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Sunday, October 3, 2010

Intelligent Design coming to the UK


Hang on to your bowler Jeeves. Dr. Alastair Noble (above) is announcing that Intelligent Design is coming to Britain in a big way.

"The Centre for Intelligent Design features a video introduction from Dr Alastair Noble, who has argued that ID should not be excluded from the study of origins. He says, among other things, that he is part of a network of people who are "dissatisfied with the pervading Darwinian explanation of origins and are attracted to the much more credible position of intelligent design" and criticise the "strident strain of science" that says the only acceptable explanations are those depending on "physical and materialistic processes"....


The network of people supporting the centre's activities numbers between 50 and 100. Among them is its president Professor Norman Nevin, emeritus professor of medical genetics, Queens University, Belfast, and its vice-president Dr David Galloway, who is also vice president of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, Glasgow. In its FAQs, the site lists the UK scientists "who are brave enough to make their support for intelligent design public. There are many more who are not willing to risk their careers by making their objections to evolution known."


Here here! Bravo to the Brits for standing up for what they believe in! Who needs to take guff from a bunch of wonks who know bugger all about origin of life issues?


31 comments:

ATVLC said...

"...much more credible position of intelligent design"

LOL!

and criticise the "strident strain of science" that says the only acceptable explanations are those depending on "physical and materialistic processes"...

They want to make -magic- science?

For now, the Centre for Intelligent Design is nothing more than a website and an office.

Of course.

GentleSkeptic said...

The network of people supporting the centre's activities numbers between 50 and 100.

http://ncse.com/taking-action/project-steve

SmartLX said...

http://ncse.com/taking-action/project-steve

Yes, right now it does sound like a smaller version of the already-futile "Scientific Dissent from Darwinism" project.

SmartLX said...

And it's Noble, not Nobel. You wish a Nobel were part of this endeavour.

SmartLX said...

Just read the site article about the cause of the universe. It's Kalam according to William Lane Craig, people. Check it out, but there's nothing new to see.

JD Curtis said...

Test

JD Curtis said...

William Dembski already addressed the so-called "Project Steve" contraversy back in 2003 with an article titled "Project Steve-Establishing the Obvious". Quote...

"If Project Steve was meant to show that a considerable majority of the scientific community accepts a naturalistic conception of evolution, then the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) could have saved its energies -- that fact was never in question. The more interesting question was whether any serious scientists reject a naturalistic conception of evolution -- that fact has been in question, especially by the NCSE. That it is now a known fact can be credited to Seattle's Discovery Institute, whose list of scientists questioning Darwinian evolution was the impetus for Project Steve. Interestingly, the NCSE has on numerous occasions stressed that science is not decided at the ballot box. If the NCSE still holds that position, then Project Steve is not only a proof of the obvious but also an exercise in irrelevance."

JD Curtis said...

And perhaps not only in the UK, but quite possibly in Japan, Intelligent Design would appear to be gaining acceptance. Link

Froggie said...

Nice try, JD!

ID makes no predictions. It is not testable or falsifiable. There are no facts supporting it.
To change the definition of science to include ID would also then include astrology, fortune telling, the Indian philosophy that the earth rests on the back of a turtle, and every other ancient myth about the existence of the earth as science.

I love it when you post an article gushing about crap that you found at UD and those other insane sites you read.
Makes my day!!!!

Whateverman said...

I would love for ID to become a valid system of inquiry. I really do hope that it provides testable hypotheses, makes predictions, and eventually blows the lid off the roof of the "naturalistic processes created everything" paradigm.

I'm totally, 100% serious about that.

Unfortunately, ID as we know it today is in no position to contribute to our understanding of life on this planet. It does not care if its ideas are falsified, it does not make predictions which can't be made through naturalistic inquiry, and it provides nothing that we don't already possess (ie. some people believe "God did it").

Bravo to the Britts for standing up for their beliefs - and a sincere Yawn at our expectations of what this will produce.

SmartLX said...

If the "Scientific Dissent from Darwin" wasn't meant to establish an argument from group authority, what was it for?

Even one professional scientist/ID proponent would have proved the point that "any serious scientists reject a naturalistic conception of evolution", and the Discovery Institute already had Michael Behe.

No, beyond that they were shooting for a perceived consensus and to portray evolution as a theory in crisis. That's what Project Steve shot down.

JD Curtis said...

ID makes no predictions. It is not testable or falsifiable. There are no facts supporting it.


"..committed evolutionists Louis Charles Birch & Paul R. Ehrlich stated in the journal Nature: Our theory of evolution has become, as Popper described, one which cannot be refuted by any possible observations. Every conceivable observation can be fitted into it. It is thus outside of empirical science but not necessarily false. No one can think of ways in which to test it. Ideas, either without basis or based on a few laboratory experiments carried out in extremely simplified systems, have become part of an evolutionary dogma accepted by most of us as part of our training. The cure seems to us not to be a discarding of the modern synthesis of evolutionary theory, but more skepticism about many of its tenets."

Froggie said...

"No one can think of ways in which to test it [ToE.]

BS. No Theory can be tested, only the facts and data supporting it.
See the Theory of Gravity.

GentleSkeptic said...

The cure seems to us NOT to be a discarding of the modern synthesis of evolutionary theory, but more skepticism about many of its tenets.

I'm not sure what this is supposed to refute. All they're saying is that while the specific mechanisms of evolution should be continually subject to skeptical scrutiny — and are also difficult to "test" — the Big Ideas of common ancestry and descent with modification are beyond empirical reproach.

Every conceivable observation can be fitted into it.

Really? Even, as Haldane put it, "rabbit fossils in the Pre-Cambrian? No. Because this is not a conceivable observation.

Whateverman said...

So JD, are you conceding that intelligent design is not science?

JD Curtis said...

are you conceding that intelligent design is not science?

To put a finer point on it, I do not think that it qualifies as methodological naturalism

Whateverman said...

So you ARE conceding it. Good. I hope you convince some of the Christian ID proponents of this; it'd go a long way towards puring the fallacy of the two being equivalent.

Froggie said...

OK, for the sake of arguendo, let's abandon Methodological naturalism, which includes mathematics and what exactly do we have left?

Anyone?

:)

GentleSkeptic said...

Wishful thinking and dogma?

Froggie said...

Bingo!

We have a winnah!

Give that man a cee-gar!

JD Curtis said...

So you ARE conceding it

What? That ID doesn't qualify as methodological naturalism? I'm sure that you read the critique that I provided in the above link re: methodological naturalism and I'm sure that youre prepared to comment on it.

I hope you convince some of the Christian ID proponents of this

I can't say that I follow everybody in the ID field closely. I do know that David Berlinski isn't even a Christian, or even a theist for that matter.

I don't have the exact quote in front of me, however I know that Stephen C. Meyer would agree that ID isn't methodological naturalism.

JD Curtis said...

ID makes no predictions. It is not testable or falsifiable

"The National Academy of Sciences has objected that intelligent design is not falsifiable, and I think that’s just the opposite of the truth. Intelligent design is very open to falsification. I claim, for example, that the bacterial flagellum could not be produced by natural selection; it needed to be deliberately intelligently designed. Well, all a scientist has to do to prove me wrong is to take a bacterium without a flagellum, or knock out the genes for the flagellum in a bacterium, go into his lab and grow that bug for a long time and see if it produces anything resembling a flagellum. If that happened, intelligent design, as I understand it, would be knocked out of the water. I certainly don’t expect it to happen, but it’s easily falsified by a series of such experiments.

Now let’s turn that around and ask, How do we falsify the contention that natural selection produced the bacterial flagellum? If that same scientist went into the lab and knocked out the bacterial flagellum genes, grew the bacterium for a long time, and nothing much happened, well, he’d say maybe we didn’t start with the right bacterium, maybe we didn’t wait long enough, maybe we need a bigger population, and it would be very much more difficult to falsify the Darwinian hypothesis.

I think the very opposite is true. I think intelligent design is easily testable, easily falsifiable, although it has not been falsified, and Darwinism is very resistant to being falsified. They can always claim something was not right." Michael Behe, Link

GentleSkeptic said...

"…go into his lab…for a long time…"

Good one, Michael Behe.

It's the existence and nature of the alleged "Designer" that can't be determined or falsified.

I claim, for example, that the bacterial flagellum could not be produced by natural selection…

This is a negative claim about past possibilities, slippery at best, and the burden of proof is on the person making the claim. So if it's so easily demonstrable, as Mr, Behe insists, I'd say it's time for Mr. Behe to get into his lab… for a long time. OR: he could just visit the wiki page and learn about possibilities.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_flagella

Here's a negative claim. "ID could not produce an organism with blind (non-functioning) eyes, because that would be, you know, really unintelligent for a designer."

http://www.slate.com/id/2195683/

http://wiki.cotch.net/index.php/What_use_is_half_an_eye%3F

"Darwinism" is "resistant to being falsified" because ALL of the evidence supports it.

GentleSkeptic said...

In related news, it would appear that familiarity really does breed contempt.

http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/dngag/iama_son_of_michael_behe_the_catholic_biochemist/?sort=confidence

SmartLX said...

I agree that the claim that the bacterial flagellum (propeller) could not have evolved is a falsifiable claim, but it was falsified when a subset of its components was found to form a functioning Type Three Secretory System (syringe), and the remainder had other functions. The initial claim was based upon the idea that if you remove anything from it, it becomes useless. Remove one component from a flagellum and you don't have a flagellum anymore, but you do have a TTSS with some hangers-on.

Intelligent Design itself is unfalsifiable because even if an ID flagship feature like the flagellum were replicated in a lab using natural processes, the biologists involved might simply be replicating the design. In fact that's exactly what Behe will probably say if they pick his baby.

JD Curtis said...

a subset of its components was found to form a functioning Type Three Secretory System (syringe)

Just out of curiosity, how many different parts did this "syringe" have?

SmartLX said...

In terms of proteins, ten out of the flagellum's 50.

JD Curtis said...

The reason I ask is because it would not appear to be nearly as complex as the flagellum. The more it is analyzed, the more complex it becomes as this recent article indicates.

SmartLX said...

We know that, JD. The TTSS is a subset of the flagellum's components, and lacks the mechanism to turn which is why it isn't a flagellum. And as I said, other functions exist for the remaining forty proteins as well.

Luskin's main objection in the link is that there is no explanation for the specific sequence of proteins in the flagellum, even if most or all of them are homologous to proteins in other organisms. Significantly he no longer claims that it couldn't have evolved, so the main point of the flagellum from the ID perspective is no longer there. So this whole article appears to be post-Dover sour grapes.

More importantly, he quotes Sarah A. Woodson when she says that proteins spontaneously combine. The thing ID proponents claim is patently ridiculous happens on a regular basis. And she's not even talking about evolution; she refers to assembly of established body types. If the wrong proteins get together from the perspective of the current genome, and they stick, you get a new body. That, while simplified, is how it happens.

Whateverman said...

The silence is deafening...

SmartLX said...

It was like that on the Tiktaalik thread too.