Thursday, March 02, 2006

Bunch of Monkeys

I was just reading the judgment in the Kitzmiller v Dover case. You know the one, the latest in a string of cases going back to 1926 and the Scopes trial representing the ongoing battle between good and evil. Evolution and creationism, or vice versa, depending on your viewpoint.

Easy, there, ya fuckin bible wielding bum smeller, I’m not going to get into it. We’ve done that before. Yes, smelled bums. Suffice it to say that the judgment is well worth a read if only for this cheeky as fuck quote from Judge Jones:

“…ID and teaching about “gaps” and “problems” in evolutionary theory are creationist, religious strategies that evolved from earlier forms of creationism”

What a beautiful man.

Anyway, he goes into a pretty damning case-history of the attempts of the fundamentalists to oust evolution, from banning it being taught in schools to getting equal time for creationism in science lessons, to “creation science” to intelligent design. All of which responses to the ever sophisticated arguments against creationism as a load of hooey. Yes, you heard it, Mr. O'Toole Goes to Washington. HOOEY! Luckily for kids in the US they have the Establishment Clause of the First amendment which pretty much fucks the creationists from the get-go. And the Supreme Court knows it.

Anyway, I thought I wasn’t going to get into it. I’m not. Here’s the point. The big difference between ID and creationism is that ID’s official stance is that they don’t say God is the creator, or intelligent designer. (Intelligent designer? Whoo…I can imagine all the hack comedians and their scrotum jokes already)

So, this begs the question. Who? Or, ok, what?

Two of the alternatives, on record, on fucking court record in the Dover case are: Aliens and, I love this…a time travelling cell biologist.

A time travelling cell biologist. Some ID heads believe that one, or at least suggest it to throw us off their cooky scent.

Let’s consider that and see where it takes us in our understanding of ourselves and the almighty. What they’re suggesting is a time loop of some sort that we’re in. In other words, they go back, we evolve to the stage where time travel is possible, they go back, etc. Thing is…it’s not about, say, the END of the world as we know it, as in Twelve Monkeys, for example, nor about something along the way, like Donnie Darko. It’s about the very beginning. That creates all sorts of logical problems that lead us to only one conclusion if we follow the path that the cell biologist believers advocate.

Time loops require a way in, so what you end up with is something that looks like this:

Or this, if the person goes too far back in time and steps in something:

The process suggested here, however, they think, looks like this:

But in fact, it’s more like this…and clearly nonsense:

So, if we look back to fig 3., the ID futuristic cell biologist proposition, we see that it could not begin in the first place without some bastard setting it up…a creator!

So, either they are full of pure, sweaty shite, or a further designer is required. And if he designed THAT world, the only solution is this:

God’s a dork.

22 Mewling Pricks

At 11:00 pm, Anonymous David Duff ejaculated...

So how did life start?

At 11:18 pm, Blogger Snotty McShot ejaculated...

For you? When I gave yer ma a hosin'.

At 6:08 am, Blogger lucretius ejaculated...

Of course, the major argument of ID folks is that an evolutionary scientist can't explain every last detail of the evolutionary theory (which of course, is beyond the ken of contemporary science).

Yet, the same argument is often applied against the existence of God, most easily in the contention that because religious people fail to find an explanation for each instance of evil, no good deity could exist.

Of course, the goal of both scientists and intellectually honest religionists is not to provide simple explanations but to uncover the questions that have not yet been asked or have not been satisfactorily answered.

That, in my opinion, is why creationists should all go hump their overly self-confident sense of religious know-it-all-ism. And this puts the lie to people like W., who suggest that it is only fair that students should be asked to judge between the theories of hard-working scholars who admit that they don't have all the answers and smug evangelists who believe that they shall be justified by their own self-righteousness.

At 10:13 am, Anonymous David Duff ejaculated...

Smugness, like beauty, is often to be found in the eye of the beholder. No-one, not even our, dare I say, smug host, has a tested theory on how reproducing life began. The ID-ers, like some scientists, offer up their particular hypothesis. That it should enrage some people to a state of apoplexy says more about them than the hypothesis.

As for evolutionary explanations of complex, multiple life-forms, at anything above and beyond the trivial (the beaks of Darwin's finches), they are so obviously daft that only true believers with similar psychological profiles to those who congregate so regularly in St. Peter's square could possibly swallow them whole. Still, if it keeps them happy!

At 10:43 am, Blogger Snotty McShot ejaculated...

Ah, 'David', you fucking knobrocket.

"No-one ... has a tested theory on how reproducing life began"

Well this is just bollocks. There are numerous theories about the origins of life that continue to be tested. The question is unanswered, and may stay that way, but the scientific research continues.

Since you are so keen on tested theories, you great big penis, perhaps you could give us an idea as to what sort of experiment we could design to test the ID-ers' "particular hypothesis"? You'd be doing everyone a great favour - after all, none of the ID people appear to be willing to go that far. Hence the fucking apoplexy.

At 2:12 pm, Blogger Hugs O'Toole ejaculated...

ID is not a scientific hypothesis. It is a conclusion based on the lack of an answer. That’s about as scientific as a talking snot. That the theory can be traced back to Thomas Aquinas in the 13th Century and was originally a theory for the existence of God says a lot. At that time Aquinas based it on a syllogism. “Wherever complex design exists there must have been a designer: nature is complex; therefore nature must have had a designer” This is essentially the same argument as the ID crowd.

David Irving did the same thing as them, even if his "hypothesis" was more deeply offensive than the ID one. He began with a particular stance and tried to wedge it into the facts. “The holocaust has been exaggerated; there are various gaps in the historical records; therefore the holocaust was exaggerated” To every expert he was either a calculating liar or a fool. The same goes for the experts' views of ID proponents, not to mention the courts in the US. There, since the Scopes trial, the creationists have been in court numerous times for attempting to have their brand of religion forced upon school children. Be it in the form of pure auld biblical 6 day creationism, “balanced treatment” (the argument that both “theories” should be given equal air-time…familiar?), “creation science” or ID, at every step of the way this has been exposed as nothing but religious fundamentalism thinly veiled.

'David Duff' doesn't support Irving's particular brand of intellectual disingenuousness, why support this one?

At 5:44 pm, Anonymous David Duff ejaculated...

Sorry, 'Hugs', but ID *is* a hypothesis, albeit, not a very convincing one on the grounds that *so far* it cannot be tested, a characteristic shared by many other 'scientific' hypotheses (is that the plural?)

Also, I do not think you are summarising ID theory correctly. They are not pointing at complexity 'per se', they are simply pointing at certain specific examples of what they call "irreducible complexity", in other words, end results at the bio-chemical level which *appear* not to comply with Darwin's notion of gradual, step-by-step evolution.

The most irreducibley complex question of all, of course, is what or how the whole process kick-started in the first place! Unlike you and our excitable host I remain equable in the hope that many different people will offer up their various hypotheses.

Your argument from the example of David Irving does you a dis-service by devaluing your entire line of reasoning. Irving was, and is, a liar. The people who advocate a supernatural prime mover believe profoundly, too profoundly, possibly, that what they say is the truth. It is a characteristic shared by many 'Darwinistas' despite the preposterous nature of some the theory and the increasing number of *scientific* attacks on its credibility.

At 5:47 pm, Anonymous David Duff ejaculated...

Sorry, I forgot to add, that I would have very much more respect and sympathy for the position of the biologists if I could be certain that they would teach the weaknesses in Darwin's theory as well as its strengths.

At 7:24 pm, Blogger Hugs O'Toole ejaculated...

In fact, 'David', ID proponents do point to complexity ‘per se’ alongside the theory of irreducible complexity. It is called the “purposeful arrangement of parts”. It is argued by the main advocates of ID and corresponds precisely with the Aquinas quote above. Here’s a quote from the Professor Behe, the irreducible complexity guy: “We infer design when we see parts that appear to be arranged for a purpose”

On that basis someone invented your dick.

On the issue of irreducible complexity, this is a test of evolution, not of ID. It is a negative test that aims to point to a flaw in one theory to prove another, which is an utterly false premise. “Evolution can’t explain X therefore ID wins!” Evolution, by the way, has so far passed this test. Professor Behe has never, ever, submitted the theory for peer review. ID is supported by absolutely NO peer-reviewed data, research or publications. Still, his three main examples of irredu…fuck it “IC” have been debunked in many peer reviewed papers: the bacterial flagellum, the immune system and the process of blood clotting. He claimed in 1996 for example, that evolution could “never” explain the immune system. At the recent Dover case he was presented with 58 peer-reviewed articles, 9 textbooks and many more chapters from immunology textbooks doing just that. He said it wasn’t enough. Well, what then? It has been shown also that in his work on the bacterial flagellum he totally ignored processes of exaptation, which he admitted in court. On blood clotting it was shown that numerous species clot without certain parts of the “cascade” which was seen as irreducibly complex.

How it all kick-started may not yet be known, this does not mean it will never be known. The word “irreducible” implies just that. So just give up eh? To quote an eminent biologist, “absence of evidence is not evidence of absence”. I'm sure catholics etc would agree with that. In 1996 evolutionary biology was struggling with the immune system. Ten years on, however, it has shown how it evolved…well, unless you, ‘David’ also think 58 articles, 9 books and and the rest that were not presented at that particular hearing is not enough? That it is not yet known is no reason to resort to superstition.

I never said ID wasn’t a hypothesis. I said it wasn’t a scientific one and I challenge you to name one of the “many” scientific hypotheses that cannot be tested. Scientific, ‘David’, not the space lobster theory or something. In other words, natural explanations for natural phenomena. ID is a supernatural explanation for natural phenomena and therefore nothing to do with science by very definition.

On Irving, my point was his lack of academic rigour in making his argument. He had a viewpoint, perhaps “too profoundly” held (eh? see what I did there?), and he sought to prove it even if it meant fudging the facts. Behe et al are faced with the destruction of their IC argument and have admitted ignoring certain aspects of natural selection which could have accounted for their perceived “discoveries” yet hold on to the ID claim regardless. Irving and the ID crowd in that sense.

At 8:28 pm, Anonymous David Duff ejaculated...

Alow me to start with a confession which may be redundant on the grounds of its obviousness; I am no scientist!

If, as some people suspect, I didn't have a life, I could no doubt produce a dozen learned, scientific papers explaining the ins and outs of phlogiston which now, scientists insist, does not exist. However, in its day it was a useful theory to explain how certain other phenomena operated. What often surprises me is how many sharp, cynical and otherwise intelligent people swallow whole volumes of scientific theory without ever even chewing! I am surprised because the whole history of science is littered with the dead bodies, so to speak, of previously preciously held 'truths'.

I haven't the time to read all the literature on the counter to Behe's propositions, nor have you, I guess, but simply adding up the number, or even the weight, of the scientific literature against him makes no impression on me at all. Just think of the number of papers written, including some by Max Planck, himself, denying the incredible conclusions to be drawn from his *own* observations of the behaviour of electrons. Even Einstein denied quantum mechanics! And, it must be said, it is possible that he was right all along. Who knows? All we can do is try and follow the debate but try not to be *enraged* by it! It seems to me that you and your ilk are so frightened of the merest mention of a supernatural prime mover that you throw all caution and sceptisism to the winds and end up sounding as fanatical as the people you oppose.

Let the debate and the research and the theorising continue. It's facinating and exciting and hugely important - BUT KEEP AN OPEN AND A COOL MIND!

And make sure the teachers teach not just teh truth, but the whole truth which includes teh doubts and the weaknesses. Without them, science would atrophy!

At 11:12 pm, Blogger Hugs O'Toole ejaculated...

"Teach the controversy" eh 'David'?

At 11:20 pm, Blogger Hugs O'Toole ejaculated...

Oh, and phlogiston, 'David'? C'mon, you're old, not that old.

Actually, good example. They couldn't quite consider what caused combustion therefore a hypothetical substance was responsible. Sound familiar?

At 6:11 pm, Blogger Desargues ejaculated...

DD, you need to go back to college (assuming you went to one), and ask for a full refund. Obviously they didn't teach you anything useful there. Your take on the nature of scientific theories were ludicrous, if it weren't so hopelessly moronic. FYI, untestable hypotheses are not seriously considered in mature sciences. When such hypotheses are adopted (as is the case in superstring theory), it is for the sake of the unifying power of the new formalism being proposed. String theory, for instance, allows the formal derivation of both general relativity and quantum mechanics from a 6 to 10-dimensional manifold of discontinuous vibrating "strings". Don't try to replicate this argument to fit it to your ID bullshit, 'cause it won't work. ID is not a mathematical formalism; it's a patchwork of regurgitated tales dreamed up by Levantine tribesmen around Palestine, ca. 1,500 B.C.

Anyway, what is it with you conservative guys that make you so fucking stupid, and eager to make yourselves into the thigh-slapping joke of civilized humanity? Can't you just accept that the retarded obscurantism they teach you in church is simply false, and see whether you can save any shred of moral wisdom from those tales you've been told? Sheesh!

So you confess you're not a scientist, but you think you have legitimate questions about Darwinian biology. Do you realize how retarded that is? What would you say if I told you that I'm not a physicist, but I have my doubts about the validity of the Hot Big Bang cosmological model? I'd be laughed out of town like a common midget, and rightly so. Therefore, before you venture to talk about the dominant paradigm in biology, have a nice tall glass of shut-the-fuck-up. Or better, why don't you chew on this piece of wisdom, courtesy of John Stuart Mill: "Conservatives aren't necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives." Beyotch!

At 12:17 pm, Blogger Larry Teabag ejaculated...

For a discussion of the "Aliens done it" side of ID - can I please whore out something I wrote about it.

You might also find the comments section a lesson in the dangers of attempting to have a sensible discussion on this subject with 'David Duff'.

At 11:30 pm, Blogger Desargues ejaculated...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 11:32 pm, Blogger Desargues ejaculated...

This Duffie fellow needs to work out some issues he's struggling with. From what I could see so far, he's been getting his ass kicked major league, yet he keeps coming back for more. Fine example of conservative spine. Either he's masochistic, or he's still living in his parents' basement. At any rate, he needs to go out more.

At 4:40 am, Blogger Labbie ejaculated...

Oh, for fuck's sakes... Just let it go. Let. It. Go.

At 12:02 am, Anonymous Anonymous ejaculated...

Amusing diagrams. Unnecessary, but cute because so earnest. Well done.

At 12:55 am, Blogger Snotty McShot ejaculated...

Ah, stick it in yer cunt.

At 1:04 am, Anonymous ID-man ejaculated...

HAHAHAHAHA! You just convinced me; I'm now officially an ID-ist!

On the behalf of everybodys favorite friend david duff, he's right that there we do not know how the world works, but we do have theories. What he's not getting is that theories have qualities which can be measured, leaving us with the possibility to keep the good ones and discard the bad ones. And, as desargues and Hugs O'Toole says, the ID theories were discarded for very good reasons way back in the days when you could have a good old war mainly for fun.

Of course, now that the "intellectuals" (you know the ones best referred to as Impostures Intellectuelles) have devised the theories of postmodern thought, it is not acceptable in a "democratic" society to discuss quality of theories any longer, so us loudmouths with a passion for what we choose to call science should probably just shut the f@ck up and go to bed.

(Also, I hate censorship. Especially the self-imposed kind that makes me use ridiculous characters like @ when I feel like cursing.)

At 9:51 am, Anonymous Anonymous ejaculated...

Funny, isn't it, how 'conservatives' can latch onto that post-modernist all-ideas-are-equal bollocks when they need to argue for ID, yet they treat economics and religion as though they are closed subjects, not open for discussion.

Is this Orwell's 'doublethink', or a manifestation of an un-diagnosed mental illness?

At 8:24 pm, Blogger lucretius ejaculated...


are you suggesting a manly war isn't fun? well then what about a girly one? I think that'd be shits and giggles.


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