I repeat my invitation to Dr. Winston Ewert to join us here for discussion of several questions I raised. It helps immensely to display mathematical formulas, rather than talk about them vaguely. However, he has replied at Uncommon Descent, where that is impossible. I’m genuinely astonished to see:
The Wedge Document, which appeared on the internet in 1999, is a curious thing. I don’t want to discuss is merits and demerits in this post, but what it says about fear: on the one side of the wedge, the fear that motivated its writing, and on the other side, the fear of those who felt targetted by it.
Because even though the document itself has ceased to have force, the mutual distrust remains.
ID proponents often portray ID critics as “materialists”, and recently someone asked whether a force was “material”. Well, if a force isn’t “material” then there are no “materialists”. So yes, is the answer to that question. A force that can move matter is a material force. A force that can’t move matter isn’t a force at all.
And this matters for the Intelligent Design argument, because when we infer that an object has been intelligently designed, we are also inferring that it was fabricated according to that design. And to fabricate an object, or modify it, the fabricator has to accelerate matter, i.e. give its parts some kinetic energy it did not otherwise possess, by applying a force.
Kairosfocus discusses this comment of mine at UD:
Elizabeth: That’s not what “undermines the case for design” William.What undermines the “case for design” chiefly, is that there isn’t a case for a designer.
If current models are inadequate (and actually all models are), and indeed we do not yet have good OoL models, that does not in itself make a case for design.It merely makes a case for “our current models are inadequate”.
Even if it could be shown that some oberved feature has no possible evolutionary pathway, that wouldn’t make the case for design.What might would be some evidence of a design process, or fabrication process, or some observable force that moved, say, strands of DNA into novel positions contrary to known laws of physics and chemistry.
And it would be interesting.
I’m not going to discuss things at UD until Barry makes it clear that he will not retrospectively delete, wholesale, posts by posters he subsequently decides to ban. It makes discussion pointless. In any case, comments are closed on that thread.
But I will respond to one thing in Kairosfocus’ post here:
Some of you are raring to go with responses to the Uncommon Descent post Dr. Ewert Answers. Adapa dropped the following into a thread in which I hope to engage Ewert in discussion of my own question, not Andy’s. Have fun.
Over at UD Ewert hand-waved away this question by Andy:
…Gap Highlighter, Design Conjecture
Though I’ve continued to endear myself to the YEC community, I’ve certainly made myself odious in certain ID circles. I’ve often been the lone ID proponent to vociferously protest cumbersome, ill-conceived, ill-advised, confusing and downright wrong claims by some ID proponents. Some of the stuff said by ID proponents is of such poor quality they are practically gifts to Charles Darwin. I teach ID to university science students in extra curricular classes, and some of the stuff floating around in ID internet circles I’d never touch because it would cause my students to impale themselves intellectually.
I’d like to start a thread about the proposition that features of the universe indicate that a designer designed and created it for a purpose.
We have had many such discussions on this blog previously, but I propose that in this thread we abide by a new rule: we will conduct the discussion solely in the form of English called E-prime:
E-Prime (short for English-Prime, sometimes denoted É or E′), a prescriptive version of the English language, excludes all forms of the verb to be. E-Prime does not allow the conjugations of to be—be, am, is, are, was, were, been, being—the archaic forms of to be (e.g. art, wast, wert), or the contractions of to be—’m, ‘s, ‘re (e.g. I’m, he’s, she’s, they’re).
I’m ambivalent to the question whether ID is or is not science. I don’t care how it is classified. The more important question is whether it is true. Even though in some people’s definition of science, ID might count as science, in other people’s definition of science it won’t count as science. Therefore, just to be safe and avoid pointless arguments, ID should not be promoted as science even by IDists.