Commentary on the so-called Creation/Evolution/Intelligent Design Debate and Right-Wing nuttery in general - and please ignore the typos (I make lots!)

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Oh dear, I've been tagged...

The Rev.BigDumbChimp tagged me...

Well, OK, there are some rules:

  • We have to post these rules before we give you the facts.
  • Players start with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
  • People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
  • At the end of your blog post, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.
  • Don't forget to leave them a comment telling them they're tagged, and to read your blog.

The 8 people I am supposed to tag may be a toughie - all the folks I would have done this to have apparently already been tagged, so I might be adding names later...

Anyway - eight random facts/habits about me...

1. I wanted to be a physical therapist until I did some observation/volunteer work at a physical rehabilitation center in Michigan and realized that I did not want to be around people with problems. So, I went to graduate school.

2. I grow a beard in the summer (since I cannot grow one during the school year - military school and all) and I have this semi-obsessive/compulsive habit of plucking out beard hairs that feel out of place.

3. I build and fly (try to, anyway) radio controlled airplanes.

4. Unlike Newt Gingrich, Dan Burton, Ronald Reagan, Rush Limbaugh, and Rudy Giuliani, I have never had an affair and have only been married once. Next month I will be celebrating my 21st Wedding Anniversary (and I'll only be 40!).

5. I did not become an atheist until I actually read the bible at age 20 after my father unexpectedly died. After I read it - from cover to cover - I was nearly dumbstruck by the realization that nearly half the population of this country believes it word for word.

6. I think Karl Popper's ideas were naive and simplistic and have little relevance to the actual process and endeavor of science.

7. My graduate school advisor lived on the corner of Northfield and Oneida streets. I grew up in New York on an Oneida Street, and I now live in Northfield, VT. Creepy, eh?

8. I recently had a 20-year reunion of my old Army unit - Delta Battery, 319th FA, Airborne Battalion Combat Team. Woo hoo!

Names of 8 taggees forthcoming....

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

More (pseudo)elitism from Bill "Ted Haggard of Information Theory" Dembski

This guy is too much...

Bill Dembski, PhD. PhD., apparently doesn't think people lacking PhD.'s in specific areas or having lesser degrees than he has have no business commenting on things outside of or above their field or level of supposed understanding.

See how he denigrates Richard Wein, after Wein devastates one of Dembski's supposed mathematical arguments, because he has but a B. S. in statistics, while he, Dembski, has a PhD.:
"A word about credentials seems worth bringing up. Richard Wein holds a bachelor's degree in statistics -- that's it. Now, his lack of academic credentials by itself does not undercut his critique -- any work must ultimately stand on its own merits. Yet his lack of formal training should raise a suspicion about his contempt for my knowledge of statistics and probability. I do have the requisite credentials in this field, having a Ph.D. from a good school and having published in this area (my CV is available at NFL was thoroughly vetted by experts spanning a range of disciplines. Moreover, the endorsements appearing with the book are glowing and come from experts in computer science, machine learning,
mathematics, statistics, engineering, biology, biochemistry, physics, and
philosophy (see ~William_Dembski/docs_books/nfl.htm).
All of the endorsers are more eminent in their respective fields than Wein. How can they think NFL is the best thing since sliced bread and Wein think it is the worst thing since the Lisbon earthquake? One has to wonder if more isn't at stake than just the merit of the ideas."

But watch out if someone dares mention reality - that Dembski has no relevent degrees in many of the things he pontificates on - you get the hero-worship treatment. (via moonman62)

"Please review his CV again. He is a mathematician---the metalanguage of all the sciences---who has a special competence in the Philosophy of Science. Are you saying that some Ph.D. biologist shuffling around in a dusty lab somewhere is a "scientist" and the extraordinary polymath Dembski is not? This is credentialism of the worst sort. I guarantee he can talk polypeptides, or some other biological esoterica, with any biologist living or dead, and write a peer reviewable paper on the subject as well."

Sure - and he can use the simplistic 'DNA is just like the english language anaology' with the best of them... Apparently, polymathery does not include actually being competent in the areas you can 'talk' in.

But I digress...

King Hypocrite is at it again:

"Chu-Carroll names his bog GOOD MATH, BAD MATH: FINDING THE FUN IN GOOD MATH, SQUASHING BAD MATH AND THE FOOLS THAT PROMOTE IT. Perhaps I’m missing something, but Chu-Carroll’s expertise is in computer programming, where he has a Ph.D. How much math does he actually know?"

Clearly not as much as Dr.Dr. Bill 'polymath and mathematical supergenius' Dembski...

It seems that hypocrisy has a face, and that face is the Intelligent Design Religio-Political Movement's Bill Dembski's.