Missing link: “cdesign proponentsists”

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You might be interested to read about a very rare transitional fossil between creationism and “intelligent design” that was recently discovered by Barbara Forrest during her exploration of some exhibits filed in Kitzmiller v. Dover, namely drafts of the original “intelligent design” book Of Pandas and People.

The amazing beast, “cdesign proponentsists” was discovered directly above strata containing the well-known and ubiquitous species “creationists”. Previous research by Forrest had dated the layer the missing link was found in to the latter half of 1987.

Forrest had previously been able to show that “intelligent design” almost completely replaced “creationism” in 1987, in a dramatic episode of ecological replacement:

…but, as is often the case in punctuated equilibria between closely-related species, the transitional form has a small, geographically localized population, and so is difficult to discover in the fossil record.

Through painstaking sifting through the record, however, Forrest eventually found the holy grail: a perfect intermediate.

Creation Biology (1983), p. 3-34: “Evolutionists think the former is correct; creationists because of all the evidence discussed in this book, conclude the latter is correct.”

Biology and Creation (1986), p. 3-33: “Evolutionists think the former is correct, creationists accept the latter view.”

Biology and Origins (1987), p. 3-38: “Evolutionists think the former is correct, creationists accept the latter view.”

Of Pandas and People (1987, creationist version), p. 3-40: “Evolutionists think the former is correct, creationists accept the latter view.”

Of Pandas and People (1987, “intelligent design” version), p. 3-41: “Evolutionists think the former is correct, cdesign proponentsists accept the latter view.”

Both creationists and Intelligent Design proponents were quick to point out that the discovery had created two new gaps between the two movements.

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30 Comments

Gee, what catastrophe happened in 1987, I wonder.

This is what we call a “cut & paste from hell.” How ironic. I think we can assume that this amazing fossil was not created by design – intelligent or otherwise.

Thanks Nick for the excellent work done by you and the many people who were fighting on the side of science rather than on the side of vacuity. The plaintiffs’ lawyers have done an excellent job at exposing the fallacies of intelligent design, its scientific vacuity and the religious foundations of the boards’ actions as well as of the ID movement.

That the DI is still talking with a twisted tongue about teaching ID is fascinating. On the one hand they applaud the changes in Kansas which require the teachers to address ‘controversies’ on the other hand they object to teaching these controversies by teachers who are not educated properly in these ‘controversies’.

All the time with a straight face.

What a farce.

This might be a good place to explain that one can point to any spot in the T.O. transcript. For example the question just before the graphic. I got by placing my pointer on top of the “Q.” and clicking it. When one places one’s pointer on top of something like “Q.”, “MR. ROTHSCHILD:”, or “THE COURT:” it should a link which can be clicked. The URL can be then taken from the address box at the top of the browser (okay most browsers). Alternatively one can view the source. If one sees things like name=”day6am968” just add a #day6am968 to the URL of the document and a link will go directly to the paragraph in question.

I somehow ommitted a few words:

When one places one’s pointer on top of something like “Q.”, “MR. ROTHSCHILD:”, or “THE COURT:” it should look like a link which can be clicked.

What a terrible calamity to happen to the fine peo*holes*ple at the Found*lying*ation for Thoug*hypocri*t and Eth*eocracy*ics.

Oops! I don’t seem to have the knack of these XML tags yet.

Matt wrote:

“Gee, what catastrophe happened in 1987, I wonder.”

The SCambrian Explosion, of course!

Was this specific C&P job actually pointed at during the trial? I see Dr. Forrest talking about “the visual inspection,” but I can’t tell from the transcript whether a slide of this was shown or not.

Put another way, does Judge Jones know about this now?

Good catch, Dr Forrest. Except, that I doubt the IDers will accept that this fills the gap because “cdesign proponentsists” seems lacking in both “irriducible complexity” and “specified complexity” (although the later is arguable).

Matt wrote:

“Gee, what catastrophe happened in 1987, I wonder.”

To which KL responded:

“The SCambrian Explosion, of course!”

Now that I think about it, that was the year of Supernova 1987A.

Hmmm.… Do you suppose that could be a coincidence? Maybe their hard disk was struck by high energy gamma rays that night. And they inserted the extra letters into “cdesign proponentsists”. Maybe *that’s* how God does it! Yeah, that’s the ticket!

Good catch, Dr Forrest. Except, that I doubt the IDers will accept that this fills the gap because “cdesign proponentsists” seems lacking in both “irriducible complexity” and “specified complexity” (although the later is arguable).

Oh, there’s definitely irreducible complexity. “cdesign proponentsists” has the obvious function of causing us to laugh harder at Pandas than we did previously, and if you remove the “c” and the “ists,” you lose that function.

Maybe its time to introduce the concepts of “specified idiocy” and “irreducible ignorance”, as principles to demonstrate the vacuity of ID e.g. the “specified idiocy of the defense witness’ arguments and their irreducible ignorance of the scientific method”.

Another possibly adaptive mutation, due to a rather poorly designed organism is the Vice-Strategy by Dembski. Once again using the double meaning of words, connoting both pressure on their opponents and the “underlying” moral tone of this “conflict.

It all started with a Darwin Doll. What types of mutations and mechanisms can be used to explain this bizarre phenomena of creationists who cannot see they have been beaten?

http://www.uncommondescent.com/inde[…]archives/464

Re “Maybe their hard disk was struck by high energy gamma rays that night”

Well, we know that gamma rays can cause a scientist to grow and turn green, so…

OK, I had to search a little, but I found out what happened on June 19, 1987.

My question: who came up with the idea of introducing the term “intelligent design”? I.e., to whom can the genesis of the modern mis-usage of the term be credited? I was thinking Phillip Johnson, but “Darwin on Trial” came out in 1991, and OPAP came out in 1987 with the fully-modern term “design proponents” in its pages.

Was there some kind of collaboration between Kenyon and Johnson in 1987? They worked in relatively close proximity.

But this new fossil just creates TWO new gaps in the record! And “cdesign proponentsists” is still just a phrase, like “creationist” or “design proponent!” It’s not like a phrase turned into a algebraic equation, or a fish, or a monkey! Clearly this is just microevolution within the same god-created kind. You satan-worshipping atheists.

If “creationists” evolved into “design proponents,” then why are there still creationists?

Even if it did happen, I think ID science (i.e., the process of deciding what you believe then manufacturing/imagining the evidence to support it, then lying to the world every time you open your mouth) will eventually demonstrate (through the rigorous process of expecting you to believe it uncritically) that the DNA of the phrase “creationist” was front-loaded with the genes for the phrase “design proponent.”

You just don’t see the impossibility of going from “creationist” to “design proponent” by chance. It would take two frame-shifts and 10 point mutations. The odds of that happening by chance are on the order of 10^^100!!! in one year!!!

Must have been intelligently designed.

in order to find out how cdesign proponentsist could have replaced creationist so abruptly in 1987 I asked some well known scientists. Ernst Mayr said that creationists spread out and occupied the territory but a founding population of proponentsists became isolated from them and due to design drift came up with a slightly more legal definition which when the populations were reintroduced from migration to the same courthouses more effectively spread thru the textbooks. Goldschmidt said that a “Hopeless Monster” abruptly emerged from a fevered mind upon realization that the constitution might undermine the stability of the lawsuits. Cuvier said that when the 1st lawsuit was lost that God sent a catastrophe which wiped out “creation” from all about-to-be-published books and relaced them with “proponentsist”. What I would like to know is what exactly is a “proponentsist” Can’t look that up in my Funk and Wagnall’s. That may qualify as speaking in tongues or at least a tongue twister.

Perhaps they’ve found a use for junk DNA after all? - investigation of “specified idiocy” and “irreducible ignorance” shows that it’s there to produce IDiots perhaps?

Maybe its time to introduce the concepts of “specified idiocy” and “irreducible ignorance”, as principles to demonstrate the vacuity of ID e.g. the “specified idiocy of the defense witness’ arguments and their irreducible ignorance of the scientific method”.

Truly, whoever could formalize these concepts would be considered the Isaac Newton of Misinformation Theory.

Oh my. Go read the last couple of posts on Telic Thoughts. It’s hilarious! ID isn’t creationism! Really!

Responding to a few points: Behe isn’t a creationist. That must be why the very first place he published his irreducible complexity argument was in the 1993 Of Pandas and People, a book aimed at an audience of ninth-graders that explicitly denies common ancestry at least a dozen times.

Dembski allegedly isn’t a creationist either. Hmm, it seems like that they missed this document, cited in the Kitzmiller case, “What Every Theologian Should Know about Creation, Evolution, and Design,” wherein Dembski says,

“Yes, I do believe that organisms have undergone some change in the course of natural history (though I believe that this change has occurred within strict limits and that human beings were specially created).”

On the possibility of a conspiracy of sneakiness from ID proponents: well, let’s think about how many ID proponents must have known about the creationist origins of Pandas, and have been hiding the fact for decades. Let’s see, first we have all the authors of the first edition – Buell, Thaxton, Kenyon, Davis, Pearcey – and in all likelihood, many of the “Critical Reviewers” on the first edition who were active in the 1980’s, such as Paul Nelson and Stephen C. Meyer. Since Davis is not a fellow, that’s six Discovery Institute fellows right there. Perhaps this is why Stephen Meyer wanted to have his own lawyer at his deposition?

On the quote “Intelligent design means…” – they say the quote appears only in the “older edition” of Pandas. Sorry, it’s pages 99-100 in both the 1989 and 1993 editions! And then, as shown during Behe’s cross-examination, in The Design of Life it miraculously transforms into “Sudden emergence means…”, which the book then says is perfectly consistent with ID.

They say that the Pandas authors substituted ID for creationism “at several keys points.” By “several key points”, they must mean about 110 key points.

I wonder, when Nancy Pearcey republished huge chunks of Pandas in the Bible-Science Newsletter, except with explicit references to God and special creation, that probably wasn’t creationism either, was it?

Next, we’re going to hear that Dean Kenyon’s creation-science affidavit in the Edwards v. Aguillard case wasn’t creationism either, because it makes all of the same legally-convenient denials that ID makes.

Like I said, two new gaps…

Telic thoughts appears to be Mike Gene talking to himself for the most part. did i miss something?

“Cdesign proponentsists” is funny/clever and a lot of people have posted witty comments, etc; however, I don’t really understand how Forrest’s findings have exposed anything. An esteemed professor from my university testified on the ID side in Dover much to the chagrin of everyone else in the biology department and the school administration. Another prominent and excellent professor who has often debated evolution versus creationism stated that ID is merely creationism with a new name and the same lame intention of bringing religion into schools. Busted? No, I don’t think creationists have put on an ID mask to try to trick people. Thanks to severe and due criticisms of creation as a science, some have re-formulated how to actually approach the idea from a scientific, evidence-based perspective or at least that is the aim. Of course ID people are creationists - creationists who got the message that creation as taught in a faith based context is not science and that religion truly does not belong in science. ID is a step in the right direction toward applying scientific principles to investigate the idea that perhaps the watchmaker wasn’t blind after all. If ID is creationism trying to play by the rules, what’s the problem? As long as they don’t violate the rules let them play. A critique of the science of ID would be much more useful than a critique of the blatantly obvious motivation behind ID.

Comment # 57555

? Wrote:

Comment #57555 Posted by ? on November 15, 2005 02:53 AM (e) (s) “Cdesign proponentsists” is funny/clever and a lot of people have posted witty comments, etc; however, I don’t really understand how Forrest’s findings have exposed anything. An esteemed professor from my university testified on the ID side in Dover much to the chagrin of everyone else in the biology department and the school administration. Another prominent and excellent professor who has often debated evolution versus creationism stated that ID is merely creationism with a new name and the same lame intention of bringing religion into schools. Busted? No, I don’t think creationists have put on an ID mask to try to trick people. Thanks to severe and due criticisms of creation as a science, some have re-formulated how to actually approach the idea from a scientific, evidence-based perspective or at least that is the aim. Of course ID people are creationists - creationists who got the message that creation as taught in a faith based context is not science and that religion truly does not belong in science. ID is a step in the right direction toward applying scientific principles to investigate the idea that perhaps the watchmaker wasn’t blind after all. If ID is creationism trying to play by the rules, what’s the problem? As long as they don’t violate the rules let them play. A critique of the science of ID would be much more useful than a critique of the blatantly obvious motivation behind ID.

They don’t play by the rules. They want the rule thrown out and a new set to be brought in tht rigs the game so they always win.

Science is about explaining things. ID, by Behe’s own words, can not explain anything besides “It looks designed therefor it must be designed” ask him “How was it designed” Behe “I don’t know” “When was it designed?” Behe “I don’t know” “How was it designed?” Behe “I don’t know” “Why was it designed?” Behe “I don’t know” “Who designed it?” Behe “I don’t know. *Behe winks to the fundamentalist because they all think it is God but he won’t fully admit that.*”

ID is politics not science. If you don’t know this then please read up on the history of the ID movement a bit more before you try to tell us that ID really is science and we should treat it with respect.

A critique of the science of ID would be much more useful than a critique of the blatantly obvious motivation behind ID.

It’s not illegal to teach bad science.

It *is* illegal to teach religious apologetics masquerading as science.

Game over.

? wrote

A critique of the science of ID would be much more useful than a critique of the blatantly obvious motivation behind ID.

Sure thing. And just as soon as those evolution-doubting “scientists” on the Discovery Institute’s list get around to actually doing some ID “science” (if they ever do) it will be critiqued. So far, though, there’s no there there.

RBH

Busted? No, I don’t think creationists have put on an ID mask to try to trick people. Thanks to severe and due criticisms of creation as a science, some have re-formulated how to actually approach the idea from a scientific, evidence-based perspective or at least that is the aim.

You’re suggesting that they changed the content of creationism to make it more scientific. But the whole point of “cdesign proponentsists” is that they didn’t do that, they just changed the label. The Pandas authors literally took their old statements, cut out “creationism,” pasted in “intelligent design,” and republished. That has nothing to do with “reformulating” the idea, and everything to do with tricking people.

If they were bringing new scientific evidence to the table, they wouldn’t have to change the label.

If they were bringing new scientific evidence to the table, they wouldn’t have to change the label.

And, of course, every one of the ID “scientific arguments” — everything from “the Cambrian explosion” to “the flagellum can’t have evolved” to “X Y and Z are too improbable” — are standard creationist arguments from 30 years ago. Not a word has been changed.

I’ve yet to see any ID argument, any at all, that isn’t just rehashed ICR boilerplate from pre-McLean times.

So where the heck IS all this “new scientific evidence” that they’re supposed to have?

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This page contains a single entry by Nick Matzke published on November 7, 2005 9:12 PM.

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