These Weeks in Intelligent Design - 09/08/11

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Intelligent design news and discussion for July 1st to August 9th, 2011.

Did the ID movement miss me whilst I was gone? Maybe, maybe not. I don’t pretend to believe I’m important enough to be noticed, so I’ll leave that there. But then again, I don’t blog to necessarily be noticed and to directly engage with the ID crowd: I blog in order to disseminate correct information and to share a passion for science and demonstrable truth (as tacky as that phrase is - I apologise).

So, yes, this is a TWiID that encompasses a little over a month of pro-ID blog posts. As usual, only the most interesting ones will be touched upon: who has the time/sadomasochistic inclination to fully subject themselves to over 30 posts from the Discovery Institute? Not I, not I.

36 Comments

Stephen starts off talking about criticism of evolutionary theory in peer-reviewed journals, claiming that the majority of criticism is subtle and under-the-radar, so as to not attract the attention of the ravenous defenders of Darwinism who regularly destroy the careers of honest, hard-working, evolution-doubting biologists.

The black helicopters are there. Very hard to pick out, because they’re stealthy. But they’re there, just like the Designer is. Notably, the Designer also is stealthy. It takes a certain kind of mind (oddly akin to a mind with religious faith) to see said Designer, but it’s there.

That’s just it, if you have the properly “skeptical” mind, and one that recognizes certain “truths” (like, a designer is really essential, and all who say otherwise are in denial), there’s always ample scope to recognizing the ninja Designer and the black ops helicopters, as well as the quailing of the not-so-brave dissenters at the persecutions.

It’s the wary hominin watching out for danger to itself and its group. Especially important is the group, which in fact is threatened by scientific practice, and always has been, because science doesn’t support the group’s beliefs. Ergo, the group lashes out at the threat in good Darwinian fashion, fighting for survival.

Live by the evidence–as it is understood in courts and in science–and die by the evidence is the threat that they face. And in their world, that such standards would be pressed upon them (and thus they’d be fired for confirmation bias instead of real science) happens to be evidence of the stealth persecution of their group.

Glen Davidson

The black helicopters are there. Very hard to pick out, because they’re stealthy. But they’re there, just like the Designer is.

When I am an Evil Overlord, I will not paint my helicopters black so they look sinister and suspicious. I will paint them like civilian medical helicopters so nobody will notice.

Or order ALL helicopters to be black.

Hey, maybe that’s why we never see those black helicopters! They’re all disguised as Life Flights, news choppers, etc. And OMG, there are THOUSANDS of them! And now the CIA and International Zionists are coming for me, since I blew their cover!

Crazy paranoia can be fun! Just ask Michelle Bachmann.

Just Bob said:

Or order ALL helicopters to be black.

Henry Sikorsky Ford: “You can buy our helicopters in any color you like, as long as it’s black.”

Just Bob said: And OMG, there are THOUSANDS of them! And now the CIA and International Zionists are coming for me, since I blew their cover!

PS: Not a concept that has escaped conspiracy theorists. I just ran across videos of “UFOs disguised as jetliners”.

“So how you do you know they’re not jetliners?”

“No passenger windows!”

“That’s a video of a 747. It’s the world’s most popular large air freighter.”

…and the obvious one to mimic if you were a UFO!

(I’m going to call this “michelleing”.)

Just Bob said:

…and the obvious one to mimic if you were a UFO!

File under “Lee Harvey Oswald doubles”.

Just Bob said:

…and the obvious one to mimic if you were a UFO!

PS: And what kind of alien holographic camouflage device can’t do windows, anyway?

mrg said:

Just Bob said:

…and the obvious one to mimic if you were a UFO!

PS: And what kind of alien holographic camouflage device can’t do windows, anyway?

There might be a high probability that it will crash and be exposed by turning blue before it had a chance to reboot.

Mike Elzinga said: There might be a high probability that it will crash and be exposed by turning blue before it had a chance to reboot.

Well, at least that removes MSoft as an element of an alien conspiracy. Which leaves Apple in the running. How do they get people to buy their gadgets at such premium prices? Sounds like mind control at work to me.

Ain’t michellein’ fun?

PS: And what kind of alien holographic camouflage device can’t do windows, anyway?

One that prefers Macs?

Mike Elzinga said:

mrg said:

Just Bob said:

…and the obvious one to mimic if you were a UFO!

PS: And what kind of alien holographic camouflage device can’t do windows, anyway?

There might be a high probability that it will crash and be exposed by turning blue before it had a chance to reboot.

It is obviously of alien design. Just take the intelligent design scam example. The ID perps did not put the science in the scam. It was designed that way.

There is another ho-hum challenge to scientists being posted yet again over on Unbelievable Dense.

Man, this gets boring!

David Abel - pretending to be the latest incarnation of David Hilbert – makes this assertion:

The Law of Physicodynamic Insufficiency states that physicochemical interactions are inadequate to explain the mathematical and formal nature of physical law relationships.

Ooooo; look at that big, scary name! And note; “mathematical and formal nature of physical law.”

Here is the “challenge:”

“If decision-node programming selections are made randomly or by law rather than with purposeful intent, no non-trivial (sophisticated) function will spontaneously arise.

So there, scientists; prove me wrong! But I get to decide what is “non-trivial (sophisticated), what is “law,” and what is “purposeful intent;” and I get to conflate them at will.

So a simple system being heated from the bottom, which then develops regular hexagonal arrays of convective cells that serve the “purpose” of transferring energy more effectively within the system; things such as these don’t count. Why? Because, by definition, they are not “purposeful” or they are “trivial.”

So a superconducting fluid that crawls up the sides of its container and over the edge is not behaving in a “purposeful” manner.

So the migration of atoms and molecules marching in coordinated patterns along electrical or thermal gradients don’t count for the same reasons.

So the formation of complex structures on top of other complex structures which take on organized, coordinated activities in a bath of energy and temperature gradients don’t count either.

Just where along the chain of increasing complexity does “purposeful intent” and “non-trivial (sophisticated) function” occur? Can David Abel tell us?

What is the purpose of this challenge if Abel doesn’t even know what constitutes a “falsification?” He gets to decide just by claiming nothing falsifies his claim; all he has to do is make up the rules as he goes.

So he has set up a challenge that is not only a straw-man about how matter and energy behave, he has also made it unfalsifiable by definition.

And what does the “challenge” allow him to further assert? “If you can’t prove me, Abel, wrong, then evolution is wrong.”

Just Bob said: Ain’t michellein’ fun?

I didn’t realize that Bachmann was a conspiracy theorist. On poking around – she’s not much of one. A REAL conspiracy theorist would have claimed compact fluorescent bulbs were mind-control devices.

mrg said:

Just Bob said: Ain’t michellein’ fun?

I didn’t realize that Bachmann was a conspiracy theorist. On poking around – she’s not much of one. A REAL conspiracy theorist would have claimed compact fluorescent bulbs were mind-control devices.

Take a look at this New Yorker article.

The last paragraph is great.

Mike Elzinga said:

Man, this gets boring!

Ah, there’s your difficulty – you’re still paying attention.

The Law of Physicodynamic Insufficiency…

Who is this guy? R. Buckminster Abel?

“I’d kick my own mother in the cojones if she laid a rap on me like that!” (Vaughn Bode)

The last paragraph is great.

That sounds so made up that if it wasn’t about Bachmann, I would refuse to believe it. “Ready! AIM! Fire!”

PS: I’ll have to read that article. I’d trust THE NEW YORKER as being more trustworthy a source on Bachmann than the article from MOTHER JONES.

I didn’t notice the cartoon on the first page initially. Oh, it’s been a long time since I ran across the sly-dry humor of THE NEW YORKER. From the people who brought you Charles Addams.

Mike Elzinga said:

“If decision-node programming selections are made randomly or by law rather than with purposeful intent, no non-trivial (sophisticated) function will spontaneously arise.

So there, scientists; prove me wrong! But I get to decide what is “non-trivial (sophisticated), what is “law,” and what is “purposeful intent;” and I get to conflate them at will.

A spider web has undeniable non-trivial function, and since humans supposedly are the only source of “purposeful intent”, those webs must arise spontaneously.

What do I win?

Science Avenger said:

A spider web has undeniable non-trivial function, and since humans supposedly are the only source of “purposeful intent”, those webs must arise spontaneously.

What do I win?

Yeah; neat idea.

Work our way down the ladder of complexity and find the exact point where “purposeful intent” and “non-trivial (sophisticated) function” stop appearing.

How about the behaviors of individual ants or bees? Slime molds? Mushrooms? Amoebas? E-coli? Viruses? Prions? DNA? RNA? Proteins? Organic compounds? Benzene? Ammonia? Salt? Aluminum? Hydrogen? Neutrons? Protons?

Are we allowed to have an energy window within a narrow temperature range? Can energy and matter flow through the system? What are the restrictions on the composition and the environment of our “primordial soup?”

Apparently somewhere along the chain the laws of physics and chemistry must be superseded by “information” and “intelligence” in order to get atoms and molecules to “do things.”

The rules of the game appear to be “decision-node programming selection;” i.e., “pick ‘em up from a random pile and drop ‘em in place.” Does anybody believe that nature behaves that way? (Oops, ID/creationists do!)

mrg said:

Just Bob said: Ain’t michellein’ fun?

I didn’t realize that Bachmann was a conspiracy theorist. On poking around – she’s not much of one. A REAL conspiracy theorist would have claimed compact fluorescent bulbs were mind-control devices.

To push the birther BS, which she did, and to seek to investigate the “unAmerican” views of congresspeople (ones who disagree with her), I would submit as conspiracy theorism:

There must have been a conspiracy to get a Kenyan into the White House, and to keep it concealed. And all those unAmerican congresspeople are surely conspiring against us True Americans. Oh, and a liberal conspiracy to make us believe in global warming, and that CO2 is harmful. And one to cover up the True Facts of American history.

Sounds like fearing lots of conspiracies to me. How does she stand on fluoridation of our drinking water and her precious bodily fluids?

Just Bob said:

To push the birther BS, which she did, and to seek to investigate the “unAmerican” views of congresspeople (ones who disagree with her), I would submit as conspiracy theorism …

I didn’t say she wasn’t. She’s just not in the same league with Alex Jones and David Icke.

I have long suspected that Pandas are generally naive about conspiracy theorists. Bachmann is merely a boring nut. A REAL conspiracy theorist is spectacularly insane in the style of a 4th of July fireworks display on recreational drugs.

We don’t disagree. I suspect that the depths of her conspiracy nuttery haven’t been fully revealed yet. A few slip by her handlers now and then, like the CO2 business, which surely made them cringe (or are they that stupid?). I’d take odds on some real howler slipping out in some interview or town hall or debate if she sticks with her campaign. Her handlers can’t possibly faux pas-proof her against every ignorant nuttism, especially if religion is involved.

Just Bob said: We don’t disagree. I suspect that the depths of her conspiracy nuttery haven’t been fully revealed yet.

I still don’t believe she has the imagination to be a REAL conspiracy theorist. Imagine people who write wild cheesy sci-fi novels and then honestly believe them. I call it “pseudoscience pseudofiction”.

If she was a REAL conspiracy theorist, she’d be less troublesome. The only people who would take her seriously would be people who were at least as nuts as she was. That’s true now, of course, but she’s in a bigger pool.

“Later on, we’ll conspire, as we sit by the fire…”

Mike Elzinga -

The Law of Physicodynamic Insufficiency states that physicochemical interactions are inadequate to explain the mathematical and formal nature of physical law relationships, etc

This kind of stuff worries me.

It’s pure word salad. It not only has no actual meaning, it’s written to allow any attempt at understanding it to be disputed.

But it’s not done as a joke, nor as a clever game. The writer knows that his audience is looking for any excuse to deny reality.

It’s a rejection of empiricism, rational thought, honesty, and arguably, of human language.

The message is “I will blabber anything, and people will pretend to agree with my meaningless nonsense, because we are pre-committed to a certain negative, embittered, resentful fantasy, and no language or logic can change our minds.”

It’s the equivalent of driving a car off a cliff while denying that a cliff is there, denying being in a car, and denying anything else that seems inconvenient, all the way down to the bottom.

This extreme degree of pure denial of reality seems to be increasing.

harold said:

This kind of stuff worries me.

It’s pure word salad. It not only has no actual meaning, it’s written to allow any attempt at understanding it to be disputed.

But it’s not done as a joke, nor as a clever game. The writer knows that his audience is looking for any excuse to deny reality.

It’s a rejection of empiricism, rational thought, honesty, and arguably, of human language.

The message is “I will blabber anything, and people will pretend to agree with my meaningless nonsense, because we are pre-committed to a certain negative, embittered, resentful fantasy, and no language or logic can change our minds.”

It’s the equivalent of driving a car off a cliff while denying that a cliff is there, denying being in a car, and denying anything else that seems inconvenient, all the way down to the bottom.

This extreme degree of pure denial of reality seems to be increasing.

The worrisome part is the fact that there are well-funded sectarian groups attempting to deliberately and maliciously misinform the public; and there are enough people in the public who see nothing wrong with it.

As I have mentioned on other occasions, the only “good” I find in screeds like Abel’s (and the rest of the ID/creationist gangsters) is that they can be used as an indicator of misconceptions that students may bring with them into the classroom.

The students may have picked these up directly from ID/creationist literature or indirectly from the memes floating around in society.

It also gives some rather deep insight into the shallow minds of the ID/creationist perpetrators. Because ID/creationists attack biology more openly and use examples from biology in their major arguments, the fact that their misconceptions are rooted more deeply and more fundamentally in chemistry and physics often goes unnoticed and unanswered.

The writings of Abel, Dembski, Wells, Nelson, Behe, and the rest all contain the genetic defect they inherited from Henry Morris and Duane Gish. Not one of them has any idea of how the universe works; they never look. What they think they know is completely wrong; and it is the spreading of that meme that is of concern.

Just Bob said:

We don’t disagree. I suspect that the depths of her conspiracy nuttery haven’t been fully revealed yet. A few slip by her handlers now and then, like the CO2 business, which surely made them cringe (or are they that stupid?).

Ed Rollins is anything but. You’ll notice she’s become a lot more polished and smooth since he came to the helm of her team. We underestimate what he can do for her at our own peril.

Science Avenger said:

You’ll notice she’s become a lot more polished and smooth since he came to the helm of her team.

That NEW YORKER article said she was a Confederate apologist, or at least sympathetic to a well-known Confederate apologist who claims that the godless North attacked the Christian South, where slaves were benevolently treated by their conscientious masters.

If you get into the bizarre thing that was slavery, it is true that there were conscientious masters – leading to the interesting scenario of watching such folk try to wrestle their consciences around a system based on kidnapping people into involuntary servitude, and keeping them there by threat of force.

Science Avenger said:

Just Bob said:

We don’t disagree. I suspect that the depths of her conspiracy nuttery haven’t been fully revealed yet. A few slip by her handlers now and then, like the CO2 business, which surely made them cringe (or are they that stupid?).

Ed Rollins is anything but. You’ll notice she’s become a lot more polished and smooth since he came to the helm of her team. We underestimate what he can do for her at our own peril.

Ed Rollins knows how to put lipstick on a pig.

Just Bob said: To push the birther BS, which she did, and to seek to investigate the “unAmerican” views of congresspeople (ones who disagree with her), I would submit as conspiracy theorism:

There must have been a conspiracy to get a Kenyan into the White House, and to keep it concealed. And all those unAmerican congresspeople are surely conspiring against us True Americans. Oh, and a liberal conspiracy to make us believe in global warming, and that CO2 is harmful. And one to cover up the True Facts of American history.

Sounds like fearing lots of conspiracies to me. How does she stand on fluoridation of our drinking water and her precious bodily fluids?

I’m not a fan of Michelle’s and, as a Republican, find her utterly pathetic. But before you dismiss the “birther” issue completely, it took someone like Donald Trump to get Obama and his advisors to act, when, at the onset, they should have released an official birth certificate from the State of Hawaii just to shut up Bachmann and others. To this day we have not yet seen a full medical report on him and apparently nor has he fully disclosed his academic record, unlike his immediate predecessors in the Oval Office. That speaks of either arrogance (which is what I would like to think) or that he has something to hide.

…or that you’re a birther!

Aha, the puzzle comes together.

Just Bob said:

…or that you’re a birther!

Aha, the puzzle comes together.

Only in your wildest delusional dreams, Just Bob. But I do have a confession to make. I am actually a surgically altered Klingon pretending to be human. Heh heh!!!!

Uh huh (makes notes).

Now just lie back on the couch, close your eyes, and think back to the first Christmas you can remember. Did you get what you wanted?

To this day we have not yet seen a full medical report on him and apparently nor has he fully disclosed his academic record…

If anyone needed solid evidence of how political partisanship can warp an otherwise scientific, reasonable mind, there it is. A warning to us all.

Back to the topic, I really want to hear an ID defender explain to me why a spider web doesn’t qualify as an example of ID, but a fishing net would. After all, surely if one came across a fishing net in Paley’s wood, one would draw the same conclusions as one would about a watch. It seems to me that they either have to attribute “intelligence” to spiders, or claim everything has intelligence (a la Steve P), or expolain how somehow a fishing net could come about totally at random.

Ditto for termite mounds and beehives. Designers all.

And nautilus shells.

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This page contains a single entry by Jack Scanlan published on August 10, 2011 12:22 AM.

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