Semiotic theory of ID

Upright BiPed has been proposing what he has called a “semiotic” theory of Intelligent Design, for a while, which I have found confusing, to say the least.  However, he is honing his case, and asks Nick Matzke

…these three pertinent questions regarding the existence of information within a material universe:

  1. In this material universe, is it even conceivably possible to record transferable information without utilizing an arrangement of matter in order to represent that information? (by what other means could it be done?)
  2. If 1 is true, then is it even conceivably possible to transfer that information without a second arrangement of matter (a protocol) to establish the relationship between representation and what it represents? (how could such a relationship be established in any other way?)
  3. If 1 and 2 are true, then is it even conceivably possible to functionally transfer information without the irreducibly complex system of these two arrangements of matter (representations and protocols) in operation?

… which I think clarify things a little.

I think I can answer them, but would anyone else like to have a go? (I’m out all day today).

1,027 thoughts on “Semiotic theory of ID

  1. Sheesh! OK, already, UB has made a logical error so obvious everyone has pointed it out in every way they can think of, and UB remains married to it with a faith the Pope would envy.

    Now the question is, is this error incidental to, or critical to, his overall argument. I don’t know, because as far as I can tell he hasn’t made an overall argument. Lizzie agreed to grant the error for the sake of moving forward, but UB doesn’t move forward, he simply continues to crow that both Lizzie and RB have agreed with him, because he’s so obviously right!

    Like everyone else here (as far as I can tell, anyway), I believe this logical error is critical to the argument he is careful not to make here. He thinks he observes A and B (that we have representations and protocols and entailments and stuff). Sometimes the entailments are A causing the representations and protocols, sometimes they are B, resulting from the representations and protocols. Not easy to parse out.

    So my guess (I never could get him to start from the top and work down) is that he is claiming that ID is required for biology to work. And to show this, he has to show that some essential part of biology (transcription) MUST BE an intelligent process. To do this, he observes results that sometimes in fact do result from intelligent processes, and attempts to show that IF intelligence produces certain sorts of results, THEREFORE one is justified in concluding intelligence just from observing the results.

    Now, this is plain vanilla ID – we assume life is Designed, we observe life, and THEREFORE we conclude Design. UB’s “result-entailments” ALWAYS occur when intelligence is involved, we see them occurring, therefore intelligence is involved! The ONLY way to inject intelligence into the process is through A->B. B, therefore A. Intelligence always causes entailments B, we observe B, we conclude intelligence. The logical error is essential to UB’s argument, just as it is essential to all of Intelligent Design.

    We are justified in assuming our conclusions because we KNOW our conclusions are correct a priori. Praise the Designer!         

  2. UB:

    This has already been conceded: Reciprocating Bill on June 10: “Of course if the necessary and sufficient conditions of a phenomenon are present, then phenomenon is present – as I stated above (B is the necessary and sufficient conditions for A. Therefore B -> A.”)

    I affirmed the following: that given the premise, “A represents necessary and sufficient conditions for B,” that upon observing A, we can infer B, and that given A, upon observing B we can infer A.* 

    But UB’s original and most consistent logical error has been: “A entails (implies, is a sufficient cause for) B. B, therefore A.” That is defective logic, very different from the reasoning I do affirm.

    In affirming the former, I am not granting an instance of the latter, as “represents necessary and sufficient conditions for”  =/=  “implies, entails.” In asserting that I do, UB gets it wrong. 

    That “A -> B. B, therefore A” has often characterized his argument is amply documented in my examination of his Moran essay, below.

    * Unfortunately, to employ this relationship to arrive at valid inferences one must already know that there are necessary and sufficient conditions for B, and what they are. It works for the fire tetrahedron because we have strong independent justification for the claim that the legs of the tetrahedron are in fact necessary and sufficient conditions for fire, both in the form of an exquisitely complete chemical theory of combustion and from massive experience with same. 

    But flat fact: in the instance of the semiotic argument, UB has yet offer even a a sketch of a positive theory of the origin of the transfer of recorded information/semiotic states, or valid inferences from experience supporting his claim that “the entailments” are in fact necessary conditions for phenomena such as the transcription of DNA. 

    Instead we have bare claims and definitions that assume these conclusions, and his repeated claim that all instances and sources of the TRI display those entailments. That, of course, leads to “A -> B. B, therefore A.” 

    Analogizing the “entailments” with the elements of the fire tetrahedron gets him exactly nowhere. 

    This remains wholly unrebutted.

  3. Actually UPB seems to believe that the child has seen Santa Claus. 

  4.   The A->B therefore B -> A argument flaw, it seems, would require another mapping or pathway to B. Such as if we discover B, then we cannot announce therefore A, because we know of N non-A pathways to B. As in rain -> wet ground. If we find wet ground it does not imply only rain, because we know of N non-rain pathways to wet ground. However, in the case of Upright Biped’s semiotic argument, there are currently zero N non-A plausible pathways to B (an information transfer system with representations and protocols).

     

     

       

  5. junkdnaforlife,

    We are talking about using logic to make a statement about reality.

    If your child smiles when he sees a picture of Santa Claus, does this mean that every time he smiles, he must have seen a picture of Santa Claus?

    If you answer yes, then you believe A->B, B->A.

    Are you going to answer yes?

     

  6. Toronto,

     

    I would answer no. Because as Santa clause -> Child smile, we cannot map from child smile -> santa clause. The reason is because there are other mappings to a child’s smile other than Santa Clause. In the case of Upright Biped’s argument, currently, there are no other known plausible pathways to B. So based on our current understanding, the semiotic is sound provisionally.

  7. So UPB’s argument doesn’t have anything to do with semiosis. It’s just another restatement of incredulity. You don’t know how it happened; therefore goddidit.

    Of course biologists have known since the code was figured out in the 60s that we don’t know its history.

    Need I point out the sorry history of the argument from incredulity?  How long between Copernicus and Newton, or between Copernicus and Einstein?  During those centuries was it useful to posit angles as keeping planets in their orbits?

  8. petrushka,

    You make a great point which for some unknown reason, the ID crowd just can’t accept.

    History has proven over and over, that a thing attributed to “goddidit” eventually turns out to be yet another thing “goddidntdo”

  9. junkdnaforlife,

    junkdnaforlife: “I would answer no. Because as Santa clause -> Child smile, we cannot map from child smile -> santa clause.”

    But we are not talking about reality, we are talking about the tool that we use to try and make some sense of reality.

    If “A->B,B->A” cannot be trusted as a logical construct then we can never use it as a tool.

    You realize I hope that the Santa Claus analogy I used was to show that “A-B,B->A” cannot be used as a tool to help us understand “reality” since that logic fails in some cases.

    Since it fails in some cases, it cannot be relied upon.

    Over at UD, there was discussion about “A != (~A)”.

    Do you believe there are exceptions to that logic also?

     

     

     

  10. So in other words if we did NOT know of any other ways the ground could get wet, THEN we could conclude it was rain? What if we didn’t know about rain either? Then could we assume it was magic?

  11. JunkDNA: 

    However, in the case of Upright Biped’s semiotic argument, there are currently zero N non-A plausible pathways to B (an information transfer system with representations and protocols).

    It does not follow that there are no alternative pathways to B. 

    Vis plausibility, the question is not whether there exist plausible non A pathways, but whether it is plausible that non A pathways exist. 

    Moreover, plausibility is relative. Unfortunately, as is characteristic of all arguments originating from within the ID community, UB’s is explicitly crafted such that it refrains from making any testable positive assertions (indeed, any assertions at all) regarding the “pathway” he implicitly prefers. As a result, the plausibility of his position is impossible to evaluate. 
     

  12. junkdnaforlife,

    Related to the A->B therefore B->A logical fallacy identified by numerous commenters here is the problem pointed out originally by Reciprocating Bill, namely that Upright Biped is using two terms to support his argument that are, in fact, synonyms.

    Originally Upright Biped used the terms “transfer of recorded information” and “semiotic state” apparently in some way to support his claims.  Inspecting his argument, it appears that these two terms have exactly the same definition, according to him.  That makes his argument circular.

    I noted more recently that Upright Biped is using the terms “transfer of recorded information” and “the use of representations and protocols” to support his claims, when in fact they are synonyms by his own definitions.  This would, again, make his argument circular.

    As an ID proponent and supporter of Upright Biped’s argument, your take on this point is of interest to me.  If the ‘A’ and ‘B’ terms are synonyms, the A->B therefore B->A fallacy doesn’t arise, because the argument is prima facie circular.  Do you think they are synonyms?  If not, why not?
     

  13. More ABCs of the semiotic argument, from UB’s April 17 post to Lizzie.

    http://theskepticalzone.com/wp/?p=659&cpage=2#comment-10871

    UB:

    you will now need to equivocate on the use of the term “information”, or, concede that the information transferred from the genome requires physical representations and physical protocols.

    (This A – > B.)

    And if it uses representations and protocols, then it is semiotic.

    A = C, by definition. (The transfer of recorded information = a semiotic state, “by necessity,” which is to say by UB definition.)

    Note that UB declines to state what “a semiotic state” entails that “the transfer of recorded information” does not, although he has been asked this question perhaps 20 times. Therefore: (A = C.)

    I have described the transfer of recorded information by the material objects involved, as well as by the dynamic relationships between those material objects.

    I have described information transfer (A) by the entailments (B), and stated that A -> B. (A -> B.)

    it is demonstrated that the physicality of the transfer is exactly the same regardless of the domain of the recorded information.

    All A entail B. (A -> B.)

    You have already conceded that it is inconceivable to transfer recorded information by any means other than by those objects and dynamics, so why the constant need to inject an anthropocentric veil over the observations?

    You have conceded that all A entail B. (A -> B.)

    Do you not agree that a human transfer of information requires representations and protocols operating in specific roles within a system?

    Is this not an example of A -> B? (A -> B.)

    Do you agree that bee communication requires representations and protocols operating in specific roles within a system?

    Is this not an example of A -> Bee? (A -> B.)

    Do you agree that an information-driven fabric loom requires representations and protocols operating in specific roles within a system?

    Is this not an example of A -> B? (A -> B.)

    Do you agree that a music box requires representations and protocols operating in specific roles within a system?

    Is this not an example of A -> B? (A -> B.)

    At what point to we…simply recognize that ALL recorded information transfer requires representations and protocols operating in specific roles within a system?

    By induction, all A -> B. (All A -> B.)

    Note that UB’s argument here is that observation of many instances of A -> B warrants the induction that “all A -> B,” NOT that “all A -> B” is warranted because A represents necessary and sufficient conditions for B. 

    Again, all of these issues have been covered a number of times, and none of them have any impact whatsoever on the material observations (of the objects and dynamics) involved in recorded information transfer.

    (All A -> B.)

    And repeated in previous and subsequent posts in various forms:

    Demonstrating a system that satisfies the entailments (physical consequences) of recorded information…

    (A -> B. B, therefore A.) 

    …also confirms the existence of a semiotic state.

    A -> B. B, therefore C. (Because C = A by UB definition. Unless he would at last like to tell us what “a semiotic state” entails that “the transfer of recorded information” does not.) 

    An example from elsewhere:

    As explained above, the ground being wet does not confirm that it had rained. On the other hand, the entailments presented in the argument successfully confirm the existence of a semiotic state.

    A -> B. B, therefore A, because A = C. (A -> B. B, therefore A.)

    So why are we still here after almost a year of conversation?

    Because you are wedded to reasoning that is patently defective, but are unable to let it go.

  14. Reciprocating Bill on June 10

    “Of course if the necessary and sufficient conditions of a phenomenon are present”

    “then [the] phenomenon is present” 

    “as I stated above”

    “B is the necessary and sufficient conditions for A. Therefore B -> A.

  15. B is the necessary and sufficient conditions for A

    And as has been pointed out to you many times, that is an assumption for which you haven’t provided sufficient, even any, evidence.

  16. UB, your careful quotemine removes crucial context, specifically the word “If” in the sentence that immediately precedes the phrase you quote:

    RB:

    Of course if the necessary and sufficient conditions of a phenomenon are present, then phenomenon is present.

    (New emphasis on the snipped “if.”)

    As above, to employ this relationship to arrive at valid inferences one must already know that there are necessary and sufficient conditions for B, and what they are. It works for the fire tetrahedron because we have strong independent justification for the claim that the legs of the tetrahedron are in fact necessary and sufficient conditions for fire, both in the form of an exquisitely complete chemical theory of combustion and from massive experience with same.

    But flat fact: in the instance of the semiotic argument, you have yet offer even a a sketch of a positive theory of the origin of the transfer of recorded information/semiotic states, or valid inferences from experience. Instead you offer claims and definitions that assume your conclusions – buttressed by repeated observations that “A -> B,” followed by “B successfully confirms A,” documented beyond sane objection above.

    I’ve repeated versions of the above perhaps five times. It remains wholly unrebutted.

  17. I see UB included the sentence containing the IF. Therefore I retract the “quotemine” comment. 

    It remains for UB to address what follows from that IF.  

  18. Upright BiPed,

    “B is the necessary and sufficient conditions for A. Therefore B -> A.

    There’s the problem UPB!

    What you have shown is “A->B”, followed by “B->A”.

    You have NOT shown “A->B THEREFORE B->A”!

    What you have are two completely separate instances.

    As an example, 2+2 = 4, 4+4 =8, but we CANNOT say, 2+2=4, THEREFORE 4+4 = 8.

    That is what everyone is trying to explain to you, that as a logical construct, the “assertion of A leading to a conclusion of B”, does not lead to the “conclusion” that, an “assertion of B leads to a conclusion of A”.

    I hope you’ll read this over a few times and try to understand what I am trying to tell you.

     

     

  19. Further:

    UB give special emphasis to my “therefore B -> A.” He apparently believes that this validates his faulty reasoning (“A ->B. B, therefore A.)

    SEE?! RB used “therefore B -> A.” He is being inconsistent.

    Not given context. I affirmed the following:

    Given the premise, A represents necessary and sufficient conditions for B, upon observing A, we can infer B, and upon observing B, we can infer A.

    However, what the above examinations of UB’s Moran missive and his post to Lizzie establish beyond sane objection is that his original and most consistent/persistent logical error has been: 

    A entails (results in, is always accompanied by) B (established through repeated observations). B, therefore A. 

    In affirming the former, I am not granting an instance of the latter, as necessary and sufficient conditions for does not equal  entails, results in, is always accompanied by

     

  20. Petrushka, JonF,

    Since my last post, references to the letters “A->B” or “B->A”, or “C” have been typed into this thread a total of 74 times by Reciprocating Bill, Patrick, Toronto, etc. Each of those instances was posted in an effort to perform mouth to mouth resuscitation on Bill’s failed attempt to paint a logical fallacy on the semiotic argument. His failed attempt was shot down earlier in this thread through the words of Sir Peter Frederick Strawson, as well as through my own argumentation … and in fact Bill flatly conceded the point (as demonstrated by the direct quote of his words, sans the sour grapes). He would like to now hide that concession is a wall of fond remembrances of the way it was before he was forced to concede – and I am simply reminding him that his failed attempt remains failed all the same. Nevertheless, he, like you, is left to do nothing more than repeat himself.

    As for your claims about me providing proofs and evidence; I am wondering if you are familiar with the meaning of the term “universal experience”. I have provided our universal experience of the phenomena as the evidence that supports my argument. Given this fact, to say that there is “no evidence” is an amateur joke, and to say there is “plenty of evidence” is an understatement.

    The simple fact remains, the semiotic argument stands on evidence and reason. No one here has shown a flaw in the material observations made within the argument, and despite the repeated attempts otherwise, no one has demonstrated a logical fallacy or an internal contradiction either.

    Feel free to repeat your objections all over again, or, (as a bold alternative to simply repeateing “no evidence” in the face of universal evidence), you can choose to answer the questions in the OP which began this conversation.  

  21. Upright Biped,

    You have several questions outstanding about your argument.  Lizzie’s rules here are to assume good faith on the part of other commenters, so for the purposes of this discussion I am assuming that your goal is to communicate your ideas effectively.  Until you answer these questions, that goal will not be met.

    The first outstanding question has been asked by Lizzie repeatedly:  How, exactly, does your semiotic argument support ID?

    The second outstanding question has been asked by Reciprocating Bill repeatedly:  What does “a semiotic state” entail that “the transfer of recorded information” does not?  If something, then what?  If nothing, then why invoke it?

    Related to Reciprocating Bill’s question is mine in response to one of your more recent comments:  Are you using the terms “transfer of recorded information” and “the use of representations and protocols” as synonyms?  If they are in any way different, please explain how.

    Now, you may not see these questions as valuable, but those of us attempting to understand your argument need this additional information in order to do so.  In the interest of communicating in good faith, please answer them directly.

  22. Upright BiPed,

    “..and despite the repeated attempts otherwise, no one has demonstrated a logical fallacy..”

    I’m willing to jump ship and join your side if you can actually prove that an “assertion of A that concludes B” leads to the logical conclusion that “an assertion of B concludes A”.

    You will notice that there are only logical statements involved here, which is exactly what we are concerned with, that the logical construct “A->B” leads to the “logical” conclusion, “B->A”, that allows us to use that logic in models about reality.

    Show me that it always holds and is trustworthy as a logical tool.

     

     

  23. He seems to have bypassed the logic problem and now asserting that B –> A. Necessary and sufficient.

  24. and in fact Bill flatly conceded the point

    Bill did not concede the point. He conceded that there are instances when, given A->B and further information from other sources, we can conclude that B->A. He also pointed out, many times, why your claim is lacking that critical information from other sources and therefore does not fit the aforementioned instance. You have failed to address his real point in any of your blustering declarations of victory.

    You quoted Bill as saying “Of course if the necessary and sufficient conditions of a phenomenon are present”, and then you asserted without information from other sources that “B is the necessary and sufficient conditions for A”. You ignored Bill’s if and repeated your error.

  25. Patrick, you ask UB:

    “How, exactly, does your semiotic argument support ID?”

    R.Bill answers this (to you):

    It seems clear enough that he believes that the “observed entailments of the transfer of recorded information/a semiotic state (by which we now know he really means ‘the necessary and sufficient conditions’ for same) cannot arise from unguided material processes.
    //comment-14557

    You responded:

    “I suspect you are correct.”
    //comment-14558

     

    toronto,

    If your asking me if Jupiter can both exist and not exist at the same time and in the same sense, I was unfortunately banned from UD before I got the pleasure of being subjected to the A not-A purging. It was a silent throat slitting of sorts, where I was quietly dragged out through the back door and quickly disposed of. That said, I don’t think I would have agreed with the Dissent of Eigenstate.

     

     

     

     

     

     

  26. RB on April 28th: The issue is not whether there is “a single way to record information that doesn’t entail the physical roles and dynamic relationships as given in the argument…

    RB on May 3rd:  …you neither understand the word “entailment,” nor understand the entailment relationship described in the simple illustrations we have provided. For that reason, you repeatedly travel the wrong way down a one-way street.

    RB on May 4th: Again demonstrating that you don’t grasp the relationship of “entailment.” Entailment may be 100% reliable, yet by itself does not “confirm.”

    RB on May 8th: I assert (not suggest) that you do not understand entailment, and due to your failure to grasp entailment you have constructed an argument beset with a fatal logical flaw.

    BIPED on June 10:  Bill, if a specific thing only exist under specific conditions, then does its existence entail the existence of those specific conditions?

    RB on June 11th: Yes, it does. So that would be a valid use of “entailment.”

    – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    RB on May 8th:  It does not follow from “A entails B” that “B entails A.” Therefore B cannot confirm A.

    RB on May 8th:  your entire argument turns on the analogous claim that because your “listed entailments” are observed in every instance of the necessarily semiotic transfer of recorded information, it follows that the presence of your entailments “successfully confirms” the presence of a semiotic state. That, obviously, exhibits the logical error “A entails B, therefore B entails A

    RB on June 3rd: Your argument is beset by invalid logic and circularity. All your spongiform prose notwithstanding, that problem stands.

    RB on June 10: Of course if the necessary and sufficient conditions of a phenomenon are present, then phenomenon is present – as I stated above (B is the necessary and sufficient conditions for A. Therefore B -> A.

    – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    Keiths on Jul 7th:   Upright, You’re not fooling anyone.

    lol

  27. Let us get this straight. You affirm that:

     “Given the premise, A represents necessary and sufficient conditions for B, upon observing A, we can infer B, and upon observing B, we can infer A.”

    “However” you do not affirm that:

     “A entails (results in, is always accompanied by) B (established through repeated observations). B, therefore A”.

    If a thing satisfies the “necessary and sufficient conditions” requirements, then it is both “always accompanied by” and never ‘not-accompanied by’?

    – – – – – – – – – – –

    Bill, your argument has wandered around so much I think you may have lost your way. Allow me to remind you in your own words of what your argument really is:

    RB on May 15th:  “UB’s claim that “the listed entailments confirm semiosis” remains fallacious regardless of the state of the evidence”.

  28. You have several questions outstanding about your argument.  Lizzie’s rules here…

    Hilarious. Patrick, I’ve already told you how little I regard people whose only demonstrated motivation is their ideology. But, I think your infinite supply of false sincerity has all the earmarks of an evolutionary adaptation, correlated in direct proportion to the denial of threatening information. It would all get too tiring otherwise. Yeah blind processes!!  

  29. JonF,

    What, again, is your understanding of how our universal common experience with the phenomena relates to “further information from other sources”.   

  30. Upright BiPed,

    1> Logic is a tool to help us model reality.

    2> This tool has to therefore be valid in all cases.

    3> “A->B THEREFORE B->A is not valid in all cases “when we use it to model reality” and is therefore not usable as logic.

    *************************************************

     Show me that this logic always holds and I’ll agree to your A->B THEREFORE B->A point.

    *************************************************

     

     

  31. What, again, is your understanding of how our universal common experience with the phenomena relates to “further information from other sources”

    I’m not aware of any relevant “universal common experience”. I have a vague recollection of some irrelevant arm-waving based on that phrase, but I can’t be arsed to remember the details.

  32. So not having paid enough attention to know what has and has not been said, you’ve concluded what has and has not been said. Do you remember enough to answer the question as to whether or not anyone provided instances of recorded information transfer that didn’t also demonstrate the entailments provided in the argument?

  33. Since you declare victory every time you come here, perhaps you’d care to recap what it is you’ve won, in English, without jargon.

     Based on your argument, what specific claim can you make regarding the origin of life?

  34. As UB’s vaporous responses clearly indicate; there is no “semiotic theory of ID;” just as there is no theory of ID whatsoever.

    If there were any substance to what UB is claiming he is trying to communicate, he would have found a way to do it by now; that’s what any intelligent individual would do. Instead, he has resorted to the passive-aggressive tactic of saying nothing with many words while insulting and baiting others to continue to engage him. He brings the culture of UD over here and insults his gracious host.

    How many students can find as many ways to screw up the concept of implication as UB does?  I would suggest that he is doing it on purpose.  Who knows or cares what his motives might be?  There is clearly no good faith effort on his part.  As near as I can tell, he is little different from Joe G; except perhaps a bit less 13 year old crude. 

  35. I lost count of the number of times Lizzie requested that UB please stop addressing her as “Dr. Liddle”. After each request, UB came right back and addressed her as “Dr. Liddle”. At that point, she gave up, and who can blame her. She succeeded in showing that UB’s interest in interacting wasn’t even minimal.

    I suppose this saves UB the trouble of conspicuously REFUSING to answer her repeated, simple question: Can you please support the title of your own thread by relating your verbiage to ID? Rather than even attempt to make his case, he simply continued addressing “Dr. Liddle.”

    In my book, this is a jerk.   

  36. Flint,

    Flint (Referring to UPB): “In my book, this is a jerk.”

    Then we should consider this debate a success since the ID types have shown again that the debate is tribal, not scientific!

     

  37. It might be tribal if UB had the respect of anyone in the ID community.

  38. UB:

    The simple fact remains, the semiotic argument stands on evidence and reason. No one here has shown a flaw in the material observations made within the argument, and despite the repeated attempts otherwise, no one has demonstrated a logical fallacy or an internal contradiction either.

    I honestly find this bizarre.

  39. UB:

    Do you remember enough to answer the question as to whether or not anyone provided instances of recorded information transfer that didn’t also demonstrate the entailments provided in the argument?

    Unbelievable. You really have no grasp of the trouble your argument is in, or why, do you.

  40. JunkDNA:

    Patrick, you ask UB:

    “How, exactly, does your semiotic argument support ID?”

    R.Bill answers this (to you)…

    With that I’ve now answered more direct questions posed to UB than he has.

  41. Mike, given that you failed even once to engage the argument in earnest, your famous last words are hardly of any consequence. You instead tried to pull off an appeal to authority, your own authority, but you missed on all three strategic requirements for making the move. Firstly, any appeal to authority in the face of a challenge is by its very nature a flanking maneuver (in anyone’s book). Out of necessity, you want to take the focus of interest away from the evidence in front of you, and move it into uncontested territory, which in your case, is your ostensive authority over the matters being discussed. In order to be successful, you have to make the change of focus stick. The problem is that your opponent must submit to your move, or in other words, your opponent must take the bait. Unfortunately for you, I am not in the least bit intimidated by your acumen. You are not my senior, Skippy, and besides, you gave me nothing to be intimidated about. And since the attempt didn’t work, we needn’t discuss the fact that your appeal was a logical fallacy from the start – one which has no value in empirical pursuits. Secondly, a successful flank on your part would have required some sense of surprise in order to get your opponent to move. This was entirely lacking on your part, and it needn’t have been so. A sense of surprise, in your case, would have been a reasoned, quality remark. Yet when you attacked, you didn’t even use your primary resource, your advanced knowledge, in any way whatsoever that could have gained you anything at all. You wasted it. You completely failed to relate it to anything of relevance whatsoever to the argument being made. You instead tried to bluff me with snorts and glares about the forces pushing atoms around, when actually, you should have engaged the argument with your knowledge and attacked from your strength. But you didn’t. And finally, you lose on the third requirement simply because you blew the first two. The third requirement has to do with ‘following through’ if you should get me to take the bait, but you never got there. And that’s a problem. When you decided not to lead with your knowledge, and chose instead to lead with an insult wrapped in a fallacy, you diminished the real value of your own resources. You swung the bat and it didn’t matter; the guy making the move on authority didn’t hit the ball. So the next time you try to flank on your authority in this exchange, and you most certainly will do so (like Pavlov’s dog, you are monolithically determined to do so) your resources will mean even less. And this train wreck of yours is all for what? So you don’t have to concede that the transfer of recorded information has observable consequences? So you don’t have to concede that biosemiosis exist? The recognition of semiosis in biology is hardly on the decline. That is something you are just going to have to learn to live with.         

  42. I don’t care about what you think about my expertise; you don’t have the tools to comprehend anyway.

    But I have been watching your treatment of your host and her guests.  I see the same jerk that Flint and everyone else sees.  You are a fraud.  You have been exposed very thoroughly by others here; it was not my doing, and it is a bit of a tragicomedy that you can’t seem to recognize it.

  43. Oh, and by the way, reference my previous post; your reply to me did precisely what I said you do deliberately.  Honest people don’t insult their hosts and her guests the way you do. You are a well-documented type of troll who has exploited the generosity of his host.

     

    QED.

  44. Biped:

    The recognition of semiosis in biology is hardly on the decline.

    It is impossible for a concept to decline from a position of not existing by name to having any footprint at all in the literature. Perhaps Biped can point me to some recent papers or suggest some names of researchers active in this topic? 

    I see there is going to be a gathering in biosemiotics in Tartu this month. Has Biped submitted anything? Is Biped going to Estonia?

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