Academic persecution of ID proponents

First, I find it disingenuous saying you want to find evidence for evolution. Without bothering to go back and find the bread crumbs, you’ve made it pretty clear from the start that the opposite is true. Second, the caveat that every bit of science be testable by armchair scientists is unreasonable. If the only things you can believe are things you test for yourself, that’s a pretty small subset of scientific knowledge.

In any case, your human-chimp genome questions have been talked about ad nauseum before you arrived. Search is your friend. Here’s a sample:


I have yet to see an explanation that makes any sense. You keep harping on some reference to randomness, but randomness is not part of this evidence. You claim there are global patterns not explained by the local distribution, but that sounds like word salad. Could you explain that more?

Why do you and others make so many assumptions about my motivation? I have no skin in the game either way.

But! I want something that is actually reliably verifiable by me!!! I do not want “well all the scientists say it is good so just believe them”.

Science is all about being able to verify things for ourselves, not appealing to authority, being skeptical, driven by quantitatively rigorous analysis, etc. Why are we not doing that here?

Looking at the literature, it appears to me evolutionary scientists are very credulous regarding their fundamental assumptions. No one tries to rigorously verify if indeed evolution is responsible for what we see. Instead, over and over again I see scientists starting with the assumption that evolution occurred, and then from there trying to fit the data and explanations to that assumption. The overall endeavour does not look very scientific to me, albeit the scientists use very mathematically and experimentally sophisticated processes to make a circular argument.

First, I like how you accuse me without evidence. That’s great.

Second, I like how you misrepresent what I am seeking. I don’t ask that everything be verifiable by little old me. What I ask is at least one thing about evolutionary science be verifiable by little old me. And without having to appeal to authority, but with some dataset that I can download, run an algorithm, poke and prod myself. That is all! For a theory over 150 years old and supposedly as well established as physics itself, why is this so hard?!?!?!

Certainly, but I’d like to first see some attempt by my readers to understand what I’m saying to be sure my efforts will not be wasted.

Well, I mined through that long thread and found this:

So, if I were to take @glipsnort literally here, he is saying there is at least a 5.5% divergence between the human and chimp genome. Much higher than the 1.5% or 2% number in the popular press. At 3Gb that 5.5% difference is a 165 Kb difference.

However, what I am really looking for is a way to verify myself. I thought I could just BLAST the genomes at NCBI, but for whatever reason my BLAST queries cannot find any similar portions between human and chimp genomes.


Why not do it all locally instead of on the NCBI website? It’s trivial even for me, and you’re far more familiar with coding than I.

Didn’t mean to impugn your motivation, only looking to support the scientific consensus - something I at least must rely on as I haven’t the disposition to become an online conspiracy theorist and no one can be a polymath in every field any longer. As a species we have so much in depth knowledge across so many fields I do not hold out hope of personally vouchsafing every finding and theory. I’m happy to have a general lay knowledge in some areas. Personally I prefer literature and philosophy but am quite happy that others are willing to do the nitty gritty heavy lifting.

But I don’t see why you don’t acknowledge your devotion to ID. I cop to my atheism and nothing bad has happened.


I said up front that I wouldn’t bother to go back and find the breadcrumbs. You aren’t that important to me to waste hours finding “evidence.” Many folks have been reading your posts since you showed up, and your motives have been obvious from the start. Pretty sure they would agree with me. Please don’t insult our intelligence by pretending to be “objective” on the subject of evolution.


I’m not sure what to take away from this paragraph (except that you don’t seem to know what the technical term ‘sufficient statistic’ means). If you have an alternative explanation for the observed patterns, present it.

Why would we do that? Why are you introducing natural selection here at all?

It would be helpful if you would explain what it is you’re seeing, since all you’ve done so far is present uninterpretable histograms of … something, without saying what it is. In any case, what you should be seeing (if you want to look for it for some reason) is a strong autocorrelation in the number of mutations across all distance scales, for both mtDNA and nuclear DNA. You should also see a correlation in the types of mutation seen. What I don’t understand is why you’re looking at this, or why you think it undercuts the point about the observed patterns in substitutions.


Are you saying mutations are not equally distributed across a chromosome?

To EricMH ,

While also believing in our Divine Creator, unlike you, I’m not here to learn about biology or genetics, as something that I could try to “IDize”. That’s a basic background difference between us, neither of whom is a “natural scientist” (thank God for that!). Would you agree?

What I don’t find credible in the “IDist persecution complex” you display now is the notion that so many people (thus the “unfair” persecution) aren’t or haven’t been willing to patiently address both IDism’s main and wildest claims. It’s been a month since I first raised the “persecution complex” issue with you in this thread on “Academic persecution of ID proponents”, so any ACTION that you intended to take in response to my challenge to you has likely already happened, unless you needed another nudge now. If so, then I am nudging you again to find an answer from Meyer &/or West, which could help the conversation. Can you do this?

To Others:

Part of the “persecution complex” that EricMH seems to feel is for not being recognized as a “revolutionary innovator” & brilliant disciple of Dembski, Behe, Axe, and other IDists at the DI. That is, using the concept duo of “Intelligent Design” as both a sword and shield of “scientific” credibility, including attempts at strange disciplinary fusions & centaurs of sorts, all around “Design”.

Yet many people, both atheistic/agnostic and theistic, have patiently tried to correct EricMH’s lack of field-specific, disciplinary knowledge, misunderstandings and false analogies he holds about biology and evolutionary theory, based on his particular fields of study and doctoral competence (e.g. in this thread: “there appears to be no solid evidence for evolution.” - EricMH). Here is another recent attempt to help EricMH educate himself so that he doesn’t have such skepticism about natural science, from his applied science perspective.

We may see in this thread that EricMH has yet again an opportunity to “save face” for himself as being humble and corrigible, if he should choose constructive ACTION, aside from anything any “skeptics” say, in terms of being invited to show his “unbiased” integrity, by responding to the question I put to him above. Will he step up to that plate ready to swing, or just put that bat on his shoulder & wait, like many at the DI and in the IDM have done?

There really must be some psychological or political-educational reason why neither EricMH, nor anyone in the IDM, including Meyer & West, will openly address the history of “design thinking”, “design theory”, “design studies” and “design history” that differs substantially in credibility & usefulness from “ID theory.” Yet IDists continue to live in a delusion that “design theorists” are “persecuted” in the Academy! No, it is “Intelligent Design theorists” who face fair and reasonable push back, which not a single IDist has answered convincingly with evidence and an understandable framework that involves both choices AND processes, that is, not just making simple past tense “it must have been designed” statements based on probabilities & “complexities” (complexes?).

Why wouldn’t EricMH directly face this if he were a reasonable person, especially since doing so would not in any way require him to reject his faith in God or the Catholic Church? Eric should just look closer to see the stories of Mark Ryland or Francis Beckwith, as examples of good Catholics who once spoke the DI’s think-tank language and accepted “ID theory”, then later asked questions that weren’t answered, and eventually grew to reject and oppose “ID theory” as misguided, and even in some ways as psychologically dangerous, considering the ways it has been used as “apologetics”, infecting the pride of the apologist with an “It’s designed!” educational attitude (compare with Ellen G. White’s, George M. Price’s, Henry M. Morris’, John Whitcomb’s or Ken Ham’s YECism).

“yes, humans are intelligent designers” - EricMH

According to Dembski, Meyer, Axe, Wells, Nelson, & the DI, “ID theory” is first and foremost about biology, origins of life and information. ID theory is explicitly not aimed at the social sciences and humanities, where the proper subject/object of study would be about “mundane designers” (Dembski) known to most people as “human beings”.

Does EricMH disagree this is what they believe about the proper scope of “ID theory”? If so, he can please quote from their published work where they indicate to the contrary. Thanks.

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To EricMH:

Can we finally hear your “truth” openly, or must you so obviously avoid and hide it away from us behind IDist ideology? Have you asked Stephen C. Meyer or John G. West yet if and/or how they and the IDM specifically distinguish between Divine Design and human design? It’s a major issue for “design universalism”. If not, why not?

@Chris_Falter challenged you above:

“I am encouraging you to step up your game by posing important questions. I would not have asked if I did not think you are up to the task!”

So, are you up to the task of asking Meyer & West as a way to clarify the too often ambiguous issue raised above amongst IDists? You said to me: “you raise an important question”. Ok, so then will you raise this question to Meyer &/or West? Yes or No will suffice.

Please let us know what happens from your ACTION steps in this regard.

Otherwise, it may help to realize that you quite understandably invite “persecution” (read: fair and reasonable push back) when you won’t answer simple, meaningful, truthfully asked, “important questions”.

It would seem that you are instead now attempting to avoid truth, which may be what you were trying to get at with your “I’m just a poor boy” posturing. Indeed, it is really hard to understand your claims sometimes, EricMH, such as when you doubt “evolution” so “absolutely” as you currently do.

In short, since you are employed by the Discovery Institute at the Bradley Center with Mind Matters, you should have a direct line to Meyer & West available to you. Will you use it and come back to report here what you discover from them? Or will you continue to avoid any serious address of this important distinction, as a “secret agent” of the DI & IDM who invites persecution for unreasonable non-disclosure?

In short, the distinction between Divine Design and human design splits “design universalism”. And since there is no biblical support (depending on which translation) for “design” outside of “human design”, the “ID theory” argument’s ultimate end-game is a no-brainer. Apologetics in natural science, however, isn’t likely to win the day, no matter how much some “converts” to IDism might like to believe in it.

You wrote:

“I’m happy to discuss it further. Especially your distinction between small and big ID, I think is an important distinction and you raise an important question, worthy of further consideration. You are a good thinker, in my opinion, and have pointed out an important facet of ID that the Discovery Institute does not explain well enough.”

It would help any “further discussion” if you were to convey the DI’s language strategy from Meyer &/or West, regarding Divine Design vs. human design. Let’s leave aside my former “distinction between small and big ID”, OK? It’s now more clearly framed as above.

Otherwise it would appear that you are pushing a kind of “design universalism”, which, among Christians, Muslims, Jews, Baha’is or most others, is not in the long run going to “scientifically” fly. It’s a kind of neo-imperialism you seem to be trying to attempt with “ID” as a “strictly scientific theory” that quickly turns into “design universalism”. Instead, the gaps in knowledge should be more humbly admitted, given your training that is largely on the academic periphery (for this topic) in engineering, computing & informatics. Let’s humbly and gladly admit our own limitations and ask for help as needed, agreed?

Close, and maybe it ends up being the same thing. It is not about distribution across the chromosome, but relative distance to specific bases. Except for adjacent bases, I’d expect relative distance to have little to no influence on @glipsnort’s biochemical distribution. Thanks for taking a shot, and I’ll work on writing up what I see more clearly.

If you’ve read any of Dembski’s writings, all his examples of intelligent design involve human designers.

Now, as for the important issue you raise distinguishing human and ‘transcendent’ (for lack of a better word) design, here is what initially tripped me up with the ID argument.

First, here is the ID argument:

  1. biology exhibits great amounts of CSI
  2. the only source of CSI we observe is humans (intelligent agents)
  3. therefore, intelligent agency is inference to the best explanation for CSI in biology

The jump from #2 to #3 is what used to trip me up, and I suspect it may be what is fueling your criticism.

The problem is, if humans themselves are a product of dysteleological evolution, then so is their intelligence, and whatever their intelligence produces, namely CSI. Consequently, CSI can itself be the product of evolution. Therefore, it is circular to use humans as counter evidence against dysteleological evolution, and positive evidence for a transcendent designer.

Now, the issue with this argument is if humans are not a necessary outcome of evolution, then even if they did somehow emerge from evolution, they are by all accounts a highly contingent outcome of evolution. There is nothing about evolution itself that seems to necessitate the emergence of intelligence. As such, even if human intelligence evolved, it is still highly independent from the evolutionary process, and so intelligence still has to be the ultimate cause of CSI. As such, intelligence must also be the ultimate cause of CSI in biology. And if the timescale to evolve an intelligence great enough to produce CSI in biology exceeds the lifespan and resources of the universe, then it must be a transcendent intelligence that comes from outside the system. Thus, the ‘what if intelligence evolved’ objection does not address the core reasoning in the ID argument.

Hopefully, I’ve clearly explained my thinking on the important distinction between human and transcendant intelligence.

I’ve given you my honest, introspective analysis of my own motivations. It’s up to you whether to believe me in regards to myself, or believe your own analysis of my psychological state.

Yes, I’d like to do that. I don’t have the know how. Any tips are appreciated.

Is H. Sapiens the only intelligent species on the planet?

The interesting question is how can the sequence of nucleotides be considered specified (the S in CSI)?

That the nucleotide sequence specifies an amino acid sequence is not disputed anywhere, but the critical question is how is it that nucleotide sequences can be regarded as specified.

Manuals exist for a reason, and they’re not hard to find.

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

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