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Peptron
2005-Oct-27, 03:17 PM
I've been thinking how the avian flu threat would be handled if ID would become mainstream science.

Right now, mainstream science noticed that it would be very likely for the avian flu to mutate so that it could be transmissible from human to human. Scientists thought so because that's what flu does all the time, it mutates to become more viable in the environment it is. There are already vaccines in the making in case of a pandemy, and there most likely will be (or is it already done?) vaccines for an eventual "human to human" version of the avian flu.

If ID would become the mainstream science, how would it be handled? From what I understood of ID, it states that the flu simply doesn't exist and cannot exists. So avian flu would be handled by doing nothing since it doesn't exist. Flu is still around by its ability to mutate all the time by "borrowing" genetic material of the organisms it infects. ID states that this is simply false, so flu cannot exist and so there is nothing to do about a non existing threat.

ToSeek
2005-Oct-27, 03:51 PM
Most ID proponents are willing to admit that mutations take place to the extent that they are observed. They're just say that there are some instances where an intelligent designer has to be invoked. They are conveniently vague on specifics as to just which instances.

Swift
2005-Oct-27, 04:03 PM
Most ID proponents are willing to admit that mutations take place to the extent that they are observed. They're just say that there are some instances where an intelligent designer has to be invoked. They are conveniently vague on specifics as to just which instances.
Maybe I just don't understand ID (that might be a good thing :p ), but wouldn't the IDers claim that the designer came in and caused the virus to change to attach humans? Do IDers believe that the designer did his/her design work years ago and stopped, or are they still actively designing? Do IDers believe there are no random mutations, or just that some are random and some are "by design"? If the latter, how do you tell them apart?

Very interesting question Peptron.

Peptron
2005-Oct-27, 04:43 PM
I hate that I keep forgetting that most (all?) pseudoscientists accept parts of a theory that doesn't conflict with their beliefs, but refuse those that do. Even in the cases where the part that conflict and the part that doesn't is one and the same...
I find it hard to believe that some people think that an intelligent designer has to be invoked in any part of evolution... and in fact I think ID is harder to understand than evolution. I think it doesn't explain well where the intelligent designer is coming from... Who/what is he/it? What designed it?

I posted that because I think that ID involves a lot of "silent contemplation", or... how should I say it... I mean, when you do science, you do it to understand something, but also to reproduce it, or prevent it if it had negative effects. But ID doesn't seem to have any of it. I mean up to now I never seen anything about ID explaining why it would have a good impact in peoples lives. I mean it involves a lot of "evolution is wrong"... So what if it is? Right now evolution is considered right because it is the very basis of medicine, and a lot of other scientific domains. A lot of health problems deemed unsolvable in their times are now bening, or on the way to become. Cancer can now be cured, even if not too long before curing it was completly out of the question. This is because of the theory of evolution that we have vaccines at all, that we can cure cancer, that we have anti-biotics, that we have sirups against cough, that we have antiseptics plasters, that we have antiseptics at all in fact, and a lot of things that makes the world a better place to live.

I mean if we just decide to trash evolution, and so medicine and all the nice things it brought, like curing cancer; and we decide to forget that ID is an opinion and take it as the reality. What does it have to offer?
Lets suppose my child have cancer in the starting phase, the moment where it still isn't life threathening, and the practitionner dumped evolution and decided to accept ID. What will he do to cure that cancer? Will he simply say that cancer cannot exist, because it is a mutation, and so evolution, and so false?

A lot of people (like ID proponents) seems to forget why there is science at all. That's true, why do people want to have science at all? Personally I like the idea that if I get sick, somebody will know what I have and will be able to help me. I'm happy to be able to use a computer to write this post. I'm also happy that I can take the bus to go back home and don't have to walk all of it. It seems so obvious to me that without science, my life would be much harder than it is now, I wouln't have all those things that I take for granted and that obviously didn't just spawn into existence. Somebody had to know how to do it, had to know how it worked. Somebody had to wake up one morning with the firm intention of understanding something he didn't the day before.

Right now there is the avian flu threat that is coming. According to most people, there isn't much of a threat if people know how to get prepared and how to react. But then again it's thank to science. To be prepared you got to know what flu is. To understand it you must know what a virus is and how it behaves. Its behavior is directly in line with the theory of evolution, the very thing IDers are trying to demonise. If IDer succeed at destroying the theory of evolution, then we would be left completly helpless in front of a not so hard to resolve problem. We would lose the very basis of the behavior of viruses, of bacterias, and of life in general. The very basis of medicine would be lost. We would start to get affected by problems that would have been fixed without problems with science.

This is of course of a worst case scenario, but I mean how can people in their right mind be against science? How can somebody see the cure of cancer as bad? How can somebody see cars, ships, planes, helicopters, computers, refrigerators, movie theaters, buildings, sealed bottles, diapers, telephones, compact disks, scotch tape, paper, mechanical pencils, electricity, water systems, toilets, etc as bad? I mean I don't think anybody is against all that, but then again all of that is there because of science. Hitting on science is to me not having a clue of what science is.

I mean proponents of ID should stop saying that evolution is wrong, and start producing repeatable results, so that we can use ID in our everyday's life.

ToSeek
2005-Oct-27, 04:48 PM
but wouldn't the IDers claim that the designer came in and caused the virus to change to attach humans?

Some would say yes, and some would say no.


Do IDers believe that the designer did his/her design work years ago and stopped, or are they still actively designing?

Some would say yes, and some would say no.


Do IDers believe there are no random mutations, or just that some are random and some are "by design"?

Some would say yes, and some would say no.


If the latter, how do you tell them apart?

Like that Supreme Court justice and pornography, you know design when you see it.

Can you see why the scientists who deal with ID proponents get frustrated? There's no "there" there.

ToSeek
2005-Oct-27, 04:53 PM
I mean up to now I never seen anything about ID explaining why it would have a good impact in peoples lives.

Well, I have, but it has nothing to do with science, it has to do with the (allegedly) pernicious effects of materialism on the erosion of ethics and values, which makes the claims that ID is a scientific pursuit even more dubious than they are already.

Peptron
2005-Oct-27, 05:45 PM
Well, I have, but it has nothing to do with science, it has to do with the (allegedly) pernicious effects of materialism on the erosion of ethics and values, which makes the claims that ID is a scientific pursuit even more dubious than they are already.

Mmm... those thinking that should REALLY read about the quiet revolution of Quebec... This is especially things like what led to the quiet revolution that makes me so afraid of ID. History has shown that when fundamentalism is in power, things can get VERY ugly. The Duplessis Orphans scandal in Quebec is an extreme case of how ugly it can get. If THAT is what they are talking about for ethics and values, then I'm glad I'm a materialist.

About the Quiet Revolution:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quiet_Revolution
About the Duplessis Orphans scandal, one of the key things that led to the Quiet Revolution:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duplessis_Orphans

Bathcat
2005-Oct-27, 06:19 PM
Let's just kind of jazz-riff on the ID theme a bit?

Not all religions are Jehovistic and large numbers of people are Hindu or Buddhist or Other.

So let's not assume the Christian view of a Designer. Maybe it's Brahma, or a non-human Void, or Coyote the Trickster.

Why does It design?

Let's guess: its own non-human idea of aesthetics.

It's doing art here, people!

But non-anthropomorphic, non-anthropocentric art.

Now, what a lovely, ironic time-space artwork the spread of avian flu through a population of self-aggrandizing apes might be! A lowly virus, veritable molecular beauty expressed in simplicity, doing other microbes the favor of making large amounts of complex proteins and other nutrients available by disrupting the lifecycle of certain large-bodied mammals?

This aesthetic event might be visualized as a multi-dimensional tapestry unfolding through spacetime as a series of billions of cellular events linked by metabolic worldlines...

And orchestrated, subtly and with complete inhumanity, by a supernatural and inhuman Designer.

(Which of course would be anathema to most champions of conventional Intelligent Design, and absolutely abhorrent to Christian Creationists...but so what?)

Peptron
2005-Oct-27, 06:33 PM
Not all religions are Jehovistic and large numbers of people are Hindu or Buddhist or Other.

I know, but from what I hear of ID, it seems obvious to me that it is talking about the "christian" version of creationism. To me ID is just a way to force christianism dogma.

Gillianren
2005-Oct-27, 07:13 PM
Ah. You see, that's mostly because it is. I've yet to hear of anyone believing in ID who didn't also believe in the Judeo-Christian God.

For the record: cough syrups have existed for milennia. Very few of them take much beyond a little herbalism. In fact, we still use some of the same ingredients. Also: cure cancer? We can surgically remove cancer. We can drive it into remission using horrible techniques such as chemotherapy. I don't think we can truly "cure" it.

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-27, 07:16 PM
what fundamentalist evangalists fail to realize is that it is them that is turning people away from the church because they are killing debate. All they have to offer is dogma and more of the sin and hell stuff and if that don't work then they think that they obviously aren't laying it on thick enough. Without debate their moral codes become little more than etiquette.
As it is their church has less and less answers for people, but lets not think about that, let's just blame science.

these power mungers(evangalists) really hate it when anyone challenges them. It always was so with religions.

Peptron
2005-Oct-27, 07:56 PM
For the record: cough syrups have existed for milennia. Very few of them take much beyond a little herbalism. In fact, we still use some of the same ingredients. Also: cure cancer? We can surgically remove cancer. We can drive it into remission using horrible techniques such as chemotherapy. I don't think we can truly "cure" it.

When I said "cure cancer", I simply meant to make cancer go away from somebody, so they won't die from it. Surgery is there because of science, and chemotherapy is too, even if it is not as good as it could be. Surgery and chemotherapy are more effective at curing cancer than doing nothing. But then again science is there to improve that. From my point of view there is no "end point" in science. I think we will never have "the best" possible techniques, but we can always improve. Going against science is putting a break on that improvement too. Also, a lot of health problems involves quite horribles techniques to be resolved...

By the way, about a week ago, there was a scientist on radio that explained that he might have found a replacement to the strong drugs used in chemotherapy. This new drug had little side effects, and was found to be very effective at disabling the self-replication of cancerous cells. He explained how all his tests pointed at that direction, and that this new drug proved quite useful. When the interviewer said that this new theory was a important finding, the scientist said "I'm not as pretencious as to call that a theory, not even an hypothesis. We have found this to work really well and be very effective. But the whys and hows still have to be answered."

As for cough sirup, I was more thinking about those that fight specific symptoms due to their medical ingredients. But even then, some scientific findings were done without science in mind. The signs that vitamin C existed were discovered without much science in mind. It is science that found and isolated the actual vitamin, but the initial findings about it being very effective against scurvy had more to do with herbalism and shamanism than science...

Swift
2005-Oct-27, 08:36 PM
My take on Peptron's comments about medicine are this...
it seems to me that as fewer people understand science and the scientific method, that science to them will become just another type of "magic". It is something that "wizards" do and can't be understood by ordinary people.

- How do cell phones work? I don't know, must be magic

- How is disease cured? I don't know, must be magic
The teaching of ID in schools won't directly lead to fewer advances in medicine (and yes Gillianren, some medical treatments were not discovered by the most scientific methods). But as science and medicine are increasingly considered magical, then all kinds of WooWoo Science and Snake Oil Medicine gain equal footing. Equating Evolution and ID in science education is one step away from teaching Flat Earth in Geography and Lunar Hoax in History.

zebo-the-fat
2005-Oct-27, 08:42 PM
If they don't like science, they should live in a cave and avoid all the scientific evils like antibiotics, clean water and cooking.
Let 'em rot!

harlequin
2005-Oct-27, 09:48 PM
<creationist id="creationist1">
But that is just microevolution.
</creationist>

<creationist id="creationist2">
But the avian flu is still just a virus
</creationist>

WaxRubiks
2005-Oct-27, 10:49 PM
they had to deal with some kind of change as with variance in race due to adam and eve only being of one race.

SolusLupus
2005-Oct-28, 12:01 AM
Zebo:

Clean air? I hate to say this, but there would be clean air with or without science.

I agree with you on most of the things, though :P

Nereid
2005-Oct-28, 01:08 AM
I must be on a different planet ... I thought the ID argument was 'evolution can't explain the origin of life, 'cause it's far too complex to have arisen by chance; ergo, there must be a 'helping hand'/'ID'/whatever' I.e. the ID-ers failed even more eggregiously in understanding of evolution than merely creating the concept of 'micro-evolution' to explain bacterial and viral evolution.

Gillianren
2005-Oct-28, 07:43 PM
Just to clarify my position: medical science is my friend. I finally, praise gods and the State of Washington, have health insurance on account of I'm crazy enough to qualify. My first therapy appointment is Thursday, and I'm hoping to be given medication of some kind, which certainly did not exist before medical science.

I'm just saying that cough syrups are not my first and foremost example of the joys of medical science. (Vaccines are.)

Ilya
2005-Oct-30, 12:53 AM
Ah. You see, that's mostly because it is. I've yet to hear of anyone believing in ID who didn't also believe in the Judeo-Christian God.

Drop "Judeo" part. I never heard of a Jewish or Muslim ID proponent.

Gillianren
2005-Oct-30, 07:23 PM
Drop "Judeo" part. I never heard of a Jewish or Muslim ID proponent.

Nor have I, but it's the same God. (There is considerably more debate about whether or not Allah is the same God, but there is no doubt that the Jews and the Christians have the same God, since they use the same Bible--just expanded for Christians.)

jfribrg
2005-Oct-31, 04:54 PM
I must be on a different planet ... I thought the ID argument was 'evolution can't explain the origin of life, 'cause it's far too complex to have arisen by chance; ergo, there must be a 'helping hand'/'ID'/whatever' I.e. the ID-ers failed even more eggregiously in understanding of evolution than merely creating the concept of 'micro-evolution' to explain bacterial and viral evolution.

One argument I've heard from an ID proponent is that while genetics can result in diversity, it can never result in a new species. That way, all these antibiotic resistent bacteria do not interfere with their faith (which we all know is what they are talking about anyway). Anything that evolves from a population is by definition the same species. With that definition in hand, they make the claim that there has never been a documented instance of speciation. It's internally consistent, but its also absolute nonsense.

aurora
2005-Oct-31, 06:31 PM
Anything that evolves from a population is by definition the same species. With that definition in hand, they make the claim that there has never been a documented instance of speciation. It's internally consistent, but its also absolute nonsense.

I suppose that definition also allows them to ignore:

Observed Examples of Speciation (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-speciation.html)

and

Some More Observed Speciation Events (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/speciation.html)

How handy it is to be able to ignore everything that would challenge your beliefs.

Response to claim that no new species have been observed (http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB910.html)