Uncommon Dissent

Friday, October 28, 2005

Design Inferences — Keeping Science Honest (1 comments)

As a public service, here's the comment Dembski couldn't stomach.
I’m just wondering what implicit arguments this post is making and if they are actually good arguments for you to be making. It seems to me there are at least two different arguments. The first: we can correctly infer design in data sets published by scientists, i.e. we can tell when data sets are ‘designed’ and when they are ‘natural’. Therefore we should also trust our design inferences when looking at nature too. Two things: this is all fine and good, but do you really need to go to this sort of obscure example? It seems that watches are a perfectly fine example, not to mention tried and true since 1800.

More importantly, isn’t this argument self undermining? It seems that you’re saying data that isn’t ‘cooked’ by the scientist would not allow for a design inference, but this is exactly where you want to use design inferences for the ID program. If an intelligent designer did in fact make the world, we shouldn’t be able to tell the difference between data sets designed by scientists and ‘data sets’, i.e. natural phenomena, designed by some other intelligent designer. Shouldn’t they share the same artifacts of design? The same stamp of conscious thought?

It seems like a second subtle implicit argument is that biologists are dishonest. Are you actually making this argument, which would seem hard to do and be much more involved than pointing out one case of dishonesty, or are you simply relying on this subtle rhetorical technique (namely the wording of the title of this post) to convince the morons that you tend to convince that science is dishonest?

Comment by mattdunn — October 28, 2005 @ 1:33 pm


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