The number of people in the world who care what the Discoveroids think of the Nye-Ham debate is probably limited to a tiny cadre in Seattle, but they do manage to keep us entertained. They’ve just posted Reflecting on the Ham-Nye Creation Debate: Intelligent Design Stands in a Great Scientific Tradition.
The author is Michael Egnor — that’s his writeup at the Encyclopedia of American Loons. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:
I’ve been reflecting a bit on the debate a few nights ago on origins and creation science between Ken Ham and Bill Nye. I may see this a bit differently from some of my Discovery colleagues. I think that Ham did very well — he pointed out the important differences between observational/experimental science and historical science, and he made the important point that historical science is particularly influenced by metaphysical assumptions. Darwinists like Bill Nye do their historical science from a materialist and atheist perspective, and it clearly taints their insights.
Lordy, lordy. Egnor is a physician, but he believes in ol’ Hambo’s bizarre distinction between “observational/experimental science and historical science.” We assume, if a blood test for one of Egnor’s patients indicates the presence of antibodies for a specific pathogen, he makes no conclusion that the patient was once exposed to that pathogen. How could he? There’s no way for him to know that such a thing happened in the past, because he wasn’t there. We’re off to a great start, but it gets better:
Unlike Nye, Ham was honest about his own perspectives — which are Biblical and for which I have great respect and much agreement.
Of course he agrees — he’s a creationist, as are all the Discoveroids. Let’s read on:
My own perspective is that revelation and reason are not, and cannot be, in conflict. Nature speaks to us of our Creator. I seek to “follow the evidence,” as do other advocates of intelligent design. But it would be naïve to think anyone’s quest for scientific truth is without a specific metaphysical perspective.
We are not naïve, and we are well aware of the Discoveroids’ supernatural perspective. Egnor continues:
When I follow the evidence, I begin with a set of quite specific assumptions. Those assumptions are the product of the great Western tradition, which is the marriage of Athens and Jerusalem — the marriage of reason and faith.
An odd coupling — reason and Oogity Boogity. How stimulating! It was so stimulating that the West didn’t fully recover until the Enlightenment, which one might regard as a long-overdue philosophical divorce. Here’s more:
The intelligent design movement stands in that tradition, which gave us the Scientific Enlightenment and modern science. That tradition has been derailed in science today by materialists like Nye who presume atheism and presume Darwinism.
Continuing with our divorce analogy, the Discoveroids are functioning as the divorce lawyers for the Oogity Boogity partner, who sat around on her fat butt the whole time, gorging on chocolates, while the logical partner went out and did all the work, yet who always got criticized for not recognizing the value of his nagging partner. We can certainly understand why she doesn’t want to be divorced. How would she ever make it on her own? Moving along:
Intelligent design rejects the dogma of materialism. Materialist science is a betrayal, not a fulfillment, of modern science.
It’s easy to see that what Egnor celebrates as the ancient “the marriage of reason and faith” was a clumsy mismatch from the beginning. It’s time for this unhappy couple to go their separate ways. Another excerpt:
Intelligent design science is a call for a reawakening of the great scientific tradition that arose in the Christian West — the science of great scientists like Copernicus and Galileo and Newton and Kepler and Pasteur and Faraday and Maxwell. All of the great scientists who gave us modern science inferred intelligent design in nature.
We offer three observations in response to that old creationist clunker:
First, not one of those scientists accomplished anything of scientific merit using any specific creationist doctrine or data. We challenge any creationist (or Discoveroid) to name anything Galileo or the others did that depends on uniquely scriptural doctrine.
Second, what have the Discoveroids accomplished with their “theory”? It hasn’t produced any results, and it never will.
Third, what industry or productive enterprise (we exclude religious theme parks) employ any specifically creationist (or Discoveroid) doctrine in any technical aspect of their work?
Okay, here’s the article’s predictable conclusion:
Intelligent design stands in the tradition of the Scientific Enlightenment. We follow the evidence, confident in the consilience of faith and reason, trusting in the rationality and purpose that is evident to all of us in nature.
No, Egnor, you don’t stand in that tradition. You’re standing in the way.
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