Re: [asa] Brownback on evolution

From: PvM <>
Date: Wed Jun 06 2007 - 19:41:43 EDT

On 6/6/07, David Clounch <> wrote:

> Since I am not a creationist I don't really know what to say to a
> creationist who morphs all their material into the form of ID. I have
> publicly argued they are stealing the idea and ruining it.
> Sure doesn't make them happy to hear that! ;) But, if they start using
> calculus does that make a calc book into a creationist book? Maybe..and it
> might depend on what they do to the book. But would that make calculus
> into religion? I don't think so. You might disagree.

The religious foundations of ID are incredibly important in reaching
the conclusion of the Dover Court.
Combined with the lack of a scientific foundation for ID, this makes
the outcome almost inevitable. IDists can deny that ID is all about
religion and claim that forensic sciences etc all show how ID is being
applied by science but as I have discussed elsewhere, such arguments
do not logically follow. ID's argument is a very narrow argument that
claims that "what remains after regularity and chance have been
removed as explanations" should be called 'design'. First of all this
means that ID cannot even compete with the null hypothesis because it
cannot even present an explanation as of the observed data, it merely
calls it 'designed'. Furthermore the step from design to designer
cannot even eliminate natural selection as its designer. In other
words, there is so much wrong with ID that I do not know where to

> I have not read the case from Dover, btw. I did read Edwards top to bottom.
> Holding, plus all opinions. May I ask, have you? Not that it matters if
> you haven't. But would it make you disingenuous if you had not? I dont
> think so. Why would it? Please tell me the circumstances where it would
> make you disingenuous if you had not read Edwards, but some reporter chatted
> with you on the phone and then wrote something?

Siemens corrected a major misunderstanding about the origins of Pandas
and People.

I have a question for you though, elsewhere you stated that "I just
wonder, if the religious people in Dover had asked for E=MC2 to be
taught, if the Dover court would have banned physics, and thus
narrowed the curriculum to just one world view just because it wanted
to exclude their religion. Edwards mistake was in narrowing for
religion. The Dover court's mistake is in narrowing against religion
without an overriding state interest to do so."

Did you reach this conclusion without having read the case? If you had
read the court case, you would have realized that it was the
combination of lack of secular purpose (since ID fails to be
scientific) complicated by religious motivations to teach ID which
caused the court to reject the policy.
Seems to me that the state had an incredibly strong interest in
narrowing against religion (ID), it's called the Constitution.

>But I think I saw the book once in the 80's. Haven't read it. What I
did read somewhere was the
> book was proffered by the board as an ID book but was really a creationist book, and the court
> did not take kindly to that deception.
> But I have not researched any of that to find out if the claim of deception was accurate.

The book was indeed offered as an Intelligent Design book, in fact
deWolf (Discovery Institute Fellow) argued

Since the 1980s, a growing number of scientists have argued that
precisely such evidences have come to light in the origins
controversy. They argue that, contrary to neo-Darwinian orthodoxy,
nature displays abundant evidence of design by an intelligent agent.
These scientists, known as design theorists, advocate an alternative
theory of biological origins known as design theory or the theory of
intelligent design (sometimes abbreviated simply design or intelligent
design). They have developed design theory in scientific and scholarly
journals as well as in such books as Darwin's Black Box, The Mystery
of Life's Origin, Mere Creation, The Design Inference, and the
supplemental high school textbook Of Pandas and People.6 Design theory
holds that intelligent causes rather than undirected natural causes
best explain many features of living systems. During recent years
design theorists have developed both a general theory for detecting
design and many specific empirical arguments to support their views.

David K. DeWolf, Stephen C. Meyer, Mark E. DeForrest, Intelligent
Design in Public School Science Curricula: A Legal Guidebook

Ignore for the moment the unsupported claims about ID, it seems clear
that the book was presented as an Intelligent Design book. When the
court was shown how Intelligent Design had become just a placeholder
for 'creation(ism)' , the court was not too impressed.

Peter Irons in the Montana Law review provides us with some
interesting insight into the Kitzmiller controversy as well as the
claims by DeWolf, West and Luskin (see for an excellent read)

I'd be interested how you perceive ID ? Is it scientific? Should it be
taught in schools? How does ID relate to 'teach the controversy' ?

> On 6/4/07, D. F. Siemens, Jr. <> wrote:
> >
> >
> >
> > If you check the trial transcript, I believe you will find that P&P began
> as a Creationist book, but every reference to creation topics in the
> original draft were, over time, replaced with ID terminology. Your claim of
> ignorance seems to me disingenuous when the evidence is readily available.
> > Dave
> >
> > On Mon, 4 Jun 2007 07:11:19 -0500 "David Clounch"
> <> writes:
> >
> > <snip>
> > "The Dover policy required students to hear a statement about ID before
> ninth-grade biology lessons on evolution. The statement said Charles
> Darwin's theory was "not a fact" and had inexplicable "gaps", and referred
> students to an ID textbook, Of Pandas and People, for more information."
> >
> > But Pandas and People is a creationist book, not an ID book. Which is
> part of why the judge went the way he did...the sneaking in of a creationist
> book was deceptive. My point here is the Scottsman reporter completely
> missed that fact and reported the book as an ID book. (Actually I don't
> really know if the book is ID related or pure creationist, I've just read in
> the press elsewhere it was a creationist book).
> >
> > <snip>

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Received on Wed Jun 6 19:42:00 2007

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