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George Jung
12-27-2015, 06:32 PM
George Will has a rather interesting 'take' on this:

http://journalstar.com/news/opinion/editorial/columnists/george-will-creationists-of-the-secular-kind/article_51ca55a2-c0f4-5563-8381-f53cdbcb079b.html

An excerpt:


"Secular theists" -- economist Don Boudreaux's term -- produce governments gripped by the fatal conceit that they are wiser than society's spontaneous experimental order. Such governments' imposed order suffocates improvisation and innovation. Like religious creationists gazing upon biological complexity, secular theists assume that social complexity requires an intentional design imposed from on high by wise designers, aka them.
In "The Evolution of Everything: How New Ideas Emerge," Matt Ridley refutes the secular creationists' fallacious idea that because social complexity is the result of human actions, it must, or should, be the result of human design. In fact, Ridley says, "Far more than we like to admit, the world is to a remarkable extent a self-organizing, self-changing place."


Interesting attempt at parallels, though it appears he's working too hard.

lupussonic
12-27-2015, 06:44 PM
Well he hasn't got a very good grasp of grammar.

"must, or should be..." which is it?

I'm not going to read it, because life is too short, I know whether God exists, how we arrived at where we are, and the deeper nuances of Occam.

Here's a thought for you though; 'the world is the way the world is, because the world is the way it is.'



I give the right to other people to wear a flower pot on their head; but that right only exists alongside my right to laugh at them.

Fitz
12-27-2015, 06:48 PM
Ready for a creationist thread?

No.

Arizona Bay
12-27-2015, 06:55 PM
George Will has a rather interesting 'take' on this:
George shouldn't...

CWSmith
12-27-2015, 06:55 PM
In fact, Ridley says, "Far more than we like to admit, the world is to a remarkable extent a self-organizing, self-changing place."

Isn't this the fundamental failure of Communism? The question is who will try to apply this same concept to social services such as Welfare and why?

Norman Bernstein
12-27-2015, 06:57 PM
George Will is always available to contribute a high-brow, sophisticated, scholarly rationalization for why he hates government.

Ridley may be right that the world is 'self-organizing'.... but that does NOT invalidate the need for government.

Peerie Maa
12-27-2015, 07:00 PM
[QUOTE]In fact, Ridley says, "Far more than we like to admit, the world is to a remarkable extent a self-organizing, self-changing place."[/QUOTE

Isn't this the fundamental failure of Communism? The question is who will try to apply this same concept to social services such as Welfare and why?
You can run welfare as a Social Service. You just run it as a not for profit paid for by a levy on all of the adults in society.

SMARTINSEN
12-27-2015, 07:09 PM
I think that Geo. Will is getting doty in his old age.

CWSmith
12-27-2015, 07:25 PM
You can run welfare as a Social Service. You just run it as a not for profit paid for by a levy on all of the adults in society.

What I meant was that any safety net is viewed by many as social engineering that sidesteps the necessary dynamics of an unrestricted economy. Obviously, I disagree.

Peerie Maa
12-27-2015, 07:29 PM
What I meant was that any safety net is viewed by many as social engineering that sidesteps the necessary dynamics of an unrestricted economy. Obviously, I disagree.
Yes, capitalism is a form of gambling. Some things are to important to be gambled with.

PeterSibley
12-27-2015, 07:38 PM
George Will is always available to contribute a high-brow, sophisticated, scholarly rationalization for why he hates government.

Ridley may be right that the world is 'self-organizing'.... but that does NOT invalidate the need for government.

Yes, the inverse is not appealing.

Ian McColgin
12-27-2015, 07:46 PM
Leave it to a dogmatic libertarian to erect that zaniest of all straw men, the "secular theist" and then claim that this falsehood led to arrogant government and laws against insider trading.

CK 17
12-27-2015, 10:05 PM
If George Will's house catches on fire, and the government doesn't come and put it out, then that could be called self regulating. . .

CWSmith
12-27-2015, 10:18 PM
They are all opposed to government until their house is burning, and then the fall back complaint is "What are my taxes used for and where is the service I paid for?" You can never get past the belief that someone is getting more.

S.V. Airlie
12-27-2015, 10:23 PM
The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence!

Keith Wilson
12-27-2015, 10:29 PM
Standard logical fallacy; false dichotomy. Almost nobody favors a command economy anymore. If one were arguing against an old-time communist, that line of reasoning would make sense. but it's pretty much useless when discussing any of the issues that we need to decide now.

I wonder sometimes if George Will is getting a little old and foggy.

I also suspect he's distorting what Ridley said. I've read several of his books although not that one; he's not nearly as dogmatic as Will's interpretation.

Too Little Time
12-27-2015, 10:48 PM
but it's pretty much useless when discussing any of the issues that we need to decide now.

Perhaps global warming is one of those issues.

bobbys
12-27-2015, 11:02 PM
They are all opposed to government until their house is burning, and then the fall back complaint is "What are my taxes used for and where is the service I paid for?" You can never get past the belief that someone is getting more.
.

I remember a story and a long thread about a guys house burning down because the firefighters stood by and watched as he did not pay into the fund for that fire departmeant..

Be carefull with the word " all " as thoughts were split on this.

Gerarddm
12-28-2015, 12:15 AM
George Will needs to stick to his baseball enthusiasm.

George Jung
12-28-2015, 10:06 AM
Ah well.... disagree, but an 'interesting' approach (IMO). I've not seen Will 'contort' to this extent, attempting to make a point. Fascinating that he doesn't see that.

David G
12-28-2015, 10:20 AM
Isn't this the fundamental failure of Communism? The question is who will try to apply this same concept to social services such as Welfare and why?

I suspect what you are referring to is a failure of Soviet-style Central Planning - which is but one way to structure communism.

Norman Bernstein
12-28-2015, 10:29 AM
'Secular theists' and 'secular creationists'? :):)

Keith Wilson
12-28-2015, 11:29 AM
The column resembles a brief summary of Burke’s Reflections on the Revolutions in France, dressed up with a bunch of evolutionary biology. It’s interesting that Mr. Will is an atheist; unusual for an American conservative.

Evolution works in nature without planning because, as far as we can tell, nobody’s planning. It is, however, inefficient, slow, and wasteful. One of the best arguments for evolution rather than 'intelligent design' in nature is the utterly boneheaded kludges found in living organisms, structures that are a result of history rather than function. Once evolution takes a road, there's generally no going back, no matter how advantageous it may be to do so. Cultural and technological evolution (as in his example about the fishing boats) works much, much faster and more efficiently because intelligent beings think about the steps, rather than relying on random mutations – i.e., people plan. Centrally-planned economies don’t work well because self-organizing structures are inherently better, but because people aren’t nearly smart enough to plan something so large and complicated.

Mr. Will is resurrecting a straw man from the previous century: ‘worshipers in the church of government, the source of top-down authority’. A century ago, such people existed, they were admirers of the Soviet Union, and genuinely believed benevolent central authority could organize a society far better. We know better now. The arguments we have now are about a somewhat greater or lesser degree of restriction on free-market capitalism.

CWSmith
12-28-2015, 11:31 AM
Perhaps global warming is one of those issues.

As I suspected, this is exactly how people will use Will's remarks and it is entirely wrong.

CWSmith
12-28-2015, 11:32 AM
I remember a story and a long thread about a guys house burning down because the firefighters stood by and watched as he did not pay into the fund for that fire departmeant.

I doubt it is true, but if it is then the fire department should be take to court and squeezed until they bleed.

CWSmith
12-28-2015, 11:33 AM
I suspect what you are referring to is a failure of Soviet-style Central Planning - which is but one way to structure communism.

True, but the Soviets are far from the only Communist state to go this way.

Canoeyawl
12-28-2015, 12:25 PM
I doubt it is true, but if it is then the fire department should be take to court and squeezed until they bleed.

BY MSNBC.COM STAFF AND WSMV-TV
SOUTH FULTON, Tenn. -- Firefighters stood by and watched a Tennessee house burn to the ground earlier this week because the homeowners didn't pay the annual subscription fee for fire service.


"You could look out my mom's trailer and see the trucks sitting at a distance," Vicky Bell, the homeowner, said.




For Bell, that sight was almost as disturbing as the fire itself.
"We just wished we could've gotten more out," she said.


It's the second time in two years firefighters in the area have watched a house burn because of unpaid fees. Last year, Gene Cranick of Obion County and his family lost all of their possessions in a house fire, along with three dogs and a cat, because the fire fee wasn't paid.


Related: No pay, no spray: Firefighters watch home burn


People in the city of South Fulton have fire protection, but those in the surrounding county do not unless they pay a $75 annual fee.


The city makes no exceptions.

Peerie Maa
12-28-2015, 02:29 PM
^ This is why English Buildings sport these Fire Marks, so that the Insurance Company Fire brigade knew which house to save
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-qlt4klGX340/TilQfxOOVcI/AAAAAAAABLE/im44Hr9LWDY/s1600/FireInsMarks.png

CWSmith
12-28-2015, 02:32 PM
BY MSNBC.COM STAFF AND WSMV-TV
SOUTH FULTON, Tenn. -- Firefighters stood by and watched a Tennessee house burn to the ground earlier this week because the homeowners didn't pay the annual subscription fee for fire service.

I'm shocked and disappointed. Remind me never to move to Tennessee. Here and everywhere I have ever lived the fire station is part of the taxes. Either way, those fighters should be horse whipped.

Osborne Russell
12-29-2015, 01:19 PM
The column resembles a brief summary of Burke’s Reflections on the Revolutions in France, dressed up with a bunch of evolutionary biology. It’s interesting that Mr. Will is an atheist; unusual for an American conservative.

Evolution works in nature without planning because, as far as we can tell, nobody’s planning. It is, however, inefficient, slow, and wasteful. One of the best arguments for evolution rather than 'intelligent design' in nature is the utterly boneheaded kludges found in living organisms, structures that are a result of history rather than function. Once evolution takes a road, there's generally no going back, no matter how advantageous it may be to do so. Cultural and technological evolution (as in his example about the fishing boats) works much, much faster and more efficiently because intelligent beings think about the steps, rather than relying on random mutations – i.e., people plan. Centrally-planned economies don’t work well because self-organizing structures are inherently better, but because people aren’t nearly smart enough to plan something so large and complicated.

Mr. Will is resurrecting a straw man from the previous century: ‘worshipers in the church of government, the source of top-down authority’. A century ago, such people existed, they were admirers of the Soviet Union, and genuinely believed benevolent central authority could organize a society far better. We know better now. The arguments we have now are about a somewhat greater or lesser degree of restriction on free-market capitalism.

Yep. Reminds me of social Darwinism. They take what they like from science and leave the rest. They build a house of cards.

What do they mean by the idea that a society is "self-organizing"? Name one that ever existed. Those with power extend it as far as they can and hold on to it as long as they can. Who, where and what is this "self" that is doing that in honor of principle, as a matter of moral choice between alternatives? Such that this is the choice that modern "liberals" seek to withhold, perverting nature herself?

Peerie Maa
12-29-2015, 01:38 PM
Yep. Reminds me of social Darwinism. They take what they like from science and leave the rest. They build a house of cards.

What do they mean by the idea that a society is "self-organizing"? Name one that ever existed. Those with power extend it as far as they can and hold on to it as long as they can. Who, where and what is this "self" that is doing that in honor of principle, as a matter of moral choice between alternatives? Such that this is the choice that modern "liberals" seek to withhold, perverting nature herself?
Do societies not evolve in the way that memes evolve? In that sense it is "self organising'' as nothing else is doing any organising. What you describe is only one mechanism that can cause any society to evolve.