Over on HuffPo, Barrett Brown wrote this article:
Intelligent Design, Online Edition
Sundry Dembski worshippers flocked to HuffPo from UncommonDescent to defend their Ideology. It appears that many of them, including one 'Uprightbiped' - were on autopilot, and responded to the article by complaining that Brown did not discuss the (pseudo)science of ID.
But you see, the article was about ID on the internet, specifically, how Dembski runs his blog and how he is a hypocrite, which any sensible, rational, intelligent person could see form actually, you know, reading the article.
But not Uprightbiped. Nosirree. You see, he thinks that because the title of the article had the phrase "Intelligent Design" in it, it is supposed to be only about the 'SCIENCE' of ID and nothing else.
And so, Uptightbiped decided to reply by first whining about how Barrett did not specifically discuss ID and how all he did was 'condemn' Dembski - which, amazingly, the ARTICLE WAS SUPPOSED TO BE ABOUT!!!
See for yourself:
Virtually every comment on this post has nothing whatsoever to do with ID -
neither does Barrets trivial condemnations of Dembki. One of the commenters here
visited Demski's UD site, stomped his feet and said "Where is your inference
coming from? Upon what scientific facts is ID based?"
For those who would rather KNOW than be just another link in the chain, you might
consider reading David Abel's peer-reviewed paper in the Journal of Theoretical
Biological and Medical Modeling. He spells out the case in no uncertain terms.
Its available here: http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=1208958There is also another from the International Journal of Molecular Science: http://mdpi.com/1422-0067/10/1/247/pdfOne thing is for
certain, no one here will address the evidence presented in either of these
peer-reviewed journals on its face. Building strawmen, as Barret has done, is
always more fun.
I guess I should also mention that Uptight (yeah, I know, namecalling - well, he took to calling me 'Scotty' at HuffPo, I guess that was supposed to be an insult, so back at ya, Uptight) seems as enamored with creationist David Abell as he is with Dembski.
Of course, Uptight's original post did not even acknowledge what Brown's article was really about. So, I replied:
Isn't is amazing?
A piece NOT actually intended to be about the vacuous
gobbledegook that is "ID" has nothing whatsoever about 'ID" in it!It is a
conspiracy, I tells ya!
Pro-ID zealots are a constant source of entertainment, to
And it went on from there, with Uptight engaging in the usual hero protection and false accusations that I have grown accustomed to seeing from these people when things don't go there way.
In the end, his posts were little more than focused and constrained Gish gallops and argument via false authority. See for yourself, in toto, starting after my reply above:
Scott, Here is what is amazing: A peer-reviewed article appearing in the Journal
of Theoretical Medical and Biological Modeling, and a companion piece in the
International Journal of Molecular Sciences implicitly states:"The fundamental
contention inherent in our three subsets of sequence complexity proposed in this
paper is this: without volitional agency assigning meaning to each
configurable-switch-position symbol, algorithmic function and language
will not occur. The same would be true in assigning meaning to each
combinatorial syntax segment (programming module or word). Source and
destination on either end of the channel must agree to these assigned meanings
in a shared operational context. Chance and necessity cannot establish such a
cybernetic coding/decoding scheme ."
"To focus the scientific community’s attention on its own tendencies toward overzealous metaphysical imagination bordering on “wish-fulfillment,” we propose the following readily falsifiable null hypothesis, and invite rigorous experimental attempts to falsify it:“Physicodynamics cannot spontaneously traverse The Cybernetic Cut :
physicodynamics alone cannot organize itself into formally functional systems
requiring algorithmic optimization, computational halting, and circuit
"A single exception of non trivial, unaided spontaneous optimization of formal function by truly natural process would falsify this null hypothesis".
...and so you suggest this has nothing to do with the hypothesis that volitional agency is required to achieve function in the sequencing of nucleotides.Nice. What exactly did you think the author was talking about when he said the phrase “volitional agency”?http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=1208958
One will note that he replies as if I had responded to him specifically about his links, which I did not. Specifically the last paragraph - Uptight seems to have me confused with others (which he basically admits later, but will not directly acknowledge). I reply:
Interestingly, your reply does the same thing to me that your earlier reply
did to Brown's article. It ignored it. That or you got me confused with someone
Perhaps if I use simpler language - Brown's article was not about the lack
of scientific merit of ID, or even of ID in general, rather, it was about Bill
Dembski and his antics. Why did you expect his article to address ID when it was
not about ID?
And why would you have expected my reply to you to be about the
bafflegab-riddled articles that Trevors and Abel somehow got published when all
it was intended to do was point out that your earlier response was essentially a
But since you are so enamored with Trevors and Abel, perhaps you can
explain how it is that an objective reader should take their claims seriously
when ALL of their 'conclusions' are premised on a totally unsupported assumption
that the genetric code was 'written'?
One will also note that despite his obvious adoration of Trevors and Abel, Uptight does nto once even try to answer my challenge in the last part. I continued:
Their 2004 paper contains this as a premise:
"How did inanimate nature write:
1. the conceptual instructions needed to organize metabolism?
2. a language operating system needed to symbolically represent, record and
replicate those instructions?
3. a bijective coding scheme (a one-to-one correspondence of symbol
meaning) with planned redundancy so as to reduce noise pollution between triplet
codon "block code" symbols (bytes) and amino acid symbols?... "
Fails from the get go.They start by assuming their conclusion - that
metabolism/genetic code was pre-planned and written, and that "inanimate nature"
cannot do this.
Theirs is an argument via analogy combined with an argument via defintion
combined with an argument via personal incredulity, gussied up with some
superfluous jargon and 'information theory' gibberish.
What about this peer reviewed scientific paper:Natural selection as the
process of accumulating genetic information in adaptive evolutionM.
KimuraGenetical Research (1961), 2:127-140 Cambridge University Press
Kimura demonstrated mathematically that adaptive evolution adds information
to genomes. Wonder why TnA never mention that...
I should also note the last sentence of the liked paper:"We invite potential collaborators to join us in our active pursuit of falsificationof these null hypotheses."In other words, they've just tossed out some hypotheses. Which is fine. What is not fine is that their acolytes then proceed to present these hypotheses as some sort of unfalsifiable truths.
Scott, (Part 1)
You say: “Interestingly, your reply does the same thing to me that your
earlier reply did to Brown's article. It ignored it.”
My comment was targeted directly at the posts being
made in this forum. This might have been obvious by the first words of my
post, which were “Virtually every comment on this post…” And by the way, I noticed in your first post you suggested the paper I cited had
nothing to do with the inference to volitional agency – and in your
second post you’ve seem to have abandoned the claim.
You say: “Perhaps if I use simpler language - Brown's article was not about
the lack of scientific merit of ID…Why did you expect his article to address ID
when it was not about ID?”
An article with the words “Intelligent Design” in the heading isn’t about
An article that suggests that ID proponents “can't get away with trying to
portray ID as a scientific theory” does not attack the “scientific merit” of ID?
So, having had to abandon your original comment as factually untenable, you’ve
been left to make observations that are demonstrably incoherent.
Tell me why anyone should take these observations of yours seriously.
Interesting... I've highlighted (in red) some interesting, if not unwitting, 'admissions'..
For how did I 'abandon' a claim I never made? Note also that Uptight has attempted to diminish anything I might write - I mean, why would anyone take me seriously when I abandon a claim I never made, right? One will see that, in typical IDcreationist fashion, Uptight later essentially accuses me of doing the same thing to his poor heroes...
If your comment was directed at other posts, why reply directly toIn the threaded world of blog replies at HuffPo, things get a little hairy, as Uptight also reponded with this:
You write:"And by the way, I noticed in your first post you suggested the
paper I cited had nothing to do with the inference to volitional agency – and in
your second post you’ve seem to have abandoned the claim."
In my first post, I mentioned or implied nothing of the sort. In fact, I
did not even MENTION anything you had written - you seem to be coflating again.
The SOLE purpose of my first post was to point out that you, as have
several other anti-'Darwinists', lamented that Brown did not discuss ID when the
fact of the matter is that was not the intent of his article!
You go on, as ID advocates are wont to do:
"An article with the words “Intelligent Design” in the heading isn’t about
“Intelligent Design”. ... So, having had to abandon your original comment as
" you’ve been left to make observations that are demonstrably
"Tell me why anyone should take these observations of yours
So, if the article has the phrase "Intelligent Design" in the title, it
must by some magical set of unwritten rules, be solely about ID in toto?
Please demonstrate how my comments are incoherent - I realise that to the
anti-'Darwinist', mere assertions count as irrefutable evidence, but to rational
folk, that won't cut it.
Then you say:
“And why would you have expected my reply to you to be about the bafflegab-riddled articles that Trevors and Abel somehow got published when all it was intended to do was point out that your earlier response was essentially a non sequitur?”
Your original post was nothing but a petty ad hominem
attack on ID which made absolutely no mention of a “non-sequitur” in my
comments, nor did it provide any rationale that supported the idea that one
existed. You are digging a hole.
In truth, you portrayed my comment as “gobbledegook” trying to extort
a peer-reviewed paper as having anything to do with ID, and then after being
corrected you switched to portraying the Abel paper itself as “bafflegab”.
You even go so far as to imply that the peer-review process at the
International Journal of Molecular Science, and that at the Journal of
Theoretical Medical and Biological Modeling, should perhaps be called into
question. What is most clear is that amidst all of your repeated attempts to
slander the reputation of anyone that disagrees with you, you say nothing
whatsoever about the actual evidence.
Why is that?
“But since you are so enamored with Trevors and Abel, perhaps you can
explain how it is that an objective reader should take their claims seriously
when ALL of their 'conclusions' are premised on a totally unsupported assumption
that the genetric (sic) code was 'written'?”
Surely you are kidding? You are actually objecting to the completely common
phrase that the genetic code was “written”? Well, if that is your objection,
then you need to get your objection pen out.
You are going to be busy…“…genes were written in a code…” -Cornell
“…DNA sequence, as a book written in a special code…” -Michigan State
“…a text written in a language common to all life…” -Nat Geo
“…a code written in multiples of three bases…” -Nature“
…a sequence of words written in the alphabet A,C,G,T…” -Carolina
Truly you can’t be serious. Trevors and Abel used the
term “written” in the exact same way as the authors of the text above –
and it is an abject lie to suggest otherwise. So not only must you try to
slander the reputations of those scientists that disagree with you, you also
must misrepresent their work in order to do so.
Poor Uptight's heroes, so in need of his protection - so much so, that Uptight, as IDcreationists so often do, felt the need to drum up some well poisoning and false accusations against me. That is what these people do. One will note that other than admit that he takes metaphorical langauge literally, he never does actually show how Abel's claims have merit.
Of course, when one bothers to learn a bit more about Trevors and Abel, one finds that, in fact, they are not at all using the term "written" in the exact same way those other sources are. I guarantee it, and it is obvious for the loaded language that TnA use. But Uptight and his creatinist cronies turn off their BS meters when reading wrok from 'friendlies'...
But he goes on:
Finally, you say:
“They start by assuming their conclusion - that metabolism/genetic code was
pre-planned and written, and that "inanimate nature" cannot do this. Theirs is
an argument via analogy combined with an argument via defintion combined with an
argument via personal incredulity, gussied up with some superfluous jargon and
'information theory' gibberish.
Your finale is one long mischaracterization followed by a few ad hominem
arrows thrown in for flavor. Yet, never do you actually
address anything of the observable evidence at the molecular level
(almost none of which is even in doubt by scientist of any stripe). Nice defense
there, Scotty- - - - - - -
By the way, Kimura’s demonstration assumes
replicating/metabolizing cells. Abel didn’t mention it because it has
nothing to do with origins research (since it already assumes
Never mind that TnA never actually mention any evidence - their papers are are purely hypothetical. So, I respond:
Ah, the old creationist stand bys - "ad hominem!" "misrepresentation!"
"You're being mean to my hero!"Calm down, fella.Surley, you know what
metaphorical languiage is, yes? I am fairly certain that the authors of your
sound bites do not think that the genetic and such were 'written' the way
creationist Abel and his pals do.
So, you read Kimura's paper did you? I did not mention any of the 'evidence' at
the molecular level at T and A do not actually present any.The fact is, the only
people who take their work seriously are themselves and a handful of
IDcreationist types, as evident from the dearth of citation.
Uptight didn't like that much, but he, perhaps, realized that he was in over his head and decided to bow out:
I didn't reply to you - Scott, ...you REPLIED to MY comment.
See how that works?In fact, you have now posted on my comment seven seperate times. Yet, you haven't addressed the actual content of my post even once, and indeed, in the your latest post you continue to attack everything but the evidence. I am willing to allow any readers to make of that what they will.
By all menas you may have the last word.
But I'll bet he's a regular HERO at Uncommondescent!
Note that in the world of the IDcreationist, quotes and disbelief that you don't agree with them count as a demonstration that their sources are correct.
Unlike the hero-worshipping Uptight, I plan on actually responding to what he has written. It might take me a few days (pretty busy this timie of year), but I'll get to it.