I know, I know - 'Creation Science' is an oxymoron; or is it? I feel like I've been left out of the loop a bit because I just discovered that there really is such a thing as 'creation science'. I expect a lot of flack for even suggesting such a thing but I should point out that emotional reactions to any suggestion of validity to 'creation science' are really on par with the dogmatic rebuttals of theists.
Like all scientists, creation scientists start out with an hypothesis and then go out and test it. I guess the only difference is that they don't really have hypothesis 'b' (or c,d,e,f...) waiting in the wings like reality scientists. Where reality science can drop an hypothesis and move on, creation science needs to get more rigorous, to say the least.
It seems that creation scientists use classical mutlidimensional scaling to group fossils into baramins - a creationist version of evolutionary taxonomy. The multidimensional scaling identifies gaps in the fossil record that leave the remaining fossils in 'groups' they call baramins, which they say were created in exactly that form by a god. Interestingly, this is the most technical definition of a 'god of the gaps' I've ever encountered.
So, the topic to discuss here is; 'IF' creation scientists could actually prove their baramin hypothesis AND reality scientists couldn't falsify it, would you be prepared to accept/admit that macro-evolution did NOT actually occur?
Just wondering; do you think the statement "the evidence for evolution is too strong" is considered dogmatic?
To me this creation science is like trying to study the colours of flowers in a scientific way as to conclude they were painted by fairies.
Also you said: "; 'IF' creation scientists could actually prove their baramin hypothesis AND reality scientists couldn't falsify it. would you be prepared to accept/admit that macro-evolution did NOT actually occur?
No I wouldn't because how would you falsify nonsense? If they couldn't falsify it, it would be thrown out. Something must be considered falsifiable for it to be real science. E,g on evolution, a fossil-rabbit popping up in the pre-cambrain would blow the theory out of the water.
They make it look to the lay person that they are following a scientific method in this process, but it's still just more pseudo-science. They start with what they are trying to prove and try and fabricate a way to make it sound believable/scholarly. Yet what do we see? Micro-evolution is real but macro-evolution isn't. Let us pay no attention to the fossil trail showing 'whales' go from land to sea. Certainly that would be one 'kind' to another. Or the fact we know birds are the descendants of the dinosaurs. Ah! There's a gap! So that means these 'kids' are different classes... Or perhaps we just don't have that fossil. Each new fossil we find fills a gap somewhere. It makes me wonder how they are determining where to cut the classes, because if you go back far enough things start to get fuzzy. I really do wonder how they purport to be providing scientific evidence for Genesis when our knowledge of geologic and evolutionary time alone tear it apart.
At first I appreciated that they were trying to be scientific, but then I started to wonder if they are aware it doesn't hold up to scientific standards and are thus being dishonest. If that is the case, then it's just the same song and dance. And that I can't get behind.
I do wholly appreciate that he states that he'd have to amend his former denial of evolution should the evidence prove macro-evolution to be so. Then he goes on forever in a micro not macro sort of fashion. Then, at the end Dr Senter seems to acknowledged evolution and that creationists increasing have less and less areas to stand on evidential grounds. If this is honest, I applaud him for it. I fear that I didn't properly comprehend the story when I read it half asleep the first time.
That said, an honest look at evidence isn't what the majority mean when they say 'creation science'. To most it's starting with a conclusion and then they just build up around it. In this case he seems to be being honest to at least some degree about where the evidence leads. I do still feel that there's much not mentioned in the article that should easily close the case on creation for him. But if he remains true to his word and follows the evidence no matter what, he'll be where we are eventually.
A lot of this stuff comes down to a proper understanding of what science is.
Science is not just positing a hypothesis so that it makes strong predictions and maximizes it's own falsifiability, then devise an experiment that targets those in the most rigorous manner achievable. It is also that the hypotheses must either fit existing science or challenge it explicitly.
The strongest evidence for universal common descent is not actually in the fossil record, in fact that is just a nice expendable extra, but in the molecular record: in the DNA. Those who have read Dawkin's "The Ancestor's Tale" will now be bored by the mere obviousness of this statement, but in fact the Wikipedia link on "baramins" links to a Talk Origins piece laying it all out once more.
The "morphological gaps" these "baraminologists" talk about and map out differences of different fossils in CMDS pictures would be misleading if they weren't already irrelevant.
Yes, well obviously this study wasn't about DNA and neither are most other scientific experiments. The real question, it seems to me, is whether or not those conducting the study are actually willing to accept the results. The gaps in the fossil record are narrowing to the point that in and of itself the body of documented fossils is now pointing to universal common descent - even though the scientists doing the study are creationists.
Now, given that their study is leading to a conclusion of universal common descent, do you still say there is no 'science' to it? Do you base your evaluations of the scientific merit of a study based exclusively on the results, perhaps exclusively on the personal philosophies of those conducting the experiment, or on the methodology?
A few people here have stated that if the study was properly conducted they would accept the results - although that doesn't contribute anything towards the existence of gods. Most, however, are about as dogmatic in refuting the study as I would expect creationists to be if I showed them a reality-science study that showed the same results.
I'm afraid I know the game of Dr. Senter. It's a bit of a false strategy to use that to accuse atheists of dogmatism, because in order for the game to work he has to assume the creation science default position, forget all the science he damn well knows, and work from there to falsify it on basis of their own axioma and assumptions.
If you ask atheists to do the same, but then unlike Phil Senter consider taxonomic loose end "baramins" as real science (you are not allowed to ignore independent corroborating evidence for competing hypotheses) or otherwise they are dogmatists, that is a bit dishonest.