Which is worse: Dishonestly claiming knowledge, or dishonestly claiming ignorance?

The Intelligent Design movement accuses biologists of claiming to know more, and with a greater degree of certainty, than they do. I would like to suggest that the proponents of ID are claiming to know less than they think they do. No true scientist, whether driven by intellectual curiosity or the desire to be famous, would claim to have found evidence that there was intervention by some powerful intelligence in our world, and then throw up their hands and say “but we have no way of knowing whether it was a deity, an alien, or what.” That isn’t an instance of humility, but of strategy, and we all know why the strategy is being used: to wedge ID into science classrooms by disconnecting it from religion.

If the proponents of ID were truly indifferent about where their “purely scientific investigations” lead, they would be eagerly exploring areas that they are currently avoiding. I return once more to the mole. William Dembski claims not to accept universal common descent. If ID were like any other form of science thus far developed, its researchers would be asking about the implications of such a view. The mole has non-functional (and in some cases skin and fur-covered) eyes. What are the options? Perhaps it was created by a being intelligent enough to create life but not quite smart enough to realize that an eyeless organism makes more sense than one with non-functional eyes. Or it was created by a being whose organism do not stand the test of time and are “devolving” (a claim that creationists have often made). Or it was created by a being who, when angry at humans, punished all living things as well (another claim creationists have made).

These are all logical possibilities that follow naturally from ID’s premises, arguments and assertions. What an exciting research opportunity! If this is a purely scientific investigation, then any of the above outcomes would be equally welcome. But of course, it isn’t. Yet I’ll be criticized, in completely hypocritical fashion, by proponents of ID if I mention that evolution avoids some of these unpleasant implications and is theologically preferable.

Intelligent design is intended as a wedge to get materialism out of science and society. But in fact it is a wedge that, if used, will break apart Christian faith even more effectively. Genuine science, on the other hand, does indeed require that we rethink our beliefs, but its effects on faith are far less destructive than those of young-earth creationism and intelligent design. As Pascal famously said, “A little science distances one from God, but a lot brings one back.”

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11734019573868663947 Steve Martin

    Hi James, I’m not sure which type of dishonesty is worse. But, as a Christian, *any* type of dishonesty is unacceptable if we claim to be following Christ. I know we all need to look closely at the beam in our own eyes as well, but the dishonesty of the leadership in the YEC movement in particular is appalling IMHO. (eg. The RATE project is being marketed as a “success for creation science” when in fact, their own data demonstrated that creation science views on radiometric dating is completely flawed. This data is not being given to the masses though). I haven’t scrutinized the ID data in detail (don’t think I have the technical background to do so) but everything that is coming the movement smacks of hype & marketing to me. If the stuff on UCD and post-darwinist wasn’t so offensive (ie. if it was actually presented in a Christ-like manner), I *might* actually look at it more closely.

  • Christensen

    Well, when Dawkins for example makes claims for science that go beyond anything is it able to provide, is that dishonest?Or just stupid?Or when he claims that the “notorious” Jewish Lobby controls American Foreign Policy…currently being discussed at Uncommon Descent…is that dishonest, or just stupid?Or maybe even something much worse?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00088119765077193302 julieunplugged

    Have you read The Language of God by Francis Collins (head of Human Genome Project)?He discredits ID and YEC thoroughly while maintaining what he calls a BioLogos position (theistic evolution). What do you think of that?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    What is your point here, Christensen? That if one extreme is dishonest and makes claims that are not genuinely scientific, that justifies the other extreme doing so? I was writing from a Christian perspective about what Christians do in this particular post. I’ve posted some of my thoughts about Dawkins both on this blog and on the Richard Dawkins forum. http://exploringourmatrix.blogspot.com/2007/08/do-as-i-say-not-as-i-do-richard-dawkins.html

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08305194278121208230 Joe G

    I say it is honest to say that we do not know who/ what the designer is.Reality demonstrates that the only way to make any determination about the designer(s) or the specific process used in the absence of direct observation or designer input, is by studying the design in question.Take Stonehenge as an example. It was only through years of research did archaeologists come up with what they currently “know” about it. And we still don’t know who or why.Also ID does not say anything about intervention. Sure it could have happened, but how could one tell?Then we have the fact that neither legilation nor adjudication can tell us what is and isn’t science.IOW if “God” was/ is the designer, so what? If science is interested in the reality behind our existence it should not matter.Intelligent Design is about detecting and understanding the design in question.“As a scientific research program intelligent design investigates the effects of intelligence and not intelligence as such.” Wm Dembski page 33 of “The Design Revolution”As for the mole- obviously you don’t understand ID. There isn’t anything in ID that prevents evolution.ID is NOT anti-evolution. Rather ID argues against culled genetic accidents, ie the blind watchmaker, as having sole dominion over the evolutionary process.However I do think it is funny, in a sad way, that you and people like you can think they can attach baggage to ID and make it do what it was never formulated for.After all the theory of evolution is held separate from abiogenesis even though how living organisms arose diorectly impacts any subsequent evolution.BTW ID is directly open to refutation.

  • Anonymous

    Blogger of one of the most read ID blog Telic Thoughts has commented your post here:http://telicthoughts.com/they-love-to-smear-us

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05904417073935434187 Smokey

    James, that was a beautiful essay. You wrote:”If the proponents of ID were truly indifferent about where their “purely scientific investigations” lead, they would be eagerly exploring areas that they are currently avoiding.”This is the crux of the biscuit, IMO. They lie and claim that their nonexistent research is being censored when in fact, they started their own journal:http://www.iscid.org/pcid.phpIt hasn’t been published since November 2005, and even prior to that, it was all apologetics, and no new data.To me, ID is about people with extraordinarily weak faith. Their faith in God is so weak that they think that He needs them to lie for him, and their faith in ID is so weak that they are scared to death of testing a single ID hypothesis and generating new knolwedge about the world. Even false hypotheses can generate new data, but I’ve generated more data relevant to the Dembski’s hypothesis (falsely presented as fact) that sequence conservation represents sequence constraint, and I did this in the process of doing basic, mechanistic, reductionist cell biology.When one reviews NIH grants, weasel words like “describe,” “explore,” and “investigate” often indicate a mortal fear of actually testing a hypothesis. Those weasel words are all we ever get from the ID movement.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07095211421748579139 mynym

    If this is a purely scientific investigation, then any of the above outcomes would be equally welcome. But of course, it isn’t. Yet I’ll be criticized, in completely hypocritical fashion, by proponents of ID if I mention that evolution avoids some of these unpleasant implications and is theologically preferable.Perhaps you should consider that what is empirically preferable and verifiable may be more important than your theology. Yet that has always been the way of the Darwinian mind, theology and theological concerns have always been its motivation and often are treated as more important than empirical evidence. I would list examples but given that you seem to be utterly hypocritical it doesn’t really matter. Or will you argue that if ID types include theology instead of attempting to avoid it as they do that you would support that? The hypocrisy typical to Darwinists is that negative theology is allowed: “God wouldn’t create the panda’s thumb this way, yet it seems natural to me to imagine that natural selection did and if I treat my own imagination as evidence then the evidence becomes overwhelming to me.” but supposedly no answer drawn from positive theology is allowed by rule because it would be religious. The pattern of including their own theological views to justify inane hypotheses that go against the empirical evidence while also arguing that other theological views must be excluded from science is typical. Then here you are demanding that ID types engage in theology and arguing that they’re dishonest for refraining from it. Are you fellows excluding theology/”religion” from science or not?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07095211421748579139 mynym

    When one reviews NIH grants, weasel words like “describe,” “explore,” and “investigate” often indicate a mortal fear of actually testing a hypothesis. Those weasel words are all we ever get from the ID movement.BS. Behe is focusing on empirical evidence and all he ever gets is attacked for it because of the theological and political concerns typical the modern scientific establishment. Ironically it seems that if Darwinism is actually specified theoretically and verified empirically then it can no longer be used as vague hypothetical goo to prop up the Darwinian creation myth. If an edge, definition and specification is found then all the people who use it to craft mythological narratives of naturalism will no longer be able to say that it does everything and that their hypothetical goo “fits” every possible observation. How many people, how much State funding or how many State funded PBS specials do you need in order to prop up the Darwinian creation myth against the few challengers that proto-Nazis work to censor?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07095211421748579139 mynym

    BTW ID is directly open to refutation.Fellows like the writers here will only admit that it is open to scientific refutation after they find a fault with it. Before that they will never admit that it is science, after they believe that they’ve found a fault then what was supposedly never science in the first place can magically be refuted scientifically.They are the type that will allow people to publish on ID in peer reviewed journals, as long as they’re refuting it. It’s very similar to the reasoning in the original post. Darwinian theology is “allowed” to justify a scientific theory while all other theology must be excluded yet ID types are wrong to try to play by the supposed rules of science.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    Mynym, Thank you for your many comments. It is hard to know how to address them, when they seem to me to reflect both a deep bitterness and a deep misperception of the situation. The scientific community thrives as a result of people making revolutionary discoveries. Sometimes (as in the case of the Big Bang) they have been ones that seemed to have unsettlingly religious overtones. The paradigm shifts occurred nonetheless, because of the evidence.Michael Behe has said what he thinks evolution cannot do. Others are working hard doing actual research that suggests that it can. Behe points at the flagellum and says “irreducibly complex” and can do nothing more. Other scientists (some even before he wrote) see the same flagellum and say “let’s see if we can explain this”. The latter approach is the one that has been responsible for scientific progress.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05904417073935434187 Smokey

    mynym wrote:”Yet that has always been the way of the Darwinian mind, theology and theological concerns have always been its motivation and often are treated as more important than empirical evidence.”ID proponents don’t produce empirical evidence.”I would list examples but given that you seem to be utterly hypocritical it doesn’t really matter.”The IDers own journal hasn’t published an issue in almost two years.”BS. Behe is focusing on empirical evidence…”No, Behe cherry-picks, and for what he calls the “centerpiece” of his book, quote-mines a review, avoiding the empirical evidence.”… and all he ever gets is attacked for it because of the theological and political concerns typical the modern scientific establishment.”No, he gets attacked for cherry-picking and making false claims about the evidence.”…to prop up the Darwinian creation myth.”Darwin didn’t address creation.”If an edge, definition and specification is found…”If Behe had even a smidgen of faith that he had found an edge, he would be in his lab doing experiments.”They are the type that will allow people to publish on ID in peer reviewed journals, as long as they’re refuting it.”ID has its own peer-reviewed journal. It hasn’t been published in almost two years.”It’s very similar to the reasoning in the original post. Darwinian theology is “allowed” to justify a scientific theory while all other theology must be excluded yet ID types are wrong to try to play by the supposed rules of science.”They don’t play at all. They don’t produce new data, just endless apologetics aimed at fooling laypeople like you.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14949411893531888555 geoffrobinson

    The post isn’t clearly thought out.First, one can hold that the science leads to particular conclusions while realizing limits of what science can do. So science can help detect teleology. But philosophy and other disciplines could be brought to bear from there. That doesn’t mean I have to be indifferent. It really is just a question of science and epistemology.Secondly, “universal common descent” is not the same thing as saying nothing is related to something else. Maybe the mole’s ancestors had wonderful working eyes. I would think Dr. Dembski would point out that this would be a net loss in functionality to give a particular advantage.To address this point, you are relying on philosophical presuppositions to rebut the point. Not science.A commentator said “Yet that has always been the way of the Darwinian mind, theology and theological concerns have always been its motivation and often are treated as more important than empirical evidence.” I have found this to be the case too. In the recent ID unDebate where the participants which supposed to lay out what would make them change their minds, the ID person stuck with science and the evolutionist went with an answer to the problem of evil.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14949411893531888555 geoffrobinson

    “Michael Behe has said what he thinks evolution cannot do. Others are working hard doing actual research that suggests that it can. Behe points at the flagellum and says “irreducibly complex” and can do nothing more. Other scientists (some even before he wrote) see the same flagellum and say “let’s see if we can explain this”. The latter approach is the one that has been responsible for scientific progress.”I would settle for a Darwinist to actually describe what a discovery would look like that would falsify their theory. In other words, what could we find in a biological system?Trying to find an evolutionary pathway is something that needs to be done. But if none are found, just-so stories will suffice.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    Thanks Geoff for your comments! Philip Kitcher’s recent book suggests that ID & YEC are “old science” rather than non-science, and interesting idea that I need to fully ponder as I finish reading the book. Of course, if one adopts a viewpoint that science once held but came to abandon because of the evidence, then there isn’t that much difference – it is still a way of saying “halt” to science.As for the potential for falsification, I’m not sure what I’ll be able to come up with new that remains to be tested. If hereditary traits had been passed on in a way that was dilutable rather than ‘digital’, that would have disproved evolution. If there hadn’t been common DNA across many life forms with similarities that demonstrate common ancestry, that would have falsified it. If radioactive dating had not shown the earth to be old enough to allow time for evolution, that would have falsified it. The problem I see with your question is that Darwin’s theory made predictions, and science tested for them, and the results largely confirmed his predictions. His theory has been refined rather than discarded, precisely because the evidence has consistently matched what the theory predicts.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08305194278121208230 Joe G

    First to correct smokey:”The Privileged Planet” makes several testable predictions and did bring us new knowledge about our world and universe.Ralated to biology both concepts- irreducible complexity and complex specified information- are well defined and can be tested against the data.We also have peer-reviewed papers from Dr Axe which support the design inference.To James:It is dishonest to say that either Darwin’s theory or its modern replacement makes any predictions.That is false. Not one of the alleged predictions is based on a proposed mechansim.As a matter of fact Dan Dennett tells us (and the PBS series “Evolution” broadcasted):“I think the mistake that many people make about natural selection is thinking that since it’s inexorable without exception, that it leaves no room for randomness, for chaos to come in and upset the directions that it’s taken so far.In fact, the process of natural selection feeds on randomness. It feeds on accident and contingency, and exploits that in ways that couldn’t be predicted. It’s still an inexorable process. It’s still always gradually improves the fit between whatever organisms there are and the environment in which they’re being selected.But there’s no predictability about what particular accidents are going to be exploited in this process.”- Daniel DennettAs far as universal common descent goes we still don’t have anything that can account for the physiological and anatomical differences observed. So far all “evidence” for ucd accounts for only the similarities observed. However similarities can be accounted for by either common design and/ or convergence.IOW if one accepts ucd they do so on faith alone.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    Thanks for the comment Joe. First, I think you are confusing randomness with untestability. Quantum physics deals with subatomic phenomena that seem to be highly random/indeterminate/uncertain, yet that does not mean there is nothing that we can test and ascertain about these phenomena. Being able to assert their randomness itself depends on having a theoretical framework that justifies such a claim.Second, it is simply not true that a common designer and common descent are both equally valid interpretations of the data. Sightless cave dwelling animals on different continents have more in common with their sighted relatives outside the cave than with each other, suggesting a relationship. The common bone structure of hands, wings, and flippers doesn’t make sense as a designer working from a blank slate, but does fit descent with modification. All this is old news. Newer methods, such as DNA analysis, allow us to see how closely our DNA matches up with that of primates. A key difference is that we have one chromosome fewer, and that chromosome matches up with the two corresponding ones in other primates, suggesting that they became fused. What would an opponent of common descent say about this? If you are going to make a plausible case for your viewpoint, you have to be able to provide some reason why a designer would make human beings by splicing two primate chromosomes together. Otherwise, the truth of the matter is what persuaded Lyell to change his mind about sporadic independent creations: it offers no explanation of the data.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    Julie, sorry it has taken me so long to reply to your comment. Collins’ own exposition of his own viewpoint is fairly brief, but what he says makes a lot of sense. I am strongly in favor of Christians incorporating into their worldview the best information the sciences can offer. I think it is important to acknowledge that there may be more than one way of doing that while attempting to do justice to both traditions/sources that one is drawing on.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08305194278121208230 Joe G

    First the only connection that ID has with religion is that some or even most of its proponents happen to be religious.Secondly you should pick up a copy of “Evolution:A Theory in Crisis” and read it. Pay particular attention to chapter 7 “The Failure of Homology”. Be forewarned you will find out why similar structures are NOT evidence for common descent- it has to do with the fact that those similar structures do not arise from similar genes nor similar developmental pathways.Common design was used to explain those similarities long before common descent. As a matter of fact when biology changed from common design to common descent very little changed (in the way of classification):”One would expect a priori that such a complete change of the philosophical bias of classification would result in a radical change of classification, but this was by no means the case. There was hardly and change in method before and after Darwin, except that “archetype” was replaced by the common ancestor.”– Ernst MayrSimpson echoed those commenbts:”From their classifications alone, it is practically impossible to tell whether zoologists of the middle decades of the nineteenth century were evolutionists or not. The common ancestor was at first, and in most cases, just as hypothetical as the archetype, and the methods of inference were much the same for both, so that classification continued to develop with no immediate evidence of the revolution in principles….the hierarchy looked the same as before even if it meant something totally different.”As for the alleged chromosome fusion- do you realize the implications? Apparently not. Ya see if such a fusion led to reproductive isolation then you run into many problems. If it doesn’t then we should see populations with varying chomosome numbers- as opposed to just a fixed 48 or 46.I will also say that there is no difference between a “God” who “creates” by culled genetic accidents and no “God” at all.IOW I am of the opinion that a “christian” who accepts Darwin is not a “christian” at all. Darwinism does not make sense in the light of “christianity”.And people who say it does are the people who are being dishonest.As for the mole no one said the design had to be perfect or that even if it started out that way that it had to remain that way.Dr Spetner proposed “built-in responses to environmental cues” as part of his “non-random evolutionary hypothesis”. That fits the eyeless mole sceanrio perfectly- IOW the moles environment triggered the loss of eyes.Also if ID can break apart “christian” faith then that faith was already breaking.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    Thanks for the comment, JoeG. I’m not sure why you assume that I haven’t read Denton’s book – is that because you cannot imagine how someone could possibly read it and not be persuaded by it? Since it has been a while, I will simply point you to others who read the book and more-or-less immediately explained why they did not feel that, apart from pointing out some things that we still do not know and some that we may never know, they did not find this to be a persuasive case against the evolutionary consensus:http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/denton.htmlhttp://www.don-lindsay-archive.org/creation/denton.htmlNext, let me address your point that “ID is not religious, its proponents just happen to be”. This is not a persuasive argument for two reasons. First, proponents of ID regularly argue that “many proponents of evolution are materialists and/or atheists, so the two are connected”, and you cannot make this argument about ideology and scientific conclusions being connected without it backfiring on your own viewpoint. Second, however, I find the argument about an intrinsic connection between Darwinian evolution and ideology does not fit the evidence. There is no one that I know of in the ID movement who is not a religious believer and influenced by that face in their evaluation. Those persuaded by the evidence for evolution, on the other hand, include people of all religious persuasions and no religious persuasion. Which side provides stronger evidence of ideological bias?You are of course free to say that no one who believes in evolution cannot really be a Christian. You are free to say that not only myself, Francis Collins, Ken Miller, Francisco Ayala, Pope John Paul, and (if we are not speaking merely of evolution through natural selection in the Darwinian sense) St. Augustine are not true Christians and are dishonest. But if you define a Christian as someone who agrees with you rather than as someone who agrees with the vast majority of official church statements, church leaders, theologians and historic viewpoints of Christianity, you will forgive us if most Christians do not find that viewpoint convincing.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08305194278121208230 Joe G

    I have dealt with both sites before and I take it I will have to do it again.I don’t have the time now but I will make a post on my blog so that it is saved this time.ID does not say anything about worship.ID does not say anything about who/ what to worship.ID does not say anything about when to worship.ID does not require a belief in “God”.Never confuse any perceived implications with the thing itself.ID was formulted to be a non-religious, driven by the observations, data and evidence- only alternative to materialism- that is everything can be reduced to energy/ matter.And again- ID is NOT anti-evolution. It is the mechanism that is being debated.I am not a christian. I was brought up christian, I know what it takes to be a christian- did the catholic school thing- and christianity just doesn’t jive with the premise that our existence is due to culled genetic accidents. Not only that there isn’t a shred of scientific data to support that view.It would also pretty much render the Bible to bathroom reading material- again I ask what is the difference between your “God” and no “God” at all?Isn’t it a bit strange one cannot tell an athesit from a christian?For example no one on this planet can account for the physiological and anatomical differences observed between two allegedly closely related populations such as chimps and humans. We don’t even know if such a transformation is even possible by any proposed mechansim.Natural selection has been demonstrated to be a bust. Genetic mutations have never been observed to accumulate in such a way that would suggest that vertebrates could “evolve” from inverts no matter how much time and how many generations are thrown at the problem.The premise cannot even be tested.In my mind you are just substituting “Father (time), mother (nature) and the blind watchmaker” for “the father, son and holy spirit”.It has also been my personal experience that most christians in many countries reject the theory of evolution. So you will have to forgive me for not believing what you stated to the contrary.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08305194278121208230 Joe G

    Is it plausible to believe that most homologous structures developed through convergent evolution? Only if the organisms wielding the structures either (a) lived in very similar environments having very similar selective pressures, or (b) the structure would confer a definite advantage in almost any environment (structures such as eyes and wings). But regarding both of these, it is necessary that the two classes of organisms that supposedly acquired their “homologous structures” through convergence not be linked to ancestors which share the same structure. It is a stretch to believe that the pentadactyl form arose separately and out of necessity in fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals, especially since the classes share ancestral links to one another as demonstrated by fossil evidence and embryological and molecular correlations. Of course, Denton does not believe the fossil record is adequate to make evolutionary inferences from, so I must deal with that next, but first a few notes on the embryological and molecular correlations I mentioned.Oops- I take it he didn’t read Unified physics theory explains animals’ running, flying and swimming:“”Our finding that animal locomotion adheres to constructal theory tells us that — even though you couldn’t predict exactly what animals would look like if you started evolution over on earth, or it happened on another planet — with a given gravity and density of their tissues, the same basic patterns of their design would evolve again,” Marden said. Hind limbs and fore limbs- same pattern. Did one evolve from the other?Embryos do not undergo convergent evolution. There is no reason for them to do so.That is quite the refutation!!!In fact, the embryo is a repository for useless vestigial structures like gill arches, and teeth that are reabsorbed by toothless creatures such as whales before birth. Plenty of junk from our evolutionary histories accumulate in embryonic stages, and it requires many ad hoc assumptions to explain them within the framework of typology.Yep and if there wasn’t any alleged junk then evolution could explain that too!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08305194278121208230 Joe G

    I didn’t read any scientific data which contradicts Denton on either website.People can spew rhetoric all day long. In the end the rubber has to meet the road.It’s the sort of nonsense on those two websites which turned me off to the theory of evolution. It also made me aware of the fact that teh theory is accepted for one reason- one can provide it with a good narrative account.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    Thanks Joe for the quick replies. Do let me know if and when you post something longer on your blog – I don’t want to miss it!Thank you also for the additional information about where you are coming from. I think one problem that often comes up in talking about Intelligent Design is that, unlike young-earth creationism, ID means a wider range of things to different people. Some have simply moved to using ID terminology but represent the same old YEC position. Others see design primarily in the laws of physics and don’t presume that there has to be subsequent intervention in the development of life for there to be design. In between there are a number of intermediate positions, among with Behe and Dembski would represent different ones.The link you posted suggested that biological evolution is constrained by physics, and thus there may be an ‘evolutionary landscape’ in which, if the tape were run over, many of the same courses and valleys would be filled (contrary to what Gould assumed). I would view the above information as indication that scientists are improving on their understanding of evolution. Perhaps you could clarify whether you think evolution per se is a ‘theory in crisis’, or whether your own perspective is that recent developments suggest that there may be much less that is random than was previously thought. If the latter, then I think there are probably a significant number of scientists, not only within the ID movement, that would probably agree.I’d also be interested to know whether you think there is some way of getting beyond design as a conclusion or inference to discovering something about the designer. I know that is controversial for some, because they are interested in avoiding reference to God for strategic reasons, but it doesn’t sound like you have those particular concerns. I think that is a fascinating topic, and would be delighted if you felt you could say more about it. Who knows – it might even lead me to retract some things I recently said I my blog! :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05904417073935434187 Smokey

    Joe wrote:”First to correct smokey: “The Privileged Planet” makes several testable predictions and did bring us new knowledge about our world and universe.”Joe, your claim is ridiculous. If you thought that they were real scientific predictions about future data, you would have simply listed them along with the results of testing them.”Ralated to biology both concepts- irreducible complexity and complex specified information- are well defined and can be tested against the data.”Predictions aren’t about testing concepts “against the data.” They are about predicting the data. The actual data, Joe, not anyone’s interpretation of the data. ID doesn’t do it, because no one in the ID movement has the faith to do it.”We also have peer-reviewed papers from Dr Axe which support the design inference.”Anything can “support the design inference” when you are afraid to make predictions about the data you will acquire in the future.IDers make no predictions, do no testing of their predictions, and basically refuse to do any science, all the while bamboozling laypeople like you who have trouble grasping the concept of a nested hierarchy.


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X