RE: Post-Empiricism Science: A little surprised

From: Alexanian, Moorad (
Date: Wed Sep 17 2003 - 10:40:17 EDT

  • Next message: Robert Schneider: "Re: Post-Empiricism Science: A little surprised"

    Evolution is more akin to forensic science than, say, physics. The word
    science in "forensic science"---just as in "historical sciences"---means
    that one does detective work using scientific instruments. It is
    certainly not an experimental science since it deals with unique events.
    It is the science that evolutionary theory uses that is experimental in
    nature not evolutionary theory itself. It is common to ask "do you
    believe in (macro) evolution?" Such types of questions are never asked
    in physics. For instance, have you ever heard anyone say "do you
    believe in relativity or quantum mechanics?" Are we, therefore, more in
    the area of "faith" rather than conventional, unadulterated science?




    -----Original Message-----
    From: Walter Hicks []
    Sent: Wednesday, September 17, 2003 10:13 AM
    To: Alexanian, Moorad
    Subject: Re: Post-Empiricism Science: A little surprised


    Does that mean that evolution is not a science? I have not heard of any
    predictive aspects of it.

    "Alexanian, Moorad" wrote:

            Ancients used to explain eclipses and why the sun rises but
    could not make predictions. The essence of a scientific theory is the
    ability to make predictions and not merely give explanations, which is
    pure phenomenology.


            -----Original Message-----
    [] On Behalf Of
            Sent: Wednesday, September 17, 2003 7:39 AM
            Subject: Re: Post-Empiricism Science: A little surprised

            In a message dated 9/17/03 1:46:31 AM Eastern Daylight Time, writes:

            The evolutionary paradigm is just as religious and sacred as a
            paradigm. The only difference is that the evolutionary paradigm
    is based upon
            and accepted by blind faith. It is blind because it cannot be
    confirmed by
            anyone who could know.

            T. Kuhn wrote that the strength of a hypothesis is in its
    explanatory value. The explanatory value of evolutionary theory is so
    strong and there is so much evidence for it that to dispute it at this
    point is to dig your head in the sand.

            "If a paradigm is ever to triumph it must gain some first
    supporters, men who will develop it to
            the point where hard headed arguments can be produced and
    multiplied. And even those
            arguments when they come are not individually decisive.

            Because scientists are reasonable men, one or another argument
    will ultimately persuade many
            of them. But there is no single argument that can or should
    persuade them all. Rather than a
            single group conversion, what occurs is an increasing shift in
    the distribution of professional

            At the start, a new candidate for paradigm may have few
    supporters, and on occasion the
            supporters' motives may be suspect. Nevertheless, if they are
    competent, they will improve it,
            explore its possibilities and show what it would be like to
    belong to the community guided by
            it. And as that goes on, if the paradigm is one destined to win
    its fight, the number and
            strength of the professional arguments in its favor will

            More scientists will then be converted and the exploration of
    the new paradigm will go on.
            Gradually the number of experiments, instruments, articles and
    books based upon the
            paradigm will multiply. Still more men, convinced of the new
    view's fruitfulness will adopt the
            new mode of practicing normal science, until at last only a few
    elderly hold-outs remain.

            Though the historian can always find men, Priestley, for
    instance, who were unreasonable to
            resist for as long as they did, he will not find a point at
    which resistance becomes illogical or
            unscientific. At most he may wish to say that the man who
    continues to resist after his whole
            profession has been converted has ipso facto ceased to be a

                                   The Structure of Scientific Revolutions,
    Thomas S. Kuhns
                                           Chapter: Resolution of

            rich faussette

    Walt Hicks <> 

    In any consistent theory, there must exist true but not provable statements. (Godel's Theorem)

    You can only find the truth with logic If you have already found the truth without it. (G.K. Chesterton) ===================================

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