Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

Reminder To Stay On Message


This applies to everyone writing articles as well as writing comments. Professor Dembski excepted of course.

The topic and purpose of this weblog is to instruct and promote the intelligent design work of Bill Dembski in particular and the ID movement in general. We are trying to convince that world that ID is based on math, science, and logic. While the implications tend to attract religious devotees in large number ID is not about religion. I consider atheism to be a contrarian religion and ID offends them as one might expect of anything that pleases the faithful. If you want a soapbox for your favorite religion (including atheism) go somewhere else. I realize that it’s hard to divorce our innermost faith from our writing and will try to tolerate a generous amount of spillage but the bottom line is if you’re warned to ease up, ease up or the axe will fall. Professor Dembski advised me to be ruthless in policing this blog. I’d naively hoped it wouldn’t come to that but as usual he was right. Stay on topic. Feel free to tell me I’m off topic if I wander but don’t expect me to ban myself if I don’t.

This is not much fun of you don't let the Darwinian mystics and the Bible bangers both make fools of themselves. That's the best part. John Davison
JaredL If it looks like you're up on a soapbox promoting something other than ID I'll give you fair warning to step down. Don't sweat it. DaveScot
Will there be a problem if I use ID to dispute the cogency of classical theology? jaredl
DaveScot, Do you see a comment of mine (regarding Fermi's Paradox) in moderation for this thread? It seems to have gotten lost. Thanks, Keith S. It was caught in the Akismet spam filter which is separate from the moderation queue. I marked it not spam. keiths
On the same website as GilDodgen's origin-of-life article is a fascinating new explanation of Fermi's Paradox from evolutionary psychologist Geoffrey Miller. Fermi's Paradox asks the question, if intelligent life is common in the universe, why haven't we seen or heard from any aliens? One popular (and cautionary) answer is that intelligent life, wherever it arises, relatively quickly destroys itself via pollution, weapons, or some other technology run amok. Here's Miller's answer: "I suggest a different, even darker solution to Fermi's Paradox. Basically, I think the aliens don't blow themselves up; they just get addicted to computer games. They forget to send radio signals or colonize space because they're too busy with runaway consumerism and virtual-reality narcissism. They don't need Sentinels to enslave them in a Matrix; they do it to themselves, just as we are doing today. "The fundamental problem is that any evolved mind must pay attention to indirect cues of biological fitness, rather than tracking fitness itself. We don't seek reproductive success directly; we seek tasty foods that tended to promote survival and luscious mates who tended to produce bright, healthy babies. Modern results: fast food and pornography. Technology is fairly good at controlling external reality to promote our real biological fitness, but it's even better at delivering fake fitness — subjective cues of survival and reproduction, without the real-world effects. Fresh organic fruit juice costs so much more than nutrition-free soda. Having real friends is so much more effort than watching Friends on TV. Actually colonizing the galaxy would be so much harder than pretending to have done it when filming Star Wars or Serenity." http://www.edge.org/q2006/q06_9.html#miller keiths
Bombadill writes: "It’s essential that we remain a united front as we discuss and promote ID…" Let us not forget that dissenters have a place on this weblog also. As Bill wrote some time ago, "Informed criticism is fine. Stupid, contemptuous, repetitive criticism is where I’ve lost patience." keiths
This is no doubt a good policy, Dave. In the last few days IDEA (Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness Center) removed its requirement that club leaders have to be Christians. Now a person of any faith can assume a leadership IDEA position. That's progress since excluding non-Christians is probably not a good idea. So having people interested in Intelligent Design lighten up on the religion aspect is a good thing I think. Mr Christopher
Good observations. Intelligent design is above all about science, and in my opinion ID has the potential to become the most profound revolution in the history of science. Since science is in some measure about making predictions, I'll make a few. I predict that in the not-so-far-distant future, historians of science will look back at this revolution and shake their heads in wonder, in particular that 19th-century speculations about the nature of living systems persisted as established and unassailable truth for so long in the 20th century, despite mounting contrary evidence. Robert Shapiro predicts that in the next five years we shall understand the origin of life: http://www.edge.org/q2006/q06_9.html#shapiro I predict that it will eventually be understood that the laws of chemistry, physics and probability represent the wrong category altogether for explaining biology, and that they are in principle incapable of explaining it. I predict that the attempt to explain biology in this way will eventually be analogized with attempts to make perpetual-motion machines. It will be fun to see who made the better predictions. GilDodgen
Good point, Dave. I whole-heartedly agree. Don't see how I could have said it any better, in fact! crandaddy
Sounds good to me. Usurper
Agreed. It's essential that we remain a united front as we discuss and promote ID... regardless of our particular religious persuasion. Bombadill

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