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Posted inEvolution

Intelligent Design is Creationism, just not Biblical (or Young Earth) Creationism

Reading Time: 5 minutes In their FAQ, the Discovery Institute write in response to the question “Is intelligent design theory the same as creationism?”:

“No. Intelligent design theory is simply an effort to empirically detect whether the “apparent design” in nature acknowledged by virtually all biologists is genuine design (the product of an intelligent cause) or is simply the product of an undirected process such as natural selection acting on random variations. Creationism is focused on defending a literal reading of the Genesis account, usually including the creation of the earth by the Biblical God a few thousand years ago. Unlike creationism, the scientific theory of intelligent design is agnostic regarding the source of design and has no commitment to defending Genesis, the Bible or any other sacred text. Honest critics of intelligent design acknowledge the difference between intelligent design and creationism.”

Well, I am an “honest critic” and I will acknowledge the difference between ID and the restrictive definition of Creationism that they choose to use but I will not acknowledge the difference between ID and Creationism in general. Creationism is the belief that some being outside nature (as we know it) created everything, as opposed to everything arising naturally without any causal agent or intervention. This totally encompasses ID.

Posted inEvolution

The Predictive Power of Evolution

Reading Time: 2 minutes I have been reading the first chapter of Neil Shubin’s Your Inner Fish recently and it really struck me again how strong, persuasive nay indomitable, the predictive powers of evolution are. The simple idea that a paleontologist can think that the first fish fossils were found at time A and the first limbed land animal fossils were found at time C, and so to find the transitional fossils for animals in between fish and limbed land animals should be found at time B (in this case, the late Devonian period). But this is already dependent upon the prediction that the fish should transform over time to limbed land animals.

Posted inEvolution, Science

Bloody awesome – rap and evolution

Reading Time: < 1 minute Some time ago, Robin Ince and some other comedians and skeptical minds came together to produce “9 Lessons and Carols for Godless People”, a skeptical comedy and science carol service at Christmas. It is now a more regular fixture. The whole show is great, but the absolute highlight is this video, a performance by Baba Brinkman, […]

Posted inUncategorized

Word of the Day: Irreducible Complexity

Reading Time: 3 minutes A system is irreducibly complex when every part is necessary. Remove any part, and the system breaks, so how could such a system have been built, piece by piece, by nature? Any precursor would have been useless and therefore selected against by evolution. But an example with which we’re all familiar undercuts this argument.

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