ID Foundations, 21: MF — “as a materialist I believe intelligence to be a blend of the determined and random … (runaway favourite with 585 comments)
In reply to MF’s attempt to reduce design by intelligence to the other two sources of cause, I suggest that this approach radically undermines the credibility of mind as a thinking and knowing function of being intelligent humans, in a reductio ad absurdum. (Cf my remarks here yesterday in reply to Dan Barker’s FFRF and my longstanding observations — in the end they go back to the mid 1980’s in answer to Marxist materialism as well as evolutionary materialism — here on.)
Haldane sums up one of the major problems aptly, in a turn of the 1930’s remark that has often been cited here at UD:
“It seems to me immensely unlikely that mind is a mere by-product of matter. For if my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true. They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically. And hence I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms. In order to escape from this necessity of sawing away the branch on which I am sitting, so to speak, I am compelled to believe that mind is not wholly conditioned by matter.” [[“When I am dead,” in Possible Worlds: And Other Essays , Chatto and Windus: London, 1932, reprint, p.209.]
But Haldane was a Darwinist when being one didn’t mean chucking your mind into the recycle bin.
2. Barry Arrington: “A Statistics Question for Nick Matzke”
If you came across a table on which was set 500 coins (no tossing involved) and all 500 coins displayed the “heads” side of the coin, would you reject “chance” as a hypothesis to explain this particular configuration of coins on a table?
A sample of the entertaining comments:
MF: “As I said, in the case of coins it is hard to know what this means.”
Typical materialist dodge. When evidence and logic fail them they can always fall back on “me no speaka zee English.”
I can’t decide if it is more sad or more pathetic.
3. Barry Arrington On Quote Mining
Now let’s go back to the beginning. To accuse someone of quote mining is to accuse them of quoting a source out of context to make it appear as though they agree with you when they don’t. It is a form of lying.
The proposition that I was advancing was that the fossil record has not turned out as Darwin expected. Alan disagreed. I quoted Eldredge to support my claim. Alan accused me of quoting Eldredge out of context to support my claim. This means Alan was accusing me of taking Eldredge’s words out of context to support my claim when in context they do not. He then said that I implied Eldredge has a problem with evolutionary theory. Bottom line: He accused me of lying and gross deceit.
But the truth is that I did not quote Eldredge out of context. Eldredge wrote that change in the manner Darwin expected is just not found in the fossil record, and that is exactly what he meant. Nothing in the context of the quotation changes that. He has never changed his views.
I never implied that Eldredge had a problem with evolutionary theory. Indeed, the whole point of quoting him is that his is an admission against interest. I called him a “leading Darwinist.” Alan’s charge is not only false it is imbecilic. He said I implied that a leading proponent of a theory has a problem with the theory, and that is absurd on its face.
Quote mining today just means quoting what a follower of Darwin or other materialist actually said and meant – in a circumstance that he finds inconvenient. – O’Leary for News
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