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Conservapedia:Opposition to intelligent design

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Between 25th April and 29th May 2008, Ed poor created Opposition_to_intelligent_design - it is a load of crap.
The talk page at 21:55, 21 October 2008 (EDT):


Another wonderfully sourced article...seriously put it in debates or something. --Snotbowst 17:56, 6 May 2008 (EDT)

== Essay? ==

I think this should be changed to an essay. Does anybody agree? Corry 18:18, 21 October 2008 (EDT)

It's a very interesting essay, but I'd still say it is an essay. LiamG 18:22, 21 October 2008 (EDT)

The 'article' is reproduced below it demonstrates, among other things, how inferior Uncle Ed's reasoning and logic are, even to those of Phil Rayment, who at least is coherent in his delusion.

Ed Poor's Screed Rationalwiki's rebuttal
Opposition to intelligent design is largely motivated by entrenched distaste for its philosophical implications. This is, no doubt, partially true, but the main cause for such opposition is the unscientific nature of the concept

A living organism fulfills the definition of a machine all the way down to the molecular level. And yet, because of the philosophical and religious implications of life resulting from Intelligent Design, a surprisingly large portion of the intelligentsia seek to find a mechanism by which life may arise naturally by random chance

(source)
Correlation (Life:Machine) does not ipso facto prove equivalence.
Because of the philosophical and religious implications, a surprisingly large portion of educated people seek to find ...
The question that ID poses is not "might there be an intelligent designer?" so much as "is there evidence of intelligent design?" Yet the first thing ID opponents always bring up is that design implies a designer. For atheists, such a designer could only be God. (Or as Richard Dawkins said in Expelled, since God almost certainly does not exist, the designer must be an alien from outer space who was himself naturalistically evolved. Obviously, Dawkins brought up that alternative to dismiss it.) (Leaving aside the connection between ID and Creationism)
Isn't that the whole point? Design implies, no - stipulates, a designer.
Why are scientists, who supposedly only care about the physical world, up in arms about the religious implications of their work? (Aha! so ID does have religious implications) Scientists do not necessarily only care about the physical world but realise that anything non-physical cannot affect the physical; if something does affect the physical world then of necessity it must be itself physical.
The point is that atheists and materialists in the mainstream of modern science reject any suggestion that the material world is (*) all there is. If evolution were to lose credibility, atheism would accordingly lose support. This would lead to what is for them an outrageous alternative.

*(suspected missing word here - see right - editorial comment)

If evolution were to lose credibility it would be because it had been replaced by a theory which was more credible and fitted the observable facts more closely. The assumption that such a theory would cause a loss of support for atheism is one more indication of the author's belief in God's hand in ID.

* (The first sentence appears to be a booboo - there should be a "not" before the "all" - this is assumed in the response - editorial comment)

The problem is the ideological refusal to separate science from ideology. Supposedly, pure science just explores what is and does its best to explain observed facts with theories. Physical science uses natural law for its explanations, and it has down spectacularly well, especially in the last 400 years. Pasteur's germ theory of disease is an outstanding example of a very useful discovery which has saved countless lives. Apart from the weasel word "ideology", there is no reason to disagree with this.
But when it comes to the question of human origins, there is no escape from the implications of any theory. It is generally agreed that there are only two possibilities:
  1. that life "evolved" entirely because of physical causes; or,
  2. that some other cause is responsible for life's existence
Replace this paragraph with:
It is generally agreed that there is only one possibility:
  1. that life "evolved" entirely because of physical causes;
In the physical sciences, methodological naturalism is the favored approach. Scientists choose to consider only physical forces and principles. Natural selection is one such principle, and all biologists accept it - even those who disbelieve completely in evolution (such as Young Earth Creationists). True - Science's business deals only with physical forces and principles. That which is undetectable is not scientific.
But at the boundary of science and philosophy, we are forced to consider whether physical science has all the answers. In criminology (social science), investigators must give a scientific opinion as to whether an occurrence such as a fire or a human death was caused naturally, by human error, or by a deliberate act. A building might catch on fire due to an accident that is no one's fault; it might be the result of culpable negligence, or it may have been set on purpose; see Arson. Likewise, a death might be accidental (the brakes failed), the result of negligence (the other driver ran a stop sign); or it could be suicide (he drove straight into a tree); see also Murder Why this is relevant is a mystery. In none of the "examples" given is there exclusion of science in favor of philosophy.
Some attempts have been made to identify "science" with physical science, as if all the other areas of study were not scientific at all. This comes as news to doctors, psychologists, anthropologists, economists and professors of political science. Some philosophers of science may wish to make a sharp distinction between real science and "the fuzzy subjects", but in academia there has traditionally been less of a cliff than a spectrum. In fact, it is only in one relatively obscure part of the life sciences i.e., biology, that anyone has put forth this idea. All the professions and disciplines referred to are, or can be treated as, science, providing they comply with the reproducibility of experiment and/or predictability of results. If some "sciences" are not generally agreed to be scientific, it is usually because they do not fulfill these criteria. The final sentence is a little obscure but seems to ignore the creationists view of the beginning of the universe (thank BAAL).