Ken Miller’s “The Collapse of Intelligent Design”

Published March 25th, 2007 by Bobby Henderson


This is a very interesting discussion on the subject of Intelligent Design by Brown University’s Kenneth Miller. It’s just under two hours long, and if you have the time I highly recommend watching it. There is even a mention of Pastafarianism at around 90 minutes.

439 Responses to “Ken Miller’s “The Collapse of Intelligent Design””

  1. bill says:

    @DPG & Everyone
    I see what you mean.
    I forget where the thread was where we were talking about the wizard of oz and dark side of the moon, but I got both and I played them. I even made a DVD with the DSOTM sound in place of the original. It is a lot of fun, not because Pink Floyd intended it but because he didn’t. The coincidences are even more interesting because they are accidental.
    There are things I cannot talk about here. If you want to know about them, email me at [email protected]
    Title your email so I’ll know. I get a lot of junk mail and delete a lot by subject alone.

  2. Mike Meier says:

    I saw Ken’s talk when he was here in Davis a couple of weeks ago. I’ll assume it was the same talk he gave at Case Western and which is shown in the video.
    The talk he gave here had basically two parts. The first part dealt with ID and he did a wonderful job reviewing the destruction of that toxic crap. I really liked the part where he answered ID’s criticisms of gaps in the fossil record that did not support theories of evolution, such as the evoluion of a cow-like animal to whales. Indeed there were gaps, big ones, but once someone finally did find a fossil of a transition species everyone suddenly knew where to look for these fossils and they eventually found 24 more species. Nice!
    Ken broadened the scope of the science-religion issue a bit by offering examples of how when interviewd by school boards who were considering adopting this biology text books, where when asked if he didn’t think evolution wasn’t a just theory and not a fact. He replied saying that everything in the book was a theory, noting that theories explain the facts. Nicely done. He also reviewed the “stickers” issue, where stickers stating that evolution was just a theory… was inserted into the text but later removed after winning a law suit.
    Then, tragically, he jumped the tracks in a big way. The second part of his talk was basically an attempt to patch things up between science and religion. The problem for me was, he completely abandoned any hint of an evidence-based critical-thinking approach to the question of god and religion, plus he clearly was thinking of his own Christian faith and not religion in general. Ken’s primary thrust was the god-in-the-cracks argument. He basically said that evolution was god’s way of doing creation, that t(his) god was obviously superior to the conventional Christian god, and even went on to site a recent book that says that knowledge of god was probably in encoded in our genes. Proof? Every human society in existance has essentially the same god myth. I call BS on that, but I do like the idea of honey bee societies having little honey bee gods, slime molds having little slime mold gods, and maybe even millions of doomed cows in those mega-farms praying (Mooing?) to their cow gods asking for deliverance from the slaughter house. I can imagine the cow creation and initial sin myths the cows would use to explain their destiny. Anyway, he basically says that just because science gave us evolution and all sorts of other theories to explain the universe, doesn’t mean god isn’t in there with us. In other words, science does not disprove god. (He takes issue with Dawkin’s stand on the matter.) On the contrary, science probably proves god by finally revealing how the creation was accomplished. Some other examples used, even if science could prove love is purely biological, would it be any less wonderful? Anyway, that was the jist of the second part of his talk.
    I listened very carefully to his talk, especially the second half, so as to hear what he was actually saying before I compared it to what I knew/believed. (Difficult to do. Head was spinning for a while.) The second part was really really disappointing. Bad bad science. How could someone so intelligent and well-informed just roll over like that and get all uncritical? He obviously loves science and does it well, but sadly he still hasn’t shed his mystical leanings when it comes to his religion. It’s like that Jesus Seminar thing of a few years ago where a bunch of theologians got together to really study the bible to learn all they could about the real Jesus. One thing they concluded was that 80% of what the bible says Jesus said, he didn’t. Wow! But, the one question they were not allowed to ask was, was Jesus actually a real person? Big blind spot. About as big as the one Ken has.

  3. DutchPastaGuy says:

    Didn’t gety around to asking anyone at the conference about relativity. Sorry, I’m out for now as far as insight is concerned

  4. retards says:

    The Collapse of Intelligents was when this stupid shit was made up.

  5. DutchPastaGuy says:

    Bill, the answer lies in Lorentz transformation!! That tells you to move your point of reference with one of the moving entities and gives an equation on how to determine the velocity of the other. Unlike in Newtonian mechanics, it’s obviously not just adding the vectors. I haven’t worked out an example yet, but I will. To be continued.

  6. Captain Noodulous Silicate TBHNA says:

    Mike Meier,
    It is a shame when good scientists try and shoe-horn their God in to their theories and lose all objectivity.
    One of the key thrusts of FSM is that if the ‘there is a God because you haven’t proved there isn’t a God’ argument stands up the ‘there is a Flying Spaghetti Monster because you haven’t proved there isn’t’ argument is just as good. Actually better.
    It’s the little flip they do (that you noticed) where their ‘profound'(!?) argument that there is a God becomes a profound argument that it is their God!
    Sad really.

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