Re: Fw: [asa] Expelled and ID

From: David Opderbeck <dopderbeck@gmail.com>
Date: Thu Apr 24 2008 - 15:39:57 EDT

George said: If it can not be tested objectively, then how will we ever
know? What tests does ID allow?

I respond: Why is "objective testing" the only criterion for evaluating a
truth claim? This is the problem -- we say "science is not the only arbiter
of truth," but we don't really often believe that, do we?

On Thu, Apr 24, 2008 at 3:20 PM, George Cooper <georgecooper@sbcglobal.net>
wrote:

> Hi Dave,
>
> [Sorry for the delay, I'm having some tech. problems, along with free time
> problems.]
>
> [Dave: The criterion of methodological naturalism, for example, is not an
> "objective" one. It represents, rather, a human judgment about the
> pragmatic bounds of the human enterprise our culture labels "science." It
> may or may not be a reasonable demarcation line for its own purposes, but it
> isn't an "objective" line.]
>
> The scientific method requires objectivity as its foundation. This does
> not mean that no "fingerprints" are allowed on the data, but the data must
> be objective enough to be transferable and validated with little or no
> subjective interference. The more subjectivity is allowed, the greater
> the inaccuracies are the claims.
>
> Subjectivity, however, can be a part of science in other important ways. Indeed,
> scientific "facts" and "laws" are subjective in the sense that they reach
> this status due to a scientific consensus where scientists have removed all
> reasonable doubt to their claims. A consensus is a subjective claim as it
> represents people's opinions. Facts and laws work within the subjective
> idea that they are considered by a consensus of being beyond a reasonable
> doubt. A legal law is similar, but it is prescriptive -- it says what is to
> be done or not done -- and a scientific law is descriptive.
>
> Subjectivity must be limited, nevertheless. If the strength of objectivity
> is removed from science, then it will set it back to the 16th century and
> beyond. Philosophy, religion, and other subjective frameworks with
> teleological approaches will decide the difference between a good theory and
> a bad. There will be no great need to have a theory offer accurate and
> very detailed predictions or retrodictions. Using a subjectively-based
> theory, we can blame the FSM (Flying Spaghetti Monster) -- or whatever is
> the fashionable consensus of the day -- for variations observed in the
> predictions.
>
> [Dave: Which means arguments over whether ID is "science" ultimately are
> meaningless. Who cares, except for the culture warriors who want to fight
> about public school curricula?]
>
> Whether ID is science or not *is* the argument. I would hope most
> scientists and science teachers do care. Considering the outcry against ID,
> perhaps most care.
>
> [Dave: The interesting question is whether anything ID says is "true."]
>
> If it can not be tested objectively, then how will we ever know? What
> tests does ID allow?
>
> GeorgeA
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> On Wed, Apr 23, 2008 at 4:54 PM, George Cooper <georgecooper@sbcglobal.net>
> wrote:
>
>
>
> Hi Dave,
>
> Natural re-arrangements of pre-existing material, versus non-natural
> re-arrangements. And their detractors are looking for the exactly that
> same criteria too. Except for one group: those who are driven by an
> ideology that says by definition there cannot be anything but natural
> phenomena because nothing else exists. The latter is a form of
> materialism.
>
>
> Science can not claim "nothing else exists", and doesn't. Science is
> a realm to itself, one that is based on objectivity. Science provides the
> specific pieces that allow more subjective model makers to design models
> that best represent reality as it is currently observable. These models (ie
> theories) must meet certain requirements to be legitimate scientific
> theories, including predicability and, usually, retrodictability.
>
>
>
> ID does not meet the definition of science. No scientific tests need to be
> conducted. Indeed, what scientific tests could be utilized? ID is a
> subjective idea, not objective.
>
>
>
> [But they dont do this based on science. If something by definition cannot
> be tested (cannot be evaluated by science) then how can someone use
> science to draw a conclusion? It is impossible, and thus it is illogical to
> claim that science was used to reach a viewpoint.]
>
>
>
> Science can determine if something is testable or not. This is a
> definitional test, not an experimental test. ID fails the definitional
> test.
>
>
>
> They rule out any possible explanation that is not "natural".
>
> And this, which is itself a both conclusion and a belief, was tested
> how? In the absence of testing it sounds like fideism or dogma. Neither of
> which is supposed to be a characteristic of science. Is it an "ultimate"
> sort of belief, affecting "ultimate questions"?
>
>
>
> Nope. By defnition, science excludes itself from purely supernatural
> determinations. Science can impact theology only when one of its subjective
> claim contains objective elements. For instance: Does the Earth have four
> corners?; Could a stone of certain mass be slingshotted and kill a giant?;
> Is the Earth the center of the universe?, etc.
>
>
>
> GeorgeA
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> *From:* David Opderbeck <dopderbeck@gmail.com>
> *To:* George Cooper <georgecooper@sbcglobal.net>
> *Cc:* asa@calvin.edu
> *Sent:* Wednesday, April 23, 2008 4:07 PM
> *Subject:* Re: Fw: [asa] Expelled and ID
>
> George C. said: Science is a realm to itself, one that is based on
> objectivity.
>
> I respond: This is surely overstated. The criterion of methodological
> naturalism, for example, is not an "objective" one. It represents,
> rather, a human judgment about the pragmatic bounds of the human enterprise
> our culture labels "science." It may or may not be a reasonable demarcation
> line for its own purposes, but it isn't an "objective" line. Which means
> arguments over whether ID is "science" ultimately are meaningless. Who
> cares, except for the culture warriors who want to fight about public school
> curricula? The interesting question is whether anything ID says is "true."
>
> On Wed, Apr 23, 2008 at 4:54 PM, George Cooper <georgecooper@sbcglobal.net>
> wrote:
>
>>
>> Hi Dave,
>>
>> Natural re-arrangements of pre-existing material, versus non-natural
>> re-arrangements. And their detractors are looking for the exactly that
>> same criteria too. Except for one group: those who are driven by an
>> ideology that says by definition there cannot be anything but natural
>> phenomena because nothing else exists. The latter is a form of
>> materialism.
>>
>>
>> Science can not claim "nothing else exists", and doesn't. Science is
>> a realm to itself, one that is based on objectivity. Science provides the
>> specific pieces that allow more subjective model makers to design models
>> that best represent reality as it is currently observable. These models (ie
>> theories) must meet certain requirements to be legitimate scientific
>> theories, including predicability and, usually, retrodictability.
>>
>> ID does not meet the definition of science. No scientific tests need to
>> be conducted. Indeed, what scientific tests could be utilized? ID is a
>> subjective idea, not objective.
>>
>>
>> [But they dont do this based on science. If something by definition
>> cannot be tested (cannot be evaluated by science) then how can someone use
>> science to draw a conclusion? It is impossible, and thus it is illogical to
>> claim that science was used to reach a viewpoint.]
>>
>>
>> Science can determine if something is testable or not. This is a
>> definitional test, not an experimental test. ID fails the definitional
>> test.
>>
>>
>> They rule out any possible explanation that is not "natural".
>>
>> And this, which is itself a both conclusion and a belief, was tested
>> how? In the absence of testing it sounds like fideism or dogma. Neither of
>> which is supposed to be a characteristic of science. Is it an "ultimate"
>> sort of belief, affecting "ultimate questions"?
>>
>>
>> Nope. By defnition, science excludes itself from purely supernatural
>> determinations. Science can impact theology only when one of its subjective
>> claim contains objective elements. For instance: Does the Earth have four
>> corners?; Could a stone of certain mass be slingshotted and kill a giant?;
>> Is the Earth the center of the universe?, etc.
>>
>> GeorgeA
>>
>>
>> On the other hand, since science is allegedly "tentative", if (the ruling
>> out ) is a "tentative belief" (and thus subject to change as new
>> information becomes available) then that might be different. In a legal
>> sense.
>>
>>
>>> Sounds like they have already made up their minds.
>>
>> Maybe.
>>
>> Cheers,
>> Dave (ASA member)
>>
>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Don (ASA member)
>>> ________________________________________
>>> From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu [asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu] On Behalf
>>> Of David Clounch [david.clounch@gmail.com]
>>> Sent: Tuesday, April 22, 2008 9:15 PM
>>> To: asa@calvin.edu
>>> Subject: Re: [asa] Expelled and ID
>>>
>>> skrogh,
>>>
>>> >"Since there is no lab test that can be used to tell what is designed or
>>> what isn't"
>>>
>>> I think I actually agree with you somewhat here. I've been saying for
>>> years that first we must be able to measure design. Then and only then
>>> should we worry about what the implications might be if we obtained a result
>>> from the measurement.
>>>
>>> But if someone is going to claim that something is all natural (ie, due
>>> to all natural processes) shouldn't one first be able to measure the
>>> difference between a natural phenomenon and a non-natural phenomenon? If
>>> science cannot measure this then how can science reach a conclusion that
>>> everything is natural?
>>>
>>> The answer is, science hasn't concluded.
>>>
>>> But there are design detectors. These exist between the ears of humans.
>>> Now, if one is going to tell people that "science says they are wrong",
>>> shouldn't one be able to at least have science objectively measure what is
>>> designed and what isn't? If your premise is correct, then those making
>>> this claim that "science says they are wrong", (or perhaps even that
>>> believers in design are being irrational) have a serious credibility
>>> problem with the public.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> On Sun, Apr 20, 2008 at 8:44 PM, skrogh. <panterragroup@mindspring.com
>>> <mailto:panterragroup@mindspring.com>> wrote:
>>> Thanks for the input, but that is not what we are really talking about
>>> with my modicum of sarcasm. I am talking about Design in the ID movement in
>>> trying to compete with legit sciences, not as in that 70's song "Master
>>> Designer." Since there is no lab test that can be used to tell what is
>>> designed or what isn't or nothing that can falsify it. Similar to trying to
>>> falsify Omphalism. Hope that clears it up.
>>>
>>> =========================================
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: David Opderbeck [mailto:dopderbeck@gmail.com<mailto:
>>> dopderbeck@gmail.com>]
>>> Sent: Sunday, April 20, 2008 8:34 PM
>>> To: panterragroup@mindspring.com<mailto:panterragroup@mindspring.com>
>>> Cc: D. F. Siemens, Jr.; asa@calvin.edu<mailto:asa@calvin.edu>
>>> Subject: Re: [asa] Expelled and ID
>>>
>>> Whatever you think if ID, "bad design" is a poor response if you believe
>>> in a creator God at all. However God created, this is we He did, "bad"
>>> designs and all. Unless you profess a God who isn't in control over
>>> whatever procesess He used to create.
>>>
>>> On Sun, Apr 20, 2008 at 3:21 PM, skrogh. <panterragroup@mindspring.com
>>> <mailto:panterragroup@mindspring.com>> wrote:
>>>
>>> Bad designs haven't seemed to gotten through the ID design detector.
>>> =========================================
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu<mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu>
>>> [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu<mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu>]On
>>> Behalf Of D. F. Siemens, Jr.
>>> Sent: Saturday, April 19, 2008 10:35 PM
>>> To: panterragroup@mindspring.com<mailto:panterragroup@mindspring.com>
>>> Cc: asa@calvin.edu<mailto:asa@calvin.edu>
>>> Subject: Re: [asa] Expelled and ID
>>>
>>> I think there is one which does so in principle. It's opposite would
>>> justify ID. If we have sequenced the genomes of all the species, or at least
>>> all the species in one kingdom, and figured out exactly how all the various
>>> parts work, if we discover some genes/control sequences/whatever else comes
>>> up that cannot be derived from others earlier in the evolutionary
>>> development, we presumably have evidence that they were introduced by the
>>> deity or some superior power. This is sure evidence for ID. However, the
>>> current indication is that we have sequences in genomes that simply preserve
>>> stuff from the past, which is clear evidence against ID. Things are too
>>> sloppy to be designed, unless the designer intends to mislead us.
>>>
>>> Generally, given the state of human knowledge, proof and falsification
>>> are claims too strong to be supported.
>>> Dave (ASA)
>>>
>>> On Sat, 19 Apr 2008 17:46:02 -0500 "skrogh." <
>>> panterragroup@mindspring.com<mailto:panterragroup@mindspring.com>>
>>> writes:
>>> Also, can one conceive of a potential observation that would falsify ID?
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu<mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu>
>>> [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu<mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu>]On
>>> Behalf Of Dehler, Bernie
>>> Sent: Saturday, April 19, 2008 5:39 PM
>>> To: asa@calvin.edu<mailto:asa@calvin.edu>
>>> Subject: RE: [asa] Expelled and ID
>>>
>>>
>>> ID is saying it is "science" so it can be more serious. To make it
>>> science, you have to bear on scientific things, such as math (statistics)
>>> and biology. So they are appealing to the hard sciences to bring it into
>>> the scientific realm.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> However, they have no scientific hypothesis. "God made it" is not a
>>> hypothesis, since it can't be tested. By definition, the scientific method
>>> requires a hypothesis that can be tested. You also can't test evolution per
>>> "origin of life," but there are other parts of evolution which are testable…
>>> ID has nothing testable. They think by disproving known naturalistic
>>> methods, God is then the default answer—but it isn't.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> ________________________________
>>>
>>> From: asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu<mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu>
>>> [mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu<mailto:asa-owner@lists.calvin.edu>]
>>> On Behalf Of Mountainwoman
>>> Sent: Saturday, April 19, 2008 2:10 PM
>>> To: asa@calvin.edu<mailto:asa@calvin.edu>
>>> Subject: [asa] Expelled and ID
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Having just seen Ben Stein's "Expelled," one thought that occurred to me
>>> is the following:
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Is Intelligent Design a modern incarnation of the classic teleological
>>> argument for the existence of God and therefore belongs in the philosophy
>>> and/or theology departments of universities rather than in the science
>>> departments?
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Paul Bruggink (ASA Member)
>>>
>>> Clarington, PA
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> --
>>> David W. Opderbeck
>>> Associate Professor of Law
>>> Seton Hall University Law School
>>> Gibbons Institute of Law, Science & Technology
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@calvin.edu with
>>> "unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
>>>
>>
>>
>
>
>

-- 
David W. Opderbeck
Associate Professor of Law
Seton Hall University Law School
Gibbons Institute of Law, Science & Technology
To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@calvin.edu with
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Received on Thu Apr 24 15:42:06 2008

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