intelligent design: a natural evolution of bourgeois biology

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Apr 2 2007 03:13
intelligent design: a natural evolution of bourgeois biology

Hi all. I got bored yesterday so I wrote this. Its about 780 words so I put in a link.

intelligent design

fruitloop
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Apr 2 2007 12:56

Hi there,

Nice post, and a lot of interesting issues raised.

Firstly, Dawkins; no-one likes a smart-arse, least of all in the UK, and he can come across as a bit of a smug one, particularly when debating with the truly wacky religionists. Also, he sometimes seems not to think quite as carefully as he might about what he says in some of his interviews and pop-science stuff, and because of this can appear to be supporting a greater degree of scientism and certitude than he does in his more considered publications. This does have a tendency to provide ammunition for the ID wacko brigade in a way that is a bit unfortunate. Extreme specialisation is the name of the game in science, and Dawkins isn't a philosopher of science etc, so some of the flak he gets for his epistemological sins is perhaps a bit unfair. The cheerleading that some folks have a tendency to indulge in (and I hold my hand up to this one) is mostly because his opponents are frequently such utter twat-witted right-wing nutjobs that watching them getting a kicking from more or less anyone is a self-indulgently pleasurable experience.

In terms of the dialectical relationship between life-forms and environment, I think there's a lot in this, but it's possible to get carried away. Clearly in some environments it's absolutely critical, like the way that elephants are instrumental in holding back the forest from encroaching on grasslands, but other environmental features are fairly obdurate even over very large timescales, like a series of mountains, valleys or islands. Also, environmental changes can have effects that totally override evolutionary influence, for example in the case of an extremophile tube-worm (or whatever) living on a single underwater volcanic vent. If the vent stops venting then boom, a whole species is gone with no possibility to adapt to the disastrously altered environmental conditions.

I don't believe there are necessary optimal fits in evolutionary biology - on the contrary there seems to be a strong element of 'if it ain't broke don't fix it' - although in my opinion complete stasis is more or less an impossibility, since without some degree of adaptability degeneration would quite likely set in, and an organism would perhaps become perilously dependent on absolute environmental continuity - not a condition that bodes well for long-term survival. David Chalmers has done some interesting genetic algorithmic work on selecting not just for evolved fitness for a particular trained task, but more of a second-order selection for the ability to adapt per se. I can dig up the reference if you're interested as I think the fulltext is online.

The thing with Darwinism (by which I mean to refer to modern evolutionary science, not whatever quaint ideas the man himself held) is that it relies ultimately on fundamental laws, whereas only the reified view of the economist fails to spot the discursive, power-permeated nature of social organisation. For this reason alone the two can be analogised, but they are not directly comparable. Perhaps a more fruitful comparison is Malthusian pressure on population vs the necessity for the expansion of capital, as this is what pushes both systems constantly beyond their comfort zone, and is the driving force behind the endless diversity and constant colonisation that is characteristic of each (think of all the different varieties of almost identical birds, but with differently adapted beaks in a way that reduces competition for food).

Hope I've understood you correctly. Please bear in mind I'm a programmer with an interest in genetic AI not a biologist, so I apologise if any of my biological facts are a bit wonky.

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Apr 2 2007 12:58
jason wrote:
Its about 780 words so I put in a link.

surprised cool cool

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Apr 2 2007 16:47

I think that the main issue here is being ignored. The whole of this "bourgeois spat" is being fought out over the matter of curriculum. Viz., what is won and lost in this battle is not theoretical points, but school districts. Will children be indoctrinated with the scientist ideology or with the creationist ideology? Will the "Seperation of Church and State" stand, or will it fall? I, for one, couldn't care less. Meanwhile, people on both sides are getting rich on the battle, what with foundations and churches popping left and right, which is the only thing that really matters, materially.

mitr
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Apr 2 2007 19:32

Nice points - I agree with you criticising Dawkins, as I find that he too often doesn't use logical arguments or back up many of his claims (I'm referring only to his 'populist' book "The God Delusion" as it's the only one I've read). I've recently wondered why the Atheist movement is stepping up it's efforts and sacrificing a lot of integrity in doing so, as originally it was simply waiting for religion to die out (as some Liberals simply wait for inequality to sort itself out), and your easy attempts to answer this - but I think it's too vague in attributing it to the "bourgeoisie". Whom and where? Why genetics and not old fashioned social darwinism? Why the desire to destroy religion, when that would be destabilizing to the status quo rather than stabilising (not the UK perhaps, but moreso in America)?

Guilt
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Apr 2 2007 20:58

I rather like what's being called "New Atheism". Fuck the liberal "We must respect all beliefs simply because they are believed!" nonsense.

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Apr 2 2007 21:03

Well, mitr, this is, at its core, a faction fight inside the bourgeoisie which arises from class conflict:

  1. One faction of the bourgeoisie has allied itself with the labor aristocracy, which has made great strides since WWII in setting itself up as an indispensable tool in the hands of industrial capital; the promotion of the ideology of scientism is part and parcel of protecting the latter's privileged position.
  2. The other faction is trying to capitalize (pun intended) on the rising militancy of the working class by misdirecting it through a fascist, Christian-centric identity ideology, whose manifestation in the sciences is creationism; the spread of creationism simply allows them to gain more and more members of the less affluent strata of the working class into their ranks.

Since the lower strata of the working class are hit first by this highly decadent stage of capitalism, their militancy rises before that of the higher strata. This asymmetry results in a fissure of the working class, along which lines capital can send them one against the other.

It's not just the "intelligent design debate", though. Observe how denigrated the lower strata of the working class are on threads like this one, from a forum frequented by people who are attached to the more professional occupations, the higher strata.

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Apr 2 2007 22:07
tojiah wrote:
Well, mitr, this is, at its core, a faction fight inside the bourgeoisie which arises from class conflict:
  1. One faction of the bourgeoisie has allied itself with the labor aristocracy, which has made great strides since WWII in setting itself up as an indispensable tool in the hands of industrial capital; the promotion of the ideology of scientism is part and parcel of protecting the latter's privileged position.
  2. The other faction is trying to capitalize (pun intended) on the rising militancy of the working class by misdirecting it through a fascist, Christian-centric identity ideology, whose manifestation in the sciences is creationism; the spread of creationism simply allows them to gain more and more members of the less affluent strata of the working class into their ranks.

Since the lower strata of the working class are hit first by this highly decadent stage of capitalism, their militancy rises before that of the higher strata. This asymmetry results in a fissure of the working class, along which lines capital can send them one against the other.

It's not just the "intelligent design debate", though. Observe how denigrated the lower strata of the working class are on threads like this one, from a forum frequented by people who are attached to the more professional occupations, the higher strata.

what utter reductionist shite.

you might have missed the whole post modern third way, death of ideology euro neoliberalism that is creating a space for idiotic shit like intelligent design. To reduce the argument to one of a two way faction fight amongst the bourgeois is to miss out the simple fact that 'intelligent design' is irrational shit that relies on the consumerist logic of developed whereby all ideas become interchangeable exchange values. Intelligent design is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of this trend., it's also obvious in new age nonsense like homeopathy . Like Tony Blair and his non ideological ideology it represents the consumer cherry picking of ideas,whereby their consistency or correctness gves way to what is convenient, what is economically viable.

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Apr 2 2007 22:27
revol68 wrote:
what utter reductionist shite.

Yeah, baby, talk dirty, you know what I like.

revol68 wrote:
you might have missed the whole post modern third way, death of ideology euro neoliberalism that is creating a space for idiotic shit like intelligent design.

Yeah. Probably because I was focusing on American society, where euro-neoliberalism is somewhat less influential. That might be due to the "euro" prefix.

revol68 wrote:
To reduce the argument to one of a two way faction fight amongst the bourgeois is to miss out the simple fact that 'intelligent design' is irrational shit that relies on the consumerist logic of developed whereby all ideas become interchangeable exchange values. Intelligent design is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of this trend., it's also obvious in new age nonsense like homeopathy . Like Tony Blair and his non ideological ideology it represents the consumer cherry picking of ideas,whereby their consistency or correctness gves way to what is convenient, what is economically viable.

Yes, and why is that? Is it just some kind of arbitrary fad, or does it have some material basis?
I, for one, think that it has to do with a faction of the bourgeoisie trying to buy off the lower strata of the proletariat with whatever ideology works, in order to put it in opposition with the higher strata, when it might otherwise have turned its restlessness against the class system itself, the source of this restlessness being the inability of capital to keep up the financial buying off of the proles in the developed countries.

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Apr 2 2007 22:43
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Yes, and why is that? Is it just some kind of arbitrary fad, or does it have some material basis?
I, for one, think that it has to do with a faction of the bourgeoisie trying to buy off the lower strata of the proletariat with whatever ideology works, in order to put it in opposition with the higher strata, when it might otherwise have turned its restlessness against the class system itself, the source of this restlessness being the inability of capital to keep up the financial buying off of the proles in the developed countries.

That is unbelievably reductionist and gives an agency to capitalism that just doesn't exist. There is no doubt that conservative christians are able to tap into uneasiness and alienation of capitalim, in a society so fragmented it becomes any port in a storm, an anchor in a world were all that is solid evaporates into air. But there is no way the issues can be reduced or put to the side on the basis of it being a faction fight within capital. The simple fact is that intelligent design is wrong, that evolutionary theory for all it's contamination with bourgeois ideals is worth defending, and as such I support those fighting to keep that crap out of classrooms.

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Apr 2 2007 22:53
revol68 wrote:
But there is no way the issues can be reduced or put to the side on the basis of it being a faction fight within capital. The simple fact is that intelligent design is wrong, that evolutionary theory for all it's contamination with bourgeois ideals is worth defending

In what way do you mean to "defend" evolutionary theory?

revol68 wrote:
and as such I support those fighting to keep that crap out of classrooms.

I'd imagine that it's better to keep kids out of classrooms, actually.

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Apr 2 2007 23:17
tojiah wrote:
revol68 wrote:
But there is no way the issues can be reduced or put to the side on the basis of it being a faction fight within capital. The simple fact is that intelligent design is wrong, that evolutionary theory for all it's contamination with bourgeois ideals is worth defending

In what way do you mean to "defend" evolutionary theory?

revol68 wrote:
and as such I support those fighting to keep that crap out of classrooms.

I'd imagine that it's better to keep kids out of classrooms, actually.

I mean to oppose irrational unjustifiable shit like intelligent design, if that stuff gets into the classroom it opens a floodgate for all sorts of backward shit.

As for keeping kids out fo classrooms well yes but then i suppouse we could take the same attitude to working conditions, sexism and racism, ie we could all play the ultra ultra leftist card. I support those teachers and kids who oppose it being introduced into their curriculum. In the UK it is also tied to the privitisation of the education system through PFI academies, and we already have numerous christian schools who teach creationism, the next step is business such as bio tech companies getting in on the act and the teaching of sciences being reduced to mere auxilieries of various narrow interests. my opposition to it stands in the same tradition as supporting opposition to the imposition of league tables and stream lined curriculums.

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Apr 2 2007 23:27
revol68 wrote:
... the next step is business such as bio tech companies getting in on the act and the teaching of sciences being reduced to mere auxilieries of various narrow interests.

But certainly biotech companies have an interest in educating capable biologists, so that they are certainly your allies in your fight to defend evolutionary theory.

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Apr 2 2007 23:41

I don't think we need to pit the argument as evolutionary theory Vs creationism because as I tried to point out "evolutionary theory" includes both quite pronounced bourgeois strains as well as more nuanced dialectical approaches (and everything in between).

So the question is: how do we defend against the ultra-irrationality of creationsim without propping up bourgeois science?

And Revol, I don't really get your whole post-modern take on creationism. I do agree that TOJ's take is a little too exact for my liking but its hard for me not to see different clusters of bourgeois values in the two poles of neo-Darwinism and creationism. Like, the ideologies aren't conscious capitalist plots or anything and so don't presuppose a definite agency to capital. Just different groups who have captured the zeitgeist and make a buck from it, but it all feeds back into the zeitgeist.

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Apr 2 2007 23:45
tojiah wrote:
revol68 wrote:
... the next step is business such as bio tech companies getting in on the act and the teaching of sciences being reduced to mere auxilieries of various narrow interests.

But certainly biotech companies have an interest in educating capable biologists, so that they are certainly your allies in your fight to defend evolutionary theory.

To some extent that is true but it also overlooks issues such as social biology, GM and the pharmecutical lobby and itheir role in shaping the predominant discourses, for example my psycholigy teacher used to tell us about how important the role of pharmaceutical companies and their lobbies were in pushing medical models for mental illness.

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Apr 2 2007 23:52
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And Revol, I don't really get your whole post-modern take on creationism.

A pomo take on creationism would make a great essay but that's not what i'm talking about, what i'm talking about is the move away from upholding any views on the basis of rationality or principle, whereby these things becomes more and more like exchange values, with none being qualitively more valuable than the other, hence intelligent design is just as worthwhile as evolutionary theory. For example our government is at the moment allowing various christian groups to set up their own schools and teach their own ridiculous curriculums, including creationism, and any opposition to this is slapped down as dogmatic and undermining 'choice'. it's a trend also notable with health, with an increase in new age quackary and the individualisation of health around diet and lifestyle that allows the responsibility for public health to slide off the government and onto individuals.

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Apr 3 2007 00:11
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environmental changes can have effects that totally override evolutionary influence, for example in the case of an extremophile tube-worm (or whatever) living on a single underwater volcanic vent. If the vent stops venting then boom, a whole species is gone with no possibility to adapt to the disastrously altered environmental conditions.

Yeah good points. My concern though is that you pick up a pop-science book and the emphasis in this tube-worm example would no doubt be on all the physiological adaptations of the tube-worm to heat, etc, and probably leave it there (without the examples of grasslands adapting to elephants). In pop-biology, I feel that the process of evolution is often presented as secondary to the emphasis on optimal adaptations, sort of like an afterthought. My personal impression from reading things like "The Selfish Gene", is that the way examples are presented, things seem so optimaly adapted that further evoution seems impossible. So my main point is that in this context its actually not hard for intelligent designers to slot in here. (Its like biologist went so far trying to convince creationists of evolution by the metaphor of adaptations, rather evolution as process, that they shot themselves in the foot).

The point with thermophilic tube-worms is yes, they are very specialised to a relatively static environmental feature, so in this case there is a superficial one way causality of selection (we don't see the thermal vents changing like grasslands trampled by elephants). But this view also misses some nuances, such as: what is it about the physiology of ancestral tube-worms that they could create vents as a niche during their evolution. Or, if predation isn't an issue at the vents: is their evidence of population cycles as populations expand and make it easier for pathological vectors, which reduce population, which grows again, etc, etc. You can always emphasise process over stasis.

(edit - just thought of another important caveat in the tube-worm example. Their distribution around the vents may protect them from predators. So in fact, they may actually perform better under a different temperature regime, but their interactions with other organisms keeps them there in a homeodynamic interaction. (There are actual examples of this kind of thing). So to talk about the worms being physiologically adapted to live near thermal vents, whilst 'true', misses some important information. Thus you would have to do a lot of expereiments before you could say they were optimally adapted, but pop-science makes this assumption almost a priori.)

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Apr 3 2007 00:29
revol68 wrote:
To some extent that is true but it also overlooks issues such as social biology, GM and the pharmecutical lobby and itheir role in shaping the predominant discourses, for example my psycholigy teacher used to tell us about how important the role of pharmaceutical companies and their lobbies were in pushing medical models for mental illness.

Indeed. Which is why this is a bourgeois faction fight. By taking any "side" on this issue, you muddy the real problem: how schools are being gutted of any relic of human use in order to be made more efficient as bare tools of indoctrination, whether it's to scientism or to fundamentalism.

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Apr 3 2007 00:43
tojiah wrote:
revol68 wrote:
To some extent that is true but it also overlooks issues such as social biology, GM and the pharmecutical lobby and itheir role in shaping the predominant discourses, for example my psycholigy teacher used to tell us about how important the role of pharmaceutical companies and their lobbies were in pushing medical models for mental illness.

Indeed. Which is why this is a bourgeois faction fight. By taking any "side" on this issue, you muddy the real problem: how schools are being gutted of any relic of human use in order to be made more efficient as bare tools of indoctrination, whether it's to scientism or to fundamentalism.

but it's not a matter of supporting 'scientism' (whatever on earth that is), afterall it isn't like it's 'bio' companies fighting with intelligent design (quite explicitly backed by narrow interests) over who gets to pimp their agendas in schools. It's about opposing something with absolutely no scientific merit whatsoever, because once this door is opened it will infact only aid in the further carve up of education and teaching by narrow interests.

Evolutionary theory for all it's crude variants atleast engages the discussion on a level far superior to the completely baseless and closed manner of intelligent design.

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Apr 3 2007 03:25
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what i'm talking about is the move away from upholding any views on the basis of rationality or principle, whereby these things becomes more and more like exchange values, with none being qualitively more valuable than the other, hence intelligent design is just as worthwhile as evolutionary theory.

But what about the thesis that neo-Darwinism has itself moved away somewhat from rationality? Hence it shouldn't surprise that some regard intelligent design as just as worthwile as a vulgarised evolutionary theory, like its losing its currency. Coz what's worthwhile? You can still genetically engineer organisms and design pharmeceuticals with a degree in intelligent design.

I'm not saying they are interchangeable. I've just been trying to show that dodgy biology has opened a door for intelligent design.

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Apr 3 2007 08:22

What's neo darwinism? Would you put Dawkins in it? Whilst there are issues and debates around evolution atleast an acceptance of the very basics allows that room. Intelligent design closes that door off from the start. So a neo darwinist might overlook the dynamism of environment in their modelling of adaption they don't carte blanche rule it out and posit that change amongst species is caused by the hand of a supernatural entity dabbling in nature when he gets bored. Surely it is obvious that one of these doesn't even deserve to be engaged with as having anything to do with biology. One of them is engagable with in intelligable terms and the other is nonsense. It's the equivalent of a debate between a crude marxist and a post structuralist being interrupted by a raving loon who believes in lizard people ruling the world.

frew
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Apr 3 2007 11:57

Revol68 Tell it like it is!

I got into reading a fair bit of modern evolutionary theory after I read Kropotkin's Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution. Much of what he argued then is supported by more left wing evolutionists. Most Evolutionary Psychologists claim Kropotkin as the first, some support him uncritically. Instead of referring to Mutual Aid, they refer to Reciprocal Altruism, which is essentially the same thing.
There is a book called The Evolution of Co-operation, which sites many modern examples of mutual aid in action and uses game theory to prove that the best survival tactics are co-operative. (Well, mostly co-operative... to explain the details would take too long...)
Trying to dismiss all science as bourgeois is ludicrous. I don't think the results of any experiments into evolution have been falsified and I don't think the scientists lie about their results in the field.
Science... Real Science (as separated from Corporate lobbyist psuedo-science or crude Neo-Darwinism, whatever that is) is testable. Climatologists have been jumping up and down for years about climate change, because they take the measurements, look at the results and report them to who-ever will listen. If science was "bourgeois" wouldn't they have just kept it quiet? There isn't some vast Capitalist conspiracy directing all of science what to report. They can bribe off some to become Corporate hacks, but there will be others who will report their results accurately.
Science is not democratic. It is based on testing and re-testing. If something is proven wrong once its wrong forever. The idea of Creationism being taught as Science is utter madness...
Next thing you know, someone will be arranging the electrons in their computer to tell me that Quantum Physics is all bullshit too.

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Apr 3 2007 12:44
revol68 wrote:

but it's not a matter of supporting 'scientism' (whatever on earth that is),

A clear illustration of scientism, from another thread, is this:

Rosa Lichtenstein wrote:
On wider issues to do with nature, however, I am happy to leave this to genuine scientists, not amateur armchair superscientists.

Clearly, it is materially obvious that you should only be able to express your view on a subject if you have the proper piece of paper. I wonder which experiment she got that out of.

revol68 wrote:
afterall it isn't like it's 'bio' companies fighting with intelligent design (quite explicitly backed by narrow interests) over who gets to pimp their agendas in schools. It's about opposing something with absolutely no scientific merit whatsoever, because once this door is opened it will infact only aid in the further carve up of education and teaching by narrow interests.

You seem to think that the professional takeover of schools will take place after the triumph of intelligent design, but last time I checked, schools were already taken over by professionalism, getting specific companies to set the curricula is the natural next step, unless it is stopped by good-hearted Christians the world over, "opening up the debate". So maybe you should actually be cooperating with the ID freaks. I'm confused now.

revol68 wrote:
Evolutionary theory for all it's crude variants atleast engages the discussion on a level far superior to the completely baseless and closed manner of intelligent design.

Evolutionary theory as some abstract theoretical framework, perhaps; but its proponents speak in the exact same baseless and closed manner of ID proponents, which is why they are unable to defend their gains against it. It doesn't matter that their authoritarianism happens to have some bearing on reality, unlike that of the various reverends and priests - as far as your average, intentionally uneducated individual is concerned, they sound the same, with the former being quite a bit more cockey than the latter (brights, anyone?).

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Apr 3 2007 13:43

just how many evolutionary theorists have you read? Because I have never read any respected ones who peddle theories any where near being as closed as the crock of shit that is intelligent design.

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Evolutionary theory as some abstract theoretical framework, perhaps; but its proponents speak in the exact same baseless and closed manner of ID proponents, which is why they are unable to defend their gains against it.

Oh catch a grip! Some proponents of evolutionary theory might overegg things but there are always evolutionary theorists who will take them to task for it. But to claim it's proponents speak in the exact same baseless and closed manner of ID proponents is just flat out bullshit. Dawkins might be arrogant and dismissive but his theories do not represent a closed circuit in the manner of ID, where Dawkins might be selective or loose in his evidence and argument he still has to make on, ID on the otherhand just throws out all that and justifies itself pretty much on a retarded relativist notion that it's just as valid as evolution. As Frew said science is not and cannot be 'democratic' it's not a matter of every retard on the planet's opinion being as valid and it's certainly not a matter of theorists having to ape the pathetic relativism that infects popular culture, where people think that everyones opinion is equally valid and atomistic withdrawal is dressed up in hypocritical respect and tolerance.

I don't care what the average person thinks about evolutionary theorists, anymore than I care what the average person thinks about Glacier erosion in the Alps, what matters is argument and evidence and on it alone ID has no place anywhere.

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Apr 3 2007 15:02

I do think that evolutionary genetics has a hidden value for the establishment, and that is being part of the broad Western trend to dominate nature, and therefore man - in this effort, objective knowledge of biology is just as important as material control. This is the same establishment that creates more and more devastating weapons, builds bigger and more dominating networks of infrastructure and communication, and attempts to control all natural resources on the planet. ID on the other hand is a shallow attempt to dress up dogmatic religious beliefs in the language of their scientific enemies - but creationism isn't just an irrational 'opium', it goes back to the belief that American christians have a manifest destiny to conquer the world, bringing us back to it being a bedfellow with 'science'.

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Apr 3 2007 15:13

oh dear,has someone been mixing their Adorno reading with crystal meth abuse?

I think your analysis of biology is a tad one sided.

Also what's wrong with mastering nature, I fail to see how it necessarily leads to the domination of human by human.

Guilt
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Apr 3 2007 15:17

The reading of evolution as having moral content is pathetic.

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Apr 3 2007 15:23
Guilt wrote:
The reading of evolution as having moral content is pathetic.

I agree but what are you saying this in relation to?

mitr
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Apr 3 2007 16:29

Since I'm new here, I will tolerate ad hominem arguments, but not respond to them. I am not analysing biology or evolution as sciences, but rather the use and reasons behind there promotion - that's where the moral content lies, and so long as objective science is conducted by men, a moral content may always exist. This also means that mastering nature doesn't necessarily lead to domination of men, but as with all technologies, it can if it is orientated to do so.

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Apr 3 2007 16:49
mitr wrote:
Since I'm new here, I will tolerate ad hominem arguments, but not respond to them. I am not analysing biology or evolution as sciences, but rather the use and reasons behind there promotion - that's where the moral content lies, and so long as objective science is conducted by men, a moral content may always exist. This also means that mastering nature doesn't necessarily lead to domination of men, but as with all technologies, it can if it is orientated to do so.

I'm failing to see the point, what are you bringing to the discussion? That science is socially constructed as such can be used to master both nature and man? yeah that's true but it doesn't say much about the issue at hand, namely intelligent design.

p.s. the Adorno coment was meant light heatedly don't take it as an insult.

mitr
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Apr 3 2007 18:06
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I'm failing to see the point, what are you bringing to the discussion? That science is socially constructed as such can be used to master both nature and man? yeah that's true but it doesn't say much about the issue at hand, namely intelligent design.

I thought that was the main issue you had against what I had posted - on the issue of ID, as I have said I think it is related to the ideas of manifest destiny, Christian Identity and British Israelism - but whereas I suspect science is used for certain ends, ID isn't being "misused", it isn't scientific so, the reactionary use it is put to is the only one possible. I did say that modern science and ID nowadays have parallel ends, but I didn't intend to argue for total relativism.

Quote:
p.s. the Adorno coment was meant light heatedly don't take it as an insult.

No worries.