Casey, Your Slip is Showing

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Casey Luskin is quoted in the Iowa State Daily as saying,

“Dr. Gonzalez is not teaching intelligent design in classes. The majority of his research is based on astronomy and cosmology. He has stellar reputation as cosmologist and astrologer. Why wouldn’t you want a great scientist like that on your staff?” Luskin said.

Update: Just after I posted this, I wrote Kyle Miller, lead author on the article. Kyle wrote me back. He says it was their error, and that they will be running a correction tomorrow. So it’s actually Miller and Boettcher’s slip, and there were two errors: the quote was actually from Rob Crowther, not Casey Luskin, and the error in copy editing.

52 Comments

That’s gotta be a typo.

Everybody knows Behe’s the Astrologer.

It just doesn’t get any better than this. Casey Luskin is just the gift that keeps on giving . … .

What’s really sad is that Luskin probably doesn’t even know he made a mistake (unless he’s read PT) - he probably doesn’t know the difference.

That’s gotta be a typo.

Yes. It should read “cosmetologist”.

So the bit about a “stellar reputation” doesn’t warrant a mention as a gross inaccuracy and well as being an atrocious pun?

Ah shucks. I thought that Luskin was obviously following the direction of Prof. Mike Behe, who admitted under oath that ID creationism was “science” to the same extent as astrology. (Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, Trial transcript: Day 11 (October 18), PM Session, Part 1).

efrique said:

So the bit about a “stellar reputation” doesn’t warrant a mention as a gross inaccuracy and well as being an atrocious pun?

So you’re saying the pun is astronomically bad? That it had a meteoric fall? That it shows confusion? That it shows a cosmic level of dishonesty?

I could go on and on. Actually, I think the pun is the least objectionable part of his entire comment.

astrologer?

astrologer?

Nope, not an astrologer. Consider the following information:

Another misperception came out in the Q&A session. Behe was asked (at the Kansas University lecture) if he believed astrology was science because he had been quoted all over the media as saying astrology would fit in with his definition of science. Behe stated that at that point in the trial they were discussing the definition of science. He was asked if astrology was science and Behe said he stated astrology was considered science in the 13th and 14th century and that it in part led to astronomy. He was referring to historical times, not current times. But, the media only picked up his reference to astrology being acceptable in his definition of science.

Source: http://reasonablekansans.blogspot.c[…]ture_07.html

******

Also see the detailed explanation at “Evolution News and Views”:

http://www.evolutionnews.org/2005/1[…]trology.html

FL

Nice thing court transcripts.

Q In any event, in your expert report, and in your testimony over the last two days, you used a looser definition of “theory,” correct?

A I think I used a broader definition, which is more reflective of how the word is actually used in the scientific community.

Q But the way you define scientific theory, you said it’s just based on your own experience; it’s not a dictionary definition, it’s not one issued by a scientific organization.

A It is based on my experience of how the word is used in the scientific community.

Q And as you said, your definition is a lot broader than the NAS definition?

A That’s right, intentionally broader to encompass the way that the word is used in the scientific community.

Q Sweeps in a lot more propositions.

A It recognizes that the word is used a lot more broadly than the National Academy of Sciences defined it.

Q In fact, your definition of scientific theory is synonymous with hypothesis, correct?

A Partly – it can be synonymous with hypothesis, it can also include the National Academy’s definition. But in fact, the scientific community uses the word “theory” in many times as synonymous with the word “hypothesis,” other times it uses the word as a synonym for the definition reached by the National Academy, and at other times it uses it in other ways.

Q But the way you are using it is synonymous with the definition of hypothesis?

A No, I would disagree. It can be used to cover hypotheses, but it can also include ideas that are in fact well substantiated and so on. So while it does include ideas that are synonymous or in fact are hypotheses, it also includes stronger senses of that term.

Q And using your definition, intelligent design is a scientific theory, correct?

A Yes.

Q Under that same definition astrology is a scientific theory under your definition, correct?

A Under my definition, a scientific theory is a proposed explanation which focuses or points to physical, observable data and logical inferences. There are many things throughout the history of science which we now think to be incorrect which nonetheless would fit that – which would fit that definition. Yes, astrology is in fact one, and so is the ether theory of the propagation of light, and many other – many other theories as well.

Q The ether theory of light has been discarded, correct?

A That is correct.

Q But you are clear, under your definition, the definition that sweeps in intelligent design, astrology is also a scientific theory, correct?

A Yes, that’s correct. And let me explain under my definition of the word “theory,” it is – a sense of the word “theory” does not include the theory being true, it means a proposition based on physical evidence to explain some facts by logical inferences. There have been many theories throughout the history of science which looked good at the time which further progress has shown to be incorrect. Nonetheless, we can’t go back and say that because they were incorrect they were not theories. So many many things that we now realized to be incorrect, incorrect theories, are nonetheless theories.

Q Has there ever been a time when astrology has been accepted as a correct or valid scientific theory, Professor Behe?

A Well, I am not a historian of science. And certainly nobody – well, not nobody, but certainly the educated community has not accepted astrology as a science for a long long time. But if you go back, you know, Middle Ages and before that, when people were struggling to describe the natural world, some people might indeed think that it is not a priori – a priori ruled out that what we – that motions in the earth could affect things on the earth, or motions in the sky could affect things on the earth.

Q And just to be clear, why don’t we pull up the definition of astrology from Merriam-Webster.

MR. ROTHSCHILD: If you would highlight that.

BY MR. ROTHSCHILD:

Q And archaically it was astronomy; right, that’s what it says there?

A Yes.

Q And now the term is used, “The divination of the supposed influences of the stars and planets on human affairs and terrestrial events by their positions and aspects.”

That’s the scientific theory of astrology?

A That’s what it says right there, but let me direct your attention to the archaic definition, because the archaic definition is the one which was in effect when astrology was actually thought to perhaps describe real events, at least by the educated community.

Astrology – I think astronomy began in, and things like astrology, and the history of science is replete with ideas that we now think to be wrong headed, nonetheless giving way to better ways or more accurate ways of describing the world.

And simply because an idea is old, and simply because in our time we see it to be foolish, does not mean when it was being discussed as a live possibility, that it was not actually a real scientific theory.

Q I didn’t take your deposition in the 1500s, correct?

He he, FL got pwned.

[Never, ever rely on creationist “sources” - it’s the lie of the land.]

FL has kindly provided us with another lie, in the very name of a website, “http://reasonablekansans.blogspot.com” - which is another intelligent design creationist website.

The specific address was in support of a talk by ex-scientist Michael Behe, where the following commentary appears:

“So, obviously, this (the stack of books) was an antic to try to make Behe look foolish.”

It wasn’t an antic- it did reveal him to be a fool. This was one of the low points of the Dover trial, which helped Judge Jones understand what he was dealing with - a liar.

FL: Also see the detailed explanation at “Evolution News and Views”:

http://www.evolutionnews.org/2005/1[…]trology.html

FL

That’s not a “detailed explanation”, that’s just damage control. That’s all that Evolution News and Spews is good for.

“About 500 years ago, most “scientists” believed (albeit incorrectly) that the Earth was the center of the solar system. Had you asked an early astronomer in the year 1500 if the geocentric model of the solar system was “a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that can incorporate facts, laws, and tested hypotheses … that develop[ed] from extensive observation, experimentation, and creative reflection … [and] incorporate[s] a large body of scientific facts, laws, tested hypotheses, and logical inferences” she would have probably told you YES!”

LIAR! Geocentricism was accepted over 500 years ago because nearly EVERYONE in Europe followed religious dogma instead of science and there was virutally NO scientific methodology followed. Geocentricism was taught in the Bible, so it was taken as truth and the “evidence” was twisted to fit that view.…much like Creationists do today!

Casey Luskin is a shameless hypocrite, charlatan, and @$$hole!

I actually like it better knowing that it was the paper’s error. Just goes to show that random mutations can indeed produce worthwhile information.

He he, FL got pwned (sic).

Hey, would you mind if we test your hypothesis there? You will want to take time to read BOTH the court transcript and the two informational sources I gave, Torbjorn. Here, let me help you:

First, the Court transcript…

Q. Under that same definition astrology is a scientific theory under your definition, correct?

A. Under my definition, a scientific theory is a proposed explanation which focuses or points to physical, observable data and logical inferences. There are many things throughout the history of science which we now think to be incorrect which nonetheless would fit that – which would fit that definition. Yes, astrology is in fact one, and so is the ether theory of the propagation of light, and many other – many other theories as well.

Q And now the term is used, “The divination of the supposed influences of the stars and planets on human affairs and terrestrial events by their positions and aspects.”

That’s the scientific theory of astrology?

A That’s what it says right there, but let me direct your attention to the archaic definition, because the archaic definition is the one which was in effect when astrology was actually thought to perhaps describe real events, at least by the educated community.

Astrology – I think astronomy began in, and things like astrology, and the history of science is replete with ideas that we now think to be wrong headed, nonetheless giving way to better ways or more accurate ways of describing the world.

And simply because an idea is old, and simply because in our time we see it to be foolish, does not mean when it was being discussed as a live possibility, that it was not actually a real scientific theory.

********

Now, if you will kindly actually read the sources that I gave, you’ll see that Dr. Behe’s statements are straightforwardly consistent with his court testimony.

Behe stated that at that point in the trial they were discussing the definition of science. He was asked if astrology was science and Behe said he stated astrology was considered science in the 13th and 14th century and that it in part led to astronomy. He was referring to historical times, not current times.

Put the NAS on the witness stand, and they would admit that 500 years ago, some people would have said that geocentrism qualified under their definition of “theory.” In fact, 500 years ago, many of these same people would have put “astrology” under the NAS definition (note: we find this incredible today, but in his time, it was not scandalous that Newton was an astrologer). Today we know both astrology and geocentrism are totally wrong, and so nobody wants them taught as science in school.

Now here is the NAS definition of theory:

The NAS defines “theory” as:

“In science, a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that can incorporate facts, laws, and tested hypotheses. The contention that evolution should be taught as “theory, not as fact” confuses the common use of these words through the accumulation of evidence. Rather, theories are the end points of science. They are understandings that develop from extensive observation, experimentation, and creative reflection. They incorporate a large body of scientific facts, laws, tested hypotheses, and logical inferences.”

Now here’s the real meal deal:

Plaintiffs’ attorney tried to twist Behe’s statements into making it appear that Behe believed that astrology was a scientific theory. Behe did say that 500 years or so ago, when people knew much much less about the world and were trying to explain things, they had an idea that things on earth might have been influenced by things on stars. This was a historical fact.

But Behe made it clear that today, astrology is known to be incorrect.

The question, Torbjorn, is not who was “owned” or “not owned.” The issue is that attorney Rothschild’s attempt at distorting Dr. Behe’s answer is openly and factually EXPOSED as precisely a distortion.

In fact, if you look at Rothschild’s respond to Behe, you can see that Rothschild is actually unable to answer Behe’s point and tries to wiggle out:

Q. I didn’t take your deposition in the 1500s, correct?

Notice that Rothschild’s sarcastic one-liner answer totally DUCKS the point Behe was making. He’s not even trying to engage the point.

Behe’s historical statement is in fact accurate; no evolutionist has ever refuted it. Roth is likewise unable to do so.

********************

So, things are clear now. A sincere thank-you to Gary Hurd for providing the snip of the court transcript so that an accurate comparison of information, could be made.

FL

LIAR! Geocentricism was accepted over 500 years ago because nearly EVERYONE in Europe followed religious dogma instead of science and there was virutally NO scientific methodology followed. Geocentricism was taught in the Bible, so it was taken as truth and the “evidence” was twisted to fit that view….much like Creationists do today!

That’s not entirely true, nor meaningful. The Geocentric system was developed by most civilizations before they had ever heard of Jesus or the Jews, and it functioned perfectly well as a scientific theory for millenia, being modified to fit the observed data as necessary. The epicycles and equants of the Ptolomaic system might seem silly to us now, but at the time it was introduced Copernicus’s system did not explain the observations any better. It was, in fact, worse. It was all in doubt until Galileo. Galileo had raised some doubts about the Copernican system when he failed to observe any proper motion in distant stars, but he killed the Geocentric system with ineluctable finality with his Venus observations. Once other astronomers heard about that they embraced the Copernican system, but it still was not very good at predicting the data until Kepler’s laws were revealed.

Actually, the court transcript reveals Rothschild is right, and Behe and the DI fellows are ducking.

Behe advances a definition of science for use today, not 500 years ago. The questioning reveals that the difference between modern definitions of science and Behe’s re-definition of science means that more things would be considered science under Behe’s re-definition. “Intelligent design” is one of those. “Astrology” is another. It’s only after that is established that you get a bunch of misdirection from Behe trying to obfuscate where he intends to deploy his re-definition. Behe wants it used in the here and now, not as something to be shot back to the 1500’s via a time machine. Astrology was considered sound back then, and it would be considered sound again today, if we adopt Behe’s re-definition of science.

I don’t think by any stretch of the imagination that I’m the first to point that out.

Nice job, FL. It’s unbelieveable that Darwinists still bring up the astrology canard. Anyone who does ever a little digging into the episode can see how ridiculous the accusation is.

Thanks for the plug as well.

Forthekids:

Nice job, FL. It’s unbelieveable that Darwinists still bring up the astrology canard. Anyone who does ever a little digging into the episode can see how ridiculous the accusation is.

Thanks for the plug as well.

So, then, how does this mitigate the fact that the Discovery Institute has no intention of doing any science what so ever?

Forthekids:

Nice job, FL. It’s unbelieveable that Darwinists still bring up the astrology canard. Anyone who does ever a little digging into the episode can see how ridiculous the accusation is.

Thanks for the plug as well.

We bring up the “astrology canard” because it is true. YOU bring up the Creationist canard (is that even a word?) because you are in denial about the facts, both about evolution itself and about how grossly DISHONEST Creationists and ID promoters are. They want you to live in a whole reality all their own, not the one the rest of us accept and understand when one just follows the evidence and obeys consistently the rules of logic.

John Vreeland, you didn’t refute my statement at all, you actually gave SUPPORT to it. The epicycles of the Ptolemaic system were a desparate attempt to make a totally unsupported theory fit the evidence and they were ASSUMED to exist, even though there was no real evidence that the epicycles themselves even existed at all! In modern science, such a tactic would be laughed to scorn. In religion, that sort of stunt is done all the time to explain away things that don’t fit the dogmas.

Not that it has been earned, but if one has not thought seriously about what separates modern science from protoscience (I am not aware of any good word to describe Pre-enlightenment intellectual work) it is not obvious what Behe’s misunderstanding/misrepresentation means. Thanks to milennia of attempts to mix mystic thinking and scientific thinking we now know that this is not a fruitful way to pursue deeper understanding of the universe. With the understanding that allowing supernatural causes leads to nothing but explanatory dead ends and that good theories need to be constantly tested we can easily see that literally Behe’s definition takes us back to the age of Alchemy. This would be the equivalent of defining Christianity in such away that their beliefs would be synonomous with Orthodox Jews. Or more intriguingly going way back to Abraham and just define all 3 religions to be the same thing.

Dale Husband and John Vreeland,

There was actually some experimental evidence in support of the Geocentric hypothesis. My understanding is that Ptolemy looked for, and did not find, parallax in observations of stars 6 months apart. If the true situation was Heliocentric, then the patterns of stars in The sky should have changed over that time period. Since they did not, Ptolemy concluded a Geocentric universe. Of course, the problem was that he did not realize the immense distances involved, and even with today’s telescopes, it is not a trivial matter to measure the parallax (always less than 1 arc-second of angle) from the ground.

The epicycles were not a “desparate attempt to make a totally unsupported theory fit the evidence”, they were an attempt to adjust what was actually at the time a relatively well-supported theory. It wasn’t until Kepler and Galileo that new evidence was discovered that showed that the Geocentric universe really was not correct.

It is indeed true that the Geocentric theory became a part of religious dogma, but that really was after it was accepted on the basis of what little data a pre-telescopic world could accumulate.

Coincidentally, the new issue of Physics Today arrived with an article about just this topic. The author, Mano Singham, suggests (referencing Thomas Kuhn) that in fact the Catholic Church initially did not have a problem with the Copernican model until the Reformation began to emphasize a literal reading of the bible (which did, in fact, occur about 500 years ago). This led the CC (I guess as a result of competition) to accept this as well and reject the Copernican model, but it wasn’t immediate.

This is, of course, not support for the DI, who will spin anything in an attempt to support it’s theocratic agenda.

GvlGeologist said: “Ptolemy…did not realize the immense distances involved…”

Neither do today’s creationists. I find a common thread in talking to creationists (including “intelligent design” creationists) is that they simply cannot wrap their narrow minds around astronomical distances and geological timespans.

The wonder in Carl Sagan’s voice when he said “billions and billions” just isn’t there in creationists.

Paul Burnett:

GvlGeologist said: “Ptolemy…did not realize the immense distances involved…”

The wonder in Carl Sagan’s voice when he said “billions and billions” just isn’t there in creationists.

For the record, during the entire Cosmos series, Sagan never once uttered the words “billions and billions,” always just “billions.” Of course he actually pronounced it “biiillllllyons,” but still.

is that they simply cannot wrap their narrow minds around astronomical distances and geological timespans.

Me either. But lack of mind-wrapping doesn’t prevent doing arithmetic or comparisons on those large number of years or light years.

Henry

Paul Burnett said:

… I find a common thread in talking to creationists (including “intelligent design” creationists) is that they simply cannot wrap their narrow minds around astronomical distances and geological timespans.

I’m not sure whether they cannot, or refuse to. I tend to think the latter, as it would interfere with their preconceptions. Following the data where it leads is outside of their comfort zone.

Oh, and I should have said, “its theocratic agenda”, not “it’s theocratic agenda”

Forthekids:

Just to be clear on where everyone stands, FL believes that life on Earth is only a few thousand years old, and that humans are not biologically related to other species. Behe believes that life on Earth is several billion years old, and that humans are biologically related to all other species. FL believes that the Bible can be used as evidence, whereas Behe thinks that that’s “silly.” Where do you stand on those issues? Do you agree with FL or Behe, or do you have a third opinion that differs from both?

Please try to answer the simple questions without dragging in your incredulity about “Darwinism,” or your philosophical objections to “naturalism.”

Paul Burnett Wrote:

I find a common thread in talking to creationists (including “intelligent design” creationists) is that they simply cannot wrap their narrow minds around astronomical distances and geological timespans.

I think that’s true of the rank and file anti-evolutionists, and in all fairness, even of most nonscientists who accept evolution. The activists, however, seem to have a good grasp, if only as evidenced by their talent of knowing just what to misrepresent and how to do it. And don’t forget that OECs and most IDers have simply conceded that mainstream science is correct on those issues.

While OECs often defend it, IDers mostly want to sweep it under the rug, because their prior commitment is to the big tent. So even ID activists are unlikely to express wonder at the vastness of God’s Creation, for fear of offending YECs.

Bill Gascoyne said: “For the record, during the entire Cosmos series, Sagan never once uttered the words “billions and billions…”

Techically true…but that non-utterance became so famous that “Billions and Billions” was the title of his last book.

Please try to answer the simple questions without dragging in your incredulity about “Darwinism,” or your philosophical objections to “naturalism.”

It’s very understandable that you’d plead for avoidance of discussing those two topics.

After all, If we start talking about problems with Darwinism or with Naturalism, you’re going to see some seriously broad-based agreement among ID supporters, YEC’s, and OEC’s alike.

And such agreement, of course, is not what you want to see nor discuss.

Forthekids:

Nice job, FL. It’s unbelieveable that Darwinists still bring up the astrology canard. Anyone who does ever a little digging into the episode can see how ridiculous the accusation is.

Thanks for the plug as well.

It’s not a canard. It’s an illustrative example to the vacuousness and uselessness of Idiotic Design. Under the definition of science proposed by Idiotic Design, such things as Astrology, Phrenology, Humors and other discredited crank/bronze-age theories could NOT BE DISCREDITED as non-scientific.

As for the “ridiculous” accusation, it was (in fact) an important and pivotal point in the case. One in which the defense’s key witness was found to be a flim-flam man peddling superstitious beliefs tarted-up as science.

So, while you argue over the details of the astrology issue, you miss the point. We know that astrology is not science; however, under the definition of science by Idiotic Design, it must be included, even to this day. Regardless that we know, today, it’s not science.

What happened 200 years ago, or 500 years ago, is not relevant. What is relevant is that, today, Idiotic Design cannot exclude Astrology as a scientific discipline. Even though it is, in our modern times, properly excluded from the scientific disciplines. Simply put, Idiotic Design says “it’s all science, even our religious, supernatural belief systems, regardless.”

It’s very understandable that you’d plead for avoidance of discussing those two topics.

Yes, it is understandable. Put positively, the request is that discussions of scientific topics respect and honor the role of evidence. Incredulity in this context simply means, I don’t like the evidence so I’ll pretend evidence doesn’t matter. “Naturalism” means “objective reality as reflected by evidence”, so that’s to be avoided as well.

After all, If we start talking about problems with Darwinism or with Naturalism, you’re going to see some seriously broad-based agreement among ID supporters, YEC’s, and OEC’s alike.

And this is also the case, for the same reason. The “problems” with both scientific knowledge and scientific method are the same - that evidence *matters*. And, unfortunately, the evidence overwhelmingly refutes the religious requirements of these sects. And this is the entire issue here - if FL is obliged to honor evidence, his doctrinal convictions stand exposed as irrational and unsupportable. So we take anything that USES evidence, give it some pejorative label (“Darwinism” and “naturalism”, for example), and reject those. And this is the true religious method - state your preferences and have a power struggle. Evidence has no utility for the Religious Method.

FL:

Please try to answer the simple questions without dragging in your incredulity about “Darwinism,” or your philosophical objections to “naturalism.”

It’s very understandable that you’d plead for avoidance of discussing those two topics.

After all, If we start talking about problems with Darwinism or with Naturalism, you’re going to see some seriously broad-based agreement among ID supporters, YEC’s, and OEC’s alike.

And such agreement, of course, is not what you want to see nor discuss.

FL, you could not, would not, can not, will not, and most importantly, have not demonstrate how ID can be used in science, not even the alleged descriptive power of your 3-plank “theory,” if your life and immortal soul were at stake.

Furthermore, you have expressed in your postings that you neither understand, nor desire to understand how Evolutionary Biology works.

Incidentally, on the topic of Gonzalez…

If even a single recent member or former member of the astronomy department (or a related department) at ISU exists who is not an ID/creationist, had similar or better qualifications for tenure relative to Gonzalez, and was also denied tenure, that would destroy the entire DI argument.

Now, I happen to believe that mixing ID into any science is in itself grounds for denying tenure to a science professor. Note that this is very different from expression of religious beliefs. By scientific standards, ID/creationism is demonstrably wrong. It is not an edgy, controversial, or “radical” idea that can be justified. There are limits to free expression by professors in fact-based fields. You can advance many unique, controversial ideas about the Norman conquest of England as a history professor, for example. You may even be entitled to note that in your personal opinion, the Normans won because God favored them over the Anglo-Saxons, as long as you don’t do so in a way that interferes with the rights of others. But if you advance the idea that it took place in 1776 rather than 1066, you should be denied tenure. There are many competent scientists who hold crackpot beliefs in private, but they keep them out of their work, or else become incompetent scientists.

However, for court purposes, it might be handy to show that others with similar credentials to Gonzalez, but no ID baggage were also denied tenure ISU. That would render the issue moot.

FL Wrote:

And such agreement, of course, is not what you want to see nor discuss.

To the contrary, your broad-based agreement on magical thinking is what we frequently discuss. What could stand a little more discussion is the heretical doctrine of biblical inerrancy. But that’s probably more for the bathroom wall.

After all, If we start talking about problems with Darwinism or with Naturalism, you’re going to see some seriously broad-based agreement among ID supporters, YEC’s, and OEC’s alike.

Yeah, “serious” broad-based agreement that “something must be wrong with what the biologists are saying, because we know God had a role in this somewhere”.

FL Wrote:

And such agreement, of course, is not what you want to see nor discuss.

Sorry, but I am more than glad to see it, and discuss it, independently of the questions I asked FTK. Questions that have yet to be answered.

Stanton Wrote:

FL, you could not, would not, can not, will not, and most importantly, have not demonstrate how ID can be used in science,…

Ironically, as a YEC, as opposed to a real “don’t ask, don’t tell” IDer, he doesn’t even have to. All he needs to so is provide independent evidence, neither cherry-picked nor augmented by scripture, that many different “kinds” originated recently and in a short period of time.

FL:

Please try to answer the simple questions without dragging in your incredulity about “Darwinism,” or your philosophical objections to “naturalism.”

It’s very understandable that you’d plead for avoidance of discussing those two topics.

After all, If we start talking about problems with Darwinism or with Naturalism, you’re going to see some seriously broad-based agreement among ID supporters, YEC’s, and OEC’s alike.

And such agreement, of course, is not what you want to see nor discuss.

FL -

You’re still posting ridiculous bovine excrement. You may want to see to that.

FL said: “…If we start talking about problems with Darwinism or with Naturalism…”

FL, I know when you say “Darwinism,” you are referring to Charles Darwin’s theory (which has evolved in the last century and a half, but you don’t want to admit any of that).

But how do you define “Naturalism”? What is “Naturalism” in your lexicon? Does it have anything to do with “Materialism,” (another creationist bugaboo)?

IINM, the opposite of FL’s “naturalism” is “magical thinking.”

But how do you define “Naturalism”? What is “Naturalism” in your lexicon? Does it have anything to do with “Materialism,” (another creationist bugaboo)?

In my experience, whenever a creationist whinges about “Naturalism” or “Materialism” it turns out to be a code word for “does not take my personal religious beliefs as axiomatic”.

I understand FL’s defense of Behe.

Astrology was an “historical document”…

The questioning reveals that the difference between modern definitions of science and Behe’s re-definition of science means that more things would be considered science under Behe’s re-definition. “Intelligent design” is one of those.

This is not, in fact, correct. Behe said that astrology is a scientific theory. He was asked when it was considered a correct or valid scientific theory, and he said that was in the middle ages. It’s fun to tweak Behe by claiming that he said that astrology is science, but he never did that. It’s a bad strategy, because Behe’s position isn’t absurd with regard to astrology, which could be a valid empirical theory in some possible world, but the same isn’t true of intelligent design, which is unfalsifiable and is based on fallacies of argumentum ad ignorantiam and false dichotomy.

Under the definition of science proposed by Idiotic Design, such things as Astrology, Phrenology, Humors and other discredited crank/bronze-age theories could NOT BE DISCREDITED as non-scientific.

This line of argument by “our side” is quite intellectually dishonest. Behe does consider astrology to be discredited, just as ether and phlogiston are discredited. But he considers them all to be empirical (“scientific”) theories – erroneous theories. And I agree with him. But intelligent design isn’t like ether or phlogiston or astrology; it makes no predictions and explains nothing, regardless of what empirical observations are made, and that makes it unscientific, unlike astrology which could, conceivably, offer a confirmable relationship between celestial arrangements and human personalities, although it doesn’t happen to.

The epicycles were not a “desparate attempt to make a totally unsupported theory fit the evidence”, they were an attempt to adjust what was actually at the time a relatively well-supported theory. It wasn’t until Kepler and Galileo that new evidence was discovered that showed that the Geocentric universe really was not correct.

Indeed. It’s unfortunate that so many scientists have so little understanding of the history of science. Or the philosophy of science: to the degree that epicycles did make the theory fit the evidence, the theory was supported.

The epicycles of the Ptolemaic system were a desparate attempt to make a totally unsupported theory fit the evidence and they were ASSUMED to exist, even though there was no real evidence that the epicycles themselves even existed at all! In modern science, such a tactic would be laughed to scorn.

The same could be said of dark matter, among other things, and at one time of atoms. You have repeatedly shown that you have little understanding of science, and certainly are in no position to make claims as to what modern science scorns.

P.S.

It’s more than a little bizarre to say “there was no real evidence that the epicycles themselves even existed at all” … it suggests that you have no idea what epicycles are. The paths of planets relative to the sun can be mathematically modeled as ellipses, but there are no “ellipses themselves” that “exist”. Likewise, the paths of the planets and the sun relative to the Earth can be mathematically modelled in terms of deferents and epicycles.

Has anyone been keeping track of the evolution of this thread? Copernicus gave an explanation that was simpler and gave earth no special status. It was not more accurate. Not until the phases of Venus were seen was the old system proved wrong.

By the way, I feel like a kid in a candy store reading this discussion. Bravo!

I thought the reason why (Claudius) Ptolemy devised the Epicycle hypothesis was to explain why and how the planets underwent retrograde motion in a geocentric universe, and not out of desperation to make the geocentric model work. In fact, I remember being told that one of the main reasons why ancient and medieval astronomers were proponents of the geocentric model of the universe was that if the earth orbited the sun, and was not the center of the known universe, you would be able to observe motion parallax of the stars, and that the reason why they weren’t able to observe parallax was that they didn’t have instruments that could detect it.

Tycho Brahe scrapped the Ptolemaic model in favor of his own, which had everything in the universe, except for the moon and Earth, revolving around the Sun, which, in turn, revolved around the Earth…

However, upon Brahe’s mysteriously ignominious, bladder-related demise, his assistant, Johannes Kepler, scrapped that model, in turn, favoring the Copernican model of a heliocentric universe, as well as validating Galileo’s observations, as, the numbers added up better using a heliocentric model, rather than a geocentric model. My astronomy professor also told me that Kepler never made any observations of his own, as he was so terribly myopic so as to be unable to see across the room he was standing in.

[/two cents]

@ FL:

Hey, would you mind if we test your hypothesis there?

I think it is evident, but go ahead.

You will want to take time to read BOTH the court transcript and the two informational sources I gave, Torbjorn.

No, I do not. The question was if “if [Behe] believed astrology was science”. And lo and behold, the court transcript says:

But you are clear, under your definition, the definition that sweeps in intelligent design, astrology is also a scientific theory, correct?

A Yes, that’s correct.

It can’t be simpler than that.

Notice that Rothschild’s sarcastic one-liner answer totally DUCKS the point Behe was making.

No, it clearly establish the time frame Behe should consider, for use today as Wesley says. I recommend his comment (# 137228) here.

iam Akshay verma, my date of birth is 7 th november 1987, and currently working for a forex trading company but i want to be a singer,will it suits me or is it ok for my career.

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This page contains a single entry by Wesley R. Elsberry published on December 4, 2007 9:32 PM.

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