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deludedgod
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o my friend deludedgod . I

o my friend deludedgod . I thank you for your time and patience. A few comments: I don't think Behe has been refuted, especially in light of the Russell Doolittle blood clotting cascade debacle. Your comment is argumentative at best. By the way Dembski preceded Behe and it now appears as the design argument is gaining momentum at a rapid pace.

That is nonsense. I known of no scientist of serious standing within the biological community who takes Intelligent Design or Irreducible Complexity seriously. Perhaps if you live in the United States, you may see it in a different light than I, but there has never been demonstrated to be biomolecular function whose workings depend on interlocking parts whereby the removal of one part would cause the whole system to collapse and furthermore that each individual mechanism is useless per se. Such a function is the Holy Grail of Design, but has never, ever, to my knowledge, been found. The examples that Behe picked, the various divergences of the eye and the rotating flagellar motor, have long since been discredited.

Also, when I mentioned Dembski's base in IC, I was referring to his most known arguments of logarithmic information theory, as he is a mathematician, not a biologist. Insofar as the presuppositions of the arguments he makes are grounded in an understanding of genetics that no geneticist would take seriously (such as the insistence of the impossibility of net increase of the information of the genome) or the assumption of IC, I generally ignore him.

Also, by blood clotting cascade, I assume you mean the metabolic pathways of the production of fibrin. To my knowledge, much of the fibrin clotting protein functions have been tracked by orthologous/paralogous genetic tracking, including the Htpa/urokinase, alpha2-antiplasm, coagulatury clotting factors in the genome like VII. Somoene with Behe's credentials is surely aware of the detected homologies found across the polyploids in the serin cofactors and protease inhibitors. The non-protease cofactors (8 and 5) are not only mutually homologous, but also towards the fibrogen product of the cascade. All 5 protease-based cofactor inhibitors are not only of the same length in peptide chain, but more or less of the same cascading activation mechanism, and eight of the domains in the serine are located in identical positions.

Anyone with any education in molecular biology would tell you that they are all in a homology. 

A general overview of metabolic pathways is given in very short detail in a short article I wrote here. It's actually more to do with thermodynamics, but metabolic pathways are still in there:

http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/yellow_number_five/5666

 

Thanks of course to the scientific community.

We laugh at IDT.

With respect to your comment "They need no transcendent being to tell them of right and wrong." Why the digression sir? I was under the impression that we would suspend such non-linear argumentation. With respect to your comments "Here is my take on morality. It is partially evolutionary as being of some selective advantage (altruism and foundational neurological ethics), to some extent..." I'm not so sure what you mean here. The term "Selection" employed in its normal and ordinary sense implies intentionality

Not in evolutionary terms, whereby the mathematical axioms upon which the propogation of advantegeous mutations are based. Selection means that favorable traits are propogated, and unfavorable wane from the pool, thus the determinate of what constitutes favorable or unfavorable would be the environment of the organism.

or within the paradigm of Philosophic thought "of-ness" or "about-ness". Are you suggesting that whatever was the locus of our purported evolution made choices? The imprecise use of language may in fact lead to someone drawing an inference that you have not intended. Surely the word "selection" is a proverbial slip. I'll grant that and move on.

Not even my phrase. It was Darwin who coined Natural selection. We are fighting over words. Everyone knows what natural selection means. Don't split hairs, this is pointless.

With respect to your comment "it is societal hence built upon various cultural foundations, which is why it changes (hence the subjectivity comment)." I think you are making a mistake in ethical theory here. It appears as though you are blurring the distinction between general principles and particular facts. General principles are known a priori by the faculties of pure cognition and so constitute the absolutes to which I refer. These general principles are cross-cultural and appear to be absolute. For example, murder, rape and theft are absolutely evil.

This is true, which is why I have some slight regrets over the absolute subjectivity comment in the other thread. It would appear that over the progress of civilization, there have remained various moral codes that have remained unchanged. I hold that both radical subjectivists and radical objectivists are wrong in this regard. To a degree, we should appreciate that morality is partially grounded in cognition and logic, and thus is more or less fixed short of mental illness, and to a degree it can be bent, sometimes in a horrific manner, by the swaying power of cultural demands.

Mercy and kindness are virtues. Yet, the facts that so constitute murder, rape and theft, known to us a posteriori, differ culturally. Ethicists have been quick to point this out.

If your point is that ethics are grounded in human nature, then why in your last post did you so repeatedly ask why atheists should be moral?

With respect to your comment "Societal morality arises from necessity, and as society becomes more advanced, it's inherent drive is progressive and towards increased ethical humanity." Your comment is replete with the value laden presumption. I really do not have any hope of an answer outside of the improbitude theory you offered.

The progressive nature of morality is easily observable. Once again, I would point out that the value I affix is mine to affix. It need not be inherent.

Your comment concerning the applicability of the "Argument From Nature Fallacy" I think is wanting. Again, I've distinguished the meta-ethical foundations of naturalism qualitatively........ With respect to your comment "As it turns out, the most humane cultures, like I said, have been those whose foundations were based on reason." Right, as if history bears this out....... How we have become so weakened by our reliance on "Reason" alone to inform us.

I apologize if the implication of the comment was that morality has a whole grounding in reason. It does not, and I would hardly claim that it ever did. If a man used reason alone to inform him, he would surely be driven insane by reaching the naturalistic conclusion that he has no inherent meaning, thus to some degree, all men function and act instinctively. There is no evolutionary advantage to relying wholly on reason, thus the evolution of the human neurological structure does not reflect such.

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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agustine wrote: To Susan.

agustine wrote:

To Susan. I appreciate your comments however I do not find any adequate reasons from within the improbitude theory for the atheist to rationally defend the values he so desperately wants to espouse. Again, my intention here is not to refute but to induce critical thought.

Thank you and God Bless

Agustine

First, I thought I missed something so I Googled "improbitude theory" and "improbitude".  There is no such thing according to Google.  I even did a seach on this site to see if I missed it.  Nope.

I will add that I find your comment arrogant and quite condescending. 

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deludedgod
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I will add that I find your

I will add that I find your comment arrogant and quite condescending.

Hit the nail on the head. Conjuring up words like "improbitude" that are not found in the English language for the reason of sounding overly verbose and perhaps intimidating is generally not considered an acceptable debate tactic.  

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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agustine
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To the distinguished

To the distinguished deludedgod. At the out-set please allow me to wish you a most joyous resurrection day in honorem Sanctissimae Trinitatis. I have made mention of you in my prayers and as such I wish you well in all of your pursuits. Returning to the substance of the matter, as always you have provided a thought provoking response which, according to my perspective, is the grand object of this exercise, to provoke thought and ultimately to get at the truth. Refutation, at least for me, is simply not a consideration, and merely serves no other purpose than to serve itself. If you recall, I was under the impression that we would direct our efforts toward restraining our mutual inclination to digress. I suspect however, from the substance of your comment we have missed the mark. I too am culpable. Yet, in the interest of brevity so as not to arouse your displeasure, I shall proffer the following abbreviated comments:

 

You are in part correct regarding the blood clotting cascade debacle to which I have alluded. In Darwin’s Black Box, Dr. Behe illustrated the fact that the blood clotting cascade consists of approximately two-dozen complex and interdependent protein components. Dr. Behe described the interdependence in terms suitable for the laity as one component acting upon another, and that upon another, and that upon another and so forth. The inference he drew from this interdependence is that the cascade itself appeared to be irreducibly complex for a multiplicity of reasons he described therein. In response, they brought in the heavy guns in order to silence this most irreverent upstart. How dare this relatively insignificant biochemist from of all places Lehigh University even deign to challenge the prevailing notions of the academic elite? The result however was quite shocking. The gentleman assigned the task of delivering the reproach was the eminent Dr. Russell Doolittle. Dr. Doolittle is a biochemist at the University of California at San Diego, a member of the National Academy of Sciences, and is considered among many of the academic beautiful-people as one of the foremost experts in the evolution of certain proteins that pertain to the clotting cascade at-issue herein. Dr. Doolittle’s research spans a period in excess of approximately forty years.

 

Dr. Doolittle’s riposte, published within an essay entitled “A Delicate Balance,” appearing in Boston Review, a publication of I think MIT press, claimed that there was in point of fact experimental evidence which demonstrates that the blood clotting mechanism is not irreducibly complex. Within his essay he commented “recently the gene for Plasminogen was “knocked-out” of mice and predictably these mice had experienced thrombotic complications because fibrin clots could not be cleared away.” Now, as you know, Plasminogen scours-out the clot material once the very object of its function has been achieved. Fibrin and Fibrinogen are the necessary precursors to the clot material. In another line of mice, the gene for Fibrinogen was “knocked out” and predictably the mice suffered serious ailments, however in this particular instance hemorrhage was the corollary result. Interestingly, when these two lines of mice were crossed, the mice lacking both genes were, according to Dr. Doolittle, for all practical purposes normal. Thus, in response Dr. Doolittle wrote “Contrary to the claims of irreducible complexity, the entire ensemble of proteins is not needed.” Dr. Doolittle’s thesis suggests that the experimental evidence clearly enough affirms the complex of requisite proteins may be the result of a gradual and thus incremental conflation as opposed to an otherwise immediate aggregation of all the requisite proteins as necessitated by the irreducible complexity thesis.

 

Much to our aghast however, it turns out that Dr. Doolittle was wrong. He misread the published results entitled, “Loss of fibrinogen rescues mice from the pleiotropic effects of plasminogen deficiency". Dr. Behe suggested that it appears as though the term “rescues” in the title may have been misconstrued by Dr. Doolittle so as to suggest the new line of mice were normal when they were in fact not. The author therein asserted “Mice deficient in plasminogen and fibrinogen are phenotypically indistinguishable from fibrinogen-deficient mice." In other words, the new line of mice missing both of the requisite proteins experience all of the aliments that mice missing only Fibrinogen experience; or as Dr. Behe puts it quite simply, “their blood doesn’t clot, they hemorrhage, female mice die during pregnancy, they are not happy campers, they are not promising evolutionary intermediates.” He then proceeded to enumerate the various symptoms attendant to the various lines of mice wherein a given gene has been excised:

 

1.      Lacking Plasminogen – Thrombosis, ulcers, high mortality.

2.      Lacking Fibrinogen – Inability to clot, hemorrhage, and death in pregnancy.

3.      Lacking Both - Inability to clot, hemorrhage, and death in pregnancy.

 

Dr. Behe concludes with The probable explanation is straightforward. The pathological symptoms of only-plasminogen-deficient mice apparently are caused by uncleared clots. But fibrinogen-deficient mice cannot form clots in the first place. So problems due to uncleared clots don't arise either in fibrinogen-deficient mice or in mice that lack both plasminogen and fibrinogen. Nonetheless, the severe problems that attend lack of clotting in fibrinogen-deficient mice continue in the double knockouts. Pregnant females still perish.

An important lesson exemplified by Bugge et al. (1996) is that it can be worse for the health of an organism to have an active-but-unregulated pathway (the one lacking just plasminogen) than no pathway at all (the one lacking fibrinogen, which exhibited fewer overt problems). This emphasizes that model scenarios for the evolution of novel biochemical systems have to deal with the issue of regulation from the inception of the system. Most important for the issue of irreducible complexity, however, is that the double-knockout mice do not merely have a less sophisticated but still functional clotting system. They have no functional clotting system at all. They are not evidence for the Darwinian evolution of blood clotting. Therefore my argument, that the system is irreducibly complex, is unaffected by that example.”

The point of this example should be glaringly simplistic. All of the indignation and thus condemnation resulting therefrom directed toward Dr. Behe is reminiscent in my view of the Catholic Church’s dogmatic abjuration and consequent censure of Galileo simply because his views at the time lay in stark contrast with the prevailing orthodoxy of the time. How arrogant have the alleged intellectual elites of our academic institutions become so as to consider any notion of competition in the arena of ideas anathema. This is not scholarship sir; I submit to you, to borrow from Mr. Hume, it is nothing but sophistry and illusion. Could it be that Malcolm Muggeridge was correct, that we have educated ourselves into imbecility? We study history so as not to repeat the mistakes of the past. I suspect a history lesson, not a lesson in Biology, is exceedingly overdue.

God Bless

Agustine   

 

 

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deludedgod
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How do you write so fast?

How do you write so fast?

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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To Susan. Allow me to wish

To Susan. Allow me to wish you a most joyous resurrection day. I suspect that you would not find any lexical references for the term “improbitude” insofar as I contrived it from the underlying premise of my friend Mr. deludedgod’s argument; simply put, value attaches to human life within the Darwinist Evolutionary context as a result of our improbable origins and finite existence. Accordingly, for the purposes of brevity and economy of language I contracted the words “improbable” and “finitude” to form the word “improbitude”. As what should be patently obvious thus far, I do have a tendency to be rather long-winded. I have not used it within a pejorative context. Any reference I have made to it have been solely for the purpose of registering my disagreement and illustrating my arguments that atheism cannot rationally defend the values it wishes to espouse. I value the discourse between Mr. deludedgod and myself. His comments are exceedingly thought provoking and as such a discourse of this variety I think ought to be commonplace. I thank you for your comments.

 

God Bless

 

Agustine

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To my friend deludedgod. I

To my friend deludedgod. I suspect that I am a pristine example of the evolutionary process.... By the way, is it possible to return to the original subject matter? As always thank you sir... I have to respond to Mr. XC right now....

God Bless

Agustine

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agustine

agustine wrote:
Accordingly, for the purposes of brevity and economy of language

How about if you could apply that to your posts overall? I often skip over posts as long as yours (especially with no paragraph breaks).


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The word "inkhorn" comes to

The word "inkhorn" comes to mind. At least he provides "full justification" for what he's saying -- eh? Eh? Typography joke! Yeah!


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To Mr. XC. I must say sir

To Mr. XC. I must say sir your comments are exceedingly gracious. Interestingly, I have had the very opposite of experiences. I have commenced my journey from within the atheistic worldview, much like C.S. Lewis. I have expended considerable time within the works of Hobbes, Hume, Berkley, and Nietzsche, to name only a few. More so many of the contemporary writers such as the infamous Dawkins, Martin -  in my neck of the woods  - Mackie, Nielson, et seq. I cannot quite honestly, and intellectually, make sense of the world outside of a Christian worldview. The end result is that I arrive at the same place as Cameau. Now, it’s not because of this reason alone that I am a Christian. I do so believe that I have experienced God and that such an experience is in point of actual fact real. Moreover, I am entirely epistemically rational in holding such a belief in the absence of defeater conditions. Interestingly enough, my experience and the fact that others may have not had this experience is entirely consonant with the substance of Judeo/Christian doctrine, otherwise known as the doctrine of Election and Reprobation.

The word "election" is derived from the Greek "eÍklekto/v” pronounced “ek-lek-tos'” and means to choose. Scripture affirms the proposition that God exercised His sovereign will and elected and/or choose before the foundation of the world those whom He would save and bring into a love relationship with Himself, and those whom He would leave in their sin and thus judge. see John 6:44, wherein Jesus said “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.”  The Koine Greek word for “draw” is “eélkw” which is pronounced “hel-koo'-o” and it means literally “to drag, to impel inwardly”. Romans Chapter 9 is particularly telling, and expands upon the doctrine of sovereign election and reprobation. Verses 8-16 provide, in pertinent part, “That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed. For this is the word of promise: “At this time I will come and Sarah shall have a son.” And not only this, but when Rebecca also had conceived by one man, even by our father Isaac (for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls), it was said to her, “The older shall serve the younger.” As it is written, “Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated.” What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? Certainly not! For He says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have compassion.” So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy.”

The clear import of the example between Jacob and Esau thus cited is that despite the fact that they were both twins, and nearly as equal in nature as conceived with the inherent propensity to sin, and because the purpose of God reversed the distinction that did exist by choosing the younger over the older in effect inverting the precedent of primogeniture, and excluding the very possibility of even considering their actions insofar as the choice was made before they were born, God exercised his sovereign election and choose to confer executive clemency upon Jacob and leave Esau in his sins and subject to judgment. In other words, Jacob received mercy by executive clemency, Esau received justice, no-one received injustice. The latter category which includes Esau is referred to by theologians as the “reprobate”.

A biblically accurate explanation concerning why some reject God and others choose God is not based upon an exercise of the will either toward or away from God, insofar as scripture testifies that our will is naturally inclined contra God, but is the corollary result of God’s sovereign election and/or reprobation.

God Bless

Agustine   

 

 

 

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Threads, many times, veer

Threads, many times, veer off course from the original subject matter.  This thread, however, has taken a left turn somewhere around Toledo and is headed toward Montreal.

If the subject isn't going to veer back toward Atheist Volunteers and the Blood Drive somewhere along the way, please begin a thread in the proper forum.  Deludedgod, could you do that, please?  (You could then move the appropriate posts to that thread.) 

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Yes please, lets get this

Yes please, lets get this back on track.   I'll be glad to start.

I'm looking to donate blood myself, but I wondered if there were enough of us in the Atlanta area to make a message about it.  I really got to thinking about this when I saw a bumper sticker in my neigborhood that stated "Let the world know!  Atlanta belongs to Jesus!"  So I started to think wouldn't it be great to send the message that Atlanta's blood used to belong to Atheists?

I'd love to get something going out here, so I'd like to know if there is any specific blood bank or donation service we are using for this.  Also anyone in the Atlanta area, contact me so we can start getting a head-count on how many could do this.

Agustine... if you want to debate irreducible complexity, the Evolution forum is down the page a bit. 

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To Susan. I think in the

To Susan. I think in the future we should be a bit more sensitive to Toledo and Montreal..... Just kidding...

Agustine

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Moved the debate to a new

Moved the debate to a new thread.

"Physical reality” isn’t some arbitrary demarcation. It is defined in terms of what we can systematically investigate, directly or not, by means of our senses. It is preposterous to assert that the process of systematic scientific reasoning arbitrarily excludes “non-physical explanations” because the very notion of “non-physical explanation” is contradictory.

-Me

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Just wanted to post here

Just wanted to post here that the atheist blood drive was mentioned in the April issue of Freethought Today, which I read last night. Myself, I can't donate being an insulin dependant diabetic.

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Is there a list somewhere

Is there a list somewhere planned donation sites for the 3rd (I know some people mentioned renting rooms in their area, etc.). 

 I can not donate myself but I have a three friends that are interested in doing so on the 3rd.  I was wondering if anyone in my area (Richmond, VA) has planned a drive or if I should just encourage them to go to the local hospital facilities and then log their donation on atheist volunteers(?).

 I apologize if there is a list somewhere - I've checked both sites and couldn'f find anything.


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All the information you

All the information you need is there if you click on "Press Release" here or in the original post.

 

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+3 units of power red

just to get this back on track; as of 26 Apr mark +3 bags of O- atheistic power red for the good guys... only drag is I cant donate again for 180 days.

-Ed

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