Top.Mail.Ru
[religion] Intelligent Design - Lakeshore — LiveJournal
? ?
Lakeshore
An author of no particular popularity

Jay Lake
Date: 2008-08-28 06:32
Subject: [religion] Intelligent Design
Security: Public
Tags:religion, science

I’ve managed to get myself into an argument with an Intelligent Design troll over on io9.com. Yes, I really do know better. But there’s a really important point about Intelligent Design that most people seem to miss.

The concept of “irreducible complexity” lies at the heart of Intelligent Design’s attempted argument. Irreducible complexity essentially says that “since I can’t imagine how such a thing came about through natural processes, God must have done it.”

The statement is ridiculous for two reasons. First, it reflects the poverty of imagination of ID proponents far more than it reflects any realities of the complexity of the observable universe.

Second, it doesn’t address anything at all about that complexity, it just abstracts complexity from the observable universe to the unobservable deity. That solves nothing.

Which is why arguing with Intelligent Design trolls is deeply pointless. They proceed from unconsciously false premises, and are not subject to reasonable discourse in the first place.

Originally published at jlake.com. You can comment here or there.

Post A Comment | 34 Comments | | Flag | Link






Paul
User: horrorofitall
Date: 2008-08-28 13:46 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Not to mention Behe's conjecture about irreducible complexity was refuted before his Darwin's Black Box even hit the book shelves. But IDers have just put their fingers in their ears and chanted LALALALALALAL WE CAN"T HEAR YOU when it comes to such things.
Reply | Thread | Link



User: autojim
Date: 2008-08-28 13:50 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Reality
Jay, Jay, Jay, you know as well as anyone "Do Not Feed The Energy Creature"... just repeat after me, "DNFTEC, DNFTEC, DNFTEC..." It can turn into a nice chant, and if you pitch your voice right, people will think you're a Tibetan Buddhist. ;)
Reply | Thread | Link



(no subject) - (Anonymous) Expand
doctorsetebos: contemplation
User: doctorsetebos
Date: 2008-08-28 14:09 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:contemplation
I didn't think that's what "irreducible complexity" was. I thought "irreducible complexity" was the idea that various things are complex, and if you remove any element of a thing, it will cease to function properly. Such as a watch. It is a complex machine, and if you remove any of its gears, it will no longer function. The idea is that humans (and any other organism) are sufficiently complex that if you take any part away, it will cease to function, therefore making it's complexity irreducible.
Reply | Thread | Link



Paul
User: horrorofitall
Date: 2008-08-28 14:20 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Essentially that is what Behe was getting at. First it was the eye. Now his item du jour is the flagella of bacteria.

Both of his examples have been thoroughly trounced.
Reply | Parent | Thread | Link



jens_fire
User: jens_fire
Date: 2008-08-28 14:17 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
“since I can’t imagine how such a thing came about through natural processes, God must have done it.”
-That is such a cop out and indicates a laziness of the brain. In any case, just because we can't conceive of how something comes about doesn't mean that there isn't a way that it did. At one point it was inconceivable by the general populace to think that the world was round. We learn every day the some of our preconceived notions are not exactly spot on. What's wrong with just saying, "we don't know yet"? Just because we don't know something now, doesn't mean we won't discover it in the future. And then the more we know, the more we realize we don't know. Ya know?
Reply | Thread | Link



biomekanic
User: biomekanic
Date: 2008-08-28 14:29 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Uncertainty causes doubt.
Doubt causes you to question your beliefs.
If nothing you believe is really as you believe, then everything is in chaos and flux.
That leads to gay marriage, and we all know where that goes...

Gay marriage

To sum up - we're not dealing with rational people, these are the sort of people who would be much happier if pi was 3.
Reply | Parent | Thread | Link | Expand



Mythusmage
User: mythusmage
Date: 2008-08-28 14:25 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
You think the ID crowd is bad, try the mercury militia. They are vile. If you'd like to see some prime ID take downs, visit Pharyngula some time. Young Earth Creationists have the amazing ability to spell short common words 15 different ways in a single post. We talking about post-modernist maoists who found Jebus in a strip mall church/telemarketer boiler room.
Reply | Thread | Link



Paul
User: horrorofitall
Date: 2008-08-28 15:15 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
We should really start calling the Mercury Militia and the Anti Vaxxers, Infectious Disease Proponents or Infections Disease Supporters. I think it would get the point across more succinctly
Reply | Parent | Thread | Link



User: autopope
Date: 2008-08-28 14:41 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Incidentally, I just sent IO9 the following comment via email:

I'd like to note in passing that SATURN'S CHILDREN doesn't "flirt" with Intelligent Design -- it ridicules the mind-set behind it.

There's a staged ID/evolution debate, in which the ID proponents win -- because they're robots, and they've got the purchase orders and blueprints that show where they come from, i.e. actual evidence. The other side loses because they, too are robots, and rather than advancing an evidence-based argument they rely on dusty old tracts handed down from legendary prophets. In other words, the side with the scientific explanation takes the prize.

"Intelligent Design" is mendacious hypocritical claptrap, pandering to the prejudices of superstitious monotheists. It is of no conceivable value to the rest of us naked apes other than as an object lesson in intellectual dishonesty.
Reply | Thread | Link



Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2008-08-28 14:46 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
You and I are both on the side of the angels (so to speak) on this one, my friend.
Reply | Parent | Thread | Link



lordofallfools
User: lordofallfools
Date: 2008-08-28 16:34 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Dude:

Belief in a special creation, either the YEC or ID variety, is nothing but a poverty of imagination, and a strong need for limits on the infinite. It says far more about the insecurities and shortcomings of the believer than it does about the realities of the universe.

You don't need to demonize your opponents in order to make the point that ID (as currently presented) is ridiculous.

Belief in intelligent design says very little about one individual's insecurities and shortcomings; it's not a belief like, say, classism. It's an intellectual conclusion that is generally disconnected from character and behavior. (Note the word "generally.")

When you assert that a belief in intelligent design shows a poverty of imagination, what exactly do you mean? Ditto with the "strong need for limits on the infinite..." Before I contend these points, I'd like to make sure that the terminology we're using is comparable.
Reply | Thread | Link



Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2008-08-28 16:40 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
This requires a more thoughtful answer than I have time for at the moment, because you're challenging me in a most excellent way and I want to get my words just right. If we're going to spar over this, let's spar over the ideas, not the phrasing.

So, um, probably this afternoon. Coz I really want to hear what you have to say.
Reply | Parent | Thread | Link | Expand



Al Bogdan: Half-Tone
User: albogdan
Date: 2008-08-29 02:28 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Half-Tone
Was the argument intended to convince the troll, or was it actually directed at the lurking audience? I always figure that's why I get dragged into such things. The conversation is really with those who are silent.
Reply | Thread | Link



Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2008-08-29 03:40 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Well, I suppose to talk to others. I generally don't bother with trolls, just kind of slipped up.
Reply | Parent | Thread | Link



browse
my journal
links
January 2014
2012 appearances