KF vs Toronto & Petrushka

Over at UD, KF has started a new thread criticizing Toronto.  He had earlier started a thread criticizing Petrushka.

It would have been nicer if KF had joined here to launch his criticism, instead of taking pot shots from UD where it is my understanding that both Toronto and Petrushka have been banned.

In any case, this is where the two accused can set the record straight by explaining what they actually meant.  Others can join in.  I may add something later.

Let’s keep it polite.  No character attacks.  Let’s stick to clear explanations of positions that KF might have misunderstood.  And let’s remember the rules of The Skeptical Zone and keep it civil.

Open for discussion.

192 thoughts on “KF vs Toronto & Petrushka

  1. Neil,

    I think you bring up a good point in keeping it civil.

    I also believe we shouldn’t be answering real points made over there unless they have the courage to make them here.

    Thanks to Elizabeth, we can all post on this site and there’s no need to talk across blogs.

    If KF has any legitimate arguments, he should post them here, not on a site that prevents our open responses.

    I’ll answer anything kairosfocus asks, but I’ll do it here.

     

  2. If you want to correct all the errors Gordon “KairosFocus” Mullings has made… you’ve got job security that a tenured professor would envy. Given the existing evidence of… well… pretty much everything Mullings has ever posted in response to criticism of ID, there’s a good chance that the phrase “positions KF might have misunderstood” includes every ID-criticizing position KF has ever read. The only question is whether Mullings genuinely is as comprehension-challenged as his writings make him appear to be, or, instead, whether he understands it all and writes the responses he does because he’s Fighting For Jesus.

  3. Cubist,

    I’m predicting kairosfocus will muster a “little” courage again, and write a post about you next, …over there of course.

     

     

  4. I predicted that mphillips would soon be banned based on a post by KF indicating he required additional correction. I haven’t seen many posters survive long after such a warning. Certainly none that maintained their argument. When mphillips stopped posting I assumed he was banned or in moderation. All based on liklihood and past experience. Petrushka was banned or moderated three times after warnings from KF. I guess this time it’s permanent. I have no idea who mphillips is. I have never had a different screen name at UD.

  5. My point was and is that people get banned at UD for expressing unpopular ideas, ideas that the leaders at UD don’t want to hear. This site exists because of such bannings. If Barry Arrington wants to dispute that let him come here or unban me so I can defend myself there. It is cowardly to hide behind censorship. If they argued like adults they would still face opposition, but a lot less derision.

  6. Petrushka: “This site exists because of such bannings. If Barry Arrington wants to dispute that let him come here or unban me so I can defend myself there.”

    They have killed off some of their credibility by banning dissent to the point that UD is now more of a Christian Creationist site.

    A lot of brotherly love but no good heated scientific debates anymore.

    I have thought many times of adopting a sock-puppet but in reality that just gives them more traffic.

    Why give them the extra traffic just so they can ban us again?

    They should just dig deep and find some courage to go against us where science isn’t muzzled.

    Does Barry have more courage than kairosfocus?

    Stay tuned!

     

     

     

  7. In a perverse way I have enjoyed watching their reversion to creationism. ID is suddenly enamored of a literal Adam and Eve. This will make any future Dover trial very short. But when gpuccio was posting I had to learn stuff; now the content is boring. I suppose it’s always been boring for people with degrees in biology, but at least in the past you had some motivation to polish your argument.

  8. Heh; not just degrees in biology.  The “physics” stuff is so bad one just has to sit back and laugh.  I would not want to disturb such a pristine habitat of spoofers.  More fun to just watch. But yeah; then it gets boring.

  9. I really can’t see why anyone should take kairosfocus seriously.

    A professional pearl-clutcher, he spends inordinate amounts of time searching the internet for things at which to take offence.

    If there’s one thing the internet is good for, it’s being a source of offence for anyone predisposed to be offended.

    Recent pages at AtBC, where UD and its denizens are closely monitored as much for hilarity as anything else, have ample evidence of this – why, he even takes offence at the very existence of TSZ, one of the most civil and intelligent members of its species to be found anywhere.

    And for a man who so decries and castigates those unwilling to accept his “corrections”, he is singularly unwilling to be corrected himself.

    Google kairosfocus/weasel/latching for a classic example.

    He lurks here, all right – but I should be amazed if he ever uncloaks 

  10. kairosfocus and his weasel episode makes me feel very nostalgic.

    A classic case if there ever was one of someone who can’t admit they’re wrong.

    KF has said that “only about 1 adult in 3 at best under present circumstances is able to follow an abstract case.”

    The creationist’s problem is one of reality.

     

  11. KF has gone so far as to mention the FSC shooting in the same breath as AtBC and TSZ posing a ‘credible threat’. He calls upon Elizabeth to clean the place up … but I really don’t see, beyond fundamental disagreement, where the source of that bitterness lies. 

    TSZ is unmoderated, beyond the removal of personal snark off-thread (a location inhabited mostly by the more unguarded utterances of Joe, still regarded by WJM, UB, KF and others as an able lieutenant). And yet people manage to be generally civil to opponents – as much as a disparate group of personalities can be expected to be, at least. Meantime, he dubs us ‘crocodiles’ from whom he may contract some ‘loathsome taint’ were he to venture here. He would struggle to get over the very low bar: assume good faith. Harrumph! Onlookers! etc etc etc.

  12. The thing that KF and all of them, WJM, StephenB, Barry, UPB, are trying to avoid is their possible loss of faith in their god.

    This could only happen when one cannot properly switch between thinking in the abstract and reality.

    Bible thumping may get you on a school board but it also prevents critical thinking, such as we’ve seen in the weasel episode.

     

  13. KF and Dembski put a lot of faith in their abstract concept of the “UPB” of 500 bits.

    Reality however can do better with just 2 bits.

    Take two bar magnets and put them in a paper bag, then shake the bag.

    While in the “abstract” you could end up with two north poles oriented in the same direction when the magnets attract each other, the “reality” of physics won’t let that happen.

    This applies to evolution also but for some reason, the reality of chemistry is completely ignored by the KF crowd.

    Physics both restricts and insists on different combinations of “information”.

     

     

  14. Regarding ‘best inference’, we are frequently reminded of Newton’s Rules (rules, mind, not laws):

    We are to admit no more causes of natural things than such as are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances . . . .

    Therefore to the same natural effects we must, as far as possible, assign the same causes.

    This would appear to warn against the invocation of the ad hoc. Extending the observed human capacity to program and send information to the very DNA that has given rise to those same humans is disfavoured precisely because it is ad hoc. The things we can do are no guide to what could be achieved before our tiniest ancestors even started to make the protein that would ultimately take part in the formation of, among other things, our brains.

    No amount of logical contortion disengages ID from the charge of inserting an ad hoc cause. ‘Materialist’ scientists (that is, the vast majority of ‘em) consider that throughout its history, replication must obey physical laws. The energy gradients involved in it must be a net flow ‘downhill’. Intelligence per se cannot change that – the intelligent designer must design a system tapping a net ‘downhill’ energy flow, else that system will not be self-sustaining.

    Is it reasonable to infer that there was ever a point at which energy flowed ‘uphill’, against the overall thermodynamic gradient? I’d say no, pace Granville Sewell. What the ID seems to be ‘for’ is the task of gathering the components of an early replicator from an entropically ‘diffuse’ state into a ‘localised’ one. Even the ID may be expected to be thermodynamically bound, on ‘best inference’ – there are no known ‘intelligent violators’ of the actual 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. So their job is the gathering-together of a molecular system with the capacity of self-replication, because that task is felt to be beyond unaided physics and chemistry. (There is no reason to suppose that its first task was to devise a system for the manufacture of protein, BTW). But like physics/chemistry, ID’s need to ‘borrow’ the energy to do that from somewhere. There are no known instances of entities that can achieve such molecular precision, and certainly none that can do it without expending energy themselves.

    There is nothing wrong with ad hoc causes per se, of course. But ID wants people to accept, on ‘best inference’, an entity that is either outside of physics, or operates within physics but whose own means of evading entropic dissipation is simply glossed over. Such an entity may well exist, but I can see no demand for invoking its action, under Newton’s oft-quoted rules. 

    We cannot demonstrate a ‘pure-physics’ OOL – but then, neither has anyone yet demonstrated a Designed one.

  15. I think the violation of the UPB (not to be confused with UBP) is due not to the general phenomenon of chemistry, so mich as the specific phenomenon of natural selection.   (See my own thread here for a numerical example and an article of mine for discussion of why William Dembski is thought by his friends to have proven that the example in my post is impossible).

  16. Kairosfocus has his standard repertoire of claims, quotes and arguments which have been answered many times and in detail over the years. All the respondents have got for their efforts is a ban from <i>Uncommon Descent</i> – usually on the grounds of incivility or some such manufactured excuse. Apparently, it is impolite to beg to differ over there. The counter-arguments have been brushed aside, not surpisingly, because, like others at that site, kf already has his truth and nothing can ever change that.

    For example, one common complaint over at UD is that the exclusion of immaterial or supernatural explanations from consideration by science is arbitrary. Coming from a site that decrees so many things by fiat that you’d think they had a promotional deal with an Italian car maker, this is ironic to say the least. In vain has it been pointed out that the very concept of ‘supernatural’ is ill-defined, that in common useage it is incoherent, that science as an enterprise distinct from philosophy or theology must start somewhere and that is with what can be observed in the broadest sense.

    In another example over at UD, Barry Arrington is <a href=”http://www.uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/on-self-evident-moral-truth/”>attempting to resurrect</a> the claim that morality has an objective existence. In this case it is in the form of a challenge to materialists to respond to two propositions. Using a standard tactic of cross-examination, Arrington wants to confine answers only to those which he can turn to support his case. There’s that Italian car make again. If I were to follow his legal precendent I would object that counsel for the plaintiff was attempting to introduce facts not yet in evidence, that the objective existence of any morality has not yet been established, that it has not yet been shown that moral claims are capable of being true or false and that it has not yet been established that they are self-evident as distinct from some simply being widely-held. Arrington ends his OP as follows:

    <i>Do you have the courage to face the questions head on? In my experience, some materialists do but most do not. We’ll see.</i>

    To which I would respond by asking if <i>he</i> is prepared to demonstrate that he has the courage of <i>his</i> convictions by discussing the issues he is raising in an open forum where he does not get to dictate the terms of the debate. We’ll see, but on past evidence, I doubt it.

  17. Since Kairosfocus has so far not responded here, this discussion is a meta-discussion of what happens here versus what happens in the closed-bubble world of UD.   Under SZ’s original rules I think this is not supposed to be allowed here, but I think it is appropriate when matters that could be sensibly discussed here are instead aired inside the closed bubble, together with the implcation there that their discussion is a free and open one, and ours here is just insults.  Elixabeth should perhaps comment on how her rules on discussion of other web sites do or do not apply to the present thread, and whether those rules need modifying,

  18. I note that the UD discussion is talking about abduction (not the kidnapping kind but the inference kind).   I think that their argument is that if they see something that is best explained by ID then one logically must ascribe it to ID.   Now that is fine but ignores the issue of prior probability of ID versus prior probability of ordinary natural causes.  A creaking noise in my house at night is best explained as being from a burglar, but is most probably explained by the house’s heating system, or one of us getting up in the middle of the night.  The “abduction” argument for ID ignores the fact that important ID proponents such as Michael Behe regard intelligent design as a relatively rare occurrence, with natural selection and other routine natural causes working in the meantime.  Of course intervention by an omnipotent, omnipresent, and inscrutable being explains and predicts anything you might observe.  Methodological naturalism rules it out, in effect assigning it vanishingly low prior probability.  Over at UD they like to complain about that and invoke what they call abduction, and argue that methodological naturalism violates the rules of abduction.

    The Wikipedia page for “Abductive Reasoning” contains a whole section on probabilistic induction — basically it just presents a calculation using Bayes’ Theorem to infer causation.  The UD use of “abduction” removes the part about priors and thus reaches silly conclusions.  A kind of kidnapping, I suppose. 

  19. So which is the best explanation for Christmas morning? Your mom and dad lied to you, oe Santa Claus is real? I think that captures the emotional quandry faced by true believers.

  20. In my (probably over-simplified) view, KF et al have in no way shown by any form of logic that the existence and actions of an Intelligent Designer is the best explanation for anything.Their problem, at least in part, is that they, in the lump, understand very little of the rules, laws, properties, constraints, or necessities of chemistry and the underpinning physics.

    Two observations support my opinion in this.

    1. As a proportion very, very few biologists, chemists, or physicists actively support ID (although a surprising number are openly open-minded on the subject, in no fear of losing their positions)

    2. Conscious of their own ignorance, they obviously feel very threatened by those who know much more than they about the science, and must needs eliminate their contributions, however civil the tone in which they are offered.

    I and my sockpuppets have been banned several times from UD. Not once were we insulting, profane, or uncivil – merely contributing counterarguments in whatever debates were ongoing, drawn from the recent scientific literature.

    It is the common tactic at UD actively to avoid the arguments put up by the likes of petrushka and Toronto, by simply eliminating them from the ring, reiterating their own arguments, and claiming victory.

    I note in passing that, in the “Toronto” thread at UD, KF has actually issued a mild reproof to the unfortunate Joe: although Joe’s posts by Joe’s standards were quite restrained. Content-free, but restrained.

    Perhaps the charges of hypocrisy have been heard!
     

  21. Personally, I prefer IBE to abduction to avoid any ambiguity but that’s just me.

    Whichever, kairosfocus, perhaps unwittingly, reveals the problem they have with IBE when he quotes Gilbert Harman:

    In making this inference one infers, from the fact that a certain hypothesis would explain the evidence, to the truth of that hypothesis. In general, there will be several hypotheses which might explain the evidence, so one must be able to reject all such alternative hypotheses before one is warranted in making the inference. Thus one infers, from the premise that a given hypothesis would provide a “better” explanation for the evidence than would any other hypothesis, to the conclusion that the given hypothesis is true.

     

    The problem with the highlighted sentence is that while you can infer to the better or best available hypothesis by various means that is all you can do.  To conclude from there, without any other supporting arguments or evidence, that the best hypothesis must also be true is an inference too far.  Yet it is clear from what he writes about it that kf is looking to IBE to provide that kind of certainty.

    As an aside, but referring to Bully Arrington’s post arguing for the existence of objective morality, the Wikipedia entry for Gilbert Harman includes the following:

     

    He has argued that there is not a single true morality. In that respect, moral relativism is true. (This sort of moral relativism is not a theory about what ordinary people mean by their moral judgments.)

  22. I tend to think of abductive inference as the “and then a miracle occured” step.  That is to say, people use the term “abductive reasoning” when they don’t know how we got from step A to step C, but they like the final conclusion.

  23. Yes, I almost made that point rather than the ones I did – Elizabeth did not want this to turn into a ‘peanut gallery’. There are grounds in this instance, since UD is directly referencing TSZ comments in posts to which TSZ-ers cannot respond, but I guess Lizzie might wish to make the call.

  24. I note in passing that, in the “Toronto” thread at UD, KF has actually issued a mild reproof to the unfortunate Joe: although Joe’s posts by Joe’s standards were quite restrained. Content-free, but restrained.

    It would be a better rebuke if it had not committed much the same crime! In response to Joe’s use of the term ‘septic zone’, we get: “you do not need to resort to what simply helps those who are comfortable in swamp mud “justify” themselves.”.

    You’re too kind, KF!

  25. KF obviously learned his debate methods from Saul Alinsky and Sandra Harding. If you can’t outscience them, make it political. Or better yet, moral.

    This is sarcastic only in the sense that I used the word learn.

  26. I think is an overreaction to think of abduction as “and then a miracle occurred”.   Obviously creationists want to use it that way, but philosophers of science will use the word abduction for rather more sensible inferences that A might be the cause of B, or if in a probabilistic framework, to figure out what the probability of A is given B, when there are prior probabilities.

  27. kairosfocus:”If someone wishes to discuss design theory on the merits, without abusive behaviour, UD is more than adequate.”

    No, UD is not adequate.

    If UD had not banned most of us who saw through poorly thought out “ID/creationist” arguments, you might have a case though.

    Why don’t you and Barry work up some courage and actually argue your case where you can’t ban your debating partners?

    Are your arguments so weak they can’t win the day on their own merits?

     

     

     

  28. kairosfocus:”So, I will speak for record, for genuine discussion is not possible when one has to be dealing with feeding frenzies of willfully disruptive, deceitful, disrespectful, just plain rude and even threatening behaviour.”

    True enough, so stop banning those that disagree with ID.

    Muster whatever courage you have and show your “onlookers” that you have a case.

    UPB tried and failed, but he’s one up on you because he presented his case.

     

     

  29. kairosfocus:”There are consequences to incivility, and to harbouring the uncivil. KF”

    True. So Barry should step up and do the right thing like Elizabeth did by banning Joe.

     

  30. I note that Dembski has used Bayesian inference when it suited his purpose, as in detecting election irregularities, but has declined to apply it to design detection.

  31. There are also consequences to a policy of banning and censoring those who disagree simply for the act of disagreeing; the major one of which is an absence of any semblance of productive debate in a tedious procession of sycophantic posts

  32. kairosfocus quoted this: “Similarly, in a good inductive argument the premises should provide some degree of support for the conclusion, where such support means that the truth of the premises indicates with some degree of strength that the conclusion is true.”

    If one of the inputs to this logic is is “CSI > 500 bits”, where is the evidence that supports the premise that a designer can actually deliver “CSI” of this complexity?

    How powerful does the designer have to be?

    Are his capabilities beyond human capabilities?

    How would we then measure the premise that he has the ability to design at this level?

  33. I started arguing a year or two ago that biological design is impossible except via evolution or by an omniscient being. That was voted the dumbest argument against ID in a UD thread. I don’t understand why they object. It doesn’t rule out their designer. You Know Who. I think it might be a good idea to start referring to the designer as You Know Who, or He Who Must Not Be Named.

  34. The irony is that Pretrushka’s guess that mphillips had been banned was reasonable, given abductive reasoning over the facts of his sudden disappearance and UD’s long history of bannination.

  35. KF to Joe:

    I will note that on the whole, you sometimes slip off the wagon, but with corrections from time to time, you have worked hard to keep up a reasonable standard here at UD. If we had objectors like that, I would be willing to live with that occasional slip-up.

    The bizarre conjunction of KF’s hysteria over civility and his tolerance of Joe G needs no comment. 

    Here is a compilation of remarks authored by another esteemed commenter at UD:

    “So if you are, perhaps, a slow learner or have difficulty with modest conceptualizations, then I simply did not pick up on it. More than likely I may have overlooked it given your pompous certainty…

    I apologize for not being more empathetic to any special needs you might have.…

    I simply assumed that you were just another materialist bigot… I am more than willing to slow down for you.”

    “As it becomes obvious, Diffaxial cannot allow himself the burden that he might be wrong – even to the extent of being able to have a reasoned conversation about the possibilities. He is a coward in this regard.”

    “This is an out and out lie. You are now lying to make your point.” 

    “That was the most baited and sophmoric attempt witnessed since the recent talking donkey episodes (or perhaps watching Diffaxial’s laborious and repeated sholveling of the ground under his feet).”

    “I think that all regulars at this site have come to understand that Diffaxial cannot say anything in which he does not assume his conclusion. It is, apparently, a pathological trait from which he has chosen not to allay himself.”

    “Why would you ask such an ignorant and misplaced (dumbassed) question? Was it meaningful to you in some fashion personally?”

    “The glaring difference between our positions is that I rationally incorporate what we observe in nature, while you irrationally ignore it.”

    “In other words, [Diffaxial’s] response was a nonsensical load of crap. Which was then immediately followed by a return to obfuscation.”

    “In Diffaxial’s case, he was simply a fool.”

    “Diffaxial, try to make sense – and try to be consistent as well.”

    “I am more than happy to consider you no more than highly-trained idiot. Moreover, if you think that I am impressed by the idea that (gasp) modern philosophers disagree with one another about a subject, then you are not even as smart as I might have given you credit for. You perhaps have the training, yet you lack the basic wisdom of a matured farm hand…”

    Guess who.

  36. Neil Rickert: I tend to think of abductive inference as the “and then a miracle occured” step.  That is to say, people use the term “abductive reasoning” when they don’t know how we got from step A to step C, but they like the final conclusion.

    If you use the common meaning of abduction as a mental leap, an aha moment, then an abduction can be considered as the generation of a hypothesis. The hypothesis still has to be tested, either by new experimentation or by comparison with other hypotheses.

  37. kairosfocus:”So I have a legitimate concern that any appearance there will soon enough end up as a mud wrestling match with those who have the manners and attitudes of a swamp predator. “

    KF has already started the wrestling match but prefers to enjoy “home mud advantage”.

    Seriously though we have a situation where neighbours are shouting across the street at each other instead of sitting down in one of our living rooms and having a serious discussion.

    Since Barry has banned us from KF’s house, KF should really think to himself, “Can my arguments carry the day when my objectors don’t have to fear their counter arguments will be constrained, muzzled or censored?”

    So again, it’s strictly a case of faith in the strength of your argument kairosfocus.

    Do you have that faith?

     

     

  38. Zachriel: “If you use the common meaning of abduction as a mental leap, an aha moment, then an abduction can be considered as the generation of a hypothesis. The hypothesis still has to be tested, either by new experimentation or by comparison with other hypotheses. “

    I agree and that’s where the ID side fails.

    They take their “aha” moment and claim they’re done.

    When ID says it “appears to be designed by a designer” they should take that as a starting point to test the designer’s capabilities and see if their logic has been correct.

    What kind of designer can know 100 years into the future what will be required for life forms?

    How do you know whether “Rev 2.028″ of a polar bear will work before you actually try it?

    Is there a testing ground or lab somewhere where the designer can see if his mods are going to work?

     

  39. Neil Rickert: “I tend to think of abductive inference as the “and then a miracle occured” step.  That is to say, people use the term “abductive reasoning” when they don’t know how we got from step A to step C, but they like the final conclusion.”

    But how did you come to that conclusion?

    Kairosfocus is right that abductive reasoning can be used in science. His problem is that he does the abductive bit without the reasoning bit. His mechanism to explain life has to be a non-living intelligent designer, and no such thing has ever been observed to exist, let alone design things with FSCI (or whatever he’s calling it now) in them. To put it another way, it’s no good pointing to the actions of intelligent living beings for whom FSCI is a prerequisite to explain life or FSCI.

  40. kairosfocus:”Again, kindly tell us the observed source of complex algorithmically functional digital code? “

    First you tell us about the power and limitations of your designer.

    How do you test his capabilities?

     

  41. kairosfocus:”Again, kindly tell us the observed source of complex algorithmically functional digital code? “

    Living things.

  42. I don’t judge posts and posters by a scale of rudeness. Glass houses and all that. I judge them by whether they use rudeness and bluster instead of content. As far as I can tell ID has only one hammer and that is incredulity. They simply refuse to extrapolate the evidence of observed microevolution to large time scales.

    The most sophisticated version of this is Behe’s Edge. That’s their best shot. Everything else in their armory just makes noise. Hence the bluster and censorship.

    I thought Maus was one of them. He seems to be experiencing the consequences of principled disagreement with Barry Arrington. Perhaps he’d like to continue here at the alligator pit. Can new people register and post here?

  43. Over at UD, Joe asks me to show my work when I say that design is impossible except by an omniscient being. More specifically, why the being has to be omnisicient.

    It’s rather simple, and I have shown the reasoning a number of times.

    I start with KF’s calculation of the probability of 500 bits of information coming spontaneously into existence. He asserts He estimates that 500 bits of dFSCI exceeds the number of particles in the universe.

    Ergo, the designer would have to have storage and processing capacity exceeding the material resources of the universe.

    I would point out that gpuccio reinforced this view of the designer  by asserting that a minimal protein coding string approaches this level of complexity. GP also asserts there is no incremental path to functional sequences.

    The alternative is that GP is simply wrong, and there are minimally functional sequences arising from random sequences, or from mutated non-coding DNA. Or from duplicated genes that are no longer needed for their original function.

    So Joe. take this back to UD, without quote mining or screwing up the argument. Your designer has to have capabilities exceeding the physical resources of the universe. Prove me wrong.

  44. It’s not the rudeness, but the hypocrisy inherent in whining about incivility while selectively tolerating same in their own ranks that this points to.  

  45. Reciprocating Bill: “It’s not the rudeness, but the hypocrisy inherent in whining about incivility while selectively tolerating same in their own ranks that this points to.   “

    It is the hypocrisy that highlights we are not in their group and thus can be treated with disrespect.

    It’s very frustrating trying to talk to that type of superior personality.

     

  46. Petrushka,

    Somehow my reply to Reciprocating Bill ended up in your comment.

    Sorry.

     

  47. Reciprocating Bill: “It’s not the rudeness, but the hypocrisy inherent in whining about incivility while selectively tolerating same in their own ranks that this points to.   “

    It is the hypocrisy that highlights we are not in their group and thus can be treated with disrespect.

    It’s very frustrating trying to talk to that type of superior personality.

     

  48. My tablet doesn’t have enough real estate to see who’s posting to whom. I just follow the links from the new posts column. I finally found if I hit the html button it opens a window I can use. Anyway, my apologies to Elizabeth if this isn’t the way she wanted her site to go.

  49. hotshoe,

    It’s very frustrating trying to talk to that type of “superior” personality.

    Yes, that does look better now.

     

  50. scordova:”So an offer KairosFocus, if you like, on threads that I’m the author of at TheSkepticalZone, I could ban you. Would you like me to do that? I’m happy to oblige. Same for Barry, I can ban him from my threads at TSZ. If I did that, then they wouldn’t have a lot of basis for complaining anymore. “

    If Sal really wanted to play fair, he would ban Barry and kairosfocus from his posts at Uncommon Descent.

    Sal could also go back and “update” his old OP’s by deleting all of Barry and kairosfocus’s comments for 6 months back.

    If you don’t think it’s possible ask Barry for some help as he’s just done a bunch.

    It must be moral, because he did it, and it must be legal, again because he did it, but is it ethical, who cares, certainly not Barry.

     

     

     

  51. Kairosfocus at UD on the third thread (!) relating to a total of perhaps 100 words written here:

    Now, of course, as was pointed out before this was ever said, we have a case where Petrushka played a nasty game of falsely pretending that I threatened to ban someone who has not been banned then played an even more nasty trick of suggesting — using my abbreviated handle — that I would post pornographic links.

    Kairosfocus, FOR RECORD! – please note that

    1) in wondering whether mphillips was banned, Petrushka was responding to your statement that you would take ‘stronger measures’ in correction. Ascribing the subsequent silence of mphillips to banning is an entirely reasonable surmise – many of us have first-hand experience of precisely that. Turns out the surmise was off-beam. Hey-ho – no harm done, eh? 

    2) the poster playing your ‘nasty trick’ was NOT Petrushka. Nor Toronto. (Nor me, for that matter). And it was just a silly, throwaway remark – “you’re welcome here as long as you don’t post porn or overload the servers”. A dig in the ribs.

    Regulars here know that this was not a suggestion that YOU really would post porn, but was an in-joke reference to an incident where one of your allies posted a gynaecologist’s-eye-view of a lady’s genitalia to several locations. 

    I realise this will not mollify you one iota. You are utterly determined to take offence. But I think it would be better to get the facts straight, nonetheless. 

  52. There is of course a strand of christian thought that holds that god is selectively omniscient – that there are things he chooses not to know.

    Handy, that 

  53. Sal does not have moderation capabilities, only posting privileges. He can’t ban anyone and is dishonest (shock!) in claiming he can. 

  54. If KF posted porn he would crop out the naughty bits. Pure speculation on my part. He wouldn’t really.

  55. Sal has now posted:

    16
    scordovaAugust 26, 2012 at 4:41 pm
     

    KairosFocus:

    Sal, ban away. No skin off my nose

    You are hereby banned from any threads that I author at THZ. If you show up, I’ll have to show you the door.

    Sal  ”

    Which isn’t really in the spirit of TSZ, is it? So No, KF, you’re not banned.    

  56. Kairosfocus has been kind enough to respond to my earlier post. My voice in 1st and 3rd indents; KF in 2nd and square brackets:

    (eta: sorry about the formatting – indenting in the editor has been lost on Post).

    Extending the observed human capacity to program and send information to the very DNA that has given rise to those same humans is disfavoured precisely because it is ad hoc.

    ==>; [--> To observe that the only empirically warranted source of digitally coded, functionally specific, algorithmic info is design is ad hoc? This is an attempt to sweep away an OBSERVATION with massive base by assertion. FYI, ad hoc means: ad hoc [æd ˈhɒk]adj & adv for a particular purpose only; lacking generality or justification (Collins). An empirical observation that is accurately summarised is simply not ad hoc.]

     ====>;Ad hoc applied to scientific theories means bringing a mechanism into an explanation that has no business being there other than to save the explanation. The capitalised OBSERVATION of human designers in action writing digital code does not equate to the OBSERVATION of any equivalent designer in action generating nucleic acid strings. The designer of such strings cannot itself have an intelligence ‘coded’ by such strings. Therefore you just bring in a designer that is ‘just like’ human designers, except in just about every material respect. That seems pretty ad hoc to me.

     The things we can do are no guide to what could be achieved before our tiniest ancestors even started to make the protein that would ultimately take part in the formation of, among other things, our brains.

    ==>[--> Again, kindly tell us the observed source of complex algorithmically functional digital code? Do we have , anywhere, empirical warrant for the origin of such by chance and necessity? Where observed, by whom, where published and in what year did they get the Nobel Prize for such an achievement?]

    ====>Argumentum ad sarcasum? The observed source of complex algorithmically functional digital code is human beings. The oft-used phrase “chance and necessity”, though I am aware of its provenance (the French of J Monod) is pretty meaningless. Let’s allow it as a shorthand for chemistry acting entirely unaided. No observer has observed a chemical replicator coming into being in such a manner, indeed. But then, neither has a human being managed to achieve it by deliberate means. So the jury must remain out on that one. Should a human manage the trick, we will have a model system to study. We will remain in something of a bind regarding the availability of non-human designers, and whatever additional capacities they may have brought to bear on the process.  

    No amount of logical contortion disengages ID from the charge of inserting an ad hoc cause.

    ==>[--> Doubling down on the fallacy]

     ====>Saying absolutely nothing.

    ‘Materialist’ scientists (that is, the vast majority of ‘em) consider that throughout its history, replication must obey physical laws.

    ==>[--> Red herring...]

     ====>But true.

    The energy gradients involved in it must be a net flow ‘downhill’.

    ==>[--> Strawman, in this case a propagandistic one that falsely suggests that design thinkers think like that ...],

    ====>Simply an observation of a real thermodynamic limitation. Design thinkers that don’t need that reminder – good for them. Design thinkers that do … it still wasn’t addressed to them. It points out an essential feature of the output of the early process. Not a molecular machine that needs constant tinkering, but a self-perpetuating one.

    Intelligence per se cannot change that – the intelligent designer must design a system tapping a net ‘downhill’ energy flow, else that system will not be self-sustaining.

    ==>[--> More strawman caricatures. Correcting what no-one has said can sound very impressive, but it is misleading. Onlookers may want to check out here on to see my own remarks on this general subject.]

    ====>You are parrying blows not dealt. It is simply an observation that leads towards the conclusion. If all ID sympathisers are entirely au fait with the Second Law of Thermodynamics, then it is simply a statement of something everybody knows. By my experience, it does not appear that everybody does know that, but it hardly makes it a straw man either way.

     Is it reasonable to infer that there was ever a point at which energy flowed ‘uphill’, against the overall thermodynamic gradient?

     ==>[--> Of course, the real point is that those who construct ART-ificial systems, do so by creating a counter-flow, using intelligence, purposes and plans based on knowledge and skill to guide work. More strawman distortions.]

     ====>No, the real point is that intelligence can’t get you round the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, on observation.

     I’d say no, pace Granville Sewell.

     ==>[--> Misrepresentaiton by name. He has argued that what we do not see is FSCO/I arising by spontaneous processes through blind chance and mechanical necessity. Which is true.]

    ====>If what he argues involves violation of the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics by ‘intelligence’, then we don’t see that either. And FSCO/I is not an established concept.

    What the ID seems to be ‘for’ is the task of gathering the components of an early replicator from an entropically ‘diffuse’ state into a ‘localised’ one. Even the ID may be expected to be thermodynamically bound, on ‘best inference’ – there are no known ‘intelligent violators’ of the actual 2nd Law of Thermodynamics.

     ==>[--> More strawmen, this is a forest of them by now. Intelligence is routinely seen to gather raw materials from scattered states, and to process them into materials and components for systems, then to build the systems. What is not observed, is the same happening by blind chance and mechanical necessity, and the issues highlighted by the 500 - 1,000 bit threshold for FSCI shows us why.]

    ====>And, despite your physics background, you seem unwilling to grasp this point, so perhaps I was not earlier ‘caricaturing’ your viewpoint at all. Intelligence can intentionally gather materials, but cannot – on observation – do so without expending energy. So you have invoked some kind of “2nd Law of Thermodynamics” which is not THE 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. This is basic physics, and if you persist in inventing capacities for intelligence which are not OBSERVED, then you have no business waving Newton’s Rules at anyone. Conduct a VERY carefully controlled experiment, and see if you can get a circumstance where Intelligence gathers raw materials from scattered states, and processes them into materials and components for systems, then builds the systems without requiring a change in entropy elsewhere in order to do so. A simple experiment: don’t feed a programmer for 6 months and then see how much code he can produce. Intelligence by itself cannot move matter – on best observation.

  57. Supposedly I started all this, yet I have no idea what’s going on.

    This is so much like junior high.

    Calling attention to their censorship seems to have struck a nerve. But it hasn’t stopped Barry Arrington from proudly deleting embarrassing posts.

  58. Da Na Na Na Na Na HAY! Da na na

    This is like Auburn and Bama.

    I’m fairly certain KF will not post here because he maps this site and its elements to that other site ATBC. Its not the humor and objection to ID the goes on at ATBC that is the issue, it is how overly personal it appears to be with respect to KF. Stuff I personally would consider out of bounds. That said, it appears to cluster around a single avatar. I’m fairly
    certain that none of those engaged with UB at TSZ in the last few months step out of bounds in such a manner. Nonetheless, from KF’s perspective, the association is enough from him to refrain from accepting the invitation to post here.

    It’s funny because Petruska (and Dr. Rec) were my favorite dissenters at UD. Always extracted the meat of the argument and econmoically stated their counter. I was banned because I disagreed with Barry about banning Dr.REC. Dr.Rec could be a prick at times no doubt, but the
    well stated economical counter-points with an insult sprinkled in here and there were refreshing in the midst of oceans of vanity posts that everyone is guilty of (like this one).

  59. Well, it’s just playacting to Sal and KF anyways.  They want to set up a fake equivalence where KF is justified in staying inside UD – because he’s banned at TSK – rather than merely afraid to post here for fear of contact with the mud swamp (or whatever he’s calling TSK nowadays.)   Since we all know that Libby won’t ban any of them (except like Joe, for porno spam) they have to get Sal to do the banning here by proxy.  Or at least, that’s how I read it.
    Could be wrong.  I do see there’s some antagonism between Sal and KF because Sal is not entirely KF’s bootlicker and KF doesn’t like that flicker of independence.  So maybe Sal would in fact ban KF if he were in a situation with power to do it, but I doubt it.  

    edit apostrophe

  60. Here’s where Sal started the game, Aug 26 2:42PM (comment 11 in that linked thread):

    “Perhaps the way to make the exchange between Petrushka and Toronto and KairosFocus fair, they could ban KairosFocus from TheSkepticalZone.That would seem the most fair arrangement to me. Of course, if TSZ did that, Toronto and Petrushka and the others would have less reason keep fielding complaints. But I expect that won’t happen because they want to feel justified in complaining.So an offer KairosFocus, if you like, on threads that I’m the author of at TheSkepticalZone, I could ban you. Would you like me to do that? I’m happy to oblige. Same for Barry, I can ban him from my threads at TSZ. If I did that, then they wouldn’t have a lot of basis for complaining anymore. ”

    Goofballs.  

  61. Joe is funny and I miss him sometimes. :)

    Joe: “1- ID is NOT about the designer  “

    If ID is not about the designer, who’s responsible for the “D” in “ID”? :)

     

  62. Joe:”

    HELLOOOOOOO… The designer(s) designed the universe

    Does anyone else not realize that the design inference extends beyond biology?”

    You know enough about the designer to know that he’s capable enough of designing the whole universe?

    Joe: “But I love the evidence-free assertions “

    Me too! :)

     

     

  63. Joe:”Obviously NOT anything YOUR position has to offer. “

    Of course not, it’s something YOUR position has to offer.

    If you don’t have a designer, you don’t have a mechanism.

    Where is he?

     

  64. But how did you come to that conclusion?

    As best I can tell, “abductive reasoning” does not name any reasoning method at all.  It seems to be just a name used as a filler, when it isn’t clear how an “explanation” was derived.

  65. I thought Maus was one of them. He seems to be experiencing the consequences of principled disagreement with Barry Arrington. Perhaps he’d like to continue here at the alligator pit. Can new people register and post here?

    There is a Maus already a member.  It is probably the same person.

  66. Sal does not have moderation capabilities, only posting privileges. He can’t ban anyone and is dishonest (shock!) in claiming he can.

    I am seeing a “Delete & Ban IP” button on every post in this thread.  I only see that for threads that I have authored.  Sal probably sees the same thing.

    I have not tested whether it works, because that goes against the general spirit of TSZ.  My guess is that it would ban the user from the entire site, not just from posting to threads that I have authored.  And then Elizabeth would have to show up to fix it.

  67. I see there is some additional Bullybluster on the objective morality thread:

    UPDATE: This post has been up three days now. Only one materialist has had the courage to answer the questions. There have been several attempts to obfuscate, confuse and change the subject, all of which, as promised, have been ruthlessly deleted. Come on materialists. You’re letting your side down. Have the courage to come in here and defend your views.

     

    Such taunting coming from behind a wall of draconian moderation, for some reason, reminds me of these lines:

    I don’t wanna talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food trough wiper! I fart in your general direction! Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!

  68. This is like Auburn and Bama.

    jdnafl – I’m sure KF won’t post here. And I really don’t blame him. Everyone is free to post where they like (rather: can!), and site-runners can ban whoever they like.

    Just to note (since your note was a reply to mine), that particular mini-meta-exchange resulted from my offering, unasked, a few ramblings here on the appropriateness of Newton’s Rules to the respective inferences. KF responded at UD, so I responded here … yeah, it’s daft.

  69. Economical. Damn. That’s about the nicest compliment I’ve ever received. Seriously. Because it’s what I attempt.

    I don’t single out KF capriciously. Regardless of whether he’s a moderator or not, he baits and goads people into becoming intemperate. He accuses people of moral terpitude for having opinions he doesn’t like. He has a one note criticism of probabilities which he will not discuss in a normal conversational style. He embodies the posting style he accuses his opponents of having.

  70. F/N: [...] I am led to wonder if there are any signs that the corrections above and in the two previous posts are being attended to, or are the TSZ denizens dancing on wrong but strong? KF

    Corrections … ? I wonder if KF appreciates that the words here are written by a set of individuals advancing their individual views, and none need speak for any other, in attack or defence. There is common ground, but no-one is responsible for what anyone else says. His, however, are all written by one person.

    I have attempted to answer the parts of his post that addressed my own (messed up by formatting issues, since UD has one over on TSZ – a very useful preview pane!). Naturally enough, I beg to differ on the subject matter, so I am not about to submit to some injunction to ‘self-correction’, as was advanced to mphillips pending ‘stronger measures’ (not unreasonably inferred by petrushka to mean ejection from the debate). No matter. 

    Will we see an apology for incorrectly accusing petrushka of the ‘no porn and don’t break the servers’ post? Or does it not really matter – it was one of them darned atheists; they are all the same?

  71. junkdnaforlife,

    This is like Auburn and Bama.

    I object to the false equivalence.  Uncommon Descent is a heavily and capriciously moderated forum where dissent is barely and only briefly tolerated.  The Skeptical Zone actively encourages open discussion and actually has a more civil atmosphere as a result.  Suggesting that they are as similar as two colleges shows complete disregard for the principles of intellectual honesty and integrity that Lizzie’s site rules support, both in theory and practice.

    I’m fairly certain KF will not post here because he maps this site and its elements to that other site ATBC.

    kairosfocus will not post here because he does not wish to subject his views to challenges that he cannot delete and opponents he cannot ban.  He can rant about “fevered swamps” all he likes, but the bottom line is that he dares not subject his positions to potential disconfirmation.
     

  72. Barry Arrington: “Have the courage to come in here and defend your views.

    And when they do they get their posts deleted and eventually banned.

    Barry is my new poster boy for censorship.

     

  73. What am I supposed to correct? KF alone knows whether his opinions are associated with bannings. They certainly are associated in time. I was personally placed on moderation within a few minutes of disagreeing with KF on a matter of science history. UD remains one of the few sites where posts are deleted entirely on the basis that the opinions expressed are unacceptable. For that reason it has been and remains a laughingstock.

    It makes no difference whether mphillips was banned. His posts were deleted because they disagreed with management’s. Shortly after that, correction was threatened. You would have to be brain dead not to see that mphillips could not pursue his argument and survive. So it goes on UD. Management periodically sets up loyalty traps in which even the regular ID supporters are placed in the position of suppressing their honest questions or being purged. After a while all that remain are sycophants and people not alert enough to understand what is going on.

  74. kairosfocus: “Joe:

    If that is what you did, own up like a man and apologise.

    That is over the top.

    KF “

    1) You suggest an apology but you ban for civil dissent?

    2) What would Barry have done if one of us had done that on your site?

    3) What is wrong with your “design detector” if all along you thought that Joe “designs” civil statements?

     

  75. kairosfocus: “When it comes to Joe, you will see that we have corrected him across time towards civility and anger management, and you can see my response to him just above. I am willing to tolerate those who slip up an have to be restrained, but I am not willing to go along with willful persistent abuse. “

    There is no hope of a real discussion with your side if you treat us as being less civil than someone like Joe.

     

  76. So Allan Miller was wrong- I did NOT post “a gynaecologist’s-eye-view of a lady’s genitalia to several locations”. I posted it to one- the swamp atbc.

    I apologise and stand corrected, Joe. You posted only a link to such a picture at other locations, the actual picture once. I may have been too distracted to distinguish the different media.

  77. Incidentally – in what I’m sure will look like undiluted hypocrisy – I have no interest in getting Joe banned from anywhere. “little children run around as tattle-tales” is fair comment – though I would point out who alerted KF to posts at TSZ in the first place!

    But when people start booming sonorously across the Net, on matters with a factual record, it does seem reasonable to try and get the facts straight. KF took clear and ongoing offence at the ‘porn’ joke, and while he may continue to do so, it was intended and read by most in a different spirit, with a particular context.

    But glass houses and all that … I don’t claim my internet record is spotless. Further details will NOT be forthcoming! ;)

  78. I have nothing to add to this merriment. My friendly advice to Barry, KF, et al, is to try to look at UD through the eyes of a child. Is this really the face of ID you want young onlookers to see? Fearful and intolerant? You are, after all, in the education business.

  79. A comment on Kairosfocus’s abduction to arrive at a best explanation for the OOL.

    A is known to be a source of B

    No other source of B is known.

    Therefore, I infer that A is the best available explanation of any B.

    That kind of abduction seems to work well when A and B are specific well described things. Humans and written language, for example. If archaeologists discovered an ancient tablet with symbols that appeared to be writing, they could reasonably infer that humans were responsible. It’s not a proof. Aliens could conceivably have visited the planet and done some scribblings, for example, but humans are currently by far the best explanation.

    The above type of abduction is what Kairosfocus seems to believe he’s doing.

    But this is what Kairosfocus really does.

    A is known to be a source of B

    No other source of B is known

    Therefore, I infer that an unknown C which shares a property with A is the best explanation of any D which is similar or analogous to B, and could be given the same broad description.

    And he ends up with non-living intelligent designers, something not known to exist, as a best explanation for the origin of life.

     

  80. Which does not prove he is wrong, except for it being the best explanation. What I got dumped into moderation for was asking for an example in the history of science where a non regular cause was found to be the best explanation. A precedent.

    Of course they keep fine tuning as the ace up their sleeve.

    And gpuccio has his invisible continually interacting bit twiddlers that hide behind stochatsic events.

    But I admire this a lot. It is the simplest and clearest exposition I’ve seen of the argument.

  81. kairosfocus: “First, as I have repeatedly pointed out — including just now to Joe — I do not control UD’s mod policy. “

    The whole point of mentioning Joe is to highlight the behaviour of KF.

    KF is okay with the incivility of people who behave like Joe but is NOT okay with the type of people who would NOT put up with his behaviour, meaning this site.

    It is you KF and Barry who are being judged here.

     

  82. Petrushka: Of course they keep fine tuning as the ace up their sleeve.

    Fine tuning? IDists spend a lot of time making arguments that imply that the world was not fine tuned for the existence of the life forms we observe. Intervention was required.

    Fine tuning is actually a prediction of naturalism. It is compatible with supernaturalism, but not predicted by it.

  83. William J Murray:”We should conduct a poll to see who believes they have free will, and just toss out everyone who is so insane that they believe they can engage in a meaningful argument without it. “

    Looks like another purge coming.

    This means they will have to ban Dembski for giving up his free will to disbelieve in a historical Noah’s flood, even though he believed science did not back up that event.

    Dembski was that close to being free to think for himself, but then the theists in his workplace, including his boss, stopped him in his tracks.

     

     

  84. Well let’s not require consistency of ID proponentsists. Fine tuning is the castle keep when all other defences fail. It is Michael Denton’s current position. Something I tried to point out when I was allowed to post. I have nothing against it as a mystical feel good philosophy.

    It’s certainly more parsimonious than gpuccio’s recurring gardener, or the notion that DNA computes solutions to satisfy need.

  85. Perhaps they should toss out everyone who is so insane as to believe that they have free will and that the Intelligent Designer can be omniscient at the same time.

  86. Very true.

    Also, if the prophecy is that Jesus will die on the cross, does Pontius Pilate have the free will to spare him?

     

  87. kairosfocus:”So, objectors to design theory, the ball is in your court. (NB: Inputs are also welcome from design theory supporters.) “

    The ball “might” be in our court if UD had not banned us even though every single one of us has shown more civility than Joe.

    It “might” also be in our court if you had the courage to post here.

    But no ID ball is in our court until ID offers up a workable mechanism like evolutionists have.

    For instance, do you have anything like a “design simulator” that would be able to target the specific functionality of an irreducibly complex biological entity that would function in a future environment that does not exist today.

    Weasel, as simple as it is, shows one aspect of evolution, i.e. selection, at work.

    Do you have anything like that?

     

  88. Joe:”Hellooooo- weasel is a targeted search, which makes it a design mechanism, not a blind and undirected mechanism. “

    The algorithm does NOT know the target.

    The algorithm is presenting an output, a “child”, which is selected by the “environment”, a char string, which might be equal to “Joe”.

    If at any time the “environment” gets changed to “Bob”, even in the middle of the process, the algorithm will start to favour “children” that most closely resemble “Bob”.

    The algorithm, or “mechanism”, doesn’t change, only the selection pressure caused by the “environment”.

    Now show one of your simulated “designer” models demonstrating the ability of foresight, which is needed for the “specification” component of an “irreducibly complex design”.

     

  89. Joe: “Unfortunately for “onlooker” the words of an anonymous poster ring quite hollow.

    The posters over on TSZ are uncivil wrt to IDists and creationists. OTOH I am “uncivil” to those uncivilized evos.”

    KF is an anonymous poster too.

    Saying you can be uncivil to those who are uncivil suggests that if your wife cheats on you, you are allowed a free affair of your own.

    Do you think that is moral?

     

  90. kairosfocus:”The notion that a serious and genuinely civil objector cannot post over an extended period at UD is patently false. “

    Empirical data proves you wrong.

    Barry has banned posters without regard to civility.

    The empirical data shows that UD censors opinions of objectors to ID.

    Sal actually went and modified “Maus”‘s comments by taking out the vowels.

    Barry deleted comments of posters for asking him to explain his position before answering a true/false question.

    That’s not respectful behaviour.

    If an ID initiative came up before a school board, I would use UD as an example of censorship by the ID community, something that school children should not be subjected to.

    Show some courage.

     

  91. I’m shocked that kairosfocus has forgotten basic programming.

    1)  TargetString = “Methinks it is like a weasel”.

      <algorithm/mechanism converges to TargetString>

    2)  TargetString = “What a lovely day today is”.

      <algorithm/mechanism converges to TargetString>

     

    Notice that the algorithm, ( the mechanism), doesn’t change while the resulting output, ( the “child”) does.

    Same mechanism, different “offspring”.

     

  92. Show the existence of any ID critics other than famous bloggers and authors that have survived more than six months at UD. Go back to the post that got Petrushka banned and tell me what incivility I exhibited. 

    As far as I can tell, anyone who disagrees with the management and sticks to a principled argument will be banned. But not before being called immoral communist nazi dupes and agents, or the equivalent. 

    There’s an entire thread listing just some of the posters who have been banned. None of them were as uncivil as KF and Joe are routinely.

    To be completely fair, I think it is reasonable to ban people who make offensive comments at other sites. But after being banned for  opinions rather than for incivility, there’s no point in pretending to respect the people who banned you.

    Respect is due to people who respond to your arguments and who do not delay or hedge or make promises before disappearing for weeks at a time.

    One thing about me that is slightly different from many ID critics is I am not afraid of being wrong. I have consistently said that if sequence space is as sparse as KF claims it to be, that is a big problem for evolution. In that sense, KF’s argument is scientific.

    Now it is up to KF to answer Thornton and Lenski and others who have explored actual evolutionary scenarios and who have found that three step functional inventions are possible, even in the short time available in controlled experiments.

    It’s back to you. KF.

  93. It would save them much grief if they just closed comments. Since they have no respect for anyone who takes a different view – such people are frequently cast as possessed of some mental deficiency – they could save themselves the trouble of having to correct their opinions by not allowing them to be aired in the first place. 

    WJM is still pursuing the ‘irrationality’ of the subjective moralist. It strikes me that a rock-paper-scissors matrix could be constructed. Four players, 2xSM and 2xOM. None of them agrees with any other. SM vs SM – it’s a draw. Neither has a ‘rational’ basis for their morality (per WJM). SM vs OM – OM wins, because their morality comes from outside, and is therefore rational (per WJM). But OM vs OM … surely, again, it is a dead heat? Both have the ‘rational’ grounds of believing in Objective Morality. But their respective OM tells them two different things. So it appears that everyone is either a Subjective-Moral-Relativist or an Objective-Moral-Relativist. Since one cannot live as if that is true (per WJM), all players spontaneously combust in a puff of logic. Game Over.

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