Tuesday, July 02, 2013

A Philosopher Trashes Junk DNA

I am one of those scientists who think that the discipline of "philosophy of science" is catering to some pretty stupid philosophers. Dan Graur found one of them, his name is Max Andrews and he's a graduate student in philosophy at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland ["I’ve Got a Little List" & “Let the Punishment Fit the Crime"].

You can read Max Andrews' blog posting at: Junk DNA Isn’t Junk. Be careful, you might find it very difficult to see the connection between this philosophy student's view of biology and anything you might recognize as real science.

It goes without saying that Max Andrews gets the Central Dogma wrong—many scientists make the same mistake. But here's a taste of what else he gets wrong.
The argument from junk DNA suggests that a designer would be maximally efficient in his use of information. There appears to be some information that does not execute or have any meaningful coding. Darwinism takes this issue and uses it as the result of the prediction that there would be left over information not being used due to natural selection and random mutation. However, it doesn’t appear that all junk DNA is actually junk.
Genome organization is patterned to be maximally informative. The overlapping codes observed are known to be evolutionarily costly, because random mutations will likely have a deteriorating effect, not an instructing role So the complex specified information entailed by any genomic region is orders of magnitude higher than previously suspected by, say, Dembski. Any seemingly random aspect of chromosome sequence arrangement is not. A case in point involves endogenous retroviruses (ERV’s). This implies that the taxonomically-specific formatting, indexing, punctuation, etc., of genomes were precisely written. Morphogenetic information is not reducible to the genotype—though it is strongly dependent upon it. Therefore, changes in DNA do not equal changes in the information that structures the body plan.
I wonder who his supervisor is? Maybe Dan or I could be external reviewer on his Ph.D. oral?


162 comments :

  1. This overlapping codes thing comes straight from Stephen Meyer's Signature in the Cell (and IIRC is repeated in Darwin's Doubt). It's mostly wishful thinking on Meyer's part. This guy has uncritically drank the ID KoolAid...

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    1. I love this sh!@. The complexity of the genome is simply cruising past any explanation evo-devo can offer, and Nick just snorts that 'only a creationist' would think like that.

      Well, kudos to design theory for stating the obvious and pleading for the dumping of a conceptual Gremlin. Better to walk then push a heap of rusting metal.

      Nick, your new old school shtick is noodling on you.

      No amount of "no, no, no" will save you from getting snagged in the thicket of complexity.

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    2. Except that Max Andrews says that the genome is not complex enough to explain biological complexity, that "morphogenetic information is not reducible to the genotype—though it is strongly dependent upon it. Therefore, changes in DNA do not equal changes in the information that structures the body plan."

      You creationists should at least try to get your stories straight.

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    3. They never got their stories straight, you think they will do so now? They even contradict themselves in the same multiauthor books for chris sakes, inadvertently undermining their own arguments.

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  2. And here I was thinking of doing a philosophy degree (with a strong phil of sci component) when I retire....

    Read Max's sidebar and other posts: he's a PR guy for William Lane Craig's apologetics outfit and really doesn't like internet atheists (OK, I don't like all of them either, but I get the impression Max doesn't like any of us).

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  3. Interesting bit of information in Andrews' "brief bio":

    Senior Writer and Public Relations Administrator for Reasonable Faith

    Would that be this "Reasonable Faith", by any chance?

    http://www.reasonablefaith.org/

    Another interesting observation: Andrews' blog accepts comments. Just saying....

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  4. Andrews tries his hand at some more biology here:

    http://sententias.org/2013/07/01/the-problem-of-whale-evolution-and-darwinism/

    It's not clear to me what those charts are actually supposed to represent, how he calculated those numbers (no sources cited) and why he feels the need to repeat them three times. It does appear, however, that they teach "The Argument from Humungous Numbers" as a valid form of argument in some philosophy schools. And the article also contains this gem of wisdom:

    All of this is based on the premise that DNA encodes the cetacean body plan and that mutations can change that programming. But if DNA does not contain the information for whaleness, then no number of mutations (plus selection) can account for the “great transformation.”



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  5. AND he received "The Alvin Plantinga Award for Best Thesis and Research"

    https://twitter.com/maxeoa/status/327868029000093697

    "The name of it was rather arbitrary but it sounds nice lol'

    That is, the reward is a joke.

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  6. He got one thing right:

    "So [whatever you care to think of in evolutionary biology] is orders of magnitude [different] than previously suspected by, say, Dembski."

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  7. Max Andrews:
    Darwinism takes this issue and uses it as the result of the prediction that there would be left over information not being used due to natural selection and random mutation.

    I would like to learn more about how natural selection fixes and maintains functionless sequences, please.

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  8. I've looked at it again to make sure it wasn't just me, but I don't think it is: That is one horribly written article. Most of the "clues" don't make any sense, even as grammatical sentences. It's as if he just transcribed the notes he scribbled down from one of the lectures at the DI symposium which he didn't really understand, and made a blog post out of them.

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    1. It's not just you. I think I fried my brain trying to parse this sentence: "When '98%' of being another species in similarity is of the 1.5% of protein coding". I can't be sure, but what I think he's trying to say is that the figure of 98% similarity between chimps and humans comes solely from comparing the coding DNA regions. Of course, this isn't true, as I'm sure everyone here knows, but it still strikes me as the most plausible reading.

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    2. I didn't check it but I am pretty sure that one will find something about different genetic codes in non-coding sequneces on his web pages

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    3. So, IOW, he is suggesting that the degree of similarity between the transcribed DNA of chimpanzees and humans is too great to explain the phenotypic differences between the two, and that it is the differences in junk DNA that account for this. That is, unless there is something other than DNA that contains the information for "humanness" and "chimpanzeeness."

      I think my IQ just dropped 10 points from typing that....

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    4. LS: No, that's a different argument. I think the IDiot intended a garbled version of Casey Luskinism when he wrote, ""When '98%' of being another species in similarity is of the 1.5% of protein coding". Compare that arglebargl to Luskin's falsification of genomic science.

      Casey Luskin: "Most studies that have claimed that humans and apes have nearly identical genomes have primarily looked at the gene-coding portions of the genome, not the non-coding DNA (formerly claimed to be "junk"). Perhaps as biologists study the non-coding regions of our genome, they will find evidence that challenges two icons of evolution: Not only does "junk" DNA have function, but humans aren't as genetically similar to apes as was once thought." [Study Challenges Two Icons of Evolution: Functional Junk DNA Shows "Surprising" Genetic Differences Between Humans and Apes. Casey Luskin. ENV. September 24, 2008. ]

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    5. I hit "publish" too soon. Anyway, note that Luskin is falsely claiming that the 98.7% similarity between humans and chimps was computed WITHOUT looking at non-coding regions-- Luskin and Andrews are saying that the 98% similarity was ONLY computed from coding DNA. Utterly false, and pathetic.

      If this ungrammatical wantwit is the best that DI can win to their side after 20 years of loud and vociferous falsification of data, quote-mining and scientific fraud, then we've won the battle.

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    6. Jeez. I had no idea that was one of the lines the IDiots were pushing. Is there no lie so blatant they won't utter it, and their minions won't believe?

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    7. No. There is no lie do blatant they won't push it.

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    8. "Perhaps as biologists study the non-coding regions of our genome, they will find evidence that challenges two icons of evolution:"

      The thing I find most funny is that neo-darwinism actually "predicts" that junk DNA should not exist (just look at Mayr). That's why adaptationists are all over the ENCODE nonsense. Even if junk DNA didn't exist, all it would do is show that neo-darwinists were right all along and that molecular evolutionists from the last 40 years or so were wrong. Junk DNA is not a fundamental "icon" of evolutionary theory.

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    9. The 98% figures first came out of DNA hybridisation studies, which haven't got a clue where coding starts and stops ...

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  9. Bingo! It's actually in the post Larry refered to:
    "Mutations also generate a lot of “junk” or DNA gibberish according to the model, with selection keeping the useful genetic codes in tact."

    I just wonder why he republished this blog post because he already posted it back in 2012 under the title Junk DNA Isn’t Necessarily Junk (emphasis mine). Did he gain new information in the mean time to leave out "necessarily" in the title this time? If so, he forgot to add it to his post.

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    1. Yes, I noticed the same thing with the post on whale evolution I linked above. There's an earlier version of he same thing here:

      http://sententias.org/2012/02/06/darwinian-whale-evolution/

      In that version, he repeats the three charts, but with one line crossed out in each, so at least it makes a bit more sense, though still not a lot of sense.

      IOW, he repeats the same post a year later, but he adds errors to the new version that weren't in the original.

      Larry can confirm this, but I doubt this level of writing would be accepted from a grad student in the sciences, and yet this guy is pursuing a degree in the humanities, where I would presume writing skills would, if anything, be even more highly prioritized. And he is studying at University of Edinburgh, not some Christian clown college like Liberty or Biola. Strange.

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    2. Apparently, a creationist "philosopher" got his PhD in philosophy from the U of Waterloo by recycling old creationist arguments for the existence of "God." The U of Waterloo is no Christian clown college, yet ...

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    3. I wonder if there is a discipline called "Philosophy of Geography", in which philosophers tell geographers that, no, they've got it all wrong: Australia is located in the northern hemisphre, and the capital of France is Omaha.

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    4. Well, sure: "north", "south" and "Paris" are just labels chosen by arbitrary convention. And a dog has five legs....

      ;-)

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    5. I don't think even BIOLA would put up with this ungrammatical, unscholarly arglebargle. This idiot can't even distinguish genetic sequence vs. code.

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    6. U of Waterloo is no Christian clown college

      It does contain some associated colleges that are religious. See 'affiliated institutions' in the wiki page.

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    7. "I wonder if there is a discipline called "Philosophy of Geography", in which philosophers tell geographers that, no, they've got it all wrong: Australia is located in the northern hemisphre, and the capital of France is Omaha."

      That's a good one. I guess these examples are illustrative of the nose dive that Philosophy in general took after it branched out from what we now call Science. Philosophers that talk about morality without any fucking clue of biological evolution of behaviour, that talk about the "meaning" of quantum physics with a fucking clue of the underlining theory, that talk about the existence of "god" as if the question is solved by throwing around sophisticated words and empty reasoning.

      I petty all the good philosophers out there that have to live with such muck.

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    8. What's really funny Lutesuite, is that he *is* a graduate of Liberty.

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    9. Just to be clear: I don't mean to disparage all Christian universities. I realize that there are many that provide education of the highest standard and do not compromise their educational mission by adherence to religious doctrine.

      Liberty is not among these.

      Delete
    10. Is this IDiot really a graduate of Liberty?

      That would explain a lot-- like his inability to form a coherent sentence.

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  10. Turns out he isn't even a "philosopher of science" at all, but a theologian at heart. Oh well..

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  11. Maybe Dan or I could be external reviewer on his Ph.D. oral?

    You best bring a bagged lunch with you. It would take a least 2-3 hrs just to get him to explain what the hell his sentences even mean. Only then could one begin to examine the validity of his claims.

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  12. Is it my imagination or does this Max Andrews have a Dembski face? Or an Ouweneel face (anaother creationist) http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willem_Ouweneel

    Any other creationists with this type of face?

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    1. I thought the same. Unworthy, genetically determinist thoughts.

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  13. @Larry:

    [I wonder who his supervisor is? Maybe Dan or I could be external reviewer on his Ph.D. oral?]

    Nice threat, Larry. The student writes a blog post with which you disagree, and you muse about destroying his career.

    Despite all of your faux proclamations of academic freedom, you're still a bully at heart.

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    1. Since when has academic freedom meant "get a degree despite being an ass-hole"? Or "get a degree despite talking bullshit"?

      Academic freedom does not mean that students should get degrees they don't deserve.

      Delete
    2. Did you get to be a neurosurgeon by mistaking blood vessels and nerves?

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    3. Negative Entropy

      You got one or so you claim...??? Miracle if it's true...

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    4. If Egnor had a student who thought you could do surgery with dirty hands and a gardening spade, Egnor would pass the idiot, I guess.

      Indeed, you'd probably make him magne cum laude, wouldn't you Egnor?

      Conservative values are all about rewarding total incompetence and denigrating excellence.

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    5. "Nice threat, Larry. The student writes a blog post with which you disagree, and you muse about destroying his career."

      But you see, the problem is not disagreeing with his posts. It's just just that it's full of errors. Usually, students don't fail tests because they have opinions, instead they fail tests because they statements are factually wrong. But I guess in Philosophy anything goes, since his thesis advisors apparently don't know any better about biology than him.

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    6. "But I guess in Philosophy anything goes, since his thesis advisors apparently don't know any better about biology than him."

      This isn't true - if you make factual errors, illegitimate inferences etc. you won't be able to publish in a reputable journal barring some other circumstances (eg. Feser's incident with Forest). There are some other problems: 1) I highly doubt he has any current advisors - he's a graduate of Liberty University. Edinburgh has a 3 year PhD program with no coursework, but it doesn't start until September. 2) He hasn't started his doctoral thesis, so we don't know if it'll contain biology. 3) He's started his own journal to publish his nonsense.

      He's an idiot, and he's wrong, but he's not mainstream philosophy's fault. It's more Liberty University + William Lane Craig + IDiots faults than anything else.

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    7. Ah, Liberty. So he is a graduate of a Christian clown college.

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    8. "Feser's incident with Forest"

      Tell us more. Which Forest? Would you mean Barbara Forrest?

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    9. My mistake, I meant Beckwith - they're both interchangeable in my mind. Brian Leiter has a pretty good summary of the incident on his blog: http://leiterreports.typepad.com/blog/2011/04/synthese-editors-cave-in-to-pressure-from-the-intelligent-design-lobby.html

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    10. Summary? The editors of Synthese, in response to claims from Beckwith and the ID lobby issued a statement chastising the guest-editors and authors of an entire special issue on intelligent design (including Forrest). They also let Beckwith publish an unedited reply to Forrest's piece concerning his political involvement with ID.

      This is pretty far from the norm, and I know people who still refuse to publish with, or review for Synthese due to the incident.

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    11. Well, that explains a lot. Anyway, in my home country a PhD thesis is defended against 3 opponents. In his case, if he were going to defend a Philosophy thesis based on biological assumptions, one of his opponents would have to be a Biologist. That's how things should be done. Otherwise, it would be a travesty of a PhD defense. How is this stuff in the US?

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    12. Just noticed a reply below, so ignore my post.

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    13. Isn't this the fellow that used his medical ethics class to attack 'Darwinism'? What a tool. A pseudointellectual, cowardly tool.

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  14. Not surprisingly, Mregnor doesn't understand how academic degrees are conferred. When one writes a PhD thesis this thesis must be successfully defended to an audience of experts in the field. (We are talking about real doctorates here, not the theological version that allows every televangelist to call themselves doctor).
    So, this isn't about destroying someone's career, its about seeing whether they can defend their thesis and thus deserve the highest academic title that can be conferred.

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    1. What I don't understand is how thesis can be conferred in Philosophy that are based on Biology, Physiscs, whatever without one of the opponents being a specialist. If your underlying premises are wrong, than all the "philosophy" you're building upon those premises is invalid and useless. I seem to remember that in my homecountry my professors defended their Masters and PhD thesis against 3 opponents. I don't know if that was old practice or is something that differs from country to country. I'd suggest Philosophy should adopt such practice to avoid the slur of nonsese that it produces.

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    2. Max doesn't have his doctoral thesis, we don't know if his thesis will be about biology, and he will have to defend against a committee. The committee will likely consist of 3 faculty plus an external (someone not from the faculty of philosophy), but the external might be a philosopher.

      I think it's safe to say that he likely won't be writing a dissertation on philosophy of biology, since while Edinburgh has philosophers of science, none of them specialize in philosophy of biology.

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  15. Hey Larry, are you gonna let the chihuahuas answer for you?

    Max's post about biology is an order of magnitude more erudite than your posts about philosophy.

    [http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/01/antichristian_bigot_dr_larry_m015331.html]

    Here's what you said about Christian students who personally reject Darwinism, but who pass all exams:

    "Flunk the IDiots...40% of the freshman class [at UCSD] reject Darwinism... the university has become alarmed at the stupidity of its freshman class and has offered remedial instruction for those who believe in Intelligent Design Creationism...UCSD should not have required their uneducated students to attend remedial classes. Instead, they should never have admitted them in the first place...[T]he University should just flunk the lot of them and make room for smart students who have a chance of benefiting from a high quality education... Of course, we all recognize the problem here. How do you distinguish between a good Christian who is lying for Jesus and one who has actually come to understand science? It seems really unfair to flunk the honest students who admit that they still reject science and pass the dishonest ones who hide their true beliefs...As we've seen time and time again on the blogs (and elsewhere), the Christian fundamentalists have erected very strong barriers against learning. It really doesn't matter how much they are exposed to rational thinking and basic scientific evidence. They still refuse to listen...This is one of the reasons why I would flunk them if they took biology and still rejected the core scientific principles. It's not good enough to just be able to mouth the "acceptable" version of the truth that the Professor wants."

    [http://www.evolutionnews.org/2008/04/a_letter_to_dr_larry_moran005064.html]

    Even if they passed the exams, you'd flunk the fundamentalist Christians.

    How far would you have gotten in academics if the stupid and grossly unethical things you say in your blog were brought up by your external cultured despisers at your oral defense? Should it be brought up now, in an effort to damage you professionally?

    If Max's (faux) "misunderstandings" about biology constitute reason to damage him professionally, why doesn't your gross disregard for professional ethics (religious discrimination against your students and juvenile personal insults and name-calling that characterizes your blog) constitute a reason to damage you professionally?

    Don't let your chihuahuas answer this one for you, Larry. Man up.





    How about your insistence that Christian undergraduates who hold fundamentalist personal beliefs be flunked out of school, even though they have passed all exams and keep their beliefs to themselves?

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    1. I don't see why you have a problem. If UCSD applicants demonstrated a profound ignorance of English, history, or geography would the university accept them? Why should profound ignorance of biology—indeed all of science—be any different?

      How far would you have gotten in academics if the stupid and grossly unethical things you say in your blog were brought up by your external cultured despisers at your oral defense? Should it be brought up now, in an effort to damage you professionally?

      Feel free to bring them up whenever you want. And if I were submitting a thesis I would welcome examiners with different points of view. I feel quite capable of defending my opinions against all comers.

      How about your insistence that Christian undergraduates who hold fundamentalist personal beliefs be flunked out of school, even though they have passed all exams and keep their beliefs to themselves?

      I never said any such thing. In fact, I specifically mentioned the difficulty in recognizing students who are prepared to lie about what they believe in order to get a degree.

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    2. Larry:

      "I never said any such thing."

      Bullshit.

      I quoted you above.

      "those who believe in Intelligent Design Creationism... should never have admitted them in the first place"

      You specifically advocated that students who believe in "intelligent design creationism", which means most Christians, should not even have been admitted to UCSD.

      Do you feel that way about religious Jews and Muslims, who are creationists as well? Is your belief that religious people who believe that the universe was created ("creationists") should all be denied college admission, or only Christians?

      You advocated flunking students who "mouthed the acceptable version of the truth that the professor wants"-- i.e. you advocated flunking students who held Christian views on science (all Christians are "creationists", broadly defined), even if they passed their coursework and exams. Presumably you advocate flunking believing believing Jews and Muslims (they're "creationists" too, Larry).

      Imagine a public referendum on this question:

      Consider two people in academia. One person advocates banning Christians who believe God created the world from college and flunking them if their private beliefs are discovered. The other believes that God created the world. Which person is a disgrace to academia?

      If you ask the general public whether a professor who said what you said should keep their job, 90% of the public would demand that they fire your ass.

      Yet, Larry, I've never written to the U of T demanding that you be fired, reprimanded, whatever. And if someone tried to get you fired, I'd defend you. Because I think that people ought to be able to freely express a wide range of opinions, even vile opinions like yours about destroying students' careers because of their religious beliefs, without professional destruction.

      If you actually discriminated against a student, I'd demand they fire your ass in a second. But there's no evidence you've ever done that.

      You need to apply the same respect that has so successfully insulated you from the consequences of your vile opinions to people who hold views that are different from yours, and views that are manifestly less noxious than yours.

      If you'd like to have an open blog debate about what you said, I'm game. Put up a post defending your posts about excluding and flunking Christian students on Sandwalk, and I'll reply on my blog. I'm sure the DI would love to get involved as well.

      Let's shed some light on your opinions, so as many people as possible are aware of what you've said. Why do you run away?

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    3. Little clarification here: no, you did not quote Larry, you quoted evolution-news-and-views. Also, if you read Larry's actual post, and were able to keep ideas in your mind for longer than one sentence away, you would better understand Larry's points. That requires more intelligence and concentration than you might be willing to put into it, but it's worth a try if you're really interested in understanding what Larry thinks.

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    4. Larry:

      Your chihuahuas keep answering, but this is a question you should address.

      Let's have a blog debate about your publicly stated opinion that Christians who believe that God created the world (i.e. creationists) should be denied admission from college and should be flunked in science courses despite passing the coursework and exams, if their private Christian beliefs are discovered.

      That is the straightforward reading of your own posts.

      Defend them on your blog, or explain that you didn't mean what you said.

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    5. If a "chihuahua" may ask a quesiton: Could you please provide a quotation where Larry specifically says any Christian who believes God created the world should be denied college admission?

      I'm sure Larry does not advocate flunking incompetent students who are incompetent because of their religious beliefs, and not flunkig those who are incompetent for reasons other than religion. So would you define his position as discriminatory?

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    6. Larry:

      Your chihuahuas are getting all confused, because you said that "creationist" Christians should be denied admission to college and should be flunked if their beliefs are discovered.

      Chihuahuas get all nervous and yippy when they don't understand things.

      Surely you can have a blog debate with me, and clear this up.

      Delete
    7. mregnor said,

      Your chihuahuas keep answering ...

      If your are sufficiently stupid to mistake a clarification with an answer, then I doubt that you could have a "debate" with Larry. Your mental incompetence would keep getting in the way of your understanding of any issues raised. It's up to Larry, of course, but I would decline.

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    8. It's very nice of Mr. Egnor to drop by and provide a case example of how IDiots either willfully distort what others have written, or are simply incapable of understanding what has been written.

      Does he really believe that Larry says all Christians who believe God created the world (Francis Collins, for example) should be refused admission to college? Is he that incapable of reading plain English? Or is he just a liar? Maybe he can clear that up for us chihuahuas.

      Delete
    9. mregnor says,

      You specifically advocated that students who believe in "intelligent design creationism", which means most Christians, should not even have been admitted to UCSD.

      Intelligent Design Creationism" is a movement dedicated to proving that evolution is worng. You should not be admitted to university if you don't accept the most fundamental principles of science.

      There are plenty of Christians who are creationists but accept evolution. I would not exclude such people.

      You advocated flunking students who "mouthed the acceptable version of the truth that the professor wants"- ...

      No, I didn't. If they pass the exams by lying about their true views on the subject then there's nothing we can do.

      You need to apply the same respect that has so successfully insulated you from the consequences of your vile opinions to people who hold views that are different from yours, and views that are manifestly less noxious than yours.

      I'm prepared to give you a lot more respect than you give me. I don't believe I have ever misrepresented your views or referred to them as "vile opinions."


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    10. I almost spit out my coffee when I saw Egnor complaining about other people being "vile".

      Egnor knows all about being "vile". He's one of the most vile people out there, never hesitating to smear anyone he disagrees with as a Nazi, even teenage girls.

      Can you even imagine what it's like being his student?

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    11. Hey Jeff,

      remember when Smegnor showed up at your blog and began idiotically pretending he understood information theory, and was using jargon words he didn't know the meaning of? Then when challenged, he ran away?

      This was Smegnor at your blog:

      Smegnor: A non-teleological blog post would be generated by a random letter/punctuation input to a non-deterministic Turing machine in which the state and symbol do not uniquely determine the transition function, which is itself governed by a random letter/punctuation generator.

      Smegnor had gone to some Wikipedia page and copied some jargon words but he didn't know what they meant. So Jeff pointed out that this was word salad and didn't mean anything. Jeff asked Smegnor to explain his terms, and Smegnor refused.

      I only had to write one comment, just one comment, and Smegnor ran away terrified.

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    12. "Smegnor had gone to some Wikipedia page and copied some jargon words but he didn't know what they meant."

      That's pretty much what IDiocy arguments amount too. Either that or 800 year old arguments.

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    13. The chihuahuas? Sorry pal - we don't have lame-brained sycophants like Sal Cordova or Barry Arrington here. Also note that you are actually allowed to post here - why are creationists so insistent upon blocking commentary from those that disagree? Cowardice? Power hunger? Fear of having your ignorance exposed (too late for that)? Go back to your circus of idiots.

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    14. "Smegnor had gone to some Wikipedia page and copied some jargon words but he didn't know what they meant."

      That sort of thing holds sway on IDiot blogs because the majority of IDiot readers don't know any differently, and those that do are of the 'little lie for Jesus' sort.

      Delete
  16. Max Andrews (you also call him Andrew Max in your post) should have a discussion with Edward Max.

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    1. Thanks. Spellcheck doesn't do a very good job of correcting dyslexia (and stupidity).

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    2. Larry:

      The pups are gettin' jumpy. They're wondering why you seem afraid of this topic. Maybe you won't engage a blog debate on what appears to be grossly unethical statements on your part because you're not an abstract thinker. You're a nuts n' bolts kinda' guy.

      Here's a practical question:

      You've got a grad student-- Johnny Fundie. He's a great student. Highest exam grades, enthusiastic diligent investigator, just tops. His PhD project on cosmology and evolutionary biology (he's a man for all seasons) is brilliant and successful. He is stellar on his oral exam. Knows more cosmology and evolutionary biology than you do. Masterful. Graduation day is comin', and you're just gettin' ready to go on down to the Dean's office to sign the papers to make him a PhD. But you decide to look up a few of your favorite molecules on the internet, and you come across Johnny's website, which you've never seen before. On it, he has a ton of blog posts about his Christian faith, including posts about his belief that Genesis is literally true, the earth is 6000 years old, etc.

      Yikes, Larry! Here's your best grad student, got A's in everything, and his personal beliefs are... creationist!He's... he's... a liaaar for Jesus!

      What do you do? Do you refuse to sign off on his degree?

      Easy question, Lar. Yes or no, and why.

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    3. The pups are gettin' jumpy. They're wondering why you seem afraid of this topic.

      Actually, the "pups" couldn't care less for two reasons: 1) the regulars on this blog are capable of reading for comprehension, and 2) we don't regard anybody, even someone as accomplished in his field as Larry, as being the intellectual ruler whom we must look to for guidance always. You're confusing your own intellectual incapability and slavish authoritarianism with that of your audience, and the audience isn't very impressed.

      Delete
    4. "Knows more cosmology and evolutionary biology than you do" = "believes that Genesis is literally true, the earth is 6000 years old, etc.", eh? I'd certainly love to ask him how he manages to "know" one thing and "believe" something completely different. Fortunately, where I come from, getting a degree involves more than the advisor's signing a piece of paper. Actually, the advisor has little influence on the PhD process once the dissertation has been submitted. We have a public defence where not only members of the Faculty Council but anyone present may ask the candidate a question. It would be a suitable moment to probe Johnny's intellectual integrity. At the end of the examination, the professors accept the defence and confer the degree by secret ballot. Who knows, they might find it reasonable to flunk an obvious nut case.

      Delete
    5. Larry:

      The puppies are gettin jumpy. They're chewin' on the leash:

      "we don't regard anybody, even someone as accomplished in his field as Larry, as being the intellectual ruler whom we must look to for guidance always."

      They may be man's best friend, but they aren't your best friend, Larry. They don't like obvious dissembling bigots I guess. Who could blame them?

      One of the pups seems to like your style:

      "It would be a suitable moment to probe Johnny's intellectual integrity."

      Maybe a background check, to check for Christian tendencies, if you know what I mean.

      It's not easy being a Religion Inspector, Larry. Heck, in Piotr's own country, 70 years ago, they had the same problem: how do you really know who's a Jew, unless you check carefully? They don't always carry papers.

      Happy huntin'.

      Delete
    6. Like Larry, I wouldn't be interested in Johnny's religion. But "the earth is 6000 years old" is not an article of the Church. It's a testable statement about the physical Universe. It can be and has been falsified empirically. If you know anything about physics, geology, astronomy, etc., you should also know that this statement is false. How can you KNOW it and BELIEVE the opposite without suffering from a split personality?

      Delete
    7. Egnor the IDiot wrote:
      They don't like obvious dissembling bigots I guess.

      You've just given us your very own self-portrait.

      Delete
    8. Larry,

      Now the pups are telling lies about you:

      "Like Larry, I wouldn't be interested in Johnny's religion."

      But you've said that you've very interested in students' religion. Damned interested. So interested, in fact, that you predicate their academic survival on their personal interpretation of Genesis. Regardless of how they do in class. If they're creationists, no college for them. If you catch'em 'cause they lied for Jesus and got into college anyway, you insist that they be flunked.

      Or have I misrepresented you, Larry? Hard to know, if you are afraid to discuss what you've said.

      Delete
    9. Oh, and Larry, one of 'em said this:

      [How can you KNOW it and BELIEVE the opposite without suffering from a split personality?]

      An atheist, who believes that nothing in the universe ultimately has a reason, is confounded by irrationality!

      They need your help, Larry.

      Delete
    10. mregnor sez:

      "we don't regard anybody, even someone as accomplished in his field as Larry, as being the intellectual ruler whom we must look to for guidance always."

      They may be man's best friend, but they aren't your best friend, Larry. They don't like obvious dissembling bigots I guess.


      Dr. Egnor, could you kindly explain how you draw the conclusion in the 2nd paragraph from the statement you quoted in the first? Such thought processes are quite alien to me, and I'd like to see how they work.

      Delete
    11. Or have I misrepresented you, Larry? Hard to know, if you are afraid to discuss what you've said.

      Dr. Egnor writes this at 2:58 PM.

      28 minutes before that, at 2:30 PM, Larry had already posted a reply clarifying (yet again) his position.

      Do IDiots live in a time warp?

      Delete
    12. lutesuite asks:
      Do IDiots live in a time warp?

      Do you need to ask? They live in a world where the pinnacle of scientific progress is from the 17th to 18th centuries and where evolutionary biology hasn't changed since 1950.

      It's just a jump to the left....

      Delete
    13. Hey Mikey - this sort of crap:

      "The pups are gettin' jumpy."

      would get a thinking person banned from the blogs and websites of your like-minded brothers in lying for Jesus, yet here you are blabbering away like you've earned it. Like I wrote before - what a pseudointellectual tool you are.

      Delete
  17. Larry:

    [Intelligent Design Creationism" is a movement dedicated to proving that evolution is worng.]

    Bullshit. "Intelligent Design Creationism" is your moniker, not a movement or a theory.

    "Creationism" is the belief that God created everything. It is usually used to signify young-earth creationists, who believe that the earth is a few thousand years old. I disagree with them as strongly as you do. So do most ID advocates. I am a creationist, in the old-earth creationist sense. So are 99% of people on earth. Sane people.

    Intelligent design is the theory that biology manifests hallmarks of intelligent agency. It is entirely consistent with evolutionary theory, if you carve out the materialist-atheist shit. It is a pefectly valid scientific inference, and supported by the evidence.

    [You should not be admitted to university if you don't accept the most fundamental principles of science.]

    What students "accept" is none of your damn business. What they do in their coursework is your business.

    [There are plenty of Christians who are creationists but accept evolution. I would not exclude such people.]

    Oh good. You are so tolerant not to exclude them.

    Bottom line: you have no right to exclude anyone who successfully completes the coursework required of all students.

    You're not a religion-inspector, or a procecutor, or an interrogator. The personal views of the students are none of your damn business. Anti-Christian bigots don't get special "exclusion" authority. Nobody gives a sh*t who you think should be "excluded". Try it, and your ass will land in court. Your blog posts will be a treasure-trove.

    [If they pass the exams by lying about their true views on the subject then there's nothing we can do.]

    You're right. You'd get your ass sued off if you tried. But why would you want "to do" something? Why do students' religious opinions fall under your authority? You're the judge of their coursework, not their soul. And why are you the "lying" detector? You're lying about what you wrote on your blog.

    [I'm prepared to give you a lot more respect than you give me.]

    I'm giving you the respect you've earned.

    I'm a professor as well, and a doctoral advisor, and I work with students on a daily basis. I don't care one bit what their personal religious beliefs are, although I can assure that I take these science-religion wars as seriously as you do. But I leave my students out of it. I would NEVER hold a student's religious (or irreligious) beliefs against him, or for him, for that matter. I would never advocate that a student be academically disadvantaged because of his or her atheist/Christian/Jewish/Muslim/whatever belief.

    I grade my students on their performance in class and in the wards and clinics and operating room. I would never threaten students with reprisals based on religious belief, as you have done.

    Your statements that I have quoted are a disgrace to the teaching profession. You lack the integrity to admit what you said, and renounce it, and apologize for it.

    The idea that a Christian kid comes into class with a professor who intends to find out his personal religious views and destroy him academically because of those views is utterly repulsive to me.

    I can't imagine a teacher saying what you said.

    [I don't believe I have ever misrepresented your views or referred to them as "vile opinions."]

    It's because my opinions aren't vile, Larry.

    I don't care about your opinions on religion or science. You're a philosophical moron, and your knowledge of science is narrow and unreflective.

    I do care about what you do and threaten to do to Christian students. Rest assured that as long as you persist in those threats, you will always have an enemy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Egnor writes:
      Intelligent design is the theory that biology manifests hallmarks of intelligent agency. It is entirely consistent with evolutionary theory, if you carve out the materialist-atheist shit.

      Entirely consistent? So intelligent design is entirely consistent with common descent, with the evolution of complex adaptations, etc. etc.? I think you might wish to communicate this with your colleagues in the ID movement, then, because I'm reading through a book right now that proposes that animal phyla are separate creations, and it's been heavily promoted as the biggest thing in years — even the best science book ever written — by representatives of the ID movement.

      If this intelligent designer operates in a manner completely consistent with evolution, then what does it do, exactly? Is it the Cosmic Quantum State Detangler of Ken Miller's Finding Darwin's God? Does it kill off certain organisms in a population like a breeder using artificial selection? Wouldn't natural selection take care of things without the designer's intervention? Or is it that the designer's interventions are independent of function, making the designer something of a Dadaist? Well, that's genetic drift, isn't it? Or does the designer look down and give a nudge to weak selection, guiding it in the "right" direction? If so, how do you know what the "right" direction is?

      It is a pefectly valid scientific inference, and supported by the evidence.

      The only way this could be true and intelligent design could be consistent with evolution is if the "materialist-atheist shit" results in unique predictions compared to someone who is less materialistic and atheistic. But if that's the case, then why do the evolutionary biologists who are theists come to the same conclusion as the ones who are atheists? Are they suppressing contradictory results? What hypotheses can you find in conventional evolutionary biology that are based on the assumption that only the material exists and that god, consequently, does not? How would they be changed if one allowed a god into the picture? How does one test for the actions of an omnipotent deity? And if a god is in the picture, then how is this not creationism, even if not of the "young earth" variety?

      Delete
    2. Larry,

      One of your less informed pups is asking me really stupid questions about ID. See if you can help him.

      You might want to point out to him that if everything came from nothing, according to your atheist faith, then phyla can come from nothing even more easily than the universe can come from nothing.

      Things can just pop into existence, with no cause at all. Just like the universe did.

      So why bother with natural selection? Why invoke some causes, and deny a cause for the whole shebang? Why bother with science at all, if you're an atheist?

      You really need to read up on the Principle of Sufficient Reason. It's one of these philosophy things, but science and logic depend on it. Not that you care.

      There no magical thinking as crazy as atheism.

      Delete
    3. Thanks for proving that you're nothing but a bloviating pseudointellectual, Egnor.

      You might want to point out to him that if everything came from nothing, according to your atheist faith, then phyla can come from nothing even more easily than the universe can come from nothing.

      Unfortunately, my questions were not about the so-called "atheist faith", but about intelligent design, which you've assured us is not atheistic nor materialistic. Since you're the intelligent design advocate who is assuring us of ID's complete consistency with the theory of evolution, you ought to be able to answer these questions yourself, instead of dodging them and spewing out irrelevant bullshit at typhoon volume.

      Delete
    4. It's all from the atheist faith, fool. None of this from your end of things has shit to do with science.

      You don't believe that anything ultimately has a cause. So why would I argue science with a nihilistic uncaused meat machine?

      Delete
    5. It's all from the atheist faith, fool.

      Including intelligent design? That was the subject of the conversation — or rather the subject of the conversation we might have had if you had the intestinal fortitude to respond to pertinent questions about your assertions.

      Delete
    6. Larry,

      You really must filter out these meat machines. They keep making nonsensical comments.

      Delete
    7. Larry,

      The funniest thing just happened. One of these meat machine bots (Nulli...something) secreted some words, and appeared to be endearingly mocking and sneering intelligent design, God, Christianity, the whole shebang. And the funny thing is that when I responded to it with endearing mockery and sneering about its own batshit atheist presumptions, it seemed... hurt and offended, as if it were somehow exempt from mockery and sneering!

      Amazing what meat will do, if you leave it in the dark.

      Delete
    8. Yeah Null, because if a nihilistic christian, such as this Egnor imbecile, projects his stupidity and therefore thinks that you should believe whatever way he thinks you should believe, then you believe as he thinks you should believe. So obvious and irrefutable!

      Let's not forget that his best tools are half-digested, 19th century philosophies as expounded by creobots. Things that you either accept or you accept, because it was explained to Egnor by some authority figure and you don't mess up with his authority figures. That's unbeatable you know?

      I bet that he will come back with some false dichotomy if I mention that, for example, the principle of sufficient reason is controversial, or that science and logic do not depend on such thing. Of course, the false dichotomy will be hollered with such triumphalism that he will be right just because such style is enough to make it right. All very obvious.

      Delete
    9. It's interesting that Null made some pertinent questions, and, because all IDiots have is arguments based on faulty logic against evolution, science, and atheism, then Egnor had to do exactly what's expected from these creationists, produce red-herrings to distract us from the fact that ID is not about anything supported by data. Ironically, his distractions are precisely attacks against evolution, science, and atheism. But no sir, ID is not creationism.

      Delete
    10. Poor Egnor can't do without negative attention.

      appeared to be endearingly mocking and sneering intelligent design, God, Christianity, the whole shebang.

      Perhaps you should stop dipping into the pharmacy stash, because what I was really doing was asking you a series of questions that could really be boiled down to two: "How is it that intelligent design can be 'entirely consistent with evolutionary theory', and yet still be supported by distinct evidence over standard evolutionary theory?" and "If ID really is completely consistent with standard evolutionary theory, then why should we prefer it over evolution as it is understood now?"

      it seemed... hurt and offended

      Whatever it is you're on has again interfered with your ability to understand reality, because I was really amused by an overweening arrogance yoked to an egregious intellectual cowardice. PZ Myers really nailed you when he said that you "[manage] to combine the arrogance of a surgeon with the ignorance of most creationist hacks in a way that I’m sure the other DI fellows envy — he’s like the apotheosis of the Intelligent Design ideal. Why, he’s got the dishonesty of Wells, the pomposity of Johnson, the ineffectual stupidity of Luskin, and the egotism of Berlinski, all wrapped up in one package."

      Delete
    11. Bottom line: you have no right to exclude anyone who successfully completes the coursework required of all students.

      This is correct. If the evaluations don't bother asking the students to demonstrate critical thinking and don't ask them to describe and defend what they actually believe to be true about biology, then they could get high marks even if they were Young Earth Creationists.

      I grade my students on their performance in class and in the wards and clinics and operating room. I would never threaten students with reprisals based on religious belief, as you have done.

      What do you do when their religious beliefs interfere with their ability to practice good medicine? Imagine that you had a student whose religious beliefs prevented them from giving blood transfusions? What about a male student whose religion dictates that he can't touch an unmarried woman? What would you do with a student who honestly believed that praying with a patient was more effective than treating them with antibiotics?

      Delete
    12. I guess Mr Surgeon ran away from your questions, Larry.

      Delete
    13. Egnor is a coward and always runs away humiliated.

      Delete
    14. Again, the ass-clown who used a medical ethics class to attack Darwin tries to lecture others about what should be done in class. What an arrogant tool. There are arrogant evolutionary biologists, but to get a truly obnoxious, clueless, elitist ass-clown, you have to look to creationism.

      Delete
  18. mregnor

    So why would I argue science with a nihilistic uncaused meat machine?

    Once you start arguing about science that could be an interesting question.

    So what's your take on germ theory ? More atheist faith ? No one's damn business ? Did you lack the intellectual integrity to admit you don't believe the evidence that backs it up and just complete the course work ?

    By your own admission you did the same thing with respect to evolutionary biology so nothing you say can be taken at face value.

    How about gravity ? More batshit atheist presumptions ? Walked out of any 10th story windows recently ?

    ReplyDelete
  19. arry:

    Meatbots are so damn cute.


    [So what's your take on germ theory ?]

    I take the atheist view. Germs just popped into existence, uncaused, and evolved without cause by survival of survivors, which has no purpose.

    [By your own admission you did the same thing with respect to evolutionary biology so nothing you say can be taken at face value.]

    If I'm a meatbot, of course nothing I say can be taken at face value. We're all uncaused meat, buddy.

    [How about gravity ?]

    I find it attractive.

    [More batshit atheist presumptions ?]

    Of course not. It's just one those uncaused aspects of nature that follows intricate mathematical laws that just happened out of nowhere for no reason.

    [Walked out of any 10th story windows recently ?]

    I treat gravity with great respect. If it was important enough to get my devout Christian forbearer Issac Newton to put down his Bible for a while, it's important enough to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "that just happened out of nowhere for no reason"

      Sure, because:

      (a) That must be what we all atheists think.

      (b) An intelligent and conscious being existing without a reality to be intelligent and conscious about, and yet capable of willing things into existence, makes so much sense!

      (c) Natural laws that allow intelligence and consciousness could not possibly exist unless there was intelligence and consciousness to produce them in the first place! Yet that intelligence and consciousness did not require natural laws allowing intelligence and consciousness. How obvious!

      (d) It's either utter nihilism or this obviously irrefutable intelligent and conscious being!

      Therefore there must be a natural-law giver! Wow such devastating logic!

      Egnor you were born to be a clown. Thanks for the fun. Keep talking I get more and more convinced that creationism cannot but be the real thing. Laughter leading to Truth[TM]! What else could anybody ask for? You have invented a new way of evangelism: clowning for Jesus. Quite an achievement. Keep at it please.

      Delete
  20. @Negative Intelligence:

    You ask good questions about God.

    Fortunately, pimpley-faced teenagers in first period metaphysics in the Lyceum in Athens in 330 B.C. knew the answers to your questions. Prime Mover, all that Aristotle stuff.

    Ya know, the substance of Western theology and philosophy for 2000 years.

    When you've finished with Aquinas, who answered your questions about God and the Prime Mover and the First Cause and Necessary Existence in Summa Theologica and Summa Contra Gentiles rigorously in 1200 AD, let me know if you have any questions.

    St. Thomas should have written a 'Summa Contra Assholes', in anticipation of New Atheists. But without crayons, it proved impractical.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Egnor, clowning for Jesus,

      I have read that stuff and it does not answer any of those problems. Seems like you lack in reading comprehension and logic. Not a surprise though. But keep trying man. It's lots of fun.

      "Prime mover" ignores the nonsense of proposing a "prime mover" that's intelligent and conscious without a reality to be intelligent and conscious about. An intelligent conscious prime mover that could exist without a reality that would at least allow for intelligence and consciousness. So those pimpley-faced teenagers did not "know" any answers to those problems. They thought that they had answers for something entirely different.

      Aquinas did not go much further in that regard because nobody told those guys about these very basic problems. The necessary existence/necessary being also ignores such basic problems, makes several unwarranted assumptions, and exercises all kinds of contortions with philosophical mumbo-jumbo. Theology is the art of fooling yourself into thinking that gods make sense by using sophisticated philosophy-sounding jargon, while pretending that the jargon can pass for reason. Theology is rhetorics for self-delusion.

      So, no, your kinder-garden-level "philosophical" arguments are far from presenting any solutions to those problems.

      Delete
    2. "Ya know, the substance of Western theology and philosophy for 2000 years."

      I think that you meant "the theology sophisms that kept Western philosophy from advancing much for most of the middle ages."

      Delete
    3. Meanwhile, Eastern theology and philosophy were coming up with very different answers to the same questions.

      They can't both be right.

      But they can both be wrong.

      Delete
    4. Larry:

      The rise of science in the West was a direct consequence of Christian theology and philosophy. The universe is not God, is created by God, Who creates according to reason so man, who is in His image, can understand His creation. That was the paradigm of scientific exploration during the rise of science in the late Middle Ages the the Enlightenment. Essentially all great scientists were Christians, half were exceptionally devout, and scientists as a group were much more devout than the general populace.

      Eastern philosophies, which were in many ways atheist as they denied a Creator God who created the universe in accordance with reason, precluded the emergence of modern science in the East.

      Western atheism, which was widely recognized as a mental illness, had nothing whatsoever to do with the Scientific Revolution.

      When atheism did become dominant in (unfortunate) parts of the West during this past century, the only science it advanced was mortuary science.

      Delete
    5. Smegnor: When atheism did become dominant in (unfortunate) parts of the West during this past century, the only science it advanced was mortuary science.

      For centuries Christendom's only scientific achievements were convincing the Western world that Greek pagans were wrong when they proved the Earth was round, also inventing the auto-da-fe, drawing and quartering, burning heretics with green wood so they would suffer longer, and the rack and Iron Maiden for Jews who wouldn't convert.

      Hindus invented inoculation for smallpox; Christians invented the idea of giving diseased blankets to Native Americans, knowing they had no resistance.

      After 1,900 years of calling Jews Christ-killers, Christians finally invented Nazism, Zyklon B and the gas chamber and tried to finish what you started.

      Luckily, the anti-Nazis had atheists on their side: Turing, who cracked the Nazi Engima code, and atheists like Feynman and Oppenheimer and Victor Weisskopf to invent the atom bomb, and in the French resistance Jacques Monod, Francois Jacob, Frederic Joliot-Curie, and among the Germans we had Max Planck and Marlene Dietrich, Helene Stoecker and Max Siever (who was refused asylum in the West and decapitated by the Nazis.)

      By the way, Smegnor, medical doctors had the highest rate of membership in the Nazi party-- 75 percent-- among the professions.

      Smegnor: Eastern philosophies, which were in many ways atheist as they denied a Creator God who created the universe in accordance with reason, precluded the emergence of modern science in the East.

      That's funny. Why did Indians invent inoculation for smallpox? Why did the Chinese discover magnetism and invent the magnetic compass, paper, paper money, toilet paper, movable block printing, sericulture, natural gas piping, the differential gear, and artemisinin?

      Smegnor never sets foot in a real science lab, but, for those of us who do, I ask: why are the science labs [that Smegnor never enters] today filled with Hindus and Confucians and almost no fundamentalist Christians to be found? What do you think is the ratio between Hindus and Confucians vs. fundamentalist Christians-- perhaps 30 to 1? 40 to 1? 50 to 1? This in a country where fundamentalists are one quarter of the population.

      Smegnor: The rise of science in the West was a direct consequence of Christian theology and philosophy.

      Bullshit. The rise of science was a direct consequence of pagan, non-Christian philosophy. The Greek pagans proved the Earth was round in 600 BC. When Christianity arose, most of the early Church Fathers who made cosmological statements believed the Earth was flat. Some Christians knew the Earth was round, but they were the minority for ~800-900 years. Even St. Augustine, who knew the pagans had good evidence, said the shape of the Earth could never be proven-- just because he resented the fact that pagans were superior to Christians at science, as they are today. (The history of Christian Flat Earthism was falsified by conservative Christian Jeffery Burton Russell in Inventing the Flat Earth; check Russell's footnote 63: his references in the early Christian literature do not embrace a round Earth.)

      So for 800 years the only real scientific achievement of Christians was convincing the West that Greek pagans couln't prove a damn thing-- that, and inventing cruel ways to torture Jews, heretics, and accused witches.

      Hey Smegnor, where's the Christian Antikythera mechanism? No? None?

      Delete
    6. Now Smegnor is just lying and making up numbers. Making up numbers is scientific fraud, asshole.

      Smegnor: Essentially all great scientists were Christians, half were exceptionally devout, and scientists as a group were much more devout than the general populace.

      Ridiculous. Einstein was a Christian? Feynman? Claude Shannon? Turing? Fuck you. All the founders of quantum field theory and information theory were atheists.

      Even Isaac Newton didn't believe in the Christian trinity-- and your co-religionists would have executed Isaac Newton if he'd told the truth about his beliefs. Yes, in Newton's day Christians executed those who, like Newton and Thomas Jefferson and John Adams and most of the founders of the USA, did not believe in the idiot math that 1== 3 and 3 == 1.

      Smegnor: half were exceptionally devout

      Utter bullshit. You're just making things up. Since the early 19th century orthodox Christians have been a minority among great scientists-- if they were ever a majority! The only time periods when one might say that orthodox trinitarian Christians were a majority among great scientists, were back in the days when Christians murdered anyone who thought heretical thoughts, and like Newton, you had to lie to avoid being murdered by Christians.

      Even James Clerk Maxwell, who was religious but not a creationist, thought it very important to keep one's religious beliefs out of one's science, because (amongst other reasons) if you do, science might disprove your religion. A lesson ID hoaxers like Smegnor refuse to learn, as they promote one hoax after another, contributing to the popular image of conservative Christians as unethical, dishonest and deranged.

      Delete
    7. If Smegnor want to again argue that Hitler was an atheist or Darwinist, I will just point you to this previous Sandwalk thread where Smegnor tried that bullshit and I pounded him into the ground with quotes, facts and evidence, until he ran away. You can get some more evidence of Nazi creationism at this detailed blog post by Coel Hellier.

      Smegnor usually runs away from a thread when I show up, or when people start talking about science. Both make him very uncomfortable and frighten him.

      Delete
    8. Egnor - besides a desire and an "intellectual" need for there to be one, what EVIDENCE do you have for your bloodthirsty thug of a deity?

      Delete
  21. mregnor, above you said:

    "Bullshit. "Intelligent Design Creationism" is your moniker, not a movement or a theory.

    "Creationism" is the belief that God created everything. It is usually used to signify young-earth creationists, who believe that the earth is a few thousand years old. I disagree with them as strongly as you do. So do most ID advocates. I am a creationist, in the old-earth creationist sense. So are 99% of people on earth. Sane people.

    Intelligent design is the theory that biology manifests hallmarks of intelligent agency. It is entirely consistent with evolutionary theory, if you carve out the materialist-atheist shit. It is a pefectly valid scientific inference, and supported by the evidence."

    -----------------------

    I'm curious about the alleged "intelligent agency". Please describe it. Is it immaterial? Is it natural, or supernatural? Is it one of more of the gods that people have thought up? If so, which one(s) and how do you know? If it's not one or more of the gods that people have thought up, what is it and how do you know?

    Is there a scientific way to test for the alleged "intelligent agency"? Is there a scientific way to test for a particular god or gods?

    I agree with you that "Intelligent Design Creationism" is not a theory (in the scientific sense) but I disagree that it is not a movement. It's a dishonest creationist/dominionist movement/agenda. The wedge document alone is enough to prove that, although there is plenty more evidence too.

    I hope you're not claiming that "ID" has nothing to do with creationism. Is that what you're claiming? If so, then are you claiming that 'the designer' is different from 'the creator'? And is 'the designer' and/or 'the creator' different from a god or gods?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. @The Half Truth:

      "I'm curious about the alleged "intelligent agency". Please describe it. Is it immaterial?..."

      Why ask me? One of your own-- Carl Sagan-- answered all of those questions. He even fictionalized it, and they made a movie.

      The principles of ID are those of SETI.

      Intelligent agency has hallmarks. That's as far as ID goes.

      Delete
    2. Smegnor: The principles of ID are those of SETI.

      No Smegnor, no one at SETI practices scientific fraud. No one at SETI cites Dembski's "complex specified information" hoax, for the obvious reason that natural processes create Dembski's "complex specified information" as is obvious if you understood his math.

      Give me one example of someone at SETI who cites Dembski's "complex specified information" or the creationist rape of information theory. Give me one example of someone at SETI who cites Behe's irreducible complexity.

      No one at SETI cites your pathetic authorities because we know that natural processes create all the mystic ooga booga ectoplasmic entities you talk about --- "complex specified information" and "irreducible complexity" are all produced by natural processes.

      SETI researcher don't practice fraud. You creationists do.

      Delete
    3. "Two words:

      cdesign proponentists"


      Touché. You should google that, Mr. Surgeon.

      Delete
    4. mregnor said:

      "Intelligent agency has hallmarks. That's as far as ID goes."

      Why? Why is that as far as ID goes?


      Of course that's not really as far as ID goes. ID, the dishonest creationist/dominionist movement/agenda, goes a lot farther than that in many ways, none of which are scientific or ethical. ID is a political/public-policy lobby based on forcing religious beliefs (mostly christian) into science, public school education, and every other aspect of everyone's life.

      Why are you afraid to answer the questions I asked you, mregnor? Are you ashamed to reveal your beliefs because you know that they're unscientific fairy tales? Are you afraid to admit what's really behind the ID movement/agenda?

      You say that you're on old Earth christian creationist and that young Earth christian creationists are wrong. How do you know that you're right and that they're wrong? How do you know that you're right and that hindus, raelians, or newaubians are wrong?

      Here's a link to the raelian version of intelligent design:

      http://www.rael.org/message

      They even "guarantee you’ll never look at the world the same way again!" How can you go wrong with a "guarantee"? Does your ID version come with a guarantee? What is your version, in detail?

      Delete
  22. Smegnor is lying: he is in fact a bigot and discriminates on the basis of relgious beliefs. Smegnor and other IDiots are always in favor of scientific fraud as long as that fraud is motivated by conservative witch-doctor Christianity, and Smegnor and other IDiots have promoted one example of SCIENTIFIC FRAUD after another but in every case, only if it supports conservative witch-doctor Christianity.

    Smegnor says: I work with students on a daily basis. I don't care one bit what their personal religious beliefs are

    The hell you don't. Here is Smegnor describing his real policy:

    So why would I argue science with a nihilistic uncaused meat machine?

    Thus he admits, indeed celebrates, his religious bigotry-- Smegnor refuses to debate science with real scientists, because Smegnor knows full well scientists can expose the frauds perpetrated by himself and other ID anti-evolutionists, so on the grounds that, as he knows well,, most atheists are smarter than he is (to be fair, most Christians, Zoroastrians, hell, most African witch-doctors are smarter than Smegnor too.)

    But his agenda here is to demand silencing and suppressing people based on their (lack of) religious beliefs, plus their ability to expose the frauds Smegnor and other IDiots have promoted. That's religious discrimination and Smegnor is a bigot. If he acts on it he should be fired.

    Smegnor: You really must filter out these meat machines.

    Again, this is a fascist attempting to silence people on the basis of their (lack of) religious beliefs, plus their ability to expose the frauds Smegnor and other IDiots have promoted. That's religious discrimination and Smegnor is a bigot. We will not be "filtered out" you fascist-- we've got your number and you can't silence us in the name of your religious bigotry.

    NO you fascist, you don't get to censor the scientists who have exposed the many scientific frauds promoted by lying IDiots like you, just because you need atheists to be silenced. That's your religious bigotry, and if you act on it you should you be fired.

    Smegnor: If I'm a meatbot, of course nothing I say can be taken at face value.

    Again: Smegnor celebrates his religious bigotry-- indeed he MUST do so, because many of the real scientists who have exposed the frauds of anti-evolution are atheists, so he and his fascist IDiot buddies hope they can silence them, hoping against hope that will succeed in concealing all evidence that they promoted scientific fraud.

    (Pathetic-- Of course, even without the atheists, there are still enough Christian and Jewish and Hindu evolutionists to expose your fraud, but you keep dreaming that a fascist purge of atheists will somehow succeed in concealing the evidence of the many frauds you witch-doctors promoted.)

    If Smegnor acts on the religious bigotry he celebrates, he should be fired.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Smegnor: I can assure that I take these science-religion wars as seriously as you do. But I leave my students out of it. I would NEVER hold a student's religious (or irreligious) beliefs against him

      The fuck you wouldn't-- what's the point of this whole post? Smegnor trumpets his religious bigotry in the hopes of changing the subject: that Intelligent Design, indeed all anti-evolution, is based on either falsification of evidence or redefinition of the scientific method to include supernatural untestable myths and legends.

      Smegnor: If you actually discriminated against a student, I'd demand they fire your ass in a second.

      Smegnor has repeatedly expressed, indeed celebrated, religious bigotry against atheists in this and other threads. His fascistic attempts to silence and suppress them are both bigoted and self-interested, because they are intended to conceal the evidence that Smegnor and other IDiots promoted scientific fraud. If Smegnor acts on the religous bigotry he celebrates, if he acts on his fascistic need to silence those who have exposed his fraud, his employers should fire his ass in a second.

      Delete
  23. mregnor says,

    Intelligent design is the theory that biology manifests hallmarks of intelligent agency. It is entirely consistent with evolutionary theory, if you carve out the materialist-atheist shit. It is a pefectly valid scientific inference, and supported by the evidence.

    I tend to judge Intelligent Design Creationists by their actions and not their words. It works well in Egnor's case since his actions are far more revealing than what he pretends to believe.

    It also works for all other IDiots. Just look at the main IDiot blogs and books and count up how many times they are attacking science and evolution (and Darwin) compared to how many times they are actually presenting evidence for intelligent design.

    The main IDiot "evidence" for God is that evolution can't explain complex structures. Yet those very same IDiots often insist that Intelligent Design Creationisms is "entirely consistent with evolutionary theory."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. @Larry:

      We attack only Darwinism and the junk science it spawned, and the ideologues and thugs who have yoked science to atheism and materialism.

      Science and academic freedom and the non-ideological study of evolution are what we defend.

      It's your side that drags people into court for asking questions about evolution and tries to ruin the careers of people who dare question your metaphysics.

      Hedin is a fine example (I know that you objected to Coyne's crusade. You were no doubt too busy with suppressing your Christian students to bother with Hedin). What Coyne and his thugs are doing is disgusting.

      The fact that ID has caused the stir it has-- the DI is a tiny organization compared to the Darwinist establishment-- is evidence of the power of their ideas and how much you fear them. Young earth creationists were never a real threat to you. Their science was a joke. But ID is a real problem for you, because any objective observer sees that its central tenet- intelligent agency can be discerned in biology-- is true.

      You have good reason to fear ID. Evasion and censorship are the only tools you have. They won't last forever.

      What really makes you angry is that the ID movement has made it necessary for you to defend your ideas publicly, in a forum where you have no authority over your opponents. You can intimidate and ruin your students. You can't intimidate or ruin me. You're going to have to fight in the arena of ideas, and your ideas will never survive that.

      This won't end well for Darwinian pseudoscience. You can't stop the discussion, and Darwinism will in a few decades be in the trash bin alongside its 19th ideological cousins-- Marxism and Freudianism-- dead bizarre materialist ideologies, snuffed out by reality.

      You'll be remembered as a small-minded anti-Christian bigot who clung to a 19th century scientific superstition and as a professor who threatened his own students. Like a 21st century Lysenko, without the political skills.

      Delete
    2. mregnor says,

      Science and academic freedom and the non-ideological study of evolution are what we defend.

      LOL

      Thanks for injecting a note of humor into your otherwise boring lies and misrepresentations.

      Delete
    3. [I'm reposting this]

      Smegnor is lying: he is in fact a bigot and discriminates on the basis of relgious beliefs. Smegnor and other IDiots are always in favor of scientific fraud as long as that fraud is motivated by conservative witch-doctor Christianity, and Smegnor and other IDiots have promoted one example of SCIENTIFIC FRAUD after another but in every case, only if it supports conservative witch-doctor Christianity.

      Smegnor says: I work with students on a daily basis. I don't care one bit what their personal religious beliefs are

      The hell you don't. Here is Smegnor describing his real policy:

      So why would I argue science with a nihilistic uncaused meat machine?

      Thus he admits, indeed celebrates, his religious bigotry-- Smegnor refuses to debate science with real scientists, because Smegnor knows full well scientists can expose the frauds perpetrated by himself and other ID anti-evolutionists, so on the grounds that, as he knows well,, most atheists are smarter than he is (to be fair, most Christians, Zoroastrians, hell, most African witch-doctors are smarter than Smegnor too.)

      But his agenda here is to demand silencing and suppressing people based on their (lack of) religious beliefs, plus their ability to expose the frauds Smegnor and other IDiots have promoted. That's religious discrimination and Smegnor is a bigot. If he acts on it he should be fired.

      Smegnor: You really must filter out these meat machines.

      Again, this is a fascist attempting to silence people on the basis of their (lack of) religious beliefs, plus their ability to expose the frauds Smegnor and other IDiots have promoted. That's religious discrimination and Smegnor is a bigot. We will not be "filtered out" you fascist-- we've got your number and you can't silence us in the name of your religious bigotry.

      NO you fascist, you don't get to censor the scientists who have exposed the many scientific frauds promoted by lying IDiots like you, just because you need atheists to be silenced. That's your religious bigotry, and if you act on it you should you be fired.

      Smegnor: If I'm a meatbot, of course nothing I say can be taken at face value.

      Again: Smegnor celebrates his religious bigotry-- indeed he MUST do so, because many of the real scientists who have exposed the frauds of anti-evolution are atheists, so he and his fascist IDiot buddies hope they can silence them, hoping against hope that will succeed in concealing all evidence that they promoted scientific fraud.

      (Pathetic-- Of course, even without the atheists, there are still enough Christian and Jewish and Hindu evolutionists to expose your fraud, but you keep dreaming that a fascist purge of atheists will somehow succeed in concealing the evidence of the many frauds you witch-doctors promoted.)

      If Smegnor acts on the religious bigotry he celebrates, he should be fired.

      Delete
    4. Whatsa matter Smegnor? Are you running away from you like you do at every other thread? Like you did when you ran away from Jeff Shallit's thread?

      [I'm reposting this]:

      Smegnor: I can assure that I take these science-religion wars as seriously as you do. But I leave my students out of it. I would NEVER hold a student's religious (or irreligious) beliefs against him

      The fuck you wouldn't-- what's the point of this whole post? Smegnor trumpets his religious bigotry in the hopes of changing the subject: that Intelligent Design, indeed all anti-evolution, is based on either falsification of evidence or redefinition of the scientific method to include supernatural untestable myths and legends.

      Smegnor: If you actually discriminated against a student, I'd demand they fire your ass in a second.

      Smegnor has repeatedly expressed, indeed celebrated, religious bigotry against atheists in this and other threads, so by his own standard he should be fired. His fascistic attempts to silence and suppress them are both bigoted and self-interested, because they are intended to conceal the evidence that Smegnor and other IDiots promoted scientific fraud. If Smegnor acts on the religous bigotry he celebrates, if he acts on his fascistic need to silence those who have exposed his fraud, his employers should fire his ass in a second.

      Delete
    5. In nearly every instance of ID-Darwinist conflict, it is always the IDers who are advocating more free discussion of evolution, and the Darwinists who are demanding censorship.

      We incessantly support academic freedom and more discussion of evolution. You suppress discussion and take people to court to deny academic freedom and to constrain discussion of evolution.

      Why are you so afraid of opening up the discussion? So afraid, I might add, that you would destroy the college careers of Christian teenagers to keep them from participating in the discussion.

      Delete
    6. Smegnor is a religious bigot because he celebrates and promotes scientific fraud as long as it supports conservative witch-doctor sects of Christianity. Want some more examples of IDiots promoting scientific fraud?

      Let's take a look at the book "Biological Information", about an ID conference which the IDiots lied about and called a "conference at Cornell Univeristy" (in fact the IDiots just rented an auditorium at the CU school of restaurant management!) The IDiots wanted Springer to publish it, but Springer apparently realized it was full of pseudoscience, scientific fraud, old wives' tales and superstitious legends tarted up with science jargon that IDiots use without knowing what it means (kudos to Nick Matzke). So they had to publish with a third rate publisher out of Singapore.

      Let's take a look at the TOC and see who the authors are.

      Right off the top I see two authors who promoted Andrew Wakefield's "vaccines cause autism" scientific fraud: William Dembski and John Oller.

      First there's Dembski, who promoted the vaccine-to-autism fraud on a Christian radio show.

      Second there's John Oller, an English professor who falsified his scientific credentials (he now calls himself a linguist), who called Archaeopteryx a fake, and who has agressively defended Andrew Wakefield as a hero taking on the medical establishment. As Barbara Forrest documents, one day he calls himself a "creationist" on a radio show, then a few days later, he denies it and calls himself a "research scholar".

      Many creationists have called Archaeopteryx a fake-- this lie was concocted by creationist Lee Spetner, who showed up in the movie Expelled where Ben Stein treated the hoaxer like he was a real scientist. Here's John Oller promoting the Archy hoax:

      Oller: "For instance, was Archaeopteryx (at the right) a transitional form between reptiles and birds? Or was this specimen a fully feathered bird? Fred Hoyle complained that ”there are no steps in the record from reptiles to Archaeopteryx or from Archaeopteryx to birds...” Was the lithograph shown here tampered with? A fradulent [sic] made-up fossil? It’s a moot question if Hoyle’s argument stands, and it does. Whether it is a flying bird or not, it certainly is very different from reptiles and if the feathers were faked, as some have claimed in recent years, then it was not much of a bird either. No matter, there are no transitions leading to it or from it in either direction. Case closed." [Oller denies reality of Archaeopteryx]

      Oller is a fraud. Case closed. We know Archaeopteryx is real because modern microscopy of its arm bones has revealed quill knobs, where feathers were attached, and quill knobs couldn't be fakes in the 19th century.

      Do I also have to mention that IDiots Phillip Johnson and Jonathan Wells denied that HIV causes AIDs?

      Smegnor defends these frauds and hoaxes because he agrees with the religious beliefs of these witch-doctors-- and he issues a fascistic demand that we be SILENCED because we have exposed your frauds!

      Delete
    7. Smegnor showed up at Jeff Shallit's blog a few months back and began idiotically pretending he understood information theory, and was using jargon words he didn't know the meaning of. When his hoax was exposed, he ran away terrified.

      Smegnor: A non-teleological blog post would be generated by a random letter/punctuation input to a non-deterministic Turing machine in which the state and symbol do not uniquely determine the transition function, which is itself governed by a random letter/punctuation generator. [Smegnor at Recursivity]

      What an Egnoramus! He had gone to some Wikipedia page and copied some jargon words but he didn't know what they meant. So Jeff pointed out that this was word salad and didn't mean anything. Jeff asked Smegnor to explain his terms, and Smegnor refused.

      I only had to write one comment, just one comment, and Smegnor ran away terrified.

      This was my comment that Smegnor daren't answer:

      Me at Jeff's blog: Explain to us, Smegnor, why ANY inability to create human language sentences is in any way relevant to observed processes of gains in BIOLOGICAL complexity.

      Suppose Shallit cannot produce English sentences by a Darwinian algorithm. So what?

      There are no English sentences in any biological lifeform. There are no English sentences (or sentences in any other human language) in the human genome or in the genome of any other species.

      There are no English sentences (or sentences in any other human language) in RNA, protein molecules, lipids, ribosomes, mitochondria, etc. etc.

      There is nothing like human grammar or human written languages in DNA, RNA, protein molecules, lipids, ribosomes, mitochondria, etc. etc.

      Do you think the human genome was written in English, like your Bible?

      Why do you believe English language sentences are in any way analogous to, or present in, biological structures?

      Give your answer in the form of an EQUATION. That is, write down an equation which takes as input a structure, and returns a property which:

      1. Returns nonzero value when applied to an English sentence

      2. Returns nonzero value when applied to a biological structure, e.g. a genetic sequence

      and

      3. Cannot be increased by already-observed evolutionary processes

      Write this equation down NOW, an equation with properties 1, 2, and 3 above.

      Write this equation down NOW. I mean in your very next comment on this thread.


      This demand made Smegnor run away immediately.

      Delete
    8. Smegnor says:

      In nearly every instance of ID-Darwinist conflict, it is always the IDers who are advocating more free discussion of evolution

      WHERE? AT THEIR BLOGS THAT DON'T PERMIT COMMENTS? EVOLUTION NEWS AND VIEWS DOES NOT PERMIT COMMENTS, AND "UNCOMMON DESCENT" HAS BANNED AND PURGED (ALMOST) EVERYONE WHO EXPOSES YOU IDIOTS FALSIFYING SCIENTIFIC "DATA".

      You show up at this blog DEMANDING CENSORSHIP!

      Smegnor: "You really must filter out these meat machines."

      NO YOU WILL NOT "FILTER US OUT" SMEGNOR, because we have evidence that you promote fraud.

      Smegnor: "Don't let your chihuahuas answer this one for you, Larry."

      NO YOU WILL NOT SILENCE US SMEGNOR. Now you demand that Larry engage in ID-type censorship and suppression of free speech! WE WILL NOT BE SILENCED BY ID-FASCISTS!

      Here is YOU, Smegnor, promoting Eben Alexander's fraud "Proof of Heaven" Near-Death Experience at Evolution News and Views. THAT BLOG POST PERMITS NO COMMENTS.

      Eben Alexander, Smegnor's hero, was a crooked surgeon who falsified surgical records and made up a story about seeing beautiful spooks when he was in a medically induced coma. His fraud was exposed by Esquire magazine-- every detail of his story was made up. Alexander is Smegnor's hero BECAUSE he committed fraud.

      What don't you allow comments at Evolution News and Views, you fascist? Why does Uncommon Descent ban (almost) everyone who presents the evidence that exposes the fraud of anti-evolution? What are you fascists afraid of?

      You ID fascists hate free speech and censor us at every opportunity. You have NEVER allowed us a fair chance to present the evidence that your anti-evolution is based on systematic scientific fraud. You're a hoax.

      After Luskin's book "Science and Human Origins" came out, I reviewed it in comment form at the Biologic Institute's Facebook page, showing that every signficant fact-claim in the book was a a lie, with citations to the real scientific literature.

      Then I challenged you IDiots to a debate, on one condition: Evolution News and Views must have an open comment policy forever more.

      In response, Ann Gauger at the DI banned me and deleted every one of my comments. You ID fascists have to squelch us and silence us because we have evidence to prove you promoted scientific fraud.

      Delete
    9. "In nearly every instance of ID-Darwinist conflict, it is always the IDers who are advocating more free discussion of evolution, and the Darwinists who are demanding censorship. "

      You should explain why then are comments disabled at the main DI blog, or why posts get deleted from their facebook page.

      By the way, have you read the Wedge document?

      Delete
    10. If Smegnor promotes scientific fraud only when conservative Christians perpetrate it in the name of his religion, then he is practicing religious bigotry and should be fired, by his own criteria.

      If Smegnor promotes all forms of scientific fraud, he is unethical and incompetent and should be fired.

      Delete
    11. "Fred Hoyle complained that ”there are no steps in the record from reptiles to Archaeopteryx or from Archaeopteryx to birds...” Was the lithograph shown here tampered with? A fradulent [sic] made-up fossil? It’s a moot question if Hoyle’s argument stands, and it does."

      Funny, because Chandra Wikramasinghe, co-author of the book with Hoyle, admits they were wrong and laments the whole affair. Apparenlty the creotards didn't get the memo.

      I wander if IDiots and Creotards beg forgiveness to the "Lord" for all the lying when they pray before going to sleep at night. Don't these people ever feel a guilty conscience? Is it all fine as long as you lie for jesus?

      Delete
    12. The Archaeopteryx hoax was conconcted by creationist Lee Spetner, author of Not By Chance, who appeared in Expelled. Hoyle and Wickramasinghe, and with many other creationists, like ID proponent John Oller, copied the story from Spetner.

      Delete
    13. Hoyle and Wickramasinghe...copied the story from Spetner.

      Can you back that up?

      Delete
    14. Of course. I'll get you the ref tonight. I think it was in McIver, "Anti-Evolution."

      Delete
    15. mregnor said:

      "Science and academic freedom and the non-ideological study of evolution are what we defend."

      So there's no ideology in your christian creationist "ID" view against evolution and evolutionary theory?

      Would you defend the "academic freedom" of a publicly funded science instructor or researcher who asserts that Fifi the pink unicorn god is the designer/creator? How, exactly, is pushing your christian creationist ideology any different than pushing Fifi?

      If you're so concerned with "academic freedom", then shouldn't you be eager to defend any publicly funded science instructor or researcher who pushes ANY ideology that goes to and beyond "Intelligent agency has hallmarks."?

      You also said:

      "It's your side that drags people into court for asking questions about evolution and tries to ruin the careers of people who dare question your metaphysics."

      No one has been 'dragged' into court for "asking questions" about evolution. Some legitimate cases have been brought to court because some people were violating laws that pertain to science instruction in public schools. You haven't gotten over the sound thrashing ID has gotten in court, have you?

      And no one on this "side" has tried to ruin the career of anyone who "dare question" whatever "metaphysics" it is that you're referring to. Questioning isn't the problem. Fraud, lies, perjury, violation of constitutional law, violation of educational instructions/policies, sneaky and dishonest political manipulation, violation of publication requirements/policies, violation of workplace instructions/policies, false and outrageous smear campaigns against honest scientists and scientific findings, pushing woo that causes people harm or death, pushing woo that enables or causes environmental destruction, and pushing fairy tale religious woo in publicly funded school science classes and other school activities are the problems.

      When someone makes a 'career' out of trying to rule the world with their insane creationist/dominionist agenda, especially via fraud, lies, harmful manipulation, etc., it should be pointed out publicly, loudly, and regularly. If that hurts the perp's 'career', tough.

      Delete
    16. mregnor said:

      "We incessantly support academic freedom and more discussion of evolution. You suppress discussion and take people to court to deny academic freedom and to constrain discussion of evolution."

      And:

      "Why are you so afraid of opening up the discussion?"

      There's nothing wrong with discussing evolution but, as courts have ruled, there is a lot wrong with pushing religious woo in places where it doesn't belong by law or by rule.

      You and your fellow creationists can discuss evolution whenever you want in any way you want as long as you don't push your religious woo in inappropriate (by law or by rule) places.

      What would you like to discuss about evolution?

      Oh, and as others have pointed out, if you IDiots are so eager to discuss evolution (or anything else) then why are so many ID sites closed to commenting or ban happy?

      Delete
    17. @John.

      Here's the reference for Spetner. This is from Tom McIver, Anti-Evolution: An Annotated Bibliography, p. 121. In McIver's bibliography, this is entry #803.

      Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe. Evolution from Space. 1981. New York: Simon and Schuster. Also pub. 1981 by J.M. Dent (London). Here Hoyle and Wickramasinghe assert the impossibility of "chance" origin of life, and declare their belief in a Creator. "These conclusions dispose of Darwinism, which cannot produce genetic changes quickly... The speculations of The Origin of Species turned out to be wrong as we have seen... Nobody seems prepared to blow the whistle on Darwinian evolution. If Darwinism were not considered socially desirable and even essential to the peace of mind of the body politic, it would of course be otherwise." They also claim there are intelligences existing between this Creator and humans. The one responsible for our development was an "extremely complex silicon chip" which designed programs for bacteria, in order that they develop into humans who could then produce more computer chips. The probability that life could be formed by random naturalistic processes are no better than the possibility that a tornado blowing through a junkyard would assemble a Boeing 747.

      Wickramasinghe testified as a witness for creation-science in the 1981 Arkansas trial (and was scheduled to appear again in the Louisiana trial) because of his anti-evolutionism— though many felt that his testimony of "seeding" of genetic material and organisms by comets did little to support the creation-science case. (At the trial he declared that the earth must be very old—contrary to the creation-science bill he was testifying for—and also conceded he believed that insects might be smarter than people.) In 1982 Hoyle and Wickramasinghe wrote a booklet Why Neo-Darwinism Does Not Work (U.C. Cardiff Pr./Longwood).

      Hoyle has endorsed and popularized the accusation that Archaeopteryx, the celebrated halfreptile, half-bird fossil, is a fake. (This claim was earlier made by Jewish creationist Lee Spetner, and endorsed by M. Trop.) Hoyle and Wickramasinghe coauthored a 1987 book, Archaeopteryx, the Primordial Bird: A Case of Fossil Forgery (Longwood).

      [Tom McIver, Anti-Evolution: An Annotated Bibliography, p. 121, entry #803.]

      Delete
    18. Yes, but it is Hoyle & Wickramasinghes' book that is often quoted by IDiots due to their standing within the scientific community. It gives it more "weight" in their view. Also, I suspect that much of H&W's work from the late 70s and early 80s was appropriated by the IDiots and modified for their own purposes. Hoyle's iseas were a treasure trove for the deveopment of IDiocy's (non)arguments in general.

      Delete
    19. @Diogenes:

      Your answer wasn't responsive. I asked for your evidence that Hoyle and Wickramsasinghe got their claim that Archaeopteryx was a fraud from Lee Spetner. You offered me all manner of irrelevant material, but nothing about my question. The closest you come is "This claim was earlier made by Jewish creationist Lee Spetner". I suppose you think that Morgan got the idea of genes from Mendel too?

      Delete
    20. @John,

      They themselves acknowledge their debt to Spetner in the book. They thank him in the preface for "valuable assistence" and later on Hoyle describes how Spetner wrote to him and asked him for help in getting access to the London specimen. Spetner also shared his "evidence of forgery" with H&W. They all collaborated on a series of articles published in the British Journal of Photography, "proving" that the London specimen was a fake.

      Delete
    21. Piotr,

      do you have this book? I'm impressed.

      Delete
    22. John says: "You offered me all manner of irrelevant material, but nothing about my question"

      Obviously false.

      Delete
    23. Don't envy me. Needless to say, it's a load of crap. The story is also recounted by Wickramasinge here (p. 165 ff.)

      Delete
    24. The book may well be conclusive, but I can't see the text. The New Scientist article, however, is clear enough. Thanks. But it would have been better just to cite that the first time rather than to launch into a long and irrelevant spiel.

      Delete
    25. What I copied was the whole entry from McIver's "Anti-Evolution: An Annotated Bibliography". This is a fascinating book, full of matter-of-fact, succinct descriptions of the most bizarre crackpot ideas on Earth for the last 200 years. I'm fascinated by bizarre pseudoscience like that of Wickramasinghe and Hoyle. Not everybody shares my addictions...

      McIver is an anthropologist who in 1985(?) wrote his doctoral thesis on creationism, still a classic. I have double-checked many of his sources and he makes few mistakes, so I trust him.

      Delete
    26. Yes, I realize all that. But I'm pointing out that it was an inappropriate response to my question. Your obsessions may not be the best thing to lead with in a public forum.

      Delete
  24. Smegnor and other IDiots celebrate scientific fraud as long as that fraud is motivated by conservative witch-doctor Christianity. Want some examples? Do you need some reminding of the history of frauds promoted by IDiots, Smegnor?

    Let's start with "Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife" by fraudster Eben Alexander. When that book came out, it was trumpeted by Smegnor as proof of the existence of spooks at Evolution Snooze and Abuse.

    Alexander, an unethical and crooked surgeon, had a "Near Death Experience." He later told Michael Shermer that his hallucination happened "took place not while [his] cortex was malfunctioning, but while it was simply off.” However, in fact he was in a medically induced coma, not a natural coma, during which he was conscious but hallucinating according to his doctor.

    At Evolution Snooze and Abuse, Smegnor was aroused by Alexander's bosomy vision of the afterlife:

    [Alexander]: "...someone else was with me. A woman.

    She was young, and I remember what she looked like in complete detail. She had high cheekbones and deep-blue eyes. Golden brown tresses framed her lovely face."


    One woman!? Just one? I thought you religious types believed you deserved 72.

    So. A crooked and unethical surgeon has a wet dream about a hot-looking spook, and Smegnor thinks it proves spooks exists.

    If Smegnor found a cum-stain in Alexander's underpants, he'd announce it was proof of Jesus, the Holy Ghost, all the Prophets, and that Balaam son of Beor really did have a conversation with his talkin' donkey, like Smegnor's Bible says [Numbers 22:28].

    Now what do we find over here at Esquire? Luke Dittrich checked the facts on Alexander's wet dream and surprise surprise, every fact that could be checked had been hoaxed up by Alexander! So surprising. Plus, he's crooked and falsifies documents.

    "The Esquire article also accuses Alexander of falsifying medical records to cover up the fact that he’d operated at the wrong site on a patient’s spine when working as a neurosurgeon." [ Daily Mail]

    A crooked surgeon. Never seen one of those before!

    The Esquire article is behind a paywall but you can read a summary of Alexander's fraud at the Daily Mail.

    He even changed the weather to invent a "perfect rainbow"! Do you idiots think there are no records of past WEATHER!?

    No wonder Smegnor demands that atheists on this website and everywhere on the internet be silenced! We have proof that you and other IDiots promote fraud, but you cannot silence us with your much-celebrated religious bigotry.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Mr. Engor,

    First, if you really are a professor, I feel sorry for your students. If you display the same attitude to them as you do here, it's a wonder you still have a teaching position.

    Second, I'm very interested in ID. But there are so many versions of it. Dembski says ID is just John's Logos theology. Behe says some things are designed and some aren't, but he also says that Astrology is science too. Some say that god is the designer. You seem to be advocating for aliens as the designer (where did they come from?).

    Third, tell you what, let's play a game. It's called "You win". The game starts with ID winning everything. What is the result?

    Do bacteria, insects, and viruses stop evolving? Would evolutionary algorithms stop working? What do we teach children about the diversity of life? How does ID explain a) the human chromosome 2, b) vitamin C production in mammals, c) opsins, etc?

    How would you teach a HS course in ID? What labs would unambiguously show ID happens?

    How would you describe the DIs plan of defeated materialism? What would you replace materialistic science with? What other method of learning about the universe is there?

    I would appreciate a well reasoned response, though I'm not confident that I will get one, based on your actions here.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. @ogremkv:

      [I would appreciate a well reasoned response, though I'm not confident that I will get one, based on your actions here.]

      You're right. You won't.

      Delete
    2. Fair enough. I understand that you can't answer any of the questions I've asked.

      Don't feel bad. Dembski couldn't either. Neither could Meyer or Behe.

      Maybe, someday, you guys will quit whining about Darwinism (whatever that is) and actually start thinking about your own notions. I doubt it though. Guys like you are too scared that you'll be tainted by actual evidence that shows you're utterly and completely wrong.

      Oh BTW, I just read your lovely rant on how ID is based on Christianity. Abbie has it posted on her blog. Wow, you really need some thorazine or xanex or something.

      Delete
    3. A physician who treats himself has a fool for a patient.

      As mregnor has amply demonstrated.

      William Osler (a real doctor) also said Soap and water and common sense are the best disinfectants, the later which seems to be completely lacking in mregnor and I'm beginning to suspect that he is a stranger to the first 2 as well.

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  26. @Larry:

    [If the evaluations don't bother asking the students to demonstrate critical thinking ]

    So if they spit back your atheist indoctrination, that's "critical thinking"?

    Heh.

    If I were a student, and you knew my beliefs, and I passed all my exams, would you flunk me?

    [and don't ask them to describe and defend what they actually believe to be true about biology, then they could get high marks even if they were Young Earth Creationists.]

    So you will ask them what they "actually believe"? It's none of your business what they actually believe. Their coursework, not their personal beliefs, are your proper concern.

    They have no responsibility to explain their beliefs to you.

    [What do you do when their religious beliefs interfere with their ability to practice good medicine? Imagine that you had a student whose religious beliefs prevented them from giving blood transfusions? What about a male student whose religion dictates that he can't touch an unmarried woman? What would you do with a student who honestly believed that praying with a patient was more effective than treating them with antibiotics?]

    Wherever possible, consistent with patient safety, we make accommodations for personal beliefs. Jehovah's Witnesses work in the medical field-- I have friends who are JW's. Arrangements are made for other professionals working with them to handle the transfusion issues.

    Accommodations are made for orthodox Jewish students who prefer not to work on the Sabbath, and with Christians and others who won't participate in abortions.

    Accommodations have been made for for me, when I refuse to deny a patient feeding and hydration.

    We respect students' and colleagues' personal beliefs. To seek out the personal beliefs of a student, and punish the student for those beliefs, is unfathomable to me.

    That's a big part of why I find your statements so revolting.

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    1. [Reposting]"

      Smegnor showed up at Jeff Shallit's blog a few months back and began idiotically pretending he understood information theory, and was using jargon words he didn't know the meaning of. When his hoax was exposed, he ran away terrified.

      Smegnor: A non-teleological blog post would be generated by a random letter/punctuation input to a non-deterministic Turing machine in which the state and symbol do not uniquely determine the transition function, which is itself governed by a random letter/punctuation generator. [Smegnor at Recursivity]

      What an Egnoramus! He had gone to some Wikipedia page and copied some jargon words but he didn't know what they meant. So Jeff pointed out that this was word salad and didn't mean anything. Jeff asked Smegnor to explain his terms, and Smegnor refused.

      I only had to write one comment, just one comment, and Smegnor ran away terrified.

      This was my comment that Smegnor daren't answer:

      Me at Jeff's blog: Explain to us, Smegnor, why ANY inability to create human language sentences is in any way relevant to observed processes of gains in BIOLOGICAL complexity.

      Suppose Shallit cannot produce English sentences by a Darwinian algorithm. So what?

      There are no English sentences in any biological lifeform. There are no English sentences (or sentences in any other human language) in the human genome or in the genome of any other species.

      There are no English sentences (or sentences in any other human language) in RNA, protein molecules, lipids, ribosomes, mitochondria, etc. etc.

      There is nothing like human grammar or human written languages in DNA, RNA, protein molecules, lipids, ribosomes, mitochondria, etc. etc.

      Do you think the human genome was written in English, like your Bible?

      Why do you believe English language sentences are in any way analogous to, or present in, biological structures?

      Give your answer in the form of an EQUATION. That is, write down an equation which takes as input a structure, and returns a property which:

      1. Returns nonzero value when applied to an English sentence

      2. Returns nonzero value when applied to a biological structure, e.g. a genetic sequence

      and

      3. Cannot be increased by already-observed evolutionary processes

      Write this equation down NOW, an equation with properties 1, 2, and 3 above.

      Write this equation down NOW. I mean in your very next comment on this thread.

      This demand made Smegnor run away immediately.

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    2. Smegnor is lying. If he promotes scientific fraud only when conservative Christians perpetrate it in the name of his religion, then he is practicing religious bigotry and should be fired, by his own criteria. If he promotes all forms of scientific fraud, he is unethical and incompetent and should be fired.

      You IDiots have been busily promoting fraud by Andrew "vaccines cause autism" Wakefield, that HIV does not cause AIDS, Eben Alexander's debunked Near-Death Experience, not to mention the fraud that natural processes cannot create information.

      If you promote ONLY frauds that are perpetrated by conservative Christians in the name of your religion, you are a religious bigot and should be fired, by your own criteria.

      Smegnor says: I work with students on a daily basis. I don't care one bit what their personal religious beliefs are

      The hell you don't. Here is Smegnor describing his real policy:

      Smegnor: So why would I argue science with a nihilistic uncaused meat machine?

      Smegnor refuses to debate science with atheists, because Smegnor knows full well real scientists-- atheist or not-- can expose the frauds perpetrated by himself and other ID hoaxers, so on the grounds that, as he knows well, most atheists are smarter than he is (to be fair, most Christians, Zoroastrians, hell, most African witch-doctors are smarter than Smegnor too.)

      But his agenda here is to demand silencing and suppressing people based on their (lack of) religious beliefs, plus their ability to expose the frauds Smegnor and other IDiots have promoted. That's religious discrimination and Smegnor is a bigot. If he acts on it he should be fired.

      Smegnor: You really must filter out these meat machines.

      Again, this is a fascist attempt to silence people on the basis of their (lack of) religious beliefs, plus their ability to expose the frauds promoted by Smegnor and other IDiots. That's religious discrimination and Smegnor is a bigot. We will not be "filtered out", and Smegnor should be fired for religious discrimination, as per his own criteria for firing.

      Smegnor: If I'm a meatbot, of course nothing I say can be taken at face value.

      Again: Smegnor celebrates his religious bigotry-- indeed he MUST do so, because many of the real scientists who have exposed the frauds of anti-evolution are atheists, so he and his IDiot buddies hope they can silence them, hoping against hope that will succeed in concealing all evidence that they have promoted countless scientific frauds.

      (Pathetic-- Of course, even without the atheists, there are still enough Christian and Jewish and Hindu evolutionists to expose your fraud, but you keep dreaming that a fascist purge of atheists will somehow succeed in concealing the evidence of the many frauds you witch-doctors promoted.)

      Again: If Smegnor promotes scientific fraud only when conservative Christians perpetrate it in the name of his religion, then he is practicing religious bigotry and should be fired, by his own criteria. If he promotes all forms of scientific fraud, he is unethical and incompetent and should be fired.

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    3. Wherever possible, consistent with patient safety, we make accommodations for personal beliefs. Jehovah's Witnesses work in the medical field-- I have friends who are JW's. Arrangements are made for other professionals working with them to handle the transfusion issues.

      Accommodations are made for orthodox Jewish students who prefer not to work on the Sabbath, and with Christians and others who won't participate in abortions.

      Accommodations have been made for for me, when I refuse to deny a patient feeding and hydration.


      Isn't that sweet, religious wack job bigots bending over backwards to accommodate each others tribal, goat herder morality.

      Who says eucumenicalism is dead.

      Have you ever considered accommodating the needs of your patients ?

      If your vile ethical system does not allow you to treat all your patients equally then what are you doing in the medical preofession ?

      Tell me, how else are your delusional fantasies accommodated ?

      Perhaps by withholding proper and complete medical information from pregnant women ?

      Denying infertile couples the option for medically assisted conception ?

      Ensuring that your hospital pharmacy does not prescribe emergency contraception ?

      Torturing helpless patients to death by denying them end of life options ?

      Perhaps turning a blind eye to children who have been sexually abused by paedophile priests ?

      Do let's discuss what you find revolting some more, you pious, hypocritical charlatan.

      Delete
    4. Larry,

      You said I.d. Is creationism bent on trying to disprove evolution (paraphrasing). I'm only a biology dilettante, but I thought i.d. proponets basically agree with evolutionary theory except for the idea that changes have entirely natural causes. I mean they believe mammals didn't live in the devonian, chipmunks didn't live when trilobites did, etc, etc, right? -- I mean, does it really matter whether a mutation is random or guided by some deity? As a non-scientist, I could care less. That a dog and I share a common ancestor is the most important thing I have ever learned.

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    6. No they don't basically agree. They are agnostic on the age of the Earth, and they are untroubled by Scientific Creationism's long history of fake fossils (human footprints alongside dinosaur prints, Calaveras man, Ica stones, Coso artifact, Humanus davidii etc.) hoaxed up to prove man coexisted with dinosaurs. That they have no problem with.

      Not only are they untroubled by Scientific Creationism's long history of lying about transitional fossils-- to the contrary, IDiots just COPIED the legends and myths and outright lies about no transitional fossils right into their ID books, just adding the jargon of information theory-- jargon they use but do not understand.

      They embrace Bible stories-- Casey Luskin's book "Science and Human Origins" has a chapter titled "The Science of Adam and Eve" (!) where he says humans can't have a common ancestor with apes. How? Lying about the characteristics of the fossils, and a dirtry trick where he cites papers and books about the fusion of human chromosome 2 (it's a fusion of ape chromosomes 2a and 2b) and Luskin LIES OUTRIGHT about the cytogenetic evidence in the books and papers he's citing, presenting evidence IN FAVOR of chromosome fusion as evidence AGAINST chromosome fusion!

      They assert that Nazism was based on Darwinism, and ignore the fact that the Nazi government banned Darwinism, that Hitler embraced creationism in public and in private, that Nazism was explicitly it was based on conservative Christian values, and their Jew-hatred was inspired by 1,900 years of Christian anti-Semitism.

      IDiots have no problem with creationist lying about the Second Law of Thermodynamics [2LOT] and saying that 2LOT says that no closed system can ever go to a lower state of entropy, thus forbidding evolution. That's a creationist lie at least 90 years old-- I've seen it in books by George M. Price from 1920.

      As for disagreeing about the "cause" of mutations, they rape information theory, using the jargon of IT but making nonsensical blurts that only show they don't know what the jargon means. The IDiots says that only intelligence can create information. This is nonsensical gobbledygook in terms of Shannon's mutual information or Kolmogorov complexity. Then the IDiots add insult to injury by bad-mouthing, insulting and denigrating Shannon and Kolmogorov, because their equations allow for natural processes to create information. The IDiots have no alternative and no improvement, just ad hoc gobbledygook and outright cheating, compounded by their lying about the achievements of real scientists.

      They censor and suppress everyone who can expose their scientific fraud. They are also global warming deniers, whore for plutocracy, promote the "vaccines cause autism" fraud, deny that HIV causes AIDS, rationalize Biblical genocide, and denigrate women and non-white cultures as inferior.

      Is that not enough to piss us off?

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    7. Bill said:

      "...but I thought i.d. proponets basically agree with evolutionary theory except for the idea that changes have entirely natural causes."

      Some IDiots sometimes say that they're not anti-evolution, but that they are anti-natural-evolution. The ones who say that (or something like it) assert that evolution is pre-programmed, or front-loaded with software, or guided, or otherwise designed and created by their chosen god. They don't like to admit that last part about their chosen god but they reveal their religious beliefs sooner or later.

      Frankly, I don't believe that any of them accept evolution in any way. As Diogenes pointed out above, lying and other despicable games are certainly not foreign to them.

      From what I've seen, which is substantial, IDiots will say and do anything if they think that it will advance their dominionist agenda.

      Something that I've always found interesting, and strange, is that IDiots don't like 'theistic evolutionists'. I find that especially odd when I see an IDiot making essentially the same claims as a theistic evolutionist. When it comes right down to it, IDiots are religious kooks and woo pushers who have serious problems with facing reality.

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    8. I want to add that I don't see why IDiots don't like theistic evolutionists if they both accept evolution. Other than some details the "theistic" part should not be a big problem between IDiots and theistic evolutionists, especially since IDiots and theistic evolutionists have various theistic beliefs within their own groups, and since their theistic beliefs are often very similar between members of one group and members of the other group.

      The point of contention must be the "evolutionist" part, and that's one of the reasons I don't believe that any IDiots actually accept evolution.

      Another thing to notice is that it's the IDiots who make the biggest stink about evolution and evolutionary theory.

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    9. @The whole truth,

      You'd better be careful revealing facts like that. It confuses the IDiots.

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    10. I'll have to watch my step. I'd hate to add to their confusing confusion. ;)

      Delete