Tim Daneluk

Page 11 of 13  

Renata wrote:

Absolutely true. Why do you fail to acknowledge that choosing a secular agenda has the *exact* same problem - not all children "espouse" secularism. Secularism is not a "netural" body of teaching. It has a distinct moral point of view with attendant values. I repeat - you cannot make *any* choice about curricula without choosing *somebody's* values system. This means that inevitably, some student's beliefs are violated. Public schools need to be abolished pure and simple.
<SNIP>

There is no "evidence" whatsoever that the matter/mechanical/naturalist view of knowledge is a) More correct than any other or b) Exclusively correct. The most you can say about it, is that it provides many practical/useful results. Go back to the top of this particular subthread and you'll see why I hold this view - you cannot prove "axioms", only examine outcomes from them.

And you cannot "prove" the efficacy of Science, only show that it does useful work. I repeat - all knowledge systems begin with "belief" or "faith" which is simply taken as true - there is neither proof nor refutation for these starting points. This is true for religion, science, and any other human constract that claims to provide us knowledge. If you're going to defend Science, do so on its utilitarian merits, not by trying to attack religion as being evidence-free...
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Tim Daneliuk wrote:

I'm sure you have ideas on how and why abolishing public schools would be beneficial, but can you think of reasons why it might be a bad idea or do more harm than good?
Joe Barta
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Joe Barta wrote:

Nope. Public Schools are a madrassas for secular ideology that pretends it is "netural". They are propped up by a teacher's union that takes one of the most critical professions in our society and turns it into factory work. They are funded at a point of a gun, and people who object to their values are then forced to pay *again* to have their children educated within a values context they affirm. Because the schools are funded by public monies, no one can be excluded, not even the violent, the disruptive, or the dangerous student. (The Columbine massacre would likely not happened in a private school because the perpetrators had a record of misbehavior that would have gotten then kicked out long before they had the opportunity to kill their peers.) Because the schools are publicly funded, every 3rd-rate politican and political bottomfeeder gets a voice in what the content, quality, and mission of education ought to be. That's how you get both the vile belching of Political Correctness AND the pressure of the Religious Right all in the same system. In short, the system is broken, dishonest, and dysfunctional.
The only question is just *how* to back out of the public school mess we have today. Clearly there are teachers (many/most) worth keeping and you cannot just pull the rug out from under the system as it is. My feeling is that the Federal government should get out of the education business, giving everyone involved, say, 5 years notice, and decreasing Federal educational funding (and taxation) 20% per year. This would give the local governments time to ramp up to accomodate it. This would put big pressure on the local governments to either outsource or privatize the schools. Would there be problems? Probably. But I cannot imagine a situation worse than what we have today: Expensive, Ineffective, and (in many cases) Dangerous schools.
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Tim Daneliuk wrote:

Ok, I'm little confused. Let me see if I understand your point of view...
a) Public schools should be abolished.
b) The federal govt should get out of the education business.
c) It should be a local govt matter
d) Local governments should take responsibility for education but outsource it... OR... preferrably get out of the education business altogether.
e) Ideally all education should be done in the home by parents or in private schools and there should be no public involvement in education whatsoever. The government's role in educating our youth should be no bigger a priority than the government's role in doll collecting.
f) Since the government's (federal, state or local) role in education is ideally zero, the government should also not attempt to set any standards for educational proficiency. It's a purely market driven matter.
I may have taken a few liberties, but do I understand you correctly?
Joe Barta
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Joe Barta wrote:

Ideally, yes ... over time and in the best practical way so as not to create a tidal wave of problems for a society already addicted to public education.

The sooner the better. Even if the States and Municipalities staying the public education business, the simple act of getting the Feds out would be an enormous improvement to what we have today.

At *most* a local government matter.

Again, ideally the case.

Yup. The only exception to this is the exception that always exists: If the treatment of minor children constitutes child abuse, then the government has to interdict. Ideally, childrens' care is an issue entirely for parents and non of the Government's business. But when parents fail in that obligation, Government has the legitimate role of speaking on behalf of the minor citizen who is legally presumed to be unable to act in their own interest (at least not completely so). This should be a choice of last resort. Say a parent is conciously failing to educate a child and Government has to remove them from that home. The answer is not to place them in a public home and educate them publicly. The answer is to work with private-sector charities to find an appropriate accomodation. We've been doing some of this for years and it works. There used to be Government-run orphanages which were just horror shows. Now most States work to find private placement for children with people who will actually care for them. It is an imprefect solution but better than totally collectivizing the whole process.

Yup.
Yup.
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Tim Daneliuk wrote:

If the government is out of the education business and the educational standards business, then who is determining if the parent is failing to educate the child and where are they getting their standards?
Further, the masses being as they are, using your method, I envision a scenario where there are great gulfs between a relatively small number of educated and large numbers of uneducated (a hundred fold what it is now), and that the limited government interdiction you propose above would be largely unable to control the deteriorating situation.
Can you at least get behind the idea that some sort of public involvement in education, despite all of its shortcomings, is the best way possible to raise the education level of the masses, and that the removal of public involvement would effectively "dumb us down"? That if we value the idea of and strength of a "middle class", your vision (in it's most strict form) would erode that middle class and we would gravitate more towards a small, affluent and educated elite and masses of poor and uneducated?
Joe Barta
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Joe Barta wrote:

It's a fair question just like "What constitutes abuse?" (Corporal punishment, not being able to stay up past 10pm, ...?). The most likely answer would be the one we have today - the courts would decide what constituted a reasonable level of education.

1) You underestimate "the masses" - they will do what is in their own self-interest sooner or later. The only reason you (and I) fear this scenario is that we've been so conditioned by the academic Elites to believe they are the sole instrument of success. Long before there was K-12, Undergrad, and Grad School, there were trade schools that taught people useful skills (rather than, say, degrees in Women's Studies). These would, no doubt, spring up again.
2) Big Eeeeeeeeeevill Corporations cannot afford an illiterate work force. They need capable people to carry forth their Eeeeeeeeevil agenda. No doubt, if there actually was a significant failure of the private sector to educate most people, corporations would start training them and treat it like a benefit of the job no different than, say, healthcare.
3) You underestimate the power of markets. If there is a need, someone pretty much always finds a way to fill it (at some price). Say there was the "great gulf" in the educational marketplace. Then some clever entreupeneur would find a way to bring education to the (presumably) economic underclass - or at least enough of it to make a dent in their needs. How do I know this? Because this takes place daily in areas like lending, insurance, and so on. There are companies that *specialize* in lending to high credit risk customers, for example. This became necessary when all the social do-gooders got laws passed that prevented redlining in poor neighborhoods. So, the mainstream banks left, and the high-credit-risk lenders came in. Credit is still available to these customers, but they have to pay a higher interest rate in reflection of their higher risk status.
4) But say you're right - that this idea leads to Haves and Have-Nots of education. How is this worse than what we have today? If you live in an affluent community, the schools are usually much better than in the inner city. A good many inner city schools manage to spend billions without ever educating almost any student because of the "must serve all" environment that prevents them from kicking out the obstacles to progress and the unions with their "No Teacher Left Behind" plan. The issue before us is not one of Good or Bad but Better or Worse. We have Worse now, I want Better.

No. US culture (and I suspect most Western democracies) are a lot "dumber" already than you're acknowledging. Watch what passes for "entertainment", "news", and "information" on TV - the single most promiscuous vector of our culture. It's nauseating. For all the billions poured into education, look at the rate of graduation of US citizens from top-tier graduate programs. Listen to grammar, clarity, and general execution of language you hear everywhere - at work, the grocery store, at the pub. We've become a post-literate society, in part thanks to the fine job government education has done.
I taught grad school briefly and had this reinforced over and over again. My foreign students were not "smarter" they just worked *much* harder than most of my US-born students. You know why? Because the US students took it all for granted - getting an "education" was assumed and it was assumed to be relatively pain free (boy did some of them squeal when they ran into me ;) My foreign students knew better; they knew education was a privilege earned. It is exactly this sense of entitlement that gets built with government money and it is exactly that sense of entitlement that corrupts the academic process

First of all, the middle class is declining because it is moving *up*. There are (inflation adjusted) more wealthy people per capita then ever. Second of all, census by census, the per capita rate of poverty is declining. Just one example. In the early 1960s, a staggering percentage of Black Americans were considered impoverished. Today, a significant majority (well over 50% IIRC) are middle class or better. The point is that the vector here is North, not South *even in the face of crappy schools*. If our dysfunctional education system (which more-or-less-fails the impoverished anyway) still manages to make us a successful culture, imagine what a *Better* (not perfect) system could do.
As always, (All) Collectivism Kills, (Honest) Markets Bring Good Things.
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Tim Daneliuk wrote:

Let me ask you further, what would you hope to achieve by implementing a "better" system? What is better? How would we know it was better? What are the benefits of better?
Joe Barta
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Joe Barta wrote:

"Better" is one where:
1) Parents are expected to care for their own children. 2) Parents are more directly involved with the content and quality of their childrens' education. 3) The knowledge base, analytical skills, and self-learning habits of the students are increased (compared to today). 4) Teachers are compensated according to ability and their work product not treated like hourly factory workers. Good teachers prosper bad ones get fired. 5) Schools have the ability to maintain an environment of learning not be a dumping ground for parents to abdicate their own responsibilities. 6) Government presence in the private lives of its citizens is reduced. 7) Wealth redistribution at the point of the government's gun is reduced.
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On 2/15/2006 10:24 AM Tim Daneliuk mumbled something about the following:

Getting rid of public schools won't change this.

Getting rid of public schools won't change this. If they're not interested in their education now, having no public schools won't make them interested.

How do you get an increased knowledge base when the only information they have is coming from their parents, who may be uneducated themselves?

If there are no schools, who's going to pay the teachers (parents).

What schools? You're getting rid of public schools.

Govt presence in private lives is all over the place, and VERY little involvement is through schools.

Let's see, when I was poor, I didn't get any rich kids money because I was going to public school. We both got the same education so that I had the same chance as he did to make it in life. Funny how I'm successful today and that rich kid I went to school with never made it past high school and is still living off his parents. Had it not been for public schools, there's no telling where I would have ended up, probably in jail for being a drug dealer or a thief because I couldn't get a job. As for private schools when I was growing up. The only one that existed near me existed strictly for the sole reason of not having any blacks in the school. They were taught from the same books as the public school, they had misfits in the classroom, just like the public schools. They would take anyone's money as long as they were white, didn't matter if the student was a good student or a bad. No one was ever thrown out of that school for bad behavior.
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Spin Denyalot wrote:

Hi Spin. This wasn't directed at you.
You are wrong. Brahe was a colorful element of the development of science. He took a position that turned out to be wrong. But he took a testable position. He also was no doubt influenced by external religious/politial pressure (sounds familiar). Saying he was "wrong" is to discount the extremely valuable contributions he made to the development of astronomy. Comparing him to ID also is the very Guilt By Association you seem to be accusing me of, and discounts the actual validity and testability of his theory, wrong or right.

Why is it baseless, just because there are discontinuities in some equations? How does that follow? That's utter nonesense. Discontinuities have distinct properties and causes, and induction over them has actual results that can be compared to well-defined behaviors. To liken the Genie in the Bottle to this is to trivialize the problems inherent to such a proposition.

Oh please, do more than assert and give me an argument. There must be something you can give me, but really I think you are spitting a party line. What current theory? Are we still talking about evolution, the theory of speciation? Are you going to talk about transitional fossils again, or do you have something beter? Be specific!

You don't know what an ad hominem is, either. A bad argument is a bad argument, not an attacked personage.
Well, I think you raised that yourself... oh wait. You were reciting an ID view... you were reciting a "bad ID practitioners" view?
ID pretends to be practical if it makes claim to merit... but ID has nothing testable or verifiable to it that isn't a simulacrum of Evo ending with a whispering "as though there were a builder". This is the failure of ID: an attempt to descend into practice by what is rightly a metaphysical discussion.

There is when you presume to descend from the realm of metaphysical discussion into science. It's a problem inherent to ID. What ID has to offer that Evolution doesn't is the essence of ID. And that lies in another area of discussion than science.

No, *you* can't. Because you refuse to recognize the separateness of physik and metaphysik, of knowledge and epistemology. You wish to confound all meaning for the purposes of your argument (well, if you had one. You offer (spurious) strengths of one, and criticisms of t'other, you exploit the fundamentally metaphysical questions of one against the practical considerations of t'other, but you only claim to be reciting the party line.)

Only if it offers something to practice beyond awed whispers.

This question was directed at someone I believe can give me an honest and heartfelt explanation of his views. Not you.
er
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> So your decision isn't influenced by the Creationist conspiracy

I'd hardly call a decision to trust in my faith in God a Creationst conspiracy.

That's not a valid conceren unless you hold to a faith that does not promise a future.

Science has proven true now what will someday become a "they use to believe..." just as the past historians and philosophers theories and testable facts are dismissed today. The study of this subject would serve well our current students.

Nope. We still have too many variables to solve.

What motive? All ID'ers want is that the whole process is discussed and from that discussion, an individual can make an informed decision. The evolutionists of today are as bad as the Spanish Inquisitionists. Think my way or suffer the consequences. Absolutely no tolerance for other points of view.

As to the creation of everything, there is no real hard science, verifability or logic. All there is, is conjecture. Modern science has yet to determine, without doubt, an answer to the simplest of questions. Why is there life?

The incorporeal ream of evolutionists and some of the ID'rs troubles me a little. However, my faith is cemented in my understanding that the work of science has nothing to do with the current consensus. Consensus is strictly political. True science is not. In science consensus is meaningless. The only truth and relevancy provable and reproducible facts. "The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus." Michael Crichton, 2003 CalTech lecture.

I love science. I trust in God. I'm promised an answer. This not a non sequitur.
Dave
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Teamcasa wrote:

DAGS "Wedge Document".
--

FF


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Ignoring all other points FF replied:

So what? Do you think that the DI speaks for all the people that believe in God? Its hard to imagine that the entire body of academia trusts solely modern science without dissent? There must be a balance. After all, what frightens the evolutionists so much that they are un-willing to have all of the information available discussed without healthy debate?
Dave An old solid oak tree is just a nut that refused to give up. Back to woodworking.
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Teamcasa wrote:

I think you asked "What motive?"
I think I answered accurately and succintly.
I don't know if you are pissed off to learn that there IS a prominant organization with an apparent motive of the sort alluded to, or if you are pissed off that the information is freely available. Personally, I think you should be pissed off at the way they've been manipulating you.

I am not aware of any 'evolutionist' who is afraid of free discussion of the information.
Any number of people capable of debating the issues decline to do so for a number of reasons. Some of them simply have better things to do. Others decline for the same reasons that the American Cancer Society quit debating the tobacco companies.
Plainly if you are interested in a healthy debate you'll post over on talk.origins, where the issue is on-topic and will attract the attention of people competent and willing to debate it.
OTOH, if you are afraid of a healthy debate, you will not.
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Teamcasa wrote:

I should hope not. :) Neither would I. But there was one surrounding the ID "movement". That's what I was referring to, and I was hoping you could tell me what you know about it and how you dealt with it when you made your decision.

But it is when you set it up as an alternative to a theory to be taught in schools... science has as a practical goal to explain the nature of the universe, but if the questions being asked don't lead to more understanding then what is the merit? It isn't the intention to deny you a spiritual worldview when these limitations are placed on science: for that you have other disciplines.

That's true, but the theories of the past have always 1) had as a goal to explain the universe 2) provide a framework to test its validity, 3) were modified when they weren't found to be in accord with the world, and 4) competed with other theories on even footing.
This isn't true of ID: it doesn't have to explain the world beyond pointing a finger at an invisible and unknowable builder to explain all unknown phenomena, and is being injected into the educational system by political means, not through scientific testing.

It's not fair or rational to ask that the ToE be able to explain the origins of life. There will always be too many, that's why you have to break it down into manageable chunks.
That sounds a lot like a surrender, if you don't mind my saying.

The motive of the ID proponents that began the whole Dover scandal. Have you read about what they've done?
The evolutionists only ask that ID, if it is to be regarded as a theory of Science, also be required to follow the same rules as science. There is no Inquisition. It is in fact the IDers that are using cynical political manipulations to inject their ideology into the school system. I think it is also possible they are being aided by nihilcons, as well.

Conjecture is a different thing entirely. Creation is the crux of the ID movement, though, that is true. Unfortunately, the IDers are waging war for their creationism against an evolution that has nothing to do with creation.

Thank goodness science is not political! (well, but it is in an entirely irrelevant academic way... but I digress:) Consensus in science is the crucible for all new theories... take it as a good, and if there is any validity to ID, test it against that. If it's a good theory...

If you love science, why would you allow ID to be elevated as a theory through political pressure and not require that it survive the same critique required of scientific theories?
er
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Tim Daneliuk wrote:
[snip]
Positivism is *dead*, Jim!
For quite some time. Read up on Wittgenstein, Karl Popper, Rudolph Carnap, and (your friend, the atheist positivist) Bertrand Russell if you want to know where that argument went.
It's funny you'd use such a modern argument, the fundamental limits and uncertainty of our perceptive powers, to attack an old idea, and advance a creationist ideology (I know you already denied it's creationism... I disagree, having seen that it is well spun creationism.)
The troubles with ID are that they (you) first claim that idea (of limits to knowledge) as their (your) own to discredit science, then propose to do away with it entirely by attributing anything unknown to the Invisible Diddler. Something you can't verify. Yes, so until we sharpen our vision to the degree that that (one at a time, slowly) question can then be answered fully and completely with a precise and unbroken timeline of events, the IDers will step in to say "here, this gray area here, is where the Invisible Diddler shows his miraculous handiwork." Science has for many years already been agonizing over the problems of proof, and exploiting that to advance what amounts to a whimsical thought experiment is... low.
The trouble with ID is that it proposes to attack one area of science using lack of a theory in quite another one.
There has never been a question regarding evolution that could not be answered with a reasonable scenario, without having to sketch the outlines of an Invisible Diddler.
"The assumption that the mechnical/material view is sufficient" is a red herring. We have a much more sophisticated view (today) of emergent systems and complexity that arise from the physical world than the worldview being attacked by the IDers. It's still not necessary to rely upon an Invisible Diddler*.
Another red herring is that evolution has ever claimed to describe the genesis of life. It doesn't. We haven't learned enough about *the past* yet to be able to *extend* evolution to such an alien landscape. But equating our ignorance of eras long past to "holes in evolution" is... a red herring.
If there is a God/Alien/SpaghettiMonster (and notice I've never said there's not) and I could face him/her/it to ask "was that you they were talking about?" [[s]he|it]'d say no. Then he'd touch me with his noodly appendage, and I'd be enlightened.
That book you posted... haven't read it but I have read Behe, and every thing he said was either a lie or omitted contradictory evidence. There's plenty of material online about his smears and about his failures to admit or remove his omissions from his rhetoric--I'll look for commentary on that book.
*I just made it up and am infatuated with the phrase, so I'm going to enjoy it for awhile...
er
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Bones McCoy wrote:

<SNIP ad infinitum ad nausem>
I could refute about 90% of what you wrote simply by explaining point-by-point how you've subtly misrepresented what I said and/or mean knowing full well the actual intention of what I wrote. Your commentary is full of straw.
But I won't. I have a much simpler refutation: If what I described is so transparently foolish, why does it annoy you so much given your self-described intimations of sophistication? Methinks thou protesteth way too much ...
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Tim Daneliuk wrote:

How could you ever prove that, given your metaphysical stance? Do you mean:
Your outdated notions of the state of philosophy? You were arguing against an old school (The Vienna School) of thought, not Science as methodology.
Your unreasonable expectation that Science adopt the doubts of philosophy, rather than use it as a guide and warning, and inspiration? Science is a practical endeavor to understand the world. It's limitations are well-known, but they don't distinguish it from, say ID. It's actually the strengths of Science, its predictive value, that distinguish it from flights of fancy like ID.
Your implication that ID might be, somehow, immune to the same limitations of the theory of evolution? Even while lacking its strengths?
Your use of our ignorance of the origin of life as an attack on our (well-established) theories of the origin of species?
Your flat-out wrong assertion that when I examine where "parts" come from and why they "work" will drive me inexorably to the conclusion there is a builder? If you were a biochemist (I am) conversant in genetics (I am) and population variation (I am) do you think that would be sufficient *background* with which to make this examination? Do you think having such a background would be helpful to such an examination?

You are all sound and fury, signifying nothing.
er
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Enoch Root wrote:

And the misdirection and intellectual prestidigitation begins. I guess I can't avoid swatting flies tonight:
I never said I could "prove" anything, merely that I could refute the previous post's dishonesty by disclosing it as such. Your cavalier introduction of the notion of "proof" is not binding upon me to defend because it is *your* idea, not mine.
If you're going to play with the Grownups, you have to learn to think and speak as one and not just pout because you don't like the content of the conversation.
> Do you mean:

I was arguing *against* nothing. I was attempting to describe why no system of knowledge can prove its premises. At no point did I attack science or its methodology.
If you're going to play with the Grownups, you have to learn to think clearly and parse sentences for what they mean not invent subtle misrepresentations thereof more ammenable to your inadequate rhetorical and reasoning skills.

I expressed none of my own expectations about science. I tried to articulate the claims of the IDers as collateral to a larger question I was asked. Moreover, philosophy is not expressing "doubt" (what a cute way to trivialize thousands of years of thoughtful discourse). Philosophy is naming very specific limitations about what we can even know. It takes a religious person to ignore those limitations and proceed anyway.
If you're going to play with the Grownups, you have to accept that you are just a religious as the most devout Theist, you're just less honest about it and your (purely mechanical) god is less interesting. It's considered Bad Form to try and hide this sort of thing.

I said this from the outset. Go back and look for the word "utility" in my previous post. I'm glad you agree with me on this.

Agreement again, surely there must be a God! The limitations in question are common across *all* systems of knowledge ... which I said in the first place.
If you're going to play with the Grownups, be sure you're not actually parroting what you are putatively arguing against. It makes you look very silly.

To the extent that it is predictive that's true. However, not every part of contemporary science is predictive. For instance, current evolutionary theory is no such thing - at least not at any fine grained level of detail. Todays "science" embraces far more than just those portions of disciplines that are predictive. There is lots of induction and deduction taking place far beyond the boundaries of being able to be predictive. Oh, and by the way ... "predictive" is nothing more than science demonstrating utility value. It does not make the premises of science inherently more valid than the premises of other systems of thought.
If you want to play with the Grownups, you can't get convenient amnesia about the parts of your system that don't fit your own line of argument.

"Thou shalt not bear false witness." Where in my original post did I even _hint_ that "ID might be, somehow, immune to the same limitations"? I realize it was a long post, but after all, I did start out by describing at some length how all epistemologies have *common* limitations and boundaries.
Grownups do no lie about each other - well civil ones don't anyway. Lying about your rhetorical opponent's position is a political tactic, is the sign of a weak argument, and a personal moral failing on the part of the liar.

The theories are not "well established". Science has at least a 2500 year tradition (and perhaps more) of which less than 150 have held some version on the origin of the species you espouse. Moreover, the arguments for that theory are: a) All indirect - they cannot be verified by direct experiment and b) Are missing key supporting elements (like transition fossils). Since this is so, that theory has to be logically seen as being *weaker* than one that has experimental confirmation.
This is not to say the theory is wrong, merely not as strong ... and therefore far from being "well-established". Unless, of course, you choose to believe it absent those things. Such a position is fine with me, but let's call it what it really is: Faith.
Grownups who really treasure their own Faith don't try and pretend it does not exist, they celebrate it.

It was not "my" assertion. That sentence comes from an attempt on my part to catalog the current position of IDers. They are, in fact, wrong about this one. You are an existence proof that some people rebel at the idea of a builder no matter how elegantly designed the building is because your Faith precludes the possibility that you are not at the top of the knowledge food chain.
Grownups do not make transparent attempts to tar their rhetorical opposition with sentences taken out of context so far as to entirely twist the point beyond recognition.
> If you were a biochemist (I am) conversant in genetics (I am) and > population variation (I am) do you think that would be sufficient > *background* with which to make this examination? Do you think having > such a background would be helpful to such an examination?
Tsk, tsk. This sounds suspiciously like an argument from Authority - how very Vatican of you. I was under the impression that the science was a discipline in which this was never done.
So now we've come full circle. Your fulminations demonstrate my very first point in the earlier post: What you "know" depends entirely on what you accept as being "true". You haven't refuted me even slighly - you've served as an example of what I wrote. The only real difference between you and the most devout Theist or one of the IDers, is that the latter admit their Faith and their God. You have both and pretend they don't exist.

And you are angry, strident, and defensive signifying self-doubt and fear ...
---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Tim Daneliuk snipped-for-privacy@tundraware.com PGP Key: http://www.tundraware.com/PGP /
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