Re: [asa] Are TE and ID Really That Far Apart?

From: Nucacids <>
Date: Fri Apr 25 2008 - 00:12:47 EDT

TE and ID are far apart when ID is proposed as a substitute for evolution.
However, both ID and evolution can co-exist, where evolution has, in some
way, been shaped by design.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Rich Blinne" <>
To: "David Opderbeck" <>
Cc: "asa" <>
Sent: Thursday, April 24, 2008 10:18 PM
Subject: [asa] Are TE and ID Really That Far Apart?

> On Apr 23, 2008, at 5:52 PM, David Opderbeck wrote:
>> I really enjoy Stephen Barr's work and he's a very interesting guy.
>> Query though: is cosmological design really not a form of "ID"? It
>> seems to me that many people who find cosmological design arguments
>> potentially helpful are put off of biological design arguments because
>> of the overstatement, politicization, etc. of the "ID movement" --
>> myself included. So making a distinction between cosmological and
>> biological ID is almost more of a necessary difference in politics,
>> style, and emphasis.
> Absolutely correct, David. I'll strengthen your point. Both are design
> arguments. They have the same form and have the same substance. In
> addition to that both have roughly the same concept of evolution. Dembski
> saying TE could be OK at the Messiah 2005 debate. Behe holds to common
> descent and natural selection. The one difference on so- called random
> mutation could be lessened if ID understood what is meant by us by random
> and by focusing on the non-randomness of the evolutionary process. By
> this I mean that evolution is random in the same sense that our children
> are male or female randomly or to use the Biblical example the random bow
> shot that killed Ahab. I'll spare the rest of the rehash of concursus
> divinitatis. BTW, I liked your discussion on analogia entis but that just
> proves that I am Reformed and George is Lutheran. :-)
> It seems to me that ID's problem is its own little form of scientism.
> Perhaps they cannot seem to identify the designer because of the issues
> that you as a lawyer have brought out previously. The other reason that I
> have heard specifically stated is they think it makes them sound more
> reasonable when it does the exact opposite. I have absolutely no problem
> that my kind of ID is not scientific and that my intent is to provide
> evidence for the Christian God. Again, as you have noted earlier science
> isn't more objective than other kinds of truth. It just uses a process
> that deals with our inherent subjectivity by having the checks and
> balances of peer review and testing hypotheses physically. Thanks for the
> heads up today on their journal which hasn't published anything in years.
> If the scientific elite truly were suppressing the truth or demarcating
> it into oblivion then this journal provides a way to get their vaunted
> research program out. But, there is no research program even though
> Philip Johnson promised not to move on to getting ID into the schools
> until they had real science to be taught. I believe -- correct me if I
> am wrong -- that it should be able to be taught in a philosophy class or
> the like in a survey style -- much like comparative religions. Now, they
> seem to think that this is inferior or more likely they perceive that
> *we* think it is inferior. At least for me, this is not true. Just
> because I believe that ID is not science does not imply I believe ID is
> not true (although some of the arguments are really, really bogus.)
> Furthermore, ID is better classified as philosophy anyway. What
> biological ID went through does serve as a cautionary tale for us when we
> use a cosmological ID argument which in my opinion is the strongest arrow
> in their quiver. Nevertheless, as George has noted the "many worlds"
> hypothesis for quantum physics and multiverses in general still are out
> there as legitimate possibilities. Any of these arguments should be more
> confirmatory rather than as a freestanding "proof".
> I really don't understand why we cannot talk about philosophy and
> theology. As your legal analysis has shown I see very little chance ID,
> or "teaching the controversy", or whatever the strategy du jour is ever
> getting in the schools. Given that, why not show our colors? But, this
> cannot happen as shown when both of us got booted from Uncommon Descent.
> Or, that theology was off the table at Messiah '05.
> I do have an idea for their research program. Show how the evolutionary
> process is not random, not how it cannot happen. We can give them help
> here. This could be like the '95 Behe/Miller debate in reverse where Behe
> showed that Miller's textbook claimed purposeless evolution and Miller
> knowing that evolution is not random in the popular sense fixed the
> error. It came back to bite him in the Dover trial where the old version
> was being used and Miller pointed to the new version. If the heart of the
> problem ID has is a random, purposeless, evolution, then we are here to
> help show how current, mainstream, evolutionary theory shows otherwise.
> It would require them to risk getting "expelled" by their YEC allies,
> though.
> Rich Blinne
> Member ASA
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Received on Fri Apr 25 00:14:41 2008

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