RE: Snoke's paper

From: Dick Fischer <dickfischer@earthlink.net>
Date: Sat Aug 13 2005 - 18:06:36 EDT

Hi Randy:
 
BTW, it was good to meet you at the ASA conference. I'm encouraged by
your leadership and fully expect you to help write a new chapter that
will move ASA out of the doldrums and into a fruition of its calling.
 
Snoke used a little smoke and mirrors in his presentation. He gave an
example of a prevailing scientific theory. He showed experimental
results indicating that the prevailing theory was insufficient to
explain the phenomena. He rightly criticized the theory before he could
offer an explanation or a competing theory. No problem here. Next, he
jumps to evolution and says it is okay to criticize a prevailing
scientific theory even though he hasn't lifted a finger to offer any
evidence at all. So okay, where are his experiments on the mechanics of
Darwinian evolution that show its deficiencies? He doesn't have any.
The parallel isn't there.
 
The sum total of ID criticism revolves around the issue of complexity.
They do no experiments, offer no data, they simply make an appeal to
emotions. Where is that scientific?
 
If they wanted to be scientific they could divide Darwinian evolution
into component parts and offer data in opposition. For example, Darwin
thought that evolutionary change was gradual. There exists some
evidence suggesting that organisms perfectly adapted to their
environment don't change very much over long periods. Rapid changes in
the environment, however, appear to cause adaptive changes. They could
say that, but they don't.
 
Further, Darwin believed that random processes alone were at work
providing the raw stuff of evolution. Again, environmental factors may
provide input. And some evidence appears to suggest that there is
interplay between the environment and the organisms that live in it.
 
These are legitimate criticisms, and lend themselves to scientific
inquiry, but they also involve natural causation. That doesn't fit the
ID agenda. They want to prove God. So how does "agenda" fit into
science?
 
As to how a super intelligence would design, I can't know for sure, but
I know how human designers work. They leave their signature imprint on
their designs so we can recognize their products. Common designs in
numerous taxa would give the ID people something to shout about. A
stealth designer doesn't help their case much. I would be far more
impressed with the bacteria flagellum example if I saw them hanging off
of squids and jellyfish too.
 
~Dick Fischer~ Genesis Proclaimed Association
Finding Harmony in Bible, Science, and History
www.genesisproclaimed.org
 
-----Original Message-----
From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On
Behalf Of Randy Isaac
Sent: Friday, August 12, 2005 8:49 PM
To: asa@calvin.edu
Subject: Re: Snoke's paper
 
Dick,
 
    I should have been more precise but took some shortcuts since some
of this was covered in Dave's paper. The issue Dave addressed in his
paper was that some people were claiming that it is not "scientific" to
criticize a scientific theory without offering a plausible alternative
theory. Dave's point, and I fully agree, is that it is indeed part of
the scientific process to show data or evidence that a particular theory
is inadequate, even in the absence of an alternative, though a proper
explanation is always desired. Whether or not a particular criticism is
valid or even whether such criticism is done in a manner consistent with
sound scientific methods is another matter altogether. That must be
judged on a case by case basis. Many critiques of ID are as bad as any
I've seen from the ID folks. Let's stop the generalizations and judge
each argument on the basis of its merits.
 
    As for your speculation that "if these things are designed by an
intelligence then we should see the same design patterns occurring
across phyla", I fear you may be making the same mistake that is often
made by ID folks as well as TE's and all the rest of us, namely
presuming to know a priori what a supernatural creator would do and
what his work would look like.
 
 
    Randy
 
 
----- Original Message -----
From: Richard <mailto:dickfischer@earthlink.net> Fischer
To: ASA <mailto:asa@calvin.edu>
Sent: Friday, August 12, 2005 7:14 PM
Subject: RE: Snoke's paper
 
Randy Isaac wrote:
 
First, just a short point on where I see the science in ID right now.
You rightly mention one area, which is the critique of evolutionary
mechanisms.
 
Anyone can criticize. And criticizing a scientific theory doesn't mean
the criticism itself is science at all. Read Darwin on Trial and
you'll see what I mean. The essence of ID is that certain organic
structures are so complicated that natural processes alone couldn't have
produced them. But if these things are designed by an intelligence then
we should see the same design patterns occurring across phyla. We
don't. The absence of similarly designed structures occurring in
distantly related organisms is the evidence for no intelligent design in
my opinion.
 
.........
 
Dick Fischer - Genesis Proclaimed Association
Finding Harmony in Bible, Science, and History
www.genesisproclaimed.org <http://www.genesisproclaimed.org/>
Received on Sat Aug 13 18:07:54 2005

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