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Author Topic:   Discovery Institute loses one
PaulK
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Posts: 14715
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.5


Message 1 of 103 (236670)
08-25-2005 2:52 AM


One of the Discovery Insitutues 400 scientitsts who doubt Darwin has asked for his name to be taken off the list.

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2002450329_danny24.html


Davidson says he was seeking a place where people "believe in a Creator and also believe in science.

"I thought it was refreshing," he says.

Not anymore. He's concluded the institute is an affront to both science and religion.


But I bring you Davidson's views because I suspect he is a bellwether for the Discovery Institute and intelligent design, as more scientists learn about them. He was attracted to an institute that embraced both science and religion, yet he found its critique of existing science wrong and its new theory empty.

"I'm kind of embarrassed that I ever got involved with this," Davidson says.


"It's laughable: There have been millions of experiments over more than
a century that support evolution," he says. "There's always questions being asked about parts of the theory, as there are with any theory, but there's no real scientific controversy about it."

Davidson began to believe the institute is an "elaborate, clever marketing program" to tear down evolution for religious reasons. He read its writings on intelligent design � the notion that some of life is so complex it must have been designed � and found them lacking in scientific merit.

{Edited topic title to change "DI" to "Discovery Institute". Also deleted the "The" at the title's beginning. - Adminnemooseus}

This message has been edited by Adminnemooseus, 11-06-2005 03:28 PM


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AdminNosy
Administrator
Posts: 4754
From: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Joined: 11-11-2003


Message 2 of 103 (236675)
08-25-2005 4:08 AM


Thread moved here from the Proposed New Topics forum.
  
ramoss
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Posts: 3097
Joined: 08-11-2004
Member Rating: 6.3


Message 3 of 103 (236721)
08-25-2005 8:32 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by PaulK
08-25-2005 2:52 AM


I don't think it will be a bell weather incident. That is just too much hopeful wishing. HOwever, it is good to know about this incident, if nothing else, for politcal reasons.
This message is a reply to:
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sidelined
Inactive Member


Message 4 of 103 (237396)
08-26-2005 2:40 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by PaulK
08-25-2005 2:52 AM


PaulK

I have fired off a letter to the Discovery Intitute asking for their take on the BobDavidson leaving issue. This is the second letter I have sent to the institute the last one was July 11 this year and no reply yet for that. If they should respond what do you suppose the official stance will be?


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PaulK
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Posts: 14715
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 2.5


Message 5 of 103 (237404)
08-26-2005 2:54 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by sidelined
08-26-2005 2:40 PM


Of course if they answer at all, they'll try to spin it. The DI is mainly a propaganda machine. But they may well try to ignore it - it doesn't seem easy for them to find a remotely plausible excuse.
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Monk
Member (Idle past 1967 days)
Posts: 782
From: Kansas, USA
Joined: 02-25-2005


Message 6 of 103 (237443)
08-26-2005 4:10 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by PaulK
08-25-2005 2:52 AM


Something smells fishy
I'm a little confused here and I may be wrong, but something doesn't smell right. The article implies that Davidson was a member of DI and then realized it was not the type of organization he wanted to be involved with.

From the article:

quote:
"When I joined I didn't think they were about bashing evolution. It's pseudo-science, at best ... What they're doing is instigating a conflict between science and religion." I'm kind of embarrassed that I ever got involved with this,"

As far as I can tell, membership will get you a few free CD's and that's about it. The fees are mainly for supporting it as a non-profit organization. All of the published articles are freely available on line. I went to their site and searched their database using keywords "Intelligent Design" and 102 articles came up. There seems to be an abundance of free information available with which to form an opinion as to what sort of organization DI is as it relates to ID.

In the article, Davidson goes on to say:

quote:
"It's laughable: There have been millions of experiments over more than a century that support evolution," he says. "There's always questions being asked about parts of the theory, as there are with any theory, but there's no real scientific controversy about it."

Then why did he join?

The various mission statements on the site are quite clear to what the focus of the organization is. I didn't need to join the organization to view any of the 102 articles on ID. Davidson surly could have determined the nature of the organization by reviewing these articles and mission statements. As a scientist, doctor, and 28 years as a nephrology professor at the University of Washington medical school, I don't think Davidson "suddenly" formed his opinion about evolution. He must have held long standing views on the matter.

If it is patently obvious to posters here at EvC that DI is nothing more than a propoganda organization, how could such a highly educated scientist been duped regarding the "real" agenda of the DI?

Its seems to me that at best, he might have been curious about ID and its proponents, (DI). But if that is the case, then he could have gotten all the info necessary to determine what type of organization they are without becoming a member and thereby save himself some embarrassment. At worst, he joined with the expressed intention of smearing the organization.

This message has been edited by Monk, Sat, 09-17-2005 11:45 AM


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Replies to this message:
 Message 7 by Theodoric, posted 08-26-2005 4:17 PM Monk has responded
 Message 9 by arachnophilia, posted 08-26-2005 4:44 PM Monk has responded
 Message 35 by PaulK, posted 08-27-2005 5:20 AM Monk has responded

  
Theodoric
Member
Posts: 5901
From: Northwest, WI, USA
Joined: 08-15-2005
Member Rating: 4.8


Message 7 of 103 (237445)
08-26-2005 4:17 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by Monk
08-26-2005 4:10 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
Monk are you claiming an Evo conspiracy?
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Monk
Member (Idle past 1967 days)
Posts: 782
From: Kansas, USA
Joined: 02-25-2005


Message 8 of 103 (237452)
08-26-2005 4:28 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by Theodoric
08-26-2005 4:17 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
Nothing of the sort. I just find it...suspicious. Don't you?

This message has been edited by Monk, Fri, 08-26-2005 03:31 PM


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arachnophilia
Member (Idle past 20 days)
Posts: 9069
From: god's waiting room
Joined: 05-21-2004


Message 9 of 103 (237462)
08-26-2005 4:44 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by Monk
08-26-2005 4:10 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
As far as I can tell, membership will get you a few free CDs and thats about it.

you're saying that they listed people who just signed up to get a few free cd's in the mail as supporters of their cause?

that DOES smell fishy.


אָרַח

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Theodoric
Member
Posts: 5901
From: Northwest, WI, USA
Joined: 08-15-2005
Member Rating: 4.8


Message 10 of 103 (237463)
08-26-2005 4:46 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by Monk
08-26-2005 4:28 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
Not at all. They make themselves out to be a reputable scientific orgainization. He was looking for a place where he could use his faith and his science background. He found out that there is no science involved.

This message has been edited by Theodoric, 08-26-2005 04:51 PM


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Monk
Member (Idle past 1967 days)
Posts: 782
From: Kansas, USA
Joined: 02-25-2005


Message 11 of 103 (237465)
08-26-2005 4:52 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by arachnophilia
08-26-2005 4:44 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
If they scoured their membership list for scientists and then used their names without permission to further their cause, that's wrong. But I get the impression Davidson was interested in more than a few CD's when he joined.
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Monk
Member (Idle past 1967 days)
Posts: 782
From: Kansas, USA
Joined: 02-25-2005


Message 12 of 103 (237472)
08-26-2005 4:58 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by Theodoric
08-26-2005 4:46 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
Yes, but he is no illiterate dummy. He could have taken 10 minutes, skim some of their articles as I did, find out who they are, then save himself some embarassment. Instead he joined. Perhaps he joined without thinking about it just to get a few CD's as Arach has suggested. Or perhaps he joined an organization he knew nothing about with the intention of learning about it latter. I don't buy it.
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RAZD
Member
Posts: 19732
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 4.9


Message 13 of 103 (237532)
08-26-2005 7:43 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by Monk
08-26-2005 4:58 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
He could have taken 10 minutes, skim some of their articles as I did,

You are assuming that the articles on the site now were also on the site then. Given that this was several years ago, and that the website has evolved over that time extensively, I think this is too simplistic.

see evolving banner (click)

{{added by edit}}

notice too that the statement signed does NOT endorse ID:

"WE ARE SKEPTICAL OF CLAIMS FOR THE ABILITY OF RANDOM MUTATION AND NATURAL SELECTION TO ACCOUNT FOR THE COMPLEXITY OF LIFE. CAREFUL EXAMINATION OF THE EVIDENCE FOR DARWINIAN THEORY SHOULD BE ENCOURAGED."

A skeptical approach to all theories is common scientific practice.

It would be interesting to see how many of these same scientists would sign a document proclaiming:

"WE ARE NOT SKEPTICAL OF CLAIMS FOR THE ABILITY OF INTELLIGENT DESIGN TO ACCOUNT FOR THE COMPLEXITY OF LIFE. CAREFUL ANY EXAMINATION OF THE EVIDENCE PROPOSED (BUT NOT TESTED) FOR INTELLIGENT DESIGN SHOULD NEED NOT BE ENCOURAGED CONSIDERED."

ENJOY.

This message has been edited by RAZD, 08*26*2005 07:50 PM

{{CHANGED LAST STATEMENT AS MARKED UP}}

This message has been edited by RAZD, 08*28*2005 04:20 PM

{Fixed quotes}

This message has been edited by RAZD, 10*24*2005 08:51 PM


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand

RebelAAmerican.Zen[Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


This message is a reply to:
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Monk
Member (Idle past 1967 days)
Posts: 782
From: Kansas, USA
Joined: 02-25-2005


Message 14 of 103 (237541)
08-26-2005 8:12 PM
Reply to: Message 13 by RAZD
08-26-2005 7:43 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
You are assuming that the articles on the site now were also on the site then. Given that this was several years ago, and that the website has evolved over that time extensively, I think this is too simplistic.

But we don't know from the article in the OP when Davidson joined. How do you know it is a given that Davidson joined several years ago? The changing banners are interesting, but how does that tie into Davidson?

You posted a statement signed that does not endorse ID. Is that what Davidson signed? My impression is that he didn't sign anything, just that his name appeared on a list as one of 400 scientist.


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RAZD
Member
Posts: 19732
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 4.9


Message 15 of 103 (237547)
08-26-2005 8:44 PM
Reply to: Message 14 by Monk
08-26-2005 8:12 PM


Re: Something smells fishy
How do you know it is a given that Davidson joined several years ago?

Because the list is several years old.

just that his name appeared on a list as one of 400 scientist ...

... that endorsed the statement.


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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 Message 20 by arachnophilia, posted 08-26-2005 9:26 PM RAZD has responded

  
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