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  Topic: AF Dave's UPDATED Creator God Hypothesis, Creation/Evolution Debate< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,03:19   

AF DAVE'S UPDATED CREATOR GOD HYPOTHESIS

When I first proposed my hypothesis a few days ago, I asked for comments and critique.  I have now received this and have updated my hypothesis to reflect this.  You can see this discussion under "AFDave's God Hypothesis."  Thanks to all of you for your feedback!

I will now restate my updated Hypothesis (added a few points) and set forth the updated rules and framework which I wish to use for my reasoning.

MY BACKGROUND
I was first an Electrical Engineer, then an Air Force pilot (T-38 and Huey, believe it or not), then a businessman. Having sold my second business, I am now what you might say "between businesses" and am spending a lot of time on non-profit endeavors. I do have an aircraft charter business (a single King Air to fuel my flying "habit") and I am into alternative motor vehicle fuels with the possibility of a future business venture, but I'm not currently doing anything big in business.  I was never a logician, by trade, but that does not mean I can't become one very quickly, especially when I see gross incompetence in the field.  I also do not pretend to be a professional geologist, cosmologist, physicist, biologist, or Hebrew or Greek scholar.  But I do know some good ones and I read voraciously. What I really am is an ordinary guy with a pretty good brain for learning most anything who is sick and tired of what appears to me to be absolute nonsense being fed to us from the Evolution Dogmatists.  It appears to me that while there are many good scientists doing a truckload of good work for the benefit of humanity, there seems to be a big disconnect with reality when "science" begins speculating about how life began and developed.  I was pleased to see the article mentioned below by Meyer because it is now obvious to me that I am not the only one floating the "God Hypothesis" again. I am apparently in very good company and the pace of new research in this area is accelerating.

RULES OF ENGAGEMENT (ROE)
I need to say right up front that my reasoning with respect to this "Creator God Hypothesis" DOES NOT follow the Deductive Framework.  I have stated prior to giving my hypothesis, that I cannot provide a watertight proof for God and I don't believe anyone can, so people are correct in saying that my hypothesis would fail using the deductive schema.  However, we CAN use Abductive Reasoning then draw an Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE), and as Meyer points out below, this gives us powerful support for believing that the "Creator God Hypothesis" may in fact be true.  So there is good news, O Seeker of Truth!  There is massive support for the existence of God and for the literal truth revealed in the Bible.  Stay with me through all of my points and I will show it to you in terms you can understand!  

Here's a little blurb on Abductive reasoning from Stephen C. Meyer.  I would HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommend reading his entire paper (only 23 pages) called "The Return of the God Hypothesis" which can be found here ...

http://www.arn.org/docs/meyer/sm_returnofgod.pdf

Abductive Reasoning
DATA: The surprising fact A is observed. (The finely tuned cosmos, biological machines, written 'holy' books, etc.)
LOGIC: But if B were true, then A would be a matter of course. (B is the God of the Christian Bible)
CONCLUSION: Hence, there is reason to suspect that B is true.  

Stephen C. Meyer notes that "The natural and historical sciences employ such logic [abductive] routinely.  For instance, Peirce argued that skepticism about Napoleon's existence was unjustified although his existence could be known only by abduction: Numberless documents refer to a conqueror called Napoleon Bonaparte. Though we have not seen the man, yet we cannot explain what we have seen, namely, all these documents and monuments, without supposing that he really existed" (Peirce, C. S. 1931. Collected Papers. Eds. Charles Hartshorne & Paul Weiss. Vol. 2. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press).

UPDATED HYPOTHESIS
A. There is a God -- My hypothesis proposes that there is a Super Intelligent, Incredibly Powerful Being -- I choose to call him God -- who has knowledge of scientific laws far more advanced than anything ever discovered by 21st Century humans.  These scientific laws are so powerful that this Being can literally "speak" material things into existence and destroy things with a simple command.  This Being lives "outside of time" and can view what we call "the future" and "the past" with equal ease.

B. This God created the Cosmos as a specially designed whole, with life and mankind as its fundamental goal and purpose.  This God created mankind with a choice of either doing his will or not doing his will, in a similar way as parents "create" babies knowing full well that their child will either do their will or not do their will.  Christian Theologians commonly call the choice of NOT doing God's will "sin."

C. All of human kind descended from two genetically rich parents, Adam and Eve, but did not diversify significantly due to minimal geographic isolation.  My hypothesis proposes that there was only one large "super-continent" prior to the Great Flood of Noah, thus minimizing geographic isolation and resultant natural selection and specialization/diversification.  The same applies to animals except that I make no proposal as to HOW MANY animals there were initially.  Obviously, there would have to be at least one pair of each 'kind' (a term to be defined later)

D. Early man was created perfectly, i.e. no deleterious genetic mutations.  It is proposed that early man was vigorous, healthy and possibly taller than modern humans.  Early families were very large--on the order of 30 to 50 kids per couple and lives were long, many over 900 years.  Sons routinely married their sisters in the ante-diluvian world with no worries of genetic defects.  The first laws prohibiting close marriages did not occur until the time of Moses by which time we assume that accumulated harmful genetic mutations would have been a significant consideration.

E. Mankind chose NOT to do God's will very early on (just as all young children choose not to do parents' will), thus prompting God to institute a system for persuading humans to admit their folly and begin doing His will, for "redeeming" humans who choose this path, and for reminding humans that the present physical world is only a "proving ground" or "training camp" for the next world which will be created at a definite point in the future.  These events are commonly called the Fall and the Curse by Christian Theologians.

F. God allowed the choices of mankind to take their natural course for the most part, intervening in the affairs of men sporadically and briefly.  Most of the "day-to-day management" of Planet Earth was delegated to mankind himself, similar to how modern parents delegate the day-to-day management of their children to a school or a day care center.

G. The natural result of collective disobedience to the revealed will of God was an extremely corrupt society--i.e. rampant dishonesty, injustice, murder, theft, etc.--which was terminated by God through the agency of a global, life-destroying flood--the Flood of Noah described in Genesis.  

H. The Global Flood of Noah was an immense cataclysm of enormous tectonic, volcanic and hydraulic upheaval.  It completely reshaped the ante-diluvian world and resulted in massive, worldwide sedimentation and fossilization, mountain range uplift, sea basin lowering, continent separation, and climate change.  The Flood was survived in a floating ark by 8 humans (four couples) and one or more pairs of terrestrial, air-breathing, genetically rich animals and birds. The diversity we see in the living world today is the result of subsequent geographic separation and isolation of species and natural selection.

I. Following the Global Flood, we hypothesize an Ice Age of undetermined duration brought on by the massive climate changes induced by the Flood.  It was during this time that the dinosaurs and many other species died out. Since the time of the Ice Age, the structure of the earth's crust and the climate which followed, has not changed appreciably, and uniformitarian principles may now be applied to geological studies.

J. We hypothesize a supernatural intervention by God at the Tower of Babel which instantly and miraculously created several new languages (we think on the order of 12 or so), whereas prior to this event, there was only one language.

K. The record of these events (except the Ice Age) was dictated to selected individuals such as Adam and Seth and their descendants and carefully recorded on stone tablets, then passed down to successive generations.  Moses eventually received these stone tablets (or copies of them) and composed the book we now call Genesis by compiling these records into one written document.  He then composed his own written record of the events of his own lifetime, resulting in the complete Pentateuch.

L. God personally dictated the events of the Creation week to the first man, Adam, but then assumed a less active role in the composition of the balance of Genesis and the balance of what is now commonly called the Christian Scriptures.  This role varied from active dictation in an audible voice to less obvious methods--we might call it "planting of thoughts" in the minds of the writers.  This collective process is commonly called the "Inspiration of Scripture" by Christian Theologians.

M. Many cultures in geographically diverse locations around the world have legends which follow the general outline above.  The reason for the variance we find in the legends is that many of them are simply oral traditions passed down through the generations without the benefit of scrupulous copying of written records that the Christian Scriptures have enjoyed.  Since the Documentary Hypothesis (Graf-Wellhausen Theory) has now been thoroughly discredited, we have good reason to revert to the previously well established hypothesis that Genesis is NOT oral tradition, but rather it is a carefully copied written record of eye-witness accounts.

N. The Christian Scriptures, i.e. the 66 books of what is commonly called the Holy Bible, are essentially the WRITTEN record of what this Super-Intelligent, Super-Powerful Creator God wanted mankind to know about Himself, His Creation, and His Plans for the Future.

O. Jesus of Nazareth is the single most influential human being to ever walk Planet Earth.  Also, there are over 300 specific prophecies concerning a supposed "Messiah" figure throughout the Jewish Scriptures -- what Christians call the Old Testament.  These prophecies "just happen" to all converge in the life of one man of history--Jesus of Nazareth. We hypothesize that this Jesus of Nazareth was (and is) the Creator God in human form, just as he claimed to be.

P. The Christian Scriptures consisting of the Jewish Scriptures plus what is commonly called the New Testament are the most basic and foundational collection of documents for all of mankind's activities on Planet Earth--from scientific endeavor to family activities to government structure.  They also are the only reliable source documents for knowing the future of Planet Earth and Mankind in relation to it.  As such, these Scriptures should be the basis and starting point for all human activities from individual behaviour to family operation to nation building and governance of human affairs to scientific endeavors and the arts.

So now you have the "AF Dave Creator God Updated Hypothesis" ... this is my second draft and almost completely my own words.  While it is true that I have done extensive study, the only sentence to my knowledge "lifted" from an outside source is the first sentence of para (b).  This hypothesis covers many of the main points that I believe should be included, but I would welcome any constructive comments suggesting additions, modifications, or clarifications.

As soon as I am satisfied from my feedback from you that my framework of reasoning is sound, I will proceed to provide evidence which I believe supports each point in my Hypothesis.

This should be fun ... I welcome your comments!

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A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,03:36   

A few pointers:

To save you some time, we don't need evidence that there was an ice age.

If you could give us something that we haven't heard a hundred times before I'm sure we'd all be very grateful.

If you're going to present this theory as an alternative to current science theories using abductive reasoning you need to show why it explains the data better than current theories. Just because your hypothesis also talks about the origin of the universe it does not mean it is automatically a better theory of the origin of species than evolution.

  
Occam's Toothbrush



Posts: 555
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,03:38   

[cue smart people who should know better taking afdave's moronic bait]

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"Molecular stuff seems to me not to be biology as much as it is a more atomic element of life" --Creo nut Robert Byers
------
"You need your arrogant ass kicked, and I would LOVE to be the guy who does it. Where do you live?" --Anger Management Problem Concern Troll "Kris"

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,03:46   

I know but I have a day off and im bored.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,04:01   

Quote
If you're going to present this theory as an alternative to current science theories using abductive reasoning you need to show why it explains the data better than current theories.

I agree completely ... I plan on going to great lengths to show exactly that.  My Ice Age info will show that it was not a million (did I get that about right from ToE?) year Ice Age, but that it was relatively short, occurred right after the Great Flood, and helps to explain dinosaur extinction.

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Laser



Posts: 4
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,04:04   

You seem to be honest in your desire for feedback, so I will give you honest critiques.  Gee, where to start?  The beginning, I guess.

Science doesn't really say anything for or against points A and B.  They aren't questions that science can address. (At least not at this point in time.  It might be possible in the future, but it might not be possible either.)

In point C, you immediately start to limit yourself in a way that science does not.  "I make no proposal as to HOW MANY animals there were initially.  Obviously, there would have to be at least one pair of each 'kind' (a term to be defined later) "  Why won't you make a claim?  Is it because the claim could be tested and found to be wrong?  Science makes hypotheses that are tested all the time.  You're already starting on a nonexistent foundation.

In point D, you finally make a claim: "It is proposed that early man was vigorous, healthy and possibly taller than modern humans.  Early families were very large--on the order of 30 to 50 kids per couple and lives were long, many over 900 years."  What evidence do you have for this claim?  Any fossils of humans taller than today's humans?  Any archaelogical digs that show structures designed for tall humans or very large families? (No, the Bible doesn't count as evidence.  There are places in the Bible that say bats are birds, so I'm not confident in the Bible as a source of scientific evidence and knowledge.)

Later in point D: "The first laws prohibiting close marriages did not occur until the time of Moses by which time we assume that accumulated harmful genetic mutations would have been a significant consideration."  Again, why "assume"?  Why not look for evidence?

Your chain of "abductive logic"  has glaring flaws and weaknesses from the get go.

  
Wesley R. Elsberry



Posts: 4807
Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,04:08   

Don't multiply topics needlessly. There was no need to open a new topic for this modification of what is already being discussed in the original topic.

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"You can't teach an old dogma new tricks." - Dorothy Parker

    
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,04:12   

Is there any way to copy this stuff over to the other topic?

Quote
My Ice Age info will show that it was not a million (did I get that about right from ToE?) year Ice Age
The theory of evolution doesn't say anything about the ice age, saying thins like this makes people not take you seriously. The theory of evolution says nothing about the origin of the universe, the origin of matter, or the origin of life. Some of the requirements include things like an old earth, but an ice age is not one of them.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,04:32   

Quote
There was no need to open a new topic for this modification of what is already being discussed in the original topic.
I hear you.  I assumed people would quit posting to the old one and it would fade away ... If you need to merge them, though, no problem ... maybe use the TITLE for this one so people know it's updated and tack this discussion on the end of the other one?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,05:01   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,08:19)
this "Creator God Hypothesis" DOES NOT follow the Deductive Framework.  I have stated prior to giving my hypothesis, that I cannot provide a watertight proof for God and I don't believe anyone can, so people are correct in saying that my hypothesis would fail using the deductive schema.  However, we CAN use Abductive Reasoning then draw an Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE), ...


Some people can use Abductive Reasoning and then draw an Inference to the Best Explanation (IBE), but not you, Dave.

There is an old quote from David Brooks that applies to your method of reasoning: "To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy."

Of course, your problem is that you don't recognise "God" as an unknown, do you?

Your "abductive inference" (that there is a least one god) is over 3,000 years old and so are the so-called "surprising facts" you are using as support. In all that time, going through several religions, it never made it past first base into the realm of deductive science.

Also, I would not recommend reading Stephen C. Meyer to learn about logic -- he'll probably forever cripple your ability to understand modern scientific reasoning.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,05:23   

Good question from the old thread from improvius ...
Quote
Or you can just change the meaning of "logic" to help you rationalize this junk.

Here's my logic ...
1) We hypothesize a Super-Intelligent Creator ... we can only imagine Him somewhat like a human mind because that is what we are familiar with, but much more intelligent ... this is my "B"
2) We observe a Surprising Fact that all over the world, people claim to have received messages--written and oral from some 'god' character.  It's a surprising fact because quite frankly it's WEIRD ... this is my "A"
3) LOGIC:  If B were true, then A would follow naturally based on our own experience with Intelligent Agents (i.e. they communicate verbally and in writing)
4)  CONCLUSION:  There is reason to suspect that B is true (not proof, obviously, but reason)

Now how is this "junk" logic?
Quote
In all that time, going through several religions, it never made it past first base into the realm of deductive science.
Again, I am saying that I am not using Deductive Reasoning ... I am using Abductive Reasoning and drawing an Inference to the Best Explanation.  This is used regularly by both scientists and historians, Meyer's Napoleon scenario being an excellent example.  Again, for other readers, see http://www.arn.org/docs/meyer/sm_returnofgod.pdf

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A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Flint



Posts: 478
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,05:36   

1) Let's hypothesize that humans are imaginative, and similar to one another in this way everywhere. Part of what makes them human.

2) We observe that humans imagine vaguely-human super powerful or influential beings fairly commonly. In fact, even small children do this.

3) LOGIC: We reason that people are very similar to people. They might even BE people.

4) We observe that apart from human imagination, no trace of objective evidence has EVER been discovered (despite searches so dedicated they approach desperate) of any such entities.

5) LOGIC: We reason that imagination might be producing something imaginary. Being the product of imagination, it might even BE imaginary.

Next step: testing. Fairly exhaustive tests for the actual existence of imaginary entities have so far failed to produce anything of the sort. Another test: do those humans raised to believe in evidence and observation and NOT raised to believe in the imaginary, ALSO experience the same entities? Well, no, they don't.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,05:40   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,09<!--emo&:0)
I agree completely ... I plan on going to great lengths to show exactly that.  My Ice Age info will show that it was not a million (did I get that about right from ToE?) year Ice Age, but that it was relatively short, occurred right after the Great Flood, and helps to explain dinosaur extinction.

Dave, where did you get the idea that there was just one long ice age? The history of the earth is peppered with ice ages, including one, about 600 million years ago, where the entire surface of the earth froze solid.

You're going to need to come up with more than one ice age in your chronology, and that's just one of your easier assignments.

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,05:44   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,10:23)
Again, I am saying that I am not using Deductive Reasoning ... I am using Abductive Reasoning and drawing an Inference to the Best Explanation.

In other words, you're not using science.

How far do you think you're going to get with the people on this website, many of whom are professional scientists?

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Mr_Christopher



Posts: 1238
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,05:52   

Quote
MY BACKGROUND
I was first an Electrical Engineer, then an Air Force pilot (T-38 and Huey, believe it or not), then a businessman.


I am curious why you seem to think there is a need for you to advertise this in every thread.

These facts do not lend any credibility to your arguements.  

Two words come to mind - who cares?

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Uncommon Descent is a moral cesspool, a festering intellectual ghetto that intoxicates and degrades its inhabitants - Stephen Matheson

  
Faid



Posts: 1143
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:01   

Dave, before I answer in any more of your arguments, I want to make this perfectly clear: Have we agreed that we are NOT discussing in scientific terms? Yes or no?

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A look into DAVE HAWKINS' sense of honesty:

"The truth is that ALL mutations REDUCE information"

"...mutations can add information to a genome.  And remember, I have never said that this is not possible."

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:02   

Quote
How far do you think you're going to get with the people on this website, many of whom are professional scientists?

I may not get very far with closed minded professional scientisits, which I hope you are not, but I hope to put some truth out there in an area where I currently see a lot of error.

This is from the Meyer article quoted previously ...
Quote
Scientists rarely prove their theories deductively from empirical evidence. Indeed, no field of inquiry short of mathematics could progress if itlimited itself to the logic of entailment. Rather, most fields of inquiry employ
alternate forms of inference known variously as the method of hypothesis,abduction, hypothetico-deductive method, or inference to the best explanation. (p.21)

and ...
Quote
The natural and historical sciences employ such logic routinely. In the natural sciences, if we have reason to expect that some state of affairs will ensue given some hypothesis, and we find that such a state of affairs has ensued, then we say that our hypothesis has been confirmed. This method of confirmation of hypothesis functions to provide evidential support for many scientific hypotheses. Given Copernicus heliocentric theory of the solar system, astronomers in the seventeenth century had reason to expect that the planet Venus should exhibit phases. Galileo's discovery that it does exhibit phases, therefore, supported (though it did not prove) the heliocentric view. The discovery did not prove the heliocentric theory, since other theories might and in fact could explain the same fact (Gingerich 1982: 133-43) (p. 22 of Meyer's article).

and ...

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A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
MidnightVoice



Posts: 380
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:04   

Quote (Faid @ May 01 2006,11:01)
Dave, before I answer in any more of your arguments, I want to make this perfectly clear: Have we agreed that we are NOT discussing in scientific terms? Yes or no?

Well, he is an engineer, not a sciemtist  :D

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If I fly the coop some time
And take nothing but a grip
With the few good books that really count
It's a necessary trip

I'll be gone with the girl in the gold silk jacket
The girl with the pearl-driller's hands

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:08   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,10:23)
Quote
In all that time, going through several religions, it never made it past first base into the realm of deductive science.
Again, I am saying that I am not using Deductive Reasoning ... I am using Abductive Reasoning ...

You think you are using Abductive Reasoning but you're not really doing that. What you are doing is called "rationalization."

Abductive Reasoning is supposed to lead to a hypothesis where deductive reasoning can apply. Thus your failure to supply a testably hypothesis after doing your Abductive Reasoning means you've failed to do it correctly.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:08   

Dave, your "abductive reasoning" is a science-killer.

A quick example:

A volcano is a "strange, weird thing."

But if God exists, volcanoes would exist as a matter of course.

Using that kind of reasoning, how far do you think we would have gotten using our belief in God to explain natural phenomena? What would we know about volcanism?

BTW, when you say things like, "I see a lot of error in scientists' work, which I mean to correct for the honest folk on this discussion board," you do realize you obliterate any credibility you might have had, right?

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:10   

Quote
These facts do not lend any credibility to your arguements.
I don't expect them to lend to or detract from credibility.  I want new people who have never met me to have some idea of where I'm coming from.

Faid--  The more I study this issue, the more I agree with Meyer that the Abductive approach with a Logical Inference to the Best Explanation is in fact used extensively by both scientists and historians to "establish" many theories (not prove, I understand) which are of great use to humanity.  This is not to say that my conclusions are then automatically true.  I expect to be required to do a great deal more work ... and I may fail.  I admit that.  If you used the same approach and your explanation was better, then it would be reasonable to adopt yours, to be sure.

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A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:15   

I said ...
Quote
I want new people who have never met me to have some idea of where I'm coming from.

Yeah, like Mars, Pluto or some Fundy Planet in another galaxy ... yeah, yeah ... I know the jokes are coming ... :-)

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A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Occam's Aftershave



Posts: 1773
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:25   

AFDave says
Quote
I may not get very far with closed minded professional scientisits, which I hope you are not, but I hope to put some truth out there in an area where I currently see a lot of error.


Dave, you're really starting to disappoint me.  You continue to criticize technical areas in which you admittedly have no expertise, yet accuse those who do have detailed knowledge in those areas of being "closed minded".

What you are doing is the equivalent of going to a convention of aerospace engineers and pilots, held at an airport with hundreds of aircraft on the tarmac and flying overhead, and lecturing that heavier-than-air flight is impossible.  Then, after you have embarrassed yourself with that, dozens of those technical people offer to help you and teach you the basics you obviously lack, but you refuse to listen and instead tell them they're closed minded.

Is it any surprise you are turning off most everyone here?

Being smug and self-assured may be a good thing for a combat pilot, but if not backed up with technical knowledge and understanding those traits will just make you a smoking hole in the ground.

Many people have already pointed out the unwarranted assumptions and battleship-sized flaws in your logic. If you want to impress us, start listening and addressing the criticisms.  Show more critical thinking skills and less single-minded bluster.

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"Science is what got us to the humble place we’re at, and what hard-won progress we might realize comes from science, with ID completely flaccid, religious apologetics bitching from the sidelines." - Eigenstate at UD

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:29   

Here's something else I have never understood ... maybe one of you can explain ...

Why does it always seem that every time the word 'God' is even mentioned, everybody runs for cover and says it's not science?  Personally, I'm content to not use the word God if it makes everyone feel better.  How about  Super-Computer-Alien-Thingy?  (SCAT for short) How about Cosmo-Brain?  Or you think of a name ... it doesn't matter to me.  What matters to me is IF ..... IF,IF,IF,IF,IF ..... there is such a thing, what do you call Him (or it) to even begin an honest search to find evidence for Him (or it) or show that there is none?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:41   

Because you can't start from the conclusion and then look for the evidence to fit your conclusion, that is not science.

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:48   

:02-->
Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,11:02)
Quote
How far do you think you're going to get with the people on this website, many of whom are professional scientists?

I may not get very far with closed minded professional scientists, which I hope you are not, but I hope to put some truth out there in an area where I currently see a lot of error.

Close-minded?  Are you serious?  This from someone who, in a single post, has proved that he has closed his mind to virtually every single bit of scientific evidence concerning the age of the Earth and its long and convoluted history?

Do you even realize how close-minded you are?  Do you understand the sheer tsunami of evidence scientists (many of them Christians) have  built up over the past 200 years compared to the muddy sidewalk puddle you young-earthers have been wallowing in?

I'm sorry to be so blunt, but you are really preaching to the wrong crowd here.

Your hypothesis--statement of faith--reads like something from a bad pseudoscience web site "proving" that aliens abducted his grandmother.  Doesn't Ken Ham have a message board you can hone your rhetoric on, or are you, like others suspect, posting here in the vain hope you will manage to "convert" some of us to your faith?  And if you are, I hope you understand how insulting that is to those of us who are already Christians.

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,06:59   

Quote
E. Mankind chose NOT to do God's will very early on (just as all young children choose not to do parents' will), thus prompting God to institute a system for persuading humans to admit their folly and begin doing His will, for "redeeming" humans who choose this path, and for reminding humans that the present physical world is only a "proving ground" or "training camp" for the next world which will be created at a definite point in the future.  These events are commonly called the Fall and the Curse by Christian Theologians.

Kind of odd behaviour for an entity who is supposed to be omipotent.  Are we expected to believe that God (as defined by most Christians anyway) needed a "Plan B"?  (Actually, if you assume the flood actually happened, he had to use a Plan C as well).

  
Faid



Posts: 1143
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,07:06   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,10:23)
Here's my logic ...
1) We hypothesize a Super-Intelligent Creator ... we can only imagine Him somewhat like a human mind because that is what we are familiar with, but much more intelligent ... this is my "B"
2) We observe a Surprising Fact that all over the world, people claim to have received messages--written and oral from some 'god' character.  It's a surprising fact because quite frankly it's WEIRD ... this is my "A"
3) LOGIC:  If B were true, then A would follow naturally based on our own experience with Intelligent Agents (i.e. they communicate verbally and in writing)
4)  CONCLUSION:  There is reason to suspect that B is true (not proof, obviously, but reason)

Now how is this "junk" logic?

(Copy/pasting my answer from the other thread)

Dave, let me rephrase that the way it actually is:

1) I observe people say that they have been contacted by an entity

2) I propose there is an entity that wishes to contact people

3) I conclude that there is good reason that my theory is true.

Maybe this might help you finally understand.


Oh, about the previous post, my bad: I was referring to the "testable predictions" part of your hypothesis, of course.

--------------
A look into DAVE HAWKINS' sense of honesty:

"The truth is that ALL mutations REDUCE information"

"...mutations can add information to a genome.  And remember, I have never said that this is not possible."

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,07:06   

Quote
If you want to impress us, start listening and addressing the criticisms.

Where have you been?  I have been doing just that. How about you?  Do you ever do that? What more do you want me to do?  (Agree that you are right ... I know, I know ... but you'll have to earn that if that's what you want.) What we have here, Aftershave, is a big problem in science today and many scientists are either too proud, or too blind, or too afraid to lose their jobs or their friends, or whatever to do anything about it themselves.  Denton and Behe are quite clear on this issue and I think this explains why they have taken the unusual step of presenting their information to the non-professionals like me.

You know, in families sometimes the dad shirks his responsibilities as a dad and so the mom takes over.  She's not as good at being a dad as he is (just like I'm not as well trained in logic, geology, etc., etc.).  But she has to jump in there and take over or the family would be in trouble.

This is exactly what I see in this one critical area of science today, i.e. the area of Origins and the Nature of Mankind and the issue of God.  Science should not be claiming that they have disproved the existence of God because they have not.  Science should not be implying to our children that they are glorified animals, because there is no proof.  Science should not be telling the theologians that God is dead or irrelevant, because they have no basis for claiming that and they arrogantly claim that they do.  And so on ... you get the idea.  So if science is going to behave irresponsibly, then who else but non-scientists are going to have to jump in and "blow the whistle" ??

This is exactly what you see going on right now on multiple fronts and it is exactly the reason we hear so much about "concerned scientists."

Now we laymen are reasonable people and we will forgive scientists if they admit their errors and fix them, but if all we ever get is stonewalling and "you're not even fit to make an argument" and "you're just a religious nut", you can be sure that the people will do everything in their power to rise up and fix it themselves.

And believe me, we laymen can do a lot.  I may not get professional scientists to listen to me, but as you and I both know, all we need is a political majority and we win.  Not to say that I'm just about politics.  I am about Truth and Fairness, but I am also about winning and using every political tool in my toolbox to make sure we have Truth and Fairness in the science establishment in this country.

A lot hinges on this, too.  What people think about origins and the nature of mankind is VITALLY important to law and society.  This is why you see me being so passionate about this issue.

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,07:27   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,10:23)
Here's my logic ...
1) We hypothesize a Super-Intelligent Creator ... we can only imagine Him somewhat like a human mind because that is what we are familiar with, but much more intelligent ... this is my "B"
2) We observe a Surprising Fact that all over the world, people claim to have received messages--written and oral from some 'god' character.  It's a surprising fact because quite frankly it's WEIRD ... this is my "A"
3) LOGIC:  If B were true, then A would follow naturally based on our own experience with Intelligent Agents (i.e. they communicate verbally and in writing)
4)  CONCLUSION:  There is reason to suspect that B is true (not proof, obviously, but reason)

Now how is this "junk" logic?
Again, I am saying that I am not using Deductive Reasoning ... I am using Abductive Reasoning and drawing an Inference to the Best Explanation.

Your problem is that we have plenty of evidence from extant primitive cultures that your "A" is simply an attempt by those societies to explain what they can't understand.  

Why do you insist on a double standard?  One for the ancient Jews, and another for the rest of humanity?  After all, you surely don't infer (abduce or whatever) that the Norse God Thor exists since the Vikings found him to best way to explain the phenomenon of lightning?

It's also a fact that the human brain works overtime to make sense of out of the confusing and incomprehensible, including dreams.  We know that people with temporal lobe epilepsy have utterly convincing visions that lead them to believe they have a direct line to God (or even that they are God themselves).  Why do you ignore this good, basic, scientific evidence that could help explain these "contacts with God" and simply argue that it's "WEIRD".

Of course it's weird, but that's no excuse to make the unsupported leap and decide that there must be a creator God.

It's funny, 100 years ago, people used to believe in fairies,  elves, and succubi since they "explained" many the weird things that happened to them.  Today... not so much.  What happened?  UFOs happened. Now it's all ETs and little green men.  Does the fact that thousands of people all around the world claim similar experiences mean that alien abductions are really happening? And why is your case for a creator God any more compelling than that nonsense?

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,07:32   

Quote
Science should not be claiming that they have disproved the existence of God because they have not.
Sience is NOT claiming it has disproved God, no scientist is saying that.

Quote
What we have here, Aftershave, is a big problem in science today and many scientists are either too proud, or too blind, or too afraid to lose their jobs or their friends, or whatever to do anything about it themselves.
Is this the old 'most scientists don't really believe in evolution but they just can't say it'. As I scientists I can tell you this is not true.

Quote
Science should not be implying to our children that they are glorified animals, because there is no proof.
What is your definition of an animal that does not include humans?

Quote
Science should not be telling the theologians that God is dead or irrelevant, because they have no basis for claiming that and they arrogantly claim that they do.
They don't say that either, what they do say is that there is no empirical evidence that conclusively points to a God, maybe you can prove them wrong.

Quote
So if science is going to behave irresponsibly, then who else but non-scientists are going to have to jump in and "blow the whistle" ??
Please quote me the science textbook passage of paper that says God does not exist. It is statements like this that make people call you a religious nut. If you think that there is an atheist conspiracy of scientists then please present your evidence.

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,07:48   

:06-->
Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,12:06)
This is exactly what I see in this one critical area of science today, i.e. the area of Origins and the Nature of Mankind and the issue of God.  Science should not be claiming that they have disproved the existence of God because they have not. Science should not be implying to our children that they are glorified animals, because there is no proof.  Science should not be telling the theologians that God is dead or irrelevant, because they have no basis for claiming that and they arrogantly claim that they do.  And so on ... you get the idea.  So if science is going to behave irresponsibly, then who else but non-scientists are going to have to jump in and "blow the whistle" ??

This is exactly what you see going on right now on multiple fronts and it is exactly the reason we hear so much about "concerned scientists."

Now we laymen are reasonable people and we will forgive scientists if they admit their errors and fix them, but if all we ever get is stonewalling and "you're not even fit to make an argument" and "you're just a religious nut", you can be sure that the people will do everything in their power to rise up and fix it themselves.

And believe me, we laymen can do a lot.  I may not get professional scientists to listen to me, but as you and I both know, all we need is a political majority and we win.  Not to say that I'm just about politics.  I am about Truth and Fairness, but I am also about winning and using every political tool in my toolbox to make sure we have Truth and Fairness in the science establishment in this country.

A lot hinges on this, too.  What people think about origins and the nature of mankind is VITALLY important to law and society.  This is why you see me being so passionate about this issue.

Now the mask is coming off:

Science should not be claiming that they have disproved the existence of God because they have not.

I will be charitable and assume you really believe this.  If that's the case, you are sadly, sadly mistaken and have been taken in by the lies of your fellow creationists.

"Science" doesn't and cannot claim to have disproved the existence of God.  That would be impossible. Once again, many good, honest and hard working scientists are committed Christians and would be insulted to hear such nonsense.

Science should not be implying to our children that they are glorified animals, because there is no proof.

What the heck is a "glorified animal"? Either way, this is nonsense.  Forget evolution.  Try basic anatomy.  What, apart from a bigger brain, do we have that separates us from the rest of the animal kingdom?  Nothing.  Even if you believe in some sort of supernatual soul, we are still mammals and primates.  Like it or lump it.

Science should not be telling the theologians that God is dead or irrelevant, because they have no basis for claiming that and they arrogantly claim that they do.  And so on ...

Again, this is an utter lie.  You should know better.  There are a few scientists, like Richard Dawkins (no doubt your favourite devil), who are outspoken on this issue, but even he would not claim what you say he does.  Again, science cannot do this.  Some scientists do, but that is not the same thing. Any reasonable person should understand this. There are thousands of Christian biologists and geologists who accept evolution.  Are you trying to insult each and every one of them?

With posts like this I suspect you are beginning to wear out your welcome here.  Why should we even bother to listen to you when even your motivations are based on such an obvious falsehood?

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,07:50   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,12<!--emo&:0)
Now we laymen are reasonable people and we will forgive scientists if they admit their errors and fix them, but if all we ever get is stonewalling and "you're not even fit to make an argument" and "you're just a religious nut", you can be sure that the people will do everything in their power to rise up and fix it themselves.

Dave, this is exactly the kind of arrogant crap that gets you into trouble with scientists. You think you're being magnanimous by being willing to forgive scientists their errors if they admit them and fix them? You think you're qualified to even find errors in scientists' work? Who do you think you are?

Some guy goes through 12 years of public school, four years of undergraduate training, another six years of postgraduate studies, a few more years of fellowships, spends the next twenty years of his life doing research into invertebrate physiology, and then you think you're entitled to read a few articles on AiG and then tell him he's wrong? What kind of a blockhead are you?

I'd say no offense, but given the offensiveness of your position, I'd be lying if I said so.

If you think the last 150 years of evolutionary biology is wrong, then I suggest you go out there, get your postgraduate degree in the relevant fields, and then go out and do some research. If you think you're remotely qualified to critique these guys' work, you're delusional.

Oh, and by the way: how are you doing with your detailed, comprehensive rebuttal of all the evidence demonstrating that the earth is billions of years old? You might want to stop criticizing scientists' research and start doing some research of your own.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Occam's Aftershave



Posts: 1773
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,08:05   

AFDave says

Quote
Where have you been?  I have been doing just that. How about you?  Do you ever do that? What more do you want me to do?  (Agree that you are right ... I know, I know ... but you'll have to earn that if that's what you want.)


Actually Dave, you haven’t.  All you’ve been doing is continuing to present your uninformed opinions on technical topic that you don’t understand.  I, personally, don’t care what you choose to believe, as long as it makes you happy.  However, when you present your ignorance as an alternative to actual scientific results, I will continue to point out your errors.

Quote
What we have here, Aftershave, is a big problem in science today and many scientists are either too proud, or too blind, or too afraid to lose their jobs or their friends, or whatever to do anything about it themselves.


That’s total bullshit Dave.  You’re off on an exercise of self-justification for your religious beliefs, nothing more.  Do you think you’re the first to come here and do this?

Quote
Denton and Behe are quite clear on this issue and I think this explains why they have taken the unusual step of presenting their information to the non-professionals like me.


Denton and Behe and the other Creationist pseudo-scientists specifically target untrained laymen like you because you don’t have the skill set to know you’re being lied to.  You’re a “soft target” Dave, whether you care to admit it or not.

Quote
You know, in families sometimes the dad shirks his responsibilities as a dad and so the mom takes over.  She's not as good at being a dad as he is (just like I'm not as well trained in logic, geology, etc., etc.).  But she has to jump in there and take over or the family would be in trouble.


And sometimes there is no problem, but the Mom becomes a controlling, domineering battle-ax over her children anyway just because she needs to feel important.

Quote
This is exactly what I see in this one critical area of science today, i.e. the area of Origins and the Nature of Mankind and the issue of God.  Science should not be claiming that they have disproved the existence of God because they have not.


Science HAS NOT EVER claimed to have disproved the existence of God.  Whoever told you that if full of shit too. There are certainly a few atheistic scientists (i.e. Dawkins) who hold that personal opinion, but the science itself says NOTHING one way or the other on the existence of God.  You want to claim different?  Then find me a textbook or a scientific research paper ANYWHERE that says “here is scientific evidence there is no God”.  

Quote
Science should not be implying to our children that they are glorified animals, because there is no proof.


Er Dave, there is ample evidence humans ARE just another species of animal.  Your total ignorance of, or personal dislike for of the evidence does not mean the evidence doesn’t exist.

Quote
Science should not be telling the theologians that God is dead or irrelevant, because they have no basis for claiming that and they arrogantly claim that they do.  And so on ... you get the idea.  So if science is going to behave irresponsibly, then who else but non-scientists are going to have to jump in and "blow the whistle" ??


Again, science DOES NOT DO what you claim.  Just what do you think “science” is, anyway?  Science is just the collected technical knowledge of the natural world. It has been compiled by millions of people of all religions over hundreds of years and is available to be examined or questioned by anybody. It is not some unified organization like the Catholic church with a “head scientist” as Pope handing out scientific “proclamations” that must be followed by the lesser scientists.

Quote
This is exactly what you see going on right now on multiple fronts and it is exactly the reason we hear so much about "concerned scientists." Now we laymen are reasonable people and we will forgive scientists if they admit their errors and fix them, but if all we ever get is stonewalling and "you're not even fit to make an argument" and "you're just a religious nut", you can be sure that the people will do everything in their power to rise up and fix it themselves.


Again, nothing personal Dave, but you’re way too ignorant on the topic to be telling professionals that they are in error.  If you wish, you can study the sciences, do your own research, and present peer reviewed results to overturn current scientific thinking.  However, just repeating your uninformed bogus claims will only get you laughed at.

Quote
And believe me, we laymen can do a lot.  I may not get professional scientists to listen to me, but as you and I both know, all we need is a political majority and we win.  Not to say that I'm just about politics.  I am about Truth and Fairness, but I am also about winning and using every political tool in my toolbox to make sure we have Truth and Fairness in the science establishment in this country.


I agree 100% that this is a political battle, because the scientific battle was decided over 150 years ago.  The YECs lost.  Like so many other Fundamentalists, all you want is your particular religion’s brand of “Truth and Fairness”, regardless that all the scientific evidence available directly contradicts you.

Quote
A lot hinges on this, too.  What people think about origins and the nature of mankind is VITALLY important to law and society.  This is why you see me being so passionate about this issue.


I respect your passion, but your critical thinking skills still haven’t gotten off the ground.

Take care.

--------------
"Science is what got us to the humble place we’re at, and what hard-won progress we might realize comes from science, with ID completely flaccid, religious apologetics bitching from the sidelines." - Eigenstate at UD

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,08:09   

Nicely put Eric.  Dave is no different from people like Richard Hoagland who condemns that whole of NASA and the rest of the space industry simply because they won't admit the Face on Mars is an artificial construct.  It's funny how he expects us to listen to him while he ignores every inconvenient little fact we bring up.

He has the nerve to bring up "Truth and Fairness" when even the premise of his argument (science is anti-religious) is a blatent lie?  I constantly find it astouding how people who are obviously quite intelligent, smart, and capable people (if we are to assume his background information is true) can be so wildly off base and so wilfully ignore the truth even when it's staring them in the face.  Whether or not God exists is not the issue here.  No one can prove that either way.  It's the dishonesty with which they even approach the subject of origins that frustrates and infuriates me.  I mean, it's one thing to believe what you are being told by your fundamentalist preacher and favourite creationist web site, it's another to continue believing it unquestioningly when you are presented with solid evidence that you are wrong.

Is faith in God so precarious that the odd bit of scientific evidence brings is all tumbling down?  Why do they want to prove God exists anyway?  With proof, faith is nothing if not diminished, and Christianity has a long history of priding faith over all other things.

Dave appears to be a prime example of what Steven Colbert would deem to be "truthiness".  The facts don't matter, it's what you feel in your gut that really counts!

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,08:58   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,11:10)
... more I study this issue, the more I agree with Meyer that the Abductive approach with a Logical Inference to the Best Explanation is in fact used extensively by both scientists and historians to "establish" many theories (not prove, I understand) which are of great use to humanity.

The problem with your above statement is you've misread Meyer who is already lying to you.

When Meyer says "developments in modern science provide support for Christian theism" it is a lie. He has offered a very skewed argument in which many lines of evidence are omitted and the evidence he does provide will not take you as far as he claims, to confirmation of Christianity. Even if it were valid, which it is not, it could only take you a vague idea of a god.

You then misread him when you say "a Logical Inference to the Best Explanation is in fact used extensively by both scientists and historians to establish many theories." Meyer's never explores anything but the metaphysical conclusions one might draw from what science we know. I never saw him claim any where that scientific theories were established by abductive reasoning alone.

It is a lie to say abductive reasoning alone establishes a scientific theory because deductive reasoning must be involved in establishing those theories. It is paramount, the fact that an apparent use of abductive inference can also seem to "establish" them is a slight of hand distraction away from what is actually critical to those theories.

For example, the theory you so dislike, Darwinian evolution, has many lines of deductive proof and prediction from them to go on. I can lay out a few if you're interested.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,09:13   

Quote
Science HAS NOT EVER claimed to have disproved the existence of God.  Whoever told you that if full of shit too. There are certainly a few atheistic scientists (i.e. Dawkins) who hold that personal opinion, but the science itself says NOTHING one way or the other on the existence of God.  You want to claim different?  Then find me a textbook or a scientific research paper ANYWHERE that says “here is scientific evidence there is no God”.
I just have to laugh ... "only a few  ... mmm ... like Dawkins, for example ... he's not very influential... not many others ..." OK.  Whatever.

I'll tell you what ... I won't sell you any bridges and you don't sell me any and we'll be friends, OK!

As for me, I'm going to get back on topic ...

Thankyou, Norm at least for that!  I'll consider your words.

Would anyone else like to comment on the real issue on this thread ... ?

We (at least I and Norm and a few others) are debating the validity of my structure for debating Origins, the Nature of Life and related topics, collectively referred to as my Creator God Hypothesis.

I have given you my preferred approach ... are there any more substantive objections?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,09:36   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,14:13)
I just have to laugh ... "only a few  ... mmm ... like Dawkins, for example ... he's not very influential... not many others ..." OK.  Whatever.

I'll tell you what ... I won't sell you any bridges and you don't sell me any and we'll be friends, OK!

As for me, I'm going to get back on topic ...

Thankyou, Norm at least for that!  I'll consider your words.

Would anyone else like to comment on the real issue on this thread ... ?

We (at least I and Norm and a few others) are debating the validity of my structure for debating Origins, the Nature of Life and related topics, collectively referred to as my Creator God Hypothesis.

I have given you my preferred approach ... are there any more substantive objections?

Why should we bother commenting on anything else you say when you can't even be bothered to back up your own comments with, like, you know, evidence.

First tell us exactly where Dawkins says that science disproves God instead of just laughing it off.  If it's so obvious to you, then educate us.  We're listening.

Second, does the fact that one, admittedly strongly atheistic and outspoken scientist might believe it mean it is safe to assume all, or even a more that a small minority of scientists believe it too.  Gee, I guess that must mean I must be right in thinking that all Christians believe the same as that paragon of Christian thought, Pastor Fred Phelps (look him up if you haven't heard of him).

Finally, perhaps if you started addressing our existing comments (you haven't answered any of mine yet) then maybe we will start to entertain the idea that you are actually interested in anything we have to say.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,09:36   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,14:13)
I just have to laugh ... "only a few  ... mmm ... like Dawkins, for example ... he's not very influential... not many others ..." OK.  Whatever.

More misdirection, Dave. Dawkins has often said that he personally does not believe in God, and points out that there is no solid evidence that God exists. He has never claimed that science can, or has, proved that God does not exist.

These claims may work with your not-well-informed layman friends, but they will not work with people who actually read about science.

Quote
As for me, I'm going to get back on topic ...


Dave, you're avoiding "the topic" like the plague. The "topic" is, what evidence does Dave have for his claim that the Bible is inerrant and is the best available explanation for experience. So far, you're batting zero on that topic.

Quote
We (at least I and Norm and a few others) are debating the validity of my structure for debating Origins, the Nature of Life and related topics, collectively referred to as my Creator God Hypothesis.

I have given you my preferred approach ... are there any more substantive objections?


I'm pretty sure the objections you've already heard have not only demolished your hypothesis; they've demolished your method for even arriving at a hypothesis. Your proposed method takes you way outside the bounds of science. You're not talking science; you're talking theology. I don't think I can get any clearer than that.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Occam's Aftershave



Posts: 1773
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,10:20   

Quote
I just have to laugh ... "only a few  ... mmm ... like Dawkins, for example ... he's not very influential... not many others ..." OK.  Whatever.

I'll tell you what ... I won't sell you any bridges and you don't sell me any and we'll be friends, OK!

As for me, I'm going to get back on topic ...


Well Dave, if you didn't want to discuss your claim of "science says it disproves the existence of God", then why in the world did you bring it up in the first place?

Speaking of on topic, you are still avoiding answering this objection to your hypothesis

Quote
I can spin that kind of argument any way I want too.  I can hypothesize "A Super Intelligent, Incredibly Powerful Being could create all necessary physical laws in the first femtosecond of existence, then just sit back and observe the results.  Therefore when I observe scientific data that says the universe is 14 Billion years old, and the Earth is 4.5 Billion years old, and that life has existed on Earth for over 3 billion years, and that life has evolved over that time by observed processes such as random mutations plus natural selection, I have just verified my hypothesis.


Why is that reasoning any less valid than yours?

or

Abductive Reasoning
DATA: The surprising fact A is observed. (The Indian tsunami killed hundreds of thousands of people
LOGIC: But if B were true, then A would be a matter of course. (B is the hypothesis that AFDave caused the tsunami :(  )
CONCLUSION: Hence, there is reason to suspect that B is true.

Tell us AFDave, should we suspect you of killing all those innocent people?

Don't feel alone.  Most of the YECs who come through here experience similar bouts of cognitive dissonance when presented with factual evidence that blows away their arguments.  That makes them get angry and confused, just like you.

--------------
"Science is what got us to the humble place we’re at, and what hard-won progress we might realize comes from science, with ID completely flaccid, religious apologetics bitching from the sidelines." - Eigenstate at UD

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,10:47   

Quote
Abductive Reasoning
DATA: The surprising fact A is observed. (The Indian tsunami killed hundreds of thousands of people
LOGIC: But if B were true, then A would be a matter of course. (B is the hypothesis that AFDave caused the tsunami   )
CONCLUSION: Hence, there is reason to suspect that B is true.
Tell us AFDave, should we suspect you of killing all those innocent people?


Thankyou, Aftershave, for getting back on topic ... you know very well what the topic is and I'm glad you are man enough to finally get back to it. It's right up there at the top of this Internet Explorer frame.  I'm glad you noticed we are debating the UPDATED version, thankyou.

Now ... to fillet your statement in front of God and everybody ... my surprising answer to your question is ... DRUM ROLL ... YES ...

YES, YES!! Thankyou!  A Thousand time YES!  This is precisely what you should do!  And while you are at it, put your Origins and Macro-Evolution Hypothesis in exactly the same format and go look for that evidence on the same trek!

Guess what!  You won't find a SHRED of evidence for either one and you will display to all who come here that it is the Evolution Dogmatists who are doing Voodoo Science!  That's the difference between my Hypothesis and the two of yours.  

Yours have no evidence.  Mine does.  

And tomorrow morning you will be getting more or it than you care to hear.  But not for your benefit, unless you open your mind.  If you haven't noticed, I'm really writing for the benefit of people with open minds.  I know I won't convince hardened skeptics.

So bring it on and let's see how yours stands up.  (Either one you like--Tsunami or Evolution).  You tell me you guys are the professionals.  Let's see how professional your arguments are.  Or are you just going say I'm incompetent and I have no idea what I'm in for and Meyer is a liar, blah, blah, blah?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,10:55   

Just post your evidence already.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,11:09   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,15:47)
[Guess what!  You won't find a SHRED of evidence for either one and you will display to all who come here that it is the Evolution Dogmatists who are doing Voodoo Science!  That's the difference between my Hypothesis and the two of yours.  

Yours have no evidence.  Mine does.

No, Dave, you don't. You haven't presented anything remotely resembling "evidence" for any of your claims. To say that something "could have happened this way," or "probably happened this way," simply doesn't amount to evidence.

Face it, Dave. "Hardened skeptics" are the people you have to reach. All practicing scientists are "hardened skeptics," and they won't be persuaded by half-assed guesses unsupported by any reference to actual evidence.

Now—where's your evidence that the earth is only 6,000 years old?

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Renier



Posts: 276
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,11:18   

Quote
Yours have no evidence.  Mine does.


Dave, get on with it. We are all waiting for this "evidence" to appear. Are you now saying that you have already presented it? You are joking, right? Either that, or you are insulting us.

...and in this mood of anticipation that you have created, take the hat and pluck out the evidence... come on! Oh, btw, your "suspicion" does not count as evidence, but I think you know that.

Well laddy, you promised evidence, so, do honour to your word!

  
thurdl01



Posts: 99
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,11:22   

Ad hominem attacks combined with a strong martyrdom complex.  Interesting strategy.  Do you expect it to win converts when you are lobbing general insults, though often veiled, at people?

Or is it your strategy, as you've demonstrated several times in this thread, that you will simply ignore any evidence that doesn't mesh with your predecided upon conclusion?  Or, worse yet, deciding to declare arguments that are damaging to your point of view as "off topic" even if they are in direct responce to comments that you, yourself, have made in the self same thread?  How can it be that we should be expected to stay "on topic," as decided upon by yourself apparently, when you are not bound by those same rules?  The issues that have been discussed above in this thread that you deemed "off topic" stemmed from comments that you yourself have made.  Thus, you are delivering the message that (A) you are allowed to be off topic but (B) no one is "allowed" to respond to your off topic statements.

I mean, I'm just trying to look at the rules that you're apparently setting up for us to "follow" should we hope to have our eyes opened by yourself.  Assuming that we are "men enough" to do so.  Because it seems to me that the pattern is going to be you ignoring, or simply labelling as "off topic," any evidence that is contrary to your position, while delivering veiled insults to anyone who dares to be on the side of reason in this whole debate.

To use your own terms, are you man enough to debate this honestly?  More simply: why should we bother reading and replying to you?

  
Renier



Posts: 276
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,11:27   

Afdave wrote:

Quote
This is extremely important and will come after I present credible evidence that we should expect some Super-Intelligence to exist and that it is highly likely that He (or it) commmunicates like we do.


Quote
And this is where I think my evidence ... "cosmic fine tuning, the anthropic principle, etc." as I will elaborate on soon lead to a Super-Intelligent 'god-like' character as a better explanation than other alternatives.


Oh cra_p. Is this going to be a Deja Vu feeling, like talking to Heddle?

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,12:01   

Quote (Renier @ May 01 2006,16:27)
Oh cra_p. Is this going to be a Deja Vu feeling, like talking to Heddle?

I think you're being unfair to Heddle -- this guy makes David Heddle look like a genius.

If anything this thread reminds me of any number of threads on boards like Bad Astronomy where a rank amateur posts a series of half-assed assertions and claims he's just about to overturn everything we thought we knew about the laws of physics.

When challenged to produce evidence to back up his assertions all he can do is: ignore, dismiss, change the subject, mock, etc. etc.  Classic pseudoscientist reactions.

As for the forthcoming "bombshell". I'm not holding my breath.

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,12:07   

Ok, since anecdotal evidence counts in Dave's book, I will provide some:

I heard a couple of people saying Dave caused the tsunami.

At this point, I think that puts it on equal footing with your God hypothesis.

--------------
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
Renier



Posts: 276
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,12:10   

Quote
As for the forthcoming "bombshell". I'm not holding my breath.


Well, I hope Afdave gets on with it, before the sun burns out.

Oh.. wait a minute, I get it. "A 1000 years is like a day". Think afdave is taking the bible definition for time, like "behold, I come quickly"?

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,12:23   

Quote (tacitus @ May 01 2006,17<!--emo&:0)
If anything this thread reminds me of any number of threads on boards like Bad Astronomy where a rank amateur posts a series of half-assed assertions and claims he's just about to overturn everything we thought we knew about the laws of physics.

When challenged to produce evidence to back up his assertions all he can do is: ignore, dismiss, change the subject, mock, etc. etc.  Classic pseudoscientist reactions.

For arguments like this, you don't even have to go that far to find one. Find the "LUCA Thread" on this very site. See how far the Ghost of Paley has progressed in his battle to overturn the last 500 years of astronomy and astrophysics.

Last I saw, he was still struggling with a geocentric explanation of non-cosmological redshift.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Occam's Aftershave



Posts: 1773
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,12:37   

AFDave, you keep ignoring this important discussion point.  You've ignored it three times now, so I'll ask it a fourth time

OA: "I can spin that kind of argument any way I want too.  I can hypothesize "A Super Intelligent, Incredibly Powerful Being could create all necessary physical laws in the first femtosecond of existence, then just sit back and observe the results.  Therefore when I observe scientific data that says the universe is 14 Billion years old, and the Earth is 4.5 Billion years old, and that life has existed on Earth for over 3 billion years, and that life has evolved over that time by observed processes such as random mutations plus natural selection, I have just verified my hypothesis."

Why is that reasoning any less valid than yours?

AFDave says
Quote
And tomorrow morning you will be getting more or it than you care to hear.  But not for your benefit, unless you open your mind.  If you haven't noticed, I'm really writing for the benefit of people with open minds.  I know I won't convince hardened skeptics.


Sure, if you realize as we do that your definition of "open minded person" is someone as totally ignorant of the sciences involved as yourself who can be gulled by pseudoscientific charlatans.  You probably won't find many here who fit your definition, though.


Quote
So bring it on and let's see how yours stands up.  (Either one you like--Tsunami or Evolution).  You tell me you guys are the professionals.  Let's see how professional your arguments are.  


Sigh...Sorry Dave, you started this thread to provide the evidence for your YEC position, remember? So post your evidence based on the pseudoscientific garbage that you picked up from AIG.  We've seen it all before.  (In fact, we 've heard it so many times it has a special name. PRATT, or "Points Refuted A Thousand Times".)  Post your technical "evidence", and we'll hand you your ass on a platter, just like every other cock-sure but clueless YEC we meet.  And you'll sputter and fume, and tell us we'll all burn in he11...oh well.

Quote
Or are you just going say I'm incompetent and I have no idea what I'm in for and Meyer is a liar, blah, blah, blah?


No need for me to belabor the obvious.  I'll let the scientific quality of your YEC arguments speak for themselves.

--------------
"Science is what got us to the humble place we’re at, and what hard-won progress we might realize comes from science, with ID completely flaccid, religious apologetics bitching from the sidelines." - Eigenstate at UD

  
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,12:50   

Quote


Last I saw, he was still struggling with a geocentric explanation of non-cosmological redshift.
At least he gave you a model, however ridiculous. He won't even give me a model he promised.

   
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,12:52   

Quote (afdave @ May 01 2006,15:47)
Quote
Tell us AFDave, should we suspect you of killing all those innocent people?


YES, YES!! Thankyou!  A Thousand time YES!  This is precisely what you should do!


Previously I said: "...the theory you so dislike, Darwinian evolution, has many lines of deductive proof and prediction from them to go on. I can lay out a few if you're interested."

Here is just one line of proof:

At this website you'll find a chapter from a book by Kevin Kelly called "Out of Control":

http://www.kk.org/outofcontrol/ch15-d.html

I will use this chapter to illustrate how science uses abductive reasoning to move into deductive reasoning and show how its the deductive reasoning that is the key to science, not the abductive.

It's about Danny Hillis who built the first massively parallel processing computer, the Connection Machine, and used it as a "proof" for a concept in Darwinian evolution.

Hillis saw a problem: The more knowledge you gave a computer, the slower it got. Yet with a person, the more knowledge you give him, the faster he gets. This paradox, that if you tried to make computers smart, they got stupider led to some pre-scientific abductive reasoning.
(Well, not really, because John Holland already did both the abductive and deductive core but Hillis' contribution is easier for me to explain because of this book - so let's look at Hillis alone.)

Hillis' abductive reasoning went: "There are only two ways we know of to make extremely complicated things. One is by engineering, and the other is evolution. And of the two, evolution will make the more complex. If we can't engineer a computer that will be proud of us, we may have to evolve it."

Hillis looks at the world and see a variety of complex things, human machines, living things and the rest of nature. He knows that people make complex and functional machine things -- he is such a person after all -- he is also told the the process of Darwinian evolution can make complex and functional machine-like things too and, unlike
you, he believes this and understands it.

From Hillis' abductive reasoning about evolution he moves then, naturally, to a deductive scientific mode of reasoning by turning his assumption about evolution into a hypothesis: He should be able, like John Holland suggests, to make a computer that can evolve computer programs and thus test this assumption about evolution. (This didn't really test evolution for anything we didn't  know by the 1950s using pure math, but Hillis was first to make the argument into a machine). This hypothesis was then tested by building a machine that could evolve computer programs. If that had not been done -- it's the experiment in the experimental method, the scientific method -- then Hillis would not have been a scientist but merely a philosopher, like Hume or Kant or Meyer.

"If we take in our hand any volume; of divinity or school metaphysics, for instance; let us ask, Does it contain any abstract reasoning concerning quantity or number? No. Does it contain any experimental reasoning, concerning matter of fact and existence? No. Commit it then to flames: for it can contain nothing but sophistry and illusion."
-- David Hume

And note what happens when its done, we have to start talking about something you'll see a lot of in science: numbers! Measurable reality quantified. You don't see much of that in philosophy.

The Connection Machine had 64,000 processors with a population of 64,000 very simple software programs that could be altered by mutation. Each program had an entire computer processor dedicated to running it. initially the seed programs are just random sequences of computer instructions, but over tens of thousands of generations they became a program that sorted a long string of numbers into numerical order. It was a specific and real machine testing a significant assumption about evolution.

The computer used selection, akin to natural selection, tested the programs and terminated the less fit so that only the shortest (the best) sorting programs would be given a chance to reproduce. Over ten thousand generations of this cycle, Hillis' system bred a software program that was nearly as short as the best sorting programs written by human programmers.

That is a form of proof -- call it proof of concept. It's not proof that Darwinian evolution is what wrote our genomes, but it is proof that evolution could, in principle, do so. That's what I  mean  when I  talk about science and deductive proof.

All that was in the '80s and you'll hardly ever hear any  creationist ever talk about Hillis or Holland. Did you know those men existed before I told you?

  
Henry J



Posts: 4565
Joined: Mar. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,17:22   

normdoering,

Re "It's about Danny Hillis who built the first massively parallel processing computer, the Connection Machine, and used it as a "proof" for a concept in Darwinian evolution. [...]"

I dunno whether afdave appreciates that story or not, but I found it fascinating.

Henry

  
BWE



Posts: 1898
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 01 2006,18:11   

Quote
Why oh why does anything about god matter in even the slightest bit to humans? Heaven and #### are meaningless words in the context of eternity. They are quite meaningful when applied to how we feel while living but not once we're dead. So why is gOd important?  ???


--------------
Who said that ev'ry wish would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that, and someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

The Daily Wingnut

   
Corkscrew



Posts: 20
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,05:34   

AFDave: again, I think we have a slight confusion of terminology. What you're describing as an hypothesis would, if I understand correctly, be more accurately considered a conjecture.

My understanding is that statements about the universe subdivide into the following categories:

Conjectures - statements that fit all the known data (these are produced by the largely-intuitive process of abduction)

Hypotheses - conjectures that are falsifiable

Data - conjectures that have been verified (there's no term for conjectures that are merely verifiable)

Predictions - conjectures that are both verifiable and falsifiable, and that haven't yet been verified or falsified

Science is concerned primarily with deciding which of the infinite number of possible hypotheses for any given situation is best. It does this by applying three principles: predictivity, parsimony and credibility. Predictivity means that an hypothesis must give us some idea of what we'll find next (otherwise it's scientifically useless), parsimony means that an hypothesis must be efficient in its use of "magic numbers" (so, for example, five dots in a row would be best described by a linear equation not a quintic equation), and credibility means that an hypothesis must have survived attempted falsification. Of these, credibility is the most important, followed by predictivity and then parsimony (this is partly because predictivity is a necessary condition for credibility).

Your conjecture does not, as it stands, make any predictions, so can't be considered an hypothesis. To rectify this, you'll need to:
1) increase its specificity until you can use it to make a prediction of the form described above
2) confirm that the current best-of-breed scientific hypotheses would not also make that prediction (ideally, they shouldn't even leave open the possibility of that prediction being true, but you can't have everything)
3) go out and test the prediction

I repeat: for your conjectures to be scientifically valid, it is not sufficient to present existing evidence in support of each of them. To match the level of current origins science, you must also be able to derive and confirm predictions from them. Otherwise, it really is just a "just so story". Predictivity is what makes the difference.

As an aside:
Quote
Why does it always seem that every time the word 'God' is even mentioned, everybody runs for cover and says it's not science?


Because over the centuries scientists have shown an alarming tendency to get sucked into ultimately-unsuccessful research of the paranormal and cease to ever again produce useful scientific results. That's not a tendency that anyone particularly wants to encourage, so it's considered valid to basically tell students: "It's a dead end. Live with it." Plus, of course, a wide array of folks claim erroneously to have scientific support for their religious beliefs, which effectively dilutes science's trademark.

Another aside:
Quote
I just have to laugh ... "only a few  ... mmm ... like Dawkins, for example ... he's not very influential... not many others ..." OK.  Whatever.


As I understand it, Dawkins merely says that modern science proves that God doesn't necessarily exist, not that He doesn't exist. It's a necessary condition for atheism, not a sufficient condition.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,05:47   

Good morning everyone ...

I'll probably start off every day with a retraction or two because I am passionate about this stuff and I believe there is a lot in our country at stake, and sometimes I say unnecessary things to try and make my point ... I think we all do ...

I said ...
Quote
Science should not be claiming that they have disproved the existence of God because they have not.  Science should not be implying to our children that they are glorified animals, because there is no proof.  Science should not be telling the theologians that God is dead or irrelevant, because they have no basis for claiming that and they arrogantly claim that they do.


I am happy to retract these statements.  They are unnecessary and do not contribute to the points I am trying to make.  They represent an impression I have about some of our leading scientists, but they do open a can of worms that I don't want to focus on right now.  Also, I do not mean to insult anyone here who may be a professional scientist.  I have no doubt--honest--that you all do excellent work in your specialty.  But I feel that many good scientists have "stepped over" OUT OF their specialty (as I also am doing) to address the question of origins.  I don't know what your reasons are, but I'm sure you have good ones, and I have my own reasons as well.  I agree that name-calling, motive-questioning and other such tactics get us nowhere, and I for one will apologize when I commit these 'sins'.

So ... back to what I DO want to focus on ...

MY GOALS
My goal, first of all, is NOT to win an argument, or to make someone feel stupid.  My real goal is two-fold:  (1) to really get to the bottom of why Creationism is so objectionable to a lot of good scientists.  This is why I am HERE, not over at AIG or DI, (2) I have personally seen a lot of excellent support for being a Creationist, but I could be wrong.  If so, who better to tell me I'm wrong that professional scientists over here? (3) If I am right, the implications are enormous and all of humanity should know about this.  Believe it or not, I care about all of you on this blog as human beings.  I feel that I am a 'beggar who has found bread' and I want to share this information with others.  My motives are altruistic even though I may not act like it sometimes.  I am human and someone has rightly said 'To err is human.'  I will continue to 'err', but I will try not to and when I do, I will confess and try to fix it.  What else can I do? (4) I came here already armed with a significant amount of study, but I knew that I was missing one key ingredient ... actual dialog with a diverse group of Naturalistic Philosophers.  So what is really happening here is that you all are making some very good points to improve the presentation of my logic, help me select proper terminology so as not to make people mad, and understand the naturalistic perspective.  This is an incredibly valuable learning experience for me, which will help me immensely if I ever do get around to presenting information on a Grand Scale.  And of course there is the off chance that you guys' position may be correct, in which case I would be a fool NOT to adopt it.


So let's dive in ... it appears that I need to spend a little more time explaining my structure for testing ANY hypothesis ... I think that a lot of the evidence I will present, you will have probably heard before, but you may reject it as support for my particular hypothesis on logical or other grounds.  So I think I need to first argue the validity of using my approach ...

I have proposed Abductive Logic Confirmed by Inference to the Best Explanation, and have inserted an extra step (this was an assumption to me, but I see it is not for you, so we will insert it)

Abductive Reasoning
DATA: The Surprising Fact A (or Phenomenon A) is observed. (The finely tuned cosmos, biological machines, written 'holy' books, etc.)
EXPERIENCE: (Let us insert this to explain where 'B' comes from)  We propose 'B' based upon our own observation and experience.  We cannot do otherwise and still call it 'science'
LOGIC: But if B were true, then A would be a matter of course. (B is the God of the Christian Bible)
CONCLUSION: Hence, there is reason to suspect that B is true.

Let's illustrate this process from an example from my own experience.  I lived for a while as a child in a foreign country with a tribe of jungle natives (my Dad is a Bible translator).  These natives had never seen an airplane when my dad arrived.  We will call this Surprising Fact (or Phenomenon) A.  Some on this thread have argued that it should not be called a Surprising Fact, but I believe it should because the 'surprise' part means that you have never seen the thing before, i.e. you are surprised.  Some also say that EVERYTHING you see in the world could be called a Surprising Fact if you propose a 'God', but this is not true.  The definition of a surprising fact in this context is simply 'new', i.e. not previously studied.  Of course 'new' facts soon become old, but this does not take away anything.  Many new things in the physical world are still fascinating to study even though they are not 'new' to science.  So I would also be content to call my 'Surprising Fact" a 'Noteworthy Fact' or simply 'Phenomenon.'  Someone else may say, "Why do you think that fact is noteworthy? I don't think it is."  Well, you may not and that's OK.  This whole exercise is written for those who ARE interested in the phenomena of the physical world and who seek to explain how they got here.  I am one of them and I assume there are others.

So the natives observe this airplane and they observe people getting out of it and walking toward them and they say "Wow ... a sky canoe!"  (They really did this ... and that is what they call an airplane to this day ... the word is 'kanawa' in their language).  Notice that they immediately explained Phenomenon 'A' in terms they already understood well.  They understand canoes ... they get into their canoes, go various places, then get out again.  They saw this airplane arrive from someplace, they saw people get out, and so they assume that it is a very fancy 'canoe', and in a sense they are correct.

Now some of the more thoughtful natives (not many mind you ... most of them said 'Wow! Sky Canoe' and moved on) ... but some of them said to themselves, 'I wonder who made this sky canoe?' ... and they began asking questions.  They asked my dad and he told them something like 'Cessna Aircraft Corporation' in a country far from here called 'America.'  (Which to the natives was so foreign sounding that my dad might just as well have said 'The Tooth Fairy made it and she lives in Timbuktu.';) Now there are some interesting things we can observe here.  First, we could ask why my dad told them Cessna made the airplane. And the answer would be that he had previously used the Abductive Reasoning method and had made an Inference to the Best Explanation.  Let's walk through this.  

MY DAD IS THE OBSERVER
DATA:  Phenomenon A is the airplane.
EXPERIENCE:  My dad proposes 'B' because of his own experience
LOGIC:  If B were true, then A would be a matter of course.
CONCLUSION:  There is reason to suspect that 'B' is true.  In fact, 'B' is so well supported that my dad feels it warrants the strong statement 'Cessna made this airplane.'

Now my dad only has his own experience to draw upon to propose 'B' and to do anything else would be unscientific.  What is his experience?  He has seen many airplanes, he has read about Cessna, Piper and Beechcraft, and he even read a book on aerodynamics once.   All this leads him to propose 'B' that 'Cessna made the airplane.'  Could he propose other 'B's'?  Sure, he could propose that a farmer planted aiplane seeds and this airplane grew from one of the seeds.  He could propose that the Fairy Godmother waved a magic wand and the airplane magically appeared.  But these proposals would not be based in his experience and they would not constitute good science.  So he does the most logical thing and proposes that 'Cessna made the airplane.'  Now some will ask, "This is great, Dave, but can he PROVE that Cessna made the airplane?  Well, no.  Has he ever OBSERVED any aircraft factory building airplanes?  No again.  How does he know that someone didn't just FABRICATE THE EVIDENCE ... maybe a trickster printed 'Cessna' on the side of the airplane and on the instrument panel an on the pilot's operating handbook!   Right again ... coulda happened.  Maybe that book on aerodynamics had errors.  Maybe the whole book was a fraud.  And on and on we could go.  Well ... granted ... my dad could propose many alternatives for explaining the origin of the airplane, but the problem is that these alternatives would not be supported from his own experience, thus rendering them UNSCIENTIFIC.  The Best Explanation then, from his own experience is 'Cessna made the airplane.'  He cannot prove this in the sense that it is not a Deductive Proof using Logical Entailment.  In other words, he cannot 'prove' the logical premise that airplanes come from aircraft factories because there is the logical chance that this might not be true.

Another thing to point out in this example is that we have two 'classes' if you will, of people here.  This is important because some people on this thread said that my Proposals  -- 'B' -- are invalid because I was informed about them already, i.e. someone has already proposed that there is a God.  But this does not matter.  Let us see why.  My dad is in the supposedly 'informed class' of people who DO know about airplanes (or at least claim they do), and the natives are in a different 'class' of people who are NOT informed about airplanes.  We explored the proposal that my dad made from his experience - "Cessna made the airplane."  Now consider the Proposal -- 'B' -- that the natives might have proposed had they not been told anything by my dad.  

THE NATIVES ARE THE OBSERVERS
DATA:  Phenomenon A is the airplane.
EXPERIENCE:  The native proposes 'B' -- 'A super-expert canoe-maker made this sky canoe.  His canoe-making ability far exceeds our own because this canoe is not restricted to the river.  It obviously can fly over the treetops and can go anywhere the guy steering it wants it to go.  It is also much faster--look how fast it whizzed by as it was taking off.  And no one has to paddle!  It has a strange 'paddle' on the front that spins!' ... and so on ... They make this proposal -- 'B' -- because of their own experience -- which is an Inference to the Best Explanation that they can think of that compares to this new phenomenon.
LOGIC:  Now if B were true, then A would be a matter of course.
CONCLUSION:  There is reason to suspect that 'B' is true.  Are there other conclusions one could draw?  Yes, but they would not be better explanations based upon the evidence of their own experience and thus would not be scientific.  The Best Explanation for the natives is that stated above and so they make the Inference and are scientifically justified in making it.

Now here's the fun part ... notice that the two Proposals made by the two Classes of people are QUITE SIMILAR.  My dad's 'B' was 'Cessna did it'.  The natives 'B' was 'A super-expert canoe-maker did it.'  Both drew from their experience.  And both made logically sound proposals to explain the phenomenon.  My dad's is more refined because he has had the privelege of more data.  But the native could also gain access to this same data if he put forth some effort, i.e. learn English, read some books on airplanes, travel to America and observe more airplanes, etc.  My point is that the objection of 'You are just making proposals from you own experience so this invalidates your proposal' is not a valid objection.  In fact, we are REQUIRED to ONLY make proposals based upon our own experience because this is the THE ESSENCE OF SCIENTIFIC INQUIRY.  At least, that's what I think I am hearing from all of you ... correct me if I am wrong.

Now someone will say, 'Come on, Dave.  Where all your evidence for this supposed 'Creator God. We are waiting!'  And some have also said, 'We've seen all the supposed YEC evidence and we don't buy it.'  I have already hinted about some of my evidence for Point 1 - There is a God ... namely, the Cosmic 'Fine-Tuning', biological 'machines' we observe and so on.  I will elaborate on these and many other evidences of my other points going forward.  But I think many of you do in fact already have part of your answer to the question "Where is the evidence?"  You have read Denton, Behe, Dembski and YEC writers.

I think the REALLY NEW THING that I am presenting to you is not necessarily new evidence, but a NEW WAY OF DRAWING CONCLUSIONS FROM THE EVIDENCE, which I actually believe you put into practice every day in your scientific and other endeavors, but which you may not have thought to put into practice into the Origins question. And I admit, that my framework may need some tweaking ... maybe you can help me with that.  But I think I am at least on the right track.  So these are my really BIG questions for you:  Is it possible that this is the case with you?  Is my approach outlined above unreasonable?  If so, why specifically?  Do you admit that you use this process regularly to support many 'hypotheses' about a plethora of 'phenomena'?  I welcome your comments on this.

SOME MORE OBJECTIONS
Quote
Chris Hyland: ... The theory of evolution doesn't say anything about the ice age, saying thins like this makes people not take you seriously. The theory of evolution says nothing about the origin of the universe, the origin of matter, or the origin of life.
I think this is a terminology thing.  I will revise my terminology.  I will stop saying 'Evolutionists' and start saying 'Naturalistic Philosophers'.  Is that better?
Quote
Norm Doering: ... There is an old quote from David Brooks that applies to your method of reasoning: "To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy."
Of course, your problem is that you don't recognise "God" as an unknown, do you?
 Actually yes.  You'll notice from the discussion above that I am doing EXACTLY what you say I should do, i.e. "To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure;"  Namely, I am trying to explain the origin of natural phenomena (unknown), with propositions from my own experience (known).
Quote
Dave, before I answer in any more of your arguments, I want to make this perfectly clear: Have we agreed that we are NOT discussing in scientific terms? Yes or no?
Answer is YES.  I do not practice 'religion' (whoa ... there's a shocker that I will have to explain separately no doubt) and I do not engage in wild speculation.  I have the mind of an engineer and a scientist.  I, like you, am a healthy skeptic.
Quote
Abductive Reasoning is supposed to lead to a hypothesis where deductive reasoning can apply.
I would submit to you that Deductive Reasoning can apply to NOTHING in all of science or history in an absolute sense.  I am only aware of its application in mathematics.  I believe the structure that I have proposed is used constantly in every day scientific practice. Can you demonstrate why I am wrong here?
Quote
BTW, when you say things like, "I see a lot of error in scientists' work, which I mean to correct for the honest folk on this discussion board," you do realize you obliterate any credibility you might have had, right?
Yes, I can see that.  Good call, referee!  I'll take the 'foul'!
Quote
The problem with your above statement is you've misread Meyer who is already lying to you.
It may be true that Meyer is lying about certain things.  I have not investigated all his claims.  But Meyer has pointed out a logical framework to determining 'truth' (proposed by Peirce in the 30's) that appears to be in use by many scientists and historians today.  I have thought through this framework myself and am adopting my own version of it, and I think it is solid.  I honestly value your feedback on this, though.
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Dave, why would you get on this site without knowing about logic and how to make a hypothesis and so on?  Shouldn't you study up a little before presenting your hypothesis?
Good question.  I came here already armed with a significant amount of study, but I knew that I was missing one key ingredient ... actual dialog with a diverse group of Naturalistic Philosophers.  So what is really happening here (and this was one of my goals) is that you all are making some very good points to improve the presentation of my logic, help me select proper terminology so as not to make people mad, and understand the naturalistic perspective.  This is an incredibly valuable learning experience for me, which will help me immensely if I ever do get around to presenting information on a Grand Scale.  And of course there is the off chance that you guys' position may be correct, in which case I would be a fool NOT to adopt it.
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To use your own terms, are you man enough to debate this honestly?
Yes.
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Ockham's Aftershave: "I can spin that kind of argument any way I want too.  I can hypothesize "A Super Intelligent, Incredibly Powerful Being could create all necessary physical laws in the first femtosecond of existence, then just sit back and observe the results.  Therefore when I observe scientific data that says the universe is 14 Billion years old, and the Earth is 4.5 Billion years old, and that life has existed on Earth for over 3 billion years, and that life has evolved over that time by observed processes such as random mutations plus natural selection, I have just verified my hypothesis."
Yes, you could propose this, but the proposal would not be based upon your experience because we have never observed such a process, so it would not be the BEST explanation. Admittedly it's an explanation, just not the best one.  A BETTER explanation is something based in our own experience, such as a Super Intelligent Being DESIGNED this flagellum (or whatever), because this would be based upon our experience.  See discussion above.
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Norm Doering:  It's about Danny Hillis who built the first massively parallel processing computer, the Connection Machine, and used it as a "proof" for a concept in Darwinian evolution.
I will copy this to my thread "AF Dave wants you to prove evolution to him" and I will try to find time to show you over there why this DOES NOT provide proof of concept for Darwinian Evolution.  But you need to know that this will be lower priority to me because I really want to get away from "Evolution Bashing".
Quote
Why oh why does anything about god matter in even the slightest bit to humans? Heaven and #### are meaningless words in the context of eternity. They are quite meaningful when applied to how we feel while living but not once we're dead. So why is gOd important?
He's only important IF HE (or it) is there.  If He is not, I agree ... who cares.  But I have strong suspicion that He is there and so I propose that see is, then make scientific observations to see if the proposal is supported.  If it is, then I make only a small step of 'Faith' by saying that I believe in God.  A step which I think takes LESS FAITH than the alternatives. Note that many people just basically pull this 'I believe in God' stuff out of thin air and I think they are rightly accused of practicing 'Blind Religious Faith.'  

Now I will go ahead and stop here and post this, then begin presenting my EVIDENCE FOR POINT 1.

See you in about an hour ...

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Corkscrew



Posts: 20
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,06:04   

Quote
YES, YES!! Thankyou!  A Thousand time YES!  This is precisely what you should do!  And while you are at it, put your Origins and Macro-Evolution Hypothesis in exactly the same format and go look for that evidence on the same trek!


- Hypothesis: humans evolved from the same lineage as modern apes

- Observation: the modern apes that are most physiologically similar to humans have 24 chromosomes per haploid

- Observation: humans have 23 chromosomes per haploid

- Conclusion: either humans have lost a chromosome or the other apes have all gained a chromosome

- By application of parsimony: humans have lost a chromosome

- Observation: chromosomes are generally "lost" by merging with another chromosome, as destruction of a chromosome's worth of genetic information is generally fatal

- Conclusion: at some point in our ancestry, two human chromosomes merged

- Prediction: one human chromosome will closely resemble two ape chromosomes merged together.

This prediction was subsequently confirmed. I can present other instances of confirmed predictions if you like.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,06:12   

Dave, if you're going to present evidence for the existence of God, you're kind of wasting your time. Many of the people here already believe that God exists, and most others, like me, who don't believe God exists, concede that the question is essentially unprovable either way. Most theologians seem to be of the opinion that trying to use physical evidence to prove the existence of God is at best futile and at worst blasphemous.

Your really contentious claim is that the Bible is inerrant. Given the difficulty of that task, I really think you should concentrate your efforts there.

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Corkscrew



Posts: 20
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,06:14   

Quote
Now some will ask, "This is great, Dave, but can he PROVE that Cessna made the airplane?  Well, no.  Has he ever OBSERVED any aircraft factory building airplanes?  No again.


However, it was still a valid hypothesis because it makes the falsifiable, verifiable prediction that, if he chose to go to the factory, he would see planes being made that were identical in style to his. Likewise, the conjecture that the aerodynamics book was accurate is falsifiable - he could go away and build a bunch of toy aircraft and compare their flight with the book's claims, for example.

In general, the only time we take a statement on trust is when we can reasonably expect that it would have been falsified were it not true. Or when we have absolutely no other option. Abduction is rarely more than half the story, and in science it's generally not even that.

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,06:30   

Quote
I have already hinted about some of my evidence for Point 1 - There is a God ... namely, the Cosmic 'Fine-Tuning', biological 'machines' we observe and so on.
We would also expect to see these things if there weren't a God.

Remember you have to present why the evidence fits your hypothesis better than the competing hypothesis.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,06:49   

Also, I'd like to get some clarification here:

Quote (afdave @ May 02 2006,10:47)
Quote
Dave, before I answer in any more of your arguments, I want to make this perfectly clear: Have we agreed that we are NOT discussing in scientific terms? Yes or no?
Answer is YES.  I do not practice 'religion' (whoa ... there's a shocker that I will have to explain separately no doubt) and I do not engage in wild speculation.  I have the mind of an engineer and a scientist.  I, like you, am a healthy skeptic.


What you've said here is that you agree that we are NOT discussing in scientific terms. Is that what you meant to say? If it is, I'm not sure this is a proper venue for you to be discussing these matters, since your conjectures, hypotheses, proposals, arguments, etc., are going to be dealt with from within the constraints of science. If you're not going to be talking in terms of science, you're going to be going at it at cross-purposes to everyone else here.

Possibly this isn't what you meant to say. But we need to know one way or another.

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Mr_Christopher



Posts: 1238
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,06:53   

I like how afDave ignores all relevant questions to him and keeps asserting the same idiotic, unscientific ideas as if he is really on to something new.  His ignorance of jr high level science is only matched by his ignorance of how many times we have heard the exact same nonsense he is bringing to the table.

This thread has turned into a real howler.

Too funny.

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Uncommon Descent is a moral cesspool, a festering intellectual ghetto that intoxicates and degrades its inhabitants - Stephen Matheson

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,06:54   

Quote
DATA: The Surprising Fact A (or Phenomenon A) is observed. (The finely tuned cosmos, biological machines, written 'holy' books, etc.)


Just stop.  None of those things constitue data.  They all represent bias before the fact.  I mean, really, you are just insulting us here.  "Surprising fact" describes an emotional reaction, not emprical data.  There is no way to measure the tuning of a cosmos.  And what scale are you using to determine how holy a given book is?

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Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
Occam's Toothbrush



Posts: 555
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,07:16   

Quote
I like how afDave ignores all relevant questions to him and keeps asserting the same idiotic, unscientific ideas as if he is really on to something new


I "like" how everyone keeps encouraging him by endlessly responding to him, regardless of his demonstrated inability to offer or even understand anything constituting reasoned arguments or evidence, thereby continually pushing his moronic threads to the top of the board and creating the impression (for anyone who doesn't already know better) that he might actually be sustaining his side of a debate.  Of course, when I say "like," I really mean hate.

Don't feed the moron.

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"Molecular stuff seems to me not to be biology as much as it is a more atomic element of life" --Creo nut Robert Byers
------
"You need your arrogant ass kicked, and I would LOVE to be the guy who does it. Where do you live?" --Anger Management Problem Concern Troll "Kris"

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,07:21   

Quote
Also, I'd like to get some clarification here:
Dave, before I answer in any more of your arguments, I want to make this perfectly clear: Have we agreed that we are NOT discussing in scientific terms? Yes or no?
Answer is YES.  I do not practice 'religion' (whoa ... there's a shocker that I will have to explain separately no doubt) and I do not engage in wild speculation.  I have the mind of an engineer and a scientist.  I, like you, am a healthy skeptic.

What you've said here is that you agree that we are NOT discussing in scientific terms. Is that what you meant to say?


CORRECTION:  I blew right past that "NOT" didn't I.  Thanks.  

I meant to say "Answer is NO.  I do not practice 'religion' (whoa ... there's a shocker that I will have to explain separately no doubt) and I do not engage in wild speculation.  I have the mind of an engineer and a scientist.  I, like you, am a healthy skeptic."

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,07:29   

AF DAVE'S CREATOR-GOD HYPOTHESIS

EVIDENCE FROM MY EXPERIENCE SUPPORTING POINT 1 (I will use numbers instead of letters so as not to confuse with the 'A' and 'B' logic tools.)

Again as I said earlier, I think most of you are quite familiar with my supporting evidence for my points, but again, the important thing to me is THE METHOD OF DRAWING CONCLUSIONS FROM THE EVIDENCE.

To recap, Point 1 is as follows:
1. There is a God -- My hypothesis proposes that there is a Super Intelligent, Incredibly Powerful Being -- I choose to call him God -- who has knowledge of scientific laws far more advanced than anything ever discovered by 21st Century humans.  These scientific laws are so powerful that this Being can literally "speak" material things into existence and destroy things with a simple command.  This Being lives "outside of time" and can view what we call "the future" and "the past" with equal ease.

Let us also restate the framework (constantly being refined ... that's what scientists do, right?) and place this Point 1 into it.

ABDUCTIVE REASONING WITH LOGICAL INFERENCE TO BEST EXPLANATION
DATA: Phenomenon A is observed. (The finely tuned cosmos, biological machines, written 'holy' books, relativity, particle physics, etc.)
EXPERIENCE: We propose 'B' (Point 1 above) from our own observation and experience.  We cannot do otherwise and still call it 'science'
LOGIC: If B were true, then A would be a matter of course. (In this exercise, B is the God of the Christian Bible)
CONCLUSION: Since we do observe lots of 'A's there is reason to suspect that B is true.  We will propose that it is true, then modify, refine, etc. as we gather more data.

Now, what do I observe in the natural world?  This is my 'A' above.

A1=WE OBSERVE A FINELY TUNED COSMOS.  
Meyer observes ... "Physicists have discovered some seventy separate
physical or cosmological parameters that require precise calibration in order to
produce a life-sustaining universe (Barrow & Tipler 1986; Gribbin & Rees 1991;
Ross in Dembski 1998)." Say what you want about Michael Denton and his conclusion that 'the laws of Biology reveal Purpose' in the universe, but his book "Nature's Destiny" certainly presents credible evidence to me that at least the universe is in fact 'finely tuned' for life on earth as we observe it today.  He talks about water, light, the elements of the earth, carbon, gases, metals, DNA, 'the nano-manipulators' we call proteins, and cells, and he shows very convincingly that every parameter must be exactly as we find it within incredibly small tolerances, or life on earth would not be possible.  I like Denton's conclusion on page 389, ""All the evidence available in the biological sciences supports the core proposition of traditional natural theology--that the cosmos is a specially designed whole with life and mankind as its fundamental goal and purpose, a whole in which all facets of reality, from the size of galaxies to the thermal capacity of water, have their meaning and explanation in this central fact ... As I hope the evidence presented in this book has shown, science, which has been for centuries the great ally of atheism and skepticism, has become at last, in these final days of the second millenium, what Newton and many of its early advocates had so fervently wished--the "defender of the anthropocentric faith."

B1=A SUPER-INTELLIGENCE SET THE PARAMETERS.  We propose that some Super-Intelligence intentionally set the myriad parameters of the cosmos so that life would be possible.  This is consistent with our experience.  In our experience, intelligent engineers set parameters quite precisely in order to achieve some goal. For example, the viscosity of fuel has to correct for it to be used as a motor fuel in a gasoline engine. Note that we are not saying that 'life WAS the goal'.  We are simply saying that in our experience, intelligent agents set parameters precisely to achieve some goal.  Since we do find lots of precisely set parameters in the cosmos, maybe it's reasonable based on our experience, to propose that SOMEBODY set them in order to achieve some goal.

A2=BIOLOGICAL MACHINES.
Sorry guys, I know you don't like Denton and Behe, but if I could find someone who says it better that you like, I would quote them.  Maybe you can help me with that.  Behe's "Darwin's Black Box" is now well known.  I love Behe's words ... "systems of HORRENDOUS, irreducible complexity inhabit the cell"!!  I just love that word "HORRENDOUS."  Michael Denton in "Evolution: A Theory in Crisis" makes a very powerful and revealing statement ... "We now know not only of the existence of a break between the living and non-living world, but also that it represents the most dramatic and fundamental of all the discontinuities of nature.  Between a living cell and the most highly ordered non-biological system, such as a crystal or a snowflake, there is a chasm as vast and absolute as it is possible to conceive." (p. 249)  Denton says about the cell ... "What we would be witnessing would be an object resembling an immense automated factory, a factory larger than a city and carrying out almost as many unique functions as all the manufacturing activities of man on earth."  (p. 329) and  Bill Gates says of DNA--which is the controlling 'program of life'--that it is "is like a computer program, but far, far more advanced than any software we have ever created (The Road Ahead, 1996, p. 228)  Denton and Behe are absolute MUST READS!

B2=A SUPER-ENGINEER DESIGNED THE MACHINES.  We propose that a Super-Human Software Engineer of surpassing brilliance wrote the DNA code.  We propose that that a Super-Human Nano-technology engineer designed the wonderfully innovative and ubiquitous proteins fro which the DNA codes.  Was it the same 'guy'?  I propose that it was, yes.  Of course there is the possibility that there are several such 'guys' somewhere that worked onthis project together ... a sort of Engineering Department if you will.

OK ... there's 2 A's and B's for you ... again what we are saying is ...

DATA: Phenomenon A1 (FINELY TUNED COSMOS) is observed. EXPERIENCE: B1=A SUPER-INTELLIGENCE SET THE PARAMETERS. We propose 'B' (supporting Point 1 above) from our own observation and experience.  
LOGIC: If B1 were true, then A1 would be a matter of course.
CONCLUSION: Since we do observe A1, there is reason to suspect that B1 is true.  We will propose that it is true, then modify, refine, etc. as we gather more data.

DATA: Phenomenon A2 (BIOLOGICAL MACHINES) is observed. EXPERIENCE: B2=A SUPER-ENGINEER DESIGNED THE MACHINES. We propose 'B' (supporting Point 1 above) from our own observation and experience.  
LOGIC: If B2 were true, then A2 would be a matter of course.
CONCLUSION: Since we do observe A2, there is reason to suspect that B2 is true.  We will propose that it is true, then modify, refine, etc. as we gather more data.

I know I'm not done with Point 1 ... I still have to cover 'speaking things into existence' and 'living outside time' but my eyes hurt and I'm quitting for now ...

See you soon!

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,07:44   

Quote (Occam's Toothbrush @ May 02 2006,12:16)
I "like" how everyone keeps encouraging him by endlessly responding to him, regardless of his demonstrated inability to offer or even understand anything constituting reasoned arguments or evidence, thereby continually pushing his moronic threads to the top of the board and creating the impression (for anyone who doesn't already know better) that he might actually be sustaining his side of a debate.  Of course, when I say "like," I really mean hate.

Don't feed the moron.

It's just entertainment, Mr. Toothbrush. None of us is having to do this for a living, we're not getting paid for it, and surely we don't want a site where we're just standing around agreeing with each other, like those other sites.

Dave is charmingly naive, and it's kind of fun watching him get his ass handed to him over and over again. And after all, no one is forcing you to read his threads, right?

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,07:50   

Quote (afdave @ May 02 2006,12:29)
A1=WE OBSERVE A FINELY TUNED COSMOS.  
Meyer observes ... "Physicists have discovered some seventy separate
physical or cosmological parameters that require precise calibration in order to
produce a life-sustaining universe (Barrow & Tipler 1986; Gribbin & Rees 1991;
Ross in Dembski 1998)."

Let me ask you something, Dave: would it surprise you to find yourself living in a universe that cannot sustain life? I know it would surprise me.

So let's just say that your fine-tuning argument, aside from being hardly original, is a less than compelling argument for the existence of God. At best, it's an argument for good luck. Assuming you think being blessed with existence is actually good luck.

BTW, I think we all get your "method" for deriving "conclusions" from "evidence." Endless repetition is only going to annoy people.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,07:51   

Quote (afdave @ May 02 2006,10:47)
Quote
Norm Doering: ... There is an old quote from David Brooks that applies to your method of reasoning: "To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy."
Of course, your problem is that you don't recognise "God" as an unknown, do you?
 
Actually yes.  You'll notice from the discussion above that I am doing EXACTLY what you say I should do, i.e. "To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure;"  Namely, I am trying to explain the origin of natural phenomena (unknown), with propositions from my own experience (known).

Not quite.

You're conflating various origin concepts (origin of the universe, origin of life, origin of species) and applying exactly the same teleological reasoning to each.

Teleological reasoning has the illusionary quality of appearing "knowable" but it's really a mask for a great big unknown.

Wikipedia has an entry on teleology:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teleological_argument

Consider your airplane argument. It's classic teleology. You're stealing the basic concept of William Paley's watchmaker argument which was made prior to Darwin and which Darwin himself shot down after he believed it for awhile.

Wikipedia has an entry on the watchmaker argument:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watchmaker_analogy

Teleology and the watchmaker argument have even deeper flaws than those noted by Wikipedia.

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,08:20   

Chris Hyland's Evolution Hypothesis

A1=WE OBSERVE A FINELY TUNED COSMOS.
Stars and that...

B1=A SUPER-INTELLIGENCE DIDN'T SET THE PARAMETERS.
Because evolution is bound by many factors including physical constants ie the properties of water and carbon, and the availability of energy, it will create organisms that depend heavily on these. Therefore because we observe that if any of the physical constants change life would not exist we assume that evolution is true. Under the alternative hypothesis, we could just as easily see organisms survive if the universe was stacked against them.

A2=BIOLOGICAL MACHINES.
"systems of HORRENDOUS, irreducible complexity inhabit the cell"

B2=THE MACHINES EVOLVED.
Based on what we understand of evolution including duplication followed by differential loss of both genes and interactions, we expect these systems to be incredibly complex, and exhibit certain properties, such as being scale-free, modular and heirachical. We increase our knowledge of A, and find that they are, so we increase our confidence in B.

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,08:23   

Quote (afdave @ May 02 2006,10:47)
Quote
Abductive Reasoning is supposed to lead to a hypothesis where deductive reasoning can apply.

I would submit to you that Deductive Reasoning can apply to NOTHING in all of science or history in an absolute sense.  I am only aware of its application in mathematics.

That demand for "absolutes" in the face of technological proof has got to be one of the classic examples of fundy brain damage.

There is nothing more "absolute" in human knowledge than technological proof, it is more certain than mathematical proof. For as Albert Einstein said, "As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain; and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality."

It is far more absolute than your vague obfuscations and  teleologies.

Hillis' proof is as absolute as the human mind can get.

If someone says a heavier than air machine cannot fly and then someone builds one that can -- it is as absolutely certain a thing as man can know that a heavier than air machine can fly.

If Hillis builds a computer that demonstrates the ability of evolution then those abilities are absolutely demonstrated.

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,08:41   

Quote (afdave @ May 02 2006,10:47)
... may be true that Meyer is lying about certain things.  I have not investigated all his claims.  But Meyer has pointed out a logical framework to determining 'truth' (proposed by Peirce in the 30's) that appears to be in use by many scientists and historians today.

You talk of "absolutes" to escape Danny Hillis' demonstration of evolutionary concepts, but then you talk of "truth" when dealing with Meyer's metaphysical conjectures.

You don't see a problem with that?

  
C.J.O'Brien



Posts: 395
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,09:10   

These tidbits from your favorite DI fellows aren’t evidence, Dave. And, remember, they’re the same as the justification for the assumptions implicit in your *cough* hypothesis.
You start with the anthropic musings of Meyer:
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Physicists have discovered some seventy separate
physical or cosmological parameters that require precise calibration in order to
produce a life-sustaining universe

First, as you will hear in practically every response to this post, I would be quite surprised to find myself in a universe where my existence was impossible.
Second, what does “life-sustaining universe” mean? Does it mean “universe identical to this one?” If so, that’s a neat tautology. On the other hand, it could mean “a universe with fundamentally different life from this one” in which case no one knows how “precise” this “calibration” would need to be. For all that we know about life on Earth, it’s still a sample size of one. We, all of us, are fundamentally ignorant about the ‘parameter space’ in which something we would be willing to call ‘life’ can occur. Unless, of course, you would only be willing to call DNA-based para-terrestrial organisms ‘life,’ in which case you’re back to the tautology “the universe is fine-tuned to be… just like this universe!”

And then we get a patented Denton howler:
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All the evidence available in the biological sciences supports the core proposition of traditional natural theology--that the cosmos is a specially designed whole with life and mankind as its fundamental goal and purpose, a whole in which all facets of reality, from the size of galaxies to the thermal capacity of water, have their meaning and explanation in this central fact.

All the evidence available in the biological (and geological) sciences in fact supports the proposition that life began ~3.8 billion years ago, and that from that time forward the most numerous, diverse, robust, and tenacious life-forms have been prokaryotes. Multicellular, animal life has been around for maybe a billion years, most of that as relatively undifferentiated worm-like creatures. Mammals have been around for 80 to 100 million years, primates about 40 million, hominids 7 to 8 million, and genus Homo maybe two million. The human conception of a creative “Super-Intelligence” is about the only thing the Bible dates correctly, being about 5 or 6 thousand years old. In other words, roughly .000001 of the history of life, or .0025 of the existence of our genus. Pretty long build-up for the punchline, wouldn’t you say?
Now, I like people too, Dave. I think we’re pretty darn special. But you have to see that, against the backdrop of the actual “evidence available in the biological sciences,” the conceit that the entire universe is just for us can begin to seem like so much wishful thinking. Keep saying it, I guess. But it sounds like whistling past the graveyard to me.

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,14:03   

Dave, I'll bite.  You don't regard yourself as "religious"... maybe I'm being too suspicious, but I've heard this assertion from fundamentalist Christians to take it at face value.  They seem to regard their faith as something more than religion, but by any dictionary definition, Christianity, or faith in Jesus or whatever way you want to term it, is still a religion.  So, Dave, is that the case with you?

I see you are trying to tread carefully, avoiding a minefield of assertions and definitions in an attempt to appear neutral and willing to learn, but you're still letting some YEC howlers slip through.  Your biggest mistake this time is your assertion that *not* believing in God takes more faith than believing in God.  All good fundamentalists and creationists like to trot that one out in such debates and it usually gets a good rise, quite justifiably, out of the opposition.

Regarding your observations:

A1: First, as others have suggested, our very existence requires there to be a Universe fine-tuned for life, that is not a surprise.  Second, we already have people working on theories, backed up by mathematics (far beyond my meagre brain's understand) that points to the possibility that our Universe may only be one of an infinite number of universes, all with different "fine-tunings".  If that turns out to be the case, then our existence may have turned out to have been inevitable.  We may never be able to detect these other universes but the theoretical physicists are hard at work on the issue and may one day find some solid evidence to back up the multiverse conjecture.  

As it stands, we already have an amazing amount of knowledge and understanding of how the Universe evolved (from the moment after the Big Bang) to today, from the orginal expansion, formation of the first gases, the first stars, galaxies, solar systems, life, etc. etc. Probably the biggest gap in our knowledge is abiogenesis, but we're working hard on that too.

99.9% of all surprising facts (lightning, supernovae, "holy" books, visions of God, ghosts, tornados, etc. etc. etc. turn out to have mundane and natural explanations. Why make this exception?

A2: OK, so you simply point us to Behe, Dembski, et al.  Surely you don't expect us to waste our time refuting what has already been refuted.  If you are being sincere in your search for the truth (BTW: only creationists and religious fundies capitalize talk about "Truth") then you need to read  the books and articles that directly refute their claims.  Are you prepared to do that?  It will take some work and the technical aspects are not always easy (at least they aren't for me) but you owe it to yourself to try.

  
Occam's Aftershave



Posts: 1773
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,18:14   

AFDave,

So far you haven’t provided any evidence at all to support YEC or God, just your own (and a few other Creationists’) personal incredulity. “WOW! It’s just SOOOOO complex, I’m too stupid or too lazy to investigate how it could have evolved!!”  You sound just like the natives looking at the “flying canoe”.   Do you realize that Behe accepts the Theory of Evolution, an old earth, and common descent?  He just thinks God, er, the Intelligent designer “front loaded” things billions of years ago.

Speaking of Behe and his “molecular machines”, did you happen to follow any of the Kitzmiller vs. Dover PA. school board "ID" trial last year?  Behe was called as a star witness for the defense, and was made to look like an absolute bumbling fool by the questioning attorney.  First, under oath, Behe testified that Astrology would qualify as a legitimate science under Behe’s definition.  If that didn’t make the clown look bad enough, Behe then made his famous “irreducible complexity” argument using the human immune system,  Behe claimed there was no evidence whatsoever that the immune system could have evolved.  The prosecuting attorney then dropped a two foot high stack of over 60 peer-reviewed scientific papers and articles with research detailing the evolution of the human immune system and asked Behe if he was familiar with the work..  Behe replied that he didn’t need to read them as he already knew his claim was correct.  With that foot shoved deep into his mouth, Behe effectively scuttled the rest of his already pitifully weak scientific credibility and his career.

I’ll give you another day to start presenting your evidence, so far you’re 0 for the week.

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"Science is what got us to the humble place we’re at, and what hard-won progress we might realize comes from science, with ID completely flaccid, religious apologetics bitching from the sidelines." - Eigenstate at UD

  
Renier



Posts: 276
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 02 2006,21:07   

The "fine-tuning" argument is really an argument "against" a God of miracles. Think about it. If we lived in a universe that would NOT allow life, then THAT would be a miracle, and could be used as an argument for a God of miracles.

As has been pointed out, we know how everything happened in a natural way, from the Big Bang, right upto now. Abio-genesis is still a big gap, and you are welcome to plug that gap with your God. Another place you can plug him in, if you so wish, is before the Big Bang. Any attempt to force him into another area is just dishonest (yes, we do think you are dishonest, even though sincere), since we have natural explanations for it.

I must mention this again, but some Christians believe that their God started everything off at the big bang. In his infinate wisdom, he planned everything so well (even evolution) that it required no constant "tinkering and fixing" from him. This God, is way more powerful and smart than the one you are trying to peddle here. You think you make a good case for your god, but all you are really doing is insulting him, and us.

  
Mr_Christopher



Posts: 1238
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,04:56   

Quote (afdave @ May 02 2006,12:21)
 I have the mind of an engineer and a scientist.  I, like you, am a healthy skeptic."

No sir, you are no skeptic.  You can pretend otherwise, but you're what is called a "true believer".  

And you do not have the mind of an engineer or a scientist, if you did you would have seen through the nonsense you promote a long time ago.

No need to thank me for pointing this out to you.

Chris

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Uncommon Descent is a moral cesspool, a festering intellectual ghetto that intoxicates and degrades its inhabitants - Stephen Matheson

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,05:28   

Quote
From Corkscrew ...
- Hypothesis: humans evolved from the same lineage as modern apes
- Observation: the modern apes that are most physiologically similar to humans have 24 chromosomes per haploid
- Observation: humans have 23 chromosomes per haploid
- Conclusion: either humans have lost a chromosome or the other apes have all gained a chromosome
- By application of parsimony: humans have lost a chromosome
- Observation: chromosomes are generally "lost" by merging with another chromosome, as destruction of a chromosome's worth of genetic information is generally fatal
- Conclusion: at some point in our ancestry, two human chromosomes merged
- Prediction: one human chromosome will closely resemble two ape chromosomes merged together.
This prediction was subsequently confirmed. I can present other instances of confirmed predictions if you like.

Corkscrew continues to be the most logical sounding, non-emotional advocate of the general Theory of Evolution that I have heard over here at PT.  Right behind him is Faid, who is at least polite and does not engage in polemics, and Norm who sounds intelligent.  I keep throwing this bone out to ToE advocates that you will further your cause if you adopt the rational, non-emotional 'Corkscrew' approach.  Adopting the 'Aftershave' approach or the 'Mr_Christopher' approach will only harm your cause.  This hypothesis is very interesting to me and I want to hear more.  I will copy it into my "AF Dave wants you to prove Evolution" thread, then I would like to do some Google searching and get back to you on this as soon as I can.
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Corkscrew said ... In general, the only time we take a statement on trust is when we can reasonably expect that it would have been falsified were it not true. Or when we have absolutely no other option. Abduction is rarely more than half the story, and in science it's generally not even that.

At first glance, I don't agree with this, but I will consider it further to see if my disagreement is warranted or not.  What do you think about Meyer's objection to falsifiability as a criterion for status as a "scientific theory"? [I'm asking Corkscrew ... or anyone else that wants to provide a calm, rational answer other than 'Meyer is a liar', etc.]
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With the death of positivism in the 1950s, demarcationists took a different tack. Other semantic criteria emerged, such as Sir Karl Popper's falsifiability. According to Popper, scientific theories were more meaningful than nonscientific ideas because they referred only to empirically falsifiable entities.21 Yet this, too, proved to be a problematic criterion. First, falsification turns out to be difficult to achieve. Rarely are the core commitments of theories directly tested via prediction. Instead, predictions occur when core theoretical commitments are conjoined with auxiliary hypotheses, thus always leaving open the possibility that auxiliary hypotheses, not core commitments, are responsible for failed predictions.

Newtonian mechanics, for example, assumed as its core three laws of motion and the theory of universal gravitation. On the basis of these, Newton made a number of predictions about the positions of planets in the solar system. When observations failed to corroborate some of his predictions, he did not reject his core assumptions. Instead, he scrutinized some of his auxiliary hypotheses to explain the discrepancies between theory and observation. For example, he examined his working assumption that planets were perfectly spherical and influenced only by gravitational force. As Imre Lakatos has shown, Newton's refusal to repudiate his core in the face of anomalies enabled him to refine his theory and eventually led to its tremendous success.22 Newton's refusal to accept putatively falsifying results certainly did not call into question the scientific status of his gravitational theory or his three laws. Meyer on Scientific Status of Intelligent Design

AFDave said ...
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I have already hinted about some of my evidence for Point 1 - There is a God ... namely, the Cosmic 'Fine-Tuning', biological 'machines' we observe and so on.
Chris Hyland said ...
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We would also expect to see these things if there weren't a God.
On what basis?  Your personal experience?  Is there a scientist somewhere that has observed this that I have not read about? In my personal experience and in all my reading, I have never observed (or read about) a non-intelligent cause producing a functional machine (there are a few equivocal examples I have heard about).  Have you?  My experience has ALWAYS been that functional machines require intelligent agency.  Therefore, I think my hypothesis of a Super-Engineer (I do not insist upon calling him 'God') is a better explanation.

Eric Murphy said ...
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Let me ask you something, Dave: would it surprise you to find yourself living in a universe that cannot sustain life? I know it would surprise me.
If you read what I have written, you will notice that I said I am content to discard the term 'Surprising Fact' and simply use 'Phenomenon.'
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So let's just say that your fine-tuning argument, aside from being hardly original, is a less than compelling argument for the existence of God. At best, it's an argument for good luck. Assuming you think being blessed with existence is actually good luck.
I didn't say it was original ... 'my hypothesis' means to me a conglomerate of existing ones plus some of my own thoughts presented in my own way. Everyone does this.  Why is it less than compelling? Have you ever experienced or read about a system that was 'finely tuned' that was NOT finely tuned by an engineer (or team of them)?
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You're conflating various origin concepts (origin of the universe, origin of life, origin of species) and applying exactly the same teleological reasoning to each. Teleological reasoning has the illusionary quality of appearing "knowable" but it's really a mask for a great big unknown. Wikipedia has an entry on teleology: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teleological_argument
Consider your airplane argument. It's classic teleology. You're stealing the basic concept of William Paley's watchmaker argument which was made prior to Darwin and which Darwin himself shot down after he believed it for awhile. Teleology and the watchmaker argument have even deeper flaws than those noted by Wikipedia.

Yes.  I am conflating them.  If I had a good reason from my experience and observable evidence NOT to conflate them, then I would not conflate them.  But I think it is quite well accepted now that the universe is finite and had a beginning, is it not?  (I think the 'parallel universe' theory is pretty much dead). So this provides support to my 'God' hypothesis.  No one has a clue about the origin of life, so why shouldn't we propose 'God' until we can find something better?  No one has yet shown me an example of a worm-like creature evolving into a squid or a dinosaur-like creature evolving into a bird, etc., etc. (did I get the supposed progression right?), so again, what is so unscientific about proposing a Master Engineer (or a committee of Master Engineers) that MIGHT HAVE created them?  And what is wrong with proposing that they all be conflated into one entity?  There are other lines of evidence that support this.  I think we can AT LEAST propose it, then investigate.  Wikipedia's main gripe of the Watchmaker argument (and I assume teleology as well) seemed to be that you run into the 'brick wall' of 'Who Designed God?'  I admit this readily, but just as the native would be wrong to say 'I cannot explain who designed the engineers at Cessna, so I will not believe that Cessna engineers designed Cessna airplanes', it is just as illogical to toss out the 'God possibility' simply because we cannot explain HIS origin.
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Chris Hyland's Evolution Hypothesis
A1=WE OBSERVE A FINELY TUNED COSMOS.
Stars and that...
B1=A SUPER-INTELLIGENCE DIDN'T SET THE PARAMETERS
Because evolution is bound by many factors including physical constants ie the properties of water and carbon, and the availability of energy, it will create organisms that depend heavily on these. Therefore because we observe that if any of the physical constants change life would not exist we assume that evolution is true. Under the alternative hypothesis, we could just as easily see organisms survive if the universe was stacked against them.
I do not follow your logic.  Can you explain more clearly?  Also, to use my structure, you would need to propose what DID set the parameters.  Are you proposing that the parameters got set by chance?  If so, what basis do you have from your experience to propose this as valid?  How would you deal with the odds against this, etc.?  I think maybe what you are saying is that you don't believe the 'fine tuning' was necessary for life to evolve?   I obviously have already accepted that they are set precisely to sustain life because I think this is well supported.  Are you saying you do not accept this?
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If someone says a heavier than air machine cannot fly and then someone builds one that can -- it is as absolutely certain a thing as man can know that a heavier than air machine can fly.
I see what you are saying, but even in this case, it is only absolute certainty to the person (or people) who built it and flew it. Think about it.  All other people who hear about it will get INDIRECT evidence--they will read about it, see the report on TV, etc. and of course this is quite reliable for the example you raise.  But TV and newspaper reports can get unreliable when reporting less cut and dried events.  The Miller/Urey experiment is an example.  The headlines were something like "Scientists Create Life in a Test Tube!!"  Oh really?  On closer examination, we found that was a big stretch (translated, lie).  Ditto for newspaper reports of many supposed human ancestor fossils.  For our discussion, I am assuming we were talking about things which CANNOT be verified directly, such as forces, fields, atoms, quarks, past events, mental states, subsurface geological features, molecular biological structures, airplane factories that the natives have never seen, George Washington, and 'God' to name a few.
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You talk of "absolutes" to escape Danny Hillis' demonstration of evolutionary concepts, but then you talk of "truth" when dealing with Meyer's metaphysical conjectures. You don't see a problem with that?
My problem with Danny Hillis' has nothing to do with the concepts of 'absolutes'.  It has everything to do with the question of 'What exactly does the Hillis demo tell us? (Really, when we remove the spin)  Notice my reference to the word 'truth' is in quotes because I know there are different definitions of truth.
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These tidbits from your favorite DI fellows aren’t evidence, Dave.
If they are not, then could you propose an example of what IS evidence?  Let me guess ... mountains and mountains of 'scholarship' from the science establishment to support Naturalistic Explanations Only?  This was the kind of odds Galileo was working against too.  Are you telling me that I should believe your evidence and reject mine because yours fits with the majority?
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Second, what does “life-sustaining universe” mean?
Exactly what it says.  And I challenge you to propose some parameter changes and ask a biologist how likely it would be for life to continue.  The problem with naturalistic speculators like yourself is that you guys like to say "Well, we only know about life on earth ... sample size of one.  There could be other planets, other universes, who knows!"  OK, great.  I agree.  And there could be a Fairy Godmother for all I know.  But if we are going to admit wild speculation into the arena, let's admit ALL kinds of wild speculation into the arena.  My favorite is "Parallel Universes".  I don't know how people can tell me with a straight face that there might be an infinite number of parallel universes, then in the next breath tell me I'm a wild speculator for proposing an Infinite God character.

Regarding the Denton "howler" ...  THIS is the howler ...
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All the evidence available in the biological (and geological) sciences in fact supports the proposition that life began ~3.8 billion years ago
*cough* because we arbitrarily made some massive initial conditions assumptions so it would come out that long
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and that from that time forward the most numerous, diverse, robust, and tenacious life-forms have been prokaryotes.
the old 'what do you think makes humans so special, just look at the bacteria' saw ... sometime I'm going to do a thread on the implications of this thinking on law and culture ... talk about a howler ... this one will be way better than Rush Limbaugh and the Tree Huggers!
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Multicellular, animal life has been around for maybe a billion years
based on our flawed assumptions in dating supposed 'index fossils'[/quote], most of that as relatively undifferentiated worm-like creatures. Mammals have been around for 80 to 100 million years, primates about 40 million, hominids 7 to 8 million, and genus Homo maybe two million[/quote]Ditto above ... funny ... every non-YEC history book I can find anywhere says things like "4000 (or so) BC: History Begins" (I never find over 10,000).   Hmmm... what did all those 'Homos' do for 1,996,000 years?  You're telling me they all of a sudden started writing and making artifacts only in the last .000000001% (or whatever) of their existence on the planet ... yeah, pretty plausible
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The human conception of a creative “Super-Intelligence” is about the only thing the Bible dates correctly, being about 5 or 6 thousand years old. In other words, roughly .000001 of the history of life, or .0025 of the existence of our genus. Pretty long build-up for the punchline, wouldn’t you say?
the buildup is in your imagination, Mr. O'Brien, which is great.  I like imagining things too.  Have you seen Narnia?  It's a good one for the imagination, but it's not about science, unless we redefine science ... which I'm not opposed to as long as the rules are fair.
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Tacitus said ... Dave, I'll bite.  You don't regard yourself as "religious"... maybe I'm being too suspicious, but I've heard this assertion from fundamentalist Christians to take it at face value.  They seem to regard their faith as something more than religion, but by any dictionary definition, Christianity, or faith in Jesus or whatever way you want to term it, is still a religion.  So, Dave, is that the case with you?
'God, Jesus, etc,' are religious terms by convention, and I understand that most people consider me religious, and I will call myself religious in certain contexts so as not to confuse people needlessly.  But my real view of myself is that I am scientific, not religious.  But my definition of science is ... drum roll ... more expansive than yours.  I consider ALL possibilites for explaining and describing the universe, not just so called 'naturalistic ones' which we presently understand. I, in contrast to you, make allowance that there just might be some things that we don't understand yet because our science is not advanced enough ... like angels and demons and creation  of matter from nothing and the ability to walk on water, part the Red Sea, etc.  Why do you guys choke so much on these ideas?  I thought you were scientists, forever pushing the boundaries back.  Isn't that what you want?  This is the most illogical thing to me.  That supposedly open-minded scientists would categorically rule out so many possibilities for explaining phenomena. Here ... go read Meyer some more and call me in three days ... http://www.discovery.org/scripts....Science
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If you are being sincere in your search for the truth (BTW: only creationists and religious fundies capitalize talk about "Truth") then you need to read  the books and articles that directly refute their claims.  Are you prepared to do that?
Already did.  Been there. Done that.  Didn't buy it because it was unconvincing.
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So far you haven’t provided any evidence at all to support YEC or God, just your own (and a few other Creationists’) personal incredulity. “WOW! It’s just SOOOOO complex, I’m too stupid or too lazy to investigate how it could have evolved!!”  You sound just like the natives looking at the “flying canoe”.
Uh, oh.  I'm getting 'Aftershaved" again.  Hey try some intelligent sounding arguments instead of insults ... they work better. See Corkscrew, Norm and Chris Hyland and others for some good examples of intelligent sounding stuff.
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First, under oath, Behe testified that Astrology would qualify as a legitimate science under Behe’s definition.
Let's get the quote right at least if you're going to quote him.  Here's what I found ...
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They acknowledged under oath that ID cannot qualify as science unless the definition of science is completely changed to admit the supernatural. Behe acknowledged that under his definition, astrology would equally qualify as science.
OK. So astrology wants to call itself a science?  Let 'em.  They have to prove their ideas just like the YECers and everyone else.  Don't you believe in the free market of ideas?  I think the majority would weed them out just like it does in other arenas.  Do you see an Astrology Chapel at the USAF Academy? (I was just there).  Do you see a Scientology chapel?  Or a Buddhist temple?  No.  You see a BIG Protestant chapel, a smaller Catholic chapel and a smaller still Jewish chapel.  Why?  Democracy.  Freedom.  Reflection of the majority within practical limits.  Should the USAF Academy shut down all religion on campus b/c it's a government entity?  Of course not.  Remember.. here in the USA ... Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion [no state church lke the Church of England] or prohibiting the FREE EXERCISE thereof.  Same for science classes.  We shouldn't be telling kids 'God created the world' in science class and we shouldn't be telling the world that 'Evolution created the world' in science class.  We should be telling them 'Most scientists believe some form of Darwin's Theory of Evolution to explain the appearance of life.  Many non-scientists and a minority of scientists believe in some form of supernatural cause for the appearance of life.  Creationism and Intelligent Design Theory are two of these views.' And if Astrology or Scientism or Christian Science or whatever gets a big enough following, then throw them in there too and let the kids decide for themselves with the help of their parents.  And this is one point I would probably agree with all of you about.  I know there are YECers who share my view of Origins but who use bad tactics--'Let's teach the kids that God said it, I believe it and that settles it!!'  I join you in vigorously opposing these types.  They are not my allies.
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The prosecuting attorney then dropped a two foot high stack of over 60 peer-reviewed scientific papers and articles with research detailing the evolution of the human blood clotting system and asked Behe if he was familiar with the work..  Behe replied that he didn’t need to read them as he already knew his claim was correct.
I didn't check this quote for accuracy, but I imagine he feels as I feel that scientists just keep on writing mountains and mountains of nonsense to support these notions they really, really want to be true ... like the immune system evolved, etc.  I've read a lot myself and it all starts to sound the same ... I'm sure you can relate.  Many people here have said the same about the stuff I write.  I will agree with you that it seems hair-brained to adopt the strategy to go try to defend a local school board's decision to put 'Evolution Warning Labels' on the books.  I mean ... who knows what kind of rednecks you might be defending?  Why fight this in the courts anyway?  I can think of better places to get the word out. So is that 2 things we agree on now?  Oh yeah ... we're both EE's.  OK 3 then.
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The "fine-tuning" argument is really an argument "against" a God of miracles.
Not if you use MY definition of 'miracles'.  Have I given that yet?  A miracle is simply a natural law being employed which our science does not yet understand.  Jesus knew how to walk on water (if the NT record is true), but we don't yet, etc.

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A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,05:39   

Quote (afdave @ May 03 2006,10:28)
Eric Murphy said ...
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Let me ask you something, Dave: would it surprise you to find yourself living in a universe that cannot sustain life? I know it would surprise me.
If you read what I have written, you will notice that I said I am content to discard the term 'Surprising Fact' and simply use 'Phenomenon.'
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So let's just say that your fine-tuning argument, aside from being hardly original, is a less than compelling argument for the existence of God. At best, it's an argument for good luck. Assuming you think being blessed with existence is actually good luck.
I didn't say it was original ... 'my hypothesis' means to me a conglomerate of existing ones plus some of my own thoughts presented in my own way. Everyone does this.  Why is it less than compelling? Have you ever experienced or read about a system that was 'finely tuned' that was NOT finely tuned by an engineer (or team of them)?

You're missing the point, Dave. I'm not talking about whether a given phenomenon is "surprising" or not.

My point is (and this is known as the "weak anthropic principle") we would be surprised to find ourselves living in a universe that was not finely tuned for life. Obviously, Dave, we could not live in a universe that was inimical to life, unless a creator god made it possible for us to live there nevertheless. Since we are, in fact, alive, it should come as no surprise at all to us that we inhabit a universe that can sustain life.

What would be truly surprising, and what would be evidence for the existence of God, would be if we inhabited a universe that could not sustain life.

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Flint



Posts: 478
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,05:48   

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What would be truly surprising, and what would be evidence for the existence of God, would be if we inhabited a universe that could not sustain life.

And if we should someday visit lots of our universe and find no life anywhere, what should we conclude? That this is evidence for some god, who crafted life on earth despite the fact that this universe is otherwise very uncongenial to life?

But if we find life everywhere we go, should we then conclude that this same god created a universe where life can thrive, and therefore must also exist?

These anthropocentic arguments always come down to  "heads I win, tails you lose" circular conclusions: My god exists, therefore whatever we find proves it.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,05:53   

Quote (afdave @ May 03 2006,10:28)
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From Corkscrew ...
- Hypothesis: humans evolved from the same lineage as modern apes
- Observation: the modern apes that are most physiologically similar to humans have 24 chromosomes per haploid
- Observation: humans have 23 chromosomes per haploid
- Conclusion: either humans have lost a chromosome or the other apes have all gained a chromosome
- By application of parsimony: humans have lost a chromosome
- Observation: chromosomes are generally "lost" by merging with another chromosome, as destruction of a chromosome's worth of genetic information is generally fatal
- Conclusion: at some point in our ancestry, two human chromosomes merged
- Prediction: one human chromosome will closely resemble two ape chromosomes merged together.
This prediction was subsequently confirmed. I can present other instances of confirmed predictions if you like.

Corkscrew continues to be the most logical sounding, non-emotional advocate of the general Theory of Evolution that I have heard over here at PT.  Right behind him is Faid, who is at least polite and does not engage in polemics, and Norm who sounds intelligent.  I keep throwing this bone out to ToE advocates that you will further your cause if you adopt the rational, non-emotional 'Corkscrew' approach.  Adopting the 'Aftershave' approach or the 'Mr_Christopher' approach will only harm your cause.  This hypothesis is very interesting to me and I want to hear more.  I will copy it into my "AF Dave wants you to prove Evolution" thread, then I would like to do some Google searching and get back to you on this as soon as I can.

Dave, this is an extremely well-known and well-publicised example of a prediction made by neodarwinian evolution. Any general text on evolution (and certainly any website like talkorigins) would have mentioned this example. That it is evidently news to you does not bode well for how much research you have done into evolution. If this is indeed the first time you've come across this example, it's pretty strong evidence that you have done very little research into the evidence in support of evolution, but rather have spent most of your time looking for evidence to refute evolution.

If it's true that this is your first exposure to the human-chimp chromosome number prediction, this seriously undercuts your claim that no one has ever shown you, e.g., evidence of evolution from dinosaurs to birds.

I said earlier that I do not believe you are qualified to hold a credible opinion on the subject of evolution. This most recent post only reinforces that notion.

Oh, and by the way—evolution is not a "cause." It's "science."

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,05:55   

Quote
No sir, you are no skeptic.  You can pretend otherwise, but you're what is called a "true believer".  

And you do not have the mind of an engineer or a scientist, if you did you would have seen through the nonsense you promote a long time ago.

No need to thank me for pointing this out to you.


For a thousand years or more people "thought" in order to show that their Xian beliefs were right.  And some of that thinking was good, yet it was unavoidably limited.

What I'm saying is that there is nothing new or surprising that Afdave begins with an inadequate a set of a priori assumptions (people did so prior to Xianity as well, of course).  The trouble is that he has it now, and he is unlikely to upset his world by seriously questioning his beliefs.  He's not young enough, he's not troubled enough by his inconsistencies and the gaps in his "thinking".  In fact he is the sort that I would bet 50 to 1 will never truly question his a priori commitments, indeed, that he cannot do so.  He seems sincere in claiming that he came at his beliefs skeptically, when just his assumption that the Bible accurately relates history to its readers shows that he does not look at "Biblical issues" in any competent manner whatsoever.

He refers back to his college days as what set him on his current path.  Not surprising, since beliefs typically congeal around that time.  But did he know much about the issues?  Certainly not.  Engineers have quite an load of engineering and math courses, and typically do not take many history or literary courses.  Hence he relied upon what he had been force-fed earlier.  One has to reach conclusions without adequate knowledge in many cases, and so Afdave did.  Believing that he was indeed skeptical and knowledgeable, he connected a set of inherited beliefs to his ego, and he has defended that ego ever since.

So of course he is a true believer, but like many true believers he thinks that he reached his conclusions with enough knowledge to come to his conclusions.  On the other hand, he seems not to be totally sure, hence his forays into the "knowledge" imparted by rank apologists at the CRI and AIG.   But their answers fit with his limited knowledge and a priori worldview, so they are satisfying to his mind.

He cannot think skeptically, or to put it another way, he cannot think skeptically about his own beliefs, rather he uses his faulty worldview to "think skeptically" about the claims of those who know vastly more about science and the Bible.  And as I implied previously, he is of no age or shape to jostle up his worldview, thus he cannot learn to think in a truly empirical manner.  As he notes, his mission is to get us to "think in a new way", as if many of us are not altogether too aware of how he does "think" and of the circularity of his "reasoning".  

What might be instructive is if he learned another metaphysical mode of "thinking", like that found in Plotinus, or eastern thought, which possibly could show how it is the way that he even begins his "skeptical thinking" that is at fault.  However, as I said before, he evidently is in no position to learn beyond his working hypotheses, so it is questionable if he even could learn how wonderfully consistent (more so than fundamentalism), yet baseless, a system like Plotinus's neo-Platonic philosophy really is.

Unfortunately, Afdave does indeed have the mind of many engineers, and not a few scientists (think of Behe, etc.).  Engineers receive an education that teaches them vetted knowledge, from which they are to deduce further working systems.  Engineers (and some scientists) do not learn how to substantiate their knowledge empirically from their particular studies--or at best they learn only the barest information about this.  They learn about designed systems, not about evolved systems, like language, texts, history, and biology.  Afdave is one of too many engineers who takes his knowledge to be knowledge of the world, and resorts to deductive schemes "based upon" self-confirming interpretations of the barest of "evidence".  If many engineers do rather better, clearly the inadequacies of many an engineering education to equip persons for scientific thought are evident in Afdave, Sal Cordova, and DaveScot.

I am doing the only thing that I think is sound in the presence of Afdave and others who automatically fit everything into their unwarranted worldviews.  I am explaining him, and not troubling with his wholly unsubstantiated arguments.  The fact is that he is unreachable at present, and there is scant reason to believe that he will ever really question his silly beliefs that the Bible is historically sound, or that flood waters explain evaporite deposites and sand dunes in the geological column.  It all "makes sense" to him because he has never had the knowledge to recognize the senselessness of it all.

And because he only thinks that we do not know how to think in his wonderful way, when some of us have learned nearly every way in which these beliefs we inherited are inadequate, he cannot begin to understand the opposition to his "reasonable position".

To be sure, everyone (except Carol and a few others) knows this, and argues with him anyway.  That's all fine, if that's what they want to do.  I just wanted to lay out how intractable Afdave really is, and basically how it all comes to be.  The crucial point almost certainly came in college, when he defaulted to a worldview that he did not have adequate knowledge to question.  Ever since then, he has defended his ego/beliefs like most of us do, but most of us here did know rather more than Afdave when we formed our basic worldviews (yes, mostly in college for me, too, though I extended the questioning period considerably beyond college).

I just hope that most here recognize that Afdave is almost certainly beyond the stage when he can question his fundamental beliefs--apart from suffering an overwhelming change in his circumstances.

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Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
Tim



Posts: 40
Joined: Sep. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,06:04   

I have read and read this thread, and lurked and read some more ...

... and we finally come to this:

Quote (afdave @ May 03 2006,10:28)
I feel that scientists just keep on writing mountains and mountains of nonsense to support these notions they really, really want to be true ... like the immune system evolved, etc.


Can one really argue against this?
Can one really debate with a man who convinces himself that the hundreds of thousands of published, peer-reviewed, professional scientists who put into workable practice their research every single day, are really part of a big conspiracy to further the evolution cause??

Yes Dave, the next time you pop a pill in your mouth to help soothe your aching head, or get vaccinated when you travel to malaria country, I'd beware because the medicine was indeed developed by a team of scientists who didn't really research their immunology very well, they just wrote some nonsense in the vague hope that they and AAAAAAALLLLLL the other scientists will have their big conspiratorial evilution cause furthered, because yes, they sooooooooo want it to be true.

Sheesh. And you're looking for intelligent answers to this?

  
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,06:16   

Quote
What do you think about Meyer's objection to falsifiability as a criterion for status as a "scientific theory"?


Meyer's critique is good, and not at all new or particularly in question.  We often resort to "falsification criteria" as a shorthand test of a scientific claim.  It is hardly sufficient, and indeed science could never begin with falsification criteria, but rather had to begin with positive inferences.

Quote
On what basis?  Your personal experience?  Is there a scientist somewhere that has observed this that I have not read about? In my personal experience and in all my reading, I have never observed (or read about) a non-intelligent cause producing a functional machine (there are a few equivocal examples I have heard about).  Have you?  My experience has ALWAYS been that functional machines require intelligent agency.  Therefore, I think my hypothesis of a Super-Engineer (I do not insist upon calling him 'God';) is a better explanation.


Here is your problem displayed for all to see.  You simply assume that "functional machines" have to be produced by intelligent agency, hence you are blind to the fact that the derived characteristics of organisms are the mark of non-design, not of design.  And you seem incapable of even questioning your presupposition that life (which is in many ways unlike designed machines) has to be designed.

And yes, we know very well of non-intelligent causes that have produced "functioning machines", namely evolutionary causes.  If you had an open mind, you could see it too.  And if you had even a remote concept of what "biological machines" are, you would already know that living organisms are quite unlike automata.

Quote
I didn't say it was original ... 'my hypothesis' means to me a conglomerate of existing ones plus some of my own thoughts presented in my own way. Everyone does this.  Why is it less than compelling? Have you ever experienced or read about a system that was 'finely tuned' that was NOT finely tuned by an engineer (or team of them)?


Once again your narrow a priori beliefs get in the way of even questioning metaphysical assumptions.  Have you ever seen a universe being created by a God?  Have you ever seen anything like an organism made by an intelligent agent?  

Of course you haven't.  You're analogizing across very different phenomena, not even noticing that intelligent religionists have typically considered the gods and/or other "supernatural agents" to be non-analogous with ourselves based upon the fact that we do not make universes, organisms, and what-not.  Only at this late date do we have people supposing that life is just a collection of machines, that the universe is fine-tuned like a computer or some such thing.

And frankly, I have said enough.  If you can ever question your prejudices, then you might learn how we know that reproducing derivative "machines" were not produced by any kind of "intelligent agent" that we have ever seen, and that the universe cannot be compared with anything we have ever produced.  

And no, I did not write this for Afdave, really, but just to show generically what is wrong with Afdave's unquestioned worldview.  Anthropomorphism runs rampant through it, and the poorest analogies are used to show that life is "created like other machines", without Afdave even noticing the vast differences between designed machines and life.  Then again, better educated individuals have failed as completely to make these basic distinctions, so we should not be surprised if Afdave is unable to question his assumptions.

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Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,06:42   

Quote
My point is (and this is known as the "weak anthropic principle") we would be surprised to find ourselves living in a universe that was not finely tuned for life. Obviously, Dave, we could not live in a universe that was inimical to life, unless a creator god made it possible for us to live there nevertheless. Since we are, in fact, alive, it should come as no surprise at all to us that we inhabit a universe that can sustain life.


This is all good, of course.  But what might be worth wondering about is why this universe, which is so poorly equipped to produce and to sustain life, is considered to be miraculously created to do just that.

If you (anyone) were God, would you produce a universe that often subjected planets to death-causing radiation, colossal collisions with heavenly bodies, and random changes in earth's climate that alternately freeze and fry life on earth?  Or would you make something far more controlled, like we do on our limited scale?

The fact of the matter is that few enough organisms survived the Permian extinction.  For most of earth's existence, there was inadequate oxygen (rising oxygen levels remain a good candidate for setting off the "Cambrian explosion").  Mars was dessicated by this "universe fine-tuned for life", while Venus was completely fried.  We exist as highly successful mammals largely because an asteroid (or at least some great disaster) killed off the dinosaurs.  We may have narrowly escaped the a caldera explosion, which appears to have produced a genetic bottleneck (with subsequent problems for us) in the human genome (I am not wedded to the caldera (supervolcano) hypothesis for the bottleneck, but it seems reasonable).

We probably exist in a sweet spot in this slated-to-die universe.  Earlier, there was too much chaos, radiation, and too many explosions for much life to arise and then evolve.  Later, the energy output of the universe will be rather poor, with few opportunities for life to arise, and diminishing resources for intelligent life trying to maintain itself.

The fact is that many conditions had to exist (be "fine-tuned") even for our dangerous and dicey existence to happen--hence there is real thought regarding the "fine-tuning" (the multiverse is a good hypothesis, but at best a hypothesis currently).  However, such "fine-tuning" indicates no real concern for producing adequate, let alone truly hospitable, conditions for intelligent life (which most IDists/creationists assume is the "goal").  Particularly in the past, life has been nasty, short, and brutish, for most of the human population, hardly the mark of a benevolent God.

The fine-tuning issue remains a real question in science--the journal Nature recently ran some articles about it.  What fine-tuning does not do, however, is to show that life is in any way favored, supported, or designed for anything except to die out as the universe slowly runs out of energy.  So many theists have claimed otherwise that we too-often argue as if fine-tuning did show a concern for life, when life only has all of the problems that evolution causes to non-designed systems, as well as the problems caused by stellar and cosmological evolution.  

What is more, one would have to show that life is some sort of "goal" or "preferred outcome" even to suggest that a single universe with life is "unusual" in any way.  We do not have access to God's telos to show that life is (supposedly) an unlikely but meaningful outcome to cosmic evolution.  Creationists/IDists only assume that life is a meaningful outcome, while we have no excuse to suppose that it is meaningful in a cosmic sense (as opposed to our own sense), however likely or unlikely it may be.  

For all I know, the universe was designed not to produce life, but the God's calculations were off and he abandoned this universe with its noisome organisms.  I have as much reason to believe this as to believe that the death-dealing universe was made for us.

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Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,06:52   

Quote (Glen Davidson @ May 03 2006,11:42)
This is all good, of course.  But what might be worth wondering about is why this universe, which is so poorly equipped to produce and to sustain life, is considered to be miraculously created to do just that.

I should probably strengthen a point I made in my previous post:

If we found ourselves living a universe in which life could not possibly exist, that would be evidence for the existence of god (and it would be pretty surprising, too).

That we live in a universe which seems in some ways to be "finely tuned" to permit life, but in which life seems extremely rare (at least, as far as we can tell so far) strikes me as extremely weak evidence for the existence of god.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Occam's Aftershave



Posts: 1773
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,06:57   

AFDave says

Quote
Ditto above ... funny ... every non-YEC history book I can find anywhere says things like "4000 (or so) BC: History Begins" (I never find over 10,000).   Hmmm... what did all those 'Homos' do for 1,996,000 years?  You're telling me they all of a sudden started writing and making artifacts only in the last .000000001% (or whatever) of their existence on the planet ... yeah, pretty plausible


Dave, as a fellow EE it’s embarrassing to see you continue to flaunt your ignorance on such topics.  Art and artifacts have been around for way before 4000 B.C.  Have you never heard of the Lascaux cave paintings in France?  Google is your friend Dave – you could easily find hundreds of examples that contradict your silly words if you were motivated to look.

Your personal incredulity and ignorance will never be acceptable as evidence, Dave.

Quote
Uh, oh.  I'm getting 'Aftershaved" again.  Hey try some intelligent sounding arguments instead of insults ... they work better. See Corkscrew, Norm and Chris Hyland and others for some good examples of intelligent sounding stuff.


Sorry Dave, my intention is not to insult you.  However, when you continue to say really stupid things, and I point out to you that they’re really stupid things, I can understand how you’d feel slighted.

Quote
Let's get the (Behe) quote right at least if you're going to quote him.  Here's what I found ...


I didn’t quote him Dave, I accurately described his testimony.

Quote
OK. So astrology wants to call itself a science?  Let 'em.  They have to prove their ideas just like the YECers and everyone else.  Don't you believe in the free market of ideas?  I think the majority would weed them out just like it does in other arenas.
 

The scientific community HAS weeded them out Dave, over 150 years ago.  That’s why the Creationists and IDers are trying to use the legal system to get their religion forced into science classrooms.

Quote
Do you see an Astrology Chapel at the USAF Academy? (I was just there).  Do you see a Scientology chapel?  Or a Buddhist temple?  No.  You see a BIG Protestant chapel, a smaller Catholic chapel and a smaller still Jewish chapel.  Why?  Democracy.  Freedom.  Reflection of the majority within practical limits.  Should the USAF Academy shut down all religion on campus b/c it's a government entity?  Of course not.  Remember.. here in the USA ... Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion [no state church lke the Church of England] or prohibiting the FREE EXERCISE thereof.  Same for science classes.  


Wrong Dave.  Science is not a democracy, and scientific facts aren’t decided by majority vote.  Do you think we can pass a law that will reduce the force of gravity by 50%?  Or change the properties of chemical bonds?

Quote
We shouldn't be telling kids 'God created the world' in science class and we shouldn't be telling the world that 'Evolution created the world' in science class.  We should be telling them 'Most scientists believe some form of Darwin's Theory of Evolution to explain the appearance of life.  Many non-scientists and a minority of scientists believe in some form of supernatural cause for the appearance of life.  Creationism and Intelligent Design Theory are two of these views.'


That’s great for a philosophy class, but dead wrong for a science class.  Should we teach the Geocentric view of the universe in science class because some non-scientists and a teeny minority of scientists hold that view?

Quote
And if Astrology or Scientism or Christian Science or whatever gets a big enough following, then throw them in there too and let the kids decide for themselves with the help of their parents.


Wrong again Dave.  Kids, even with the help of their lay parents, do not have the technical knowledge to decide for themselves what is scientifically accurate.

Quote
"The prosecuting attorney then dropped a two foot high stack of over 60 peer-reviewed scientific papers and articles with research detailing the evolution of the human blood clotting system and asked Behe if he was familiar with the work..  Behe replied that he didn’t need to read them as he already knew his claim was correct."  

I didn't check this quote for accuracy, but I imagine he feels as I feel that scientists just keep on writing mountains and mountains of nonsense to support these notions they really, really want to be true ... like the immune system evolved, etc.  I've read a lot myself and it all starts to sound the same ... I'm sure you can relate.  


He’s supposed to be a profession scientist and an expert on the subject.  Since he never bothered to read all the scientific evidence, how did he know it was nonsense?  The scientific evidence being presented “all sounds the same” to you only because it all directly contradicts your ignorance based view of scientific reality.

Being ignorant doesn’t mean unintelligent Dave, it just means untrained.  I’m quite ignorant of the flight controls of a Huey, but I’m sure you could teach me.  You don’t see me going on web sites and claiming that I already know better that those “closed minded” Huey drivers about how to pilot their aircraft.

Quote
Many people here have said the same about the stuff I write.  I will agree with you that it seems hair-brained to adopt the strategy to go try to defend a local school board's decision to put 'Evolution Warning Labels' on the books.  I mean ... who knows what kind of rednecks you might be defending?  Why fight this in the courts anyway?  I can think of better places to get the word out. So is that 2 things we agree on now?  Oh yeah ... we're both EE's.  OK 3 then.


Then you need to tell that to the Creationists who avoid the scientific peer review process like the plague, and opt for “end runs” through the legal system instead.

Sorry again if you feel insulted – I’ll buy you a beer or three if we ever meet :)  As you are passionate about your cause, I am just as passionate about scientific literacy.  I see a real threat to the economic future of my country if the pseudoscientific pushers like the Creationists continue to try and lower the U.S. science standards.

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"Science is what got us to the humble place we’re at, and what hard-won progress we might realize comes from science, with ID completely flaccid, religious apologetics bitching from the sidelines." - Eigenstate at UD

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,06:59   

Quote
Is there a scientist somewhere that has observed this that I have not read about? In my personal experience and in all my reading, I have never observed (or read about) a non-intelligent cause producing a functional machine (there are a few equivocal examples I have heard about).  Have you?  My experience has ALWAYS been that functional machines require intelligent agency.  Therefore, I think my hypothesis of a Super-Engineer (I do not insist upon calling him 'God';) is a better explanation.
The difference is that we know the processes which led to the diversity of life and 'crafted' these systems. They differ from manmade machines in that they have properties we would expect if they had been formed by the processes of evolution. Every engineer who has seriously studied biology has told me this. We cannot assume that just because the only time we have seen machines being created it was by humans, we can infer nature was created by an intelligence. I might just as easily infer it must have been created by some humans.

Quote
Are you proposing that the parameters got set by chance?  If so, what basis do you have from your experience to propose this as valid?  How would you deal with the odds against this, etc.?  I think maybe what you are saying is that you don't believe the 'fine tuning' was necessary for life to evolve?
No Im saying life could ONLY evolve if the constants are perfect. An omnipotent being could create life even if they were not. Therefore If I observe that the constants are right for life I infer that the were not 'fine-tuned'. That being said I have no strong feelings one way or the other as my cosmology is a little lacking, the point is it is not reasonable to infer a creator from fine tuning.

Quote
If they are not, then could you propose an example of what IS evidence?  Let me guess ... mountains and mountains of 'scholarship' from the science establishment to support Naturalistic Explanations Only?
Just give us a way to test the supernatural using science, no one has as far as I am aware.

Quote
'Most scientists believe some form of Darwin's Theory of Evolution to explain the appearance of life.  Many non-scientists and a minority of scientists believe in some form of supernatural cause for the appearance of life.  Creationism and Intelligent Design Theory are two of these views.'
I was told this in high school (well not about ID), but as scientists do not believe it we didn't learn about it.

  
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,07:05   

Quote
If we found ourselves living a universe in which life could not possibly exist, that would be evidence for the existence of god (and it would be pretty surprising, too).


Not so surprising to the Semitic (writ large) mind , which typically thought of the universe as being fundamentally chaotic, yet held together by the pharoahs or kings, and the gods.  

And I say this to bolster your point, that the miracles are apparent where they overcome the unknown difficulties that beset us.  This "fine-tuned" claim for God seems to fit well with pagan beliefs about the eternal universe, yet one in which we "miraculously" exist "apart from nature" (that is, in later pagan beliefs).  Even the Xians tended to view this universe, though created by God, as a barely tolerable, inimical-to-humanity realm of the devil.  Xians needed God to survive in this hellhole, and the only thing that made this universe in the least bit "fair" was the fact that the good would go to heaven.

Now the parameters of existence are used as "evidence" for this supposedly benevolent God, when in the past it was salvation from this squalid existence that indicated that the Savior was Good.  And I quite agree with your conclusions.

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Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
C.J.O'Brien



Posts: 395
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,07:56   

Quote
 
These tidbits from your favorite DI fellows aren’t evidence, Dave.
If they are not, then could you propose an example of what IS evidence?  Let me guess ... mountains and mountains of 'scholarship' from the science establishment to support Naturalistic Explanations Only?  This was the kind of odds Galileo was working against too.  Are you telling me that I should believe your evidence and reject mine because yours fits with the majority?


One of the things about science that YEC's just can't get their heads around is that there just isn't any "my evidence" and "your evidence." Science demands transparency and replicability. So all of the evidence we have comes from that dreaded "establishment." Unless there's a YEC research program I'm not aware of, all you have to go on is the evidence uncovered by the hard work of scientists, spit on by the cretins at AiG et al.
Quote
 
Second, what does “life-sustaining universe” mean?
Exactly what it says.  And I challenge you to propose some parameter changes and ask a biologist how likely it would be for life to continue.  The problem with naturalistic speculators like yourself is that you guys like to say "Well, we only know about life on earth ... sample size of one.  There could be other planets, other universes, who knows!"  OK, great.  I agree.  And there could be a Fairy Godmother for all I know.  But if we are going to admit wild speculation into the arena, let's admit ALL kinds of wild speculation into the arena.  My favorite is "Parallel Universes".  I don't know how people can tell me with a straight face that there might be an infinite number of parallel universes, then in the next breath tell me I'm a wild speculator for proposing an Infinite God character.

It's a simple question (with complicated implications), and you didn't answer it, Dave. And there are demonstrably "other planets," so the 'parameter space' that would allow for life is a completely open question, just in the universe we are sure exists. You'll notice that I didn't say anything about multiverses, not because I agree with you that the concept is on an epistemological level with your "Super-Intelligence," but because, in a simplistic debate like this, it's open to your facile dismissal. Why don't you respond to the arguments I did make, rather than the ones you wish I'd made?

Quote
Regarding the Denton "howler" ...  THIS is the howler ...
 
All the evidence available in the biological (and geological) sciences in fact supports the proposition that life began ~3.8 billion years ago
*cough* because we arbitrarily made some massive initial conditions assumptions so it would come out that long


We did? This is interesting. Can you lay out for me a few of these "massive assumptions"?
Quote
and that from that time forward the most numerous, diverse, robust, and tenacious life-forms have been prokaryotes.
the old 'what do you think makes humans so special, just look at the bacteria' saw ... sometime I'm going to do a thread on the implications of this thinking on law and culture ... talk about a howler ... this one will be way better than Rush Limbaugh and the Tree Huggers!

Again, you're responding to something I plainly did not say. Microbial life has dominated this planet from the dawn of life to now, and will continue to do so, right up until the sun, a bloated red giant, swells up to devour the earth. From a prokaryotes 'point of view,' the universe is made for it. And I can't imagine anything being worse than "Rush Limbaugh and the Pill Poppers," so have fun with that.

Quote
Multicellular, animal life has been around for maybe a billion years,
based on our flawed assumptions in dating supposed 'index fossils'

Again with the mystery assumptions. And I think you're confused. Index fossils are mostly used to date rocks, not necessarily other fossils, and certainly not the earliest. The date is derived from the earliest trace fossils, and the radiometric dates of the rocks themselves. Why don't you finish toppling the facade of evolution before you start in on digging out the rotten foundations of nuclear physics, there, tiger.

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most of that as relatively undifferentiated worm-like creatures. Mammals have been around for 80 to 100 million years, primates about 40 million, hominids 7 to 8 million, and genus Homo maybe two millionDitto above ... funny ... every non-YEC history book I can find anywhere says things like "4000 (or so) BC: History Begins" (I never find over 10,000).   Hmmm... what did all those 'Homos' do for 1,996,000 years?  You're telling me they all of a sudden started writing and making artifacts only in the last .000000001% (or whatever) of their existence on the planet ... yeah, pretty plausible

"Writing" and "making artifacts" are separated by millions of years. Is it too much to ask that you try to perceive that technology developed through time? I mean, why cave painting, when they could've invented TV and been done with it?  
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The human conception of a creative “Super-Intelligence” is about the only thing the Bible dates correctly, being about 5 or 6 thousand years old. In other words, roughly .000001 of the history of life, or .0025 of the existence of our genus. Pretty long build-up for the punchline, wouldn’t you say?
the buildup is in your imagination, Mr. O'Brien, which is great.  I like imagining things too.  Have you seen Narnia?  It's a good one for the imagination, but it's not about science, unless we redefine science ... which I'm not opposed to as long as the rules are fair.

If it's in my imagination, then evidently it is also in the imagination of the entire scientific community. Conspiracy theories? The rules are unfair? How dreadful.

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
tacitus



Posts: 118
Joined: May 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,08:27   

I give up.  With every response Dave makes he confirms he's simply the same old run-of-the-mill young-earth creationist fundamentalist Christian who just happens to believe he has some novel approach to the tried old arguments.  Well, I;ve got news for him.  Expanding the definition of science to encompass supernatural phenomena is not a novel approach.   It is at the very heart of what both the creationist and ID movements have been trying to do since the beginning.  It's never worked before, and will never work in the future.

The only ground he's given in this debate is on terminology alone.  He hasn't really been listening to anything we're saying--at least, if he has, it hasn't moved him one jot.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,08:59   

Quote
Same for science classes.  We shouldn't be telling kids 'God created the world' in science class and we shouldn't be telling the world that 'Evolution created the world' in science class.  We should be telling them 'Most scientists believe some form of Darwin's Theory of Evolution to explain the appearance of life.  Many non-scientists and a minority of scientists believe in some form of supernatural cause for the appearance of life.  Creationism and Intelligent Design Theory are two of these views.'


This is incorrect. The Theory of Evolution says nothing about the appearance of life. Origins of Life ("abiogenisis") theories are entirely separate from the Theory of Evolution. Nor does the Theory of Evolution have anything to say about the origin of the earth or the origin of the universe. Entirely separate theories deal with those issues. It's common among creationists to assume that the Theory of Evolution is an all-embracing origins theory.

Again, Dave, this reinforces my impression that you've done next to no reading about what evolution actually says, as opposed to what creationists think it says.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,09:08   

Dave, I asked you very early on in this thread to explain why you think the earth is only thousands of years old, not billions of years old. So far, the only thing you've come up with, after several very long posts, is that the evidence for an earth billions of years old is based on "flawed assumptions." The evidence isn't based on "flawed assumptions"; it's based on a detailed understanding of nuclear decay and geophysical processes, among other things. No one "assumed" the earth was billions of years old; the evidence showed that it was.

You're going to have to explain what those "flawed assumptions" are pretty quickly if you're going to maintain whatever shreds of credibility you have left. And believe me, this isn't a side issue: it's critical to your claim that the Bible is inerrant. If the Bible is off by six orders of magnitude on an fact as basic as the age of the earth, that doesn't leave it much credibility on other matters.

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,09:13   

Quote (afdave @ May 03 2006,10:28)
I see what you are saying, but even in this case, it is only absolute certainty to the person (or people) who built it and flew it. Think about it.  All other people who hear about it will get INDIRECT evidence--they will read about it, see the report on TV, etc. and of course this is quite reliable for the example you raise.  But TV and newspaper reports can get unreliable when reporting less cut and dried events.

What  about you, Dave? Didn't you say you were a pilot?

You don't design airplanes -- but you, and most people, do have direct evidence of a heavier than air machine flying. You've got a non-argument there. Is there anyway you could ever deny to yourself that it is possible for heavier than air machines to fly?

Evolutionary programming and genetic algorithms are that kind of evidence. It may be indirect to you now -- but you've got to be stubornly denying the obvious for you to deny such things exist.

It is still as absolute a proof as  the human animal can get.

  
Rilke's Granddaughter



Posts: 311
Joined: Jan. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,09:15   

Quote (tacitus @ May 03 2006,13:27)
I give up.  With every response Dave makes he confirms he's simply the same old run-of-the-mill young-earth creationist fundamentalist Christian who just happens to believe he has some novel approach to the tried old arguments.  Well, I;ve got news for him.  Expanding the definition of science to encompass supernatural phenomena is not a novel approach.   It is at the very heart of what both the creationist and ID movements have been trying to do since the beginning.  It's never worked before, and will never work in the future.

Have you ever met theist who actually had a novel take on these arguments?  I haven't.  The boilerplate is the same no matter what they claim or think.

But you are right about afDave: he hasn't actually responded to a single logic point raised.

He's boring.  ???

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,09:30   

Quote (afdave @ May 03 2006,10:28)
My problem with Danny Hillis' has nothing to do with the concepts of 'absolutes'.  It has everything to do with the question of 'What exactly does the Hillis demo tell us?'

Read the book I linked and you'll find out.

http://www.kk.org/outofcontrol/

You'll learn some basic ideas about things like "search space," co-evolution, evolutionary computer algorithms and get a very brief note on the mathematics involved.

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,09:43   

Quote (afdave @ May 03 2006,10:28)
No one has yet shown me an example of a worm-like creature evolving into a squid or a dinosaur-like creature evolving into a bird, ....

Evolution in animals takes a long time so you can't see it directly, (though you can get direct results with bacteria and fruit flies). We can, however, show you tons of evidence that it happened. You want a worm-like creature evolving into something? How about this bit of sample evidence:
http://www.admin.ox.ac.uk/po/news/2005-06/jan/09.shtml
http://www.physorg.com/news9717.html

The genes of animals have extra bits of DNA sequence, called introns, that don't code for proteins. Humans have many and flies have fewer. Some assumed that a simple fly genome might be more ancient, but flies go through far more generations in the same period of time than humans or other animals. Genes don't always get more complex during evolution. So, animals have a lot of introns, and quickly-evolving species like flies have lost most of them.

We share introns with a worm-like creature that lived more than 550 million years ago, a last common ancestor of almost all living animals, including worms, flies and humans.

Evidence of a dinosaur-like creature evolving into a bird goes like this:
http://www.enchantedlearning.com/subjects/dinosaurs/Dinobirds.html
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news....yx.html

What you're talking about is phylum level evolution. Here is something you should read about creationist arguments:
http://home.entouch.net/dmd/cambevol.htm

How about an ape-like homid into a man?
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/
http://encarta.msn.com/encnet/refpages/RefArticle.aspx?refid=761566394

Creationists have nothing like that kind of evidence not because they're not trying -- that had more than a thousand years head start on looking for evidence -- but because their evidence isn't there.

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,11:20   

Quote (Rilke's Granddaughter @ May 03 2006,14:15)
He's boring.  ???

Yep.  Once they make it clear that they reject methodological naturalism, there's really no point in continuing the discussion.

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Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,12:32   

Here's something else to think about, Dave.

You're really in the position of someone claiming heavier-than-air flight is impossible. The evidence for an ancient earth, and for the fact of evolution (as opposed to the Theory of Evolution), is absolutely overwhelming and ironclad. Those of us who are familiar with this evidence know this (you have demonstrated conclusively that you are not aware of this evidence).

Therefore, the only things you can say that will be of interest to the rest of us is why you think the earth is less than 10,000 years old and macroevolution doesn't happen. In other words, you need to show in detail why the vast body of evidence supporting these two contentions is incorrect. N.B.: you can't just show that a few pieces of evidence here and there are incorrect, because the evidence is cumulative. You'd have to refute virtually all of it.

But nothing else you can say on the subject is really of interest. Your methods, sources, life history, etc. aren't really advancing your argument. Nor are analogies to watches, airplanes, or other machines. Either presenting evidence that the earth is young, or demonstrating that the evidence of its antiquity is incorrect; or evidence not only that evolution is impossible, but that the Bible's account of the origin of species is correct, are really the only things that are going to get you anywhere here.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Joe the Ordinary Guy



Posts: 18
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 03 2006,14:58   

Well, I just want to jump in and once again thank everyone for modeling the appropriate responses to Creationist blather. Afdave is certainly charming and affable, and he periodically throws in a little self-deprecating humor, but I, too, finally decided that he is unreachable. For me, it was these comments:

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I was never a logician, by trade, but that does not mean I can't become one very quickly, especially when I see gross incompetence in the field.

Really? Without actually BEING one, Dave can see “gross incompetence”? Huh, that, to me, suggests that Dave can NOT “become one very quickly”.

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I may not get very far with closed minded professional scientists, which I hope you are not, but I hope to put some truth out there in an area where I currently see a lot of error.

Dave hopes to put some “truth” out there. Not “corrections of data”, or “new and compelling data”, but “truth”. And of course, he “sees a lot of error” in spite of having no training other than reading some articles.

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Why does it always seem that every time the word 'God' is even mentioned, everybody runs for cover and says it's not science?

No one “runs for cover”. Everyone “says it’s not science” for the simple reason that… wait for it… it’s not science! This is one of the things that truly puzzles me about fundies and biblical literalists. Why the obsession with being scientific? You’re talking about GOD. That is, if I recall, a RELIGIOUS topic. Not all things in the world are the same in all respects. Some things are different from other things in significant ways. Religion and Science would be two things that are not the same, but different. Why the insistence that the auto mechanic could really, really use flour, eggs and milk as part of his toolkit?

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A lot hinges on this, too.  What people think about origins and the nature of mankind is VITALLY important to law and society.  This is why you see me being so passionate about this issue.

I think this is the real reason for Dave’s enthusiasm. Obviously, the world is going to h3ll in a handbasket, and someone has to do something, quick! Nevermind that old people have said this about young people since there have been old people and young people, THIS time, it’s SERIOUS! The other observation I would make is that there have been more than a few “societies” since the time of Christ. Of those with some form of Christianity as their religious foundation, there is significant difference in their laws and social structures. This suggests that there is not as direct a correlation as Dave may be hoping for.

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My real goal is two-fold:  (1) to really get to the bottom of why Creationism is so objectionable to a lot of good scientists.  This is why I am HERE, not over at AIG or DI, (2) I have personally seen a lot of excellent support for being a Creationist, but I could be wrong.  If so, who better to tell me I'm wrong that professional scientists over here? (3) If I am right, the implications are enormous and all of humanity should know about this.

1) Creationism is objectionable because is CLAIMING to be science, but it is NOT science. If it WAS science, scientists would treat it as such. If it DID NOT CLAIM to be science, scientists would have no problem with it. 2) Oddly, in spite of ALL of the professional scientists here telling Dave he is wrong, he’s not getting it. Perhaps the answer to the “who better” would be… Dave’s minister. 3) Enormous implications for all of humanity? Wow! Ya think? Dave better hope there’s, like, no one else working on this question, or else they may tell all of humanity before he does and steal his thunder.

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I think the REALLY NEW THING that I am presenting to you is not necessarily new evidence, but a NEW WAY OF DRAWING CONCLUSIONS FROM THE EVIDENCE, which I actually believe you put into practice every day in your scientific and other endeavors, but which you may not have thought to put into practice into the Origins question.


Quote
I consider ALL possibilities for explaining and describing the universe, not just so called 'naturalistic ones' which we presently understand.

This betrays such a misunderstanding of the scientific process that it is hard to know how to respond. After several promises of “evidence coming soon”, Dave changes tracks and offers a New Way of Drawing Conclusions; if you want Conclusion A, use Method A, and if you want Conclusion B, use Method B; what could be more useful than that?

My understanding is that the success of science is largely BECAUSE OF its strictly self-imposed limitations; ONLY natural phenomena, ONLY repeatable experiments, ONLY provisional acceptance of explanations. Once you admit supernatural explanations, you’ve diluted the usefulness of your explanations.

Dave was intriguing to me because he came on initially like someone who really did want to learn. It was kind of sad to see him reveal his inability to get it.

But thanks again to those who patiently respond; we lurkers find it valuable.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,06:58   

Hello Everyone!

I begin this morning with a quote from Corkscrew because I can still see that we are not in agreement on HOW to present my case and WHAT constitutes 'science' ...

Quote
AFDave: again, I think we have a slight confusion of terminology. What you're describing as an hypothesis would, if I understand correctly, be more accurately considered a conjecture.  My understanding is that statements about the universe subdivide into the following categories:

Conjectures - statements that fit all the known data (these are produced by the largely-intuitive process of abduction)

Hypotheses - conjectures that are falsifiable

Data - conjectures that have been verified (there's no term for conjectures that are merely verifiable)

Predictions - conjectures that are both verifiable and falsifiable, and that haven't yet been verified or falsified

Science is concerned primarily with deciding which of the infinite number of possible hypotheses for any given situation is best. It does this by applying three principles: predictivity, parsimony and credibility. Predictivity means that an hypothesis must give us some idea of what we'll find next (otherwise it's scientifically useless), parsimony means that an hypothesis must be efficient in its use of "magic numbers" (so, for example, five dots in a row would be best described by a linear equation not a quintic equation), and credibility means that an hypothesis must have survived attempted falsification. Of these, credibility is the most important, followed by predictivity and then parsimony (this is partly because predictivity is a necessary condition for credibility).

Your conjecture does not, as it stands, make any predictions, so can't be considered an hypothesis. To rectify this, you'll need to:
1) increase its specificity until you can use it to make a prediction of the form described above
2) confirm that the current best-of-breed scientific hypotheses would not also make that prediction (ideally, they shouldn't even leave open the possibility of that prediction being true, but you can't have everything)
3) go out and test the prediction

I repeat: for your conjectures to be scientifically valid, it is not sufficient to present existing evidence in support of each of them. To match the level of current origins science, you must also be able to derive and confirm predictions from them. Otherwise, it really is just a "just so story". Predictivity is what makes the difference.


This objection is commonly called a "Demarcation Argument" ... possibly you all are very familiar with this in which certain "Demarcation Criteria" such as verifiability, falsifiability, predictivity, etc. are used to say "This is not science" or "that is not science."

While I would agree that Corkscrew's arguments are true for some endeavors within some branches of science, I do not think they are true for all of them.  Historical geology is one field that I would assume everyone here considers to be a scientific endeavor, yet I am not aware that the rules above apply.  My understanding of the data which we have in historical geology is that it is fixed.  We go out and observe the rock formations and begin making theories about WHY they are the way they are.  Of course, we can also test some samples in the lab to determine isotope content subject to certain initial conditions.  But I am not aware of anyone being able to make predictions of "how the next mountain range will be built" or "where the next oil fields will be laid" or "when, where or how a new gold mine will be formed." (If some of you know this last one, please tell me)  Rather, what we are concerned with is HOW the geologic formations got there  and WHAT EVENTS might have caused them, and this is a different business than predicting orbits of satellites, yet we rightly call it science.

Corkscrew uses the term 'origins science' and I agree that the study of the ORIGIN of all things IS INDEED SCIENCE.  However, some distinctions must be made.  A Neo-Darwinist's attempt to explain the origin of species (or we might say phyla here) by mutation and natural selection is in my opinion a scientific endeavor, but not because of the rules above.  Some of the rules certainly apply  when predicting relatively minor changes such the size of finch beaks, moth colorations, fruit fly anomalies, and my kid's disposition, etc.  But when ND's begin talking about how a worm developed into a squid, or how a land-mammal developed into a whale, they have crossed a big line.  Now they cannot make "predictions" in the same sense, i.e. "Put that worm in a bucket in your backyard, add X, Y, Z and wait one year and you will have a proto-squid."  They can do this with minor variations in finches and fruitflies, however.  They can say "Take some finches from South America with long beaks, put them on the Galapagos Islands and wait 10 years.  Then come back after 10 years and you will see only finches with short, strong beaks." (or whatever ... you get my point).  Do you see the difference?  One field of study, which I call "Designed Adaptation" (I think ND's call it confusingly to me -- Evolution) allows one to apply the demarcation tests of Credibility, Predictivity, Parsimony, mentioned by Corkscrew, and even Experimental Validation.  But with the former enterprise, which I have trouble labeling--shall we call it Macro-evolution? (worms to squids, eyes from eyespots, flippers from feet, etc)--we are not able to do any such thing to my knowledge.

I submit to you that in light of these considerations, my attempt to propose a Hypothesis for an Intelligent Designer as the Cause of all life on earth IS AT LEAST IN THE SAME CATEGORY OF DEMARCATION as current Neo-Darwinist attempts to explain life on earth (I call this Macro-Evolution, but I am open to a different term).

1)  BOTH have access to data which is FIXED.  We cannot observe flippers to feet happening today, and we cannot observe my postulated creation of dolphins.
2)  BOTH assume that AN EVENT in the past or a SERIES OF EVENTS in the past caused the phenomena being studied.
3)  BOTH are seeking to come up with a true description of the event or events that took place in the past.
4)  NEITHER can test the process that formed the phenomena today by experimental methods.
5)  BOTH require the use of analogy to things which ARE known to us
6)  BOTH require the scientist to DRAW INFERENCES TO THE BEST EXPLANATION

OK?  There you have my argument for why I think my structure is valid.  Before moving ahead with more evidence supporting Point 1 of my hypothesis, I would like to have your feedback.  For those who don't think I am being responsive with your questions, keep in mind that I am trying hard, but I also need to stay focused on the topic of this thread.

I did study the Human-Chimp chromosome fusion prediction and I found what appears to be some serious flaws in reasoning.  This is posted as a separate topic. I will be interested in your replies.

Quote
Evolution in animals takes a long time so you can't see it directly, (though you can get direct results with bacteria and fruit flies).

I am glad to see an acknowledgment that you cannot see evolution in animals.  I had never heard of that.  I am aware of the fruit fly and bacteria thing.  What kind of changes do we see?  I am only aware of relatively minor changes, which I would call 'Designed Adaptation.'  Are you saying that someone has observed, for instance, a fruit fly evolving into a house-fly like insect?

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This is incorrect. The Theory of Evolution says nothing about the appearance of life. Origins of Life ("abiogenisis") theories are entirely separate from the Theory of Evolution. Nor does the Theory of Evolution have anything to say about the origin of the earth or the origin of the universe. Entirely separate theories deal with those issues. It's common among creationists to assume that the Theory of Evolution is an all-embracing origins theory.
OK.  Maybe someone should come up with one.  Isn't there something called a GUT? (Grand Unifying Theory).  That's sort of what mine attempts to be.

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Dave, I asked you very early on in this thread to explain why you think the earth is only thousands of years old, not billions of years old.
I have to get past Demarcation Arguments and Point 1, then we will look at it.

Quote
Evolutionary programming and genetic algorithms are that kind of evidence. It may be indirect to you now -- but you've got to be stubornly denying the obvious for you to deny such things exist.
They are excellent evidence for what I call "Designed Adaptation" (moths, fruiflies, etc.) and are certainly quite useful, but they are not convincing to me regarding Flippers from Feet, etc.

Quote
One of the things about science that YEC's just can't get their heads around is that there just isn't any "my evidence" and "your evidence."
Agreed.  I did not mean to imply there is separate evidence.  I only meant evidence that I have seen.

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
C.J.O'Brien



Posts: 395
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,07:18   

Re: micro/macro

1+1=2  BUT

1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1 =/= 10?

In other words, what is the barrier to cumulative microevolution events resulting in macroevolutionary change in a lineage?

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
k.e



Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,07:31   

hey half a dave

Forget about the.. ah theory (snigger)BS I've got a much better idea for you. Take a tip from someone who really knows how to sell a great idea(giggle). Merda d'artista available for a small price http://www.heyokamagazine.com/heyoka-3-manzoni.htm
much more valuable than ID its a collectable....a bit like ID.
You should go out and get all those books while they last
half a dave before they become as rare as rocking horse s**t.

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

   
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,07:32   

Quote
4)  NEITHER can test the process that formed the phenomena today by experimental methods.
What we can do is test the mechanisms that we hypothesize caused macroevolution. We can also make predictions based on what we understand from these processes, of what we expect to find in other organisms.

Quote
5)  BOTH require the use of analogy to things which ARE known to us
How so? If you like we can stop using analogies for the purpose of this debate.

Quote
6)  BOTH require the scientist to DRAW INFERENCES TO THE BEST EXPLANATION
No one has said otherwise. This in no way means of course that both inferences are equally valid.

Quote
I did study the Human-Chimp chromosome fusion prediction and I found what appears to be some serious flaws in reasoning.
No it doesn't. I don't mean to be rude but you don't seem to have much of a concept of how biology works at all. If this was a mistake like you claim someone would have already noticed it.

It would be better for all concerned if you just present your evidence. We will judge it in the same way that we judge the evidence for evolution.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,08:09   

Dave, you've posted another great big long post on defintions, methods, etc., when what everyone here really wants to see is evidence. I cannot fail to point out that you have not yet presented any evidence for the following claims:

1. The Bible is inerrant;
2. The earth (and presumably the rest of the universe) is less than 10,000 years old; and
3. Evolution cannot account for the origin of species (and higher-level taxa).

You've been admonished several times that you'll wear out everyone's patience if you don't get down to supporting these three assertions.

Quote (afdave @ May 04 2006,11:58)
Quote
This is incorrect. The Theory of Evolution says nothing about the appearance of life. Origins of Life ("abiogenisis") theories are entirely separate from the Theory of Evolution. Nor does the Theory of Evolution have anything to say about the origin of the earth or the origin of the universe. Entirely separate theories deal with those issues. It's common among creationists to assume that the Theory of Evolution is an all-embracing origins theory.
OK.  Maybe someone should come up with one.  Isn't there something called a GUT? (Grand Unifying Theory).  That's sort of what mine attempts to be.


In some sense, Dave, all of experience comes down to quantum mechanics. But if you think you're going to come up with a theory that explains the hierarchy problem in particle physics and how birds evolved from dinosaurs, you'd better get cracking. The "GUTs" (Grand Unified Theories) of particle physics attempt, with indifferent success, to unify three of the four known forces of nature (gravity excluded). They don't even begin to be as ambitious as to attempt to explain the origin of the universe, the origin of the earth, and the origin of life, and have nothing whatsoever to say about the evolution of life.

Quote
I have to get past Demarcation Arguments and Point 1, then we will look at it.


No you don't. Demarkation arguments aren't going to help you. We want to see evidence to support your assertions, and you're not going to get any peace until you present such assertions. Quibbling about "demarkation arguments" is a waste of time.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,08:23   

Not to belabor the point, but it seems Davey is very confused about the term "testable predictions".  He's expecting Nostradamus-type predictions, like how many fingers humans will have one million years from now.  He doesn't seem to appreciate actual scientific predictions, like human/chimp DNA similarity, chromosome fusion, finding specific fossils, etc.

Of course, this is certainly a minor complaint compared to his dismissal of methodological naturalism.

--------------
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,11:33   

Quote
You've been admonished several times that you'll wear out everyone's patience if you don't get down to supporting these three assertions.

Relax.  Relax.  We'll get there ... besides, aren't you having fun beating up on a YECer?  Just think ... you might even make a convert!

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Seven Popes



Posts: 190
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,11:43   

Quote (afdave @ May 04 2006,16:33)
Quote
You've been admonished several times that you'll wear out everyone's patience if you don't get down to supporting these three assertions.

Relax.  Relax.  We'll get there ... besides, aren't you having fun beating up on a YECer?  Just think ... you might even make a convert!

Beating up a YECer? Fun? Not much sport really.
Make a convert?  Why would we care to make one of you?  You won't even Google that rubbish from AIG for truthiness before cutting and pasting it here.  Can't see how much use you'd be to science.

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Cave ab homine unius libri - Beware of anyone who has just one book.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,11:44   

Actually, not really. Since you haven't actually presented any "evidence" yet, all we've really been able to do is ask you to present it.

Granted, it was slightly fun to watch you pull up 30-year-old research to attempt to refute one piece of evidence in support of evolution, only to have it get torn to shreds, but we see this kind of thing all the time from creationists.

What we really want to see is your evidence supporting your assertions. We haven't seen that yet.

Creationists spend about 95% of their time trying to critique scientific research they don't have the competence to critique, and another 5% in lobbying efforts aimed at the non-scientific community. That leaves what percent for actual research?

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,15:26   

Quote
Beating up a YECer? Fun? Not much sport really.
Mmmm ... proud words!  Hope you can keep it up for the long haul :-)

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,15:44   

Quote (afdave @ May 04 2006,20:26)
Hope you can keep it up for the long haul :-)

Not likely.

If you can't figure out that microevolution in your lifetime + millions of years = macroevolution then people will eventually see that trying to teach your religion darkened brain anything is about is profitable as Brian Greene trying to teach his dog string theory.

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,16:06   

Quote (afdave @ May 04 2006,16:33)
Relax.  Relax.  We'll get there ... besides, aren't you having fun beating up on a YECer?  Just think ... you might even make a convert!

It's actually depressing to see another human being so gleefully embracing ignorance and lies.  The worst part is that many of us feel helpless to do anything about it.  We can argue until we're blue in the face, but nothing ever seems to snap you true believers out of that trance.  Any anger you sense is just coming out of our frustration.

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Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
Joe the Ordinary Guy



Posts: 18
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,17:11   

Dave, let me try this approach:

I’m not a scientist. I’m just a regular guy. I am considered knowledgeable and talented in my chosen field, (business video communications) and the people who consider me so are my peers. I have interests and activities outside of my chosen field; these are hobbies (collecting PEZ dispensers, writing original music).  In my hobbies, I am NOT an expert, and I sometimes seek information from people who I determine may know more than I.

From what you’ve told us, you were an Electrical Engineer, an Air Force Pilot, and a successful businessman. Cool. I bet you’re smart and know a lot of stuff.

Now, I don’t know about you, but in MY life, I have found that there are many things I DON’T know. Plumbing. Car repair. Tax return preparation. Ballroom dancing. Gourmet cooking. Quantum mechanics. Evolutionary biology. And many more.

For these things, I rely on Experts. I mean, I suppose I COULD study the tax code and prepare my own returns, but you know what? I don’t wanna. It doesn’t interest me. So I hire an accountant to do that for me. I trust him to do so professionally, and so far, so good. And I suppose I COULD learn to cook better, but I usually get a better meal when I go to a restaurant, so when I want a really good meal, I go to a restaurant. I trust the chef not to poison me, and so far, so good. And there are some things that I simply, physically, cannot do. My knees are way too shot to ever let me learn ballroom dancing. And my brain is way too small to ever let me learn quantum mechanics. So I trust the professionals in those fields as well.

Science (like Religion) is a human endeavor conducted by human beings. It is, therefore, imperfect. (Like Religion.) I believe that the class of professionals called “scientists” has no inherent reason to lie to the rest of us. I notice that when they catch one of their own in a lie, they essentially destroy the liar’s career. I’m confident that they sometimes make mistakes, but the nature of their endeavor is to continually refine their knowledge and correct mistakes as they are found.  I understand and appreciate that the nature and amount of their training is far more than I could handle, and I respect them for their knowledge and ability. I trust them.

You, apparently, do not.

Could you tell me why?

Thanks.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,17:30   

I trust them with many, many things as well.  I am not a hermit who rejects science.  I love all the research that our enormous scientific community is doing and most of what they do is not affected by my debate here.  

There is really one really big thing I resent.  And that is the idea that humans are nothing more than highly evolved animals.  This to me first of all has never been proven but many scientists speak as if it has, and secondly, history has shown what this type of belief can do in a society if it is believed by the leadership. I not only believe it is unproven, I believe it is patently false, and I believe that I can show that my assertion that mankind is no animal (in spite of our little chimp discussion today), but that he is in a different category--made in the image of the Creator God with the ability to commune with this God, is very well supported by the evidence.  

The rest of the stuff I don't care nearly so much about.

See you tomorrow!

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
jupiter



Posts: 97
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,17:38   

afdave, you've asserted that your view of the world and its origins is true because a) most people believe it and b) you and others are marshaling political support for it.

Yet you agree with Behe that a two-foot stack of research, produced and challenged and confirmed over many decades, is meaningless.

Are scientific research and its results determined by democratic vote, or not? If not, you have no support at all. If so, who's franchised? How often would the votes take place? Who sets the ballot? Are the votes national, or statewide, or county-by-county? How would the voting affect, e.g., pharmaceutical research? If scientific research isn't voted on but scientific pedagogy is -- how would that work?

You reject so-called "macroevolution" because you've never witnessed it. In theological terms, aren't you being a bit presumptuous, assuming that the Lord's works are limited by what you can perceive? In practical terms, if you flew a plane relying on nothing but your own senses, how would that work out?

Your thinking is pretty flabby, for a skeptic. Or anyone else.

  
Ved



Posts: 398
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,17:48   

Hi afdave ;)

Well, God made us right after all the other animals, and we share a lot of the same characteristics with them... Do you think the people who wrote Genesis knew exactly how God made all the animals, or us, out of dirt? They only write a sentence or two. How did God do it?

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,18:33   

Quote
I love all the research that our enormous scientific community is doing and most of what they do is not affected by my debate here.


Well, actually, none of the research is affected by your debate.

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Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,19:29   

Quote (afdave @ May 04 2006,22:30)
There is really one really big thing I resent.  And that is the idea that humans are nothing more than highly evolved animals.  This to me first of all has never been proven but many scientists speak as if it has, and secondly, history has shown what this type of belief can do in a society if it is believed by the leadership.

Why do you resent the idea that you're an animal, Dave? (Would you prefer to be a plant?)

The evidence that human beings are animals (as opposed to, say, amniosperms, fungi, viruses, or archaebacteria) is so utterly overwhelming as to leave the suspicion that doubters aren't fully in possession of their senses. Not only can we tell that humans are animals, but we can tell how closely or how distantly they are related to other primates, other mammals, other amniotes, other vertebrates, other animals, other eukaryotes, etc. I'm sorry this makes you feel resentful, but I suppose that can't be helped.

I guess if it makes you feel better to believe that humans were specially created by God and bear no closer relationship to other animals than they do to, say, the color blue or the number 3.4747907, I don't really have a problem with that. But if you think you're going to persuade the rest of us that none of us are actually animals, I suggest you try a less challenging hobby. Like, for example, building suspension bridges using the two smallest toes on your left foot and items found around the office.

Oh, and if you're worried about the political ramifications of a belief that humans are animals—look around you and observe the political ramifications of a belief that they are not.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Renier



Posts: 276
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,21:26   

True Believer

So, Dave, your only gripe is really with common descent, from ape to man? That's it? That's all? Then why all this other useless noise and antics? Lets focus on the chimp/human thing then and ignore the rest of the BS.

Tip: Vitamin C. I used to be a YEC fundie, Vitamin C did it for me. Why do you need Vitamin C? What other animals... come on Dave, show us you can do some googling....

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 04 2006,23:29   

Quote
There is really one really big thing I resent.  And that is the idea that humans are nothing more than highly evolved animals.
If you think this somehow diminishes us that is your problem and nothing to do with science.

Quote
history has shown what this type of belief can do in a society if it is believed by the leadership.
That has nothing to do with whether or not it is true.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,00:47   

Quote
afdave, you've asserted that your view of the world and its origins is true because a) most people believe it and b) you and others are marshaling political support for it.
What I think I said was that to me it warrants investigation when half the country believes AIG and some smaller % believe in evolution.  In response to this, the consensus here was that this "half the country" aren't scientists, which I grant is a good answer.  However, the question still remains to me ...  "Are ND's really such poor marketers of their ideas that only 20% of the public is buying their story?"   I mean, they've got all the museums showing evolution, all the textbooks, all the encyclos, most of the media, etc, etc.  I draw one of two conclusions from this ... (1) either the ND's are just REALLY bad at marketing their origins ideas or, (2) their origins ideas don't make any sense and the public rejects them
Quote
Yet you agree with Behe that a two-foot stack of research, produced and challenged and confirmed over many decades, is meaningless.
It's meaningless for explaining the ORIGIN of immune system.  I'm sure its quite meaningful at explaining HOW THE IMMUNE SYSTEM WORKS.
Quote
Are scientific research and its results determined by democratic vote, or not? If not, you have no support at all. If so, who's franchised? How often would the votes take place? Who sets the ballot? Are the votes national, or statewide, or county-by-county? How would the voting affect, e.g., pharmaceutical research? If scientific research isn't voted on but scientific pedagogy is -- how would that work?
You might want to try quoting me next time so I can see how you think I am saying this.  I don't think any of this stuff.

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,00:53   

Quote
How did God do it?
I haven't a clue.  The writers of Genesis didn't either.  ND's THINK they know how it happened, but they really only have some guesses.

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Renier



Posts: 276
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,01:07   

Dave, are you going to read up on the Vitamin C thing or not? If so, check some other sources too, not just AiG BS.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,01:19   

Quote
Why do you resent the idea that you're an animal, Dave? (Would you prefer to be a plant?)  The evidence that human beings are animals (as opposed to, say, amniosperms, fungi, viruses, or archaebacteria) is so utterly overwhelming as to leave the suspicion that doubters aren't fully in possession of their senses. Not only can we tell that humans are animals, but we can tell how closely or how distantly they are related to other primates, other mammals, other amniotes, other vertebrates, other animals, other eukaryotes, etc. I'm sorry this makes you feel resentful, but I suppose that can't be helped.
Yes, I understand all this ... no ... don't care to be a plant.  I understand that our BODIES are very much like other animals ... VERY, VERY much like chimps as we are seeing on the other thread (I've got a lot more for that thread by the way), but I will be showing you that there are many fundamental differences between a chimp and a human--differences so great that when you see them, you realize it is not sensible to call a human an animal any more.  He should be called a human.  These are not physical differences.  It's matters of the mind and spirit and morality that we will be exploring.  You may not think these issues are not 'science' but they are whether you recognize it or not.
Quote
Oh, and if you're worried about the political ramifications of a belief that humans are animals—look around you and observe the political ramifications of a belief that they are not.
It is true that many awful things have been done in the name of God, Jesus Christ, Mohammed, Atheism, etc., but I believe (don't know if I will get to show this here--we're trying to focus on the God/human thing) that all the wonderful blessings of Western Civilization all ultimately boil down to one man of history--Jesus of Nazareth.

Quote
So, Dave, your only gripe is really with common descent, from ape to man? That's it? That's all? Then why all this other useless noise and antics? Lets focus on the chimp/human thing then and ignore the rest of the BS.
You'll notice my first hypothesis points focus on God and mankind.  If you want to tune me out after the first two points are done, OK by me.

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,01:23   

Quote
Dave, are you going to read up on the Vitamin C thing or not? If so, check some other sources too, not just AiG BS.
Sure.  What is it exactly that I am looking for?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Faid



Posts: 1143
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,02:13   

Quote
"Are ND's really such poor marketers of their ideas that only 20% of the public is buying their story?"

As surprising as it may seem to you, Dave, the answer is yes. And there's nothing wrong with that.
You see, "ND's" Do not try to market their ideas. Maybe that hurts their image, but they cannot do otherwise: Their cause is to discover truth, not sell their "truth" to the public (which is exactly what the other side -ID/Creos- does). That's why all their funding goes to research, not PR departments.
But maybe this "marketing" of ideas seems normal to you... In which case, tell me: If you learned that a car company puts all their money in advertising and publicity, to show how cool their cars are, and NOTHING in research to make them better and safer -in fact, they don't have an R&D department at all- would you buy a car from them? Or would you ignore them, regardless of what other people think?

(Oh I understand the alalogy is a bit flawed- ID does not even have a car to sell  :) )

Quote
It's meaningless for explaining the ORIGIN of immune system.  I'm sure its quite meaningful at explaining HOW THE IMMUNE SYSTEM WORKS.

Um Dave, I dunno what AIG says, but the research presented in the trial was about the evolution of the immune system.
If they were to present all the research done over the whole field of immunology over the last years, they'd probably need one of these:


...Now, what would ID?Creos need to present their research in the field?
Well, probably come up with some first, I guess.  :)




PS. the question mark in "ID?Creos" was supposed to be a slash, but I like it better that way. "ID? Nah, Creos".  :D

--------------
A look into DAVE HAWKINS' sense of honesty:

"The truth is that ALL mutations REDUCE information"

"...mutations can add information to a genome.  And remember, I have never said that this is not possible."

  
Renier



Posts: 276
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,02:14   

Oh what the ####, I’ll help you out Dave.

Imagine you write a book. It is a book about sound and how it behaves. You publish the book and have copyright on it. A couple of months later, you pick up another book, about sound. You are furious when you notice that someone else has copied your work, and you promptly take them to court.

Now, how will you prove that the other person copied your book, since all the facts about sound, and how it behaves, are stated in the same way in both books? The other person could of course get the facts right too! In fact, the 2 books appear about 97 percent the same (factually)! You cannot tell the judge: “Well, your honour, I wrote the speed of sound is 330 m/s, and the other person wrote the same!”. The judge will laugh at you, since you claim that because the other person got his facts right, that he must have got it from you. Still with me Dave?

But, if there are errors in your book, factual errors, and they appear in the other book too, then you have a strong case for copyright infringement. If you made a mistake in your book, and wrote that the speed of sound is 632 m/s, and the other person repeats that EXACT SAME mistake, then you can prove that he copied your book. Your case would be even better if you could come up with 37+ errors that you made that were repeated in the impostor’s book!

Humans must eat Vitamin-C. They cannot fabricate their own Vitamin-C. Why is that? It is because our gene for Vitamin C fabrication is broken. It was a mutation that destroyed the function of the Vitamin-C gene, therefore we have to eat stuff with Vitamin-C in it, or else we would die. You know who sits with the same problem? Chimps! They also have the broken Vitamin-C gene, and it is broken in the SAME way that ours is. Why is that?

We know our DNA and Chimp DNA are VERY close to each other. But apart from the entire DNA that works, that are the same, in both our species, we ALSO share ERRORS, like the Vitamin-C gene (and many others), with Chimps. To me, this is good proof that we and Chips evolved from the same type of ape thing. We share common ancestry (Thus, we did not evolve FROM Chimps; we simply share a common ancestor). We BOTH inherited the DNA that works, AND the various ERRORS from the common ancestor.

Relate this back to my copyright story at the start of this post, and you will understand. But take it further. The 2 books are WORD FOR WORD, FACT AND ERROR, the same and ordered the same, except for about 5% max (it’s less), that differs.

So, tell me with a straight face that you think common ancestry is not true. But hey, I know you would rather believe preachers (AiG) than biologists (and other scientist) about biology. Even Behe admits common ancestry is true….
???

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,02:58   

Quote
These are not physical differences.  It's matters of the mind and spirit and morality that we will be exploring.  You may not think these issues are not 'science' but they are whether you recognize it or not.
Interesting, all we need to see is your evidence. I would point out first that many people believe the fact God imbued man with a spirit does not mean we didn't evolve from apes.

  
Renier



Posts: 276
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,03:29   

I supose Afdave wants us to assume that there is something like a spirit/soul, and that these are not just words used for the mind and its various functions/output.

Apologetics...

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,03:29   

Quote (afdave @ May 04 2006,22:30)
history has shown what this type of belief can do in a society if it is believed by the leadership.

This is utter bs, Dave.  But I'd love to see you Godwin this thread, so I'll ask you what evidence you think you have to back this up.

Someday you'll regret having lied to your children about all of this.

--------------
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
Rilke's Granddaughter



Posts: 311
Joined: Jan. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,03:40   

[quote=dave] However, the question still remains to me ...  "Are ND's really such poor marketers of their ideas that only 20% of the public is buying their story?"   I mean, they've got all the museums showing evolution, all the textbooks, all the encyclos, most of the media, etc, etc.  I draw one of two conclusions from this ... (1) either the ND's are just REALLY bad at marketing their origins ideas or, (2) their origins ideas don't make any sense and the public rejects them[/quote] There is another reason, which Faid was, I suspect, too polite to touch on.

The reason, Dave is that most people are stupid.  Yes, that's right.  Stupid.  Civilization advances and is sustained on the minds of a vanishingly small percentage of the race.  The rest are drones - useful for evolutionary purposes, no doubt, but contributing nothing, unable to reason, unable to do much of anything except eat, sleep, and procreate.

AIG is a case in point: an entire organization of such drones.

Quite frankly, I'm astonished that the percentage of cretins is as low as it is.

"Most people can't think, most of the remainder, won't think, and those that do mostly don't do it very well."

Robert Heinlein.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,03:59   

OK, back to my evidence ...

Here's Point 1 again.

1. There is a God -- My hypothesis proposes that there is a Super Intelligent, Incredibly Powerful Being -- I choose to call him God -- who has knowledge of scientific laws far more advanced than anything ever discovered by 21st Century humans.  These scientific laws are so powerful that this Being can literally "speak" material things into existence and destroy things with a simple command.  This Being lives "outside of time" and can view what we call "the future" and "the past" with equal ease.

I have already given evidence for the existence of an Intelligent Entity of some sort.  The two lines of evidence given so far are (1) Cosmic Fine Tuning and (2) Biological Machines.  To me this says loud and clear ... "Someone purposely set the 'dials' in the 'universe control room'" and "Someone is a fantastically brilliant Engineer."  Obviously, that's ALL these two lines of evidence suggest.  They say nothing about the Bible or genetics or morality or any of the other myriad issues that I am interested in.  But to me they do speak very loudly to the two statements above.  Some here say that this is not evidence and I would have to ask specifically WHY is this not evidence?  

Some ask "What do you mean by Cosmic Fine Tuning?" Well to quote one of your favorite resources over at TalkOrigins ...
Quote
In recent years, creationist theologians, and even a few physicists, have heavily promoted what they claim is a remarkable fine-tuning of the basic laws and constants of physics, without which life as we know it would never have developed (Barrow, 1986; Rolston III). If the universe had appeared with slight variations in the strengths of the fundamental forces or the masses of elementary particles, that universe would be pure hydrogen at one extreme, or pure helium at the other. Neither would have allowed for the eventual production of heavy elements, such as carbon, necessary for life. Similarly, if gravity had not been many orders of magnitude weaker than electromagnetism, stars would not have lived long enough to produce the elements of life. Long before they could fabricate heavy chemical elements, stars would have collapsed. Only the fact that the gravitational force was forty orders of magnitude weaker prevented this from happening. In a calculation similar to Hoyle's, mathematician Roger Penrose has estimated that the probability of a universe with our particular set of physical properties is one part in 1010123 (Penrose 1989: 343). However, neither Penrose nor anyone else can say how many of the other possible universes formed with different properties could still have lead to some form of life. If it is half, then the probability for life is fifty percent. [url="http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/cosmo.html"]

Notice here that this TalkOrigins writer does not refute any claims of these physicists regarding THIS universe.  All he is able to do is point out that there MAY BE other universes.  And this nicely illustrates my point about the inconsistency of scientists such as some of you ... namely that you engage in 'wild speculation' about multiple universes with no evidence that there may be other universes.  Then you accuse theists of engaging in 'wild speculation' about our proposed 'God' character.  We are BOTH talking about things that we cannot observe and that are even difficult to imagine, yet the theistic scientists are pushed away with the lame argument that they are somehow less scientific that the Multiple Universe Speculators (MUS's).  Now of course we theists would not push away the MUS's as we ouselves are pushed away.  It is quite permissible for them to propose anything they want ... the real question is "How reasonable is their hypothesis?" to which Richard Swinburne, John Leslie, William Lane Craig and Robin Collins have given a formidable answer.  In my opinion, they have shown the superiority of the Theistic Design Hypothesis.  More about that here [url="http://www.arn.org/docs/meyer/sm_returnofgod.pdf"].  If anyone would like to argue this, I am happy to dive into it in more detail. (looked hard on TO for a refutation ... couldn't find one)

Some also ask "How do biological machines point to a 'God'?" ...  Well again, I have not yet given enough evidence to say that it is 'God' as described in the Bible, but it certainly does seem to indicate that there at least was a Designer of some sort.  Richard Dawkins spends an entire chapter on bat echolation in The Blind Watchmaker and then says
Quote
I hope the reader is as awestruck as I am, and as William Paley would have been, by these bat stories.  My aim has been in one respect identical to Paley's aim.  I do not want the reader to underestimate the prodigious works of nature and the problems we face explaining them. (p. 37)
then he says
Quote
We have seen that living things are too improbable and too beautifully 'designed' to have come into existence by chance. (p. 43)
Thank you Richard Dawkins.  Case closed.  It's been great debating all of you.  Now can we move on to the IMPLICATIONS of the existence of a Designer?  Just kidding ... I know you are not yet convinced, but I hope this is at least a good start for you.  I'm pretty sure you don't want me to repeat the Denton and Behe stuff which is why I quoted one of your own.  Here's one more nice tidbit on Molecular Machines from a non-YEC source ... Bruce Alberts, President of the National Academy of Sciences, introduced this issue with an article entitled, The Cell as a Collection of Protein Machines (pointed out by Meyer ... see link above).  In his article, Alberts admits that
Quote
We have always underestimated cells . . . . The entire cell can be viewed as afactory that contains an elaborate network of interlocking assembly lines, each of which is composed of a set of large protein machines . . . Why do we call the large protein assemblies that underlie cell function protein machines? Precisely because, like machines invented by humans to deal efficiently with the macroscopic world these protein assemblies contain highly coordinated moving parts (Alberts, Bruce. 1998. The Cell as a Collection of Protein Machines: Preparing the NextGeneration of Molecular Biologists. Cell 92 (8 February): 291-94).
Alberts notes that molecular machines strongly resemble machines designed by human engineers, although as an orthodox neo-Darwinist he denies any role for actual, as opposed to apparent, design in the origin of these systems.

Say what you want about Behe and his wisdom in court (and I probably agree), but in my opinion, Behe has done an excellent job of pointing out the complete absence of any gradualistic explanations for the origin of the systems and motors he discusses.

Before we field questions, let's touch on the last two issues in Point 1.  I said
Quote
this Being can literally "speak" material things into existence and destroy things with a simple command.  This Being lives "outside of time" and can view what we call "the future" and "the past" with equal ease.  
What in the world could I possibly have as evidence for this?  Well, this is obviously a bold statement, but consider Meyer's study of "The Big Bang and General Relativity."  I searched TalkOrigins for a refutation of Meyer's "God Hypothesis" article as well as the "Index to Creationist Claims" for a refutation of the particular section I am about to quote and found none.    I Googled "meyer god hypothesis refutation" which yielded a seemingly unrelated Panda's Thumb article. So maybe you all can point me to some of those if they exist somewhere.  Here's the Meyer quote in full.  I give it IN FULL because I want all here to READ IT IN FULL.  I have, probably 3 times now and it makes a lot of sense to me ...
Quote
THE BIG BANG AND GENERAL RELATIVITY
During the twentieth century, a quiet but remarkable shift has occurred in
science. Evidence from cosmology, physics, and biology now tells a very
different story than did the science of the late nineteenth century. Evidence from
cosmology now supports a finite, not an infinite universe, while evidence from
physics and biology has reopened the question of design.
In 1915-16, Albert Einstein shocked the scientific world with his theory of
general relativity (Chaisson & McMillan 1993: 604-5). Though Einstein s theory
challenged Newton s theory of gravity in many important respects, it also implied
(as did Newton s) that the universe could not be static, but instead was
simultaneously expanding and decelerating. According to relativity theory,
massive bodies alter the curvature of space so as to draw nearby objects to them.
Einstein s conception of gravity implied that all material bodies would congeal
unless the effects of gravitation were continually counteracted by the expansion of
space itself (Eddington 1930). Einstein s theory thus implied an expanding, not a
static, universe.
Einstein disliked this idea, in part for philosophical reasons. An actively
expanding universe implied a beginning to the expansion, and thus, to the
universe. As the Russian physicist Alexander Friedmann (1922: 377-86) showed,
general relativity implied that, in the words of Stephen Hawking, at some time in
the past (between ten and twenty thousand million years ago) the distance
between neighboring galaxies must have been zero (1988: 46). Relativity theory
suggested a universe of finite duration racing outward from an initial beginning in
the distant past. For Einstein, however, a definite beginning to the universe
seemed so counterintuitive that he introduced an arbitrary factor in his theory to
eliminate the implication. In 1917, he postulated a repulsive force, expressed by
his cosmological constant, of precisely the magnitude necessary to counteract
the expansion that his theory implied.1 Like Newton, Einstein inadvertenly
concealed an important cosmological reality implicit in his theory.
Yet the heavens would soon talk back. In the 1920s-30s, Edwin Hubble, a
young lawyer-turned-astronomer, made a series of observations that shocked even
Einstein. While working at the Mt. Wilson Observatory in Southern California,
Hubble discovered for the first time that our Milky Way galaxy is but one of
many galaxies spread throughout the universe. More important, he discovered that
the galaxies beyond the Milky Way are rapidly receding from ours. Hubble
noticed that the light from these distant galaxies was shifted toward the red-end of
the electromagnetic spectrum. This red-shift suggested recessional movement,
for the same reason the so-called Doppler Effect that a train whistle drops in
pitch as a train moves away from a stationary observer. Hubble also discovered
that the rate at which these other galaxies retreat from ours is directly related to
their distance from us just as if the universe were undergoing a spherical
expansion in all directions from a singular explosive beginning the big bang
(1929: 168-73).
During the remainder of the twentieth century, physicists and cosmologists
formulated several alternatives to the Big Bang theory that preserved an infinite
universe. Some of these cosmological models were formulated for explicitly
philosophical reasons. For example, in the late 1940s, Fred Hoyle, Thomas Gold,
and Hermann Bondi proposed the steady state model to explain galactic
recession without invoking the objectionable notion of a beginning. According to
their theory, as the universe expands new matter is generated spontaneously in the
space between expanding galaxies. On this view, our galaxy is composed of
matter that spontaneously popped into existence between other galaxies, which in
turn came out of the empty space between other galaxies, and so on (Bondi &
Gold 1948; Hoyle 1948). Thus, the steady state theory denied the need to
postulate a singular beginning, and reaffirmed an infinite universe without
beginning or end.
By the mid-1960s, however, Hoyle s theory had run aground as the result of
a discovery made by two employees of Bell Telephone Laboratories in New
Jersey. According to the steady state model, the density of the universe must
always remain constant, hence the creation of new matter as the universe expands.
Yet in 1965, the Bell Lab researchers, Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson, found
what physicists believed to be the radiation left over from the universe s initial
hot, high-density state (1965: 419-21). The discovery of this cosmic background
radiation, at roughly 2.7 degrees Kelvin equivalent, proved decisive. Physicist
George Gamow had predicted its existence as a consequence of the Big Bang
(1946: 572-73). Yet advocates of the steady state acknowledged that, given their
model, such radiation should not exist. The steady state theory also implied that
galaxies should have radically different ages, but advances in observational
astronomy have revealed that galactic ages cluster narrowly in the middle-age
range. By the 1970s, even Bondi, Gold, and Hoyle had abandoned their theory
(Kragh 1993: 403).
Following the demise of the steady state model, the oscillating universe
model arose as an alternative to a finite universe. Advocates of this model
envisioned a universe that would expand, gradually decelerate, shrink back under
the force of its own gravitation, and then, by some unknown mechanism, reinitiate
its expansion, on and on, ad infinitum. But, as physicist Alan Guth
showed, our knowledge of entropy suggests that the energy available to do the
work would decrease with each successive cycle (Guth & Sher 1983: 505-7).
Thus, presumably the universe would have reached a nullifying equilibrium long
ago if it had indeed existed for an infinite amount of time. Further, recent
measurements suggest that the universe has only a fraction about one-fifth of
the mass required to create a gravitational contraction in the first place (Peebles
1993: 475-83; Coles & Ellis 1994: 609-13; Sawyer 1992: A5; Ross 1993: 58).
Prior to the formulation of the oscillating universe theory, three
astrophysicists, Hawking, George Ellis, and Roger Penrose, published a series of
papers that explicated the implications of Einstein s theory of general relativity
for space and time as well as matter and energy (Hawking & Penrose 1970).
Previously, physicists like Friedmann showed that the density of the universe
would approach an infinite value as one extrapolated the state of the universe
back in time. In a series of papers written between 1966-70, Hawking and his
colleagues showed that as one extrapolated back in time the curvature of space
also approached infinity. But an infinitely curved space corresponds to a radius
(within a sphere, for example) of zero and thus to no spatial volume. Further,
since in general relativity space and time are inextricably linked, the absence of
space implies the absence of time. Moreover, neither matter nor energy can exist
in the absence of space. Thus, Hawking s result suggested that general relativity
implies that the universe sprang into existence a finite time ago from literally
nothing, at least nothing physical. In brief, general relativity implies an absolute
beginning of time, before which neither time and space, nor matter and energy,
would have existed.

The space-time theorem of general relativity was, of course, conditional. It
stated that, if general relativity obtains for the universe, then space and time
themselves must have originated in the same initial explosion that created matter
and energy. In a series of experiments, beginning just two years after Einstein
published his results and continuing on to the present, the probable error of
general relativity (estimated quantitatively) has shrunk from 10 to 1 to .05
percent, to a confirmation out to the fifth decimal place. Increasingly accurate
tests conducted by NASA, such as the hydrogen maser detector carried by a
NASA rocket in 1980 and 1994, have continued to shrink the probable error
associated with the theory (Ross 1993: 66-67; Vessor 1980: 2081-84). Thus,
general relativity now stands as one of the best confirmed theories of modern
science. Yet its philosophical implications, and those of the Big Bang theory, are
staggering. Taken jointly, general relativity and the Big Bang theory provide a
scientific description of what Christian theologians have long described in
doctrinal terms as creatio ex nihilo Creation out of nothing (again, nothing
physical). These theories place a heavy demand on any proposed causal
explanation of the universe, since the cause of the beginning of the universe must
transcend time, space, matter, and energy.
[url="http://www.arn.org/docs/meyer/sm_returnofgod.pdf"]


Now admittedly, this study does not yet fully support my hypothesis points of "God  speaking things into existence" and "God living outside of time, seeing the past and future with equal ease."  But you have to admit it is intriguing and warrants further study.  Meyer's last paragraph (bold) is stunning to me and argues strongly for AT LEAST THE POSSIBILITY of a 'God' who can 'speak' things into existence and who JUST MIGHT in fact 'live outside of time' as the Bible asserts.  

OK.  That's enough for now.  I have now given you much of what I consider to be excellent evidence for a "Designer of the Universe" and a "Designer of Living Systems" and at least preliminary evidence for believing the long standing assertion of theists that "God Transcends Space and Time."  As we move ahead, I will show why I believe there is much evidence that this "Universe Designer" and "Living Systems Designer" are in fact One Person and that there is good reason to believe that this One Person does in fact 'dwell outside of space and time.'

I welcome your intelligent comments.  I qualify comments with the modifier 'intelligent' because I have now pretty much heard everything un-intelligent that there is to hear including but not limited to Glen Davidson's detailed and authoritative "Psychoanalysis of AF Dave" (thankyou, Glen ... I have to pay $300/hr for those here in Kansas City), Aftershave's continual attempts to supposedly "Look out for a poor-deluded fellow EE and help him avoid 'getting his ass handed to him'".  Some people's criticisms have in fact been well founded and I have acknowledged them.  The latest, of course is AIG's reference to the Chimp-Human Chromosome issue and my acceptance of it.  Again, a good criticism and I plan on confronting AIG about it (I have a contact who claims they know Ken Ham personally ... we will see what happens).  Of course, if you WANT to keep making un-intelligent criticisms, that's OK,  but you could always start another thread for that, and I question what such inane comments profit you.  But again, who am I to stop you?

Note that I have left of the A1, B1 stuff.  I assume by now that everyone at least UNDERSTANDS my argumentation framework--whether they agree with it or not, so it is not necessary to keep repeating it.

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,04:21   

FYI, quote mining is probably the single best way to demonstrate your own dishonesty.
Quote
We have seen that living things are too improbable and too beautifully 'designed' to have come into existence by chance. How, then, did they come into existence? The answer, Darwin's answer, is by gradual, step- by-step transformations from simple beginnings, from primordial entities sufficiently simple to have come into existence by chance. Each successive change in the gradual evolutionary process was simple enough, relative to its predecessor, to have arisen by chance. But the whole sequence of cumulative steps constitutes anything but a chance process, when you consider the complexity of the final end-product relative to the original starting point. The cumulative process is directed by nonrandom survival. The purpose of this chapter is to demonstrate the power of this cumulative selection as a fundamentally nonrandom process.

Someday you'll regret having lied to your children about all of this.

--------------
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
Faid



Posts: 1143
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,04:31   

Quote (afdave @ May 05 2006,08:59)
Quote
We have seen that living things are too improbable and too beautifully 'designed' to have come into existence by chance. (p. 43)
Thank you Richard Dawkins.  Case closed.  It's been great debating all of you.

Dave,
Before we discuss this, it's important (I think) to clear out something:

Quote-mining is frowned upon in this forum. It's a clear indicator of the deceiving tecniques the people you believe in use.
Now, I think you probably quoted that straight from the AIG site, so I don't blame you. You can retract it, of course, or, better yet: Look what Dawkins actually wrote, and see for yourself who has been LYING to you.

Check it out- Chapter three.


<edit: Whoops- sorry, improvius.>

--------------
A look into DAVE HAWKINS' sense of honesty:

"The truth is that ALL mutations REDUCE information"

"...mutations can add information to a genome.  And remember, I have never said that this is not possible."

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,04:39   

Quote (Faid @ May 05 2006,09:31)
<edit: Whoops- sorry, improvius.>

Not at all.  The more the merrier.  I'd be happy to see EVERYONE here give Dave a smack for that one.  I mean seriously, quote mining Dawkins?  Dave is getting worse and worse with each new post.  I'm just waiting for him to trot out the alleged connection between evolution and you-know-who.

--------------
Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
Faid



Posts: 1143
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:00   

Hmm. I think thordaddy did, at some point... But then, thor is so absurd, even Godwin can't touch him.


Dave, About your talkorigins link: Did you stop reading after the part you quoted? Because if you kept on, you'd see how he goes on to explain how his arguments are not based in the "multiple universe" theory.

Uniess you quoted that from AIG too, I guess.

--------------
A look into DAVE HAWKINS' sense of honesty:

"The truth is that ALL mutations REDUCE information"

"...mutations can add information to a genome.  And remember, I have never said that this is not possible."

  
Flint



Posts: 478
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:00   

I must say the Dawkins quote surprises me. For anyone who has never heard of Dawkins, there won't be any leverage from name recognition anyway. For anyone who HAS heard of Dawkins, this quote is such a flagrantly dishonest misrepresentation of what Dawkins says that such people better not be trying to eat when they read it. Even the most brain-dead creationist can't help but recognize that this can't be even remotely accurate.

Discussing this stuff with someone who genuinely doesn't know any better might have some value. But why discuss with someone who knows better and lies anyway? This is the canonical argument with pigs.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:03   

Quote
FYI, quote mining is probably the single best way to demonstrate your own dishonesty.
[quote]
We have seen that living things are too improbable and too beautifully 'designed' to have come into existence by chance. How, then, did they come into existence? The answer, Darwin's answer, is by gradual, step- by-step transformations from simple beginnings, from primordial entities sufficiently simple to have come into existence by chance. Each successive change in the gradual evolutionary process was simple enough, relative to its predecessor, to have arisen by chance. But the whole sequence of cumulative steps constitutes anything but a chance process, when you consider the complexity of the final end-product relative to the original starting point. The cumulative process is directed by nonrandom survival. The purpose of this chapter is to demonstrate the power of this cumulative selection as a fundamentally nonrandom process.


Someday you'll regret having lied to your children about all of this. [/quote]

I own the book ... I have heard you that you don't accept 'lifts' from AIG, so you didn't get any this time.  I typed the quotes from Dawkins myself.

It's not dishonest to quote the pieces I did because the part I was wanting to point was that Richard Dawkins himself at least ADMITS that it all looks designed, which my quotes illustrate nicely.  Of course it is common knowledge that Dawkins rejects ACTUAL design ... I think that's pretty obvious from the title of his book, don't you?

As for my kids, they have free access to this book and they understand both Dawkins and MY position well. Come on, guys, there's no deception going on here.

Now if we are going to get preachy about quote mining, let's talk about some other quote mining criminals ... let's look at Faid's ... he lifted this from me
Quote
(afdave @ May 05 2006,08:59)
[Quote ]
We have seen that living things are too improbable and too beautifully 'designed' to have come into existence by chance. (p. 43)

Thank you Richard Dawkins.  Case closed.  It's been great debating all of you. [/quote]

but forgot to include the last part ...
Quote
Thank you Richard Dawkins.  Case closed.  It's been great debating all of you.  Now can we move on to the IMPLICATIONS of the existence of a Designer?  Just kidding ...


I was joking because I KNEW that Dawkins (and you) don't accept this as ACTUAL design ... i.e. "It LOOKS like a duck, WALKS like a duck, QUACKS like a duck, but let me spend the next EIGHT CHAPTERS trying to convince you that it's NOT a duck **cough** (isn't that what this debate is about in the first place?)

OK.  So now that we have another ROE question settled, are there any substantive arguments against my case?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Faid



Posts: 1143
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:13   

Dave, you settled nothing.

After you say "just kidding", you admit this is an attempt to convince us:
Quote
I know you are not yet convinced, but I hope this is at least a good start for you.  I'm pretty sure you don't want me to repeat the Denton and Behe stuff which is why I quoted one of your own

When you knew, in fact, that this misquote does not support "design" in any way, and in fact simply argues against random assembly of life in its present complexity, ie: the "tornado in a junkyard" example(which is something none of us believes, anyway).

I mean seriously, Dave.  :angry:

--------------
A look into DAVE HAWKINS' sense of honesty:

"The truth is that ALL mutations REDUCE information"

"...mutations can add information to a genome.  And remember, I have never said that this is not possible."

  
thurdl01



Posts: 99
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:30   

Quote (afdave @ May 02 2006,11:47)
Quote
To use your own terms, are you man enough to debate this honestly?

Yes.

Just to remind you of your promise.  Cause quote mining?  Doesn't count as honest debate.  Even if you mined your own quote from the book rather than relying on a pre-mined quote, it's still quote mining.

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:33   

Quote
Some also ask "How do biological machines point to a 'God'?" ...  Well again, I have not yet given enough evidence to say that it is 'God' as described in the Bible, but it certainly does seem to indicate that there at least was a Designer of some sort.
As I said before, you need to provide evidence that biological systems are more likely to be the work of a designer than biological evolution without using and argument from ignorace or analogy. No-one will accept your point if you just assume this to be the case.

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:39   

Quote
When you knew, in fact, that this misquote does not support "design" in any way, and in fact simply argues against random assembly of life in its present complexity, ie: the "tornado in a junkyard" example(which is something none of us believes, anyway).

I mean seriously, Dave.  


Again, let me say VERY CLEARLY.  I quoted Richard Dawkins to illustrate to me a FASCINATING phenomenon with this man ...

Here is a man who everyone know DOES NOT accept design, yet he in effect says, "It LOOKS like a duck, WALKS like a duck, QUACKS like a duck, but let me spend the next EIGHT CHAPTERS trying to convince you that it's NOT a duck **cough** (isn't that what this debate is about in the first place?)

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to once again highlight this embarassing paradox of one of science's most brilliant minds.

I'll do my darndest not to quotemine and I trust you will do the same.  Now, to quote someone on this thread, "Can we quit arguing about rules and get on with it?"  

Do you have any substantive refutation of my logic?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:53   

Quote
The reason, Dave is that most people are stupid.  Yes, that's right.  Stupid.  Civilization advances and is sustained on the minds of a vanishingly small percentage of the race.  The rest are drones - useful for evolutionary purposes, no doubt, but contributing nothing, unable to reason, unable to do much of anything except eat, sleep, and procreate.


Well, true enough, I suppose, but we didn't evolve intelligence in order to theorize and to do mathematics.  We evolved intelligence in order to do well in our little primate groups, and that is entirely possible to do without knowing science or accepting evolution.  We're herd animals, and we are intelligent herd animals for the most part.

Afdave illustrates this fact over and over again.  It's all argumentum ad populum, which is why he fails to distinguish between good science and bad (whatever), and fails entirely to even recognize the evidence when it's in plain view.  Which is why he looks at the obviously derived chromosome 2, and says that what obviously did happen "could not happen".  His "standards" come from his herd.  He doesn't think so very stupidly, considering where he's coming from, so much as that he argues from his herd position, and with a near-total lack of science knowledge--let alone its philosophy.  

There are no rewards for him even to begin to understand the world in an unbiased manner, rather he probably gets credit in his circles for "tackling the atheists", even though he never actually manages a hit on anybody (his herd would know the difference?).  Within his herd, his reward system, it all works out, and he obviously cares not a fig about science (though he probably has a high opinion of an ideal of science), only about defending his ego and his herd.  This is why "discussing these things with him" is futile through and through.

You can't make a cat look in the mirror, and you can't get most people to look past their social-reward systems.  This is actually true for scientists in many cases, as anyone who has come up with actually new ideas knows.  Nearly all challengers of the accepted ideas have considerable trouble getting even scientists to look at the evidence uncolored by past beliefs.  How much worse it must be when one has virtually no background in science, an "education in evolution" from the CRI and AIG, and a considerable amount of ego invested into "knowing evolution to be wrong".  

Intelligence serves the primate's psyche, not the "truth of the world" (it's complicated to explain how this differs in science to a meaningful extent, but it has mostly to do with societies of people who have recognized and experienced the rewards of empiricism).  Intelligence could not evolve differently, as far as we know, so we're stuck with people whose intelligence works for themselves and their group, quite contrarily to small-t "truth" as it is commonly understood.

And yes, I still think that saying "people are stupid" fits the contextual meaning of that phrase.  Of course, but most people who are too stupid or lazy to understand the scientific method still don't oppose the vast majority of science--partly this is because their religious prejudices actually tend to suggest that one may well learn from the "created world".  The trouble is when one disagrees that life itself was "created" (or disagrees that a flood was created by an angry God who regretted what he had made--a clear strike against the "design hypothesis"), since that goes against the worldview that in many cases has facilitated science.

Stupidity no doubt has much to do with it, however the social "herd instinct" of humanity seems to explain more.  While social pressures and curiosity helps to place more of the intelligent people into a mode of the acceptance of science, clearly some quite intelligent people also expend quite a lot of intellectual skill (debating skill) into disagreeing with the science that they have learned where they "already know it to be wrong".  

Look at Afdave's argument.  Clearly it is fallacious by any standard, but it is also carefully drawn (though it was hardly invented by Afdave) to avoid the fact that the only explanation for current and fossil forms of life that has managed to cross borders, religions, ethnic groups, politics, and intellectual inheritances, is evolutionary theory.  Russian atheists, American Catholics and mainline Protestants, scientists, intellectuals, Japanese Shintoists (initially, anyhow, though I don't know if Shinto holds up well alongside modern science), Muslim thinkers, Hindus, Jainists, and traditional religionists like native Americans, have all been able to comprehend and accept the evidence for evolution.

Herd thought?  No, except to the degree that empiricism is a kind of herd thought, which it is (but with standards that reach beyond the herd).  Tradition?  Only the tradition of "objectivity", rather than forcing the interpretation.

Evolutionary theory is extraordinarily successful by the standards of any startup of a new religion.  This is because evolutionary thought only depends upon the evidence, and it is not designed to challenge or to disagree with any religion.  Cultural baggage and biases (such as Darwin's) need not follow evolutionary theory, and indeed tend not to.  Most of all, evolutionary theory does not depend upon herd thought, except to the extent that empiricism should be considered "herd thought".  Promulgating a new religion, by contrast, requires herd sanctions and herd thinking to slowly infiltrate (or to be violently imposed) upon society, and the creation myths of that religion remain peculiar to that religion.

The only universally-acceptable origins-of-life idea is evolutionary theory, while one may easily enough explain why opposition by particular religions persist.  But one may as "easily" explain to a herd-thinker like Afdave why he and so many other ignorant types cling to exploded notions, as one may explain to them how to recognize the evidence of derivation of chromosome 2 when they are explaining how something like chromosomal fusion cannot occur.  They are operating on the basis that evolution is impossible, which is why they cannot even begin to deal with the evidence in favor of evolution.

--------------
http://tinyurl.com/mxaa3p....p

Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,05:54   

Biological systems only trivially appear to be designed. You can't just say 'they look designed' and assume they are. People who actually study these systems don't think they look designed at all.

  
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:02   

Quote
I welcome your intelligent comments.  I qualify comments with the modifier 'intelligent' because I have now pretty much heard everything un-intelligent that there is to hear including but not limited to Glen Davidson's detailed and authoritative "Psychoanalysis of AF Dave" (thankyou, Glen ... I have to pay $300/hr for those here in Kansas City),


Well, you're too stupid and ignorant even to respond to my authoritative analysis, moron.  All you can do is to compound your ignorance by denying everything intelligent ever written with regard to your mindless tripe, and of course your ignorance of yourself is probably the most profound ignorance that you possess.

If you ever can make an intelligent remark, please do so, cretin.  I see that you not only cannot respond to my analysis of your mindlessness, but you have also failed to explain how such a dangerous place as this universe is "designed for life", why it is that the "designer" only uses evolutionary algorithms, or evinced the least bit of knowledge of how science works.  Thank you for showing how close to correct my analysis of your ignorance is.

There is virtually no chance that you will ever be anything except a stupid and ignorant little ape, Dave.  The biggest reason of all is that you only sneer at expertise of all kinds, while clinging to your tiny collection of knowledge as if it were Eternal Truth, as do all bigots.

--------------
http://tinyurl.com/mxaa3p....p

Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:10   

Quote
Here is a man who everyone know DOES NOT accept design, yet he in effect says, "It LOOKS like a duck, WALKS like a duck, QUACKS like a duck, but let me spend the next EIGHT CHAPTERS trying to convince you that it's NOT a duck **cough** (isn't that what this debate is about in the first place?)

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to once again highlight this embarassing paradox of one of science's most brilliant minds.


It should be embarrassing for Dawkins.  However, real scientists do not care a fig about Dawkins' incorrect notions about life "appearing designed", for on the face of it, life does not appear designed.  I will grant that it may appear "miraculous" or "spiritual", depending on definitions and contexts, but it does not appear designed.  

The most truly embarrassing thing is that religious apologists like Afdave think that life looks designed like machines.  

I brought this up previously, Dave, and you failed as utterly to respond intelligently as you did to my analysis of your ignorance.  Why don't you for once face the facts, that you know virtually nothing except engineering and business, and that you need to learn something other than your determined prejudices?  Or at least that you shouldn't reveal to intelligent people that you couldn't think yourself out of a hole in a tree.

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Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:11   

Quote
The reason, Dave is that most people are stupid.  Yes, that's right.  Stupid.  Civilization advances and is sustained on the minds of a vanishingly small percentage of the race.  The rest are drones - useful for evolutionary purposes, no doubt, but contributing nothing, unable to reason, unable to do much of anything except eat, sleep, and procreate.
Count me out on that. It reminds me of a Randroid math professor I once knew. He was puzzled that America was so successful. He said in European countries--he was Swedish--only the very few top people were selected to become professors and corporate executives and researchers and the like. America, he said, allowed anyone to try to do anything. Allowing all those unthinking idiots he and Rilke's Grandaughter believes in to try all those things, would waste so many resources America should be inefficient and poor.

Now, I would agree that most people don't think in a very logical and trained way. But they do think.

   
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:20   

Quote
And that is the idea that humans are nothing more than highly evolved animals.


Now see, Dave, if you were intelligent and educated you'd know that the idea that humans are animals (generally thought to be "at the peak") is hardly new with Darwin.  Aristotle generally referred to us as animals, for the obvious reason, that we act and exist very much like animals.

Do you want medical testing to be done on our relatives, the apes, or would you prefer that it be done on birds?  And can you think through the implications of why medical testing is done on monkeys and apes just prior to humans, or are you going to just drivel on in your ignorance and prejudice?

And if for once you were able to argue something based on the evidence, instead of your prejudices, you might get some respect.  That is to say, if you were curious and willing to learn, even though you know so little about science, psychology, philosophy, sociology, and religion, you would receive some helpful replies.  

We do care that your prejudices against humans as "evolved animals" prevent you from discussing the evidence that we are.  We just don't care about all of the blather that you gather up to defend your prejudices, trying to pass them off as science.

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http://tinyurl.com/mxaa3p....p

Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
afdave



Posts: 1621
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(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:24   

Quote
As I said before, you need to provide evidence that biological systems are more likely to be the work of a designer than biological evolution without using and argument from ignorace or analogy. No-one will accept your point if you just assume this to be the case.
True.  But this is my point exactly.  Science attempts to explain things in terms of current understanding.  Then as new understanding comes, science modifies its descriptions.  This is what I do.  I see bio machines.  I know how non-bio machines come into existence, so I have nothing better from my experience to explain the bio-machines than "Bio-Machine Design."  I would be happy to adopt "Evo Did It" if I had ever seen an instance of this happening, but so far I have not.  When I ask for examples of, for instance, a fruit-fly "evolving" into a house fly type insect, I am told that this type of change would take many millions of years, so "we cannot possibly observe the process."  This would leave me in the uncomfortable position of trying to explain a process that I can only wildly speculate about, but have never even seen, even by analogy.  So to me, my ANALOGY, while it may be weak, appears to be far stronger than your COMPLETE LACK OF AN ANALOGY.  In other words ... at least I have SOMETHING ... I have my analogy.  You have NOTHING that I can see.  Oh, yes ... I know ... moths changing color and finch beaks, etc.  But this is well understood already WITHIN the Creationist model and has NOTHING AT ALL to say about "Feet to Flippers" type Evolution.  Oh and I know .. the fossil record.  But again, we have a handful of equivocal examples of "transitional forms."

I'm happy to try to see things your way, but so far, no one has walked me through it well enough to be convincing.

Does this make sense?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:25   

Quote (afdave @ May 05 2006,08:59)
I searched TalkOrigins for a refutation of Meyer's "God Hypothesis"

Meyer doesn't warrant special attention in a search term because his arguments are stolen from old and moldy arguments that were refuted before he made them.

Try searching for "Big Bang Argument for the Existence of God," "Teleology," "Prime Mover."

You think the Big Bang theory provides a scientific description of creatio ex nihilo, Creation out of nothing but that's not quite true -- define "nothing."

Spacetime, the fabric of the universe isn't really nothing. Look up the term "Casimir effect."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casimir_effect
http://focus.aps.org/story/v2/st28

There is no such thing as "nothing."

The metaphysical question is really "what is the primordial stuff of the universe?" What had to exist for that big bang to happen.

You propose "an intelligent being" but there is no evidence that an intelligent being could do such a  thing (you have to make up your major claim out of whole cloth -- "God could speak things into existance") And besides, an intelligent being that can speak things into existance isn't nothing.

Nothing is explained by proposing an unknown entity with unknown powers. You're explaining the known in terms  of the unknown.

What killed those old arguments was the death of dualism. Back in history people used to think that intelligence itself was a primordial thing, souls existing forever and all.

Religions, at least those of Judeo-Christian family, must start with a core metaphysical assumption about mind (of an entity with will, planning, intention, foresight and understanding) being the primordial stuff and cause of the universe. This is implied in Judeo-Christian creation myths when God makes a universe out of nothing, a void: Mind was first — a mind and soul as primordial stuff.

Creation myths are teleological and naturalism undermines teleology by finding non-mind, (rules of material interaction without any mind stuff like choice, will or intention coming into play), as an explanation. But when naturalism begins to explain the only organ of teleological action we know, the brain, in naturalistic terms then teleological explanations are undermined more completely.

The core assumptions of our religions were made in ignorance of such science and now neuroscience has begun to undermine this core teleological and metaphysical assumption that Christianity is rooted in.

  
Faid



Posts: 1143
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:25   

It's only you who sees the paradox here, Dave. If, in your mind, "not made by pure chance" = "designed by god" that is only your inability to understand that evolution is NOT a purely random process- far from it. THAT is what Dawkins says, and you should KNOW that before you served his butchered words to us as admittance of design. And you should know that this would NOT "convince" us, even in the slightest.

As for your other arguments: The anthropic principle is examined thoroughly in the very talkorigins page you quoted; again, did you read past the quote? Because if you did, you'd see that the author does not use multiple universes as the sole support for his arguments.
As for your "biological machines" argument, this has been demonstrated repeatedly to be based on loaded terms: Labelling living things "machines" to argue that they are designed, presupposes that they are designed.
It's a "dog=table" argument, basically, interwined with speculations of a cause: With the same logic, we should argue that those round volcanic rocks were the marbles of giants, because they look like big stone marbles. Now, the reasons those rocks are round are pretty much the same (as far as the fundamental laws of physics are concerned) with the reasons marbles are made round- but that is no proof that they are, in fact, marbles -as I'm sure you agree.

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A look into DAVE HAWKINS' sense of honesty:

"The truth is that ALL mutations REDUCE information"

"...mutations can add information to a genome.  And remember, I have never said that this is not possible."

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:32   

Quote
We just don't care about all of the blather that you gather up to defend your prejudices, trying to pass them off as science.
Would you care to show me specifically WHY it's blather, since you obviously are smarter than me?  Or will you keep filling my thread with psycho-analysis?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:37   

AF Dave said ...
Quote
Would you care to show me specifically WHY it's blather, since you obviously are smarter than me?  Or will you keep filling my thread with psycho-analysis?


One more thing, Glen.  Talk really slow and refute my points one by one in simple layman's terms so that my "religion darkened brain" can understand.

Thanks!

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:54   

Quote (afdave @ May 05 2006,06:19)
I understand that our BODIES are very much like other animals ... VERY, VERY much like chimps as we are seeing on the other thread (I've got a lot more for that thread by the way), but I will be showing you that there are many fundamental differences between a chimp and a human--differences so great that when you see them, you realize it is not sensible to call a human an animal any more.  He should be called a human.

Actually, Dave, the differences between humans and chimps, compared to e.g. the differences between humans and bacteria, are practically invisible. Humans are basically taller, balder, weaker, and smarter chimps. I fail to understand why this presents a problem for you.

If you want to say there are spiritual differences between a human and chimp that amount to some sort of unbridgeable gulf, that's fine, but you're not talking about science anymore (to the extent you ever were).

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2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,06:58   

Quote (afdave @ May 05 2006,06:23)
Quote
Dave, are you going to read up on the Vitamin C thing or not? If so, check some other sources too, not just AiG BS.
Sure.  What is it exactly that I am looking for?

Vitamin C is a useful therapy in the treatment of Creationism, Dave. Strange but true.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,07:03   

Quote
 
True.  But this is my point exactly.  Science attempts to explain things in terms of current understanding.  Then as new understanding comes, science modifies its descriptions.


Metaphors do not fundamentally change the practice of science.  Of course the descriptions change, but they are also understood as relatively fluid descriptions, not as statements about reality.  Unfortunately you do not know this, either, about science, or you'd know that "biological machines" is a convenient tag used for what used not to be called "machines".  IDists have made a great deal out of the metaphor of "machine" to indicate biological "objects", but they fundamentally misunderstand what science has identific, vs. the words it uses to understand what has been identified.  

Naturally, you are too ignorant and unintelligent to understand this, Dave, but just because you don't understand anything doesn't mean that it isn't true.

Quote
This is what I do.  I see bio machines.  I know how non-bio machines come into existence, so I have nothing better from my experience to explain the bio-machines than "Bio-Machine Design."


"Machine" is just a name.  Learn some philosophy, if you ever learn any science.  

And of course you have nothing better to "explain it", because you know nothing about biology.  Before "biological machines" were even called that, biologists already had a better explanation.  Your ignorance is no excuse to say Goddidit.

Quote
I would be happy to adopt "Evo Did It" if I had ever seen an instance of this happening, but so far I have not.


We have lizards losing their legs right now, Dave.  The only reason you haven't seen evolution happening is that you haven't looked, and apparently are unwilling to use the vast evidence for past evolution to question your ignorance.

Quote
When I ask for examples of, for instance, a fruit-fly "evolving" into a house fly type insect, I am told that this type of change would take many millions of years, so "we cannot possibly observe the process."


Yet you believe the Bible as a credible source for history throughout, when you have never seen any of the miracles mentioned.  

You do not have the same standard for evolution that you have for other historical and supposedly historical occurrences, but make an exception here.  You aren't even intellectually honest, among your other tremendous intellectual faults.


Quote
This would leave me in the uncomfortable position of trying to explain a process that I can only wildly speculate about, but have never even seen, even by analogy.


You haven't, but you could, using evolutionary programs.  You only close your eyes to the evidence.

By the way, did languages evolve?  No one has seen the evolution of English out of Indo-European, or its equivalent, but we have clear evidence that it did.  Cretinists and IDiots don't generally fault that evidence, only the evidence that they find inconvenient.

Many creationists, and most IDists, accept that Darwin's finches evolved, substantially through natural selection.  Yet we have never "observed" that sort of speciation (other than what is happening at present, but its a tiny sliver of the whole).  So of course there is no real problem with past evidence in their philosophy, only with past evidence which points to considerable evolutionary changes.

Crack a book for once, Dave, and quit relying upon what you don't know to "analyze evolution".

Quote
So to me, my ANALOGY, while it may be weak, appears to be far stronger than your COMPLETE LACK OF AN ANALOGY.


Of course we have a number of analogies, you just ignore them when they are presented.  We have evolved stories, evolved languages, computer simulations, and observed smaller scale evolutions that we have observed.  

We use phylogenetic evidence to identify strains of HIV, even though we don't "directly observe" HIV evolution.  Sometimes this phylogenetic evidence is used in court in relation to deliberate AIDS infection.  There is actually little "categorical" difference in the sorts of information being used to track HIV evolution and the use of information to track primate evolution.  Crack a book, open your mind, and you might learn this, too.

Quote
In other words ... at least I have SOMETHING ... I have my analogy.  You have NOTHING that I can see.


No, you have precisely nothing, because there has never been an observed designer who has designed to produce the "nested hierarchies" that we see in life.  We have several analogous derivative evolutions to compare and contrast with biological evolution, though we have to recognize that language and narrative evolution occur significantly differently than does RM + NS (which doesn't change the fact that similar (but not identical) patterns are seen).  

What is more, we back up our mechanism with evidence.  You only argue words like "machine", without even understanding how paltry your knowledge of the relationship of science to words is.

Quote
Oh, yes ... I know ... moths changing color and finch beaks, etc.  But this is well understood already WITHIN the Creationist model and has NOTHING AT ALL to say about "Feet to Flippers" type Evolution.


Tell me why creationists didn't come up with "microevolution".  Also, tell us how it is that microevolution cannot add up to macroevolution (I know that some differences can be defined as "macroevolutionary", but even using this definition would not prevent microevolutionary changes alone from adding up to "macroevolution").  Bring up some evidence that "microevolution" is separate from "macroevolution" to show for once that you have even a slight regard for evidence.

Quote
Oh and I know .. the fossil record.  But again, we have a handful of equivocal examples of "transitional forms."


They aren't equivocal, and your lies do not make them so.  See, this is the actual evidence you've been given, the sort of thing that you lack in all of your posts.  It is more than a handful of intermediates that we have as well, though I recognize that you wouldn't know that or any other intellectually sound fact.

--------------
http://tinyurl.com/mxaa3p....p

Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
ericmurphy



Posts: 2460
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,07:17   

Quote (afdave @ May 05 2006,08:59)
OK, back to my evidence ...

I have already given evidence for the existence of an Intelligent Entity of some sort.  The two lines of evidence given so far are (1) Cosmic Fine Tuning and (2) Biological Machines.  To me this says loud and clear ... "Someone purposely set the 'dials' in the 'universe control room'" and "Someone is a fantastically brilliant Engineer."  Obviously, that's ALL these two lines of evidence suggest.  They say nothing about the Bible or genetics or morality or any of the other myriad issues that I am interested in.  But to me they do speak very loudly to the two statements above.  Some here say that this is not evidence and I would have to ask specifically WHY is this not evidence?

Dave, you have not given evidence for a cosmic "Intelligent Entity" through the "cosmic fine tuning" and "biological machines argument." You're still unclear on the meaning of the term "evidence." At best, "cosmic fine tuning" and "biological machines" are conjectures, or arguments. They're certainly not "evidence," and both conjectures have been reviewed here and you've been shown why they're not persuasive.

I don't want to leave you with the impression that you've "established" anything by presenting "cosmic fine tuning" or "biological machines" "evidence."

If you'd shown some physical parameters that are indeed finely tuned (the cosmological constant, to pick an obvious example), that would be one thing, but you haven't done that, and even if you had, we've already shown you why that argument is unpersuasive.

Quote
Thank you Richard Dawkins.  Case closed.  It's been great debating all of you.


Dave, this same quote-mining was used over a century ago with Charles Darwin. Darwin made the same point (that biological organisms are awe-inspiring in their complexity), and then went on to explain exactly how that complexity could have come about through unguided processes. Dawkins is saying exactly the same thing here, and you're making the same mistake of misinterpreting where Dawkins is going with this.


Quote
Alberts notes that molecular machines strongly resemble machines designed by human engineers, although as an orthodox neo-Darwinist he denies any role for actual, as opposed to apparent, design in the origin of these systems.


Dave, this is argument by analogy. It's not evidence of anything. Behe made the statement at Dover and in "Darwin's Black Box" that life looks designed, therefore it was designed. I'm sure you can see how weak this argument really is.

Quote
Say what you want about Behe and his wisdom in court (and I probably agree), but in my opinion, Behe has done an excellent job of pointing out the complete absence of any gradualistic explanations for the origin of the systems and motors he discusses.


No he hasn't. Every single example Behe used (the flagellum, the clotting sequence, the complementary immune system) has been shown over and over again to be evolvable. This area of biological research is extremely fertile, Dave, and if you don't read the current research, you're always going to be way behind. "Darwin's Black Box" was written ten years ago.

--------------
2006 MVD award for most dogged defense of scientific sanity

"Atheism is a religion the same way NOT collecting stamps is a hobby." —Scott Adams

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,07:19   

Quote (afdave @ May 05 2006,11:37)
Talk really slow and refute my points one by one in simple layman's terms so that my "religion darkened brain" can understand.

Compare Meyer's argument to this argument:
http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/quentin_smith/bigbang.html

It is from 1992, by Quentin Smith, and it was written before Meyer wrote his argument and yet it refutes Meyer's claims.

How do you explain that?

  
edmund



Posts: 37
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,07:31   

From afdave:
Quote
in my opinion, Behe has done an excellent job of pointing out the complete absence of any gradualistic explanations for the origin of the systems and motors he discusses.


In his book "Darwin's Black Box", Behe claimed that there was a certain kind of biological system that was "irreducibly complex". He claimed that a gradual, stepwise path leading to an IC system could not exist. He emphasized the complexity of biological systems by describing six especially complicated systems in detail.

Since then, biologists have proposed gradual, stepwise pathways for all six of those systems. Remember that Behe's claim was not just that we don't know exactly how these systems evolved. Behe's claim was that no possible pathway existed for these IC systems.

That claim was dead wrong. IC systems can evolve. Anyone who tells you differently is selling something.

If you believe that there is a "complete absence of any gradualistic explanations" for these complex systems, somebody really hasn't been honest with you. I can definitely sympathize. As a Christian, I naively assumed that anti-evolutionists would be very honest with their audience. Once I started digging in to the claims of creationists and intelligent-design proponents, I was horrified by how many falsehoods that I encountered.

After about ten years of studying all sides of the debate over evolution, I've found that the scientists defending evolution are more honest than the Christians who are attacking it. Not just a little bit more honest-- a lot more honest. Even the agnostics and atheists defending evolution are behaving far more honestly than most of the Christians who lead the "creation science" and ID movements. It's scandalous.

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,07:35   

Quote
I would be happy to adopt "Evo Did It" if I had ever seen an instance of this happening, but so far I have not.
Just so I understand, this is an important point. You will think that design is a better scientific explanation until you actually see some kind of large scale change take place naturally, with your own eyes?

  
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,07:40   

Quote
Would you care to show me specifically WHY it's blather, since you obviously are smarter than me?


I already did.  You lacked the courtesy and knowledge to respond to what I had written, preferring to tell lies instead.

What is it about so many of the religious?  Why do lies about others come out so readily into their posts?  

Quote
Or will you keep filling my thread with psycho-analysis?


It's not "your thread", greedy businessman, rather it is a thread in which all may discuss.  And it's hardly psychoanalysis, though you wouldn't know that either.  It's more of an analysis based on social psychology, if more on the lines of Nietzsche than on Pareto, Weber, or Durkheim.

And since you have no evidence, or convincing arguments, there is little really to do except to point out the failings of you and many of your fellow believers.  I do so in part because "our side" tends to argue with you guys as if you might soon begin to understand things sensibly, when it is clear that you will not.  

While many are not really going to understand just why  it is that you "think" your herd thoughts and how thoroughly entrenched your very patterns of cognition actually are, at least one might drive home the fact that worldviews are not easily changed.  Particularly not in the self-satisfied bourgeoisie.

Quote
One more thing, Glen.  Talk really slow and refute my points one by one in simple layman's terms so that my "religion darkened brain" can understand.


Don't imply that I consider religious brains to necessarily be "darkened".  Norm Doering strikes at religion, I do not, except when religion has decided to make exceptions in accepted thought to accommodate their dogmas.  Not even then, if they don't spread their nonsense onto the web and attempt to force it into schools.

And if you understood what I have written, you would recognize that I know that I can hardly get through to you.  I have refuted any number of your points, and what I got in return were sneering lies from you.  

What is more, I do not believe in trying to dumb things down enough for those who refuse to study.  I might try to get through to someone who was curious and teachable, but not someone who really only wants to defend the nonsense that he got from pseudoscientific sites.

If you don't know that all of your points have either been refuted or explained to be without merit (but not "refutable" exactly), you're clearly not listening or unable to comprehend.  That is why I think it more profitable to discuss the why of your failings, rather than try again and again to get you to see what you not only have not learned to see, but rather have learned to avoid seeing.

Quite honestly, and without malice, I can only recommend that you do some serious study into biology, and into the history of evolutionary thought.  If you were to simply read, not react, and follow the thought processes of biological/evolutionary thinkers, you might begin to understand how the evidence is used scientifically to indicate that life was derived from other life.  

And if you still did not accept evolution, at least you would not be using such faulty lines of "reasoning" and denial of evidence to "make your points".  Then we might still disagree, but we could discuss things on an equal footing.  It will not do to demand that we see things your way, when we have learned how and why the kinds of thinking that we were taught early on are not adequate.

I do know how to see the evidence like you do, I merely have to think back to when I was 14 and earlier.  You need to learn, and it is not simple or easy, how scientists and/or philosophers think, if you want to have some traction on science forums.

--------------
http://tinyurl.com/mxaa3p....p

Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,07:42   

Quote
Since then, biologists have proposed gradual, stepwise pathways for all six of those systems.
Is there an online source you could point me to so that I can see this?

--------------
A DILEMMA FOR THE COMMITTED NATURALIST
A Hi-tech alien spaceship lands on earth ... DESIGNED.
A Hi-tech alien rotary motor found in a cell ... NOT DESIGNED.
http://afdave.wordpress.com/....ess.com

  
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,07:50   

Quote (afdave @ May 05 2006,12:42)
Quote
Since then, biologists have proposed gradual, stepwise pathways for all six of those systems.
Is there an online source you could point me to so that I can see this?

Yes, try here:
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html

The links should lead to refutations of most of Behe's claims.

Panda's did one on the Evolution of Hormone-Receptor Complexity:
http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives/2006/04/evolution_of_ic_1.html

  
improvius



Posts: 807
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,08:15   

[quote=afdave,May 05 2006,11:24][/quote]
Dave, try to stop lying.  You are trying to come across as being impartial when it is clear that you are not.  You cannot reconcile statements like this:
Quote
I would be happy to adopt "Evo Did It" if I had ever seen an instance of this happening, but so far I have not.

With statements like this:
Quote
There is really one really big thing I resent.  And that is the idea that humans are nothing more than highly evolved animals.

Your objections stem from an emotional reaction, not from rational thought.  There is NO WAY we can reasonably convince you because your objections are not based in reason to begin with.

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Quote (afdave @ Oct. 02 2006,18:37)
Many Jews were in comfortable oblivion about Hitler ... until it was too late.
Many scientists will persist in comfortable oblivion about their Creator ... until it is too late.

  
Glen Davidson



Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,08:56   

What Afdave fails to recognize in the area of origins is the importance of establishing proximate causes, of showing how one event causes another one.  

In this matter he thinks like the ancients did, by using sweeping analogies which led to anthropomorphic "hypotheses".  While few of the ancients made the mistake of thinking that animals and humans were designed machines (they don't act like machines, they aren't "designed" like machines, and they are produced in a wholly different way.  The evidence for derivation came later, of course), they did view "creation" as occurring via reproductive means, spirit transfers, and speech.

But what we need for any ID hypothesis is a designer who has been shown to design items similar to organisms.  We don't mind inferring design of simple and complex objects so long as they conform to human capabilities, because we have this known "proximate cause" for pots and spacecraft.  Undoubtedly we would also infer intelligent humanoid designers if we found early alien spacecraft, again because we know how some evolved "intelligences" act.  Yet we totally lack any credible designer who has made organisms like those we see.

Thus a designer is not a reasonable explanation.  As IDists have noted, we do indeed think that we could detect the results of "intelligent beings" in radio signals and in machines.  Yet virtually no one has seriously proposed that aliens made the animals (aliens are brought up to confuse the issue, but only for that reason).  This is because animals are very different from machines, even at a cursory glance.  And more so when we study organisms thoroughly.

What is more, we aren't even satisfied with "intelligence" as a "reason" for human-made machines and art, rather we typically appeal to psychology, evolution, and social causation to explain why and how art is made (as in all historical sciences, we can't fully explain Sumerian art, but we can explain important aspects of it).  Ideally we will at some point have good neurological explanations for artistic creation, which will rely on evolution for part of the complete explanation.

This brings up an important fact:  triumphant IDists would likely impede investigation into what intelligence is and why it is the way that we find it to be--even if only by suggesting that intelligence is some kind of "universal constant" or "law".  We don't even explain design, today, without resort to causal factors beyond the former black box of the brain.  IDists analogize wildly to God, but then they fail utterly to be able to identify factors, like evolution, that would constrain God's designs.  So while we are unwilling to stop with "design" as an explanation anywhere, IDists insist that this is the end of the matter, that God designs in a certain way because of his will, or some such thing.

Anyway, I became sidetracked in these issues, but the important point is that Afdave thinks of "Cause" in the pre-scientific analogical sense, while we insist on at least tentative causes throughout.  We are not going to know every cause, of course, but if we could not find causes of evolution in the genome/environment, we would have to abandon evolution as an explanation.

We know how many mutations are caused, and we know a good deal about natural selection.  We have dealt with the causes, we have connected them, and we have shown how evolution proceeds, at least in considerable part.  It would not do to just invoke "RM + NS" as some grand "Cause", rather science has worked out how it happens, if questions remain.  Science extends these conclusions to fossils and "genomic fossils", but only because both fossils and genomes fit the pattern expected from RM + NS, the patterns observed in HIV evolution.  Thus it is a very reasonable extrapolation.

Dave doesn't like macroevolution, claiming that it has not "been seen".  Since, however, macroevolution is predicted to be produced by largely known mechanisms, therefore to produce the sorts of fossils, nested hierarchies, and genomes that we see, it is fair to say that we have observed it, since we are surrounded by it and are a part of it.

What he wants is some sort of "evidence" for macroevolution beyond the proximate causes that we know.  But science wants proximal causes for evolution, including "macroevolution", and this is what it finds.  This is all that it can be expected to find, since it insists on using proximally linked causes in its evidence, as opposed to the philosophizing about the "Grand Cause".  We have found the mechanisms of evolution, and the patterns to be expected from "RM + NS" (plus other mechanisms of "selection" and bottlenecking).

The genetic material we found is what was needed for evolution, and what would seem unlikely for a perfect creation to have in it.  That is to say, we have found the proximate causes of "macroevolution" operating.  This was needful, but evolution passed this test.  

Dave wants something like God to explain "macroevolution", otoh, because he equates evolution with his origins myth.  No, we do not accept Causes that are not seen to be acting, we accept the mutations and selections of those mutations as the sort of mechanism that evolution demands and requires, both as a science of proximal causes, and as a theory peculiar to biology.

Could something be intervening in the course of evolution?  See, here is where it is appropriate to demand evidence for "macroevolution".  We don't know what might have intervened in the past, but we know that something could have.  Hence, evidence is required for past "macroevolution" if it is going to be properly accepted.  Since we've found such evidence in abundance, some through predictive (and other) paleontology, and much more in the genomes of organisms, we have high confidence that the proximal causes necessary for evolution that we have identified happening, also happened in the past (or at least any other mechanisms left essentially the same pattern of derivation).

We have our proximate causes, then.  The IDists/creationists have no cause at all, but only an analogy that on the face of it appears flawed, and which more tellingly cannot be backed up through evidence for active proximal causes.  Evolution is active today, while any number of IDists and creationists claim that the proximal causes of "type creation" are lost to the past.  We can and do demonstrate how changes occur, but the IDist cannot demonstrate how anything was "caused by the designer".

--------------
http://tinyurl.com/mxaa3p....p

Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of coincidence---ID philosophy

   
normdoering



Posts: 287
Joined: July 2005

(Permalink) Posted: May 05 2006,10:02   

Quote (normdoering @ May 05 2006,11:25)
Try searching for "Big Bang Argument for the Existence of God," "Teleology," "Prime Mover."

If this news turns out to be true, even the shaky foundation Meyer built his argument on is shot down:

'Cyclic universe' can explain cosmological constant
http://www.newscientistspace.com/article.ns?id=dn9114&print=true

  
afdave



Posts: 1621
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: May 06 2006,04:55   

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If you learned that a car company puts all their money in advertising and publicity, to show how cool their cars are, and NOTHING in research to make them better and safer -in fact, they don't have an R&D department at all- would you buy a car from them?
No, I would not buy the car.  And I do realize that ICR has a limited research department and I think AIG and DI probably have none at all ... doesn't matter because the fact is that THE DATA IS THE DATA, regardless of the source.  Creationists really don't care a hoot about the beliefs of the guy digging up the fossil or mapping the genome or what have you.  What we are interested in is the INTERPRETATION of the data.  And we do realize that you need qualified experts in many fields to be able to INTELLIGENTLY analyze the data.  At this point in my study of the whole origins debate, it is too early for me to be able to say with strong assurance that ICR and AIG and DI have well qualified experts in many fields.  I have assumed they did in past years without drilling into them in great detail.  Now that I have begun this very detailed investigation, I have found one major goof (or lie, not sure which yet) by Carl Wieland (the chimp chromosome thing).  If I find a lot of these types of wrong information, obviously I will begin to question the reliability of the whole organization, question their motives, etc.  This has not yet occurred, but I'm sure you will help me on this quest.  That is one reason I am here and not debating over at DI (as someone has suggested).

AF Dave said ...
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It's meaningless for explaining the ORIGIN of immune system.  I'm sure its quite meaningful at explaining HOW THE IMMUNE SYSTEM WORKS.

Faid responded ...
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Um Dave, I dunno what AIG says, but the research presented in the trial was about the evolution of the immune system.

So let us look at the relevant testimony because this is very important that there be no misunderstanding ...
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Q. We'll get back to that. Now, these articles rebut your assertion that scientific literature has no answers on the origin of the vertebrate immune system?
A. No, they certainly do not. My answer, or my argument is that the literature has no detailed rigorous explanations for how complex biochemical systems could arise by a random mutation and natural selection and these articles do not address that.
Q. So these are not good enough?
A. They're wonderful articles. They're very interesting. They simply just don't address the question that I pose.
Q. And these are not the only articles on the evolution of vertebrate immune system?
A. There are many articles.
Q. Okay. So there's at least fifty more articles discussing the evolution of the immune system?
A. And midpoint I am, I certainly haven't had time to look through these fifty articles, but I still am unaware of any that address my point that the immune system could arise or that present in a detailed rigorous fashion a scenario for the evolution by random mutation and natural selection of the immune system.
Q. Is that your position today that these articles aren't good enough, you need to see a step-by-step description?
A. These articles are excellent articles I assume. However, they do not address the question that I am posing. So it's not that they aren't good enough. It's simply that they are addressed to a different subject.
Q. And I'm correct when I asked you, you would need to see a step-by-step description of how the immune system, vertebrate immune system developed?
A. Not only would I need a step-by-step, mutation by mutation analysis, I would also want to see relevant information such as what is the population size of the organism in which these mutations are occurring, what is the selective value for the mutation, are there any detrimental effects of the mutation, and many other such questions.
Q. And you haven't undertaken to try and figure out those?
A. I am not confident that the immune system arose through Darwinian processes, and so I do not think that such a study would be fruitful.
Q. Origin and Evolution of the Vertebrate Immune System, by Pasquier. Evolution and Vertebrate Immunity, by Kelso. The Primordial Vrm System and the Evolution of Vertebrate Immunity, by Stewart. The Phylogenesis of Immune Functions, by Warr. The Evolutionary Mechanisms of Defense Reactions, by Vetvicka. Immunity and Evolution, Marchalonias. Immunology of Animals, by Vetvicka. You need some room here. Can you confirm these are books about the evolution of the immune system?
A. Most of them have evolution or related words in the title, so I can confirm that, but what I strongly doubt is that any of these address the question in a rigorous detailed fashion of how the immune system or irreducibly complex components of it could have arisen by random mutation and natural selection.
Q. And the fifty-eight articles, some yes, some no?
A. Well, the nice thing about science is that often times when you read the latest articles, or a sampling of the latest articles, they certainly include earlier results. So you get up to speed pretty quickly. You don't have to go back and read every article on a particular topic for the last fifty years or so.
Q. And you conclude from them that certain structures are irreducibly complex that could not have evolved through natural selection, and therefore are intelligently designed?
A. I conclude from them that we see very detailed molecular machinery in the cell, that it strongly looks like a purposeful arrangement of parts, that in fact a purposeful arrangement of parts is a hallmark of intelligent design. I surveyed the literature and I see no Darwinian explanations for such things. And when one applies one's own reasoning to see how such things would be addressed within a Darwinian framework it's very difficult to see how they would, and so one concludes that one explanation, Darwinian processes, doesn't seem to have a good answer, but that another explanation, intelligent design, does seem to fit better.

After reading through this, I think my statement above is valid, but could be stronger and more clear, so let me add to it.

The stack of 50+ books are meaningless for explaining the ORIGIN of immune system.  I'm sure they quite meaningful at explaining how the immune system works and I'm sure they are quite full of SINCERE ATTEMPTS to explain the origin of the immune system.

There ... is that better?  If you read the testimony above, this is what Behe is saying and I strongly agree with him.  Again, let's reiterate what Behe (and I) (and all Creationists) are looking for ...

A. Not only would I need a step-by-step, mutation by mutation analysis, I would also want to see relevant information such as what is the population size of the organism in which these mutations are occurring, what is the selective value for the mutation, are there any detrimental effects of the mutation, and many other such questions.

Notice also that Behe (and I) think that spending one's time to search for this is, to put it politely as Behe did, UNFRUITFUL.  I can think of many other, less polite adjectives to describe the wisdom of attempting such a search, but I'm trying to practice what I preach and be nice, so I will refrain, but you get the idea.

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PS. the question mark in "ID?Creos" was supposed to be a slash, but I like it better that way. "ID? Nah, Creos".
Cute.  And I happen to agree with you on this point.  And I do have my own version:  Evos? Nah, Flat-earthers. :-) Just kidding here.  I know everyone here is very intelligent even though I disagree with some of your interpretations.

Renier--  Thanks for the analysis of the Vitamin C issue.  You are correct that this requires careful analysis.  I will be taking some time to do just that starting with what you have written.
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The reason, Dave is that most people are stupid.  Yes, that's right.  Stupid.
I would agree that the advent of government involvement in education in Western society has, in fact been a colossal failure.    I might take this opportunity to point out, though, that even with private schools, self study, excellent colleges and the like, it appears that much learning does not always yield smarts, unfortunately.  Or maybe the better term would be wisdom instead of smarts. There have been many people down through history who had much learning, but did incredibly unwise things or made incredibly unwise statements--  Galileo's opponents being a case in point. I believe--but have not proven yet to my satisfaction (it's still a hypothesis)--that this exact situation exists today with Neo-Darwinists.  They have much learning and know many facts and possess much knowledge, but in my opinion are making incredibly unwise statements when they assert that "flippers came from feet" and "we see life because of abiogenesis millions of years ago", etc.  This by itself is very unwise, but then to go further and not only assert things which don't make sense to a lot of people, but also vilify others who try to propose alternatives that they honestly feel DO make sense, is INCREDIBLY UNWISE to me. In my opinion, there are hordes of Neo-Darwinists sitting on a very thin branch, with the "saw" of scientific evidence slowly cutting through it, the ID/Creo people are offering an escape ladder, and the ND's are spitting on them.  


RICHARD DAWKINS MISIDENTIFIES "DUCKS"

I will repeat my quote of Richard Dawkins because (a) I am NOT "quote mining" (maybe I should just quote the whole chapter?) and (b) it is worth repeating because it drives home my point so well.  Dawkins spends an entire chapter on bat echolation in The Blind Watchmaker and then says
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I hope the reader is as awestruck as I am, and as William Paley would have been, by these bat stories.  My aim has been in one respect identical to Paley's aim.  I do not want the reader to underestimate the prodigious works of nature and the problems we face explaining them. (p. 37)

then he says
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We have seen that living things are too improbable and too beautifully 'designed' to have come into existence by chance. (p. 43)

This is HUGE and I do not want my readers to miss this. Here is one of "world's most brilliant minds) (according to some vote) spending AN ENTIRE CHAPTER  ON A SINGLE WONDER OF NATURE -- Bat Echolocation and admitting that he is "awestruck" and does not underestimate the "prodigious work of nature" and "the problems we face explaining them."  After standing in awe of this stuff, he then spends the next 9 chapters telling us why this is not ACTUAL design, but APPARENT DESIGN ... i.e. "It LOOKS like a duck, WALKS like a duck, QUACKS like a duck, but let me spend the next NINE CHAPTERS trying to convince you that it's NOT a duck **cough**   **retch**   **die**

This is HUGE, folks, and we are just getting started.  I will make this prediciton ... there will come a day soon when the name of Darwin and all his disciples, like Richard Dawkins will be relegated to the ashheap of scientists whose theories were wrong and whose name people remember, not for the good they did, but for the prodigious blunder they made.

Glen Davidson ...
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We're herd animals, and we are intelligent herd animals for the most part.
Afdave **cough** (I meant to say the Neo-Darwinist) illustrates this fact over and over again.


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Look at Afdave's argument.  Clearly it is fallacious by any standard, but it is also carefully drawn (though it was hardly invented by Afdave) to avoid the fact that the only explanation for current and fossil forms of life that has managed to cross borders, religions, ethnic groups, politics, and intellectual inheritances, is evolutionary theory.  Russian atheists, American Catholics and mainline Protestants, scientists, intellectuals, Japanese Shintoists (initially, anyhow, though I don't know if Shinto holds up well alongside modern science), Muslim thinkers, Hindus, Jainists, and traditional religionists like native Americans, have all been able to comprehend and accept the evidence for evolution.
Herd thought?[YES]
You guessed it, Glen.  My thought exactly. (Attention Quote Mine Police:  Glen really said "No" -- I'm putting words in his mouth)
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Evolutionary theory is extraordinarily successful by the standards of any startup of a new religion.
Yes.  And so was Islam.  And your point is?  Possibly that this means AF Dave should accept it as true?  I see.
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The only universally-acceptable origins-of-life idea is evolutionary theory
never mind the small detail that no one has the slightest idea how it arose.  Francis Crick was so perplexed that he proposed "Panspermia".  

Chris Hyland ...
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Biological systems only trivially appear to be designed.
Trivial?  How does this mesh with the fact that Richard Dawkins wrote an ENTIRE BOOK trying to tell people that this stuff IS NOT designed.  Answer: A LOT of people think this stuff at least APPEARS designed.  To me, this is in no way trivial.

Glen Davidson ...
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Well, you're too stupid and ignorant even to respond to my authoritative analysis, moron ... If you ever can make an intelligent remark, please do so, cretin ... There is virtually no chance that you will ever be anything except a stupid and ignorant little ape, Dave.  The biggest reason of all is that you only sneer at expertise of all kinds, while clinging to your tiny collection of knowledge as if it were Eternal Truth, as do all bigots.
Wow Glen, if words could kill! Have you found this debating technique to be effective for you?
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However, real scientists do not care a fig about Dawkins' incorrect notions about life "appearing designed", for on the face of it, life does not appear designed.  I will grant that it may appear "miraculous" or "spiritual", depending on definitions and contexts, but it does not appear designed.
Are you telling me that Richard Dawkins is not a real scientist?
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The most truly embarrassing thing is that religious apologists like Afdave think that life looks designed like machines.
Why don't you call Bruce Alberts, President of the National Academy of Sciences and tell him he is an embarrasment to you.  Here is his quote again ...
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We have always underestimated cells . . . . The entire cell can be viewed as a factory that contains an elaborate network of interlocking assembly lines, each of which is composed of a set of large protein machines . . . Why do we call the large protein assemblies that underlie cell function protein [ba]machines?[/b] Precisely because, like machines invented by humans to deal efficiently with the macroscopic world these protein assemblies contain highly coordinated moving parts (Alberts, Bruce. 1998. The Cell as a Collection of Protein Machines: Preparing the NextGeneration of Molecular Biologists. Cell 92 (8 February): 291-94).

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Do you want medical testing to be done on our relatives, the apes, or would you prefer that it be done on birds?  And can you think through the implications of why medical testing is done on monkeys and apes just prior to humans, or are you going to just drivel on in your ignorance and prejudice?
If you read what I wrote, you will see that I acknowledge that human BODIES are very similar to the apes.  I even acknowledge that Chromosome 2 in humans does in fact appear to be fused from 2 chromosomes in chimps.  But to me it is a different matter  then to say definitively that they did in fact fuse.  Also, let me reiterate what I have said before that my hypothesis regarding humans and apes is that humans have something additional, something invisible, that is very different from the apes, and that this difference is quite crucial. I will be presenting evidence for this soon.

Norm Doering ...
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Meyer doesn't warrant special attention in a search term because his arguments are stolen from old and moldy arguments that were refuted before he made them. Try searching for "Big Bang Argument for the Existence of God," "Teleology," "Prime Mover."
Or maybe the reason is because no one HAS BEEN ABLE to refute him?  I searched the archive below and found nothing that refutes Meyer's "Cosmic Fine Tuning" argument.  In fact, the article from Talk Origins that I posted does not in any way attempt to refute it.  Don't you think this would be the FIRST thing they do if it could be refuted?

Talk Origins Index to Creationist Claims
CE400: Cosmology
(see also CI300: Anthropic principle)
CE401. There are too few supernova remnants for an old universe.
CE410. Physical constants are only assumed constant.
CE411. The speed of light has changed.
CE411.1. Physicists found that the speed of light was once faster.
CE412. Gravitational time dilation made distant clocks run faster.
(see also CF210: Radiometric dating assumes constant rates.)
CE420. The big bang theory is wrong.
CE421. The cosmos has an axis, contrary to big bang models.
CE425. Red shift comes from light aging, not expansion of the universe.
CE440. Where did space, time, energy, and laws of physics come from?
CE441. Explosions such as the big bang do not produce order or information.

You are going to have to better than send me off on a Google hunt if you want me to believe that "Cosmic Fine Tuning" has been refuted.  Try refuting me point by point with linked support.
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Spacetime, the fabric of the universe isn't really nothing. Look up the term "Casimir effect."
I agree.  The term is used by Creationists out of convenience and the need to use SOME word.  Maybe we should say "apparent nothing."
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Nothing is explained by proposing an unknown entity with unknown powers. You're explaining the known in terms  of the unknown.
Yes, actually it is ... quite well.  Remember my example of the native who has never seen an airplane  before?  He proposes an unknown (the Cessna factory) to explain the new phenomenon (the airplane) in terms THAT HE ALREADY KNOWS (canoes), hence his fairly accurate statement considering his limited observation and experience, "A brilliant sky-canoe maker must have built this!"  Would you like more examples?
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Religions, at least those of Judeo-Christian family, must start with a core metaphysical assumption about mind (of an entity with will, planning, intention, foresight and understanding) being the primordial stuff and cause of the universe.
My discussion has nothing to do with religion and I do not consider myself to be religious.  I am trying to explain the phenomena in the universe by the most sensible explanations.  Religion to me is man made stuffy ritual ... robes, candles, homina-hominas and the like.  Would it surprise you to know that I don't think God is religious?  Or Jesus either?  Well ... that's my opinion.
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Creation myths are teleological and naturalism undermines teleology by finding non-mind, (rules of material interaction without any mind stuff like choice, will or intention coming into play), as an explanation.
There are in fact many creation myths.  But my opinion is that there is only one true, earliest, eyewitness account from which all the myths were then derived with various levels of deletions, modifications and embellishments.  

Secondly, naturalism only undermines teleology if it explains the evidence BETTER.  It is my goal of this exercise to show you that Teleology is in fact the better, more sensible explanation.

Faid said ...
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The anthropic principle is examined thoroughly in the very talkorigins page you quoted
Really?  Where?  Could you cut and paste the section?  I looked and did not find it.  Also, why would not the author have refuted the section I quoted if he thought he could have?
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As for your "biological machines" argument, this has been demonstrated repeatedly to be based on loaded terms: Labelling living things "machines" to argue that they are designed, presupposes that they are designed.
I propose that the labeling is complained about only by those who have no other way to complain that their view might be questioned, i.e. they don't have anything sensible to counter with, so they have to say crazy things like "your terms are loaded."  As for my calling them machines, talk to Bruce Alberts, President of the National Academy of Sciences.  He is more of an authority than I.  Also, let me correct you ... I do not PRE-suppose design.  I PROPOSE design, then test the validity to see if it is the best among competing hypotheses.  There is a BIG difference.
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With the same logic, we should argue that those round volcanic rocks were the marbles of giants, because they look like big stone marbles. Now, the reasons those rocks are round are pretty much the same (as far as the fundamental laws of physics are concerned) with the reasons marbles are made round- but that is no proof that they are, in fact, marbles -as I'm sure you agree.
I do agree.  But have ever studied the differences between marble/round rocks and biological machines?  I don't think you need to study this b/c this is obvious.  This is not a valid refutation of my argument.

Eric Murphy ...
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Actually, Dave, the differences between humans and chimps, compared to e.g. the differences between humans and bacteria, are practically invisible. Humans are basically taller, balder, weaker, and smarter chimps. I fail to understand why this presents a problem for you.If you want to say there are spiritual differences between a human and chimp that amount to some sort of unbridgeable gulf, that's fine, but you're not talking about science anymore (to the extent you ever were).
The proper definition of science should include trying to explain the phenomena in the universe, where ever that may lead.  If it leads us to invisible entities, why is that a problem?  Are not quarks invisible and rather abstract and hard to define?  Ditto for multiple universes, the Casimir Effect and a host of other things?

Norm quoted someone who said ...
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Since then, biologists have proposed gradual, stepwise pathways for all six of those systems. (Behe's supposedly irreducibly complex systems)
Yes. After Behe's book they tried.  But even if there were a few before, they were unconvincing attempts.  See discussion above RE: Dover testimony.  Here's an example of a failed (in my opinion) attempt.  You see if YOU think the attempt was successful.
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One plausible path for the evolution of flagella goes through the following basic stages (keep in mind that this is a summary, and that each major co-option event would be followed by long periods of gradual optimization of function):

a. A passive, nonspecific pore evolves into a more specific passive pore by addition of gating protein(s). [How?  In detail please.  By magic?  By what selective pressure?  What mutation or transposition of what gene(s)?] Passive transport converts to active transport by addition of an ATPase [Ditto above questions]that couples ATP hydrolysis to improved export capability. This complex forms a primitive type-III export system.

b. The type-III export system is converted to a type-III secretion system (T3SS) by addition of outer membrane pore proteins (secretin and secretin chaperone) from the type-II secretion system. These eventually form the P- and L-rings, respectively, of modern flagella. The modern type-III secretory system forms a structure strikingly similar to the rod and ring structure of the flagellum (Hueck 1998; Blocker et al. 2003).

[How?  In detail please.  By magic?  By what selective pressure?  What mutation or transposition of what gene(s)?]

c. The T3SS secretes several proteins, one of which is an adhesin (a protein that sticks the cell to other cells or to a substrate). Polymerization of this adhesin forms a primitive pilus, an extension that gives the cell improved adhesive capability. After the evolution of the T3SS pilus, the pilus diversifies for various more specialized tasks by duplication and subfunctionalization of the pilus proteins (pilins).

[How?  In detail please.  By magic?  By what selective pressure?  What mutation or transposition of what gene(s)?]

d. An ion pump complex with another function in the cell fortuitously becomes associated with the base of the secretion system structure, converting the pilus into a primitive protoflagellum. The initial function of the protoflagellum is improved dispersal. Homologs of the motor proteins MotA and MotB are known to function in diverse prokaryotes independent of the flagellum.

[How?  In detail please.  By magic?  By what selective pressure?  What mutation or transposition of what gene(s)?]

e. The binding of a signal transduction protein to the base of the secretion system regulates the speed of rotation depending on the metabolic health of the cell. This imposes a drift toward favorable regions and away from nutrient-poor regions, such as those found in overcrowded habitats. This is the beginning of chemotactic motility.

[How?  In detail please.  By magic?  By what selective pressure?  What mutation or transposition of what gene(s)?]

f. Numerous improvements follow the origin of the crudely functioning flagellum. Notably, many of the different axial proteins (rod, hook, linkers, filament, caps) originate by duplication and subfunctionalization of pilins or the primitive flagellar axial structure. These proteins end up forming the axial protein family.


Do I make my point clear?  This is the point Behe was trying to make in the trial.   Let me repeat his statement from above ...
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A. Not only would I need a step-by-step, mutation by mutation analysis, I would also want to see relevant information such as what is the population size of the organism in which these mutations are occurring, what is the selective value for the mutation, are there any detrimental effects of the mutation, and many other such questions...Q. And you haven't undertaken to try and figure out those?
A. I am not confident that the immune system arose through Darwinian processes, and so I do not think that such a study would be fruitful.


improvius quote mined me ...
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There is really one really big thing I resent.  And that is the idea that humans are nothing more than highly evolved animals.
and left out the last part that said I also believe this to be a factual error.  It is true that I get somewhat emotional, but the emotion is generated BECAUSE I believe there is some great error in ND thinking.  I've notice some of this emotion going the other direction on this thread as well, have you not?  It is understandable on both sides of the debate ... we are human, not rocks, thus we have emotions.

Glen said ...
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What Afdave fails to recognize in the area of origins is the importance of establishing proximate causes, of showing how one event causes another one.
What I am doing, Glen, is showing everyone why MY proposed proximate cause makes more sense than YOUR proposed proximate cause for explaining the phenomena in the universe.
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But what we need for any ID hypothesis is a designer who has been shown to design items similar to organisms.
Well, I cannot show Him to you any more than you can show me a fruitfly evolving into a "housefly type insect" or a "foot becoming a flipper."
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This is because animals are very different from machines, even at a cursory glance.
Yes, but the key difference is that they are SO SO SO SO much more sophisticated.  Ask Bill Gates ...
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DNA is like a computer program, but far, far more advanced than any software we ve ever created (The Road Ahead,1996: 228).

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