Re: Is there evidence of design?

From: janice matchett <>
Date: Mon Nov 14 2005 - 11:21:21 EST

At 10:15 AM 11/14/2005, Robert Schneider wrote:
>"...I think that one needs to start with "design" and try to educate the
>public about the distinctions between the term as it is used in theology
>and as it is used in ID argumentation." ~ Bob

### As you know, many "real" scientists are highly incensed because
they think that other "sneaky" scientists at Discovery Institute have
figured that a good way to teach "creationism to kids would be under the
guise of calling it "Intelligent Design."

Here is my suggestion as to how the "distinctions" you cite could be taught:

"Design" is to ID argumentation as "SETI" is to scientific argumentation.

And then go on to explain it to the ignorant this way:

"...Cast your minds back to 1960. John F. Kennedy is president, commercial
jet airplanes are just appearing, the biggest university mainframes have
12K of memory. And in Green Bank, West Virginia at the new National Radio
Astronomy Observatory, a young astrophysicist named Frank Drake runs a two
week project called Ozma, to search for extraterrestrial signals. ......"

"...George Gaylord Simpson of Harvard sneered that SETI was a "study
without a subject," and it remains so to the present day.

But scientists in general have been indulgent toward SETI, viewing it
either with bemused tolerance, or with indifference. After all, what's the
big deal? It's kind of fun. If people want to look, let them. Only a
curmudgeon would speak harshly of SETI. It wasn't worth the bother.

And of course it is true that untestable theories may have heuristic value.
Of course extraterrestrials are a good way to teach science to kids. But
that does not relieve us of the obligation to see the Drake equation
clearly for what it is-pure speculation in quasi-scientific trappings.

The fact that the Drake equation was not greeted with screams of
outrage-similar to the screams of outrage that greet each Creationist new
claim, for example-meant that now there was a crack in the door, a
loosening of the definition of what constituted legitimate scientific
procedure. And soon enough, pernicious garbage began to squeeze through the
cracks. ..."

Excerpted from: "Aliens Cause Global Warming" A lecture by Michael
Crichton California Institute of Technology Pasadena, CA January 17,
Received on Mon Nov 14 11:56:39 2005

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