Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Excuse Me While I Kiss the Ground, Part 3

Mr. Carson has taken exception to my comments about ID in three areas: 1.) What he takes as my dismissal of the arguments of ID’s opponents, 2.) My perceived failure in defining a criterion for what science is, and 3.) My alleged failure to recognize that what sets ID apart from genuine science is that like effects do not necessarily entail like causes.

This post addresses item 3. Here is the post for item 1. Here is the post for item 2.

Now onto bringing a plague to my peoples because of some syllogistic blunder. For the life of me, I can’t figure out to what Mr. Carson is referring. He provides a link to what is supposed to be a comment of mine at CAEI, but it is to a post on which I have no comment. Either, he has me confused with someone else, or his link is broken-I do have two ID-related comments at CAEI (here and here).

Even reviewing these two comments, I don’t see it. I wonder, could it be that Mr. Carson has been motivitated by a flaw in his own reasoning? Perhaps he is using a non-sequitur of his own. Something like: If ID is accepted as science, then it displaces evolution. But no, I can’t be that uncharitable because it might be a reasonable proposistion, if you rely on Popper’s falsifiability criterion. I’m just spitballing here because I honestly do not know where it is he thinks I assert like effects entail like causes. Given he seems to have missed my points elsewhere, I will assume it again to be the case, in the absence of additional data.

Frankly, regardless of whether his reading of my post was careless, I suspect in the end, that my use of Kuhn (and his of Popper) is at the heart of his objections. Consider one of his closing paragraphs:

I, for my part, can't for the life of me imagine what the motivation behind ID is supposed to be. If one is an evolutionist who believes in God, and who believes that evolutionary processes are themselves examples of the design that God built into the kosmos, on what grounds are we supposed to then reject evolution in favor of a hypothesis that says, in effect, everything you already believe is true, except for the evolution part. In short, ID is antecedently denying that certain examples of design can really be counted as examples of design. But no reason is given for thinking that these forces ought not to count as proof of God's design.
Here he reveals a dogma not dissimilar from those who promote the ID movement, and in doing so, to his credit, rejects the presuppositoin of material determinism. I assume by evolutionary process Mr. Carson means neo-Darwinism’s “random mutation and natural selection.” This process is already admitted by ID (the movement), including the gang at DI, as one example of God’s design, particularly for micro-evolution. No reason is given by many in the ID movement for thinking that these forces ought not to count as proof of God's design because ID the science, properly understood, is testing and ID the movement is challenging outright (prematurely, I think) whether neo-Darwinist processes are the only examples of design that God built into the kosmos.

For my part, the ID movement ultimately will rise, or fall, on the strength of the science. I am content to let the science proceed and judge it accordingly. The falsifiability will present itself. Want a clue? There will be nothing to falsify if the specific complexity hopper winds up empty.

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