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ID blogger has a meltdown that I debunk Stephen Meyer

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ID blogger has a meltdown that I debunk Stephen Meyer
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RumraketUser avatarPosts: 1263Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 7:49 am Gender: Male

Post ID blogger has a meltdown that I debunk Stephen Meyer

It all starts here on The Skeptical Zone.

Beating a dead horse (Darwin’s Doubt)

Posted on December 21, 2015 by Rumraket
First off I must apologize for doing another post on a subject that’s been done to death around here, but I’ve been meaning to make a post about this for a while but other stuff kept coming up. Anyway, things have quietened down at work where I now only have to maintain some cell cultures, so I have a bit of time duing the christmas holiday.

My post, which is a repost of something I also brought up in a thread on Larry Moran’s sandwalk blog, is about a chapter in Stephen Meyer’s book Darwin’s Doubt and what I can, if I’m being generous, only attribute to extremely shoddy scholarship.

Having read the book, a recurring phenomenon is that Meyer time and again makes claims without providing any references for them. Take for instance the claim that the Cambrian explosion requires lots of new protein folds, from Chapter 10 The Origin of Genes and Proteins: ...

I basically show that Meyer is making claims without supporting them, then finally produces a single reference that argues the opposite. Naturally what follows is a lot of denial, deflection, irrelevancies and moving the goalposts from the Supernaturalist brigade.

Eventually this seems to have caught the attention of well-known (in ID circles) ID blogger Vincent Torley, who writes the most ridiculously flailing post on the ID blog Uncommon Descent:

This is embarrassing: “Darwin’s Doubt” debunker is 14 years behind the times:
Over at The Skeptical Zone, Mikkel “Rumraket” Rasmussen has written a post critical of Dr. Stephen Meyer, titled, Beating a dead horse (Darwin’s Doubt), which is basically a rehash of comments he made on a thread on Larry Moran’s Sandwalk blog last year. The author’s aim is to expose Dr. Stephen Meyer’s “extremely shoddy scholarship,” but as we’ll see, Rasmussen’s own research skills leave a lot to be desired.

Did Dr. Meyer fail to document his sources?
Rasmussen focuses his attack on chapter 10 of Dr. Meyer’s book, “Darwin’s Doubt.” He writes:

(N.B. For ease of readability, I have used square brackets to correct Rasmussen’s spelling and punctuation errors, and I have also inserted four extra words, without which his meaning would have been obscure to readers, in the preceding paragraph – VJT.)

It starts out ironic (nobody can understand what I write because of spelling and grammatical errors, which makes me wonder how VJT knew what I meant since he was able to correct it, but anyway..), then just ends up flailing around hysterically.

The very first response Torley recieves is from Nick Matzke, who nails it in the very first paragraph:
1 NickMatzke_UDDecember 25, 2015 at 7:54 pm
VJ Torley, your post is silly in several ways:

1. “New genes” and “new proteins” are not the same thing as “new protein folds”. You can have many different kinds of proteins that all draw from the same folds. You can’t quote sources talking about new genes/new proteins/new information and just blithely assume this automatically means new folds. Rasmussen gets this, Meyer misses this, you miss this.


I've responded to Torley's post here. Basically, despite all of VJT's references, these weren't the droids we were looking for. I cross-posted this same thread on rationalskepticism.org
"Nullius in verba" - Take nobody's word for it. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nullius_in_verba
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.
Sat Dec 26, 2015 3:30 pm
he_who_is_nobodyBloggerUser avatarPosts: 3508Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 1:36 amLocation: Albuquerque, New Mexico Gender: Male

Post Re: ID blogger has a meltdown that I debunk Stephen Meyer

As I have often said, the worst thing creationists do for their own arguments is cite their sources. If they just leave claims vague with no citation, at least the evolution proponent has to work on hunting down the references. Once the creationists give their citation, seven out of ten times the citation says the opposite of what they are claiming and the other three times it has nothing to do with what they are claiming. Torley must be saying "oh no" right about now for making such a basic mistake.
Sun Dec 27, 2015 7:15 am
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