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Is Evolution Science?


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#1 Springer

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Posted 19 November 2005 - 06:41 PM

There have been numerous posts challenging the position of ID as a science. The point has repeatedly been made that a hypothesis must be testable and falsifiable to be classified as science.
The hypothesis of evolution states that life evolved purely by naturalistic means, without intelligent design. Thus, the hypothesis states that intelligent design is not operative in nature.
If ToE is falsifiable, as evolutionists claim it is, then ID has no problem as science. The ID hypothesis is simply: Evolution is false. By so proving, I have disproven their claim that ID is nonexistent. In other words, I've proven that ID exists.
If ToE is not falsifiable, i.e., if their denial of ID is not falsifiable, then it is, according to evolutionists, not admitted as science.
ToE also fails as a scientific theory because it is not testable. All of the evidence offered in defense of ToE is based on philosophy and extrapolations, not on direct testing.

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Posted 20 November 2005 - 04:07 AM

Not to poke fun at this. But that post gave me a headache :o .

I think you need to break it down into sections to make it more understandable. Not having breaks (paragraphs) can make it all run together in a person's mind. Therefore make it as confusing as well.

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Posted 20 November 2005 - 07:23 AM

There have been numerous posts challenging the position of ID as a science.  The point has repeatedly been made that a hypothesis must be testable and falsifiable to be classified as science. 
The hypothesis of evolution states that life evolved purely by naturalistic means, without intelligent design.  Thus, the hypothesis states that intelligent design is not operative in nature.

I think it would be better to allow evolution adherents to state their case. The ToE says absolutely nothing about ID at all, although you can infer from the ToE that ID is unnecessary. The ToE really makes just a few real claims:

1. All life is descended from a common ancestor or a small common gene pool (Common Descent).
2. That genetic change occurs (Mutation).
3. That a mechanism exists which filters organisms causing some to die out and some to live (Natural Selection).

If ToE is falsifiable, as evolutionists claim it is, then ID has no problem as science.  The ID hypothesis is simply: Evolution is false.  By so proving, I have disproven their claim that ID is nonexistent.  In other words, I've proven that ID exists.

If the ID hypothesis is simply that the ToE is false then the entire concept of ID is irrelevant. It is sufficient to show that the ToE is false without having to come up with a name for it. Of course the real goal is to sneak all sorts of hidden ID claims along with that one claim (ToE is false therefore God exists and created the universe and man and everything else). I'm afraid those claims require positive evidence of their own to be accepted as science. If you wish to exclude all of those things from your definition of ID you're welcome to it, but Pat Robertson and lots of other people will probably get angry.

If ToE is not falsifiable, i.e., if their denial of ID is not falsifiable, then it is, according to evolutionists, not admitted as science.

Strawman. The ToE does not claim that ID is false although you can infer that the ToE makes ID unnecessary. You need to overcome the actual claims of the ToE. Evolutionists have to prove the ToE is true (an ongoing task) and ID proponnents have to show ID is true in exactly the same manner.

ToE also fails as a scientific theory because it is not testable.  All of the evidence offered in defense of ToE is based on philosophy and extrapolations, not on direct testing.

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When someone makes a prediction based on the ToE such as what sorts of fossils you can expect to find in particular strata they are testing the theory. The ToE tells us that if it is correct then certain things must be true and if we observe facts that are inconsistant with it we must either reject the ToE or alter it to account for the facts. I'm sure that all the biologists and paleontologists and so on are going to welcome their movement into the philosophy department once you've proven your case.

#4 Springer

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 08:25 AM

wepwawet,Nov 20 2005, 07:23 AM

If the ID hypothesis is simply that the ToE is false then the entire concept of ID is irrelevant.


Evolutionists are trying to exclude ID from consideration under the pretext that it is not "science". They want a forum with only one theory under discussion. Then when evidence is put forth to debunk ToE, evolutionists say ID has to stand on its own. However, they won't allow positiive evidence because it's not "science". This is merely a self-serving ploy to keep ID out of the arena.

It is sufficient to show that the ToE is false without having to come up with a name for it. Of course the real goal is to sneak all sorts of hidden ID claims along with that one claim (ToE is false therefore God exists and created the universe and man and everything else). I'm afraid those claims require positive evidence of their own to be accepted as science.

There is, of course, abundant positive evidence. However, evolutionists categorically exclude it because they think ID is not "science". Therefore, ToE is true by default, since it is the only "scientific" theory out there.


Strawman. The ToE does not claim that ID is false although you can infer that the ToE makes ID unnecessary. You need to overcome the actual claims of the ToE. Evolutionists have to prove the ToE is true (an ongoing task) and ID proponnents have to show ID is true in exactly the same manner.


As you stated, the inference of lack of ID is always there. By proving that ToE is false, one has invalidated the theory that ID is unnessary. Therefore, you've demonstrated that ID is necessary. You're saying that I can't take the default position. If that is the case, then ToE's contention that ID is unnessary is not falsifiable. You can't have it both ways. You can't say ID is not science because it's not falsificable, while at the same time call evolution a science
when it is attempting to prove ID is not necessary.

When someone makes a prediction based on the ToE such as what sorts of fossils you can expect to find in particular strata they are testing the theory. The ToE tells us that if it is correct then certain things must be true and if we observe facts that are inconsistant with it we must either reject the ToE or alter it to account for the facts.


ToE cannot stand on its own. You speak of the geologic strata as if it's some sort of "gold standard". You cannot validate a theory by relying on assumptions. Selectively filtering data to lend credibility to a theory is not science.

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 06:45 PM

If ToE is falsifiable, as evolutionists claim it is, then ID has no problem as science. The ID hypothesis is simply: Evolution is false. By so proving, I have disproven their claim that ID is nonexistent. In other words, I've proven that ID exists. If ToE is not falsifiable, i.e., if their denial of ID is not falsifiable, then it is, according to evolutionists, not admitted as science.


A scientific theory can not be devoted to disproving another theory. It has to, by the very definition of a theory, explain an observation in the enviroment. "Evolution is wrong" is not by any means an observation of our enviroment in a scientific sense. So either ID is considered a "theory", but is not falsifiable, and is thus not a scientific theory. Or, ID isn't a theory because it fails to make an observation in the first place. Take your pick.

Evolutionists are trying to exclude ID from consideration under the pretext that it is not "science". They want a forum with only one theory under discussion. Then when evidence is put forth to debunk ToE, evolutionists say ID has to stand on its own. However, they won't allow positiive evidence because it's not "science". This is merely a self-serving ploy to keep ID out of the arena.


What evidence? ID is being exluded from science because of the lack of evidence. Not only that, but it fails at the scientific method (as shown above) and isn't valid science in the first place.

There is, of course, abundant positive evidence. However, evolutionists categorically exclude it because they think ID is not "science". Therefore, ToE is true by default, since it is the only "scientific" theory out there.


ID is being exluded from science because it's simply not scientific. What crutch can ID stand on these days? Specified complexity? Refuted. Irreducible complexity? Refuted, over and over. These were the two pillars of ID pseudoscience, and they have been toppled soundly. There is no evidence, only speculation, and speculation should be left to philosophy - not science.

As you stated, the inference of lack of ID is always there. By proving that ToE is false, one has invalidated the theory that ID is unnessary. Therefore, you've demonstrated that ID is necessary. You're saying that I can't take the default position. If that is the case, then ToE's contention that ID is unnessary is not falsifiable. You can't have it both ways. You can't say ID is not science because it's not falsificable, while at the same time call evolution a science
when it is attempting to prove ID is not necessary.


ToE doesn't attempt to prove that there isn't a creator. It attempts to prove that species have descended from a common ancestor. Your argument here is a flimsy strawman at best.

ID cannot stand on its own. You speak of the meager evidence as if it's some sort of "gold standard". You cannot validate a theory by relying on assumptions. Selectively filtering data to lend credibility to a theory is not science.


I was going to delve deeper into the flaws of ID "science", but it seems you've taken care of that for me. Thanks! I'll just replace "ToE" with "ID" and "geologic strata" with "meager evidence", then we'll have the truth!

(Psst, if the work of millions of scientists over a hundreds years is "selectively filtering" data, then I think you're a bit... mistaken?)

#6 Springer

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 07:47 PM

quote=Alois,Nov 21 2005, 06:45 PM

A scientific theory can not be devoted to disproving another theory. It has to, by the very definition of a theory, explain an observation in the enviroment. "Evolution is wrong" is not by any means an observation of our enviroment in a scientific sense. So either ID is considered a "theory", but is not falsifiable, and is thus not a scientific theory. Or, ID isn't a theory because it fails to make an observation in the first place. Take your pick.


We’ve already debated at length whether or not ID is science. Now ToE is on the hot seat. Evolutionists claim that ID is not science because it’s not falsifiable. My contention is that ToE is not falsifiable because it claims that ID is non-existent… and that is non-falsifiable. ToE is based on an ideological assumption… that there is no intelligent design.

What evidence? ID is being exluded from science because of the lack of evidence. Not only that, but it fails at the scientific method (as shown above) and isn't valid science in the first place.


You have not analyzed any evidence because you have not admitted it into scientific discussion. Everything in nature loudly proclaims ID. The fact that you cannot see it is only a reflection of your atheistic ideology. Any scientific theory that excludes the only competing theory on the pretext that it’s “unscientific” is worthless.


ID is being exluded from science because it's simply not scientific. What crutch can ID stand on these days? Specified complexity? Refuted. Irreducible complexity? Refuted, over and over. These were the two pillars of ID pseudoscience, and they have been toppled soundly.


I have yet to hear a single explanation of irreducible complexity that stands up to any scientific scrutiny. Simply offering a canned rebuttal does not dismiss the problem. Your contention that these pillars have been “toppled soundly” is laughable. I have challenged evolutionists multiple times on this forum and never have been given a reasonable response, so I’ll give them to you:
1. explain to me how a flight feather could have evolved from a scale by natural selection…
2. explain how laws of probability would have permitted identically designed pentadactyl forelimbs and hindlimbs in terrestrial vertebrates to have evolved through independent means, i.e., from pectoral and pelvic fins of a fish. ( The problem of homologous structures coming into existence by nonhomologous chromosomes presents a fatal roadblock to ToE.)

There is no evidence, only speculation, and speculation should be left to philosophy - not science.


Are you kidding? What kind of evidence is there for goo-to-you evolution? Has anyone ever demonstrated that macroevolution is biologically possible? The entire ToE is built only on assumptions, speculation, and materialistic ideology… not on one iota of science.


ToE doesn't attempt to prove that there isn't a creator. It attempts to prove that species have descended from a common ancestor. Your argument here is a flimsy strawman at best.


ToE assumes there is no creator. In attempting to prove ToE, you are attempting to prove that a creator was not necessary. However, the entire ToE is built on the assumption of atheism.

(Psst, if the work of millions of scientists over a hundreds years is "selectively filtering" data, then I think you're a bit... mistaken?)


So, your argument is, “millions of scientists couldn’t be wrong”… and you accuse me of “flimsy evidence?”

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 08:38 PM

We’ve already debated at length whether or not ID is science. Now ToE is on the hot seat. Evolutionists claim that ID is not science because it’s not falsifiable. My contention is that ToE is not falsifiable because it claims that ID is non-existent… and that is non-falsifiable. ToE is based on an ideological assumption… that there is no intelligent design.


Wrong. ToE doesn't claim that there can't be an intelligent creator, it simply states that creatures evolved from a common anscestor. In fact, the door is left ajar in ToE for a designer to create life. Of course, as an atheist I don't believe a creator had a hand. You probably do. That's not what we're discussing though.

You have not analyzed any evidence because you have not admitted it into scientific discussion. Everything in nature loudly proclaims ID. The fact that you cannot see it is only a reflection of your atheistic ideology. Any scientific theory that excludes the only competing theory on the pretext that it’s “unscientific” is worthless.


Opinions aren't permissible in a debate. Everything may scream ID to you, but I see it differently. If you can provide facts to support you opinion I'll take it seriously, if you cannot, I'll ignore it. You've started the topic, therefore it's up to you to put forth your evidence. I'm waiting.

The laws of science make ID unscientific. I clearly stated that, and you're clearly avoiding the argument I've put forth.

I have yet to hear a single explanation of irreducible complexity that stands up to any scientific scrutiny. Simply offering a canned rebuttal does not dismiss the problem. Your contention that these pillars have been “toppled soundly” is laughable.


Refute the links then. I'm, once again, waiting. Show what you know, rather than simply saying "You're wrong."

I have challenged evolutionists multiple times on this forum and never have been given a reasonable response, so I’ll give them to you:


1.) Done.

2.) Ah, good old da Beer showing his head again. I'd suggest using updated evidence and claims, you know, stuff that's more recent than the 60s.

The refutation of you argument is fairly simple: With more advanced observation we have seen that similar genes can arise from seemingly different genes, and in fact they can be quite common. Probabilty doesn't factor much into evolution, mind you. Natural selection "picks" the best mutations and keeps them, while getting rid of the drift wood. If the enviroment was best suited for two similar sets of limbs, then the laws of natural selection dictate that the two limbs will be similar. Basic stuff here.

Are you kidding? What kind of evidence is there for goo-to-you evolution? Has anyone ever demonstrated that macroevolution is biologically possible? The entire ToE is built only on assumptions, speculation, and materialistic ideology… not on one iota of science.


You're stepping off the grounds of rational debate and approaching ranting. Whether or not you believe it, the ToE IS scientific, which is why 99% of the scientific world subscribes to its theories. Would you like me to provide a list of the evidence for evolution; a list of the science used to support it? Done.

Oh, and here's a list of evidence for macroevolution too. Go on, refute it. Stop dodging my counters and support your position please.

ToE assumes there is no creator. In attempting to prove ToE, you are attempting to prove that a creator was not necessary. However, the entire ToE is built on the assumption of atheism.


You're wrong, I'm sorry to say so, but you are. ToE states NOTHING about a designer. It states only that life originated from a common anscestor. Like I said earlier, it leaves the door open for an intelligent creator. It is not an atheistic viewpoint, and believe it or not, Darwin was a theist. You're only fooling yourself, and driving this discussion quickly into the ground.

So, your argument is, “millions of scientists couldn’t be wrong”… and you accuse me of “flimsy evidence?”


No, I'm saying that the repeated observations of millions of scientists over a hundred years aren't flimsy evidence as you said they were. They could be wrong. I believe they aren't, you obviously believe they are. But disagreement breeds discussion, so that's a good thing, right?

Oh, and I called your strawman flimsy, not your evidence. You haven't provided any of that yet.

#8 Springer

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 06:43 AM

quote=Alois,Nov 21 2005, 08:38 PM

Wrong. ToE doesn't claim that there can't be an intelligent creator, it simply states that creatures evolved from a common anscestor. In fact, the door is left ajar in ToE for a designer to create life. Of course, as an atheist I don't believe a creator had a hand. You probably do. That's not what we're discussing though.

Atheism is not explicitly stated but always implied.

Opinions aren't permissible in a debate. Everything may scream ID to you, but I see it differently. If you can provide facts to support you opinion I'll take it seriously, if you cannot, I'll ignore it. You've started the topic, therefore it's up to you to put forth your evidence. I'm waiting.

You don't see ID in nature: that is an opinion. Einstein saw it when he stated, "The more I study science, the more I believe in God".

The laws of science make ID unscientific. I clearly stated that, and you're clearly avoiding the argument I've put forth.

Whatever "laws" you're referring to are man-made and arbtrary.

Refute the links then. I'm, once again, waiting. Show what you know, rather than simply saying "You're wrong."
1.) Done.

The link you provided said nothing as to how the feather evolved... how natural selection would have created the aerodynamically marvelous flight feather. The need for insulation would not have created something as geometrically complex as a feather. Why would a central shaft be formed to support the peripheral appendages? Once again, evolutionists completely dodge the question with simplistic answers.


The refutation of you argument is fairly simple: With more advanced observation we have seen that similar genes can arise from seemingly different genes, and in fact they can be quite common. Probabilty doesn't factor much into evolution, mind you. Natural selection "picks" the best mutations and keeps them, while getting rid of the drift wood. If the enviroment was best suited for two similar sets of limbs, then the laws of natural selection dictate that the two limbs will be similar. Basic stuff here.

Your refutation is grossly simplistic and shallow. How is natural selection going to produce essentially identical structures? Why would there be a need, for example, for 8 carpals and 8 tarsals, for 2 phylanges on the first digit and three on the remaining 4; for 5 digits on each limb?

You're stepping off the grounds of rational debate and approaching ranting. Whether or not you believe it, the ToE IS scientific, which is why 99% of the scientific world subscribes to its theories.

Your making a statement unsupported by any fact.

Would you like me to provide a list of the evidence for evolution; a list of the science used to support it?

There is no scientific evidence that macroevolution has ever occured or is biologically possible. Everything is extrapolation based on assumptions. If you can show me some concrete evidence that you understand (rather than just throwing a link at me), please do so.

You're wrong, I'm sorry to say so, but you are. ToE states NOTHING about a designer. It states only that life originated from a common anscestor. Like I said earlier, it leaves the door open for an intelligent creator. It is not an atheistic viewpoint, and believe it or not, Darwin was a theist. You're only fooling yourself, and driving this discussion quickly into the ground.


There is always an assumption that ID is nonexistent/

No, I'm saying that the repeated observations of millions of scientists over a hundred years aren't flimsy evidence as you said they were.

You're ignoring innumerable observations that have repeatedly debunked the fundamental pillars of evolutionary thinking. However, you choose to filter the evidence and see only what you want to.
I've given you two challenges: the flight feather and the pentadactyl limb. THese are fatal flaws to evolutionary theory, and you have not provided me with any rational rebuttals to my questions.

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 10:43 AM

wepwawet,Nov 20 2005, 07:23 AM
Evolutionists are trying to exclude ID from consideration under the pretext that it is not "science".  They want a forum with only one theory under discussion.  Then when evidence is put forth to debunk ToE, evolutionists say ID has to stand on its own.  However, they won't allow positiive evidence because it's not "science".  This is merely a self-serving ploy to keep ID out of the arena.

Evidence to debunk the ToE can be presented and published without confusing the issue by presenting ID as an alternative. Science does not require an alternative theory to make a disproof valid. If you can disprove the ToE then do it. If you can prove ID then do it, but they are two entirely different things. This is similar to the parliamentary practice of dividing the question...so instead of letting you say "Evolution is wrong because ID is right" you need to just say why Evolution is wrong and then say why ID is right. Either or both positions may be wrong or right on the strength of their own merits.

There is, of course, abundant positive evidence.  However, evolutionists categorically exclude it because they think ID is not "science".  Therefore, ToE is true by default, since it is the only "scientific" theory out there.

The majority of supposedly positive evidence I have seen for ID is actually negative evidence for the ToE. Even discounting the quality of that evidence (which I find generally lacking) it does not count as a positive argument for ID. So yes, many arguments are dismissed without bothering to look at the evidence because the argument is poorly formed along the lines of "ID is true because this evidence shows the ToE is false". This is fundamentally flawed reason and fails on casual inspection. So where is all this positive scientific evidence for ID?

As you stated, the inference of lack of ID is always there.  By proving that ToE is false, one has  invalidated the theory that ID is unnessary.  Therefore, you've demonstrated that ID is necessary.  You're saying that I can't take the default position.  If that is the case, then ToE's contention that ID is unnessary is not falsifiable.  You can't have it both ways.  You can't say ID is not science because it's not falsificable,  while at the same time call evolution a science
when it is attempting to prove ID is not necessary.

You're setting up that strawman again. ID is unnecessary to the ToE...it's irrelevant and therefore not at all a component of the body of evidence supporting the ToE. So invalidating the ToE likewise says nothing whatsoever about ID. ID must stand or fall on it's own.

ToE cannot stand on its own.  You speak of the geologic strata as if it's some sort of "gold standard".  You cannot validate a theory by relying on assumptions.  Selectively filtering data to lend credibility to a theory is not science.

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Selectively filtering data? Do you mean ignoring things that are irrelevant to the field of study? I'm not sure what you're accusing scientists of doing, but it sounds out and out dishonest. Are you sure you don't want to start an Evolution Conspiracy Theory thread? Do you think all the evolutionary biologists owe allegiance to some leader who tells them which evidence to use and which to avoid so they don't fall into the trap of accidentally admitting that Genesis is right and foiling their plans to achieve global secular humanist domination?

Be careful there....if you're going to accuse evolution scientists of selectively filtering data I would remind you of the advice given to people in glass houses.

#10 Springer

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 11:54 AM

wepwawet,Nov 20 2005, 07:23 AM


Science does not require an alternative theory to make a disproof valid.


You are correct, although many evolutionists defend ToE by attempting to debunk ID.

Eiither or both positions may be wrong or right on the strength of their own merits.


The theory of evolution includes all possible naturalistic explanations of the origin of life. Either life originated by naturalistic means or by non-naturalistic means, ie, intelligent design. Both ToE and ID cannot be wrong. Therefore, proving ToE impossible does offer positive evidence for ID, contrary to what evolutionists think.

So where is all this positive scientific evidence for ID?


We have offered mountains of positive evidence for ID and you choose to ignore it. I’ll probably start another thread shortly and explain, but I don’t want to get sidetracked at this point.


ID is unnecessary to the ToE...it's irrelevant and therefore not at all a component of the body of evidence supporting the ToE. So invalidating the ToE likewise says nothing whatsoever about ID.


The purpose of this thread is to discuss whether or not ToE qualifies as science, according to evolutionists’ definition. There is no formal document stating what the ToE is. All one has to do is read the literature and the implication is crystal clear… There is always a presumption that ID is not operational in nature… That is a pillar of evolutionary theory. All one has to do is peruse the arguments in defense of abiogenesis to fathom the depth of that ideologic bias. A simple disclaimer that ToE is neutral in matters of religion is meaningless.

ID must stand or fall on it's own.


ID can and does stand on its own. The evolutionary mindset will not allow consideration of ID because its proponents always assume it doesn’t exist. This is not because of a lack of evidence. It is due to the ideologic perspective of evolution. The truthfulness of this observation is only too evident by such statements as, “there is no positive evidence of ID in nature.”

Selectively filtering data? Do you mean ignoring things that are irrelevant to the field of study? I'm not sure what you're accusing scientists of doing, but it sounds out and out dishonest. Are you sure you don't want to start an Evolution Conspiracy Theory thread? Do you think all the evolutionary biologists owe allegiance to some leader who tells them which evidence to use and which to avoid so they don't fall into the trap of accidentally admitting that Genesis is right and foiling their plans to achieve global secular humanist domination?


I’m not suggesting that all evolutionists are individually dishonest. They believe what they hear. Evolutionary biologists believe that the earth is 4.5 billion years old because geologists agree with them. Geologists are confident that their methods are accurate because they are told that ToE is a fact. Objective science is nonexistent because everyone assumes that ToE is true. Within the evolutionary paradigm, there are no other alternatives. They’ve rejected ID as a possibility because they think it’s “unscientific”.
A good example of the way evolutionists filter data is in the interpretation of the fossil record. In the case of archaeopteryx, for example, they see only the features that point to a transitional species, but ignore counter arguments that don’t support ToE. The fact that it had claws on its wings and a shallow furcula is not necessarily indicative of transitional status, as some modern birds have these features. More importantly,in the one feature that is most important in distinguishing a bird from a reptile, namely, the feather, archaeopteryx was in no way transitional but was 100% bird. Thus, it’s position as a transitional species has been grossly overstated because such an exaggeration will fit better into evolutionary theory. Furthermore, artists’ conceptions of archaeopteryx portray it as a somewhat ungainly creature with limited flying ability, when in fact there is no evidence that it wasn’t as capable of powered flight as a modern bird.
Similarly, the fossil record is not objectively evaluated for what it is. A few species with questionable transitional features are touted as proof of macroevolution, while at the same time the evolutionary community completely ignores the negative evidence of the fossil record, i.e., the lack of the necessary millions of transitional species expected if ToE actually occurred.

If you can disprove the ToE then do it. If you can prove ID then do it, but they are two entirely different things. This is similar to the parliamentary practice of dividing the question...so instead of letting you say "Evolution is wrong because ID is right" you need to just say why Evolution is wrong and then say why ID is right. Either or both positions may be wrong or right on the strength of their own merits.

As stated at the onset of this thread, it is impossible to invalidate ToE as long as it is implicit in the doctrine of ToE that ID doesn’t exist. There are no alternatives left. What you have is only one point of view. Thus, ToE must be excluded as science.

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 01:48 PM

wepwawet,Nov 20 2005, 07:23 AM
You are correct, although many evolutionists defend ToE by attempting to debunk ID.

Are you sure you haven't got your debunkers crossed there? It's my experience that most evolutionists pay little heed to ID unless they are somehow brought into this debate. ID proponents, on the other hand, seem to do little more than try to poke holes in the relatively poke-proof ToE.

The theory of evolution includes all possible naturalistic explanations of the origin of life.  Either life originated by naturalistic means or by non-naturalistic means, ie, intelligent design.  Both ToE and ID cannot be wrong.  Therefore, proving ToE impossible does offer positive evidence for ID, contrary to what evolutionists think.

I keep telling you about those strawmen. The ToE does not include all possible naturalistic explanations for the origin of life. As a matter of fact the ToE does not include a single naturalistic or super-naturalistic explanation for the origin of life. The ToE is entirely neutral on the subject. Your assertions to the contrary don't change that and your conclusions cannot follow from a false premise.

We have offered mountains of positive evidence for ID and you choose to ignore it.  I’ll probably start another thread shortly and explain, but I don’t want to get sidetracked at this point.

Evasion noted.

The purpose of this thread is to discuss whether or not ToE qualifies as science, according to evolutionists’ definition.  There is no formal document stating what the ToE is.  All one has to do is read the literature and the implication is crystal clear… There is always a presumption that ID is not operational in nature… That is a pillar of evolutionary theory. All one has to do is peruse the arguments in defense of abiogenesis to fathom the depth of that ideologic bias. A simple disclaimer that ToE is neutral in matters of religion is meaningless. 

I think you can find many documents that describe the ToE, but no, you will not find a standardized document that everyone agrees is the ToE. The laws of Thermodynamics are in the same boat and while some scientific theories enjoy more standardized wording (usually by benefit of being written by a single author or small group) it is the meaning of the words that is important and all should wind up meaning the same thing.

Likewise there are many different versions of the 10 commandments, but you can't get away from the fact that while they may use different words they all mean the same thing.

All science presumes that only natural causes are present because there is no way to observe and test the supernatural. This methodological naturalism is a foundation of science and so important that unless you have that assumption you are not doing science. So it's not the ToE, but all science everywhere that denies ID the right to bring a supernatural actor into the laboratory.

ID can and does stand on its own.  The evolutionary mindset will not allow consideration of ID because its proponents always assume it doesn’t exist.  This is not because of a lack of evidence.  It is due to the ideologic perspective of evolution.  The truthfulness of this observation is only too evident by such statements as, “there is no positive evidence of ID in nature.”

We come back to methodological naturalism which is, granted, an ideology but a necessary ideology to form an environment for exploring the natural world. Again, it's not evolution that has that mindset, but all science. Evolution is just unfortunately the field of science that most directly challenges religious beliefs, so it gets all the blame. You can't tear down the ToE on this point without taking all science with it.

I’m not suggesting that all evolutionists are individually dishonest.  They believe what they hear.  Evolutionary biologists believe that the earth is 4.5 billion years old because geologists agree with them.  Geologists are confident that their methods are accurate because they are told that ToE is a fact.  Objective science is nonexistent because everyone assumes that ToE is true.  Within the evolutionary paradigm, there are no other alternatives.  They’ve rejected ID as a possibility because they think it’s “unscientific”.

So science is based on what people tell you? I think you're mistaking religion for science. In science we do things called experiments...that's where you test theories before you believe them...every scientist can make up their own mind about what the evidence says. Proper science uses a rigorous method to allow others to do the same things and reach their own conclusions. If your methods are sloppy and people see different experimental results or your scientific colleagues think your conclusions are unreasonable then you will find your ideas rejected...like ID.

A good example of the way evolutionists filter data is in the interpretation of the fossil record.  In the case of archaeopteryx, for example, they see only the features that point to a transitional species, but ignore counter arguments that don’t support ToE.  The fact that it had claws on its wings and a shallow furcula is not necessarily indicative of transitional status, as some modern birds have these features.  More importantly,in the one feature that is most important in distinguishing a bird from a reptile, namely, the feather, archaeopteryx was in no way transitional but was 100% bird.  Thus, it’s position as a transitional species has been grossly overstated because such an exaggeration will fit better into evolutionary theory.  Furthermore, artists’ conceptions of archaeopteryx portray it as a somewhat ungainly creature with limited flying ability, when in fact there is no evidence that it wasn’t as capable of powered flight as a modern bird.

A fossil may be interpreted in many ways....I may interpret a particular fossil to mean that a hideously deformed wombat fell into wet cement, this is just my interpretation. The question is do you have widespread agreement among the scientific community or is it controversial. There is dispute on matters of detail about archeopterex, but there is general agreement about what it represents. Sure there are some dissenters who may be right, but until they can convince enough people scientifically they are just so many crackpots.

Similarly, the fossil record is not objectively evaluated for what it is.  A few species with questionable transitional features are touted as proof of macroevolution, while at the same time the evolutionary community completely ignores the negative evidence of the fossil record, i.e., the lack of the necessary millions of transitional species expected if ToE actually occurred.

The fossil record is what it is. If you think you have a better explanation then publish it and see what everybody else thinks. You cannot invalidate the fossil record for not being what you want it to be.

As stated at the onset of this thread, it is impossible to invalidate ToE as long as it is implicit in the doctrine of ToE that ID doesn’t exist.  There are no alternatives left.  What you have is only one point of view.  Thus, ToE must be excluded as science.

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And I'm now completely tired of that Strawman. The ToE says nothing about ID at all aside from the implication inherent in all science that ID is not necessary and is untestable in any case. The ToE does not deny ID, it ignores it because ID is not science. I understand how heart breaking it is to not get your pet idea into the club, but if you won't play by the same rules as the other members then why should they let you in?

There is an alternative here....do science. If ID really is science then you can do it the same way as everyone else...come up with a hypothesis and test it. Ultimately the question of this thread is already decided. The ToE is science so long as it is treated as science and proper procedures are followed. If ID plays by the same rules it can be science too despite the fact I think it would be bad science. At one point phlogiston was scientific and so was phrenology...they were bad science that fell by the wayside when better science came along. Someday the ToE may be proven to be bad science, but only by better science (at least that's what we hope...we may see the question answered by lawyers instead of scientists).

#12 Springer

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 04:08 PM

quote=wepwawet,Nov 22 2005, 01:48 PM


All science presumes that only natural causes are present because there is no way to observe and test the supernatural.


You've just stated the fundamental fallacy of evolutionary thinking. You've concluded that if you think you can't observe and test something that it doesn't exist.
Thus, you have concluded that life evolved through naturalistic means before you've ever tested it.

The ToE says nothing about ID at all ...


You just contradicted your statement above. You said that "All science presumes that only natural causes are present..." Thus, you presume ID to be non-existent.

This methodological naturalism is a foundation of science and so important that unless you have that assumption you are not doing science.


That's your opinion. There is no law engraved in stone that sets limits on what science can or can't observe and test.

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 08:00 AM

quote=wepwawet,Nov 22 2005, 01:48 PM
You've just stated the fundamental fallacy of evolutionary thinking.  You've concluded that if you think you can't observe and test something that it doesn't exist.

No. That is not the conclusion of evolutionary or scientific thinking. The conclusion is: We can't see it, we can't test it so let's concern ourselves with the things we can see and test. Nobody says it doesn't exist, but the fact is that it does not exist in nature and so cannot be subjected to the rigours of scientific investigation.

Thus, you have concluded that life evolved through naturalistic means before you've ever tested it. 

Science makes the assumption that we can only learn about natural processes using science. It's no use at all for detecting important things like divine truth and love. So yes, we discard all supernatural explanations that have no supporting evidence....oh and by the way, rhetoric is not evidence and that's all the ID crowd seem to be able to come up with.

You just contradicted your statement above.  You said that "All science presumes that only natural causes are present..."  Thus, you presume ID to be non-existent.

All science makes the presumption of natural causes for the phenomona studied. Your problem is that you want to call something scientific that clearly isn't. It's like wanting to call a piano a tuba...it makes no sense. So why do you pick on the ToE so much when the Atomic Theory and Germ Theory and every other principle of science also refuses to accept supernatural explanations. Can you name a single accepted theory in the entire body of science which relies upon a supernatural explanation for it's foundation?

That's your opinion.  There is no law engraved in stone that sets limits on what science can or can't observe and test.

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Fortunately it's not just my opinion. But what will happen, and is happening, is that science (meaning scientists as a group) will pretty much ignore ID advocates. As much as the ID people whine and cry and get celebrities and politicians and lawyers on their sides they'll find that all this has not the slightest impact on the real scientific community. You won't force ID down their throats even with another inquisition. You can't compete at their level and you know it so you try to spoon feed these myths to our children and tell them it's "the controversy" and an "alternative" when it isn't even science because it can't be seen or tested.

So if you can observe and test creation I suggest you get those creation scientists busy observing, testing and publishing. Scientists will not pay attention to anything else.

#14 Springer

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 08:21 AM

quote=wepwawet,Nov 23 2005, 08:00 AM

No. That is not the conclusion of evolutionary or scientific thinking. The conclusion is: We can't see it, we can't test it so let's concern ourselves with the things we can see and test. Nobody says it doesn't exist, but the fact is that it does not exist in nature and so cannot be subjected to the rigours of scientific investigation.


Do you care to retract your statement, "All science presumes that only natural causes are present because there is no way to observe and test the supernatural."
You stated that science categorically dismisses ID as a possibility.


Science makes the assumption that we can only learn about natural processes using science. It's no use at all for detecting important things like divine truth and love. So yes, we discard all supernatural explanations that have no supporting evidence...


You presume that ID cannot be observed or tested, which is false. The consequences of ID are myriad and they are observable. No one is attempting to prove the nature of God... only that intelligent design exists. Geologists look at rock formations and conclude whether something was formed by nature or by intelligent design... is that unscientific? As far as "testing", one can compare a model of ID with a model of evolution. So, your notion that ID is any less scientific than ToE is baseless.

So why do you pick on the ToE so much when the Atomic Theory and Germ Theory and every other principle of science also refuses to accept supernatural explanations.

Atomic theory and germ theory make no claim that ID does not exist... ToE does.
You keep saying that ToE is neutral... that is simply untrue, by your own admission.

Can you name a single accepted theory in the entire body of science which relies upon a supernatural explanation for it's foundation?

What is the relevancy of that argument?

Fortunately it's not just my opinion. But what will happen, and is happening, is that science (meaning scientists as a group) will pretty much ignore ID advocates. As much as the ID people whine and cry and get celebrities and politicians and lawyers on their sides they'll find that all this has not the slightest impact on the real scientific community. You won't force ID down their throats even with another inquisition. You can't compete at their level and you know it so you try to spoon feed these myths to our children and tell them it's "the controversy" and an "alternative" when it isn't even science because it can't be seen or tested.

Your ranting is unconvincing. You think you have this massive body of scientists behind you. That "mass" you refer to is rapidly eroding as well credentialed scientists are rethinking ToE in light of the facts of nature.
It is evolution that has been forced down the public's throats by politics, not ID.
Evolution cannot be defended by strict empiricism, so its proponents must resort to indoctrination, and that is what is happening in this country with the attempt of evolutionists to suppress evidence that contradicts their theory under the pretext that it's not "scientific".


So if you can observe and test creation I suggest you get those creation scientists busy observing, testing and publishing. Scientists will not pay attention to anything else.

I am a professional scientist and I, along with many of my peers, don't buy it.

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 09:58 AM

quote=wepwawet,Nov 23 2005, 08:00 AM
Do you care to retract your statement, "All science presumes that only natural causes are present because there is no way to observe and test the supernatural."

Nope I don't retract it at all...because it is true.

You stated that science categorically dismisses ID as a  possibility.

If you are going to try to put words in my mouth be so kind as to post direct quotes. Unless you can direct me to the post where I said "Science categorically dismisses ID as a possibility" then I seem to remember one of those ten commandment thingies which talked about false witness. It's time for you to clean up your act in this debate. If you want to act in such an underhanded and dishonest fashion I can do the exact same thing and I'm willing to bet I'm better at than you are.

You presume that ID cannot be observed or tested, which is false.  The consequences of ID are myriad and they are observable.  No one is attempting to prove the nature of God... only that intelligent design exists.  Geologists look at rock formations and conclude whether something was formed by nature or by intelligent design... is that unscientific?  As far as "testing", one can compare a model of ID with a model of evolution.  So, your notion that ID is any less scientific than ToE is baseless.

ID is not scientific because it posits a supernatural force which cannot be observed or tested. Apologists for ID have made all sorts of natural observations and have posited a supernatural cause but since they cannot show direct evidence or test the results in a manner which proves it their notions are dismissed by scientists in general. The majority of positive evidence for ID is actually little more than deeply flawed math that tries to show how improbable evolution is. Sorry, rhetoric won't cut it here, we want to see the evidence.

Atomic theory and germ theory make no claim that ID does not exist... ToE does.

No the ToE makes no claim about ID whatsoever...unless you have a citation for this I'll assume it's just another violation of commandment nine.

You keep saying that ToE is neutral... that is simply untrue, by your own admission.

The ToE is neutral. Most people are not.

What is the relevancy of that argument? 

Well it was to give you the opportunity of citing a precedent that would allow for scientific consideration of supernatural causes. You know...like ID. I guess there's no support for ID there either huh?

Your ranting is unconvincing.  You think you have this massive body of scientists behind you.  That mass is rapidly eroding as well credentialed scientists are rethinking ToE in light of the facts of nature. 

I've asked you before to keep this conversation civil and you can't do it. When backed into a logical corner you can only direct arguments agains the arguer. Think of me laughing at your inability to argue your position effectively. The rapid erosion you're talking about isn't happening anywhere but in the dreams of ID proponnents I'm afraid. There are more biologists on the Steve list than there are scientists of any stripe who have acknowledged support for ID. Sorry...but the Darwinists got their brain washing done first....we even gave you a 2,000 year head start, you can't say we didn't give you a fair chance.

It is evolution that has been forced down the public's throats by politics, not ID.

Oh yes...that's right...let's see...how many proposed laws are there requiring that evolution be taught to students....by my count that would be zero. How many proposed laws are there requiring ID be taught? I lost count myself but every one of them that has passed has been challenged as a violation of the establishment clause and not once has Creationism or ID survived that test. Your statement is comically false.

Evolution cannot be defended by strict empiricism, so its proponents  must resort to indoctrination, and that is what is happening in this country with the attempt of evolutionists to suppress evidence that contradicts their theory under the pretext that it's not "scientific".

I have tried to defend evolution on an emprical, if amateur scale. I have met with nothing but strawmen and refusal to discuss the issues actually at hand. I'm not indoctrinating anyone and I'm not suppressing evidence. The idea that God created us in his image is not scientific and the sophistication that it was not God but some intelligent designer isn't scientific either.

I am a professional scientist and I, along with many of my peers,  don't buy it.

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Wow...do your employers know that you don't understand the laws of thermodynamics? I kind of thought that was one of the first things they teach scientists back in Science 101...maybe you were sick that day or something. Go back to school...I'm not a professional scientist (while I do have a degree in science) but I seem to know more about the theory and practice of science than you. Have you figured out how to turn lead into gold yet?

#16 Springer

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 10:21 AM

quote=wepwawet,Nov 23 2005, 09:58 AM

If you are going to try to put words in my mouth be so kind as to post direct quotes. Unless you can direct me to the post where I said "Science categorically dismisses ID as a possibility" then I seem to remember one of those ten commandment thingies which talked about false witness. It's time for you to clean up your act in this debate. If you want to act in such an underhanded and dishonest fashion I can do the exact same thing and I'm willing to bet I'm better at than you are.


Your post yesterday at 1:48 pm states: "All science presumes that only natural causes are present because there is no way to observe and test the supernatural. " To presume that only natural causes are present means that supernatural causes are absent. In other words, you're saying ID is presumed absent.
If you didn't mean that, perhaps you can enlighten me as to what you meant.

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 10:40 AM

quote=wepwawet,Nov 23 2005, 09:58 AM
Your post yesterday at 1:48 pm states: "All science presumes that only natural causes are present because there is no way to observe and test the supernatural. "  To presume that only natural causes are present means that supernatural causes are absent.  In other words, you're saying ID is presumed absent.
   If you didn't mean that, perhaps you  can enlighten me as to what you meant.

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Your post said:

You stated that science categorically dismisses ID as a  possibility.

And I asked you to show where I said it. It turns out I didn't say it at all and that you tried to put words in my mouth so you could argue against those because my actual argument was evidently too good for you.

Presuming something is absent is not the same thing as categorically denying it's existance.

You're exposed buddy, our discourse is over. Go read that Bible of yours and see if it teaches you how to be more ethical than this agnostic guy.

#18 Springer

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 10:49 AM

Your post said:

And I asked you to show where I said it. It turns out I didn't say it at all and that you tried to put words in my mouth so you could argue against those because my actual argument was evidently too good for you.

You're exposed buddy, our discourse is over. Go read that Bible of yours and see if it teaches you how to be more ethical than this agnostic guy.

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The above ranting only underscores the intellectual dishonesty of many of those who profess evolution. They demonstrate contempt for religion and prefer haggling over terms rather than the pursuit of truth. The fact that ID is presumed false is evident throughout the evolutionary literature and has been evident repeatedly in this forum. The attempt of evolutionists to plead "neutral" is a vain attempt at political correctness.

#19 Angelus-Tenebrae

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Posted 28 November 2005 - 07:26 AM

The above ranting only underscores the intellectual dishonesty of many of those who profess evolution.  They demonstrate contempt for religion and prefer haggling over terms rather than the pursuit of truth. The fact that ID is presumed false is evident throughout the evolutionary literature and has been evident repeatedly in this forum.  The attempt of evolutionists to plead "neutral" is a vain attempt at political correctness.

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There is no pursuit for truth, at least not in terms of religion. The definition of "truth" in science is a different one in religion. This is the sort of thing most creationists fail to understand. That is why we have to speak on such "haggling" of terms. Scientists do not say that ID is presumed false, but rather that they cannot evaluate it because it is not a science. They ask for a hypothesis, which is fair game in science, but no creationist or IDer can give them one. They ask for observations and experiments that can be repeated, which is fair game in science, but no creationist can give them one. They ask for a scientific report that can be peer reviewed, which is fair game in science, but no creationist can give them one. Since those three things are necessary for a scientific theory to be seriously considered, and ID has none of those, it is fair game for scientists to not consider ID as a science. So tell me they're not being intellectually dishonest.

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Posted 28 November 2005 - 08:39 AM

There is no pursuit for truth, at least not in terms of religion. The definition of "truth" in science is a different one in religion. This is the sort of thing most creationists fail to understand. That is why we have to speak on such "haggling" of terms. Scientists do not say that ID is presumed false, but rather that they cannot evaluate it because it is not a science. They ask for a hypothesis, which is fair game in science, but no creationist or IDer can give them one. They ask for observations and experiments that can be repeated, which is fair game in science, but no creationist can give them one. They ask for a scientific report that can be peer reviewed, which is fair game in science, but no creationist can give them one. Since those three things are necessary for a scientific theory to be seriously considered, and ID has none of those, it is fair game for scientists to not consider ID as a science. So tell me they're not being intellectually dishonest.

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Hi Angelus, nice to have someone new to talk to. While I tend to agree with you, I'd also warn you to not use too wide a brush to paint IDers or Creationists. There are some out there who are quite willing to play the game according to the rules of science. They publish hypotheses, address criticisms and refine their work. Sadly, up until the Dover trial I thought Michael Behe was actually one of these; I believed he is incorrect but ultimately honest. The Dover transcripts prove he is quite willing to lie to support his "science". Anyway, there are people out there on both sides who deserve respect and those on both sides who deserve censure. We just have to try and move the debate past those who are trying to use science to push their own agenda, regardless of the agenda they are pushing.

There is a grain of truth to creationist concerns that evolution proponnents can be selling more than simple science. You'll find people on every side of the issue who have their own agendas to push. Science is supposed to be objective and dispassionate, but we may be looking at a field where we find that scientific methodology cannot overcome observational bias.




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