From: <>
Date: Tue Jun 05 2007 - 11:12:46 EDT

PvM wrote:

> I am unclear as to what exactly you believe Dembski said in his design
> inference book that leads you to this conclusion so I am eagerly
> awaiting some examples which would allow us discuss these issues. I
> have access to the book so some references would be beneficial.

If you have the book, then what exactly is your problem
about it? I think there are a number of issues I have with it,
but I've brought this stuff up before.

> God may or may not work like human agencies, but that would be a
> problem would it not if we cannot make any assumptions at all about
> how He would or would not operate? But why would Dembski then suggest
> we take examples of human inventions as specifications for design in
> nature?

> Dembski
> <quote>But what about the predictive power of intelligent design? To
> require prediction fundamentally misconstrues design. To require
> prediction of design is to put design in the same boat as natural
> laws, locating their explanatory power in an extrapolation from past
> experience. This is to commit a category mistake. To be sure,
> designers, like natural laws, can behave predictably (designers often
> institute policies that end up being rigidly obeyed). Yet unlike
> natural laws, which are universal and uniform, designers are also
> innovators. Innovation, the emergence to true novelty, eschews
> predictability. Designers are inventors. We cannot predict what an
> inventor would do short of becoming that inventor. Intelligent design
> offers a radically different problematic for science than a
> mechanistic science wedded solely to undirected natural causes. Yes,
> intelligent design concedes predictability. But this represents no
> concession to Darwinism, for which the minimal predictive power that
> it has can readily be assimilated to a design-theoretic
> framework.</quote>

> And yet, when it comes to sciences such as criminology, it is exactly
> the extrapolation from past experiences which is used to make
> predictions about patterns of offenders, especially repeat offenders
> that remain uncaught. In other words, regularity and chance processes
> seem to be quite able to capture intelligent behavior, as people in
> advertising know quite well. Amazon, is building a whole empire on
> being able to capture these concepts and deliver predictions as to
> user interests etc.

In general, I think you have a point. We generally use
a lot of corroborating evidence together to help build
our case in science. This is what makes the YEC position
largely untenable. Some of their ideas might work in
isolation, but when you put it all together, it's a
nightmare of a mess.

Nevertheless, you would have to work this way from
decryption. Your enemy may be just sending noise.
You want to put your computers to work analyzing
signal. Now a good code is good because it is hard
to tell the difference from it, and a random generation
of digits. So in cryptography, you would have to work
from a way of standpoint of detecting design. It is
a narrow enough discipline that it is possible to
do that.

> > The trivializing of ID may be politically expedient, but
> > frankly, it's rather lame to think that Dembski is just some
> > stupid guy with a really really moronically dumb idea. Probably
> > wrong in using the idea the way he has, but we all make mistakes.
> the idea is interesting at most but quickly seems to fade away. As to
> Dembski being stupid, rather than stupid I'd prefer the term ignorant
> or uninformed, or even better 'written in Jello' as one mathematician
> described Dembski's musings. Personally I believe that Dembski had an
> interesting idea, which faded away quickly and since then he has
> focused on some mostly irrelevant topics about the nature of 'search'
> and 'no free lunch' but basically nothing much relevant to the topic
> of evolution has come out of his hands. And the limited amount that he
> did deliver seemed of particularly poor quality to me.

It did sound interesting at first to me also. I have not
found a way to use it constructively, but that does not
mean it cannot be useful for anything. The annoying thing
to me is the hype. I have no objection to people exploring
what they like. But they built up this thing like some kind
of "secret weapon", but then you go and look for it, and you
find out it's just a scare crow.

by Grace we proceed,

To unsubscribe, send a message to with
"unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
Received on Tue Jun 5 11:13:32 2007

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Tue Jun 05 2007 - 11:13:32 EDT