Friday, November 11, 2005

Desperate Darwinians

Why is it that people with weak arguments always use ad hominem attacks?

Here's a philosophy teacher criticizing the science of ID on TCS (my emphasis):

It is sometimes complained that IDers resemble the Marxist historians who always found a way to modify and reframe their theory so it evades any possible falsification, never offering an experimental procedure by which ID could in principle be falsified. To my mind, this complaint is warranted indeed. But the primary problem is not with the intellectual honesty of IDers, but with the nature of their theory.

So people who propound ID are Marxists and intellectually dishonest hence don't need rebutting with fact. Pity the kids in this guy's philosophy class.

In fact it's Darwinism that is poor science, because it doesn't make testable predictions. No Darwinian has modeled an evolution sequence generating the simplest of organisms, or statistically validated the non-linearities in the fossil record, or explained the advanced componentry in ancient species.

Conversely, ID will be disproved by the first simulation that grows an apparently irreducibly complex bio-component by a series of evolutionary steps, each of which adds utility to the organism. All it takes to do this is a few supercomputer-years and some smart statisticians.

That's not to say that ID means that somebody sat down and designed the codings for life on earth - it could easily be a property of matter, the same thing that gives us the curious regularities of the physical constants.