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REPLY #98e TO
This is the fifth of an eleven-part reply. Select the "Go to next reply" link at the end of each part to read the next part of the reply.
...even though you may not agree with the evidence or the conclusions obtained from it.
(R) Huh? Now, do conclusions produce evidence or does evidence produce conclusions? I always thought that evidences are supposed to generate conclusions, not the other way around. However, you probably said it right the first time since materialism does make evidence based on a priori conclusions.
(MB) You're reaching for more straws. As stated quite clearly and explicitly, the fact that you neither agree with the evidence (even though you acknowledge its existence) nor with the conclusions obtained from it does not mean that there is no evidential support for the scientific view. The fact that there is evidential support for the scientific view invalidates your claim that the theistic view -- for which there is truly *no* evidential support -- is equally reasonable or even "more likely". It is theism which works from desired conclusions backwards and rejects anything which does not support those conclusions. Science does not do this.
You have yet to provide the first shred of supporting evidence for your own claim.
(R) As have you.
(MB) So, you admit that there is no evidence to support your views? I've supplied some to support mine. Therefore, our views are not equal.
You have yet to show why a completely unsupported claim in favor of God is "the only other possibility" if the current scientific evidence is wrong. Therefore, my position is the only one here with any basis for logical acceptance.
(R) I was patient and tried to allow you time to provide your positive case for Materialism first, but you are stalling.
(MB) *laughing* You "allowed" me to present my case "first" because you have no other choice. You have no case of your own to present!
(R) Obviously, I disagree that what you are calling "scientific evidence" is scientific at all.
(MB) On what basis? Simple disagreement is not the same thing as refutation.
(R) Also, it should be noted that by appealing to the lack of support for my claim as a basis for claiming that your position is the only logical one is yet another reiteration of your initial revolving-door argument.
(MB) Nope. My view has support. Yours does not. You admit as much. When one view is supported and an opposing view is not, the supported view is the more reasonable position. When the unsupported view is a positive existential claim and fails even to attempt to bear the necessary burden of proof, it is not reasonable to accept that view in light of a supported opposing view. This is not a "revolving door" argument. This is basic logic whether you like it or not.
(R) I can just as easily claim that since you have not provided the support for the existence of universal materialism, OR this alleged natural processes that creates universes out of nothing, trancendental conclusions are the only logical ones.
(MB) Not unless you can show that anything transcendental actually exists and that no other explanation is possible. Unsupported arguments do not improve simply because their adherents flatly reject all others.
(R) I will have to break this revolving-argument ping pong match by providing at least the beginning of my case for trancendence.
(MB) It's about time that you quit playing ping-pong with yourself and got on to supporting your own case!
(R) Apparently, I couldn't rely on you to step up to the plate first.
(MB) In case you haven't noticed, in baseball, the home team bats second.
[RE: Also, "religious" is not a word that applies to this debate because I am not arguing for any particular god or gods or their various religions, but merely the existence of some form of intelligent, trancendental cause.] If that's not a "religious" view, then what is it? It's not science. It's not logic.
(R) Its a philosohpical view of origins.
(MB) Granted, but it's still religion, right? It still postulates one or more gods and the existence of the supernatural, right?
(R) Its not science, but it uses some science.
(MB) Where? Science is based upon evidence. What evidence supports your views?
(R) Its not logic, but it uses logic.
(MB) Where? Supporting a proposition simply because it hasn't been disproven is not "logic".
(R) Your denial of its logical foundation is rooted in the assumption of universal materialism's validity, which you have not established.
(MB) My denial of its logical foundation is rooted in the fact that your argument *has* no logical foundation. It is constructed solely upon begged questions, circular reasoning and other logical fallacies.
(R) My own personal "religious" definitions of this intelligent designer are codified as the result of many different areas of inquiry that are not central to this debate.
(MB) Nonsense. Since you are certainly not purporting any sort of generic "intelligent designer", all arguments in favor of this proposition must also be arguments which must necessarily be biased in favor of the very same God that you worship. Nothing else is possible if your argument has any hope of coherency.
Then, I suggest that you get on with it instead of perpetuating your logical fallacies.
(R) I intentionally perpetuated your revolving argument fallacies in order to expose the fact that you were using them.
(MB) Sure you did. More like you intentionally invented something to complain about to try to avoid the fact that you have no positive case of your own to present. Now, like I said, it's time for you to get on with presenting the case you claim to have.
In the process, I hope you'll remember that emotional appeals about the "beauty" of the universe, bogus mathematical probability calculations, and "It should be obvious that he exists" sentiments will not further your case.
(R) I don't intend to employ any form of aesthetic arguments;...
(MB) So far, that's all there has been and that's all there ever is in any "intelligent designer" argument. This is because there are no facts with which to support such a case. Those who promote these arguments have no choice but to appeal to emotion and aesthetics. They do so because the majority of their listening audience don't possess the critical thinking skills that are necessary to see such arguments for what they are.
(R) ...however, cosmological calculations of chance/material causation are 100% relevant to this debate since you are advocating chance/material causes as the only "logically possible" ones. To claim that probability has nothing to do with the logical soundness of a "possibility" claim is absurd, unwarranted, and unsupportable.
(MB) Nope. Notice that I said "bogus mathematical probability calculations" and not simply calculations. Mathematics provides strong arguments in support of science, but it must be performed correctly to be of any value. The nonsensical "odds against a natural universe" arguments you are likely to try to sleaze by me are all highly flawed and easily refuted. But, if you feel you must try them, please feel free to go right ahead and do so. Just remember that events do not happen one at a time and that there are only a limited possible number of interactions between particles.
Hopefully, by now, you understand that you still have to provide support for your own claims about an "intelligent designer" and that I am not obligated to "prove" your own invalid assumptions about the findings and theories of science.
(R) Of course, but there are no assumptions involved here. I am going on only what you've stated.
(MB) And, of course, upon your own added stipulations and improper inclusions to what I've stated along with the reliance upon a few undefined or incorrectly defined buzzwords.
Concerning your invalid assumptions, you should know that science does not posit the existence of "nothing".
(R) I've committed no invalid assumption because I never claimed that "science" has posited "nothing."
(MB) Oh, really? You have included the "created from nothing" stipulation in all of your arguments against the universal origin theories of science so far, haven't you? If you've forgotten, please reread your quoted statements and the numerous times I've pointed out that flaw to you.
Now, you wanna try that last statement again?
(R) My argumentation thusfar has been aimed at Materialism.
(MB) Which you are using only as a buzzword since you don't seem to know what it really is or which form you wish to invoke. Even at that, your attack against materialism (in any form) is misguided since it wouldn't be in force until *after* the universe had been created. Therefore, you can't attack materialism for not explaining the creation event itself, since that event wouldn't fall within its realm! Again, this is how I know that you are only using it as a convenient buzzword.
(R) The only invalid assumption that has been committed is your assumption that the philosophy of materialism and "science" are one and the same.
(MB) You are the only one who has made that assumption. I would never do so because I know what each of those are.
Indeed, that is a philosophical paradox which has been around since the days of Aristotle. "By nothing" refers to the old argument against uncaused events. However, those who understand quantum physics know that uncaused events are a very common and necessary component of the universe.
(R) Quantum physics does not support entire universe appearing "uncaused." So the relevancy of your statement is questionable.
(MB) You are dead wrong here.....again. I think you need to work on your science education before making such silly statements. Reading up on the collapse of scalar fields and false vacuum states would be a good start.
(R) In addition, you will need to show exactly what these uncaused events are, and how and why they are "common."
(MB) If you do the suggested reading, you'll have your answers. In addition, you might consider the uncaused event we call "radioactive decay". I doubt you will try to claim that this is not a common event. You might also consider quantum tunnelling and quantum leaps. If these uncaused events did not occur, the Sun would not be able to shine. I doubt you'll try to argue that it's only a materialistic assumption that the Sun actually shines.
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