Sunday, September 16, 2007

Crap-- Dembski wins Round 1, ERV forfeits Round 2

Oh sneaky, sneaky Dembski. He had a secret weapon this morning.

Over, and over, and over, and over: "Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord!"

Thats bless-ed. Two syllables.

Ive had a migraine ever since, and Dembski didnt even give an entertaining sermon.

Im even angrier I wasted time there, because I found out at this mornings services that Dembski is speaking on campus TONIGHT. 7.30 pm, Oklahoma Memorial Union. Topic:

"Intelligent Design and Academic Suicide: How not to be the Next Casualty"
Translation:
"IM PERSECUTED! POOOOR CREATIONISTS!!! POOOR MEEEEEEEE! IM A MARTYR! LOOK AT MEEEEEEEEEE! MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"
THIS is the presentation I wanted to go to! (though I admit I had a good chuckle when all the college kids got on their knees around Dembski to pray for him). And they (evidently) didnt advertise THIS presentation, so the crowd will be much smaller. But now I have a damn migraine, and I have a test to study for.

Curse you Dembski! Heartless bastard!

Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord! Blessed be the name of our Lord!

61 comments:

quantok said...

Keep your pecker up! How about if we all get down on our knees and pray for you?

What's that? Pray TO you?

I knew it!

Tyler DiPietro said...

"What's that? Pray TO you?"

Oh, the sweet release in sacrilege and idolatry. Count me in!

quantok said...

Tyler, lets' go the whole hog and make a graven image. Something the size of the Bamiyan Buddhas should suffice. It should definitely have ruby slippers.

Tyler DiPietro said...

I say we make a graven image, and then spend the rest coveting out neighbors' goods, lusting after married women and performing abortions.

Tyler DiPietro said...

"[R]est of the day" that is.

Wanderin' Weeta said...

What's wrong with you? You weren't supposed to fight it! You were supposed to sing along, enthusiastically, clapping in time to the "music", until the rhythm washed you away, until the words faded out and there was nothing left but the feeling. Until your mind opened to the "Word of the Lord".

"Bless-ed be the Name ..."

Such peace! Such acceptance! No more arguing back! No more foolish "reasoning"!

"Bless-ed be the Name, Bless-ed be ..."

That's how it's done. That's how you can know the Truth.

Repent! Abandon your rebellious thoughts; don't you see how they bring you misery? Accept! Believe!

That's how it's done.

"Bless-ed be the Name, Bless-ed be the Name, Bless-ed ..."

Ian said...

For some reason I thought that Dembski was supposed to be a good speaker. I was disappointed in both his style and his content. Sure, he presented an interesting lecture on theology (ok, not that interesting, but there was a thoroughness to it). But not only did he read the whole thing, he moved away from his prepared notes only once, and that as a maybe 4 or 5 word "aside".

Maybe that's his shtick - appear professorial so people will take you seriously.

quantok said...

Tyler, you're on.

But right after that we have to root out some schismatics and persecute their asses. I mean, what's the point of religion if you can't be a bigot?

Trinity Member said...

Even the way you bash on Trinity's music is mis-informing and silly.

First, the "Blessed be the name of the Lord" song had more lyrics. They are:

Blessed be your name
In the land that is plentiful
Where the streams of abundance flow
Blessed be your name

Blessed be your name
When I'm found in the desert place
Though I walk through the wilderness
Blessed be your name

Every blessing you pour out,
I turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say...
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be your glorious name

Blessed be your name
When the sun's shining down on me
When the world's all as it should be
Blessed be your name

Blessed be your name
On the road marked with suffering
Though there's pain in the offering
Blessed be your name

Every blessing you pour out,
I turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say...
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be your glorious name

You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, Blessed be your name

Second, the actual song that Dembski quoted at the end of his theological treatise was "How Deep the Father's Love for Us." It's lyrics:

How deep the Father's love for us,
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure

How great the pain of searing loss,
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the chosen One,
Bring many sons to glory

Behold the Man upon a cross,
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed I hear my mocking voice,
Call out among the scoffers

It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished

I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection

Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom

Trinity Member said...

You know what really made you mad about this morning. Dembski didn't corroborate any of your claims about ID being Creationism or ID being a Trojan Horse to set up a theocracy.

Dembski said, "Intelligent Design is not the Gospel. If you want to talk about the Gospel, go to the Gospel."

He gave a rather academic talk (it would be hard to call it a sermon) on the Cross of Christ. Aside from his training in Psychology, Computer Science, Philosophy, and Mathematics, he has a theology degree from Princeton. The man not only has developed a method for detecting design in nature but is also into thinking about the nature of God and the nature of the relationship between mankind and deity. You know, kind of like Isaac Newton did.

It's ok Abbie, people like to think about lots of different things. You don't have to agree with them.

There's no need to be so fussy, vitriolic, and well, out-right anti-intellectual, in your dealings with people that you disagree with.

Tyler DiPietro said...

"I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection"


I can't think of anything more anti-human and abhorrent than the above lyrics. These sorts of attempts to turn ignorance and weakness into a virtue are disgusting, and one of the main reasons I despise your faith.

BTW, Quantok, I'm totally in! But we'll have to avoid the mistake the Church of Rome made with Michael Servitus, letting the bloody heretics burn him first. We shall burn them all!

Tyler DiPietro said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tyler DiPietro said...

"The man not only has developed a method for detecting design in nature..."

No, he hasn't. He's developed a collection of pseudomathematical twaddle with no demonstrated power behind to do what it claims. Not to mention been rubbished by competent scientists, including those whose work he mutilated to support his nonsense.

Forthekids said...

"I can't think of anything more anti-human and abhorrent than the above lyrics. These sorts of attempts to turn ignorance and weakness into a virtue are disgusting, and one of the main reasons I despise your faith."

Tyler, the point is that Christianity focuses on serving and humility rather than arrogance and want.

I'll bet in the real world, when you come across a person who displays arrogance and focuses only on themselves and their strengths and how they can grab all they can out of life regardless of who they knock over along the way, you aren't terribly impressed by them.

Certainly wisdom is something that all Christians strive for and the Bible focuses on the importance of wisdom time and time again. But, it also warns against a self-inflated ego that tells us that we are so intellectually superior that we have no need for God's guidance in our lives.

I've been reading a book that touches on this topic. Here's a portion of it that gives you a better sense of where I'm coming from here:

Jesus captured succinctly the paradoxical nature of life in his one statement most repeated in the Gospels: “Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” Such a statement goes against the search for “self-fulfillment” in advanced psychology - which turns out to be not advanced enough. Christianity offers the further insight that true fulfillment comes, not through ego satisfaction, but through service to others. And that brings me to the last illustration of the pain/pleasure principle: the Christian concept of service.

In my career as a journalist, I have interviewed diverse people. Looking back, I can roughly divide them into two types: stars and servants. The stars include NFL football greats, movie actors, music performers, famous authors, TV personalities, and the like. These are the people who dominate our magazines and our television programs. We fawn of them, poring over the minutiae of their lives: the clothes they wear, the food they eat, the aerobic routines they follow, the people they love, the toothpaste they use.

Yet I must tell you that, in my limited experience, these “idols” are as miserable a group of people as I have ever met. Most have troubled or broken marriages. Nearly all are hopelessly dependent on psychotherapy. In a heavy irony, these larger-than-life heroes seem tormented by incurable self-doubt.

I have also spent time with servants. People like Dr. Paul Brand, who worked for twenty years among the poorest of the poor, leprosy patients in rural India. Or health workers who left high-paying jobs to serve in Medenhall Ministries in a backwater town of Mississippi. Or relief workers in Somalia, Sudan, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, or other such repositories of world-class human suffering. Or the Ph.D.’s scattered throughout jungles of South America translating the Bible into obscure languages.

I was prepared to honor and admire these servants, to hold them up as inspiring examples. I was not, however, prepared to envy them. But as I now reflect on the two groups side by side, stars and servants, the servants clearly emerge as the favored ones, the graced ones. They work for low pay, long hours, and no applause, “wasting” their talents and skill among the poor and uneducated. But somehow in the process of losing their lives, they have found them. They have received the “peace that is not of this world.”

Forthekids said...

Trinity Member,

Thanks for sharing the lyrics. I couldn't tell from Abbie's post what song it was that she was referring to. I really like "Blessed be the Name of the Lord". We sing it every once in a while at my church.

I'm glad you were able to bring Dembski to OK. Students need to be made aware of all the issues surrounding this debate. I heard him speak at KU last year, and he was an excellent speaker. I didn't find him at all how Ian describes him, but he was talking strictly science when he was at KU.

He also did a superb job at tackling the aggressive questions aimed at him from some of the Darwinists in the crowd during the Q&A. So much so that a few of them somewhat lost their cool.

Doppelganger said...

So much so that a few of them somewhat lost their cool.


Yeah, I'm sure that is exactly what happened - and other FtK news: Walt Brown's claims are unassailable, regardless of topic!



Dembski said, "Intelligent Design is not the Gospel. If you want to talk about the Gospel, go to the Gospel."

Ah, so clearly then, since Dembski said it, it must be true.

Like when he said ""Intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John's Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory," that was true, too...

I guess it depends on his audience.

quantok said...

FtK: "But somehow in the process of losing their lives, they have found them. They have received the “peace that is not of this world.”

This is an interesting contribution to the question of whether altruism (as popularly understood) is possible. I'm surprised, though that you come down on the side that it isn't, that every apparent act of service is ultimately based on a personal reward. True, I think.

The interesting point then becomes: does Christian belief make it more or less likely that people will 'dedicate their lives to others'? That one is very easy to resolve, of course, by comparing social provision in Scandinavian countries with that in the US.

The final point of concern for atheists is whether religious denominationalism isn't an impediment to altruism. I'd rather see "Ph.D.’s scattered throughout jungles of South America translating the Bible into obscure languages" translating all religious literature - you know, teach the controversy - or, better yet, transcribing good science and health primers.

Mark Studdock said...

"Like when he said ""Intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John's Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory," that was true, too..."

Lesson in Logic for doppleganger.

ID is not the Gospel
The Gospel is the Gospel
ID is "Logos theology restated in the idion of information theory."
Logos theology is protrayed in John's Gospel.
Of does not mean same as.

What are they teaching in the schools these days?

Anonymous said...

I want to ask the people at Trinity if they are embarrased by God or denying god by calling him a Designer?

Who is this Great Desingner?
Do they not have the conviction to say that they are bringing Christianity to schools? I remember that peter had this same problem when he was confronted 3 times about knowing jesus.
What's ironic is Peter was also Simon which in hebrew is very close to Simian.

I can't wait to see the talk and see if they deny the lord in public with vague language like intelligent designer.

Albatrossity said...

M. Studdock condescended: Lesson in Logic for doppleganger.

ID is not the Gospel
The Gospel is the Gospel
ID is "Logos theology restated in the idion of information theory."
Logos theology is protrayed in John's Gospel.
Of does not mean same as.

What are they teaching in the schools these days?


Lesson in civics for Studdock, and an answer to his question.

Not the Gospel, thank God.

Torbjörn Larsson said...

Trinity Member:

The man not only has developed a method for detecting design in nature

Yawn. No one has ever demonstrated a design detection.

Oh, and prayers have no place on a science blog. Go spout to someone interested.

Ftk:

Tyler, the point is that Christianity focuses on serving and humility rather than arrogance and want.

Spouting prayers is arrogance. Really, I don't know what they teach For-the-kids these days.

Oh, and spouting prayers on a science blog isn't serving science. Did you have anything to say on "Intelligent Design and Academic Suicide"? Because as I remember it, that was what ERV wanted to hear about.

The Factician said...

[Dembski] not only has developed a method for detecting design in nature but is also into thinking about the nature of God and the nature of the relationship between mankind and deity. You know, kind of like Isaac Newton did.

Kinda like Isaac Newton? I would agree with you on that one. Though not the younger optics-working, calculus-whoopin' Newton. More like the older Newton. You know, the older, nutty uncle Isaac. The one who spent his last years trying to figure out how to turn lead into gold.

Trinity member said...

Not identifying the designer by the methods of detection developed by modern design theorists isn't disengenuous or an act of Christ denial, it is simply being consistent with the method. Must this really be explained? ID theorists are not lying about their method being only able to detect that design itself has occured in biological history.

ID is the study of patterns in nature which are best explained by an intelligent cause. This is truly what ID is about. When they say that scientific methods can only take them so far, they mean it. When the same ID proponent says that faith in Christ is not brought about through the design argument, they are being serious. When they say that identifying the designer is left to philosophical argumentation, they are not fibbing. I have heard Dembski say this a number of times over the past two days. (in front of large groups of christians, small groups of christians, small groups of non-chrsitians, and large mixed groups of both)

When a guy like Dembski speaks in a church he consistently holds his position. This is because it is what he really thinks. Stop being so simple-minded.

Honestly, and sorry for being forward, but I feel like I am arguing with imbeciles or liars.

Chris Harrison said...

Trinity Member said:

ID theorists are not lying about their method being only able to detect that design itself has occured in biological history.

We* don't think their inquiries allow Dembski etc. to reliably detect non-human design. That's the gist of the argument.

* meaning us Evil, atheistic Darwinists, of course (or actually, just everyone who doesn't buy ID's thesis).

michael f said...

I would really suggest trinity member read Dembski's book The Design Inference. Some real problem exist in the logic. First, he defines design as "patterned improbability", but pattern is in the eye of the beholder. Everything has pattern. Second, he equates design with an intelligent agency (he hedges a bit, but not much) claiming we can infer intelligence when an event is specified (matches some preestablished pattern). If we don't know what the intelligent agent is trying to specify then we have no means of detecting design. The only design we can detect is that made by an agent we can understand. We need to do experiments on the "designer" to know what the "designer" will do. We can do this with humans and with selection, but not with extraterrestrials and supernaturals.

My question is if Dembski and others at the Discovery Institute truly believe their god is outside science, they don't need science to prove their god exists and even if they had evidence for design it would still be impossible for them to know who the designer was, then why are they trying to shove intelligent design into science courses?

Albatrossity said...

Trinity member blathered:
Not identifying the designer by the methods of detection developed by modern design theorists isn't disengenuous or an act of Christ denial, it is simply being consistent with the method. Must this really be explained?

Ummm, well, maybe it needs to be explained because identifying the designer is the ONLY way that one can generate testable hypotheses for the design crowd. Simply saying that the designer did some unknown something at some unknown time in some unknown place is frankly inadequate. If you don't want to do anything scientific, you can take the position that the designer is off-limits as far as hypothesis building. But if you want to even pretend that this is science, you will have to talk about the designer and the time, place, and methods of the designing activities.

Put another way, a scientific investigation of an arson would be fruitless unless you had a decent hypothesis about who, when, where, and by what means the arson was committed. Must this really be explained?

Further, the TM wrote "Honestly, and sorry for being forward, but I feel like I am arguing with imbeciles or liars."

Yeah, I know how you feel.

Arden Chatfield said...

Tyler, the point is that Christianity focuses on serving and humility rather than arrogance and want.

Not really. Christianity's focus is that gays and liberals are horrible and that everybody should vote Republican.

You haven't been paying attention for the last 20 years, I see.

Dembski didn't corroborate any of your claims about ID being Creationism or ID being a Trojan Horse to set up a theocracy.

Out of curiosity, do you have an opinion on the wedge document, or an explanation as to why the Discovery Institute is funded by Dominionists?

Arden Chatfield said...

Dembski said, "Intelligent Design is not the Gospel. If you want to talk about the Gospel, go to the Gospel."

Interesting. 'Cuz Dembski has also said:

"Intelligent design is the Logos of John's Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory."

It's funny how IDers say one thing when they're talking to potential donors and quite a different thing when they're trying to act all sciency in public.

JanieBelle said...

Trinity Member prevaricated:

"ID theorists are not lying..."

myeh, tell it to the judge.

Oh wait.

Forthekids said...

"Not really. Christianity's focus is that gays and liberals are horrible and that everybody should vote Republican."

Arden, when's the last time you went to church?

Christians certainly don't "focus" on "gays and liberals", nor do they promote voting strictly Republican. If someone attends a church like that, they should obviously consider finding a new one.

I've been going to church for 43 years, and that quote of yours really couldn't be further from the truth.

I often wonder what kind of church environment many of you were brought up in to have such an adverse reaction to religion in general.

Arden Chatfield said...

Christians certainly don't "focus" on "gays and liberals", nor do they promote voting strictly Republican. If someone attends a church like that, they should obviously consider finding a new one.


FTK, you are just priceless.

BTW, Dembski just said this at the University of Oklahoma tonight:

" I've got plenty of ulterior religious motive -- I'd like to see ID succeed because of my christian background and beliefs"

Foot, meet mouth.

Forthekids said...

"This is an interesting contribution to the question of whether altruism (as popularly understood) is possible. I'm surprised, though that you come down on the side that it isn't, that every apparent act of service is ultimately based on a personal reward. True, I think."

It certainly depends on what you consider a personal reward. Yes, people find that when they serve, they have a sense of purpose and peace. That would be rewarding...but, consider the missionary that picks up malaria and any number of other unwanted ills due to their work. Many suffer great physical and mental anguish as they serve, yet there is that reward in seeing others benefit from their blood, sweat and tears.

I, personally, don't think they throw themselves into service to attain "personal reward".

Forthekids said...

Arden, did you attend Dembski's lecture tonight? Can we expect a full report?

If Trinity member is still out there...do you know if Dembski's lectures at Trinity are being taped?? If so, let us know how we can get access to them.

Arden Chatfield said...

See here:

http://www.iidb.org/vbb/showthread.php?t=220993

I very much hope a video is made available.

Forthekids said...

Oh, and Arden, you didn't answer my question about the last time you stepped foot in a church. Were you brought up with a particular religious belief? If you intially had faith in a deity, what initiated your choice to reject that faith?

Also, I see nothing shocking in what Dembski said. At least he's honest. Materialists never admit that they support Darwinism mainly due to their rejection of the possibility that there may be a higher source of intellect than themselves.

olegt said...

trinity member said: ID is the study of patterns in nature which are best explained by an intelligent cause. This is truly what ID is about. When they say that scientific methods can only take them so far, they mean it.

I'm afraid Dembski's method does not take him that far. He arrives at a point where there is no natural explanation for some phenomenon. Then he takes a leap of faith and claims that a supernatural cause is thereby established. That, in a nutshell, is Dembski's explanatory filter.

But we have been down this road many times. A lack of a natural explanation at some point in time does not guarantee that one will never be found. It just shows the limits of our current knowledge. Lots of mysteries of the past have been successfully resolved. Johannes Kepler, who discovered that planets followed elliptical orbits, speculated that they were pushed along by angels. Newton's theory of gravity, combined with his laws of motion, put the angels out of business. Science has many more examples of this kind.

So, Dembski's "scientific" method is anything but. It's the good old God-of-the-gaps argument, which smart religious scholars have learned to avoid. It's a losing game, guys. Gaps in scientific knowledge have a tendency to close, thereby squeezing out God.

Take a cue from the Catholic Church and don't mess with science. Stick to philosophical issues.

Forthekids said...

Good Lord, Arden...are you hanging out with THOSE heathens?

***I'm just teasing you! Don't get pissed.***

Arden Chatfield said...

Materialists never admit that they support Darwinism mainly due to their rejection of the possibility that there may be a higher source of intellect than themselves.

Thank you for neatly demonstrating why it is that people exactly like you keep me out of church, FTK.

So how do you rationalize the existence of millions of Christians who accept Darwinism? Are they wicked? Deluded? If not, why are 'materialist' Darwinists so awful, but not Christian ones?

PS: I don't normally spend time at IIDB at all, that thread just got linked to at ATBC. (The *other* heathens.)

Forthekids said...

"Thank you for neatly demonstrating why it is that people exactly like you keep me out of church, FTK."

Awww...now Arden, you're making me feel like crap...you know deep down that I love you regardless of whether you believe in God or not. *wink* Why ya so pissed off at me for asking a few simple questions?

"So how do you rationalize the existence of millions of Christians who accept Darwinism? Are they wicked? Deluded? If not, why are 'materialist' Darwinists so awful, but not Christian ones?"

First of all, I don't think that Darwinists are "wicked" or “awful“. I don’t remember ever saying anything like that. Secondly, there is a difference between the definitions of Darwinism and Evolution.

Christians who accept that all aspects of the ToE are "fact", still believe that there is an ultimate designer. Some don't believe that design can be detected, and others reject design because they feel that science can only advance if we adhere to methodological naturalism. I don’t happen to agree with them, but that doesn’t make either of us “wicked” or “delusional” any more than it makes atheists who reject ID “wicked” or “delusional”.

“Darwinism” refers to the belief that the mechanisms of evolution are powerful enough to explain away any need for a designer whatsoever. Christians who accept evolution do not believe that to be true whereas philosophical naturalists do.

Anyway.....those are *my* definitions...lol.

“PS: I don't normally spend time at IIDB at all, that thread just got linked to at ATBC. (The *other* heathens.)”

LOL...well not all those “heathens” at AtBC are really so bad, though a few could benefit from listening to several weeks of church sermons on the subject of loving their neighbors like themselves.

Russell said...

Abbie,

Hey I am the guy who talked with you and Ian after the Dembski talk whom wagered you two beers that your interpretation, or thoughts on Kepler were ill-founded, ie factual incorrect. I see now from reading your blog, one of the comments above that you were led astray. That happens. People don't know everything. Especially about history. And Scientists, especially those who try to wage war against theology, have a real hard time looking at the history of science. However, the article I was pointing you to is titled, and found at the following JSTOR Link:

Theological Foundations of Kepler's Astronomy
By: Peter Barker; Bernard R. Goldstein
Osiris > 2nd Series, Vol. 16, Science in Theistic Contexts: Cognitive Dimensions (2001), pp. 88-113
Stable URL: http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0369-7827%282001%292%3A16%3C88%3ATFOKA%3E2.0.CO%3B2-Z

PS: I prefer to start with Wheats and them move towards Stouts.

Russell

Russell said...

Someone accidentally said,...?
"Put another way, a scientific investigation of an arson would be fruitless unless you had a decent hypothesis about who, when, where, and by what means the arson was committed. Must this really be explained?"

Arson detection begins with detecting arson then proceeds to the who, when, where, and by what means. Yes, you have really messed yourself up on this point. ID is modest. All it is claiming is that Design has occurred. (the first thing a CSI/Arson detector does is determine whether the fire was designed or not) Then it proceeds to trying to find out who the designer is, and gets to this by employing other methods. (ie philosophical and theological arguments, or to stick with your analogy, philosophical examinations of the candidate arsonists motives and whereabouts etc)

Again, you have really messed yourself up on this point. You have given everything to the ID proponent.
Can you not see this?

TM is right about the silliness of anti-ID people, though I would say, "lack of intellectual rigor."


Arden Chatfield, The "logos John gospel quote" is from Dembski's book titled "Intelligent Design, The Bridge Between Science and Theology" It was not written to donors but to whomever wants to pick it up and read it.

When he spoke to his potential donors the other day at Trinity, he said very clearly that ID was not the Gospel. Your just wrong in your assessment of ID, it's method, goals, ethics, and epistemology.

Russell

BTW, The Factician needs to go back and read Newton's work and the historical work done on him. His facts are sorely wrong.

Albatrossity said...

Russell intoned:

Arson detection begins with detecting arson then proceeds to the who, when, where, and by what means. Yes, you have really messed yourself up on this point. ID is modest. All it is claiming is that Design has occurred.

Indeed, ID is modest. Far more modest than you understand, and light-years away from being considered scientific enough to teach to grade-schoolers.

"All it is claiming is that design occurred." Fair enough. It is claiming that. I could claim lots of stuff too. But if I want to call it science (and I think that is what ID used to aspire to, before its demise into street theater), I have to have more than a "claim".

What does ID have to bring to bear on its self-appointed task of detecting design? The Explanatory Filter? Please point me to one published and peer-reviewed instance of the use of that thing to detect design in a biological system. One. Just one. I'll keep waiting.

So unless you can provide further evidence, ID only has "claims". No tools. No results. And (the point of my original post) no chance of proceeding further via predictive hypotheses until and unless they make some claims about the identity, timing, and mechanism used by the designer. Which they won't do, for obvious philosophical AND constitutional reasons.

I'm sorry to point this out to you, but that ain't science. It's Kool-Aid, and you have clearly drunk more than your fill.

Forthekids said...

Russell,

You won't convince Albatrossity of anything so don't bother. He's irritated by the religious implications of ID like everyone else around here. It really fogs their thinking.

But, do stick around because I've no doubt Abbie is going to give us her version of Dembski's presentation the other night, and it would be interesting to hear your take on it as well.

I read somewhere that she brought up her on-line discussions with Sal/UD at the Q&A. I'm really surprised she did that, because if anyone decides to read through that dialogue, it's not terribly flattering for Abbie...

Tsumetai said...

the first thing a CSI/Arson detector does is determine whether the fire was designed or not

...by considering the known capabilities and methods of the only known designers. They don't, as you claim, start with design and only then move on to considering the designer. They start off with a great deal of information about potential designers already at their disposal.

Bloke said...

No, arson investigators have very specific ideas about the nature of the arsonist that may or may not have started a fire.

1) The arsonist is human with all the powers and capabilities of a human.

2) The arsonist will have used natural methods to start a fire.

3) The arsonist will have intended to start a fire.

That is three more things that IDist will say about their designer.

Albatrossity said...

FtK opined:

You won't convince Albatrossity of anything so don't bother. He's irritated by the religious implications of ID like everyone else around here. It really fogs their thinking.

I'm finding it hard to speak with all those words she crammed into my mouth, but I am at least able to type.

For the record, my "irritation" re ID is because it claims to be scientific when it actually is not even close. Pretending that criticism of ID is criticsm of religion is a time-honored Ftk tactic (how do those words feel in your mouth, dear?). But in this particular instance, she is wrong.
Show me the science, and I'll come right along with you.

Doppelganger said...

Lesson for Mark Studdock:

"Like when he said ""Intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John's Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory," that was true, too..."

Lesson in Logic for doppleganger.


Here is a lesson on getting your head out for you.

I was applying the logic of this statement:

Dembski said, "Intelligent Design is not the Gospel. If you want to talk about the Gospel, go to the Gospel."
which had been made as a 'defense' of ID as a non-religious movement with another of Dembski's statements regarding the clear religious implications of ID and the real motivation of many ID advocates.

Pretty simple really, even for you I should think.



ID is not the Gospel
The Gospel is the Gospel
ID is "Logos theology restated in the idion of information theory."
Logos theology is protrayed in John's Gospel.
Of does not mean same as.

What are they teaching in the schools these days?


I don't know - you'll have to ask Dembski as I quoted him verbatim and of course your above statement is nearly indecipherable, so I might want to ask your homeroom teacher, also.

Plus, you know, you get better results when you just cut and paste something - fewer grammatical erros and such.

Ian said...

Just blogwhoring: my take on last night's presentation. And Russell - it was really nice to meet you.

Jon said...

How to Argue Like a Creationist:

A) Nitpick words, not ideas. How you say something is a hundred times more important than what is actually said.

B) Blather on about how scientists are just angry because they know in their hearts that ID is correct.

C) Quote a lot of nothing from people who don't publish, let alone do, scientific research.

D) Insert a whole lot of irrelevant and malformed analogies.

E) Do your best to paint your favorite ID heroes as scientific rebels, freedom fighters against the orthodoxy. Because "being wrong" is synonymous with "being a rebel".

F) Go on about academic qualifications. Because where you went to school has everything to do with how scientific you are.

G) For the love of God.. I mean the Designer.. don't bring up any actual science! Rhetoric is your friend!

H) When all else fails, announce to your opponents that you'll be praying for their everlasting souls.

J-Dog said...

Thank you ERV for recovering from your migrane and toughing it out.

BIG, HUGE thanks however, for publicly pantsing and spanking Dr. Dr. Dembski! :) Your description of the happy, blessed event will make me smile for a long, long time!

quantok said...

FtK, this is very wide of the mark if you were aiming at atheists: "He's irritated by the religious implications of ID like everyone else around here."

For an atheist, there aren't any religious implications for ID as such (or indeed any other secular hypothesis). Should it be demonstrated that the design inference is valid, it would just be another empirical fact. ID proponents have, we are assured, nothing to say about the nature of the designers, so where would the pressure come from to begin making denominational inferences? Not from us atheists.

As to speculation about the nature of the designers based upon their supposed design interventions, all the comfort seems to be on the side of the atheists. Intelligent or not, the design portfolio seems heavily circumscribed by natural law. Some bacteria may have a flagellum, but it's just a protein structure coded for by humble DNA. Now if it was candy-striped and make of kevlar, we might be impressed.

In fact, all the religious implications for ID should make uncomfortable reading for anyone convinced that there is not just design, but perfect design. In all cases where ID is seeking irreducible complexity there is also always a large measure of the make-shift bodge-up. It's hard to see how replacing the ratchets and cranes of evolution with the skyhooks and tinkering of intelligent designers redounds to their greater glory.

Logan said...

Russell's comments last night on the history of science and paradigms (Galileo and Kuhn) didn't seem to add up to anything.

If someone's theories are validated, then it doesn't matter what their motivations were.

Additionally, Darwin's language in Origin of Species against prevailing notions of creationism doesn't say much about his motivations for discovering evolution. Being a historian of science, surely he knows that Darwin sat on his discovery for decades and only published Origin of Species when he heard Alfred Russell Wallace was about to publish something very similar, and that Darwin felt revealing his discovery would be like "confessing a murder". His motivations seem to speak against a confirmed atheist looking for vindication.

michael f said...

Two items are showing up in the comments - belief in Christianity and belief in intelligent design.

I have been in and out of churches for close to 50 years - primarily because I was born into a very Christian family. I gave up Christianity almost 30 years ago because I could not defend it. First I realized that the Bible was neither scientifically nor historically true. Second, I realized that no rational means existed to determine if it were even theologically true. If I had been born in another place or time, I would most likely not have been born to Christian parents. Many possibilities exist from Christianity being the sole “truth”, to one of many “truths” to not being “true” at all. Most people don’t consider the middle path.

Humans recognize patterns everywhere. This is where Dembski’s “explanatory filter” comes into play. Events can have probabilities ranging from 1 to almost 0. He divides patterns up into high probability events attributed to “regularity” (i.e. earth rotating on its axis every 24hr), intermediate probability events attributed to chance (i.e pulling the jack of hearts from a deck of cards) and low probability events attributed to design (a pattern matches a “specific” pattern) (i.e a page of text from a book). It is easy to use this filter when applied to human-designed patterns, but will it work on living organisms? An evolutionary biologist explains the pattern in living organisms in this manner: genetic variation is an intermediate probability event and is attributed to chance. Selection is a high probability event and is attributed to regularity. This makes change very likely and easy to accomplish. An intelligent design advocate explains it in this manner: neither genetic variation (chance) nor selection (regularity) is adequate and, once those are eliminated, the only option remaining is design.
I don’t think the design proponents have come close to eliminating regularity and chance.

Design advocates would have us believe the analogy between human design and living organisms is sound. I would claim the analogy is very tenuous and any similarities are superficial at best. Organisms are based on the cell. All cells in the organism are genetically identical (barring mutation) and are related to each other through ancestor-descendant relationships via the zygote. Each cell is a repository of the whole. These features are not standard to human design.

Intelligent design may be secular in its narrowest sense, but it doesn’t have much to offer biology until it can identify the designer.

Tyler DiPietro said...

logan,

The primary problem with Dembski's explanatory filter is much simpler than that: it's meaningless. A probability model is only as good as the assumptions you attach to it.

In an analogy to the NFL results in optimization theory (yes, I am being deliberately ironic here), you have to know something about what you are facing to develop a reasonably accurate model. Try applying Dembski's explanatory filter to "randomly" popping balloons of hydrogen and oxygen. What are the chances that such a large quantity of individual objects would all combine to make the same molecule (i.e., H2O)? If you disregard the laws of physics and chemistry, you get an absurdly low number. This is the exact game that Dembski plays with evolution.

In other words, it's all pseudomathematical pablum.

Tyler DiPietro said...

My apologies to logan, I actually intended to address my comment to Michael F.

michael f said...

Tyler,
OK, I was overly generous. I was trying to make the point that even if you take his claims at face value they don't apply to living systems. I think many people are swayed by the analogies to human design and don't want to put in the effort to tackle the math or the biology.

J-Dog said...

I think that you are all finding out what has been know for some time about ID and Dembski. What he has actually invented is a "Nixplanatory Filter"(TM), and it always works perfectly, except when facts interefere, jam it up, and need to be cleaned out like lint.

Facts do not interact well with Dembski's Nixplanatory Filter.

However, fortuntely for Dembksi, they do not interfere with the ability of a $10,000 honorium to filter through to his numbered account in the Caymans.

MTran said...

ForTheKids asked: "I often wonder what kind of church environment many of you were brought up in to have such an adverse reaction to religion in general."

These sorts of comments have come up regularly in the past, usually in the form of a suspicion that an atheist's horrific or troubling experiences in church were the source of religious estrangement.

For me, at least, and every single atheist I have known on a personal basis, there were no "bad" experiences with churches, church leadership, or church members, only an utter inability to provide any reason to accept fairy tales as truth.

I still like and respect those churches I attended when I was much younger.

What I see on teh intranets, however, are a lot of religious whack jobs who worship superstitious nonsense, post lies, and follow charlatans.

If I had attended churches that preached the things I see written by believers on blogs such as these, I would have been a militant anti-religionist long ago. I may become one yet, if I keep seeing the utter crap that they like to spew.

quantok said...

Tyler, if I take tenor can you fill in the bass?

Bless-ed be the name of our ERV.
Bless-ed be the name of our ERV.
Bless-ed be the name of our ERV.
Bless-ed be the name of our ERV.
Bless-ed be the name of our ERV.

PS. We need 2 or 3 more members. Don't wanna look like a cult.

PPS. How do we do the charitable status thing?

Russell said...

Logan,

Sorry if my comments on the history of science and paradigms (Kuhn,Galileo, well mainly I think we talked about Kepler, and because Abbie mentioned that it was his theology that held him back from discovery elliptical orbits, to which I disagreed.) didn't seem to add up to anything. But we agree on one thing that I was saying, which you wrote in your post,

"If someone's theories are validated, then it doesn't matter what their motivations were."

This is the main thing I was attempting to get across. I even metnioned that ID could bring about some discoveries by asking wierd questions which the current paradigm may not itself and, and that this could occur regardless of whether ID is true, or a good theory, or whatever. This is all in Kuhn. (and many others)

also,

I am well aware of the history Darwin and the publication of the Origin. I think you put it well enough in the space you used. We agree.

The Factician said...

Umm, Russell?

You really shouldn't accuse others of talking out their ass unless you have checked your facts. Check out:

http://webapp1.dlib.indiana.edu/newton/index.jsp

Isaac Newton spent his final decades pursuing two major areas:

1) His interest in alchemy. (Under that auspice, he was pursuing the philosopher's stone and formation of gold out of lead).

2) His pursuit of heresy. He thought the idea of the trinity of God was nonsense. Of course he didn't publish on this, as it would have gotten him in more than a small pot of trouble, but he did write extensively about this in his private notes (which are still available).

Now that we've straightened out your knowledge of history, perhaps we can help you with some science...