID is not a negative argument against the ToE).

HYPOTHESIS (PREDICTION): (wait what?)

Luskin for some reason equates his hypothesis with his predictions.  Oddly enough they are just restatements of his Observations (characterizations) mixed with terms and concepts already discovered by science.  Equating hypotheses with predictions is a misrepresentation of the scientific method.  Predictions are only meaningful if they are able to say things which could not have been said otherwise.  Predictions should be able to be made based on the hypothesis.  If Luskin were representing the scientific method correctly then he would have properly defined his initial observations, formed his hypothesis about an “Intelligent agent” and then made predictions about what we can expect to find if the hypothesis is correct and what we shouldn’t expect to find.

None of the “Hypothesis (Prediction)” proposed by Luskin provide a direct link to the “Intelligent agent” nor isolate the “Ingelligent agent” as the sole or primary cause.  The ToE on the other hand can provide explanations for all of the predictions made by Luskin.

EVIDENCE: (At this point, should I even bother continuing? I guess I will for fun)

I’m not even sure if Luskin understands his own words, which makes sense since he doesn’t define them, but whatever, CSI and irreducible complexity are garbage.  The prime example provided by Luskin is also garbage as biologists have found that bacterial flagellum evolved from the type III secretory and transport system (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_flagella - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SdwTwNPyR9w - http://www.talkdesign.org/faqs/flagellum.html ).

The prime example for Paleontology is also garbage since prior to the Cambrian explosion the world was essentially void of life, and once Hox gene’s evolved (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hox_gene ) they allowed for an unprecedented amount of diversity in species to develop rapidly and occupy an entire ecosystem.  Additionally, it is well known that the fossilization process rarely occurs for specific forms of life as the precise conditions must be present in order for remains to fossilize (http://en.citizendium.org/wiki/Fossilization_%28palaeontology%29 ).

As I continue to look at the examples of evidence, I’m not really sure what Luskin is trying to prove here.  Since he never properly defined “Intelligent agent” or what level of intelligence this agent should be expected to have or how to gauge this intelligence I’m left thinking the “intelligent agent” is a complete dumbass.  With systematics the hypothesis is that functional parts will be commonly re-used in different organisms (the experiment isn’t worth my time), however if we look at the mole rat (http://www.iovs.org/content/31/7/1398.full.pdf ) we find a vertebrate mammal where the eye (functional part) is re-used but with a different purpose when compared to other vertebrate mammals.  This “intelligent agent” seems completely random in choosing when and where to re-use genes and other functional parts.  Wow this entire part about systematics is just completely useless.

The section on genetics might be even more useless than systematic.  Okay, so since scientists happened to find function for “numerous” types of “junk DNA”, we somehow get a conclusion confirming the hypothesis.  This is total BS.  How about actually predicting how much non junk DNA there will be.  The prediction offered by Luskin is useless since it can’t ever be wrong.  If we don’t discover a function for what is perceived to be “junk DNA”, well we just haven’t discovered a function yet. 
Also, without the contrast to evolution, all this section says is that there are genes we do not know the function for yet.  Luskin was really going out on a limb on that one wasn’t he. 

CONCLUSION:  (uh oh, I wonder if I’ll be surprised)

As I already stated, the conclusions are useless since the conclusion cannot be observed or tested.  As is so often stated, what exactly is the difference between this “intelligent agent” and nothing?  Luskin’s misrepresentation of the scientific method proved nothing.  Perhaps if he would like to use the scientific method correctly, he might be able to prove something, but I have a feeling, that like so many others, he would only prove ID is pseudoscience.  It’s fake, dressed up creationism pushing religion into public schools.

ID is truly dangerous as well.  Just think what someone could do if all they had to do was dress bullshit up in scientific terms just to get gullible, uninformed and unsuspecting people to buy bullshit.


I agree that an isolated incident of inaccuracy in a high school text book does not necessitate the need to upset an entire curriculum. I used it as example to counter the OP and point out that naturalists will bark up a storm about inaccuracies in curriculums when it is perceived to somehow threaten their beliefs.....but remain ignorant and silent when the naturalistic teachings contain inaccuracies.

Yet you support pseudoscience bullshit like ID which has no evidence, makes no predictions and serves no purpose other than to subvert the U.S. constitution.  Before you talk about hypocritical, perhaps you should look in the mirror.

It's not only hypocritical but it is highly suggestive of a militant mentality that seeks to use science as a means to invalidate God. That is NOT what science is about.

It really seems like you are describing yourself, only you’re using science as a means to validate God. 
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 21, 2014, 10:23:47 PM
One critical aspect of a scientific theory is falisifiabilty.  ID is not falsifiable.  It is NOT SCIENCE.

Yes it is.

still lying I see.

I challenge you to give a theoretical example of some evidence that would prove ID false.

No, THIS above was the point you are being called dishonest, because you are--until you can provide a theoretical falsification of the ID hypothesis.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 22, 2014, 04:26:21 AM
666.

Wrong. It was 7.

This must the point in the thread when I start getting accused of being dishonest. This is a well known tactic and is very predictable.

Well, if you had answered the rest of my post, I wouldn't be justified in calling you dishonest, would I? Since you didn't, I am.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 22, 2014, 05:41:10 AM
That was not a dodge. It was intended to determine whether wheels5894 has even a basic understanding of what the evidence consists of.

If he does, his question is pointless. If he doesn't, you're just stalling for time. If you simply answered the question, everyone would win.


Please don't play me for a fool. Let's be adults here, shall we? I have a good idea what most of you already know about the arguments theists make for a Creator. If you and wheels5894 were being honest, you would admit that the request is primarily born out of a desire to be antagonistic. You already know what I would offer, don't you? Be honest.

OK, I am back - the time difference with the USA means we are in bed over here while the forum is active.

Biblestudent, I have not seen any convincing evidence of a creator. Please present it as I asked, in one post. Since the evidence is substantial I'm sure there will be no problem. Please, no more diversionary tactics, just do it.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 22, 2014, 12:06:13 PM
That was not a dodge. It was intended to determine whether wheels5894 has even a basic understanding of what the evidence consists of.

...which is a dodge.  And so is this^ post.  And the 4 posts after it.

 Kindly answer the original questions.  They are:
1. in what way is ID science?  As I recall, when Mike Behe was on the stand in Dover, he defined it in such a way that would include astrology.  Not astronomy.  Astrology.  You know, like Tarot card readings. I say this so that you do not accidentally quote him and thus, make an ass of yourself.

2. what evidence is there of ID?  "Stuff looks designed" does not qualify.


Thanks.  
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 12:24:16 PM
That was not a dodge. It was intended to determine whether wheels5894 has even a basic understanding of what the evidence consists of.

...which is a dodge.  And so is this^ post.  And the 4 posts after it.

 Kindly answer the original questions.  They are:
1. in what way is ID science?  As I recall, when Mike Behe was on the stand in Dover, he defined it in such a way that would include astrology.  Not astronomy.  Astrology.  You know, like Tarot card readings. I say this so that you do not accidentally quote him and thus, make an ass of yourself.

2. what evidence is there of ID?  "Stuff looks designed" does not qualify.


Thanks.

I think you may have this a little mixed up. I haven't dodged the ID questions. What I am being accused of dodging is the request to provide the evidence I feel makes for a reasonable argument about God's existence. But I am really trying to narrow that done somewhat because if the individuals making the request really wants me to provide ALL of the evidence, then I decline. That is unreasonable and would fill up several pages of this thread. There aren't just a few bullet points....it is extensive and substantial.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 22, 2014, 12:47:18 PM
That was not a dodge. It was intended to determine whether wheels5894 has even a basic understanding of what the evidence consists of.

...which is a dodge.  And so is this^ post.  And the 4 posts after it.

 Kindly answer the original questions.  They are:
1. in what way is ID science?  As I recall, when Mike Behe was on the stand in Dover, he defined it in such a way that would include astrology.  Not astronomy.  Astrology.  You know, like Tarot card readings. I say this so that you do not accidentally quote him and thus, make an ass of yourself.

2. what evidence is there of ID?  "Stuff looks designed" does not qualify.


Thanks.

I think you may have this a little mixed up. I haven't dodged the ID questions. What I am being accused of dodging is the request to provide the evidence I feel makes for a reasonable argument about God's existence. But I am really trying to narrow that done somewhat because if the individuals making the request really wants me to provide ALL of the evidence, then I decline. That is unreasonable and would fill up several pages of this thread. There aren't just a few bullet points....it is extensive and substantial.

You are going to have to pick and choose then, aren't you. Assemble the best arguments from the substantial body of evidence and get it posted.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 12:57:16 PM
You are going to have to pick and choose then, aren't you. Assemble the best arguments from the substantial body of evidence and get it posted.

Yes, I guess so....and I'll do it with same amount of vigor that you used to never answer the question I posed to you in post #13.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 22, 2014, 01:46:53 PM
You are going to have to pick and choose then, aren't you. Assemble the best arguments from the substantial body of evidence and get it posted.

Yes, I guess so....and I'll do it with same amount of vigor that you used to never answer the question I posed to you in post #13.

I can honestly say I didn't learn much about evolution if anything in highschool.  Sure it was mentioned a few times but my highschool classes never actually taught anything directly about evolution.  The biology courses I took were more the basics for Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Cell Biology.  I'm sure my highschool offered more advanced classes that directly taught evolution but I never took them.

I went to college for CAD so Biology wasn't one of the courses I took. 

So I really haven't had the opportunity to critique a highschool or college biology book.

So where did I learn about evolution?  Online.  Which I critique.

http://www.dmoz.org/Science/Biology/  < ---- This is a directory containing links to over 28 thousand peer reviewed articles, journals and various sources relating to biology.



Though, I do have to question the honesty of a person that has no problem with ID (which is pseudoscience) being taught in public schools yet questions others if they've critiqued textbooks teaching an actual scientific subject.

If you have no issue with ID being taught, then I guess we might as well have classes focusing on Big Foot, Witchcraft, Ancient Aliens, the Bermuda Triangle and Astrology just to make sure we are being fair.


Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 22, 2014, 01:55:26 PM
I think you may have this a little mixed up.

Looks like you are correct.  I was a little mixed up.  Please stop dodging that other question and provide evidence of a creator.  It does not have to be exhaustive, but it should give some concrete indications.  "Just look around at how awesome the universe is," is not acceptable.

Thanks.  
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 22, 2014, 01:59:57 PM
Any response to the olive branch I tried to extend in my earlier post in the thread, BibleStudent?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 02:09:21 PM
So you think the way in which Casey Luskin represents the scientific method is accurate?   

My personal opinion is that IDT certainly pushes the boundaries of the scientific method but, yes, I feel it is accurate.

For reference, here is his article at http://www.evolutionnews.org/2013/08/what_is_the_the075281.html and a pdf that he wrote http://www.discovery.org/f/986

It is odd that Luskin attempts to claim ID is not a negative argument against evolution yet insists on using terms like “Darwinian biologists” and “Darwinists”.  There is no such thing as a “Darwinian biologist” or “Darwinist”. 

Where are you seeing this? I did not observe these words in the either of the links you provided.

The four essential elements of the scientific method are iterations, recursions, interleaving or orderings of the following:

Characterizations (observations, definitions, and measurements of the subject of inquiry)
Hypotheses (theoretical, hypothetical explanations of observations and measurements of the subject)
Predictions (reasoning including logical deduction from the hypothesis or theory)
Experiments (tests of the characterizations, hypotheses and Predictions)

Where did you get this from? I think you failed to cite your source or are you crediting yourself with this?

OBSERVATION: (which I guess are the characterizations plus general observations made by Luskin or someone else who may or may not be identified by Luskin)

Luskin attempts to define “Intelligent Agents”, however the terms used to do this are not used in any scientific way.  He fails to define the terms used to define “Intelligent Agents”, for example when he states that “Intelligent agents can rapidly infuse large amounts of information into systems:” the concept of information are not standard in information theory(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information_theory ).

None of this makes any sense. Intelligent Agents have been defined….a good example of which is in the second link you provided. What terms require definition? The last sentence (bolded) makes no sense at all.

He never actually properly defines “intelligence”

Look it up in the dictionary. It’s a common word.

, thus never providing any indication of how much “intelligence” can be expected to either prove the hypothesis or disprove it.

What makes you think that a certain level of intelligence needs to be identified?

Luskin also never defines “specified complexity”
Then what is this?:
In the evolutionnews.org article, Luskin does quote a definition for “complex and specified information” which was provided by William Dembski.  “Complex and specified information” is defined as a rare or highly unlikely event which conforms to an independently derived pattern.


or “End Goal”.  What exactly is the “End Goal” of biology?

I don’t know what he means by “end goal” either.

This is just absurd.  On the very first step of the scientific method, ID has failed, and we haven’t even gotten to his misrepresentation of the scientific method.

While you've written of words so far, you have done nothing to discredit or invalidate IDT as being scientific.

This is basically “Irreducible complexity” which is worthless as evidence and is in fact a negative argument against the ToE (oops, so much for the claim that ID is not a negative argument against the ToE).

This is a common misconception amongst opponents of IDT.

Irreducibly complex systems such as mousetraps and flagella serve both as negative arguments against gradualistic explanations like Darwin's and as positive arguments for design. The negative argument is that such interactive systems resist explanation by the tiny steps that a Darwinian path would be expected to take. The positive argument is that their parts appear arranged to serve a purpose, which is exactly how we detect design. (Darwin's Black Box, pp. 263-264 (2006).)
http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/11/misrepresenting_the_definition028051.html


I am still working through the rest of your post.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 02:10:25 PM
Any response to the olive branch I tried to extend in my earlier post in the thread, BibleStudent?

My time is pretty limited today so please be patient. Thank you. I've only been able to sign on a couple of times today for a few minutes each time.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 04:14:40 PM

You are going to have to pick and choose then, aren't you. Assemble the best arguments from the substantial body of evidence and get it posted.

In a nutshell, for me, the incredible complexity of life and the vastness of the universe points to an Intelligent Designer (the God of the Bible). The naturalistic worldview and the theory of evolution along with the various hypotheses relating to abiogenesis all present an alternate view but, even collectively, they come up way too short to convince me. There are so many assumptions guesses, dishonesty, and floating variables behind crucial areas of it. Phylogenetics, for me, only demonstrates that different species have similar DNA which could point to an Intelligent Designer just as easily as it could to a common ancestor. Convincing evidence of beneficial random mutation is virtually non-existent. And, evolution cannot explain our desire to create things like art and music. Evolution cannot explain why animals have been known to flee an area just before a tsunami occurs. The TOE cannot account for why or how sexual reproduction evolved….and on and on I could go. These may seem like trivial issues but attempts to explain how the processes of evolution would/could account for them does not fit. Also, I could add numerous more unanswerable questions to the list. And this says nothing of the BIG blank that discussions about abiogenesis creates. Do I think the ToE is a complete farce? Absolutely not….and I have said this numerous times so please don't start flaming me for making these comments.
 
I find the moral argument, the Kalam Cosmological Argument (contemporary version), Intelligent Design Theory, the Ontological Argument (still trying to really understand this one), and the historical reliability of the Bible to be among the most influential in my belief.

I find the Bible to be an exceptional, accurate, and convincing account of why the world and life exists.

Christianity logically satisfies my need to understand:

How we got here.
Why we’re here.
Where we’re going.
How the universe and ‘life’ came to be.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 22, 2014, 04:32:10 PM
Christianity logically satisfies my need to understand:

Yet, so many xians throughout history have found those explanations to be wanting that they went off on their own, made observations, used rational tools and came to purely naturalistic explanations.  So, while the xian answers may satiate you, they do not everyone. 

Let us also not forget that while you disagree with with parts of evolution in favor of creationism because you like that conclusion better, there is a whole lot of science you agree with that also used to be considered anti-xian.  You should learn from that fact and get over your ID hangup. 

Telling children old wives tales stops the questions for a bit.  But eventually they should grow up, put away childish things and replace those tales with, you know, reality.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 22, 2014, 04:40:24 PM
OK, Biblestudent, thanks for that. I'll take your points one by one.

1. the Kalam Cosmological Argument has been taken apart so often , on this forum and in other places that I think I'll leave youa  film to watch which in interesting and informative.
http://youtu.be/baZUCc5m8sE

2. The Ontological Argument is all very well but it is entirely made up. It is the person who created it just saying there ought to be a greatest being. Its like me saying there out to be the greatest restaurant in Edinburgh. Sadly, that doesn't make anything appear. Its theory only with no way of checking anything out.

3. Intelligent Design Theory(ID). This has the problem of not having enough about it to show itself as really scientific. It claims to make predictions but actually looks backwards at what we know and says it matches that. predictions in science have to not be things we know before they are made. However, the central claim to ID is that bits of animals or plants that are considered Irreducibly Complex (IR) are incapable of working if not all the parts are there. That's the claim. Ken Miller shows you in just a few minutes that this claim is rebutted in respect of the most significant case Michael Behe mentions of IR, the flagellum. Watch it right here and now.
http://youtu.be/Q4DJ3Uf-5mQ

Have a look at these films and let know what you think.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 22, 2014, 04:49:08 PM
So you think the way in which Casey Luskin represents the scientific method is accurate?   

My personal opinion is that IDT certainly pushes the boundaries of the scientific method but, yes, I feel it is accurate.

ID fails the scientific method, or at least I haven’t seen ID successfully utilize the scientific method to prove anything.  I really don’t understand what you mean by “pushes the boundaries”, and I would associate any phrase like that with failing to use the scientific method accurately.  I don’t believe you actually care if ID uses the scientific method properly.  I do believe your only interest is that science be used to validate God.

My point was never that ID misrepresents the scientific method, only that Casey Luskin has in his article about ID.  I have yet to see any scientific paper in regards to ID which uses the scientific method accurately.  ID fails as a hypothesis, and thus should not be taught as science.

For reference, here is his article at http://www.evolutionnews.org/2013/08/what_is_the_the075281.html and a pdf that he wrote http://www.discovery.org/f/986

It is odd that Luskin attempts to claim ID is not a negative argument against evolution yet insists on using terms like “Darwinian biologists” and “Darwinists”.  There is no such thing as a “Darwinian biologist” or “Darwinist”. 

Where are you seeing this? I did not observe these words in the either of the links you provided.

It is in the second link:

http://www.discovery.org/f/986

Under Table 1. Ways Designers Act When Designing (Observations)

“(4) Intelligent agents typically create functional things (although we may sometimes think something is functionless, not realizing its true function):  “Since non-coding regions do not produce proteins, Darwinian biologists have been dismissing them for decades as random evolutionary noise or ‘junk DNA.’ From an ID perspective, however, it is extremely unlikely that an organism would expend its resources on preserving and transmitting so much ‘junk’”

Under Table 3. Examining the Evidnece (Experiment and Conclusion)

“(3) Systematics – Similar parts have been found in organisms that even Darwinists see as separated by more closely related forms that do not contain the similar parts in question.  Clear examples include genes controlling eye or limb growth in different organisms whos alleged common ancestors are not thought to have had such forms of eyes or limbs”

“(4) Genetics – Genetic research continues to uncover functions for “junk-DNA,” include functionality for pseudogenes, introns, LINE, and ALU elements.  Examples of unknown DNA functions persist, but design encourages researchers to investigate functions, whereas Darwinism has caused some scientists to wrongly assume that non-coding DNA is junk.”


The four essential elements of the scientific method are iterations, recursions, interleaving or orderings of the following:

Characterizations (observations, definitions, and measurements of the subject of inquiry)
Hypotheses (theoretical, hypothetical explanations of observations and measurements of the subject)
Predictions (reasoning including logical deduction from the hypothesis or theory)
Experiments (tests of the characterizations, hypotheses and Predictions)

Where did you get this from? I think you failed to cite your source or are you crediting yourself with this?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method

I went with the 4 essential elements for the scientific method as defined in Wikipedia (a source I already provided).  I provided other sources as well in Reply #76.


OBSERVATION: (which I guess are the characterizations plus general observations made by Luskin or someone else who may or may not be identified by Luskin)

Luskin attempts to define “Intelligent Agents”, however the terms used to do this are not used in any scientific way.  He fails to define the terms used to define “Intelligent Agents”, for example when he states that “Intelligent agents can rapidly infuse large amounts of information into systems:” the concept of information are not standard in information theory(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information_theory  ).

None of this makes any sense. Intelligent Agents have been defined….a good example of which is in the second link you provided. What terms require definition? The last sentence (bolded) makes no sense at all.

My apologies, my grammar was poor for the bolded part, the point I was making was that “but his concept of information is not standard in information theory”.  He never defines what he means by information, is he talking about entropy, joint entropy, conditional entropy (equivocation), mutual information (transinformation), kullback-leibler divergence (information gain), kullback-leibler divergence of a prior from the truth, other quantities like Renyi entropy (a generalization of entropy), differential entropy (a generalization of quantities of information to continuous distributions, conditional mutual information, some of the above or all of the above.

From the way he is defining “intelligent Agents”, he seems to be defining humans.  Is Luskin saying that humans designed everything in the universe?

He never actually properly defines “intelligence”

Look it up in the dictionary. It’s a common word.

Well, since “Intelligence” is such an important part of ID, I would think that it would be thoroughly discussed, if the scientific method is being used.

But Okay, I looked it up.

I’ll used Merriam-Webster’s definition of “Intelligence”:

1 a (1) : the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new or trying situations : REASON; also : the skilled use of reason (2) : the ability to apply knowledge to manipulate one’s environment or to think abstractly as measured by objective criteria (as tests)
b : Christian Science : the basic eternal quality of divine Mind
c : mental acutemess : SHREWDNESS
2 a : an intelligent entity; especially : ANGEL
b : intelligent minds or mind <cosmic intelligence>
3 : the act of understanding : COMPREHENSION
4 a : INFORMATION, NEWS
b : information concerning an enemy or possible enemy or an area; also : an agency engaged in obtaining such information
5 : the ability to perform computer functions

Well I sure hope Luskin isn’t using the “1 b : Christian Science : the basic eternal quality of divine Mind” or “2 a : an intelligent entity; especially : ANGEL” definitions of intelligence, otherwise ID would be religious and there goes the whole idea, of teaching ID in public schools, right out the window. 


, thus never providing any indication of how much “intelligence” can be expected to either prove the hypothesis or disprove it.

What makes you think that a certain level of intelligence needs to be identified?

Well, if “intelligence” is defined as a skilled use of reason, one could find that the “Intelligent agent” had no skilled use of reason, yet the “Intelligent agent” could still be considered to be proven to exist because unskilled use of reason was used.

Without properly defining the key elements of the observations, hypothesis and experiements, ID is set up to be proven correct no matter what.  Why even go through the trouble of pretending to be scientific?  Just assume the Intelligent Agent exists and if anyone asks for evidence just point to existing science like evolution as your proof. 


Luskin also never defines “specified complexity”
Then what is this?:
In the evolutionnews.org article, Luskin does quote a definition for “complex and specified information” which was provided by William Dembski.  “Complex and specified information” is defined as a rare or highly unlikely event which conforms to an independently derived pattern.

That is a definition of “complex and specific information”, which is supposed to be a means of detecting an Intelligent Agent.  Luskin doesn’t actually define “specified complexity”, but he does note that Dembski wrote that “the defining feature of intelligent causes is their ability to create novel information and, in particular, specified complexity”.

So I guess “specified complexity” is a form of novel information which is a defining feature of intelligent causes.  I personally don’t think that qualifies as a definition, the definition of “complex and specified information” is better.  You could be correct though and they are one in the same, although Luskin doesn’t actually say they are one in the same.

Likely though, both “specific complexity” and “complex and specific information” are the types of information Luskin are using, however as I said, neither are standard forms found in information theory.

This is just absurd.  On the very first step of the scientific method, ID has failed, and we haven’t even gotten to his misrepresentation of the scientific method.

While you've written of words so far, you have done nothing to discredit or invalidate IDT as being scientific.

If a supposed science can’t define words, how exactly is it science?  If what I’ve said so far doesn’t invalidate ID in your eyes, then I doubt anything would.  Everything is science then. 

This is basically “Irreducible complexity” which is worthless as evidence and is in fact a negative argument against the ToE (oops, so much for the claim that ID is not a negative argument against the ToE).

This is a common misconception amongst opponents of IDT.

Irreducibly complex systems such as mousetraps and flagella serve both as negative arguments against gradualistic explanations like Darwin's and as positive arguments for design. The negative argument is that such interactive systems resist explanation by the tiny steps that a Darwinian path would be expected to take. The positive argument is that their parts appear arranged to serve a purpose, which is exactly how we detect design. (Darwin's Black Box, pp. 263-264 (2006).)
http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/11/misrepresenting_the_definition028051.html


I am still working through the rest of your post.

Well considering that neither mousetraps and flagella are irreducibly complex, your bold quote  from “Darwin’s Black Box” is off to a bad start.  So the quote says, IC is both a negative argument and a positive argument, how exactly does that show that IC is not a negative argument?

Also, I’m okay with things appearing arranged, however I would like to see any kind of evidence linking that which appears to be arranged and a designer.  After all, we know that humans are conditioned to see patterns.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 05:55:11 PM
My apologies, my grammar was poor for the bolded part, the point I was making was that “but his concept of information is not standard in information theory”.  He never defines what he means by information, is he talking about entropy, joint entropy, conditional entropy (equivocation), mutual information (transinformation), kullback-leibler divergence (information gain), kullback-leibler divergence of a prior from the truth, other quantities like Renyi entropy (a generalization of entropy), differential entropy (a generalization of quantities of information to continuous distributions, conditional mutual information, some of the above or all of the above.

Okay. I see what you are getting at now. Good question. See if this provides a basis for the information sought out in IDT:

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

From the way he is defining “intelligent Agents”, he seems to be defining humans.  Is Luskin saying that humans designed everything in the universe?

In a sense, he is defining humans but only as a reference point. I have never seen it suggested in any IDT literature that humans created the universe.

While you've written of words so far, you have done nothing to discredit or invalidate IDT as being scientific.

If a supposed science can’t define words, how exactly is it science?  If what I’ve said so far doesn’t invalidate ID in your eyes, then I doubt anything would.  Everything is science then. 

Disregard what I said here. I was typing on a computer whose browser didn't like something in the format of the 'Post Reply' function on this website and while I thought I had it corrected, I obviously didn't. What it was supposed to say is: "While you've written a lot of words so far, you have done nothing to discredit or invalidate IDT as being scientific."

Well considering that neither mousetraps and flagella are irreducibly complex, your bold quote  from “Darwin’s Black Box” is off to a bad start.  So the quote says, IC is both a negative argument and a positive argument, how exactly does that show that IC is not a negative argument?

If you've never done so, try and find some material that explains in intricate detail what the bacterial flagellum is, or the Cilium is, or the ATP Synthase Molecule is. I could give you some links but I don't want you to think I am pointing you to something that has an IDT slant to it (although I will if you want me to). Just examine the makeup and function of any or all of these structures and see for yourself just how enormously complex they are....and then see if produces a better understanding why IDT exists.

Also, if there is an element of IDT being a 'negative argument,' what exactly does that mean to you?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: mrbiscoop on January 22, 2014, 06:28:26 PM
If you and wheels5894 were being honest, you would admit that the request is primarily born out of a desire to be antagonistic.

So now you can read minds? Cool! What number am I thinking of?

666.

Be honest.

Funny request coming from you, but whatever.

This must the point in the thread when I start getting accused of being dishonest. This is a well known tactic and is very predictable.

  If it means anything to you I would of called you dishonest after only a few posts.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 22, 2014, 08:30:32 PM

Okay. I see what you are getting at now. Good question. See if this provides a basis for the information sought out in IDT:

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

Would you like me to debunk this article or would you prefer I post several links of others (who are probably more qualified than me) who have debunked Dembski.

I started reading his article and the first thought that came to my mind is that this guy doesn’t actually understand information theory.  He quoted a philosopher who loosely uses the word information in his book inquiry which is about the process of acquiring and changing beliefs about the world and argues that a pragmatic approach better solves the philosophical problems about the nature of mental representation.  The way in which Dembski quotes other published authors is seriously questionable.

I’d probably have to read the books which Dembski quotes to really get a good idea of how full of shit he is.

So let’s read a little more about William Dembski:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_A._Dembski  < lots of controversy surrounding this guy

So here are a bunch of sources debunking pretty much all of Dembski’s claims:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Specified_complexity < go to Criticisms

http://www.talkreason.org/articles/eandsdembski.pdf

http://scienceblogs.com/goodmath/2006/06/16/dembskis-profound-lack-of-comp/

http://www.talkreason.org/articles/Pandasthumb.pdf

Articles from Mark Perakh:

http://www.talkreason.org/articles/dembski.cfm

http://www.talkreason.org/articles/Chap11.pdf

http://www.talkreason.org/articles/Skeptic_paper.cfm

http://www.talkreason.org/articles/complexity.pdf

http://www.talkreason.org/articles/math.cfm

http://www.talkreason.org/articles/newmath.cfm

Reading up more on the guy and the outright lies he’s told about evolution, I can’t really tell if he is just a pathological liar or complete idiot.  No seriously, don’t question this guy, he’s awesome, everything he says is gold.  Keep questioning evolution and the literally 150 years of established scientifically peer reviewed theories by hundreds of thousands of professional scientists with various backgrounds and specializations across over a dozen fields of scientific study but don’t question William Dembski.

Nope, can’t question that William Dembski guy, everything he says makes perfect sense.  Look he even uses math!  Oh man.


From the way he is defining “intelligent Agents”, he seems to be defining humans.  Is Luskin saying that humans designed everything in the universe?

In a sense, he is defining humans but only as a reference point. I have never seen it suggested in any IDT literature that humans created the universe.

Well considering humans are the only known intelligent agents we can prove exist with reasonable experimentation, until we see some evidence for some other intelligent agent what other choice would we have but to conclude that humans created the universe.

Maybe aliens did it.

While you've written of words so far, you have done nothing to discredit or invalidate IDT as being scientific.

If a supposed science can’t define words, how exactly is it science?  If what I’ve said so far doesn’t invalidate ID in your eyes, then I doubt anything would.  Everything is science then. 

Disregard what I said here. I was typing on a computer whose browser didn't like something in the format of the 'Post Reply' function on this website and while I thought I had it corrected, I obviously didn't. What it was supposed to say is: "While you've written a lot of words so far, you have done nothing to discredit or invalidate IDT as being scientific."


What I said still holds true.  Seriously, what would you consider to discredit or invalidate ID as being scientific?

 

If you've never done so, try and find some material that explains in intricate detail what the bacterial flagellum is, or the Cilium is, or the ATP Synthase Molecule is. I could give you some links but I don't want you to think I am pointing you to something that has an IDT slant to it (although I will if you want me to). Just examine the makeup and function of any or all of these structures and see for yourself just how enormously complex they are....and then see if produces a better understanding why IDT exists.

Also, if there is an element of IDT being a 'negative argument,' what exactly does that mean to you?

I have already.

I knew ID was crap when I still believed God existed.  In fact it was the lies and dishonesty of ID and Christian apologetics that really pushed me into learning more about philosophy, psychology and theology until I got to the point where I just didn’t believe in any god anymore and afterwards I studied evolution more to really understand the theory.

Hypotheses that rely on a established theory to be incorrect without actually providing any new evidence or making meaningful predictions usually don’t do well.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on January 22, 2014, 08:36:49 PM
My time is pretty limited today so please be patient. Thank you. I've only been able to sign on a couple of times today for a few minutes each time.
I just wanted to make sure you'd seen it.  Take your time.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 09:10:50 PM
The only thing expecting 100% accuracy does is suggest that you don't really understand science very well.  Worse, it suggests that you don't care about that same level of accuracy in other things that you do agree with.

Where I expect 100% accuracy is when science claims to “know” the answers.  Let’s not distort my statement by implying that I meant science is required to produce 100% accuracy in all of its findings.

Not to mention your own religious beliefs, since it's outright impossible to demonstrate that level of accuracy in something that relies so heavily on subjective, personal experience. 

If I had ever indicated that “I know God exists,” then you would have a leg to stand on here. I believe there is a high probability that He exists but I would never go so far as to say or imply that I “know” it be true.

I just find it rather perplexing to believe you condone the wording in the textbook we are discussing. You seem like a rather intelligent person who is probably capable of forming conclusions outside of whatever bias you might have. I’ll grant you that I, personally, do not consider the wording to be a grave unforgiving error that demands a jail sentence for someone. However, the strange rationalization taking place in your defense of the text is, in my opinion, very telling of some uncontrolled power of your bias.

Seriously, have you ever held intelligent design to the same standard that you're holding evolution to, or even come remotely close?

Absolutely.

As somewhat of an example (although maybe not the greatest), you may recall that I agreed with you not too long ago when you had constructed a strong argument for special pleading in the Cosmological Argument…this occurred in another thread and, again, it was not that long ago. If an argument or position is presented with strong enough evidence, I believe that I am capable of accepting it even if it could potentially inflict damage to my Christian beliefs. 

Yet, what we see time and again is that we can make accurate, falsifiable predictions about the universe, and even when we discover new things, they fit with what we've already learned, expanding our knowledge and our understanding of things.

This is true.

Also, understand this.  I do not have faith as you understand the term.  This is one thing I really wish theists would figure out - that just because you have religious faith, doesn't mean other people do.  I put my trust in things that are demonstrated, and the scientific method has demonstrated itself to be the most accurate way we have of discovering and demonstrating things. 

Oh, yes you do use your faith in science to form your worldview. If that were not true, you could present irrefutable proof of soup to humans. Your faith in science is demonstrated anytime you assert that someday science will produce the answers to things we don’t yet have the answers to. Personally, I have never really understood why some non-theists who embrace naturalism and the ToE get all torqued up when some accuses them of having faith in science. What is so insulting about that?

It's not ridiculous at all.  A scientist can point to the evidence which forms the basis of their knowledge.  What can you point to?  Your own, personal, subjective experiences.  The only thing you can do is tell other people about those experiences, which doesn't do a whit of good unless they decide to believe you

I don’t rely exclusively on “personal, subjective experiences” to form my beliefs. There are strong philosophical arguments and theological evidence along with Intelligent Design Theory that plays a role in my beliefs.

But with evidence, you don't have to depend on what a scientist personally and subjectively experienced.  He can show you that evidence, repeat the experiments he did in front of you, show you how to do them yourself so you get the same result he did, and demonstrate the validity of the conclusions that he came to.  That's how the whole concept of peer review works.

This is true but when science cannot produce the answers people are looking for or it starts engaging in deceit and fraud, it loses credibility and people begin looking elsewhere and it is precisely this element of curiosity and our human inclination to explore that should be respected and allowed to advance. Boxing civilization into a worldview via militant insistence that those who  deny it are deluded idiots is  profoundly disturbing.

Have you seen legal contracts?  That's the cost of the kind of precision you're demanding - something that's turgid, difficult to read, and leaves you going "huh?" after you've managed to wade through all the precise wordings in order to make sure that there's no confusion as to what they meant.  What you're complaining about is the result of trying to make sure the information is present while making sure that it's comprehensible.  Sometimes you end up with less-optimal word choices, but the way to deal with it is to contact the textbook manufacturer about your concerns, not to kick up this kind of outrageous fuss because you think it's to cover weaknesses in evolutionary theory, or whatever.

You mean like the outrageous fuss the OP apparently felt was warranted with regards to Responsive Ed’s curriculum?

Since we both feel the same way, how about instead of snarling at each other over what amounts to a line in the sand, we try to discuss it like two rational adults?

I highly prefer this. I dislike it very much when some of these threads become a contest to see who can insult the opposing party(ies) with greater effect.

I don't know if you're aware of this, but it's common for people to misunderstand each other in text-only conversation.  It loses all the subtext - body language, tone of voice, and everything else - so what you intend to say can very often be lost with it.

Yes. This is very true and I couldn’t agree more.


The whole point of my involvement here was to demonstrate an element of hypocrisy and militant-like opposition that seems to come raging forth whenever a hint of Intelligent Design or Creationism is introduced into what is supposed to be the sacred territory of the ToE. It just baffles me that anyone would want to stifle the curiosity and creative nature of other people for the sake of protecting and preserving something that clearly does not have all of the answers. Frankly, I think it takes a blend of   arrogance, fear, irresponsibility, and dishonesty to try and box other people in like that.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 09:24:10 PM
Reading up more on the guy and the outright lies he’s told about evolution, I can’t really tell if he is just a pathological liar or complete idiot.  No seriously, don’t question this guy, he’s awesome, everything he says is gold.  Keep questioning evolution and the literally 150 years of established scientifically peer reviewed theories by hundreds of thousands of professional scientists with various backgrounds and specializations across over a dozen fields of scientific study but don’t question William Dembski.

Nope, can’t question that William Dembski guy, everything he says makes perfect sense.  Look he even uses math!  Oh man.

So, are you going to rely on a bunch of articles and links that you believe discredit Dembski...or are you going to do the responsible thing and read his material and decide for yourself?

Well considering humans are the only known intelligent agents we can prove exist with reasonable experimentation, until we see some evidence for some other intelligent agent what other choice would we have but to conclude that humans created the universe.

Maybe aliens did it.

Yep. That is a possibility...albeit not one that I personally find to be likely.

What I said still holds true.  Seriously, what would you consider to discredit or invalidate ID as being scientific?

A clear indication that it was not doing what it set out to do.

I have already.

I knew ID was crap when I still believed God existed.  In fact it was the lies and dishonesty of ID and Christian apologetics that really pushed me into learning more about philosophy, psychology and theology until I got to the point where I just didn’t believe in any god anymore and afterwards I studied evolution more to really understand the theory.

Hypotheses that rely on a established theory to be incorrect without actually providing any new evidence or making meaningful predictions usually don’t do well.

Okay. Got it.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 22, 2014, 10:40:53 PM
Reading up more on the guy and the outright lies he’s told about evolution, I can’t really tell if he is just a pathological liar or complete idiot.  No seriously, don’t question this guy, he’s awesome, everything he says is gold.  Keep questioning evolution and the literally 150 years of established scientifically peer reviewed theories by hundreds of thousands of professional scientists with various backgrounds and specializations across over a dozen fields of scientific study but don’t question William Dembski.

Nope, can’t question that William Dembski guy, everything he says makes perfect sense.  Look he even uses math!  Oh man.

So, are you going to rely on a bunch of articles and links that you believe discredit Dembski...or are you going to do the responsible thing and read his material and decide for yourself?

I did start reading it and started picking it apart.  I could spend my time explaining to you point by point what is wrong with it but I don't get the impression you care.

Are you going to do the responsible thing and read it and actually research the relevant topics for yourself?  Instead of just blindly supporting the links that support your beliefs which you hold so dear.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 22, 2014, 10:57:14 PM
Reading up more on the guy and the outright lies he’s told about evolution, I can’t really tell if he is just a pathological liar or complete idiot.  No seriously, don’t question this guy, he’s awesome, everything he says is gold.  Keep questioning evolution and the literally 150 years of established scientifically peer reviewed theories by hundreds of thousands of professional scientists with various backgrounds and specializations across over a dozen fields of scientific study but don’t question William Dembski.

Nope, can’t question that William Dembski guy, everything he says makes perfect sense.  Look he even uses math!  Oh man.

So, are you going to rely on a bunch of articles and links that you believe discredit Dembski...or are you going to do the responsible thing and read his material and decide for yourself?

I did start reading it and started picking it apart.  I could spend my time explaining to you point by point what is wrong with it but I don't get the impression you care.

Are you going to do the responsible thing and read it and actually research the relevant topics for yourself?  Instead of just blindly supporting the links that support your beliefs which you hold so dear.

I'm not quite sure I know what the it is in your question?...the links you provided or the ones I provided?...or something else? And, also, what makes you think that I "blindly" support anything?...or is that just you 'blindly' assuming something?

Frankly, based on how comments are appearing in your posts, I highly suspect that you have never really dug into IDT until now. Don't know that for certain (of course) but you are not speaking as though you are even moderately familiar with IDT and your knowledge seems to be evolving as we go along. Am I right?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 23, 2014, 12:24:27 AM
I'm not quite sure I know what the it is in your question?...the links you provided or the ones I provided?...or something else? And, also, what makes you think that I "blindly" support anything?...or is that just you 'blindly' assuming something?

Frankly, based on how comments are appearing in your posts, I highly suspect that you have never really dug into IDT until now. Don't know that for certain (of course) but you are not speaking as though you are even moderately familiar with IDT and your knowledge seems to be evolving as we go along. Am I right?

I was referring to your own link.  Did you bother reading Dembski's article and critiqueing it?

I tore apart Luskin's article fairly easily yet to you nothing I said mattered.  I'm wasting my time, even if you did read Dembski's article you'd just say it's great.  Who cares if Dembski equates complexity, information and probability which makes no sense.  Nevermind that Dembski never explains why a perceived specified posibility and perceived random posibility are actually different when the probability is the same.

I was hoping you would actually discuss ID for yourself but instead you copy/paste BS predictions and provide a link to an article written by a guy who doesn't understand information theory, has questionable ethics and is likely a pathological liar. 

It doesn't really matter what I say does it.  No matter how convincing, sensible, rational, logical or correct I may be, you can just fall back on "SevenPatch is just some nobody on the Internet, I'll just keep believing the guy with a phd who says things that confirm my beliefs".


Tomorrow I'll take a section of his article and explain thoroughly why it's BS.  After that, you're on your own.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 09:22:51 AM
It doesn't really matter what I say does it.  No matter how convincing, sensible, rational, logical or correct I may be, you can just fall back on "SevenPatch is just some nobody on the Internet, I'll just keep believing the guy with a phd who says things that confirm my beliefs".

The vast majority of the time that someone of Dembski's standing is criticized for his work, you will find those criticisms defended. So, I ask: are you just seeking out the criticisms or are you seeking out the responses to those criticisms as well? If you are simply loading up on the criticisms, you are bound to form a distorted impression that is neither fair to the person who produced the work or to yourself.

And, yes, it does matter what you say but you are going to need a much stronger argument than you've produced so far to persuade me that IDT is not a form of science.

Tomorrow I'll take a section of his article and explain thoroughly why it's BS.  After that, you're on your own.

I anxiously await to hear your thoughts.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 23, 2014, 12:12:04 PM
What it was supposed to say is: "While you've written a lot of words so far, you have done nothing to discredit or invalidate IDT as being scientific."

OK, I'll write very little and discredit IDT as being unscientific.

IT IS UNFALSIFIABLE.

I again challenge you to give a hypothetical example of some data that could prove ID invalid/wrong.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 23, 2014, 12:33:48 PM
Well, Boots, that's only nearly true. Behe defines Irreducible complexity (IR) as

Quote
"composed of several well-matched, interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, wherein the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning"

In fact this gives us, more or less, a way of falsifying ID. Take the flagellum which has been a centrepiece of illustration of the principle of IR. Without all its parts it doesn't work. So it is IR. However, if one takes off the 40 molecules that make the whip end, what one has left isn't a motor, its and injector used by various bacteria to inject poison into other cells. It's still functional, though not for locomotion. The 40 bits of the whip are in various other uses in cells so the whole if the flagellum assembly works fine in parts as well as when assembled. That pretty much falsifies ID on this one object though we have to be careful as it is people like Behe who can easily modify the definition to avoid this sort of falsification.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 02:26:53 PM
Well, Boots, that's only nearly true. Behe defines Irreducible complexity (IR) as

Quote
"composed of several well-matched, interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, wherein the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning"

In fact this gives us, more or less, a way of falsifying ID. Take the flagellum which has been a centrepiece of illustration of the principle of IR. Without all its parts it doesn't work. So it is IR. However, if one takes off the 40 molecules that make the whip end, what one has left isn't a motor, its and injector used by various bacteria to inject poison into other cells. It's still functional, though not for locomotion. The 40 bits of the whip are in various other uses in cells so the whole if the flagellum assembly works fine in parts as well as when assembled. That pretty much falsifies ID on this one object though we have to be careful as it is people like Behe who can easily modify the definition to avoid this sort of falsification.

Exactly how does this falsify 'irreducible complexity?' Seems you only supported the flagellum's IR by demonstrating that it can't function with certain parts missing....which is exactly what IR means.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 23, 2014, 02:37:33 PM
Well, Boots, that's only nearly true. Behe defines Irreducible complexity (IR) as

Quote
"composed of several well-matched, interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, wherein the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning"

In fact this gives us, more or less, a way of falsifying ID. Take the flagellum which has been a centrepiece of illustration of the principle of IR. Without all its parts it doesn't work. So it is IR. However, if one takes off the 40 molecules that make the whip end, what one has left isn't a motor, its and injector used by various bacteria to inject poison into other cells. It's still functional, though not for locomotion. The 40 bits of the whip are in various other uses in cells so the whole if the flagellum assembly works fine in parts as well as when assembled. That pretty much falsifies ID on this one object though we have to be careful as it is people like Behe who can easily modify the definition to avoid this sort of falsification.

Exactly how does this falsify 'irreducible complexity?' Seems you only supported the flagellum's IR by demonstrating that it can't function with certain parts missing....which is exactly what IR means.

Huh?  It's stating that it CAN function with parts missing.  Or more precisely, it adequately completes a function.  That it's not the same function is irrelevant.

but still, how can IR be falsified?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 03:10:26 PM

Exactly how does this falsify 'irreducible complexity?' Seems you only supported the flagellum's IR by demonstrating that it can't function with certain parts missing....which is exactly what IR means.

Huh?  It's stating that it CAN function with parts missing.  Or more precisely, it adequately completes a function.  That it's not the same function is irrelevant.

What do you mean it's irrelevant. It's absolutely relevant. All wheels5894 has done is identify a sub-system and now the flagellum is no longer functioning as a rotary propulsion system. What happened to the rotary propulsion system that makes the flagellum irreducibly complex?

Quote
but still, how can IR be falsified?

"Well, all a scientist has to do to prove me wrong is to take a bacterium without a flagellum, or knock out the genes for the flagellum in a bacterium, go into his lab and grow that bug for a long time and see if it produces anything resembling a flagellum. If that happened, intelligent design, as I understand it, would be knocked out of the water. I certainly don’t expect it to happen, but it’s easily falsified by a series of such experiments." Michael Behe
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 23, 2014, 03:14:27 PM
An aside. Michael Demski, one of the inventors of ID has this to say in July/August, 1999, issue of Touchstone Magazine. It's quite revealing of what he intended ID to be.

Quote
... intelligent design should be understood as the evidence that God has placed in nature to show that the physical world is the product of intelligence and not simply the result of mindless material forces. This evidence is available to all apart from the special revelation of God in salvation history as recounted in Scripture. ... To be sure, creationists who support intelligent design think it does not go far enough in elucidating the Christian understanding of creation. And they are right! ... Even so, there is an immediate payoff to intelligent design: it destroys the atheistic legacy of Darwinian evolution. Intelligent design makes it impossible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist. This gives intelligent design incredible traction as a tool for apologetics, opening up the God-question to individuals who think that science has buried God[1]
 1. http://www.designinference.com/documents/2005.08.Commending_President_Bush.pdf

As everyone can see it is an entirely scientific exercise with no thought of religion!

Care to comment on this. Biblestudent?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 23, 2014, 03:45:52 PM

Exactly how does this falsify 'irreducible complexity?' Seems you only supported the flagellum's IR by demonstrating that it can't function with certain parts missing....which is exactly what IR means.

Huh?  It's stating that it CAN function with parts missing.  Or more precisely, it adequately completes a function.  That it's not the same function is irrelevant.

What do you mean it's irrelevant. It's absolutely relevant. All wheels5894 has done is identify a sub-system and now the flagellum is no longer functioning as a rotary propulsion system. What happened to the rotary propulsion system that makes the flagellum irreducibly complex?

we know that this is not how evolution works.  The famous argument "what use is half a wing?" is answered by the fact that while a partial wing cannot be used to fly, it can be used for other things, like slowing descent or catching insects or making longer leaps to escape predators.  We know that evolving structures don't have an "end goal" of making, for example, a wing for flight.  Survivable traits are selected for, and sometimes new functions can be had by evolving things, like wings.  Or injection thingies that become propulsion thingies.

Quote
Quote
but still, how can IR be falsified?

"Well, all a scientist has to do to prove me wrong is to take a bacterium without a flagellum, or knock out the genes for the flagellum in a bacterium, go into his lab and grow that bug for a long time and see if it produces anything resembling a flagellum. If that happened, intelligent design, as I understand it, would be knocked out of the water. I certainly don’t expect it to happen, but it’s easily falsified by a series of such experiments." Michael Behe

There's something wrong with this, but I can't put my finger on it yet.  I need to chew on it some more.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 23, 2014, 03:49:27 PM
There's something wrong with this, but I can't put my finger on it yet.  I need to chew on it some more.

Maybe the fact that evolution on that scale takes far too long for scientists to be able to conduct such an experiment? That's one possibility.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 04:00:08 PM
An aside. Michael Demski, one of the inventors of ID has this to say in July/August, 1999, issue of Touchstone Magazine. It's quite revealing of what he intended ID to be.

Quote
... intelligent design should be understood as the evidence that God has placed in nature to show that the physical world is the product of intelligence and not simply the result of mindless material forces. This evidence is available to all apart from the special revelation of God in salvation history as recounted in Scripture. ... To be sure, creationists who support intelligent design think it does not go far enough in elucidating the Christian understanding of creation. And they are right! ... Even so, there is an immediate payoff to intelligent design: it destroys the atheistic legacy of Darwinian evolution. Intelligent design makes it impossible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist. This gives intelligent design incredible traction as a tool for apologetics, opening up the God-question to individuals who think that science has buried God[1]
 1. http://www.designinference.com/documents/2005.08.Commending_President_Bush.pdf

As everyone can see it is an entirely scientific exercise with no thought of religion!

Care to comment on this. Biblestudent?

What makes you think Dembski was one of the "inventors" of IDT ? Besides, if he chooses to use its conclusions as a means for proving that God exists, the all the power to him. I really don't think he was one of the inventors, though, as you allege.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 04:03:02 PM
we know that this is not how evolution works.  The famous argument "what use is half a wing?" is answered by the fact that while a partial wing cannot be used to fly, it can be used for other things, like slowing descent or catching insects or making longer leaps to escape predators.  We know that evolving structures don't have an "end goal" of making, for example, a wing for flight.  Survivable traits are selected for, and sometimes new functions can be had by evolving things, like wings.  Or injection thingies that become propulsion thingies.

So, the question is, does your injection thingy do the same thing as the propulsion thingy?


Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 23, 2014, 04:04:27 PM
There's something wrong with this, but I can't put my finger on it yet.  I need to chew on it some more.

Maybe the fact that evolution on that scale takes far too long for scientists to be able to conduct such an experiment? That's one possibility.

Yes, that's part of it.

I figured out another part of it: it assumes that the flagellum is The End Goal.  Evolution has no "end goal."  If a totally different appendage or "device" evolved, and not a flagellum, it would be the result of different selective factors than what produced a flagellum.

So, BibleStudent, what if we did that experiment Behe stipulates, and a different, non-flagellum appendage evolved?  Would *that* disprove ID?  Or would it *have* to produce a flagellum?

(am i even using the proper word for "flagellum" here??  I ain't no biologist...)
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 23, 2014, 04:05:06 PM
An aside. Michael Demski, one of the inventors of ID has this to say in July/August, 1999, issue of Touchstone Magazine. It's quite revealing of what he intended ID to be.

Quote
... intelligent design should be understood as the evidence that God has placed in nature to show that the physical world is the product of intelligence and not simply the result of mindless material forces. This evidence is available to all apart from the special revelation of God in salvation history as recounted in Scripture. ... To be sure, creationists who support intelligent design think it does not go far enough in elucidating the Christian understanding of creation. And they are right! ... Even so, there is an immediate payoff to intelligent design: it destroys the atheistic legacy of Darwinian evolution. Intelligent design makes it impossible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist. This gives intelligent design incredible traction as a tool for apologetics, opening up the God-question to individuals who think that science has buried God[1]
 1. http://www.designinference.com/documents/2005.08.Commending_President_Bush.pdf

As everyone can see it is an entirely scientific exercise with no thought of religion!

Care to comment on this. Biblestudent?

What makes you think Dembski was one of the "inventors" of IDT ? Besides, if he chooses to use its conclusions as a means for proving that God exists, the all the power to him. I really don't think he was one of the inventors, though, as you allege.

So how did invent it then - in its modern form?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 23, 2014, 04:08:23 PM
we know that this is not how evolution works.  The famous argument "what use is half a wing?" is answered by the fact that while a partial wing cannot be used to fly, it can be used for other things, like slowing descent or catching insects or making longer leaps to escape predators.  We know that evolving structures don't have an "end goal" of making, for example, a wing for flight.  Survivable traits are selected for, and sometimes new functions can be had by evolving things, like wings.  Or injection thingies that become propulsion thingies.

So, the question is, does your injection thingy do the same thing as the propulsion thingy?

No, no no!!!  That's not the question.  THEY DON'T HAVE TO DO THE SAME THING.  The "simpler" thing simply has to provide a survivable function.  Which it does.

EVOLUTION DOES NOT HAVE AN END GOAL.  Survivability of the species is the goal.  Period.  If that means that a parital wing can evolve into a full-blown flight-capable wing, or not (in the case of the "flying squirrel and snake), so be it.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 23, 2014, 04:31:15 PM
"Well, all a scientist has to do to prove me wrong is to take a bacterium without a flagellum, or knock out the genes for the flagellum in a bacterium, go into his lab and grow that bug for a long time and see if it produces anything resembling a flagellum. If that happened, intelligent design, as I understand it, would be knocked out of the water. I certainly don’t expect it to happen, but it’s easily falsified by a series of such experiments." Michael Behe

Shifting goal posts?  I'm shocked!  Quick, bring me some smelling salts, I feel faint...
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 23, 2014, 04:32:59 PM
No, no no!!!  That's not the question.  THEY DON'T HAVE TO DO THE SAME THING.  The "simpler" thing simply has to provide a survivable function.  Which it does.

EVOLUTION DOES NOT HAVE AN END GOAL.  Survivability of the species is the goal.  Period.  If that means that a parital wing can evolve into a full-blown flight-capable wing, or not (in the case of the "flying squirrel and snake), so be it.
I'd be hesitant to use the word 'goal'.

Survivability of the species is not a goal in the sense that 'goal' usually implies the involvement of a willful sentience capable of identifying or establishing a goal.

Survivability of the species is what makes the process continue.  Less survival = less instances of procreation.  More survival = more instances of procreation.

If species can maintain a level of procreation that is at least at equilibrium or greater than the rate of reduction in number, then the species will continue to survive.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 23, 2014, 04:35:15 PM
There's something wrong with this, but I can't put my finger on it yet.  I need to chew on it some more.

Maybe the fact that evolution on that scale takes far too long for scientists to be able to conduct such an experiment? That's one possibility.

And the fact that we dont know the exact environmental pressures that occurred to allow the flagellum to develop.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 04:40:45 PM
No, no no!!!  That's not the question.  THEY DON'T HAVE TO DO THE SAME THING.  The "simpler" thing simply has to provide a survivable function.  Which it does.

I will help you out a little here. Finding sub-systems of a larger system is only half the battle. What the opponents of IDT claim is that a functioning sub-system suggests that if those sub-systems have independent functions then they can be construed as the ingredients for natural selection's mill and capable of coming together with other sub-systems to form, in this case, a flagellum. The problem is, biologists have no way of explaining how this all occurs. They say 'evolution did-it' and the IDT experts say a 'designer did-it.'
I am short on time and feel like I am rushing so I better end here so that I don't botch this up and get taken to task.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 23, 2014, 04:47:31 PM
No, no no!!!  That's not the question.  THEY DON'T HAVE TO DO THE SAME THING.  The "simpler" thing simply has to provide a survivable function.  Which it does.

I will help you out a little here. Finding sub-systems of a larger system is only half the battle. What the opponents of IDT claim is that a functioning sub-system suggests that if those sub-systems have independent functions then they can be construed as the ingredients for natural selection's mill and capable of coming together with other sub-systems to form, in this case, a flagellum. The problem is, biologists have no way of explaining how this all occurs. They say 'evolution did-it' and the IDT experts say a 'designer did-it.'
I am short on time and feel like I am rushing so I better end here so that I don't botch this up and get taken to task.

Scaffolding.

And Boots is incorrect on:
The "simpler" thing simply has to provide a survivable function.
The "simpler" thing has no such need to provide a survivable function.  It merely needs to not impede survivability.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 23, 2014, 04:54:25 PM
No, no no!!!  That's not the question.  THEY DON'T HAVE TO DO THE SAME THING.  The "simpler" thing simply has to provide a survivable function.  Which it does.

I will help you out a little here. Finding sub-systems of a larger system is only half the battle. What the opponents of IDT claim is that a functioning sub-system suggests that if those sub-systems have independent functions then they can be construed as the ingredients for natural selection's mill and capable of coming together with other sub-systems to form, in this case, a flagellum. The problem is, biologists have no way of explaining how this all occurs. They say 'evolution did-it' and the IDT experts say a 'designer did-it.'
I am short on time and feel like I am rushing so I better end here so that I don't botch this up and get taken to task.

Assuming you're correct (and I will, because I don't have time to study/argue that point), IDT is simply throwing the baby out with the bathwater and assuming that, because evolution theory may not have every answer, it must be completley wrong.

Science will end when it has all the answers.  And that's the problem with religion, and IDT as a subset of religion: it hands out the answers without any work.  That will end science, and that will be a sad, sad world.  And THAT'S the real danger (IMHO) of religion (and IDT as a subset of religion)

(and thanks for the correction, jdawg)
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 23, 2014, 05:06:46 PM
No, no no!!!  That's not the question.  THEY DON'T HAVE TO DO THE SAME THING.  The "simpler" thing simply has to provide a survivable function.  Which it does.

I will help you out a little here. Finding sub-systems of a larger system is only half the battle. What the opponents of IDT claim is that a functioning sub-system suggests that if those sub-systems have independent functions then they can be construed as the ingredients for natural selection's mill and capable of coming together with other sub-systems to form, in this case, a flagellum. The problem is, biologists have no way of explaining how this all occurs. They say 'evolution did-it' and the IDT experts say a 'designer did-it.'
I am short on time and feel like I am rushing so I better end here so that I don't botch this up and get taken to task.

Did I read I read right?
Quote
biologists have no way of explaining how this all occurs.
On what basis do you make this statement? Where is the facts to back it up. This appears to suggest that you have pre-judged the position and decided that biologist will never be able to do this. That seems to be jumping the gun a little, doesn't it? We have only know about DNA seriously for 50 years and yet we have moved on to sequencing complete human genomes at the rate of 5 a day. Science is coming on a fats rate. Where research will take us in the next 50 years we can't say but who knows there won't be answers to these things by then.

We are still no closer, I see, at nailing down the method of design or the designer. Claims for a designer fail if you can't come up with the designer and how the design was done. Sadly, the bible isn't going to help.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 05:20:39 PM
Did I read I read right?
Quote
biologists have no way of explaining how this all occurs.
On what basis do you make this statement? Where is the facts to back it up. This appears to suggest that you have pre-judged the position and decided that biologist will never be able to do this. That seems to be jumping the gun a little, doesn't it? We have only know about DNA seriously for 50 years and yet we have moved on to sequencing complete human genomes at the rate of 5 a day. Science is coming on a fats rate. Where research will take us in the next 50 years we can't say but who knows there won't be answers to these things by then.


Assuming you're correct (and I will, because I don't have time to study/argue that point), IDT is simply throwing the baby out with the bathwater and assuming that, because evolution theory may not have every answer, it must be completley wrong.

Science will end when it has all the answers.  And that's the problem with religion, and IDT as a subset of religion: it hands out the answers without any work.  That will end science, and that will be a sad, sad world.  And THAT'S the real danger (IMHO) of religion (and IDT as a subset of religion)

(and thanks for the correction, jdawg)

There is a lot of complex and technical information that goes into this argument about the flagellum. I envy anyone who can wade through it and understand it on the first go-around because that wasn't the case for me. In the end, at least for me, the possibility that unintentional processes could have created the flagellum are unfathomable....especially when taking into account the enormous amount of biological data and knowledge that has accumulated over the last several decades. In my opinion, there is simply no way that the flagellum could have formed without at least having received some help from an intelligent source. It's just not explainable through natural processes.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 23, 2014, 05:24:54 PM
There is a lot of complex and technical information that goes into this argument about the flagellum. I envy anyone who can wade through it and understand it on the first go-around because that wasn't the case for me. In the end, at least for me, the possibility that unintentional processes could have created the flagellum are unfathomable....especially when taking into account the enormous amount of biological data and knowledge that has accumulated over the last several decades. In my opinion, there is simply no way that the flagellum could have formed without at least having received some help from an intelligent source. It's just not explainable through natural processes.

Bold mine.

I assume you're familiar with the term "Argument from personal incredulity"? It's a form of "Argument from ignorance".
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 23, 2014, 05:32:44 PM
There is a lot of complex and technical information that goes into this argument about the flagellum. I envy anyone who can wade through it and understand it on the first go-around because that wasn't the case for me. In the end, at least for me, the possibility that unintentional processes could have created the flagellum are unfathomable....especially when taking into account the enormous amount of biological data and knowledge that has accumulated over the last several decades. In my opinion, there is simply no way that the flagellum could have formed without at least having received some help from an intelligent source. It's just not explainable through natural processes.

What is your method for determining when it is impossible for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 06:49:44 PM

Scaffolding.

Please explain.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 06:53:45 PM
There is a lot of complex and technical information that goes into this argument about the flagellum. I envy anyone who can wade through it and understand it on the first go-around because that wasn't the case for me. In the end, at least for me, the possibility that unintentional processes could have created the flagellum are unfathomable....especially when taking into account the enormous amount of biological data and knowledge that has accumulated over the last several decades. In my opinion, there is simply no way that the flagellum could have formed without at least having received some help from an intelligent source. It's just not explainable through natural processes.

What is your method for determining when it is impossible for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?

My hyperbole probably prompted this question. I do not actually go so far as to say that it would be impossible for natural processes to have produced the flagella.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 23, 2014, 06:57:43 PM
There is a lot of complex and technical information that goes into this argument about the flagellum. I envy anyone who can wade through it and understand it on the first go-around because that wasn't the case for me. In the end, at least for me, the possibility that unintentional processes could have created the flagellum are unfathomable....especially when taking into account the enormous amount of biological data and knowledge that has accumulated over the last several decades. In my opinion, there is simply no way that the flagellum could have formed without at least having received some help from an intelligent source. It's just not explainable through natural processes.

What is your method for determining when it is impossible for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?

My hyperbole probably prompted this question. I do not actually go so far as to say that it would be impossible for natural processes to have produced the flagella.

Ok, what is your method for determining when it is vastly improbable for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 23, 2014, 10:00:53 PM
Ok, what is your method for determining when it is vastly improbable for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?

When the complexity of the "observation" can be more reasonably explained by an intelligent cause than by natural processes.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Astreja on January 24, 2014, 12:37:24 AM
Ok, what is your method for determining when it is vastly improbable for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?

When the complexity of the "observation" can be more reasonably explained by an intelligent cause than by natural processes.

That might be so if the intelligent cause was an entity whose existence could be empirically demonstrated, such as a group of plants growing taller because the next-door neighbour watered them when she watered her own flowerbed.

It's a completely meaningless explanation when the "intelligent cause" is itself hypothetical.  Provide empirical evidence for the intelligent designer first, so that we can see if it does explain things better than current science.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 24, 2014, 02:43:27 AM
Ok, what is your method for determining when it is vastly improbable for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?

When the complexity of the "observation" can be more reasonably explained by an intelligent cause than by natural processes.

That isn't a method, that's just a rewording of what you've already stated. Perhaps you could present your method in flowchart form? Just to give you a heads up, your method can't be based on naturalism, so you're going to have to explain in your method how you falsify non-natural claims.

However, also, when is the complexity of what's observed more reasonably explained by natural processes? Can you give an example of something that is complex that points to a natural process being the more reasonable explanation?

Thirdly, how does this intelligence manage to cause an observation in nature without interfering with natural processes?

Fourthly, can you point to, with evidence, an intelligence that isn't a natural phenomena?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: natlegend on January 24, 2014, 03:55:54 AM
On lizards and snakes...

Genesis 1:14

"Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals! You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life."

...ergo, prior to this event snakes had legs, and were in fact... lizards! Proof! From your own book, BibleStudent. Prove me wrong. Trololo...

Evolution within two generations...

http://m.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/bigger-taller-wider/story-e6frg8h6-1111115975557 (http://m.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/bigger-taller-wider/story-e6frg8h6-1111115975557)

"We have all become taller (but not nearly as much as our cousins in northern Europe)... Girls are developing breasts two years earlier and menstruating at least a year earlier. Boys are reaching their adult height at a younger age, 17, but the growth spurt is happening in their legs, creating a lankier look."

Do you have an answer for this example of evolution, BibleStudent?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 24, 2014, 08:09:51 AM
Ok, what is your method for determining when it is vastly improbable for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?

When the complexity of the "observation" can be more reasonably explained by an intelligent cause than by natural processes.

But your "intelligent cause" can't even be reasonably explained, so how does that work?

All throughout human history, nature has been a mysterious wonder. We 've sacrificed people for volcanos, done dances for rain, feared the gods that caused earthquakes, and prayed to Zues to stop with the lightning bolts. Yet, not once has any natural mystery been traced back to a god of any sort. Not even once.

It seems quite reasonable to me that natural process, yet to be discovered, will be sufficient to explain our universe.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Graybeard on January 24, 2014, 09:07:37 AM

http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2014/01/creationism_in_texas_public_schools_undermining_the_charter_movement.html

From the article:
Quote
When public-school students enrolled in Texas’ largest charter program open their biology workbooks, they will read that the fossil record is “sketchy.” That evolution is “dogma” and an “unproved theory” with no experimental basis. They will be told that leading scientists dispute the mechanisms of evolution and the age of the Earth. These are all lies.

The more than 17,000 students in the Responsive Education Solutions charter system will learn in their history classes that some residents of the Philippines were “pagans in various levels of civilization.” They’ll read in a history textbook that feminism forced women to turn to the government as a “surrogate husband.”

Infiltrating and subverting the charter-school movement has allowed Responsive Ed to carry out its religious agenda—and it is succeeding. Operating more than 65 campuses in Texas, Arkansas, and Indiana, Responsive Ed receives more than $82 million in taxpayer money annually, and it is expanding, with 20 more Texas campuses opening in 2014.

My daughter attends a Texas charter school that is not one of Responsive Education Solutions' schools, and I've seen nothing like this, so not all Texas charter schools are guilty of this.
I assume that the people who run these schools think that the Madrashas of the fundamentalist Islamic world that radicalise children are wrong... but that is the same thing as is being done by these schools.

Education is teaching critical thinking and teaching knowledge. The schools seem to be doing neither.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 24, 2014, 09:20:17 AM
Ok, what is your method for determining when it is vastly improbable for natural processes to be the cause of an observation in nature?

When the complexity of the "observation" can be more reasonably explained by an intelligent cause than by natural processes.

This is a textbook Argument from Ignorance.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 11:01:19 AM

That might be so if the intelligent cause was an entity whose existence could be empirically demonstrated, such as a group of plants growing taller because the next-door neighbour watered them when she watered her own flowerbed.

It's a completely meaningless explanation when the "intelligent cause" is itself hypothetical.  Provide empirical evidence for the intelligent designer first, so that we can see if it does explain things better than current science.

That isn't a method, that's just a rewording of what you've already stated. Perhaps you could present your method in flowchart form? Just to give you a heads up, your method can't be based on naturalism, so you're going to have to explain in your method how you falsify non-natural claims.

However, also, when is the complexity of what's observed more reasonably explained by natural processes? Can you give an example of something that is complex that points to a natural process being the more reasonable explanation?

Thirdly, how does this intelligence manage to cause an observation in nature without interfering with natural processes?

Fourthly, can you point to, with evidence, an intelligence that isn't a natural phenomena?

This is a textbook Argument from Ignorance.

But your "intelligent cause" can't even be reasonably explained, so how does that work?

All throughout human history, nature has been a mysterious wonder. We 've sacrificed people for volcanos, done dances for rain, feared the gods that caused earthquakes, and prayed to Zues to stop with the lightning bolts. Yet, not once has any natural mystery been traced back to a god of any sort. Not even once.

It seems quite reasonable to me that natural process, yet to be discovered, will be sufficient to explain our universe.

I disagree with the proposition that empirical evidence is the only form of evidence. Such an assertion, if true, would make the discipline of philosophy useless. In addition, where is the empirical evidence for things such as logic, morality, and perhaps much of history? Are good and evil empirically verifiable? Where is the empirical evidence for an abiogenetic origin of life, big bang, dark matter, etc? Fact is, what many non-theists offer to answer these questions constitutes special pleading in light of what you are asking of me.

The point is, we can rationally construct non-empirical concepts when empirical evidence is absent.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 24, 2014, 11:16:03 AM
The point is, we can rationally construct non-empirical concepts when empirical evidence is absent.

Of course we can. But making the leap from "we don't know" to "godidit" isn't rational, especially given that
Quote
All throughout human history, nature has been a mysterious wonder. We 've sacrificed people for volcanos, done dances for rain, feared the gods that caused earthquakes, and prayed to Zues to stop with the lightning bolts. Yet, not once has any natural mystery been traced back to a god of any sort. Not even once.

Your attempts to construct a god are wishful thinking at best, because all those other concepts you alluded to do have some evidence[1], whereas your god has absolutely none. You have to live with this, BS.

Not knowing something isn't as as bad as you might think. It leads to curiosity and learning. Discovery and awe. It can be a wonderful thing. Don't be afraid of it.
 1. with the possible exception of abiogenesis and dark matter, afaik
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 24, 2014, 11:34:24 AM

I disagree with the proposition that empirical evidence is the only form of evidence. Such an assertion, if true, would make the discipline of philosophy useless.

That doesn't sound right. Philosophy doesn't necessarily work with empirical evidence and often doesn't. Certianly it seems to be able to arrive at conclusions without any evidence. Take the Kalam Argument. It starts with something that sounds empirical, though it isn't quite, and concludes that there has to be a first cause - dismissing anything else and in the face of the fact that there is not such empirical evidence for such a cause. Take the Argument for god that says that is the greatest thing that can be thought of. That is entirely though with no evidence of any sort. Philosophy can work fine without empirical evidence.

 
Quote
In addition, where is the empirical evidence for things such as logic, morality, and perhaps much of history? Are good and evil empirically verifiable?

The things you quote are abstract nouns - things that live in your head only. They come to be recognised by empirical evidence when we see humans, for example, displaying these qualities. Of course logic in the basis of mathematics which can have empirical evidence to check its statements. If it can not, it fits with the philosophy that in without the need for evidence at all.
 

Quote
Where is the empirical evidence for an abiogenetic origin of life, big bang, dark matter, etc? Fact is, what many non-theists offer to answer these questions constitutes special pleading in light of what you are asking of me.

Ah, I understand, it is special pleading to say we don't know, yet? Science progresses and although we have hypotheses in these areas they only get promoted to theories when they can be proved and they have not been yet. It is sad that theists can come to the party with just an old book and claim their god did it whilst the scientists have to work for decades for the real answer.

Quote
The point is, we can rationally construct non-empirical concepts when empirical evidence is absent.

Of course you can - do carry on! Warning, though, there is no reason to believe that the arguments you make are anywhere near correct until they predict something that can later be checked. For example, and I am not applying any of this logic to you, but supposing a young earth creationist was studying creation. He will say the earth was created 6,000 years ago (just a guess here of course). A prediction would be that there would be no evidence of life older than 6,000 years, We could then go out and find the age of various fossils and see if the prediction was true.

If you present an argument that has nothing that can be checked empirically there is no more reason to accept it than any other explanation.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 11:53:57 AM

That doesn't sound right. Philosophy doesn't necessarily work with empirical evidence and often doesn't. Certianly it seems to be able to arrive at conclusions without any evidence. Take the Kalam Argument. It starts with something that sounds empirical, though it isn't quite, and concludes that there has to be a first cause - dismissing anything else and in the face of the fact that there is not such empirical evidence for such a cause. Take the Argument for god that says that is the greatest thing that can be thought of. That is entirely though with no evidence of any sort. Philosophy can work fine without empirical evidence.

No. According to what I am being told, empirical evidence is the only way to demonstrate that something is, or could be, real.

 
Quote
The things you quote are abstract nouns - things that live in your head only.

Please show me the empirical evidence to support your claim.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 11:58:01 AM
Evolution within two generations...

http://m.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/bigger-taller-wider/story-e6frg8h6-1111115975557 (http://m.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/bigger-taller-wider/story-e6frg8h6-1111115975557)

"We have all become taller (but not nearly as much as our cousins in northern Europe)... Girls are developing breasts two years earlier and menstruating at least a year earlier. Boys are reaching their adult height at a younger age, 17, but the growth spurt is happening in their legs, creating a lankier look."

Do you have an answer for this example of evolution, BibleStudent?

Honestly, no I don't. But may I ask what you are trying to demonstrate with this information?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 12:19:04 PM

Of course we can. But making the leap from "we don't know" to "godidit" isn't rational, especially given that
Quote
All throughout human history, nature has been a mysterious wonder. We 've sacrificed people for volcanos, done dances for rain, feared the gods that caused earthquakes, and prayed to Zues to stop with the lightning bolts. Yet, not once has any natural mystery been traced back to a god of any sort. Not even once.


A significant portion of the phylogenetic tree is based on speculative reasoning that asserts "evolution diddit." And using the same "leap" you propose as being irrational, some pro-ToE people will even go so far as to say that "we know snakes evolved from lizards"..... when, in fact, that has never been conclusively demonstrated.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 24, 2014, 01:05:10 PM

Of course we can. But making the leap from "we don't know" to "godidit" isn't rational, especially given that
Quote
All throughout human history, nature has been a mysterious wonder. We 've sacrificed people for volcanos, done dances for rain, feared the gods that caused earthquakes, and prayed to Zues to stop with the lightning bolts. Yet, not once has any natural mystery been traced back to a god of any sort. Not even once.


A significant portion of the phylogenetic tree is based on speculative reasoning that asserts "evolution diddit."

Based on evidence that evolution works. Evolution is fact. Evolution is real, and demonstrably so.

Quote
And using the same "leap" you propose as being irrational, some pro-ToE people will even go so far as to say that "we know snakes evolved from lizards"..... when, in fact, that has never been conclusively demonstrated.

It's not the same leap at all. There is evidence of snakes, and there is evidence of lizards, and there is evidence that snakes in the past had small vestiges of limbs that, through natural selection and evolution, have disappeared over time.

http://news.discovery.com/animals/zoo-animals/snakes-lost-legs-evolution-110207.htm (http://news.discovery.com/animals/zoo-animals/snakes-lost-legs-evolution-110207.htm)

Do we absolutely know for sure? Maybe not. But that in no way suggests that a god created the snake just as it is today, simply because we know that evolution does indeed work, and that there have yet to be any natural mysteries that needed a god to be the causal agent.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 01:14:59 PM
It's not the same leap at all.

Your 'leap' is not as big as my 'leap,' therefore, your's is an acceptable 'leap.' Special pleading.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 24, 2014, 01:21:37 PM
It's not the same leap at all.

Your 'leap' is not as big as my 'leap,' therefore, your's is an acceptable 'leap.' Special pleading.

Not special pleading.  the "leap" Dante is referring to is evidence-based.  Your leap is faith based.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 01:33:40 PM
Not special pleading.  the "leap" Dante is referring to is evidence-based.  Your leap is faith based.

You are back to arguing that evidence is only evidence when it is empirical. If that is what you believe then please go back to post #199 and provide an answer to the questions I asked.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 24, 2014, 01:43:29 PM

That doesn't sound right. Philosophy doesn't necessarily work with empirical evidence and often doesn't. Certianly it seems to be able to arrive at conclusions without any evidence. Take the Kalam Argument. It starts with something that sounds empirical, though it isn't quite, and concludes that there has to be a first cause - dismissing anything else and in the face of the fact that there is not such empirical evidence for such a cause. Take the Argument for god that says that is the greatest thing that can be thought of. That is entirely though with no evidence of any sort. Philosophy can work fine without empirical evidence.

No. According to what I am being told, empirical evidence is the only way to demonstrate that something is, or could be, real.

Do you know what you are talking about here? The sort of philosophy that argues for god was my example. The ontological argument is one I mentioned, though not by name. Here it is

Quote
God is the greatest conceivable being.
It is greater to exist than not to exist.
Therefore, God exists.

Here is a philosophical argument that needs no empirical evidence and reaches a its conclusion with no way of checking empirical evidence. Philosophy manages fine without empirical evidence.

Quote
Quote
The things you quote are abstract nouns - things that live in your head only.

Please show me the empirical evidence to support your claim.

Again, are you thinking straight. An abstract noun is such because it is an abstract concept and nothing that can be touched and measured. Maybe this  (http://www.grammar-monster.com/glossary/abstract_nouns.htm)will help.

Things like love, justice, hate are abstract - things we think in our head. We can recognise that people have the same concept as us by watching what they do.

Now, a question from earlier on.

You commented on Demski quotes that -
Quote
What makes you think Dembski was one of the "inventors" of IDT ? Besides, if he chooses to use its conclusions as a means for proving that God exists, the all the power to him. I really don't think he was one of the inventors, though, as you allege.

I asked you who was the father of the modern ID movement as I would have though Demski and Behe were juts that. Can you answer now?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 24, 2014, 01:44:17 PM
Not special pleading.  the "leap" Dante is referring to is evidence-based.  Your leap is faith based.

You are back to arguing that evidence is only evidence when it is empirical. If that is what you believe then please go back to post #199 and provide an answer to the questions I asked.

In addition, where is the empirical evidence for things such as logic, morality, and perhaps much of history? Are good and evil empirically verifiable?

The things you quote are abstract nouns - things that live in your head only. They come to be recognised by empirical evidence when we see humans, for example, displaying these qualities.

Note, these are not faith-based. There is verifiable evidence of logic and morailty. There is no evidence of gods. None, zero, zip, zilch, nada.

So....what else you got?


edit - quotes fixed, I think...
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 24, 2014, 01:45:29 PM
The point is, we can rationally construct non-empirical concepts when empirical evidence is absent.
You can also make a career out of it too.

It's called being a fiction writer.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Astreja on January 24, 2014, 01:48:37 PM
I disagree with the proposition that empirical evidence is the only form of evidence. Such an assertion, if true, would make the discipline of philosophy useless. In addition, where is the empirical evidence for things such as logic, morality, and perhaps much of history? Are good and evil empirically verifiable? Where is the empirical evidence for an abiogenetic origin of life, big bang, dark matter, etc? {emphasis Mine}

It is precisely the highlighted section for which I want empirical evidence, because those are things that pertain to the physical universe.  That evidence is currently being collected and analyzed by scientists, and it'll be here eventually.  All of your other items are abstract concepts, and if you want to make up your own language to explain them, be My guest. You don't, however, get to pull that stunt when dealing with physical things.

If you want to convince us, empirical evidence is the only way to go.  Wibbling about morals and history and good and evil and such simply isn't a match for a decent telescope and a powerful computer.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 02:00:34 PM
Again, are you thinking straight. An abstract noun is such because it is an abstract concept and nothing that can be touched and measured. Maybe this  (http://www.grammar-monster.com/glossary/abstract_nouns.htm)will help.

Things like love, justice, hate are abstract - things we think in our head. We can recognise that people have the same concept as us by watching what they do.

Where is the empirical evidence to demonstrate that the things "we think in our head" are real? I don't see how labeling it 'abstract' has any bearing on the request I am making. If you believe those things "we think in our head" are real, then provide empirical evidence to support your claim.

Quote
Now, a question from earlier on.

You commented on Demski quotes that -
Quote
What makes you think Dembski was one of the "inventors" of IDT ? Besides, if he chooses to use its conclusions as a means for proving that God exists, the all the power to him. I really don't think he was one of the inventors, though, as you allege.

I asked you who was the father of the modern ID movement as I would have though Demski and Behe were juts that. Can you answer now?

Michael Behe put the words "irreducible" and "complexity" together so he is probably considered the "inventor" of modern contemporary IDT.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 02:03:33 PM
Note, these are not faith-based. There is verifiable evidence of logic and morailty. There is no evidence of gods. None, zero, zip, zilch, nada.

So....what else you got?

Please provide empirical evidence to support your claim that "there is verifiable evidence of logic and morality."
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 24, 2014, 02:05:17 PM

I disagree with the proposition that empirical evidence is the only form of evidence. Such an assertion, if true, would make the discipline of philosophy useless. In addition, where is the empirical evidence for things such as logic, morality, and perhaps much of history? Are good and evil empirically verifiable? Where is the empirical evidence for an abiogenetic origin of life, big bang, dark matter, etc? Fact is, what many non-theists offer to answer these questions constitutes special pleading in light of what you are asking of me.

The point is, we can rationally construct non-empirical concepts when empirical evidence is absent.

Even if I agreed that you could "rationally construct non-empirical concepts" this wouldn't get you even one step closer to some deity or 'intelligent designer' - and it certainly wouldn't justify your use of the argument from incredulity fallacy. Yet still, I would like to see you attempt a rationally valid and sound argument for this alleged designer you think is there and how you can differentiate what is designed from what is not designed.

Now, you made mention of logic, morality, history, good, evil, etc. Do you think these things "exist" (proper) somewhere out there? If so, please demonstrate. Regarding abiogenesis, doesn't it just suck that science doesn't know things all the time?? Why do you think it's OK to just make shit up when you don't know either? Regarding the big bang and what is called "dark matter" scientists do in fact have demonstrable evidence for such things (such as red-shift).

When you don't know something you shouldn't pretend to by the use of fallacies like the argument from ignorance/incredulity. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, not just more claims.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 24, 2014, 02:10:02 PM
Note, these are not faith-based. There is verifiable evidence of logic and morailty. There is no evidence of gods. None, zero, zip, zilch, nada.

So....what else you got?

Please provide empirical evidence to support your claim that "there is verifiable evidence of logic and morality."

Are people not moral? Do they not exibit morality? Are they not logical? Can one not do logic problems?

So you can see logic and morality in action, in the real world. You can test for it. You cannot see any god's actions.

You cannot see "creation". You can, however, see evolution, and no amount of mental gymnastics and wishful thinking and burying your head in the sand can overcome those facts, try as you might.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 24, 2014, 02:12:53 PM
That isn't a method, that's just a rewording of what you've already stated. Perhaps you could present your method in flowchart form? Just to give you a heads up, your method can't be based on naturalism, so you're going to have to explain in your method how you falsify non-natural claims.

However, also, when is the complexity of what's observed more reasonably explained by natural processes? Can you give an example of something that is complex that points to a natural process being the more reasonable explanation?

Thirdly, how does this intelligence manage to cause an observation in nature without interfering with natural processes?

Fourthly, can you point to, with evidence, an intelligence that isn't a natural phenomena?

I disagree with the proposition that empirical evidence is the only form of evidence. Such an assertion, if true, would make the discipline of philosophy useless. In addition, where is the empirical evidence for things such as logic, morality, and perhaps much of history? Are good and evil empirically verifiable? Where is the empirical evidence for an abiogenetic origin of life, big bang, dark matter, etc? Fact is, what many non-theists offer to answer these questions constitutes special pleading in light of what you are asking of me.

The point is, we can rationally construct non-empirical concepts when empirical evidence is absent.

I'm not expecting empirical evidence, though I was hoping for you to answer the questions I asked.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 24, 2014, 02:24:40 PM
Not special pleading.  the "leap" Dante is referring to is evidence-based.  Your leap is faith based.

You are back to arguing that evidence is only evidence when it is empirical. If that is what you believe then please go back to post #199 and provide an answer to the questions I asked.

Those would be the questions you asked in response to evading the questions I asked? Hypocrite.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Jag on January 24, 2014, 02:25:02 PM
Again, are you thinking straight. An abstract noun is such because it is an abstract concept and nothing that can be touched and measured. Maybe this  (http://www.grammar-monster.com/glossary/abstract_nouns.htm)will help.

Things like love, justice, hate are abstract - things we think in our head. We can recognise that people have the same concept as us by watching what they do.

Where is the empirical evidence to demonstrate that the things "we think in our head" are real? I don't see how labeling it 'abstract' has any bearing on the request I am making. If you believe those things "we think in our head" are real, then provide empirical evidence to support your claim.

This is an interesting question, although I don't see how it's going to advance BS's position other than semantically or philosophically, which is sidestepping the point entirely.....

Can anyone make the case that a "thing" (for lack of a better word) that is only experienced subjectively can be said to be an objective reality? If we start from the position that certain words exist to describe abstract ideas that are ultimately both subjective and individual in every respect, what is the logical end of that argument?

Edited to add: to be clear, it looks like we can see (witness?) the effects of these subjective experiences, but not the objective reality of the "things" themselves. We can see the effects (outcomes, consequences, whatever word suits) of the subjective experience of love, but not the objective reality of love. Not sure if this added clarity or muddle my point even worse...
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 02:26:59 PM
Yet still, I would like to see you attempt a rationally valid and sound argument for this alleged designer you think is there and how you can differentiate what is designed from what is not designed.

Let's say you are an explorer and you have just discovered a cave. No one has ever been in this cave before. On the cave walls are pictures of trees and mountains and you have determined that these pictures are thousands of years old.

1. How did those pictures get there?
2. What leads you to believe that your answer to number one is true?

Quote
Now, you made mention of logic, morality, history, good, evil, etc. Do you think these things "exist" (proper) somewhere out there? If so, please demonstrate.

Yes, I do believe they exist and once I have formed a reasonable and rational argument for the existence of God, I can apply the historical reliability of the ancient texts (the Bible) to account for why I believe that logic, morality, and good and evil exist.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 02:31:36 PM
Not special pleading.  the "leap" Dante is referring to is evidence-based.  Your leap is faith based.

You are back to arguing that evidence is only evidence when it is empirical. If that is what you believe then please go back to post #199 and provide an answer to the questions I asked.

Those would be the questions you asked in response to evading the questions I asked? Hypocrite.

I apologize. I made a mistake. I will answer your questions. Although I think I have gotten much better at responding to multiple questions (that come rather quickly at times), I see that I still have some progress to make. Again, my apologies.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 02:43:08 PM
Are people not moral? Do they not exibit morality? Are they not logical? Can one not do logic problems?

So you can see logic and morality in action, in the real world. You can test for it. You cannot see any god's actions.

Does this constitute empirical evidence? If so, please explain how.

Quote
You cannot see "creation". You can, however, see evolution, and no amount of mental gymnastics and wishful thinking and burying your head in the sand can overcome those facts, try as you might.

Did evolution create the first living thing? If not, then why are you using it to negate God?


edit: worded the last question incorrectly?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 24, 2014, 02:52:21 PM
Yet still, I would like to see you attempt a rationally valid and sound argument for this alleged designer you think is there and how you can differentiate what is designed from what is not designed.

Let's say you are an explorer and you have just discovered a cave. No one has ever been in this cave before. On the cave walls are pictures of trees and mountains and you have determined that these pictures are thousands of years old.

1. How did those pictures get there?
2. What leads you to believe that your answer to number one is true?

I'm not being smarmy, this is a sincere question, but how do we know your hypothetical are "pictures?" How do we know they're not, for example, mineral deposits that occurred naturally through water dripping, that our humand minds (that are known to see patterns when there are none) interpret as "meaningful," or representations of something else?

Quote
Quote
Now, you made mention of logic, morality, history, good, evil, etc. Do you think these things "exist" (proper) somewhere out there? If so, please demonstrate.

Yes, I do believe they exist and once I have formed a reasonable and rational argument for the existence of God, I can apply the historical reliability of the ancient texts (the Bible) to account for why I believe that logic, morality, and good and evil exist.

are you saying that logic and morality depend not only on god, but on the bible?  That these things did not exist before the bible was written down?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 03:03:52 PM
That isn't a method, that's just a rewording of what you've already stated. Perhaps you could present your method in flowchart form? Just to give you a heads up, your method can't be based on naturalism, so you're going to have to explain in your method how you falsify non-natural claims.

See post #170

Quote
However, also, when is the complexity of what's observed more reasonably explained by natural processes? Can you give an example of something that is complex that points to a natural process being the more reasonable explanation?

Anything NASA sends into space.

Quote
Thirdly, how does this intelligence manage to cause an observation in nature without interfering with natural processes?

What do you mean by "cause an observation?" Could you give an example?

Quote
Fourthly, can you point to, with evidence, an intelligence that isn't a natural phenomena?

If you are asking for empirical evidence, then, no, I cannot.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 24, 2014, 03:08:04 PM
Yet still, I would like to see you attempt a rationally valid and sound argument for this alleged designer you think is there and how you can differentiate what is designed from what is not designed.

Let's say you are an explorer and you have just discovered a cave. No one has ever been in this cave before. On the cave walls are pictures of trees and mountains and you have determined that these pictures are thousands of years old.

1. How did those pictures get there?
2. What leads you to believe that your answer to number one is true?

The problem with your analogy is that we have LOTS of examples of human beings doing things (such as painting on walls), now and before. However, you DO NOT have any demonstrable examples of alleged "God" things doing anything. You have nothing to compare your findings to (i.e. - you have exactly ONE cave/universe case to examine). So this is a false analogy. A better analogy would be if you came upon a foreign unknown object, of unknown origin, and had to attempt an hypothesis regarding it. Would you just jump to your first intuition, or would you admit ignorance if you didn't know?? That is your problem: CREDULITY.

Quote
Now, you made mention of logic, morality, history, good, evil, etc. Do you think these things "exist" (proper) somewhere out there? If so, please demonstrate.

Yes, I do believe they exist and once I have formed a reasonable and rational argument for the existence of God, I can apply the historical reliability of the ancient texts (the Bible) to account for why I believe that logic, morality, and good and evil exist.

I'm not interested in your faith claims. I'm interested in what you can actually demonstrate to be true (via evidence or sound argument). If you think logic or morality are 'things' that exist 'out there' I'd like you to demonstrate, b/c Plato couldn't and I find his arguments insufficient. Logic, love, good/evil, and morality are labels for descriptions we put upon phenomena. They do not "exist" as things in themselves. Have you done your intro philosophy homework?

Btw, textual accounts of the supernatural or alleged miraculous are not evidence of the miraculous. They don't even come close to extraordinary evidence. Do you accept other supernatural texts which claim miracles and contradict your theology? You don't, do you? So textual accounts won't get you anywhere. You need more than just old books to demonstrate miracles from anecdotal supernatural claims. Your standard for separating fact from fiction is hypocritical b/c you wouldn't even accept supernatural claims from a salesman at your front door-step (or anther religion) even if he demonstrated something extraordinary to your face. You are a skeptic too - about ALL the other claims besides the one you ASSUMED was true from the outset. That is called intellectual hypocrisy.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 03:12:11 PM
I'm not being smarmy, this is a sincere question, but how do we know your hypothetical are "pictures?" How do we know they're not, for example, mineral deposits that occurred naturally through water dripping, that our humand minds (that are known to see patterns when there are none) interpret as "meaningful," or representations of something else?

If you think mineral deposits could draw pictures of mountains and trees then I suppose I may have to come up with a different hypothetical.

Quote
are you saying that logic and morality depend not only on god, but on the bible?  That these things did not exist before the bible was written down?

The Bible simply explains why these things exist and Who the entity is that created them.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 24, 2014, 03:13:17 PM
Are people not moral? Do they not exibit morality? Are they not logical? Can one not do logic problems?

So you can see logic and morality in action, in the real world. You can test for it. You cannot see any god's actions.

Does this constitute empirical evidence? If so, please explain how.

Dont buy it as empirical? No skin off my nose. But it's a helluva lot more evidence than you have for any god, no? If not, why not?

Quote
Quote
You cannot see "creation". You can, however, see evolution, and no amount of mental gymnastics and wishful thinking and burying your head in the sand can overcome those facts, try as you might.

Did evolution create the first living thing? If not, then why are you using it to negate God?

Are we not arguing the merits of ID vs. ToE? ID is inherently "creation", unless it's your position that a god created living things to evolve.

So which is it, BS? Does evolution negate your god, in your eyes, or does it not?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 24, 2014, 03:20:23 PM
Quote
are you saying that logic and morality depend not only on god, but on the bible?  That these things did not exist before the bible was written down?

The Bible simply explains why these things exist and Who the entity is that created them.

Wrong. The bible (which is written by men) merely ASSERTS these things. The authors neither sufficiently explain nor demonstrate their claims. They just keep making more CLAIMS. And that is not evidence.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 24, 2014, 03:39:57 PM
That isn't a method, that's just a rewording of what you've already stated. Perhaps you could present your method in flowchart form? Just to give you a heads up, your method can't be based on naturalism, so you're going to have to explain in your method how you falsify non-natural claims.

See post #170

You are Behe?

Really, to falsify a non-natural claim, your method is to start with the non-natural existing as the default explanation, and if one naturalistic hypothesis fails to explain that claim more proficiently, then your default holds, but if it does then your non-natural claim is falsified?! No, I don't think so sunshine. You don't just get to shoe horn the non-natural in at the beginning and claim it victorious when one natural explanation you find inadequate fails. You would need to exhaust every single possible natural explanation before you get to place all your chips on god, and I can't see anyone ever being able to do that, never mind just you.

Quote
Quote
However, also, when is the complexity of what's observed more reasonably explained by natural processes? Can you give an example of something that is complex that points to a natural process being the more reasonable explanation?

Anything NASA sends into space.

Everything NASA sends into space is put into space by humans. It's through our intelligence that we managed to achieve that. Are you saying here that our intelligence is a result of a natural process, because that would seem to go against your apparent theology.

Quote
Quote
Thirdly, how does this intelligence manage to cause an observation in nature without interfering with natural processes?

What do you mean by "cause an observation?" Could you give an example?

To make something happen in nature that we can observe. An example could really be anything. So, can you fathom how this intelligence manages to cause something to happen in nature without interfering with natural processes?

Quote
Quote
Fourthly, can you point to, with evidence, an intelligence that isn't a natural phenomena?

If you are asking for empirical evidence, then, no, I cannot.

I'm just asking for evidence. I appreciate that you cannot provide any evidence that can be independently verified, but due to this I would hope you realise that you shouldn't expect others to find your claims reliable for determining what exists.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 24, 2014, 03:44:17 PM
If you think mineral deposits could draw pictures of mountains and trees then I suppose I may have to come up with a different hypothetical.
Well, mineral deposits are pretty good at drawing faces:
(http://shroudofturin.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/image68.png)

It did better than I can draw.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 04:00:17 PM
The problem with your analogy is that we have LOTS of examples of human beings doing things (such as painting on walls), now and before. However, you DO NOT have any demonstrable examples of alleged "God" things doing anything. You have nothing to compare your findings to (i.e. - you have exactly ONE cave/universe case to examine). So this is a false analogy. A better analogy would be if you came upon a foreign unknown object, of unknown origin, and had to attempt an hypothesis regarding it. Would you just jump to your first intuition, or would you admit ignorance if you didn't know?? That is your problem: CREDULITY.
Having something to compare it to only leads to a stronger hypothesis about where those drawings came from. It doesn’t lead you to the actual source. They could have very well been drawn by an alien entity from another planet….or perhaps even by God himself. Your answer clearly indicates that you  concluded a human being had drawn them because of the intelligence you know we possess. You’ve never seen a turtle or a squirrel do such a thing so you conclude that something with the intelligence capable of drawing pictures of mountains and trees did it….. and since you are obviously of the opinion that naturalism is the only possible source of that intelligence you selected a human being. Likewise, we have never seen a natural process capable of producing living matter from non-living matter nor can we form plausible and widely accepted hypotheses by the scientific community so we adopt a theory to begin testing for an intelligence capable of doing such a thing. We use “irreducibly complex” systems to validate the theory.

 
Quote
I'm not interested in your faith claims. I'm interested in what you can actually demonstrate to be true (via evidence or sound argument).
What constitutes truth for you?

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Btw, textual accounts of the supernatural or alleged miraculous are not evidence of the miraculous. They don't even come close to extraordinary evidence.
If this is all I was relying on, then you would have a point. However, I provided a basis for my belief earlier in this thread…which you must have missed….that explains the arguments I concluded were sufficient for my reasoning. They are not confined to “textual accounts.”
 
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Do you accept other supernatural texts which claim miracles and contradict your theology? You don't, do you?
No. You are correct. I don’t. My Christian beliefs are based on what I consider to be the most plausible  account of why the world exists, how it came to be, and, most importantly – why. No other ‘supernatural text’ assembles all of that into anything that even comes close to connecting all the dots like Christianity.
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So textual accounts won't get you anywhere. You need more than just old books to demonstrate miracles from anecdotal supernatural claims.
I agree. I do not rely exclusively on “textual accounts” and “old books.”
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Your standard for separating fact from fiction is hypocritical b/c you wouldn't even accept supernatural claims from a salesman at your front door-step (or anther religion) even if he demonstrated something extraordinary to your face. You are a skeptic too - about ALL the other claims besides the one you ASSUMED was true from the outset. That is called intellectual hypocrisy.
If I had dismissed all other belief systems out-of-hand then you would be correct.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 04:02:33 PM
Are we not arguing the merits of ID vs. ToE? ID is inherently "creation", unless it's your position that a god created living things to evolve.

So which is it, BS? Does evolution negate your god, in your eyes, or does it not?

Evolution (the ToE) does not posit an origin so I don't see how it could negate God.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 24, 2014, 04:09:08 PM
Are we not arguing the merits of ID vs. ToE? ID is inherently "creation", unless it's your position that a god created living things to evolve.

So which is it, BS? Does evolution negate your god, in your eyes, or does it not?

Evolution (the ToE) does not posit an origin so I don't see how it could negate God.

So you accept the ToE as fact?

edit to add: Fact, as in the best explanation we have for the diversity of life on this planet, but subject to change given new evidence.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 24, 2014, 04:10:26 PM
If you think mineral deposits could draw pictures of mountains and trees then I suppose I may have to come up with a different hypothetical.
Well, mineral deposits are pretty good at drawing faces:
(http://shroudofturin.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/image68.png)

It did better than I can draw.

In the apartment building where I lived as a kid, there was a stain left on the basement floor from a water leak that went untreated.  The stain had an uncanny likeness to a grey alien, which freaked me out when I was a child.  I thought aliens were going to come get me.

There are probably thousands of examples of natural causes producing images which we might recognize as something else.  There are also examples of natural causes altering human made paintings so they appear to be something different as well.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 04:16:45 PM
Everything NASA sends into space is put into space by humans. It's through our intelligence that we managed to achieve that. Are you saying here that our intelligence is a result of a natural process, because that would seem to go against your apparent theology.

No. What I am saying is that the use of human intelligence to construct a spacecraft is a natural process?

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To make something happen in nature that we can observe. An example could really be anything. So, can you fathom how this intelligence manages to cause something to happen in nature without interfering with natural processes?

This is kind of a strange question. Perhaps I just do not understand what you are attempting to determine (?) If I believe that a Creator (God of the Bible in my case) created the world and gave life to all living things then, yes, I can fathom His ability to "cause something to happen in nature without interfering with natural causes."

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I'm just asking for evidence.

This was covered two or three pages ago in this thread. I provided an account of how I arrived at my beliefs. Granted, it was brief but if I am going to write a book, it isn't going to be for the benefit of WWGHA.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 04:19:10 PM
So you accept the ToE as fact?

edit to add: Fact, as in the best explanation we have for the diversity of life on this planet, but subject to change given new evidence.

Yes, there are findings that I consider fact...but I do not accept the entire theory (as I believe you would describe it) as fact.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 24, 2014, 04:19:21 PM
Are we not arguing the merits of ID vs. ToE? ID is inherently "creation", unless it's your position that a god created living things to evolve.

So which is it, BS? Does evolution negate your god, in your eyes, or does it not?

Evolution (the ToE) does not posit an origin so I don't see how it could negate God.

I agree, evolution says nothing about God.  What evolution does negate however is taking the Bible as a literal account of past events.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 04:22:13 PM
It did better than I can draw.

Ha. Ditto.
That appears to be a pretty well defined face.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 24, 2014, 04:22:27 PM
So you accept the ToE as fact?

edit to add: Fact, as in the best explanation we have for the diversity of life on this planet, but subject to change given new evidence.

Yes, there are findings that I consider fact...but I do not accept the entire theory (as I believe you would describe it) as fact.

Fair enough. You've a lot on your plate. I'll leave you to deal with everyone else.

Have a good weekend!
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 04:23:48 PM
What evolution does negate however is taking the Bible as a literal account of past events.

What do you mean by that? Just curious.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 24, 2014, 04:26:03 PM
Fair enough. You've a lot on your plate. I'll leave you to deal with everyone else.

Have a good weekend!

Thank you. You have a nice weekend, too !
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 24, 2014, 04:58:51 PM
What evolution does negate however is taking the Bible as a literal account of past events.

What do you mean by that? Just curious.

Genesis 1:19-30 can't be taken as a literal account because of the ToE.

Note: I'm looking at the King James Version, as that is the only version I've read.  I'm no Bible expert, but there are several members here who have studied multiple versions of the Bible.

EDIT: Heck, Genesis 1:1-18 can't be taken as a literal account because of astrophysics and cosmology.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 25, 2014, 01:43:31 AM
Having something to compare it to only leads to a stronger hypothesis about where those drawings came from. It doesn’t lead you to the actual source. They could have very well been drawn by an alien entity from another planet….or perhaps even by God himself. Your answer clearly indicates that you  concluded a human being had drawn them because of the intelligence you know we possess. You’ve never seen a turtle or a squirrel do such a thing so you conclude that something with the intelligence capable of drawing pictures of mountains and trees did it….. and since you are obviously of the opinion that naturalism is the only possible source of that intelligence you selected a human being. Likewise, we have never seen a natural process capable of producing living matter from non-living matter nor can we form plausible and widely accepted hypotheses by the scientific community so we adopt a theory to begin testing for an intelligence capable of doing such a thing. We use “irreducibly complex” systems to validate the theory.

No, YOU use "IC" as YOUR excuse for your incredulity and pre-commitment to your theology (i.e. - your presupposed belief that "It's impossible without a God!" - which is a logical fallacy). And you clearly didn't listen to one word I stated in my response. Do I need to repeat myself? We have lots of examples of paintings on cave walls (none of them by anything other than human beings has been demonstrated), and there is no assertion of "absolute certainty" in that - b/c science does NOT make assertions to absolute certainty. Science is not about finding some fictional 'absolute certainty'. It is about what can be demonstrated to be true, both verifiable and independently.

Regarding your abiogenesis comment (once again), YOU are the one claiming you know what is 'impossible' or what can't happen, but that is just one more of your numerous arbitrary claims that you haven't demonstrated. What position are you in by which to reliably determine what is possible and what is not possible in the cosmos? Are you a cosmologist, physicist, or biologist? Perhaps more importantly, what are you so afraid of that you can't simply admit ignorance on that subject? Why can't you be honest enough to admit that you don't know how life began? Ah, that's right, b/c you've got that pesky little pre-commitment to your theology to keep defending.

What constitutes truth for you?

I do not understand the question.

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Btw, textual accounts of the supernatural or alleged miraculous are not evidence of the miraculous. They don't even come close to extraordinary evidence.
If this is all I was relying on, then you would have a point. However, I provided a basis for my belief earlier in this thread…which you must have missed….that explains the arguments I concluded were sufficient for my reasoning. They are not confined to “textual accounts.”

Lots of religions claim the miraculous, and none of them have been confirmed as such. Personal subjective testimonies do not count either, as human beings are notoriously prone to mistake, error, misapprehension, faulty memory, misinterpretation, confirmation bias, and lying. It sounds like you have lowered your standard of evidence for only your theology. That is inconsistent.

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Do you accept other supernatural texts which claim miracles and contradict your theology? You don't, do you?

No. You are correct. I don’t. My Christian beliefs are based on what I consider to be the most plausible  account of why the world exists, how it came to be, and, most importantly – why. No other ‘supernatural text’ assembles all of that into anything that even comes close to connecting all the dots like Christianity.

Ah, so the double standard is exposed but yet you still continue in cognitive dissonance. So you picked the myth that is most comfortable to you, and it just so happens that that book is the one you were raised with. Go figure! What you've said here is nothing more than a statement about your preferences. You picked the bible and went ALL-IN on it but that says nothing about whether or not it is true. Just b/c some old set of books makes claims doesn't mean anything about the validity of it's content. Even IF you could demonstrate that your personal theology "connects the dots" (and I don't think you could) this still wouldn't say anything it's truth or falsity. One can easily construct a story to "connect the dots" to lots of subjects but such logical consistency does not correlate with whether or not that chosen story is actually true. 

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Your standard for separating fact from fiction is hypocritical b/c you wouldn't even accept supernatural claims from a salesman at your front door-step (or anther religion) even if he demonstrated something extraordinary to your face. You are a skeptic too - about ALL the other claims besides the one you ASSUMED was true from the outset. That is called intellectual hypocrisy.
If I had dismissed all other belief systems out-of-hand then you would be correct.

So are you saying that you are one of those gullible types that believes every claim he hears until it's proven false?? Is this how you approach knowledge claims or salesmen at your front door?? I'm guessing your answer is NO. So then, the default position is to disbelieve a claim until sufficient evidence has been brought forth, not before. If this is sufficient for you, then you are in fact practicing hypocrisy with knowledge claims. You have a double standard.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 25, 2014, 10:31:11 AM
No, YOU use "IC" as YOUR excuse for your incredulity and pre-commitment to your theology (i.e. - your presupposed belief that "It's impossible without a God!" - which is a logical fallacy). And you clearly didn't listen to one word I stated in my response. Do I need to repeat myself? We have lots of examples of paintings on cave walls (none of them by anything other than human beings has been demonstrated), and there is no assertion of "absolute certainty" in that - b/c science does NOT make assertions to absolute certainty. Science is not about finding some fictional 'absolute certainty'. It is about what can be demonstrated to be true, both verifiable and independently.

If science is not about determining 'absolute certainty' (which I agree with), then what makes you so 'certain' that I may not be correct?

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Regarding your abiogenesis comment (once again), YOU are the one claiming you know what is 'impossible' or what can't happen, but that is just one more of your numerous arbitrary claims that you haven't demonstrated. What position are you in by which to reliably determine what is possible and what is not possible in the cosmos?

I have not asserted that I am capable in the least of forming irrefutable claims about the origin of life. Why are you accusing me of this?

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Are you a cosmologist, physicist, or biologist? Perhaps more importantly, what are you so afraid of that you can't simply admit ignorance on that subject? Why can't you be honest enough to admit that you don't know how life began?

I admit that I do not know how life began. Again, I do not know what has led you to think that I do. I am beginning to think YOU who are the one who is not reading what I am writing.

What constitutes truth for you?

I do not understand the question.

Truth has different meanings to different people. How do YOU define "truth?"

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Lots of religions claim the miraculous, and none of them have been confirmed as such. Personal subjective testimonies do not count either, as human beings are notoriously prone to mistake, error, misapprehension, faulty memory, misinterpretation, confirmation bias, and lying. It sounds like you have lowered your standard of evidence for only your theology. That is inconsistent.

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Do you accept other supernatural texts which claim miracles and contradict your theology? You don't, do you?

No. You are correct. I don’t. My Christian beliefs are based on what I consider to be the most plausible  account of why the world exists, how it came to be, and, most importantly – why. No other ‘supernatural text’ assembles all of that into anything that even comes close to connecting all the dots like Christianity.

Ah, so the double standard is exposed but yet you still continue in cognitive dissonance. So you picked the myth that is most comfortable to you, and it just so happens that that book is the one you were raised with. Go figure! What you've said here is nothing more than a statement about your preferences.

All I have stated is how I came about reaching the conclusions that I did. If you prefer to label those as my "preferences" then I guess I have no qualms with that. I fail to see your point, though, and can only assume you have barely skimmed through the preceding comments in this thread because you are most certainly attributing false claims to me.

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So are you saying that you are one of those gullible types that believes every claim he hears until it's proven false?? Is this how you approach knowledge claims or salesmen at your front door?? I'm guessing your answer is NO. So then, the default position is to disbelieve a claim until sufficient evidence has been brought forth, not before. If this is sufficient for you, then you are in fact practicing hypocrisy with knowledge claims. You have a double standard.

With all due respect, this is very lame. It reeks of antagonism and has a very adolescent tone to it. It is evident based on your last few posts that you take more  pride in demonstrating how good you can be at making condescending remarks than engaging in tactful and reasonable  conversation. You really haven't read through much of this thread, have you? If you had, I do not think you would be making some of the comments that you are.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 25, 2014, 04:36:47 PM
First off, what happened to the first part of my post? You've completely cut it off and ignored it. Why? Please, at least acknowledge it if you're not going to offer a rebuttal.

Everything NASA sends into space is put into space by humans. It's through our intelligence that we managed to achieve that. Are you saying here that our intelligence is a result of a natural process, because that would seem to go against your apparent theology.

No. What I am saying is that the use of human intelligence to construct a spacecraft is a natural process?

Ok, I think I understand that - that anything man made is due to natural processes that are, say, harnessed by us. Is there anything that isn't man made you can point to?

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To make something happen in nature that we can observe. An example could really be anything. So, can you fathom how this intelligence manages to cause something to happen in nature without interfering with natural processes?

This is kind of a strange question. Perhaps I just do not understand what you are attempting to determine (?) If I believe that a Creator (God of the Bible in my case) created the world and gave life to all living things then, yes, I can fathom His ability to "cause something to happen in nature without interfering with natural causes."

Your first, the creation of the world isn't something that happens in nature as such, as it is the 'setting up' of nature. Your second, giving life to living things is something that happens in nature (unless this was also set up when the world was created). However, I asked if you could fathom how this intelligence manages to, not simply tell me you can fathom it due to your beliefs. The thing is, to cause something to happen in nature, the intelligence has to interfere in natural processes otherwise we couldn't  observe a change in nature. This makes the interference indistinguishable from a natural process.

Also, like every other theist before you, you have shown your ID argument to be a case of special pleading by stating that you believe this intelligence created the world. That means the natural processes you see as being vastly improbable for the reason behind certain complexity were created by this intelligence, which then means that when you pit the probability of ID versus natural processes, you're just pitting ID against itself. Why you then have to point to specific examples of complexity as evidence for ID, when anything in the world, no matter how simple or complex, would also be evidence for ID is anyone's guess. Perhaps you're not that confident in your belief that the world was created by an intelligence, and that really an intelligence only intervenes in the world to create really complex things?... By the way, yes I am being generously sarcastic.

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I'm just asking for evidence.

This was covered two or three pages ago in this thread. I provided an account of how I arrived at my beliefs. Granted, it was brief but if I am going to write a book, it isn't going to be for the benefit of WWGHA.

We're at a bit of an impasse then, aren't we? You have evidence, but it's personal and only works for you. If you have nothing you can share, then why are you using the ID argument as if there is empirical evidence?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 25, 2014, 08:10:53 PM
First off, what happened to the first part of my post? You've completely cut it off and ignored it. Why? Please, at least acknowledge it if you're not going to offer a rebuttal.

Sure. Here you go:

You are Behe?

No. I am not Behe.

Really, to falsify a non-natural claim, your method is to start with the non-natural existing as the default explanation, and if one naturalistic hypothesis fails to explain that claim more proficiently, then your default holds, but if it does then your non-natural claim is falsified?

Someone starting with the non-natural as the default is a signal that a bias might be present. The proper method, in my opinion, would be to compare non-natural hypotheses with natural hypothese and deterine which presents a more plausible explanation. Simply trying to ‘fit’ an explanation into a worldview is a form of manipulion and perhaps even dishonesty.

No, I don't think so sunshine. You don't just get to shoe horn the non-natural in at the beginning and claim it victorious when one natural explanation you find inadequate fails. You would need to exhaust every single possible natural explanation before you get to place all your chips on god, and I can't see anyone ever being able to do that, never mind just you.

I agree.

Ok, I think I understand that - that anything man made is due to natural processes that are, say, harnessed by us. Is there anything that isn't man made you can point to?

Sure. There are hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of microevolutionary changes that have been observed and documented. The biological changes that took placce to accomplish that are, in my opinion, ‘complex’ and amazing.

Your first, the creation of the world isn't something that happens in nature as such, as it is the 'setting up' of nature. Your second, giving life to living things is something that happens in nature (unless this was also set up when the world was created). However, I asked if you could fathom how this intelligence manages to, not simply tell me you can fathom it due to your beliefs. The thing is, to cause something to happen in nature, the intelligence has to interfere in natural processes otherwise we couldn't  observe a change in nature. This makes the interference indistinguishable from a natural process.

Sounds like you are looking for an explanation as to how an intelligent designer might perform something the theist community would call a miracle? Is that correct? If so, I have no explanation for how that may occur. There have been many examples of people stricken with terminal illnesses who suddenly discovered they were no longer stricken…..with no sign of the disease that had been threatening to end their life. The doctors are unable to explain how this occurs and neither can I. I believe that God is certainly capable of performing these miracles but how He does it is a mystery.

Also, like every other theist before you, you have shown your ID argument to be a case of special pleading by stating that you believe this intelligence created the world.

I fail to see how this qualifies as special pleading.

That means the natural processes you see as being vastly improbable for the reason behind certain complexity were created by this intelligence, which then means that when you pit the probability of ID versus natural processes, you're just pitting ID against itself.

Intlligent Design Theory is an ‘origins of life’ theory. If there are natural processes occurring, then the IDT position is that they are occurring because of the designer who created the design for that to happen.

Just as the ToE and abiogenesis are two separate matters, so is the ToE and ‘Intelligent Design Theory.’ This is why I often marvel at how highly contentious the debate betwee supporters of the ToE and IDT become. It’s effectively an apples and oranges argument.

Why you then have to point to specific examples of complexity as evidence for ID, when anything in the world, no matter how simple or complex, would also be evidence for ID is anyone's guess.

Again, IDT is an ‘origins of life’ theory. There are natural processes taking place in the biological realm that have been observed and documented and only a fool would deny that.  Naturalism posits that a random, undirected, unplanned, uncoordinated, spontaneous event occurred that put into motion the ability for natural processes to create these mechanisms. IDT posits that such mechanisms bear the mark of having been designed due the careful arrangment of the biological components that make them work. …and I agree with that position and find that IDT does a good job testing for that.

We're at a bit of an impasse then, aren't we? You have evidence, but it's personal and only works for you. If you have nothing you can share, then why are you using the ID argument as if there is empirical evidence?

No. I am not taking the position that it is personal and I am not going to share it. But, I am not going to write out the amount of text it would take to explain everything. For one thing, if I did, I would be deluged with arguments and questions relating to the numerous topics. I would never be able to keep up with that.

We have been discussing IDT but if you would like to discuss another one of the topics then I will do my best to answer questions or respond to arguments you may wish to make.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Jag on January 26, 2014, 02:08:58 PM
Ahem.

Again, are you thinking straight. An abstract noun is such because it is an abstract concept and nothing that can be touched and measured. Maybe this  (http://www.grammar-monster.com/glossary/abstract_nouns.htm)will help.

Things like love, justice, hate are abstract - things we think in our head. We can recognise that people have the same concept as us by watching what they do.

Where is the empirical evidence to demonstrate that the things "we think in our head" are real? I don't see how labeling it 'abstract' has any bearing on the request I am making. If you believe those things "we think in our head" are real, then provide empirical evidence to support your claim.

This is an interesting question, although I don't see how it's going to advance BS's position other than semantically or philosophically, which is sidestepping the point entirely.....

Can anyone make the case that a "thing" (for lack of a better word) that is only experienced subjectively can be said to be an objective reality? If we start from the position that certain words exist to describe abstract ideas that are ultimately both subjective and individual in every respect, what is the logical end of that argument?

Edited to add: to be clear, it looks like we can see (witness?) the effects of these subjective experiences, but not the objective reality of the "things" themselves. We can see the effects (outcomes, consequences, whatever word suits) of the subjective experience of love, but not the objective reality of love. Not sure if this added clarity or muddle my point even worse...

Bible Student, has your original question regarding the question bolded in your post above been addressed? I looked through the thread and don't see it - but I remain very curious.

I know I addressed my question to "anyone" but I admit it was your answer I was more interested in hearing. If you're disinclined to delve into this particular question here, that's fine - it can be taken up elsewhere -  but I'd appreciate it if you would take a moment. I'm sincerely interested in where you were intending to go with your original question.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 26, 2014, 02:35:29 PM
If science is not about determining 'absolute certainty' (which I agree with), then what makes you so 'certain' that I may not be correct?


This is a category error. "Certainty" has nothing to do with my thinking regarding whether a given proposition "may not be correct". The possibility of you being incorrect about an aposteriori claim (just like anybody) is always there. Are you attempting to say that you CANNOT be wrong about your religious presuppositions? If your answer is no, then please describe how we can reliably go about determining whether or not your supernatural claims regarding Christianity (and your theology) are true or not.

Also, is science all just about opinion for you?

I have not asserted that I am capable in the least of forming irrefutable claims about the origin of life. Why are you accusing me of this?

This is an interesting move, b/c earlier it certainly sounded as if you were making the claim that life deriving from non-living material was impossible (or so unlikely that you prefer an argument from ignorance/incredulity) instead of actually admitting ignorance and withholding judgment. So then if ALL you're claiming is that life deriving from non-living material is "highly improbable" I would like to know how exactly you think that matters to the discussion (b/c highly improbable events happen ALL THE TIME). This says absolutely nothing about whether or not your alleged "God" thing exists, whether it could have done anything even if it did, and how you could distinguish those differences from natural processes in the corporeal world. As others have mentioned here prior, common descent is a done deal in science. There is ample independently attested evidence for it, which even many professing Christians accept (such as Ken Miller at Brown University), and it is not under any serious questioning that could overturn it. Just b/c the science disagrees with your personal assumed theology doesn't give you license to insert your ID hypothesis into the classroom.

I'm really wondering if you have actually studied evolutionary biology in depth, b/c I HAVE studied (and argued for) Intelligent Design (as I was an apologist like you for many years), as well as studied biology at the university level and online, and ID is just not science. If you think it is then please demonstrate how it is. Please define science (in your own words) and how you could keep something like astrology out while keeping ID in.

I admit that I do not know how life began. Again, I do not know what has led you to think that I do. I am beginning to think YOU who are the one who is not reading what I am writing.

WOW. So you have now changed your position from Christian theist to agnostic? Do you not think you know that this Yahweh thing (aka - ID) created the universe and everything in it? If all you have is a personal belief (a 'faith'/opinion) then why are you arguing that we should have this in classrooms?

Truth has different meanings to different people. How do YOU define "truth?"

For the sake of this discussion I will define truth as that which corresponds with reality. However, such a definition is both simplistic and tentative as there are many theories of what that word refers to and means in it's entirety. How do YOU define the term truth?



All I have stated is how I came about reaching the conclusions that I did. If you prefer to label those as my "preferences" then I guess I have no qualms with that. I fail to see your point, though, and can only assume you have barely skimmed through the preceding comments in this thread because you are most certainly attributing false claims to me.

I'm actually NOT attributing false claims to you. If you think so please demonstrate that. I have read this thread and have not seen you actually present any actual evidence or sound reasoning for your claims regarding ID being viable science, why we should allow the ID hypothesis into the classroom, or your beliefs about a deity or "designer". Yes, we've seen you present your opinion along with arguments from incredulity fallacies and a post about what convinces you (#152, see link). In essence you've said, "This, this, and this convince me" and you haven't elaborated or attempted to defend those arguments, nor have you attempted to defend what science is and why we should allow the mere HYPOTHESIS of ID in.

http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,26224.msg597137.html#msg597137 (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,26224.msg597137.html#msg597137)

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So are you saying that you are one of those gullible types that believes every claim he hears until it's proven false?? Is this how you approach knowledge claims or salesmen at your front door?? I'm guessing your answer is NO. So then, the default position is to disbelieve a claim until sufficient evidence has been brought forth, not before. If this is sufficient for you, then you are in fact practicing hypocrisy with knowledge claims. You have a double standard.

With all due respect, this is very lame. It reeks of antagonism and has a very adolescent tone to it. It is evident based on your last few posts that you take more  pride in demonstrating how good you can be at making condescending remarks than engaging in tactful and reasonable  conversation. You really haven't read through much of this thread, have you? If you had, I do not think you would be making some of the comments that you are.

Yes...I can just feel that Christian "love" flowing out of you toward me from the spirit of 'Jesus' with every word. NOT. Yes, I have read the thread and this last response is just another dodge from you. I asked a specific question - if you approach knowledge by just believing everything you hear about until proven false (of which you didn't answer). Is this how you approach knowledge (and specifically claims to the supernatural or miraculous)?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 26, 2014, 07:43:01 PM
Ahem.

Again, are you thinking straight. An abstract noun is such because it is an abstract concept and nothing that can be touched and measured. Maybe this  (http://www.grammar-monster.com/glossary/abstract_nouns.htm)will help.

Things like love, justice, hate are abstract - things we think in our head. We can recognise that people have the same concept as us by watching what they do.

Where is the empirical evidence to demonstrate that the things "we think in our head" are real? I don't see how labeling it 'abstract' has any bearing on the request I am making. If you believe those things "we think in our head" are real, then provide empirical evidence to support your claim.

This is an interesting question, although I don't see how it's going to advance BS's position other than semantically or philosophically, which is sidestepping the point entirely.....

Can anyone make the case that a "thing" (for lack of a better word) that is only experienced subjectively can be said to be an objective reality? If we start from the position that certain words exist to describe abstract ideas that are ultimately both subjective and individual in every respect, what is the logical end of that argument?

Edited to add: to be clear, it looks like we can see (witness?) the effects of these subjective experiences, but not the objective reality of the "things" themselves. We can see the effects (outcomes, consequences, whatever word suits) of the subjective experience of love, but not the objective reality of love. Not sure if this added clarity or muddle my point even worse...

Bible Student, has your original question regarding the question bolded in your post above been addressed? I looked through the thread and don't see it - but I remain very curious.

I know I addressed my question to "anyone" but I admit it was your answer I was more interested in hearing. If you're disinclined to delve into this particular question here, that's fine - it can be taken up elsewhere -  but I'd appreciate it if you would take a moment. I'm sincerely interested in where you were intending to go with your original question.

No. I can't say that the question has been thoroughly answered. My point during that part of the discussion was that evidence is not confined to things that have a physical substance.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 26, 2014, 09:56:39 PM
This is a category error. "Certainty" has nothing to do with my thinking regarding whether a given proposition "may not be correct". The possibility of you being incorrect about an aposteriori claim (just like anybody) is always there. Are you attempting to say that you CANNOT be wrong about your religious presuppositions? If your answer is no, then please describe how we can reliably go about determining whether or not your supernatural claims regarding Christianity (and your theology) are true or not.

Given the amount of information, knowledge, and evidence available, embracing a certain worldview is a matter of personal interpretation. I can examine the same information and evidence as you and conclude that God of the Bible is the most rational explanation for our existence.

And, as I've stated a couple of times in this thread, I would like to be able to discuss individual topics relating to how my "supernatural claims regarding Christianity (and your theology) are true or not." Introducing the amount of text necessary to present the entire argument would likely produce far more questions than I could ever answer and lead to a thread that goes off into nuerous different directions.
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Also, is science all just about opinion for you?

Of course not.

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This is an interesting move, b/c earlier it certainly sounded as if you were making the claim that life deriving from non-living material was impossible (or so unlikely that you prefer an argument from ignorance/incredulity) instead of actually admitting ignorance and withholding judgment. So then if ALL you're claiming is that life deriving from non-living material is "highly improbable" I would like to know how exactly you think that matters to the discussion (b/c highly improbable events happen ALL THE TIME). This says absolutely nothing about whether or not your alleged "God" thing exists, whether it could have done anything even if it did, and how you could distinguish those differences from natural processes in the corporeal world.

The difference between you and I is that I do not limit my beliefs to only what I can see. If I examine arguments and evidence that collectively leads to a source outside of our realm of existence as the Cause for that existence, then I can embrace that Cause by means of a rational argument.

Yes, highly improbably events happen all the time. Terminally ill people sometimes become perfectly well after having been previously informed that medical science was unable to cure their disease. Theists may claim that occurrence as a 'miracle' from God while non-theists and the medical community scratch their heads in a state of puzzlement. Am I saying that prayer and God are definitely the cause of the highly improbable event occurring? No. However, we can certainly form a rational argument that since the Bible speaks of such things occurring along with indications that they can still occur, we have a foundation for the belief that God is real.

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As others have mentioned here prior, common descent is a done deal in science. There is ample independently attested evidence for it, which even many professing Christians accept (such as Ken Miller at Brown University), and it is not under any serious questioning that could overturn it. Just b/c the science disagrees with your personal assumed theology doesn't give you license to insert your ID hypothesis into the classroom.

Nonsense. Common descent may seem like a done deal to some, but not all of us are that gullible. Common descent is not a done deal. As I've stated elsewhere, the phylogenetic tree could just as easily be explained by a common Creator.

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I'm really wondering if you have actually studied evolutionary biology in depth,

I would say that depends on what you consider "depth." What criteria do you use for determining whether someone has studied something in depth?

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b/c I HAVE studied (and argued for) Intelligent Design (as I was an apologist like you for many years), as well as studied biology at the university level and online, and ID is just not science. If you think it is then please demonstrate how it is. Please define science (in your own words) and how you could keep something like astrology out while keeping ID in.

If you have studied Intelligent Design and concluded that it is not science, then do you honestly think I can convince you otherwise?

I will share a personal experience regarding IDT. When I first began examining it, my understanding was that it posited 'irreducible complexity' as meaning that a biological mechanism was comprised of component parts that existed nowhere else nor had a function all their own. That's a simplified explanation of my understanding but I think you get the gist of it. Not sure why that was my understanding but that was it. Then we discover that the flagellum may very well contradict this claim by demonstrating that some of it's coponent parts do have separate functionality. That pretty much blew IDT out of the water for me....until I dug deeper and gained a deeper understanding of the theory. That is when I really began examining what 'irreducible complexity' was and why it formed a stronger argument than the various hypotheses for abiogenesis. I am not a biologist but what I do know is that the biological processes we are familiar with cannot account for the formation of certain biological mechanisms.

I have a very simple definition of science: Science is the exploration of our physical universe with the intent to form a better understanding of it and benefit from the findings and observations made.

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WOW. So you have now changed your position from Christian theist to agnostic? Do you not think you know that this Yahweh thing (aka - ID) created the universe and everything in it?

Yes, I do !!!

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If all you have is a personal belief (a 'faith'/opinion) then why are you arguing that we should have this in classrooms?

This has already been covered previously in this thread. If you disagree with the reasons I gave then please explain why.


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For the sake of this discussion I will define truth as that which corresponds with reality. However, such a definition is both simplistic and tentative as there are many theories of what that word refers to and means in it's entirety. How do YOU define the term truth?

Is there a word more difficult to define?

Truth is a synonym for God. We cannot use the word Truth as a property of sentences that do not refer to God. True sentences are about God only. Truth exists, is unchangeable, eternal, spiritual, and is superior to the human mind. But only God possesses these attributes. http://truth-defined.com/index.htm

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I'm actually NOT attributing false claims to you. If you think so please demonstrate that. I have read this thread and have not seen you actually present any actual evidence or sound reasoning for your claims regarding ID being viable science, why we should allow the ID hypothesis into the classroom, or your beliefs about a deity or "designer". Yes, we've seen you present your opinion along with arguments from incredulity fallacies and a post about what convinces you (#152, see link). In essence you've said, "This, this, and this convince me" and you haven't elaborated or attempted to defend those arguments, nor have you attempted to defend what science is and why we should allow the mere HYPOTHESIS of ID in.

I disagree. I have responded to every (I think?) argument and question posed in response to what I presented. Albeit brief, I have provided what makes IDT sccientific in nature. A discussion about an example of irreducible complexity was discussed (ie. flagellum). What exactly is it that you would like me to elaborate on?

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Yes...I can just feel that Christian "love" flowing out of you toward me from the spirit of 'Jesus' with every word. NOT. Yes, I have read the thread and this last response is just another dodge from you. I asked a specific question - if you approach knowledge by just believing everything you hear about until proven false (of which you didn't answer). Is this how you approach knowledge (and specifically claims to the supernatural or miraculous)?

My approach for gaining knowledge and assessing a meaningful way to use it is irrelevant. We all have different methods for gaining and making use of knowledge. What should be important is whether the expression of the knowledge gained is rational and supported by evidence. Labelling me as the gullible type that believes every claim he hears until it's proven false is something you cannot be certain about so it is better left out of the discussion.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 27, 2014, 01:37:30 AM
Given the amount of information, knowledge, and evidence available, embracing a certain worldview is a matter of personal interpretation. I can examine the same information and evidence as you and conclude that God of the Bible is the most rational explanation for our existence.


Are you admitting that you have no reliable pathway for independently separating fact from fiction? Is science just all about opinion for you then?? Facts don't matter then? It's all just about your personal interpretation?

And, as I've stated a couple of times in this thread, I would like to be able to discuss individual topics relating to how my "supernatural claims regarding Christianity (and your theology) are true or not." Introducing the amount of text necessary to present the entire argument would likely produce far more questions than I could ever answer and lead to a thread that goes off into nuerous different directions.

That is a dodge. I didn't ask you for "the entire argument". I asked you to present what your method is for reliably separating fact from fiction when it comes to claims to the supernatural and miraculous.

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Also, is science all just about opinion for you?

Of course not.

Your above comments say the opposite (i.e. - they suggest that you have some personal subjective 'rationality' that you think convinces you). That sounds a lot like the opinion that you just tried to say that it is not.


The difference between you and I is that I do not limit my beliefs to only what I can see. If I examine arguments and evidence that collectively leads to a source outside of our realm of existence as the Cause for that existence, then I can embrace that Cause by means of a rational argument.


This is called the fallacy of a Red Herring. Did I EVER say anywhere that I "limit my beliefs to what I can see"??? No, I didn't. So stop trying to put words in my mouth b/c that is extremely offensive and intellectually dishonest. You have presented no rational arguments for this "outside realm". What you've presented are arguments which rest upon logical fallacies (such as the fallacy of the argument from ignorance). Do you have anything else?

Yes, highly improbably events happen all the time. Terminally ill people sometimes become perfectly well after having been previously informed that medical science was unable to cure their disease. Theists may claim that occurrence as a 'miracle' from God while non-theists and the medical community scratch their heads in a state of puzzlement. Am I saying that prayer and God are definitely the cause of the highly improbable event occurring? No. However, we can certainly form a rational argument that since the Bible speaks of such things occurring along with indications that they can still occur, we have a foundation for the belief that God is real.


Do you hear yourself? You just attempted another logical fallacy (aka - The Argument from Incredulity Fallacy). Just because a specific person gets better from being ill DOES NOT in any way mean they were "cured" by this 'God' thing. It makes no difference at all if some old book makes claims, b/c MEN write books and we have no evidence that any deity wrote anything. So you don't actually have any 'rational' arguments. You have irrational ones (based upon fallacies). If you were even remotely intellectually honest you would admit this and correct your errors. A person getting better from being sick or near death doesn't get you anywhere near some 'God' thing. The two do not in any way go together, sorry. I'd like to see you demonstrate your method for separating miracles from non-miracles.

Nonsense. Common descent may seem like a done deal to some, but not all of us are that gullible. Common descent is not a done deal. As I've stated elsewhere, the phylogenetic tree could just as easily be explained by a common Creator.


Did you even listen to ONE word I wrote! I said it's a done deal in the context of the scientific community at large (just like the germ theory of decease, and the theory of gravity are done deals within science). Are you questioning those?? Open your ears. You can posit some magical "creator" all you want but you have no evidence for it and the evidence we have currently doesn't show any demonstration of some teleology.

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I'm really wondering if you have actually studied evolutionary biology in depth,

I would say that depends on what you consider "depth." What criteria do you use for determining whether someone has studied something in depth?

What kind of actual studying of evolutionary biology, paleontology, or related subjects have you done? Have you taken any college courses? If so, which ones?


If you have studied Intelligent Design and concluded that it is not science, then do you honestly think I can convince you otherwise?

Absolutely you could convince me. All you would need to do is demonstrate (in detail) what would falsify your hypothesis of ID. To put it another way, distinguish ID from something like astrology and demonstrate what reliable predictions it can make, what actual uses it has in the scientific world at large, and what facts (if true) would falsify it. 

I will share a personal experience regarding IDT. When I first began examining it, my understanding was that it posited 'irreducible complexity' as meaning that a biological mechanism was comprised of component parts that existed nowhere else nor had a function all their own. That's a simplified explanation of my understanding but I think you get the gist of it. Not sure why that was my understanding but that was it. Then we discover that the flagellum may very well contradict this claim by demonstrating that some of it's coponent parts do have separate functionality. That pretty much blew IDT out of the water for me....until I dug deeper and gained a deeper understanding of the theory. That is when I really began examining what 'irreducible complexity' was and why it formed a stronger argument than the various hypotheses for abiogenesis. I am not a biologist but what I do know is that the biological processes we are familiar with cannot account for the formation of certain biological mechanisms.


This is just another argument from ignorance/incredulity coming. "It cannot account..." NOPE! Please demonstrate how you think you know natural processes "cannot" explain the existence of something in biology. You have made a judgment that something is impossible and that leads to a logical fallacy b/c you don't know that and you are trying to pretend that you do.

I have a very simple definition of science: Science is the exploration of our physical universe with the intent to form a better understanding of it and benefit from the findings and observations made.

And your definition is insufficient: https://www.google.com/search?num=50&safe=off&espv=210&es_sm=122&q=science+definition&oq=science+definition&gs_l=serp.3..0i67j0l9.12039.14645.0.14820.15.6.2.7.8.0.119.613.3j3.6.0....0...1c.1.32.serp..0.15.730.-ONF3z9bFY8

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WOW. So you have now changed your position from Christian theist to agnostic? Do you not think you know that this Yahweh thing (aka - ID) created the universe and everything in it?

Yes, I do !!!

Then you've just contradicted yourself b/c earlier you said you didn't know. You are in cognitive dissonance apparently. Please fix that. If you say you know Yahweh made everything then I'm going to ask you to demonstrate how you think you know. If you don't claim to know then admit you are not a Christian but an agnostic.

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If all you have is a personal belief (a 'faith'/opinion) then why are you arguing that we should have this in classrooms?

This has already been covered previously in this thread. If you disagree with the reasons I gave then please explain why.

No, we did not discuss this direct question (in the context of mere opinion in the classroom) in the thread, and you didn't answer the question. Earlier you admitted that science is NOT just about opinion for you. Are you admitting then that ID (since it is just your opinion) should not be allowed in the classroom?

Is there a word more difficult to define?

Truth is a synonym for God. We cannot use the word Truth as a property of sentences that do not refer to God. True sentences are about God only. Truth exists, is unchangeable, eternal, spiritual, and is superior to the human mind. But only God possesses these attributes. http://truth-defined.com/index.htm (http://truth-defined.com/index.htm)

This is an absolutely useless definition. So the word truth means "God"? WTF does "God" mean? Can you define this term without resorting to a vicious circularity? You seem to act as if you want to come together and reason soundly, but then you jump right into logical fallacies. These terms "God", "spiritual", etc do not refer to anything. They have no referent. So I'm calling bullshit on this assertion that "truth is God". You might as well say "truth is blarkscharmbelfarben". Your terms are irrational and meaningless, and yet earlier in this thread you criticised someone else for using the term 'truth' as being (allegedly) meaningless b/c they didn't define it.

PURE HYPOCRISY. Does it feel good to lie for your God?

Btw, true sentences are about God only? Really? So the the sentence "Three apples added to three apples makes six apples" is not true?? WOW.


I disagree. I have responded to every (I think?) argument and question posed in response to what I presented. Albeit brief, I have provided what makes IDT sccientific in nature. A discussion about an example of irreducible complexity was discussed (ie. flagellum). What exactly is it that you would like me to elaborate on?

No, you have not elaborated upon how you think ID is actually science. Saying it is so doesn't make it so (see my challenge to you above). Please elaborate (in detail) as to how ID meets the requirements for being actual science (and not just pseudo-science) and how that definition does not also simultaneously open the door for things like astrology to be called science.

My approach for gaining knowledge and assessing a meaningful way to use it is irrelevant. We all have different methods for gaining and making use of knowledge. What should be important is whether the expression of the knowledge gained is rational and supported by evidence. Labelling me as the gullible type that believes every claim he hears until it's proven false is something you cannot be certain about so it is better left out of the discussion.

Go back and read it again. I ASKED YOU A QUESTION about gullibility. I did not label! The way you approach knowledge is VERY relevant to the subject b/c that approach effects outcomes, decision making, potential confirmation bias, and judgments. And these are things scientists very much care about in separating fact from fiction. Did you not know this? I thought you just admitted that science is not just about opinion. But here you are, going right back to making science all about opinion again.

The question still stands, what reliable method do you use to reliably separate fact from fiction? How are you approaching the quest for knowledge about scientific questions?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 27, 2014, 03:43:19 AM
Really, to falsify a non-natural claim, your method is to start with the non-natural existing as the default explanation, and if one naturalistic hypothesis fails to explain that claim more proficiently, then your default holds, but if it does then your non-natural claim is falsified?

Someone starting with the non-natural as the default is a signal that a bias might be present. The proper method, in my opinion, would be to compare non-natural hypotheses with natural hypothese and determine which presents a more plausible explanation. Simply trying to ‘fit’ an explanation into a worldview is a form of manipulation and perhaps even dishonesty.

What are non-natural hypotheses? If you're observing a natural phenomenon, then how does a non-natural hypothesis offer a tentative explanation, because the idea of cause and effect here has been limited to nature by default. You're trying to squeeze in an unscientific concept into scientific language and methodology. You can't do that because science is methodologically naturalistic. A "non-natural hypothesis" is a misnomer. It'd even be generous to say it's a conjecture.

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No, I don't think so sunshine. You don't just get to shoe horn the non-natural in at the beginning and claim it victorious when one natural explanation you find inadequate fails. You would need to exhaust every single possible natural explanation before you get to place all your chips on god, and I can't see anyone ever being able to do that, never mind just you.

I agree.

If you agree, then why are you making god a more probable explanation?

To be clear, I am not saying that a natural process is a more probable explanation. I'm saying that probability doesn't even enter the arena. It is void in these circumstances because you have no method for falsifying non-natural claims. God is not even wrong.

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OK, I think I understand that - that anything man made is due to natural processes that are, say, harnessed by us. Is there anything that isn't man made you can point to?

Sure. There are hundreds, perhaps even thousands, of microevolutionary changes that have been observed and documented. The biological changes that took place to accomplish that are, in my opinion, ‘complex’ and amazing.

Yet you also believe that the natural processes behind microevolutionary changes were created by god, correct? So why can't these natural processes that you believe your god created, be responsible for things that are even more complex? Was god not as powerful at the creation of these natural processes as he was when he intervened in nature to allow these uber complex things to exist? This is what I mean by you pitting ID versus ID.

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Your first, the creation of the world isn't something that happens in nature as such, as it is the 'setting up' of nature. Your second, giving life to living things is something that happens in nature (unless this was also set up when the world was created). However, I asked if you could fathom how this intelligence manages to, not simply tell me you can fathom it due to your beliefs. The thing is, to cause something to happen in nature, the intelligence has to interfere in natural processes otherwise we couldn't  observe a change in nature. This makes the interference indistinguishable from a natural process.

Sounds like you are looking for an explanation as to how an intelligent designer might perform something the theist community would call a miracle? Is that correct? If so, I have no explanation for how that may occur. There have been many examples of people stricken with terminal illnesses who suddenly discovered they were no longer stricken…..with no sign of the disease that had been threatening to end their life. The doctors are unable to explain how this occurs and neither can I. I believe that God is certainly capable of performing these miracles but how He does it is a mystery.

Ignoring your incredulity, but if your god exists and has the ability to do anything he damn well pleased, then guess what, I agree that your god is capable of performing these miracles. This has no bearing on how you falsify when this god has performed these miracles, as he has the ability to do anything.

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Also, like every other theist before you, you have shown your ID argument to be a case of special pleading by stating that you believe this intelligence created the world.

I fail to see how this qualifies as special pleading.

I know you do, otherwise you wouldn't use it.

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That means the natural processes you see as being vastly improbable for the reason behind certain complexity were created by this intelligence, which then means that when you pit the probability of ID versus natural processes, you're just pitting ID against itself.

Intelligent Design Theory is an ‘origins of life’ theory. If there are natural processes occurring, then the IDT position is that they are occurring because of the designer who created the design for that to happen.

No. Intelligent design is not a theory. For it to be a theory, first you would need an observational fact for it to explain. Your theory, or what you might call a hypothesis, conjecture pure shot in the dark, is an alternative explanation of evolution. Intelligent design would first need the observation of the intelligent designer and then the "theory" would explain how that intelligent designer works.

Anyway, yes, I understand what IDers claim it explains. I'm still telling you it's a case of special pleading and you've made it perfectly clear that it is. The natural processes that occur are there because a designer created the design, yet you are telling us that these natural processes in the context of "macroevolution", are a less plausible explanation than ID, when the natural processes are also ID! Do you not see this?

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Just as the ToE and abiogenesis are two separate matters, so is the ToE and ‘Intelligent Design Theory.’ This is why I often marvel at how highly contentious the debate betwee supporters of the ToE and IDT become. It’s effectively an apples and oranges argument.

They are not two separate matters. They are both there to explain how evolution works. However, the ToE via natural selection says nothing, nada, zip, about whether or not there is ID because it is outside the realm of science. You can accept the whole of the ToE via natural selection and still propose that it takes an intelligent designer to create the process. The thing is, you do do this while simultaneously making a claim that ID explains evolution better than the ToE via natural selection. You are picking a specific example in the world you believe your god created, to show that god created something. This is special pleading and frankly dishonest. I mean, why aren't you using someting else? I dunno, like the existence of elementary particles, the force of gravity, or cloud formation? You have a pick of ANYTHING. This is why the ID argument and the cosmological argument (eg Kalam) are incompatible, because the KCA shows up ID to be special pleading.

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Why you then have to point to specific examples of complexity as evidence for ID, when anything in the world, no matter how simple or complex, would also be evidence for ID is anyone's guess.

Again, IDT is an ‘origins of life’ theory.

Again, ID is not a theory.

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There are natural processes taking place in the biological realm that have been observed and documented and only a fool would deny that.  Naturalism posits that a random, undirected, unplanned, uncoordinated, spontaneous event occurred that put into motion the ability for natural processes to create these mechanisms. IDT posits that such mechanisms bear the mark of having been designed due the careful arrangement of the biological components that make them work. …and I agree with that position and find that IDT does a good job testing for that.

We're not discussing naturalism. We're discussing explanations of evolution. The ToE via natural selection is a scientific theory. Science is not based on philosophical naturalism, but methodological naturalism, which says nothing about the existence or nonexistence of things that are posited as not natural, so please put away your erroneous naturalism card.

All ID does is plonk an intelligent designer to be behind the process of evolution, and then in special pleading cases, is behind specific, uber complex cases of evolution. ID does nothing for testing that there is an intelligent designer. ID is an argument against philosophical naturalism, but since the ToE via natural selection isn't based on that, this "war" of explanations has been erroneously concocted by IDers.

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We're at a bit of an impasse then, aren't we? You have evidence, but it's personal and only works for you. If you have nothing you can share, then why are you using the ID argument as if there is empirical evidence?

No. I am not taking the position that it is personal and I am not going to share it. But, I am not going to write out the amount of text it would take to explain everything. For one thing, if I did, I would be deluged with arguments and questions relating to the numerous topics. I would never be able to keep up with that.

OK, I can appreciate that to an extent, but please, don't tell me you don't have empirical evidence and then claim to have a "theory", when it isn't based on methodological naturalism. You need an alternative method, one which you have failed to present, and one in which I see no way of you ever being able to achieve.

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We have been discussing IDT but if you would like to discuss another one of the topics then I will do my best to answer questions or respond to arguments you may wish to make.

There are plenty of topics out there in the forum already if you ever wanted to discuss any, with me or others. Alternatively, perhaps start a new thread.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 27, 2014, 07:53:23 PM
Are you admitting that you have no reliable pathway for independently separating fact from fiction? Is science just all about opinion for you then?? Facts don't matter then? It's all just about your personal interpretation?

What I am saying is that in the absence of facts, it is still possible to form rational beliefs. Are you suggesting that your claim regarding his non-existence is fact and indisputable?

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That is a dodge. I didn't ask you for "the entire argument". I asked you to present what your method is for reliably separating fact from fiction when it comes to claims to the supernatural and miraculous.

It's very simple. If I believe that the Bible is valid evidence for God's existence then I have a foundation for my beliefs in the supernatural. While I can elaborate on why the Bible is valid evidence, I am not required nor compelled to present further evidence to support that claim. I described in post #152 which arguments I find capable of establishing a rational belief in God.

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Also, is science all just about opinion for you?

Of course not.

Your above comments say the opposite (i.e. - they suggest that you have some personal subjective 'rationality' that you think convinces you). That sounds a lot like the opinion that you just tried to say that it is not.

Then you misunderstood what I was stating.


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This is called the fallacy of a Red Herring. Did I EVER say anywhere that I "limit my beliefs to what I can see"??? No, I didn't. So stop trying to put words in my mouth b/c that is extremely offensive and intellectually dishonest.

Have a drink, relax and hum a few verses of "When you Wish Upon a Star, Nature Makes You What You Are." You won't be so uptight and sensitive.

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You have presented no rational arguments for this "outside realm". What you've presented are arguments which rest upon logical fallacies (such as the fallacy of the argument from ignorance). Do you have anything else?

Again, if I can demonstrate why the Bible can be taken as an accurate account of God's existence then I am not compelled or required to demonstrate where, why, or how the realm of His existence exists.

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Do you hear yourself? You just attempted another logical fallacy (aka - The Argument from Incredulity Fallacy). Just because a specific person gets better from being ill DOES NOT in any way mean they were "cured" by this 'God' thing. It makes no difference at all if some old book makes claims, b/c MEN write books and we have no evidence that any deity wrote anything. So you don't actually have any 'rational' arguments. You have irrational ones (based upon fallacies). If you were even remotely intellectually honest you would admit this and correct your errors. A person getting better from being sick or near death doesn't get you anywhere near some 'God' thing. The two do not in any way go together, sorry. I'd like to see you demonstrate your method for separating miracles from non-miracles.

If you can provide irrefutable proof that God does not exists and/or is incapable of healing disease then I will admit to the error of my ways.

Or, if you can demonstrate how the sudden disappearance of diseases (that even the medical profession cannot explain) occurred then I would be interested in hearing your explanation.

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Did you even listen to ONE word I wrote! I said it's a done deal in the context of the scientific community at large (just like the germ theory of decease, and the theory of gravity are done deals within science). Are you questioning those?? Open your ears. You can posit some magical "creator" all you want but you have no evidence for it and the evidence we have currently doesn't show any demonstration of some teleology.

Yes, you are correct. I failed to recognize that you had referred specifically to the scientific community. I apologize for that. Regardless, you are coming dangerously close to making an argument ad populum which is incapable of demonstrating the validity of your claim.

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What kind of actual studying of evolutionary biology, paleontology, or related subjects have you done? Have you taken any college courses? If so, which ones?

Yes, but I cannot recall specific classes. It's been awhile. Most of the studying I do now is done online and primarily in evolutionary biology.

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Absolutely you could convince me. All you would need to do is demonstrate (in detail) what would falsify your hypothesis of ID. To put it another way, distinguish ID from something like astrology and demonstrate what reliable predictions it can make, what actual uses it has in the scientific world at large, and what facts (if true) would falsify it.

I have already provided a means for falsifying ID earlier in this thread.

I would also suggest you consider the efforts of several scientists to falsify it. Do you believe that these highly educated and experienced professionals would be trying to falsify it if they felt it was unfalsifiable? You can't have it both ways. ID cannot be both falsifiable and unfalsifiable when it is convenient.

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This is just another argument from ignorance/incredulity coming. "It cannot account..." NOPE! Please demonstrate how you think you know natural processes "cannot" explain the existence of something in biology. You have made a judgment that something is impossible and that leads to a logical fallacy b/c you don't know that and you are trying to pretend that you do.

If my claim is false, then please provide evidence that does irrefutably demonstrate how biological processes produce "complex specified information."

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And your definition is insufficient: https://www.google.com/search?num=50&safe=off&espv=210&es_sm=122&q=science+definition&oq=science+definition&gs_l=serp.3..0i67j0l9.12039.14645.0.14820.15.6.2.7.8.0.119.613.3j3.6.0....0...1c.1.32.serp..0.15.730.-ONF3z9bFY8

You are good at claiming that my claims are incorrect but you are rather weak in making your arguments to demonstate what makes mine false.

Not that I am necessarily making a claim here by providing a definition but here is an example of you claiming my basic definition is wrong but failing to explain why or how.

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Then you've just contradicted yourself b/c earlier you said you didn't know. You are in cognitive dissonance apparently. Please fix that. If you say you know Yahweh made everything then I'm going to ask you to demonstrate how you think you know. If you don't claim to know then admit you are not a Christian but an agnostic.

I think that perhaps your ability to comprehend is impaired. My claim is (and has been) that I believe God exists but that I cannot offer empirical evidence to satisfy your request. And, again, please see post #152....and if you feel there is an error in what I used to reach my conclusion then please state why and provide your own claims to support your position.

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No, we did not discuss this direct question (in the context of mere opinion in the classroom) in the thread, and you didn't answer the question. Earlier you admitted that science is NOT just about opinion for you. Are you admitting then that ID (since it is just your opinion) should not be allowed in the classroom?

If you cannot understand the argument I made earlier in this thread for teaching IDT in the classroom then you are simply not reading what I am writing.

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This is an absolutely useless definition. So the word truth means "God"? WTF does "God" mean? Can you define this term without resorting to a vicious circularity? You seem to act as if you want to come together and reason soundly, but then you jump right into logical fallacies. These terms "God", "spiritual", etc do not refer to anything. They have no referent. So I'm calling bullshit on this assertion that "truth is God". You might as well say "truth is blarkscharmbelfarben". Your terms are irrational and meaningless, and yet earlier in this thread you criticised someone else for using the term 'truth' as being (allegedly) meaningless b/c they didn't define it.

I cannot be responsible for your failure to comprehend what I wrote. Visit the link I provided if you need help understanding. You're not making an Argument from Personal Credulity here, are you?

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PURE HYPOCRISY. Does it feel good to lie for your God?

Irrelevant....hasty generalization --> logical fallacy.


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Btw, true sentences are about God only? Really? So the the sentence "Three apples added to three apples makes six apples" is not true?? WOW.

Answering this would dignify it and it does not deserve such acknowledgement.

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No, you have not elaborated upon how you think ID is actually science. Saying it is so doesn't make it so (see my challenge to you above). Please elaborate (in detail) as to how ID meets the requirements for being actual science (and not just pseudo-science) and how that definition does not also simultaneously open the door for things like astrology to be called science.

I have already done that earlier in this thread. What part do you dispute?

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Go back and read it again. I ASKED YOU A QUESTION about gullibility. I did not label! The way you approach knowledge is VERY relevant to the subject b/c that approach effects outcomes, decision making, potential confirmation bias, and judgments. And these are things scientists very much care about in separating fact from fiction. Did you not know this?

What do you mean by "approach knowledge?" How does a person "approach knowledge?" Could you please clarify.


Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Jag on January 27, 2014, 10:49:18 PM
massive snip

No. I can't say that the question has been thoroughly answered. My point during that part of the discussion was that evidence is not confined to things that have a physical substance.

Let's table it for now and pick it up later, elsewhere on the forum.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Brad the Bold on January 28, 2014, 12:13:38 PM
Bringing this thread back around to Texas...in the debate last night ALL four of the candidates for Lt. Gov declared themselves to be creationists and supported teaching creationism and/or ID in public schools.

http://tpr.org/post/recap-immigration-marijuana-lieutenant-governor-candidates-sound
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on January 28, 2014, 01:20:38 PM
Bringing this thread back around to Texas...in the debate last night ALL four of the candidates for Lt. Gov declared themselves to be creationists and supported teaching creationism and/or ID in public schools.

http://tpr.org/post/recap-immigration-marijuana-lieutenant-governor-candidates-sound
It is honestly very difficult for me to determine if they say these things because of what they think about actual reality or if they say these things because of what they think about their actual constituency.

Both are rather depressing to be honest.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 28, 2014, 02:35:22 PM
What are non-natural hypotheses? If you're observing a natural phenomenon, then how does a non-natural hypothesis offer a tentative explanation, because the idea of cause and effect here has been limited to nature by default. You're trying to squeeze in an unscientific concept into scientific language and methodology. You can't do that because science is methodologically naturalistic. A "non-natural hypothesis" is a misnomer. It'd even be generous to say it's a conjecture.

I see your point. Let me re-word what I said:

Someone starting with hypotheses pertaining to the non-natural as the default might signal that a bias is present. The proper method, in my opinion, would be to compare hypotheses pertaining to the non-natural with hypotheses pertaining to the natural and determine which presents a more plausible explanation. Simply trying to ‘fit’ an explanation into a worldview is a form of manipulation and perhaps even dishonesty.


If you agree, then why are you making god a more probable explanation?

To be clear, I am not saying that a natural process is a more probable explanation. I'm saying that probability doesn't even enter the arena. It is void in these circumstances because you have no method for falsifying non-natural claims. God is not even wrong.

It is not possible for any one person to obtain all knowledge in order to form a basis for their claim. It’s just not humanly possible. Therefore, I believe most of us tend to place focus on the facts and evidence which carry the most weight and are capable of allowing us to make an informed decision. Is it possible that there may be some additional information that could sway the decision? Sure. That is why we are careful not to go so far as saying things like “I can PROVE beyond any doubt that God exists”….or “I can PROVE abiogenesis occurred.”


Yet you also believe that the natural processes behind microevolutionary changes were created by god, correct? So why can't these natural processes that you believe your god created, be responsible for things that are even more complex? Was god not as powerful at the creation of these natural processes as he was when he intervened in nature to allow these uber complex things to exist? This is what I mean by you pitting ID versus ID.

When you refer to ‘uber complex things,’ are you referring to things that the ID scientific community would label as “irreducibly complex?” If so, then we need to discover a way to demonstrate that the “irreducible complexity” of certain mechanisms were formed by identifiable biological processes before your argument has a leg to stand on. That is the crux of it and the answer to your question. ID posits that microevolutionary processes cannot explain the formation of “irreducibly complex” mechanisms.

Ignoring your incredulity, but if your god exists and has the ability to do anything he damn well pleased, then guess what, I agree that your god is capable of performing these miracles. This has no bearing on how you falsify when this god has performed these miracles, as he has the ability to do anything.

That is correct. Since God does not brand his work in an easily identifiable way, then determining whether the unexplainable was caused by Him or not is not possible. The naturalist will claim that an unidentifiable natural process was likely the cause and the Christian will claim that God did it. Neither claim can be proven beyond doubt….at least not as of today.

Frankly, the answer to your question should be obvious because if we could identify the hand of God in our daily affairs then you and I wouldn’t be having this conversation in the first place.


No. Intelligent design is not a theory.

I disagree.

For it to be a theory, first you would need an observational fact for it to explain.

The observation is that intelligent agents produce complex specified information.

Your theory, or what you might call a hypothesis, conjecture pure shot in the dark, is an alternative explanation of evolution.

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.

Intelligent design would first need the observation of the intelligent designer and then the "theory" would explain how that intelligent designer works.
Incorrect. Again, the observation is that intelligent agents produce complex and specified information. The testing of “irreducibly complex” mechanisms tests for the presence of intelligence in the design of the mechanism.


They are not two separate matters. They are both there to explain how evolution works.
If this is what you believe then you need to gather some additional information about the purpose of Intelligent Design Theory. IDT is not intended to demonstrate an alternate process to evolution.

However, the ToE via natural selection says nothing, nada, zip, about whether or not there is ID because it is outside the realm of science.
Please explain how you know that ID is outside the realm of science.
You can accept the whole of the ToE via natural selection and still propose that it takes an intelligent designer to create the process.
Yeah. So?

The thing is, you do do this while simultaneously making a claim that ID explains evolution better than the ToE via natural selection.

No. IDT explains how life originated.

You are picking a specific example in the world you believe your god created, to show that god created something.

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?


We're not discussing naturalism. We're discussing explanations of evolution. The ToE via natural selection is a scientific theory. Science is not based on philosophical naturalism, but methodological naturalism, which says nothing about the existence or nonexistence of things that are posited as not natural, so please put away your erroneous naturalism card.

All ID does is plonk an intelligent designer to be behind the process of evolution, and then in special pleading cases, is behind specific, uber complex cases of evolution. ID does nothing for testing that there is an intelligent designer. ID is an argument against philosophical naturalism, but since the ToE via natural selection isn't based on that, this "war" of explanations has been erroneously concocted by IDers.

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.

OK, I can appreciate that to an extent, but please, don't tell me you don't have empirical evidence and then claim to have a "theory", when it isn't based on methodological naturalism. You need an alternative method, one which you have failed to present, and one in which I see no way of you ever being able to achieve.

See my last response.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Brad the Bold on January 28, 2014, 02:42:27 PM
Bringing this thread back around to Texas...in the debate last night ALL four of the candidates for Lt. Gov declared themselves to be creationists and supported teaching creationism and/or ID in public schools.

http://tpr.org/post/recap-immigration-marijuana-lieutenant-governor-candidates-sound
It is honestly very difficult for me to determine if they say these things because of what they think about actual reality or if they say these things because of what they think about their actual constituency.

Both are rather depressing to be honest.

Especially since there was no mention (by anyone) that the teaching of creationism and ID in publicly funded schools has been ruled explicitly unconstitutional.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 28, 2014, 02:43:06 PM
Bringing this thread back around to Texas...in the debate last night ALL four of the candidates for Lt. Gov declared themselves to be creationists and supported teaching creationism and/or ID in public schools.

http://tpr.org/post/recap-immigration-marijuana-lieutenant-governor-candidates-sound
It is honestly very difficult for me to determine if they say these things because of what they think about actual reality or if they say these things because of what they think about their actual constituency.

Both are rather depressing to be honest.

I agree. It has become rather challenging to distinguish which public figures are genuinely committed to their ideals and which are just appealing to the popular view.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 28, 2014, 03:34:14 PM
Someone starting with hypotheses pertaining to the non-natural as the default might signal that a bias is present. The proper method, in my opinion, would be to compare hypotheses pertaining to the non-natural with hypotheses pertaining to the natural and determine which presents a more plausible explanation. Simply trying to ‘fit’ an explanation into a worldview is a form of manipulation and perhaps even dishonesty.

lemme get this straight.  So, if you and I are discussing how daisy reproduction occurs and I suggest pollination is done by invisible, intangible, and othewise undetectible faeries, you would be biased and possibly dishonest if you discarded that explanation out of hand?

I once had a cell phone which I turned off.  I watched it power down and set it on my desk.  A couple hours later, I heard it make its startup music.  I looked at it and found it was on.  What hypotheses should I consider as an explanation as to how that happened? 

Can you explain to me how a plasma tv works?  I mean, details.  If not, should we consider supernatural explanations?  If not, why not?



biblestudent, I don't think you are stupid.  But I also have an incredibly hard time understanding why you still don't get it.  It is like we are trying to explain how 1+1=2 and you keep saying 1+1= fudge.  You are not even on the same planet.  I don't have any idea what anyone can say to help you.  As far as I can see, you are totally helpless, trapped in a moronic idea, with no way out.


Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 28, 2014, 04:33:56 PM
Someone starting with hypotheses pertaining to the non-natural as the default might signal that a bias is present. The proper method, in my opinion, would be to compare hypotheses pertaining to the non-natural with hypotheses pertaining to the natural and determine which presents a more plausible explanation. Simply trying to ‘fit’ an explanation into a worldview is a form of manipulation and perhaps even dishonesty.

lemme get this straight.  So, if you and I are discussing how daisy reproduction occurs and I suggest pollination is done by invisible, intangible, and othewise undetectible faeries, you would be biased and possibly dishonest if you discarded that explanation out of hand?


If you were clever enough to construct a hypothesis explaining how this could be accurate, then, yes, I would be biased and possibly dishonest for dismissing it out of hand.

Quote
I once had a cell phone which I turned off.  I watched it power down and set it on my desk.  A couple hours later, I heard it make its startup music.  I looked at it and found it was on.  What hypotheses should I consider as an explanation as to how that happened?

This is not all that uncommon and can be caused by a number of different factors.  Google search should help lead you in the right direction.

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Can you explain to me how a plasma tv works?  I mean, details.  If not, should we consider supernatural explanations?  If not, why not?

I do not know how a plasma TV works but unless the unit was somehow constructed out of miscellaneous parts in a junkyard by an unknown, random, arbitrary process then the point you are trying to make is missing comparative elements.


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biblestudent, I don't think you are stupid.  But I also have an incredibly hard time understanding why you still don't get it.  It is like we are trying to explain how 1+1=2 and you keep saying 1+1= fudge.  You are not even on the same planet.  I don't have any idea what anyone can say to help you.  As far as I can see, you are totally helpless, trapped in a moronic idea, with no way out.

Because you THINK you are saying that 1 + 1 = 2 when you are actually trying to prove that 1+ 2 = 2.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 28, 2014, 05:20:02 PM

What I am saying is that in the absence of facts, it is still possible to form rational beliefs. Are you suggesting that your claim regarding his non-existence is fact and indisputable?

And once again you are using irrational arguments (this time straw-man) to support your position. Did I ever claim this alleged 'thing' does not exist?? Did I ever make that positive assertion? I didn't, did I? So you are (once again) trying to misrepresent my position. The burden of proof is on you to demonstrate your claims (since you are the one claiming that some 'thing' you call "God" exists). I never made such an assertion about something not-existing.

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That is a dodge. I didn't ask you for "the entire argument". I asked you to present what your method is for reliably separating fact from fiction when it comes to claims to the supernatural and miraculous.

It's very simple. If I believe that the Bible is valid evidence for God's existence then I have a foundation for my beliefs in the supernatural. While I can elaborate on why the Bible is valid evidence, I am not required nor compelled to present further evidence to support that claim. I described in post #152 which arguments I find capable of establishing a rational belief in God.

And this is yet again another dodge. It does not actually answer my question. I specifically asked you what method you use to separate fact from fiction (for ALL claims to the supernatural or miraculous). I did not ask you if you believe the bible. I want to know what method you are using in order to determine such things and whether or not that method is valid. Answer the question directly.

Then you misunderstood what I was stating.

What a lazy response. Care to actually elaborate on how I misunderstood you instead of just claiming it??

Have a drink, relax and hum a few verses of "When you Wish Upon a Star, Nature Makes You What You Are." You won't be so uptight and sensitive.

Stop trying to divert attention away from the fact that you have misrepresented my position multiple times now. Could you get anymore dishonest?

Again, if I can demonstrate why the Bible can be taken as an accurate account of God's existence then I am not compelled or required to demonstrate where, why, or how the realm of His existence exists.

See above. I've asked you to provide the method you are using for separating fact from fiction and you still haven't answered it.

If you can provide irrefutable proof that God does not exists and/or is incapable of healing disease then I will admit to the error of my ways.

And yet another logical fallacy. So unicorns exist until you can prove they don't? This one you've presented is called The Fallacy of Shifting the Burden of Proof. It is the very reason I ask if you are one of those gullible types that believes every claim you hear until it has been proven false. Are you? Do you just believe everything until someone shows you it's wrong? The burden of proof is on you to demonstrate your claim and the time to believe a claim is after sufficient evidence has come in, not before. You don't get to pretend that someone else has to prove the opposite and that is b/c the default position is to disbelieve a claim until there is sufficient evidence.

Or, if you can demonstrate how the sudden disappearance of diseases (that even the medical profession cannot explain) occurred then I would be interested in hearing your explanation.

This hints at another logical fallacy (The Argument from Incredulity Fallacy). It fails for you to act that if science, or doctors, or medical people do not know how a specific thing occurred that somehow this gives you license to just insert your alleged "God" thing in there. That is called the god-of-the-gaps argument. It is a logical fallacy. When you don't know how a specific thing happened you should admit ignorance (aka - be agnostic about it), not jump to logical fallacies.

Yes, you are correct. I failed to recognize that you had referred specifically to the scientific community. I apologize for that. Regardless, you are coming dangerously close to making an argument ad populum which is incapable of demonstrating the validity of your claim.

Really. So you think anytime someone accepts the science on a given subject (say gravity, the germ theory of decease, cell theory, that the earth is round! etc) that they are not rationally justified b/c they are just believing what's popular?? I understand the science and accept the findings (just like you accept germ theory - that germs cause decease) and it is not at all an ad populum argument. But even if I didn't, this wouldn't lend one iota of credibility to your mere assertion of the bible or creationism. At best, you would have to admit agnosticism - that you don't know how it happened.

Yes, but I cannot recall specific classes. It's been awhile. Most of the studying I do now is done online and primarily in evolutionary biology.

Huh? You've taken classes in evolutionary biology, paleontology, etc at a credentialed college/university and you can't recall what they were? Please tell us exactly what actual classes you have taken.

I have already provided a means for falsifying ID earlier in this thread.

I would also suggest you consider the efforts of several scientists to falsify it. Do you believe that these highly educated and experienced professionals would be trying to falsify it if they felt it was unfalsifiable? You can't have it both ways. ID cannot be both falsifiable and unfalsifiable when it is convenient.

No, you did not provide a viable means for falsification. All you did was CLAIM that is was viable and when others responded that your method could easily be rationalized or spun (changed definitions etc) you still provided no viable falsification method. Your 'method' makes astrology science and thus your method is faulty.

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This is just another argument from ignorance/incredulity coming. "It cannot account..." NOPE! Please demonstrate how you think you know natural processes "cannot" explain the existence of something in biology. You have made a judgment that something is impossible and that leads to a logical fallacy b/c you don't know that and you are trying to pretend that you do.

If my claim is false, then please provide evidence that does irrefutably demonstrate how biological processes produce "complex specified information."

Another dodge? Really? Your argument is begging the question (circular) b/c you haven't shown that anything in biological systems have been "specified". Specification implies a mind. So your demand is irrational. You need to demonstrate that biological systems have been "specified". This response also hints at another argument from incredulity fallacy. Your claim doesn't win by default (aka - your assumptions about life's origins are not the default position). You are starting with your conclusion and trying to work backwards. That is the opposite of science. When you don't know something you should admit it. Otherwise you aren't practicing science but gullibility and confirmation bias.

You are good at claiming that my claims are incorrect but you are rather weak in making your arguments to demonstate what makes mine false.

Not that I am necessarily making a claim here by providing a definition but here is an example of you claiming my basic definition is wrong but failing to explain why or how.

I have pointed out many logical fallacies that you keep attempting to use, and still you keep trying to use them. If you are uninterested in actual rational discourse and intellectual honesty then there's no reason to discuss anything b/c you obviously do not care about truth - just satisfying your religious assumptions.

I think that perhaps your ability to comprehend is impaired. My claim is (and has been) that I believe God exists but that I cannot offer empirical evidence to satisfy your request. And, again, please see post #152....and if you feel there is an error in what I used to reach my conclusion then please state why and provide your own claims to support your position.

I have asked you to provide the method you are using to separate fact from fiction (particularly when it comes to claims of the supernatural). Are you actually going to sit there and claim that no claims of the supernatural (from anyone anywhere) require independently demonstrable evidence? If not, then why do you think you get to bypass having to show empirical evidence but other religions (who compete with yours) do not? You seem to be quite evasive as to what your method is. I wonder why that is.

If you have arguments that you think are rational then present them. So far all we've seen are logical fallacies (see above).

If you cannot understand the argument I made earlier in this thread for teaching IDT in the classroom then you are simply not reading what I am writing.

Please reference specifically what part of the thread you are talking about.

Quote
This is an absolutely useless definition. So the word truth means "God"? WTF does "God" mean? Can you define this term without resorting to a vicious circularity? You seem to act as if you want to come together and reason soundly, but then you jump right into logical fallacies. These terms "God", "spiritual", etc do not refer to anything. They have no referent. So I'm calling bullshit on this assertion that "truth is God". You might as well say "truth is blarkscharmbelfarben". Your terms are irrational and meaningless, and yet earlier in this thread you criticised someone else for using the term 'truth' as being (allegedly) meaningless b/c they didn't define it.

I cannot be responsible for your failure to comprehend what I wrote. Visit the link I provided if you need help understanding. You're not making an Argument from Personal Credulity here, are you?

WOW. What a hilarious obfuscation of my rebuttal to your absolutely useless, meaningless, and tautological definition of the term 'truth'. I understood very well what you wrote. And what you wrote was logically fallacious and tautological.

Quote
PURE HYPOCRISY. Does it feel good to lie for your God?

Irrelevant....hasty generalization --> logical fallacy.

Asking a question is NOT a logical fallacy.

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Btw, true sentences are about God only? Really? So the the sentence "Three apples added to three apples makes six apples" is not true?? WOW.

Answering this would dignify it and it does not deserve such acknowledgement.

I'll accept this as your admission of defeat.

Quote
No, you have not elaborated upon how you think ID is actually science. Saying it is so doesn't make it so (see my challenge to you above). Please elaborate (in detail) as to how ID meets the requirements for being actual science (and not just pseudo-science) and how that definition does not also simultaneously open the door for things like astrology to be called science.

I have already done that earlier in this thread. What part do you dispute?

Another dodge. No you have not made an actual elaborated case how you think ID is science. You just quoted Behe who was talking about IR not ID. Absolutely nothing you have said thus far demonstrates how ID is science or why it should be taught in classrooms (a quote from Behe doesn't do the job - especially when the goal post can be moved anytime, or an argument from ignorance can be used, to avoid refutation). Behe himself admits that ID can never be ruled out (aka - is not falsifiable). Thus, ID is NOT science. It uses a basic textbook argument from ignorance. You simply cannot infer design in nature by use of logical fallacies or trying to compare nature with human design.


http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives/2006/12/behes_confusion.html (http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives/2006/12/behes_confusion.html)

What do you mean by "approach knowledge?" How does a person "approach knowledge?" Could you please clarify.

See above. What methods do you use in order to determine what is true from what is not true when it comes to claims of the supernatural, the miraculous, or the natural order?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on January 28, 2014, 05:23:02 PM
If you were clever enough to construct a hypothesis explaining how this could be accurate, then, yes, I would be biased and possibly dishonest for dismissing it out of hand.

In other words, if his hypothesis was naturalistic - if it made sense as a means of explanation - then you couldn't dismiss it out of hand.  But that's not what he was asking.  A supernatural "explanation" necessarily leaves out bits of explanatory cause-and-effect.  Those are naturalistic.

Try again?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 28, 2014, 05:43:59 PM
Just to but in here with a quote from Behe which I thought Biblestudent might like. In the Dover trial. Behe was being questioned about Ir / ID and said that it was a well-tested inductive argument. Question went on


Quote
A. Well, since it’s an inductive argument, since the purposeful arrangement of parts is an inductive argument, then in order to falsify an induction, you have to find an exception to the inductive argument.

So if somebody said that, when you see this purposeful arrangement of parts – and again, the – as I stress, the argument is quantitative, when there is a certain degree of complexity and so on. If it was shown that that did not always, did not always bespeak design, then the induction would not be reliable, and we would – so – and the argument would be, would be defeated.

Q. Now you, in fact, have stated that intelligent design can never be ruled out, correct?

A. Yes, that’s right.

In effect, Behe shows that IR/ID is not science as it can never be falsified. (Yes I know he talked about knocking the genes for the flagellum out of the bacteria that had a flagellum and seeing it evolution put it back but he wasn't prepared to waste time on that.)

Sorry, Biblestudent, but one of the originators of Creation Science Intelligent Design[1] has ruled it out of science.
 1. adjustment made as it was in 'Of Pandas and People'
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 28, 2014, 05:51:05 PM
Regarding ID, has anyone pointed out chaos from order? Like, say... when you shake a cereal box and all the little pieces gather at the bottom?[1] Or those videos with multiple pendulums swinging randomly and organizing themselves into distinct patterns all on their own?
 1. Not an example I came up with. I don't know who came up with it first, but it is not mine.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 28, 2014, 10:36:57 PM

<snipped>


It is pointless to continue on with you. You are clearly a narcissist who has no interest in actually participating in a discussion. You are snipping my direct questions and completely ignoring them and, instead, cherry picking comments that you feel are an easy target for ridicule and critique with the intent to discredit the poster rather than engaging in beneficial dialogue. I've encountered your type on here before. In fact, I reviewed your posting history and what you are doing in this thread seems to be your modus operandi. You rarelyt make arguments (possibly because you don't possess the ability to do so?).... and, like the two or three other similar individuals I've encountered before, you have a seemingly well conceived plan for your methods because there is clearly a pattern in the words, and phrases you use.

I have better things to do than continue down the path you are taking here.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Nam on January 28, 2014, 10:48:58 PM
I have better things to do than continue down the path you are taking here.

I know what you mean, man. I mean, "logic" and "reality" is so passé. Don't worry. I'm, and others are here for you. We'll protect you from the evil 'logic/reality' scheme these people are trying to brainwash you in.

Damn them! Damn them all!

-Nam
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: magicmiles on January 29, 2014, 02:46:43 AM

In fact, I reviewed your posting history

You sat down and read several of Median's post at once? Are you completely mad?

I bet you never want to see another exclamation mark or the word fallacy again.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on January 29, 2014, 04:32:20 AM
I see your point. Let me re-word what I said:

Someone starting with hypotheses pertaining to the non-natural as the default might signal that a bias is present. The proper method, in my opinion, would be to compare hypotheses pertaining to the non-natural with hypotheses pertaining to the natural and determine which presents a more plausible explanation. Simply trying to ‘fit’ an explanation into a worldview is a form of manipulation and perhaps even dishonesty.

Re-wording what you've said has done nothing to solve the dilemma of using terms based on a naturalistic methodology for non-natural concepts. It's a hijacking of the terminology to give added credence to an idea that has no basis. There is no comparison that can be made because you first have to establish that the non-natural/supernatural exists, before you can even entertain anything pertaining towards hypotheses for it.

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It is not possible for any one person to obtain all knowledge in order to form a basis for their claim. It’s just not humanly possible. Therefore, I believe most of us tend to place focus on the facts and evidence which carry the most weight and are capable of allowing us to make an informed decision. Is it possible that there may be some additional information that could sway the decision? Sure. That is why we are careful not to go so far as saying things like “I can PROVE beyond any doubt that God exists”….or “I can PROVE abiogenesis occurred.”

Agreed, but so what? I don't see how this response is relevant to what I was saying. I was making the point that there is no method for assessing the probability of god's existence/nonexistence, 1) because god is posited as being external to the natural world we perceive and 2) because god is posited as being able to do anything. If god can do anything, then anything that exists can be evidence for god, therefore there is no situation where you could conclude that god didin't so something. This means that you have left evidence meaningless due to the violation of cause and effect.

The only way, as I know it, of being able to falsify a god is dependent on how hod is defined. If god is posited as natural, then we have the means to potentially falsify god. Also, if god is said to be confined by logic (or have it as part of his "nature"), then god can be wiped from existence through any contradiction found.

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When you refer to ‘uber complex things,’ are you referring to things that the ID scientific community would label as “irreducibly complex?” If so, then we need to discover a way to demonstrate that the “irreducible complexity” of certain mechanisms were formed by identifiable biological processes before your argument has a leg to stand on. That is the crux of it and the answer to your question. ID posits that microevolutionary processes cannot explain the formation of “irreducibly complex” mechanisms.

When referring to "uber complex things", I mean the things you see as being so complex that you think they most probably require a designer.

"My" argument regarding the things you see as being irreducibly complex is not based on philospohical naturalism. Just like the ToE, I am not tying to eliminate ID. To do that, I would require a different method than the scientific one. Care to provide one?

You see, ID doesn't kick the ToEs or abiogensis' legs away even if they couldn't demonstrate that certain "irreducibly complex" mechanisms were formed by identifiable biological processes, because the ToE and abiogenesis have nothing to say about whether there was an intelligent designer, even if they could demonstrate it, because you can still have an intelligent designer behind the identifiable biological processes. The idea of ID is just pushed back andcan be continuously pushed back until you reach the creation of nature/the universe itself.

Ignoring your incredulity, but if your god exists and has the ability to do anything he damn well pleased, then guess what, I agree that your god is capable of performing these miracles. This has no bearing on how you falsify when this god has performed these miracles, as he has the ability to do anything.

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That is correct. Since God does not brand his work in an easily identifiable way, then determining whether the unexplainable was caused by Him or not is not possible. The naturalist will claim that an unidentifiable natural process was likely the cause and the Christian will claim that God did it. Neither claim can be proven beyond doubt….at least not as of today.

No, it's not that god doesn't brand his work in an easily identificable way, it's that he brands his work in an unidentifiable way, from our perspecive at least.

The philosophical naturalist will claim that a natural process was the cause. A methodological naturalist will claim that a natural process is all that can be potentially identified as a cause, but say absolutely nothing about whether or not there is a god behind it. In future, can you please make the distinction between philosopihcal and methodological naturalism instead of clumping them both together?

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Frankly, the answer to your question should be obvious because if we could identify the hand of God in our daily affairs then you and I wouldn’t be having this conversation in the first place.


Correct, we probably wouldn't. Do you know what would solve that problem though? - it's that method of being able to falsify supernatural claims that you fail to provide.

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No. Intelligent design is not a theory.

I disagree.

We know, but you've failed to explain why it should be considered a theory when the conclusion of ID is not natural.

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For it to be a theory, first you would need an observational fact for it to explain.

The observation is that intelligent agents produce complex specified information.

Are you referring to humans here, because if you are, then ID is a theory. That's because humans are a natural phenomena. If you are referring to god, then ID is not a theory because god is not a natural phenomena. I understand that this is what you are trying to compare - humans design complex stuff therefore if we see things that are complex but aren't designed by humans then there is another designer yadda, yadda, yadda.... but you are looking at the wrong thing for evidence. We know humans produce complex things because we have evidence of them actually producing them... we have evidence of the existence of the actual designer. You don't have that with god. You have to extrapolate from your existing knowledge of humans designing complex things and apply that to complex things humans don't design.
Your problem here is that humans are more complex than the complex things they design, so then you have to apply that to god when you posit him as designing the complex things that humans don't design. That leads to god being more complex than the complex thnigs he designs, and therefore, because complexity is a signpost for ID, god requires an intelligent designer... and that intelligent designer requires an intelligent designer ad infinitum.

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Your theory, or what you might call a hypothesis, conjecture pure shot in the dark, is an alternative explanation of evolution.

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.

It is a negative argument against evolution, sometimes all of it, sometimes some of it. You yourself are a prime example of someone who is against some of it and see ID as a better explanation:

My point is that I do not see anyone barking about some of the false ToE teachings in the mainstream texts but God helps us all if there is a hint of Intelligent Design Theory being taught somewhere....then the wolves come out.

What exactly is it that you think I need to learn? Like others here, you seem to be taking the position that I am a denier of the entire ToE. Where does that come from?

In a nutshell, for me, the incredible complexity of life and the vastness of the universe points to an Intelligent Designer (the God of the Bible). The naturalistic worldview and the theory of evolution along with the various hypotheses relating to abiogenesis all present an alternate view but, even collectively, they come up way too short to convince me. There are so many assumptions guesses, dishonesty, and floating variables behind crucial areas of it. Phylogenetics, for me, only demonstrates that different species have similar DNA which could point to an Intelligent Designer just as easily as it could to a common ancestor. Convincing evidence of beneficial random mutation is virtually non-existent. And, evolution cannot explain our desire to create things like art and music. Evolution cannot explain why animals have been known to flee an area just before a tsunami occurs. The TOE cannot account for why or how sexual reproduction evolved….and on and on I could go. These may seem like trivial issues but attempts to explain how the processes of evolution would/could account for them does not fit. Also, I could add numerous more unanswerable questions to the list. And this says nothing of the BIG blank that discussions about abiogenesis creates. Do I think the ToE is a complete farce? Absolutely not….and I have said this numerous times so please don't start flaming me for making these comments.

A significant portion of the phylogenetic tree is based on speculative reasoning that asserts "evolution diddit." And using the same "leap" you propose as being irrational, some pro-ToE people will even go so far as to say that "we know snakes evolved from lizards"..... when, in fact, that has never been conclusively demonstrated.

So you accept the ToE as fact?

edit to add: Fact, as in the best explanation we have for the diversity of life on this planet, but subject to change given new evidence.

Yes, there are findings that I consider fact...but I do not accept the entire theory (as I believe you would describe it) as fact.

There, I think it's quite clear from what you have posted that ID can be a negative argument against evolution. You are one of those babblers.

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Intelligent design would first need the observation of the intelligent designer and then the "theory" would explain how that intelligent designer works.
Incorrect. Again, the observation is that intelligent agents produce complex and specified information. The testing of “irreducibly complex” mechanisms tests for the presence of intelligence in the design of the mechanism.

Yes, the observation is of intelligent agents, ie humans, doing this. We have evidence of the existence of the designers to show that there are designers. We don't have evidence of the existence of a designer for anything that isn't man made (or at least made by other biological beings). We recognise design firstly through the existence of the designer. Without that, we don't know if something is designed so we opt for the default position, which is that it is not intelligently designed but occurred naturally, as that is what we contrast design against.
It's the watch on the beach scenario. We know watcheds are intelligently designed because we have evidence of them being designed and no evidence of them ever occurring naturally. However, we know that beaches can occur naturally and (ignoring that beaches can be artificially created), we see contrast. ID removes any contrast, because the watch is on a beach made of watches. Design is everywhere.

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They are not two separate matters. They are both there to explain how evolution works.
If this is what you believe then you need to gather some additional information about the purpose of Intelligent Design Theory. IDT is not intended to demonstrate an alternate process to evolution.

It only takes you to see that ID is a better explanation that one single part of the ToE for ID to be intended to be an alternative process to evolution. You've clearly stated you don't agree with all of the ToE, so don't piss on my cornflakes and tell me it's frosting.

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Please explain how you know that ID is outside the realm of science.

Because the conclusion of ID posits a being that is outside of nature and science is based on methodological naturalism, ergo science cannot falsify ID because of how you define god.

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You can accept the whole of the ToE via natural selection and still propose that it takes an intelligent designer to create the process.
Yeah. So?

So it doesn't matter where you find issue with the ToE because you can just knock ID back a step like so:

Evolution ---> ID
Evolution ---> ToE via natural selection ---> ID

Replace evolution with anything you like.... abiogenesis, gravity, cloud formation, ANYTHING. You can accept natural explanations for anything and still propose ID to be behind those natural explanations. Everything is a potential signpost for ID, so using "irreducible complexity" is a bogus case of special pleading.

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The thing is, you do do this while simultaneously making a claim that ID explains evolution better than the ToE via natural selection.

No. IDT explains how life originated.

At grass roots level, ID (not IDT) explains how [b[everything[/b] originated. That's why using ID for abiogenesis, or parts of the ToE that you don't agree with is special pleading.

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You are picking a specific example in the world you believe your god created, to show that god created something.

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.

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We're not discussing naturalism. We're discussing explanations of evolution. The ToE via natural selection is a scientific theory. Science is not based on philosophical naturalism, but methodological naturalism, which says nothing about the existence or nonexistence of things that are posited as not natural, so please put away your erroneous naturalism card.

All ID does is plonk an intelligent designer to be behind the process of evolution, and then in special pleading cases, is behind specific, uber complex cases of evolution. ID does nothing for testing that there is an intelligent designer. ID is an argument against philosophical naturalism, but since the ToE via natural selection isn't based on that, this "war" of explanations has been erroneously concocted by IDers.

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.

Your own posts confirm my view.....not that it matter one jot what ID is trying to be a more probable explanation for.
Have it your contradictory way if you like, and have ID to be about the origin of life. Any hypothesis/theory on abiogenesis being a natural process still doesn't shut down ID.

Now, if you could address the points about philosophical and methodological naturalism, instead of glossing over it with more talk on ID not being about ToE, when for you it cleary is.

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OK, I can appreciate that to an extent, but please, don't tell me you don't have empirical evidence and then claim to have a "theory", when it isn't based on methodological naturalism. You need an alternative method, one which you have failed to present, and one in which I see no way of you ever being able to achieve.

See my last response.

I saw it and found it to be dodging, wanting and irrelevant.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 29, 2014, 08:19:31 AM
If you were clever enough to construct a hypothesis explaining how this could be accurate, then, yes, I would be biased and possibly dishonest for dismissing it out of hand.

This was not a hypothetical question I asked.  I actually gave you the hypothesis.  It is exactly as clever as yours (IC, ID, etc), so what say you?  Do you dismiss it and if so is that dishonest?

This is not all that uncommon and can be caused by a number of different factors.  Google search should help lead you in the right direction.

That is a massive dodge.  I was asking you a direct question about your interpretation.

I do not know how a plasma TV works but unless the unit was somehow constructed out of miscellaneous parts in a junkyard by an unknown, random, arbitrary process then the point you are trying to make is missing comparative elements.

Not at all.  Your answer for creation is "I cannot understand or explain any scientific explanation, so it must be supernatural."  So, since your answer regarding plasma tvs is also "I cannot understand or explain any scientific explanation," do you claim supernatural means?  By your reasoning, you should.


Because you THINK you are saying that 1 + 1 = 2 when you are actually trying to prove that 1+ 2 = 2.

You don't even get that you don't get it.  I might have been wrong.  You might actually be stupid afterall.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Quesi on January 29, 2014, 09:03:51 AM

It is pointless to continue on with you. You are clearly a narcissist who has no interest in actually participating in a discussion.

I'm so confused.  So in addition to the God of Abraham, you also worship the Greek Pantheon?  Or are you just saying that the whole "falling in love with his own reflection" story is all made up?  Unlike the stories in your scriptures...
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 29, 2014, 11:58:10 AM

It is pointless to continue on with you. You are clearly a narcissist who has no interest in actually participating in a discussion. You are snipping my direct questions and completely ignoring them and, instead, cherry picking comments that you feel are an easy target for ridicule and critique with the intent to discredit the poster rather than engaging in beneficial dialogue. I've encountered your type on here before. In fact, I reviewed your posting history and what you are doing in this thread seems to be your modus operandi. You rarelyt make arguments (possibly because you don't possess the ability to do so?).... and, like the two or three other similar individuals I've encountered before, you have a seemingly well conceived plan for your methods because there is clearly a pattern in the words, and phrases you use.

I have better things to do than continue down the path you are taking here.

No, it may be pointless for you to continue b/c you cannot meet the challenge that is before you. That is quite clear. Instead you turn to logically invalid arguments and then, when called out on them, start complaining and using more invalid arguments (in this case name calling). Btw, whether or not I am a narcissist has absolutely nothing to do with this discussion (ad hominem). The arguments are what you are supposed to be dealing with. What's worse, you are a liar. I did in fact address your questions. You just didn't like the answer b/c you are trying to turn the tables and shift the burden of proof. But that's not how it works. You are the one making the positive claim that some "designer" is necessary, that a "God" exists, and that ID is science and should be taught in schools, and you've been asked to defend those assertions by many of us here - choosing to turn to invalid or unsound reasoning for defense.

So don't point the finger at me. Look in the mirror. I will take this reply above as just one more admission of your defeat. WWJD?

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 29, 2014, 01:35:36 PM

It is pointless to continue on with you. You are clearly a narcissist who has no interest in actually participating in a discussion. You are snipping my direct questions and completely ignoring them and, instead, cherry picking comments that you feel are an easy target for ridicule and critique with the intent to discredit the poster rather than engaging in beneficial dialogue. I've encountered your type on here before. In fact, I reviewed your posting history and what you are doing in this thread seems to be your modus operandi. You rarelyt make arguments (possibly because you don't possess the ability to do so?).... and, like the two or three other similar individuals I've encountered before, you have a seemingly well conceived plan for your methods because there is clearly a pattern in the words, and phrases you use.

I have better things to do than continue down the path you are taking here.

No, it may be pointless for you to continue b/c you cannot meet the challenge that is before you. That is quite clear. Instead you turn to logically invalid arguments and then, when called out on them, start complaining and using more invalid arguments (in this case name calling). Btw, whether or not I am a narcissist has absolutely nothing to do with this discussion (ad hominem). The arguments are what you are supposed to be dealing with. What's worse, you are a liar. I did in fact address your questions. You just didn't like the answer b/c you are trying to turn the tables and shift the burden of proof. But that's not how it works. You are the one making the positive claim that some "designer" is necessary, that a "God" exists, and that ID is science and should be taught in schools, and you've been asked to defend those assertions by many of us here - choosing to turn to invalid or unsound reasoning for defense.

So don't point the finger at me. Look in the mirror. I will take this reply above as just one more admission of your defeat. WWJD?


These are the items that you either never addressed or just skirted around: 

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If science is not about determining 'absolute certainty' (which I agree with), then what makes you so 'certain' that I may not be correct?

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Are you suggesting that your claim regarding his non-existence is fact and indisputable?

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I would also suggest you consider the efforts of several scientists to falsify it. Do you believe that these highly educated and experienced professionals would be trying to falsify it if they felt it was unfalsifiable? You can't have it both ways. ID cannot be both falsifiable and unfalsifiable when it is convenient.

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Not that I am necessarily making a claim here by providing a definition but here is an example of you claiming my basic definition is wrong but failing to explain why or how.

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And, again, please see post #152....and if you feel there is an error in what I used to reach my conclusion then please state why and provide your own claims to support your position.

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I have already done that earlier in this thread. What part do you dispute?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 29, 2014, 02:28:26 PM
If you were clever enough to construct a hypothesis explaining how this could be accurate, then, yes, I would be biased and possibly dishonest for dismissing it out of hand.

This was not a hypothetical question I asked.  I actually gave you the hypothesis.  It is exactly as clever as yours (IC, ID, etc), so what say you?  Do you dismiss it and if so is that dishonest?


I realize you gave me the hypothesis and I maintain that I answered your question. On what basis would I dismiss it? Because it proposes fairies are involved? Without examining the entire hypothesis based on the observations you made, how do I know that you haven’t observed something that might support that? And if you’re suggesting that your hypothetical is nonsense to begin with because YOU KNOW upfront that there is no such thing as fairies, then you really haven’t formed a valid hypothesis, have you?


This is not all that uncommon and can be caused by a number of different factors.  Google search should help lead you in the right direction.

That is a massive dodge.  I was asking you a direct question about your interpretation.


You don’t have much of a sense of humor, do you? That was a joke.

I do not know how a plasma TV works but unless the unit was somehow constructed out of miscellaneous parts in a junkyard by an unknown, random, arbitrary process then the point you are trying to make is missing comparative elements.

Not at all.  Your answer for creation is "I cannot understand or explain any scientific explanation, so it must be supernatural."  So, since your answer regarding plasma tvs is also "I cannot understand or explain any scientific explanation," do you claim supernatural means?  By your reasoning, you should.

You are dismissing or ignoring that science has established a valid definition for ‘complex specified information’ and can apply it to “irreducibly complex’ mechanisms to test for ‘Intelligent Design.’ Thus, we do not know who created the plasma TV or how it works but we do know that an intelligent source is involved. 
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on January 29, 2014, 03:02:35 PM
You are dismissing or ignoring that science has established a valid definition for ‘complex specified information’ and can apply it to “irreducibly complex’ mechanisms to test for ‘Intelligent Design.’ Thus, we do not know who created the plasma TV or how it works but we do know that an intelligent source is involved.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Specified_complexity

From the above Wiki article (emphases added):

"Dembski states that specified complexity is a reliable marker of design by an intelligent agent, a central tenet to intelligent design which Dembski argues for in opposition to modern evolutionary theory. The concept of specified complexity is widely regarded as mathematically unsound and has not been the basis for further independent work in information theory, the theory of complex systems, or biology"

"A study by Wesley Elsberry and Jeffrey Shallit states that "Dembski's work is riddled with inconsistencies, equivocation, flawed use of mathematics, poor scholarship, and misrepresentation of others' results."[5] Another objection concerns Dembski's calculation of probabilities. According to Martin Nowak, a Harvard professor of mathematics and evolutionary biology "We cannot calculate the probability that an eye came about. We don't have the information to make the calculation."  Critics also reject applying specified complexity to infer design as an argument from ignorance."

"When Dembski's mathematical claims on specific complexity are interpreted to make them meaningful and conform to minimal standards of mathematical usage, they usually turn out to be false.  Dembski often sidesteps these criticisms by responding that he is not "in the business of offering a strict mathematical proof for the inability of material mechanisms to generate specified complexity".

"...a crucial calculation on page 297 of No Free Lunch is off by a factor of approximately 1065"

"Dembski's calculations do not model birth and death. This basic flaw in his modeling renders all of Dembski's subsequent calculations and reasoning in No Free Lunch irrelevant because his basic model does not reflect reality. Since the basis of No Free Lunch relies on this flawed argument, the entire thesis of the book collapses"

In short, your statement I quoted above is complete garbage.
* "science" has not come up with the definition, Dembski tried--poorly--to take it from Orgel and apply it to his religious agenda
* "irreducible complexity" has NEVER EVER ONCE EVER been shown.  Every time an IDer comes up with an example, scientists (that is, actual scientists) have shot it down.  Every.  Single.  Effing. Time.
* "Intelligent design" cannot repeat CANNOT be tested.  It is unfalsifiable, as I and many have stated again and again and you have uttelry failed to prove otherwise.

In other words, monster super-fire-hot-wings epic fail.


Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on January 29, 2014, 03:11:35 PM
Just to but in here with a quote from Behe which I thought Biblestudent might like. In the Dover trial. Behe was being questioned about Ir / ID and said that it was a well-tested inductive argument. Question went on


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A. Well, since it’s an inductive argument, since the purposeful arrangement of parts is an inductive argument, then in order to falsify an induction, you have to find an exception to the inductive argument.

So if somebody said that, when you see this purposeful arrangement of parts – and again, the – as I stress, the argument is quantitative, when there is a certain degree of complexity and so on. If it was shown that that did not always, did not always bespeak design, then the induction would not be reliable, and we would – so – and the argument would be, would be defeated.

Q. Now you, in fact, have stated that intelligent design can never be ruled out, correct?

A. Yes, that’s right.

In effect, Behe shows that IR/ID is not science as it can never be falsified. (Yes I know he talked about knocking the genes for the flagellum out of the bacteria that had a flagellum and seeing it evolution put it back but he wasn't prepared to waste time on that.)

Sorry, Biblestudent, but one of the originators of Creation Science Intelligent Design[1] has ruled it out of science.
 1. adjustment made as it was in 'Of Pandas and People'

biblestudent,

You seem to have missed commenting on this and, since you will have to comment on the Demski stuff above you might as well kill 2 birds with one stone....
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 29, 2014, 03:44:39 PM
I realize you gave me the hypothesis and I maintain that I answered your question. On what basis would I dismiss it? Because it proposes fairies are involved? Without examining the entire hypothesis based on the observations you made, how do I know that you haven’t observed something that might support that? And if you’re suggesting that your hypothetical is nonsense to begin with because YOU KNOW upfront that there is no such thing as fairies, then you really haven’t formed a valid hypothesis, have you?

feh.  you don't get what you don't get.

You don’t have much of a sense of humor, do you? That was a joke.

I have a terrific sense of humor.  Unfortunately humor does not always come across as obviously as intended on the internet.  Sorry I missed the joke.

You are dismissing or ignoring that science has established a valid definition for ‘complex specified information’

"complex specified information" does not exist in science.  It exists in creationism dressed up as intelligent design.  This is Dembski's brainchild and is not accepted in the science world:

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The concept of specified complexity is widely regarded as mathematically unsound and has not been the basis for further independent work in information theory, the theory of complex systems, or biology.[1][2][3]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Specified_complexity

There are footnotes to explanations as to why Dembski's idea is laughably wrong.  He, like many creationists, is just smart and educated enough to be dangerous.  And they often dabble in fields in which they have only the most rudimentary, shallow knowledge.  These links, as well as others in that article, show mathematically why Dembski is thoroughly and conclusively wrong.   

Try this: Imagine Dembski and all the other creationists are wrong.  How do you react?  What does that change for you?  Visualize what you would do in a world without "irreducible complexity", that only works on natural selection.  Don't think about why that cannot be.  Don't give me more reasons.  Just accept it for the moment and visualize what the consequences for you would be. 

I suggest it does not mean you have to stop believing in god.  It just means god is different than you imagined.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 29, 2014, 04:04:00 PM
I realize you gave me the hypothesis and I maintain that I answered your question. On what basis would I dismiss it? Because it proposes fairies are involved? Without examining the entire hypothesis based on the observations you made, how do I know that you haven’t observed something that might support that? And if you’re suggesting that your hypothetical is nonsense to begin with because YOU KNOW upfront that there is no such thing as fairies, then you really haven’t formed a valid hypothesis, have you?

feh.  you don't get what you don't get.

No. Please explain it. I truly want to know what I am missing here.

You don’t have much of a sense of humor, do you? That was a joke.

I have a terrific sense of humor.  Unfortunately humor does not always come across as obviously as intended on the internet.  Sorry I missed the joke. [/quote]

Yes. I know. No apologies needed.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 29, 2014, 05:48:27 PM

In fact, I reviewed your posting history

You sat down and read several of Median's post at once? Are you completely mad?

I bet you never want to see another exclamation mark or the word fallacy again.

Yeah...I believe I had noticed you were subjected to some of the same tactics when I was reading through his posting history. It's tolerable when there is an effort to make an actual argument sprinkled in but that does not seem to be part of the approach.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 29, 2014, 06:52:28 PM
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

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Nam on January 29, 2014, 07:21:22 PM
7patch,

You should correct the usages of "p oker", it's not just once. It reads like a second or third rough draft. You state facts without providing sources for those facts. You also use juvenile language (crack whore) to add a bit of amateurish humor. If this were an actual published article I would dismiss reading further past the lack of sources and the juvenile vocabulary used.  I say this because, if you want who this is targeted toward to take it seriously, these things need to be addressed.

Otherwise: good effort.

-Nam

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 29, 2014, 07:32:06 PM
7patch,

You should correct the usages of "p oker", it's not just once.

For some reason I can't type the word p oker correctly, either the location I'm using won't allow it or WWGHA won't allow it.

It reads like a second or third rough draft. You state facts without providing sources for those facts. You also use juvenile language (crack whore) to add a bit of amateurish humor. If this were an actual published article I would dismiss reading further past the lack of sources and the juvenile vocabulary used.  I say this because, if you want who this is targeted toward to take it seriously, these things need to be addressed.

I assume you're joking?  Heh, it was intended to be casual easy read.

Otherwise: good effort.

-Nam

Thanks.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: magicmiles on January 29, 2014, 07:36:09 PM

For some reason I can't type the word p oker correctly, either the location I'm using won't allow it or WWGHA won't allow it.


WWGHA won't allow it. It also won't allow f ireplace, f irewood or c himney.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Nam on January 29, 2014, 08:59:13 PM
My bad. I forgot certain words aren't allowed. I retract that part. You have it set up like an article, and you do somewhat source certain things (person's name, and a lot of wiki) but the intent, and I could be wrong, is to counter whomever, and it's a bit sloppy if written as an "article", which reads like one. If it's just a well thought out response--nevermind.

-Nam
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 29, 2014, 09:20:05 PM
It's just my review of the Dembski article that BibleStudent provided.

I guess it is structured like an article that could be submitted for peer review but that isn't the intention.  If it were I would have written it to be professional.

I gave it structure so my points could be compared with the article by Dembski, side by side.



Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: screwtape on January 30, 2014, 09:06:38 AM
Try this: Imagine Dembski and all the other creationists are wrong.  How do you react?  What does that change for you?  Visualize what you would do in a world without "irreducible complexity", that only works on natural selection.  Don't think about why that cannot be.  Don't give me more reasons.  Just accept it for the moment and visualize what the consequences for you would be. 

I suggest it does not mean you have to stop believing in god.  It just means god is different than you imagined.

This was actually the most important part of my post.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on January 30, 2014, 09:56:57 AM
This was actually the most important part of my post.

That's probably why he ignored it.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Hatter23 on January 30, 2014, 05:07:18 PM


Quote
PURE HYPOCRISY. Does it feel good to lie for your God?

Irrelevant....hasty generalization --> logical fallacy.

Asking a question is NOT a logical fallacy.


Actually, it can be. Complex Question and Loaded Question(which is Circular Reasoning)

Yours was a loaded question.

So that's One fallacy for you and something well into three digits for Bible Student.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 30, 2014, 08:50:07 PM
If science is not about determining 'absolute certainty' (which I agree with), then what makes you so 'certain' that I may not be correct?

I never said I had some absolute certainty (strawman). I said the burden of proof is on you and you have not met that burden of proof. I also noted the many fallacies that you have continually used in an attempt to support your position. Just b/c a certain position may or may not be logically possible does not in any way tell us if it is actually true. Again, you have the burden of proof and I have not made the claim which you have accused me of making.

Are you suggesting that your claim regarding his non-existence is fact and indisputable?

NOPE. I'm saying you haven't met your burden of proof and that belief in something (especially supernatural claims) should be withheld until sufficient evidence has been presented, which you have not done.

I would also suggest you consider the efforts of several scientists to falsify it. Do you believe that these highly educated and experienced professionals would be trying to falsify it if they felt it was unfalsifiable? You can't have it both ways. ID cannot be both falsifiable and unfalsifiable when it is convenient.

I addressed this in a previous response (noting there's a difference between ID and IR). Care to site some sources for your claim here?

Not that I am necessarily making a claim here by providing a definition but here is an example of you claiming my basic definition is wrong but failing to explain why or how.

Not sure what you are referring to here.

And, again, please see post #152....and if you feel there is an error in what I used to reach my conclusion then please state why and provide your own claims to support your position.

This is yet again another irrational attempt, by you, to shift the burden of proof. There is no requirement for me to present my position b/c I'm not the one making the positive claims here. I could simply be agnostic about the whole thing. It is up to YOU to demonstrate your claims by use of evidence and/or valid and sound reasoning. But you haven't done that. You just keep using fallacious reasoning.

Here are your arguments:

Quote
the incredible complexity of life and the vastness of the universe points to an Intelligent Designer (the God of the Bible)

You haven't even begun to demonstrate these claims. In fact, all you said was "For me..." - once again making this all about opinion ('what it means to me') that earlier you said it was not. Looking at something and just CLAIMING, "It's complex therefore God!" is just another argument from ignorance - no matter how many times you try to use it. Furthermore, even IF (and that's a big IF) you could show 'complexity=desisn' this would not in any way get you to "the God of the Bible". That's an entirely different subject. Which God? Who's interpretation? Which bible? Can you independently demonstrate this God exists by use of actual non-vague/non-shifty evidence (like you would require of a salesman at your door)? This claim is just an opinion. It doesn't actually demonstrate anything.

Quote
The naturalistic worldview and the theory of evolution along with the various hypotheses relating to abiogenesis all present an alternate view but, even collectively, they come up way too short to convince me. There are so many assumptions guesses, dishonesty, and floating variables behind crucial areas of it. Phylogenetics, for me, only demonstrates that different species have similar DNA which could point to an Intelligent Designer just as easily as it could to a common ancestor. Convincing evidence of beneficial random mutation is virtually non-existent. And, evolution cannot explain our desire to create things like art and music. Evolution cannot explain why animals have been known to flee an area just before a tsunami occurs. The TOE cannot account for why or how sexual reproduction evolved….and on and on I could go. These may seem like trivial issues but attempts to explain how the processes of evolution would/could account for them does not fit. Also, I could add numerous more unanswerable questions to the list. And this says nothing of the BIG blank that discussions about abiogenesis creates.

This is just another argument from ignorance/incredulity. "I just can't see how it could have happened naturally. Therefore, Yahweh did it!" It also hints at a false dichotomy (that somehow you think there's only two options you could hold - 1. Believing it happened naturally or 2. believing a God did it). But these are NOT the only two options one could hold. You could admit, for example, that you don't know and just be agnostic about it (for starters), or you could be someone who thinks that foreign life from other galaxies placed life here, or you could believe solipsism is true that none of this is real. There are not just two options.

I find the moral argument, the Kalam Cosmological Argument (contemporary version), Intelligent Design Theory, the Ontological Argument (still trying to really understand this one), and the historical reliability of the Bible to be among the most influential in my belief.

Time and time again you bring it right back to your personal opinion (and yet you said earlier that you don't think science is about opinion). What gives?

1. The moral argument - You haven't demonstrated that there is some "objective" moral law/set of rules that applies independently of people. The fact that people thinking morally does not in any way point to some teleology or divine deity 'thing'.

2. The Kalam Cosmological Arugment - This argument has been dealt with and refuted. Have you ever even bothered to look up the refutation of these arguments? I suggested going to YouTube. Kalam fails on many accounts. It uses an equivocation on the term "begins to exist", assuming that our local universe began to exist out of non-existence. But the Big Bang model does NOT say that. It speaks of an initial singularity, of which we cannot currently speak past. When a table begins to exist does it do so out of non-existent material? It doesn't, does it? In the same way, the Kalam is flawed b/c it merely assumes something that is not known. I could go further but I have to leave soon. Next.

3. The Ontological Argument - You cannot define your deity into existence, neither can you arbitrary claim what the term "greater" means in relation to existing. This is where this argument breaks down. Ever hear of Xenos paradox? His argument failed for a similar reason. Merely making the CLAIM that "the greatest possible thing that exists must exist" is to start with your conclusion (namely that this "God" thing must be in that category). Anyone can define anything they want to as anything. But that demonstrates nothing but a mere linguistic trick. "Hey! I defined this thing as the greatest!" Ok, and? Imagination doesn't make a God real.

4. The Historical "Reliability" of the Bible - Textual accounts of miracles do not establish that miracles occurred. Do you believe all the other holy books claiming miracles but that compete with your religion? If not, then this argument fails. Just b/c YOUR book makes "different" claims (like a Spiderman comic is 'different' from a Batman one) doesn't make it true or reliable. Do you believe the second salesman at your door b/c his claims are different from the first guy?

Second, the bible is not "historically reliable". It makes all kinds of mistakes, errors, direct contradictions, and fabrications (just like the Koran does). Why on earth would you think this collection of old writings was "reliable" for demonstrating the supernatural unless you had FIRST believed it AND THEN went out looking for confirmation??

Christianity logically satisfies my need to understand believe:

How we got here.
Why we’re here.
Where we’re going.
How the universe and ‘life’ came to be.

Fixed this last one for you. These aren't arguments. They are just personal statements about you, not about demonstrating how you think you know these things. The fact that you have a desire to "know" something (right now) doesn't in any way show that the things that you believe are actually true and accurate. You need more than just credulity for that.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 31, 2014, 03:36:22 PM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 31, 2014, 03:40:27 PM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Dante on January 31, 2014, 04:09:09 PM
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?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 31, 2014, 04:40:41 PM

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?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: median on January 31, 2014, 04:59:26 PM

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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 31, 2014, 05:10:26 PM

<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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 31, 2014, 05:16:07 PM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 31, 2014, 05:18:52 PM

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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 31, 2014, 05:20:36 PM

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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: One Above All on January 31, 2014, 05:24:32 PM
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).
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 31, 2014, 06:12:03 PM

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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 31, 2014, 06:21:16 PM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 31, 2014, 07:04:22 PM

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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Nam on January 31, 2014, 07:06:56 PM
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
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on January 31, 2014, 07:11:46 PM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Nam on January 31, 2014, 07:17:33 PM
See my post above as a good example of not only being a "smartass" but also an "asshole". ;)

-Nam
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 31, 2014, 07:44:44 PM

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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 31, 2014, 07:53:50 PM

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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on January 31, 2014, 08:41:03 PM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on February 01, 2014, 06:43:26 AM
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?

Quote
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.

Quote
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?

Quote
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?

Quote
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 01, 2014, 09:11:21 AM
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.

Quote
Quote
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?’


Quote
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.

Quote
Quote
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)

Quote
Quote
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.



Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Hatter23 on February 01, 2014, 09:15:56 AM


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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on February 01, 2014, 10:23:27 AM
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.

Quote
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.

Quote
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.

Quote
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.

Quote
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.

Quote
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.

Quote
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.

Quote
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?

Quote
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.

Quote
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....

Quote
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.
 
Quote
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on February 02, 2014, 03:19:54 PM
For anyone who still thinks ID is a good explanation and for those who juts want to check, I present... tada!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODetOE6cbbc&list=PLECD9ACF9D6F1F8FF&feature=share

Still sold on ID?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Nam on February 02, 2014, 04:19:29 PM
You notice that female god's apple didn't actually hide anything?[1]

-Nam
 1. I'm such a perv
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Graybeard on February 02, 2014, 09:35:40 PM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Quesi on February 03, 2014, 01:11:33 PM

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! 
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Boots on February 03, 2014, 01:19:07 PM
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!
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 02:56:31 PM
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.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on February 12, 2014, 03:13:58 PM

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

Who are you kidding? One of the significant facts discovered during the Dover Trial was that the Creationist textbook, 'Of Pandas and People' was merely edited to become an[wiki] Intelligent Design[/wiki] textbook by changing each mention of god with designer and so on.  There can be no doubt that the whole purpose of ID was to try and evade the rules that banned creationism in US schools. It was designed (pun intended) to replace the teaching of creationism (a clearly religious idea) but retain the concepts of creationism. Why else keep a creationist textbook save for a few word changes?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on February 12, 2014, 03:16:33 PM

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.

In my opinion, ID is precisely a religion pretending to not be a religion.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on February 12, 2014, 04:00:24 PM
How does teaching a Hindu myth have anything to do with teaching Intelligent Design? ID is not a religion. Strange analogy.
Intelligent design isn't itself a religion.  However, it is religious; it's an adjunct to Christianity, specifically the Biblical literalism of many Protestant sects.  The pretense that it is not is so threadbare that it doesn't even serve as a fig leaf anymore.  Look at who primarily pushes intelligent design - the Discovery Institute (http://www.discovery.org/about.php), a Christian think tank.  They freely acknowledge that they're basing their position on Judeo-Christian culture, which essentially means Christianity.  They even specifically talk about "the reality of God" and pushing ethics based on the Judeo-Christian mindset.

Intelligent design is a re-envisioning of Christian creationism, an attempt to do an end run around the separation of church and state principle so that they can teach an essentially religious belief in taxpayer-funded public school classrooms.  It may not push any one specific creation myth (unlike, say, Ken Ham), but it is pretty clearly predicated on the Christian belief system.  More to the point, it isn't a scientific theory in the first place, because it makes no real effort to explain the origins of life using the scientific method.  It simply dresses up "God did it" in language that is intentionally vague, to make it look like it isn't actually a religious belief.

Ask yourself this, BibleStudent.  If intelligent design isn't a religious belief, how come everyone who supports it is?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 04:15:34 PM
Ask yourself this, BibleStudent.  If intelligent design isn't a religious belief, how come everyone who supports it is?

The answer to that is quite simple. Intelligent Design Theory does an excellent job of scientifically demonstrating how a Designer could be the cause of the beginning of life.

Why would individuals who have written off any hope of discovering a Creator be interested in supporting it?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Jag on February 12, 2014, 04:22:44 PM
Intelligent Design Theory does an excellent job of scientifically demonstrating how a Designer could be the cause of the beginning of life.

It does no such thing, as has been repeatedly explained to you throughout this thread.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 04:33:43 PM
Intelligent Design Theory does an excellent job of scientifically demonstrating how a Designer could be the cause of the beginning of life.

It does no such thing, as has been repeatedly explained to you throughout this thread.

That is not an accurate assessment. I provided an example in post #69 of IDT as science and there were some rather feeble attempts to tear it down..... but certainly nothing that clearly made it an unscientific endeavor. 
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on February 12, 2014, 04:35:39 PM
Ask yourself this, BibleStudent.  If intelligent design isn't a religious belief, how come everyone who supports it is?

The answer to that is quite simple. Intelligent Design Theory does an excellent job of scientifically demonstrating how a Designer could be the cause of the beginning of life.

Why would individuals who have written off any hope of discovering a Creator be interested in supporting it?

Have you read what we posted? ID is a cover for creationism - don't be fooled.

Meanwhile, why not try some work on the topic yourself and report back? We need to know the following to take your claims seriously -

1. ID currently only makes claims that something or other in nature could not have evolved. It doesn't explain anything. I think we need to know how this whole design process was done - i.e. why is there some wonderfully intricate 'designs' inside cells yet humans, from a design point of view are a mess. The same applies down to the smallest viruses. How do you suppose the design process went along?

2. Identify a designer - no, I don't mean pop into Genesis and pick a name! I mean use the evidence that is carefully researched to work back to find out who did it.

Let us know when you can answer the above with evidence and not guesses  and we will have something to talk about.

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on February 12, 2014, 04:36:48 PM
That is not an accurate assessment. I provided an example in post #69 of IDT as science and there were some rather feeble attempts to tear it down..... but certainly nothing that clearly made it an unscientific endeavor.

Could you post a direct link to that post?  I just want to make sure that we're all clear on which one you're referring to.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on February 12, 2014, 04:38:26 PM
Look, Biblestudent, you are looking at the school text book, These are books for teenagers not for graduates. There is no way the such a book can go into all the intricacies of assessing the details in the family tree of life. Your first suggestion of an error turned out to be nothing more than nit-picking.

Nit-picking? The book clearly conveyed that snakes evolved from lizards. It was not stated as a likelihood or a possibility. It said it has been proven. That is false and misleading.....which seems acceptable to you yet you will take exception to Responsive Ed teaching alleged inaccuracies and lies? Do you see what I'm getting at here?



You say false and misleading. How would you phrase the text to make it fit your view of things? It is going to have to be a very few changes but have a go.

I simply would have presented it as a popular hypotheses.

Quote
While you are at it, please state some prediction made by ID theory.

Predictions of Design (Hypothesis):
(1) Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information).
(2) Forms containing large amounts of novel information will appear in the fossil record suddenly and without similar precursors.
(3) Convergence will occur routinely. That is, genes and other functional parts will be re-used in different and unrelated organisms.
(4) Much so-called "junk DNA" will turn out to perform valuable functions.

http://www.evolutionnews.org

This doesn't answer anything mentioned to you recently, Biblestudent
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Jag on February 12, 2014, 04:53:37 PM
That is not an accurate assessment. I provided an example in post #69 of IDT as science and there were some rather feeble attempts to tear it down..... but certainly nothing that clearly made it an unscientific endeavor.

Could you post a direct link to that post?  I just want to make sure that we're all clear on which one you're referring to.
Seconded. Please link.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 04:58:43 PM
This is the post I am referring to:


Look, Biblestudent, you are looking at the school text book, These are books for teenagers not for graduates. There is no way the such a book can go into all the intricacies of assessing the details in the family tree of life. Your first suggestion of an error turned out to be nothing more than nit-picking.

Nit-picking? The book clearly conveyed that snakes evolved from lizards. It was not stated as a likelihood or a possibility. It said it has been proven. That is false and misleading.....which seems acceptable to you yet you will take exception to Responsive Ed teaching alleged inaccuracies and lies? Do you see what I'm getting at here?



You say false and misleading. How would you phrase the text to make it fit your view of things? It is going to have to be a very few changes but have a go.

I simply would have presented it as a popular hypotheses.

Quote
While you are at it, please state some prediction made by ID theory.

Predictions of Design (Hypothesis):
(1) Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information).
(2) Forms containing large amounts of novel information will appear in the fossil record suddenly and without similar precursors.
(3) Convergence will occur routinely. That is, genes and other functional parts will be re-used in different and unrelated organisms.
(4) Much so-called "junk DNA" will turn out to perform valuable functions.

http://www.evolutionnews.org

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 05:06:13 PM
They have to be "predictions" that are somehow different from what we'd expect if the organisms had come about naturally.  Otherwise, you might as well also include the prediction that "the designed organism will reside on Earth", too.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Jag on February 12, 2014, 05:08:16 PM
This is the post I am referring to:


Look, Biblestudent, you are looking at the school text book, These are books for teenagers not for graduates. There is no way the such a book can go into all the intricacies of assessing the details in the family tree of life. Your first suggestion of an error turned out to be nothing more than nit-picking.

Nit-picking? The book clearly conveyed that snakes evolved from lizards. It was not stated as a likelihood or a possibility. It said it has been proven. That is false and misleading.....which seems acceptable to you yet you will take exception to Responsive Ed teaching alleged inaccuracies and lies? Do you see what I'm getting at here?



You say false and misleading. How would you phrase the text to make it fit your view of things? It is going to have to be a very few changes but have a go.

I simply would have presented it as a popular hypotheses.

Quote
While you are at it, please state some prediction made by ID theory.

Predictions of Design (Hypothesis):
(1) Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information).
(2) Forms containing large amounts of novel information will appear in the fossil record suddenly and without similar precursors.
(3) Convergence will occur routinely. That is, genes and other functional parts will be re-used in different and unrelated organisms.
(4) Much so-called "junk DNA" will turn out to perform valuable functions.

http://www.evolutionnews.org

Oh I see. So you believe the numerous responses that explained why you are wrong in calling this "science" are feeble? In that case...
Intelligent Design Theory does an excellent job of scientifically demonstrating how a Designer could be the cause of the beginning of life.

It does no such thing, as has been repeatedly explained to you throughout this thread.

...I rest my case.

This is why it's all but impossible to talk to creationists about science - you folks have no idea what you are arguing against, particularly regarding the scientific method and what the ToE actually claims.

And you're also applying "survival of the fittest" incorrectly.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 05:12:51 PM
Have you read what we posted? ID is a cover for creationism - don't be fooled.

I am not fooled. I know precisely what I am talking about.

Quote
Meanwhile, why not try some work on the topic yourself and report back? We need to know the following to take your claims seriously -

1. ID currently only makes claims that something or other in nature could not have evolved. It doesn't explain anything. I think we need to know how this whole design process was done - i.e. why is there some wonderfully intricate 'designs' inside cells yet humans, from a design point of view are a mess. The same applies down to the smallest viruses. How do you suppose the design process went along?

I don't know how the "design process went along." I only know that ID provides a more plausible explanation for how life began.

Quote
2. Identify a designer - no, I don't mean pop into Genesis and pick a name! I mean use the evidence that is carefully researched to work back to find out who did it.

While ID does not posit a specific creator, I believe it was the Christian God of the Bible and I have already described in a previous post how I reached this conclusion. You can go back and read it again if you'd like.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 05:18:06 PM
...I rest my case.

This is why it's all but impossible to talk to creationists about science - you folks have no idea what you are arguing against, particularly regarding the scientific method and what the ToE actually claims.

And you're also applying "survival of the fittest" incorrectly.
Quote
Oh I see. So you believe the numerous responses that explained why you are wrong in calling this "science" are feeble? In that case...

What I received was responses based on individual interpretations of what science is and what science does. No one cited where these so-called boundaries (demarcation) originate from. In other words, technically speaking, the scientific method is being employed by IDT but being disregarded as pseudoscience based on what amounts to nothing more than personal opinions. It is simply not possible to invalidate IDT as science because it follows all of the rules.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 05:22:43 PM
They have to be "predictions" that are somehow different from what we'd expect if they organisms had come about naturally.  Otherwise, you might as well also include the prediction that "the designed organism will reside on Earth", too.

Why would the predictions have to be different? I'm not sure I understand what you are getting at here.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: wheels5894 on February 12, 2014, 05:32:59 PM
They have to be "predictions" that are somehow different from what we'd expect if they organisms had come about naturally.  Otherwise, you might as well also include the prediction that "the designed organism will reside on Earth", too.

Why would the predictions have to be different? I'm not sure I understand what you are getting at here.

Prediction of something you already know is not prediction. All 4 of your so-called predictions are, in fact, already known. Its the equivalent to predicting the lottery numbers a hour after the draw!

Predictions have to be something we don't know and then have to be tested. ID makes a prediction that there is a designer. Finding evidence that there is a designer - i.e evidence of the existence of one - would make a great start. No jumps to faith though - it needs evidence.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: RED_ApeTHEIST on February 12, 2014, 05:35:14 PM
I don't know how the "design process went along." I only know that ID provides a more plausible explanation for how life began.

What is ID more plausible than, and how is it more plausible? You do realize that "we don't know" is a viable answer, right? Plausible doesn't mean correct.


Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 05:40:53 PM
I don't know how the "design process went along." I only know that ID provides a more plausible explanation for how life began.

What is ID more plausible than, and how is it more plausible? You do realize that "we don't know" is a viable answer, right? Plausible doesn't mean correct.

See my post #152.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on February 12, 2014, 05:44:29 PM
Oh I see. So you believe the numerous responses that explained why you are wrong in calling this "science" are feeble? In that case...

What I received was responses based on individual interpretations of what science is and what science does. No one cited where these so-called boundaries (demarcation) originate from. In other words, technically speaking, the scientific method is being employed by IDT but being disregarded as pseudoscience based on what amounts to nothing more than personal opinions. It is simply not possible to invalidate IDT as science because it follows all of the rules.

It has been thoroughly explained to you that "Intelligent Design" does not follow the rules.  ID fails to use its own definitions properly, and is specifically tailored to trick you.  See my reply #280 for all of the details.



Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on February 12, 2014, 05:48:04 PM
What I received was responses based on individual interpretations of what science is and what science does. No one cited where these so-called boundaries (demarcation) originate from. In other words, technically speaking, the scientific method is being employed by IDT but being disregarded as pseudoscience based on what amounts to nothing more than personal opinions. It is simply not possible to invalidate IDT as science because it follows all of the rules.

Look, ignoring his strawman atheist, even Matt Slick - a prominent Christian apologist - understands what science entails:

http://carm.org/atheist-error-asking-for-material-evidence-for-god (http://carm.org/atheist-error-asking-for-material-evidence-for-god)

The scientific method is philosophically based on methodological naturalism. ID violates that philosophy with a supernatural "conclusion" which cannot be falsified. By all means you can continue to throw your blanket over this and totally ignore it, but this is what science is based on, like it or lump it.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 05:53:08 PM
Look, ignoring his strawman atheist, even Matt Slick - a prominent Christian apologist - understands what science entails:

http://carm.org/atheist-error-asking-for-material-evidence-for-god (http://carm.org/atheist-error-asking-for-material-evidence-for-god)

The scientific method is philosophically based on methodological naturalism. ID violates that philosophy with a supernatural "conclusion" which cannot be falsified. By all means you can continue to throw your blanket over this and totally ignore it, but this is what science is based on, like it or lump it.

Kindly explain how any theory relating to abiogenesis is any more scientific than IDT.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on February 12, 2014, 05:57:12 PM
Look, ignoring his strawman atheist, even Matt Slick - a prominent Christian apologist - understands what science entails:

http://carm.org/atheist-error-asking-for-material-evidence-for-god (http://carm.org/atheist-error-asking-for-material-evidence-for-god)

The scientific method is philosophically based on methodological naturalism. ID violates that philosophy with a supernatural "conclusion" which cannot be falsified. By all means you can continue to throw your blanket over this and totally ignore it, but this is what science is based on, like it or lump it.

Kindly explain how any theory relating to abiogenesis is any more scientific than IDT.

Because the conclusions are based on naturalistic explanations.

Regardless of this, not one scientific theory relating to abiogenesis eliminates ID.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on February 12, 2014, 06:03:12 PM

Kindly explain how any theory relating to abiogenesis is any more scientific than IDT.

Abiogenesis is a hypothesis, not a theory.  Abiogenesis hypotheses use the scientific method.  Intelligent Design does not use the scientific method.

Again, it has been explained to you that Intelligent Design does not use the scientific method.  See my reply #280 for details.

EDIT:

Furthermore, why do you keep insisting that Intelligent Design is a theory?  You have offered no evidence that Intelligent Deisgn uses the scientific method properly or that it is a theory.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 06:05:44 PM
They have to be "predictions" that are somehow different from what we'd expect if they organisms had come about naturally.  Otherwise, you might as well also include the prediction that "the designed organism will reside on Earth", too.

Why would the predictions have to be different? I'm not sure I understand what you are getting at here.

Because if ID doesn't predict any details that aren't covered by present theories, then it's not explaining anything any better than present theories.  It brings nothing to the table.  It is empty.  That was my point with the "organism will reside on Earth" part.  We could add "the organisms will be Carbon-based" as well.  That wouldn't be a relevant prediction, either, so it would fit right into your list as well.

Here's an example of what I mean, with flat-Earthism.  As a scientific hypothesis[1], it predicts that we can walk along the surface of the Earth as though it were flat.  But the competing "round-Earth" hypothesis also predicts that we should be able to walk along the Earth as though it were flat.  So the prediction of being able to walk on a fairly flat surface of the Earth isn't a useful prediction in favor of flat-Earthism.

Let's say someone makes the further hypothesis, and reasoning, of how a round Earth means that other celestial bodies should also usually appear to be spheroids - expanding the model.  Nothing in flat-Earthism says that other celestial objects can't be spheroids, but it's certainly not a prediction of that model or anything that comes from it.  So this would be a case where the round-Earth model predicts things about the universe that the flat-Earth model does not.  This ends up being a point in its favor.

That's why a theoretical model making unique predictions is important.  If its predictions are not unique, then they don't belong to that model - they instead belong to some other more general one that encompasses both it and the models that are competing with it.  In my example, "ability to walk in a straight line" is a prediction that belongs to neither the round-Earth model nor to the flat-Earth model; it could be said to belong to a "large surface" model that is more general and encompasses both the other models.[2]
 1. Disregarding for the moment the fact that it's been falsified; the fact that it's been proven false isn't relevant to my point.
 2. The "large surface" model in this case would simply be, "the Earth is really big, regardless of its shape".
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 06:06:45 PM

Kindly explain how any theory relating to abiogenesis is any more scientific than IDT.

Abiogenesis is a hypothesis, not a theory.  Abiogenesis hypotheses use the scientific method.  Intelligent Design does not use the scientific method.

Again, it has been explained to you that Intelligent Design does not use the scientific method.  See my reply #280 for details.

EDIT:

Furthermore, why do you keep insisting that Intelligent Design is a theory?  You have offered no evidence that Intelligent Deisgn uses the scientific method properly or that it is a theory.

Regarding abiogenesis, what is the 'observation'?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 06:14:13 PM
Because if ID doesn't predict any details that aren't covered by present theories, then it's not explaining anything any better than present theories.

What "present theories" are you referring to that provides us with a basis for the origin of life?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 06:16:13 PM
Regarding abiogenesis, what is the 'observation'?

Abiogenic production of amino acids in the lab is but one of them.  It demonstrates that there is a set of mechanisms by which the building blocks of life can come about naturally.

What is the mechanism proposed by ID?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 06:19:55 PM
What "present theories" are you referring to that provides us with a basis for the origin of life?

I'm not talking about that, specifically, in my post.  I was talking about the origin of species.  The whole of natural science has a pretty coherent model for how that happened, in the context of Earth's geological history.

For the origin-point of biological activity on Earth, prevailing models are chemical.  They don't have a lot of predictions yet, but one they share is that amino acids and other organic components should be able to be produced abiogenically (they can be).  This is a prediction not contradicted, but also not made, by ID.

Care to address the rest of my post?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 06:20:25 PM
Regarding abiogenesis, what is the 'observation'?

Abiogenic production of amino acids in the lab is but one of them.  It demonstrates that there is a set of mechanisms by which the building blocks of life can come about naturally.

What is the mechanism proposed by ID?

An Intelligent Designer.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on February 12, 2014, 06:20:59 PM
BibleStudent,

Why don't you explain why a naturalistic explanation is less plausible than ID, because I'm at a loss as to how a god can cause life to arise without affecting nature. It's like expecting Matt Groening to be able to manipulate the movements of Homer Simpson without drawing him.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 06:22:14 PM
Regarding abiogenesis, what is the 'observation'?

Abiogenic production of amino acids in the lab is but one of them.  It demonstrates that there is a set of mechanisms by which the building blocks of life can come about naturally.

What is the mechanism proposed by ID?

An Intelligent Designer.

If you asked the mechanism by which your car was fixed, and someone said "by deliberate intent", that wouldn't really answer the question, would it?

No more than yours answers mine.

What is the mechanism of abiogenesis proposed by ID?  I get that you think a designer was involved.  Great.  What mechanism did it use?

EDIT:  This doesn't have to be a definitive answer.  That would be hypocritical to ask.  But any proposed mechanism would be great.  Anything at all.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jdawg70 on February 12, 2014, 06:30:09 PM
If you asked the mechanism by which your car was fixed, and someone said "on purpose", that wouldn't really answer the question, would it?

No more than yours answers mine.

What is the mechanism of abiogenesis proposed by ID?  I get that you think a designer was involved.  Great.  What mechanism did it use?

EDIT:  This doesn't have to be a definitive answer.  That would be hypocritical to ask.  But any proposed mechanism would be great.  Anything at all.

You must have missed his not-at-all-subtle constant capitalization of Designer and Creator.

I point this out primarily to ensure that BibleStudent's presupposition (intentional or otherwise) isn't obscured from view...
...but he has pretty consistently typed Creator, not creator.

I was wondering how long it would take for someone to point that out that. It is intentional.

The mechanism he proposes is divine magic.

Why he keeps pretending that he doesn't have a religious agenda...
Why he keeps pretending that ID doesn't have a religious agenda...
...divine magic I guess.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 06:33:07 PM
That would be the lack of any definable mechanism.  If he admits as much openly, then I'll walk away from this happily.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on February 12, 2014, 06:58:03 PM
The answer to that is quite simple. Intelligent Design Theory does an excellent job of scientifically demonstrating how a Designer could be the cause of the beginning of life.
You did not answer the question I actually asked.

I asked you why all of the people who actually support intelligent design are religious (specifically, Christians).  Please answer that this time.

Quote from: BibleStudent
Why would individuals who have written off any hope of discovering a Creator be interested in supporting it?
That presupposes that they have, in fact, "written off any hope of discovering a Creator".  Science is not about finding what you 'hope' to find, it is about finding what's actually out there to find.  Someone who only looks for what he believes should exist (or wants to exist) is not practicing science in any way, shape, or form.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Jag on February 12, 2014, 07:02:22 PM
...I rest my case.

This is why it's all but impossible to talk to creationists about science - you folks have no idea what you are arguing against, particularly regarding the scientific method and what the ToE actually claims.

And you're also applying "survival of the fittest" incorrectly.
Quote
Oh I see. So you believe the numerous responses that explained why you are wrong in calling this "science" are feeble? In that case...

What I received was responses based on individual interpretations of what science is and what science does. No one cited where these so-called boundaries (demarcation) originate from. In other words, technically speaking, the scientific method is being employed by IDT but being disregarded as pseudoscience based on what amounts to nothing more than personal opinions. It is simply not possible to invalidate IDT as science because it follows all of the rules.

Again, you don't understand what you are attempting to argue against well enough to make a case of any sort - and this quoted reply demonstrates that.

You've been told repeatedly. Given your inability to grasp what you are being told, I can only draw a few potential conclusions. You aren't actually reading the replies you are getting (but you do quote them, so maybe you are reading them); you don't actually understand what is written (more likely than the previous), or you are willfully resisting understanding what is being written (which is pretty dishonest). In any case, I have to drop out of this discussion before I forget to resist the urge to speak to you contemptuously.

Enjoy your stay.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: RED_ApeTHEIST on February 12, 2014, 08:41:50 PM
In a nutshell, for me, the incredible complexity of life and the vastness of the universe points to an Intelligent Designer (the God of the Bible). The naturalistic worldview and the theory of evolution along with the various hypotheses relating to abiogenesis all present an alternate view but, even collectively, they come up way too short to convince me. There are so many assumptions guesses, dishonesty, and floating variables behind crucial areas of it. Phylogenetics, for me, only demonstrates that different species have similar DNA which could point to an Intelligent Designer just as easily as it could to a common ancestor. Convincing evidence of beneficial random mutation is virtually non-existent. And, evolution cannot explain our desire to create things like art and music. Evolution cannot explain why animals have been known to flee an area just before a tsunami occurs. The TOE cannot account for why or how sexual reproduction evolved….and on and on I could go. These may seem like trivial issues but attempts to explain how the processes of evolution would/could account for them does not fit. Also, I could add numerous more unanswerable questions to the list. And this says nothing of the BIG blank that discussions about abiogenesis creates. Do I think the ToE is a complete farce? Absolutely not….and I have said this numerous times so please don't start flaming me for making these comments.
 
I find the moral argument, the Kalam Cosmological Argument (contemporary version), Intelligent Design Theory, the Ontological Argument (still trying to really understand this one), and the historical reliability of the Bible to be among the most influential in my belief.

I find the Bible to be an exceptional, accurate, and convincing account of why the world and life exists.

Christianity logically satisfies my need to understand:

How we got here.
Why we’re here.
Where we’re going.
How the universe and ‘life’ came to be.


This does not answer my question.

I asked, specifically, what ID is more plausible than and what gives it this plausibility. Since both evolution and abiogenesis can both be accepted without contradicting the concept of ID then I don't see why you consider them as being an alternative. That's like saying that teh sport of football is an alternative to the concept of referees.

Also, even if you discard both evolution and the current model of abiogenesis, you still need to provide a theory about how it was done. The concept of a designer exists completely separately from an understanding of the process by which  said creation takes place.

A deist god may have used abiogenesis and evolution to create the human race as it exists now.can you explain how this possibility can be if evolution and abiogenesis stand in opposition to a designer as you say?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 09:17:09 PM
Regarding abiogenesis, what is the 'observation'?

Abiogenic production of amino acids in the lab is but one of them.  It demonstrates that there is a set of mechanisms by which the building blocks of life can come about naturally.

What is the mechanism proposed by ID?

An Intelligent Designer.

If you asked the mechanism by which your car was fixed, and someone said "by deliberate intent", that wouldn't really answer the question, would it?

No more than yours answers mine.

What is the mechanism of abiogenesis proposed by ID?  I get that you think a designer was involved.  Great.  What mechanism did it use?

EDIT:  This doesn't have to be a definitive answer.  That would be hypocritical to ask.  But any proposed mechanism would be great.  Anything at all.

I answered your question. The Intelligent Designer is the mechanism. Why is that difficult to understand?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: RED_ApeTHEIST on February 12, 2014, 09:34:00 PM
Regarding abiogenesis, what is the 'observation'?

Abiogenic production of amino acids in the lab is but one of them.  It demonstrates that there is a set of mechanisms by which the building blocks of life can come about naturally.

What is the mechanism proposed by ID?

An Intelligent Designer.

If you asked the mechanism by which your car was fixed, and someone said "by deliberate intent", that wouldn't really answer the question, would it?

No more than yours answers mine.

What is the mechanism of abiogenesis proposed by ID?  I get that you think a designer was involved.  Great.  What mechanism did it use?

EDIT:  This doesn't have to be a definitive answer.  That would be hypocritical to ask.  But any proposed mechanism would be great.  Anything at all.

I answered your question. The Intelligent Designer is the mechanism. Why is that difficult to understand?

No, the intelligent designer is the agent. in the above analogy the mechanic who fixes the car would be the agent. The mechanism that the mechanic uses to fix the car is a separate question from who fixed it.

DO you understand the difference between mechanism and agent now?

Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 09:47:40 PM
I answered your question. The Intelligent Designer is the mechanism. Why is that difficult to understand?

I'm an intelligent designer of reports on geology.  I have a mechanism through which I compose them, though.  My simply being an intelligent designer doesn't poof them into existence, unless I actually do something.

If ID hasn't even thought up a hypothetical mechanism for their hypothetical designer to use, then at least be honest about it.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 09:48:03 PM
BibleStudent,

Why don't you explain why a naturalistic explanation is less plausible than ID, because I'm at a loss as to how a god can cause life to arise without affecting nature. It's like expecting Matt Groening to be able to manipulate the movements of Homer Simpson without drawing him.

Makes no sense. Nature exists because of the intelligence and creative power of God.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 09:57:01 PM
I answered your question. The Intelligent Designer is the mechanism. Why is that difficult to understand?

I'm an intelligent designer of reports on geology.  I have a mechanism through which I compose them, though.

If ID hasn't even thought up a hypothetical mechanism for their hypothetical designer to use, then at least be honest about it.

If we, as humans (being intelligent), are capable of genetic engineering, then why is it so difficult to understand that an Intelligent Designer would have the ability to create DNA and then manipulate it in such a way as to create a variety of functions and structures?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 10:02:34 PM
No, the intelligent designer is the agent. in the above analogy the mechanic who fixes the car would be the agent. The mechanism that the mechanic uses to fix the car is a separate question from who fixed it.

DO you understand the difference between mechanism and agent now?

I have understood the difference between the agent and the mechanism all along. My beliefs are that the agent is both the designer and the mechanism by which life originated. Why is this so difficult to understand?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: ParkingPlaces on February 12, 2014, 10:08:22 PM
I answered your question. The Intelligent Designer is the mechanism. Why is that difficult to understand?

I'm an intelligent designer of reports on geology.  I have a mechanism through which I compose them, though.

If ID hasn't even thought up a hypothetical mechanism for their hypothetical designer to use, then at least be honest about it.

If we, as humans (being intelligent), are capable of genetic engineering, then why is it so difficult to understand that an Intelligent Designer would have the ability to create DNA and then manipulate it in such a way as to create a variety of functions and structures?

The concept is easy to understand. However, an intelligent designer does not appear to be necessary, and there is no evidence that he exists, so we're gonna go with the the concept that is even easier to understand. That natural processes are adequate to create and evolve life. And that no outside forces were involved.

If you find any evidence to the contrary, I'm sure you'll let us know. But human imagination doesn't count.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: RED_ApeTHEIST on February 12, 2014, 10:15:58 PM
No, the intelligent designer is the agent. in the above analogy the mechanic who fixes the car would be the agent. The mechanism that the mechanic uses to fix the car is a separate question from who fixed it.

DO you understand the difference between mechanism and agent now?

I have understood the difference between the agent and the mechanism all along. My beliefs are that the agent is both the designer and the mechanism by which life originated. Why is this so difficult to understand?

You haven't specified any mechanism. A mechanic has to use his nerves to move his hands, which in turn move tools, which effect change in the car. There has to be a mechanism by which the agent manipulates the circumstances it wishes to act on. Why is this so difficult to understand?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 10:24:59 PM
If we, as humans (being intelligent), are capable of genetic engineering, then why is it so difficult to understand that an Intelligent Designer would have the ability to create DNA and then manipulate it in such a way as to create a variety of functions and structures?

Without a mechanism by which it can do so, let alone a mechanism by which it does anything at all (like living), it can't.  A mechanism is the means.

You saying this really is like saying that a mechanic fixes cars just by being a mechanic, or that I can compose geological reports just by being a geologist.  Uhh, no, even intelligent beings have to actually do stuff in order to get anything done...
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 10:26:50 PM
The concept is easy to understand. However, an intelligent designer does not appear to be necessary, and there is no evidence that he exists, so we're gonna go with the the concept that is even easier to understand. That natural processes are adequate to create and evolve life. And that no outside forces were involved.

If you find any evidence to the contrary, I'm sure you'll let us know. But human imagination doesn't count.

This is where I believe you are gravely mistaken. The natural processes do not appear adequate to create and evolve life. It is my opinion that you have been duped into thinking they do. You recognize that science does not posess the answers and rely on faith that it will someday in order to craft a rationale argument for your belief.....similar to my faith that we will someday learn that God was the intelligence, designer, and creator of life.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 10:39:25 PM
If we, as humans (being intelligent), are capable of genetic engineering, then why is it so difficult to understand that an Intelligent Designer would have the ability to create DNA and then manipulate it in such a way as to create a variety of functions and structures?

Without a mechanism by which it can do so, let alone a mechanism by which it does anything at all (like living), it can't.  A mechanism is the means.

You saying this really is like saying that a mechanic fixes cars just by being a mechanic, or that I can compose geological reports just by being a geologist.  Uhh, no, even intelligent beings have to actually do stuff in order to get anything done...

I completely understand the point you are making but identifying the specific mechanism you are looking for would require having an intimate knowledge of who the designer is.

As for me, the designer is God and according to the knowledge given in the Bible,He is capable of creating life as He sees fit by the power he possesses.

It is not necessary to identify a specific mechanism in order to conclude that an intelligent agent designed and created life.  That is to say that, if a living structure can be shown to possess the type of complexity and design that can only originate from an intelligent source, then the mechanism by which the intelligent agent created that structure is inconsequential.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 10:48:29 PM
You haven't specified any mechanism. A mechanic has to use his nerves to move his hands, which in turn move tools, which effect change in the car. There has to be a mechanism by which the agent manipulates the circumstances it wishes to act on. Why is this so difficult to understand?

It is not difficult to understand but explain why it is necessary to identify the Intelligent Designer's mechanism(s).
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: RED_ApeTHEIST on February 12, 2014, 10:55:38 PM
It is not necessary to identify a specific mechanism in order to conclude that an intelligent agent designed and created life.  That is to say that, if a living structure can be shown to possess the type of complexity and design that can only originate from an intelligent source, then the mechanism by which the intelligent agent created that structure is inconsequential.

OK, so what you are saying is : If there was a creator  then we don't have to understand how he did it, but on the other hand, if we think it was natural processes without a creator then we need to understand every detail or you deny that possibility.

That doesn't strike you as being the least bit inconsistent?

You have to hold your own hypothesis to the same level of scrutiny that you hold other hypotheses to. Otherwise it has no value.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: RED_ApeTHEIST on February 12, 2014, 11:06:25 PM
You haven't specified any mechanism. A mechanic has to use his nerves to move his hands, which in turn move tools, which effect change in the car. There has to be a mechanism by which the agent manipulates the circumstances it wishes to act on. Why is this so difficult to understand?

It is not difficult to understand but explain why it is necessary to identify the Intelligent Designer's mechanism(s).
Because you claim to dismiss other hypothesis because you don't believe that their mechanisms can  explain the world as we see it today. According to your own logic, an inability to mechanistically describe a process is enough to dismiss a hypotheses about origins. So present the mechanics of your hypothesis so we can examine it in the same fashion.

PS: Answering a question with "why" stopped being acceptable when you were in grade school. Please act like an adult here. Answer the  question or admit you don't have an answer.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on February 12, 2014, 11:14:24 PM
I have understood the difference between the agent and the mechanism all along. My beliefs are that the agent is both the designer and the mechanism by which life originated. Why is this so difficult to understand?
Because you're being obtuse.  Let's say I throw a punch.  In that case, I was the actor (the one who threw the punch), but my body was the mechanism (how the punch was thrown).  So in every single case, the actor and the mechanism can be described separately.  Yet you're insisting on just saying they're the same thing without making any effort to distinguish between them, which has no explanatory power and thus isn't useful.

By saying that the agent is both the designer and the mechanism, you're conceding that it isn't a scientific explanation.  Take the sun, for example.  If you were to say that the sun produces light and heat because it's the sun, it wouldn't be a scientific explanation (indeed, it'd be circular logic).  The way to make it a scientific explanation is to propose an explanation for how the sun produces light and heat, one that can be tested against the reality and shown to be false, if it comes to that.

Intelligent design fails to do that, because you're not proposing an explanation for how the intelligent designer operated that could be tested against reality and proven false.  Indeed, you can't - because if you did and ended up being wrong, then you'd be left without a foundation to base your worldview on.  You depend too much on believing that there is a god to take the chance that there might not be one, even if that were the only way to prove it to anyone else.

Also, answer the question I asked you in my last post.

"I asked you why all of the people who actually support intelligent design are religious (specifically, Christians).  Please answer that this time."
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Azdgari on February 12, 2014, 11:15:20 PM
I completely understand the point you are making but identifying the specific mechanism you are looking for would require having an intimate knowledge of who the designer is.

I am not asking you to identify a specific mechanism.  I am asking about what mechanisms ID has put forth as scientific hypotheses.

For example, abiogenesis could occur in the laboratory of an advanced alien race, after which the aliens planted their intelligently designed microbes on Earth.  One could posit a mechanism through which that abiogenesis might conceivably be carried out, without any need to actually identify these aliens.  That mechanism could then be tested for plausibility.

That is one avenue for proposing a mechanism by which intelligent design could have seeded the Earth with life.

I doubt it is a mechanism you or other ID'ers would favor.  If not, then by all means put forth something of your own.  Got anything?  Anything at all?  I would find it sadly easy to believe that nobody in the ID community has actually been curious enough to investigate this.

As for me, the designer is God and according to the knowledge given in the Bible,He is capable of creating life as He sees fit by the power he possesses.

Fortunately for us all, reality is not at the beck and call of your personal convictions.  You do not live in a separate universe in which "as for me" gets to dictate reality.  I'm glad, though, that you acknowledge that for you, ID is not a matter of science, but a matter of religion.

It is not necessary to identify a specific mechanism in order to conclude that an intelligent agent designed and created life.

No, all you need is some cultural conditioning to that effect.

That is to say that, if a living structure can be shown to possess the type of complexity and design that can only originate from an intelligent source, then the mechanism by which the intelligent agent created that structure is inconsequential.

Two big problems with this, before and after the comma.

Before the comma:  A critical level of complexity has never been demonstrated to prove design.  This is old stuff, though.
After the comma:  It is absolutely consequential, to showing that design was possible in the first place.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Hatter23 on February 12, 2014, 11:16:25 PM

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.

In my opinion, ID is precisely a religion pretending to not be a religion.

Not quite AFAIC, it is a sciencey sounding blanket theists throw over their religion in order to sneak it into schools and crowd out actual science.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on February 12, 2014, 11:29:16 PM
This is where I believe you are gravely mistaken.
One of you two is, anyway.  Do you have the integrity to admit that you could be the one wrong, instead of him?

Quote from: BibleStudent
The natural processes do not appear adequate to create and evolve life.
If this thread is going to go anywhere, you need to stop with the weasel-wording.  What you really mean here is "I don't think the natural processes are adequate to create and evolve life."  But the fact of the matter is that you don't actually know one way or the other.

Quote from: BibleStudent
It is my opinion that you have been duped into thinking they do.
Your opinion and a dollar might buy you a fountain drink at a convenience store.  To put it a little less politely, your opinion is worthless on its own.

Quote from: BibleStudent
You recognize that science does not posess the answers
That's true, but not for the reason you assume.  Science doesn't give us the answers to anything - answers are useless by themselves, including the answers your religious belief gives you.  What it does is give us the ability to ask meaningful questions.  And it's those questions which drive us.

Quote from: BibleStudent
and rely on faith that it will someday in order to craft a rationale argument for your belief.....similar to my faith that we will someday learn that God was the intelligence, designer, and creator of life.
No, he doesn't rely on faith.  Faith is an anchor, tying you to a favored answer, and one you can't abandon if it ends up being wrong.  Whereas he doesn't know the answer, so he doesn't assume that any given answer is right simply because it's the one he wants to be true.

Can you say the same?
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 11:31:43 PM
OK, so what you are saying is : If there was a creator  then we don't have to understand how he did it, but on the other hand, if we think it was natural processes without a creator then we need to understand every detail or you deny that possibility.

That doesn't strike you as being the least bit inconsistent?

You have to hold your own hypothesis to the same level of scrutiny that you hold other hypotheses to. Otherwise it has no value.

I completely agree with you here. My position is that I can examine all of the scientific evidence we have, including Intelligent Design Theory, and conclude that it substantially compliments other arguments and evidence (including Biblical) for the existence of God which then collectively forms a strong basis for my belief in God.

Likewise, you could substitute the theory of evolution (or some other word or phrase that adequately identifies your worldview) for God in a paragraph similar to mine above and state that you are claiming a comparable or superior basis for your beliefs.

The point is, you cannot invalidate my claim (or belief) based on your belief or the manner in which you went about forming that belief. In other words, you cannot eliminate the possible existence of an Intelligent Designer based soley on the evidence you use to form your belief.

I am convinced that my belief in God is correct and I can feel confident in that belief because it is based on a strong rational argument.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: BibleStudent on February 12, 2014, 11:43:19 PM
This is where I believe you are gravely mistaken.
One of you two is, anyway.  Do you have the integrity to admit that you could be the one wrong, instead of him?

As of right now, no, I do not believe that I am wrong. The evidence is much too strong for me to make an admission that I could be wrong. That could change but as of right now, the answer is no.

Quote
No, he doesn't rely on faith.  Faith is an anchor, tying you to a favored answer, and one you can't abandon if it ends up being wrong.  Whereas he doesn't know the answer, so he doesn't assume that any given answer is right simply because it's the one he wants to be true.

Then, by your analogy, he is compelled to admit that Intelligent Design is a possibility that warrants careful consideration along with further investigation and study.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: jaimehlers on February 13, 2014, 12:07:06 AM
As of right now, no, I do not believe that I am wrong. The evidence is much too strong for me to make an admission that I could be wrong. That could change but as of right now, the answer is no.
So, it's all the people who disagree with you who are wrong; you, of course, are right, because you couldn't possibly have misunderstood any of that evidence or made a mistake somewhere or come to a wrong conclusion or even just let your preconceived notions get in the way.  It doesn't matter how much thought anyone else put into it, or what evidence they have, or anything else.  They're wrong, and you're right, and as far as you're concerned, that's all there is to it?

Haven't you realized just how arrogant that attitude is?  How monumentally egotistical that attitude of yours is?  Of course you could be wrong!  So could I.  The difference between us is that I'm capable of admitting it, because I haven't based the foundation of my worldview on being right about a specific god existing.

Quote from: BibleStudent
Then, by your analogy, he is compelled to admit that Intelligent Design is a possibility that warrants careful consideration along with further investigation and study.
A possibility, yes.  I don't think anyone here has actually said that it's impossible.  However, it's up to you and people like you to back up that possibility with evidence.  Yet despite you saying that the evidence was very strong, you haven't actually presented any real evidence, nor has anyone in the ID movement.  It's always taking something that has to be viewed a very specific way in order to fit into the picture you've already decided it must form.

That isn't science.  Science is when you take the puzzle pieces as they come and try to figure out how they fit together, rather than trying to make them fit how you think they should fit.
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: SevenPatch on February 13, 2014, 12:58:31 AM
In my opinion, ID is precisely a religion pretending to not be a religion.

Not quite AFAIC, it is a sciencey sounding blanket theists throw over their religion in order to sneak it into schools and crowd out actual science.

You are correct, it is a "sciencey" sounding blanket that theists throw over their religion in order to sneak it into schools.

What I mean is that ID is what is left when you strip away all the typical religious aspects of a religion (ie prayer, worship, sacred/nonsacred objects and beings etc).  All that is left is the agent which can't be discussed.  ID has its own dogma about not discussing the nature of the designer.  ID isn't falsifiable either which is troubling.  Intentionally not having interest in the nature of the designer is IMO what makes ID a religion pretending not to be a religion.

If ID were to offer hypotheses and predictions about the designer then maybe my opinion might be different.  I'd be interested in the 'how' questions that are usually asked of any hypothesis.
 
Title: Re: Public Charter Schools Teaching Creationism And Right-Wing Propaganda In Texas
Post by: Ataraxia on February 13, 2014, 03:04:46 AM