Home » Complex Specified Information » Functionally Specified Complex Information & Organization, ID Foundations, Intelligent Design, Science, Science, worldview issues and society » Update: Toronto earns a bar to poster child status (as does Petrushka) in a TSZ thread, with several others joining in and showing the habitual incivility and strawman tactics of too many design objectors

Update: Toronto earns a bar to poster child status (as does Petrushka) in a TSZ thread, with several others joining in and showing the habitual incivility and strawman tactics of too many design objectors

Sometimes UD commenter, NR has started a thread at TSZ, which addresses my new poster child of illogical conduct by objectors to design theory series.

Unfortunately, the thread all too soon illustrates just why it is wise to cordon off sites that harbour abusive commentary as enablers of uncivil behaviour. And into the bargain, it seems that Toronto manages to become a poster child with bar, i.e. s/he does it again (and Petrushka follows, as we will see).

Let’s clip:

NR: Over at UD, KF has started a new thread criticizing Toronto.  He had earlier started a thread criticizing Petrushka.

It would have been nicer if KF had joined here to launch his criticism, instead of taking pot shots from UD where it is my understanding that both Toronto and Petrushka have been banned.

In any case, this is where the two accused can set the record straight by explaining what they actually meant . . . . Let’s keep it polite.  No character attacks.  Let’s stick to clear explanations of positions that KF might have misunderstood.  And let’s remember the rules of The Skeptical Zone and keep it civil.

Now, of course, as was pointed out before this was ever said, we have a case where Petrushka played a nasty game of falsely pretending that I threatened to ban someone who has not been banned then played an even more nasty trick of suggesting — using my abbreviated handle — that I would post pornographic links. That is a plain case of willful deceit with insult added to injury.

So, what is needed here is not a correction of misunderstanding but an apology and retraction.

As for Toronto, s/he asserted that an argument by scientific inference to best explanation is a question-begging argument. Thus, s/he earned poster child status by virtue of a massive logical blunder that needs to be corrected. Instead, s/he doubled down in the very first comment in response to NR:

I also believe we shouldn’t be answering real points made over there unless they have the courage to make them here . . . If KF has any legitimate arguments, he should post them here, not on a site that prevents our open responses.

In short, T implies that I am a coward.

A personal and unwarranted attack given the circumstances and what will very shortly follow in the thread at TSZ. Talk about, for instance, outing etc.

QED.

(UD commenters and contributors, kindly note how when you use a term that is loaded, it — and its like — promptly gets transferred to those who have not used it, as a handy term of abuse and pretended justification by turnabout accusation. So, let us operate by the broken windows theory and refuse to break the first window.)

In actuality, as the above just showed — from the very first comment, the boast of civility at TSZ is quite hollow.

So I have a legitimate concern that any appearance there will soon enough end up as a mud wrestling match with those who have the manners and attitudes of a swamp predator. In a context, where I have had to repeatedly deal with all manner of personal attacks up to and including threats against my family, and the operation of outright hate sites, denizens of which hang out at TSZ and similar sites.

So, sorry, I have good reason to decline the invitation to what will predictably be a swamp mud wrestling match.

And, if we read between the lines, Toronto is refusing to correct his/her blunder of thinking that a scientific inference to best explanation is a question-begging argument. On the flimsy excuse that I am not willing to get into a swamp mud wrestling match in order to correct such a grave blunder and associated snide accusations or insinuations.

Sorry, T, you have a plain duty of care in reasoning and if you refuse to admit and correct blatant errors such as imagining that empirically based inferences to best current scientific explanation can be crudely equated to question begging then that tells us what your level of reasoning is.

Notice, too: the very next comment tries to out me, never mind that I have long since explained why it is reasonable for me to ask that I be dealt with through my handle.

That descends to gross rudeness and disrespect.

Predictably.

Petrushka then shows up to suggest that s/he was justified to accuse me of threatening banning, never  mind that we have good reason to see that I never made such a threat and we have it on record from the blog owner here that MP was not banned. In fact the evidence points to a sock-puppet game where confederates set up a sock puppet here at UD and used it to throw a false accusation of banning to be posted at TSZ, which was stuck on me. For this we find nowhere the faintest trace of retraction or apology.

Another poster then proceeds to suggest that one of the hate sites is about hilarity, not childish animus and abuse with behaviour that no sensible person should tolerate.

That speaks volumes about the type of “civility” we are dealing with.

And seems to imagine that we have not read up on our Saul Alinsky, so we don’t understand what is going on propagandistically behind such sick “hilarity”:

5. “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. It is almost impossible to counteract ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, which then reacts to your advantage.” . . . .

13. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.  [NB: Notice the evil counsel to find a way to attack the man, not the issue. The easiest way to do that, is to use the trifecta stratagem: distract, distort, demonise.] In conflict tactics there are certain rules that [should be regarded] as universalities. One is that the opposition must be singled out as the target and ‘frozen.’…

     “…any target can always say, ‘Why do you center on me when there are others to blame as well?’ When your ‘freeze the target,’ you disregard these [rational but distracting] arguments…. Then, as you zero in and freeze your target and carry out your attack, all the ‘others’ come out of the woodwork very soon. They become visible by their support of the target…’

 ”One acts decisively only in the conviction that all the angels are on one side and all the devils on the other.”

That dehumanisation, demonisation and targetting through in effect mocking smears and slanders is obviously the real agenda behind such sick “hilarity.”

Toronto then returns with an attempt to suggest that shaking two magnets together in a bag, which would constrain the result to be locking with the poles aligned N-S, is comparable to how contingent possible values of states are used to store information in information systems. It is worth pausing to clip this further blatant misunderstanding and strawman caricature:

KF and Dembski put a lot of faith in their abstract concept of the “UPB” of 500 bits.

[--> Cf here on to understand what T would distract attention from, deride and dismiss]

Reality however can do better with just 2 bits.

Take two bar magnets and put them in a paper bag, then shake the bag.

While in the “abstract” you could end up with two north poles oriented in the same direction when the magnets attract each other, the “reality” of physics won’t let that happen.

[--> in short T knows this is a case of mechanical necessity, of low contingency, which is substituted strawmannishly for a case where high contingency needs to be explained on chance or choice]

This applies to evolution also

[--> Bare assertion, and get that folks, the implication is that evolution FORCES body plan level biodiversity similar to how shaking up two bar magnets in a bag will trigger a locked in alignment. Maybe he does not understand that he has just argued for the programming of the cosmos in a way that if true would be about as solid a proof of design as you could get: programming build into the laws of necessity of the cosmos. But actually this is just careless thinking by poor analogies]

but for some reason, the reality of chemistry is completely ignored by the KF crowd.

[--> in the relevant cases, as has been repeatedly pointed out but ignored by objectors, the chemistry of the chaining of D/RNA and of proteins in the same strand is NOT constrained by chemical forces to hold particular sequences. If it were, neither variety of proteins nor variety of genetic information would be possible. (Since it is a point of likely further confusion, let me point out that I am speaking within the chain, not across the two coiled chains where there are matched complementary pairs.)]

Physics both restricts and insists on different combinations of “information”.

[--> Unable to acknowledge the blatant reality of digitally coded information used in algorithmic processes in the living cell. Let's simply cite Wikipedia, speaking against known ideological interest:

The genetic code is the set of rules by which information encoded in genetic material (DNA or mRNA sequences) is translated into proteins (amino acid sequences) by living cells.

The code defines how sequences of three nucleotides, called codons, specify which amino acid will be added next during protein synthesis.

One hopes that there will in future be at least a minimal willingness to acknowledge that in D/RNA, we have a discrete state (= digital) symbolic code here at work that specifies the sequence of AA's in a protein chain. That is, which gives a "control tape" to a step by step assembly process. It is also worth noting that the tRNA "taxis" carry the load AA's to a standard CCA coupler, i.e the coding depends on an informational assignment carried out by synthetase enzymes. Indeed, artificial assignments have been created in the lab. ]

JF then goes on to suggest that the origin of two sites worth of information and a hypothetical example are adequate to overturn the observations on the source of FSCO/I and the analysis that shows why 500 bits of de novo information is a reasonable threshold for de novo info from an arbitrary start point being reasonably attributed to intelligence.

Of course, beginning in an existing island of function and moving around a few bits at a time through some form of hill climbing is not relevant to the matter, as it begs the question at stake: how to get to the shores of an island of function across a deep isolational barrier from an arbitrary initial condition. And that basic challenge does not begin from already existing life — a big begged question — but from some warm little pond or the like pre-biotic environment.

This issue is often begged in the context where there is no empirically supported causally adequate chance and necessity mechanism to get us from chemicals in a pond or the like to a functioning, encapsulated and gated, metabolising digital coded information using self replicating form. But, observed cell based life is full of things that in any other context would be immediately recognised as strong and reliable signs of design: digital code, algorithms, organised information processing and cybernetic machinery etc etc etc.

Sometimes, it is best to simply watch what we are talking about, so it is not lost in a forest of verbiage:

embedded by Embedded Video

vimeo Direkt

So, why should we — apart from Lewontin’s a priori materialism — suddenly insist that no, here is a case where we can infer that chance and necessity somehow did what we have never see them do, and where we have good needle in haystack reasons for doubting they can do on the gamut of our solar system and even the observed cosmos?

Shortly following, AM gives a classic of strawman tactics in action:

Extending the observed human capacity to program and send information to the very DNA that has given rise to those same humans is disfavoured precisely because it is ad hoc.

[--> To observe that the only empirically warranted source of digitally coded, functionally specific, algorithmic info is design is ad hoc? This is an attempt to sweep away an OBSERVATION with massive base by assertion. FYI, ad hoc means: ad hoc [æd ˈhɒk]adj & adv for a particular purpose only; lacking generality or justification (Collins). An empirical observation that is accurately summarised is simply not ad hoc.]

The things we can do are no guide to what could be achieved before our tiniest ancestors even started to make the protein that would ultimately take part in the formation of, among other things, our brains.

[--> Again, kindly tell us the observed source of complex algorithmically functional digital code? Do we have , anywhere, empirical warrant for the origin of such by chance and necessity? Where observed, by whom, where published and in what year did they get the Nobel Prize for such an achievement? (Prigogine doesn't count as he himself admitted.)]

No amount of logical contortion disengages ID from the charge of inserting an ad hoc cause.

[--> Doubling down on the fallacy]

‘Materialist’ scientists (that is, the vast majority of ‘em) consider that throughout its history, replication must obey physical laws.

[--> Red herring. Programmers are constrained by physical laws in coding a program, but the laws of chance and necessity do not explain the program. Knowledgeable intelligence, purpose, planning and skill in action do. And that holds even for materialist scientists once they set out to actually design and build a program; regardless of what a priori materialism imposed on science and science education may wish to tell us. Where also, BTW, in science , what is well warranted is decided on empirical evidence, not the alleged consensus of the crowd, even the credentialled crowd. Surely, we can learn that from the ongoing scandals with climate science. No authority is better than its facts, reasoning, underlying assumptions and so forth.]

The energy gradients involved in it must be a net flow ‘downhill’.

[--> Strawman, in this case a propagandistic one that falsely suggests that design thinkers think like that, in a situation where the typical audience member will not cross check to see that this suggestion is not so. No-one has asserted the opposite to what is held up as though it is a distinctive of the party of materialists. That's like the ad man who on seeing the way beer bottles were cleaned with live steam in a factory wanted to use it in an ad campaign. But that is industry standard. Yes, but no-one else is saying that, so present this as though it were a distinctive, at most if others come along later, that only says "me too." Which duly led the beer drinkers to think as was suggested.  Unfortunately, this is a widespread problem, not just one for beer drinkers. Let us lay out a basic fact: intelligence is routinely observed in action, and is observed to use resources to carry out metabolism to support intelligent behaviour. As in: ever seen lunch time on a construction site or seen a programmer surrounded by junk food and Jolt Cola etc?]

Intelligence per se cannot change that – the intelligent designer must design a system tapping a net ‘downhill’ energy flow, else that system will not be self-sustaining.

[--> More strawman caricatures. Correcting what no-one has said can sound very impressive, but it is misleading. Onlookers may want to check out here on to see my own remarks on this general subject.]

Is it reasonable to infer that there was ever a point at which energy flowed ‘uphill’, against the overall thermodynamic gradient?

[--> Of course, the real point is that those who construct ART-ificial systems, do so by creating a counter-flow, using intelligence, purposes and plans based on knowledge and skill to guide work. More strawman distortions.]

I’d say no, pace Granville Sewell.

[--> Misrepresentaiton by name. He has argued that what we do not see is FSCO/I arising by spontaneous processes through blind chance and mechanical necessity. Which is true.]

What the ID seems to be ‘for’ is the task of gathering the components of an early replicator from an entropically ‘diffuse’ state into a ‘localised’ one. Even the ID may be expected to be thermodynamically bound, on ‘best inference’ – there are no known ‘intelligent violators’ of the actual 2nd Law of Thermodynamics.

[--> More strawmen, this is a forest of them by now. Intelligence is routinely seen to gather raw materials from scattered states, and to process them into materials and components for systems, then to build the systems. What is not observed, is the same happening by blind chance and mechanical necessity, and the issues highlighted by the 500 - 1,000 bit threshold for FSCI shows us why.]

Seversky, almost predictably, then turns up with more personalities based on misrepresentations and outright untruths:

Kairosfocus has his standard repertoire of claims, quotes and arguments which have been answered many times and in detail over the years.

[--> As I just showed again above, the "standard" answers of objectors are as a rule based on red herrings, led away to strawman distortions and then laced with ad hominems and set alight, clouding, confusing and polarising the issue. U/D: Cf. my remarks on why this is so sadly typical, here. Onlookers are invited to look at my 101 survey of origins science from a design perspective here on, at the UD Weak argument correctives here, at the UD glossary here, at UD's definition of ID here, at a general purpose ID FAQ here, at the NWE survey article on ID here (the Wikipedia one being an inaccurate and unfair hit piece) and at the background note here on, (which is linked from my handle for every comment I have made at UD) to see for themselves. I also clip from comment 32 below on wider themes:

I suggest Coppedge’s survey of fallacies here as a good start-point, and let me point out my own straight vs spin primer (with a grading grid!) here. Also, here is a short primer on straight thinking, including on scientific thinking. This critical review of a major and highly effective recent agit-prop classic (it is even echoed in the unofficial anthem of new atheism by Aiden), by an expert, will also help.]

All the respondents have got for their efforts is a ban from Uncommon Descent – usually on the grounds of incivility or some such manufactured excuse.

[--> the evidence of incivility in case after case after case over the course of years is there to be seen, in case after case after case; including this one. As for the behaviour in the penumbra of objecting and hate sites, that is something else, rudeness gone up to the nth degree.]

Apparently, it is impolite to beg to differ over there.

[--> Mere difference is not to be  self-servingly substituted for false accusations, personal attacks and the like -- the latest one being the snide suggestion that I would be likely to post links to pornography, which has not been either justified on evidence or apologised for. Notice, in the very thread where Seversky presents this blatant untruth, we have examples of the sort of incivility that is the real problem, up to and including outing. With of course refusal to apologise for the sort of snide and outrageous suggestion that face to face would never be made.]

The counter-arguments have been brushed aside, not surpisingly, because, like others at that site, kf already has his truth and nothing can ever change that.

[--> if you cannot answer the issue, set up a straw man, soak it in ad hominems, set alight, then  attack the man as closed minded and a bully if he objects . . .]

We could continue on and on, but that is enough for now to substantiate the point about what would be likely to happen were I to be so foolish as to try to show up to deal with that sort of “civil” discussion.

It seems that we have two very radically divergent views of what constitutes reasoned and reasonable discussion, where Plato from 2350 years ago tells us just why, by exposing the underlying radical relativism and amorality of evo mat, leading to how it invites ruthless factions that vie to seize power and will act with gross disrespect and abuse once they think they can get away with it:

Ath. . . . [[The avant garde philosophers and poets, c. 360 BC] say that . . .   The elements are severally moved by chance and some inherent force according to certain affinities among them-of hot with cold, or of dry with moist, or of soft with hard, and according to all the other accidental admixtures of opposites which have been formed by necessity. After this fashion and in this manner the whole heaven has been created, and all that is in the heaven, as well as animals and all plants, and all the seasons come from these elements, not by the action of mind, as they say, or of any God, or from art, but as I was saying, by nature and chance only. [[In short, evolutionary materialism premised on chance plus necessity acting without intelligent guidance on primordial matter is hardly a new or a primarily "scientific" view! Notice also, the trichotomy of causal factors:  (a) chance/accident, (b) mechanical necessity of nature, (c) art or intelligent design and direction.] . . . .

[[Thus, they hold that t]he Gods exist not by nature, but by art, and by the laws of states, which are different in different places, according to the agreement of those who make them; and that the honourable is one thing by nature and another thing by law, and that the principles of justice have no existence at all in nature, but that mankind are always disputing about them and altering them; and that the alterations which are made by art and by law have no basis in nature, but are of authority for the moment and at the time at which they are made.- [[Relativism, too, is not new; complete with its radical amorality rooted in a worldview that has no foundational IS that can ground OUGHT. (Cf. here for Locke's views and sources on a very different base for grounding liberty as opposed to license and resulting anarchistic "every man does what is right in his own eyes" chaos leading to tyranny. )] These, my friends, are the sayings of wise men, poets and prose writers, which find a way into the minds of youth. They are told by them that the highest right is might [[ Evolutionary materialism leads to the promotion of amorality], and in this way the young fall into impieties, under the idea that the Gods are not such as the law bids them imagine; and hence arise factions [[Evolutionary materialism-motivated amorality "naturally" leads to continual contentions and power struggles; cf. dramatisation here],  these philosophers inviting them to lead a true life according to nature, that is, to live in real dominion over others [[such amoral factions, if they gain power, "naturally" tend towards ruthless tyranny], and not in legal subjection to them. [The laws, Bk X]

So, it seems the root problem was diagnosed 2350 years ago.

At this point, what we can do is point out to the onlooker, just what is really going on, trusting that in the end, the extremism and abuse of such radicals will be its own best refutation.

Hence the poster child project. END

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71 Responses to Update: Toronto earns a bar to poster child status (as does Petrushka) in a TSZ thread, with several others joining in and showing the habitual incivility and strawman tactics of too many design objectors

  1. Nice to see petrushka is spewing its same ole, tired equivocation and strawman:

    I started arguing a year or two ago that biological design is impossible except via evolution or by an omniscient being.

    1- What “evolution” are you referring to, seeing you, like a coward, refused to address that while you were here? Is it Intelligent Design evolution, front-loaded evolution or blind watchmaker evolution?

    2- Why does the designer need to be omniscient? Please show your work.

    Also it is noce to see that Toronto has yet to address KF’s initial post to it. But nice to see it wants me banned from here because I easily see through their never-thought-out arguments.

  2. Hi Joe:

    I had decided to come by and add a bit more on DNA as an info system, using Wiki speaking against ideological interest.

    I saw your comment as well.

    You are quite right that there is a basic problem of poor quality argumentation on the part of objectors to design theory.

    I see they want you banned.

    I will note that on the whole, you sometimes slip off the wagon, but with corrections from time to time, you have worked hard to keep up a reasonable standard here at UD. If we had objectors like that, I would be willing to live with that occasional slip-up. Unfortunately, too many objectors to design theory are simply not trying to deal with issues rather than habitually and incorrigibly resorting to abuse.

    But then, we need to start with the equivalent of “I am an alcoholic.”

    Until there is a determination on the part of objectors to act to a different standard, we are simply looking at excuses for nastiness.

    The recent poster child nastiness by Petrushka of a pretended banning multiplied by snide suggestions that I would be the sort of person to link to pornography, are all too revealing of what we are dealing with.

    You will see as well how after a dozen or so comments in the same sad vein of strawman caricatures and/or abusive behaviour, I said, look that’s enough of a slice of the cake to see the ingredients.

    So, I again have to call on Dr Liddle: is this what you really want to associate with?

    KF

  3. May I ask that you stop injecting your comments inside other people’s posts by using your inline “[--->" or "[]” convention. Your habit really does make it difficult to tell the difference between what you think and what somebody else thinks.

    This blog engine provides you a way to ensure that I can tell the difference between what you think and what the person you are commenting upon thinks. The blockquote HTML convention makes it easy to tell what you are saying and what a third-party is saying.

  4. TA: Can you see the indents used in the above? I would think that the very use of a parenthesis indicates just what you ask for, where I am here avoiding taking out a long set of numbered excerpts with extended comments under, which I do occasionally. If your problem is with Plato, his The Laws can be accessed in full form from the links I give. I also normally give the link to the source so you can see what was said in its original context. KF

  5. KF posted this:

    TA: Can you see the indents used in the above?

    I don’t see that you indent your opinions in the above (you typically inject your opinions by using your characteristic inline “[--->" or "[]” convention. Please stop doing this. It makes your contributions difficult to understand.

  6. TA: If you don’t see the extra-deep indents, which are indeed above, then something is wrong with your browser. KF

  7. Just use blockquote, it makes it obvious what the previous contributor is saying versus what you are saying.

  8. TA: You seem to be complaining against using an indicator that I am making an interjection of comment; in the above being ADDED to a double indent, which now seems from your last remark to be visible. I find that astonishing. (In future, I will endeavour by using breaks and where accessible indents to make such clear as possible.) KF

  9. Character assassination seems to be a very common tactic for some atheists. I got a first hand lesson in this after first beginning to debate atheists on YouTube (I know, not exactly a place to find intelligent scholarly insight).

    My friend was making videos refuting atheists on YouTube and I started responding to atheist attacks against him and the arguments he was presenting. I started listing off all kinds of studies and scientific findings from peer reviewed journals and the like to point out evidences and issues for and against various arguments. I was making a bit of a splash as the atheists on there were very clearly completely unprepared for all the data I was throwing there way.

    I branched out to responding to videos that some of the atheists had made with similar results. So within a week or two the atheists tried a new tactic. Instead of trying to actually debate with me, they would instead try to make me look bad to undermine my credibility and character.

    A couple of atheists suddenly started having their comments marked as spam. On YouTube, you can mark comments as spam and they’ll be temporarily blocked from view unless you choose to show them anyway. It was only atheist comments that were getting marked this way, and it was out of the blue that it began happening. Me and other pro Intelligent Design commenters immediately asked that whoever was doing that to please stop because it didn’t do anyone any good. The comments were not spam. To mark them as such was to hinder the debate.

    Right away one of the atheists responded accusing me of being the one to be marking his and other atheist comments as spam. “You liar! YOU’RE the one blocking the comments!” I plainly pointed out that I had been posting for a week or two to many video comment sections debating atheists and only a couple of those videos ended up having atheist comments marked as spam. Particularly, the ones where one particular atheist was the one debating with me. This was the same atheist who accused me of being the comment blocker. I pointed out that the spam marking of atheist comments started in his own video FIRST and then spread out to other videos hours and days later. But I had been commenting on those videos and more for many days and not once had any of the comments been blocked until he (the atheist) began commenting there. I pointed to numerous other threads where I commented and showed how none of the atheists there had been blocked. Then I pointed to the fact that all of the spam-marking was happening right around the same time that this one particular atheist was posting comments and NOT during the time of day when I was posting comments.

    This, along with other evidences made it quite clear that this one single atheist had gotten fed up with me and decided to try and make me look bad by making it look like I was blocking atheist comments. However the evidence made it very clear that he (the atheist) was the one orchestrating the entire thing. I pointed this all out and miracle of miracles, the comment blocking stopped dead and that atheist stopped responding to comments all together. His plot had been easily thwarted and outed.

    Now this is really just elementary school yard bullying, but I guess he figured that he had to beat me somehow and this was the best way he figured he could do it. Unfortunately for him, his whole strategy completely backfired because the way he’d gone about doing all this made it extraordinarily obvious that it was him all along and definitely not me blocking comments.

    This type of thing seems to be surprisingly common among atheists towards anyone that disagrees with them. It’s an instance of, “If you can’t compete fair, cheat.” It’s like kicking for the crotch or going for the eyes when you’re losing a fight. They can’t keep up or take the heat so they try to take you down some other way beyond the actual points we make or the data we present. It’s character assassination. Making up stories about us “evil IDers” is the best some of them have because they simply can’t compete when it comes to actual scientific and logical debate.

    I commend the atheists and evolutionists who do NOT stoop to such childish and low-blow tactics to try and win points in the debate.

  10. In KF’s defence when it comes to using the block quotes, I’ve had trouble using those myself. I probably just haven’t figured out how to use them right, or something. Though it would make it easier to quickly see what is a quote and what is not, it isn’t absolutely necessary. Simply putting the quotes in quotations should be enough. It’s really a minor issue.

  11. Perhaps the way to make the exchange between Petrushka and Toronto and KairosFocus fair, they could ban KairosFocus from TheSkepticalZone.

    That would seem the most fair arrangement to me. Of course, if TSZ did that, Toronto and Petrushka and the others would have less reason keep fielding complaints. But I expect that won’t happen because they want to feel justified in complaining.

    So an offer KairosFocus, if you like, on threads that I’m the author of at TheSkepticalZone, I could ban you. Would you like me to do that? I’m happy to oblige. Same for Barry, I can ban him from my threads at TSZ. If I did that, then they wouldn’t have a lot of basis for complaining anymore. :-)

  12. F/N 1: Someone — a Dr Who — over in the TSZ thread seems to recognise that science DOES routinely use abduction, correcting NR and others who were having great fun mocking away at the idea of abductive reasoning in science, That is commendable, not all is lost. Then, unfortunately, this clanger is dropped:

    Kairosfocus is right that abductive reasoning can be used in science.

    [--> at last, a lightbulb goes off! As in what did Peirce have to say on getting to hypotheses, again?]

    His problem is that he does the abductive bit without the reasoning bit.

    [--> We gotta get in a rhetorical jab]

    His mechanism to explain life has to be a non-living intelligent designer,

    [--> OOPS. From TMLO by Thaxton et al on, back in the first technical design theory work, it was acknowledged, even underscored that the explanation of the origin of life on the only known (i,e, empirically observed and inductively warranted . . . as in the "bigger half" of Logic) source of functionally specific and complex information -- design -- does not warrant a SCIENTIFIC inference to a designer within or beyond the cosmos, just to a designer.

    --> In addition, there is an implicit worldviews level confusion between cell-based biological life and life in any possible form. Let's just say that in the same context of The Laws cited, Plato raises the issue of the self-moved, purposeful entity as a different understanding of life.]

    and no such thing has ever been observed to exist,

    [--> Begs some huge questions, through dismissing large swathes of human experience of the spiritual, connected to the same equation of life with cell based biological life.

    --> Experience and observation are not just in science and dismissal of so large a block of transformational experience of spiritual reality as delusional undercuts the general credibility of the human mind.

    --> But in an era where there is abundant, powerful and prestigious support for the ideology of evolutionary materialism -- never mind its little problem of being self-refuting -- that which is self-stultifying in this and many other ways can attract mass support]

    let alone design things with FSCI (or whatever he’s calling it now) in them.

    [--> Diverts from the key observation: per massively based induction, the warranted cause of FSCI is design.

    --> In addition, per the needle in the haystack type analysis as repeatedly highlighted (the why of the 500 - 1,000 bit threshold) we have good reason to see why it is maximally implausible on the gamut of the solar system or the cosmos as a whole, why blind chance plus mechanical necessity starting from an arbitrary initial condition would get to the shores of an island of complex specific function

    --> And, per that complex specificity, well matched, multiple components have to fit a nodes-arcs pattern just so for function to result; starting with digits in a string data structure being correct code, e.g. in D/RNA]

    To put it another way, it’s no good pointing to the actions of intelligent living beings for whom FSCI is a prerequisite to explain life or FSCI.

    [--> A further blunder, the attempted infinite regress objection that traces to Dawkins.

    --> In fact, it is ROUTINE in science and other responsible contexts for explanations to be quite acceptable that are one or just a few steps deep. That is, the objection is first, selectively hyperskeptical.

    --> Next, all that design theory is doing is inference from inductively well-warranted sign to its empirically reliable cause. Deer tracks --> Deer, or the equivalent. That this is controversial and dismissed speaks volumes about the state of education and thinking among the credentialled in our day under the impact of evolutionary materialist ideology.

    --> In fact, as I have repeatedly noted, what we are explaining is cell based life as seen here on earth with plausibly colonies on Mars etc due to interactions. For that, a molecular nanotech lab a few generations beyond Venter would credibly do. That would be a sufficient cause, and is in reasonable technological reach.

    --> But of course, the root of the objection is that such an inference may admit Lewontin's dreaded Divine Foot in the door. Where, L's notion that such would blow up an orderly world in chaos is simply silly, Let us just note (a) to stand out as signs, miracles HAVE to be rare and in a context of the usual course of nature, and (b) the concept of a lawful course of nature set by its Architect is foundational to the rise of modern science -- hence the term law of nature.

    --> All of this has been repeatedly pointed out with warranting details but has simply been ducked or willfully ignored]

    There are of course several other objections, but this will give a flavour.

    ____________

    F/N 2: In light of what was documented above and previously, this from NR is astonishingly out of touch with reality not to mention duties of care to truth, civility and fairness. It is also a capital example of turnabout false accusation of incivility. Apparently to cite and give fair comment on abusive commentary including outing and to correct gross errors is “provocation”:

    Thanks to all for keeping this calm and civil.

    Let’s avoid any over-reaction to the provocation in a recent UD thread by kf.

    If I needed confirmation of why I should not wander over to TSZ’s threads, this is it. It is plainly a surreal atmosphere over there.

    KF

  13. PS: Oops, missed an indent-outdent. That is why I am reluctant to use multiple levels of indenting. I don’t have comment editing privileges on all threads.

    PPS: Kinvadren, you seem to be new, welcome. Thanks for some kind words. Sorry to see what you have had to go through.

    PPPS: Sal, ban away. No skin off my nose. I don’t need to go to TSZ to make a reasonable point, and since I link them, those who want to check can see for themselves. Notice how NR has inadvertently corroborated UB’s complaint of one-sided chiding there. I am astonished that the original post above seems to be a “provocation” instead of an occasion to stop and think again. It seems we are dealing with people who are running on rage and who need to take a very serious look at how they are projecting their rage unto others and “justifying” themselves in the inexcusable. not to mention just plain putting ignorance and a lot of fallacies on public display.

  14. F/N 3: I forgot, the latest spin is that Petrushka’s insinuation of a threat of banning and snide suggestion of banning was an inference to best explanation. The basic problem is of course that s/he has cast an unwarranted and false accusation, one that simply had no grounds. Since we have good reason to accept that MP was not banned [UD blog owner declaration], AND P “predicted” the disappearance, sadly, a far better warranted explanation was that MP was a sock puppet whose planned disappearance was used to set up the sort of trick that KV just pointed out.

  15. F/N 4: Food for thought on inductive reasoning, from Avi Sion. Notice:

    The uniformity principle is not a generalization of generalization; it is not a statement guilty of circularity, as some critics contend. So what is it? Simply this: when we come upon some uniformity in our experience or thought, we may readily assume that uniformity to continue onward until and unless we find some evidence or reason that sets a limit to it. Why? Because in such case the assumption of uniformity already has a basis, whereas the contrary assumption of difference has not or not yet been found to have any. The generalization has some justification; whereas the particularization has none at all, it is an arbitrary assertion.

    It cannot be argued that we may equally assume the contrary assumption (i.e. the proposed particularization) on the basis that in past events of induction other contrary assumptions have turned out to be true (i.e. for which experiences or reasons have indeed been adduced) – for the simple reason that such a generalization from diverse past inductions is formally excluded by the fact that we know of many cases that have not been found worthy of particularization to date.

    That is to say, if we have looked for something and not found it, it seems more reasonable to assume that it does not exist than to assume that it does nevertheless exist. Admittedly, in many cases, the facts later belie such assumption of continuity; but these cases are relatively few in comparison. The probability is on the side of caution . . . . In this way, our beliefs may at all times be said to be as close to the facts as we can get them. If we follow such sober inductive logic, devoid of irrational acts, we can be confident to have the best available conclusions in the present context of knowledge. We generalize when the facts allow it, and particularize when the facts necessitate it. We do not particularize out of context, or generalize against the evidence or when this would give rise to contradictions . . . .

    The uniformity principle ought to be viewed as an application of a much larger and important principle, which we may simply call the principle of induction (in opposition to the so-called problem of induction). This all-important principle could be formulated as follows: given any appearance, we may take it to be real, until and unless it is found to be illusory.[3]

    This is the fundamental principle of inductive logic, from which all others derive both their form and their content. And indeed, this is the way all human beings function in practice (with the rare exception of some people, like Hume, who want to seem cleverer than their peers). It is, together with Aristotle’s three laws of thought, the supreme principle of methodology, for both ordinary and scientific thought, whatever the domain under investigation[4].

    Indeed, we could construe this principle of induction as the fourth [fifth] law of thought. [--> The principle of sufficient reason -- if something exists, it can be found out why -- is 4th, in my book!]

    I trust this helps those who want to reflect on underlying matters of logic.

    KF

  16. KairosFocus:

    Sal, ban away. No skin off my nose

    You are hereby banned from any threads that I author at THZ. If you show up, I’ll have to show you the door.

    Sal

  17. I think “design objector” gives them too much credit.

  18. Respectfully, KF, I choose not to hang out in “the irrational zone” and don’t much care to see their drivel being copied over here.

    Leave. Let them have fun playing with themselves.

    They are hardly interested in civility, much less the truth.

  19. kairosfocus,

    toronto and petrushka welcome here for submit of arguments, yes? or is necessary to read them in Skeptical Zone site?

    sergio

  20. This is classic:

    First you tell us about the power and limitations of your designer.

    How do you test his capabilities?

    1- ID is NOT about the designer

    2- Designers- successful designers anyway- are capable of designing the things they design :roll:

    3- If you ever grow a pair perhaps YOU- Toronto- will step forward and demonstrate that neccessty and/ or chance is capable of producing what IDists say is designed. But until you do, stuff a sock-puppet in it :)

    4- IF you HAD an argument you would never have been banned from here

  21. sergiomendes-

    Neither Toronto nor Petrushka have an argument. If they had they would still be posting here. However petrushka is stuck on equivocation and Toronto needs to but several vowels and then try to put those together with the other letters so it can form a coherent sentence.

    That said, I agree with Mung. However nice it is to observe a swamp, enough is enough.

  22. And one more bit of laughter from petrushka:

    Your designer has to have capabilities exceeding the physical resources of the universe.

    HELLOOOOOOO… The designer(s) designed the universe

    Does anyone else not realize that the design inference extends beyond biology?

    But I love the evidence-free assertions

  23. If ID is not about the designer, who’s responsible for the “D” in “ID”?

    Obviously NOT anything YOUR position has to offer. But nice to see that Toronto thinks its ignorance is some sort of “argument”….

  24. And obviously Toronto also loves its positions’s evidence-free assertions.

    ID has the evidence, Toronto. But then again your side doesn’t deal very well with evidence- evidence is like a plague to you guys…

  25. Intelligent design begins with a seemingly innocuous question: Can objects, even if nothing is known about how they arose, exhibit features that reliably signal the action of an intelligent cause? Wm. Dembski

    Yes, they can.

    Most, if not all, anti-IDists always try to force any theory of intelligent design to say something about the designer and the process involved BEFORE it can be considered as scientific. This is strange because in every use-able form of design detection in which there isn’t any direct observation or designer input, it works the other way, i.e. first we determine design (or not) and then we determine the process and/ or designer. IOW any and all of our knowledge about the process and/ or designer comes from first detecting and then understanding the design.

    This is a virtue of design-centric venues. It allows us to neatly separate whether something is designed from how it was produced and/ or who produced it (when, where, why):

    “Once specified complexity tells us that something is designed, there is nothing to stop us from inquiring into its production. A design inference therefore does not avoid the problem of how a designing intelligence might have produced an object. It simply makes it a separate question.”
    Wm. Dembski- pg 112 of No Free Lunch

    Stonehenge- design determined; further research to establish how, by whom, why and when.

    Nasca Plain, Peru- design determined; further research to establish how, by whom, why and when.

    Any artifact (archeology/ anthropology)- design determined; further research to establish how, by whom, why and when- that is unless we have direct observation and/ or designer input.

    Fire investigation- if arson is determined (ie design); further research to establish how, by whom, why and when- that is unless we have direct observation and/ or designer input.

    An artifact does not stop being an artifact just because we do not know who, what, when, where, why and how. But it would be stupid to dismiss the object as being an artifact just because no one was up to the task of demonstrating a method of production and/ or the designing agent.

    And even if we did determine a process by which the object in question may have been produced it does not follow that it will be the process used.

  26. lol at the original post here being a “provocation” and representation of immature uncivil discourse. *rolls eyes* It’s a wonder some of these people can look at themselves in the mirror without grimacing or laughing over their “higher than thou” stances on these sorts of things.

    I’m guessing it’s a little like Richard Dawkins argument that atheists are perfectly capable of good moral standards, and then he announces that cheating on your girlfriend or wife is perfectly acceptable and that your significant other needs to stop being so selfish if she gets mad over discovering it…

    You think eventually some of them would realize that they’ve completely eroded their foundations for sensible well-reasoned debate. Yet they keep on ticking like nothing is amiss.

  27. This is funny:

    To put it another way, it’s no good pointing to the actions of intelligent living beings for whom FSCI is a prerequisite to explain life or FSCI.

    No reasoning, nothing. Just dr who’s “say-so.

    Pointing to the actions of intelligent living beings gives us a baseline from which to infer causation. We have knowledge of what nature, operating freely can produce and knowledge of what requires some agency involvement.

    We take that, plus the fact that nature, operating freely cannot give rise to nature, plus the criteria for determining design, and we get the design inferernce.

    That said, dr who, your position has all the power, thanks to Newton. You could always just step up present a testable hypothesis for your position along with positive evidence, saying “it ain’t designed” is not positive evidence, and you could do away with ID.

    However it must really bother you guys that you can’t do such a thing. Sweet…

  28. I will admit right off the bat that what I’m about to say is just an idea or concept and not in any way a scientific theory… I describe this concept here because some people have pointed at the issue of what the “designer” could be capable of or not capable of.

    If God (of some sort) did in fact create our universe, and if that God is actually beyond the bounds of the universe he created (which is quite possible), then he would have no limitations within our universe.

    Think of it like this. If I created a very fancy computer program to simulate an entire universe, giving it all sorts of parameters, variables, laws, functions, and so on, does my creation of that program limit my ability to change anything within it as I see fit? I programmed it, after all. Being the designer and creator of this program does not mean I am limited by the “laws of nature and the universe” that I put into it. In fact, the very capability to work outside of those laws would be a testament to my god-hood. If I were not able to do that, then I wouldn’t be much of a god. The point is that if a god created our entire universe (and the laws that govern it), then it quite rationally stands to reason that he is very much beyond the limitations of that created universe that we ourselves are bound within.

    Here’s an example of what I’m getting at with regards to the “simulated universe” concept. If you’re playing a computer game and you enter a cheat code that automatically gives you 1 billion of a particular resource, you’ve quite effectively “created something from nothing” in the context of that game, have you not? All that resource literally sprung out of thin air. You did this by use of a cheat function within the game code. You “broke the rules” that the game is bound by. Now to anyone actually residing within the game, the sudden appearance of 1 billion resources out of thin air in a single instant would be shockingly god-like, an incredible miracle! But to you, it was nothing at all. You simply typed in the appropriate cheat command.

    This is obviously an entirely hypothetical and metaphysical discussion (about the nature and capabilities of God, IF God is in fact the Designer of life and the universe). ID, however, does not require the identity of the Designer to be known. It simply infers that the Designer exists and designed life (and possibly the universe and everything in it, if you want to bring it into the realm of cosmology as well). But my point is that to argue what God can and can’t do on the basis that God is actually restricted by his own creation is a little funny.

    As is often stated, ID does not require that the Designer or even the Creator of life must be God or a deity. ID is not based upon the identity of the designer, but upon the inference of design itself. Sort of like how a book’s existence is not determined by you personally knowing the identity of the author who wrote it. A book is more than capable of sitting on a book shelf or in your library, even if the author’s name has been scratched out. The document is a testament to the fact that someone wrote it, and CAN potentially be a testament to the characteristics (and possibly even the identity) of the writer, but it does not require that we know who this writer was. The book was written, therefore it had a writer. Now if the book was a random jumble of incomprehensible nonsense with not order or structure to it whatsoever, then you could reasonably consider that the book didn’t actually have a writer.

  29. Kinvadren

    The thing is, what design theory does is seeks empirically warranted truth in science, about certain effects and their credible causes. That is going to have limits at any time.

    What I find amazing is that here we have a way to look at scientific methods and give a precise focus to how we make an investigation, off answering two questions, on a per aspect basis: (i) high/low contingency under similar conditions, and (ii) whether this reflects what we could expect from fair random sampling of a large population of possibilities. On low contingency, we are on a law of necessity hunt to explain the pattern. On seeing what looks like a stochastic outcome, we seek a chance based process. But when we see a “lottery” that should be un-winnable per needle in the haystack grounds being won then we have reason to go look for reverse engineering techniques.

    It turns out that C-chemistry, cell-based life and its body plan level diversity are unwinnable lotteries. That suggests “cheating” the odds, i.e. loading the dice. Design.

    Similarly, the physics of the cosmos in light of observations and its evident fine tuning for cell based life is another unwinnable lottery. Tipped a bit off the current operating point, in any of dozens of ways, and the cosmos is radically ill-adapted to the kind of life we see.

    So, we enjoy cell-based life in a cosmos set up for that, in the teeth of some unwinnable lotteries. Looks like there has been a lot of dice loading going on.

    That is anathema to too many, not on grounds of good reason to shift the lotteries to winnable terms, but on a priori world view commitments. And the sort of arguments trotted out in support don’t hack it. (And Sev et al, just because you have lodged specious objections — and yes, that is what they are, repeatedly — that does not give you a proper basis to then brush aside inconvenient evidence and reasoning. Every tub must stand on its own bottom.)

    The above does — when the cosmos side is brought in — make a creator beyond the cosmos and capable of designing and building a cosmos seem a viable candidate to be architect and builder of the physical world and the world of life.

    Similarly, even through multiverse speculations — no evidence in hand and in many cases no prospect of evidence — we see a need to explain a contingent cosmos. That points to a necessary being as the round of reality. And, given that that which is composite (as opposed to inherently unified in a complex unity) is arguably inherently contingent. In other words, if parts are put together one way, there is no reason to assert that they cannot conceivably be rearranged, potentially taking the composite entity out of islands of function dependent on specific ranges of configuration. Matter is like that.

    We are looking here at a logical basis for seeing a necessary, powerful and immaterial being as the grounds of the material world we inhabit.

    That sounds a lot like a possibility that ever so many are patently desperate to avoid and show astonishing hostility to.

    But, that is how today’s ideological cookie crumbles.

    KF

    PS: Joe et al, interesting further finds and points in a target-rich logical environment over at TSZ. I think that every now and then the evo mat ideologues and fellow travellers need to be scrutinised and trimmed back a bit, and after I saw the behaviour of PM and the evident ignorance of the basic role of abduction in scientific reason — as in how do hypotheses get formed and comparatively evaluated — I thought, let me give this one a chance to redeem himself before making him a poster-child of ignorance and illogic. I think it was over three times across various threads I called for dealing with the logic, to no avail. And by the time it was time to make the poster child PM had vanished, only to see the pattern of “prediction,” false accusation of a threat of banning and the soon to be associated nastiness of that suggestion that I would post links to porn sites. So, it was clear that Petrushka had earned pride of place in the list of poster children. Then Toronto turned up with the silliness of accusing me of circular argument because I have pointed to the significance of inference to best current explanation in science — and BTW, hostile onlookers, did you not notice how I immediately adjusted the point made by a cited source? Shouldn’t that highlight that I saw a difference and point of disagreement requiring moderation from what is a courtroom oriented perspective? In this context the yelping and yelling and projection are obviously because they do not like being held up and called to account for habitual strawman and personal attack tactics. And as for the suggestion that I would post links to porn, that is a plain insult tracing to an underlying hostility and discourtesy that simply are off the charts, that should have been immediately retracted and apologised for. The want of basic common courtesy involved in such is appalling.

  30. F/N: Designer of life needs at least the capabilities of a molecular nanotech lab some generations beyond Venter. Since this has been pointed out by me for more than a year repeatedly including when the sock puppet Mathgrrl was active, there is no excuse for willful ignorance of this stated view. Going back to the beginnings of modern ID with Thaxton et al in TMLO in 1984, a designer of life within the cosmos was similarly contemplated. So at this level we are seeing a strawman tactic. A root designer of the observed cosmos and/or the multiverse — cf John Leslie’s lone fly on the wall swatted by a bullet point — has the power and knowledge to build a cosmos set up for life, and is arguably a necessary, immaterial being. Such a pattern of inference goes back 2300 – 2400+ years, and is therefore not inextricably linked to any religious tradition or texts of scripture. In The Laws, Bk X, Plato — having subtly distanced himself from the Greek Pantheon and exposed the follies of evolutionary materialism — went on to argue to a good self-moved being — notice the cybernetic looping implied here — as the source of the well ordered cosmos we see. That empirical fact and its locus on the timeline of our civilisation are sufficient to decisively undercut any and all talking points about trying to read religious texts into the fabric of scientifically informed thought on origins. KF

  31. Yup I couldn’t agree more with your last post KF. The fine tuning of the universe, random lottery vs intentional design, etc. It’s fun to sometimes watch a science documentary and count how many times the narrator or scientists interviewed toss out words like “lucky”, “miracle”, “impossible”, “extremely implausible”, “shouldn’t have happened”, “unexpected”, etc. in their discussion of so many aspects of our universe and biological life. Unintentionally they admit to knowing full well that all of this “can’t just be”. That it simply doesn’t work from a purely material naturalistic stance. Yet even while saying such things they stand firm that it’s all just chance, physics and chemistry and how dare you suggest otherwise! It always makes me chuckle.

  32. F/N: I must have been sleepy. I just added, to my response to Seversky’s contribution, a set of links to where onlookers can find out about ID for themselves. I am led to wonder if there are any signs that the corrections above and in the two previous posts are being attended to, or are the TSZ denizens dancing on wrong but strong? KF

    PS: KV, sadly, yes. We are dealing with ideology and too often with rhetorical bewitchment. I suggest Coppedge’s survey of fallacies here as a good start-point, and let me point out my own straight vs spin primer (with a grading grid!) here. A;so, here is a short primer on straight thinking, including on scientific thinking. This critical review of a major and highly effective recent agit-prop classic (it is even echoed in the unofficial anthem of new atheism by Aiden), by an expert, will also help.

  33. F/N: Now that TSZ will load this morning, I see this from AM there:

    1) in wondering whether mphillips was banned, Petrushka was responding to your statement that you would take ‘stronger measures’ in correction. Ascribing the subsequent silence of mphillips to banning is an entirely reasonable surmise – many of us have first-hand experience of precisely that. Turns out the surmise was off-beam. Hey-ho – no harm done, eh?

    2) the poster playing your ‘nasty trick’ was NOT Petrushka. Nor Toronto. (Nor me, for that matter). And it was just a silly, throwaway remark – “you’re welcome here as long as you don’t post porn or overload the servers”. A dig in the ribs.

    1: This, of course neatly omits the “prediction” and the convenient disappearance turned into a false accusation of silent banning for mere disagreement. (Remember, MP had not passed the border into outright rude conduct or consistent outright personal abuse or trollishness that would have triggered a banning for cause. S/he was simply being evasive and strawmannish. So, the stronger measures were what did come out: the poster child. And it is fairly obvious that Petrushka has stood in quite nicely for MP to the point where I am fairly confident of their being confederates, if not necessarily the same person; as Joe believes on his experience of the former. And BTW, it is not “hypocrisy” — notice the ever so swift resort by some at TSZ to trying to undermine moral credibility, onlookers — to exercise patience with those who are plainly trying though they occasionally slip off the wagon. There is a material difference between a struggler and one who is blatantly defiant in wrong.)

    2: It also refuses to acknowledge the gravity of an accusation of arbitrary censorship, and the way this has been used against UD across time.

    3: When one makes a grave accusation, one had better be backing it up with serious warrant, not mere guesses. To be careless about the reputation of others is just as much a dereliction of duties of care to fairness and accuracy as to outright state what one knows to be false. But, I doubt that this was mere carelessness, given context and track record of too many of the objectors to UD. Nope, this was plainly a sick sock-puppet game.

    4: Next, I take very serious exception, for cause, to the idea that to suggest that someone would link porn, is a mere lighthearted dig. Sorry, that itself adds further insult to injury — the notion that I would be too stupid to see the next level in the Alinskyite mockery game. The false accusation pivoting on twisting what I have done (oppose porn) is utterly disgraceful and disrespectful, and to act like that without good reason goes to character. That sort of behaviour is beyond any excuse, period. Admit it, apologise and take it back instead of standing fast or upholding in wrong.

    5: To substantiate that a smear is involved, I clip Petrushka’s response to AM:

    If KF posted porn he would crop out the naughty bits. Pure speculation on my part. He wouldn’t really.

    6: Notice, the clever little rhetorical shift in terms from LINKing porn to POSTing it. This is a snide allusion to an anti-porn post in my personal blog where as a part of exposing what is going on for a Christian, Caribbean audience [including my spiritual "big sister" and several pastors and senior religious and civil society leaders . . . ], I took an online photograph of a so-called porn star and ran it through a photo editor, carefully clipping out the actual pornographic parts, focussing on a face. In so doing, I stated: “Let’s put a face on the process (by virtue of fair use).”

    (I also explicitly stated that I would provide no links to such exploitative and destructive, addictive filth. I did provide across a series [cf the links and refs, porn-perversion agenda section, RH column in my blog], figures, links, clips and video embeds provided by the Pink Cross Foundation and other anti-porn and porn recovery online sources. Here in particular is my link on the twelve step recovery process applied to this major new addiction, implicated by the US trial lawyers in over half of divorces and according to phone co sources there responsible some years back for probably half or more of the BANDWIDTH of Internet usage. That one rocked me back on my heels and shocked me into action. And of course it was precisely this anti-porn series that was used as a venue for harassing comments by denizens of one of the worst hate sites, which I later found out tied right back to the lyrics of Aiden’s songs.)

    7: That is, I did not post or link porn, but the face of a so-called porn star I suspect is much more the victim than the so-called glamorous star that is projected. (Those who do not understand my context should study the real story of the first high profile so-called porn star, known as Linda Lovelace. In her words to the US Congress, when you view her videos, you are watching her being raped, the gun being off the camera or being implicit in the behaviour of the man she so unwisely married.)

    8: This has been further twisted by Petrushka into a reflection of the gleeful snide remarks at the hate sites that tried to portray me as a porn-addict or the like. And yes, Petrushka, I know of that little game too. So the snide mocking doublespeak game fails.
    ________

    So, the context and content are plainly uncivil, and Dr Liddle should further understand just what she is harbouring at TSZ.

    KF

  34. And MathGrrl is still spewing lies:

    The Skeptical Zone actively encourages open discussion…

    Nonsense. You evos won’t even produce anything that supports your position. All you have are bald assertions.

    Unfortunately for Patrick, neither he nor any of the TSZ regulars would last one round in a moderated debate.

  35. kairosfocus,

    Next, I take very serious exception, for cause, to the idea that to suggest that someone would link porn, is a mere lighthearted dig.

    In the paragraph right after the one you quoted, Allan Miller explains exactly what he meant:

    Regulars here know that this was not a suggestion that YOU really would post porn, but was an in-joke reference to an incident where one of your allies posted a gynaecologist’s-eye-view of a lady’s genitalia to several locations.

    This is related to a comment I recently left here that I hope you will find the time to answer.

  36. So it’s OK to post a picture of a man’s genitalia, as Lizzie did?

  37. Joe:

    If that is what you did, own up like a man and apologise.

    That is over the top.

    KF

  38. KF-

    Yes, over on TSZ, I posted a link to something that was nasty and disgusting- my search words- because that is what I was dealing with- nasty and disgusting evos. Lizzie didn’t even know what it was, the link that is, until someone told her. And THAT is just truly pathetic- little children run around as tattle-tales.

    And yes I also posted the picture, not the link, over in the swamp atbc, well because that is what I think of them.

    And finally I posted the link on my blog when I corrected the evos as to what is and is not pornography.

    So Allan Miller was wrong- I did NOT post “a gynaecologist’s-eye-view of a lady’s genitalia to several locations”. I posted it to one- the swamp atbc.

    And no, the way I have been treated by those cowards I have nothing to apologize for, even if that means you ban me from UD.

    Not to worry though. Banning me from UD will not change my mind wrt Intelligent Design.

  39. O/L:

    Something is wrong here.

    Has it not got home to you that there is NEVER any possible excuse for the sort of false accusation that Petrushka posted?

    Do you understand that face to face such a remark would be the sort that would often elicit a PHYSICAL response from many men as an intolerable insult equivalent to spitting in the face or the like? In short, them’s fighting words.

    Do you understand the sort of implication of “have you stopped beating your wife”?

    That is the ilk of the remark.

    No excuse is possible. Such an attempt, by AM or whoever, will only come across as trying to uphold in wrongdoing. Especially, as Petrushka is very likely to know the wider context that you may not as I just laid out.

    Do you understand that the denizens of the hate site in question were speaking of how it would be better to spend Sundays viewing porn than to attend to churches viewed as “houses of hate,” and to put money in the coffers of such alleged houses of hate?

    In addition, are you aware that one of these denizens has operated a photography business that openly posts NSW pictures, including of a suspiciously youthful young miss whom the then deputy commissioner of police here estimated to be 16 YO at most (never mind that person’s assertion that she was 23). And yes, operators and denizens of said site, I spoke with both the Police and the Attorney general’s Office here.

    Note too that UK law is moving to a very serious stance on trolls.

    An apology and amends are plainly called for as a step towards recovery from willful injury and insult.

    As to the situation with TSZ, I have not called this a hate site. It is a site that is harbouring denizens of such sites, which I will not link. The denmizens in question indulge themselves in outing behaviour, threats to family — notice how someone just received pictures and addresses etc on wife that led him to contact the FBI — the abuse of online photographs to deface them with hateful messages projected unto targets. That counts as targetting behaviour for the sort of unhinged fringe that always hangs around such fever swamps.

    I need not go into the red herrings, strawman ad homienem demonising games at those sites, and the Alinsky mockery tactics which are being echoed in somewhat milder form at TSZ. All I will say is the milder form works to evoke the far crueller behaviour at those hate sites.

    And as for the notion — and insinuation — that someone who wishes to actually discuss the design theory issue on the merits without resort to the sort of tactics I have identified or the like, would be subject to arbitrary banning and censorship, that is simply a false accusation.

    Let me simply call the name Allen MacNeill to show one case of why. Similarly, while the rubbish has had to be taken off the lawn as above in the OP, I have had a fairly substantial discussion with Maus on argument by induction and inference to best explanation. I also raised the issue of morally self evident truths in the context of self evidence as a key move in argument and worldview building. I know, not as exciting and fun, but central.

    When it comes to Joe, you will see that we have corrected him across time towards civility and anger management, and you can see my response to him just above. I am willing to tolerate those who slip up an have to be restrained, but I am not willing to go along with willful persistent abuse.

    Similarly, I can understand the response of the Blog management to persistent thread derailing by evasions and tangents etc. In some cases where I have disagreed, I have communicated my disagreement, publicly and privately. As I did so over the weekend in the OP above.

    Now, if you wish to address the substantial issues in the original post above on the merits — notice, other onlookers, how these points have been conspicuously missing in action in the exchanges — you and others are quite welcome to do so. Observe the links to far more detailed discussions that address them.

    FYI, I welcome a genuine discussion on the merits.

    Indeed, that is what I was trying to get MP to engage when he decided to duck away in the context of a false accusation of my personal involvement in censorship by banning for mere disagreement.

    There is a name for that, O/L: SLANDER.

    Unfortunately, that has been par for the course.

    For, over the years, I have found instead of serious engagement, a habitual pattern of red herrings led out to strawman caricatures and soaked in ad hominems then set alight, clouding, confusing and polarising the issues.

    Okay, let us set some topics that could be pursued on the merits:

    1: Is argument by inference to best current explanation question-begging?

    2: is there such a thing as reasonable inductive generalisation that can identify reliable signs of causal factors, including mechanical necessity, chance contingency and choice contingency?

    3: Is it reasonable per sampling theory, that we should expect a chance based sample that stands to the population as one straw to a cubical hay bale 1,000 light years thick — about as thick as our galaxy superposed on it centred on Earth, to pick up anything but straw (the bulk of the population)?

    4: Is it therefore reasonable to identify that functionally specific complex organisation and/or associated information (FSCO/I, the relevant part of CSI) is er a broad observational base, a reliable sign of design?

    5: Is it reasonable to compare this general analysis to the grounding of the statistical form of the second law of thermodynamics, i.e that large fluctuations from the typical range of the bulk of possibilities will be vanishingly rare for reasonably sized systems

    6: Is digital symbolic code found stored in the string-structure configuration of monomers in D/RNA chains, and does such function in algorithmic ways in protein manufacture in the living cell?

    7: is it reasonable to describe this as “information” in the relevant sense?

    8: Is the metric, Chi_500 = Ip*S – 500, bits beyond the threshold and is the comparable per aspect design inference filter as may be seen in flowcharts,a reasonable application of such a claim?

    9: Is it reasonable to infer on this case that the origin of cell based life required the production of digitally coded FSCI — dFSCI — in string data structures, together with associated molecular processing machinery [cf the vid in the OP], joined to gated encapsulation, metabolism and a von Neumann kinematic self replicator [vNSR]?

    10: Is it reasonable to infer that such a vNSR is an irreducibly complex entity and that it is required before there can be reproduction to allow for natural selection across competing sub populations in ecological niches?

    11: Is it therefore fair — why or why not — to infer on FSCO/I, dFSCI and irreducible complexity as well as the known cause of algorithms, codes, symbol systems and execution machinery properly organised to effect such, that the original cell based life is on inference to best current explanation, credibly designed? Why, or why not?

    12: Further, as the increments of dFSCI to create dozens of major body plans is credibly 10 – 100+ mn bits each, dozens of times over across the past 600 MY or so, and much of it on the conventional timeline in a 5 – 10 MY window on earth in the Cambrian era, is it reasonable to infer further that major body plans show credible evidence of design?

    13: Is it fair or not fair to suggest that on what we have already done with digital technology and what we have done with molecular nanotech applied to the cell, it is credible that a molecular nanotech lab several generations beyond Venter etc would be a reasonable sufficient cause for what we see? [In short, the issue is inference to intelligent design not specifically supernatural design.]

    14: Is or is it not reasonable to note that in contrast to the tendency to accuse design thinkers of being creationists in cheap tuxedos who want to inject “the supernatural” into science and so to produce a chaotic unpredictability:

    a: From Plato in The Laws Bk X on, the issue has been explanation by nature (= chance + necessity) vs ART or techne, i.e. purposeful and skilled intelligence acting by design,

    b: Historically, modern science was largely founded by people thinking in a theistic frame of thought and/or closely allied views, and who conceived of themselves as thinking God’s creative and sustaining thoughts — his laws of governing nature — after him,

    c: Theologians point out that the orderliness of God and our moral accountability implies an orderly and predictable world as the overwhelming pattern of events,

    d: where also, the openness to Divine action beyond the usual course of nature for good purposes, implies that miracles are signs and as such need to stand out against the backdrop of such an orderly cosmos?

    15: In light of all these and more, is the concept that we may legitimately, scientifically infer to design on inductively grounded signs such as FSCO/I a reasonable and scientific endeavour? Why or why not?

    16: in that light, is it the case that such a design theory proposal has been disestablished by actual observations contrary to its pivotal inductions and inferences to best explanations, or has the debate mostly pivoted on attempted latter-day attempted redefinition of science and its methods though so-called methodological naturalism that undercuts the credibility of explanatory models of the past — on grounds that inference to the best evolutionary materialism approved explanation of the past is not the same as inference tot he best explanation of the past in light of all reasonably possible causal factors that could have been at work?

    G’day

    KF

  40. Joe:

    You went over the top, by your own confession, and you have given great occasion to those who want to use such to make much mischief.

    Try to understand that.

    Yes, the site named is a hate site and a fever swamp for propagation of hatred and corrupt notions. But there is no excuse for what you did, even if the image were a gynecological one rather than an outright pornographic one. That which is appropriate to the medical classroom or text book is not appropriate in other contexts. Nor is it an appropriate means of expressing contempt — that is disrespectful to our mothers, wives, sisters and daughters who have the sacred duty and capacity to be the bridge over which new generations pass into the world.

    You need to do a lot better than that, whatever Dr Liddle may have done.

    I hold no banning power at UD, so I leave that sort of decision to those who will have to make it, but it is clear that you need to be a lot more responsible, regardless of how strongly you may fell about the denizens of hate sites. They should be pitied, as the dupes of evil they are, not turned into demons in the flesh in our eyes.

    Yes, we may have to take strong corrective measures, but that does not rob such of being made in God’s image and due the respect of that image [which is why for instance those who put Cudjoe's cut off head on display in a cotton tree in the village behind me, were wrong, above and beyond the wrongs of slavery etc]. To despise and mock that image is to blaspheme God, who created it. That is why the apostle plainly says, we cannot love God whom we do not see if we hate men, made in his image.

    Please, reflect soberly on this.

    KF

  41. F/N: I just had occasion to notice a new post at TSZ in which Alan Fox claims to be the one who posted the remark I have up to this moment understood to have been posed by Petrushka, and as I recall, backed up by the Petrushka crab icon sitting next to the timing data from which I got the post link. If that misattribution is so [I am quite puzzled . . . ], I apologise to Petrushka for the misattribution. However the substantial issue remains the same. KF

  42. KF- The link was not aimed at Dr Liddle. It was addressed to a sock-puppet that goes by “OM”- the same OM who tried to falsify wikipedia’s entry on a company I worked for in an effort to sling $#!+ at me. The same OM who goes by “oldmanintheskydidntdoit” over on atbc.

    “Do unto others” and I did.

    (He is probably here, under another sock- a UK IP.)

    But anyway you are looking at the finger and not where it is pointing. That these lowly people are using this against me now months after it happened and has been erased, just demonstrates their desperation.

    And instead of being their willing pawn you should just disregard anything they have to say about their opponents. See it for what it is- a desperate ploy from a desperate people.

  43. I think you have it a little messed up Joe, it is not ” do unto to others as they do to you” rather ” Therefore all things whatsoever you would that men should do to you, do you even so to them”.

    And it is not nice to call KF a ” willing pawn”

  44. velikovskys-

    In the words of Monty Python-

    “I [vulgar reference deleted-- KF] in your general direction”

    Have a nice day

    _________

    Joe, you probably have an inch of leeway left if so much. Kindly watch tone and manners. KF

  45. kairosfocus,

    As to the situation with TSZ, I have not called this a hate site. It is a site that is harbouring denizens of such sites, which I will not link.

    To be consistent, you should refrain from posting here until Uncommon Descent stops harbouring not just a denizen, but the owner of a site like this.

    When it comes to Joe, you will see that we have corrected him across time towards civility and anger management, and you can see my response to him just above. I am willing to tolerate those who slip up an have to be restrained, but I am not willing to go along with willful persistent abuse.

    If you check the dates of the posts on that site, you will see that your corrections have done nothing to modify his behavior over the course of years. Just today there is a new post riddled with vulgarities and the type of writing that you deplore at other sites. Even in this very thread his comments subsequent to your chiding are rude and show no remorse.

    Refusing to post your questions at The Skeptical Zone because of your objections to the comments of one or a few of the participants there on a completely different site is hypocritical when you continue to post here, shoulder-to-shoulder with someone who has been far more offensive than anyone I’ve seen at Elizabeth Liddle’s blog.

  46. kairosfocus,

    And as for the notion — and insinuation — that someone who wishes to actually discuss the design theory issue on the merits without resort to the sort of tactics I have identified or the like, would be subject to arbitrary banning and censorship, that is simply a false accusation.

    Please then demonstrate exactly why Elizabeth Liddle was so offensive, relative to the ID proponents here, that she deserved to be banned. As an observer, it looked to me like her only sin was to argue effectively against some of the regulars here.

  47. Joe,

    QED

  48. As an observer, it looked to me like her only sin was to argue effectively against some of the regulars here.

    LoL! If Lizzie has an effective argument she sure as heck didn’t use it yet.

    BTW being offensive to very offensive people is OK in my book. And Lizzie and her ilk are about the most offensive people on this planet. And your actions here say that you are one of the lowest of the low.

    Are you from the UK or the USA’s west coast? IOW not any “onlooker” but an active loser evo named thorton/ occam’s aftershave or the whole truth…

  49. O/L:

    First, as I have repeatedly pointed out — including just now to Joe — I do not control UD’s mod policy.

    I have made my view on his behaviour and attitude clear to him. The same holds for the case with Dr Liddle, which came about in a context of vulgar language used to the blog owner by an objector. Dr Liddle while relatively harmless here other than a bit evasive [FYI, early on I actually devoted a post to commending her], was a hanger on on hate sites.

    Joe is a bit of a special case whom we have tried to help, and there are sides that I am not comfortable speaking in an open blog, especially in the face of your “can and will be used against you” attitude; which has you trying to double down in the context where I have given a public rebuke to Joe.

    Frankly, that attempt to pile on pressure from an obvious sock-puppet, leaves me a lot less than impressed; especially given your convenient dodging of the matters posed on the merits. As in, fifteen questions worth.

    It would be worth noting that someone on the other side tried to get him fired unjustly. Which seems to be connected to the recent incident.

    I am confident those who make the sort of decision will bear in mind all relevant factors. And pressure tactics will be likely indeed to back fire.

    KF

  50. Joe’s status is of no consequence to me and your forbearance is praiseworthy,KF. It reminds me of exactly how Dr Liddle dealt with Joe’s inability to control his anger.

    KF is was you who put posting porn as a topic [--> VS, you seem to be fact challenged. It is apparently Alan Fox who for some reason that escapes me, thought that suggesting that I would link porn could be a "lighthearted" rhetorical dig. Please, get your facts straight. KF] ,it is just Joe’s bad luck that he caught the spear. I,for one,just explained what the remark referenced. As you have said,you have no ability to ban,any pressure would be pointless.

  51. I agree KF,it is beyond limits to attempt to damaged one’s livelihood. [That, sadly, is one plain intent of the obsession with outing on the part of some objectors to design theory. The other, is target painting, as a certain hate site operator known as TWT has plainly indulged, along with the circles at certain hate forum sites. Let's just say the police have the background research details, just in case. I hope the recent incident at FRC shows to one and all the danger of falsely accusing people of hate for the mere presence of disagreement with a politically correct agenda, or of dishonesty etc. And, Joe, that is the context in which I just deleted a guessed identity. KF]

  52. It reminds me of exactly how Dr Liddle dealt with Joe’s inability to control his anger.

    Any “anger” came from Dr Liddle’s inability to tame her uncivilized faithful. Nice of you to totally ignore that very relevant point.

    And how does Dr Liddle deal with her and her ilks inability to make a valid point, post in good faith and form a coherent, positive case for their position?

    By spewing more of the same. And here you are, with nothing to offer, as usual.

  53. Joe’s status is of no consequence to me

    You and your ilk are obsessed with me. And for good reason- when they try to push evolutionism on my daughter I will see them in Court. And they will not be able to pin my fight against evolutionism on any religion- heck my daughter barely understands the concept.

    However, if you are very lucky, in a few years you may have some positive evidence to share with the world and I may not have a case to make.

  54. If onlooker has RCN for an ISP then it is [name deleted -- not relevant to the discussion. Only if O/L were doing actually trollish misconduct would it be legitimate to expose his identity in the real world. If he were suing multiple online identities or hangouts, then that is appropriate to point out. KF].

    And KF that line you thought was vulgar was from a very funny Monty Python movie- I definitely need to tone it down but you need to lighten up, just a little
    ______

    Joe: All that did is to further reduce Monty Python in my already low estimation. The language reference to flatulence is vulgar, and should not be used. KF

  55. Ah,posting links to porn for the sake of future generations. I now see you have a plan,apologies.

  56. Ah,posting links to porn for the sake of future generations.

    Ah blathering incoherent spewage for the sake of all evos.

    Who posted links to porn?

    But I see your “plan”- lie, bloviate, equivocate and misrepresent…

  57. kairosfocus,

    I have made my view on his behaviour and attitude clear to him.

    Joe is a bit of a special case….

    One’s friends and allies are often a special case. That’s the root of hypocrisy.

    You are refusing to participate in the open forum at The Skeptical Zone because of what you consider to be uncivil behavior on the part of some of the participants there, on an entirely different forum. At the same time, you continue to participate here at UD despite the fact that you are voluntarily associating yourself with one of the most uncivil commenters it has ever been my misfortune to encounter, as demonstrated on his own blog and at The Skeptical Zone.

    Since uncivil participants clearly don’t prevent you from being active in a forum, there is no reason why you shouldn’t post your questions for Elizabeth Liddle where she will see them and can respond rather than here where she is banned.

    And speaking of that banning, you have yet to reply to my earlier request for information:
    Please then demonstrate exactly why Elizabeth Liddle was so offensive, relative to the ID proponents here, that she deserved to be banned. As an observer, it looked to me like her only sin was to argue effectively against some of the regulars here.

    Until you can explain that, your claim that

    If someone wishes to discuss design theory on the merits, without abusive behaviour, UD is more than adequate.

    rings quite hollow.

  58. Unfortunately for “onlooker” the words of an anonymous poster ring quite hollow.

    The posters over on TSZ are uncivil wrt to IDists and creationists. OTOH I am “uncivil” to those uncivilized evos.

    That “onlooker” continues to fail to mention that fact speaks volumes about its agenda.

  59. kairosfocus,

    I agree KF,it is beyond limits to attempt to damaged one’s livelihood.

    [That, sadly, is one plain intent of the obsession with outing on the part of some objectors to design theory. The other, is target painting, as a certain hate site operator known as TWT has plainly indulged, along with the circles at certain hate forum sites.

    For the record, and in the spirit in which you publicly chastised one of your allies, I agree with you that TWT’s behavior is more than a little obsessive and certainly uncivil. I tend not to read his long screeds, actually — too little signal in the noise.

  60. too little signal in the noise

    Talk about pegging the irony meter….

  61. KF- the reason for giving “onlooker”‘s possible name is that person is as foul and vulgar as they come, yet it is sitting there throwing stones at me.

    Strange that the sock-puppets that are attacking me now are some of the same who have repeatedly attacked you when in their other socks.

  62. Keep digging Joe,you are doing all the work of making yourself look bad. So now the story is that a) the you posted no link b) you only posted link therefore you didn’t post porn and c) evil in the cause of good is righteous

    No a puppet of any kind,but loved the Banana Splits.

  63. LoL! Looking bad in your eyes is what I would expect. After all I have exposed you and your ilk as substance-free trolls.

    So now the story is that a) the you posted no link

    Nope. 0 for 1

    b) you only posted link therefore you didn’t post porn

    Nope- 0 for 2

    and c) evil in the cause of good is righteous

    I don’t care about righteous. 0 for 3- you lose, again, as usual. Another substance-free post by velikovskys…

  64. KF
    [--> VS, you seem to be fact challenged. It is apparently Alan Fox who for some reason that escapes me, thought that suggesting that I would link porn could be a "lighthearted" rhetorical dig. Please, get your facts straight. KF

    That is weird because that is what I thought as well, speaking of getting facts straight at least I didn’t falsely accuse someone of slander. I guess that brings us back to the beginning

  65. Sincere apologies KF for the last part, it was juvenile and unnecessary.
    ________
    I am leaving this on record, so the onlooker can see how a genuine error is twisted into a false accusation, meanwhile an invidious and horrible association fully comparable to “have you stopped beating your wife yet” stands unremarked or is trivialised or is even defended by ever so many objectors to design theory. Despite the semi-apology, this goes to attitude. KF

  66. Dear Kairosfocus,

    I wrote earlier:

    You are hereby banned from any threads that I author at THZ. If you show up, I’ll have to show you the door.

    Sal

    Because of the outcry against me at TSZ and the outpouring of support for your unbanning, you are hereby unbanned from any thread I author unless Elizabeth Liddle and the management at TSZ say otherwise.

    Not that the original banning was really serious in the first place, or that I had authority to do so, but some members at TSZ were horribly insulted at my ceremonial actions-in-jest against you.

    So I beg your forgiveness for censoring your non-existent postings at TSZ. Feel free now to non-post at TSZ because you are hereby unbanned there (not that I had authority to ban or unban anyway).

  67. SC: I have seen absolutely no reason to reconsider my utter lack of interest in commenting at TSZ. The fundamental problem there being selective hyperskepticism. The rhetorical antics of several objectors to design theory there deserve iconic status as poster-children for irresponsibility on serious matters. KF

  68. Sal,

    If those people were worth the time they would still be allowed to post here. That you want to play in a worthless swamp is on you.

    Good luck with that

  69. Just look at what Elzinga spews:

    Everything in physics, chemistry, and biology points to life emerging from the condensation of matter.

    He is obvioulsy totally oblivious to reality.

    We don’t know what actually happened yet; but there are no laws of physics and chemistry that stand in the way.

    There aren’t any laws that allow it. YOU need POSITIVE evidence and all you have are bald declarations.

  70. That you want to play in a worthless swamp is on you.

    Good luck with that

    Mike and Olegt have been very generous with their time and expertise. They are professional physicists and they have brought me along further in my understanding of science.

    I’ve disagreed with them before. I expect UD and TSZ to have disputes between authors and commenters in the future. But I must give credit where credit is due and extend public thanks to individuals who actually (sometimes reluctantly) provide assistance in helping me learn things. To that end I also thank Elizabeth Liddle.

    Sal

  71. Sal,

    They have helped me learned things to- like some people (TSZ) will go to any lengths to refute their opponents other than actually engaging their arguments all the while just making bald declarations and equivocations to support their position.

    Just remember to shower and disinfect after. That is all I’m sayin’…

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