Monday, November 28, 2011

A FALSIFIABLE, TESTABLE CREATION/ID THEORY THAT ANTHROPOLOGISTS CAN TEST

This theory is based on the Genesis chapter 3 creation story, but not chapter 1.

Basis in principle/rule: Most myths are based on some real-world identifiable element/kernel of truth.

Creation Myth Basis: Garden of Eden/Adam and Eve- Perhaps it was something more a environmentally controlled dome or an open corral. Maybe Eve wasn't LUCY, but Adam WAS Tarzan.

Falsifiable Hypothesis: Homo sapiens neanderthalensis and maybe the later Australopithecines were in a partially zoo-llke, or some other semi-controlled environmental setting. Traits were selected for there through intelligent intervention. This and not culture resulted in the development of multiple subspecies and even species changes that included readily identifiable domestication traits such as increases in gracile features in morphology.

Predicted Evidence Pro.: H. s.n. -> H.s.s. subspecies changes are domestication traits. They are the result of domestication. So might also many A.r. -> A. a. changes be. Homo sapiens sapiens have numerous traits in evidence that can best be attributed to the effects of domestication. They resulted from artificial selection and not natural selection.

Projected Evidence Con: Homo s. s. has no domestication traits, but natural selection-only affected traits. Any morphological features that look like ones they might be attributable to effects of artificial selection can be better attributed to effects of culture and the development of large groups instead.

Nonhominid primate control group: baboons or rhesus monkeys.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

How Would You Like to Test REAL-WORLD ID HYPOTHESES Using a Publicly Accessible Database?

The following ID hypotheses were originally produced to supply candidates for a testable ID hypothesis consideration on AmazonBooks.com at a time when the possibility of writing such hypothesis was a matter of heated contention. Even a rudimentary, provisional ID hypothesis test if empirical would allow scientists to at least look more closely at the potential theoretical import of ID arguments, for eg., the possibility of drawing explanatory inferences from real-world data. Anybody want to do so? As I am a proponent of ID trained in scientific methodology and am convinced that such is possible, I sought out such hypothesis for doing simple tests like those done in SETI. I can tell you how to do this.

The database providing usable evidence for testing these ID hypotheses is readily available to the public. It can be found on the internet. Check for it at NASA. The data come in the form of a chart posted as some initial results of the Kepler telescope team's exoplanet survey. They cover only the first six months of the survey and so come from a few years back, but they still provide extensive data suitable for analysis and useful in this connection. Now wouldn't that make a nice science fair project?

Where do you go to look for the pertinent data? Check out planetary descriptions of planets in habitable zones around nearby stars. There are over 50 of them listed in the original Kepler telescope survey! Yes, potential life-producing planets have been found around nearby stars. I will give the links to some sources soon, but the database I am talking about here can be easily found simply by doing a Google search on the Kepler exoplanet survey.

Looking closely at the differences between planets located inside and outside liquid water-temperature habitable zones of stars and to popularize such a comparison as a viable ID research project is the matter of concern for me here at this time. The concept reminds me of SETI. SETI used statistical inference to examine radio signals coming primarily from outside our solar system. The goal was to detect anything that might reflect a pattern of intelligent repetition or modulation in radio signals coming from beyond our solar system. A very sensitive and highly directional antenna was used for this purpose.

SETI was never considered a religious or supernatural activity. (Times have changed. The same mathematical and statistical indicators used in SETI when applied to ID detection get held in contempt by some scientists, due to their belief that the examination gets 'contaminated' outright by religious interests.) The processes of forming and parking life-bearing planets are indeed worthy questions for scientific exploration. Examining the location and makeup of planets existing in and out of habitable zones are surely as important a scientific concern as listening to the radio for signs of intelligent activity. Would you rather be all eyes or all ears as a scientist, if given the choice? Which would be better for doing a scientific exploration for the existence of aliens (or none)- removing scientific blindness or deafness- or wrestling with religious bigotry in academia?

I believe there are many other testable ID hypotheses that are possible, though most evolutionists I have spoken with state unequivocally and categorically that there can be none. That's rather closed-minded, I think. Only one is needed to show otherwise, and that was originally my whole point. Provisional case exemplification and assertion-nullification were my primary goals for bringing the matter up at the time (when I first mentioned it); not to publish a paper about it or to demonstrate that I am a cosmologist. I most certainly am not the latter.

The simplest hypothesis here would be a check on the percentage of exoplanets in habitable zones versus adjacent to them. The next would add size/weight(gravity) of the planet concerned, i.e., midrange, Earth/Mars-like versus moon/Mercury-like or Jupiter-like. An associated consideration was a prediction that high-gravity (large planets in general) and other planets holding environments hostile to the development and differentiation of life AS WE KNOW IT (gas giants and planetoids being only two examples of this) might typically fall outside the habitable zone, and ID explanations for this. However, the evolutionists on Amazon.books I discussed this matter with appear to believe that life can exist on most planets and moons in our solar system (and believe this based on negligible scientific data taken from very hostile environments on Earth). However, they have no real scientific evidence of life living beyond Earth or Mars, i.e., on very small or large planets, or beyond our sun's own habitable zone. What has already been documented as life existing on a celestial body must be the basis for actual scientific comparison in this hypothesis test, not scientific conjecture.

A lot of observations and math that relate to such an investigation have already been performed for you by NASA personnel. They must get cited and be thanked for this. However, an investigator does not have to empirically define or measure habitable zone around any star, only critically ponder and correctly interpret what it means with reference to this projected study. Indeed, this determination has already has been made for us: The habitable zone is typically defined for every applicable star once a planet is discovered; sometimes, it appears, before such discoveries are made.


I am of the opinion that something less than a god or gods is/was involved in doing design. Perhaps a whole pantheon of participants operated in more or less chorus fashion advancing a somewhat inscrutable purpose(s). I think a lot of naturalistic processes were involved, too. To me, these factors would explain the waste and mistakes in evidence among the results of design.

I also don't hold or seek to pursue any 'unitary' view on life that might lend cohesion to such disparate views (and to multiple levels). That is undoubtedly one source of the ambiguity in some of what I write. And I don't care much about remaining consistent from a philosophical or personal point of view; basically only from a scientific and paradigm perspective.

I've been pouring over habitable zone hypotheses in the back of my head like wire puzzles. I thus have a third habitable planet hypothesis. It is the most complete one yet encompassing my thoughts about star system design, however:

ID HYPOTHESIS: Size and mass of planets orbiting stars possessing a habitable zone are correlated with distance from the star in ways that maximize the potential for the proliferation of life as we know and observe it, but are not so correlated in stars lacking habitable zones and stars possessing no planets in their habitable zones.

Now this one directly addresses the need of discriminating design, purpose, and guidance as distinct from the typical patterns seen in natural processes, i.e., the hardest issue/catch to make- in my opinion. Hopefully it will take a step in the right direction by adding a control (group) for ID vs. natural processes, i.e., a comparison to stars lacking habitable zones and stars completely lacking planets in their habitable zones. That's about it...

Why not just count planets in and out of the habitable zone for comparison to be simple? Or how about something more like the quasi-anthropocentric "Stars with habitable zones (will) have more planets close to them- improving the chances for a proliferation of life in the universe" then? (re: planet distribution)

Or, even the more direct, though simple and innocuous "Stars with habitable zones (will) have more planets- providing more opportunities for life to develop in the universe"? (re: planet frequency/incidence)


Indeed, in my second habitable zone hypothesis just mentioned above, I have been essentially assuming (if looked at overall, using simple terms) that the designer(s) like planets and prefer multi-planet star systems.

I say 'essentially,' because that varies from my own concept of a designer slightly. It seems somewhat limited in scope and a little anthropocentric. That is to say, isn't it a psychological reference/emotive appeal to the feature of motive only? Then are we to assume then that designer(s) cannot be robot-like/emotionally detached or even slow moving/amoeba-like in operation? I have no qualms about using the term of 'preference' in all references to this area, though I admit this selection may be partisan and somewhat arbitrary; I see rational drive in self-aware creatures more in terms of a goal or purpose, i.e., in keeping with classical teleology.

Then again, why quibble over terms with evolutionists here? Drawing fine distinctions at this point in an investigation is likely to wind up an exercise in futility/trivia. In some versions of the hypothesis I mentioned, the outgrowth of making assumptions about designer(s)' preferences/ purpose is more particular and complex. These versions predict (more) specialized patterns of planetary location/distribution/or size in stars that have habitable zones in contrast to a random or naturally predictible distribution of the same features around stars having none, I think without resort to natural selection. They are intended to reflect that designer(s) preferred certain locations, sizes, and/or kinds of planets, and not merely more planets.

Could it be that the designer(s) simply prefer more planets, thus putting more of them in habitable zones, or even more of them in any location around stars that have habitable zones? That seems like the most basic place to start. However, can natural forces indeed not do such things? Indeed, the fact that such has even been done has not yet been determined. These questions must first be addressed. Yet, can we know these matters with sufficient degree of logical and inductive certainty at this time? I think these are intriguing questions. Since they are at basic levels of the inquiry, they would be good places to start.

I haven't yet considered size of the habitable zone as a variable. Size and spectral output of the stars might also interact with the above projected relationship(s). What about possible outliers such as very large (eg., white giant) and very weak (eg., red dwarf) stars? Could the habitable zone (or its size) serve as a control for the effects of star size and radiation characteristics, or should the latter factors be instead considered as additional independent variables? I haven't even considered what would constitute realiable types of stars in terms of radiation characteristics for the purposes of generating life and sustaining biological progression on a planet.

I think the general null is reflected at least to some degree in the following considerations: Could life-promoting confluences of habitable zones and propitious planetary number/distribution/size be only random occurrences, or patterns resulting from the operation of natural phenomena alone? Assuming only natural factors, could the same, possibly a third natural phenomena such as the particular type of star (or its size, development, history, etc.) provide star systems with both habitable zones and quantitatively more planets (or, alternatively, qualitatively more potential life-producing planets)? That is, could the latter two dependent phenomena be caused by an as-yet unidentified third naturally occurring factor? Then again, what would the discovery of purely random or star-type-only correlated planetary distributions suggest about ID theory in this area?

As you can see, I am still talking about several alternative variables as options for this study. For instance, I am assuming that more planets in the habitable zone would reflect design only if we could rule out appropriate naturally influencing factors, or alternatively, that a complex, life-propitious pattern of size or distribution of planets around candidate\habitable zone stars could logically be only due to design. More likely, the results will provide uncorrelated findings, the failure to reach levels of statistical significance, or provide only hints about possible real causes.

I believe a good first step would be to focus and refine the hypothesis to be investigated. That is what I have been exploring here for the most part. In the more complex versions of the proposed hypothesis, if I am not able to describe all potential causal factors well (in your analogy perhaps: the features of the lake, island proximity, local and surrounding geology,and area features), i.e., whatever conditions that give rise to habitable zones (star type, distance from star, emitted spectrum, etc.) and affect planet number/distribution/or size, I'm going to need a lot of descriptive data on planets lying outside of habitable zones or around stars having no habitable zones. If that is so, then at this time, at the start, with little descriptive data to go on and only a basic understanding to build on, wouldn't a simpler form of the hypothesis would be better?

In all of this, we should not lose track of the overall goal of trying to discover whether there more independently generated life-favoring factors present in habitable zones than in regions outside of them, and then, discovering whether such should be explained by something other than natural forces alone, i.e., not dependent on fluctuations in natural phenomena or the operation of random factors.

To that more basic and general end, wouldn't simpler forms of the hypothesis be preferable now? Here is yet another example of such: Stars with habitable zones will have a larger number of planets and their orbits will be closer together in habitable zones than adjacent to such zones. However, wouldn't even this version be a little too complex at present to count as a good starting point for launching such an investigation?

Want to help test a real-world ID hypothesis using public domain astronomical data? Get in contact with me and let's discuss the possibilities.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

What Biological, Functional Realities Support ID Theory?

Stephen Meyer's book "Signature in the Cell" lucidly covers several of these. Here I will provide several overall conclusions of my own on the subject:

We cannot perceive function without at least rudimentary intelligence. Is that a more basic activity than enacting or adapting a function? Probably so. Detection and identification are likely a magnitude of order simpler than systems creation and startup. Thus more complex systemic activities like sensory feedback, information application/enhancement, and enlisting/prescribing of functions are likely prerequisites for evolution to occur.

I differ some with Stephen Meyer some: Memory, i.e., backpropagated feedback or recursive import/impetus from other events, could supply directional bias though admittedly not the original information framework needed for upwardly complex as opposed to cycling biological progress. Without it, new information arrives in a meaningless manner as countless windfalls from 'nowhere'. We also see the routine arrival of statistically improbable fortuitous twists thru repeated functional confluences in the fossil record- in the form of elaborately enhanced, intricately applied new information. Is upward impetus or a dreamy-eyed catalyst at work?

On the other hand, multiple outcomes and survivor bias chained together with every conceivable possibility played out through innumerable, branching realities would create multiple and some very special universes. We have no framework for tracing all finite possibilities yet, so theory involving such multiverses remains more metaphysical than ID and evolution. In a strictly sequential cause-effect universe, you can only get ever increasing complex functions by the interaction of useful developments or experience in some form of information feedback loop, not through accumulative incremental change alone, since functions are network-constrained, systemic solutions.

One profound ID finding: 3.5 billion years isn't enough biological time; it's either ID, or evolution in the multi-universe sense. So, does the mind envisaged in ID evoke a sense of timelessness, or does evolution have a mind of its own?

Has Science Been Sheltering Evolutionary Theory?

Proper tact should come as second nature to any avid hypothesis tester. For one, I wouldn't mix in astringent discounters in debate with surface commentary. For eg., I often read evolutionists writing, "There are no ID hypotheses." Also, statements such as "There is no ID theory, period" litter anti-ID comments. What amounts to the drumhead approach is simply bombastic, overbearing, and uni-disciplinary. It could even be shooting one's ability to extrapolate discussions in the foot. This is because uses of the term theory are varied in science, applied to even propositional explanations and low-level modeling. This is seen to all but undergraduates. Narrowly circumscribing theory for intelligent design is uncalled for. I see it as some what (sic)- basically a smear issued out of creationist spite!

Evolutionists are being so parochial without being religious! They are getting blind-sided, shooting their own intellectual scientific efforts in the foot. Theory and hypothesis testing should be what science is about, not the worship and exploitation of naturalism!

Now let's get down to business: ID is teleology, not theology. Someone can't spell. It is no more theology than evolution is metaphysics; yet, ID is less esoteric. It firmly clings to technical distinctions drawn into its argument; formal definitions are an integral part of its logic and organization. Most ID critics on A. Books avoid such vigorous incisiveness. In the strictest sense, historically speaking, macroevolution explanations typically use analogy for logical support, since assertions often go untested, at least in terms of the foundational scientific exercise of hypothesis testing.

My claim here is not that evolution lacks evidence. Relatively small changes have been observed, but that's like constructing a web by pl(a)ying with LEGOs. Nothing comparable to the level of the fossil record's tree and branches results; just a crude outline. It's my blue Jeans (depressed single mothers, deploring missing 'Gene') hypothesis. It's also the paleontologist's view versus the geneticist's.

Shall we be so cheeky as to equivocate purpose with motive to speak of lies? "No evidence!" and "No theory!" then are among the evolutionist's best: weak arguments prompted by blissful ignorance, willful blindness, and myopic impudence. More professional and honest would be any tempered extreme, for eg., "There's always evidence, just not good evidence."

Evolution shows evidence of being old and crusty as a theoretical construct. It is broad and general enough to warrant ever more diverse elaborations and extensions. Even lay persons toy with it, manipulating it in linguistic use as a concept, analogy, and rubric. And its scientific feature set has been significantly altered over the years. The last point is actually voicing alarm, not criticism; the next point is a criticism, however: Evolution is often used exclusively as a thesis (as it is used in history) in technical and scientific writing, and in this manner it has seen much more application than as a theoretical tutor or judge for hypothesis testing. I am talking about the social sciences; here it is being used as a thesis for packaging research, not as a theory guiding it. It has waxed into a more generalized concept referring to broadly construed developmental changes of any type and nearly waned into household cliche', losing some logical distinctiveness and linguistic usefulness along the way. Hasn't history demonstrated a less grand unified theory would be more scientific-better for hypothesis testing? Like esoteric Marxist theory, has it no operationalized models or theorems to test?

I classify evolution as a pattern theory based on the way it receives anecdotal inclusion in scientific research reports. With metaphors and analogues arrived at for illustrative purposes after the data has been gathered, it is often used to paint findings, not guide them in an exercise of what to look for and how to interpret it-used in tandem. Causal-oriented models demonstrate a more continuous reference to theory at least in my experience. The notion of cause itself is a more direct premise, constituting a flow line demonstrated throughout the conduct of research and shown in the activity of report writing!

I think ideological and conceptual developments made to the theory of evolution subsequent to Darwin carried us askance from causal inference instead of towards it embracingly in the social sciences. What of the physical sciences?

Evolutionary theory has been subjected to remarkable sequential revisions. And these changes include rather drastic alterations and additions made to the internal mechanisms of the theory. Every 30 years or so, evolution gets a make-over of dramatic revisions to correct what I maintain are long-forestalled corrections to its categorically denied flaws. Changing it's name would allay a host of problems. Evolution's updates are to the point now that the theory does not appear or function as evolution in the classical Darwinian sense any more, except to its single-minded idealistic luminaries: neonates, loyalists, and antiquaries.

No wonder ID proponents and others have taken issue with certain aspects of the original theory as well as these subsequent updates! Using typical evolutionists' after-the-fact logic, ID gets blamed for its inadequacies in 'blame the critic for all the town's ills' fashion and gets farmed out as religion. It's happening protect established positions and leaders or to maintain the initial placard of bigotry set out typically by wider society against newcomers and outsiders in America.

Discount ID's criticisms of evolution out of hand in a libelous manner? It's a far more useful position in terms of discussing socio-cultural issues to take the tact that there is no genuine macro-evolutionary theory and see what happens- simply poke around like many a diagnostician! Evolution in an applied societal sense frequently appears religious. At times, it even looks like simple ideology wrapped in worship- considered above reproach, held untouchable and unassailable like an icon, sacred relic or time-worn liturgical utensil. At minimum, the theory carries a traditionally assigned, compelling scientific status. This is in spite of its showing some evidence of erosion. In addition, it is nonempirical in several areas, routinely passing through theoretical muster while using untested and in some cases untestable propositions (at least, in terms of hypothesis testing). Here still, I am essentially connecting the dots in what I consider to be areas I am most knowledgable in, evolution in the social sciences. This includes anthropology, my specialty.

Is ID not theory? The term "theory" is applied to scientific models that generate hypotheses that CAN be tested, not to models that hold a track record of having been tested and yielding supportative, valuable findings. If theories' underlying hypotheses first have to be comprehensively tested before they could have the designation as theory assigned them, then they would be mere social devices, not the inductive and predictive technical guides they really are. They would also constitute fly-paper for hypotheses more than the catapults for ideas they really are!

Here's the real reason ID is assaulted: It competes with Evolution, a theory being 'shorn up'. Over time, evolution has evolved from the cause-effect model Darwin proposed it to be to a pattern-elaboration one it is used nowadays in actual practice. This is actually understandable, for evolution has had to be used in this way due to its sweeping scope, particle reductionism, and intractible hypothesis testing status. It has exhibited a strong incapacity for hypothesis testing to be accomplished with it. Maybe testing lengthy multivariate events on such a grand, sequential time scale is a futile exercise. Popper had a fit once over the atypicality of this theory.

Evolutionists at times present a decidedly overfocused view of theory, implying a capital 'T' as in Grand Theory when discussing ID. It's narrowly applied, thus contrived, overspecified definition. Maybe it's the act of using a reserved, populist view for the political purpose of enacting an invective against ID. Dumping diatribe on my bandwagon once more, some highly specialized, ad hoc, contrived definitions are being used to weigh ID in the prejudiced accounts. Yes indeed, I hold this social viewpoint very religiously! So slip me over into the religious book section p(r)etty please!

If only related groupings of successfully tested hypotheses are allowed to constitute legitimate scientific theory, then certain mechanisms and various aspects of evolutionary theory make it fail the same test, at least as Smokey has defined it here. I think it is an overly elaborate definition of theory he has suggested here.

Theory as a general construct for scientific methodology and testing is a far cry from the particularized coverage given here by Smokey. Still, we cannot explain such complex matters to grade school children, so such highly resolved views can have some social merit: This one appears an awe-inspiring embellishment of a vital scientific concept made of simple scientific jargon, apparently to instill admiration for science in grade schoolers.

Is this the kind of scientific coverage that gets used against ID by proponents of evolution? Yes, I think so. Is it also being done for purposes of curriculum control in our elementary schools? Are grade school teachers the ones in control, making ID a special case? I hope not. Then it would basically constitute a process of mixing innocent overspecifications in with a few lazy inaccuracies to fill the educational goals of some interest group. I think other similarly defined terms are being used to heap insincere and inequitable social ridicule and defamation on ID.

Once again, I have frequently stated that evolution's more arrogant proponents are consistently imprecise in their handling of definitions and inaccurate in terms of their language. They tend to be spiteful. I attribute the spiteful tendency to schools of thought attempting to maintain traditional distinctions and a sense of intellectual confidence, spilling over into pomposity and overconfidence. Thus the status quo can be disadvantaged. Evolution's foundational rhetoric often incorporates a single-minded, confidence-assertive approach based on a group of highly repetitious, traditions/platitudes for purposes of self-assurance and even self-aggrandizement in its neonates. This is the historical process of responsible scientific professions working at their optimal best.

Is a successful track record of predictions needed in order to qualify as a theory? Maybe famous and traditional ones. Is that what evolutionists' mean by theory? No test of successful or superior adaptation to a particular niche has been established longitudinally in evolution. And without IDing superior adaptations, there's no tracking progress upward. Without operational (measurable) definitions of them taken from past experience, we simply have no benchmark except superficial complexity for future tracking of meaningful biological progress on any scales that would allow humans to directly observe it. Is evolution a sheltered theory?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

FATHER TREE ABOUT ORIGINS

It was a strange scene. Seven little trees were moving up a clearing toward some large trees at the top of a hill. The tree at the very top was the tallest and biggest. Its limbs were nearly completely covered beneath a huge canopy of leaves. The leaves were held out by limbs that looked very much like strong arms. Its branches reached far out from its trunk to the sides and rear, except at one point. There was a little spot devoid of branches and leaves directly in front of the huge tree. At that point, something stood out that looked like a face.

The old tree looked like a ridiculously top-heavy parasol. Apparently, only its huge tail kept the old tree standing upright.

His name was Father Tree. The little ones had obviously come up to see him. When they got close, they stopped and bowed their little green heads to him. As they did, you could hear the canopy of leaves rustle. Father Tree turned around slowly towards them. He returned their gesture with a jerk of his head.

"Good morning, Father Tree," they said.

"Good morning, little ones," he replied. "What brings you up here to the top of the hill this early in the morning?"

"Father Tree, please help us. We want to hear more about the olden days. We disagree about what we heard."

"Oh, the olden days, hmmm? ... How far back do you want to go?" answered the old tree politely.

"As far as you can!" said one tree in the group.

"Ah, well, I can only tell you what I know. I remember when I was a young tree. An old tree talked about things in the olden days -- in the time before we had brains, eyes, mouths, teeth, feet, and a tail."

"What ... no tail? How did we get our tail then?" barked one bright, little tree.

"Nobody can agree on that, child. I guess, no one really knows for sure. But, it appears that either something very powerful or someone who we don't see around today changed us and made us like we are today," answered the old one.

"Why are we here?" asked one little perceptive tree.

"Well, we only know what other trees have been able to discover by digging in the ground. We have feet to run with and hands to hold things with now. At sometime in the distant past, though, we were at the total mercy of the elements. We had no feet to move us or tail to balance with. That's why now when there is a flood or fire, you must move fast and escape from them!"

"But, Father Tree, how can you? You're so slow," barbed the bright little one again.

"That's true, so that must be why I have all you of young ones around me staying close by. You come, visit, keep an eye on me, okay? And you come help me move down the hill when things get bad.

There was another little tree who had remained silent the whole time up until now. She was shifting nervously side to side. She was obviously aggravated at something. She finally blurted out, "And what about bugs? I want to hear about the bugs!" The other young trees quickly moved in towards her. They began saying, "Shhh," "Sssshuttup," and "We're not supposed to ask about that!" She only glared back at them in silence. But she was not figgiting anymore.

Father Tree was scarred with several missing patches of leaves mixed in with a lot of oddly shaped, discolored ones. There were also a few places where his branches would not grow correctly anymore. That's why the little trees weren't supposed to ask him about the bugs.

"Oh, someone's asking about the bugs again. Well ...(sigh)... When an army of insects comes around, we all do our best to get away from them. But bugs can move very fast. You see, we still do not have the means to move away fast enough and outrun all of them."

The little trees gathered in a huddle. Then they whispered to the sage their one last question. "Why not, Father Tree?"

He had hoped that their inquiry wouldn't proceed this far. He sighed. "Ahhh, children. This gets very personal." He continued, "When some you were very young, the bugs came. I took you up in my arms and placed you deep inside my leaves. I hid you there close to my heart. And while I held you safe there, I could not get away from the bugs. I held you there until the terror passed. You see, I could survive their ravages, but as mere babes, you could not."

"You couldn't get away from the bugs because of us!" replied the littlest of all.

"That's true," said the aged tree, "You see, there is an important lesson about life that you need to learn. Young and old must always stick together and help each other out- especially during the bad times. This is a lesson about a purpose for life and death. Neither generation can survive apart or by itself. Each of us at different times needs the encouragement and assistance of the other. Perhaps that could tell us something about our real origin. Something very elegant made things in this way. And that's the best explanation I have to give you for the way we are now."

Monday, April 19, 2010

The Absurdity of Expecting the Mainstream Press to Publish ID Books

I guess we should sample the title pages of the anti-slavery books from the 19th century and women's suffrage books from the early 20th, and then analyze the list of publishers that printed them. Then we could decide for ourselves which positions were right. It's a good argument for people who characteristically find relief and acquiesce in the simple view of things. However, it is comparable to the act of judging the quality of a cake from the visual appearance of its icing, or the quality of a store by its window-dressing.

Most strategies used by the status quo to deny legitimacy and prevent institutional access to individuals holding radically new views constitute such examples of shallow-minded thinking, evidently at the point they perceive they are loosing too many constituents. That is the same point in time you see a large number of derisive statements cropping up. Ostensibly, it is for the purpose of reigning in the faithful by employing very simple thus easily politicized sketches outlining a group's essential, though self-admittedly cryptic, positions and dogma. It's by-product is discrimination legally speaking, the unfair treatment of individuals or groups based on race, religion, gender, age, or intellectual position.

What should we make of this current state of affairs? I suggest the following approach: ID, take heart and bide your time! The current evolutionist strategy is dangerously short-sighted. As long as this kind of treatment is levied against you in the form of tangible economic effect and levelled against you in public instances of harangue that bring very evident professional anguish, then historically speaking- you cannot lose! Persecution and defamation historically have never succeeded, at least in the long run. What you should really fear is winning under the wrong circumstances, or perhaps 'winning' at all.

If evolutionists actually wanted to kill your position and do so effectively, they would gobble it up. That is, they would insincerely welcome it for a time. Once in real control, sitting back in their chairs in academic departments, they would quietly sidetrack its arguments, water down its import, and defuse all its insights about evolution. That would leave them in control and you demoralized- in a quandry! You actually should rejoice that your intellectuals and scientists are still powerfully in control of the development of your arguments and viewpoint, and not converted evolutionists such as I.

I have a M.A. in Anthropology from a large midwestern US university and wrote my thesis on the sexual evolution of primates (basically supporting macroevolution). Now I take the naturalistic ID position. But I think some creationists should maintain a base of control of ID, not because they are unjustly accused of being in collusion with ID and of already doing being in control, but from the high risks that academic compromise could bring to ID's goals. Academic acceptance of the ID position is ID's greatest risk due to the fact that ID scientists appear to long excessively for such acceptance. Professionally speaking, that is advantageous, but politically speaking, it is very unwise. I think you should be happy that you are being very obviously being treated rudely and unreasonably. You should even seek out public opportunities for such treatment. Think about THAT whenever you suffer ridicule. We should not be seeking personal comfort in the middle of a fight! And God help us intellectually, figuratively speaking, if the fight is ever over!

Remember, the American people are watching. Rely on the kind of people you know them to be. Subconsciously, evolutionists are deeply troubled at this, that is, by most Americans, their beliefs, curiousity, political nature, and love for the media. This cauldron is all working in the background against evolution and greatly to some evolutionists' chagrin. Some naively express strong sentiments about it in the columns posted here on Amazon Books. It is also an indication of what likely is really happening. The American people are most likely turning en mass against evolution.

Right now, anti-ID arguments look like fruit baskets to those helping shore up traditional evolution. But all the while, intellectually speaking, they are loud-ticking time bombs set out on a very public stage. And... haven't our parents and the American dream practically raised us to prefer the underdog?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Riddle: With the English Language Changing So Quick, Does It Really Matter Whether the Selection is an Adjective or Adverb?

You've just been given a riddle, and in it, you've been given an example. Enough information is supplied even in the title to decide the matter.

While reading the title of this blog entry, you either winced or you didn't. Those who winced could be called prescriptivists, the authority-minded lot, and those who didn't wince, descriptivists, a democratic and user-friendly group.

The goal of the riddle is this: Find which group is analogous to the evolutionists and which one is analogous to intelligent design.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Big Bang. An Origins Story.

Once the universe was a romance. Attraction and Repulsion ruled the roost and Indifference and Excitement were their little kids. Attraction tried to make something of itself, and Repulsion tore it down. Indifference sought patience, the pattern that time brought. Excitement did its own thing, ignoring all sorts of problems.

Then something slammed into this family. It did so with a bang. No one really knows what it was. We never really know in a divorce, do we? Whatever it was, it caused the Big Bang. Attraction gave up and Repulsion got so angry, it blew everything away! Away from what? Well, away from what ever type of romance they had.

What a mess! Things stayed on the edge of nothingness for a while. Then one day a stranger came by. That stranger decided to make a difference. The mess was cleaned up so that the alienation and divorce of principles might never occur again. That stranger was intelligence.

It all has happened before. And it will happen again. It may happen innumerable times- at least until someone gets some real brains and changes the rules of the game in the physical universe.

Friday, April 2, 2010

All Intelligent Design or Evolution Need Prove

Intelligent Design need not toy with the idea that there is a God, or even explicitly allow for its possibility. There are many types of causal agents that could be influencing direction-limiting biological progress, some natural and others beyond our current levels of functional, systems understanding. Attributing the development of life to a cause or group of causes beats propitious additive random design (evolution) hands down. Take the miracle of the DNA code and its replication, for example. What human alive today could have thought that one up on his own? Originally, it was an incredibly difficult concept to even model. It would have been impossible to have humanly designed it, and it still is. Also consider the self-healing, automatic mending nature of the body which can even by-pass incidentally obstructed blood vessels and restore blood flow. These processes surpass the capabilities of current medicine. We cannot even pair up strands of RNA.

Functioning systems call for causes. The only natural, physical analogies that run counter to the principle of a precipitous cause have a very short lifespan by comparison and are functionally many levels lower on the scale of complexity than functioning, self-repairing tissues and organs. Four of only a handful of possible choices are wave action, typhoons, tornadoes and snowflakes. Humans are basically left to mimick, imitate, or copy observed natural functions. They are not like mere weather or climatological patterns, but more like feedback-driven biological machines beyond human capability to replicate. We are generally neither creative nor insightful enough to originate our own biological systems solutions. What could not be manufactured by man cannot have evolved out of choice accidents and the environmental variation that has been available on Earth.

Intelligent agency, like the evolutionary paradigm, must be viewed through the looking glass it produces and has produced. Basically, its processes are shown in its biological products. But products alone tell us little about the methods used in their manufacture unless some sort of manufacturing code lies beneath the surface. We are limited organisms ourselves, with mediocre sensory organs comparatively speaking and specialized intellectual capacities, thus are restricted by our constitution just as other organisms are. Who certified us capable of discovering our own origins? For one, we can only perceive our world in limited ways and forms. We can only sense certain things, too. Other concepts and phenomena are only noticed by first attributing cause and meaning to them, i.e., to their instances, events and objects. Technology has only added to these abilities incrementally. It has not yet enhanced them on an exponential scale. We are children of a 21st century intellect, its shared records, and its store of devices. We are rarely able to work our way out of this conundrum and see beyond it. When the subject and details of what happened in milleniums past comes up, we are often reminded that our families cannot often agree on what was wrong with last night's supper or conversation. We can offer no guarantee that the experts are right in their interpretation of history. We should even be less reliable when it comes to the matter of pre-history. Why do we give evolutionists a free hand and blank check in the public schools? If one scientist speaks up against it, he or she should be mentioned! I have a masters degree in anthropology and am not permitted to present my view in a U.S. public school science classroom! Current-day court rulings are not merely recapitulating the U.S. court rulings that supported and encouraged monopolies to have an economic heyday in the U.S during the 19th century. They are legally preserving the same type of absurd travesty occuring in American educational institutions!


One consequence of this is shown in the forms our data take. Evolution is just as restricted in its data pool as ID is. Creationists use religious texts for sources of data, primarily. ID broke off of it to base its views on the scientific method and then found its theory severely restrictive, too. Now it jumps into theory and philosophy, as it jumps backs to data and research. Like historical science, evolution and ID are relegated to the position of searching for processes in the archives of past data (fossils and fissures), or else be limited to present physical microprocesses (in genetics and biological cells). Most of our interpretations are circumscribed by the absence of real, direct, ever-present, ideal forms of data. We cannot conduct experiments on macroevolution, for example, but we can sure act like we understand it very well. Both evolution and ID then project views from the position of weakness (and in some cases ignorance), the absence of direct observation of physical data, as a result. Little empirical research is even attempted on the processes of biological progress; instead, much is assumed theoretically. Very little of it gets tested. The main way to prove this fact is by citing the general lack of hypothesis testing found traditionally occuring or going on currently in origins science.

With evolution and ID sitting on their laurels and neither doing much more than complacently trusting theories, unable to physically test their key principles, and waiting for supportative evidence to pile up in the form of subtle, indirect accumulation of implications and a subjectively interpreted preponderance of findings, the following state of affairs exists: All ID needs to demonstrate is that nature is smarter than man. If it proves this case within the present sparse intellectual climate, it has ipso facto proved its main thrust. And this point shouldn't be all that hard to prove, since (as Peter Marshall had said) the DNA code created us and not vice versa! That thrust is that features of directed intelligence in all likelihood produced biological progress- that intelligence in nature is much more likely the cause of biological progress than chaos theory's explanation. All evolution need do is prove that man is the pinnacle of natural, physical development and there is no need to grow beyond his design or look beyond it for anything better. Hopefully, both premises won't be demonstrated to have merit at the same time, but this is exactly what I expect to see happen in the present highly charged political climate of the origins debate.

Randomness is impotent as a directional force. And indeed, I did not say important. Even an appropriately demonstrated process of evolutionary progress needs a demonstratable rationale for directional change and increased complexity as shown in the fossil record. With hominids, it has been culture. With nonhominids, it should be other derivatives of intelligence.

The despised injection of brain matter that would constitute adding insights from artificial intelligence and ID into evolutionary theory in order to give it a needed shot is categorically rejected without due consideration. Any directivity sufficient to provide strong (as opposed to weak) causes of increased biological complexity is currently rejected out-of-hand by evolutionists. They won't countenance causal discussions or observable physical causes because of their blindly hypocritical, unnaturalistic committment to time as cause. No criticisms or adjustments to evolutionary theory supported by nonloyalists are allowed because of wildly charged emotionalism. The merits of AI and ID's arguments cannot not even discussed in an adultlike, rational manner. An atmosphere of dogmatism and a climate of professional fear that it built clouds all discussion. It has beseiged evolutionary science for decades. Partisanism and dogma are the root causes behind it.

Evolutionists' main weakness in this area is their blind parochialism: many are not interdisciplinary. Furthermore, such close-minded proponents are adamant and childishly proud of the fact. Dogma and ideological purity can reign in interest-group politics, and it does so precisely in the case of evolution's out-of-hand, categorical rejection of AI and ID due ostensibly to their hatred of the alleged association of ID proponents with creationists. Stated as at the heart of the argument is a fear of the pollution of science by religion and religious texts, though the same scientists do not try to rein in religious influences that might influence cosmology. Neither are they concerned over the heavy influence that other philosophical positions already have on science, such as humanism, materialism, or atheism. Thus their rejection of ID is most likely historically based and not rooted in any theoretical or methodological- indeed any substantive concerns.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Intelligence and Music Virtually Ignored as Natural Forces

Intelligence and music are features of nature, prominent in numerous species, yet distinctly separate in their appearance and development from human progress itself. They are greatly reflected in human progress, and perhaps, perfected to a high degree in it. However, biology and physics have virtually ignored intelligence and music as forces of nature.

They get shunned as independent variables and treated as mere consequences and dependent variables. Why is this so? I think it's simply out of the lame excuse that theists project intelligence and creativity as significant causes in origins. Perhaps scientists should steer clear of the use of drinking vessels, too, due to the fact that chalices are still used in churches. That's not to mention other customs that originated in churches, such as the wearing of formal clothing, consulting of reference works, attending institutions of higher learning, etc.

Fearing pollution or other types of influence from the etymological derivation of words is a ridiculous notion, just as expanding the concept of the separation of church and state as a guide to regulate choices of topics in science classrooms is. At work here is the same two-centuries-old Luddite principle at work, surreptitiously designed by a group of people to resist technological change, but actually motivated by the desire to economically regulate the workplace. Many evolutionists in principle fear their craft being influenced in the least bit by anything ever called religious. However, they have not quite thought the notion through yet in my estimation. Some things cannot be avoided in life. We can bury our heads in the sand, but this will not make physical forces or the history of ideas go away.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Some Naturalistic Intelligent Design Hypotheses and Definitions

Intelligence = Selective Reactions to Stimuli (Not Necessarily Conditioned or Consistent Responses)

Naturalistic Intelligent Design Support = Evidence of Intelligence Appearing Coincidentally with Progress (Circumstantial Evidence is Considered Compelling and Supportative, though Not Conclusive.)

Progress = Increased Relative Complexity or Numerical Ascendancy

Complexity = Degree of Functions and Interrelations in an Object

Sensors = Chemical Processes that Create Reactions in Adjacent or Connected Physiological Areas or Pathways
(Also, Mechanical Processes that Create Responses in Adjacent Mechanical Parts or their Connections)