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The design argument from a mechanic’s perspective

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Our Danish correspondent Karsten Pultz, author of Exit Evolution, offers a design argument from the perspective of someone who works with design all the time:

What constitutes a good ID argument

Inspiring conversations with fellow ID folks has made me think about what constitutes a good argument for ID, and more importantly to whom. It has come to my attention that arguments I find so compelling, that I actually need no further evidence to make a design inference, is far from convincing to others Having renovated, modified and maintained engines for historic car racing, seeing the drawing or an animation of a flagellum motor is sufficient for me to infer design. I don’t find it slightly convincing, I find the flagellum motor so convincing that no doubt is left in my mind, that nature is intelligently designed.

It has dawned on me that this is far from the experience others are having. I recently was met with the argument, that if the flagellum motor or equal machine like objects from nature were that convincing as I claim, the discussion would be over and ID declared winner. “The facts do not speak for themselves” was repeated several times in one particular conversation I had, – the “facts” being that the flagellum motor has design like features.

The disagreement circled around my claim that the flagellum motor is absolute proof of ID. My interlocutor justifiably claimed that if it were absolute proof everybody would be convinced, and since everybody is not convinced the flagellum motor as evidence for ID is simply not good enough. Now then my reply was and is, that it’s not the argument lacking quality, it’s people’s ability to appreciate the argument’s weight that constitutes the problem. The argument for design alone from the flagellum motor is so overwhelming that in fact everybody ought to be convinced.

So why aren’t they? The problem here is, I’ll argue, that it requires real world experience with machinery to acquire the ability to appreciate the huge weight of the argument from the flagellum motor including Behe’s concept of irreducible complexity. A friend of mine who happens to be both a theologian and an electronics engineer recently had this amusing comment when we were talking about why the evolutionists don’t get it, he said:

We can’t talk with these people until they have spent time in the shed disassembling and assembling a moped! He was referring to what we did as teenagers. And yes, this is the problem in a nut shell. If you haven’t had hands-on experience with assembling complex functional systems like a moped, you cannot, and I’m sorry to offend all you great thinkers out there, evaluate the argument around the flagellum and irreducible complexity. Why? Because machinery, functional systems and their inherent irreducible complexity are real world phenomena!

The word “empirical” refers to having had experience (in German “Erfahrung”). The only true way to acquire experience is through physical interaction. Experience does not come through theoretical knowledge. In the world of abstraction all sorts of scenarios could be true, you can simply yourself decide what is true and what is not. Actual physical experience is the only thing that keeps thought constructions in check and can weed out wrong theories.

If you understand through bodily experience how reality works, you will come to the conclusion that evolution is an unrealistic idea. In the realm of thought though, evolution works brilliantly because in the abstract you can choose the bits and pieces which make your theory work and ignore anything that contradicts. This is actually how Darwin’s theory is kept alive.

Evaluating Behes IC concept is simply not possible on a theoretical level. You need hands-on experience with complex functional systems to fully understand that evolution is a thought experiment which could never work in reality.

When Ken Miller purportedly debunked Behe’s mousetrap analogy he did so in the world of abstraction with no reference to how real stuff in the real world works. Evolutionist disciples bought it hook line and sinker because in the realm of thought everything you want to work works. Behe’s IC proves (yes proves!) that evolution is false, but the chance is that you aren’t able to realize it because you operate solely on a theoretical level and have no real world experience working on complex machinery.

While we are here: Didn’t Ken Miller attempt a ridiculous explanation of human consciousness?

Design is as obvious as the noses on our faces. We live in a cause and effect universe, and the design inference is the only explanation that makes total sense. The rhetorical contortions necessary to maintain the biggest lie in the last 160 years are maddening. One doesn't need to be an engineer to get it. It doesn't automatically get you to the Christian God, but the dominant materialist paradigm is laughable nonsense. But it's necessary to live a lie, and us humans have no issue doing that, it seems, and we are the only living beings who do not act according to our design. Because we have that choice. And we choose poorly. Time after time. All well and good, I suppose, until we take our last breath. Then what we've lived our lives as a happy delusion comes crashing down, when we learn that we've been wrong all along, and what's objectively true, becomes plain, and the delusion skitters away like a thief. That would make me want to wail and gnash my teeth too. AnimatedDust
I dont want to repeat myself again, but i as an engineer, i see multiple layers of design when i study biology ... e.g. the design of the species itself, the design of the species self-assembly/ self-replication process, the chemical design of various materials the species are made of, the design of species self-repair processes and so on... martin_r
Biologists - natural science graduates ...how are these guys qualified to talk about design ? Biologists, they never made anything .... martin_r
The only bulletproof design argument/ design definition: “Thousands of parts working together for a purpose” “Thousands of parts working together for a purpose” “Thousands of parts working together for a purpose” “Thousands of parts working together for a purpose” martin_r
Sledgehammer FWIW, I think both Steve and Meyer and Douglas Axe have engineering degrees.
:))) This explains why they are real biologists. Sandy
the Privileged Planet said it best:
In fact, no amount of evidence for apparent design could ever count as evidence of actual design. But if science is a search for the best explanation, based on the actual evidence from the physical world, rather than merely a search for the best materialistic or impersonal explanations of the physical world, how responsible is it to adopt a principle that makes one incapable of seeing an entire class of evidence?- page 270
How responsible is it to have science start with a conclusion already in hand? ET
FWIW, I think both Steve and Meyer and Douglas Axe have engineering degrees. Sledgehammer
Apparently only engineers and mechanics are qualified to understand biology,
Biology is much more complex than engineering and mechanics so a logical step for a biologist is to have a degree in engineering first and then go on next level of engineering that is biology. If Darwin had been an engineer, he would never have come up with the stupid theory of evolution. Lieutenant Commander Data
I gets back to the thermodynamic argument about “mechanism”. You don’t get locally entropy decreasing processes moving away from equilibrium from happening without the mechanism controlling all the processes. People who actually design things know how difficult this is. For example, wrapping up the DNA and preventing it from becoming a tangled mess is an amazing feet. Darwinists, look at this and go “big deal”. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=7Hk9jct2ozY How in the world does a cell replicate the DNA so fast in mitosis? Watching the video is is definitely mind boggling! kllrDogThermo
@Robocop #4 I suspect he would never do that, because: 1) Apparently only engineers and mechanics are qualified to understand biology, and 2) From photographs, it just looks like a tail; it takes fancy drawings and diagrams to make it seem designed. Pater Kimbridge
Karsten, as a thought experiment with some practical implementation, have you considered posting pictures of a bacterial flagellum onto Facebook with a simple question, asking people whether it is designed or not…? Robocop
The science( that have the sin of keeping the pseudo-science of evolution under its wing) , darling of western world is the worse human's creation because give the illusion of human's autonomy from God and make people arrogant. Science is the Tree of Knowledge from Heaven that God tried to prevent human's to "eat". People eat today from the tree of knowledge and grow insane. Very strange "more knowledge" ="more insanity" ...because it's without God. Lieutenant Commander Data
My experience is, that not even an absolute argument will convince the sufficiently determined. Only sufficient pain from natural consequences of folly will move . . . those who survive going over the cliff. KF kairosfocus
Makes sense. I've always worked with electronic stuff, first tubes then transistors then digital, and I've also repaired and overhauled quite a few cars. When I see details like the flagellum, or the remarkable tip-links in the cochlea, I can immediately compare them with motors or shift linkages or variable capacitors. People who live in a pure abstract digital world are missing the 'muscle sense'. polistra

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