Bifurcation of the mind

  • Thread starter Evo
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  • #51
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Complete horse puckey! There is nothing scientific about ID.
Irrelevant. Cooking isnt scientific either, that doesnt justify mistreatment of cooks. I wonder how many people would turn against science when scientists start ridiculing everyone that enjoys cooked meals.

The day they can present solid evidence supporting their speculation rather than the "It's just too hard for us to understand the actual evidence" view that they currently argue with is the day they'll earn credibility among scientists.
Design of life seems to be ruled out by definition in science (not falsifiable or something like that), regardless if its true or not. A scientist saying that ID isnt true because it isnt science, is like a brainsurgeon saying that a leg isnt broken because its not a brain.
 
  • #52
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Irrelevant. Cooking isnt scientific either, that doesnt justify mistreatment of cooks. I wonder how many people would turn against science when scientists start ridiculing everyone that enjoys cooked meals.

Design of life seems to be ruled out by definition in science (not falsifiable or something like that), regardless if its true or not. A scientist saying that ID isnt true because it isnt science, is like a brainsurgeon saying that a leg isnt broken because its not a brain.
Ok present the evidence that implies intelligent design?
 
  • #53
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The only point that needs to be made is that ID is not science. Criticisms of the relevance of science are perfectly acceptable, but pretending that something unscientific is scientific is not. ID does not belong in science textbooks and it does not belong in the science classroom. I don't see anything wrong with having it appear in a religion classroom.
I dont care where its discussed, but it should be discussed without ridicule, and without an air of superiority breathing from peoples mouths.
 
  • #54
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Irrelevant. Cooking isnt scientific either, that doesnt justify mistreatment of cooks. I wonder how many people would turn against science when scientists start ridiculing everyone that enjoys cooked meals.
Actually, cooking IS pretty scientific...it's based on a lot of chemistry. There are even people who major in Food Science.

Design of life seems to be ruled out by definition in science (not falsifiable or something like that), regardless if its true or not.
ID proponents only get criticized for that because they try to claim their views ARE science, which they are not, precisely for the reason you identify, that they are not claims that can be tested (not falsifiable).

A scientist saying that ID isnt true because it isnt science, is like a brainsurgeon saying that a leg isnt broken because its not a brain.
Scientists say ID is not science, period. If people want to discuss it in church or religious classes, we have no problem with that, only when they try to teach something that is not based in science in the science classroom have they run into criticism from scientists. Your analogy makes no sense at all. It's more like a brain surgeon saying they can't treat a broken leg because it's not a brain. In other words, it's outside their field, and should be referred to an orthopedic surgeon, just as science and scientists don't deal with intelligent design; it belongs squarely in the realm of religion, not science...outside the field.
 
  • #55
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Ok present the evidence that implies intelligent design?
What it takes for intelligent design to be true is intelligence, but this is very difficult to determine. These links for example describe how even the simplest lifeforms can be considered intelligent, and how they 'genetically engineer' their own genomes:

http://shapiro.bsd.uchicago.edu/genome.html

I think ideas like these are victim of the entrenched positions both sides have put themselves in.
 
  • #56
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What it takes for intelligent design to be true is intelligence, but this is very difficult to determine. These links for example describe how even the simplest lifeforms can be considered intelligent, and how they 'genetically engineer' their own genomes:
You do realize that actually has NOTHING to do with what proponents of Intelligent Design are arguing, don't you? Intelligent Design is just a repackaging of creationism.
 
  • #57
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The vile treatment of ID is of course a shame on science and any scientist involved in it. I remember a guy was mistreated by some smithsonian people for publishing an article about ID.
Not true, and yes I personally know the Smithsonian Chair of Zoology below that the controversy is around. You couldn't find a more reasonable man.

From Panda's thumb

Here at PT, we had little to say about Sternberg's complaint for the simple reason that there wasn't much information to go on, as we pointed out in Sternberg vs. Smithsonian. But that article apparently caught the attention of one of the principals in the dispute, Jonathan Coddington. He responded in the comments, offering a brief statement taking on several of the allegations made in Klinghoffer's article. I will reproduce it here:

Comment #14871

Posted by JAC on February 3, 2005 09:36 AM

Although I do not wish to debate the merits of intelligent design, this forum seems an apt place to correct several factual inaccuracies in the Wall Street Journal's Op Ed article by David Klinghoffer, "The Branding of a Heretic" (Jan. 28, 2005). Because Dr. von Sternberg has filed an official complaint with the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, I cannot comment as fully as I would wish.

1. Dr. von Sternberg is still a Research Associate at the National Museum of Natural History, and continues to have the usual rights and privileges, including space, keys, and 24/7 access. At no time did anyone deny him space, keys or access.

2. He is not an employee of the Smithsonian Institution. His title, "Research Associate," means that for a three year, potentially renewable period he has permission to visit the Museum for the purpose of studying and working with our collections without the staff oversight visitors usually receive.

3. I am, and continue to be, his only "supervisor," although we use the term "sponsor" for Research Associates to avoid personnel/employee connotations. He has had no other since Feb. 1, 2004, nor was he ever "assigned to" or under the "oversight of" anyone else.

4. Well prior to the publication of the Meyer article and my awareness of it, I asked him and another Research Associate to move as part of a larger and unavoidable reorganization of space involving 17 people and 20 offices. He agreed.

5. I offered both individuals new, identical, standard Research Associate work spaces. The other accepted, but Dr. von Sternberg declined and instead requested space in an entirely different part of the Museum, which I provided, and which he currently occupies.

6. As for prejudice on the basis of beliefs or opinions, I repeatedly and consistently emphasized to staff (and to Dr. von Sternberg personally), verbally or in writing, that private beliefs and/or controversial editorial decisions were irrelevant in the workplace, that we would continue to provide full Research Associate benefits to Dr. von Sternberg, that he was an established and respected scientist, and that he would at all times be treated as such.

On behalf of all National Museum of Natural History staff, I would like to assert that we hold the freedoms of religion and belief as dearly as any one. The right to heterodox opinion is particularly important to scientists. Why Dr. von Sternberg chose to represent his interactions with me as he did is mystifying. I can't speak to his interactions with anyone else.

Sincerely yours,
Jonathan Coddington

I have confirmed via email correspondence that Jonathan Coddington at the Smithsonian is the author of the comment posted here at PT.

http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives/2005/02/a_second_dimens.html [Broken]
 
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  • #58
Gokul43201
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Give me a break Gokul43201, I said where the original could be found.
Sorry, I missed that. My bad.

It appears that you read it. Is it not as I indicated? He calls electrons a theory because no one had ever seen one.
He never actually says that no one has seen an electron, but it is true that he is trying to make the analogy to the theoretical construct. But it is an analogy he was invoking, not a rigorous argument.

If you do an experiment in which electrons hit a scintillation counter and you write up the results for a journal, what do you write:

1. In 1 hour I saw 5 electrons hit the scintillator.

2. In 1 hour I saw 5 flashes in the scintillator.
Neither. I'd write: "In 1 hour, 5 electrons were observed." If this was the 30s or 40s, I'm not sure I'd have used the same words.
 
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  • #59
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Neither. I'd write: "In 1 hour, 5 electrons were observed."
What would you say to an advocate of ID, who claimed that the hand of the designer is observed? After all, they don't really see the hand of the designer, do they?
 
  • #60
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In physics, an observable is very well-defined. In QM, for instance, it is associated with a hermitian operator. Whatever the area of science, there is a theoretical construct that takes you from the observation to the inference. This theory is rigorously developed, using the scientific method. And it is the repeated experimental verification of the veracity of this theory which allows one today to talk of seeing an electron in much the same way you can talk of seeing a brick, ONLY because the theory behind both kinds of observations has shown itself to be overwhelmingly reliable.

(Side note: you do not actually observe an object. You only observe its properties. The object itself is merely a label attached to a specific set of properties.)

If ID were a theory that had demonstrated predictive ability and testability over a statistically large number of experiments conducted independently under varied conditions, then I'd believe the link between the observation and the inference. It comes nowhere close to satisfying any of these standards.
 
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  • #62
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Not true, and yes I personally know the Smithsonian Chair of Zoology below that the controversy is around. You couldn't find a more reasonable man.
I base my statement on these sources:

Richard Sternberg, editor of a small publication associated with the Smithsonian Institute, agrees to publish a peer-reviewed article by Stephen Meyer, an advocate of Intelligent Design. He thinks "that by putting this on the table, there could be some reasoned discourse." Instead, his "colleagues and supervisors at the Smithsonian" are enraged. They take away Sternberg's master key, ostracize and harass him at work, and spread rumors that that the article was not peer reviewed and that Sternberg is not a scientist. (These rumors are false.) An official review of the matter discloses that "officials at the Smithsonian worked with the National Center for Science Education -- a group that opposes intelligent design -- and outlined 'a strategy to have [Sternberg] investigated and discredited.' "

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/08/18/AR2005081801680.html?sub=AR

U.S. OFFICE OF SPECIAL COUNSEL

I have carefully considered the information you provided. Based upon my evaluation of the facts and law applicable to your claim, I have made a preliminary determination to close our investigation into your allegations. My decision is not based upon the substance of your allegations; in fact, our preliminary investigation supports your complaint. My decision is founded upon a complicated jurisdictional puzzle and your position as a Research Associate (RA).

During our initial investigations, OSC has been able to find support for many of your allegations. However, the SI is now refusing to cooperate with our investigation.

Our preliminary investigation indicates that retaliation came in many forms. It came in the form of attempts to change your working conditions and even proposals to change how the SI retains and deals with future RAs. During the process you were personally investigated and your professional competence was attacked. Misinformation was disseminated throughout the SI and to outside sources. The allegations against you were later determined to be false. It is also clear that a hostile work environment was created with the ultimate goal of forcing you out of the SI.

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5007508

http://www.rsternberg.net/OSC_ltr.htm
 
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  • #63
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You do realize that actually has NOTHING to do with what proponents of Intelligent Design are arguing, don't you? Intelligent Design is just a repackaging of creationism.
Dont the ID folks specifically point out that ID doesnt mention who or what the intelligence is?
 
  • #64
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Actually, cooking IS pretty scientific...it's based on a lot of chemistry. There are even people who major in Food Science.
Is there any scientific theory about which recipes will taste good? Cooking is about making meals that taste good.
ID proponents only get criticized for that because they try to claim their views ARE science, which they are not, precisely for the reason you identify, that they are not claims that can be tested (not falsifiable).
Thats what the criticism should be about yes, but most of it isnt.

Scientists say ID is not science, period. If people want to discuss it in church or religious classes, we have no problem with that, only when they try to teach something that is not based in science in the science classroom have they run into criticism from scientists.
This is another danger to science i think. Many scientists being so fervently opposed to ID, and science in general refusing to let the idea be considered within science, there is the real possibility that this will damage the reputation of science in the future. The argument against ID (as u pointed out) is not that is isnt true, but that it isnt scientific. When science thus opposes an idea which may very well be true, there is the danger that when it does turn out to be true, science will have the bomb explode in its face.

I think it would be better for science to really look into the possibility of how (parts of) ID can be empirically researched. That way, when it starts looking like its true, science would avoid a "the sun rotates around the earth" scenario.

Your analogy makes no sense at all. It's more like a brain surgeon saying they can't treat a broken leg because it's not a brain. In other words, it's outside their field, and should be referred to an orthopedic surgeon, just as science and scientists don't deal with intelligent design; it belongs squarely in the realm of religion, not science...outside the field.
My analogy hit the nail on the head, except that the brainsurgeon not only denies that the leg is broken, he also ridicules the orthopedic surgeon. Also, when we take the entire hospital as an anology for researching reality, then the orthopedic surgeon has a legitimate role in it, as does the brainsurgeon.
 
  • #65
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In physics, an observable is very well-defined. In QM, for instance, it is associated with a hermitian operator.
Please don't confuse obvervable with observation. If you report that you saw the cat dead, then you are mistaken, you did not observe the cat at all. If you report that you saw it alive, same problem. If you report that you saw the cat half dead, half alive, then you reported what the theory told you, not what you actually observed.

I would like to get back to what Feynman wrote because even though it has been many years since I read it, and have long forgotten the exact words, yet the meaning that I took away struck me deeply and I have never forgotten that. I recall that he wrote (not in so many words):
1. Electrons are a theory.
2. No one has seen an electron.
3. Electrons are a theory BECAUSE no one has seen one.

You indicated that you have a copy of the book. What did he actually write? What did he write in the surrounding paragraphs that blunted the force of these words? What did he write for scientific audiences that blunted the force of these words?
 
  • #66
Kurdt
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Th crux of this whole ID thing is that the theory was put out there with no supporting evidence at all. Proponents of the theory then set about trying to prove the theory true from evidence already collected that supports evolution and natural selection theories. Where this differs from science is that they have proposed a theory with no shred of evidence to support it. They then try to prove that theory using already gathered evidence with pathetic arguments which is not scientific because scientists do not try and prove their theories. Science also differs from ID theory because it was only after empirical evidence was gathered that evolution was proposed to explain that evidence.

You can therefore understand why scientists get a bit annoyed by this. Firstly there are people trying to push a theory that they say is a scientific theory when it is not (has no supporting evidence) and secondly when trying to explain how it can't be called scientific you get staunch illogical resistance. Thirdly the ceaseless publicising of this to the general public and the need to clean up the mess.
 
  • #67
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Dont the ID folks specifically point out that ID doesnt mention who or what the intelligence is?
They are still arguing it is some sort of "supreme being" or god. As I mentioned above, it's just an attempt to bring back creationism, and tries to do so by not specifying which god to try to force it into the public school classroom. It is still religion and still has zero scientific basis.

The person whose site you linked to, if you read what's there, also clearly distinguishes that what he is talking about is not ID. He's actually very critical of it. He's not even arguing against evolution, or making any extraordinary claims. Most of what he's arguing against is the equally dogmatic, and incorrect, presentation of evolution in the classroom as being entirely dependent on random mutations and survival of the fittest, and presents genetic engineering as a mechanism of evolution as an example that departs from traditionally taught mechanisms.
 
  • #68
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Is there any scientific theory about which recipes will taste good? Cooking is about making meals that taste good.
That's your perception of what cooking is about. There is no "theory" on it, but yes, there is study of things like taste reception, the chemistry of how foods will interact, how different ingredients alter palatability, etc. That you don't need to understand the science to follow a recipe doesn't mean there is no scientific study of the subject.

Thats what the criticism should be about yes, but most of it isnt.
No, that is what most of the criticism is about. There are others who have problems with it on a social, not scientific, level as well, but that is not the issue the scientific community, as a whole, has with it.

This is another danger to science i think. Many scientists being so fervently opposed to ID, and science in general refusing to let the idea be considered within science, there is the real possibility that this will damage the reputation of science in the future. The argument against ID (as u pointed out) is not that is isnt true, but that it isnt scientific. When science thus opposes an idea which may very well be true, there is the danger that when it does turn out to be true, science will have the bomb explode in its face.
The burden of proof is on those who are proposing the "theory." When they can provide solid evidence supporting their claims, they will be listened to. If they continue to base their claims on what is NOT observed, and ignore all the existing evidence to the contrary, then it is NOT science.

I think it would be better for science to really look into the possibility of how (parts of) ID can be empirically researched. That way, when it starts looking like its true, science would avoid a "the sun rotates around the earth" scenario.
You're again making an assumption there that it will be true. When those who are proposing ID present the experiments or show how it can be empirically researched, again, scientists will be interested to hear it. They have not provided anything testable as yet.

My analogy hit the nail on the head, except that the brainsurgeon not only denies that the leg is broken, he also ridicules the orthopedic surgeon. Also, when we take the entire hospital as an anology for researching reality, then the orthopedic surgeon has a legitimate role in it, as does the brainsurgeon.
If you want to make up completely nonsense analogies, then here is the analogy of what ID is...it would be the preacher coming in and looking at the patient with the broken leg and telling him that because we didn't see him fall, his leg isn't broken, and when the doctor points out the fracture on the x-ray, he would argue that's just a deception of the creator making it look like it's broken when it isn't.
 
  • #69
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They are still arguing it is some sort of "supreme being" or god. As I mentioned above, it's just an attempt to bring back creationism, and tries to do so by not specifying which god to try to force it into the public school classroom. It is still religion and still has zero scientific basis.
Ive read many times that ID itself does not state who or what the intelligence is, that it simply speaks of 'intelligence'. But in the end it doesnt matter if the proponents think its god or a supreme being, and it doesnt matter if people think its not scientific. What matters is if its true or not.

The person whose site you linked to, if you read what's there, also clearly distinguishes that what he is talking about is not ID. He's actually very critical of it.
If someone says that the simplest lifeforms are intelligent and can genetically engineer their genomes, then that is a form of intelligent design. Its just not a supernatural god doing it.

Btw i didnt mention him as an ID proponent, but as someone whose ideas could get stuck between the two extremes.
 
  • #70
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That's your perception of what cooking is about. There is no "theory" on it, but yes, there is study of things like taste reception, the chemistry of how foods will interact, how different ingredients alter palatability, etc. That you don't need to understand the science to follow a recipe doesn't mean there is no scientific study of the subject.
There is scientific study of religion also, so what? My point was that when people say they can cook a fabulous meal, they shouldnt be ridiculed because its not a scientific theory.

The burden of proof is on those who are proposing the "theory." When they can provide solid evidence supporting their claims, they will be listened to. If they continue to base their claims on what is NOT observed, and ignore all the existing evidence to the contrary, then it is NOT science.
The opposite is equally true. If evolutionists managed to show that neodarwinism is capable of what they claim it is capable of, and back it up with empirical evidence instead of philosophical possibilities, then the ID folks will not have a foot left to stand on.

You're again making an assumption there that it will be true. When those who are proposing ID present the experiments or show how it can be empirically researched, again, scientists will be interested to hear it. They have not provided anything testable as yet.
Actually, no, i didnt make an assumption, i simply stated the fact that it was a possibility.

If you want to make up completely nonsense analogies, then here is the analogy of what ID is...it would be the preacher coming in and looking at the patient with the broken leg and telling him that because we didn't see him fall, his leg isn't broken, and when the doctor points out the fracture on the x-ray, he would argue that's just a deception of the creator making it look like it's broken when it isn't.
What about this one: a person is shot 20 times. Each bullet has hit a finger or toe. The preacher looks at the patient and says that he was purposely shot. The doctor says that they were just random shots fired by a chaingun that went off by itself.
 
  • #71
Gokul43201
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What about this one: a person is shot 20 times. Each bullet has hit a finger or toe. The preacher looks at the patient and says that he was purposely shot. The doctor says that they were just random shots fired by a chaingun that went off by itself.
You can't decide who is right based on their conclusions; you need to hear the complete arguments. But this is exactly the thing the IDers (such as you, perhaps) refuse to do. They refuse to accept that it takes long, hard work to figure stuff out...and instead believe, as above, that one can "arrive" at conclusions based on a casual glance at things.

We don't make judgements based on appearances, we make them based on a system of reasoning that has proven to hold water. If the doctor's argument is based on a careful scientific study of the case that is backed up by sufficient evidence, and is verified independently by other doctors/forensics experts, I'd definitely believe them, rather than the preacher that arrived at a conclusion based simply on a perfunctory glance at the locations of the bullet shots.

You couldn't have more clearly illustrated the problem with ID than you just did.
 
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  • #72
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The opposite is equally true. If evolutionists managed to show that neodarwinism is capable of what they claim it is capable of, and back it up with empirical evidence instead of philosophical possibilities, then the ID folks will not have a foot left to stand on.
My irony meter is going nuts here.
 
  • #73
The opposite is equally true. If evolutionists managed to show that neodarwinism is capable of what they claim it is capable of, and back it up with empirical evidence instead of philosophical possibilities, then the ID folks will not have a foot left to stand on.
What do you want proof of macro evolution, or proof of micro evolution? They have both.

ID doesn't have a leg to stand on anyway, it's the snake of the scientific community. Using spurious reasoning and faulty science to "prove" its case. It's selling snake oil and claiming its science. Another analogy would be the snake in the garden of Eden, wanting Adam and Eve to eat of the forbidden fruit, or to put it another way to swallow it.:smile:
 
  • #74
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I've recently thought of a new theory called P-theory. Now P-theory states that there are invisible organisms similar to pixies that cannot be detected. These organisms rarely interact with our universe as they are slightly phase shifted from the background spacetime, but when they do they tend to only stay for microseconds. Now there is no "proof" or "evidence" for P-theory but you know when you misplace something and you never find it, then a pixie came from their phase shifted universe and took it back with them. This is an example of one success of P-theory in the explaination of missing objects.

Of course this isn't really "scientific" in the traditional sense but what matters at the end of the day is whether its true or not and I believe it is.
 
  • #75
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In response to original poster:

I think there's nothing incomprehensible here. Noone asks any questions when a scientist in his paper calculates the angle of light bending using Newton gravitation model and GR on the same page. Or, it is not a big deal if someone speaks two languages native to nations that are currently fight in war or something. So what's so wrong here?

Personally, I like to think of multiple (scientific) theories and (non-scientific) beliefs we have as sort of reality "models" made to fit particular data about this reality. some do equally good, some not. some are better in explaining one things, some - in explainig other things. some are even incomparable. these "models" are like projections of some higher-dimensional truth humans will never really grasp.
 
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