Scientific Accuracy Vs. Journalistic Balance

moultanomoultano Creator of ns_shiva.Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor, Constellation, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Gold, NS2 Community Developer, Pistachionauts Join Date: 2002-12-14 Member: 10806Posts: 4,219 Advanced user
edited November 2004 in Discussions
Fascinating article
http://www.cjr.org/issues/2004/6/mooney-science.asp

Whoops, that topic title was supposed to say "Balance" rather than Bias. When a mod gets around to reading this, could you fix it for me please? Done - Mouse

QUOTE
Blinded By Science
How ‘Balanced’ Coverage Lets the Scientific Fringe Hijack Reality

By Chris Mooney

On May 22, 2003, the Los Angeles Times printed a front-page story by Scott Gold, its respected Houston bureau chief, about the passage of a law in Texas requiring abortion doctors to warn women that the procedure might cause breast cancer. Virtually no mainstream scientist believes that the so-called ABC link actually exists — only anti-abortion activists do. Accordingly, Gold’s article noted right off the bat that the American Cancer Society discounts the “alleged link” and that anti-abortionists have pushed for “so-called counseling” laws only after failing in their attempts to have abortion banned. Gold also reported that the National Cancer Institute had convened “more than a hundred of the world’s experts” to assess the ABC theory, which they rejected. In comparison to these scientists, Gold noted, the author of the Texas counseling bill — who called the ABC issue “still disputed” — had “a professional background in property management.”

Gold’s piece was hard-hitting but accurate. The scientific consensus is quite firm that abortion does not cause breast cancer. If reporters want to take science and its conclusions seriously, their reporting should reflect this reality — no matter what anti-abortionists say.

But what happened next illustrates one reason journalists have such a hard time calling it like they see it on science issues. In an internal memo exposed by the Web site LAobserved.com, the Times’s editor, John Carroll, singled out Gold’s story for harsh criticism, claiming it vindicated critics who accuse the paper of liberal bias. Carroll specifically criticized Gold’s “so-called counseling” line (“a phrase that is loaded with derision”) and his “professional background in property management” quip (“seldom will you read a cheaper shot than this”). “The story makes a strong case that the link between abortion and breast cancer is widely discounted among researchers,” Carroll wrote, “but I wondered as I read it whether somewhere there might exist some credible scientist who believes in it . . . . Apparently the scientific argument for the anti-abortion side is so absurd that we don’t need to waste our readers’ time with it.”

Gold declined to comment specifically on Carroll’s memo, except to say that it prompted “a sound and good discussion of the standards that we all take very seriously.” For his part, Carroll — now editing his third newspaper — is hardly so naïve as to think journalistic “balance” is synonymous with accuracy. In an interview, he nevertheless defended the memo, observing that “reporters have to make judgments about the validity of ideas” but that “a reporter has to be broad-minded in being open to ideas that aren’t necessarily shared by the crowd he or she happens to be hanging around with.” Carroll adds that in his view, Gold needed to find a credible scientist to defend the ABC claim, rather than merely quoting a legislator and then exposing that individual’s lack of scientific background. “You have an obligation to find a scientist, and if the scientist has something to say, then you can subject the scientist’s views to rigorous examination,” Carroll says.

The trouble is, the leading proponent of the idea that abortions cause breast cancer, Dr. Joel Brind of Baruch College at the City University of New York, underwent a pro-life religious conversion that left him feeling “compelled to use science for its noblest, life-saving purpose,” as he put it in Physician, a magazine published by a conservative religious group called Focus on the Family. Brind’s dedication to the ABC theory has flown in the face of repeated negative critiques of that theory by his scientific peers. When the National Cancer Institute convened the world’s experts to assess the question in February 2003, Brind was the only dissenter from the group’s conclusions.

Nevertheless, a later article by Gold suggests he may have taken Carroll’s lesson to heart (though Gold says the piece “certainly wasn’t a direct response, or an attempt to change anything or compensate” following Carroll’s memo). On November 6, 2003, Gold reported on a push in Texas to revise the way biology textbooks teach the scientific theory of evolution, which some religious conservatives don’t accept. Gold opened with a glowing profile of one William Dembski, described as a “scientist by trade” but “an evangelical Christian at heart who is convinced that some biological mechanisms are too complex to have been created without divine guidance.” But according to his Web site, Dembski is a philosopher and mathematician, not a biologist. Moreover, he’s a leader of the new “intelligent design” crusade against Darwin’s theory, an updated form of creationism that evolutionary biologists have broadly denounced. (He recently took a job running the Center for Science and Theology at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.) The American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world’s largest scientific society and publisher of Science, the highest-circulation general scientific journal, has firmly stated that proponents have “failed to offer credible scientific evidence to support their claim” that the intelligent design theory “undermines the current scientifically accepted theory of evolution.”

Scott Gold had it exactly right on abortion and breast cancer. Then he produced an article on “intelligent design” so artificially “balanced” it was downright inaccurate and misleading.

The basic notion that journalists should go beyond mere “balance” in search of the actual truth hardly represents a novel insight. This magazine, along with its political Web site, Campaign Desk, has been part of a rising chorus against a prevalent but lazy form of journalism that makes no attempt to dig beneath competing claims. But for journalists raised on objectivity and tempered by accusations of bias, knowing that phony balance can create distortion is one thing and taking steps to fix the reporting is another.

Political reporting hardly presents the only challenge for journalists seeking to go beyond he said/she said accounts, or even the most difficult one. Instead, that distinction may be reserved for media coverage of contested scientific issues, many of them with major policy ramifications, such as global climate change. After all, the journalistic norm of balance has no corollary in the world of science. On the contrary, scientific theories and interpretations survive or perish depending upon whether they’re published in highly competitive journals that practice strict quality control, whether the results upon which they’re based can be replicated by other scientists, and ultimately whether they win over scientific peers. When consensus builds, it is based on repeated testing and retesting of an idea.

Journalists face a number of pressures that can prevent them from accurately depicting competing scientific claims in terms of their credibility within the scientific community as a whole. First, reporters must often deal with editors who reflexively cry out for “balance.” Meanwhile, determining how much weight to give different sides in a scientific debate requires considerable expertise on the issue at hand. Few journalists have real scientific knowledge, and even beat reporters who know a great deal about certain scientific issues may know little about other ones they’re suddenly asked to cover.

Moreover, the question of how to substitute accuracy for mere “balance” in science reporting has become ever more pointed as journalists have struggled to cover the Bush administration, which scientists have widely accused of scientific distortions. As the Union of Concerned Scientists, an alliance of citizens and scientists, and other critics have noted, Bush administration statements and actions have often given privileged status to a fringe scientific view over a well-documented, extremely robust mainstream conclusion. Journalists have thus had to decide whether to report on a he said/she said battle between scientists and the White House — which has had very few scientific defenders — or get to the bottom of each case of alleged distortion and report on who’s actually right.

No wonder scientists have often denounced the press for giving credibility to fringe scientific viewpoints. And without a doubt, the topic on which scientists have most vehemently decried both the media and the Bush administration is global warming. While some scientific uncertainty remains in the climate field, the most rigorous peer-reviewed assessments — produced roughly every five years by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) — have cemented a consensus view that human greenhouse gas emissions are probably (i.e., the conclusion has a fairly high degree of scientific certainty) helping to fuel the greenhouse effect and explain the observed planetary warming of the past fifty years. Yet the Bush administration has consistently sought to undermine this position by hyping lingering uncertainties and seeking to revise government scientific reports. It has also relied upon energy interests and a small cadre of dissenting scientists (some of whom are funded, in part, by industry) in formulating climate policy.

The centrality of the climate change issue to the scientific critique of the press does not arise by accident. Climate change has mind-bogglingly massive ramifications, not only for the future of our carbon-based economy but for the planet itself. Energy interests wishing to stave off action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions have a documented history of supporting the small group of scientists who question the human role in causing climate change — as well as consciously strategizing about how to sow confusion on the issue and sway journalists.

In 1998, for instance, John H. Cushman, Jr., of The New York Times exposed an internal American Petroleum Institute memo outlining a strategy to invest millions to “maximize the impact of scientific views consistent with ours with Congress, the media and other key audiences.” Perhaps most startling, the memo cited a need to “recruit and train” scientists “who do not have a long history of visibility and/or participation in the climate change debate” to participate in media outreach and counter the mainstream scientific view. This seems to signal an awareness that after a while, journalists catch on to the connections between contrarian scientists and industry. But in the meantime, a window of opportunity apparently exists when reporters can be duped by fresh faces.

"There’s a very small set of people” who question the consensus, says Science’s executive editor-in-chief, Donald Kennedy. “And there are a great many thoughtful reporters in the media who believe that in order to produce a balanced story, you’ve got to pick one commentator from side A and one commentator from side B. I call it the two-card Rolodex problem.”

The Stanford climatologist Stephen Schneider echoes this concern. A scientist whose interactions with the media on the subject of climate change span decades, Schneider has reflected at length on the subject, especially in his 1989 book Global Warming. Schneider’s climate-change Web site also devotes a section to what he calls “Mediarology,” where he notes that in science debates “there are rarely just two polar opposite sides, but rather a spectrum of potential outcomes, oftentimes accompanied by a considerable history of scientific assessment of the relative credibility of these many possibilities. A climate scientist faced with a reporter locked into the ‘get both sides’ mindset risks getting his or her views stuffed into one of two boxed storylines: ‘we’re worried’ or ‘it will all be okay.’ And sometimes, these two ‘boxes’ are misrepresentative; a mainstream, well-established consensus may be ‘balanced’ against the opposing views of a few extremists, and to the uninformed, each position seems equally credible.”

Academics have studied media coverage of climate change, and the results confirm climate scientists’ longstanding complaints. In a recent paper published in the journal Global Environmental Change, the scholars Maxwell T. Boykoff and Jules M. Boykoff analyzed coverage of the issue in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and the Los Angeles Times between 1988 and 2002. During this fourteen-year period, climate scientists successfully forged a powerful consensus on human-caused climate change. But reporting in these four major papers did not at all reflect this consensus.

The Boykoffs analyzed a random sample of 636 articles. They found that a majority — 52.7 percent — gave “roughly equal attention” to the scientific consensus view that humans contribute to climate change and to the energy-industry-supported view that natural fluctuations suffice to explain the observed warming. By comparison, just 35.3 percent of articles emphasized the scientific consensus view while still presenting the other side in a subordinate fashion. Finally, 6.2 percent emphasized the industry-supported view, and a mere 5.9 percent focused on the consensus view without bothering to provide the industry/skeptic counterpoint.

Most intriguing, the Boykoffs’ study found a shift in coverage between 1988 — when climate change first garnered wide media coverage — and 1990. During that period, journalists broadly moved from focusing on scientists’ views of climate change to providing “balanced” accounts. During this same period, the Boykoffs noted, climate change became highly politicized and a “small group of influential spokespeople and scientists emerged in the news” to question the mainstream view that industrial emissions are warming the planet. The authors conclude that the U.S. “prestige-press” has produced “informationally biased coverage of global warming . . . hidden behind the veil of journalistic balance.”

In a rich irony, a UPI report on August 30, 2004, about the Boykoffs’ study covered it in — that’s right — a thoroughly “balanced” fashion. The article gave considerable space to the viewpoint of Frank Maisano, a former spokesman for the industry-sponsored Global Climate Coalition and a professional media consultant, who called the Boykoffs’ contentions “absolutely outrageous” and proceeded to reiterate many of the dubious criticisms of mainstream climate science for which the “skeptic” camp is so notorious. In the process, the UPI piece epitomized all the pathologies of U.S. coverage of climate change — pathologies that aren’t generally recapitulated abroad. Media research suggests that U.S. journalists cover climate change very differently from their European counterparts, often lending much more credence to the viewpoints of “skeptics” like Maisano.

In an interview, Maxwell Boykoff — an environmental studies Ph.D. candidate at the University of California at Santa Cruz — noted that if there’s one American journalist who cuts against the grain in covering the climate issue, it’s Andrew C. Revkin of The New York Times. That’s revealing, because Revkin happens to be the only reporter at any of the major newspapers studied who covers “global environmental change” as his exclusive beat, which Revkin says means writing about climate change “close to half” of the time. Revkin has also been covering global warming since 1988 and has written a book on the topic. (This fall he began teaching environmental reporting as an adjunct at Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism.)

Revkin agrees with the basic thrust of the Boykoff study, but he also notes that the analysis focuses only on the quantitative aspect of climate-change coverage, rather than more subtle qualitative questions such as how reporters “characterize the voices” of the people they quote.

After all, the issue isn’t just how many column inches journalists give to the perspective of climate-change “skeptics” versus the mainstream view. It’s also how they identify these contrarian figures, many of whom have industry ties. Take a January 8, 2004, article by The Washington Post’s Guy Gugliotta, reporting on a study in the journal Nature finding that global warming could “drive 15 to 37 percent of living species toward extinction by mid-century.” Gugliotta’s story hardly suffered from phony balance. But when it did include a “skeptic” perspective — in a thoroughly subordinate fashion in the ninth paragraph — the skeptic’s industry ties went unmentioned:

    One skeptic, William O’Keefe, president of the George C. Marshall Institute, a conservative science policy organization, criticized the Nature study, saying that the research ‘ignored species’ ability to adapt to higher temperatures’ and assumed that technologies will not arise to reduce emissions.

What Gugliotta didn’t say is this: the Marshall Institute receives substantial support from oil giant ExxonMobil, a leading funder of think tanks, frequently conservative in orientation, that question the scientific consensus on climate change. Moreover, O’Keefe himself has chaired the anti-Kyoto Protocol Global Climate Coalition, and served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of the American Petroleum Institute. Senate documents from 2001 through 2003 also list him as a registered lobbyist for ExxonMobil. (To be fair, when I discussed this matter with O’Keefe while working on a previous article, he said that he registers as a lobbyist “out of an abundance of caution” and keeps his ExxonMobil and Marshall Institute work “separate.”)

Asked about all of this, Gugliotta said he simply didn’t know of O’Keefe’s industry connections at the time. He said he considered O’Keefe a “reasoned skeptic” who provided a measured perspective from the other side of the issue. Fair enough. His industry ties don’t necessarily detract from that, but readers still should know about them. The point isn’t to single out Gugliotta — any number of other examples could be found. And such omissions don’t merely occur on the news pages. Some major op-ed pages also appear to think that to fulfill their duty of providing a range of views, they should publish dubious contrarian opinion pieces on climate change even when those pieces are written by nonscientists. For instance, on July 7, 2003, The Washington Post published a revisionist op-ed on climate science by James Schlesinger, a former secretary of both energy and defense, and a former director of Central Intelligence. “In recent years the inclination has been to attribute the warming we have lately experienced to a single dominant cause — the increase in greenhouse gases,” wrote Schlesinger. “Yet climate has always been changing — and sometimes the swings have been rapid.” The clear implication was that scientists don’t know enough about the causes of climate change to justify strong pollution controls.

That’s not how most climatologists feel, but then Schlesinger is an economist by training, not a climatologist. Moreover, his Washington Post byline failed to note that he sits on the board of directors of Peabody Energy, the largest coal company in the world, and has since 2001. Peabody has resisted the push for mandatory controls on greenhouse gas emissions, such as those that would be required by the Kyoto Protocol. In a 2001 speech, the Peabody executive John Wootten argued that “there remains great uncertainty in the scientific understanding of climate,” and that “imposition of immediate constraints on emissions from fossil-fuel use is not warranted.” Funny, that’s pretty much what Schlesinger argued.

For another group of scientists, the grievances with the press have emerged more recently, but arguably with far greater force. That’s because on an issue of great concern to these scientists — the various uses and abuses of somatic cell nuclear transfer, or cloning — journalists have swallowed the claims of the scientific fringe hook, line, and sinker.

Consider the great 2002 cloning hoax. In the media lull following Christmas, one Brigitte Boisselier — the “scientific director” of Clonaid, a company linked to the UFO-obsessed Raelian sect, and already a semi-celebrity who had been profiled in The New York Times Magazine — announced the birth of the world’s first cloned baby. At her press conference, covered live by CNN, MSNBC, and Fox, Boisselier could not even produce a picture of the alleged child — “Eve” — much less independent scientific verification of her claims. She instead promised proof within eight or nine days. Needless to say, the whole affair should have made the press wary.

Nevertheless, a media frenzy ensued, with journalists occasionally mocking and questioning the Raelians while allowing their claims to drive the coverage. CNN’s medical correspondent, Sanjay Gupta, provided a case in point. When he interviewed Boisselier following her press conference, Gupta called Clonaid a group with “the capacity to clone” and told Boisselier, credulously, “We are certainly going to be anxiously awaiting to see some of the proof from these independent scientists next week.”

Perhaps most outspoken in criticizing the press during the Clonaid fiasco was Arthur Caplan, the University of Pennsylvania biomedical ethicist. As one of the nation’s most quoted bioethicists, Caplan had the advantage of actual access to the media during the feeding frenzy. Yet that familiarity made little difference. As Caplan complained in an MSNBC.com column following the Raelians’ announcement, no one wanted to listen to his skepticism because that would have required dropping the story: “As soon as I heard about the Raelians’ cloning claim, I knew it was nonsense,” wrote Caplan. “The media have shown themselves incapable of covering the key social and intellectual phenomena of the 21st century, namely the revolution in genetics and biology.”

Caplan observed that Clonaid had no scientific peer-reviewed publications to prove its techniques were up to snuff, and that cloning had barely worked in live animal species, and then only after countless initial failures. Nevertheless, Clonaid had implausibly claimed a stunning success rate — five pregnancies in ten attempts — in its experiments.

The Clonaid fiasco shows the media at their absolute worst in covering scientific issues. Reviewing the coverage two years later is a painful exercise. As even Gupta later admitted, “I think if we had known . . . that there was going to be no proof at this press conference, I think that we probably would have pulled the plug.” Later on, even the Raelians themselves reportedly laughed at how easy it was to get free publicity.

But this wasn’t just fun and games. The political consequences of the press’s cloning coverage were considerable. Widespread fear of human cloning inevitably lends strength to sweeping legislation that would ban all forms of cloning, despite the fact that many scientists think the cloning of embryos for research purposes holds significant medical promise; it would allow for the creation of embryonic-stem-cell lines genetically matched to individual patients. Thus, on an issue where one side of the debate thrives on fear, the media delivered exactly what these cloning-ban advocates desired. Where the press’s unjustifiable addiction to “balance” on climate change produces a political stalemate on a pressing issue of global consequence, its addiction to cloning cranks provided a potent political weapon to the enemies of crucial research.

None of those examples of poorly “balanced” science reporting arise from precisely the same set of journalistic shortcomings. In Scott Gold’s case at the Los Angeles Times, he appears to have known the scientific issues perfectly well. That gave his writing an authority that set off warning bells in an editor wary of bias. That’s very different from the Clonaid example, where sheer credulousness among members of the media — combined with sensationalism and a slow news period — were the problem. And that’s different still from the problem of false balance in the media coverage of climate change in the U.S., which has been chronic for more than a decade.

Yet in each case, the basic journalistic remedy would probably be the same. As a general rule, journalists should treat fringe scientific claims with considerable skepticism, and find out what major peer-reviewed papers or assessments have to say about them. Moreover, they should adhere to the principle that the more outlandish or dramatic the claim, the more skepticism it warrants. The Los Angeles Times’s Carroll observes that “every good journalist has a bit of a contrarian in his soul,” but it is precisely this impulse that can lead reporters astray. The fact is, nonscientist journalists can all too easily fall for scientific-sounding claims that they can’t adequately evaluate on their own.

That doesn’t mean that scientific consensus is right in every instance. There are famous examples, in fact, of when it was proved wrong: Galileo comes to mind, as does a lowly patent clerk named Einstein. In the vast majority of modern cases, however, scientific consensus can be expected to hold up under scrutiny precisely because it was reached through a lengthy and rigorous process of professional skepticism and criticism. At the very least, journalists covering science-based policy debates should familiarize themselves with this professional proving ground, learn what it says about the relative merits of competing claims, and “balance” their reports accordingly.


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Comments

  • The_FinchThe_Finch Members Join Date: 2002-11-13 Member: 8498Posts: 661
    Good article.

    Much of scientific reporting in the media seems to fall into the Middle Ground fallacy; that the truth lies somewhere in between the two extremes of the potential positions on a particular topic. However, that isn't true at all. Like the unsupported "abortion causes breast cancer" statement. Many journalists are so worried about being accused of bias, that they fail to realize that sometimes, people are just plain wrong. The "dig" about the background in property management isn't bias. The man was making a medical claim with no medical background.

    Similarly, I see the same thing happening with the Georgia evolution warning stickers. In that case, it doesn't highlight the fact that scientific use of the word "theory" differs greatly from the everyday use of the word. To achieve theory status in science, you need a veritable dumptruck full of evidence supporting it. In this case, evolution is being singled out because it's not popular. But you don't see the theory of gravity, atomic theory, the theory of relativity or the theory of limits being objected to. If "it's just a theory" is a valid criticism, you'd need a warning sticker on every science and advanced mathematics text.
    QUOTE (X Stickman)
    America's Army taught me that I'm more likely to be shot in the back by my own teammates, then have my sexuality insulted as well as accusations made towards my mother's sex life. If it's a recruitment tool, it's a damn poor one.
  • WindelkronWindelkron Members Join Date: 2002-04-11 Member: 419Posts: 3,975
    As a high school journalist myself, I find this article very fascinating indeed. The job of the journalist is to report the truth, no doubt. But what happens when reporting the truth means having to report an untruth, as in the case of many of these unfounded scientific claims? Giving journalistic credence to a hairbrained theory by reporting about it would mean supporting an invalid claim (in harsher terms, a lie). At the same time, though, not reporting [the silly claim] at all would be falsely implying that there is no controversy.
    QUOTE(esuna)
    In short, stop just looking at screenshots and thinking "JESUS CHRIST! THAT ENGINE IS PERFECT BECAUSE IT LOOKS LIKE x GAME! MY COLON EXPLODED!"
  • Pepe_MuffassaPepe_Muffassa Members Join Date: 2003-01-17 Member: 12401Posts: 537
    QUOTE (The Finch @ Nov 11 2004, 01:26 PM)
    Good article.

    Much of scientific reporting in the media seems to fall into the Middle Ground fallacy; that the truth lies somewhere in between the two extremes of the potential positions on a particular topic. However, that isn't true at all. Like the unsupported "abortion causes breast cancer" statement. Many journalists are so worried about being accused of bias, that they fail to realize that sometimes, people are just plain wrong. The "dig" about the background in property management isn't bias. The man was making a medical claim with no medical background.

    Similarly, I see the same thing happening with the Georgia evolution warning stickers. In that case, it doesn't highlight the fact that scientific use of the word "theory" differs greatly from the everyday use of the word. To achieve theory status in science, you need a veritable dumptruck full of evidence supporting it. In this case, evolution is being singled out because it's not popular. But you don't see the theory of gravity, atomic theory, the theory of relativity or the theory of limits being objected to. If "it's just a theory" is a valid criticism, you'd need a warning sticker on every science and advanced mathematics text.

    I agree, Finch, with your analysis of the first case - breast cancer linked to abortion. He was not a medical doctor, and shouldn't be treated as such. The theory deserves very little weight.

    Concerning the creation / evolution debate (I'm not trying to de-rail this thread) the problem is BOTH sides have compelling evidence - you could even say "theory of creation" v. "theory of evolution". Both are rigourously tested and tried, and both have been able to stand up fairly well. Both have prominent scientific experts looking at the evidence, both have pre-supposed ideas / premises, both are looking for "truth". Heck, both should be taught in schools.

    The point is, it takes a discerning mind to determine which "theories" are totally bunk, and which deserve some credit. The link between breast cancer and abortion is about as strong as the link between cosmic bodies and my future - there is little to 0 evidence, and any "evidence" can easily be seen as conincidence.

    The Media has lost its discernment.
    In Soviet Russia, walls strafe you ...

    SoS 8:6-7 "...for Love is as strong as Death, it's Jealousy unyealding as the Grave!"

    BY THE PADDLES OF PONG WHAT DO MIDICLORIANS HAVE TO DO WITH ANYTHING?!
  • SkulkBaitSkulkBait Members Join Date: 2003-02-11 Member: 13423Posts: 2,543
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (Pepe_Muffassa @ Nov 11 2004, 01:50 PM)
    Concerning the creation / evolution debate (I'm not trying to de-rail this thread)

    Then why bring this up, you know it only cause trouble.

    QUOTE
    the problem is BOTH sides have compelling evidence

    No. One side has compelling evidence, the other side presents a hypothosis that requires the existance supernatural forces that do not obey any form of physical law, known or unknown.

    QUOTE

    - you could even say "theory of creation" v. "theory of evolution". 

    the "Theory of creation" is not a theory in the same was as evolution is a theory. Creationism is only a theory in the common sense of the word, wheras Evolution is a theory in the scientific deffinition.

    QUOTE

    Both are rigourously tested and tried, and both have been able to stand up fairly well.

    This is a rediculous statement. How do you test the idea that life was designed? The only reason creationism stands up at all is because it relies on the existance of god, and if god exists than anything is possible. Like fake dinosaur bones planted to test our faith or whatever excuse creationists use to explain that nowadays.

    I could say that a magical invisible intangable eagle layed an egg from which all life on earth originated. Can you devise a test for this hypothosis?

    QUOTE

    Both have prominent scientific experts looking at the evidence

    Again, wrong. There is no evidence to look into for intellegent design. And just because a creationist calls them selves a scientific expert doesn't make it so. There is a reason that scientific journals don't have articles about creationism "theory".

    QUOTE
    both have pre-supposed ideas / premises, both are looking for "truth".

    WRONG! Creationists already think they know the truth, now they're just looking for a way to prove it. This is exactly the oposite of scientific method.

    QUOTE
    Heck, both should be taught in schools.

    Hell freaking no. Religion should be taught in the home, not by the state.
    1.04ever
  • TimmythemoonpigTimmythemoonpig Members Join Date: 2003-11-08 Member: 22407Posts: 99

    Creation vs Evolution is an issue? I'm from Ireland which is a very religious country...95% Catholic...not in my lifetime has that ever been an issue, evolution is taught in the schools, its never contested, its like saying the Earth is round, done, proven....I heard a snippet on the news saying a poll suggested that up to 60% of Americans believed in creationism, I honestly figured he said 16%, but it was actually 60% which is unreal.
  • the_x5the_x5 the Xzianthian Members, Constellation Join Date: 2004-03-02 Member: 27041Posts: 3,175
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (moultano @ Nov 11 2004, 12:56 PM)
    Related comic:
    {cartoon image}

    n1 m8! tounge.gif

    ~Reply to below~

    Oh I'm sorry, I didn't realize I couldn't ever do a short reply. I thought it was amusing so I was going to compliment moultano with a "nice one mate" which I then abreviated. I don't see why you think it was a weapon, somehow you think you know my intentions better than myself with an eight character reply. Believe it or not I actually read the whole article but I didn't really have anything come to mind that was necessary to add in commentary so I simply made a short reply to compliment moultano on taking the time to find the article and admittedly humorous comic and move on.

    For that matter my respect for you is quite low right now from that recent racist stunt you pulled. Closeminded is a pet peeve but when you take your stereotypes and not only make generalized hate slurs at a group when it's a minority, but go further to advocate genocide of the whole because of the actions of a extremist little minority is downright villianous. mad-fix.gif
    Post edited by Unknown User on
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  • Pepe_MuffassaPepe_Muffassa Members Join Date: 2003-01-17 Member: 12401Posts: 537
    *sigh*
    Skulk - please re-read your post. It is 90% reiteration of other threads, 100% bias, and as 0 to do with this thread.

    To put the creation/evolution debate on the same level as the "world is round" debate belittles the intellect of many, many well thought out, very scientific creationists. Just because one is religious does not make one:
    1. Unscientific
    2. A complete moron.
    3. Irrational
    4. Close minded

    In terms of journalism, be fair in your reporting. It is easy to say: Based on these pre-supositions and this new evidence, this group of scientists have come to this conclusion, but these other guys, with these pre-suppositions have come up with this explanation.

    It is important to be accurate in the explanation of both sides, and the journalist must understand both sides fully in order for the audience to make a rational choice. It is not the journalists job to provide bias - it is to present information.

    x5, I forgive you for re-posting that immage. It was a shameless jab at my expence, but no harm done. The first time, it was funny. The second, it was used as a weapon. I had expected more from you.

    *sigh*
    In Soviet Russia, walls strafe you ...

    SoS 8:6-7 "...for Love is as strong as Death, it's Jealousy unyealding as the Grave!"

    BY THE PADDLES OF PONG WHAT DO MIDICLORIANS HAVE TO DO WITH ANYTHING?!
  • Marine0IMarine0I Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-11-14 Member: 8639Posts: 1,870
    I agree with a lot of what that article said. It itself was actually quite balanced, which is important for an article on balance smile-fix.gif

    However, several things bothered me. One was the claim that anyone associated with a company couldnt be trusted. I understand why this would hurt their credibility, but I cant understand why "Nature" or "Greenpeace" or even garden variety university researchers should be treated with any more credibility. They have agendas.

    If you are a university researcher - you are already going to want to find out that the world is coming to an end. Why? Because if you tell the Government that this is a huge problem and they need to find out more about it, then they're going to give you research grants to carry on your vital research with global implications confused-fix.gif

    QUOTE
    No. One side has compelling evidence, the other side presents a hypothosis that requires the existance supernatural forces that do not obey any form of physical law, known or unknown.


    And which side is that? Your side of course! And what happens when your side cant explain something eg existance of the Universe - either ignore it or file it away under "unsolved/unsolvable".

    QUOTE
    There is a reason that scientific journals don't have articles about creationism "theory".


    Damn straight - just as you wont find the pro's of democracy in the World Socialist Weekly magazine.

    QUOTE
    WRONG! Creationists already think they know the truth, now they're just looking for a way to prove it. This is exactly the oposite of scientific method.


    Oh really - you just told me evolution was the only theory in town. I know just about every scientist also believes that. What makes you think that they dont just believe the their truth and only seek confirmatory information? As a BaSci student I've had it hammered into me that evolution is a FACT, not a theory. You may not challenge it - lest you get bent over by your peers.
  • SkulkBaitSkulkBait Members Join Date: 2003-02-11 Member: 13423Posts: 2,543
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (Pepe_Muffassa @ Nov 11 2004, 07:57 PM)
    *sigh*
    Skulk - please re-read your post.  It is 90% reiteration of other threads, 100% bias, and as 0 to do with this thread.

    Its not biased. Give me one piece of scientific evidence that suggests we were devinely created, as opposed to evidence that evolution couldn't happen, thats the only kind i've ever seen and its all been delt with.

    QUOTE

    To put the creation/evolution debate on the same level as the "world is round" debate belittles the intellect of many, many well thought out, very scientific creationists. 

    Let me tell you something, only the religious think its a debate. As far as the scientific community is concerned answering questions with "god did it" is unnacceptable. Now if there happened to be evidence that man suddenly started existing, or that the world was only 6000 years old, then thats all that evidence would mean as far as science is concerned.



    Now to take on the more experienced opponent:

    QUOTE
    And which side is that? Your side of course! And what happens when your side cant explain something eg existance of the Universe - either ignore it or file it away under "unsolved/unsolvable".

    More or less yes, because science rufuses to try and explain things in terms of supernatural forces. Science doesn't ask "why is the sky blue?" and answer "because blue is God's favorite color", even though that may be the correct answer. Science is all about understanding the universe, if we were to blame everything we couldn't explain on God rather than trying to explain it, well we wouldn't be chatting on this here internet would we?

    QUOTE
    Damn straight - just as you wont find the pro's of democracy in the World Socialist Weekly magazine.

    Sure, paint it as a conspiracy if it makes you feel better, its not the truth. Keeping the wrong model for how something works is useless to science since it prevents further understanding.

    QUOTE

    Oh really - you just told me evolution was the only theory in town. I know just about every scientist also believes that. What makes you think that they dont just believe the their truth and only seek confirmatory information? As a BaSci student I've had it hammered into me that evolution is a FACT, not a theory. You may not challenge it - lest you get bent over by your peers.

    Well evolution is pretty much fact. We know that organisms adapt to their surroundings and improve themselves via natural selection (and other methods, gene transfer comes to mind), we've seen it happen so we know that it does. The only problem religious people have with it is that it suggests that humans are the product of billions of years of this process, which is still up in the air somewhat. Doesn't the fact that evolution is the only theory in town lend credit to it? I mean, no one has offered a theory that fits better...
    1.04ever
  • Marine0IMarine0I Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-11-14 Member: 8639Posts: 1,870
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE
    Let me tell you something, only the religious think its a debate. As far as the scientific community is concerned answering questions with "god did it" is unnacceptable. Now if there happened to be evidence that man suddenly started existing, or that the world was only 6000 years old, then thats all that evidence would mean as far as science is concerned.


    Which explains my suspicion. They didnt discover the Earth was millions of years old - they decided that abiogenesis was possible, and for it to be possible you'd need millions of years. So they went looking for millions of years, and strangely enough, given that their was no alternative to their theory of millions of years, they found them. Any problems with these methods are covered under the auspicies of "scientific error" and "unusual trends".

    QUOTE
    More or less yes, because science rufuses to try and explain things in terms of supernatural forces. Science doesn't ask "why is the sky blue?" and answer "because blue is God's favorite color", even though that may be the correct answer. Science is all about understanding the universe, if we were to blame everything we couldn't explain on God rather than trying to explain it, well we wouldn't be chatting on this here internet would we?


    Sir Issac Newton. One of the pioneers of modern science - hardcore Christian. A lot of religions (and indeed many Christians as well) suffered from the belief that everything happened on the whim of the God/s, so you couldnt find patterns or laws. Newton believed in a God of rules and order, so he set out to discover these laws. Interesting that you use the analogy of the sky being blue when it was Newton who discovered the electromagnetic spectrum responsible for those colours. Clearly a religious belief is not a hinderance to scientific advancement - a tightly shut mind is, and that applies to the believers and nonbelievers.

    QUOTE
    Well evolution is pretty much fact. We know that organisms adapt to their surroundings and improve themselves via natural selection (and other methods, gene transfer comes to mind), we've seen it happen so we know that it does.


    No one argues with natural selection, we just disagree with the whole upwards development.

    QUOTE
    The only problem religious people have with it is that it suggests that humans are the product of billions of years of this process, which is still up in the air somewhat. Doesn't the fact that evolution is the only theory in town lend credit to it? I mean, no one has offered a theory that fits better...


    Unfortunately, it doesnt. Science has had theories that were the "only game in town" before (Newtonian physics before Einstein, Aristoles Earthcentric vs Copernican/Gallileo heliocentric, special creation vs abiogenesis) and all of them are now currently rejected. Each of them were stoutly defended at the time, and critics denounced as lunatics. I find it interesting how each successive generation laughs at the past mistakes of science while making the same error. "eheheheheh yeah but they were wrong back then, the difference is I'm 100% right - we're modern, we must be smart!"

    EDIT

    On topic - I reread that article and each time it disturbs me a little more. Basically they are picking sides in the environmental science war, accusing the "everythings fine" mob of being all corrupt, using dodgy science, and being in the minority anyway, and then whining that the media doesnt give them a thrashing front page everyday.

    Its akin to bclaiming that the Democrats are outnumbered and stupid, so its a clear demonstration of the media bias that this deluded few get the same attention as Republicans - its defining your opponent out of the realms of being treated seriously.

    EDIT2 Its times like this I wish evolutionairy criticism wasnt outlawed on these boards and Aegeri was still around - because with my first year of Science behind me I could actually make a fight of it smile-fix.gif
  • moultanomoultano Creator of ns_shiva. Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor, Constellation, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Gold, NS2 Community Developer, Pistachionauts Join Date: 2002-12-14 Member: 10806Posts: 4,219 Advanced user
    edited November 2004
    Find me a peer reviewed paper published in a respectable scientific journal that supports intelligent design, and then you'll have a leg to stand on.

    Marine, as far as I know, you don't have extensive training in any of the sciences relevant to the debate, yet you are taking on the entire established scientific community. Take an honest look at this. There are a lot of devout christians who are also scientists, and believe me, if the evidence supported intelligent design, you'd hear about it. As it is, serious scientists who are also religious find ways to work within both frameworks in their personal life, but the realm of science has strict definitions, and until the evidence supports it, intelligent design is not science.

    QUOTE (Marine01)
    Unfortunately, it doesnt. Science has had theories that were the "only game in town" before (Newtonian physics before Einstein, Aristoles Earthcentric vs Copernican/Gallileo heliocentric, special creation vs abiogenesis) and all of them are now currently rejected. Each of them were stoutly defended at the time, and critics denounced as lunatics. I find it interesting how each successive generation laughs at the past mistakes of science while making the same error. "eheheheheh yeah but they were wrong back then, the difference is I'm 100% right - we're modern, we must be smart!"

    QUOTE (Carl Sagan)
    They laughed at Columbus, they laughed at Fulton, they laughed at the Wright brothers. But they also laughed at Bozo the Clown.

    I've always wanted to use that quote smile-fix.gif
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • Marine0IMarine0I Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-11-14 Member: 8639Posts: 1,870
    QUOTE
    Find me a peer reviewed paper published in a respectable scientific journal that supports intelligent design, and then you'll have a leg to stand on.


    The problem here as I see it (or "conspiracy here" as Skulkbait sees it) is that this is a circular process. How do you get scientific credibility? Get published in a peer reviewed scientific journal - but any broadbased attack on evolution is automatically dismissed as lunacy. So the only place to gain credibility is to be published in the stronghold of your opposition.

    "Its not science, you're not published in our journals, so you have no credibility"

    "Ok then, can you publish this"

    "Ahahahaha we dont publish creationist rubbish, you guys got no credibility"

    "How do I get credibility?"

    "get published in our journals"

    An appropriate analogy is "Show me one clergy member who agrees with Galilleo and then I'll believe you" back in ye olde days

    And round and round it goes. I have no doubt that some creationist theory is complete bunk and deserves a polite but firm rejection - but there is a visceral and emotional response to Creationism in the scientific community: Think of a feminist who just saw your "No, biznitch, its not your body, have my baby and get back in the damn kitchen" tshirt and you're on the right track.

    QUOTE
    Marine, as far as I know, you don't have extensive training in any of the sciences relevant to the debate, yet you are taking on the entire established scientific community


    I'm a Bible believing, creationist rightwing religious fundamentalist - I love the underdog fight smile-fix.gif

    QUOTE
    Take an honest look at this. There are a lot of devout christians who are also scientists, and believe me, if the evidence supported intelligent design, you'd hear about it.


    I do hear about it. I read it. Michael Behe's "Darwin's Black Box" is my current reading. ID really just claims that the similiarities evolutionists take for links in development are actually just the signs of similar work from the same workman - and then spends the rest of its days attacking evolutionairy theory.

    QUOTE
    As it is, serious scientist who are also religious find ways to work within both frameworks in their personal life, but the realm of science has strict definitions, and until the evidence supports it, intelligent design is not science.


    I think it is, as it utilises scientific methods to put forward its viewpoint and attack its opponents. It can never 100% prove its basic hypothesis that life was designed, but the same criticism applies to abiogenesis - they cant reproduce the supposed millions of years required, so even in the event they one day manage to pull it off, it will be in a lab with masses of equipment and intelligence going into its creation.

    Two theories:
    A Life came about by abiogenesis
    B Life came about by design

    ID rejects A for scientific reasons ie irreducible complexity (many people fail to realise that the ID movement is not related to religious creationists, although they share many similiarities), leaving only option B available

    Evolutionists reject B because they cant accept anything that relies on outside interference because its not directly studiable, so option A is the only option available. Neither are easy to argue, the look of panic on my biol lecturers face when I asked him to draw me a map of molecules going to the first organic substances going to the first organism was priceless. "There are a lot of theories...."

    QUOTE
    I've always wanted to use that quote  smile-fix.gif


    Bozo was right - we just never realised it at the time. The meaning of life was a pie in the face and we couldnt accept it sad-fix.gif
  • SkulkBaitSkulkBait Members Join Date: 2003-02-11 Member: 13423Posts: 2,543
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (Marine01 @ Nov 12 2004, 05:40 PM)
    QUOTE
    Let me tell you something, only the religious think its a debate. As far as the scientific community is concerned answering questions with "god did it" is unnacceptable. Now if there happened to be evidence that man suddenly started existing, or that the world was only 6000 years old, then thats all that evidence would mean as far as science is concerned.


    Which explains my suspicion. They didnt discover the Earth was millions of years old - they decided that abiogenesis was possible, and for it to be possible you'd need millions of years. So they went looking for millions of years, and strangely enough, given that their was no alternative to their theory of millions of years, they found them. Any problems with these methods are covered under the auspicies of "scientific error" and "unusual trends".

    I'm not entirely sure how the idea that the earth is billions of years old first came about, but I suspect it first came from geologists, not evolutionary science. Besides, there are plenty of indicators that this is true. Creationists usually offer the explaination "God could have created it so that it looks that way". Well, if thats the case god could have created the world 17 seconds ago and just made everything look like it had been around longer, including our memories. Therefore, such an argument is completely useless to science even if it is true.

    See this site for a good example of what I'm talking about: http://www.religioustolerance.org/oldearth.htm

    Especially the part where they claim that the main problem with all these indicators is that they assume something that is constant today has always been constant.

    QUOTE

    QUOTE
    More or less yes, because science rufuses to try and explain things in terms of supernatural forces. Science doesn't ask "why is the sky blue?" and answer "because blue is God's favorite color", even though that may be the correct answer. Science is all about understanding the universe, if we were to blame everything we couldn't explain on God rather than trying to explain it, well we wouldn't be chatting on this here internet would we?


    Sir Issac Newton. One of the pioneers of modern science - hardcore Christian. A lot of religions (and indeed many Christians as well) suffered from the belief that everything happened on the whim of the God/s, so you couldnt find patterns or laws. Newton believed in a God of rules and order, so he set out to discover these laws. Interesting that you use the analogy of the sky being blue when it was Newton who discovered the electromagnetic spectrum responsible for those colours. Clearly a religious belief is not a hinderance to scientific advancement - a tightly shut mind is, and that applies to the believers and nonbelievers.



    Sure, there are scientists who are christian and are able to keep to scientific method. This is not the case with creationists though. Creationists didn't set out to find out the origins of life on earth, or more specificall human origins. They looked to the big book cheat sheat, found the answer, and set out to prove it. Or rather disprove anything that suggests otherwise, since I've never seen a creationist present evidence FOR creationism, mearly AGAINST evolution.


    QUOTE


    QUOTE
    The only problem religious people have with it is that it suggests that humans are the product of billions of years of this process, which is still up in the air somewhat. Doesn't the fact that evolution is the only theory in town lend credit to it? I mean, no one has offered a theory that fits better...


    Unfortunately, it doesnt. Science has had theories that were the "only game in town" before (Newtonian physics before Einstein, Aristoles Earthcentric vs Copernican/Gallileo heliocentric, special creation vs abiogenesis) and all of them are now currently rejected.

    In this case you have it backards. Special creation was here first and is being replaced by the better working model of evolution. Newtonian physics, however, were never really replaced, they were enhanced by later, more accurate, models. Evolution has also been enhanced by things like punctuated equilibrium.

    QUOTE

    Each of them were stoutly defended at the time, and critics denounced as lunatics. I find it interesting how each successive generation laughs at the past mistakes of science while making the same error. "eheheheheh yeah but they were wrong back then, the difference is I'm 100% right - we're modern, we must be smart!"

    I only seen that attitude with regard to actual crackpot theories. Its sort of part of the process, if a theory has merit it will survive the criticism and eventually win out.

    QUOTE
    Get published in a peer reviewed scientific journal - but any broadbased attack on evolution is automatically dismissed as lunacy.


    More likely they are dismissed because they are full of holes, or have crummy science backing them.

    QUOTE
    I do hear about it. I read it. Michael Behe's "Darwin's Black Box" is my current reading. ID really just claims that the similiarities evolutionists take for links in development are actually just the signs of similar work from the same workman - and then spends the rest of its days attacking evolutionairy theory.

    And therin lies the problem with creationist "science" it doesn't support its claim with evidence, it supports its claim by refuting the evidence for evolution, and then wonders why it can't get published.

    QUOTE
    they cant reproduce the supposed millions of years required, so even in the event they one day manage to pull it off, it will be in a lab with masses of equipment and intelligence going into its creation.

    No one is saying God didn't create a universe in which things were structured such tthat life could appear on its own. That could very well be the case and we would never know it. However, creationists don't claim this do they? They claim that the earth was created 6,000 years ago and that humans were there within the first week.
    1.04ever
  • Marine0IMarine0I Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-11-14 Member: 8639Posts: 1,870
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE
    I'm not entirely sure how the idea that the earth is billions of years old first came about, but I suspect it first came from geologists, not evolutionary science. Besides, there are plenty of indicators that this is true.


    I'm quite confident millions of years geology was crackpot theory until happened upon by those seeking support for the millions of years required for abiogenesis.

    QUOTE
    Creationists usually offer the explaination "God could have created it so that it looks that way". Well, if thats the case god could have created the world 17 seconds ago and just made everything look like it had been around longer, including our memories. Therefore, such an argument is completely useless to science even if it is true.


    I dont accept that God created things just to trick us.

    QUOTE
    See this site for a good example of what I'm talking about: http://www.religioustolerance.org/oldearth.htm

    Especially the part where they claim that the main problem with all these indicators is that they assume something that is constant today has always been constant. ://http://www.religioustolerance.org/o...been constant. ://http://www.religioustolerance.org/o...been constant. ://http://www.religioustolerance.org/o...been constant.


    The constancy of light has been criticised (not by creationists might I add), but suffers from the problem outlined above, too revolutionairy:

    Slowing down?

    Twain summed up the dangers of backwards extrapolation best for me:

    CODE
    In the space of one hundred and seventy-six years the Lower
       Mississippi has shortened itself two hundred and forty-two miles.  That
       is an average of a trifle over one mile and a third per year.
       Therefore, any calm person, who is not blind or an idiot, can see that
       in the Old O\"olitic Silurian Period, just a million years ago next
       November, the Lower Mississippi River was upward of one million three
       hundred thousand miles long, and stuck out over the Gulf of Mexico like
       a fishing-rod.  And by the same token any person can see that seven
       hundred and forty-two years from now the Lower Mississippi will be only
       a mile and three-quarters long, and Cairo and New Orleans will have
       joined their streets together, and be plodding comfortably along under
       a single mayor and a mutual board of alderman.  There is something
       fascinating about science.  One gets such wholesome returns of
       conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.


    QUOTE
    Sure, there are scientists who are christian and are able to keep to scientific method. This is not the case with creationists though. Creationists didn't set out to find out the origins of life on earth, or more specificall human origins. They looked to the big book cheat sheat, found the answer, and set out to prove it. Or rather disprove anything that suggests otherwise, since I've never seen a creationist present evidence FOR creationism, mearly AGAINST evolution.


    Argument against is argument for. If you argue against the null hypothesis, you are arguing for the primary hypothesis. Creationists believe that they understand the origins of life on Earth, and that the evidence supports it, and that the evidence that doesnt can be explained away. Substitute Creationist for evolutionist in that sentence - it works exactly the same. Evolutionary theory is hammered into people just like creationism is indoctrinated.

    QUOTE
    In this case you have it backards. Special creation was here first and is being replaced by the better working model of evolution. Newtonian physics, however, were never really replaced, they were enhanced by later, more accurate, models. Evolution has also been enhanced by things like punctuated equilibrium.


    No I think I have it forwads. In every example there the original theory that was solid science was placed before the following theory that rejected the first. By Newtonian physics I meant Newtonian astrophysics sorry, Newtonian physics are still the mainstay everywhere.

    QUOTE
    More likely they are dismissed because they are full of holes, or have crummy science backing them.


    Precious few theories are without holes, but when your basic premise defines crummy science (ie you dont believe what everyone else does), then you got no chance.

    QUOTE
    And therin lies the problem with creationist "science" it doesn't support its claim with evidence, it supports its claim by refuting the evidence for evolution, and then wonders why it can't get published.


    You do realise that peer reviewed journals exist so people can attack theories right? Stay away from the sacred cow though.

    EDIT

    QUOTE
    A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and
    making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually
    die and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.
                                                            --- Max Planck


    Truer words were never spoken!
  • moultanomoultano Creator of ns_shiva. Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor, Constellation, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Gold, NS2 Community Developer, Pistachionauts Join Date: 2002-12-14 Member: 10806Posts: 4,219 Advanced user
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE
    The problem here as I see it (or "conspiracy here" as Skulkbait sees it) is that this is a circular process. How do you get scientific credibility? Get published in a peer reviewed scientific journal - but any broadbased attack on evolution is automatically dismissed as lunacy. So the only place to gain credibility is to be published in the stronghold of your opposition.

    That most definitely is a conspiracy theory. If you have data, and are willing to put your claims up for peer review, and your work is significant, you will be published.
    QUOTE
    I do hear about it. I read it. Michael Behe's "Darwin's Black Box" is my current reading. ID really just claims that the similiarities evolutionists take for links in development are actually just the signs of similar work from the same workman - and then spends the rest of its days attacking evolutionairy theory.

    Anyone can write a book. The only prerequisite is that someone thinks it will sell. Scientific discourse has different standards.
    QUOTE
    Evolutionists reject B because they cant accept anything that relies on outside interference because its not directly studiable, so option A is the only option available.

    Science by definition only studies data and causes within this universe. This is part of its definition. If something is not subject to natural law, it is not the subject of science. That doesn't exclude it from the realm of truth, but it does exclude it from the realm of science. Regardless of the truth of intelligent design (which I'm still willing to allow room for) intelligent design is not science.
  • Marine0IMarine0I Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-11-14 Member: 8639Posts: 1,870
    QUOTE
    Evolution has also been enhanced by things like punctuated equilibrium.


    Whoa, couldnt let this go past. Evolution has not been enhanced by punctuated equilibrium theory - it actually created an awesome divide amongst evolutionist. The two camps are "slow and gradual evolution" and "no evolution for a while - then EVOLUTION PARTY BABY!"

    The slow and gradual mob deal the punctuated equilibrium kids a lot of damage - because there is no actual suggested mechanism for the "massive spontaneous evolve party". One of the most hilarious criticisms I ever read of punctuated equilibrium was from a slow and gradual scientist: "Let me guess - God came down and told them all to start evolving massively for a couple of million years in leaps and bounds, then stop for the next couple of hundred million, then start again". eheheheheh equating other evolutionists with creationists biggrin-fix.gif I love it.

    But the punctuated equilibrium people point out the massive problems with the current fossil record and claim there is no way that there could be a slow, gradual change from less complicated to more complicated, so you need to have these huge jumps in short periods of time.

    Punctuated equilibria hurts evolution way more than it enhances it.

    Moultano - I shall reply when I get back from my chemistry exam. Wish me luck kids!
  • moultanomoultano Creator of ns_shiva. Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor, Constellation, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Gold, NS2 Community Developer, Pistachionauts Join Date: 2002-12-14 Member: 10806Posts: 4,219 Advanced user
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (Marine01 @ Nov 12 2004, 07:05 PM)
    I shall reply when I get back from my chemistry exam. Wish me luck kids!

    Good Luck! smile-fix.gif

    Marine 01 --- Chemistry Exam
    asrifle.gif
    hive5.gif
  • SkulkBaitSkulkBait Members Join Date: 2003-02-11 Member: 13423Posts: 2,543
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (Marine01 @ Nov 12 2004, 06:45 PM)
    QUOTE
    I'm not entirely sure how the idea that the earth is billions of years old first came about, but I suspect it first came from geologists, not evolutionary science. Besides, there are plenty of indicators that this is true.


    I'm quite confident millions of years geology was crackpot theory until happened upon by those seeking support for the millions of years required for abiogenesis.

    And yet you produce no evidence for such a statement.

    QUOTE

    QUOTE
    See this site for a good example of what I'm talking about: http://www.religioustolerance.org/oldearth.htm

    Especially the part where they claim that the main problem with all these indicators is that they assume something that is constant today has always been constant.


    The constancy of light has been criticised (not by creationists might I add), but suffers from the problem outlined above, too revolutionairy:

    Slowing down?

    Sure, we can play link wars if you want, I have the time: http://www.fsteiger.com/light.html

    BTW, I notice you completely ignored the indicators that they had no rebuttle for...

    QUOTE

    QUOTE
    In this case you have it backards. Special creation was here first and is being replaced by the better working model of evolution. Newtonian physics, however, were never really replaced, they were enhanced by later, more accurate, models. Evolution has also been enhanced by things like punctuated equilibrium.


    No I think I have it forwads. In every example there the original theory that was solid science was placed before the following theory that rejected the first. By Newtonian physics I meant Newtonian astrophysics sorry, Newtonian physics are still the mainstay everywhere.

    Oh I see, doesn't count if it isn't "solid science"?

    QUOTE

    QUOTE
    More likely they are dismissed because they are full of holes, or have crummy science backing them.


    Precious few theories are without holes, but when your basic premise defines crummy science (ie you dont believe what everyone else does), then you got no chance.

    I don't edit a scientific journal, nor do I have my work published in one. I have no idea what their criteria are. If you do, then by all means share it with us, stop offering conspiracy theories.

    QUOTE

    QUOTE
    And therin lies the problem with creationist "science" it doesn't support its claim with evidence, it supports its claim by refuting the evidence for evolution, and then wonders why it can't get published.


    You do realise that peer reviewed journals exist so people can attack theories right?

    Sure, thats beside the point. Attacking a theory is one thing, but attacking a theory then turning around and using the disproof of that theory as evidence for your own theory is silly. If your theory has merit then there will be evidence for it.

    QUOTE
    Whoa, couldnt let this go past. Evolution has not been enhanced by punctuated equilibrium theory - it actually created an awesome divide amongst evolutionist. The two camps are "slow and gradual evolution" and "no evolution for a while - then EVOLUTION PARTY BABY!"


    But both still use the concept of evolution no?
    1.04ever
  • SwiftspearSwiftspear Custim tital Members Join Date: 2003-10-29 Member: 22097Posts: 7,018
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (Marine01 @ Nov 12 2004, 07:05 PM)
    The slow and gradual mob deal the punctuated equilibrium kids a lot of damage - because there is no actual suggested mechanism for the "massive spontaneous evolve party". One of the most hilarious criticisms I ever read of punctuated equilibrium was from a slow and gradual scientist: "Let me guess - God came down and told them all to start evolving massively for a couple of million years in leaps and bounds, then stop for the next couple of hundred million, then start again". eheheheheh equating other evolutionists with creationists biggrin-fix.gif I love it.

    There is a few "suggested mechanisms" but they haven't been proven to say the least at this point. Keep in mind, the punctuated equilibrium crisis is reletively new, there hasn't been a massive ammount of time to study it yet, and all evolutionary science requires a massive ammount of time. If you aren't tracking multiple generations genetically then you are trying to pull thosands of fossils out of the ground, both being extreamly time consuming exercizes.

    Also, it should go without saying, that simply because the method with which a somewhat under-developed theory like evolution is in question, doesn't disprove the theory, it just means we probably don't understand all the variables and factors yet.

    [edit] I know this really isn't a welcome point in the context of this discussion, but if you intend to argue old earth/new earth, you can't argue example counter example. New earth theorist will present evidence that old earth theorists must refute, otherwize the argument stands that God just made some things to look old, but the proofs of a new earth can't be denyed that the earth is infact new.

    Personally I agree with the old earthers, and I belive that all the evidence for new earth science can be refuted, but it doesn't chance the fact that new earth logically seems like the more likely choice simply based on the fact that one proof alone proves it, but old earth requires every proof to pan out true.[/edit]
    O_O image
  • WindelkronWindelkron Members Join Date: 2002-04-11 Member: 419Posts: 3,975
    beh, you people are terrible. Way to completely derail the thread. If a mod comes along, delete/move the last ... uh, almost all of the replies to a different thread, they're not talking about journalism in the slightest.

    Anyway, to try to veer this back on topic, here's something to think about.
    The article stated that editors very often cried for "balance" and to "get both sides." Do you think it's likely that, if those editors have a bias/agenda, they can instruct reporters to gather balance on one issue, but non-balance on another issue? (for example, a Pro-industry editor will say "get balance on the global warming issue" but "don't get balance on the story about campaign contributions from both sides" [because both sides are guilty, and he wants to focus on the other side]).

    Do you think reporters have such a hammered-in mantra of "getting both sides" from journalism school that they somewhat ignore these biased directives from their editors? Or do you think they bend and do as they say? Just based on your experiences with the media, how quick are journalists to automatically jump to "balance, balance, balance! ?"
    QUOTE(esuna)
    In short, stop just looking at screenshots and thinking "JESUS CHRIST! THAT ENGINE IS PERFECT BECAUSE IT LOOKS LIKE x GAME! MY COLON EXPLODED!"
  • FrikkFrikk Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-11-01 Member: 3164Posts: 860
    edited November 2004
    *GLEE* If you guys just hold off about 2 weeks I'll have a basic background in Genetic evolution as well as Comparative Anatomy and basic Evolution. I doubt this topic will survive (not being locked) that long. Oh well.

    I personally find that arguing with Intelligent Designers, or any other Creationist, is best done with an example. It's at least the most entertaining way to do it in my eyes.

    There exists a beetle that has a rather unique way of living. The males posses a extremely sharp **** with which to copulate with the females. After a male copulates with a female, the last bit of it's ejaculate will basically "cement" the females cloaca ( I believe that's the term, it's just the female beetle's genitals.) The next male that copulates with this female has to break through the ejaculate in order to fertilize the female. It's a good defense against other males getting young from what the first male wants to be his clutch of young.
    Also, in this same beetle there is male-to-male use of the ****. They will mount and pierce the abdomen of the other male and ejaculate sperm into their body so that the next time the second male has sex with a female he in fact gets the female pregnant with somebody else’s babies.

    Now, with evolution it is blatantly obvious how this happened (If somebody needs it explained, I'll go through it), but ID has a totally different problem. Why would a God who is good and just, design such a group of creatures. They are walking promotions of both rape and anal sex/rape. How exactly does a good and just God come up with something like this?

    Second, is how poorly designed everything is. Honestly, a decent engineer could design better plumbing for the body than exists now. When you look at the development of the circulatory system you can see how much better you could do if somebody had actually designed the body with humans, or even mammals in mind. We have plumbing in the genital region of men that is something like 3 times too long and gets tangled up with the vas defrens (can't quite remember, but i think that's right). It causes infections, but can't be done any other way, because of the way that it evolved.


    Evolution is the same as gravity in many respects. It basically contains most of the groundwork for how we look at the body. You can't understand physics on earth without gravity same as you can't understand biology without evolution.

    [edit: I wish I could spell. Hope your exam went better for you than my genetics one did last night Marine.]
    [edit2: Somebody mentioned earlier about teaching ID in schools.
    A. if you want to teach ID in schools you should be teaching other non-christian origins as well. I expect some Giant Tortoise action if we go that way.
    B. Evolution is a theory the same as gravity is a theory.
    C. Creationsim isn't a scientific theory. It doesn't subscribe to the same rules as a scientific theory. I have no problem with teaching it in a English class with some other creation stories, but it has no place in a Biology class room.
    D. Creationism needs to be able to supply some other evidence other than the "Look at the bible!" or "Evolution has holes! Give me some intermediate forms!" that it usually falls-upon. If you want it taught in a science classroom you need to subscribe to the same rules we do.]
  • SkulkBaitSkulkBait Members Join Date: 2003-02-11 Member: 13423Posts: 2,543
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (Frikk @ Nov 13 2004, 12:09 AM)
    A. if you want to teach ID in schools you should be teaching other non-christian origins as well.  I expect some Giant Tortoise action if we go that way.

    Don't forget the hindu and ancient egyption origin stories (amoung many, many others). Those will require that the student's parent sign a slip saying it is ok for them to hear such graphic material tounge.gif
    1.04ever
  • AegeriAegeri Members Join Date: 2003-02-13 Member: 13486Posts: 1,150
    QUOTE
    Much of scientific reporting in the media seems to fall into the Middle Ground fallacy; that the truth lies somewhere in between the two extremes of the potential positions on a particular topic.


    There are many examples of this however, all of which are frustrating to various degrees. For example, there are people that are convinced that vaccines cause autism. Most of us in the scientific community however know that is a load of rubbish, because the initial study (published in the lancet) had a massive conflict of interest and used an incredibly biased source for their data. Later publications showed that there was no link between the mercury based vaccine or the MMR vaccine and autism what so ever. Still, people believe this to be the case and will not get their children vaccinated, increasing the chances of the herd immunity principle (how vaccines *really* work) breaking down and lethal diseases potentially being able to make a come back. On sixty minutes once I observed a woman saying that "there hadn't been enough work done onto the safety of vaccines" (or along those lines), to which the show immediately demonstrated over 4500+ papers had been published on the subject in the last 10 years alone. So much for that idea!

    My personal favourite however is the one where some media station, I forget which one now, claimed that aspartame (an artificial sweetener) can give you brain cancer. There are websites all over the net that give you this impression too, yet I have never seen any scientific backing for this what so ever, and I can't even see how this would be the case. Of course, aspartame IS toxic to those with a disease called phenylketonuria as they are unable to process the amino acid phenylalanine, which is a part of aspartame. How that gets translated from dangerous to some to dangerous to 'all' is beyond me however.

    Quite frankly, the media really are full of it to a large degree and I wouldn't trust them for any scientific matter as far as I could throw the buildings they broadcast from.
    QUOTE
    “I’ve not read it word for word myself,” confessed board member Kathy Martin in an ill-fated attempt to salvage the credibility of the witnesses.
  • Marine0IMarine0I Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-11-14 Member: 8639Posts: 1,870
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (moultano @ Nov 13 2004, 11:53 AM)
    Good Luck! smile-fix.gif

    Marine 01 --- Chemistry Exam

    Thank you - I needed every last bit of it. With some fancy guessing, that could land me a six!

    I was about to jump ship and take my entire reply over to the other ID thread, when I realised that would be disrespectful to the original poster... Seeing as you ARE the original poster, lets continue until happened upon by a moderator - seems like everyones staying calm and rational here:

    QUOTE
    That most definitely is a conspiracy theory. If you have data, and are willing to put your claims up for peer review, and your work is significant, you will be published.


    Not so - this is taken from my previous link.

    QUOTE
    The invitation to give this report came from Lambert T. Dolphin, (who was sceptical at first), a member of SRI, where it was given peer revue and also vetted by outside laboratories - all of them approving its publication. Dolphin also gave a lecture on the subject in 1988 to the Batelle Institute where it was well received. The SRI hierarchy tried to rescind the report on an administrative technicality when they realised its implications. Dolphin and his manager were made redundant.

    Setterfield is still being criticised for "not publishing his results in a reputable journal". What critics do not realise is that no journal is prepared to publish such a revolutionary concept, no matter how well researched it is. We then have the "catch 22" situation:- i) No 'scientist' will examine the paper unless it has been published. ii) Publishers reject it because their referees do not like the implications and fail it for trivial reasons such as no other journal has published it; iii) Therefore no scientist reads of it in a 'reputable journal', etc. etc. The acceptance by SRI was a major breakthrough that the hierarchy tried to rescind. See also 6. below.


    Not only that, they also tried the scientific equivalent of a kick in the shins - hit loudly and retract softly. Read from 2. downwards for the delightful antics of Mr Goldstein.

    QUOTE
    Science by definition only studies data and causes within this universe. This is part of its definition. If something is not subject to natural law, it is not the subject of science. That doesn't exclude it from the realm of truth, but it does exclude it from the realm of science. Regardless of the truth of intelligent design (which I'm still willing to allow room for) intelligent design is not science.


    Fair enough - lets call them critics of evolution, but not go so far as to be unfair and ask them what their theory is, and then laugh at them because it doesnt fit our definition of science. It has the unenviable position of only being able to prove itself by ruling out evolution/abiogenesis, and in science, even when we dont understand something, there is always the possibility of a mechanism we dont know - so they face impossibility.

    QUOTE
    And yet you produce no evidence for such a statement.

    Skulky, its impossible for the evidence not to exist. Science was a religiously dominated field back in the days of yore, and religious science had deemed anything greater than 6,000 as heresy. Crackpot it must have been deemed. Buffon was probably the first though, suggesting that it would have taken over 10,000 years to several millions for mountians of chalk to form from marine animal skeletons. He did so at least 40 years before evolutionary theory was "discovered", although it is interesting to note that he also had some interesting biological beliefs as well, that I would consider precursors to evolutionary belief.

    QUOTE
    BTW, I notice you completely ignored the indicators that they had no rebuttle for...


    At least half were about radiodating and hence associated with light, but if you insist, I'll tackle the rest. I was also disheartened by their "rebuttal" - which was generally constituted of the oldest and worst possible explanations.

    Indicator: GWB is smart, funny, and a brilliant statesman who has never been wrong!
    Rebuttal: Claims that GWB once told a unfunny joke when he was 7

    Methusela tree - I've never heard of a specified date for the Flood other then general references like "about 5000 years ago". It would be nice if those guys sourced - which they refuse to do unless linking to a site that agrees with them. Best rebuttal actually found in the reference section here:

    QUOTE
    The oldest living tree known (called the Methuselah Tree) is a bristlecone pine in the White Mountains of California. The American Forestry Association estimates it is 4,600 years old. Amazingly, it is not part of any “long chronology.” Its age, however, is remarkably close to the probable time of the flood, about 5,000 years ago. It should not be surprising that some trees alive today started growing soon after the flood.

    “The entire chronology is the work of one laboratory, the director of which [C. W. Ferguson] has refused to allow critical study of the raw data.” For details, see Herbert C. Sorensen, “Bristlecone Pines and Tree-Ring Dating: A Critique,” Creation Research Society Quarterly, Vol. 13, June 1976, p. 5.


    Scientific transparency at its finest.

    Note: Two hours have passed here since I typed that full stop in the last sentence - I've been looking at varves till my eyes wanted to to bleed. I'll try and answer all of those criticisms Skulkbait, but gawwd its hard work.

    Varves, Green River and Japanese:
    Varves - 1 per year?

    Greenland ice:
    Ice ftl

    I shall attemp to deal with the rest tomorrow - bring me to task if I forget, but I'm getting a little weary now so I'll finish answering yours and other posts and then come back to this.

    QUOTE
    Sure, we can play link wars if you want, I have the time: http://www.fsteiger.com/light.html


    Again - no references, but from what I have read I am forced to believe that he is posting the criticisms my link is debunking:

    QUOTE
    In fact, the more accurate determinations of the velocity of light made since 1960 do not support the conclusion that the speed of light is decreasing. Sutterfield's alibi is that the speed of light had reached its minimum at that time and was constant thereafter.


    Wrong:

    section 2 deals very thoroughly with this claim promulgated by Goldstein.

    QUOTE
    But both still use the concept of evolution no?


    Yes, but the schizophrenic nature of it makes it very frustrating for evolutionists. When they talk about how the fossil record backs up slow and gradual evolution, the punctuated equilibrists point out that that is simply not true - it doesnt. These guys are actually given credibility in the scientific world, so they are allowed to publish attacks on slow and gradual evolutionists. The slow and gradual evolutionists point out that punctuated equilibria theory has no backing other than "just so" stories that they are so fond of deriding in creationist theory. Two sides of a debate both delivering what I consider fatal blows to each others theories - and a hell of a lot rides on one or the other of these theories being correct. To me it looks like both are wrong, which I can certainly live with - most evolutionists find that difficult to accept.

    QUOTE
    "The main problem with such phyletic gradualism is that the fossil record provides so little evidence for it. Very rarely can we trace the gradual transformation of one entire species into another through a finely graded sequence of intermediary forms."  (Gould, S.J. Luria, S.E. & Singer, S., A View of Life, 1981, p. 641)


    Couldnt have put it better myself.
  • moultanomoultano Creator of ns_shiva. Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor, Constellation, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Gold, NS2 Community Developer, Pistachionauts Join Date: 2002-12-14 Member: 10806Posts: 4,219 Advanced user
    edited November 2004
    QUOTE (Marine01 @ Nov 13 2004, 08:43 AM)
    QUOTE
    The invitation to give this report came from Lambert T. Dolphin, (who was sceptical at first), a member of SRI, where it was given peer revue and also vetted by outside laboratories - all of them approving its publication. Dolphin also gave a lecture on the subject in 1988 to the Batelle Institute where it was well received. The SRI hierarchy tried to rescind the report on an administrative technicality when they realised its implications. Dolphin and his manager were made redundant.

    Setterfield is still being criticised for "not publishing his results in a reputable journal". What critics do not realise is that no journal is prepared to publish such a revolutionary concept, no matter how well researched it is. We then have the "catch 22" situation:- i) No 'scientist' will examine the paper unless it has been published. ii) Publishers reject it because their referees do not like the implications and fail it for trivial reasons such as no other journal has published it; iii) Therefore no scientist reads of it in a 'reputable journal', etc. etc. The acceptance by SRI was a major breakthrough that the hierarchy tried to rescind. See also 6. below.


    Not only that, they also tried the scientific equivalent of a kick in the shins - hit loudly and retract softly. Read from 2. downwards for the delightful antics of Mr Goldstein.

    Papers about VSL (variable speed of light) have been published in scientific journals, and while it certainly isn't mainstream, people are investigating it. My guess is that this one person's failure to be published had to do with the quality of research rather than the unbearable novelty of the ideas.

    QUOTE
    QUOTE
    Science by definition only studies data and causes within this universe. This is part of its definition. If something is not subject to natural law, it is not the subject of science. That doesn't exclude it from the realm of truth, but it does exclude it from the realm of science. Regardless of the truth of intelligent design (which I'm still willing to allow room for) intelligent design is not science.


    Fair enough - lets call them critics of evolution, but not go so far as to be unfair and ask them what their theory is, and then laugh at them because it doesnt fit our definition of science. It has the unenviable position of only being able to prove itself by ruling out evolution/abiogenesis, and in science, even when we dont understand something, there is always the possibility of a mechanism we dont know - so they face impossibility.

    This gets at the crux of the matter. The entire purpose of science is to discover the nature of natural law, and to discover the causes for what we observe within it. If God follows natural law, and if there is some way of reliably detecting his influence through measurement, then God can be a subject of science. Otherwise, he isn't.

    Intelligent design is the scientific equivalent of giving up. I can't figure out how this could possibly occur, therefore a wizard did it.

    Valid scientific criticism:
    Current theories don't account for x and y, therefore we need to find a better physical mechanism.
    Invalid scientific criticism:
    Current theories don't account for x and y, therefore we have to abandon a physical explanation altogether.

    Even if Intelligent Design were completely true, unless the influence of this designing being is detectable and verifiable, he is not the subject of science. Teach it in philosophy class all you want, but it isn't science.
  • SkulkBaitSkulkBait Members Join Date: 2003-02-11 Member: 13423Posts: 2,543
    You can continue to argue your side marine01, you seem to be willing to put more effort into defending it than I am, but I'm probably not going to rebut it. This argument has been done over, violates the forum rules (religion vs science, since we've already established that ID isn't science), and has had better defenders than myself. I consider the statement I first posted to challenge:

    QUOTE
    Concerning the creation / evolution debate (I'm not trying to de-rail this thread) the problem is BOTH sides have compelling evidence - you could even say "theory of creation" v. "theory of evolution". Both are rigourously tested and tried, and both have been able to stand up fairly well. Both have prominent scientific experts looking at the evidence, both have pre-supposed ideas / premises, both are looking for "truth". Heck, both should be taught in schools.


    To be thuroughly delt with.
    1.04ever
  • Marine0IMarine0I Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-11-14 Member: 8639Posts: 1,870
    QUOTE (SkulkBait @ Nov 15 2004, 12:00 AM)
    You can continue to argue your side marine01, you seem to be willing to put more effort into defending it than I am, but I'm probably not going to rebut it. This argument has been done over, violates the forum rules (religion vs science, since we've already established that ID isn't science), and has had better defenders than myself. I consider the statement I first posted to challenge:

    QUOTE
    Concerning the creation / evolution debate (I'm not trying to de-rail this thread) the problem is BOTH sides have compelling evidence - you could even say "theory of creation" v. "theory of evolution". Both are rigourously tested and tried, and both have been able to stand up fairly well. Both have prominent scientific experts looking at the evidence, both have pre-supposed ideas / premises, both are looking for "truth". Heck, both should be taught in schools.


    To be thuroughly delt with.

    Yeah you can always tell when I have exams on - I seem to have that much more time to fritter away on anything but study smile-fix.gif

    Fair enough skulkbait, it is banned, and I just know Aegeri could walk in here at any time and end all this anyway with his Godlike knowledge, so lets call it quits.

    Moultano - I'm keeping my tinfoil hat tounge.gif
  • Nemesis_ZeroNemesis_Zero Old European Members, Retired Developer, NS1 Playtester, Constellation Join Date: 2002-01-25 Member: 75Posts: 12,841
    edited November 2004
    ***Locked.***

    Nem did not read far enough. Re-opened. Sorry, everyone.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
    QUOTE
    And if I haven't seen further, it's because those bloody giants have blocked my sight.
  • TheWizardTheWizard Members, Constellation Join Date: 2002-12-11 Member: 10553Posts: 1,646 Advanced user
    You know, for a long time it was accepted in the scientific community that hysteria in women was cured by the release of sexual tension. The proof: after treatment the women were much more relaxed. However it was up to the doctors to devise tools to help women with these problems. The first vibrators were medical devices created for this purpose.


    The moral? Just because you have a PhD behind your name doesn't make your calculations or methods correct.

    Sig de-borkified. -- Nem

    I had a sig? --TheWizard
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