A friendly discussion on evolutionary...

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

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#22 Apr 11, 2013
Remy wrote:
I'll simply discuss irreducible complexity since you brought it up. I know it's widely claimed that irreducible complexity has been totally discredited, but that really isn't true.
Big post, so I will just deal with this chunk.

Irreducible Complexity (IC) makes the claim that there are features that could not have evolved because there are no possible intermediate steps. And we know something is IC when removing one of the pieces would make the rest of the assemblage useless.

That is what Behe, Mayers, etc claim?

There are two glaring errors in this reasoning.

1. At a previous time, there is no reason so suppose that the other parts of the assemblage did not have some entirely different useful function. This has been shown in numerous cases where claims of IC have been overturned. A reduced clotting cascade and a simplified immune system still works. A major component of the bacterial flagellum was foundin simpler form to do something entirely different (an injector system).

All we have seen is ID proponents move to the next hopeful item every time research debunks their last claim.

But this misses an even more fundamental error in their thinking.

2. Evolution does not walk in straight lines. Today's seal might one day become as independent of the land as a whale, or might re-colonise some isolated land somewhere and gradually lose its marine capabilities. No way of knowing.

Likewise when we look backwards.

There is NO WAY to rule out every possible evolutionary pathway to a current biological structure. You would have to have omniscient powers to KNOW, and RULE OUT, any possible pathway to the structure you see. It could have gone through intermediates with entirely different functions. It could even now be a reduction in structure from an even more elaborate structure in the past.

So ID fails even in principle. Its a flawed approach that only sounds plausible by an argument from ignorance...."I cannot see how X could evolve, therefore it cannot have evolved!" IS NOT A SCIENTIFIC ARGUMENT. No matter how they try to dress it up.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

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#23 Apr 11, 2013
Remy wrote:
For instance, there are those who believe evolution is good science because, as you say, to them it is good science. There are others, however, who are proponents of evolution largely for their own religious reasons.
And who care about proponents of evolution "for their own religious reasons", whatever that means?

It is good science. Its a falsifiable theory that made predictions and these were then found to be true.

For example, when Darwin proposed human evolution from apes, there were no fossils of ape/human intermediates. That means, fossils with features MEASURABLY and OBJECTIVELY in between a typical human and a typical apes. Darwin predicted that if his theory was right, they would be found.

And to this date, we have found a succession of fossils that are measurably intermediate. Over the right time frames, getting more human and less apelike over a period of 4+ million years.

The same is true, as predicted, for many other species.

In fact, of the millions of fossils we have found, there are none that verifiably violate the Nested Hierarchy, which is the specific prediction of evolution. Design does not need a nested hierarchy, evolution does. And the fossil record tells us, that is what we have.

And when we look inside the genome at pseudogenes, ERVs, and ubiquitous proteins, we see the SAME nested hierarchy independently verified.

Only evolution predicted it, and only evolution, to this date, explains it.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

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#24 Apr 11, 2013
Remy wrote:
Anyway, my point is that intelligent design does have as good of a case to be called legitimate science as does evolution (some would argue more of a case). The idea of Intelligent Design is that if there is a designer than there could be a way to see design in nature. It is the science that studies signs of intelligence.
"if there is a designer then there could be a way to see design in nature".

As far as that goes, nothing wrong with that idea. But it goes no further. Behe and others have not been able to formulate any coherent hypothesis that worked or was testable in any way. So what looks like a fertile question turns out to be nothing but a conjecture.

All they did was look at complex structures and ask evolutionists "how could THAT evolve?", and assume that if no answer was forthcoming, that was somehow evidence for their conjecture. Its not. In every case, it may merely mean we have not found the particular evidence or worked out how THAT structure came to be.

Not science, not even close!

“Leave That Thing Alone!”

Since: Nov 07

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#25 Apr 11, 2013
Kong_ wrote:
<quoted text>
Good catch.
Missed that.
I have a feeling "Remy" is a student of Dembski's "Design Inference Class". Final grade includes:

"At least 10 posts defending ID totaling at least 3,000 words on “hostile” websites — 20 percent."

From page 3 of the course syllabus

http://designinference.com/wp-content/uploads...

“Nihil curo de ista tua stulta ”

Since: May 08

Orlando

#26 Apr 11, 2013
TerryL wrote:
<quoted text>I have a feeling "Remy" is a student of Dembski's "Design Inference Class". Final grade includes:
"At least 10 posts defending ID totaling at least 3,000 words on “hostile” websites — 20 percent."
From page 3 of the course syllabus
http://designinference.com/wp-content/uploads...
That would explain a lot.

Didn't another "college" of this type have a similar course 'extra credit' option, but was based out of (or near) Colorado?

“I am Sisyphus”

Since: Nov 07

Location hidden

#27 Apr 11, 2013
TerryL wrote:
<quoted text>I have a feeling "Remy" is a student of Dembski's "Design Inference Class". Final grade includes:
"At least 10 posts defending ID totaling at least 3,000 words on “hostile” websites — 20 percent."
From page 3 of the course syllabus
http://designinference.com/wp-content/uploads...

We will have to count his posts.

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#28 Apr 11, 2013
Drive by?

“Leave That Thing Alone!”

Since: Nov 07

Location hidden

#29 Apr 11, 2013
Kong_ wrote:
<quoted text>
That would explain a lot.
Didn't another "college" of this type have a similar course 'extra credit' option, but was based out of (or near) Colorado?
I'm not sure. I just remember reading about Dembski's class a year or 2 ago.

Level 9

Since: Sep 08

Everett, WA

#30 Apr 11, 2013
How do you defend a failed idea on a "hostile website"?

I wonder if almost everyone fails that part of the course.

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Since: Nov 07

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#31 Apr 11, 2013
Dogen wrote:
<quoted text>
We will have to count his posts.
His sock-puppet names are easy to spot... I've seen at least 3 from the same location all with the same basic posting style. "Sock-puppetry" is probaly encouraged to lend the illusion of support. I mean, seriously, if you're going to be dishonest anyway you might as well be as dishonest as possible, right? LOL!

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Since: Nov 07

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#32 Apr 11, 2013
Subduction Zone wrote:
How do you defend a failed idea on a "hostile website"?
I wonder if almost everyone fails that part of the course.
I'm sure by "defend", Dembski is merely telling them to use his "arguments" as often as possible and ignore all replies that blow holes in those arguments as if they didn't exist

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Since: Nov 07

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#33 Apr 11, 2013
MikeF wrote:
Drive by?
No.. he came back as "Remy"
The Dude

Macclesfield, UK

#34 Apr 11, 2013
TerryL wrote:
<quoted text>I have a feeling "Remy" is a student of Dembski's "Design Inference Class". Final grade includes:
"At least 10 posts defending ID totaling at least 3,000 words on “hostile” websites — 20 percent."
From page 3 of the course syllabus
This isn't a hostile website.

We don't own it.

:-)

“Pissing people off since 1949”

Level 8

Since: Apr 08

Seffner, FL

#35 Apr 11, 2013
TerryL wrote:
<quoted text>No.. he came back as "Remy"
Ah! Right!

“I am Sisyphus”

Since: Nov 07

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#36 Apr 11, 2013
TerryL wrote:
<quoted text>His sock-puppet names are easy to spot... I've seen at least 3 from the same location all with the same basic posting style. "Sock-puppetry" is probaly encouraged to lend the illusion of support. I mean, seriously, if you're going to be dishonest anyway you might as well be as dishonest as possible, right? LOL!

That is KABs philosophy (from the Darwin Crowd forum).

“Leave That Thing Alone!”

Since: Nov 07

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#37 Apr 11, 2013
Dogen wrote:
<quoted text>
That is KABs philosophy (from the Darwin Crowd forum).
Yeah... it's all too familiar. The only thing 'original' about such posters is some of their screen-names, although "True" "Truth" "Real" etc seem to appear in many as if having it as/in a 'name' will increases their credibility. It's my general rule of thumb to ignore posters with those types of terms in their names as it RARELY (if ever) reflects the content of their posts.
The Dude

Macclesfield, UK

#38 Apr 12, 2013
Darn it. And I was SO hoping (this time) that I'd get to find out what the "scientific theory" of ID is...

:-(
Remy

Charlotte, NC

#39 Apr 12, 2013
Hey everyone. Sorry for the couple days absence. I’ll try to respond to what I can.

First, I think the most basic question that was repeated was how is Intelligent Design a scientific theory? I think this is a fair question. Going into every point would take a while, but I'll try my best to show how it actually is.

Intelligent design is the science that studies signs of intelligence. It is not trying to figure out who that designer is, but it works off the hypothesis that if there is a designer it may be possible to detect signs of design in nature. ID proponents claim to be able to find those signs of intelligence within biological systems. Scientists have legitimate questions about this because of the concern, which some of you voiced, that we would think we saw something as designed using this method only to later discover it was not. Design theorists make the claim that they are able to conclusively tell the difference between designed and undesigned objects.

The primary claim is that evolution cannot fully explain how complex and information-rich some structures in biology actually are, and that there are ways to detect this. This is something we do in our everyday lives. By way of analogy (which I know some of you hate), we can look at a cloud and think it looks like a heart, but know based on previous observations that shape is not designed at all. It’s just how the cloud is shaped. If there is a small airplane by that cloud, however, that has also spelled out the words "Will you marry Me?" then we can tell that is designed. The chances of that happening by chance are just too small to even be considered remotely possible. ID claims that we can apply similar principles to biology.

One of the markers ID claims shows design is irreducible complexity. Aside from that, there is also the claim that design leaves behind a signature, namely specified complexity. To see if something in biology exhibits this, design theorists search for it in biological systems we can identify such as individual enzymes and metabolic pathways. ID theorists argue that blind natural causes cannot generate specified complexity. The point here is not to say natural systems cannot exhibit specified complexity. The argument is natural processes (evolution) cannot lead to it if there was none before.

Combining irreducible complexity with specified complexity makes intelligent causes empirically detectable. This is how it is able to be a scientific theory.

Also, despite the accusations, intelligent design is not creationism. Intelligent design is not interested in what the source of the creation of the universe is, or what caused there to be life, light, matter, or antimatter. It's interested in what caused things to be arranged the way they currently are much in the same way evolution is. Creationism is tightly tied to certain religious ideals. Intelligent design is not (even if its founder or some of its proponents hold to similar ideals).

Creationism is a religious idea, and not science. ID doesn't claim to know how the universe originated or to know how old it is, makes no claims about the age of the earth, can accommodate any degree of evolutionary change, doesn't claim human beings had to arise in a specific way, and does not make claims about who the designer is or how he created. The ID designer is compatible with the Judeo-Christian God, but is also compatible with the Demiurge, the unknown and uninvolved god of deist, the Demiurge, and even agnosticism. It is not theology. It is science that can be measured, and tested. Experiments can be run in a lab in attempts to support or deny it. It can even be proven wrong if direct evolutionary pathways to things such as the bacterial flagellum can be discovered. That’s what distinguishes it from creationism, and what makes it a science.

There's more to show why it's a science than that. Just not a lot more characters.

“Nihil curo de ista tua stulta ”

Since: May 08

Orlando

#40 Apr 12, 2013
Remy wrote:
Hey everyone. Sorry for the couple days absence. I’ll try to respond to what I can.
First, I think the most basic question that was repeated was how is

<<content deleted>>
A couple of hundred years ago, LIGHTNING was both "complex" and thought to have been derived from God/Intelligence.

We now know that lightning is not "Intellgently Designed", nor is it complex. We don't know EVERYTHING about lightning, but we are continuing to study it.

There **IS** no evidence for Intelligent Design. Not to totally discount the possibility of there being a Deity that started it all. There just is presently no evidence for it.
Remy

Charlotte, NC

#41 Apr 12, 2013
Related to this last post, I wanted to ask a question. The claim is made that intelligent design is not science because it was originated as something designed to combat evolutionary science, and to support the Judeo-Christian worldview. I get that, though I don't really think it's legitimate. Lots of good things are thought up by those with bad or different intentions. I don’t stop using my microwave just because the originator wasn’t trying to find a faster way to cook food.

However, I want to ignore that. I'm really curious about something else. Let's assume a scientist in a lab somewhere who somehow knew absolutely nothing about intelligent design, and who had no desire to support a Judeo-Christian worldview came up with a similar idea. With no concern about whom a designer or designers could be he or she began to wonder if there was someone to find signs for such a designer scientifically.

Would there be some way for him or her to perform experiments to try to detect this that would be considered legitimate in your eyes? How could he go about it? What if what he concluded showed that there was design, and it went perfectly along with evolutionary theory? Would you buy it? What if what he discovered (and this was verified in countless other experiments) showed that in some step along the way that evolution wasn't what caused everything from nonlife to sophisticated life? Would you find his or her claims to be more difficult to accept then?

I ask this largely because one of the prominent claims of ID scientists is that some are so committed to the evolutionary process in an almost dogmatic or religious way that there is simply no way to convince them that design could have been present anywhere. Even if the designer started branding everything, for instance, it would be claimed that evolution could somehow account for that. Are they right? If not, how could one legitimately go about design detection in your eyes? Is that even possible? I really am curious about this, and want to hear what you have to say.

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