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Selective Hyperskepticism

Dr Raoult Roars — new articles on findings and issues about HCQ + Cocktails for Covid-19

IHU- Méditerranée Infection, Marseille, is a significant French research institute that has continued its work on CV 19. For the record, here are excerpts from some recent work, headlined from threads where such would be buried: EXH 1: >>COVID-IHU #15 Version 1 du 27 Mai 2020 Early diagnosis and management of COVID-19 patients: a real-life cohort study of 3,737 patients, Marseille, France Abstract Background: In our institute in Marseille, France, we proposed early and massive screening for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Hospitalization and early treatment with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin (HCQ-AZ) was proposed for the positive cases. Methods: We retrospectively report the clinical management of 3,737 patients, including 3,054 (81.7%) treated with HCQ-AZ for at least three days and 683 (18.3%) Read More ›

L&FP39: How the folded structure (and then the “loading”) of tRNA corrects attempts to reduce protein synthesis to “mere” chemistry

One of the more astonishing rhetorical gambits of objectors to the design inference is to try to suggest that the alphanumeric, code-using, algorithmic information system we see in the D/RNA of the living cell and linked protein synthesis is not really an information system, it all reduces to chemical reaction trains. A common associated gambit is to assert that terms like “code” etc are all readily dismissible analogies. As a first reminder, protein synthesis as graphically summarised: Of course, it never hurts to remind such objectors of p. 5 of Sir Francis Crick’s $6 million, March 19, 1953 letter to his son, Michael: Notice, his belief right from the outset of discovering the double-helix stricture: “. . . D.N.A. is Read More ›

On Scientific Methods and alternatives to the “Placebo Control is the gold standard” view, in the face of pandemics (–> Logic & First Principles, 38)

It is clear that we need to re-think how we go about doing science to warrant approaches to the pandemic. So, allow me to headline a comment from the double-blind thread: KF, 16: >> I am also thinking back to the old “Scientific Method” summary we were taught in schools and its roots in Newton’s Opticks, Query 31: As in Mathematicks, so in Natural Philosophy, the Investigation of difficult Things by the Method of Analysis, ought ever to precede the Method of Composition. This Analysis consists in making Experiments and Observations, and in drawing general Conclusions from them by Induction, and admitting of no Objections against the Conclusions, but such as are taken from Experiments, or other certain Truths. For Read More ›

Does The Bible “condone” slavery, even as Darwin opposed it?

It seems, this issue is on the table here at UD again, and it needs to be publicly corrected for record. As a first step, I link a discussion in response to the oppression thesis used to try to discredit and marginalise the historical contribution of the Christian faith (and to create the false impression that due to “obvious” ethical failure, the gospel can be dismissed). It is also worthwhile to link my recently updated discussion on moral government, objectivity of ethics and law. (While we are at it, here is a summary response on the rhetorical challenge of evil.) Let me also again put up an infographic that has been featured several times here at UD in response to Read More ›

BBC swings and misses: “Why is there something instead of nothing?”, pt. 2 ( –> Being, Logic and First Principles, 24b)

The exploration in-the-wild on Heidegger’s pivotal question is turning out to be quite fruitful. Here, we see BBC swing and miss, leading to dancing stumps. Dancing stumps: Video, with one of the greats at bat: First, context, we are discussing here popularised forms of the idea that “nothing” has been defined by physicists to denote in effect a sub-universe that gives rise to quantum fluctuations and thus expanding sub-universes. Let’s clip from the parent thread LFP 24: [KF, LFP 24, 41:] Let us continue our “in-the-wild” exploration, here a Robert Adler BBC article (as representing what we might find in high-prestige media): [BBC:] >>Why is there something rather than nothing? By Robert Adler 6 November 2014 People have wrestled with Read More ›

“If it fits into a nutshell . . .”: on, the error of demanding arbitrary, rhetorically loaded brevity

I noticed that the objection of dismissal on length (without substantial consideration) has come up here at UD yet again. I think it appropriate to note its fallacious character where considerable reflection is required. (And BTW, a quote from a serious source is a legitimate approach as I will shortly exemplify.) Accordingly, let me headline a comment I just made in the Egnor vs a materialist neuroscientist thread: KF, 15: >>[I]f a philosophical claim on any serious matter fits neatly into a nutshell, it belongs there. There is always an issue of substantial exposition, cross-check against material facts, establishing credible coherence and comparative, balanced explanatory power. This is not a business of 140 or 280 character tweets or rhetorically loaded Read More ›

Atheism’s problem of warrant (–> being, Logic and First Principles, No. 23)

Atheism seems to be on the table these days here at UD and a few points need clarification. First up, what is Atheism? The usual dictionaries are consistent: atheism n. Disbelief in or denial of the existence of God or gods. [French athéisme, from athée, atheist, from Greek atheos, godless : a-, without; see a-1 + theos, god; see dh?s- in Indo-European roots.] American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved. atheism n (Philosophy) rejection of belief in God or gods [C16: from French athéisme, from Greek atheos godless, from a-1 + theos god] Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Read More ›

Logic and First Principles, 11: The logic of Ultimate Mind as Source of Reality

After we headlined and began discussing PS on hearing and consciousness yesterday, H raised a significant issue: H, 15: >> . . . the invocation of a Creator who “beautifully designed what each sound should sound like” and “put the special program that can interpret each frequency pattern of air vibration into each sound, thus giving us the sound experience” is an empty explanation, no more useful than claiming that mind arises from matter without any idea how that could happen. >> To this, I replied: KF, 16: >> The concept that the root of reality is Mind, and that mind is at least as fundamental as matter is not an empty claim or assertion. That intelligent, minded designers exist Read More ›

Simple demonstrations of how structure and quantity are embedded in the world

As there seems to be resistance to the point that the world embeds structure and quantity (thus, mathematical features) I think it is useful to provide some simple reminders. The Egyptian rope trick and the 3-4-5 Pythagorean triplet, thus a right angle forced through a numerical relationship (and note the power of the number twelve again): Lego bricks demonstrating the Pythagorean relationship — notice, number theory connexions and the natural interpretation of “squaring”: Also, notice a Mobius strip cutting exercise: In none of these cases is the result dependent on our creating a mathematical model or an axiomatisation. The results are objective, factual, embedded in the world and in fact helped to constrain how Mathematical systems were axiomatised. END In Read More ›

Logic and first principles, 5: The mathemat-ICAL ordering of reality

As we continue to explore the significance of logic, the pivotal importance of Mathematics (and of the mathemat-ICAL ordering of reality) has come up. Where, we can best understand mathematics in two frames by using a definition with a bracket: Mathematics is [the study of] the logic of structure and quantity. The study part is cultural, the logic part speaks to an intelligible rational framework inextricably embedded in the existence of a world with distinct identity and then with structures amenable to quantification. So, let us headline a comment from the thread on no 4: 87: >>Let us take a key observation: There is order in the universe and we are good at modelling it mathematically. But that doesn’t mean Read More ›

Logic & First Principles, 4: The logic of being, causality and science

We live as beings in a world full of other concrete entities, and to do science we must routinely rely on mathematics and so on numbers and other abstract objects. We observe how — as just one example — a fire demonstrates causality (and see that across time causality has been the subject of hot dispute). We note that across science, there are many “effects.” Such puts the logic of being and causality on the table for discussion as part 4 of this series [ cf. 1, 2, 3] — and yes, again, the question arises: why are these themes not a routine part of our education? The logic of being (ontology) speaks to possible vs impossible entities, contingent ones Read More ›

Logic & First Principles, 3: The roots of right reason and the power/limits of entailment

Why is this topic important? (Why a series, now on no 3 (see 1 and 2)?) Here at UD, the phrase “first principles of right reason” and similar ones (e.g. “reason’s rules”) have often come up. Others talk about “the laws of thought,” which in a post-Kant world hints of “the ugly gulch” between the inner world of mental, conscious phenomena and the outer world of things in themselves. In that context, we have often highlighted that evolutionary materialistic scientism is irretrievably self-referentially incoherent and have pointed out how this means it is necessarily false. We have also pointed to “self-evident” first truths and principles, including the principle of distinct identity and its immediate corollaries, non-contradiction and the excluded middle. Read More ›

Revealing in-thread exchanges on the imposition of evo mat scientism/ naturalism (and on the tactics to deflect attention from that)

The imposition of evolutionary materialistic scientism (aka naturalism) is one of the key issues driving the march of folly in our civilisation. It is also very difficult to discuss as there are some very powerful rhetorical deflectors at work. Sometimes, then, the best thing we can do is to clip from one of UD’s exchanges and headline it so we can see what is going on from the horse’s mouth: _________________________ It is amusing at first (then on deeper reflection, quite saddening) to trace some of the onward discussion in the thread from which the OP comes: JDK, 94: >>Hi JAD. I don’t think there has been anything in this thread about purposelessness. The OP has been about teleological explanations Read More ›

UD’s Weak Arguments Correctives page passes 50,000 visits

As I checked the dashboard, I just saw that the current visit-count for the “Frequently raised but weak arguments against Intelligent Design” page stands at 50,307. Worth noting, even as onlookers are again invited to ponder its remarks. END PS: Table of contents: WEAK ANTI-ID ARGUMENTS: 1] ID is “not science” 2] No Real Scientists Take Intelligent Design Seriously 3] Intelligent Design does not carry out or publish scientific research 4] ID does not make scientifically fruitful predictions 5] Intelligent Design is “Creationism in a Cheap Tuxedo” 6] Since Intelligent Design Proponents Believe in a “Designer” or “Creator” They Can Be Called “Creationists” 7] Because William Dembski once commented that the design patterns in nature are consistent with the “logos Read More ›

President Duterte, this is what it means to say that God is the necessary being at the root of reality

Recently, President Duterte of the Philippines issued a challenge to prove the existence of God. About a week ago, I showed that to believe in God is reasonable and responsible; indeed, he credibly exists.  (BTW, the hits:comments ratio was interesting.) Today, I will explore a bit on what it means for God to be the necessary being at the root of reality. Classically, a necessary being would exist in any possible world, while a contingent one (such as we are) exists in at least one possible world, but would not exist in at least one possible world. This is because contingent beings are causally dependent on external enabling factors. For example, ponder the fire tetrahedron: A fire, being contingent, has Read More ›