2018 Year Summary: Who was converted?

Most pro-ID or pro-evolution blogs have summaries of the year usually with the highlights of the most interesting points or OPs …Larry Moran also has one on the most popular post though of 2017…

If I were in charge of a blog like TSZ my summary of 2018 would ask for the details of the actual conversions: i.e. how effective TSZ has been in what it was set up for. It was apparently set up to attract converts from the support or belief of ID to support or believe that sheer dumb luck in the discussions of life origins…

While some kind of survey would be also helpful, this OP could also help to set up such a survey with the actual data and more details…

So, feel free to comment with details about what effect the OPs in 2018 at TSZ have had on your world views in the debate of the origins involving ID vs Evolution (sheer dumb luck).

For example, over the last year, I have been converted from the belief that evolution could still be considered as a scientific hypothesis to total absurdity due to the lack of any experimental evidence supporting it… The total lack of even the proposals how to set up few relatively simple experiments have proven to me that evolutionary theory has nothing to do with science and everything to do with ideology…

What about you? Have you been converted?

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104 thoughts on “2018 Year Summary: Who was converted?

  1. Allan Miller: But it’s not the Jews here who are exhibiting disproportionate amounts of misanthropic assholery, so why would I? I mean (whisper it) some Jews can be twats too, while many Christians achieve the standards to which they nominally aspire. It’s not about the entirety of either group, but an ironic prod at some.

    How would you know? Are we allowed to ask?

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  2. phoodoo: How would you know?Are we allowed to ask?

    How would I know if it was an ironic prod? I’m probably better placed than most to answer that question, don’cha think?

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  3. Allan Miller: How would I know if it was an ironic prod? I’m probably better placed than most to answer that question, don’cha think?

    You know who the Jews are? You have Jew radar?

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  4. phoodoo: You know who the Jewsare?You have Jew radar?

    I know who some of the Jews are (here), and I know who the misanthropic assholes are. The sets don’t overlap.

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  5. My ‘ironic’ comment tied together two themes whose ironic juxtaposition amused me: conversion, and the aspiration to higher standards of goodwill and neighbourliness. Both of these are distinctively part of the Christian faith – Judaism, somewhat less so, insofar as subtracting the New Testament gets rid of all that Jesus-y ‘niceness’ (which is not to say that Jews aren’t ‘nice’!).

    Conversion means that Christians cannot properly be a ‘race’. Many races are Christian, ditto Muslim. Jews, however, experienced far less conversion, and hence there is a closer alignment between faith and ethnicity.

    So, on several levels, the simplistic substitution of the one faith for the other does not quite work. If one is casting around for a Bad Word that covers slurs against both Christians and Jews, ‘racist’ isn’t it, and one might instead prefer ‘bigot’.

    Now, what about slurs against atheists?

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  6. Allan Miller: I know who some of the Jews are (here), and I know who the misanthropic assholes are. The sets don’t overlap.

    You have asshole radar then? You are the asshole guru. We should all just defer to you on all matters relating to assholes. That’s good to know. You are King of the Assholes . You are kind of like Jesus for assholes. That’s swell.

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  7. Allan Miller: Conversion means that Christians cannot properly be a ‘race’. Many races are Christian, ditto Muslim. Jews, however, experienced far less conversion, and hence there is a closer alignment between faith and ethnicity

    So king of the assholes and king of the converted Jews, do you have figures for that? You know how many people convert to Judaism versus other religions? Very interesting. Maybe the reason is because Judaism is less appealing. Maybe it’s because the people who don’t convert are humble, they don’t feel they are the chosen ones? Who can say?

    Apparently you think you can.

    So we decide race by how many people decide to become that race.

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  8. phoodoo: You have asshole radar then?You are the asshole guru.We should all just defer to you on all matters relating to assholes. That’s good to know.You are King of the Assholes . You are kind of like Jesus for assholes. That’s swell.

    Yeah, I have a pretty good radar for assholes.

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  9. Allan Miller: Yeah, I have a pretty good radar for assholes.

    I believe you. And I won’t judge you for that.

    It’s interesting to note you sort of align with Hitler. Once a Jew always a Jew, it’s in your blood.

    I guess once a protestant always a protestant.

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  10. phoodoo: So king of the assholes and king of the converted Jews,do you have figures for that?You know how many people convert to Judaism versus other religions?Very interesting.Maybe the reason is because Judaism is less appealing.Maybe it’s because the people who don’t convert are humble,they don’t feel they are the chosen ones?Who can say?

    My own view is that there was far less invading-other-nations-and-forcing-your-religion-on-’em from the Jews.

    So we decide race by how many people decide to become that race.

    No, that’s not it. It amazes me how many people struggle with the concept of ‘race’.

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  11. phoodoo: I believe you.And I won’t judge you for that.

    It’s interesting to note you sort of align with Hitler.

    In what way?

    Once a Jew always a Jew,it’s in your blood.

    Not to my knowledge, but I’m quite sure there would be Jews somewhere in my family tree, if I went back far enough.

    I guess once a protestant always a protestant.

    Nominally.

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  12. Allan Miller: My own view is that there was far less invading-other-nations-and-forcing-your-religion-on-’em from the Jews.

    Ha, yea, they are much more likely to just steal their land, and then put them inside a walled fortress.

    That’s what happens when you are chosen I guess.

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  13. phoodoo: Ha, yea, they are much more likely to just steal their land, and then put them inside a walled fortress.

    That’s what happens when you are chosen I guess.

    Yeah, I’m not really talking of recent history though, nor am I an apologist for atrocity. I’m no fan of the behaviour of the Israeli state. But there is a sharp line between that position and antisemitism in my view – a line many are trying to blur. There’s been a battle over perceived antisemitism in our Labour Party, hinging round the legitimacy of criticism of Israel. For a quiet life, Labour caved in to the pressure, a political convenience but a surrender to abuse of language IMO.

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  14. This latest phoodoo meltdown is quite the spectacle. Did something happen during the holidays? Oh my…

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  15. Rumraket:
    This latest phoodoo meltdown is quite the spectacle. Did something happen during the holidays? Oh my…

    Fairness?

    Oh how shocking.

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  16. Allan Miller:
    My original comment about ‘following the evidence where it leads’ was about common descent, not abiogeneisis. The evidence leads to a conclusion of common descent … doesn’t it?

    Really? I choose experimental scientists’ view on this matter over baseless ideology…
    Try to engineer an evolution of a prokaryotic cell into a eukaryotic and you will know what I mean… Some thought about it but didn’t even know where to start…
    You do it and I will convert to common descent… I have a very accurate prediction though…This evolution will remain in the relm of speculative science where sheer dumb luck accomplished things human intelligence can’t replicate…

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  17. J-Mac: Really? I choose experimental scientists’ view on this matter over baseless ideology…
    Try to engineer an evolution of a prokaryotic cell into a eukaryotic and you will know what I mean… Some thought about it but didn’t even know where to start…
    You do it and I will convert to common descent… I have a very accurate prediction though…This evolution will remain in the relm of speculative science where sheer dumb luck accomplished things human intelligence can’t replicate…

    The evidence points to common descent at all levels. Whether or not experimental scientists can recreate a particular transition is irrelevant to this question. I would not have to make another you in order to establish your closest relatives, nor would I need to make chimps and humans from a common ancestor in order to establish that they arose by that means.

    On the other hand, has anyone designed a chimp or human, if experimental validation is the gold standard?

    This is a fine illustration of the bullshit underlying your sententious claim “I follow the evidence where it leads”. You deny the relationship of ALL groups, because you don’t like the conclusion. Nothing is related, according to you, despite the mountain of contradictory evidence.

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  18. Rumraket: This latest phoodoo meltdown is quite the spectacle. Did something happen during the holidays? Oh my…

    Someone made a claim about the Jews as a race. Another person alleged that this was anti-Semitic and racist. Instead of trying to resolve this in a civilized manner everyone over-reacted, and now phoodoo is once again taking the path of self-righteous indignation. They seem to think that TSZ administrators are unfairly biased against Christians, and that it’s yet more evidence of this bias that one is permitted to mock Christians at TSZ but not Jews. (The administrators tolerate mockery of atheists all the time but it wouldn’t advance phoodoo’s case if they were to take notice.)

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  19. Tribe is a better word for people who claim an identity and common interests.

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  20. Because of threads like this, I’m nearly converted to steering clear of this place.

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  21. petrushka:
    Tribe is a better word for people who claim an identity and common interests.

    I have a lot of complicated thoughts about philosophy of race, sociology of groups, Judaism and anti-Semitism, etc. and TSZ is not the place for me to get into it.

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  22. walto:
    Because of threads like this, I’m nearly converted to steering clear of this place.

    Same, really. Even though I’m a part of the problem.

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  23. Kantian Naturalist: I have a lot of complicated thoughts about philosophy of race, sociology of groups, Judaism and anti-Semitism, etc. and TSZ is not the place for me to get into it.

    That already seems to have happened. I suggest we would need to separate the subject from how TSZ should conduct moderation around such issues. How TSZ handles racism and hate speech is a moderation issue. Otherwise why not post an OP if you have time.

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  24. J-Mac:
    Pardon me! Entropy likes to hide sheer dumb luck behind the creative powers of natural processes…I guess it sounds more scientific…

    Thanks for making my point J-Mac. There you are, arrogant and clueless as to why you’re ridiculing yourself.

    J-Mac:
    But if natural processes have such creative abilities so as to turn a 5 pound land walking mammal into a 50 ton whale their creative abilities surely can be tested on the much smaller scale…

    They have. Haven’t you heard of scientists who have been experimenting on evolving molecules? A few of them won a Nobel Prize last year. There’s from getting functions from scratch to deriving functions from old functions in the scientific literature, all using the random-variation / selection / recombination / reproduction or some variant thereof. Oh, sorry, i was forgetting that in your tiny mind any experiment proves intelligent design because, well, they’re experiments! As I said. Thanks for making my point!

    J-Mac:
    … That’s why the believers in natural processes require to have much greater faith than believers in ID or God… They are required to believe in the creative omnipotence of natural processes, which surpasse thier intelligence pushing their faith beyond any imaginable limits…

    You’re also clueless as to the irony of you making fun of faith when that’s all you have going for your magical being in the sky. Keep making fun of yourself J-Mac.

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  25. I’ve moved a comment to guano. Could posters consider the distinction between criticism and insult.

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  26. Kantian Naturalist: Let’s just say that there are two kinds of Christians: those that Nietzsche was right about and those that Nietzsche was wrong about. The ones at TSZ are the kind that Nietzsche was right about.

    I wonder what Nietzsche had to say about atheists. 🙂

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  27. Alan Fox: Otherwise why not post an OP if you have time.

    I have time but I would prefer not to. In general I’m reluctant to post OPs here because I’m working on problems of interest to academic philosophers and cognitive scientists. But especially on political issues I won’t post OPs because I know that I’m much further to the political Left than anyone else at TSZ and I don’t want to get into even more pointless fights.

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  28. J-Mac: Aren’t the degrading comments about Christians racist?

    Do you think Christians ought to appeal to the worldly authorities to protect them?

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  29. Mung: I wonder what Nietzsche had to say about atheists. 🙂

    No need to wonder — he despised them (see The Gay Science aphorism 125, “The Madman”).

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  30. Kantian Naturalist: I have time but I would prefer not to. In general I’m reluctant to post OPs here because I’m working on problems of interest to academic philosophers and cognitive scientists. But especially on political issues I won’t post OPs because I know that I’m much further to the political Left than anyone else at TSZ and I don’t want to get into even more pointless fights.

    No problem. I wonder about how you compare with me on the left/right scale, though. I might give you a run for your money. 🙂

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  31. Alan Fox: I wonder about how you compare with me on the left/right scale, though. I might give you a run for your money.

    Quite possibly, but I’d rather let sleeping dogs lie.

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  32. quarrion,

    I don’t understand you . On many/all points in these matters one is right and one is wrong. Math will agree. I guess you had a point but the two options are not about what i said.

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  33. Mung: Do you think Christians ought to appeal to the worldly authorities to protect them?

    Of course…as did Paul…

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  34. Mung: I wonder what Nietzsche had to say about atheists. 🙂

    He never mentioned them as there no real ones…

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  35. Entropy: They have. Haven’t you heard of scientists who have been experimenting on evolving molecules? A few of them won a Nobel Prize last year.

    Oxymoron! That’s not an insult, BTW.
    Experimentally evolving prokaryotic cell into eukaryotic should be a piece of cake… with some miraculous intervention… Hasn’t Venter tried it? I wonder what kind of experimental work made him believe in thousands of common ancestors that are not necessarily so common?

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  36. J-Mac: Oxymoron!That’s not an insult, BTW.
    Experimentally evolving prokaryotic cell into eukaryotic should be a piece of cake… with some miraculous intervention… Hasn’t Venter tried it? I wonder what kind of experimental work made him believe in thousands of common ancestors that are not necessarilyso common?

    Poor old Venter being misrepresented again. Is this the Mycoplasma thing? 63 out of 64 common codon assignments with other prokaryotes means that they don’t commonly descend? Chortle.

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  37. Allan Miller: misrepresented again

    Yes. Misrepresented by you. Don’t forget Larry Moran supports Venter that makes it 2.. Both no good?lol
    “One question is, can we extrapolate back from this data set to describe the most recent common ancestor. I don’t necessarily buy that there is a single ancestor. It’s counterintuitive to me. I think we may have thousands of recent common ancestors and they are not necessarily so common.”

    https://www.edge.org/conversation/j_craig_venter-craig-venter—life-what-a-concept

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  38. J-Mac: Yes. Misrepresentedby you. Don’t forget Larry Moransupports Venter that makes it 2. Both no good?lol

    And no-one disagrees? 2 against none? You are the cherry-picker’s cherry-picker. It’s not about who argues, but what they argue. If someone thinks that Mycoplasma’s single codon difference means that they are not commonly descended with bacteria, when the other 63 codons match, I’d say they were being obtuse. I am quite certain Moran does not think that, and I don’t see how you can think that while simultaneously arguing that you ‘follow the evidence where it leads’. If you were presented with two alphabets differing by just one letter, you wouldn’t insist that single difference was enough to claim separate origin. But for organisms – because you don’t like the conclusions – suddenly all you can see is that difference.

    “One question is, can we extrapolate back from this data set to describe the most recent common ancestor. I don’t necessarily buy that there is a single ancestor. It’s counterintuitive to me. I think we may have thousands of recent common ancestors and they are not necessarily so common.”

    You obsess over this brief comment in a verbal discussion – 5 seconds out of Venter’s life. It’s as if no-one else ever said anything, including Venter. Your reason for not accepting common descent at all is something someone said once, conversationally?

    What about humans and chimps? What do Venter and Moran say about them? Do issues of extrapolation in deep time mean that no common descent can be detected anywhere?

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  39. J-Mac:
    Oxymoron! That’s not an insult, BTW.

    It’s indeed an insult, but to your own intelligence.

    J-Mac:
    Experimentally evolving prokaryotic cell into eukaryotic should be a piece of cake… with some miraculous intervention…

    Why do you insist on making fun of your own position? It’s you who believes in miracles, remember?

    J-Mac:
    Hasn’t Venter tried it?

    Nope. He’s trying to design life forms, starting with redesigns.

    J-Mac:
    I wonder what kind of experimental work made him believe in thousands of common ancestors that are not necessarily so common?

    If I had to guess, I’d say that would be the data showing that prokaryotes exchange a lot of genes. With gene exchange it would take quite an effort figuring out where some gene came from. Was it, ultimately, some gammaproteobacterium or some firmicute? Was it some achaea or some cyanobacterium? Things like that.

    That doesn’t refute evolution though. It just makes it very difficult, conceptually and experimentally, to establish its history at the deepest levels. You’re still left being a close relative to chimps, gorillas, all the other great apes, the old-world monkeys, the rest of the vertebrates, and much more. Sorry.

    I suspect, though, that you were asking the question rhetorically at best.

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  40. Allan Miller: What about humans and chimps? What do Venter and Moran say about them? Do issues of extrapolation in deep time mean that no common descent can be detected anywhere?

    I would not be too surprised if this is what J-Mac concludes from those few sentences. Remember that to these guys it’s an all-or-nothing deal, as if this was some bible inspired by an all-knowing god, rather than the human gathering of knowledge, piece by piece, where some pieces might be well established, others still under exploration. To them, if Universal Common Ancestry, for example, is not perfectly established, then evolution never happened.

    You’re talking to someone who thinks that our descriptions are necessary for phenomena to occur, and who insisted on the very same mistake after reading how ridiculous that is. So, I don’t expect J-mac to suddenly understand our points.

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  41. Entropy,

    So, I don’t expect J-mac to suddenly understand our points.

    Of course, I just like to point out the inconsistencies. Such as regarding people who believe humans and chimps shared common ancestry as supreme authorities … until, that is, we come to the argument regarding human-chimp ancestry! That’s the trouble with argument from authority (a Creationist staple!).

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