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  Topic: responses to Darwin's Black Box?, I finally got around to reading it< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
Leftfield



Posts: 107
Joined: Nov. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 31 2007,10:58   

I'm a little slow, I've just gotten around to reading Darwin's Black Box. As much as I could stand anyway, the discussions of biochemical details were more than I could digest. I thought there might be a discussion of the book and its arguments somewhere around here, but a brief amateur search did not turn it up. Is there a good one here or elsewhere?


My thoughts on it were that:
1) it seems to argue entirely from personal incredulity.
2) it is difficult (impossible?) to come up with the demanded step-by-step molecular history given that we don't currently know the molecular starting point for any particular system.
3) the last chapter is full of self-congratulation on the magnitude of the scientific leap "we" have made in recognizing design; self-congratulation that would be inappropriate if a great leap had actually been made, and seems laughable in light of the real world results of the book.

Thanks.

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Speaking for myself, I have long been confused . . .-Denyse O'Leary

  
Quack



Posts: 1946
Joined: May 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 27 2008,05:23   

I just love this kitchy panegyric at page 233, which IMHO is but the tip of the iceberg of Behe's pathetic propaganda style of writing:
Quote
The result of these cumulative efforts to investigate the cell - to investigate life at the molecular level-is a loud, clear, piercing cry of "design!"  The result is so unambiguous and so significant that it must be ranked as one of the greatest achievements in the history of science. The discovery rivals those of Newton and Einstein, Lavoisier and Schrodinger, Pasteur, and Darwin. The observation of the intelligent design of life is as momentous as the observation that the earth goes around the sun or that disease is caused by bacteria or that radiation is emitted in quanta. The magnitude of the victory, gained at such great cost through sustained effort over the course of decades, would be expected to send champagne corks flying in labs around the world. This triumph of science should evoke cries of "Eureka!" from ten thousand throats, should occasion much hand-slapping and high-fiving, and perhaps even be an excuse to take a day off.
But no bottles have been uncorked, no hands slapped. Instead, a curious, embarrassed silence surrounds the stark complexity of the cell. When the subject comes up in public, feet start to shuffle, and breathing gets a bit labored. In private people are a bit more relaxed; many explicitly admit the obvious but then stare at the ground, shake their heads, and let it go at that.
Why does the scientific community not greedily embrace its startling discovery? Why is the observation of design handled with intellectual gloves? The dilemma is that while one side of the elephant is labeled intelligent design, the other side might be labeled God.


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The first principle is that you must not fool yourself — and you are the easiest person to fool.
                                                                                               Richard Feynman

  
pwe



Posts: 46
Joined: Sep. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 27 2008,06:54   

Quote (Quack @ Jan. 27 2008,05:23)
I just love this kitchy panegyric at page 233, which IMHO is but the tip of the iceberg of Behe's pathetic propaganda style of writing:
Quote
.... Why does the scientific community not greedily embrace its startling discovery? Why is the observation of design handled with intellectual gloves? The dilemma is that while one side of the elephant is labeled intelligent design, the other side might be labeled God.

Ummm, a labelled elephant? Does sound as an act of intelligent design, it sure does.

Poor elephant :(

Anyway, I don't think Behe's right -- it's just that the arguments don't really work, unless you have to have drink a lot of champagne already.


- pwe

  
bystander



Posts: 301
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 28 2008,00:25   

Behe probably believed that the Nobel would be his after this book. What is it 10 years later and he gets beaten up by a graduate student and has to go on a radical Christian radio station to get a warm welcome.

  
pwe



Posts: 46
Joined: Sep. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 29 2008,08:55   

Quote (bystander @ Jan. 28 2008,00:25)
Behe probably believed that the Nobel would be his after this book. What is it 10 years later and he gets beaten up by a graduate student and has to go on a radical Christian radio station to get a warm welcome.

:D Yes, they are a weird lot, aren't they?

Who has the blackest box?

Charles Darwin was in The Origin of Species not too concernes with giving details about the mechanism of variation. In the Conclusion he wrote something about use and disuse of organs and subsequent modifications to other organs. Later he developed the pangenesis theory that was picked apart by Francis Galton.

However, Charles Darwin at least tried to come up with a gray box, and that box has become a whiter shade of pale since then due to RESEARCH.

THe Disco Kids, including Behe, employ the black boxiest black box that has ever black boxed this or any other known or unknown planet and its surroundings, namely intelligence.

Intelligence is a quantity (or is it a quality?) capable of doing ANYTHING -- you imagine it, intelligence can do it. But intelligence does not have any parts, no internal workings or anything else, it is not subject to any kind of scientific analysis.

So who should have a black box shoveled down their throats?


- pwe

  
Erasmus, FCD



Posts: 6349
Joined: June 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Jan. 29 2008,09:02   



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You're obviously illiterate as hell.Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
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