Intelligent Reasoning

Promoting, advancing and defending Intelligent Design via data, logic and Intelligent Reasoning and exposing the alleged theory of evolution as the nonsense it is. I also educate evotards about ID and the alleged theory of evolution one tard at a time and sometimes in groups

Monday, September 24, 2007

Does the Designer have to be "God"?

As I have stated many times now, the designer could be "God" and that it doesn't matter if it was/ is.

But does the designer have to be "God"?

Absolutely not.

The designer(s) need not have anything to do with eternal salvation nor eternal damnation.

The designer(s) need not have any requirement for worship.

All religions could be man-made nonsense and the designer(s) wouldn't care.

The designer(s) need not have supernatural powers.

The designer(s) need not be supernatural.

The designer(s) need not be caring, loving nor judgemental.

The designer(s) need not have a personal relationship with anything nor anyone.

The designer(s) need not be omnipotent, omniscient nor omnipresent.

Any questions?

Monday, September 17, 2007

If the Designer is "God", so what?

As I stated in my previous entry, you cannot legislate nor adjudicate how to define science.

Also science cannot be limited to some arbitrary set of rules:

In any case, as Thomas Kuhn pointed out, debate about methodological rules of science often forms part of the practice of science, especially during times when established paradigms are being challenged. Those who reject the "teach the controversy" model on the grounds that ID violates the current rules of scientific practice only beg the question. The present regime of methodological rules cannot prevent the controversy for the simple reason that those rules may themselves be one of the subjects of scientific controversy. page xxv of Darwinism, Design and Public Education

The 2004 Encyclopedia Britannica says science is “any system of knowledge that is concerned with the physical world and its phenomena and that entails unbiased observations and systematic experimentation. In general, a science involves a pursuit of knowledge covering general truths or the operations of fundamental laws.”

“A healthy science is a science that seeks the truth.”- Paul Nelson, Ph. D., philosophy of biology.

“Science is the search for the truth.”-Linus Pauling, winner of 2 Nobel prizes

“But science can only be created by those who are thoroughly imbued with the aspiration toward truth and understanding.” Albert Einstein

The truth need not be an absolute truth. Truth in the sense that Drs. Pauling, Einstein & Nelson are speaking is the reality in which we find ourselves. We exist. Science is to help us understand that existence and how it came to be.

As I like to say- science is our search for the truth, i.e. the reality, to our existence via our never-ending quest for knowledge.

And it just so happens that science was once used as a method for understanding "God"'s handy-work.

Which means that those who do so today can only be as scientifically literate as the great scientists who did so before them. I would think that would be a good thing.

So if the designer is "God", so what? If science is interested in reality it doesn't care.

No one is saying that science has to say something about "God". But we may be able to make some determinations if we observe, gather data and evidence.

Science without religion is lame; religion without science is blind.- Albert Einstein.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Intelligent Design- What's the Point?

People I have talked to wanted to know the point? "What's the point to Intelligent Design?"

My response:

The point is to (be able) conduct scientific research and be allowed to reach a design inference if that is what the data, evidence and observations warrant.

That's it. Then I remind them that:

1) There is only one reality behind our existence and the exitence of what it is we are trying to explain.

2) Science is a tool for determining that reality.


3) You can neither legislate nor adjudicate what "reality" science can deal with.

Also as Justice Lewis Powell wrote in his concurrence to Edwards v. Aguillard:
(A) decision respecting the subject matter to be taught in public schools does not violate the Establishment Clause simply because the material to be taught ‘happens to coincide or harmonize with the tenets of some or all religions’.”

Thursday, September 13, 2007

The Explanatory Filter (EF) used on the Sci-Fi Channel!

All too often I hear cries that the Explanatory Filter is not used by anyone, anywhere. I have always responded that the people who say that do not know how to determine design in the absence of watching the designer at work.

But anyway, the Sci-Fi Channel has a show called "Ghost Hunters". Their methodology on the show captures/ models the EF.

That is with every phenomenon they observe they first try to explain it without calls to "ghosts". IOW they set out to debunk the claim(s) of "ghost(s)".

If they have high EMF readings they try to find a normal electrical source.

If doors open and close in the absence of a person they try to find some "natural" cause.

If shadows move across a room they try to find a "natural" cause.

Only once all possible "natural" causes are ruled out do they come to a paranormal inference.

That is the EF in action!

You make observations, you gather data and evidence, then you (try to) explain what you observed as well as the data and evidence you have gathered.

With the EF you try to explain it fisrt via regularity, then via chance, then via intentional design. It forces you through those first two lines of defense- regularity and chance- guarding against the design inference.

That is what the "Ghost Hunter"'s do- they try to debunk a claim by running it through those defenses- they use observation, electronic surveillance, thermo imaging, and EMF tracking to gather the data and evidence, put that together with their observations, and then try to explain every piece of the pie via easily explainable natural processes.

If and only if those options have run out, and some recognizable pattern exists (specification) do they attribute some phenomenon to a "ghost".

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Biological Specification (Dembski CSI) and My explanation of CSI

Biological specification always refers to function. An organism is a functional system comprising many functional subsystems. In virtue of their function, these systems embody patterns that are objectively given and can be identified independently of the systems that embody them. Hence these systems are specified in the same sense required by the complexity-specification criterion (see sections 1.3 and 2.5). The specification of organisms can be crashed out in any number of ways. Arno Wouters cashes it out globally in terms of the viability of whole organisms. Michael Behe cashes it out in terms of minimal function of biochemical systems.- Wm. Dembski page 148 of NFL

In the preceding and proceeding paragraphs William Dembski makes it clear that biological specification is CSI- complex specified information.

In the paper "The origin of biological information and the higher taxonomic categories", Stephen C. Meyer wrote:
Dembski (2002) has used the term “complex specified information” (CSI) as a synonym for “specified complexity” to help distinguish functional biological information from mere Shannon information--that is, specified complexity from mere complexity. This review will use this term as well.

In order to be a candidate for natural selection a system must have minimal function: the ability to accomplish a task in physically realistic circumstances.- M. Behe page 45 of “Darwin’s Black Box”

He goes on to say:

Irreducibly complex systems are nasty roadblocks for Darwinian evolution; the need for minimal function greatly exacerbates the dilemma. – page 46

IC- A system performing a given basic function is irreducibly complex if it includes a set of well-matched, mutually interacting, non-arbitrarily individuated parts such that each part in the set is indispensable to maintaining the system’s basic, and therefore original, function. The set of these indispensable parts is known as the irreducible core of the system. Page 285 NFL

Numerous and Diverse Parts If the irreducible core of an IC system consists of one or only a few parts, there may be no insuperable obstacle to the Darwinian mechanism explaining how that system arose in one fell swoop. But as the number of indispensable well-fitted, mutually interacting,, non-arbitrarily individuated parts increases in number & diversity, there is no possibility of the Darwinian mechanism achieving that system in one fell swoop. Page 287

Minimal Complexity and Function Given an IC system with numerous & diverse parts in its core, the Darwinian mechanism must produce it gradually. But if the system needs to operate at a certain minimal level of function before it can be of any use to the organism & if to achieve that level of function it requires a certain minimal level of complexity already possessed by the irreducible core, the Darwinian mechanism has no functional intermediates to exploit. Page 287

What I said about CSI:

What is complex specified information (CSI)?

CSI & specified complexity are basically the same thing. CSI can be understood as the convergence of physical information, for example the hardware of a computer and conceptual information, for example the software that allows the computer to perform a function, such as an operating system with application programs.

Let’s see, in order for the hardware (inside a computer) to achieve a minimal function it indeed requires the proper software- just try running a computer without it.

In biology the physical information would be the components that make up an organism (arms, legs, body, head, internal organs and systems) as well as the organism itself. The conceptual information is what allows that organism to use its components and to be alive. After all a dead organism still has the same components. However it can no longer control them.

Again without the command and control a bacterial flagellum does not achieve minimal functionality:

The bacterial flagellum- It is a physical part. The physical information is the specific arrangement of amino acid sequences required, as well as their configuration- the “propeller” filament is comprised of more than 20,000 subunits of the flagellin protein FLiC; The three ring proteins (Flgh, I, and F) are present in about 26 subunits each; The proximal rod requires 6 subunits, FliE 9 subunits, and FliP about 5 subunits; the distal rod consists of about 25 subunits; the hook (or U-joint) consists of about 130 subunits of FlgE . The conceptual information is that which allows for its assembly, i.e. the assembly instructions, as well as for the operation, i.e. the speed and direction of rotation. The operation requires communication, which would also have to be considered, ie more CSI is required for that.

Given tha above can anyone tell me how my usage is wrong?

On another note-

Another IDist, CJYman posted the following:

If it is Shannon information, not algorithmically compressible, and can be processed by an information processor into a separate functional system, then it is complex specified information.

Monday, September 10, 2007

David Kellogg- English prof., liar, loser and momma's boy

Over on his blog, David Kellogg, English professor at Northeastern U., has stated that I have physically threatened him.

However when pressed for an answer as to the alleged threat he clams up.

This is tha anti-ID way.

That is make an accusation but never substantiate it.

That is par for the course as their anti-ID position is totally lacking in substantiation.

I wonder how the administration at NU would feel if they knew one of their professors was posting false accusations on the internet?

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Why English professor David Kellogg should stay out of scientific discussions

This also applies to secondclass who thinks that the scientific paper below tells us what genes are responsible for photoreceptors.

English professor David Kellogg seems to think the article refutes my claim that we do not know what is responsible for the vision system.

Comprehensive Analysis of Photoreceptor Gene Expression and the Identification of Candidate Retinal Disease Genes

The functional breakdown of the genes selectively expressed in rods is shown in Figure 3. We saw a broad spectrum of functional categories of rod-enriched genes (see Figure 3 legend for selected examples and Supplemental Table S10 for a full list of genes). We saw a number of uncharacterized putative zinc finger transcription factors only expressed in rods, along with a number of other more broadly expressed transcription factors and coactivators, such as ERRβ2, Sox11, and All, which showed strong enrichment in rods. We observed several mammalian homologs of Drosophila genes, such as muscleblind and nemo-like kinase, which have been implicated in later stages of photoreceptor development (Begemann et al. 1997; Choi and Benzer 1994 and Zeidler et al. 1999). We observed many protein kinases and phosphatases, along with a TNF family ligand and several potassium and calcium channel subunits.

For those who do not know, photoreceptors are cells (in the eye- the retina to be exact) that detect light.

The human eye has two types of photoreceptors- rods & cones. Rods do not discriminate among colors of light. Cones provide us with color vision.

With that said all the article is discussing is genes that are expressed in rods. Again rods are eukaryotic cells- cells with a nucleus- meaning they contain the same DNA that all other cells in your body contain in their nucleus. (red blood cells aren't really cells, they are "formed elements")

What the paper is discussing are the genes that are expressed in rods. That they are expressed in rods does not make them responsible for rods.

That distinction goes to the control genes- that is the genes that control and direct cellular differentiation.

IOW it appears that Kellogg, secondclass and a host of other anti-ID zealots do not have the first clue when it comes to biology.

Friday, September 07, 2007

A secondclass admission: The anti-ID position is NOT based on scientific methodology

I asked:

Can you tell me about the scientific methodolgy used that determined that living organisms and their subsequent evolution are solely due to stochastic processes?

To which secondclass responded:
I'll answer it: No scientific methodology has determined that living organisms and their subsequent evolution are solely due to stochastic processes.

Thanks for the admission.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

David Kellogg, English professor, cannot differentiate between "new" and "originate"

The following is why I don't like dealing with ignorant anti-IDists.

David Kellog, an English professor at Northeastern U., cannot even differentiate between words like "new" and "originate".

CSI is all about origins.

With that in mind the following is what took place on Kellogg's blog:

David said:
New CSI requires intelligence.

To which I responded:

That's not in NFL either.

Don't worry. You just don't get it and probably never will.

David than demonstrates he cannot differentiate between the words "new" and "originate":

Holy shit, Joe, I know the book well enough to riff on it. Apparently better than you:

NFL, p. 161: "[O]rdinary experience also tells us that complex specified information originates from intelligence."

NFL, p. 163: "The Law of Conservation of Information is not saying that natural causes in tandem with intelligent causes cannot generate CSI but that natural causes apart from intelligent causes cannot generate CSI."

NFL, p. 164: "To explain an instance of CSI requires either a direct appeal to an intelligent agent who via a cognitive act originated the CSI in question, or locating an antecedent instance of CSI that contains at least as much CSI as we started with."

"Intelligent causes generate CSI whereas natural causes transmit preexisting CSI (and usually imperfectly)."

"With CSI the information problem never goes away short of locating the intelligence that originates the CSI."

This is funny because on page 162 my pont is made. That is funny because David starts quoting from page 161.

Ya see if one has pre-existing CSI and then random mutations (or other unintelligent processes) are allowed in, that pre-existing CSI could very well become "new" CSI- meaning it is different than the original and therefore "new".

This can be seen by taking an existing sentence:

"David Kellogg is an assistant professor at Northeastern."

Then say the page that it was written on gets torn by natural wear and tear.

The original sentence becomes:

"David Kellogg is an ass"

This seemingly new information was not generated from scratch, but generated by natural processes acting on pre-existing information.

The same scenario applies to biological organisms. For example those populations which have lost some biological feature present in their ancestors.

But I do not expect Kellogg or his minions to accept or understand this concept. That is why they are anti-IDists- they just refuse to understand what is being debated.

David Kellogg- an English professor who doesn't understand English!!

Recently something I posted on Uncommon Descent has come under scrutiny. I do not mind that however at least a few people have chosen to misinterpret what I said and then scrutinize that misinterpretation.

David Kellogg, an English professor at Northeastern U., has taken his misinterpretation to a new low.

The following is the context and the wording used.

Stuart Harris said:
For example, one can come up with many plausible Darwinian explanations for the evolution of the vertebrate eye given the starting point of a light sensitive cell.

To which I responded:

Can that same person verify that explanation with actual scientific data? No.

Does anyone even know what gene or genes is responsible for the vision system? No.

Totally ignoring the first part these anti-IDists, especially David Kellogg, instead focused solely on the second.

These people think I am saying that we don’t know anything about the vision system! How they can infer that from what was posted is beyond me. All I can attribute that to is a lack of understanding of the English language. That is surprising because at least one of them, hermagoras (David Kellogg), claims to be an English professor!!!

The key words in that second part is “responsible for”. My usage is equivalent to “causation”.

So, taken in context, one should have been able to discern that I was talking about what caused, ie what gene or genes as well as the assembly instructions, the vision system of vertebrates to come into existence.

I said that because if we do not know then one cannot come up with a plausible Dawrian explanation.

The sad part is that David, nor any of these other imbeciles, were not part of the discussion. IOW it appears that these anti-IDists are infatuated with me!

I am flattered but in reality all they have to do is to scientifically demonstrate a plausible Darwinain explanation for the evolution of the vertebrate vison system.

Ya see David, not only do you need to know the genes required, but there are also assembly instructions tucked away somewhere.

And in the end if someone requires clarification all one has to do is ask.

But to take your own (mis)interpretation of what I said and run with it is just plain stupid.

Perhaps my wording wasn't the best. That still isn't any reason for anyone to start telling me what I meant.

On another note:

David Kellogg is currently working on a book -"The Rhetoric of anti-Science". The book should be interesting as it appears that David doesn't even know what science is.