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Author Topic:   Is Intelligent Design An Open Movement?
Granny Magda
Member (Idle past 124 days)
Posts: 2383
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007

Message 42 of 91 (689507)
01-31-2013 11:05 AM
Reply to: Message 31 by Genomicus
01-29-2013 6:59 PM

Re: Is Intelligent Design An Open Movement?
Hi Genomicus,

Just wanted to echo most of what CS had to say.

I have not changed the original meaning of intelligent design. There has never been a set definition of intelligent design other than the broad idea that teleology has, in some way or another, played a role in the origin of biological complexity. This has always been its meaning. The Discovery Institute adds its own baggage to the idea of intelligent design in biology, but that baggage is not a necessary part of ID.

The DI invented ID. Don't they get to define their own terminology?

Intelligent design means that various forms of life began abruptly through an intelligent agency, with their distinctive features already intact. Fish with fins and scales, birds with feathers, beaks, wings, etc. - Of Pandas and People

Creation means that the various forms of life began abruptly through the agency of an intelligent creator with their distinctive features already intact. Fish with fins and scales, birds with feathers, beaks, and wings, etc. - Of Pandas and People

It's not our fault if the people who invented the ID consider it to be synonymous with creation.

Only those unacquainted with the broader context of the ID debate would immediately jump to the conclusion that any ID proponent is a creationist.

No. Those acquainted with the debate would assume exactly that and with good reason.

Well over 99.9% of ID proponents are religious apologists, either explicit or otherwise. I can count the non-apologist ID proponents on one hand and half of them are anonymous internet posters. It still seems like a fairly safe assumption to me.

If you choose to look like a duck and quack like a duck, well... it's just about possible that you might merely be a very small goose. But don't get too surprised if people mistake you for a duck.

Mutate and Survive

This message is a reply to:
 Message 31 by Genomicus, posted 01-29-2013 6:59 PM Genomicus has not yet responded

Granny Magda
Member (Idle past 124 days)
Posts: 2383
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007

Message 48 of 91 (689597)
02-01-2013 11:14 AM
Reply to: Message 44 by Genomicus
01-31-2013 11:13 PM

Re: Is Intelligent Design An Open Movement?
Genomicus, it's really pretty simple;

Are you a liar?

Are you a religious apologist seeking to promote one of the Abrahamic religions under a smokescreen of sciencyness?

Are you out to attack science on behalf of your faith?

Are you trying to push religion into school science classes?

Are you privately convinced that the designer is God (specifically your version of God)?

Are you a dupe or useful idiot who unwittingly promotes Christian apologetics for Evangelical Christians?

If your answer to these questions is "No" then you're not an IDist, becausethat's what ID is. At its heart, ID is a lie, a Christian apologetic dressed up in a cheap lab coat. In trying to rehabilitate the term "Intelligent design", all you're doing is acting as a useful idiot on behalf of the Discovery Institute and other crazy people.

I know you don't like it when I say this and I can appreciate why, but I can only tell you what I believe to be the truth. ID is a lie. To promote ID is to promote religious apologetics. Trying to salvage any genuine scientific endeavour from the ID movement is going to require that you distance yourself form the liars and zealots of the ID crowd as much as possible. Plus, it's all a waste of time anyway; life is not designed, intelligently or otherwise.

Mutate and Survive

This message is a reply to:
 Message 44 by Genomicus, posted 01-31-2013 11:13 PM Genomicus has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 55 by Genomicus, posted 02-02-2013 12:31 AM Granny Magda has responded

Granny Magda
Member (Idle past 124 days)
Posts: 2383
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007

Message 59 of 91 (689663)
02-02-2013 7:08 AM
Reply to: Message 55 by Genomicus
02-02-2013 12:31 AM

Re: Is Intelligent Design An Open Movement?
That all depends how you're defining ID. You're definition of ID is more like a definition of the ID movement, not a definition of intelligent design as a view on how biological life and biological complexity on Earth arose.

But the latter is just teleology. You don't need to call it ID. You don't need to taint it with that soiled moniker.

Hey, if you think "intelligent design" necessarily means Christian creationism, then by all means consider me not an ID proponent.

Not necessarily Christian. You could be a Muslim IDist.

But seriously, if you keep promoting ID you are doing the work of Christian fundamentalists who want to destroy science and replace it with crazy dogma. By the time we get to that point it scarcely matters whether you are an apologist or not. You are doing harm, end of story. You are acting like a disease carrier immune to the plague you spread, but culpable in passing the contagion on to others.

Okay, wait. Are you saying that the view that life was engineered is a lie, or are you saying that creationism is a lie?

I'm saying that ID, in all its incarnations thus far, has been a lie. And that includes Behe, who is convinced that his designer is the Christian god and who took place in the attack on science education that was Of Pandas and People. Behe stood up in court and tried to defend the indefensible. Behe is is nice guy, I can't help but like him (where I despise Dembski) but he is a creationist in a sense. He believes that human life is dependant on direct intervention from his personal deity. I would call that a form of creationism, albeit a weak creationism.

I've done my fair share of distancing myself from the ID movement, ya know.

Not enough to remove suspicion. Not enough to be taken seriously, although no amount of distancing might be enough for that, since your "ID" thesis is just so darn silly.

You so cavalierly proclaim that it's all a waste of time, because life is not intelligently designed. To me, this smacks of unscientific arrogance. It is as if you know life is not intelligently designed. Let's keep an objective mindset here.

You so cavalierly proclaim that my research into leprechauns is a waste of time, because there's no such thing as leprechauns. To me this smacks of arrogance. It's as if you know there's no such thing as leprechauns. Let's keep an objective mindset here.

That's how you sound to me. Your charming ideas about taking the central thesis of ID seriously just come across as silly. Even explicit creationism doesn't sound as silly as this. You are essentially suggesting that life was engineered by aliens (and there really are no other candidates, however much you whine about keeping an open mind). That's silly. We have an overwhelming amount of evidence for life evolving through natural process and none whatsoever for alien interference. The idea belongs in a bad episode of Star Trek, not in a serious scientific publication. Feel free to pursue it if you like, but don't expect anyone else to take you much more seriously than we do circle squarers or perpetual motion enthusiasts.

Mutate and Survive

This message is a reply to:
 Message 55 by Genomicus, posted 02-02-2013 12:31 AM Genomicus has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 69 by Genomicus, posted 02-04-2013 12:40 AM Granny Magda has responded

Granny Magda
Member (Idle past 124 days)
Posts: 2383
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007

Message 73 of 91 (689746)
02-04-2013 11:10 AM
Reply to: Message 69 by Genomicus
02-04-2013 12:40 AM

Re: Is Intelligent Design An Open Movement?
What, then, is the term for the view that the origin of the biochemical complexity of life was purposeful?


But I agree with Paulk who said that you do not need a term for your position. Ideas that matter need names. The private musings of a tiny handful of eccentrics do not.

If you're desperate for an idea though, how about the Extraterrestrial Genegineer hypothesis, since that's pretty much what it amounts to. If you're ruling out the supernatural, that pretty much only leaves aliens, so call a spade a spade.

There's no such thing as a Muslim IDist, though, is there?

ID has its Muslim proponents, although way fewer than Christian ones. Check out the following quote, apparently from an essay entitled "Why Muslims Should Support Intelligent Design";

“Intelligent Design (ID) is a term that implies creation. The universe and life are not products of blind forces of nature, ID holds, but show evidence that they were designed by an intelligence. The ID Movement has deliberately chosen not to specify the identity of the Designer. Through science you can demonstrate convincingly that there is a designer, but you can't go further without invoking theology. Everybody has the right to believe in a Designer according his own theology. What makes the movement effective is its emphasis on solid scientific evidence. “

I'm sure you'll be able to find Jewish ID proponents as well.

You mean if I keep promoting the ID movement, I am doing the work of creationists. But I'm not promoting the ID movement. Far from it. I'm simply proposing that biological life was intelligently designed.

And in doing so you are lending credence to the ID movement.

This is exactly how the strategy is supposed to work. First the deliberate liars float the idea, then more sincere types pick up the idea. The liars can then point to people like you and say "See! ID isn't religious!".

Some would call Kenneth Miller a creationist, because, ya know, he believes that a God made all things.

Miller doesn't claim to have scientific evidence for his kooky beliefs though. That's the difference. But yeah, Miller is a bit of a kook in some respects.

You're really stretching the definition of "creationism" when it comes to individuals like Behe, IMHO.

Behe believes that he has found the fingerprints of God in our blood clotting system. He may not be a YEC, but I can't think of a better term for this kind of foolishness than Creationism. At the very least it rules him out of being cited the way you are citing him, as an unbiased, non-kooky ID scientist, with no religious agenda.

Besides, Behe took part in Of pandas and People, a blatant attack on science education on behalf of Christian nutballery. That alone marks him as being far from neutral on this issue. It's a shame; I like Michael Behe, he seems like a nice guy (in a way that Dembski never will), but he's still nuts.

You don't even have a remotely testable leprechaun hypothesis, so the analogy doesn't fit.

Sure I do! Leprechauns exist, and any time I find something in biology that I can't explain... leprechauns did it.

Perhaps bigfoot would be a better fit. After all, bigfoot is non-supernatural, technically possible, if implausible. The idea is eminently testable. The only flaw in bigfoot research is that it's completely mental, much like research into whether space aliens diddled with our DNA.

Anyway, I don't think that you have a testable hypothesis for your alien theory either. All you can do is point to the unexplained in biology and explain it away with aliens. Weak.

Really? Creationism isn't as silly as a simple extension of Crick and Orgel's directed panspermia hypothesis?

Directed panspermia is pretty silly to start with, so I don't really see much difference.

Where I come from, the merit of an idea is not determined by how silly it sounds to any one individual.

Where I come from, if you want a grant for a scientific project, it helps if your proposal is not totally batshit insane.

Sure, you're right in a technical sense; it is possible that space aliens engineered our biota. But as Straggler says above, all sorts of nutty ideas are possible. What matters when deciding whether they warrant investigation or not is whether they are plausible. Science is, in some ways, a zero-sum game. If you spend time and resources studying theory X you can't spend that same time and resources on studying theory Y. Given finite time and resources, that means that decisions have to be taken about what is worth pursuing and what is not. I just don't think that your space alien theory is worthy of anyone's time or attention. I think there are better things that science could be doing. If you want to pursue it, go ahead, it's your life. Just don't expect anyone else to care about it (other than lunatic fundamentalists who'll seize upon it as proof of God).

Granny writes:

We have an overwhelming amount of evidence for life evolving through natural process.

Genomicus writes:

We do not.

Er... yes we do, obviously we do. Don't be silly.

The strongest evidence for the hypothesis that life arose through purely non-teleological mechanisms...

Not what I said. Read it again.

I also notice that the ID examples you tend to cite aren't of life being created; they're more about pre-existing life being given a nudge here or there. So what are you proposing exactly?

Geez, thanks for the encouragement.

You want me to encourage you to waste your time? Why would I do that? You seem like a nice person, I'd rather encourage you to stop wasting your time on fairy stories and do something more constructive.

Mutate and Survive

Edited by Granny Magda, : No reason given.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 69 by Genomicus, posted 02-04-2013 12:40 AM Genomicus has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 77 by PaulK, posted 02-04-2013 5:43 PM Granny Magda has not yet responded

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