KF Sums it Up Nicely
|August 17, 2012||Posted by Barry Arrington under Intelligent Design|
Bill is saying that IF you can demonstrate (and not just assert) that no other process can possibly produce the material observations, then your logic is correct.
Stop right there, we are dealing with an empirical situation. No inductive or empirical fact or principle can be established beyond possible contradiction. To demand such a proof for a case where you should know better is selective hyperskepticism, here a form of question-begging. That’s like the rhetorical fast move played by Darwin when he spoke of a like condition.
That boils down to demanding a default you have no right to.
What inductive evidence can and does support is that there are two observed sources of highly contingent outcomes under more or less similar conditions: chance and choice.
It further supports that in every case where we directly can see the cause of functionally specific complex information, in this case digitally coded algorithmic or otherwise semiotic info, this is by intelligent choice.
We can then take up the analysis of chance based random walks in a config space of sufficient complexity, to see why that should be so for complex and functionally specific patterns. Namely, there is too much haystack, you can only make a relatively tiny sample, and there is just too little needle.
Sampling theory — notice, not an exact probability calculation [which is not at all necessary for the conclusion to be all but certain . . . cf. here on] — tells us, with maximum likelihood, you will get hay not needle under such circumstances. Indeed, that sort of analysis is the foundation of the statistical form of the second law of thermodynamics.
This is what your side is really doing:
a: in the teeth of a base of billions of test cases across 5,000+ years of recorded history where we directly and routinely observe the ONLY directly known source of digitally coded complex functionally specific information,
b: Where also the only observed alternative to choice for highly contingent outcomes is intelligent choice,
c: With the needle in the haystack search challenge also being on the table,
d: It is being insisted that — to save an a priori commitment to materialism now being imposed on the definition of science and its methods —
e: The bare logical possibility that chance can throw up any contingent pattern must hold the default unless a logically certain disproof can be produced,
f: This in a context where it is already known that no scientific — empirical and inductive — conclusion can be shown to demonstrative certainty.
In short, you are insulating an a priori from empirical test, which is the same as saying that it is not a scientific claim.
Do you really want to turn science into applied materialist philosophy?
That is what you are doing.
If you are doing so, then the rules change.
We have every right to expose how you rigged the game, and to call you out as materialist ideologues and fellow travellers hiding in the holy lab coat and pronouncing ex cathedra statements as a new magisterium.
I suggest that you do not want to go down that a priori materialist ideology road.