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Thursday, January 29, 2009

Peer review review part two

I have to wait on files to transfer from one computer to another today. The last discussion began getting chippy and way off point but I am staying on point by posting this article and interspersing comments. Part three will follow:


The Geological Society of London again moves to silence debate on creation science

by Tas Walker and Jonathan Sarfati

Vesuvius

Photo of Mt Vesuvius from wikipedia.org

This week’s feedback responds to a recent policy statement on creationism by the Geological Society of London, one of the oldest such professional institutions in the world.

In January 2008 the editor of Geoscientist, the in-house magazine of the Society, wrote an aggressive opinion piece about creationists, saying that they were not even worthy of their contempt.1 A few months later, Geoscientist published a call to bar the creationist viewpoint from the public information centre at the Giant’s Causeway, UK.2

Now, the Council of the Geological Society of London has issued a statement critical of young-earth creationism, creation science and intelligent design, saying they should not be considered as scientific.3 Clearly the issue is of concern to the Society and we are pleased that the Council has made a public statement. It gives us the opportunity to respond and set the record straight.

‘Young Earth Creationism’, ‘Creation Science’ and ‘Intelligent Design’

A Statement by the Geological Society of London
Approved by Council 10 April, and published 11 April 2008
This Society upholds the right of freedom of belief for all. The freedom scientists enjoy to investigate the nature and history of the Earth is the same freedom that allows individuals to believe—or not—in a deity.

Freedom of belief means that government cannot prescribe what an individual should believe; they cannot try to force an individual to act contrary to their beliefs, or discriminate against individuals on the basis of their beliefs. However, the Council, through this statement, seems to want to influence government to remove the freedom of individuals to promote beliefs that are contrary to the Council’s views.

Science's business is to investigate the constitution of the universe, and cannot pronounce on any concept that lies ‘beyond’ nature.

Central to science is observation and measurement, activities that can only be performed in the present. Events of the past lie ‘beyond’ the ability of scientists to observe, so all statements about what happened in the past, including geological interpretations, rely on assumption and opinion.

Geologists have often referred to Pliny the Younger’s writings [on Vesuvius’ eruption] when interpreting the geology of the area, and that is scientifically valid. Likewise, it’s scientifically valid for creationists to refer to biblical history when interpreting the geology of the globe. In fact, the pioneers of geology such as Nicholas Steno did just that.


Radar - In other words, the naturalistic materialistic worldview is scientific whether it is speaking to observations being made in 2009 or philosophically driven suppositions about origins that suggest possible past operations that cannot be observed. Interpretation and forensic conclusions are the sole property of naturalistic materialists and the rest of us, being of lesser value and intellect, can just go hang...

Concerning ‘Intelligent Design’, science is well able to recognize design when it is present, and several scientific disciplines rely on this, including forensic science, archaeology, and the SETI project. In the same way, scientists who point to evidence of ‘intelligent design’ in living organisms are presenting conclusions that are absolutely valid within the realm of science. Questions about of the nature of this intelligence tend to be ‘beyond’ scientific investigation, which is why ‘intelligent design’ advocates generally don’t venture into this area.

Likewise, young-earth creationism, or creation-science, is a valid scientific approach to questions about the past. It’s based on recorded history. The Bible records historical events that have consequences for geology, as does Pliny the Younger’s account of the eruption of Vesuvius in AD 79. Geologists have often referred to Pliny the Younger’s writings when interpreting the geology of the area, and that is scientifically valid. Likewise, it’s scientifically valid for creationists to refer to biblical history when interpreting the geology of the globe. In fact, the pioneers of geology such as Nicholas Steno did just that. (See Geological pioneer was a biblical creationist.)

This is the meaning of ‘agnostic’, the word coined by former GSL President Thomas Henry Huxley, to describe a scientist’s position of being ‘unable to know’.
Steno

Nicholas Steno (wikipedia.org)

Frequently the term ‘agnostic’ is used in the sense of ‘I don’t want to know’. Long term atheist Antony Flew changed his mind about atheism and became a theist in 2004—because of the scientific evidence. (Radar - There is a God is Flew's new book) The Apostle Paul says in his letter to the Romans that the evidence of the Creator’s power and nature is so clear that all people are without excuse (Romans 1:20). It’s interesting that the Apostle describes how people will deny that knowledge and suppress the truth, something that is relevant to the Council’s statement.

This Society has therefore long operated according to the view that religion and science only become incompatible with each other when one attempts to trespass upon the domain of the other.

The fact is that the Bible and evolutionary science are making competing claims within the same domain. The Bible says that this world was created by God in six days about 6,000 years ago; the Geological Society of London says this world formed by itself by natural processes over millions of years and that no supernatural activity was involved.

Clearly these two claims are incompatible, which is why the Council says that science is ‘incompatible’ with religion. But the Council is confused on this issue because it promotes resources (in its ‘Further information’ section below) that say the exact opposite—that science and religion are compatible. This confusion arises because the Council uses the word religion in two different ways.

But beware of such claims about ‘domains’—see who decides where the boundaries lie! Christian should be suspicious about antitheists deciding the scope of Christianity’s domain. In practice, this allows the antitheists to shrink the boundaries all the time. Of course, God owns the entire universe, so nothing lies outside His domain. See further discussion in Is evolution compatible with religion?

Further, the Council does not appreciate that there are two different kinds of science, ‘experimental’ and ‘historical’, or operational and origins. Statements about the origin and evolution of the earth are questions of ‘historical’ science—ideas about what happened in the past. Everyone has a belief about how the world came into being and everyone interprets the evidence based on that belief—their worldview. That is why we think it is better to use the term ‘worldview’ instead of ‘religion’. When the Council uses the term ‘religion’ they imply that some people have a religion and are biased, and that some people don’t. But the fact is that everyone has a worldview and everyone is biased. Atheistic evolutionary philosopher Michael Ruse explicitly admitted, ‘Evolution is a religion.’

Radar - I have been asserting that which is contained in the above paragraph since I began blogging. Some of my commenters have either failed to comprehend this concept or preferred to ignore it but I know they are smart enough to understand it. Can any of them deny the truth of the paragraph above?

The incompatibility the Council refers to only arises because they are comparing apples with oranges—things that are not the same. If you assume naturalism/atheism as your worldview you end up with the ‘science’ of evolution over billions of years. However, if you assume that the Bible records accurate history (biblical Christianity) you end up with a young earth and a global Flood. Different worldviews lead to different scientific explanations.

The Council rightly recognizes that naturalistic science is incompatible with the biblical worldview. They also recognize that some worldviews (i.e. some religions) are compatible with evolution over millions of years. And remarkably, the Council is promoting those ‘compatible’ religious views in the section below ‘Further information’. Could this activity by the Geological Society of London be described as their ‘attempt to trespass upon the domain of the other’?

The idea that the Earth was divinely created in the geologically recent past (‘Young Earth Creationism’); attempts by Young Earth Creationists to gain acceptance for what they misrepresent in public as corroborative empirical evidence for this view (‘Creation science’); and the allied belief that features of the universe and of living things are better explained as the direct result of action by an intelligent cause than by natural processes (‘Intelligent Design’), represent such a trespass upon the domain of science.

We don’t think it is becoming of the Geological Society to use derogatory terms like ‘misrepresent’ as a way of discrediting people who hold different views. All the ideas they cite here are alternative views that should be aired and discussed—not censored and suppressed.

The Geological Society of London is the oldest national learned society for the Earth sciences in the world, and embodies the collective knowledge of nearly 10,000 Earth scientists worldwide.

The Council is here using an argument from authority, which is a logical fallacy and has no place in scientific debate. Copernicus and Galileo challenged the consensus view of the scientific establishment when they promoted the radical heliocentric scheme. Alfred Wegener fell foul of the geological establishment for decades when he proposed his idea of continental drift, first proposed by the creationist Antonio Snider in 1859. I’m surprised that Geological Society would actually use this argument from authority.

Furthermore, we suspect the Council is not aware of the range of views held by its own membership. If they checked we think they would find a percentage of their membership were young earth creationist and disagreed with this policy statement—unless those members felt too intimidated to say.

On their behalf it wishes, during the United Nations International Year of Planet Earth, to place on record the following facts as being long established beyond doubt.

‘Long established beyond doubt’! It’s a standard political tactic to declare that the debate is over. That way you do not have to defend your position. Surveys have shown that more than 40% of the population of the USA would not accept the following statements as fact, so the debate is not over.

  • Planet Earth, along with the other planets in the Solar System, was formed approximately 4560 million years ago.

This is said to be a fact but it is not. It is a subjective opinion based on personal worldview, albeit held by a large number of geologists. To recognize that this is not factual, ask yourself how all this was observed scientifically. Where were these 10,000 geologists standing to see it happen?

This statement is based on the Nebular Hypothesis for the origin and formation of our solar system. Note the word hypothesis! A hypothesis is a speculation, and in this case it is a speculation about what may have happened in the unobserved past—discounting the historical account of the Bible. There are plenty of problems with this, such as:

  • Although the sun has over 99% of the mass of the solar system, it has only 2% of the angular momentum. This pattern is directly opposite to the pattern predicted for the Nebular Hypothesis. Evolutionists have tried to solve this problem, but a well-known solar system scientist, Dr Stuart Ross Taylor, has said in a recent book, ‘The ultimate origin of the solar system’s angular momentum remains obscure.’4
  • Earth and the other inner planets were allegedly formed from fragments that collided and fused together. However, the fragments would have bounced off each other, rather than melted and clung.5
  • There should have been insufficient material for the cores of Jupiter6 and Saturn7 to form. And even if it could form, they would have spiraled in towards the sun.
  • Uranus

    Photo of Neptune: NASA

  • The Ice Giants, Uranus and Neptune, should not have been formed at all! One evolutionary astronomer admitted:
‘Pssst … astronomers who model the formation of the solar system have kept a dirty little secret: Uranus and Neptune don’t exist. Or at least computer simulations have never explained how planets as big as the two gas giants could form so far from the sun. Bodies orbited so slowly in the outer parts of the solar system that the slow process of gravitational accretion would need more time than the age of the solar system to form bodies with 14.5 and 17.1 times the mass of Earth.’8
  • Life has existed on Earth for thousands of millions of years. It has evolved into its current form by a combination of genetic variation and natural selection-and is likely to go on doing so for as long as it continues to exist.

Again, the idea of life existing on Earth for billions of years is one interpretation of the geologic strata. There are other ways of interpreting the same evidence. Further, no one knows how the first living cell could have assembled itself from non-living chemicals. In fact, there is no scientifically defensible explanation for how life originated, or how the many biochemical systems within cells and multi-cellular organisms arose. There is no evolutionary mechanism that can provide the needed increase in genetic instructions. The fossil evidence is lacking. The genetic evidence is confusing. So this dot-point is simply story telling, not fact.

  • Close study of the structure and organisation of living animals and plants clearly indicates their common ancestry, and the succession of forms through the fossil record, as well as the genetic record contained in every living organism, provides powerful evidence of the reality of evolution.


This is not a fact but an assertion, and it is based on hope rather than evidence. There are gaps in the fossil record and in the molecular record. Similarity of form can be explained using the concept of common design, which would bring great honour to the Designer, an explanation that avoids many of the problems that the common-ancestor explanation has. Evolution is simply one explanation for the evidence but there are others.

Further information

  • For a statement on this subject by the Royal Society, the UK national academy of science, go to

The Royal Society statement is similar to this one by the Geological Society. It contains many unsubstantiated assertions and arguments from authority. If those who drafted these statements had read a critique of evolution such as Refuting Evolution they would realize that their arguments have been long refuted.

  • For a recently updated (2008) version of the US National Academy of Sciences booklet Science, Evolution and Creationism, go to: . This document will tell you what is and is not science, summarises the scientific evidence for evolution by natural selection, and highlights repeatedly how leading religious figures have spoken out in favour of evolution as being consistent with their world-view.

This document has been thoroughly refuted at: Science, Creation and Evolutionism: Response to the latest anticreationist agitprop from the US National Academy of Sciences (NAS), Science, Evolution and Creationism.

This dot-point also illustrates the inconsistency of the Council. Their main statement above says that science and religion deal with different domains and that incompatibilities arise when one domain trespasses on the other. But here they do their own trespassing by saying that evolution is consistent with religion.

Of course people who hold an evolutionary worldview (whether atheist, agnostic, Christian or Hindu) find that evolution is consistent with their worldview. But evolution is not consistent with the worldview of those who believe the Bible records real history.

The question is, ‘Which worldview is correct?’ This debate should be in the public arena and open for intelligent discussion. The Council’s attempt to silence and suppress debate is counter productive.

  • For a statement on Intelligent Design issued by the International Society for Science and Religion, the main academic international society dedicated to the relationship between science and religion, see www.issr.org.uk/id-statement.asp.

The International Society for Science and Religion is an example of a religious group that does not take the Bible as history. The article essentially promotes naturalism and its thrust would be contrary to the attitude of many pioneers of modern science.

  • For an account of evolutionary knowledge, see vertebrate palaeontologist Prof. Kevin Padian's evidence, given in trial (Kitzmiller v Dover): http://tinyurl.com/2nlgar. This destroys the bases of young-Earth creationists' assertions regarding critical gaps in the fossil record.

For information on the problem the fossil record presents for evolution see:

See also: Fossils Q&A and Refuting Evolution: The Links are Missing.

For books and DVDs that deal with the fossil problem see: Bones of Contention, Evolution the Fossils Still Say No and Artistic Ape Anecdotes: The Art of Deception (DVD).

  • For a clear account of evolution given by one of the world’s leading geneticists, showing how it is compatible with religious belief, see The Language of God by Francis Collins (Free Press, 2006). Francis Collins is Head of the Human Genome Project.

Francis Collins is an evangelical Christian but does not take Genesis as history, which is an inconsistent position. This is why the Geological Society again trespasses into religion here—to promote a ‘religion’ that agrees with their view. The inconsistencies within Collins’ book have been discussed in the Journal of Creation review, Harmony and discord.

  • Alexander, D. & White, R. S. (2004). Beyond Belief: Science, Faith and Ethical Challenges, Lion, Oxford, 219pp. Gives an accessible account of science and its interaction with religious views, including sections on evolution (with a critique of intelligent design), the age of the Earth and global environmental issues.

Once again the Council is promoting a religious view that opposes the plain teaching of the Bible. More trespassing. For information on the other view see:

  • Gould, Stephen J. 1999. Non-overlapping magisteria. A succinct and entertaining exposition of the lack of conflict between science and non-literalist religious thought. Published in: Leonardo's Mountain of Clams and the Diet of Worms. Jonathan Cape, pp. 269–283.

This concept is refuted at: Stephen Jay Gould and NOMA and Who’s really pushing bad science?

  • Pope Pius XII 1950, Papal Encyclical Humani Generis

Why not cite one of his predecessors, Leo XIII, incidentally quite a strong chessplayer, in the the Encyclical Providentissimus Deus (1893):

Inspiration Incompatible with Error
‘… It is absolutely wrong and forbidden, either to narrow inspiration to certain parts only of Holy Scripture, or to admit that the sacred writer has erred. The system of those who restrict inspiration to things of faith and morals cannot be tolerated. All the books which the Church receives as sacred and canonical are written wholly and entirely, with all their parts, at the dictation of the Holy Ghost; and so far is it from being possible that any error can co-exist with inspiration, that inspiration not only is essentially incompatible with error, but excludes and rejects it as absolutely and necessarily as it is impossible that God Himself, the supreme Truth, can utter that which is not true.
‘… And the Church holds them as sacred and canonical, not because, having been composed by human industry, they were afterwards approved by her authority; nor only because they contain revelation without error; but because, having been written under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, they have God for their author. Hence, because the Holy Ghost employed men as His instruments, we cannot therefore say that it was these inspired instruments who, perchance, have fallen into error, and not the primary author. For, by supernatural power, He so moved and impelled them to write-He was so present to them-that the things which He ordered, and those only, they, first, rightly understood, then willed faithfully to write down, and finally expressed in apt words and with infallible truth. Otherwise, it could not be said that He was the Author of the entire Scripture. Such has always been the persuasion of the Fathers.’

See 15 Reasons to Take Genesis as History and Creation and Change.

See also The Great Turning Point: The Church’s Catastrophic Mistake on Geology—Before Darwin which documents how anti-biblical geological ideas undermined the Christian church in the UK. It also documents how some of the prominent members of the fledgling Geological Society deliberately politicked to compromise the authority of the Bible among the leadership of the Church of England. So, trespassing by evolutionary geologists to tell Christians how to read the Bible is not a new phenomenon.

ENDS

This statement by the Council of the Geological Society of London suggests it is governed by people who are hostile to the biblical worldview (the historic-grammatical view that has been the orthodox view of Scripture in the Christian church until the advent of a new geological philosophy in the early 1800s). The Council is not used to defending their naturalistic worldview against alternatives, and it’s clear that they do not want to start now. Perhaps they imagine that by throwing their weight into a council resolution they will be able to silence discussion before it starts. However, their problem is not going to go away because people today are becoming more informed (and concerned about the effects of evolutionary philosophy on our culture). If the Council is going to be prepared for the ongoing battles with creationists we suggest they read some of the links and literature mentioned here, and engage with what creationists are actually saying.

Related articles

Radar - In part two of the Peer Review postings, I have shown that, using this article as an example:

1- Orthodox naturalistic materialistic science (ONMS) is hostile to all worldviews other than their own, which is more of a religious or philosophical question than it is one of science.

2- ONMS uses derision rather than evidence as a reason to exclude YEC and ID scientists and their findings from consideration.

3- ONMS does this because they cannot support their own positions factually and observationally.

4- Therefore ONMS seems to consider censorship a valid and integral part of the pursuit of scientific truth. I vehemently disagree!

Allow me to present a way science SHOULD work. Michael Brooks presented an overview of "13 things that do not make sense" in the New Scientist Magazine. He may not be a YEC or a ID guy, but he is willing to admit he doesn't know and that study is required to understand some very interesting quandries of science. Would it surprise you that YEC scientists have discovered evidence to answer some of these? But I will leave it at this for now. It is scientific to question and test and hypothesize. It is even scientific to theorize. It is censorship to shut off discussion and turn hyphothesis into fact on religious/worldview grounds.

34 comments:

highboy said...

Huxley was a flaming nutbag.

Taxandrian said...

*yawn*

Radar, three things:

First: we've been there. And you were quite quick then to bugger off, not even making an effort to defend the article. What makes you think you will succeed this time? Please stop recycling arguments...it's getting boring.

Second: when I followed the link and saw the word 'creationontheweb' this rang a bell, though I couldn't immediately tell why. Then I remembered: Hartnett. That's right, Radar: it's the same website that published 'scientific research' containing bogus mathematics, that's now trying to argue that creationism is sound science.
And this I really don't get, Radar: why are you still endorsing a site that displays such contempt for their reader's intellect? More even: what makes you think that we, your readers, will take Creationontheweb serious after the Hartnett debacle?

Third: I really would like to know what it is with this copy/paste obsession of yours. Do you think it makes your post look more 'sciency'? Or more impressive? Or easier to read?
Well, news flash: on all three accounts the answer is 'no'.
A link and a few quotes will suffice, thank you very much.

Oh, and by the way: do you have any intention of replying in the other topics like this one or this one? Or can we just put 'abandoned by Radar' underneath it?

highboy said...

I don't know why he's wastes time answering you at all. Anybody who actually types out yawn for effect is clearly an adolescent. If its so boring entertain yourself on one of your own worthless blogs.

scohen said...

Since we're just rehashing arguments:

"However, the fragments would have bounced off each other, rather than melted and clung"

That's another thing that really bothers me about the anti-science types. They look at a trivial observation and think they've discovered something that no one has ever thought about before. They imagine themselves going up to an astrophysicist and saying "The fragments would have bounced off each other, rather than melted and clung" and then the astrophysicist slaps herself on the forehead and exclaims "Oh no! All of the assumptions I've made have been totally wrong. Thank you for bringing this important and overlooked data to my attention, Mr. Valiant backyard researcher". When you think of it, this line of reasoning is incredibly insulting to people who have bothered to learn about a subject.

Anonymous said...

"I don't know why he's wastes time answering you at all."

I think it's safe to say that Radar is actually quite economical with the time he spends answering us. It's so much easier to run away from an argument and then repeat it months later, claiming that all questions had been answered.

Just about all the regular commenters here can name a subject or two that Radar abandoned and subsequently returned to, pretending the original discussion never took place.

Whether that is because of dishonesty or lack of comprehension on Radar's part is still a mystery. It is, however, a simple fact that there are a number of subjects of which Radar has not yet indicated any comprehension, but doesn't let that stop him from making and sticking to incoherent claims about them.

-- creeper

highboy said...

"Whether that is because of dishonesty or lack of comprehension on Radar's part is still a mystery. It is, however, a simple fact that there are a number of subjects of which Radar has not yet indicated any comprehension, but doesn't let that stop him from making and sticking to incoherent claims about them."

So keep commenting. That makes sense.

highboy said...

"When you think of it, this line of reasoning is incredibly insulting to people who have bothered to learn about a subject."

You realize no where in that response did you actually refute anything radar actually said?

radar said...

Yes,

Commenters recently are not answering the evidence presented but going back to topics I DID answer and claiming I did not. What it means is they did not like the answer. Fair enough, free country.

This is a group of guys who are simply failing to answer the core questions being presented and attempting to deflect attention elsewhere.

Ice cores, Obama, Hartnett, all these were answered. I disagree concerning whether soft tissue/remains are classified as such when included within a mostly fossilized specimen. I vehemently disagree that bacteria have in any way proven anything that backs Darwinism but are, in fact, the falsification thereof.

I will proceed and so far no one has addressed the issue of censorship as presented.

C'mon, guys. At least TRY to justify it or else admit it, one.

highboy said...

"Commenters recently are not answering the evidence presented but going back to topics I DID answer and claiming I did not."

scohen's last post didn't even do that much. He just told you how your post pissed him off.

Taxandrian said...

Commenters recently are not answering the evidence presented but going back to topics I DID answer and claiming I did not.

And indeed you didnt. Here you used the argument you are recycling now, and here I commented on the argument, pointing out the unbased assertions in it. You didn't answer. Give me a good reason why I should answer your evidence when you couldn't or wouldn't even refute me when I already did so the first time you presented it? Weren't you the one who stated that if you have an opinion you should be able to defend it?

This is a group of guys who are simply failing to answer the core questions being presented and attempting to deflect attention elsewhere.

See above.

Ice cores, Obama, Hartnett, all these were answered.

I haven't been involved in the Ice cores and Obama discussions, but as far as Harnett concerns: no, you didn't answer. Yes, you did claim you had a person that said that Harnett's math was correct. Yet when we asked you to let that person explain in the comments how he came to that conclusion, it suddenly went awfully quiet. I wonder why?

But again, Radar: why do you keep endorsing a site which tried to pull one on you?

I vehemently disagree that bacteria have in any way proven anything that backs Darwinism but are, in fact, the falsification thereof.

Of course you can disagree, but that's just an opinion. If you can indeed back that opinion up with evidence, we're waiting right here for you to present that evidence. Been asking you quite a few times now for a reply so I can quite rightfully claim you didn't answer.

I will proceed and so far no one has addressed the issue of censorship as presented.

As I've said before: I'm quite sure that after the Harnett debacle no commenter here will take the Creationontheweb very serious on any subject. Try building a better case using more trustworthy sources and you might get some serious replies. Just a suggestion.

C'mon, guys. At least TRY to justify it or else admit it, one.

See above. Fallacy of the false dilemma, btw.

radar said...

I have gone to see some things these guys have said about me and my blog on their blogs and I am considerably more gentlemanly and kind to my commenters than a few of them are to me. I did get angry enough to want to punch one of them once (me not being perfect, surprise!) but calmed down and realized that no matter how callous or inept or mean-spirited or boring or slanderous or deceitful a comment may seem to me, unless it is pornographic or ungodly enough to be considered profane I will not muzzle or censor my commenters.

As to cutting-and-pasting, I do it when I think an entire article is well worth reading and therefore very kindly present it to my readership intact for them to peruse. I always link and/or attribute sources (after once posting something I could never find again I learned that lesson) and that is the courteous thing to do anyway.

I don't do trackbacks to increase my traffic count in order to make my blog look more popular. I do not care to try to be a big deal. I get to share my opinions freely here and doing so makes me happy enough to make it worthwhile.

Other blogs out there are better, many other writers are better or smarter. I am not the pinnacle of all wisdom and knowledge. It would be nice if commenters would realize a fair fight would be fun and duke it out instead of complaining about the ring and the referee and the height of the ropes or the weigh-in procedures. Quit whining about minutiae and old stupid arguments that were way off the subject and get in the game!

radar said...

I have missed a comment that does deserve a good reply:

Tax said - (me)You will have to show us evidence of multi-mutation evolution that adds rather than subtracts from or simply utilizes preexisting information within the DNA.(end me)

(tax)Why does IAMB have to do this? Seelke's article (to which IAMB replied), nowhere states that it's necessary for evolution to 'add information'. It's only about adding functions, and IAMB clearly showed that multi-mutation evolution IS indeed possible and DOES occur.

But if you insist; could you please explain WHY it's necessary for evolution to 'add information' within the DNA to be possible?
Also, could you clearly define the term 'information'?

On a side note, though: not sure why you even copy/pasted this article by Seelke. The guy believed bats first appeared 50 millions ago. Surely someone who believes such baloney can't be trusted? (end tax)


My next post must be part three of my series and then you will get your answer and that is a promise! Aha, a really good valid question and I missed it! Of course, I was pretty sick there for awhile and recuperating still. But this comment is right up my alley, thanks Taxandrian!

radar said...

As to Hartnett -

One - two of my resources are on scholarship at a prestigious technical university (Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology) which is rated even above MIT for its engineering undergraduate program, the best in the USA in fact. They will not be around here again until June and I am not going to bug them about this before then.

My third resource was called to Iraq, came home to get married, honeymooned, and then was called back to Iraq. He is an engineer and a great one but he, too, is rather busy at the moment.

Since the leading light over at Creationontheweb is Jonathan Sarfati and he has credentials that probably clobber those of any commenters here, I am confident that the site remains a valid source. Other full-time scientists there include Carl Wieland and Tas Walker and Don Battern, all with at least one doctorate and all with other credentials if you care to research.

Harnett is a part-time contributing source. He has a doctorate in Physics and this whole fuss is a notational one anyway. Good sources have told me that the equation works if the assumptions are correct. We do not know if the assumptions are anywhere near correct, it is a premise rather than a theory. Enough, already!

scohen said...

Tim, Radar:
Do you actually for one second think that physicists didn't consider that things bounce off of one another?
Really?

Besides the fact that the way creationweb describes solar system formation in a way unlike I've ever heard it described before; you think that all these smart guys didn't think of that? Does the fact that we witness stellar formation *every day* and it occurs like we theorize hold any sway with you?

Do we know everything? Of course not, but gaps in theory don't mean there's a conspiracy.

And where did you get that I was pissed off? I'm more exasperated than anything else. I've been dealing with radar for too long for him to upset me. Heck, I *like* radar, and if he makes it out to SF any time soon, I'd buy him a steak dinner.

As for Hartnett, my whole point was that he used nomenclature to fool you. No one mentioned that you could do the same thing with multiplication? I take it you approve of this then. And what, your Rose guy doesn't have internet access? If he's worth his salt, he'd chastise Hartnett for violating KISS (keep it simple, stupid).

radar said...

scohen, I like you as well and never wanted to punch YOU in the nose, just to be clear.

One of the Rose guys did mention that Hartnett was either in a hurry or careless when he posted the equation and that HE wouldn't turn something like that in for a grade. He immediately said it was not the right way to do it but what he did say was that the math would still work.

I am not saying Hartnett looks good here and, besides that, I don't think he is on to anything. His wild speculation is off-kilter to me but I was just illustrating that there are all sorts of theories out there and not one of them has been proven.

As to stellar formation, considering that every day we are learning more about how much we don't know (how far are ARE quasars, anyway?) and whether a man-made black hole would destroy the world, I do not think we can say we really understand that either.

Did you guys know that at the time scientists were readying the first atomic fission test that some were unsure whether the result might be an unstoppable reaction that would destroy all matter within reach of the initial splitting of the initial atom? Look it up.

I am all for the increase in knowledge and the advance of science. What some of you guys just don't get is that your stance is anti-science at the core because you won't look at part of the evidence and consider some of the solutions to problems presented by questions intrinsic to both science and philosophy. I am the guy who wants open dialogue and research.

scohen said...

I know you didn't want to punch *me* in the nose, but frankly I've been much less kind to you than Creeper has been. He's the one, right? I'm serious about the steak dinner by the way --and I'm not talking about outback.

"how far are ARE quasars, anyway?"

This is something we've learned ;) They're as far away as the galaxies that contain them. They are the super-massive black holes at the center of each active galaxy, and are up to 2 million stellar masses. We've also recently discovered super-massive black holes at the center of every galaxy we've observed, and are now believed to be central to the formation of *any* galaxy. Additionally, we're now observing hundreds of extra-solar planets; both rocky and gaseous. Clearly, a solar system isn't that unique.

Since cranky old fart isn't around any more, I'll ask his question: Which discoveries in science have been made possible by invoking the supernatural?

Would that have helped with the aforementioned Quasars?

Anonymous said...

Radar,

"It would be nice if commenters would realize a fair fight would be fun and duke it out instead of complaining about the ring and the referee and the height of the ropes or the weigh-in procedures. Quit whining about minutiae and old stupid arguments that were way off the subject and get in the game!"

Funny, "complaining about the ring and the referee and the height of the ropes or the weigh-in procedures" is exactly what it seems to me you are doing with this obsession with peer review and supposed "censorship".

If the evidence actually indicated what you claim it does, i.e. a Young Earth and a global flood 4,000 years ago, then this would be confirmed in one testable prediction after another, and all the predictions that indicated the opposite would consistently fail. Papers supporting YEC would simply fly through any peer review process by virtue of being supported by observable evidence, and the theory of evolution (insofar as it would contradict your beliefs) would have died a sorry death over a century ago.

But instead here you are, having to claim some global conspiracy of scientists as well as natural laws changing right when it suits you, running away from arguments that don't go your way (and then claiming they were answered) etc. etc.

Get in the game already.

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

"Commenters recently are not answering the evidence presented but going back to topics I DID answer and claiming I did not. What it means is they did not like the answer."

We've gone through some effort in a number of cases to illustrate exactly which arguments you abandoned and where. Your standard "you just didn't like my answer" is nonsensical. Putting up a response whose logical flaws are pointed out to you is not "answering", it is merely part of the discussion, and the discussion obviously doesn't end there.

If you think you responded to Lava's challenge re. the 11% claim - even in a way that we supposedly "don't like" - then by all means, post the link.

If you have responded in any way at all to the fatal logical fallacy that I have pointed out re. your claims on the prison population - even in a way that I supposedly "don't like" - then by all means, tell me where, post the link. So far, I have yet to see any indication at all that you even understand the logical problem in question. Feel free to show us otherwise.

I suppose it is possible in some cases (on a variety of subjects) that you simply didn't understand why your response didn't answer the problem (your recent comment about snow in your backyard certainly is a clue that you haven't really looked into the science of ice core layers all that much), but when we insist that the discussion isn't merely aborted when you run away, that is not "whining about minutiae and old stupid arguments that were way off the subject".

If you want to be "in the game" you have to be prepared to deal with responses to your claims. And why shrink away with a blanket "uh, I answered that and you didn't like it" instead of being clear about where you think you answered?

-- creeper

radar said...

creeper, you get chutzpah of the year award for continuing to try to make the prison percentage a problem. I am not going to keep going back there. Why can't you focus on science? Taxandrian, for instance, actually came up with a good point. Go though and do likewise.

Anonymous said...

creeper, you get chutzpah of the year award for continuing to try to make the prison percentage a problem. I am not going to keep going back there. Why can't you focus on science? Taxandrian, for instance, actually came up with a good point. Go though and do likewise.

There is a reason that this stuff(percentages of prison population, obama breaking the law as an officer of the court) is a big deal and you should actually deal with it. It reeks of intellectual dishonesty (or a plain inability to comprehend what commentators are saying--- which I don't think is the truth).

When you can't recognize a mistake or a misunderstanding, it takes away from everything else you say on this blog. A simple retraction would lend a whole lot more to what you are trying to do here than your current MO of "dodge, duck, and bury". Nobody is going to research into every point you make (or article you paste). If I know you make a mistake in one place (i.e. Obama breaking the law as an officer of the court) and clung to that statement without any real explanation or logic, then how can I believe anything you write that I don't have time to research or already know about?



lava

DQ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

"creeper, you get chutzpah of the year award for continuing to try to make the prison percentage a problem. I am not going to keep going back there. Why can't you focus on science? Taxandrian, for instance, actually came up with a good point. Go though and do likewise."

Keep on running. There are plenty more battlefields you've abandoned and claimed to have answered. You think discussing claims, data and logic isn't "focusing on science"?

I didn't make the prison population issue a problem; you did. You claimed that you had sources that showed that 11% of the prison population were Christian. You were called on this (and not just by me) and you have had to retreat and retreat, bit by bit, but you still cling to your claim that in essence you did show exactly that. The simple truth is that you did not have such sources and you have in no way managed to back up your claim.

And yet you don't even seem to recognize that that is the case, which is why I had to start wondering out loud if you perhaps didn't even understand the very fallacy in question (the fallacy of division). And frankly, in absence of any indication on your part otherwise, I'm not yet convinced that you do.

It's entirely possible, however, that you understand that fallacy and how it applies to your faulty argument, but that you are too proud or dishonest to simply amend your claim... but if that is the case, one would very much have to guess at it, since you have never given any indication anywhere that you've understood this fallacy.

But at the end of the day, it isn't me who's stopping you from doing all along what an honest man (and perhaps a Christian) would have done at the drop of a hat: retract the erroneous statement.

Just so we're perfectly clear on this: your claim to have answered this (if you do indeed still insist on that claim) is an out and out lie. It used to be something that one could write off as you perhaps being confused about it, but it has been pointed out to you too many times for such an explanation to still hold water.

Lava is right of course that your unwillingness to deal with such glaring mistakes does not speak highly of your credibility. I take it you're aware of that, but that's your cross to bear.

-- creeper

radar said...

Sticks and stones, creeper. Make yourself happy. It is easy to call me a liar from a great distance and kind of cowardly all things considered. It has all just made me think you are not worthy of conversational battle.

Lava, after all the long and involved discussion on prison population numbers I am dumbfounded that you side with creeper. He just wants to change the subject. What is your aim? I am not going to respond to creeper because I regard him as dishonest in his intent but go ahead and tell me what it is you cannot understand?

Anonymous said...

"Sticks and stones, creeper. Make yourself happy. It is easy to call me a liar from a great distance and kind of cowardly all things considered. It has all just made me think you are not worthy of conversational battle."

If you're not a liar, then it would behoove you to stop lying. Otherwise get used to the term. Your claim that you answered these questions is quite simply a lie - the alternative and more charitable explanation that you may be confused or that you may have made an honest mistake can no longer hold in light of the number of times this has been brought to your attention, and you have now moved to willfully repeating an untruth - a.k.a. lying.

Nobody is forcing you to proceed with this, it is of your own free will. You don't have to choose to lie, and I am not a coward for pointing out your demonstrable lies. I'm just the messenger, you're the one making the actual choice.

"Lava, after all the long and involved discussion on prison population numbers I am dumbfounded that you side with creeper."

For starters, you didn't respond to Lava's challenge (which he drew your attention to on several occasions) to post your alleged step-by-step explanation. What did you expect him to do? Pretend that you had done so?

And second, you have never - ever - responded to the fatal logical fallacy at the heart of your 11% prison population claim, so how on Earth do you expect to be seen as the winner in such an argument? Seriously.

Your unwillingness to simply retract your claim - which is what any honest man would do and which would seem to me what a Christian would do - is truly baffling.

"I am not going to respond to creeper because I regard him as dishonest in his intent"

In what way do you think I have been dishonest in my intent?

And are we to conclude from this that you want to try to take being called out on your blatant dishonesty as an excuse to, say, not back up some of your other claims, such as this one?

"Blah blah blah. Study of ice cores shows that many, perhaps hundreds of layers can be formed in one year."

"Please provide a link to this study, provided it didn't take place in your backyard. And if you don't have such a study, please just tell us instead of wasting everyone's time again."

Or shall we add that, too, to the list of "claims abandoned by Radar"?

-- creeper

Anonymous said...

Radar,

I read over most, if not all, of the prison population stuff. I couldn't find where you laid out "step by step" how you came up with 11%. I had asked you to cute and paste the step by step you said you provided in the comments.

lava

highboy said...

"Where did you get that I was pissed off?"

Scohen, your exact words were "what really sticks in my craw". It doesn't matter, I was just pointing out that the last 20 or so comments from the whole group there do nothing to actually argue against anything radar is saying. You've done so in your last response but you're the only one.

Taxandrian said...

I did get angry enough to want to punch one of them once (me not being perfect, surprise!)...

So when you threaten to punch someone on the nose it's because you are not perfect, yet when one commenter doubts your ability to comprehend something you throw a hissy fit. Why not at least give your commenters the benefit of the doubt and consider the fact that they might not be perfect either?
The reason, Radar, why your outburst of anger was so remarkable was the fact that not so long before it you had posted several articles questioning the morality of others (i.e. atheists) like for instance here and here.
Although claiming the higher moral ground as a christian, you are in fact the only one here on this blog who actually threatened with physical violence. Like it or not, it does hurt your credibility.

As to cutting-and-pasting, I do it when I think an entire article is well worth reading and therefore very kindly present it to my readership intact for them to peruse.

What makes you think your readers will not read the article when you do not copy/paste it in full? Again, Radar: why not give your readers the benefit of the doubt? If the article is really interesting you can simply copy/paste an excerpt as a teaser.
Also, in most cases it's mandatory to go to the original article anyway, since by copy/pasting you almost always ruin the original lay-out. This makes it very hard as a reader to determine who said what, and which words are exactly yours or from the original article. So you might think you do your readers a favour, but in fact you are only making things harder for them.
And it has some other disadvantages, too. There's a good chance that if you had simply linked to the Hartnett article instead of copy/pasting it, Scohen would have never noticed the faulty maths and you would have been spared that embarrassing episode of your blog.
You might take this as a criticism, but actually it's some friendly advice. Do with it as you please.;)

It would be nice if commenters would realize a fair fight would be fun and duke it out instead of complaining about the ring and the referee and the height of the ropes or the weigh-in procedures.

What you should realise, Radar, is that you often make it very hard for your readers to put up a fair fight. This relates directly to the copy/paste issue. Like for instance this 'peer-review' issue: why do you need to post three consecutive articles on the same topic? You could easily put three links to your sources including some excerpts, so the whole peer-review topic could be condensed in one post. Now you post one article, some people respond, you post the next in the series and the first topic, responses included, get abandoned. It's not easy this way, Radar. I hope you would realise that making a fair debate possible requires some effort from your side, too.
Again: you might take this as criticism, but it's friendly advice.

Aha, a really good valid question and I missed it! Of course, I was pretty sick there for awhile and recuperating still.

Of course it is possible that you missed the reply due to illness. On the other hand: your next article was posted only three days later, so clearly you didn't check the then active article for any new replies. Also, I referred to it again in a reply and a follow-up reply afterwards. So you missed it three times, yet you stated without blinking that "commenters recently are not answering the evidence presented". So please Radar, if you care any bit about your credibility, please check a few things before making statements like that.
Apart from that though: one question in my reply had to do with your referred article in that post: in specific why you felt the need to move the goalposts, i.e. why do you require IAMB to prove that evolution necessitates multi-mutations while the article he responded to never claimed this was necessary. I really wonder why you would need to post another article to answer that question (unless, of course, you have no intention at all to answer it).

Since the leading light over at Creationontheweb is Jonathan Sarfati and he has credentials that probably clobber those of any commenters here, I am confident that the site remains a valid source.

The irony here is of course that you are now doing exactly that which your copy/pasted article is criticizing: using an argument from authority. And put bluntly: referring to credentials is not where you want to go as a creationist. After all, if it's all down to credentials: who has the most credibility: Richard Dawkins or Ken Ham? And having a Ph.D does not exclude someone from saying dumb things.
The fact remains though, that Creationontheweb published an article either knowing it used shoddy maths, or not checking it. Either way it's not an indication of trustworthiness.

Harnett is a part-time contributing source. He has a doctorate in Physics and this whole fuss is a notational one anyway. Good sources have told me that the equation works if the assumptions are correct.

You have said that a few times now, but you keep ducking away when we ask you to produce these sources. Scohen already said it: all your sources need is an internet connection so they can show us their explanation. That's all we ever asked for. And I don't ask you to do anything I am not willing to do myself. Personally, I know not enough about calculus, so that's why I asked Anna Lemma to give some input. Mind you, I didn't even know Anna personally, but since her profile stated she used mathematics for her work she seemed to be knowledgable enough to give us some insight. And indeed, she was kind enough to reply here and demonstrate why the mathematics was wrong. Yet, Radar, you say your sources are your personal friends and still you cannot get them to post a simple explanation here? That's really weird...and a little suspicious too, if I may add. Here's your chance to prove us wrong, why don't you grab it?

radar said...

I did not actually threaten to go and physically find and punch the commenter. I found it cowardly for him to continually call me a liar from the distance and anonymity of his comfortable basement. But I have not punched anyone in the nose since the 1980's and it would take the necessity of protecting my family or vulnerable friend or my own life to cause me to actually ever do it again. I have decided to just let him be a jerk and let it go at that.

It doesn't matter if you insult my intelligence, but it doesn't move the discussion along and it is stupid and boring to do it.

It is my blog, if I miss a comment, hey, too bad. Go ahead and remind me and I might catch up. If I cut and paste, that is what I felt like doing. I am sharing information. I am doing it as a sidebar to my life. The real world gets first priority in my life.

Richard Dawkins is kind of a joke. Ben Stein got him to admit he was willing to believe in Intelligent Design as long as the Designers were aliens from outer space and not God. Yeah, that is science! Plus, when he says "...evolution has been observed. It's just that it hasn't been observed while it's happening." He reveals himself to be just another atheist desperate to hang onto ABG.

scohen said...

"Ben Stein got him to admit he was willing to believe in Intelligent Design as long as the Designers were aliens from outer space and not God."

The man who wrote "The Selfish Gene" is hardly a joke. Militant atheism aside, do you think for a second that what you saw was an unedited or accurate representation of his answer?

Seriously, do you think that movie was in the least bit objective?

Anonymous said...

"I did not actually threaten to go and physically find and punch the commenter. I found it cowardly for him to continually call me a liar from the distance and anonymity of his comfortable basement."

The "punch the nose" comment and threat to censor can be found here.

The previous post it refers to is here.

And no, I don't blog from my basement, and yes, we are communicating at a distance, so it's easy not just to call someone a liar, but also to call someone a coward, to pretend they live in a basement, and also - last but not least - to lie.

I think it's significant that your outburst and threat to censor me came immediately after I pointed out the fatal flaws in your ridiculous 11% prison population claim.

I did not easily move to the characterization of your claim as a lie. A lie is an intentional spreading of an untruth. If someone spreads an untruth, it's entirely possible that they are mistaken or in disagreement. If they can not back up their claim, then "in disagreement" falls out the window; ditto if there's a logical error in the claim.

Everyone makes mistakes, of course, and that is the next charitable interpretation of someone speaking an untruth. And when a person makes mistakes and this is pointed out to that person, then the right thing to do is to admit the mistake, allowing everyone to move on.

If, however, one continues to speak the untruth and stick to one's claim and not back it up and not respond to glaring logic errors that are pointed out, then those other more charitable interpretations fall away, and all that is left is, quite simply, a lie.

I have demonstrated your lie ad nauseam, Radar. I can't retract your claim for you, and all the name-calling and anger on your part is not going to suddenly turn it into a truthful statement. Blame the messenger all you want, but the choice is yours. Think of yourself as a superior moral being all you want, but your behavior in this situation does not speak well of your character.

"But I have not punched anyone in the nose since the 1980's and it would take the necessity of protecting my family or vulnerable friend or my own life to cause me to actually ever do it again. I have decided to just let him be a jerk and let it go at that."

My oh my. I will respond with Radar's own words: "Name calling is not a particularly classy methodology in advancing your argument unless you regularly inhabit bar stools and begin using the method after your fourth or fifth brewski."

Practice what you preach. I know, I know. You're not perfect. And because you believe in God you're morally superior. Right?

"It doesn't matter if you insult my intelligence, but it doesn't move the discussion along and it is stupid and boring to do it."

Your behavior on this blog - the repeated running away from arguments regarding your claims, followed by repeating the same claims months or years later - allows possible interpretations of dishonesty, cognitive dissonance, misplaced pride or lack of comprehension. I hadn't considered the last option until recently (not that the others are all that flattering), but your continued lack of response to the fallacy of division inherent in your prison population claim has made me wonder whether you actually didn't understand the logic problem in question. Each time when you try to sweep this under the rug with some claim that you already answered that (which, not to put too fine a point on it, is a lie), it makes the possible explanation that you simply don't understand it more likely.

And no doubt you will dismiss it this time. Which means you will never have indicated that you understand the problem. Which lends credibility to the "lack of comprehension" interpretation.

So go ahead, Radar. Dismiss it again. Claim you already answered it. Then blame me for pointing out that that's a lie.

"It is my blog, if I miss a comment, hey, too bad. Go ahead and remind me and I might catch up."

You work in IT, right? It's really not that hard to find a software solution to keep up with comments and online conversations (on your blog and elsewhere). For example, if you're using Firefox, there's a handy extension called cocomment.

"If I cut and paste, that is what I felt like doing. I am sharing information. I am doing it as a sidebar to my life. The real world gets first priority in my life."

As well it should. Family and health have to come first.

As for the ABG argument, it's pretty much irrelevant in science. The observable evidence indicates what it indicates - and if you believe in God, it's not going to indicate anything that God didn't do. I don't think I've ever heard a coherent response to the point that if God did create the world etc., then he must have done this by some mechanism, and why should that mechanism not be what scientists are discovering in their studies and which is commonly known as the theory of evolution? It doesn't make sense that what they would discover is something other than what God created.

The only hitch here is that that would clash with the literal interpretation of some parts of an ancient collection of religious texts known as the Bible. But to study evolution is not to deny God.

-- creeper

scohen said...

"Each time when you try to sweep this under the rug with some claim that you already answered that"

Creeper,
You must admit that if Radar doesn't understand the fallacy of division then he also might not understand that his answers were lacking or non-existent. Wouldn't that be a more charitable explanation for the current behavior?

That could be a possible reason for his, and our exasperation.

Anonymous said...

"You must admit that if Radar doesn't understand the fallacy of division then he also might not understand that his answers were lacking or non-existent. Wouldn't that be a more charitable explanation for the current behavior?"

It's true that if he doesn't understand the fallacy of division to begin with, then the extent of the lie is reduced to just him claiming to have answered Lava's question about how he explained how he arrived at the 11% when in fact he didn't and that he is drawing a mental blank at the rest.

That would mean that Radar did not comprehend the meaning of the following:

"Having data that show that something applies to x% of a group does not allow you to conclude that the same thing applies to x% of an arbitrary subset of that group. For example, if you know that 10% of the population of Timbuktu wear fake moustaches, you can simply not conclude from that that 10% of a village somewhere in Timbuktu wear fake moustaches. It is possible that anywhere from zero to 100% of the inhabitants of that village wear fake moustaches."

Radar is in some kind of huff about his intelligence supposedly being insulted and allegedly being called "stupid", so I don't know if he'd appreciate this particular "out" - but you're right, and whether Radar appreciates it or not, he has not yet given any indication that he understands this logical fallacy.

-- creeper

Taxandrian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Taxandrian said...

I did not actually threaten to go and physically find and punch the commenter. I found it cowardly for him to continually call me a liar from the distance and anonymity of his comfortable basement.

Well, it can easily be argued that it's equally cowardly to say you want to punch someone on the nose from the distance and anonymity of your comfortable basement. But, of course, I don't know you personally; maybe in the real life you tell everyone who angers you that you'd like to punch them on the nose?
Fact of the matter is that for all your talk about morality, you have proven that you, as an evangelical christian, are no better than anybody else when it comes to losing your temper and using ad hominem attacks.

It doesn't matter if you insult my intelligence, but it doesn't move the discussion along and it is stupid and boring to do it.

Well, reacting all insulted in your replies doesn't move the discussion along either.
By the way: you might want to explain how accusing IAMB of anti-intellectual bent moved the discussion along?

It is my blog, if I miss a comment, hey, too bad. Go ahead and remind me and I might catch up.

That's some weird reasoning there, Radar. On the one hand you accuse your readers of not addressing your issues or falsely accusing you of not replying, yet on the other hand you say it's perfectly understandable that you miss replies that are on topic. You can't have it both ways, Radar.
And did you even read my reply? I just pointed out that I did remind you...several times even.

I am doing it as a sidebar to my life. The real world gets first priority in my life.

Well, here's a top tip: just copy/paste the link to the article instead of the article as a whole: that will leave you even more time for the real world.
By the way: before you go and claim victory simply because no one responded in a (to you) satisfactory way, you might consider the fact that your readers also have real life priorities, which might rank higher than reading your blog and commenting on your articles.

Richard Dawkins is kind of a joke. Ben Stein got him to admit he was willing to believe in Intelligent Design as long as the Designers were aliens from outer space and not God. Yeah, that is science!

If you consider Dawkins to be a 'joke' on the basis of that interview, then that actually says more about you than about Dawkins. But I have no interest in defending Richard Dawkins; he's not my personal hero.
No, my actual point -which you apparently missed- was that if you want to use the argument from authority by referring to credentials (like you did with Sarfati), you should rather believe Richard Dawkins than Ken Ham, since Dawkins has credentials that probably clobber those of Ken Ham. Yet you still think Ham is more credible than Dawkins, don't you?