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Author Topic:   Does intelligent design have creationist roots?
Percy
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Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 8 of 151 (505314)
04-10-2009 7:19 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by Fallen
04-09-2009 6:36 PM


I didn't know anything about David Berlinski, so I looked him up at Wikipedia. Here's the first paragraph from the Intelligent Design section:

Wikipedia writes:

An outspoken critic of evolution, Berlinski is a Senior Fellow of the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture, a Seattle-based think-tank that is hub of the intelligent design movement. Berlinski shares the movement's disbelief in the evidence for evolution, but does not openly avow intelligent design and describes his relationship with the idea as: "warm but distant. It's the same attitude that I display in public toward my ex-wives." Berlinski is a scathing critic of "Darwinism", yet, "Unlike his colleagues at the Discovery Institute, [he] refuses to theorize about the origin of life."

Berlinski is a Senior Fellow of the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture, and it's interesting that the Discovery Institute is so hard up for Senior Fellows that they have one who describes his relationship with their core values as "warm but distant." I doubt you could find any senior fellows of the AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science) who would describe their relationship with science as "warm but distant."

Anyway, getting to the topic, intelligent design is in something of a quandary. It's an attractive haven for any who reject evolution for whatever reason, but as Dover so clearly revealed, conservative Christians concerned about science education are attracted to it because they think it's just creationism under another name. This misunderstanding by the conservative Christian public by no means indicts intelligent design as creationism (that conclusion derives from other evidence), but it does mean they would be nearly as unsatisfied with the teaching of intelligent design as they are of evolution. What most conservative Christians don't know about intelligent design is that it believes the universe began with the Big Bang about 13.7 billion years ago, that the earth is 4.56 billion years old, that the current geology of our planet reflects the expression of natural forces over billions of years, and that there was no global flood about 4500 years ago.

In other words, the immense popularity of intelligent design with the conservative Christian public is due to the fact that they have no idea what it really says. But creationist organizations like ICR (Institute of Creation Research) have a clear understanding of intelligent design, and while the two movements have a polite relationship, knowledgeable creationists (by knowledgeable I mean they know what intelligent design is, not that they're knowledgeable about science) reject intelligent design.

Probably the worst thing that could happen for intelligent design would be to get accepted into a public school science curriculum somewhere, because then its congruence with 99% of the standard science curriculum would suddenly become apparent to conservative Christians. Public support for intelligent design would quickly dry up. Discovery Institute understood this on some level when they walked away from the Dover trial.

--Percy


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 Message 10 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 7:59 AM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 11 of 151 (505326)
04-10-2009 9:38 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by PaulK
04-10-2009 7:59 AM


PaulK writes:

It would be fair to say that many leaders in the ID movement believe that, However ID itself takes no position on those matters.

Strictly speaking you're right, it doesn't, but that's beside the point. Strictly speaking neither does evolution.

Indeed there are YECs happily within the ID movement.

Which was the point I was making. They only think they're inside it, and only because they misunderstand it, see ICR's rather nuanced position on intelligent design: Intelligent Design and/or Scientific Creationism

--Percy


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 Message 10 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 7:59 AM PaulK has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 12 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 11:09 AM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 13 of 151 (505335)
04-10-2009 11:45 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by PaulK
04-10-2009 11:09 AM


PaulK writes:

You're including some of the leaders of the ID movement in that - Nancy Pearcey and Paul Nelson are two that I know of.

Like I said, the Discovery Institute is evidently desperate for fellows. Does their presence make YECism part of ID?

--Percy


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 Message 12 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 11:09 AM PaulK has responded

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 Message 14 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 11:56 AM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 15 of 151 (505354)
04-10-2009 1:34 PM
Reply to: Message 14 by PaulK
04-10-2009 11:56 AM


Ah, I see, we're talking about different things. I was wondering why you mentioned Nelson and Pearcey. I wasn't talking about ID leadership, I was talking about the rank-and-file. What I originally said was, "In other words, the immense popularity of intelligent design with the conservative Christian public is due to the fact that they have no idea what it really says."

My point was that the conservative Christian rank-and-file by and large does not grasp that ID is fairly distinct from their own views. As Dover made clear, the rank-and-file has it all confused. When asked to describe ID all they could do is talk in terms of God and Christ and Noah's flood and all lifeforms being created by God and getting rid of evolution. Few conservative Christians have ever heard of irreducible complexity or specified complexity or that information can only be created by intelligence. They're grasping at ID not because they've had it inculcated in their minds from the pulpit for years and years (as has been the case with creationism and which explains why so many are familiar with creationist positions - you can find creationist brochures on the tables near the entrance to many conservative Christian churches) but because it sounds like their best bet for opposing the teaching of evolution.

On the other hand, the leaders of the ID movement understand the distinction between creationism and ID very well.

Why else won't they admit to the Earth being 4.5 billion years old?

They do admit the Earth is 4.5 billion years old. I just rewatched Flock of Dodos a couple weeks ago, and there was Behe expressing his belief that the earth is billions of years old and that the universe is billions of years older. And I believe it was Stephen Meyer who I saw in a debate express similar beliefs.

I think what you're thinking of is the Discovery Institute's "big tent" approach, and certainly people like Paul Nelson's presence is helpful in making this case to assuage the concerns of YEC organizations like ICR. Nonetheless, they view Discovery Institute's position askance.

--Percy


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 Message 14 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 11:56 AM PaulK has responded

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 Message 16 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 2:35 PM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 17 of 151 (505362)
04-10-2009 2:51 PM
Reply to: Message 16 by PaulK
04-10-2009 2:35 PM


So your position is that ID includes YEC, and that therefore the rank-and-file conservative Christian isn't confused about ID. Understood. I disagree.

--Percy


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 Message 16 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 2:35 PM PaulK has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 18 by Coyote, posted 04-10-2009 3:21 PM Percy has responded
 Message 19 by PaulK, posted 04-10-2009 3:26 PM Percy has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 20 of 151 (505368)
04-10-2009 4:21 PM
Reply to: Message 18 by Coyote
04-10-2009 3:21 PM


Re: ID
Coyote writes:

As a tool, it has attracted both OEC and YEC folks, as well as many folks who don't care what it is as long as it can be used against evolution.

Well, maybe some don't care, maybe some are confused. Whatever the case, they're certainly mistaken if they believe that ID is the way to get creationism taught in school.

It may possibly be the case that IDists tailor their presentations to the faithful by deemphasizing their scientific positions. But in secular venues, especially in public debates and in presentations to school boards and legislatures, they have to persuade people that ID is science and that it is not associated with creationist views like a young earth and a relatively recent global flood. It was the failure of such ideas that made the switch to ID necessary, and so ID must, of necessity at least publicly, disavow such views and embrace legitimate science.

If you want to claim that there's some considerable dissembling going on over at DI I wouldn't argue with you, I often feel that way, too, but I try not to think that way. Many creationists think evolutionists know evolution is a lie, and I think it's just as much a mistake to conclude that creationists know creationism (in whatever form) is a lie. Most people just don't have the stamina to lead insincere lives.

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Grammar.


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 Message 21 by DevilsAdvocate, posted 04-11-2009 12:15 AM Percy has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 26 of 151 (505699)
04-15-2009 3:35 PM
Reply to: Message 22 by Fallen
04-15-2009 1:31 PM


Re: Innocent until proven guilty.
Let's not forget your original point. This is from your opening post:

Fallen writes:

While I agree that Intelligent Design draws some of its support from creationists and former creationists such as the FTE, I disagree with your statement that “intelligent design was invented to masquerade its religious background, and replace creation ‘science’ after it was banned by the court.” I disagree because I think its clear that many of the advocates and supporters of Intelligent Design come from very anti-creationist backgrounds.

The actual roots of the intelligent design concept are almost always traced back to Paley. If he isn't the original creationist "root" I don't know who is.

As I said once already, the intelligent design concept attracts adherents for more than religious reasons, but it was adopted and made into a movement by the same people who previously failed to expel evolution from the classroom, the creationists.

So all you're really saying is that contemporary creationists didn't invent the concept of intelligent design, and I think many here would agree with you. Like I said, credit for that is usually given to Paley.

More importantly, and as has already been pointed out by others in this thread, intelligent design is an inherently religious concept because wherever and whenever life first began, since there was no prior life to intelligently design that first life, if you really believe a natural origin for life is impossible then only supernatural possibilities remain. Intelligent design is in essence a rejection of natural explanations and of science itself.

Dembski's concepts concerning information and specified complexity are inventions of his own mind without any connection to the real world.

--Percy


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 Message 22 by Fallen, posted 04-15-2009 1:31 PM Fallen has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 103 of 151 (508799)
05-16-2009 10:00 AM
Reply to: Message 102 by Fallen
05-15-2009 8:33 PM


Re: Worthless subtitle replaced by this slightly less worthless subtitle
Fallen writes:

Actually, I don't think intelligent design has anything at all to do with any interpretation of Genesis. The whole point of using the term "intelligent design" is to draw attention to the fact that ID advocates believe the evidence suggests an intelligent designer at work. Nothing more, nothing less.

What percentage of scientists who are traditional creationists are evangelical Christians? I don't really know, but I'm sure we can agree it's a very high percentage, right? Maybe 99%?

What percentage of scientists who are IDists are evangelical Christians? I don't really know this number, either, but I hope we can still agree that it's a fairly high percentage. Maybe 80%?

Some very prominent IDists are not evangelical Christians, like Michael Behe, arguably the founder of the modern intelligent design movement. But at trial when asked if he believed the intelligent designer was God he answered, "Yes, that's correct." (Dover Trial Transcripts, Morning of Day 10)

Steve William Fuller is an IDer and sociologist with no public statements of his religious beliefs, but at Dover he testified at length about God and about the relationship between science and religion. When asked if the designer is a monotheistic conception of God he answered, "Yes, it is in that tradition that comes about, yes. You need a God that's detachable from the creation." (Dover Trial Transcripts, Afternoon of Day 15)

What we see is that almost no scientists who aren't evangelical Christians accept creationism.

And we see that maybe only 20% of scientists who accept ID aren't evangelical Christians, but this group is still highly religious.

The textbook of intelligent design, Of Pandas and People, began as a creationist textbook. It was transformed into a book about intelligent design by simple word substitutions. "Creator" was replaced by "intelligent designer", "creation" was replaced by "intelligent design", and so forth. All other content in the book is the original creationist content.

But the real identity of ID is revealed at the grass roots level in school systems like Dover, where the only proponents of ID are young earth creationists who see ID as their only chance of opposing evolution. This is why the Discovery Institute is against public spectacles like the Dover trial. They understand that as much as they'd like to keep their religion out of their science, their followers lack the knowledge and expertise to maintain or even understand this position, and many are not aware that such a distinction exists. You can't have school board members promoting ID with statements like, "Two thousand years ago, someone died on a cross. Can't someone take a stand for him?" (Bill Buckingham, chair of the Dover school board) and still maintain that ID isn't religion.

--Percy


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 Message 102 by Fallen, posted 05-15-2009 8:33 PM Fallen has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 105 by Fallen, posted 05-16-2009 2:56 PM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 106 of 151 (508848)
05-16-2009 5:37 PM
Reply to: Message 105 by Fallen
05-16-2009 2:56 PM


Re: Worthless subtitle replaced by this slightly less worthless subtitle
Fallen writes:

An idea should be classified on its own merits, not the beliefs of the people advocating it.

Uh, look at the title of the thread. We're not assessing the merits of ID, we're discussing whether it has creationist roots.

I was actually trying to respond to your point that ID advocates are just following the evidence. That's why I pointed out that the vast majority of creationists and ID advocates are evangelical Christians. Where religious beliefs correlate so prominently it's not because they're following the evidence, and as Dover made clear, rank and file evangelical Christians aren't familiar with the evidence and can't even define ID. "Following the evidence" isn't within their capabilities.

Concerning Behe and Fuller, I was not making any attempt to argue that they claimed to be able to connect the intelligent designer to God. The point was that although not evangelical Christians, Behe is very religious, and Fuller, while his religious views are not public, is professionally very focused on religion in his philosophical and sociological work, and I suspect he's very religious, too.

In other words, with few exceptions, ID supporters are very religious, and to a great extent the ID advocates of today were the creationist supporters of yesterday. It is no surprise that the tactics today are similar to the tactics then. For example, you quote Behe saying that creationism is "a theological religious concept," but creationists were not forthright and honest about this 20 years ago, were they, and IDists are being no more forthright and honest today. It will surprise no one 20 years from now when whatever succeeds ID is on trial and someone testifies, "Creationism and ID were religious concepts, but what we've got now is real science."

What Behe is actually saying is, "Okay, well, yeah, creationism was religion, but this time we're really doing science. Yeah, okay, we avoid legitimate science journals and conferences like the plague and run our own journals and conferences just like creationism did, but we're still really doing science. And okay, yeah, we've come out against methodological naturalism which underpins all of modern science just like creationism, but we're not really anti-science like they were. And yes, I don't really see any need to actually perform scientific research on the ideas I proposed in my book Darwin's Black Box just like creationists didn't do research, but I'm just a scientist doing real science. Really, trust me, I wouldn't lie."

Percy writes:

The textbook of intelligent design, Of Pandas and People, began as a creationist textbook. It was transformed into a book about intelligent design by simple word substitutions. "Creator" was replaced by "intelligent designer", "creation" was replaced by "intelligent design", and so forth. All other content in the book is the original creationist content.


This is all very debatable...

That Of Pandas and People was modified from a creationist to an ID textbook just by making word substitutions was one of the least debatable facts to emerge from Dover. The only thing less equivocal was that Bill Buckingham was a liar.

Well, again, I don’t see why an idea should be defined by those that abuse it.

I agree, but neither should it be claimed that ID has widespread support when most of its so-called supporters are actually those you say are abusing it.

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Grammar.


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 Message 105 by Fallen, posted 05-16-2009 2:56 PM Fallen has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 111 by Fallen, posted 05-18-2009 4:48 PM Percy has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 112 of 151 (509090)
05-18-2009 5:01 PM
Reply to: Message 105 by Fallen
05-16-2009 2:56 PM


Re: Worthless subtitle replaced by this slightly less worthless subtitle
I'm posting a second reply because while reading Michael Shermer's Why Darwin Matters I came across this quote from William Dembski, a Discovery Institute fellow, author of many books, originator of the concept of specified complexity, and one of the most prominent supporters of ID. This quote is from February 6, 2000, at the National Religious Broadcasters conference in Anaheim, California:

Dembski writes:

Intelligent design opens the whole possiblity of us being created in the image of a benevolent God. . . .The job of apologetics is to clear the ground, to clear obstacles that prevent people from coming to the knowledge of Christ. . . .And if there's anything that I think has blocked the growth of Christ as the free reign of the Spirit and people accepting the Scripture and Jesus Christ, it is the Darwinian naturalistic view.

Whenever advocates of creation science or ID think only true believers are listening, they're actually very honest about what they think, and Dembski thinks ID's job is to clear the obstacle of Darwinism from the path to salvation. Dembki's interest in ID is not scientific. He's a theologian, not a scientist, and his only interest in ID is as a weapon in the war against the evolutionary threat to faith. ID is evangelical Christianity's hope for disproving evolution, just as creation science was their hope up until about 20 years ago.

There's just no way to hide the fact that the vast majority of people pushing ID are evangelical Christians, just like the vast majority of people pushing creation science were evangelical Christians 20 years ago. The roots of ID are deeply embedded within creation science which is itself deeply embedded within evangelical Christianity.

We know that many honest and sincere evangelicals sincerely believe that ID is really science, but religious adherents the world over believe lots of things that aren't true of reality. We use science to figure out what's true of reality, and until ID does science instead of self-promotion it'll go nowhere science-wise.

One more quote, again from Shermer's book. If ID has a father figure it is Philip E. Johnson, author of Darwin on Trial, who in 1996 said:

Johnson writes:

This isn't really, and never has been, a debate about science. . . .It's about religion and philosophy.

Well duh!

--Percy


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 Message 105 by Fallen, posted 05-16-2009 2:56 PM Fallen has responded

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 Message 113 by Fallen, posted 05-24-2009 2:34 PM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 115 of 151 (509769)
05-24-2009 7:13 PM
Reply to: Message 113 by Fallen
05-24-2009 2:34 PM


Re: Worthless subtitle replaced by this slightly less worthless subtitle
Fallen writes:

How would you define a "quote mine," Percy?

How would you define, "Let's ask a leading question and just leave the accusation hanging in the air without offering any arguments or evidence and without being specific or even quoting a single word?"

The quotes I provided of Behe, Dembski and Johnson are accurate characterizations of their views. It's not like they've ever tried to hide that they believe the intelligent designer is God. Should I quote from the Wedge Document from the Discovery Institute next? Maybe from the opening paragraph stating their "bedrock principle" that "human beings are created in the image of God?" Does that sound like ID to you?

Your point based upon the Gallup poll didn't make sense to me and I couldn't see where your numbers came from, but to the extent it is true that a very large segment of America accepts both evolution and a role for God then it is worth noting that a much smaller subset believe that God's role constitutes science. The plaintiffs at Dover all believed in God.

--Percy


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 Message 113 by Fallen, posted 05-24-2009 2:34 PM Fallen has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 118 by Fallen, posted 05-24-2009 11:09 PM Percy has responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 121 of 151 (509805)
05-25-2009 7:54 AM
Reply to: Message 118 by Fallen
05-24-2009 11:09 PM


Re: Shermer quotes
Fallen writes:

After further consideration, I don’t think it would be fair to attach that label to Shermer, since neither quote’s context is available online.

Sure it would be fair to accuse Shermer of quote mining, assuming the quotes met one simple criterion. You don't need to see a quote's context to become suspicious that it's a quote mine. All you need to know is that the quote appears to be saying something that would be highly unusual for that person to say. Stephen Jay Gould was a prominent opponent of creationism, and he was quote mined relentlessly by creationists. One famous example is where creationists quote Gould saying:

Gould writes:

The fossil record with its abrupt transitions offers no support for gradual change. All paleontologists know that the fossil record contains precious little in the way of intermediate forms; transitions between major groups are characteristically abrupt.

Does this sound like an opinion that a paleontologist and one of the most famous evolutionary scientists in the world would hold? No, of course not. And so one immediately suspects a quote mine, and that turns out to be the case. Gould was stating that position in order to argue against it. His next sentence begins, "Although I reject this argument..."

A creationist might be forgiven for innocently passing on that quote since they would likely be ignorant of both context and the details of Gould's views, but some creationist out there did purposefully and knowingly extract that quote from its context.

And this isn't an isolated incident. Creationists have produced literally pages and pages and pages of quote mines of prominent scientists. It is relentlessly dishonest behavior like this that occasionally causes those on the side of science to finally just throw up their hands in frustration and label creationists as liars. And obviously some are, and I think we're all thankful that for the most part intelligent design advocates have abandoned this facet of their creationist heritage.

Getting back to Shermer's quotes, ask yourself if Shermer is quoting Behe, Dembski or Johnson saying anything they don't actually believe. Only if you knew that they don't believe the intelligent designer is the Christian God would you suspect quote mining. But we know they all believe this, and if the particular quotes Shermer used aren't on the Internet you'll still have no trouble finding others. For example, just enter "Dembski intelligent design God" into Google. I've just done this and the 2nd link (Dog Bites Man; Dembski Says Designer is God) has this Dembski quote:

Dembski writes:

I believe God created the world for a purpose. The Designer of intelligent design is, ultimately, the Christian God.

Religion does strange things to people. A thousand years ago it caused them to travel halfway around the civilized world to crusade against infidels in Palestine. More recently it has caused at least a couple mass suicides (Johnstown and Heaven's Gate). How does one explain such things? I don't think anyone can answer that question.

And so of course we also can't explain why Behe, Dembski and Johnson think that intelligent design is science, but I believe that they are truly sincere in this belief. But they also seem to understand that the science isn't really in complete form yet, and certainly not ready for the classroom, which is the main reason the Discovery Institute pulled out of Dover.

Supporting this view, here are a couple more quotes from Shermer's book, Why Darwin Matters. This first one is from Dembski's 2004 book, The Design Revolution (you can find this one on the web):

Dembski writes:

Because of intelligent design's outstanding success at gaining a cultural hearing, the cultural and political component of intelligent design is now running ahead of the scientific and intellectual component.

This next is a quote from Paul Nelson, a Discovery Institute fellow, at the 2004 meeting of the Bible Institute in Los Angeles (you can find this one on the web, too):

Nelson writes:

Easily the biggest challenge facing the ID community is to develop a full-fledged theory of biological design. We don't have such a theory right now, and that's a problem. . . .Right now, we've got a bag of powerful intuitions, and a handful of notions such as 'irreducible complexity' and 'specified complexity' - but, as yet, no general theory of biological design.

Look at what Dembski and Nelson are saying. Not only does intelligent design have insufficient scientific support, it doesn't even have an intelligible theory. This is probably the biggest reason why intelligent design shouldn't be taught in science class. And even aside from the problems regarding what one could possibly teach about intelligent design, there's the larger problem of how any school system could in good conscious teach as legitimate biology something that 99% of biologists reject.

The route to the science classroom is by becoming accepted science by doing the research, presenting the results, and convincing colleagues. If becoming accepted science is a goal of intelligent design then eschewing scientific journals and conferences is a recipe for failure. Creating your own "scientific" journals and conferences, which is just what creationism did, is just too obviously a dishonest attempt to give the appearance of doing science without actually doing science. I think that intelligent design would love to become accepted science if they only could find a way to do that, but the real world isn't being very cooperative in providing them any evidence.

What is your standard for determining when guilt by association is fallacious? How do you justify your standard?

I know you asked this question of Taz, but establishing objective standards for assessing guilt by association would seem outside the scope of this thread. Staying more within this thread's topic I would answer that while it is a fact that most advocates of intelligent design are evangelical Christians whose real beef is with the teaching of evolution in public schools, this isn't sufficient by itself to conclude that intelligent design is just spruced up creationism. It's suspicious, of course, but not conclusive. But when you add other facts the reality becomes crystal clear:

  • 99% of biologists reject intelligent design, just as they did creationism.

  • The Discovery Institute is primarily engaged in PR efforts rather than research, just like ICR (a creationist organization).

  • Intelligent design has made no research progress, just like creationism.

  • Intelligent design opposes the methodological naturalism that underpins all science, just like creationism.

  • Intelligent design avoids participation with mainstream science, just like creationism.

  • Intelligent designers endlessly assert that they are doing legitimate science, just like creationists.

  • All it took to change a book about creation science into a book about intelligent design was to replace references to creator and creation with intelligent designer and intelligent design.

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Spelling.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 118 by Fallen, posted 05-24-2009 11:09 PM Fallen has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 125 of 151 (509832)
05-25-2009 11:17 AM
Reply to: Message 124 by Taz
05-25-2009 10:45 AM


Re: Appeal to Authority
Taz writes:

Too bad the site's search engine ain't working.

The site's search engine works fine. I entered "fallacies aquaintance authority ethical professionals" into the search box and it found the precise message you cited.

I'll post the link to the thread where myself versus all you guys took place on this very matter when I find the thread.

What is the point of citing a thread where you took on everyone but convinced no one?

As Nwr stated in that thread (Science is based on a logical fallacy - II (re: Appeal to Authority)), one commits the fallacy of appeal to authority when one attempts to close off further discussion by citing an authority. I suppose the fallacy isn't as egregious if the authority is legimate, but it's still a fallacy.

So if someone says, "The Bible says the Earth is only 6000 years old," while it is a reference to an authority, it is not an appeal to authority. For example, if you reply, "But the geological evidence says otherwise," and the answer comes back, "Then let's explore that evidence," then while the Bible reference was as an authority, it obviously wasn't an example of the fallacy of appeal to authority.

But if the answer that comes back is, "The Bible says it, I believe it, and that's that," then that seems like a pretty clear example of the fallacy of appeal to authority.

In the same way, if someone says, "Einstein says that time slows with increasing velocity," and someone else replies, "There is evidence that this is not true," and the answer comes back, "Then let's examine this evidence," then though it's a reference to an authority, it isn't the fallacy of appeal to authority.

Only if the answer comes back, "You think you know more than Einstein? Get lost!" then that's a pretty clear example of the fallacy of appeal to authority.

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Improve grammar.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 124 by Taz, posted 05-25-2009 10:45 AM Taz has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 127 of 151 (510082)
05-27-2009 8:37 AM


Smile for the Day
Off topic, but I just referenced Einstein in my previous message, so I'll put this here. While in line at the CVS pharmacy yesterday I looked up at the board that said "Meet our pharmacists." Next to it were three pictures, and the third one was...Einstein.

"I'd like to meet your new pharmacist," I said when it was my turn.

"Al isn't here right now. His hours are 10 to 3 weekdays."

"Oh, that's too bad," I replied. "I'd really like to meet him."

"Who's he asking about, Al?" someone else called over.

"Yeah, Al."

"He's on sabbatical."

"Oh, too bad," I said. "Well, you take good care of Al."

"Don't worry, we will."

:)

--Percy


  
Percy
Member
Posts: 19287
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 134 of 151 (510943)
06-04-2009 10:16 PM


A Former Creationist Reveals All
Dean Kenyon is the author of the book Of Pandas and People that received so much attention during the Dover trial. Now an ID proponent, in 2000 he reportedly said:

Dean Kenyon writes:

Scientific creationism, which in its modern phase began in the early 1960s, is actually one of the intellectual antecedents of the Intelligent Design movement.

See A New Scientific Revolution. This is the Google cached version, the webpage at Catholic.net apparently is no longer there, but it can be found at other websites around the web.

I think this neatly settles the issue.

--Percy

Edited by Percy, : Spelling.


Replies to this message:
 Message 136 by Fallen, posted 06-09-2009 12:40 PM Percy has responded

  
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