View Full Version : ID's hypocritical use of science

2005-Sep-25, 08:22 PM
Thought I'd share this wonderful analogy from another forum's member sharing it there.


Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Cowbirds, Parasitism, and Intelligent Design
Red State Rabble reader Neil M. was eating lunch at his desk, reading Scientific American, and thinking about the many spurious arguments for intelligent design coming out of Seattle's Discovery Institute when it suddenly occurred to him that -- huge though their brains may be -- the boys at Discovery could not possibly have come up with any of their many arguments for intelligent design in the absence actual science.

Behe, Dembski, and others talk about irreducible complexity, their favorite examples are the many proteins in the blood that are involved in clotting. They talk, also, about the structure of the eye, and bacterial flagella. They talk, and they talk, and they...

But, Neil asks, how would anyone know anything about the structure of the eye, or proteins in the blood, or even what a protein is, for that matter, without science?

Infallible though it may be, you canít look any of these things up in the Bible.

This is an excellent point that set RSR to thinking:

Perhaps we should begin to think of intelligent design not as a theory, or an intuition, or even a glimmer in Behe's eye, but rather as a form of intellectual parasitism -- a half-baked concept become cowbird that propagates by laying its eggs in the nests of other birds leaving its young to be raised by the unfortunate hosts.

In the same way the cowbird slips into the nests of others to lay her eggs, dissolute intelligent design "theorists" want to drop their ill-formed idea off in science classrooms with a note pinned to its jacket -- "please take care of little so and so."

The intelligent design dilettante -- like the cowbird -- refuses to do the hard work of field or laboratory research to feed and clothe their gawky child. They refuse to nurture the little monster they've so crudely stitched together in that Frankensteinian laboratory in Seattle.

I'm told that robins push cowbird eggs out of their nests...

2005-Sep-26, 11:33 AM
Excellent point. A lot of good stuff there, too. Thanks!

2005-Sep-26, 02:39 PM
The Washington Post (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/09/25/AR2005092501177.html)
has a really good article on the ID vs. evolution debate that actually delves into the philosophy of science and dismisses the concept of ID as science.

Best quote, from Alan Leshner, chief executive of the American Association for the Advancement of Science

"Just because they call it a theory doesn't make it a scientific theory," Leshner said. "The concept of an intelligent designer is not a scientifically testable assertion."

2005-Sep-26, 05:39 PM
The big problem with intelligent design is that it affirms the consequent (a behaviour ever more popular these days). Proponents nitpick the concept of macroevolution and argue it is untenable. I cannot evaluate the legitimacy of that argument, but even so, all they are really showing is that the mechanism behind evolution has yet to be explained. To then turn around and say it must be intelligent design is an affirmed consequent. More than that, it almost removes falsifiability because it creates a hypothesis that is untestable. By definition, the intelligence is unobservable.

2005-Sep-26, 06:21 PM
ID is just a backhanded way to get religious doctrine taught in public schools.
actually, allow it to be taught. most science teachers would cover the actual SCIENCE of evolution, then, on the last day, they could simply mention that some folks think there was a single intelligence that drives all of it.
that is all they need to teach about ID- it would take up all of 5 minutes of class time.
or, better yet, put ID in the area of social studies, and away from the science class- when i was in high school (early 90's), we kind of touched on the different religions of the world in social studies. since this stuff is coming from mostly religious groups, it can be taught right along with the 7 day creation as stated in the bible..
there- everyone is happy. the ID'ers get their stuff into the schools, and those that follow the logic of science don't have this fringe "theory" taught alongside their stuff.

2005-Sep-27, 03:37 AM
Intelligent design "theory" (I would think of a better term for it but I'm at a loss for words presently) reminds me of much of the debate over the authorship of the plays attributed to Shakespeare. The "Anti-Stratfordians" who claim that someone else wrote the plays base much of their argument upon what we DON'T know about William Shakespeare: no records exist of his schooling, none of his original manuscripts exist, and the few examples of his own handwriting appear to be little more than unintelligible scrawl. Therefore, they claim, "Shaxper" was an illiterate country bumpkin who lacked the education and the refinement necessary to write even a single poem, let alone 36 plays. This line of reasoning completely ignores the fact that evidence of his authenticity has largely been lost over the past 400 or so years, or is yet to be found. Not surprisingly, Anti-Stratfordianism is not widely discussed in schools.

Intelligent design is simply an attempt to nitpick the areas of evolutionary science that still have holes in them, all the while conveniently ignoring other areas which have enormous evidence to support them. Unfortunately, the uninformed masses who don't know what the word "theory" actually means and who teach songs like "I Didn't Come From a Monkey" to Sunday school kids (I actually saw a video of kids at church singing a song like that...stuff like spiders, snakes, and ghosts have never bothered me, but those kids scared the hell out of me) will come out and support ID in droves, since it offers the path of least amount of thought needed. Hopefully this won't create an upswing in membership into the Flat Earth Society :P

2005-Sep-27, 04:38 AM
I was looking at http://www.americanhumanist.org/manifesto1.html and noticed that they declare humanism a religon. Christians, Jews, Islam and etc have some differing views but they are not the only ones that have a religious points of view.

2005-Sep-27, 04:46 AM
Sorry the link will not work for the manifesto page per say. If one would like to check you will have to go to the main page.

2005-Sep-27, 10:22 AM
The page is at http://www.americanhumanist.org/humanism/manifesto1.php

Christians, Jews, Islam and etc have some differing views but they are not the only ones that have a religious points of view.
I think about these three as a single religion with some internal squabbling about who where the real prophets.
As such it's really clever the way they have indoctrinated many people to only think of those three when the word religion is mentioned.

2005-Sep-27, 11:28 AM
The page is at http://www.americanhumanist.org/humanism/manifesto1.php

I think about these three as a single religion with some internal squabbling about who where the real prophets.
As such it's really clever the way they have indoctrinated many people to only think of those three when the word religion is mentioned.

Apart from the fact that every major religion relies on indoctrination (aka belief), this is a bit over the top. Not only are Christianity and Islam the two largest religions overall, they are the clearly dominant religions in the Western world, where most of the members of the board come from. People always speak from their own background, and as such, it is only logical that those two are mentioned most often. For JudaÔsm, this has more to do with the common origin Christianity and JudaÔsm have, and the prominent role it has played in twentieth century history.

2005-Sep-27, 04:58 PM
I thought this (http://www.ucomics.com/nonsequitur/2005/09/27/) was appropriate and would get a laugh. It's the cartoon "Non Sequitur" and their take on "Intelligent Tax Code".