The Rachel Maddow Show: Report – Ensign Broke Law

While FOX was making Common into a cop killer, real stuff was happening in the Senate Ethics Committee. Had he not resigned, Senator John Ensign of Nevada, would have been considered for expulsion from the Senate. The whole story reads like a Hollywood screenplay. An affair/sexual harrassment, bribery, a religious group known as “The Family,” and another Senator, Tom Coburn trying to broker a deal with the mistress to keep it all quiet. This will become a Hollywood movie because it wrote itself. Check out Rachel Maddow’s report on this case:

Vodpod videos no longer available.


70 responses to “The Rachel Maddow Show: Report – Ensign Broke Law

  • Terrance H.

    Hypocrites exist on both sides of the isle.

    (Ahem. John Edwards.)

    • Spinny Liberal

      Yup. He’s a douchebag too.

      The main difference is that one side is loudly and proudly “holier than thou” about it. They preach it, but don’t practice it. (Ahem. John Ensign)

      • Terrance H.

        Spinny,

        Is there a Democrat out there who doesn’t think family values are important? Or, is there one out there who actually says they are not important? Is there a Democrat out there who says it’s O.K. to lie, cheat, and steal?

        I don’t think so.

      • lyttleton

        I think the point is that the Democrat platform isn’t usually about legislating personal morality. There is a difference between espousing ‘values’ (which can really mean a whole lot of things) and pushing laws that would dictate people’s personal choices (on matters of sex, especially).

        Politicians getting extramarital strange is nothing new (on either side of the aisle), which makes this case sadly unsurprising.

        (However, politicians getting extramarital strange of the homosexuality variety while legislating against homosexual rights is an almost entirely Republican bit of hypocrisy.)

        It just makes you all the worse when you win elections by wrapping yourself in religious piousness (as the right has been doing especially fervently in the past decade) and then do something like Ensign has done. Though it isn’t explicitly stated, it is the presumptive platform of the Right that they are the party of morality because they stand on the Bible.

        The higher the pedestal you put yourself on, the louder the noise you’re gonna make when you fall.

      • Spinny Liberal

        lyttleton nailed it and said it way better than I ever could. Especially with this:

        It just makes you all the worse when you win elections by wrapping yourself in religious piousness (as the right has been doing especially fervently in the past decade) and then do something like Ensign has done.

      • Terrance H.

        I see. So, because the Republicans want to prohibit abortion and protect traditional marriage, they’re automatically worse when they do something bad.

        If I’m not mistaken, many Democrats support traditional marriage as well. And there are more than a few pro-life Democrats meandering about.

        But that isn’t the point. The point is that both parties talk about family, American values, and patriotism. Each party simply has different ideas of how best to run this nation.

        You people always want to point the finger at Republicans. You all but ignore the hypocrisy that exists within your own party. Spinny did it with teachers and the sex abuse which occurs in schools, claiming it’s worse when a priest does it. And now apparently infidelity and telling lies are worse when a Republican does it.

        It’s nothing more than transparent hypocrisy.

      • Spinny Liberal

        But Democrats aren’t holding Bibles and espousing family values like Republicans do, and you know it. And you know exactly why I think it’s worse when a priest abuses a child. I’ve stated my position quite clearly. In my opinion, I think it’s worse because abuse by a priest can shake someone’s faith to the core. The place where they should find comfort (God) has been compromised by a piece of crap priest who I think should be shot.

        Infidelity is 1000x worse when the person whose platform is family values and sanctity of marriage. They usually tend to point fingers at those who aren’t so faithful. That is the perfect example of transparent hypocrisy.

      • lyttleton

        It has nothing to do with their stances on social issues, and you know it T, you’re just being intentionally obtuse (at least, I hope so; egad).

        The right predominantly claims religious authority. Democrats and Republicans are generally not that far apart on social issues (when it comes to the way they really vote on the issues), but it’s the right that almost exclusively claims the authority of God on their side. That is not to say that all people on the right do this, but when it’s done, it’s on the right. Just look at The Family, a religious institution that uses their supposed calling from God to support truly atrocious global politics while shielding them from persecution for their personal sins.

        When someone claims moral authority based on the divine will of God, then yes, they deserve greater personal indictment when they fall. The punishment for their crimes shouldn’t be harsher in the eyes of the secular law, but in the court of public opinion, the deservedly should be judged harsher.

        Unless we can all agree that religious belief has absolutely nothing to do with morality. Once the right is willing to admit that, then I’ll stop calling them worse hypocrites.

        (I for the record think the act of sexual abuse is equal egregious when a teacher or a priest does it; the difference is that teachers are fired and put in jail whereas priests are shielded and shipped to another diocese. It’s institutional hypocrisy from a group that claims to be the sole arbiters of morality. Far worse.)

      • lyttleton

        *equally egregious*

  • lyttleton

    Have you read the original book about the Family (titled, appropriately enough, “The Family.”)? Truly chilling. A great read, though.

    This whole thing has shades of King David and Bathsheba. How fitting.

    (I Heart Rachel.)

  • Terrance H.

    No, the right does not “predominately claim religious authority,” notwithstanding your bombast. Please show me where in the Republican Platform that statement, or any statement to the effect, exists.

    I’ll be waiting.

    Please show me, too, where the Right claims God is on their side. Where is that in their platform.

    I’ll be waiting for that, too.

    If you’re talking about individual Republicans, fine. But I can point you to an individual Democrats who have said similar things. In fact, John Edwards has made statements to that effect himself.

    I’ll be waiting for you to provide those quotes in the Republican Platform – of any recent year.

    Spinny,

    Democrats talk about faith just as much as the Republicans. In fact:

    “BRIDGEPORT TWP. — United Auto Workers President Bob King mixed politics with religion in a call to create a “social justice movement in America.”

    The president of the union delivered an impassioned speech Friday to about 500 people at UAW Local 467, taking aim at “extremist Republicans” who “are destroying America.”

    U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Lansing, shared the stage at the Saginaw County Democratic Party fundraiser, noting an auto industry rebound since the dark days of the economic crash in 2008 that threatened to sink General Motors Co. and Chrysler without a federal auto bailout.

    “We stopped folks that said let the auto industry go down the tubes,” Stabenow said. “We turned that around, and President Barack Obama stood with us every step of the way.”

    Sounding much like a preacher in the pulpit, King referred to his Christian faith and urged political activism to bring nonviolent change. The union leader criticized former CEO-turned-GOP Gov. Rick Snyder and Republicans in the Legislature with the enactment of tax polices and budget cuts that King said would double the budget deficit while giving tax breaks to corporations. Republicans have said the changes are necessary to create jobs and eliminate those same deficits.”

    http://www.mlive.com/news/saginaw/index.ssf/2011/05/uaw_leader_bob_king_extremist.html

    Some groups claiming to be Republican or conservative may wrap themselves up in religious piety, but the Republican Party certainly doesn’t. No more than the Democrats.

    • lyttleton

      Read “The Family” for a prime example of the Right claiming the authority of God for their deeds.

      There is a difference between mentioning one’s faith as a motivation for actions (as all politicians do because this is a nation that unfortunately demands it of our politicians) and claiming that God is speaking to you directly, as Bush did for 8 years. (For example)

      The leader of the Republican party claimed he had a direct line from God and very few on the right even batted an eye. That is more than just complicit acceptance of that sort of rationale, it’s implicit respect for it.

      One of the leading voices of the Conservative Media, Glenn Beck, has claimed that God speaks through him and often asks his listeners/viewers to heed God’s voice for action (Listen). “God is giving a plan, I think, to me.” Direct quote from Beck.

      This is three major examples of major figures on the right (politicians and media) that claim God oversees their actions and approves.

      When a Democrat mentions God, they do so to say that they have faith and that it uplifts them or helps through tough times (as Obama has said of his faith). It’s personal.

      (Your example is of a Union Leader, not a Democratic politician; irrelevant and not even remotely the same anyway.)

      When many Republicans (by no means all) mention God, they are using it as a way to validate their actions and to try to dictate other people’s actions.

      Bush took us to war because he believed God told him to.

      The members of the Family have helped sign treaties with dictators under the auspice of God’s commands (I would ask you to read the book before even trying to comment further).

      Beck tells his followers what to think by claiming that God’s plan is over their life.

      Of all the senators that have been caught in public gay sex acts, how many have been right-leaning anti-homosexual spokespeople who have claimed God’s authority for their stances? Almost every single one, if not every one.

      It’s your turn to find a quote of a Democrat claiming to be basing their decisions on hearing the literal voice of God talking to them. I’ll wait.

      I know the official Republican Platform isn’t a religious document, I never claimed that. You’re creating an obvious straw man. The point isn’t official policy, it’s personal rhetoric. It’s not about the official party lines, it’s about the individuals who lead the parties and attempt to legislate morality.

      If you seriously think that the Democrats are as fundamentalist in their religious beliefs as Republicans, you are clearly blind to the reality we have been living in for 10 years.

      Just look at the breakdown of the religious members of each party.

      I know you won’t listen. You block people who disagree with you and claim everyone but you is blind to the facts. Nevermind that you parrot Fox News, Ben Stein and David Barton for all your views.

      You are too immersed in your own propaganda to even be fun to debate with. (Ever read my lengthy response to our last debate about ID? I know you saw it posted on Spinny’s blog post.)

    • Spinny Liberal

      So the ones who wrap themselves in religious piety aren’t “real” Republicans or Conservatives and merely claiming to be?

      • Terrance H.

        I didn’t say that. But they don’t represent the entire Republican Party. And let’s not pretend as though Democrats don’t invoke God just as often. For crying out loud, you have ‘ol Rangle claiming God is tell him how to handle his court case, and James Clyburn talking about how deeply rooted in faith the Democrat Party is.

        Do evangelicals generally vote for the Right? Of course, because of the Rights stance on social issues, like abortion and gay marriage, which one can reject, as I do, without invoking religion. So, when evangelicals get involved in politics, most of the time it’s with the Republican Party, which is why the wanderer keeps talking about the book “The Family,” as if it proves his point. All it proves is that evangelicals have, since Pat Robertson, immersed themselves into the political scene. It’s like the socialists and communists using the Democrat Party to accomplish their goals. It’s no different.

        The Republican Party does not invoke religion, on average, anymore than the Democrat Party. The Republican Party is not a religious party simply because a religious movement – evangelism – has decided it is the party best suited to accomplish the goals they want accomplished. Just like the Democrat Party is not communist or socialist simply because some communists and socialists have figured it is the party best suited to accomplish their goals.

        Both sides invoke faith. A Republican cheating on his wife is a scumbag, just like a Democrat who cheats on his. One is not more of a dirtbag simply because he has an R next to his name, and to suggest so is to be totally bias and ridiculous – like lyttleton so often is. You are better than that, or at least I hope.

      • Spinny Liberal

        They’re equal in douchebaggery. However, when they act like the moral police, they shouldn’t be surprised when people call them on their blatant hypocrisy.

        If you don’t invoke faith and screw up, you just screwed up. You weren’t pretending to be all about Jesus, religion, and morality. If I was a politician who invoked faith, my actions better be above board. Like Newt. Founder of that religious Renewing American Leadership NPO. He had some serious balls to call Clinton out on f*cking his intern while he was…..f*cking one of his staffers.

  • Terrance H.

    This is getting pathetic.

    President Bush claimed to have a direct line from God, yes. Does he represent the entire Republican Party? Does Bill Clinton – who cheated on his wife – represent the entire Democratic Party? No.

    You say a union leader is a not politician, and I agree. So, tell me this: What office has Glenn Beck run for again? None? Oh, O.K. then.

    I’ll wait.

    Not for long.

    Charles Rangle Says God Doesn’t Want Him To Cop A Plea

    Rep. Charles Rangel says God doesn’t want him to cop a plea.

    Under pressure from Democratic colleagues to make a deal on ethics charges and avoid a public trial, the scandal-scarred congressman said Thursday that a higher authority told him not to settle.

    “How lucky you are that God tells you you don’t have to take a plea,” a fired-up Rangel declared to a Harlem Week luncheon crowd at Columbia University, which gave him a standing ovation.

    The show of love came as City Hall confirmed that Mayor Bloomberg, after some hesitation, will attend Rangel’s fund-raising birthday bash next week.

    http://articles.nydailynews.com/2010-08-05/news/27071883_1_plea-bargaining-charles-rangel-ethics-violation-charges

    Then he backed-off after a reporter asked him if he meant that literally. But, it’s yet another example of a politician, Democrat or Republican, invoking God when speaking in public. Both sides do it.

    And according to Democrat James Clyburn: “The Democratic agenda is deeply rooted in faith…but we have been less effective than we could be in communicating how our moral values guide our policies.”

    Here

    Interesting…

    Here we have Hillary Clinton talking about how her faith in God got her through Bill’s infidelity.

    So, another example of a Democrat talking publicly about his or her faith in God.

    Barack Obama said, referring to him and his wife: “We are reminded that, ultimately, what matters is not what other people say about us but whether we are being true to our conscience and true to our God.

    And I could go on and on and on. Democrats invoke faith just as often as Republicans. So, you fail – yet again. You’re becoming quite good at this, I’ve noticed.

    Peace.

    Oh…

    And God Bless You.

  • Terrance H.

    No, I haven’t read your lengthy response to ID. I don’t care enough about it. It’s all the same discredited nonsense you spewed over on my blog. And you were blocked for one reason and one reason only: you refused to read any of the studies I provided. YOu dismissed them, out of hand, and went back to the same stupid ass arguments you cluttered up my time with in the first place, ignoring that the studies I offered refuted your bombast. So, I don’t bother myself with pathetic people like you.

    Not only that, but your pathetic explanation of dark matter was enough for me to write you off as a wanna-be intellectual who derives HIS VIEWS from Christopher Hitchens, Richard Dawkins, and any number of other putrid liberal minds.

    Now, why don’t you come back with another asinine dismissal of the facts. Because I am finished with you. It is painfully obvious that both sides of the isle invoke faith when convenient. Only a willfully ignorant halfwit would dispute that fact.

  • lyttleton

    I love how you say you blocked me for not reading your studies (when I did) and then go on and say you refused to read the studies I showed you. You are an ignorant, arrogant child who believes in your own intelligence above all other things, and without reason.

    As I’ve said on this before, I’m not talking about invoking God. You have no reading skills whatsoever, so this is a waste of time.

    This is for the intelligent people who may be reading this and will get it, whereas I expect you to just be playing with your feces and screaming into the wind like Glenn Beck.

    All politicians speak of their faith, they claim it helps them, they claim it gives them comfort. Atheists don’t get elected in this country.

    But the right, pretty well exclusively, claims that their authority and morality is given by God, and thus they use it to justify their actions. Like Spinny said, they act like the moral police (which makes their hypocrisy worse). Claiming you believe in God but failing to live up to that ideal is bad. But claiming the right to enforce other people’s morality (by God’s will) and then failing to live up to those morals is hypocrisy.

    Rangel is a nutjob, and not because he invokes God, but just because he is. He was flailing and tried to invoke God’s authority to save himself as a Hail Mary. Whereas the right invokes God’s authority at all times.

    The difference between a Union leader and Beck is that the union leader is representing a small contingent of people who are not inherently Republican or Democrat, though they may lean mostly Democrat. Beck, however, is a political leader in the sense that he actively supports political leaders by helping create the Tea Party. He’s not technically a politician, but he’s a shill for the Republican party (especially the far right aspect of it), and his views become the views of the party.

    I tried civility with you T, but you are a classic 20-something male, bitter and in love with your own intellect, and absolutely certain that the world is in a conspiracy against you.

    I love how you say the stuff I posted on ID was discredited. By who? You know nothing about biology and I am embarrassed for whatever institution gave you your alleged minor in it.

    Peace back at you.

  • Terrance H.

    Argument from…other people will probably understand what you mean? Nice.

    You have not supported your contention that the Right, in large numbers, believes they operate via divine edict. I’m sure evangelicals believe that, but they do not represent the entire Republican Party. Just like, say, socialists don’t represent the entire Democratic Party – or do they?

    BTW, the union leader was on stage with Debbie Stabenow, is an admitted Democrat, and head of an organization that donates an absurd amount of money, yearly to the Democratic Party.

    Glenn Beck is an idiot and he doesn’t represent the Republican Party either. Hell, Fox News got rid of his sorry ass because he’s too far gone.

    Lastly, you showed me no studies. Whatever long ID post you’re referring to I have not read. Also, we never discussed biology, at least not specifically. As far as I remember, Michael Behe – who you wrote off without reason – was the only explicit mention of anything related to biology. You called him a poor scientist, as if you, a wandering waiter, has the credentials to make such a sweeping statement.

    The only thing science related we discussed was dark matter. I offered you an explanation of it, specifically supported by mainstream science, and you ignored it. How common for you…

    I have no interest in Intelligent Design one way or the other. I took up the battle because you were making ridiculous claims about the Right and how we’re so “anti-science,” specifically mentioning ID. I don’t care one way or the other, to be honest. But, just know that ID is based, somewhat, on science, and is not “creationism,” as you ignorantly claimed. Other than that, there is nothing more to say.

    So now, please continue on with your maudlin rambling. I’m giddy with excitement at the thought of you, lyttleton, running back here like a rutting chimp to show us all how smart you are…

  • lyttleton

    We actually discussed ID quite a bit and only mentioned dark matter in passing (it was tangential to the whole point). You don’t remember our long discussion of “Expelled” or irreducible complexity? Talk about selective memory.

    What are your credentials, may I ask? As far as I can tell, we have the same credentials (a college education), but I have a few years on you and I supported my dissection of Ben Stein’s pathetic ‘documentary’ while also pointing to numerous prominent, respected scientists (Dawkins, Myers, Coyne, and really the list can go on) who have dismissed Behe. Hell, the courts officially threw out his ideas as being obvious religious claptrap (based on the testimony of scientists).

    The fact is, if a person doesn’t agree with you, you dismiss them as ‘liberal.’ That’s your only answer. Behe is the only ‘biologist’ (Dembski is a philospher with no background in biology) who supports that warmed over Creationist nonsense, but that’s okay because you have one group(the Discovery Institute) that is espousing all this junk and that’s all you need. You have no support for your views that doesn’t come from that single organization (they funded Expelled, too). That should raise some red flags for you.

    But you’re backpeddling now and claiming “The only thing science related we discussed was dark matter.” That’s crap and anyone who wants to go back and look can see that’s not true. But, hey, deny reality, create facts and ignore anything that might contradict your beliefs. It’s the Fox News mantra.

    And yes, I’m a traveling writer. I wait tables now, but I’ve managed bookstores, worked various retail, done numerous jobs. How does how I live my life have anything to do with the validity of my views. What do you do? Why should anyone care what you think? Do you even have a job? At least I’ve traveled this country, met thousands of people from different backgrounds, experienced a variety of worldviews. You’ve done what, sat in front of your computer and spent your days trolling blogs? You don’t have to respect what I say, but keep in mind that blade swings both ways. You’ve shown yourself to be a bigot against homosexuals as well as women and a person with absolutely no understanding of science who just regurgitates the bulletpoints of ideologues.

    I’m not here to try to show how smart I am, you do it for me.

  • Terrance H.

    If we discussed I.D. at great length, I certainly don’t remember it. I do remember mentioning Expelled, and I remember you dismissing it as “religious nonsense,” or something to that effect. Actually, you sort of dismissed it in the same way you say I dismiss those who disagree with me. I call them “liberal;” you call them “religious.”

    You’re sorta hypocritical, me thinks.

    You pointed to a few biologist, yes. I then told you to watch Expelled before dismissing it out of hand. Clearly, you did not heed my advice, otherwise you wouldn’t make the ridiculous claim that Behe is the only biologist who subscribes to the theory.

    I pointed you toward the Discovery Institute, yes. Again, you dismissed it because it doesn’t extol a belief that conforms to your perverted worldview.

    Other than that, I can’t remember much biological talk. Nothing nuts and bolts, anyway. As I said, the only thing specifically related to science, that I recall, is dark matter. We did mention irreducibly complexity in passing, but you claim that isn’t science. So, why count it?

    What have I done? Ducked from bombs and bullets while you were moving from town to town living like a Gypsy, no doubt bashing your country. Before that, I worked on an ambulance while finishing up school. So, do you really want to compare experience?

    Do I have a job? No. I manage to get by, paying a mortgage on a $189,000 house on looks and charm alone. Not because I own a business or anything.. Surely, that’s not it.

    I hate homosexuals and women? I was waiting for that clear ad hom. Clearly I must, because I reject abortion and gay marriage. I’m just a hater…Obviously.

    You make an ass out of yourself, actually. One would think someone so educated would know something about a topic before talking about it. Quit clowning yourself, lyttleton.

    .

    • lyttleton

      And for the record (again), I’m not claiming all Republicans are religious hypocrites or saying that Democrats aren’t hypocrites when they cheat on their wives or whatnot (John Edwards was/is a huge douchebag and probably a bit of a psychopath, in the technical sense of the word).

      My point (and I think Spinny’s, though I don’t mean to speak for her), is that politicians/leaders who claim a religious moral authority over others are almost exclusively Republican (right-leaning for sure) and that adds an extra level of hypocrisy to their infidelities.

      The original focus of this post was Ensign, a member of The Family. The Family is a blatant religious organization with ambitions towards a ruling theocracy, and their aim is to enforce their biblical moral view of the world (which includes issues like abortion, homosexual marriage and women’s rights) through politics. The Family is mostly Republican and they include a great deal of political leaders. When these people fall into scandals (and Ensign is the second one I can think of, offhand), it reeks of the worst kind of hypocrisy.

      That is all.

      • Spinny Liberal

        Our point is the same. You expressed it a lot better than I did, so thanks!! 😀

      • Terrance H.

        Now we’re on to individual politicians and leaders, when before it was just Republicans.

        Could someone give me a few quotes from Ensign then that would suggest he believe he is operating under divine edict? Statements that are simply way different from what John Edwards – who I mentioned – has said. Keep in mind who John Edwards is, what type of Democrat he is, and where he comes from.

    • Terrance H.

      Your threat was yet another example of the lie that is liberalism. It claims to tolerate dissent and those who are different. Clearly, lyttleton doesn’t believe this. He wants me and those like me gone.

      What an ignorant fuck he is, huh, Spinny? If a conservative had said that he would like to live in a world where all blacks, Jews, and Mexicans didn’t exist, you’d be all over his ass. Yet, curiously, you say nothing to do lyttleton…

      • Spinny Liberal

        I thought he wanted a world without just you in it. Not an entire group of people. I don’t know. Maybe I’m wrong, lyttleton?

        Seriously, though, this is your debate. I am just watching from the sidelines.

      • lyttleton

        Of course that’s what I meant.

        Haha, you just get me Spinny.

        But seriously, this isn’t even a debate. I can fully cop to being an ass, but at least I’m self-aware enough to realize that all we’re doing is the exact same thing, going back and forth, accusing each other’s sources of bias and claiming we don’t read our references, all the while getting in some meaty jabs.

        We’re both walls, now it just remains to see who the world leans on.

  • lyttleton

    One would think someone so educated would know something about a topic before talking about it.

    Precisely. So stop talking about evolution, because you clearly don’t know anything.

    As I told you, I have seen Expelled. It’s a poorly crafted (well, that’s not fair, there is some great stolen music in it) propaganda piece that is filled with lies and hackjob “biologists” who couldn’t keep a job. I pointed you to this site which you undoubtedly didn’t read because it’s part of the grand conspiracy of 99% of biologists to dismiss ID.

    The fact is, an overwhelming number of biologists (that is, experts in the field of biology, not just scientists in other fields who are asked to comment on biology) reject ID out of hand because it is creationism. Scientists have said so. The courts have said so. The only group who refuses to listen is the Discovery Institute, and you are here being their brainwashed little soldier ignoring reality and claiming that everyone else is wrong and clearly less informed than you.

    I might be just a waiter, but I can list you at least a half dozen books I’ve read on the subject and point you to a biologist’s blog that I read daily (among others) that details how evolution really works. Dismissing renowned biologists as “liberals” while siding with Behe and Ben Stein doesn’t make you look very good. Can you name a supporter of ID who isn’t on the Discovery Institute’s payroll?

    Why do you say I’ve been bashing this country? Because I’m liberal? If there is anyone who has a profound appreciation for what this country offers, it’s a person who has been in its cities, lived with its poor, experienced true diversity.

    Do you see why your (or my) personal experiences have nothing to do with our knowledge of facts? You accuse me of ad hom attacks, but you do the same and try to paint me as someone who couldn’t possibly know anything because I wait tables and am a gypsy (a racist pejorative, by the way). Fascinating.

    You’re hatred from homosexuals has come out quite plainly in our original discussion. You’re stance is the very definition of homophobic. Homophobia isn’t always bullying and name calling. It’s more often (and more insidiously) about dismissing homosexuals as mentally ill ‘others’ who shouldn’t be accepted as part of normal society. All of your studies (which, again, I read, unimpressed; and responded to) were your way of supporting your fear and hatred.

    And you stated that you think this country is worse off because women aren’t staying home with their children and are working instead. In fact, you said this country is worse off in general because of the liberal agenda (like what, exactly? Civil rights?).

    You’re a kid pining for a magical time that never existed and an era of bigotry where every one was worse off other than white, hetero males.

    I take solace in the fact that your bigotry and overarching worldview is the product of a bygone era and people like you will always lose in the forward march of progress. That you side with IDists only makes your irrelevance all the more inevitable.

    Good day to a ghost.

    (I sincerely apologize to Spinny for having this debate on her page. Of course, I can’t debate it with T on his page because he blocks anyone who doesn’t immediately concede that he’s a genius.)

  • Terrance H.

    Precisely. So stop talking about evolution, because you clearly don’t know anything.

    I never said anything about evolution, you halfwit. I agree with evolution. In fact, I remember you asking me what made me think homosexuality was “not normal.” Do you remember what I said?

    Let me refresh your memory.

    I said: Evolution. You do believe in evolution, don’t you?

    The only thing I said about evolution that could be mistaken as bad in any way, shape, or form is:

    Natural Selection is a flawed doctrine

    I offered you websites discussing why, but you rejected them. Obviously.

    As I told you, I have seen Expelled.

    And now you’re back to lying again. If you have seen Expelled, you wouldn’t say Behe is the only biologist who rejects evolution and subscribes to ID. If you had seen Expelled, you’d know better than to utter such unadulterated ignorance. Yet, you didn’t.

    The fact is, an overwhelming number of biologists (that is, experts in the field of biology…

    Oh. Now, it’s “an overwhelming number” of biologists when before it was every biologist save Behe. This is a perfect example of how ridiculous you really are. You open your mouth, spew ignorance, get called on it, then change your tune. You’re a pathetic individual, lyttleton. Pathetic.

    The courts have said so.

    And at one time the courts also said black people weren’t people and had no rights. Then they said they were “separate but equal.” So, do you really want to rest your argument on what a court said?

    Regardless, I responded to this dimwitted response once before. I said:It established nothing of the sort. That was the opinion of a few biased scientists, which some ignorant court decided to accept.

    The only group who refuses to listen is the Discovery Institute, and you are here being their brainwashed little soldier ignoring reality and claiming that everyone else is wrong and clearly less informed than you.

    Frankly, I don’t think you know what the hell you’re talking about. I have never rejected evolution out of hand. Never.

    The very first mention of Expelled was in response to YOU bringing up Intelligent Design as evidence of the Christian Right’s anti-science beliefs. So, I said:

    We use science to justify our faith, as did Galileo. But mainstream science will have none of it, because it’s been hijacked by ideology. If you’re a scientist and even mention the possibility of an Intelligent Designer, you’re banished. Just watch Expelled. It interviews scientist after scientist who lost their job because they looked at Intelligent Design a bit closer and said, “Gee, maybe there is something to this.”

    For a difference between Creationism and Intelligent Design, I requested you peruse this article.. Obviously you didn’t, because you didn’t refute any of it. In fact, here is exaactly what you said in response:

    My God, you linked to an article that references Michael Behe? I’m trying hard not to be rude, but you are slow pitching to me.

    That’s how Michael Behe was first mentioned: an article explaining the difference between ID and Creationism mentioned his name. Not shockingly, that was enough for you to dismiss everything contrary to the line you were brainwashed to believe and repeat, like so many parrots. Pathetic…sorta like you.

    I then closed with this statement.

    If a book be false in its facts, disprove them; if false in its reasoning, refute it. But for God’s sake, let us freely hear both sides if we choose. ~ Thomas Jefferson

    Then later on in that same post, you said:

    ID is an argument from ignorance. We don’t know how certain things happen, so let’s throw in a mystical figure. We won’t call it God, but, let’s face it, it’s God.

    When, in fact, that’s not what Intelligent Design is about. It’s not a God of Gaps argument at all. The article I offered clearly showed that, but you rejected it.

    Then in response to you calling Expelled laughable, I said:

    

    Why is it “laughable,” lyttleton? Because it tells the story of scientists who were shunned by the scientific community for believing that, God forbid, Darwinism doesn’t have all the answers?

    You don’t like academic freedom. Do you? Why are you so anti-science?

    When you attacked Behe again, I said:

    Logical fallacy. You are attacking the man rather than his arguments. You dislike Michael Behe because he is an outspoken critic of Darwinism, and is perhaps the best-known IDer, and no other reason.

    And that’s all the scientific talk we engaged in, outside of discussing Dark Matter. We never discussed biology beyond that, so this revisionist history can be cleared by anyone interested in reviewing the comment section of this post.

    You will find, Spinny, that I never discounted evolution. I never said I believed in Intelligent Design over Evolution.If anything, I think evolution may have been directed by an Intelligent Designer, because natural selection, in my view, is flawed. We never discussed the science behind natural selection, either. I simply said I felt it was flawed. He never asked why.

    You’re hatred from homosexuals has come out quite plainly in our original discussion. You’re stance is the very definition of homophobic.

    Nonsense. I reject gay marriage, so clearly I’m a hater. You’re so pathetic, lyttleton. This is what you far-left liberal idiots do whenever someone says something you can’t refute. You insult them, make them out to be haters, or knuckle-draggers.

    Why don’t you just admit that I made you look like an utter fool on my page. So much so, in fact, YOU were the one that mentioned Intelligent Design first. I didn’t. You mentioned it after straying from the gay marriage argument because you were getting your ass stomped. This is something every commenter over there noticed. You’re pathetic. I can’t say it enough. You are simply pathetic.

    You responded to none of my studies except to say they were biased. A rather effortless dismissal, I thought. But that’s what you far left liberal idiots do when the science cannot be refuted. You say it’s “junk science.” Typical of the left; the anti-science wing in American politics.

    And you stated that you think this country is worse off because women aren’t staying home with their children and are working instead. In fact, you said this country is worse off in general because of the liberal agenda (like what, exactly? Civil rights?).

    I said I was a traditional person, yes. I think children are better off when their mothers are at home with them, because there is no person more important to the child’s development than his or her mother. I say that as a father and former child. That, amazingly, makes me a woman hater, in your pathetic mind. Hmm…

    I’m talking about modern liberalism. I do believe this country is worse off because of it. Read my blog for more information.

    You’re a kid pining for a magical time that never existed and an era of bigotry where every one was worse off other than white, hetero males.

    Oh, put down the thesaurus, lytteton. You’re not impressing anyone but morons. You write well but you’re lacking substance. That was obvious from the downward spiral your writing took in the comment section of the page I linked to above. You went from writing quite well to rambling, because you were caught between a rock and a hard place. I suspect if this debate goes on, we’ll all be able to see what I mean.

    You’re a pathetic liar and nothing more. You mentioned ID first; I didn’t. I simply said that ID has some merit and is not Creationism, as you ignorantly claim. I factually stated that the Right uses science to justify our beliefs more than the Left, and you ignored that, too. You have no argument. You’re resting your saving grace on the opinion of those who already agree with you on the issues. That’s pretty pathetic in itself. LOL. I just can’t stop using that word to describe you. It just fits so perfectly.

    Peace.

  • Terrance H.

    I would be perfectly happy, lyttleton, to make peace with you – like I did Snoring and Spinny – if you would quit spewing this nonsense that I’m a religious nut who hates women and gays. That alone is enough for me to totally discount and ignore you. You advanced this narrative on my blog more than once, and on this blog more than once. And you keep doing it, despite all evidence to the contrary. It’s – what’s the word – pathetic…

    • lyttleton

      Ensign is a member of The Family. As I’ve said a few times, read the book on them and then you’ll have all the quotes you need. Religion is their entire platform.

      I haven’t been claiming you’re a religious nut (in fact, I don’t think I’ve address your religious beliefs), but your homophobia is pretty blatant. All of your arguments against gay marriage are predicated on the fact that you think homosexuality is a lesser, worse form of sexuality (when really, it’s just different). That’s homophobia. You’ve centered your argument on the notion that homosexuals are bad for society (and if that isn’t your argument, why exactly did you point to all those studies about mental illness and promiscuity?).

      You might not hate women, but you just see them as lower on the hierarchy, where their desires for careers and personal life outside the home is harmful. If a mother works and a father stays at home, is that really worse? I’ve known great families where both parents worked and I’ve known truly messed up families where the mother stayed at home. It seems to me, families should be deciding their personal dynamics for themselves. Good for liberalism.

      I’m not fretting making ‘peace’ with you. You have been rude and condescending from the beginning (you do remember thanking me for my civility in the face of your anger, right?), and I see your views as archaic and dangerous. That Spinny tolerates you probably just says something good about her character, but I find you to be distasteful, disrespectful and bigoted. You write with vitriol and anger, and what annoys me the most is that you bring out the same in me. Discount and ignore me, please, because I would like to live in a world where you (and your beliefs) don’t exist.

      Pathetic, indeed.

      • Terrance H.

        So, in other words, you cannot back up your claim that Ensign believes he is operating under divine edict. “Read the book!” Pathetic.

        If you think using science to discount homosexuality as something society should not be so quick to endorse, then you don’t understand the definition of homophobia. It is a fact that homosexuals are at greater risk of developing some form of mental illness than heterosexuals. If I’m a homophobe for not discounting that by claiming the studies were methodologically flawed (like you do), then so be it. If science doesn’t tell me what I want to here, I don’t ignore it – like some.

        You might not hate women, but you just see them as lower on the hierarchy, where their desires for careers and personal life outside the home is harmful.

        Ridiculous. I specifically said that women should have careers if they want. But I believe, personally, that because they are so incredibly important in a child’s development, their first obligation should be in the home. Only a halfwit would find that statement misogynistic.

        I’m not fretting making ‘peace’ with you. You have been rude and condescending from the beginning (you do remember thanking me for my civility in the face of your anger, right?)

        At one time, you were decent. I thanked you for it. Then you went back to the “You hate gays and women” narrative. I literally had to defend myself against your attacks by divulging personal information, such as the sexual predilections of my best friend. You claimed that doesn’t prove anything; I could still be a homophobe. That tells me two things: 1). You don’t care about the facts; and 2). You don’t understand the definition of homophobia.

        Discount and ignore me, please, because I would like to live in a world where you (and your beliefs) don’t exist.

        Now you’re on to threatening me. That’s pathetic – and a felony.

      • lyttleton

        And, uh, yeah, I’m asking you to read a book. I know that is probably asking a lot of you, but you should try it sometime.

        Felony? This guy cracks me up. What a hoot.

      • Terrance H.

        Yes, lyttleton. Clearly our conversation thus far impels one to regard me as an ignorant, knuckle-dragging, book-hating fool. I mean, clearly…

      • Terrance H.

        Wait. Except the Bible. I love the Bible. All other books? Psssh. The work of Lucifer.

  • lyttleton

    And if you go that page you will see that you were the one who devolved into insults first. In fact, you insult me constantly in your posts, and then say that my points must have no merits because I’m using insults. See the irony?

    I never said you brought up ID first. What does that matter. I brought it up, you defended it, claimed you had a minor in biology and said that Natural Selection (which is what I meant when I said evolution; it’s shorthand, my fault if that wasn’t clear to you) was flawed. That’s all plain.

    I meant (I feel, pretty obviously) that Behe is the only prominent biologist speaking out for ID. Just as I reference Dawkins and Myers because they are public figures, I discuss Behe because he’s the singular (Biologist) public face of ID. Obviously there are people who have studied biology and worked in biology that believe ID (you being one, if you did in fact study biology), but there is a difference between personal belief and publishing books/articles in support of it. Expelled is filled with discredited biologists and scientists bitter that their ideas were weak and rejected. You call it lack of academic freedom, reality just calls bad science bad science.

    You go on and on about me not reading links or watching your movies (when I do) but you haven’t read any of the links I provided you (and blocked me when I had my longest lists). Here is the response I wrote to you that I had to post on Spinny’s blog because you went cowardly to the block function:

    My full response.

    I know you won’t read it, but it’s there for the record.

    In that post I linked to this article: The Flagellum Unspun. It thoroughly dismantles Irreducible Complexity, which is what they showed in the court case that decided that ID is just a trojan horse for religious indoctrination.

    Saying God/A Designer did it doesn’t answer a question, it just begs it. It’s not a scientific response, it’s a philosophical hypothesis. Who is that designer? Who created the designer? How did that designer come to be with the abilities to fashion universes?

    You dismissively talked of Dark Matter as a ridiculous notion, but can there be any more ridiculous assertion than that God (whatever you want to call it) is a scientific proposition?

    (I went and reread your comment on Dark Matter, by the way. Funny, you did the same thing you do to anyone who doesn’t agree with you, you just blithely dismiss it. You called it a bunch of “jargon”. That “jargon” is the science. If you don’t get it (and I’m not claiming to get it all), that doesn’t make it fake.)

    The article you linked to that asserts ID isn’t Creationism is, again, the Discovery Institute. You claim bias by the entire scientific community, you say the scientists that argued in the Dover case are biased (for rational science, maybe), yet your every resource in support of ID is one group of people. If there was ever a risk of having a biased opinion, might it not be the group whose entire livelihood is based on trying to convince people ID is a legitimate scientific theory (when it is not)?

    (Also, that article doesn’t prove it’s not warmed-over creationism, it just feebly attempts to make that argument. You’re convinced, obviously, but scientists aren’t.)

    I love how you can just dismiss the court decision because of a past, unrelated court. Obviously, science shouldn’t be decided in courts, but when it comes to education, the court had a legitimate and fair right to decide whether ID was really just religion in fancy terms. And even with Behe and other Discovery Institute colleagues on the stand, they couldn’t convince a conservative judge of that hogwash.

    You say Natural Selection is flawed? Okay, I’m asking you here, now, why? Irreducible Complexity has already been dismantled thoroughly; I’d be interested in what other ways it’s flawed. And keep in mind, there is a difference between incomplete knowledge and mistakes.

    Perhaps you are going to mention DNA and Dembski’s argument. Go for it.

    ID has no merits other than as a fairy tale, and that’s where you reveal how ignorant you are.

    You have harped over and over again that I don’t read your links (when I do), but will you read mine? They’re thorough, exhaustive refutations of ID nonsense, not just a letter from an editor. It’s called science, try it some time.

    On a different note, when did “Modern Liberalism” begin exactly? That’s a pretty convenient way to distance yourself from criticizing all the good things liberalism has done in our history. But when did old liberalism end and new liberalism begin? The liberal force of history hasn’t changed, it’s just that you have to begrudgingly admit that good has come from it while hating where it’s taking us.

    You call yourself a traditionalist, I call you a misogynist. Which, I guess, is pretty traditional.

    I’d say that as a product of mother-rearing, you’re an argument for not being raised by a mother.

    If you want to claim you stomped my ass, feel free, but keep in mind that I wrote a thorough response to your homophobic nonsense on my blog (which I linked above and I know you didn’t read), and your claims to superiority might be a little more convincing if you hadn’t blocked me from responding. Do you not get the irony of using that Jefferson quote right before blocking me? You’re a giddy hypocrite, you should run for office.

    (I’m glad you’re impressed with my writing skills, maybe you could pick up a few tricks. You don’t have to worry about your writing taking a “downward spiral”, there’s no lower for it to go.)

  • Terrance H.

    And if you go that page you will see that you were the one who devolved into insults first.

    Don’t be inane. The insults started here on Spinny’s blog. Or, don’t you remember what prompted me to write that post in the first place? A discussion with you here, on this blog.

    I never said you brought up ID first. What does that matter. I brought it up, you defended it, claimed you had a minor in biology and said that…

    I defended those who subscribe to ID against your spurious insults. You say they are anti-science. Why? Because they subscribe to something other than evolution? If going against the tide is wrong, then I guess Galileo, Newton, and Da Vinci were all wrong.

    My degree is in history, but I did minor in biology. It was not a mere claim, but a fact. I could give a shit if you choose to believe it or not. I don’t have to prove anything to you or anybody else. I know who I am, what I’ve done, and where I come from.

    Natural Selection (which is what I meant when I said evolution; it’s shorthand, my fault if that wasn’t clear to you) was flawed. That’s all plain.

    Here we have yet another example of lyttleton talking without knowing what he is talking about. Natural Selection and evolution are not the same thing. Would you like me to explain the difference? Too bad.

    Natural Selection is a process by which undesirable traits are weeded out and desirable traits are kept or enhanced. Natural Selection is an important aspect of Evolution as modern science describes it, but they are not the same. To say that evolution and natural selection are the same is to discount symbiogenesis, lateral gene transfer, and just about every other aspect or theory regarding evolution.

    So, why do you feel you have the ability to discuss complex topics in the realm of science when you’ve been unable to distinguish between individual processes of something, and the something (i.e., evolution) itself?

    Obviously there are people who have studied biology and worked in biology that believe ID (you being one, if you did in fact study biology), but there is a difference between personal belief and publishing books/articles in support of it.

    First of all, a minor in biology does not entitle one to the label of “biologist.” Behe and those interviewed in Expelled have more than merely studied biology for a few years. But that’s a moot point. The real point is that you discounted the entire article explaining the fundamental differences between Creationism and Intelligent Design simply because it referenced a “prominent biologist out for ID.”

    That’s particularly absurd. The truth of the article, or the logic of it, does not depend on whether or not Behe is right, wrong, or simply silly. Behe could be in fact quite wrong, but that does not make his theory “warmed over creationism.” It makes his theory wrong. Nothing more or less.

    Aside from that obvious fact, however, is your effortless attempts to discount Behe. Essentially, your argument can be reduced to one thing: “Mainstream science rejects Behe, therefore he is a bad scientist.”

    Brilliant!

    Secondly, I do not subscribe to ID. Most people who do reject evolution whereas I do not. I believe evolution was directed by an intelligent designer, who, according to me, is God. According to Behe and other biologists who do subscribe to ID, that designer is —- irrelevant.

    Your folly is in assuming their theory depends on knowing who the designer is in order for it to be true or logical. This is false. It’s akin to saying that Dawkins must be able to explain abiogenesis (which he can’t) in order for evolution to be true.

    If you want to fault me for disagreeing with mainstream science on a particular issue, you can fault me for believing that abiogenesis is the absurd concoction of those who fancy presuppositional arguments to satisfy scientist’s inherent need to answer every question.

    If you want to debate abiogenesis, I’d be giddy to do so.

    (Also, that article doesn’t prove it’s not warmed-over creationism, it just feebly attempts to make that argument. You’re convinced, obviously, but scientists aren’t.)

    A fallacy of defective induction. Quite common for you, I’ve noticed.

    I love how you can just dismiss the court decision because of a past, unrelated court.

    I love how you rest a substantial part of your argument on a court decision because it’s what you want to hear, ignoring, mind you, that courts are not infallible. A few scientists gave testimony claiming that ID was no different, in principle, than Creationism, and therefore it would be unconstitutional – a violation of the First Amendment – to teach it alongside Evolution, a required topic in high school biology.

    What does it prove? Nothing. Just that a few scientists and a judge reject ID.

    You keep repeating the absurd notion that Behe is the only prominent biologist who subscribes to the theory. Surely you’re aware of Dr. Jonathan Wells, who received a doctorate in molecular and cell biology from Berkley. He says: “The truth is Darwinism is not a scientific theory, but a materialistic creation myth masquerading as science.”

    I don’t know that I necessarily agree with his sentiments, but the point is that Behe is not the only one, or even close to the only one. There are many real biologists and scientists who reject evolution.

    You say Natural Selection is flawed? Okay, I’m asking you here, now, why? Irreducible Complexity has already been dismantled thoroughly; I’d be interested in what other ways it’s flawed. And keep in mind, there is a difference between incomplete knowledge and mistakes.

    Irreducible Complexity has not been “dismantled thoroughly” because all arguments against it rely on natural selection. I’m not going to get into that here, however. I will write a post in a few days regarding it and you’re welcome to come over and respond, or if you feel more comfortable, you can respond on your blog and I’ll find my way over there. It’s too complex and long to clutter up Spinny’s blog with it.

    ID has no merits other than as a fairy tale, and that’s where you reveal how ignorant you are.

    Why doesn’t ID have merit? And for someone whose arguments against it are the thoughts of other people, you shouldn’t be talking about my ignorance. At least I use my own words to defend what I believe and don’t believe. You just paste links.

    I plan to respond – in my own words – to all of the objections to ID you’ve pasted links to. Some I will agree with while others I will not. You see, the problem you’re having is trying to paint me as someone who believes in ID. The fact of that matter is that I do not. I believe in evolution. But I do reject the idea that ID is nothing more than creationism.

    On a different note, when did “Modern Liberalism” begin exactly?

    I think abortion on demand and allowing the feel good attitude to dictate what is and is not normal is a pretty good example of modern liberalism and it’s failures.

    You call yourself a traditionalist, I call you a misogynist. Which, I guess, is pretty traditional.

    Yes. Recognizing that women are important to their children – more so than men – is a very misogynistic thing to say, I guess.

    You really a pathetic waste of space.

    Do you not get the irony of using that Jefferson quote right before blocking me? You’re a giddy hypocrite, you should run for office

    All you did was ramble on about how the studies were bias, wrong, bad science, and so on. It’s the same B.S. over and over again, repeated like a bad record. You were totally wrong regarding the founding purpose of marriage in Western society, then you sidestepped that and claimed that society has transformed itself, so on and so forth. You arguments were heard; you kept repeating them. I didn’t see the need to continue it, so I blocked you and all the people who kept coming over and arguing with each. When I finally shut it down, over 100 comments had been left and few of them, toward the end, had anything to do with the post. It was a bunch of people arguing over religion!

    (I’m glad you’re impressed with my writing skills, maybe you could pick up a few tricks. You don’t have to worry about your writing taking a “downward spiral”, there’s no lower for it to go.)

    Your writing is good, but I’ve read much better (e.g., Snoring Dog Studio). Also, it might behoove you to consider that the only one here claiming to be a writer is you. Personally, I don’t feel the need to impress the people of the blogosphere through a process of good writing that is incredibly time consuming. I do so only when absolutely necessary. But make no mistake about it, if I wanted to take the time, I’d put you to shame, and of that I am absolutely certain.

    • lyttleton

      My God Terrence, you are psychotic. I didn’t threaten you, I didn’t express any desire to do you any harm. I merely said I’d like you not to be in my life, as in, I’d love it if you went away. I’m not wishing away a race or gender, I’m wishing away your vial and contemptible worldview.

      Holy crap are you insane.

      You’re starting to come apart at the seams dude, settle down.

      Yes I link to other people, because they are scientists. I’m going to let the biologists explain the biology because that is their expertise. Only someone completely delusional would see that as a poor way to make an argument. I’m not here to prove how smart I personally am, I’m here to debate a topic. The best way to do that is to provide facts. Why would that be a bad thing?

      I guess that as someone who supports ID as a scientific theory (whether you believe it or not), facts probably aren’t important to you.

      The difference between God/Designer and abiogenesis is that the latter can be tested, studied and eventually explained (and I bet Dawkins could explain it quite well, though that isn’t his specific area of biological study from what I know; could be wrong). God is a hypothesis that can’t be tested or studied, it’s not even a hypothesis, it’s a guess.

      If the point of Irreducible Complexity is to show that Natural Selection couldn’t happen without a guiding hand, then why isn’t using Natural Selection to disprove Irreducible Complexity valid? That makes no sense. You’ve lost the thread here, man, and it’s starting to become clear how pointless this conversation is.

      (But I just can’t help myself.)

      Let’s go back to the court case: A group of scientists argued against ID, and a group (including Behe) argued for it. The side fighting against it made the more compelling case. The courts aren’t infallible, but I’m having a hard time understanding why that isn’t at least worthy of mention. If two people have a debate, and someone wins the debate, that person made the more compelling argument, meaning their version was more likely closer to the truth.

      I’m understanding now why this debate is so frustrating. You don’t care about facts and you don’t care about truth, you just care that your beliefs hold.

      This idea that there are “mainstream” scientists is hilarious, and now I get why you love Sarah Palin. Or maybe you’re just trying to be her.

      I have no problem with a good scientific theory that challenges the status quo, but ID is not it. In fact, as you’ve already said, it doesn’t even challenge the basic foundation of Darwin’s theory. The process is all the same, but ID just adds a tinkerer into the mix. This is why real scientists reject it as a scientific theory. Plenty of scientists believe in God, and they probably even think He/She/It helped create life. But they know that it doesn’t qualify as science to say, “I don’t fully understand how this process works, so I’ll just say God did it.”

      This isn’t some vast liberal conspiracy. The fact that you see liberals as some sort of insidious evil in the world just makes you sound all that much crazier. I respect the conservative view, can even commiserate with some of the underlying beliefs behind it. I think some conservative stances are bad, but I don’t feel like conservatism is destroying America.

      For a guy who, out of nowhere, accused me of bashing America, you sure do talk about how bad of a society we live in. I’m personally of the opinion that this is a pretty great nation and it’s because of our long history of liberal-minded innovators.

      As regards the marriage debate, I will admit that I allowed myself to get pulled in too many directions. I tend to see everything as interconnected, so I go on tangents. I didn’t keep my focus on the debate we were having and so I didn’t give my full attention to the topic. That’s why I wrote my longform blog response so I could get all my thoughts together and in one coherent piece. Still, I don’t recall dismissing any of the studies as biased (my memory on that account isn’t perfect), but if anyone has thrown the ‘bias’ claim around, it’s been you at any and every person who disagrees with you.

      The debate had no resolution because of the fact that you see this world as worse off these days and I don’t. Since that is your central tenet, there was no way for us to ever come to terms. Once I realized that, I lost interest in what was turning into a battle over meaningless statistics and semantics.

      The biology debate interests me because there are facts involved, but I’m starting to think this is just as fruitless. You dismiss experts because they’re ‘biased’ (what personal gain do these scientists get for rejecting ID and supporting Natural Selection? Oh right, I forgot how fabulously rich all those biologists are, siding with Big Science), and then you tell me you’ll ‘use your own words.’ Why should I care about your own words? You’re no more qualified to discuss this topic than I am, which is why I prefer to link to experts. I don’t mind you summarizing your views, but unless you can support it with the peer-reviewed science, I’m not seeing the point.

      You got me on Jonathan Wells, I forgot all about that renowned misquoter and liar. (A compendium of critiques of his book). You harp on bias and then you mention a guy who has admitted his entire life’s aim was to refute a science that didn’t align with his religious beliefs. Now, I’m not claiming that having religious belief discounts his work (I know you’ll try to make that implication), but when a person goes into an endeavor with the outcome already determined, that’s bad science.

      This isn’t really even fun anymore. I wait with red hot anticipation for the biology minor’s blog post proving ID, but until then, I think I’m just going to find ways to make this conversation more amusing to me.

      (I am a writer. That’s what I do. I’m not trying to impress anyone by writing well, I just do it because it’s how I write. I’d love to see you put me to shame, however you think that could be accomplished.)

  • Terrance H.

    My God Terrence, you are psychotic. I didn’t threaten you, I didn’t express any desire to do you any harm. I merely said I’d like you not to be in my life, as in, I’d love it if you went away. I’m not wishing away a race or gender, I’m wishing away your vial and contemptible worldview.

    Inherent in good writing is effective communication. I took what you said as a threat. You shouldn’t count on the reader’s ability to explicate, exclusively given the nature of the piece you are writing. After all, this isn’t a poem-a-thon. You should be clear.

    Yes I link to other people, because they are scientists. I’m going to let the biologists explain the biology because that is their expertise. Only someone completely delusional would see that as a poor way to make an argument. I’m not here to prove how smart I personally am, I’m here to debate a topic. The best way to do that is to provide facts. Why would that be a bad thing?

    Lyttleton, you’re not debating the topic; you’re allowing other people to debate the topic. You claim the high-ground via logical fallacy (i.e., you appeal to authority). In your mind, because so many biologists reject Intelligent Design, it’s bad science, or, religion masquerading as science. That is your folly.

    As for me, I’m not debating the merits of either theory. My purpose is to defend “IDers” from your unsubstantiated, casuistic insults. Nothing more; nothing less.

    I guess that as someone who supports ID as a scientific theory (whether you believe it or not), facts probably aren’t important to you.

    In the face of reality, you spew yet more unsubstantiated garbage. I’m not obliged to explain my views again, but I’ll do nonetheless.

    1). I believe in evolution.

    2). I believe evolution was directed by God.

    3). I don’t believe in the theory of Intelligent Design by your definition of it, because that definition necessitates a denial of evolution.

    The difference between God/Designer and abiogenesis is that the latter can be tested, studied and eventually explained (and I bet Dawkins could explain it quite well, though that isn’t his specific area of biological study from what I know; could be wrong).

    Actually, abiogenesis cannot be tested because it is impossible to replicate the conditions of early Earth in a laboratory setting, or any setting for that matter. That aside, abiogenesis is yet another naturalistic origin of life hypothesis that yields an – you’ll love this – irreducible volume of complexity that cannot be overcome by natural means. Simple.

    God is a hypothesis that can’t be tested or studied, it’s not even a hypothesis, it’s a guess.

    To suggest that Intelligent Design is unscientific simply because it compels one to make a logical assessment of the facts is to suggest that science itself is illogical.

    If the point of Irreducible Complexity is to show that Natural Selection couldn’t happen without a guiding hand, then why isn’t using Natural Selection to disprove Irreducible Complexity valid? That makes no sense. You’ve lost the thread here, man, and it’s starting to become clear how pointless this conversation is.

    I have never met a “writer” who didn’t understand the term natural.

    In biology, natural selection is a natural – or undirected – process, and so it is appropriately named. It is directed insomuch as any adaptive process is directed. Intelligent Design, on the other hand, suggests natural means couldn’t possibly account for the complexity we see and understand today.

    You seem unable to understand simple biological definitions and principles, yet you believe you have the ability to discuss issues far more complex. Astounding.

    Let’s go back to the court case: A group of scientists argued against ID, and a group (including Behe) argued for it. The side fighting against it made the more compelling case. The courts aren’t infallible, but I’m having a hard time understanding why that isn’t at least worthy of mention. If two people have a debate, and someone wins the debate, that person made the more compelling argument, meaning their version was more likely closer to the truth.

    Lyttleton, courts do not specialize in science, or the arbitration of science. The case you mention is about as valid in this discussion as the Scopes-Monkey Trial.

    …I get why you love Sarah Palin. Or maybe you’re just trying to be her.

    In a heartbeat. But, I’d prefer Michelle Bachmann. She’s just uber-hot. Hell, I get hot just thinking about her.

    In fact, as you’ve already said, it doesn’t even challenge the basic foundation of Darwin’s theory.

    Not to me, but to many it certainly does. Most IDers, you’ll note, reject evolution altogether. Why? I don’t know. But certainly Intelligent Design does not rely on the God of Gaps argument. If you think it does, then you don’t know anything about it aside from what someone has told you. I would recommend a thorough examination of it.

    This isn’t some vast liberal conspiracy. The fact that you see liberals as some sort of insidious evil in the world just makes you sound all that much crazier. I respect the conservative view, can even commiserate with some of the underlying beliefs behind it. I think some conservative stances are bad, but I don’t feel like conservatism is destroying America.

    This coming from the guy who cannot tolerate opposing views. You would, as I recall, prefer that me and people like me not exist. You said as much. Is this yet another example of lyttleton changing his tune?

    Still, I don’t recall dismissing any of the studies as biased (my memory on that account isn’t perfect), but if anyone has thrown the ‘bias’ claim around, it’s been you at any and every person who disagrees with you.

    Surely we both used that card. But the difference is that I explained why I felt that way; you didn’t. I believe, yes, the American Psychological Association is bias. I gave you my reasons.

    The debate had no resolution because of the fact that you see this world as worse off these days and I don’t.

    That’s probably the most intelligent thing you have ever said.

    You dismiss experts because they’re ‘biased’ (what personal gain do these scientists get for rejecting ID and supporting Natural Selection?

    When did I say these “experts” were bias? I’m saying they are simply wrong, or misguided.

    Now I’m going to point out the irony because I feel like it.

    Behe, by all accounts, is also an expert, yet curiously you dismiss his view as nothing more than “warmed over creationism,” basically implying that his religion compels him to sacrifice his intellectual and academic integrity (bias). You have done this to Behe and every other expert in the field who accepts ID as more logical than natural selection. Ad hominem. Do you do this because there are more scientists who reject ID than accept? Appeal to majority.

    That is why this debate is fruitless. You can’t stop with the fallacies.

    Nice ad hom on Wells, too.

    This isn’t really even fun anymore. I wait with red hot anticipation for the biology minor’s blog post proving ID, but until then, I think I’m just going to find ways to make this conversation more amusing to me.

    I can’t prove ID. I can only explain that ID is a valid scientific theory, but that I suspect will be pointless. Already you have rejected the opinion of Stephen C. Meyer, a far more adept writer than you, and if for no other reason than communicating his position effectively without pasting link after link to information he is unable to understand.

    You have been reduced, effectively, to an appeal to majority.

    • lyttleton

      This coming from the guy who cannot tolerate opposing views. You would, as I recall, prefer that me and people like me not exist. You said as much. Is this yet another example of lyttleton changing his tune?

      This is what I said:

      Discount and ignore me, please, because I would like to live in a world where you (and your beliefs) don’t exist.

      Find a single rational person who would read that as a threat. Seriously. Are you off your meds? And I never said ‘people like you.’ You misquote and mischaracterize everything. No wonder you’re a fan of Wells. (It’s not an Ad Hom attack to acknowledge the well-published criticism of him. He’s been proven to use quotes out of context and flat out lie about the opinions of biologists who do not share his beliefs.)

      Also, the guy who blocks people that he disagrees with is saying I don’t tolerate other views? Really? Really?

      I’m not appealing to majority, but I am appealing to authority, for good reason. Science isn’t decided by consensus (or whines of “Listen to ME!”), but it is decided by peer-review. In other words, science builds a foundation on getting the opinions of experts in a particular field. What’s the difference if I write it out or I just link to a post that says what needs to be said. You’re ignoring my links that thoroughly explain the science, yet you provided a plethora of links when we were having the marriage debate. How is that different?

      What do you think ID is? The best definition of it is this:

      Intelligent design is the proposition that “certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection.”

      That’s God. Do you even know the history of the Intelligent Design movement? It was developed by Creationist who wrote the “Of Pandas and People” textbook. When that book was rejected from schools for teaching that God created the world, they revised the book over and over again until it was no longer overtly religious. Did you watch the documentary about the Dover trial, because all of this background is explained fully. Or have you just accepted the Discovery Institute’s press release?

      It isn’t science. Feel free to try to explain it to me, though, I’m sure that’ll be amusing. (Meyer is the director of the Discovery Institute, once again showing that you have one source for this topic.)

      When did I say these “experts” were bias? I’m saying they are simply wrong, or misguided.

      Regardless, I responded to this dimwitted response once before. I said: It established nothing of the sort. That was the opinion of a few biased scientists, which some ignorant court decided to accept.

      I feel like Jon Stewart showing Fox News clips. This is going to be fun.

      Behe, by all accounts, is also an expert

      Actually, only by the Discovery Institute’s account is he an expert. The scientific community has dismissed his work and debunked it. You can call that an appeal to authority, again, but that is (and I must stress this) how science works. You have an idea, you research and test it (Behe admitted he never did this) and then your research is vetted by your peers. Behe’s theory failed on this account.

      How you said I defined ID:

      3). I don’t believe in the theory of Intelligent Design by your definition of it, because that definition necessitates a denial of evolution.

      And here is how I actually defined ID:

      I have no problem with a good scientific theory that challenges the status quo, but ID is not it. In fact, as you’ve already said, it doesn’t even challenge the basic foundation of Darwin’s theory. The process is all the same, but ID just adds a tinkerer into the mix.

      And you actually quoted that same block of text. So one minute you’re saying that I claim ID refutes evolution and the next minute you’re showing me say that it doesn’t.

      My understanding of ID is that God made evolution happen. There is, of course, Young Earth Creationists who think God just spoke and made it, and they saddle up with IDers. The Discovery Institute, however, in its attempts to appear scientific, borrows the language of Natural Selection, but then adds God to it.

      It is directed insomuch as any adaptive process is directed. Intelligent Design, on the other hand, suggests natural means couldn’t possibly account for the complexity we see and understand today.

      Yes, I get this. Hence, Irreducible Complexity. Taking for example, the eye. Behe claims that it couldn’t evolve because if one part of it wasn’t there, it wouldn’t work. But, numerous scientists have explained how the eye evolved, naturally.
      (Watch this whole video, or does it not count because I didn’t make it?) Put simply, in nature we have proof of eyes that are simpler than the modern eye, proving that the eye is not irreducibly complex.

      Lyttleton, you’re not debating the topic; you’re allowing other people to debate the topic.

      This isn’t a philosophical debate about matters of opinion like Gay Marriage or Abortion. This is a debate about scientific fact, what is and isn’t. For this reason, I’m providing facts. The links I provided were scientists discussing the ideas and explaining why they were flawed.

      You and I can go back and forth all day (obviously) ‘debating’ this, but in the end, the facts are all that matters. Not how pretty we write or how many insults we can hurl at the other, just facts. I provide facts, you provide irrational blatherings with promises that eventually you’ll make your point.

      I will concede that ID is a philosophical point of view. But it is not sound science and you haven’t shown anything that supports it.

      • Terrance H.

        First, I have a request.

        Everyone, please write Microsoft and tell them that their Online Office Suite is a useless, maddening, fucking piece of shit. Not just a piece of shit. No! That isn’t good enough. Tell them it’s a FUCKING piece of shit.

        I literally had lyttleton’s entire response replied to within an Office document, and the page just fucking magically disappeared, costing me everything I wrote, saving none of it. The only reason I did not reply within this page is because I wanted to talk to a Facebook friend while writing, totally disinterested in dicking with the browser tabs. I’m so fucking pissed right now. But that is my reward for using Microsoft Live. My reward for flirting with a girl while married, I guess. My fucking reward…

        Anyway. I’m going for a walk. I will reply later!

      • Terrance H.

        This is what I said:

        I know what you said. It’s contrary to your alleged political predilections. You’re supposed to be a liberal, which literally means “open to new behavior or opinions; open to a broadening of general knowledge. “

        Claiming you do not want me (or my beliefs) in your life means you are unwilling to tolerate dissent, differing opinions, or a broadening of general knowledge.

        If a threat was not intended, then I suggest rewriting your statements until no room is left for extrapolation. Be clear and concise.

        And I never said ‘people like you.’

        Am I wrong in assuming your dispute is my opinions on certain issues? Of course I’m not. You referred to be as a misogynistic homophobe because I reject abortion, gay marriage, and have the audacity to believe that mothers are incredibly important. So, do you think I am the only person who holds these “backward views,” or what? Of course you know I’m not, so clearly you meant people like me as well.

        Also, the guy who blocks people that he disagrees with is saying I don’t tolerate other views? Really? Really?

        It’s my blog. I’m the decider (LOL)! Your views were well represented, refuted, and repeated endlessly. Toward the end of our discussion, you referred to me, yet again, as a homophobe, despite all evidence to the contrary. I literally had to defend myself by divulging personal information, but that did not satisfy.

        I made every effort to apologize for my part in our heated dispute. It went well for a while, until this overplayed narrative was advanced again. You cannot stop with its use because you truly believe it. You suffer from true-believer-ism. I chose not to bother myself with it any longer.

        Science isn’t decided by consensus (or whines of “Listen to ME!”), but it is decided by peer-review. In other words, science builds a foundation on getting the opinions of experts in a particular field.

        In questions of science, the authority of a thousand is not worth the humble reasoning of a single individual. ~ Galileo Galilei

        Your definition of science discounts the pursuit of knowledge. You would Behe stop asking questions and accept the views of the majority. The Catholic Church made similar demands during in its zenith. Mainstream science has a lot in common with its old adversary.

        No man really becomes a fool until he stops asking questions. ~ Charles P. Steinmetz

        What’s the difference if I write it out or I just link to a post that says what needs to be said. You’re ignoring my links that thoroughly explain the science, yet you provided a plethora of links when we were having the marriage debate. How is that different?

        I link to scientific studies that substantiated my claims. You link to opinions, some of which do not support what you claim, as we will see below. That is the difference. It’s a bloody big one, too.

        That’s God.

        No, it’s not. ID does not purport to know who the designer is. It makes no mention of the designer, except to say that one must exist – because an irreducible level of complexity is observed that cannot be bridged by natural means – and that he, she, or it is intelligent.

        It was developed by Creationist who wrote the “Of Pandas and People”

        Meyers and Behe are self-styled architects of the theory. Whether one or both authors of the book were involved is something I do not know, nor claim to.
        However, the creator[s] of the theory is not relevant, as it does not speak the validity of the theory itself.

        Earlier, I mentioned Galileo. I suggest it is time to mention another pioneer in science.

        Science brings men nearer to God. ~Louis Pasteur</b

        Perhaps those who subscribe to ID firmly believe that. Perhaps others simply believe the logic is something that cannot be ignored. I do not know what they really believe, and neither do you.

        It isn’t science. Feel free to try to explain it to me, though, I’m sure that’ll be amusing. (Meyer is the director of the Discovery Institute, once again showing that you have one source for this topic.)

        Your folly is separating logic and science, which is illogical.

        Meyer is the director of the discovery institute. Those who subscribe to the theory will naturally be attracted to an organization with like-minded people with whom they can discuss the issue. Is that a bad thing?

        Actually, only by the Discovery Institute’s account is he an expert. The scientific community has dismissed his work and debunked it.

        The man holds a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Pennsylvania, and teaches biochemistry at Lehigh University. Does that not qualify him as an expert in the field?

        Furthermore, his work has not been debunked. Find me any criticism of his work and I will find his response.

        You can call that an appeal to authority, again, but that is (and I must stress this) how science works.

        No, it isn’t. If that were true, abiogenesis wouldn’t be the accepted theory of mainstream science. It is unfalsifiable for the simple fact that early Earth conditions (and I must stress this) cannot be replicated in a lab.

        And here is how I actually defined ID:

        Actually, your first description was “warmed over creationism.” Creationism and Evolution are not compatible. But now I see you have conceded the point and rendered it a “philosophical point of view.” We keep this up and you might just concede the whole conversation. It would behoove you to do so.

        (Watch this whole video, or does it not count because I didn’t make it?)

        Interesting that you would discount an article because it mentions a prominent IDer, yet you expect me to accept a video that satisfies its purpose by talking to a rabid atheist like Richard Dawkins?

        In any event, I gave it attention. It refutes nothing, in fact. There are over 40 subsystems of the human eye, most having no individual purpose until the entire system is formed, which according to your video, takes several thousand generations. If natural selection is true, then systems which have no purpose should not be carried on to the next generation and then the next generation and so on.

        An epic fail. You claim to understand Behe’s arguments, yet all evidence to the contrary.

        This isn’t a philosophical debate about matters of opinion like Gay Marriage or Abortion. This is a debate about scientific fact, what is and isn’t. For this reason, I’m providing facts. The links I provided were scientists discussing the ideas and explaining why they were flawed.

        You’ve offered no facts. You offer third-party opinion and claim it refutes Behe’s work when in fact it doesn’t. And if you don’t mind my saying so, that’s what we just saw!!!

        I’ve made my point. You haven’t made yours. I’m sorry, but that is reality.

        As a house implies a builder, and a garment a weaver, and a door a carpenter, so does the existence of the Universe imply a Creator ~ Marquis de Vauvenargues

        The more I study nature, the more I stand amazed at the work of the Creator. ~ Louis Pasteur

  • lyttleton

    You keep saying you’re going to provide proof for your view, but you never do it. The video I provided was meant to make a clear, concise argument, but not an exhaustive one.

    The Flagellum Unspun, the link I provided you, was not an opinion piece. It was a thorough dissection of Irreducible Complexity. It deals with Behe’s original idea, and then it addresses the counterarguments, and the further counterarguments. It’s about as thorough an analysis of the ‘science’ as there can be. That you dismiss it as mere opinion proves you either did not read the link (I would guess that’s the case) or that you will refuse to accept any argument against ID and it’s components. (I would be interested in seeing Behe’s response to that criticism.)

    You are the True Believer.

    I didn’t dismiss Behe because of his beliefs (as you do to countless people, like Dawkins), I dismissed him because his scientific credentials have been put under scrutiny and found lacking by his peers. That matters in science. For all his atheism, the scientific community (which is a mix of believers and non-believers) has affirmed over and over again that Dawkins is successful in his scientific endeavors.

    The history of ID does not discount it as a theory, I will grant you that. It doesn’t matter if a retarded monkey stumbled across the theory, as long as it holds up. The problem is, it doesn’t hold up.

    I brought up the history of it because you seem to be of the belief (one disseminated by the Discovery Institute) that there is a conspiracy among the scientific community to hold down ID. But here’s the thing, the scientific community isn’t one organization. In fact, far from being one cohesive thought machine, universities and research facilities are in a constant battle for the insufficient funds that are thrown at research, and everyone is looking for a breakthrough, a new, valuable idea. If ID had merit, there would be somebody outside of Discovery who was seriously pursuing it. The problem is, though, that ID provides no testable propositions, nothing fundamentally scientific to research. It’s only scientific pursuit is in trying to poke holes in Natural Selection (which is fine), but in place of that holes, it wishes to stick in God/Designer, something that even you admit the IDers don’t know anything about. And they never could.

    Whereas we can’t currently recreate abiogenesis in the lab, that doesn’t mean we never will.

    You like quotes so much, how about this one:

    “Taking what is unknown, unexplained, or undiscovered today and claiming that it will remain forever beyond our understanding isn’t just poor logic – it’s a lousy bet, considering the rate at which science continues to advance.” ~ Kenneth Miller

    Kenneth Miller, by the way, is a Christian, a firm believer in God, but still one of the leading experts in the Dover case with a firm understanding that Natural Selection is the best theory we have and that ideas of God have no place in science.

    If we’re going to assume that a group has an agenda, is it more likely to be the single one who would profit from their ideas being accepted on a large scale, or is it going to be the worldwide scientific community that has no central mind and only hampers themselves by ignoring valid theories?

    As you would probably point out, historically, scientific men have been devout, or at least generally theistic, though most of them would probably balk at the idea of trying to prove God as a scientific theory. So, when did this vast atheistic conspiracy to hide God enter the community?

    On the Discovery Institute’s side, you have Behe and Wells and Meyer, all hyper-religious men with an obvious faith bias towards ID. Hell, even Behe’s own university, Lehigh, has officially gone on record as saying they oppose his views.

    I called ID “warmed over Creationism” because that’s what it is. Scientists have taken up its mantle and have rejiggered it to be a ‘scientific’-esque theory, but that doesn’t change it’s roots anymore than giving a car a new paint job, tented windows and fancy rims adds any horsepower to the engine.

    Again, that doesn’t make the theory wrong, but it’s telling, and since you will dismiss all scientific criticism of ID as mere opinion, there’s really no where to go from there.

    As to the idea that you blocked me for calling you a homophobe over and over again, here are the relevant quotes:

    I cannot help but take away from your posts a taint of homophobia. That is clear by your constant declaration that homosexuality is a perversion (it is no more a perversion than liking blondes over brunettes). Where do you get your support for declaring homosexuality a perversion? You talk of your integrity, but I merely see a man doing anything he can to justify his dislike of gays.

    (Immediately after that comment, you thanked me for my civility.)

    When you responded to my comment by saying you were not homophobic, I mentioned the word twice more:

    I don’t want to call you homophobic. I believe this debate can be had on an intellectual level that has nothing to do with personal feelings.

    (I’m not impressed with the “I have gay friends” argument. Research indicates that people can have friends from a group and still have prejudice towards the group; they just perform some cognitive dissonance and tell themselves, “Oh, my friend is one of the good ones.” Again, I’m not saying you’re homophobic, I’m just saying that isn’t a convincing argument to me).

    You acknowledge my point, saying:

    I am not homophobic. That I have a gay friend is not sufficient evidence of this, of course, but it’s just another fact about me that might help you see the truth.

    After that, we debated for quite a few more comments (before I was blocked), yet I never mentioned homophobia again. So this notion that you blocked me for insulting you is specious. You got insulting and condescending, and when I refused to just accept your view, you blocked me.

    I’ve called you homophobic here, openly, because I believe that to be the case. In that debate, however, I remained fairly neutral in my tone (I will admit that my writing probably became more cutting as it went on, but that was a matter of both of us ratcheting up the vitriol).

    These are facts. You will ignore them.

    Lastly, I return to the idea that anything I said could be constituted as a threat. No rational person would see that. And I did just mean your views. I have no problem with ID existing, and I don’t begrudge the anti-abortion view (in fact, you keep mentioning abortion as a reason I call you misogynist, but I’ve never attacked your view on that; I made a point of saying I wasn’t interested in discussing it).

    What I dislike is the way your views have merged together into one cohesive hate machine, fueled by a shoddy understanding of science. I dislike the vile pessimism you spray out on the world, claiming that society is somehow worse today than it was years ago, even though we live in a world where racial, sexual and gender barriers are being broken down. Your personal dystopian view of our world is exhaustingly bleak and selfish (You, personally, would like women to be at home because you, personally, had a mother who stayed at home). For that reason, I don’t want your views in my life. That’s not a threat, and it isn’t me refusing to hear other opinions, it’s me saying, “I’ve heard your opinion, now feel free to keep that ugliness inside yourself (or, at least, away from me).”

    I’m not particularly convinced that I need to be open-minded to bigotry.

    Good day.

    • Terrance H.

      You keep saying you’re going to provide proof for your view, but you never do it. The video I provided was meant to make a clear, concise argument, but not an exhaustive one.

      I don’t know what “proof” you’re looking for aside from what has been repeated endlessly. You question the validity of Intelligent Design as a scientific theory, or at the very least, a scientific idea. It’s veracity I cannot prove, but its validity I have.

      A scientific observation of biological structures is made, a logical conclusion formulated. To a certain extent, it is unfalsifiable because there is no way to definitively prove the it is flawed. However, unless natural selection provides a better answer, which it doesn’t, then Intelligent Design is worth consideration.

      The Flagellum Unspun, the link I provided you, was not an opinion piece. It was a thorough dissection of Irreducible Complexity. It deals with Behe’s original idea, and then it addresses the counterarguments, and the further counterarguments. It’s about as thorough an analysis of the ‘science’ as there can be. That you dismiss it as mere opinion proves you either did not read the link (I would guess that’s the case) or that you will refuse to accept any argument against ID and it’s components. (I would be interested in seeing Behe’s response to that criticism.)

      WillIam Dembski provided a response. You will note that Dembski is not a scientist, but a philosopher. Therefore, he should be at a significant disadvantage in this debate. Read the piece and find out.

      Contrary to your opinion, I read the piece. I happen to like Ken Miller. I think he is a fine scientist, but I think he’s wrong on this account.

      I didn’t dismiss Behe because of his beliefs (as you do to countless people, like Dawkins), I dismissed him because his scientific credentials have been put under scrutiny and found lacking by his peers. That matters in science. For all his atheism, the scientific community (which is a mix of believers and non-believers) has affirmed over and over again that Dawkins is successful in his scientific endeavors.

      Behe’s scientific credentials are impeccable. He dare go against the grain so all of a sudden he’s a muttonhead masquerading as a biologist. Ridiculous.

      I ponder whether you have actually read a single book he has authored rather than simply the criticism or “scientific review” of his book. So, have you?

      You’re wrong on another account, too. I don’t like Richard Dawkins because mainstream science tells me to like him. I like Richard Dawkins – while totally at odds with his religious observations – because he’s incredibly smart, gutsy, and speaks with a nice accent. The video you offered in which he appeared was an interesting summation of natural selection that failed, entirely, to address Behe’s argument. Pity you didn’t understand that.

      The problem is, it doesn’t hold up.

      Has someone proved it wrong? Or, rather, has someone suggested it is wrong, because…

      There is a crucial difference.

      I brought up the history of it because you seem to be of the belief (one disseminated by the Discovery Institute) that there is a conspiracy among the scientific community to hold down ID.

      No. I think there are so many scientific theories, ideas, and opinions that depend on evolution, as we know it, being absolutely correct, that mainstream science simply cannot alter it without shattering so much “gumption.” They’re simply not going to do it unless and until the truth is glaringly obvious they can dismiss it no longer. I grant that Intelligent Design is a scientific idea based on logic, not quantifiable properties.

      If ID had merit, there would be somebody outside of Discovery who was seriously pursuing it.

      I seriously doubt you have ever watched Expelled. It interviews many scientists who do not, or did not, work for the Discovery Institute when they began pursuing the idea. Once they were discovered (no pun intended), they were shunned, according to them, by the scientific community at large.

      If all you’re going to do is watch or read the criticism of something I mention, then I don’t see the point of this conversation.

      Whereas we can’t currently recreate abiogenesis in the lab, that doesn’t mean we never will.

      True. But if neither can be tested now, then I don’t see why either should be valid if we accept your definition of science. It might be valid in the future, but for now it shouldn’t be – yet, amazingly, it is.

      Kenneth Miller, by the way, is a Christian, a firm believer in God, but still one of the leading experts in the Dover case with a firm understanding that Natural Selection is the best theory we have and that ideas of God have no place in science.

      I know of Kenneth Miller. I like him very much, but I think he is wrong.

      So, when did this vast atheistic conspiracy to hide God enter the community?

      That’s not my argument. See above.

      I called ID “warmed over Creationism” because that’s what it is. Scientists have taken up its mantle and have rejiggered it to be a ‘scientific’-esque theory, but that doesn’t change it’s roots anymore than giving a car a new paint job, tented windows and fancy rims adds any horsepower to the engine.

      And yet you admitted above that the origin of the theory doesn’t speak to its truth. So, if indeed it was created by Creationists, then so what? The science of it is not Creationism at all. Read Genesis Chapter 1 for an understanding of Creationism. You’ll notice, immediately, how much it differs from Intelligent Design.

      You got insulting and condescending, and when I refused to just accept your view, you blocked me.

      I got condescending? Perhaps you should read your remarks again. Regardless, it wasn’t a matter of you accepting my views. I don’t want people to accept my views without first defending their own. You defended them well, but in the end it was all “warmed over,” already-refuted nonsense. That coupled with your behavior was enough for me to bid you farewell.

      (I will admit that my writing probably became more cutting as it went on, but that was a matter of both of us ratcheting up the vitriol).

      I’m not trying to get all schoolyard on you, but you started it.

      What I dislike is the way your views have merged together into one cohesive hate machine, fueled by a shoddy understanding of science.

      Yes. I’m hateful. That’s probably why more liberals come over to my blog than conservatives, right? If I were such a hateful idiot, why would they bother?

      And, excuse me, but my understanding of science? You’re the one who offers link after link claiming it refutes Behe’s argument when in fact it cutely sidesteps his argument.

      Perhaps you should read a few books and stop discounting every little thing because the majority tells you to. Perhaps give something else a chance and try to see things through the eyes of another person. Then, and only then, will you come off a bit shrewder than the fella we see here now, moaning about the hateful conservative TerranceH. Perhaps if you understood my views, or made an effort to, you wouldn’t see me in such a distasteful light. Only liberal zealots see me that way.

      Good day to you.

  • lyttleton

    Yes, you got condescending. Go schoolyard if you wish, but as we’ve already discussed, it was you who had to apologize to me for your tone. I’m not sure why that’s even coming up anymore.

    Anyway, onto the point.

    There are two different lines of attack going on here, and while they are connected, they must be addressed separately.

    The first is the idea that ID is scientific, and the other is the soundness of its proposed ‘science’: Irreducible Complexity (and Design Inference) as a proof of a designer.

    Maybe I’ve missed it, but I don’t recall you explaining how the notion of a Designer is at all scientific. You make a lot of evasive statements about abiogenesis being as unknowable as God, therefore the Designer should get a pass. That makes no logical sense. If anything, that’s just a mark against abiogenesis, but it doesn’t help your cause. Furthermore, you are comparing two different things. Abiogenesis is an area of study under which theories on the origin of life can be tested. The Designer is an untestable hypothesis with no definite criteria and no explanation for its own existence. Who designed the Designer?

    A scientific observation of biological structures is made, a logical conclusion formulated. To a certain extent, it is unfalsifiable because there is no way to definitively prove the it is flawed. However, unless natural selection provides a better answer, which it doesn’t, then Intelligent Design is worth consideration.

    You seem to be saying that if Natural Selection can explain all phenomenons then ID isn’t real science, but if it can’t, then ID gets to call itself science.

    That’s got some troubling implications, but most importantly, it posits that ID is an argument of (as Wesley Elsberry states in the article “Logic and Math Turn to Smoke and Mirrors”, an article I can’t find online, unfortunately) “not X, therefore Y.” Dembski would deny that his arguments are arguments from ignorance, yet “it is clear from The Design Inference and No Free Lunch… that Dembski’s EF/DI [explanatory filter/design inference] is a deductive eliminative argument that demands acceptance of design when regularity and chance hypotheses of causation have been excluded.” (Elsberry, 2007).

    In other words, despite all of his (or Behe’s or anyone’s) attempt to paint IC or DI as scientific pursuits that make testable inquiries, they are merely complex ways of arguing that “Natural Selection cannot explain it, so it must be designed.”

    He actually says as much in the article you linked:

    If indirect Darwinian pathways could also be ruled out as unable to account for such systems, that would sink Darwinism and support intelligent design (an indirect Darwinian pathway being one where a system evolves by also modifying its function).

    He is saying that if Darwinism is wrong, ID is right. That’s making a pretty big assumption. Couldn’t you just as easily say that if Darwinism is wrong, Creationism is right? Or neo-Lamarckism? It’s not enough to say, if not X, then Y. You have to actually provide evidence for design.

    To say something looks designed so it must be designed is simply begging the question. What’s the mechanism of design? How did the designer work? ID offers no answers, merely conjecture.

    Taken from the Dembski’s writing:

    But whether that means a designing intelligence actually intervened at those points will require further investigation and may indeed not be answerable.

    He says a couple of times in his response that the Designer’s methods and form are probably unknowable. Obviously he won’t say flatout that the Designer can’t be known, but the inference is pretty clear: The Designer is outside the realm of human knowledge, and thus, outside the realm of science.

    I have yet to see an IDer even attempt to define who or what the Designer is (outside of those who would claim it is the Judeo-Christian God, which doesn’t scientifically define God at all).

    So, my question is, how is The Designer a scientific proposal? Saying there is a Designer, yet stopping there is the antithesis of scientific imagination and inquiry.

    Do you disagree? Do you believe there is a way of knowing who or what the Designer is by scientific means? How would that be accomplished?

    Now, the second arm of this debate is IC.

    Dembski’s response (which I had to track down because for some reason your link was listed as a dangerous site in my browser) to Miller is fairly well-written and clearly shows why he is one of the more respected IDers, but that does not mean I (or any scientists) concede his points.

    I’d be interested in reading in your own words what you believe his argument is. You got on me for linking to other scientists, so I wonder if you’ll heed your own criticism and explain his arguments as you understand them. As I read his work, I get the definite sense of somehow whose expertise is not biology. I read Dawkins, Myers, Miller, the whole gambit, and they articulate their arguments quite clearly. Maybe that’s just an issue of Dembski writing outside his field of education, but a lot of the criticism I’ve read of Dembski over the years has been that he obfuscates his points, and I’m starting to see what they mean. His entire response under the heading “Irreducible Complexity Hasn’t Shown Darwinism to Be Logically Impossible” is rhetorical mesh.

    But I’ll address what I can:

    At best the TTSS represents one possible step in the indirect Darwinian evolution of the bacterial flagellum. But that still wouldn’t constitute a solution to the evolution of the bacterial flagellum. What’s needed is a complete evolutionary path and not merely a possible oasis along the way.

    Okay, so this is the classic ‘Missing Link’ argument. We can’t currently explain every step along the way of the flagellum’s evolution, so we must accept the divine hand. It doesn’t wash. We understand a little more of its evolution, with time we will know still more.

    The TTSS is after all much simpler than the flagellum. The TTSS contains ten or so proteins that are homologous to proteins in the flagellum. The flagellum requires an additional thirty or forty proteins, which are unique.

    This is actually false. It’s one of those ‘facts’ IDers mention over and over again, and yet it isn’t true. In fact, as is pointed out here, of the ‘indispensible’ proteins, only 2 are unique. That’s a big difference from 30 (or 40) to 2.

    He repeats the same claim here:

    Miller doesn’t like my number 10^(-1170), which is one improbability that I calculate for the flagellum. Fine. But in pointing out that a third of the proteins in the flagellum are closely related to components of the TTSS, Miller tacitly admits that two-thirds of the proteins in the flagellum are unique. In fact they are (indeed, if they weren’t, Miller would be sure to point us to where the homologues could be found). Applied to those remaining two-third of flagellar proteins, my calculation yields something like 10^(-780), which also falls well below my universal probability bound.

    If we’re dropping from 2/3rds to 1/20th, that is a huge drop in the number. Miller has a right to be skeptical of Dembski’s numbers.

    Behe and the ID community have therefore successfully shown that Darwinists don’t have a clue how the bacterial flagellum might have arisen. Miller, however, wants more, namely for ID proponents to show that Darwinists don’t have a prayer for the naturalistic origination of the flagellum. But as a good Roman Catholic, Miller must realize that no sinner is beyond the reach of prayer, not even the Darwinist. At any rate, prayer is not the issue. The issue is whether design does have a clue about the flagellum. The intelligent design community argues that it does. Miller doesn’t like the argument, but don’t think for a moment that he has anything equal or better.

    This is the crux of the matter, and a rather bold assertion (with a bizarre non sequitor about prayer, but I digress). Essentially, he claims the matter settled. Miller (as a proxy for all Darwinists, a term that IDers love but that has no real meaning) has been unable to provide an explanation for the flagellum evolution, so ID must be right. Yet, ID isn’t giving any better explanation of how it evolved, it isn’t explaining the mechanism or the route of evolution, it’s merely saying, God, er… The Designer did it. Poor science.

    And what if we do come across the evolutionary route of the flagellum? Obviously the ID movement is founded on the belief that we never will (Dembski claims that his method of Design Inference will not produce false-positives), but if it is discovered at some point, does that dismantle ID once and for all? Or will ID (in some guise) stick around as long as there are unanswered questions in the universe? I think we both know the latter is true, because ID is not about scientific inquiry, it’s about justifying belief in God. It’s why the movement was created, it’s what unites all IDers.

    One of the problems of IC is that it lacks testable tenets (something I think even Dembski has admitted). It puts all the impetus on Natural Selection to explain how things evolved naturally, and if it sees an area where Darwinian Evolution seemingly fails to do such, it can just throw in the Designer. Nevermind that you could just as easily propose some other form of Evolution other than Darwinian evolution.

    Holes in a scientific theory are why we do science, to gain greater knowledge and understanding. There should never be a stopping point. Yet ID fills the holes it sees with The Designer and does no further tests, no studies. ID claims that the “Darwinists” want to shut down open inquiry and academic freedom, but let’s imagine if ID became the dominant theory of biology. Where would we go from there? We can’t make predictions based on ID. And it’s a philosophy that encourages accepting ignorance. If nothing else, denying ID keeps the spirit of scientific discovery alive.

    The evidence for Natural Selection is copious, with everything from species diversification and modern medicine, genetics and even geological records supporting it. That Natural Selection has not answered every question thrown at it doesn’t disprove it. In fact, the evidence for Natural Selection is so great at this point that a logical response to a hole in the theory is, “Let’s figure out what’s wrong with our understanding of this hole,” not, “Let’s subvert the whole theory.”

    Ever heard the phrase, “Incredible claims demand incredible proof?” Natural Selection made incredible claims back when Darwin first proposed it, and the 150 years since has seen us find incredible proofs for it. Now, ID is making an incredible claim, but its ‘proof’ is the poorly understood flagellum, the eye (which despite your dismissal of the video, has been shown throughout nature to have reasonably ‘reducible’ predecessors) and a few other mechanisms. If ID wants to be taken seriously, it’s going to need to do more than poke holes. It’s going to have to go out and make testable predictions. Which it can’t.

    I get that ID can ‘work’ with Natural Selection, the so-called ‘mechanism’ for evolution, using natural means, but that again comes back to the problem of calling it a scientific theory. Creationism historically has meant everything from Young Earth Creationism to Old Earth Creationism and even Theistic Evolution. Whereas Creationists in the past just ignored the science in favor of their beliefs in God, the IDers are trying to look at the science in order to find holes in which they can insert their religious beliefs. That’s why I (and the scientific community) call it re-worked Creationism. That you refuse call it the Christian God when you say The Designer only makes ID less precise than Creationism, but no less religious.

    Another response to Dembski, for the heck of it, because I think it rightly points out that despite his protestations, ultimately Dembski’s arguments are from ignorance.

    You accept, wholeheartedly, that Behe and Dembski’s (a non-biologist) description of the flagellum is correct, and thus that ID holds up. I can admit I’ve never even looked at a flagellum through a microscope, let alone studied one. I’m guessing your experience with E. Coli bacteria is pretty minimal, too. So we have to admit that we’re at a point where we’re both accepting the words of experts. I’m currently sitting on a couple books worth of biology writing (published in the last few years) that dispute the common ID flagellum argument. What can I do, I’m at least partially forced to take them at their word because I am not a biologist and, more importantly, I am not doing the research.

    Here’s where I have a harder time trusting Dembski, though. He isn’t doing the research either. He is looking at other people’s research and commenting on it. This is damning for Dembski, because his background isn’t even in biology. His rhetorical skill aside, when he’s debating with a biologist about biology, and the biologist flatly says he’s wrong, it’s hard to side with Dembski, no matter how eloquently he might argue.

    As far as Behe, I just have to post this, because it’s really pretty funny (and puts the lie to the notion that the Dover trial was just a matter of biased scientists winning the day). Behe’s testimony is embarrassing.

    I guess what I’m saying is, we can both debate back and forth on the Flagellum or the immune system or whatever, but it’s just going to be a matter of who has the more sources. And ultimately, I’ll win that battle just by the matter of pure size of the pro-evolution scientific community. So, it’s a meaningless battle. As long as the full evolutionary path of the flagellum is unexplained, you’ll remain unconvinced, no matter how much biologists figure out in the interim.

    I think we can debate the merits of ID as a scientific theory, as that is more philosophical in nature, but I imagine that will just be another game of going in circles.

    I grant that Intelligent Design is a scientific idea based on logic, not quantifiable properties.

    So it’s not science. And it’s faulty logic. As we’ve discussed before, it’s a matter of claiming, “If not X, then Y”, yet we have an entire alphabet of options that you just ignore.

    Science and logic are not the same thing. Logic is a tool of science, but science demands more. Research, predictions, testable hypotheses. ID does not participate in these. (Keep in mind that saying ‘Scientific Discipline X doesn’t have testable hypotheses’ isn’t in argument in favor of ID.)

    Perhaps you should read a few books and stop discounting every little thing because the majority tells you to. Perhaps give something else a chance and try to see things through the eyes of another person. Then, and only then, will you come off a bit shrewder than the fella we see here now, moaning about the hateful conservative TerranceH. Perhaps if you understood my views, or made an effort to, you wouldn’t see me in such a distasteful light. Only liberal zealots see me that way.

    “Perhaps you should read a few books and stop discounting every little thing because your faith tells you to. Perhaps give something else a chance and try to see things through the eyes of another person. Then, and only then, will you come off a bit shrewder than the fells we see here now, moaning about the intolerant liberal Lyttleton. Perhaps if you understood my views, or made an effort to, you woudn’t see me in such a distasteful light. Only conservative zealots see me that way.”

    You have absolutely no self-awareness. I have to imagine Spinny is reading these comments and laughing at the way we’re doing the same thing to each other. I realize it, at least.

    How you cannot see the irony in some of your statements is rather hilarious to me.

  • Terrance H.

    Lyttleton,

    My purpose has been to defend the Right against the farcical accusation – the anti-science sentiments of the Right – advanced by you. It has never been to prove Intelligent Design. That cannot be done.

    Originally, you claimed Intelligent Design was nothing more than a religious idea; “warmed over creationism” was in fact your statement. Then you conceded half the point and rendered it a “philosophical point of view.” For you to go a step beyond and concede the full point, you want me to prove every single argument Behe, Dembski, Meyer, and others have made, while simultaneously refuting Miller, Dawkins, and every other vocal opponent of Intelligent Design. That is unreasonable.

    My purpose, I think, has been fulfilled. Intelligent Design theorists make scientific observations, test competing theories, and then make a logical deduction based on those observation and results.

    If that is not science, then I don’t know what is. If you cannot accept that as a scientific idea – at the very least – then you should be appointed Chief of Fantasyland.

    I never said Intelligent Design should considered science simply because abiogenesis is considered science. I said that if your definition of science is correct, then abiogenesis does not qualify as science either, but rather, philosophy.

    I don’t find any of my statements ironic or contradictory. If someone else does, then they have exhibited a complete inability to understand my arguments. I am not a proponent of Intelligent Design insomuch as I seek to totally refute natural selection or evolution. I’m simply stating that Intelligent Design, whether you like it or not, IS science.

    Find someone else to swing at the pitches in the dirt.

  • lyttleton

    Ah, I love it. You came at this like you knew that ID was a legitimate threat to Natural Selection, and now you’re saying that all you ever wanted was for me to admit that it’s a science.

    Well, it is not a science, exactly for the reason that you defined:

    Intelligent Design theorists make scientific observations, test competing theories, and then make a logical deduction based on those observation and results.

    They actually don’t do this. They look at other people’s research, they claim that it is faulty or filled with holes, they assert a Designer as a hypothesis to fill those holes, and then they provide no means of testing that hypothesis or making predictions based on it.

    By you’re own definition, you have just shown that ID is not a science.

    Let’s keep in mind that you have claimed that “Natural Selection is a flawed doctrine,” yet you have failed to support that claim.

    This is your faith statement:

    Sooner or later, mainstream science must recognize that it cannot explain everything, which opens the door up for philosophy, religion, logic, common sense, et cetera…

    You believe this to be true, despite how much science has revealed to us in the past 100 years alone. We have had religion for thousands of years, and it hasn’t revealed even a fraction of what science has revealed in the last decade alone. Religion is the limited philosophy, not science.

    (Also, your very sentence sounds pretty anti-science to me. You claim to be pro-science and yet you anticipate its failure. Curiouser and curiouser.)

    You sound like a broken down man Terrence, and with good reason. Creationism and ID are not the same thing in the same way Protestants and Catholics aren’t the same thing. That is to say, pedantically, you are right, but in reality they are opposite sides of the same coin, both with a manifested goal to disprove (and undermine) Evolution by Natural Selection.

    What the courts found and what the scientists have pointed out time and time again is that ID makes the same basic claim as Creationism, just minus the specific story.

    Creationism itself has many forms. It can be Old Earth, Young Earth, Christian, Jewish, Islamic, even Hindu. Creationism is the religious assertion that the God of that particular religion created everything. ID ignores specificity in order to not sound religious, but ultimately its claims to science are nothing more than articles of faith.

    I’ve written out my full thoughts on the matter here.

    Another choice quote by you:

    Why are things they way they are? Chance? Possible, but unlikely. The odds that evolution is true are essentially zero – mathematically speaking.

    Either you’re saying evolution isn’t true, or you’re saying ID is necessary for it to be true. Either way, you’re contradicting yourself when you say that your only interest in ID is to protect it from my erroneous claims of “Creationism”. You obviously have a personal stake in the matter, because you believe ID is true.

    (This ignores the fact that evolution isn’t based on ‘chance,’ and any real student of biology would know that. If I mistook you for an ID acolyte, it’s only because your arguments are taken verbatim from the ID For Dummies handbook.)

    There is weariness in your tone, and I am happy to let this topic drop. Not because I think I convinced you of anything, but because I think the outsiders reading this can see where reality lies.

    You are the true believer, defending a kingdom that’s walls have already crumbled, decrying other people as lunatics while you live in fantasy.

    Have your own beliefs. I take back what I said before. I don’t despise you and your beliefs, I pity you.

    Good day.

  • Terrance H.

    You came at this like you knew that ID was a legitimate threat to Natural Selection, and now you’re saying that all you ever wanted was for me to admit that it’s a science.

    Intelligent Design is a legitimate threat to natural selection, because natural selection is incredibly flawed. You haven’t been able to defend it. You offered a video you thought defended it, but in reality, it cutely side-stepped Behe’s argument.

    You can claim whatever you want, but let’s remember precisely why Intelligent Design was mentioned in the first place.

    You said:

    This is besides the fact that the form of Christianity practiced by the founders would be decried as heretical among today’s anti-science, anti-intellectual Christian movement (I’m not saying all Christians are this way; some of my closest, most intelligent friends are Christian).

    I said in response:

    I have a huge, huge, huge problem with this idea that Christians are anti-science. I’m going to respond to that in full later.

    Then you said:

    Creationism/Intelligent Design is anti-science (when it attempts to use the language of science, it’s just bad science). I realize that doesn’t represent all Christians, I never said it did. But it represents a healthy portion of the Christians who are attempting to make conservative societal changes.

    So, you started your rant off with lies. Finally, though, you’ve conceded that Intelligent Design is NOT Creationism. Very big of you to admit your obvious folly.

    They actually don’t do this.

    And of course you have proof that Behe and others have never once tested natural selection, right? Do you really want to go down that road?

    (Also, your very sentence sounds pretty anti-science to me. You claim to be pro-science and yet you anticipate its failure. Curiouser and curiouser.)

    I’m one of those people who think our world is so grand, science couldn’t possibly understand it all. That’s not anti-science, but reality. People like you think we can know everything and anything. That’s not true.

    We cannot fathom the mystery of a single flower. Nor is it intended that we should. ~ John Locke

    Either you’re saying evolution isn’t true, or you’re saying ID is necessary for it to be true.

    By that statement, I meant true as we know it today. I don’t believe in natural selection and I’ve made that clear. Does that mean I believe in ID? No.

    You obviously have a personal stake in the matter, because you believe ID is true.

    Yet another lie. You’re getting good at this.

    (This ignores the fact that evolution isn’t based on ‘chance,’ and any real student of biology would know that.

    Ignorance.

    There is weariness in your tone, and I am happy to let this topic drop.

    Not really. I just have no interest in defending ID because I’m not certain I believe in it. I need to research it more. But what I can say is that ID is based on science. Your repeated attempts to refute that have failed.

    You are the true believer, defending a kingdom that’s walls have already crumbled, decrying other people as lunatics while you live in fantasy.

    According to who? Zealots like you? I’m sure.

    I really just think you’re pathetic. We already know you have a stake in the whole gay marriage thing, which is why you can’t stand me. LOL. I rather think that’s funny.

  • lyttleton

    Intelligent Design is a legitimate threat to natural selection, because natural selection is incredibly flawed. You haven’t been able to defend it. You offered a video you thought defended it, but in reality, it cutely side-stepped Behe’s argument.

    You keep repeating this sentiment without explaining what is exactly flawed about it. And you say it sidestepped Behe’s argument, but you don’t explain how. Besides the fact that it was just a video meant to show that the eye can function perfectly fine in less complex forms. Irreducible Complexity asserts that the eye as we know it couldn’t possibly work (and thus be a product of evolution) if it were simpler, yet reality shows us otherwise.

    You also tend to repeat your same words/phrases over and over again. “Cutely side step”, “Gumption”, “Pathetic”. You’re a very boring writer. This is just a criticism of you, not your ideas, but I think it’s worth noting. When I see a writer use the same phrasing over and over again, I suspect that they are either bereft of ideas, or they have heard another writer use them in the past and they’ve latched onto them like a lifesaver.

    Finally, though, you’ve conceded that Intelligent Design is NOT Creationism. Very big of you to admit your obvious folly.

    I actually did not admit this. Since I’ve always said that ID is just Creationism “rejiggered” (quoting myself), I haven’t gone back on what I said. ID is the Creationism Emperor in new clothing, naked as the day it was born (of ignorance). You are flailing here, and it’s getting pretty funny.

    And of course you have proof that Behe and others have never once tested natural selection, right? Do you really want to go down that road?

    I actually do want to go down this road. I’ve been asking you all along to go down this road. I’m not asking for proof that they’ve tested Natural Selection (though that would be interesting, and I know they haven’t), I’m asking if they’ve put their own theory (ID) to the test. They have not. How could they? How do you ‘test’ the proposition that an unknowable Designer designed the universe? It’s an assertion from ignorance, nothing more.

    You quote John Locke. He died 150 years before Darwin’s theory was published. While a very wise man, hardly an authority on what science can teach us.

    By that statement, I meant true as we know it today. I don’t believe in natural selection and I’ve made that clear. Does that mean I believe in ID? No.

    So you’re admitting that conceivably another theory of evolution could exist other than Natural Selection or ID? Since ID is a reductive argument that claims, “If not Natural Selection, than ID,” you’re admitting the flaw in ID. It assumes there are only 2 choices when, realistically, other naturalistic forms of evolution could be possible.

    (This ignores the fact that evolution isn’t based on ‘chance,’ and any real student of biology would know that.)

    Ignorance.

    Great argument. You are a master of debate.

    Find a single biologist that calls Evolution by Natural Selection a mere product of chance. You don’t understand the very basics of the theory you claim is flawed and unconvincing to you, truly a mental giant.

    I just have no interest in defending ID because I’m not certain I believe in it. I need to research it more. But what I can say is that ID is based on science. Your repeated attempts to refute that have failed.

    It isn’t up to me to prove ID isn’t science. It’s up to you to prove it is, and you have not. You have yet to show how ID makes predictions, how it allows for tests or how it can be falsified.

    <blockquote.I really just think you’re pathetic. We already know you have a stake in the whole gay marriage thing, which is why you can’t stand me. LOL. I rather think that’s funny.

    Yes, because I am a decent, non-homophobic human being.

    Way to end on ‘LOL’. Nothing screams intellectual heavyweight like internet lingo.

    Stay out of the deep waters, my friend, you’re only drowning.

  • Terrance H.

    You keep repeating this sentiment without explaining what is exactly flawed about it. And you say it sidestepped Behe’s argument, but you don’t explain how.

    Scroll up.

    This is just a criticism of you, not your ideas, but I think it’s worth noting. When I see a writer use the same phrasing over and over again, I suspect that they are either bereft of ideas, or they have heard another writer use them in the past and they’ve latched onto them like a lifesaver.

    I’m talking to a halfwit. I don’t want to confuse you with a big vocabulary.

    But more than my repetition is the swelling your head has undergone. You act like you’re Faulker or something. Frankly, your writing is pretty pathetic when compared to other bloggers. And keep in mind that YOU’RE the one claiming to be a writer. I’ve made no such claims. I’ve said before I don’t feel the need to spend a lot of time delicately crafting sentences which you will reject out of hand any way. What is the point? It’s a waste of time. So, I just write what comes to mind first and don’t bother checking it for grammar, spelling, or the like.

    I actually did not admit this.

    Pretty sure you said you will grant that ID is a philosophical point of view. Before you were claiming it was religion and you specifically called it that. So, while religion is a form of philosophy, you chose to get specific, which tells me you’re learning. Good job!

    You quote John Locke.

    Did the name after the quote give it away?

    So you’re admitting that conceivably another theory of evolution could exist other than Natural Selection or ID? Since ID is a reductive argument that claims, “If not Natural Selection, than ID,” you’re admitting the flaw in ID.

    You fail to take logic into consideration. ID has it.

    Great argument. You are a master of debate.

    I think so, too.

    Find a single biologist that calls Evolution by Natural Selection a mere product of chance. You don’t understand the very basics of the theory you claim is flawed and unconvincing to you, truly a mental giant.

    If evolution is not mere chance, then what is it? This world say for how many billions of years before the first organic material formed. Who knows how many more billions of years before the Earth formed. If God doesn’t exist, it’s all chance.

    Don’t start throwing around criticism because of your inability to put things into context.

    Way to end on ‘LOL’. Nothing screams intellectual heavyweight like internet lingo.

    ROTFLMFAO. Let’s not pretend like I haven’t made you look like a fool before, lyttleton. Everyone is welcome to peruse the post on my page I linked to before. I see you’re still upset about that, which is why you had to drudge it up on this blog a month later. Pathetic.

    Did you get your pride back yet?

    Your responses have become nothing but insults and criticisms. 80% of your most recent hogwash is a criticism of me. I guess I’ll just have to think you have finally conceded the argument and admitted, at least to yourself, that ID is science. Good for you!

  • Terrance H.

    <a href-http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8jXXJN4o_A<Actually, I was wrong.

  • Terrance H.

    Something just occurred to me.

    You have asserted on many occasions that you have given attention to my sources, but rejected them. I find the claim dubious, given the defense of your position[s] you continually mount – many at odds with the facts to which my sources speak – but not, until now, entirely fraudulent. (Prior to this newest revelation, I simply thought you were stupid and unable to grasp the work “read.”)

    However, something has dawned on me. You have claimed that intelligent design is nothing more than a stage name for creationism, and that Behe and other proponents of the theory – the religious theory – simply inject scientific jargon here and there to complete the illusion.

    You have accused the Discovery Institute of being a safe haven of sorts for these religious zealots masquerading as scientists in a religious organization masquerading as a scientific organization. You have failed miserably to support this claim, but this is a matter of nomenclature, I think, to be decided by the reader, as is most of this conversation.

    But you could have argued it much better had you taken the time to at least read your own sources. Like, if you had taken the time to read the Behe testimony you were so kind to furnish me with, you might have discovered something rather important, rather supportive of your premise.

    You could have, for example, discovered the exisistence of a paper written by the Discovery Institute, from which the following quote was pulled:

    The social consequences of materialism have been devastating. As symptoms, those consequences are certainly worth treating. However, we are convinced that in order to defeat materialism, we must cut it off at its source. That source is scientific materialism.

    This is precisely our strategy. If we view the predominant materialist science as a giant tree, our strategy is intended to function as a wedge that, while relatively small, can split the trunk when applied at its weakest points. The very beginning of this strategy, the thin edge of the wedge was Phillip Johnson s critique of Darwinism begun in 1991, in Darwinism on Trial, and continued in Reason in the Balance and Defeating Darwinism by Opening Minds. Michael Behe s highly successful Darwin’s Black Box followed Johnson s work. We are building on this momentum, broadening the wedge with a positive scientific alternative to materialistic scientific theories, which has come to be called the theory of intelligent design. Design theory promises to reverse the stifling dominance of the materialist world view, and to replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions.

    It’s simply fascinating that someone so skilled in the art of debate wouldn’t use a statement so supportive to his argument.

    Neither did you think to use the following Behe quote pulled from a New York Times Op-Ed piece:

    I grew up in a Catholic family and have also believed in God. But beginning in parochial school I was taught that He could use natural processes to produce life. Contrary to conventional wisdom, religion has made room for science for a long time. But as biology uncovers startling complexity in life, the question becomes, can science make room for religion.

    Fascinating!

    Now of course I can let Behe respond. But this doesn’t speak to the science of intelligent design, but it certainly speaks to the motives of those proposing the theory. You claimed their motives were religious and I rejected that. I was wrong.

    But more important than my error is what I perceive to be proof of your intellectual dishonesty. You don’t even read your own sources. You are a clown, lyttleton. A dishonest, intellectual midget masquerading as a writer, taking his marching orders and arguments from the heavyweights behind the movement to silence intelligent design proponents. In a word, you are…pathetic.

    Now, why not a clever statement explaining your failure to argue your case effectively when you had the tools, the information, to do so? How many end-arounds do you think you can pull on this one?

    Did I mention you are…pathetic?

    Good day.

  • lyttleton

    So, you just admitted that you were wrong all along (ID is in fact a way to introduce religion into science), and yet you think I’m the idiot because I didn’t quote from something that disproves your point?

    While I have read of the Wedge Strategy (it’s mentioned in the Dover documentary, I believe, and also in “The Family” book), it wasn’t something that you or I directly linked to. I never claimed to have read the entire Discovery Institute websites list of writings. That would be ridiculous to expect. That’s like assuming you would have read “The Family” overnight. (Not that you’re going to read it at all.)

    I looked for the documents pertinent to this debate, the ones that provided evidence of research and scientific tests. I didn’t find them, but maybe you could point to them. Except, the Discovery Institute isn’t a scientific organization, its goal is really the “renewal” of the culture back to Conservative Christian ideals (which is why the Center for Science and Culture was originally called, “Center for Renewal of Science and Culture”).

    I was wrong.

    But more important than my error is what I perceive to be proof of your intellectual dishonesty. You don’t even read your own sources.

    You were wrong, but what you find to be truly important is that I didn’t quote from sources that I never claimed to have read. Yes, truly a stunning victory for you.

    You have just provided the evidence to show you were wrong all along, and you call me pathetic. Hilarious.

    As far as Behe’s claim to falsification, it is a Straw Man. He’s picking one specific problem (the flagellum) and resting the entire theory on that. When he asks to falsify Natural Selection, the biologists would have a good point: Natural Selection doesn’t follow a single route every time. We could do a hundred tests a hundred different ways (over how long?), and if a flagellum didn’t evolve, that wouldn’t disprove Natural Selection (nor prove ID). It’s a lousy example. Certainly, on the off chance they found the right set of circumstances for a flagellum to evolve, it would dismantle ID, but looking for a specific result is not what Natural Selection is about.

    (You claim Natural Selection is about chance, then you mention the billions of years before life was formed. That has nothing to do with Natural Selection. You’re confounding Biology with other disciplines. Once life exists, Natural Selection takes over and that is not a game of chance. Generation upon generation are born, and those that are fittest for survival in their environment do just that, survive. Chance would be if one mutation occurred and it just happened to be the right one. Natural Selection sees a great number (thousands, millions) of mutations occur, and it selects from the best.)

    ID is the upstart “science”, its scientists should be the ones running this experiment. I find it funny how Behe smuggly claims that this is all scientists have to do to falsify his theory, yet he isn’t doing the experiment himself. Why doesn’t he do any real science, get in the lab and see how it’s done?
    (Also, I notice that comments aren’t allowed on a video that’s only been viewed 8,000 times. Seems like IDquest is afraid to have dissenters speak up.)

    ID is only falsifiable if its single claim (the Flagellum; he originally claimed the Immune System was irreducibly complex, and then in the Dover case he was shown all the studies proving how it evolved and was made to look a fool) holds true. An entire scientific theory resting on a single idea that we have been unable to prove one way or the other.

    If ID were a legitimate science, it would produce other predictions and theories that we could test in lieu of the flagellum. It does not. It’s got all its eggs in one basket.

    Natural Selection is falsifiable, though. It makes predictions on where the fossil records of species will begin and end (and has been right), where certain animals will exist (and has been right), and has even done numerous studies in the lab that have supported Natural Selection. Are you familiar with the E Coli experiments of Richard Lenski (and team) at Michigan State University? It’s a pretty impressive showing of Natural Selection at work. Look into it. It’s also an example of how scientists test their theories. IDers should pay heed.

    (There are other ways in which Natural Selection is falsifiable, but I really don’t think I need to waste my time explaining this.)

    Pretty sure you said you will grant that ID is a philosophical point of view. Before you were claiming it was religion and you specifically called it that. So, while religion is a form of philosophy, you chose to get specific

    At one point I said ID was ‘religion in fancy clothes’ when I should have said ‘religious belief’. It’s a mere semantics difference, but obviously with you I have to make it plain. My point all along is that ID is Creationism, and that it is a product of religion, not that it is, itself, an actual Religion (all clear?). Saying ID is a philosophy is not really damning or a reversal, since Creationism is a philosophy, too. Creationism is not a religion, by the way. Christianity is, and Creationism is an offshoot philosophy of that religion. You can be a Christian and not accept Creationism, as you should know. So when I say that ID is a philosophy, but not a science, I’m only restating my original point, not conceding anything. Hogwash, indeed.

    Your responses have become nothing but insults and criticisms.

    Really? Because I’m the one actually still talking about the science, and you’re the one calling me a fool or pathetic every other line. I criticized a facet of your writing, I felt that after about 50 comments, it was becoming glaring to see you use the same responses over and over. If that constitutes me thinking I’m Faulkner, then so be it. Honest critique is certainly verboten among ID, no surprise it would be with you, too.

    Let’s not pretend like I haven’t made you look like a fool before, lyttleton.

    After seeing this showing here, I think any interested observer would be rightly justified in thinking that your claims to dominance in the past may just be the foolhardy claims of a blowhard (who blocks people with dissenting opinions).

    I’ve responded to your Gay Marriage claims in full on my blog, and to this ID rubbish in full.

    At this point, it’s just a matter of seeing who gets the last word. For me, now, it’s all about poking an angry bear. I’m having fun.

  • lyttleton

    I want to thank you Spinny for letting two arrogant assholes ream each other on your page (but not in a gay way, cos that would totally piss T off).

    I hope you have at least gotten a few good laughs out of this endless pissing match, and maybe even read something enlightening (if this subject is even remotely of interest to you).

    I fear this debate will never end unless someone successfully evolves a flagellum this week, but I think the substantive aspect of the debate has long ended.

    Now it’s all about who can insult each other better. I’m gonna reach for my Oscar Wilde quote book…

  • Terrance H.

    My claim that ID proponents are NOT motivated by religion is not entirely accurate, as I have just discovered. But that doesn’t prove your main point, i.e., intelligent design is creationism masquerading as science.

    In fact, Professor Ronald Numbers of the University of Wisconsin, a historian of science, has said: “the creationist label is inaccurate when it comes to the ID [intelligent design] movement.” He has also said that labeling intelligent design as simply creationism under a different name is “the easiest way to discredit intelligent design.”

    Intelligent design makes a scientific observation and makes a logical inference based on that observation. The Big Bang Theory does the same thing. It’s not as if, for example, we can watch a universe explode or start from a singularity and evolve, if you like, into what we see today. Scientists make a logical inference based on their observations. Paleontologists do the same thing. Interesting, however, that ID is the only one coming under attack. Perhaps because of its implications?

    I never claimed to have read the entire Discovery Institute websites list of writings. That would be ridiculous to expect.

    I found it by reading Behe’s testimony, which you provided. I inferred by your report that Behe’s testimony was “embarrassing” that you had read it. I formulated a logical conclusion based on the evidence, something ID and many other sciences do all the time. You did not read it, apparently, yet you felt comfortable using it as a source. Interesting.

    As far as Behe’s claim to falsification, it is a Straw Man. He’s picking one specific problem (the flagellum) and resting the entire theory on that. When he asks to falsify Natural Selection, the biologists would have a good point: Natural Selection doesn’t follow a single route every time. We could do a hundred tests a hundred different ways (over how long?), and if a flagellum didn’t evolve, that wouldn’t disprove Natural Selection (nor prove ID). It’s a lousy example. Certainly, on the off chance they found the right set of circumstances for a flagellum to evolve, it would dismantle ID, but looking for a specific result is not what Natural Selection is about.

    This is precisely Behe’s point. Darwinian evolution is unfalsifiable, because anytime something particularly damaging comes along, it’s rationalized away. Did you watch the full video, because he talked about this toward the end.

    You also make a mistake in assuming that Behe rejects natural selection. He doesn’t. Instead, he rejects natural selection as the be all, end all. He says that natural selection explains somethings very well. For others, he suggests the complexities are simply irreducible to natural means.

    My point all along is that ID is Creationism…

    And, all along, you were wrong. It’s not, something a firm believer in Darwinian evolution, Numbers, admits to.

    This is the exact same path our gay marriage debate took. You made ridiculous claims you could not support, I destroyed them, caused you to ramble on endlessly, lacking any sort of harmony, and reduced you to baseless accusations of “homophobe!” This debate hasn’t quite gone the same way because I’ve been responding in passing, for the most part. I’m actually involved in an abortion debate on Facebook. You’ll note I haven’t done much on my own blog in a few days, aside from a goofy little story I posted today and a blog roll yesterday.

    Angry bear? I’m not angry at all. The more I concentrate on this particular issue, the more it becomes obvious you’re simply wrong and looking to save a little face in light of our last encounter. Seriously, there is no other reason you would attack my choice of words, if not to be petty.

    My only purpose is show that Intelligent Design, while pushed by religious people, is not itself a religious idea or theory. It is not creationism under a different name or dressed in a scientific get up.

    The point you are trying to make is a chimera. It simply doesn’t exist.

    • lyttleton

      So, one guy, Ronald Numbers, says ID isn’t Creationism and that’s sufficient proof, but hundreds of prominent biologists (including those who testified in the Dover case) say it is, and those don’t count (because they’re biased).

      Someone’s bias is showing, but I don’t think it’s the biologists.

      Intelligent design makes a scientific observation and makes a logical inference based on that observation.

      It makes an inference, the question is whether it’s really logical. And let’s take the Big Bang Theory, for instance. The Big Bang Theory came about largely because of Hubble’s discovery of expanding universes. He made a few observations and developed his theory. Then he, and countless scientists since him, have gone on to test that theory further by making predictions of a universe that would exist if the Big Bang was true, and they’ve found support for the theory. If Hubble had made his initial observation and then no further predictions or observations were made and no more research into the implications of the Big Bang was conducted, it wouldn’t be a respected scientific theory.

      That’s where ID rests. It’s made one guess (The Designer), a guess that is intentionally left vague and without boundaries, and then has done nothing to find more proof for it. There have been something like 4 ‘irreducibly complex’ systems suggested by the IDers (and really, only the flagellum still gets regular traction in their literature), and they haven’t gone past that. Beyond that, they’ve never attempted to explain anything about The Designer.

      That’s as if someone came up with the phrase “The Big Bang” and then never bothered to try to explain how it happened, when it happened, what occurred when it happened or what can be expected because it happened.

      Even if I was being generous, the best I could do would be to call ID ‘bad science.’ But I’m not feeling that generous.

      This is precisely Behe’s point. Darwinian evolution is unfalsifiable, because anytime something particularly damaging comes along, it’s rationalized away. Did you watch the full video, because he talked about this toward the end.

      So you just completely ignored the whole part where I explained how Natural Selection can be falsified, then?

      It’s true that one unexpected finding isn’t going to automatically undermine the theory. Natural Selection is so well supported by science and observation (and the mountains of evidence) that it’s going to take a pretty convincing argument to undermine it.

      How would you react if someone said Gravitational Theory is a lie, and in fact God is what keeps our feet on the ground? It’s ultimately the same argument as ID. You could even say, “I accept gravity, but our current theory of how it works is incomplete because it ignores God’s place in it.” That’s the same as saying “I accept evolution, but our current theory (Natural Selection) of how it works is incomplete because it ignores God’s place in it.” The same logic applies, the same faulty reasoning.

      You keep saying I’m looking ridiculous, but I’m not the one having to admit huge errors and I’m not the one whose whole argument here seems to come down to, “You’re pathetic, I already made you look like an idiot.”

      I’m hardly rambling, and I think anyone reading this could see a clear line of thought in my arguments, whereas you have rested on ad hom attacks for most everything you’ve said, dismissing me as a fool rather than truly addressing my criticisms. I find it interesting that when I provided the factual proof of Dembski’s mathematical error concerning ‘unique proteins’ in the flagellum, you didn’t mention it again. Why talk about the science when you can call me ‘pathetic’ one more time?

      There was a telling interview with Behe (on the Colbert Report) when he talked about how Einstein’s theories showed the limits of Newton’s, and that was what he saw ID doing to Darwin’s theory. Except, Einstein’s goal wasn’t to poke holes in Newton’s theories, he was attempting to honestly explain the phenomenon he saw as best he could, regardless (though, not ignorant) of the science that came before it. Behe is merely content to shine a light on holes, but his theory (A Designer) lacks credible scientific perimeters.

      It doesn’t really matter, though. The scientific community has examined ID and found it to be religious. The gauntlet has been thrown down to ID to prove itself as a valid science, but instead of trying to do the work to gain respect among scientists, it has waged a PR campaign to make scientists look bad and to win over the undereducated masses.

      You made a point of mentioning people like Galileo who proposed theories that went against popular opinion. The amazing thing about Galileo (and his ilk) is they pressed ahead with the science, followed their convictions by strengthening their theories and finding additional support for them. ID, on the other hand, just whines about not getting enough respect and spends its money on ‘cultural renewal’ instead of scientific research.

      You seem to think I’m embarrassed by our debate over Gay Marriage, yet my only shame is that I allowed myself to battle on too many fronts. I got distracted by this meaty ID debate, as well as debating with your other friend, and I didn’t really focus my efforts on the initial topic. Which is why I went back and wrote a blog post about it, to lay out my thoughts on the matter as deliberately as possible. Only a fool would think that back and forth blog comments is the best way to delve into the minutia of a complex subject. It’s too easy for a train of thought to get hijacked or left behind entirely. This is why I prefer taking in all the information and responding in a post (but I can’t help myself from commenting).

      You’ve got this wild notion that you’ve intellectually bested me, yet you have been the one to admit your errors and you have expended numerous comments simply maintaining that you’re right instead of making any arguments. You’re so confident in your rightness beforehand that you barely engage with the subject, and when you do, you end up hitting these little roadblocks, like facts.

      You use language like “destroyed” and “made you look like an utter fool” to describe our past interaction (and presumably, you believe this one), but what does that mean when you’ve clearly made up your mind upfront that you’ve won any and every debate you engage in. I’m wondering, who are you trying to convince? Yourself?

      As a debater, you lack logical restraint, as a writer you lack creativity, and as an intellectual you like curiosity.

      But mainly, as an antagonist, you lack charisma. And that is perhaps the worst sin of all.

      No one likes a boring villain.

  • Terrance H.

    Who are these hundreds you’re talking about? Ken Miller? If you listen to him talk about it, or read some of his writings, it’s clear he’s not quite sure it’s Creationism either.

    For example, the following is pulled from Ken Miller’s response to Michael Behe’s biomedical design argument.

    The history of science includes so many examples of such discoveries that in many respects the practice of science has a built-in bias in favor of the little guy, the individual investigator who just might hold the key to our next fundamental scientific advance. Indeed, if there is one dogma in science, it should be that science has no dogma.

    What this means, as a practical matter, is that everything in science is open to question. Can we be sure that the speed of light isn’t an absolute upper limit? Is it possible that genetic information can be carried by proteins, rather than DNA? Was Einstein correct in his formulation of the theory of general relativity? It’s never easy to upset the scientific apple cart, but the practice of science requires, as an absolute, than everything in science be open to question. Everything.

    In 1996, Michael Behe took a bold step in this scientific tradition by challenging one of the most useful, productive, and fundamental concepts in all of biology – Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution. Behe’s provocative claim, carefully laid out in his book, Darwin’s Black Box, was that whatever else Darwinian evolution can explain successfully, it cannot account for the biochemical complexity of the living cell. As Behe put it: “… for the Darwinian theory of evolution to be true, it has to account for the molecular structure of life. It is the purpose of this book to show that it does not” (Behe 1996a: 24-25).

    In this scientific tradition, he says. Not religious or Sunday school tradition, but scientific tradition.

    To call ID Creationism is be totally ignorant of what Creationism really is. Please read Genesis for a thorough understanding.

    Miller, BTW, testified in the Dover trial.

    It makes an inference, the question is whether it’s really logical. And let’s take the Big Bang Theory, for instance. The Big Bang Theory came about largely because of Hubble’s discovery of expanding universes. He made a few observations and developed his theory. Then he, and countless scientists since him, have gone on to test that theory further by making predictions of a universe that would exist if the Big Bang was true, and they’ve found support for the theory. If Hubble had made his initial observation and then no further predictions or observations were made and no more research into the implications of the Big Bang was conducted, it wouldn’t be a respected scientific theory.

    This is precisely what Behe and others have done with Intelligent Design. Do you really think the Big Bang Theory didn’t receive all sorts of criticism when it was popularized back in the 1980s?

    Arthur Eddington was the editor of Nature, the most prestigious scientific magazine in the world. He wrote a piece in response to the Big Bang Theory. He said: “Philosophically, the notion of an abrupt beginning to the present order of nature is repugnant to me, as I think it would be to most. And even those who would welcome a proof of the intervention of a creator will probably consider that a single winding up at some remote epoch is not really the kind of relation between God and his world that brings satisfaction to the mind.”

    Here

    Both intelligent design and big bang theory are examples of inductive reasoning. The latter was first rejected because it was one of the first scientific theories that indicted the existence of a creator. Finally, however, it was accepted. Then ID comes along and flat-out says, “Yes, there is a creator,” and all hell breaks loose.

    Clearly you don’t understand the use of inductive reasoning. If the reasoning, the logic, is flawed, then the theory is wrong. That doesn’t mean, however, the theory is religion masquerading as science. So, it doesn’t matter if it’s “really logical” or not.

    That’s where ID rests. It’s made one guess (The Designer), a guess that is intentionally left vague and without boundaries, and then has done nothing to find more proof for it. There have been something like 4 ‘irreducibly complex’ systems suggested by the IDers (and really, only the flagellum still gets regular traction in their literature), and they haven’t gone past that. Beyond that, they’ve never attempted to explain anything about The Designer.

    That isn’t true. Every argument for ID – and the criticism – can be found by navigating this page.

    So you just completely ignored the whole part where I explained how Natural Selection can be falsified, then?

    In theory, sure. But it’s not going to be and not because it’s true. Scientists will not let it. They rationalize it away. “Oh, the sample wasn’t big enough;” “The tube is too small;” “The humidity mixed with the barometric pressure, blah, blah, blah.”

    How would you react if someone said Gravitational Theory is a lie, and in fact God is what keeps our feet on the ground? It’s ultimately the same argument as ID. You could even say, “I accept gravity, but our current theory of how it works is incomplete because it ignores God’s place in it.” That’s the same as saying “I accept evolution, but our current theory (Natural Selection) of how it works is incomplete because it ignores God’s place in it.” The same logic applies, the same faulty reasoning.

    This is ridiculous. Gravity is a natural law we have many ways of testing.

    You keep saying I’m looking ridiculous, but I’m not the one having to admit huge errors and I’m not the one whose whole argument here seems to come down to, “You’re pathetic, I already made you look like an idiot.”

    What errors have I made? Outside of assuming the Discovery Institute and Behe were not motivated, at least in part, by religion, I’ve made none. I admitted my folly. You have done end-around after end-around, proven yourself to be a dishonest cretin, and have blundered repeatedly. It’s been shown you don’t even read your own sources. You said Behe’s testimony was embarrassing. How could you know that if you didn’t read it? You were taken your argument from some Argument from Evil website, like I said from the beginning.

    I find it interesting that when I provided the factual proof of Dembski’s mathematical error concerning ‘unique proteins’ in the flagellum, you didn’t mention it again. Why talk about the science when you can call me ‘pathetic’ one more time?

    What are you talking about now? The math you copied from an anti-ID website? I skimmed it over because I’d read it before. It’s a pretty common criticism of his work. I chose to ignore it because my purpose is not to prove ID, but to show that iD is science, even if it’s bad science.

    Behe believes in natural selection, so he’s comparison to Einstein trying to show that Newton’s physics doesn’t pass muster for every little thing is accurate. Behe doesn’t believe natural selection best explains certain biological systems.

    Yes. I have admitted my errors, which speaks volumes. I did make a pretty silly error, but I admitted to it. You have made several blunderers and haven’t admitted to any of them. When you do, you backtrack and say, “No, no. I didn’t mean that.” It’s ridiculous.

    As a debater, you lack logical restraint, as a writer you lack creativity, and as an intellectual you like curiosity.

    As a debater, you lack logic; as a writer, you’re no better or worse than me; and as an intellectual, you’re a midget.

    But mainly, as an antagonist, you lack charisma

    You’re the one spewing baseless accusations at the Right, yet somehow I’m the antagonist. You make no logical sense.

  • lyttleton

    If you listen to him talk about it, or read some of his writings, it’s clear he’s not quite sure it’s Creationism either.

    Really, you are trying to suggest that one of the key expert witnesses in the Dover case on the side of arguing that ID is religious is, in fact, saying the exact opposite?

    The quote you provide is part of a longer article in which he ultimately says the exact opposite.

    Direct quote from the article in question:

    Why does the biochemical argument from design collapse so quickly upon close inspection? I would suggest that this is because the logic of the argument itself is flawed.

    Or how about the entire concluding section:

    Paley’s 21st century followers claim that the intelligent design movement is based upon new discoveries in molecular biology, and represents a novel scientific movement that is worthy of scientific and educational attention. Couched in the modern language of biochemistry, Behe’s formulation of Paley represents the best hopes of the movement establish its views as scientifically legitimate. As we have seen in this brief review, however, it is remarkably easy to answer each of his principal claims.

    This analysis shows that the “evidence” used by modern advocates of intelligent design to resurrect Paley’s early 19th century arguments is neither novel nor new. Indeed, their only remaining claim against Darwin is that they cannot imagine how evolution might have produced such systems. Time and time again, other scientists, unpersuaded by such self-serving pessimism, have shown (and published) explanations to the contrary. When closely examined, even the particular molecular machines employed by the movement as examples of “irreducible complexity” turn out to be incorrect. Finally, the logic of the argument itself turns out to have an obvious and fatal flaw.

    Prof. Behe argues that anti-religious bias is the reason the scientific community resists the explanation of design for his observations:

    “Why does the scientific community not greedily embrace its startling discovery? Why is the observation of design handled with intellectual gloves? The dilemma is that while one side of the elephant is labeled intelligent design, the other side might be labeled God.” (Behe 1966a: 232)

    I would suggest that the actual reason is much simpler. The scientific community has not embraced the explanation of design because it is quite clear, on the basis of the evidence, that it is wrong.

    He’s deriding Behe’s attempts to gain ‘scientific legitimacy’ for his ‘theory.’

    You’ve just exhibited a classic case of ID quote mining. Taking a portion of a text out of context and claiming the writer/speaker meant the opposite of what they said. Jonathan Wells would be so proud.

    It’s like that classic Darwin quote that is always stripped of its context to make it sound as if he doubted his own theory in the very book that he’s proposing it.

    But, hey, let’s be generous and look at that part you bolded:

    In 1996, Michael Behe took a bold step in this scientific tradition

    Is this sufficient proof that Miller thinks ID is scientific? That would be, of course, a stretch. He is talking about Behe’s desire to challenge the accepted theory. No one has a problem with that, and if Behe were a more rigorous scientist with an interest in actually researching his ‘theory’, he would probably have the respect of his peers.

    Unfortunately, Behe hasn’t done the science justice. He proposed a theory (a religious one, at heart) without doing any leg work.

    To call ID Creationism is be totally ignorant of what Creationism really is. Please read Genesis for a thorough understanding.

    You’ve said this a couple of times, revealing how ignorant of Creationism you are. Creationism has had many different guises over the years, some that assume a literal interpretation of the Bible, some that assume a more metaphorical interpretation. You’ve never heard of the Day-Age theory? Look it up, it’s Creationism. You don’t have to believe that God literally made Adam out of dirt and Eve out of a rib to be a Creationist. Certainly, Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis is the type of Creationist you imagine when you say that word (they do still exist), but ID is just a more (religiously) moderate form of the same old argument.

    Take for instance these two passages of a ID textbook, the first from a 1986 version, and the second from the version that was published a year later:

    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.

    Compared to:

    Intelligent Design means that the 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, and wings, etc.

    Oddly similar, don’t you think, for describing two completely different beliefs. I’ll note, that textbook is “Of Pandas and People,” the book that Behe and other IDers were brought in to defend in the Dover case.

    One of the authors of that textbook, Percival Davis, stated about his intentions: “Of course my motives were religious. There’s no question about it.”

    Something else to be noted about that Dover trial that you’ve dismissed out of hand because of the ‘biased’ scientists who testified against ID:

    “All of the witnesses for the defense [of ID] were paid an hourly rate.” ~ Eugenie C. Scott (“Creation Science Lite”). Whereas all the witnesses against ID supplied their expertise for free. ID is a business for people like Behe, not a scientific pursuit. You want to look for bias, look at the guy whose bank account swells the more he speaks.

    This is precisely what Behe and others have done with Intelligent Design. Do you really think the Big Bang Theory didn’t receive all sorts of criticism when it was popularized back in the 1980s?

    I know it did. Just like Darwin’s theory did.

    Except, with the Big Bang theory (and Natural Selection), they did further research, further studies, made predictions and found them to be true.

    Again I ask, what research has Behe (or any IDer) done?

    You keep confusing logic with science. As I said in my blog post, you can make the argument that ID is a logical argument (a flawed one) but not a scientific argument. Logic is a different discipline altogether from Science, in the realm of Philosophy. Logic is a useful tool in any realm of philosophy, even in religion. For instance, I could say:

    Jesus died on the cross for sinners to redeem them.
    I am a sinner.
    Therfore, Jesus died for me.
    Ergo, I am redeemed.

    That is technically a logical argument, and a sound one, assuming we accept the initial premise (I do not). But you can still recognize that it isn’t science.

    Neither is ID.

    Provide the research, provide the evidence for ID’s usefulness as a scientific theory. Instead of deflecting by talking about other scientific principles or quoting dead scientists from three hundred years ago, just provide the evidence.

    That isn’t true. Every argument for ID – and the criticism – can be found by navigating this page.

    I looked through this page, there was no research that I could find. Best I could tell, it’s a page telling people how to do the research, but there are no studies, no peer-reviewed articles or anything of substance. The few references I found were to Behe and Dembski’s books (neither of whom do actual biological research).

    I thought I might find something of interest behind some of the protected pages once I created an account, but when I did I found pages that were literally blank. The thing looks like it’s brand new and is still waiting for people to add content, but the bottom of the page said last updated in October of 2009. 2009! It’s been 2 years and they haven’t found one piece of research or one peer-reviewed study to link to?

    I will grant you this, on the “Predictions” page (the “Detection” and “Methods” pages were tellingly blank) they offer a few predictions that ID will make:

    1. Much so-called “junk DNA” will turn out to perform valuable functions.
    2. Natural structures will be found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function.
    3. In general, vestigial organs will yield some function for the organism.
    4. The correlation between habitability and discovery will strengthen.

    Only the first one of these is at all convincing as a prediction of ID (but, really, no more so than Irreducible Complexity).

    2 is just another way of saying “Irreducible Complexity,” which is what ID is resting on, so it’s redundant. 3 would hardly support ID. It wouldn’t support anything. It would be a fascinating find, but it definitely wouldn’t be evidence of a designer. Not to mention that there is loads of evidence that many vestigial organs are exactly that. Plenty of research has gone into discovering a reason for the human appendix, and nothing fits it better than the Natural Selection explanation that it simply no longer has a purpose. (If ID is resting on vestigial organs, they are screwed.)

    And frankly, I don’t even know what 4 means. What is that prediction?

    You’ve accused me of not reading my own links (because of the odd assertion that if I had, I clearly would have quoted one random quote out of the hundreds of fascinating quotes; all of it was interesting, so I just left you to read it on your own, if you desired), but have you really looked through this page you provided? There’s nothing there.

    In theory, sure. But it’s not going to be and not because it’s true. Scientists will not let it. They rationalize it away. “Oh, the sample wasn’t big enough;” “The tube is too small;” “The humidity mixed with the barometric pressure, blah, blah, blah.”

    You’re showing your obvious bias here. You assume Natural Selection is wrong, so instead of accepting that the scientific pursuit can be a complicated, long, arduous and exacting art, you just accuse any scientist that doesn’t agree with you of not doing legitimate science. Meanwhile, you give a free pass to IDers who work completely in the realm of the theoretical, never getting their hands dirty in the real business of research.

    How do you think Natural Selection came to be such a widely-supported theory over the years if mountains of research hadn’t supported it? The predictions that have been made and proven true since Darwin first proposed the theory are legion. Our entire understanding of the biological world rests on Natural Selection, and rests quite nicely.

    You have done end-around after end-around, proven yourself to be a dishonest cretin, and have blundered repeatedly.

    If by ‘end-around after end-around,’ you mean provided links and resources and countered every argument you’ve asserted (which have been few and far between) with counterarguments, then yes I have.

    Also, you claim not to be an angry bear, yet you pepper nearly every paragraph with phrases like “dishonest cretin.” I’m not claiming that I’m being nice to you, but at least I’m not expending half my comments on name calling (when I have made personal attacks, they’ve been at the end of the comment once I’ve expressed my ideas).

    What are you talking about now? The math you copied from an anti-ID website? I skimmed it over because I’d read it before. It’s a pretty common criticism of his work. I chose to ignore it because my purpose is not to prove ID, but to show that iD is science, even if it’s bad science

    You choose to ignore the math provided by a research study published in Nature? It’s not just ‘criticism’ of Dembski’s math, it flat out shows that his math is based on the wrong numbers. Does that really not matter to you? How do you completely ignore facts because of the source? The ‘anti-ID’ site I linked to was discussing that table of facts, but the original table was part of a scientifically vetted and peer-reviewed study. Look at it again. Are you really going to start dismissing all peer-reviewed articles because they are ‘anti-ID’? Again and again, your bias shows.

    Yes. I have admitted my errors, which speaks volumes. I did make a pretty silly error, but I admitted to it. You have made several blunderers and haven’t admitted to any of them. When you do, you backtrack and say, “No, no. I didn’t mean that.” It’s ridiculous.

    What blunders have I made, what backtracking have I done? You keep saying this, but what blunder have I made that was bigger than you flatly denying ID was a religiously-inspired movement? I’m not aware of any blunders I’ve made in this debate, but I’m sure you’ll gladly claim I’ve made plenty (without pointing them out).

    How about this blunder of yours I already pointed out, where you flatly contradicted yourself in two different quotes:

    Regardless, I responded to this dimwitted response once before. I said: It established nothing of the sort. That was the opinion of a few biased scientists, which some ignorant court decided to accept.

    And then, later you said this:

    When did I say these “experts” were bias? [sic] I’m saying they are simply wrong, or misguided.

    In fact, you continually dismiss people as “anti-ID” and have just admitted to ignoring them. (I’ll quote you again in case you’ve already forgotten:
    “I chose to ignore it because my purpose is not to prove ID”)

    I dismissed Behe as a discredited hack at the beginning of this (I stand by it), but I’ve never refused to give his (or Dembski’s) arguments a read over in order to engage with them.

    You’re the one spewing baseless accusations at the Right, yet somehow I’m the antagonist. You make no logical sense.

    I’d been interested in you pointing out where I’ve strayed from logic. That ‘baseless accusation’ at the Right is, presumably, that it’s anti-science, and I stand by it. The right has been bolstered by a history of anti-science figures (anti-evolution, especially) in the name of “Cultural Renewal.”

    These are the pillars of the “Wedge” document, that has not only come to define the ID movement, but has also become representative of cultural conservatives in general:

    Governing Goals

    To defeat scientific materialism and its destructive moral, cultural and political legacies.
    To replace materialistic explanations with the theistic understanding that nature and hurnan beings are created by God.

    At the same time, the anti-evolution argument has existed almost since Darwin first published his work, and there has always been an undercurrent of resisting ‘modernism’ in the movement.

    Take for instance this quote from a 1920s clergyman that wouldn’t be out of place in the Wedge Document:

    “A modernist in government is an anarchist and Bolshevik; in science he is an evolutionist; in business he is a Communist; in art a futurist; in music his name is jazz and in religion he is an atheist and infidel.”

    Frankly, that quote wouldn’t read so out of line within your own personal framework.

    Natural Selection is sound, well-supported science, so to be anti-NS is to be anti-science.

    Now, let me summarize your response:

    Angry dismissal of my facts (without providing any facts of your own), a few statements about how I’m a fool and pathetic, (unsupported) claims that I’m lying or wrong, a deflection from actually engaging in the debate, a claim that you don’t care about ID (even though you’ve expended a lot of energy attempting to defend it) and then finally a sign off where you insult me again and brag about how thoroughly you’ve demolished me in this debate.

    There, I’ve saved you the time of having to (not-)debate this topic anymore.

  • Terrance H.

    Joe, Joe, Joe.

    I have never seen a writer take so long to make his point, or write so many words without saying anything at all.

    You are trying to turn this discussion into Natural Selection vs. Intelligent Design, and I’m not going to let you. I have no interest in defending the science of intelligent design, because it’s an incredibly difficult task nobody is capable of doing.

    Why? Because mIcroevolution is a fact. It’s a fact as well-established as any other fact we have. But the important thing to keep in mind is that all the research which purports to prove macroevolution – a very different thing – uses microevolution to do it. It’s almost like saying because I can drive my car to the mailbox, I can therefore drive it to Ireland. We extrapolate a role for natural selection in macroevolution, and that isn’t something that can be disproved right now.

    So, I have no intention of having that debate. I don’t care enough about either theory to pick one and attempt to prove it. I’m not certain either is good science.

    What I am certain of is that ID is science, if only bad science. You failed to link intelligent design and creationism at all. I have wont he debate because you haven’t proven this.

    You say there are different types of creationism; some using a literal translation of the Bible and some not. But in order for something to be labeled “creationism,” it at least has to claim the existence of God. Intelligent design, on the other hand, doesn’t do this. The agent could be God, a god, or an alien.

    You keep on this narrative about big bang theory being studied for so long, etc…What you have to realize is that intelligent design depends on nanotechnology quite a bit. Until nanotechnology improves, and keeps improving, there is only so much testing and observation that can be done.

    So, do you have any evidence that intelligent design is no different than creationism? Of course you don’t, which is why I contend you have lost this debate. What you’re doing now is trying to save face by shifting the argument to something else. This is an utter red herring.

  • lyttleton

    You are the most madly delusional man I have ever encountered. You want to reduce this debate down the most simplistic aspect in order to deny that ever assertion you’ve made has been wrong (about Irreducible Complexity, about the religious background of ID, about Dembski’s numbers, about Miller’s view on Behe’s theory).

    Now this:

    You keep on this narrative about big bang theory being studied for so long, etc…What you have to realize is that intelligent design depends on nanotechnology quite a bit. Until nanotechnology improves, and keeps improving, there is only so much testing and observation that can be done.

    Read that paragraph again and tell me how that makes sense as one coherent, connected thought.

    Keep telling yourself you won this debate. Live in that delusion.

    Creationism isn’t just about God, you know. There is a Hindu version of Creationism. In fact, every creation myth is Creationism, and they were all originally created by the logical inferences of scientifically illiterate people thousands of years ago.

    (Actually, even Scientology has a kind of Creation Myth at its center, which also purports to be based on science.)

    I’ve proven the historical evolution of ID from Christian Creationism. I’ve shown that the ‘science’ behind ID is mere “Argument from Ignorance” with no independent research or experimentation to fill it out. I’ve shown that experts in biology have effectively dismantled Behe’s Irreducible Complexity, and Dembski’s Design Inference. I’ve shown that Creationism can be more than just a literal interpretation of Genesis (yet one more fact you’ve claimed and then been flatly wrong on).

    As far as I can tell, you would only accept the reality that ID is Creationism in sheep’s clothing if Michael Behe knocked on your door and admitted it to you.

    If you’ve won anything today, it’s the True Believer award. In the face of staggering facts and a complete falling back from every position you’ve asserted accept for the most vaguely philosophical one, you still remain confident not only in your point of view, but in this idea that you’ve flat out won this debate. Amazing.

    You are right, the onus for proof was on me, because I made the statement (although, in the reality of science, the onus is actually on ID to prove itself as a science, but that’s outside of this little box we’re debating in). So all you had to do to support your argument was provide a minimum of proof that ID engages in actual scientific research, and you couldn’t even do that.

    Instead, you’ve made mention of the Big Bang Theory and Abiogenesis and whined, “If those get to be science, why can’t Intelligent Design!?! Waaahhhh!”

    Ironically, your argument style has mimicked that of the ID movement. ID came out all guns ablazing, trying to set itself up as equal to Natural Selection. It failed (in court), so it backed up and said it deserved to be heard, at least. It was heard and found lacking anything substantive.
    Now the ID movement (like your own argument) is reduced to, “Maybe we’re wrong but maybe Natural Selection is, too, so let us talk about it.”

    Why have IDers spent so much money on lawsuits and battles to get ID into schools and so little on scientific research? Because they know they can’t win this fight on the science, so they are trying to make this a philosophical fight (which is all this has ever been since its origins as a Creationist Trojan Horse).

    And here you are, doing the same thing.

    I have no interest in defending the science of intelligent design, because it’s an incredibly difficult task nobody is capable of doing.

    Really? Nobody can defend the science of ID? If nobody can do that, maybe it’s because it’s not science.

    So you’ve abandoned the hard science of this debate to just make the philosophical argument that ID is a science. Except, without the Hard Science to support it, ID has nothing to stand on. It’s, as I’ve said a few times now, a (flawed) logical argument, but not a scientific one.

    After all is said and done, your entire argument boils down to this paragraph:

    You say there are different types of creationism; some using a literal translation of the Bible and some not. But in order for something to be labeled “creationism,” it at least has to claim the existence of God. Intelligent design, on the other hand, doesn’t do this. The agent could be God, a god, or an alien.

    Because ID is too ignorant to be able to even describe its central claim, it isn’t Creationism? I think that was probably the argument the IDers tried in the Dover case, and it explains why they were so thoroughly demolished.

    Don’t even get me started on those idiots. I minored in biology and I would put my scientific knowledge up against any other blogger out there.

    You made that claim when this debate originally began on your blog. And yet, here you are, abandoning all discussion of science because you don’t understand it.

    Take your invisible trophy and celebrate your landmark victory in “Reality Vs. What You Believe.”

    I think the court is at recess.

  • Terrance H.

    More of the same nonsense. First, you were certain intelligent design was nothing more than an evangelical movement; now, you’re talking about Hindus.

    You’re pathetic.

    I wasn’t wrong about irreducibly complex. I was simply explaining the idea as Behe believes it. You keep saying I’m a supporter of ID, which is perhaps the greatest delusion since the apparition of the Virgin Mary, as scholars report it.

    So all you had to do to support your argument was provide a minimum of proof that ID engages in actual scientific research, and you couldn’t even do that.

    Actually, I did. A scientific observation is made and inductive reasoning is applied. I even likened it to the big bang theory – which is still relevant – and paleontology. You ignored both examples, because you aren’t interested in facts or reality, but in ideology.

    I’ve proven the historical evolution of ID from Christian Creationism.

    Yet, earlier you said it didn’t have to be Biblical creationism, and then you started ranting about Hindus. Gee. You’re getting really desperate, dude. You’re drowning man. Drowning. Why not write a poem about it?

    How about: A mind like the fluttering heart of a dying sparrow, you have no truth
    and in it’s last breath, the bird has more song.

    So, do you have anything to support your contention that intelligent design is nothing more than creationism under a different name? Yes? No?

    I’ll be waiting for that.

  • Terrance H.

    It’s funny you would say I don’t understand the science when I’ve been the one explaining it in my own words, while you, on the other hand, have been issuing link after link you don’t bother to read.

    I can explain the science of ID – and have – but I can’t totally defend it, just like you can’t totally defend natural selection. That isn’t the debate. Instead, we’re all waiting for you to prove your assertion, which you haven’t done.

    You have done one thing:

    1). Show that those involved in the ID movement were motivated by their religion.

    Actually, I showed that, because you didn’t read your link and discover the smoking gun.

    Your second assertion is still waiting for supporting evidence:

    2). ID is nothing more than Christian Creationism under a different name.

    Still nothing to support that. In fact, your own statements contradict that assertion. You did in fact say it is a “philosophical point of view.”

    Your third assertion you haven’t supported either:

    3). ID is not science.

    Making a scientific observation and applying inductive reasoning is science when we’re talking about BBT and paleontology, so why not for ID?

    We all know why.

  • lyttleton

    I wasn’t wrong about irreducibly complex. I was simply explaining the idea as Behe believes it.

    You were wrong because you claimed it hasn’t been dismantled, when in fact it has.

    Stop hiding behind this wall of, “I’m just providing the argument, I don’t really care.” You’ve cared enough to call me a fool and pathetic dozens of times and to keep coming back to this debate. Your stance of ID/Natural Selection agnosticism is plainly a lie.

    Yet, earlier you said it didn’t have to be Biblical creationism, and then you started ranting about Hindus.

    I said it didn’t have to be, correct. But, it in fact is.

    And, I mention Hinduism once or twice (among others) and suddenly that amounts to ranting? Your ridiculous hyperbole is just one of the facets of your debating style that undermines every thing you say (the other facet is your complete lack of facts).

    And when did I say ID was Evangelical? You are the one that keeps mentioning Evangelicals, not me. Evangelicals support ID, but all I’ve said is that ID is Creationism in new packaging. That is my argument, well supported and well documented. Stop trying to change my argument to some Straw Man.

    Actually, I did. A scientific observation is made and inductive reasoning is applied.

    What makes it a scientific observation? That is what you have failed to answer. Is it scientific because it’s looking at Nature? If so, doesn’t that suggest that the supernatural reliance on a Designer makes ID not scientific, because it’s outside of nature (that is a rhetorical question, because in fact, yes, science is concerned with the natural universe, not invisible men in the sky).

    Maybe all observations are scientific? If I observe that my pop tart is red, have I made a scientific observation? Can I call myself a scientists and get a book published? Who was Behe’s publisher, I know they’ll publish anything.

    Once again, for the umpteenth time, I’ve asked for research, and been given none. The Big Bang Theory began with inductive reasoning, but it did not end there. (How have I ignored the Big Bang Theory, as you’ve claimed, when I’ve talked about it a bunch? I’m getting the distinct feeling that you don’t read my comments, which explains why you are so ignorant of all the facts I’ve presented you.)

    Your inductive reasoning is also faulty as I’ve pointed out because first you have to provide proof that something is 100%, for certain designed, i.e. Irreducibly Complex, and that has not been done. When ID’s entire argument is reliant on the idea that something is designed, it does have to be 100% certain. If there’s even a 1% chance that it isn’t designed, then ID as a logical argument falls apart.

    I’ve given pages upon pages of referenced support that ID is Creationism. You just ignore it and claim victory.

    You are clearly a blind nutjob, no better than those people who thought they were going to be raptured on Saturday.

    But for the people of reason, I’m just going to leave you with this:

    Kitzmiller V. Dover

    It’s about as finely worded and intricately detailed a proof of ID and Creationism’s shared DNA that you’re going to find.

    From now on, I’m just going to respond to each of your inane comments with “Last Word” because that’s all you want, and I’m happy to not give you that pleasure. You long ago gave up trying to support your side of the debate.

    You lost.

    Last word.

  • Terrance H.

    I’ve said is that ID is Creationism in new packaging. That is my argument, well supported and well documented. Stop trying to change my argument to some Straw Man.

    You haven’t provided any evidence of this – at all.

    Your debating style is simply to continue repeating inanity over and over again in a desperate attempt to appear learned. That is pathetic.

    Sorry for the repetition, but no other word describes you so completely.

    You say BBT didn’t end with inductive reasoning. That’s absurd for one obvious reason: We have no experience with universes exploding into existence or with singularities expanding. Until we get that experience, inductive reasoning based on observation is all we have.

    IC hasn’t been destroyed. The human eye is a perfect example. There are over 40 subsystems that have no individual purpose until the final product is complete. If natural selection as we understand it were true, there is no way the eye could have evolved into what it is today. We have no experience with the complex eye evolving, so scientists use inductive reasoning to suggest how it might have happened.

    Observation and inductive reasoning coalesce into scientific theories all the time. That you fail to see this, to remain ignorant, is besides the point. The world doesn’t spin because of you, Mr. Fonseca.

    I’ll let you have the last word. You have failed to prove your point. You cannot show that intelligent design is Christian creationism under a different name, because it isn’t. And even Ray Charles could see that.

    P.S. You again bring up the Dover case. That, as I have said, is about as relevant to this discussion as the the Scopes Monkey Trial. Though, it’s worth noting that Of Pandas and People was the downfall of intelligent design in that particular case. If a better textbook, one not so obviously religious, were used, the outcome may have been vastly different. (You’ll undoubtedly claim I have been defending the book.)

    Now, dazzle us all with your long-winded obfuscation, because that’s all you’ve got.

  • lyttleton

    And again you reward us with your ignorance of how science works.

    Last word.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: