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December 31, 2005

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tako

I guess in fact what ID proponents are saying is that this manuscript is too splendid to be the work of human. It is the work of supernatural being, but we don't know its identity or how it produced the manuscript.

Deborah Speath

Alschuler

"Get rid of pretentious claims of "falsification" and "scientific method"; start talking "inference to the best explanation"; and you'll make room for Tom Aquinas"

Huh? That's it? Asking that a major theory to explain all the life forms that ever lived on earth be remotely subjectable to the scientific method is "pretentious"????

No admission of any false statements on your part, Perfesser? No admission that many of your statements above have been shown to be pure bunk?

Wow.

How about you answer some of my straightforward questions, Perfesser?

Like: Can you explain how students would be harmed by learning facts about evolution? In science class?

If I get 100 people in a room praying to their deity that a coin I'm flipping turns up heads EVERY TIME, and I flip that coin 1000 times and it turns up heads 50% of the time, is it wrong for me to conclude that -- scientifically speaking -- human prayer does not detectably affect the outcome of coin tosses?

Or must I -- as a scientist -- must I genuflect before your deity and your beliefs and state: "It is also possible that God simply didn't feel like answering those prayers on that day for his own reasons."

Is it your belief that the inclusion of the latter disclaimer makes my conclusion more SCIENTIFICALLY accurate?

To the extent scientists don't include in their textbooks the well-established and reliable scientific "theory" that a mammal whose heart and respiratory system has shut down completely, and which has been stabbed in its vital organs, and which has been buried at ambient temperatures for 72 hours will never come back to life, perform feats of superstrength, walk around for a while, then disappear, are those atheistic scientists not already "compromising" with the religious fundamentalists?

Deborah Spaeth

Out of an excess of generosity, I will engage the Big P's stupid hypo:

"The only point is that there is nothing wrong with the form of Tom's argument."

Sure. Whatever. There is nothing "wrong" with the "form" of the argument that a mysterious manuscript-pooping being pooped out the manuscript without conscious thought.

Theoretically, it could have happened that way. Based on some theological considerations that I won't go into now, I know that's what happened. But that's neither here nor there.

The great irony in your hypo, Professer (pointed out by tako) is that the argument your guy Tom is making is very sensible because we KNOW there are these beings called humans who type manuscripts. And we know HOW they do it. And we know WHY they do it. Heck, we could destroy every manuscript on earth and rewrite them all in a blink of an eye, from a geological perspective. It's that simple.

It's a little different when you're talking about designing and creating every species of living thing that every lived on this planet for the past 4 billion years (in addition to the species that are continually evolving right under our noses).

We simply don't have any evidence that beings exist which are capable of accomplishing that task. None. NADA. ZILCHO.

And no, you're personal religious beliefs don't count as evidence for all the reasons I've explained in these threads.

Not only are your religious beliefs not useful evidence for anyone but -- here's the really cool part -- our Constitution recognizes this fact and for YOUR SAKE prevents the government from promoting your religious beliefs over mine!!!

Can you imagine?

In some ways, this is irritating because my religious beliefs are superior to your religious beliefs in every way and it would behoove my religion if the government started helping me to promote it and trash everyone who I perceived as a threat.

But I respect the Constitution and appreciate the fact that not everyone is so smart that they can choose the One True Religion like I did. They must be free to be wrong.

Kaiser Soze

tako you wrote:

"You are getting silly. It's hard to believe but you don't seem to understand how falsification works.

But let's use your War and Peace example. Forget about the monkey business. That is too ridiculous. If the manuscript is written in a human language, it is fair to assume that it was written by a human (unless it is disproven). The question is the identity of the author."

He used the example of monkeys typing as an analogy for random mutations. To take that part out of his story would render his point meaningless, are you sure you understand what he meant to convey? I'll try to clarify for you.

Evolutionists tell us that all life (except the first) came to exist through random mutations gradually building every part of every species. The point of the monkey typists is to make an analogy of random mutations and monkeys typing. Ya with me so far?

What we have around us are millions of species of extremely complex living entities, from oak trees to dolphins, from banana trees to human beings. Every form of life has a blueprint stored within the lifeform which tells the nanotechnology within the cells and organs how to construct the particular body plan. There are numerous types of very complex coded information within every living entity along with extremely tiny molecular nanotechnology which reads the code, understands the code, and then constructs extremely complex biological machines.

Can random mutations build these microscopic nanotechnologies, coding systems (coding, reading, understanding the code) and the blueprints which they come with?

Can monkeys typing produce the complexity of information found within living entities?

Which is more intelligent? Monkeys or random mutations? I put it to you that monkeys have some small amount or level of intelligence, random mutations are nothing more then defects in the genome of a living entity. I put it to you that defects have absolutely no intelligence whatsoever and that monkeys typing have a much higher chance of producing a novel then mutations. Of course monkeys typing have zero probablity to produce a novel because the number of random letters they can strike on the typewriter makes it mathematically impossible for them to create consecutively meaningful words in any meaningfull numbers. They may by chance create a few words in a row, but the chance of them creating thousands of words that form sentences in a known language and which makes sense, is completely impossible.

Yet evolutionists tell us that random mistakes in a genome not only create information processing and storing systems, but also the information they utilize, the nanotechnology which can make use of the information, and the end result of a color coordinated artistically brilliant highly complex living entity, like a tiger, or an orchid, or a butterfly, or pretty much anything.

So it's not a question of falsifiability which ID supposedly needs to have, it's crediblity which evolution is so obviously lacking which makes ID preferred due to probability. The inference of an intelligent agent is what we have when we remove the possibility of random natural events being able to produce highly sophisticated information sharing technology (biological systems).

Why do we remove random events having that power of inventiveness? Back to typing monkeys. It's all about mathematical probabilities. By the process of elimination we arrive at the mathematical probability of an intelligent agent. Random mutations are random, and it is that randomness which is evolutions fatal flaw. Random events may occasionally produce some type of simple non chaotic outcome, but as more random events occur that non chaotic event will turn back into chaos. The more complex something is the less chance it came about by random forces.

A good example is the snowflakes. They are produced by a fairly complex process and they are fairly complex designs. But as random natural events act on the snowflake the design doesn't increase in complexity, it breaks down completely e.g the flake melts or compacts. The snowflake is one of the most complex designs you will find occuring by a natural force on earth. We cannot expect natural processes found on earth to produce something with moving parts, like say a mousetrap. What to speak of the most sophisticated technology ever encountered (biological systems).


tako

Kaiser Soze wrote:
"He used the example of monkeys typing as an analogy for random mutations. To take that part out of his story would render his point meaningless, are you sure you understand what he meant to convey? I'll try to clarify for you."

I deliberately take that part out because it was not a good analogy and I think it was disingenuous for Professor Alschuler to characterize evolution in that way.

First of all, we do have evidence from our everyday experience that human beings can use languages and produce sentences. So, it is not unreasonable to hypothesize that the manuscript was written by a human. And it is possible to falsify if not to prove what kind of person wrote the manuscript as in the example I gave.

Another reason what Professor Alschuler gave is not a good analogy is that he didn't include the most important ingredient of Darwinian evolution, which is selection. If the final product is a manuscript with coherent use of language, there must be something to encourage series of letters that sound like words, and then grammatical sentences, over gibberish. (Somewhat like how a baby learns a language, though admittedly a baby is equipped with an ability to learn a language.) Professor Alschuler's scenario lacks this fundamental aspect of evolution and instead he is simply obsessed with randomness.

When it comes to animals, we don't have any evidence that it can be designed and created by god (though certainly that is not disproven). What we know is that animals reproduce. So we can assume that they have parents and grandparents and so on, although we don't know how many generations we can go back. So, at the primary level, we can have many potential ideas. Literal biblical creationism could be one. Darwinian evolution could be one. There can be others.

The question is how we judge which one is more likely. One way is to ask which one "seems" right. That is what you and Professor Alschuler are doing. But that's not how science works. We ask what each model predicts. Creationism would tell something about the age of earth, among other things. Evolution would tell that closer species diverged more recently compared to more distant species, among other things. These things can be tested. We can measure the age of earth and rule out creationism. Evolution can be tested by fossil records and comparing DNA sequences of various species. So far, evolution is not disproven, though by no means it will ever be completely proven, by these criteria.

What about intelligent design? In a way, it's even worse than creationism. It doesn't offer any testable prediction avoiding the possibility of disproven all together.

Kaizer Soze wrote:
"Why do we remove random events having that power of inventiveness? Back to typing monkeys. It's all about mathematical probabilities. By the process of elimination we arrive at the mathematical probability of an intelligent agent. Random mutations are random, and it is that randomness which is evolutions fatal flaw. Random events may occasionally produce some type of simple non chaotic outcome, but as more random events occur that non chaotic event will turn back into chaos. The more complex something is the less chance it came about by random forces."

But the fact is that there are examples both in nature and engineering that systems based on randomness work remarkably well. The so-called genetic algorithm is one example. If our intelligence is so great and randomness is bad, why would even introduce randomness. The answer is because it can come up with something a human would not likely to think of.

Our own immune system (aside of the fact that it is itself a result of evolution) is also a good example. The reason our bodies can react to a new pathogen is not because our immune system intelligently anticipates this pathogen would invade our bodies. That's because our immune system creates diverse antibodies by random combinations of parts. The one that works is selected and produced more.

Josh

"Get rid of pretentious claims of "falsification" and "scientific method"; start talking "inference to the best explanation"; and you'll make room for Tom Aquinas"

But you're no longer talking about science if you get rid of the scientific method.

Is it still the law if you get rid of pretentious claims of "judicial review", the "presumption of innocence" or "a jury of your peers"?

There are religious people who reject direct divine intervention. For those people, Tom Aquinas is not the better explanation, no matter what story you spin. Therefore, we can reject your original contention as well, that ID is compatible with religion, broadly speaking.

Science isn't whatever the heck you want it to be, it's a well-defined set of ideas and procedures for evaluating hypotheses. Get rid of the scientific method and falsificationism, and what do you have left? How are you to judge "best"?

In science, the "best explanation" is the one which produced testable (falsifiable in principle) predictions which have not (yet) been falsified.

KS: Mice are mammals, that's why we use them. All mammals share a common ancestor. That hypothesis produces testable predictions. When we look at current species or fossils, we find that those predictions are supported.

That's how science works.

If we return to the manuscript example, we find that it is badly flawed. What we'd expect if the random monkeys produced the manuscript is not just monkeys and typewriters, but pages and pages of incoherent gibberish. After all, you aren't offering any model for selecting grammatical English (which destroys any analogy to evolution - natural selection is the process which adds direction to evolution, and which replaced Paley's Designer). If a person wrote the book, we ought to be able to identify information about that person from the text. For instance, we could look for books with similar titles. Perhaps Vernor Vinge's "Peace War." We could compare the writing style of the manuscript with Vinge's writing, and reject him as the author. We could also evaluate the age of the paper, telling us whether it could even be millions of years old. And so forth.

That's the scientific method. If you take that away, you aren't doing (or teaching) science. That's how evolution is taught. Since IDC offers no falsifiable predictions, it isn't science. I've said so for years, so have other scientists and philosophers of science, and after reviewing the evidence presented, that's what Judge Jones concluded.

The topic of what is compatible with religion is interesting (the original topic of this post), but doesn't belong in science class.

tako

Getting back to the War and Peace example once more, just for fun, real Darwin (not the stupid hypothetical Darwin imagined by Professor Alschuler) could in fact explain the manuscript starting from monkeys without contradicting Thomas Aquinas.

The monkeys, for whatever selective pressures, evolved in to humans, with abilities to use languages and tools. And one such human individual wrote War and Peace.

A few things to keep in mind. Certainly humans were not evolved in order to write War and Peace. Evolution doesn't work by aiming at some specific goal. It's just that the result was a large brain that can handle languages. Writing War and Peace was not a necessity, but one individual happened to be able to do it. (In fact, do we even need to think about evolution to see that chance plays a role in life?) And other individuals are able to appreciate it. And needless to say that evolution takes such a long time scale that you cannot blame this hypothetical Thomas Aquinas for not consider ing it or being interested in it.

Anyay, I think Professor Alschuler should stick to the more legal aspects of the case, if he wants to continue at all. At least he must know the laws and it can be interesting for a non-expert like me. Of course science is relevant to the case, but obviously it is not the specialty of the professor - his opinion is amusing, but not very informative. The more the professor bases his arguments on his very personal views on science and religion, the more problematic and less convincing he becomes.

Deborah Spaeth


Kaiser the Nut:

"What we have around us are millions of species of extremely complex living entities, from oak trees to dolphins, from banana trees to human beings."

Two points. First, that's an astonishing mispresentation of life on earth. It reminds me of how the Perfesser waved off those "strange microbes" in his first post, ignoring the incontrovertible fact that those "strange microbes" are the most successful life forms on the planet from the perspective of niches inhabited, number of species, number of individuals, and the amount of time they've been the dominant life form on the planet (several billion years).

Second, every individual microbe, human, oak tree, dolphin, and banana tree on earth lives for a little while and dies, just as its parent did.

Compared to non-living things like mountains and oceans and planets and suns and galaxies, individual organisms are stunningly fragile objects which barely "exist" in the geological or astronomical sense. If individuals of a species don't reproduce well, the species disappears from the face of the earth and is gone forever. This likely happens every day, somewhere on earth. But for the most part, nobody cares about those species. Probably we never recognized their existence in the first place.

Just some perspective. Serious people sometimes appreciate that, you know.

Kimball Corson


Cueing on Professor Alschuler’s three part presentation and as an honest, practical and truly instructional compromise that I proposed to a smaller audience elsewhere, I submit that something like the following could be lawfully taught in our schools without offending the First Amendment or breaching the Jones’ opinion, while at the same time accommodating the reasonable interests or concerns of many, if not most. Fringe lunacy is of course beyond the pale.

1) Teach evolution and natural selection substantially as now; 2) Explain also that neither are necessarily inconsistent with a front-loaded, non-interventionist ID hypothesis; 3) explain the big bang prospective improbabilities against us existing and how they are arrived at; 4) explain that those probabilities are not proof per se of the ID hypothesis or of the existence of God, only some evidence that cannot be proved or disproved; 5) explain that this ID hypothesis is not a scientific hypothesis because it cannot be tested or verified as scientific method requires or even addressed as a biological paradigm; 6) explain the difference between religion and science in this regard and why this ID hypothesis must be relegated to the study of religion or metaphysics; 7) explain the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment and why we have it; 8) explain why the Clause therefore precludes schools from providing instruction about the various ID and creationist hypotheses that you can learn about elsewhere than in school.

If the foregoing were done honestly -- a big if for sure -- I think it would be very instructional and good for older high school student because it would provide them with good understanding of the issues, scientific and biological method, part of the First Amendment; why we have it; the boundaries of scientific method; and of course evolution and natural selection. Discussion of the ID hypothesis and the issues surrounding it would then likely be engender in the homes of religious families and that is one place it belongs.

It would also address many’s reasonable concern that what might be sensibly taught in a religious home environment not be contradicted at school. Indeed, children so instructed might be able to teach their parents a thing or two in these regards from the ensuing discussion. This approach puts the cards on the table for the kids, protects and instructs all interests, is consistent with the Jones' opinion, does not undermine or promote ID, while teaching evolution and natural selection, and is reasonably fair-minded to all, while at the same time being honest and lawful.

Any takers or grudging acceptors?

Deborah Spaeth

In what class are you providing that instruction, Kimball?

"Explain also that neither are necessarily inconsistent with a front-loaded, non-interventionist ID hypothesis"

Is this supposed to be scientific? What "ID hypothesis" are you referring to exactly?

"explain the big bang prospective improbabilities against us existing and how they are arrived at"

Uh, Kimball, this "privileged planet" and "fine tuning" garbage is just question-begging baloney and that was already explained to you. What's the deal?

"explain that those probabilities are not proof per se of the ID hypothesis or of the existence of God only some evidence"

So the fact that we exist is evidence for God? That's interesting. Is that science, Kimball? You don't think that teaching this is promoting religion? Hmmm.

(FYI -- Kimball's "modest proposal" was demonstrated to be unworkable and less-than-honest lip service to fundies in the previous thread and Kimball managed to avoid addressing the refutations and also refused to acknowledge far simpler and Constitutional "compromises" of others -- go figure!)

Deborah Spaeth

"This approach puts the cards on the table for the kids, protects and instructs all interests, is consistent with the Jones' opinion"

False, false and false -- (the latter is false if it's done in science classrooms, certainly).

This was addressed in the previous thread but Kimball enjoys pretending otherewise.

Why?

Kimball Corson

Deborah writes and I respond:

“In what class are you providing that instruction, Kimball?”

None. I am not, and never have been a teacher. The pay is too low and political correctness and deconstructionism too often compromises the endeavor.

"Explain also that neither are necessarily inconsistent with a front-loaded, non-interventionist ID hypothesis.”

I said neither evolution nor natural selection is necessarily inconsistent with a front-loaded, non-interventionist ID hypothesis. The prospective probability from the big bang forward that we will exist is infinitesimally small, as many scientists have noted. The outcome of us may be hypothesized to result from two possibilities: 1) what appears to be a highly unlikely coincidence of compound probabilities in determining the equation systems pursuant to which we resulted or, 2) a predetermined resulting set of equation systems, including the laws of chemistry and physics, established by a front-end loaded or programmed, subsequently non-interventionist intelligent design implicit in the big bang. Evolution and natural selection, from a de post facto and macro point of view are not inconsistent with either alternative.

“Is this supposed to be scientific?”

Yes. The method and approach here are well grounded in science, mathematics and law.

“What "ID hypothesis" are you referring to exactly?”

None specifically, but generally the set of ID hypotheses that could result in our existence within the nominal framework of 2) above. Intervention after the initial big bang is precluded, however.

"Explain the big bang prospective improbabilities against us existing and how they are arrived at"

First, there is a huge literature on this subject. Second, see my comments above. Finally, the basic idea is that if the constants or resulting values of the multiple equation systems were even slightly varied, earth might not exist, mean surface temperatures might be 600 degrees, earth might have no atmosphere, the atmosphere might be toxic, etc. etc. etc.

“Uh, Kimball, this "privileged planet" and "fine tuning" garbage is just question-begging baloney and that was already explained to you.”

We disagree. Nothing was explained any better than you do now. The method is scientific. The alternative scenarios are probability trees streaming forward from the big bang. No question is begged.

“What's the deal?”

Sorry, I do not understand this question.

"Explain that those probabilities are not proof per se of the ID hypothesis or of the existence of God only some evidence"

The fact we are so improbable, but do exist, in light of all of the prospective probability outcomes, does not prove 2) above because ‘1) coincidence’ remains a possible explanation, but 2) remains a possibility and our existence may be some evidence of it, but certainly not proof because of the alternative hypothesis.

“So the fact that we exist is evidence for God?”

No. See the comment just above. The fact we exist is some evidence of hypothesis 2) or the set of ID possibilities I posit. If we have ID, we highly likely have an IDer. As Alschuler suggests, we are not likely to call him Uncle Zeke.

“That's interesting. Is that science, Kimball?”

Yes. It is and it is the reason so many scientists do not preclude the possibility of a god.

“You don't think that teaching this is promoting religion? Hmmm.”

What I suggest does not promote religion per se. It just allows for the possibility of it at the edge, without going further and then noting that such discussion is outside of the scope of instruction on evolution and natural selection and precluded by the Establishment Clause.

“FYI -- Kimball's "modest proposal" was demonstrated to be unworkable and less-than-honest lip service to fundies in the previous thread and Kimball managed to avoid addressing the refutations and also refused to acknowledge far simpler and Constitutional "compromises" of others -- go figure!”

This is flatly untrue. The readers may judge the comments here for themselves.

"’This approach puts the cards on the table for the kids, protects and instructs all interests, is consistent with the Jones' opinion’ False, false and false -- (the latter is false if it's done in science classrooms, certainly).”

We disagree. The readers may judge points one and two for themselves. As for the third point, Judge Jones himself concluded that evolution and natural selection where not inconsistent with the existence of a supreme being. I have only explained the good Judge’s position in that regard. My proposal does not teach ID in the classroom. It stops short of that and explains why that must be done in light of the Establishment Clause and Judge Jones’ ruling.

“This was addressed in the previous thread but Kimball enjoys pretending otherwise.”

This too is false and inaccurate. Further, I do not pretend otherwise, but instead said at the very outset of my post here: “ . . . as an honest, practical and truly instructional compromise that I proposed to a smaller audience elsewhere, I submit . . .” Further, I never said Deborah or others did not try to address my proposal provisions elsewhere. I say only here they did a poor and insufficient job of it, just a Deborah has done here.

“Why?”

Is then irrelevant

AlanDownunder

Kimball,

Your 8-point proposal is imbued with the right spirit. Any student that leaves science class believing that evolution - or any other science - says anything either way about God is a testament to a failed science education (or, I suppose, implacable scriptural literalism acquired outside school).

Where I violently disagree with you is with mention of ID in your 8-point proposal. If the establishment clause did not exist, ID would not have been concocted. Substitute 'divine creation' for 'ID' in your 8-point proposal and we then have something we can engage with.

Kimball Corson

Alan,

I can live with that proposal. I used ID in order not to be charged with ducking the issue semantically.

Douglas J. Bender

Josh:

"Common descent is the principle which makes medical testing in animal models practical. We think that a medicine's behavior in a mouse tells us anything about its effect on a human because we share an ancestor, and therefore share most of the same biochemical pathways."

Not so. "Common DESIGN" would have the same effects, and would actually have spared us the faulty idea of "vestigial organs".

Also, "evolution" is NOT equivalent in meaning to "change". If so, then millions of people are "evolving" through various diets, losing (or gaining, as the case may be) weight. "Evolution" proper means "common descent", or "ORIGIN OF SPECIES" through some form of "RM&NS". Trying to hide this fact from a sleight of hand with definitions is not admirable.

ctw

mr corson:

your proposal appears to be a serious attempt at a compromise. unfortunately, even ignoring quibbles about specifics, it strikes me as unworkable for (at least) two reasons.

first, the implicitly assumed level of background knowledge and conceptual skills seems unrealistic even in environments in which one would hope for higher levels than I assume is typical of HS students. eg, the theism/deism distinction implicit in your program rarely is made explicit in the numerous exchanges I have read in high quality blogs on the general topic of religious belief even though I think it's critical; the concepts of randomness and probabilites is almost always misunderstood among those who aren't specifically trained in relevant areas; the importance of the establishment clause and its interpretations isn't understood by a depressingly large fraction of our legally trained political "leaders". and even you, who clearly are intelligent, informed, and interested apparently don't have a really good grasp of the ID movement. which segues to ...

the second problem is that none of the people who find evolution and/or natural selection problematic (eg, IDers) are likely to accept your deistic approach. if one accepts what I see as the popular (tho multi-facetedly incorrect) definition of "atheism", viz, belief that there is no interventionist god, your deistic program essentially teaches it and will be evoke the same ignorant assaults.

Deborah Spaeth

Kimball, you are reciting creationist garbage.

"If we have ID, we highly likely have an IDer."

Yeah, and if the center of the moon is made of green cheese, we need a big cracker.

This is not science, Kimball. This is junk philosophy.

Re "privileged planet" and "fine-tuning" creationist horsecrap, you write

"The method is scientific. The alternative scenarios are probability trees streaming forward from the big bang."

Oh, spare me, Kimball. Are you some sort of armchair rocket scientists? It's not scientific Kimball. It's philosophy and really lame philosophy at that.

We exist. The fact that our brains allow us to recognize this fact and imagine some "being" capable of creating the universe does not constitute EVIDENCE for such "beings".

Period. End of story.

Try reading this

http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CI/CI301.html

As I showed on the previous thread, Kimball, and now here: the SCIENCE CLASSROOM lesson plan you proposed is unconstitutional on its face because it's filled with lip service to religious crapola.

I'm still curious, Kimball, why you choose to push your plan after it's shown to be garbage but you ignore my proposed "compromise" which is plainly Constitutional.

What's the problem, Kimball? Are you really that arrogant that you can't admit the truth when it disagrees with your baloney?

Here's the compromise:

A school-wide announcement at the beginning of the school year over the loudspeaker: "In accordance with the US Constitution, this public school does not promote any religion over any other, nor does it promote deity belief over non-belief. The facts taught in your classes are not intended to contradict anyone's religious beliefs. To the extent a contradiction is perceived, we apologize. You are still free to believe whatever you want provided you show us that you've learned the facts as historians and scientists understand them to be true."

Deborah Spaeth

Kimball

"We disagree. The readers may judge points one and two for themselves."

Hahaha. This is like in the previous thread where you said, "Like it or not, you are accomodated"!!!!

Thank you, Herr Kimball!

You put SOME cards on the table, but not all (that's a fact -- demonstrated to you in the previous thread). You paid lip service to SOME interests but not all (that's a fact -- demonstrated to you in the previous thread).

"I have only explained the good Judge’s position in that regard. My proposal does not teach ID in the classroom."

There is no real difference between "ID" baloney and "fine-tuning"/"priviliged planet" garbage. It's creationist apologetics.

ingrid

I like Deborah's compromise, although there shouldn't have to be an announcement at school, parent's should be able to tell their own children that same thing before they head out the door.

Kimball Corson

Ingrid:

With Deborah there is no compromise. Unlike Solomon, she would tear her kids in half on this issue.

Deborah:

I do not necessarily posit a diety. I only allow, out of our ignorance, for the possibility of one. Second, if there is ID, the implication of a possible IDer is not a quantum leap or necessarily bad reasoning. The cheese/moon/cracker analogy is not close. Third, I bet I could sell my position to Judge Jones as a lawyer in his court room and I could certainly find credible scientists to testify as experts, including many quoted from earlier in a commenting post to Alschuler's article.

CTW:
Your criticisms are well taken and have given me pause earlier. There is no pleasing everyone to be sure and many bunny brains in High School may not understand the analysis, but should we stay with "dumming down" or bit a bullet or two.

Deborah Spaeth

Kimball

"I do not necessarily posit a diety. I only allow, out of our ignorance, for the possibility of one."

Yes, that's called an "argument from ignorance." And along with the false dichotomy, it sums up the "logic" of creationists. I believe that Judge Jones went through this in his opinion.

Smart guy, that Judge Jones.

"With Deborah there is no compromise. Unlike Solomon, she would tear her kids in half on this issue."

Wow, what an axxhole.

"The cheese/moon/cracker analogy is not close."

Yeah, this about as robust as your arguments get, Kimball, isn't it? WHY isn't it close, Kimball? It seems 100% on point to me. You say "If X is true, then Y is true." But you have no evidence for X. Zilcho. And I pointed that out to you already. And I showed you the talkorigins link which you haven't addressed. Very curious, Kimball.

"Third, I bet I could sell my position to Judge Jones as a lawyer in his court room "

Not bloody likely. Please provide the name of one of those "experts" you think you could testify that the fact we exist is evidence for God, in order to promote this lip service to theists in SCIENCE CLASS.

Then we can simply email the expert and ask him if he'd be willing to testify to support your "lesson plan."

C'mon Kimball. Let's hear it.

Bear in mind that I'll have my own experts testifying that your "fine tuning" arguments for the existence of a deity who created the universe are pure crap from a scientific viewpoint. ANd I won't have trouble finding those experts. And they'll be very persuasive and they won't need to lie.

Deborah Spaeth

Kimball

"should we stay with "dumming down" or bit a bullet or two."

Are those the only two options?

How about we simply teach the overwhelming consensus opinions of scientists in SCIENCE class and leave the religious mumbo-jumbo to the kids' preachers in church?

You haven't explained why this isn't an option, Kimball. It's certainly Constitutional to do so and, from an educational perspective, seems like a very reasonable and productive use of the limited time that kids have to learn scientific facts about the world before they graduate.

Deborah Spaeth

Kimball

""I do not necessarily posit a diety. I only allow, out of our ignorance, for the possibility of one."

What about the possibility of two? Or three?

What about the possibility of a deity who poops out entire universes where each universe is guaranteed to evolve life on a planet that looks just like yours?

What about the possibility of a deity who can create life in ANY universe regardless of the value of physical "parameters" in that universe?

What about the possibility that MY deities are the TRUE deities and they didn't design the universe but they did design the Christian deity as a myth to separate society into rational people and deluded Christian rubes?

Do you allow for these possibilities "out of your ignorance", Kimball?

Should we teach these possibilities in SCIENCE classrooms, Kimball? Or just YOUR preferred "possibilities" relating to deities?

C'mon Kimball. Let's put ALL the "cards on the table."

Deborah Spaeth

Ingrid

"I like Deborah's compromise, although there shouldn't have to be an announcement at school, parent's should be able to tell their own children that same thing before they head out the door."

I agree. The fundies aren't satisfied with that, unfortunately, just like they aren't satisfied with turning off their TVs and dressing their kids in chastity belts.

Nope. The rest of us are supposed to coddle their children for them and pretend that their religious beliefs are Oh So Precious and important.

But do the fundies respect my beliefs in return?

Hell no. Why? Because according to the fundies, my religious beliefs are WRONG and theirs are CORRECT. My beliefs will lead to an increase in the number of people who have sex with turtles or people who kill babies for pleasure. Their beliefs never hurt anyone who didn't deserve it.

See how it works?

Deborah Spaeth


I really have to laugh at the Great Perfesser: a clueless dissembling moron who spews his crap and refuses to even try to rebut the direct refutations of his crap, or acknowledge his errors.

Where I come from, such people are considered "hypocrites" at best or "pathetic losers" when we're feeling less charitable.

I suppose in the Perfesers's world his "opinions" are supposed to be considered with great seriousness because, after all, he's such a "scholarly gentlemen."

On the count of three, let's all puke together.

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