On the Use of the Term "Creationism" in Popular Debate in the Past Century or So

Why then do ID-Creationists keep pretending IDC is science when you admit they have no testable hypotheses?

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It’s not a ribozyme. The PTC is RNA, but the whole structure is RNA plus a LOT of proteins. Moreover, every ribosome is constructed in a complex protein cradle.

Show me a naked RNA that does what the ribosome does, and you’d have a point.

Nice try, but no cigar. :wink:

The functional, business part is.

I know. You’re eliding the fact that none of those LOT of proteins contributes anything to the active site. It’s the antithesis of what we’d expect from an Intelligent Designer, who would have replaced it with protein instead of decorating it.

That’s precisely what we’d expect from a system that could not replace such a vital function. Massive decoration.

I’m not seeing your hypothesis.

I think that your handwaving failure to offer an ID hypothesis made my point quite well.

How could your colleague Meyer, when writing an entire chapter about the RNA World hypothesis, not only omit the strongest evidence for it, but misrepresent the evidence?

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@pnelson

Well, Paul, now you know what we’ve had to listen to, day in and day out, at BioLogos and here, for the past ten years or so. :grinning:

When I look up the phrase “broken record” in my dictionary of idioms, the above words of Mercer are the example. :wink:

Your long-suffering ally,
Eddie Robinson.

So your “hypothesis” is still inchoate? That’s great news. We can look forward to many more years of Paul Nelson Day parties!

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Well, one or both of you could address it. Or Meyer could.

Does repetition make a statement false?

You wrote:

“Here’s my thesis: The theory of evolution by natural selection does not explain the origin of animal form, because natural selection cannot account for origin de novo of the developmental stages required to construct (i.e., evolve) animals.

I simply don’t see what empirical predictions that makes or made, so it is not a scientific hypothesis. Am I missing something?

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Going from hazy memory, I have heard some ID supporters state that there isn’t an ID theory yet, and they need to work on forming some good hypotheses. They think they are going down the right path, but they also agree with those who criticize ID for lacking hypotheses. That’s a position I can respect.

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Reminds me of a song I sang as a kid in Sunday School:

Hide it under a bushel? YES!
I’m not going to let it shine.
Hide it under a bushel? YES!
I’m not going to let it shine.
Don’t let it shine, don’t let it shine, don’t let it shine.

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Yup, that would be one of the ID Creationist movement’s founders, Phillip E. Johnson:

I also don’t think that there is really a theory of intelligent design at the present time to propose as a comparable alternative to the Darwinian theory, which is, whatever errors it might contain, a fully worked out scheme. There is no intelligent design theory that’s comparable. Working out a positive theory is the job of the scientific people that we have affiliated with the movement. Some of them are quite convinced that it’s doable, but that’s for them to prove…No product is ready for competition in the educational world. -Berkley Science Review (Spring 2006)

He died without ever seeing his wish fulfilled. But that would have probably been the case even if he lived to be 10,000.

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Sorry, @pnelson, it’s a ribozyme. An enzyme in which the business of catalysis is done by RNA. THAT is the definition of a ribozyme. An RNA catalyst.

The ribosome is a ribozyme. There is really no question about this.

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@Eddie, since you seem to agree with @pnelson that ribosomes are not ribozymes, perhaps you can share with the crew here the pieces of data that bring you to this conclusion. I think many would be interested.

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@Eddie would you agree that Behe and Denton’s conclusions regarding optimal peaks in protein foldspace, are explained by regarding foldspace as polyphasic rather than polysemous? Would you agree that the model with the best explanatory power is the Reittman-Nyland manifold, rather than Behe’s model?

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As I recall, somebody digested all the proteins away from a ribosome and it still worked. Google might produce a reference. I’ll look.

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The ridicule isn’t because you proposed a hypothesis, or even because you proposed a hypothesis before you were ready - it’s because you claimed to have a method to calculate “ontogenetic depth”, promised to provide details the next day, and never did.

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A perfect example of why ID Creationism is a cargo-cult science. It reminds me of the early days the internet revolution, when it was not uncommon for unscrupulous entrepreneurs to promise amazing new programs and applications. They would create websites, produce ads, pamphlets business cards and all the trappings of a new computer-based venture which they would use to attract investors. Problem was, the promised software was never written, and once the investors’ cheques had cleared, the company would vanish never to be heard from again.

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A post was merged into an existing topic: Ontogenetic Depth

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And it’s not a hypothesis at all…

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In this and other threads, you have been attempting to parse between creationism and ID, and this comes across to me as motivated by similar considerations as attends the use of “mind” for “miracle” or some other term for divine intervention. Design is invoked as a level of organization which is held to be inexplicable by natural processes and thus demonstrates the requirement for an intelligent designer.

As you have stated, the basic concept of ID is a big tent, and can encompass views ranging from the AiG vision of specific animal kinds created apart from common descent, presumably across the spectrum to someone holding that God fine tuned the physical constants of the universe at the onset and just let it run. Yet these are very different planes of scientific credibility, and leads to one of the basic frustrations directed at ID, that it is seemingly amorphous. Engaging with ID is like trying to nail jello to the wall.
Some ID proponents state where they stand, others you have no idea whether they think the earth is 6K or 4.5B years old, or whether God created species or kingdoms, because they studiously avoid taking any position which might be regarded as divisive to YEC vs more scientifically literate folk. The tent becomes so large as to be meaningless. What is the unifying concept between Ken Ham creationism and fine tuning deism, other than the intervention of God? As such, ID cannot be given a coherent definition, or tested, in any broad sense, because it skips around between population genetics, to abiogenesis, to cosmology. At some level, as a theist I myself could be considered to be an ID proponent; how does that make any sense if I mostly disagree with the vast majority of ID proponents?

The differences matter. If the position is ID/YEC, it is pointless to appeal to fine tuning which allows for billion year scales of cosmological expansion and stellar lifetimes, and nuclear synthesis of carbon, because YEC does not believe in those timelines or that organic carbon is derived from stars. Yet I have seen YEC appeal to fine tuning. It is like any ID is good ID, even where the packages are incompatible.

Then there is the recalcitrance to allow for the supernatural juxtapositioned along side the eagerness to appeal to the supernatural, as long as it is not in the same breath. Such an elaborate distinction without a difference maintained by such discipline! The invocation of mind but never of God. The refusal to discuss the means of actuation of mind on nature because of the unavoidably miraculous nature of such a mechanism. The problem for ID is that despite the consistent messaging, this distinction is just not convincing. Anyone can see what is being driven at is divine intervention, and as such we have left the realm of science, experimentation, and natural causation, and therefore the motivation for all this caginess has to be to present belief in divine causation as somehow science. That is not to say that science has to have all the answers, only that it is ultimately incoherent to try to make theology within the methodologies of science.

So, in summary of this post, my take on ID is that it is so broad as to defy meaningful definition and is ultimately incoherent. I also believe it has no heuristic value, but this post is already long enough. That said, I want to say that I actually appreciate the steadfast defense the ID proponents on this board present. It would be a shame if this blog became a mere echo-chamber.

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