Talk:Intelligent design/Archive 36

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Future research? Possible applications?

I was disappointed to find that this article, like so many resources concerning Intelligent Design, contains almost no mention of either future research or the field's possible applications. Does Intelligent Design as it stands tell us everything we could ever need to know about the history and structure of life, or is there more research pending? Does ID have future applications in fields such as Biology or Medicine? What will the concepts of "Irreducible complexity", "Specified complexity", "Fine-tuned universe", "Intelligent designer" actually mean after the evolutionists concede and ID replaces Natural Selection as the dominant paradigm for the study of biological systems? Can we include some sense of the long-term scientific plan in this article? TheDewi 13:55, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

This kind of comment just is pure nonsense. If our attempts are so bad, why do you not just go to the Discovery Institute Website and find it there? Because it does NOT exist!!! Or at least we, and all the other skeptics, and all the >99% of the scientists and the courts have not found any research in this area, and the way things are going, it looks like ID will not replace evolution as a paradigm. It explains nothing. It is just a waste of time and energy. And it if is admitted as science, it will be flushing real science that our medicine is based on down the toilet. The long term plan is to create a theocracy and to force you to worship in their way and to acknowledge they and only they and their interpretation are correct. It is basically a plan for a new Dark Ages. Read what Johnson et al say is their plan if you do not believe me.--Filll 02:19, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
We gladly would - but unfortunately ID does not have any of those. DLX 14:14, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
What will the concepts ... actually mean after the evolutionists concede and ID replaces Natural Selection as the dominant paradigm for the study of biological systems? If ID replaces natural selection as the dominant paradigm in biology, it will mean the end of biology as an experimental science. It will also mean a revolution in modern religion, since the "paradigm" of Faith will be replaced with a materialistic "paradigm" looking for Proof. Guettarda 14:31, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Future research and applications? How about some present research and applications? Intelligent Design as it stands tells us nothing whatsoever about the history or structure of life. Tsumetai 14:37, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Now be fair, didn't the New Scientist find something about the DI having a secret research program, carrying out... secret research..... which they can't divulge because those scientist chappies will ask for.. um.. peer review or something. Don't miss the next exciting announcement. Should bode well for faith healing...... dave souza, talk 16:32, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Oh man, now they're going to have to kill you for divulging the secret research program publicly. Dave souza said it, I didn't. Please don't have me shot. Really, I don't know anything about the cough...secret...ahem.....research....program......sssssshhhhhhhh.

Orangemarlin 16:43, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

Can we include some sense of the long-term scientific plan in this article? Absolutely we can and will, when and if the IDers ever develop such a plan. We'll even include any ID scientific theory if they ever develop one. Mr Christopher 20:28, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
In response to the feeling that I keep getting from ID proponents that we are too heavy handed with the scientific view, I will move Michael Behe's comments about ID as a science (very reliable source: a Christian under oath) from the overview to the lede. That way, the ID proponents get their view in first, and the tone of the introduction is less oppositional.Trishm 21:10, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Have any ID proponents contributed to this section? . . ;) . . dave souza, talk 21:16, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Umm, I don't think so. They've argued a lot, though.Trishm 21:20, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
I've noticed that. ID, Creation and anti-evolution proponents tend to yell and scream Except for Homestarmy. He seems to know how to make a cogent, calm discussion. Orangemarlin 02:43, 10 February 2007 (UTC)
Drat. I was rather hoping some IDers more knowledgeable than me would bite, and furnish me with a less woefully incomplete view. I hear a lot about ID being unfalsifiable or non-materialistic, but the lack of any substance (beyond discrediting other theories) is just as grievous in making ID unrecognisable as a science. But please, feel free to prove me ignorant if I'm missing something! TheDewi 16:56, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Just look at youtube and google video videos of Johson and hear what he says and his plans. --Filll 02:19, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
The part you're missing is that ID is unrecognizable as a science, because it isn't one. KillerChihuahua?!? 17:06, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Nice bit of fishing, the problem is that the IDers who are so quick to complain that the article is biased are remarkably slow when it comes to producing any substance for their claims. ... dave souza, talk 18:02, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

Recent minor changes

Kenosis has made two small changes to the article that I feel we should discuss. The first is the recombination of the opening two sentences into one. This is purely a stylistic point, but I think that the opening reads better as two sentences: "ID is an argument for the existence of God. It is expressed in secular terms...". Secondly, and more importantly, is the change from "which" to "that" in the "Controversy" section. As the article stands ("They state that their religious faith is fully compatible with science that is limited to dealing only with the natural world;") it implies (perhaps unintentionally) that there's such a thing as "science that is not limited to dealing only with the natural world", and, moreover, that the supporters of theistic evolution consider their faith to be incompatible with this "supernatural science". With "which", the sentence just describes science as being limited to nature. I think that the second meaning is what's intended, so "that" should be changed back to "which"; however, I'd just like to confirm that before doing it. Tevildo 17:19, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

(Quick follow-up). If the first meaning is intended, I think we need to make it more explicit; perhaps "compatible with science, insofar as science is limited...", or "compatible with the areas of science that are limited..." Tevildo 17:23, 10 February 2007 (UTC)
I support a change in the Controversy section to read "... science which is limited to...", for the reason just given by Tevildo. ... Kenosis 17:26, 10 February 2007 (UTC)
Done - it's open to revision, of course. Tevildo 00:08, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Surely that needs a comma: "...science, which is limited to..."? Adam Cuerden talk 00:54, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
It has one. :) Tevildo 12:20, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

Kenosis has also moved Behe's testimony that ID is not science from the lead. I would have thought that this is particularly important, because it shows that it isn't just the scientific community who says that ID is not science. As it stands, we have:ID proponents say this (unequivocally) and the scientists oppose it (unequivocally); and that is just not true.Trishm 01:13, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

Actually, I integrated it into the second paragraph, with a comment in the edit summary. You'll see the relevant summary if you flip through the history. ... Kenosis 05:01, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Ah, I see. Sorry. I guess I am surprised to see Behe grouped with the scientists, rather than the ID proponents.Trishm 05:29, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Good point. I grouped it, albeit somewhat hesitantly, according to issue rather than class of person. As I said in the edit summary, I don't think the lead is the place to put it. But since it was there in a stranded paragraph, I integrated Behe's admission as best I could rather than revert it back into its earlier placement in the Overview. ... Kenosis 17:52, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Can we put him at the start of the paragraph? It would lessen sense of mindless conflict between the ID proponents and scientists.Trishm 02:10, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

I think that the first paragraph is quite awkward, from an English comprehensibility point of view. It is just two long sentences, with tons of clauses separated by commas. Not good.--Filll 00:12, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

I removed "stated in secular terms" from the first sentence. The extra little clause turns out to have been superfluous because the premise is stated right there. Offhand, I would not be in favor of breaking up the second sentence, as a great deal of work by many editors went into arriving at it in its present form. When it was recently broken up, it had the quirky feature of beginning a related sentence with the word "they". The second sentence appears to read just fine as it currently is, so long as it's not on the heels of an excessively long sentence. ... Kenosis 02:06, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
I also removed the parenthetical with the abbreviation "ID" from the first sentence, as it was wholly unnecessary there. I hadn't realized it, but bit-by-bit that first sentence had accumulated more chrome than a '58_Oldsmobile. ... Kenosis 03:53, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

FA

Well! The first FA objection came up: The section on Intelligence is under-cited. Let's go fer it, laddos! Adam Cuerden talk 19:37, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

I've seen this article is attempting FA, this might help, but the introduction seems to developpe on how it isen't considered as a science than what ID claims to be. I don't know what equilibre the introduction should achieve but in my opinion the "this is not a science" seems much too excessif in the intro. I didn't read the rest of the article, because I might to waste my time with pseudo-science not being published in credible peer-reviewed journals, so my opinion is only relevant for the intro. Fad (ix) 23:33, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Not sure what you're trying to say, because your English is a bit broken (not a criticism, just hard to read), but ID is absolutely not a science. The lead must say this, or the article is not worth anything. Orangemarlin 23:51, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
The most important thing that one can find out about ID, the lead, is that it is a rehashed argument for the existence of God, that is not scientific. The Lead says this. What is more important than that? Nothing to my mind. If you want more details, you can read further.--Filll 00:10, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
Sorry guys for the broken English, I did not read myself. I've convinced myself to jump in and read the rest of the article, which is OK and very well written. But I still am under the impression that something is not right with the introduction, I agree it is pseudoscience and all that; but that introduction seems as if it was trying to convince and remind over again that it is pseudoscience. I may be mistaken, but I don't see the necessity of that, highlining what most scientist consider this hypotheses to be is verry relevant and a must, but in my opinion the introduction is not the place for developping on that, a résumé is enough. Fad (ix) 01:29, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
Do I smell a raspor?--Filll 01:34, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
No. Coming from a different place.Trishm 02:33, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
I don't know what or who is a raspor, but I am intelligent enough to assume that you think I have some ill intention. I didn't think that this might make any difference, but I am a very strong adherent of natural selection, even Lee Smolin's cosmological natural selection, also the bioneurologic natural selection hypothesis of self-awarness. Oh and, and... Darwin is the scientist I place in the highest estime, since I consider that his hypothesis could be applied in favoring cosmological constants. But again, I really didn't thought that I would be needing to developpe on what I adhere to. Anyway, I am done with that, my opinion on the introduction was an opinion afteral. No hard feelings. Fad (ix) 02:44, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
Our apologies. You were mistaken for a moment for a certain banned editor, who has a troubled history on this page and no intention of contributing productively. Your personal views are yours to hold. Any editor who is constructive is welcome.Trishm 03:09, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
Oh OK I understand, anyway, I wish good luck for the FA. Fad (ix) 20:15, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
Fadix is a reliable, established editor. Granted, this article makes you paranoid, but it's good to have a fresh pair of eyes on this. Guettarda 14:46, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

A concern was raised at the FAC page that this page has too many external links. While I am not saying that we should trim the section, but it is pretty long, and wouldn't hurt to have a look at it, make sure that what we have there is the best of the best. Guettarda 14:46, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

I don't like how it's written in a box down the side, but as in Talk:Evolution, there needs to be links to the same old rehashed discussions, so that we don't rehash the same old discussions. I actually like easily finding the archives, especially when someone needs a reference source. But I don't like the box down the side, not to rehash something. Orangemarlin 16:57, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
Actually the organised archive here is the inspiration for the one over at Evolution. I believe this one is largely the work of Ec5618. Guettarda 18:08, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

The issue of the fair use magazine cover has been raised at the FAC discussion. I agree that, unless the magazine issue is discussed in some way, that it's hard to justify fair use. It's a shame, because I like the picture, but they're right probably should go. Guettarda 18:08, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

Amazing Templeton Foundation guidelines on ID

From our FAQ...

Does the Foundation support I.D.?

No. We do not support the political movement known as “Intelligent Design.” This is for three reasons 1) we do not believe the science underpinning the “Intelligent Design” movement is sound, 2) we do not support research or programs that deny large areas of well-documented scientific knowledge, and 3) the Foundation is a non-political entity and does not engage in, or support, political movements.

It is important to note that in the past we have given grants to scientists who have gone on to identify themselves as members of the Intelligent Design community. We understand that this could be misconstrued by some to suggest that we implicitly support the Intelligent Design movement, but, as outlined above, this was not our intention at the time nor is it today.


Take a look at [1] and [2]. Think we can squeeze something like these in?--Filll 23:05, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

What is the Templeton Foundation? Orangemarlin 01:38, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
Templeton Foundation funds religious research and scholarship. They funded the Discovery Institute when it started some years back. They were not very happy with the results they obtained-lots of promises, but turned out to be political hot air instead of serious research. Just basically jerks and crooks. So they lost their funding.--Filll 01:46, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
They also offered to fund ID research, but there were no takers. It's referenced somewhere in the archives. Guettarda 14:41, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

Removal of Time magazine image

I wasn't the one to remove it, but I'd like to point out to anyone readding it that doing so is not fair use, and is a legal liability for wikipedia. i kan reed 18:57, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

Lead Section

The lead section of this article is particulary good, and does exactly what a lead section should in summing up all the information about intelligent design. This might sound weird but I think it might be a little two heavily referenced. Most of the references mentioned there will be used later on in the article (maybe I should have finished reading it :p), and personally so many references so early on is both distracting and slightly unattractive. I feel lead sections should be alot like abstracts, which don't reference at all. Though in this case you would put the reference in if it is not used again.

Uh, just a thought! (a Mentally Efficient Loonies And Nice Insane Elephants creation 19:42, 13 February 2007 (UTC))

Actually, without them the statements are regularly challenged, hence the somewhat excessive use of references. Guettarda 19:55, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
Shame people can't be bothered to read the rest of the article to find them :p(a Mentally Efficient Loonies And Nice Insane Elephants creation 13:46, 14 February 2007 (UTC))
I suppose we could use "hidden" references in comments. Adam Cuerden talk 20:21, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
What's a hidden reference? (a Mentally Efficient Loonies And Nice Insane Elephants creation 13:46, 14 February 2007 (UTC))
Comments in the text which don't appear in the article - have a look at the wikicode of the lead, there's one in there. Guettarda 13:54, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
In response to the original comment, if you read what the MoS says about the lead section, it appears that lead sections should be referenced. A lead is a summary of the article, but it isn't an abstract - more like a Micropaedia article. Guettarda 13:54, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Not difficult enough?

For those editors for whom the monitoring of this article simply isn't enough of a challenge - might I invite you to wander over to Marriage where there's a heck of a bun fight.

I think the gang who work here do one of the best jobs on the wiki, and your help would be appreciated - thanks folks! Petesmiles 23:24, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

Wow. That wasn't fun to read. I'll stay here :) By the way, there are many other controversial articles that work out. First of all, you need to train editors who have an agenda to learn NPOV. Second, you need to drink wine. Lots of it. Orangemarlin 23:33, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
i've pretty much have given up on it. when you know your own POV is NPOV, what's there to learn? r b-j 18:16, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
That's a level of arrogance that might not help in discussions. How can you know your POV is NPOV without getting a consensus. Orangemarlin 18:20, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
I have found stout beer has a similar effect. Mr Christopher 23:36, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
And it has all the nutrients for strength and stamina. Orangemarlin 18:20, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

I'll buy you one if you can make the article better.... 'course i may have to drink it for you too..... Petesmiles 01:41, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Well, it's better now than last november, when it simply stated that "A marriage is a relationship between a man and a woman, usually recognized by civil authority and/or bound by the religious beliefs of the participants." [3] -- Ec5618 14:40, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
That is much worse than the stuff going on here. Orangemarlin 18:20, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
i fail to see how the present machinations are better than that. (but it is a pretty bad lead sentence.) r b-j 18:16, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

Scope (FAC)

Piotrus raised the issue that the article didn't cover the attitude to ID outside of the US, the UK and AUS. While I think this may really be something for the intelligent design movement article, offhand I can't think of much to say about ID outside of these three countries (there's the guy in Turkey, but I can't say I have read much about a movement there. Surely there is an impact in other countries, via the internet if nothing else, but how much documentation is there of any of this? Guettarda 14:06, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

There was an article in le Monde a couple of years ago, but it was about one presentation which failed to do anything but amuse the French. KillerChihuahua?!? 14:16, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
I suppose there's this story [4] [5] [6] (second story) - I had forgotten about it. Guettarda 14:24, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
Ok, here's something in Germany [7], Turkey [8], Canada [9], some weird creationism from Poland [10]... So how do we use this in a way that's proportionate? Guettarda 14:35, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
I would suggest the global influence go under the inteligent design movement and not this article. Only because the primary focus on this article seems to be ID itself. Perhaps the movment article needs to be broadened. Mr Christopher 15:01, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
I perked up at the link to Canada, but having read the article I'm not sure it applies. It appears that a social science funding organization used some odd wording in rejecting a grant application and the researcher in question jumped on them for it. I don't really see any indication that his claim is correct, that the organization in question is harboring ID proponents. Mountain? Molehill? YOU be da judge! Maury 15:45, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
Actually I find it hard to believe that there isn't an active ID community in Canada - after all, the DI is based in Seattle, which is practically a suburb of Vancouver, at least on a world map. Guettarda 16:28, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

<reduce indent> I used to live in Seattle and they would not agree with you on the staturs of who is a suburb of who :-) And Canadians don't often import US styled religious extreemism (teaching creationism as science). Mr Christopher 16:51, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Next you'll be saying that Detroit isn't a suburb of Windsor. Guettarda 18:50, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Link to ResearchID.org

Attention admins at this page: I wanted to bring it to your attention that ResearchID.org has a hyperlink under "ID perspectives" on this article.[11], and that this may be a violation of Wikipedia standards of notoriety. I want the admins here to be aware that I, the founder of ResearchID.org, had nothing to do with this, and that to my knowledge this link addition did not originate from our admins or members. Please take any necessary actions in accord with Wikipedia standards of notoriety.

Of course, I do not mind that ResearchID.org is linked on the ID article. And I think that ResearchID.org has more potential than some of the sites listed. I must also add that, beyond any doubt in my own mind, ResearchID.org is much more important to the topic of ID than the link to the page on the Jehovah's Witnesses Official Web Site.

I do not think we have attained the level of notoriety necessary to be linked here YET. Most importantly, I do not want to give the appearance, even for a moment, that we at ResearchID.org have acted inappropriately towards this ID article, or Wikipedia, in any way. --Joseph "Joey" C. Campana 14:44, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

I don't recall anyone complaining about that site being linked under "ID persepctives". ... Kenosis 16:55, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
Just to clarify a potential area of confusion here - the standards for inclusion as an external link are at WP:EL, and are fairly relaxed; I don't see any obvious reason why ResearchID might fail them, as it seems (on a cursory examination, admittedly) to have "a substantial history of stability and a substantial number of editors." Joseph might be worried about the much stricter standards of WP:WEB, but those are for articles about individual websites, not merely articles which reference websites. Tevildo 20:58, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
The website appears to have 78 active members[12]. I don't see much of a reason to include it at this time. JoshuaZ 21:01, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
Well, maybe 78 users is nothing to sneeze at. My understanding is the average readership for blogs across the entire web is, when rounded off to the nearest whole number, a whopping one-reader-per-blog. ... Kenosis 21:30, 14 February 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, but the author doesn't count.  ;) &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 22:20, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

FM seems to be M.I.A., maybe he'll chime in later. Back to it, so in determining the permanency of the link to ResearchID.org, it seems that there are a two for inclusion of the link, one against. (I’m not counting my own vote.) How does that pan out as far as making a decision? Do we need more votes? --Joseph "Joey" C. Campana 16:07, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

I think it's safe to say that this particular link isn't a controversial issue. My comment above just expresses my view that we're not obliged to remove it under the terms of WP:EL; I wouldn't say that I actively want to keep it. However, if anyone actively wants to remove it, then I'm sure its departure wouldn't cause a fuss. Tevildo 22:37, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
I think we ought to keep it. WP is supposed to be a useful source of information, including its links, and frankly I find the links in WP very useful. WP can function like an annotated google search, which is extremely convenient, although I know that is not the intent of WP. I do not really care about the WP intent, what I care about is usefulness, and it is useful to include links like ResearchID.org.--Filll 00:39, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
With all that has been said here, it would seem that the link to ResearchID.org is a permissible (but not-yet-having-enough-notoriety to be strictly permanent) inclusion in the list of links. Given this, would anyone object to me changing the label of the link from "Research Intelligent Design" to "ResearchID.org"? --Joseph "Joey" C. Campana 16:25, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
I have heard no objections here for two days now, so I will change the link label to show "ResearchID.org" --Joseph "Joey" C. Campana 18:18, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Wider focus

This website is full of information on ID in Turkey, and would help us have more of a whole-world perspective. Adam Cuerden talk 10:33, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

This does not appear to be ID per se, but creationism generally. ID is primarily an issue in the United States, an attempt to bypass the Establishment Clause of the First amendment, and in particular the 1987 decision Edwards v. Aguilard. The material put forward by the NCSE in that link would be more appropriate to note in creationism, the creation-evolution debate, or other similar article, or alternately in a separate topic fork linked to from such an article. ... Kenosis 12:59, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
Actually Edis makes the point that he is surprised that there isn't more ID in Islamic creationism, because Islam isn't hamstrung by a Genesis narrative. Guettarda 14:41, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
This is a very interesting article, and I would recommend it to everyone.--Filll 01:10, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Kansas School Board

I note that the KSB has now voted to remove ID from the curriculum - which article is best for noting these kind of changes?

BTW thanks to whoever posted the link to the Marriage article discussion - now I've got something else to amuse myself reading during the slack moments at work (although nothing yet tops the Death Star discussion IMHO) Tomandlu 16:39, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

This spot comes to mine [Kansas evolution hearings] Mr Christopher 16:57, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
many tnx - article updated.... Tomandlu 17:20, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

BTW, i'm reading ...

... a book by Owen Gingerich, an astronomer, Harvard prof, and theist, called "God's Universe" that takes issue with both the Dawkins's and the DIers (not to be confused with IDers). i think that the article injects POV when it insists that any present day scientist who believes in "design" is part of or associates with or is even sympathetic to the DI. some scientists accept, on a philosophical level the concept of "design", yet still reject both the scientific assertions and the political positions (regarding education, the bogus "teach the controversy" thing) of the DI.

just something to think about. i have no intention of attacking this article. but my experience here and with Fine-tuned universe is that there is a little bit of systemic bias that causes the article to misrepresent what some people are saying. r b-j 18:24, 15 February 2007 (UTC)


But intelligent design isn't a simple argument for the concept of design, but that such design is scientifically demonstrable. That's what this article is about. And, as far as I can tell, all of the major proponents of this idea are associated with the DI. Guettarda 18:35, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
there have been some hijacking of terminology. it's not the first time "Christian" "Fundamentalists" (both quotes are independently meaningful) have hijacked perfectly good terms and turned them into excrement. r b-j 02:58, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
Since I'm too lazy to read the whole article trying to find it, r b-j, could you please point out where the article "insists that any present day scientist who believes in "design" is part of or associates with or is even sympathetic to the DI." .. ? ...... dave souza, talk 21:36, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
"... its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute..." can't this be toned down to "most", or better yet, can there be something in the lead that differentiates the common theistic Teleological argument from the DI crap? r b-j 02:58, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
There are many "design" and "teleological" arguments that have floated around for centuries. But the version called "intelligent design", aside from a very few historical antecedants, is almost exclusively associated with the DI. I bet [[Owen Gingerich does not call his ideas "intelligent design" in his book, does he?--Filll 01:14, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
he does but with a small "i" and a small "d". he says that the DI guys are basically full of crap (my interpretation) and that, from the other end, it's not just bad science but bad theology (but he qualifies himself as an amateur theologian). he basically says that the mindless probabilistic models that create complicated molecules for life are, by themselves, not persuasive (P = 10-321) and supports the common teleological explanation for the existence of such stuff. r b-j 02:20, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

the sound of a back fire

It seems a Texas law maker was sending around a letter to other Texas law makers promoting teaching creationism/intelligent design and dogging evolution in Texas public schools. He failed to actually read some of the propaganda he was distributing and it turns out one was promoting the idea that Jews are behind evolution and its a Jewish scheme to undermine Christianity ("The memo points to "indisputable evidence" that "evolution science has a very specific religious agenda" and refers readers to a Web site that asserts the universe revolves around the earth. It also suggests that Jewish physicists are part of the force behind a "centuries-old conspiracy" to destroy the Christian teachings of Earth's origins.") This is one of those many "whoopsie" moments we see amongst the ID supporting politicians. Anyhow, I thought it was an yet another interesting example of how many ID advocates don't really understand or bother to read what it is they are advocating. Read it here. Mr Christopher 20:12, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

Warren Chisum, the lawmaker in question seems to be more of a creationist than an IDer so I'm not sure how relevant it is here. Anyways, I already added a note in his article about it. Feel free to expand it, since I was very brief. JoshuaZ 20:22, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
Here is where it all started (from yesterday) Memo: Stop teaching evolution House Appropriations Committee Chairman Warren Chisum, R-Pampa, used House operations Tuesday to deliver a memo from Georgia state Rep. Ben Bridges. The memo assails what it calls "the evolution monopoly in the schools." Mr. Bridges' memo claims that teaching evolution amounts to indoctrinating students in an ancient Jewish sect's beliefs.... And you're right, it may make a better home in the evolution article or creationism or even blunders. :-) Mr Christopher 20:37, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
creation-evolution controversy maybe? I enjoyed his "don't blame me, I was doing it as a favour for a friend"... Guettarda 20:53, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
Ok, I am an idiot or something, I cannot find Ben Bridge's article. Did anyone add this? The AJC link is probably better for his update. KillerChihuahua?!? 21:29, 15 February 2007 (UTC)
I dont think Bridges has one yet. Not surprising since he is a state rep. JoshuaZ 01:09, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

This is great amazing stuff. Go check out the website for yourselve at [13]. I am stunned and speechless. Wow.--Filll 01:31, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

Now I'm officially sickened by these people. So Chisum is either stupid or a racist. Good job Texas. You really know how to pick those politicians of yours. OK, you did give us LBJ. And I hope maybe some of you understand when I fear these Christian Taliban members represented by Creationists. The cultural memory of 2000 years of hatred of Jews by some Christians seems to have not evolved. Great. Orangemarlin 02:44, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
A reminder that this page is for discussing article content and how to improve the article, not vent our opinions about politicians. JoshuaZ 02:48, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
Hmmmmm. OK, sure, let's put this right in this article to remind everyone of the hatred they have. Orangemarlin 02:54, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
It should go somewhere, but to put it into one of the main articles is POV, because it implies that most creationists think this way, for which there is no evidence. Indeed, the US Christian religious right tends to support Judaism for various doctrinal reasons of their own. The place to use it is on the article for the individuals who used it. If the State Senator doesn't have a WP yet, now he will deserve one. Let one's opponents be the fools. Over-reacting makes them feel righteous. DGG 05:33, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

I agree with the first part, that to put it in a main article without a neutral third party referencing it is probably POV. On the Christian support for Judaism, that is an article I would like to read. It puzzles me. In some cases I suspect many right wing talk show hosts who happen to be Jewish are part of the puzzle. In other cases, I think the Christians are just happy that the Jews who do not accept Christs are instrumental in bringing about the end times. On the last part, I caution you (personally) that your motives could be better; rather than worrying about how inclusion would affect your intellectual opponenants, you should be more focused on NPOV and RS, regardlesss of how your intellectual opponents may take advantage. You should not fear intellectual honesty (not that you do), but should work toward it. StudyAndBeWise 06:24, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

AGF. The message was not that my opponents are or will be fools, but that my friends should not heedlessly put themselves in the position of looking a little foolish themselves. I think that the opponents of evolution show great restraint in not complaining about some of the language on this talk page. 06:15, 17 February 2007 (UTC)DGG 06:24, 17 February 2007 (UTC)
This material and similar material belongs someplace, but not necessarily here. Definitely on the politician's pages if they have them. Maybe a new article? I notice that there are a few fundamentalist Christian sects (dominionism and some others) that favor supporting Israel because they hope it will bring about Argmageddon and the Rapture and other assorted nonsense that mostly came out of a fevered dream of a young girl sick in bed in the early 1800s. And there is a branch of Shiites (including Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) that hopes to have some sort of cataclysm to bring about the coming of the 12th Imam. Are there other religious sects that have a sort of "paradise will result if we can bring about a disasterous end of the world" philosophy?--Filll 14:20, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
Again, it has already been added to the Warren Chisum page. JoshuaZ 17:00, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
FYI [14]; adds some more context. Apparently Bridges and Hall were involved in trying to ban the teaching of evolution in GA in 2005. Which reminds me...do we have an article on the GA textbook disclaimer thing? Guettarda 18:16, 16 February 2007 (UTC)
It's here: Selman v. Cobb County School District. 151.151.21.99 19:35, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

New AfD

Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Level of support for evolution Please comment. --ScienceApologist 19:43, 16 February 2007 (UTC)

The decision there was that this article was keep DGG 21:30, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
Huh? I've no objection to keeping or deleting. But this has only been under discussion for two days, and does not appear to properly be a candidate for a "speedy keep". There were many opinions expressed thus far on both sides of that issue. Why do admins so often make these kinds of hasty judgments without allowing the community the full reasonable range of their input?? ... Kenosis 21:40, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
My point had to do with the sometimes premature implementation of "speedy keep" prior to the 7-day minimum normally alloted for community discussion. I just ran across an instance of this happening at Category:Articles with unsourced statements. But I see the discussion is still ongoing in this instance-- sorry, I took it as closed based on DGG's comment above. ... Kenosis 23:55, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
It's a clear keep - the article may not be entirely encyclopaedic, but it's well written and well researched. Any other decision would have been pedantic IMHO. Tomandlu 22:50, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
The discussion still looks live, as of now: no indication of a decision or of the discussion being archived. .. dave souza, talk 23:01, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
  • I need to apologize here, -this AfD is still live--I was judging by the support that some of the more prominent evolutionists have given this article. Anyway let me also mention the debate on Creation according to Genesis which is also still open. DGG 01:22, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Status of Intelligent Design elsewhere

I've added a section on "Status of Intelligent Design elsewhere" to deal with a suggestion in the Featured Article candidacy, but it could use a bit more work. Please help. Also, what do you think of temporarily removing the section on Intelligence to the talk page, so that we can work on it without it delaying the FA? Adam Cuerden talk 05:36, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

I adjusted this material to include a treatment of the international status generally, with subsections on UK, Australia, and "other nations". I left the material added by Adam untouched except for the resectioning here. This all takes into consideration, of course, that ID is primarily a response to the 1987 US Supreme Court decision Edwards v. Aguilard. ... Kenosis 05:55, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Aye, understood. But we were asked by an FA contributor to include more on ID outside of the english-speaking world, and, well, this is what I could find and source. He made a couple suggestions, but they were actually Creationists - I'm going by the "If they say it's ID, it is, else, no" method, which seems the only sane way to judge without OR. Adam Cuerden talk 09:38, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Adam, I would point out to a user advocating a non-US-centric treatment as an expectation for this article, that the relevant information is already in the article. “Intelligent design” is a response to Edwards v. Aguilard (U.S. Supr. Ct., 1987), which prevented U.S. states from enacting legislation to teach creation science or creationism in the publlic schools, while allowing that "teaching a variety of scientific theories about the origins of humankind to school children might be validly done with the clear secular intent of enhancing the effectiveness of science instruction." Within two to three years of this decision, the intelligent design movement had begun to publish its first books (Charles Thaxton’s Of Pandas and People, which changed uses of the word “creationism” to the words “intelligent design”, published in 1989; and Phillip E. Johnson’s book Darwin on Trial, published in 1991, with the Discovery Institute founded in 1990, etc.). ... Kenosis 16:47, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
True. Adam Cuerden talk 17:37, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
Is there any link between the Letizia Moratti affair and ID or ID proponents? Or was it simple creationism? Guettarda 15:15, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
According to "Anti-evolutionists raise their profile in Europe" in the journal Nature, she removed evolution from the curriculum because it "promoted materialism". That's more of a Creationist line. Adam Cuerden talk 17:45, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
"Materialism" is a key word for the whole DI CSC/wedge strategy, so it works as well for ID as other creationism. Guettarda 02:03, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Starting to get diminishing returns, but: is this notable? http://www.ideacenter.org/contentmgr/showdetails.php/id/784 Adam Cuerden talk 17:50, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Interesting find, but a 3.5-year-old press release, noting the first non-US IDEA club isn't really evidence of great deeds, especially given the final line: For more information about the IDEA Club at Braeside High School in Nairobi, Kenya, please contact Caleb O. Seda at . Hmm...when I type "." into the address line of Thunderbird, nothing happens. Is it a bug in my software? :) Guettarda 04:44, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
Looks like Seda has moved up in the world [15] Guettarda 04:53, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
Full list of international clubs [16] - one in Kenya (links to press release), one in the Philipines (press release + dead link), one in Ukraine (link leads back to "About student clubs"), one in Canada, which has a live website which asks you to stay tuned for summer events. Guettarda 04:53, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Found another definite hit: [17] - Unfortunately, I feel just now like my head's packed with cotton wool and can do nothing about it. Adam Cuerden talk 04:27, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

Condensing footnotes

Zleitzen suggested condensing some of the footnotes down in the lead, into single references (except, of course, the ones that are cited more than once. It seems reasonable, per readability. Any objections? Guettarda 21:23, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

I fully support this. Adam Cuerden talk 06:28, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

The criticism that anti-evolutionists deny the omniscience of God

The article includes many criticisms of ID from a scientific perspective. It would benefit from a semantic criticism. The quote "undirected process such as natural selection" is a semantic confusion between "undirected" and "randomly directed". Further the semantics actually lead to a theological criticism which in light of the controvecy the article would also benefit from including. The criticism in full:

Natural selection does not deny that creation is directed. It proposes a mechanism by which random events interact to create. The key failure of those who reject natural selection is their failure to grasp what is meant by the term "random". A random sequence of events is one whose information content is infinite. God being omniscient is quite capable of infinite knowledge of an event. Humans on the other hand cannot predict the outcome of a random event because that would require them to be omniscient. Thus random events are distinguished from events that have finite information content, i.e. those knowable by humans.

By rejecting the role that randomness plays in creation, anti-evolutionists are claiming that creation takes place through events that only contain finite information and are thus knowable by individuals. Thus they deny the need for an omniscient presence in the process all together.

In other words, not only are the anti-evolutionists not proposing empirical science they are, through their lack of understanding, arguing against the need for an omniscient, omnipresent God. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 82.203.4.2 (talk) 15:01, 22 February 2007 (UTC).

Can you cite an authority who wrote something to that effect? —xyzzyn 20:17, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
There might be references we could find that demonstrate that the God advocated by creationists and Intelligent design advocates is a weak and error prone bumbler. The reason they do this however is a frantic desire for God to be understandable and personally involved in day to day events. However, I am not sure that this discussion belongs in this article.--Filll 00:07, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

do not delete parts of this discussion page please

When discussion pages need to be archived, or something really, really, really, and very, inappropriate is posted here, an admin can be called upon to properly format the page. Otherwise, discussion pages are add only. Jerimee 15:44, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

What policy says that? 151.151.73.166 22:13, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Greetings, Jeremee. My earlier deletion (reverted by Orangemarlin) was prompted by the sentence above: "Any attempts at trolling, using this page as a soapbox, or making personal attacks may be deleted at any time." The section I deleted was not dealing with the article, it dealt with a general debate of the topic.
Now, if the community prefers that such deletions be done only by admins, that's fine--but if that is the case, the "Please read before starting" box needs to be changed. Justin Eiler 22:25, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
There's nothing that says that Justin can't archive sections which appear non-productive. On the other hand, I'm not sure that the issue raised is non-productive - the poster seems to be asking about is about religious criticisms of ID - the whole "not only bad science, but also bad theology" line (now I wish I could remember who that came from). Guettarda 23:58, 22 February 2007 (UTC)
Um, actually I didn't archive that section, I deleted it. Again, if that's a problem, the Please Read box probably needs to be updated. Justin Eiler 00:12, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
"Archived in the page history" ;) - that's the correct way to archive trolling (not that I think this was, but anyway...) Guettarda 00:51, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Astonishment at the first phrase of the article

"Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God..." sayeth Wikipedia. Really? I thought that was the teleological argument. Intelligent design is a claim that an "intelligence" created the universe "by design". The creationists who advocate it are careful to keep the door open a crack so that it isn't just about proving God's existence. --71.57.90.96 10:31, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

I'd agree that the phrasing is a little dogmatic (although essentially true). How about "Intelligent design, whenever examined by US courts, has been found to be an argument for the existence of God..."? Tomandlu 10:51, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Exactamundo! Any credibiity this aricle may have had is overshadowed by that whopper at its very beginning.—Preceding unsigned comment added by 216.52.235.101 (talkcontribs)

How about "Intelligent Design is an attempt by certain US religous institutions to circumvent various court rulings that prevent teaching Creationism in US science classes?" That seems to be a pretty accurate summary. SheffieldSteel 00:54, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Or: "Intelligent design is a legal strategy specifically designed to circumvent the U.S. Supreme Court's 1987 ruling in Edwards v. Aguilard, which prevented teaching creationism as an alternative to evolution in public school science classes.". It could give the whole article a fresh start-- a bit more honest and direct about the verified facts. ... Kenosis 01:35, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
all of these things are true (in my opinion), but why not let people say what they mean (and pick it apart later)? the lead sentence is nearly inflammatory anti-ID POV. is it not obvious? (as obvious that ID as science is a load of crap?) r b-j 05:25, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
No it is not obvious, and it is not solely a personal POV of any of the participants in this page. What it is is thoroughly verified by WP:reliable sources in the scientific and legal communities. This article has been discussed more thoroughly than nearly any article on the wiki. It is highly restrained in its judgments, thouroughly sourced with nearly 150 footnotes, and has been repeatedly gone over by numerous participants with an exteremely fine-toothed comb. The term "intelligent design" was only evident in modern discourse after Charles Thaxton changed roughly a hundred instances of the word "creationism" to "intelligent design" in a later draft of the 1989 book Of Pandas and People. This, and the events that followed, were in direct response to the Supreme Court decision Edwards v. Aguilard. The court in Kitzmiller v. Dover ruled that it was not science but instead an argument for the existence of God, and therefore could not be taught as an alternative to evolution in public school science classes in the US. The opening statement, and indeed the entire article, is quite consistent with the verified sources concerning the subject. ... Kenosis 05:49, 27 February 2007 (UTC)


Kenosis, even though it is my judgement as well that ID is, in the final analysis, a Teleological argument, and is not science. and i am completely sympathetic with detractors that are alarmed that they want to put this in the science or biology classroom, it is really not good faith to define a person or a group of people, not as they define themselves, but in a negative analysis of them. i may think that Republicans are crooks and hypocrites (and i do in most cases), but to go to the article on the Republican party and define in the lead that it is the party of crooks and hypocrites (rather than the party that supports less government, strong military, free enterprise, family values, whatever) is obviously POV. let people define for themselves who they say they are. THEN deconstruct it, if the evidence allows (which it does, in my opinion). r b-j 05:53, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Personally I agreed with earlier versions of the article, but this was changed by a fairly strong consensus in recent months, which decided to "cut right to the chase", so to speak. If the article is to read differently then it should be re-consensused. ... Kenosis 06:03, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

I'm open to revision, but think the one suggested today was a poor choice of quote, and that it needs a bit more attention paid to the rest of the paragraph after the addition of the quote, so that it doesn't keep repeating itself. Perhaps we could jump between the two extremes - mention the most pro-ID definition we can find, followed immediately by Edwards vs Aguilard? That might be a bit much, of course Remember, though, that ideally the first sentence should stand on its own as a fair assessment of the whole. Adam Cuerden talk 07:00, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

just say, very briefly and concisely, what IDers say that ID is (they've coined the term, they get to define the term they've coined otherwise i'm gonna go define Republicans as lying stinking bastards - but somehow, i don't think that edit would stick). and then, immediately say what science and/or the courts or whatever say that ID is. that will capture the controversy (not in science, there is no controversy there, but in the overall political millue) in a nutshell. r b-j 07:17, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Agreed, but if we spend a little time selecting quotes, we'll probably hit consensus faster. Anyway, the front page is hard to edit with all those reference tags interrupting the flow, so we'll save a lot of grief by planning it out here. So... suggested quotes? Adam Cuerden talk 07:29, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I wouldn;t object to some version of RtG's that started as "according to its proponents...", semicolon, and then the part about it being an argument for the existence of God. Or some similar arrangedment. JoshuaZ 07:32, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

"The defining purpose of the IDM is to advance the argument that neo-Darwinism has failed to explain the origin of the highly complex information systems and structures of living organisms, from the first cells to new body plans. This makes it reasonable to infer that the evidence of biology, if not the philosophy that dominates this science, suggests the need to consider that some intelligent cause may have played an indispensable role in the origin and development of life." [18]

Do you think that "Intelligent design is an attack on evolution that claims it is insufficient to explain the origin of complex information in biology" is a fair summary? Adam Cuerden talk 07:37, 27 February 2007 (UTC)


However the first line is exactly phrased, it should somehow make clear that intelligent design is a religious argument, which is the same as the teleological argument in all but name, that it is scientifically bogus, and yet indicate that the distinction between it and the teleological argument is meant to get around existing US law against teaching creationalism in public schools. Wikipediatoperfection 08:15, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Huzzah! FA!

Great work, everyone! Only wish I had done more - my role in the FA is miniscule. Adam Cuerden talk 13:26, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Congratulations and well done all – from someone whose role in the FA was nil, since y'all seem to be doing pretty well here without my less well informed attention. The article's been excellent for a long time, and recent changes have made modest but useful improvements. ... dave souza, talk 09:37, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Well done! That's excellent work. I'd long ago given up on it ever being possible (despite the article's quality), so am another negligible contributor. It certainly should give hope to editors working on similarly controversial subjects. Again - fantastic! --Plumbago 09:55, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I made precisely one edit, so I didn't do much. It's hard to edit something that is so disgusting to me personally. But it really is a great article, if you want to know how the anti-science fringe thinks. I'm curious as to why it is categorized under FA as "Philosophy." Anyone have any ideas? Orangemarlin 17:51, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Page protected

I'm seeing a lot of reverting here, so I've protected to give people a break and time to work on a compromise. Let me know when you're ready to start editing again. SlimVirgin (talk) 07:24, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

My vote is for the prior consensus header using the definition of ID from the federal court. Using a definition from a proponent of ID is problematic, because they say one thing to the general public and a different thing to their religious supporters. -- Cat Whisperer 12:51, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Without wanting to tar the few intelligent creationists we have about as editors, I have to say I don't think this is terribly problematic with a little research, because, frankly, the leading ID proponents aren't very good at keeping their mouths shut about what they're doing.
This holds true for rather a lot of creationism. For instance, I was working on the Baraminology article. Here's one of the references:
Robinson and Cavanaugh, A Quantitative Approach to Baraminology With Examples from the Catarrhine Primates. ...We have found that baraminic distances based on hemoglobin amino acid sequences, 12S-rRNA sequences, and chromosomal data were largely ineffective for identifying the Human holobaramin. Baraminic distances based on ecological and morphological characters, however, were quite reliable for distinguishing humans from nonhuman primates. See also A Review of Friar, W. (2000): Baraminology - Classification of Created Organisms.
This is an outright confession to choosing data after the fact. (With secondary reference to make it clear it's not OR, as others have made the same interpretations of such things.) Adam Cuerden talk 13:22, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Similarly - I did post this above, but...

"The defining purpose of the IDM is to advance the argument that neo-Darwinism has failed to explain the origin of the highly complex information systems and structures of living organisms, from the first cells to new body plans. This makes it reasonable to infer that the evidence of biology, if not the philosophy that dominates this science, suggests the need to consider that some intelligent cause may have played an indispensable role in the origin and development of life." [19]

Seems to say, in summary, "Intelligent design is an attack on evolution that claims it is insufficient to explain the origin of complex information in biology." If this is considered a fair summary, we can probably use it without problems. Adam Cuerden talk 07:37, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Adam and Glen both feel that full protection isn't necessary, so I've unprotected. Let me know if you need full or semi-protection again. Cheers, SlimVirgin (talk) 14:42, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
This page should be reverted to the 'new intro' which is more NPOV. As a user has pointed out below, none of the ID advocates are satisifed with the introduction and there is no consensus about it. Most of the reversions haven't been justified and the reasons for reversions have been personal attacks. Wyatt 16:36, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
See m:wrong version. Guettarda 17:33, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

What is it?

Intro:

Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of a God

I would say rather:

It's not an alternative explanation for Evolution. It is a religious dogma that has nothing to do with Evolution, biological notwithstanding. Orangemarlin 17:49, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
We need a source for that. For example:
  • Prof. Charles A. Zebra of Michigan University wrote, "Intelligent Design is a religious dogma that has nothing to do with evolution" [citation needed]
I guess I never knew how to put verifiable statements in Wikipedia. Thank you for your teaching assistance. By the way, I don't want the intro changed, you're the one who wants to put in an explanation of how ID has something to do with science. I was just telling you that ID is religion. Therefore, the original intro makes complete sense. Your stuff is unverifiable garbage. Orangemarlin 19:57, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

We need to mention straight off that ID posits a "designer". I assume it's God, as do virtually all ID opponents. The quibble about whether it "might be something else" has a whole article of its own: Intelligent Designer!

I don't care, since ID is bogus anyways. If you want to write aliens did it, it doesn't make it nothing else but pseudoscience.Orangemarlin 17:49, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
To be sure, the intro should 'wedge in' the word "pseudoscience", which I think it already does. --Uncle Ed 18:09, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
It is pseudoscience. No need to wedge in anything. Orangemarlin 19:58, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Then I would add:

  • ID is at adds with modern biology because it argues that science should not confine its search for causes to material forces in the material world. It insists that, unlike the force of gravity (which keeps the planets in the solar system moving like clockwork [citation needed]) major changes in descended forms are too complex to have "evolved" through "random" forces such as mutation. It specifically denies that natural selection can create new species.[citation needed]
ID adds nothing to modern biology. Seeking supernatural causes for a natural process is still pseudoscience. Intelligent Design should be described as a religious dogma (as it is in the current article), and not imply nor infer that it is a real science. Orangemarlin 17:49, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
This needs a source, something like:
  • Ima Brayne, research biochemist at Taylor University, wrote, "Intelligent Design adds nothing to modern biology." [citation needed]
Once again, I appreciate your skills in teaching me the ins and outs on how to edit Wikipedia. However, once again, I don't want anything changed. You do. I was merely refuting your desire to convert ID into something that it is not. Orangemarlin 19:59, 27 February 2007 (UTC)


A source for the supernatural objection would be good, too. Even a whole section, somewhere further down in the body of the article, since it touches on one of ID's main points. I'd like to see a quote like this:
  • Jerome Weinerberger of the Walker Plank Institute wrote, "It is pseudoscientific to seek supernatural causes for any natural process." [citation needed]
But does the article specifically call ID "religious dogma" or merely say that certain US courts ruled that it is part and parcel of Creationism? (Or do you see that as the same thing?) --Uncle Ed 18:09, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

After that, the usual reply by scientists and jurists should follow:

  • Scientists dismiss ID out of hand as pseudoscience because (1) it's not falsifiable and (2) science does not study the supernatural.
Fine. Don't care. Orangemarlin 17:49, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
So that part can go in? --Uncle Ed 18:09, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
  • US courts have ruled that ID is a form of Creationism and thus does not merit "equal time" in science classes.
I thought the article says that, right in the first paragraph. Orangemarlin 17:49, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Well, sure, it does, but not in so many words. I'd want to use the phrase equal time because that references the Wedge Strategy, which wants to get the Creationist idea of "maybe God made them" grounds or standing in science class. --Uncle Ed 18:09, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

I would venture to say that my proposed intro is both factually correct and neutral. I might be a mite off in details, but the main points I make are agreed to by ID proponents and ID opponents alike. Moreover, my proposed intro does not say that either side is right, while carefully avoiding any hint of Wikipedia:Undue weight.

Note that ID is an "attack on" or "response to" evolution. The intro should indicate clearly that it is view espoused by a tiny minority. Perhaps we should add that, amoung bioligists, it is supported by only 0.2% (or whatever the figure is - maybe 0.0%). I'd be happy with Not a single bioligist supports ID. with a ref indicating a survey or other authoritative statment. No one's going to call Jon Wells a "biologist", for example: he's just an author with a Ph.D. who churned out a few papers in grad school. --Uncle Ed 14:38, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

I prefer "response to" or "attack on" evolution - "alternative explanation" makes it sound like it's a variant of evolution. Adam Cuerden talk 15:38, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Yes, your wording is better. Moveover, the article needs to clarify better which aspects of evolution are accepted or rejected by major ID proponents. I think most accept the fossil record as geologically accurate; i.e., when biologists say a certain species first appeared 400 million years ago, they are right. But some design theorists may reject common descent, regarding the appearance of species as divine actes (see progressive creationism).
I'd also like to see more about the main argument of ID, that life is "too complex to have evolved" with God's help.
What may interfere with the process is the political attempt by some to distance (or link!) ID with scientific creationism. SC is an attempt to present theology as scientifically sound, and ID looks like more of the same. --Uncle Ed 15:59, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

If ID proponents say ID is not religious but scientific and the scientific community and the courts say it is religion and not science, tell us how your version when it replaces "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of a God, based on the premise that..." with "Intelligent design is an alternative explanation for biological evolution which incorporates the teleological argument that God or a similar being must have designed the various forms of life observed on earth, from fossils to modern times" does not promote the POV ID proponents to the detriment of the majority view on the topic. Not to mention being weasely and unecessarily wordy... 151.151.73.167 17:08, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

I am unaware of a proponents who says both things you mentioned:
  1. that ID is not religious
  2. that ID is scientific
Can you provide a quotation from a source? --Uncle Ed 17:39, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
If you are actually unaware that IDers have said these things then you haven't read the sources already in the article and have no business editing it. I think you're simply being contentious, not genuine with your question. 151.151.73.167 18:31, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
The article did not adequately present the views of those asserting that ID is scientific. I did some googling, and I have some quotes at User:Ed Poor/Evolution. When I have time, I will present them here.
I gather you would prefer I made no changes whatsoever to the article without discussing them first. Am I hearing you right? --Uncle Ed 19:03, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but that claim is laughble. The intro of the article says right there 'Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute, claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory' and gives a great source: [20]
What I'd prefer is not relevent. What is relevant is that you are the subject of an arbitration committee ruling placing you on probation for disruption [21] of this article and others. Regardless of whether you choose to take it seriously or not, others do. And you have a history of pretending like you are seeking clarification while trying to sneak your POV in through subtle changes, [22], so don't make the mistake of thinking we're not on to you and start try it all over again. 151.151.73.167 19:28, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Didn't know this one. So I wasted my words above. It did read like POV pushing, but I thought I was just cranky this morning. Well, he is POV pushing, and therefore, I wish I'm glad no one is jumping on board with his Intro changes. Orangemarlin 20:04, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Apparently Ed, you missed my points. NO CHANGES ARE NECESSARY. It's clear that my sarcasm was lost on you. Everything you suggested makes the intro less useful intellectually. ID has nothing to do with science, so to infer anything else is not acceptable.Orangemarlin 20:01, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Conflicting statements about ID

From the Panda's Thumb:

For a recent example of ID proponents from the Discovery Institute making conflicting statements for political effect, consider these DI statements made in August 2005:
Discovery Institute’s William Dembski, August 4, 2005
  • President Bush is therefore completely on target in wanting intelligent design taught in the public school science curriculum.
Discovery Institute’s John West, August 8th, 2005
  • Discovery Institute opposes any effort to mandate the teaching of design. All it is asking for is the teaching of scientific criticisms of modern Darwinian theory as well as the best evidence for the theory.

he teaching of design Santorum shines

Perhaps the article should say that Panda's Thumb asserts that ID propononts have made conflicting statements about the teaching of ID in public schools: Dembski is for it; West says the D.I. is against it. --Uncle Ed 17:58, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

Opening sentence

I've had a go at a revision. I think it's balanced and fair. I suppose, given how this sort of thing tends to go, that means that it'll be universally hated and my name shall be taboo forever more. Adam Cuerden talk 19:31, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

I think it's less accurate. First and foremost ID is a version of the teleological argument . That it is an attack on evolution is clearly secondary. Furthermore, it's better to rely upon a direct quote from the most notable ID proponents for the definition since it is a very specific claim, otherwise there will endless twindling with it from every new arrival who thinks their understanding of ID is the only right one. The previous version was better. 151.151.21.102 19:46, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I agree with 151. Why exactly did you feel a revision was indicated at all? thanks - KillerChihuahua?!? 20:03, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
First of all, I'll never hate you Adam. However, the revision looks good, but I'm not sure it was required. Orangemarlin 20:06, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
why does there have to be so much vitriol in the lead sentence??? i don't get it, guys, why do you want to set the impression on the outset that this is an anti-ID article. it should be about ID. and the IDers coined the phrase, so they get to first say what they say ID is (in a nutshell), then do the analysis, get all of the data pro and con and put it in there. i want to make clear that i also think that ID (capital "I", capital "D", the stuff that comes out of the DI org not the general philosophical teleological thing which might sometimes be referred to as "intelligent design" with small case letters) is pseudoscience masquarading as legit science (which means it has no legit business in the science classroom of a public school), and i think that this article is pretty well balanced and accurate except for the lead sentence. i mean holy crap, don't you want to at least make it have the appearance of neutrality at the outset? r b-j 20:59, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
<removed indents arbitrarily, but kindly> RBJ, I'm not sure if I get your point. I don't see the vitriol. Evolution is a fact and is science. What ID does is attack Evolution and, by extension, science. The article is completely neutral, up to and including the lead sentence. If I were to extend your logic, I guess you'd want the start of the Holocaust article to state: "the holocaust was actually meant to be a birth-control methodology, but it accidentally got confused with something else." You kind have to say what it is right from the beginning, and not use weasel-words. Orangemarlin 21:11, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I see where Rbj is coming from. When I first came across the article the lead sentence did seem somewhat POV, and it would probably irritate people who support ID, but I think Orangemarlin is right. However, comparing the Holocaust with ID is a pretty extreme, although I do see the analogy.CerealBabyMilk 21:27, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I can't help what the ID Proponents say. Phillip E. Johnson specifically said ""The defining purpose of the IDM is to advance the argument that neo-Darwinism has failed to explain the origin of the highly complex information systems and structures of living organisms, from the first cells to new body plans..." If they want to to say the main goal of ID is to attack evolution to make room for an intelligent designer, all I can do is take them at their word. What are we supposed to do, ignore what they say to try and make them look better? Adam Cuerden talk 21:35, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I just think the word "attack" has a negative connotation and upsets CIers. In the context of the actual opening, however, it doesn't seem so bad. But perhaps one could say:
Inteligent design is an argument against evolution that claims...
I would also support the splitting of that opening sentence into multiple parts. Perhaps:
...organisms. The argument states that an inteligent designer is needed for that purpose: a variation....
---trlkly 21:54, 27 February 2007 (UTC)


Intelligent design theory accepts most of the theory of evolution so I do not see how it could be attacking it. It says that at least some parts of some living organisms had to be designed. Some IDers accept all of evolution theory except that humans were designed. Or that the first organism was designed and the rest evolved. Or that the coding was designed and the rest evolved. The point is that ID is compatible with most of evolutionary theory. Seems like it is just saying that evolutionary theory cannot adequately explain everything 68.109.232.53 22:29, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
I think this is Raspor. Wasn't he banned? 151.151.21.101 23:48, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Maybe we should describe it as a "challenge" to evolution. Many sources write as if Evolution were an all or nothing thing. I tried to start an Aspects of evolution article to clarify this. For example, one can accept the fossil record while thinking that God personally intervened for each and every instance of speciation, which is called Progressive creationism. Some ID advocates accept the fossil record while denying common descent; I believe Wells is one of these.
ID is interesting to our readers because of its role in the creation-evolution controversy, and because of the Wedge thing. With just under half of Americans rejecting evolution outright (i.e., in all its aspects), getting ID into classrooms would tip the balance away from evolution as "solid science". Certain people just won't tolerate that.
I would love this article to be only about ID and not touch anything else, but by branding ID as "Creationism" the anti-ID crowd have created a connection. Come to think of it, one of the biggest points of contention is whether ID *is* creationism. One writer makes a point of always referring to ID as "intelligent design creationism", ensuring that readers always get the point that she regards ID as a form of creationism.
Meanwhile, some ID proponents claim that "intelligent design makes all claims under purely empirically-based scientific arguments, and makes no appeal to the supernatural and does not derive its claims from religious texts nor theological doctrines." [23] This is plainly at odds with Barbara Forrest's view.
The thing about NPOV is that, when there is a dispute, Wikipedia articles are not supposed to take sides. They can say that 99.8% of scientists in a field support or reject something, as long as the percentage itself is not in dispute. --Uncle Ed 22:52, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
Wow Ed promote a particular viewpoint often? In that single comment you manage to repeat ID rhetoric ('getting ID into classrooms would tip the balance away from evolution as "solid science"'), take a cheap shot at those who wrote the article (Certain people just won't tolerate that) while downplaying the majority viewpoint and the Dover trial ruling ('Come to think of it, one of the biggest points of contention is whether ID *is* creationism'). 151.151.73.164 23:22, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
'Challenge' suggest it stands a chance. -- Ec5618 22:56, 27 February 2007 (UTC)
'Critique', then. --Uncle Ed 22:58, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

(undent) All of which is ignoring the Wedge document. I see no need to ignore that in the lead - the goal is to promote religion. Teleological argument. I'm willing to work with others, but not to be inaccurate. KillerChihuahua?!? 23:13, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

And the Dover trial. 151.151.73.164 23:22, 27 February 2007 (UTC)

I'll chime in here about the new intro. I don't like it. The version as of a few days ago, I thought was outstanding. Those are my € 0.02 --CSTAR 01:11, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

Just to clarify, this version.--CSTAR 03:09, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
If the version I just saw (and watched disappear) was the old version, I agree. However, now that the article has been (re-)reverted, I'll comment again, taking what I consider the most valid of Uncle Ed's arguments into account. He is right that ID accepts certain parts of evolution, primarily "micro-evolution." So why not replace the word "evolution" in the intro with "the Theory of Evolution"? It fixes the problem. And, perhaps "critique" or "challenge" might be better. (I needed a noun, and "argument" fit.)
---trlkly 01:38, 28 February 2007 (UTC)~
No, the rejection is of evolution in the ways that matter (and we don't need to support the essentially creationist POV of how to dinstinguish between "micro" and "macro" evolution), the current wording is short and works fine. JoshuaZ 03:13, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
I'll agree on the current language as a reasonable alternative to the prior consensused versions. both of which were also acceptable in my opinion.
The current version reads: Intelligent design is an attack on evolution that claims it is insufficient to explain the origin of complex information in biological organisms, and that an intelligent designer is required for that purpose.[1][2] It is a variation of the teleological argument for the existence of God.[3]
The prior versions were:
((A) (the longstanding version through most all of 2006)): Intelligent design (ID) is the concept that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."[1][2][3]
((B) (The more recent version of the last month or so)): Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God,[1] based on the premise that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."[2][3][4] ... Kenosis 03:40, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

I also think the day is not far away where we will need to mention in the article lead that ID is primarily a legal strategy born of the 1987 Supreme Court decision Edwards v. Aguillard. That is how current discussion about ID is increasingly seeing it, and I think it's now fairly likely, if not inevitable, that we will need to report it that way at some point in the future when the number of WP:reliable sources increases which refer to it as such. For the present, among the many possible ways to write the article lead, the way it's written is quite objective and well verified. ... Kenosis 03:50, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

I can't say this is an improvement over the previous version (which carried the article through FA BTW) for all the reasons already mentioned. The previous version was more precise and accurate, and for that reason alone it should be restored. FeloniousMonk 04:14, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

would have to agree with felonius.... i think the FA version (now current) is much better than what was here - also, please note that the ID = argument for God is properly sourced, so the opening is a truthful, verified statement. thanks Petesmiles 04:46, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
For what it is worth, I like the current version. --Michael Johnson 06:12, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
I'd like to see the new version of the intro added, and it still needs improvments. the current intro that is protected is not the consensus and critical of Intelligent Design. Numerous editors have given enough doubt that this intro is not NPOV that they shoudl be considered. Wyatt 16:49, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Implication of a Christian God

I apologize if I may be beating a dead horse here; however, I noticed an edit that caught my eye and thought I might interject. The edit that caught my eye was namely this one. I understand Kenosis' reasoning here; however, I must disagree and argue that this single 'a', frivolous as it may seem, makes a dramatic difference to the entire implication of the first paragraph. As it stands currently, "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God," the sentence implies, quite specifically, the Christian God. As the major debate regarding ID involves whether or not it is merely Christianity pretending to be science, I believe it to be of utmost importance that we excercise extreme caution in making any implication that could indicate a bias in this debate on our behalf. Furthermore, ID theorists often attempt to distance themselves as far from the word "God" as possible. If I may cite Dembski in his Design of Revolution:

The supernatural agent presupposed by scientific creationism is usually understood as the transcendent, personal God of the well-known monotheistic religions, specifically Christianity. ... By contrast, intelligent design nowhere attempts to identify the intelligent cause responsible for the design in nature, nor does it prescribe in advance the sequence of events by which this intelligenct cause had to act.

Dembski, William. The Design Revolution. 2004

Furthermore, ID theory does not ever attempt to discuss God after Creation took place; he is discussed within the context of ID only as a creator, or an intelligent cause for creation. Yet the word "God" carries with it the connotation a supreme, ultimate being, and the term God is also most commonly associated with the Infinite. ID theory in no way attempts to discuss the Intelligent Designer as anything more than a creator--not infinite, not supreme, not ultimate.

As such, I would like to propose we reach a compromise that, though it in many ways gives ID the benefit of the doubt, makes as little of a biased implication as I believe is possible. My suggestion would be to rewrite the sentence to the following: "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of a divine creator." I'd appreciate your thoughts. Thanks. AmiDaniel (talk) 06:44, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

You are still using a singular term (creator), rather than a plural (creators). What terminology would you suggest that could encompass intergalactic teenage-mutant-ninja-turtles designer(s) [24]. Of course, we'd have to alter the Kitzmiller ref, as that's the legal basis for finding that ID is not based on *a* God, but simply "God". ID is not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God. He traced this argument back to at least Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century, who framed the argument as a syllogism: Wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer. Ronabop 07:04, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
The WP:reliable sources used in this article say it's the teleological argument for the existence of God, period. I'd want to ask User:AmiDaniel just which "God" the ID proponents might be referring to for purposes of deciding how to write this WP article? perhaps possibiy an ancient Sumerian God? Caesar?, Extraterrestials? (well, per the verified shell game, three-card monte presented by the affiliates of the Discovery Institute, extraterrestrials, ancient Sumerian gods (pardon me, ancient Sumerians) and Caesar the Eternal God, all theoretically qualify for the role of intelligent designer). In general, the reference to "teleological argument" has to do with the estimation that the entire cosmos is not merely littered with competitive gods, but involves one coherent scheme of teleology (read that: "one God" with an "evolution" or forward progress towards an end of some kind, argued in the context of ID to involve the whole of life). But I don't want to get too far off-point for this article. Perhaps I'll make another comment here and might also be willing to continue the discussion of AmiDaniel's points on another appropriate page. More importantly to the topic of intelligent design, ID is primarily a legal strategy arising out of a 1987 US Supreme Court decision Edwards v. Aguilard , even leaving aside its related aspects of socio-political advocacy recently brought to bear in the US. Conceptually it's been shot down by the scientific community as not scientific, by the courts (thus far at least) as not eligible for teaching within secular pedagogy in public schools, and also by-and-large avoided by the churches and by experienced theologians as too weak a description of what God is. Nonetheless educated philosophers immediately recognize it as a teleological argument for the existence of God, and so has the US federal court system to date. ... Kenosis 07:36, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
I will have to admit that I may need some more reflection on this point (it's 1am presently, and my argumentative abilities are slowly fading), and my opinion may change when I have some time to think about this some more. However, presently, I would just like to rebutt one major presumption that you've made, namely the point that all reliable sources define ID as a theological argument for the existence of God. The U.S. Supreme Court ruling does indeed express the official opinion that this is so; however, that is not the only source that speaks to this point. The texts of Behe, Dembski, and many other ID theorists state the exact opposite, one of which I quote above, and I do not see these sources as any less reliable. True, their claims can be interpreted as biased attempts to dilude readers into thinking ID is something it is not to make their philosophy more popular, or rather to push their belief that ID should be tought in school; however, that is just another element of the ongoing debate. The truth is that this is still an issue of heated debate in the scientific, philosophical, and legal community; the Supreme Court's ruling in no way finalizes the debate, just as their ruling in Roe v. Wade in no way concluded the national debate regarding abortion as a federal or state issue. As we have multiple sources on both sides of this debate, it seems to me that picking and choosing which sources to honor in our introductory paragraph serves only to interject a biased perspective on this debate. Apropos, do you consider Behe and Demski to be among the "educated philosophers [who] immediately recognize it as a teleological argument"?
In response to User:Ronabop, I must say, and I say this without the intention to offend, that your argument regarding my phrasing reminds me of a similar argument made by a proponent of leaving the words "Under God" unchanged and in the pledge--unfortunately I cannot recall where I read this, but the argument was basically "Should we then change it to 'one nation under one or more gods or godesses, devils, divine or ultimate entities or realities, sacred creatures, prophets, or lack there of'?" Nonetheless, I do admit that my phrasing here may not be perfect; however, I do not presently believe that the current wording is correct either. I do, however, believe that the correct wording exists and can be found. AmiDaniel (talk) 08:09, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
AmiDaniel, please read up on this subject before arguing further. You have said just above: "The U.S. Supreme Court ruling does indeed express the official opinion that this is so [that ID is a teleological argument for the existence of God]; however, that is not the only source that speaks to this point. The texts of Behe, Dembski, and many other ID theorists state the exact opposite, one of which I quote above, and I do not see these sources as any less reliable."
It is not the case that 1987 Edwards v. Aguilard ruled in this fashion, but rather that the Kitzmiller v. Dover District Court case held that it was a teleological argument for the existence of God, as stated in the footnote in the article. The WP editors are well within their rights within WP policy to use this particular WP:reliable source, along with others, to make the statement that ID is a teleological argument for the existence of God. The assertions of ID advocates online and in several books need not, according to WP policy, be given treatment on face value in the lead when the weight of the reliable published evidence is that there is a hidden agenda in "intelligent design", which is to teach creation as an alternative to evolution in the public school science classes. ... Kenosis 15:14, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
This rather begs the point - if the designer is not God what is it? Of course by God I mean anyones god, of for poythiests, gods. Or is the proposition that there is a supernatural entity that has the power to create biological organisms, but nothing else? Or are the proponents of ID in fact agnostics, and argue that while we have no way of knowing if there is a god, there must be a designer? I'm confused. --Michael Johnson 08:46, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
Intelligent Design theory makes no claim about what "the designer" is. It simply attempts to assert that creation cannot be explained solely as a natural phenomenon, but rather required the influence of an intelligent designer. I suppose you could say ID is sort of an agnostic pholosophy--although most (if not all) of the proponents of the philosophy are most certainly not agnostic. Some have taken this to extremes of saying that little green men from mars could have created humanity--ID does not rule this possibility out; rather, it refuses to comment on what the nature of the designer is except to say that it, in some form, exists. This is of course from the perspective of ID proponents, not opponents, who debate instead that ID is an attempt to prove and convince others of the existence of a Christian god and that this "agnosticism" in the philosophy is merely an illusion. AmiDaniel (talk) 08:57, 28 February 2007 (UTC)
All well and good except that a number of neutral sources such as a US federal judge have agreed that the opponents were correct. JoshuaZ 09:01, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

I left a comment above with a request that AmiDaniel research the subject more thoroughly before arguing further about it. It is plain that some important things are being missed in the debate in this talk section. ... Kenosis 15:17, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

Every notable ID proponent is on record saying that they believe the designer to be the Christian God -- this is covered at this article and others. Also sufficiently covered here and elsewhere is the fact that their claim of "Intelligent Design makes no claim about what "the designer" is" is actually a rhetorical device to avoid to running afoul of Edwards v. Aguillard. 151.151.21.104 18:15, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

Invisible changes

I've made a few invisible changes to the introduction, using HTML comments to make it easier to find the text in between the references. I've flipped between the two versions repeatedly and can find no difference in display of the text outside of the edit window. Adam Cuerden talk 15:18, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

you guys ought to be ashamed of yourselves. but i know you're not.

even though User:Michael Johnson claimed in his edit summary that he was "removing POV introduction", in fact he reinserted a highly POV introduction ("attack", come on) and removed an attempt to tone down the naked POV here. simply claiming something as true does not make it so. he did the opposite of what he said.

even so, that was not good enough for User:FeloniousMonk in reverting back to the even more naked POV introductions claiming it as having consensus when the opposite is true. (i'm not counting myself since i wasn't watching when such bogus "consensus" was determined, it's just obvious when someone comes here to resist the obvious bias in the article that they get repeatedly slapped down.)

at WP:NPOV#Fairness_of_tone it says:

If we are going to characterize disputes neutrally, we should present competing views with a consistently fair and sensitive tone. Many articles end up as partisan commentary even while presenting both points of view. Even when a topic is presented in terms of facts rather than opinion, an article can still radiate an implied stance through either selection of which facts to present, or more subtly their organization — for instance, refuting opposing views as one goes along makes them look a lot worse than collecting them in an opinions-of-opponents section.[dubious ] We should write articles with the tone that all positions presented are at least plausible,...

at Criticism_of_Wikipedia#Censorship is says:

Wikipedia's policy is to fairly represent all sides of a dispute by not making articles state, imply, or insinuate, that only one side is correct; however it can be difficult to maintain this policy.[1]

i imagine that i am farther left of center than any of you because i find myself farther to the left of nearly anyone i meet. but this stinks. you guys oughta be ashamed of yourselves.

this is obviously not an article about ID, but one that is against it. i believe that ID (with capital letters, not to be confused with the many believers, within the science community and without, of some kind of intelligent design of the fine-tuned universe) as put forth by the DI organization is also full of crap. these guys are clearly trying to inject a religious POV where it doesn't belong at all, but this article stinks. and it is the lead sentence and the tone of the introduction that stinks up the rest of the article which would otherwise be good.

it does not adhere to Wikipedia policy (as i've cited above, but it was obvious even without the citation) and to claim it as worthy of FA status when it is so clearly biased in tone at the very beginning is shameful. you are giving the conservatives (Conservapedia) ammunition and you just don't give a rat's ass because you'ld rather see ID utterly crushed in the article (which will end up defeating the purpose of Wikipedia). r b-j 06:43, 2 March 2007 (UTC)

Excuse me, is it Sir? Madam? Hundreds of editors have participated in researching, writing, shaping, arguing and debating this article. Who the hell is user:Rbj to use this kind of ad-hominem attempt to shame those currently maintaining it into making the article read the way r-b-j wishes it would read. Or does the title of this talk-page section refer to all participants? except for r-b-j of course, and perhaps those who've argued for WP to essentially be a public relations conduit for the Discovery Institute. I'll help address the errors in user:Rbj's statement(s) above later on; after I cool off a bit. Have a very nice day. ... Kenosis 15:02, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
that is a deliberate misrepresentation (otherwise known as a lie) and it is noted. what i am arguing for is that WP does not play into the hands of the DI and other conservative critics of WP by having such blatent POV in the very lead sentence of an article. r b-j 07:47, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm not sure I understand what you are objecting to in the current version - yes, there is some bias in the current article. That's unavoidable IMHO - ID has consistently failed to stand up to any proper scrutiny. An unbiased article about ID would make no more sense than an unbiased article about a flat earth. Asking for an unbiased article is pretty much what the ID promoters have done in real-life - i.e. that ID be treated as respectable science.
As far as it goes, the current version seems to state the ID position without any histrionics - are you sure you are not referring to a previous version? Tomandlu 09:41, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
This is not the first time that I've seen an ID opponent try and defend the bias in this article by comparing it to another article which doesn't show the same bias. The Flat Earth article comprises a history of the belief in a flat Earth and a round Earth, and an account of modern claims of a flat Earth. The modern claims are simply and neutrally presented as the claims, and they are not rebutted, as the claims of ID are in this article. I agree that an unbiased article would make no more sense than an unbiased article about a flat Earth, but as there is an unbiased article about a flat Earth, then this one could be also! Philip J. Rayment 13:30, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
Heh - fair point... sort of. My impression reading the flat earth article is that it doesn't even think it's worthwhile even discussing the 'controversy' - besides, I don't think there is a meaningful one - no one is suggesting that geography classes should teach the controversy with regard to a spherical(ish) earth...
holocaust denial would be a better comparison, but one I avoided for obvious reasons: a) it's too emotive and b) it would be insulting to suggest that there is a moral equivalence (whether inferred or implied) between IDers and HDers.
In the end, ID is not just pseudo-science (something an encyclopedic article must address), but also a fundamentally (sic) dishonest campaign to disguise creationism. To treat ID as just another 'theory' (lame or otherwise) would be to ignore its essential aims and character, and would not be encyclopedic IMHO.
Re-reading the article, I cannot find any bias that is not properly sourced (I'm sure there are exceptions, but they are exceptions). Tomandlu 14:59, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
Holocaust denial is a better choice to support your argument, but even this article is not as critical as the ID article! It spends barely half of the introduction criticising the idea (compared to around two thirds of the ID introduction) and contains almost all remaining criticism to one section ("Holocaust denial examined"). This section, which is actually a bit shorter than the preceding section where the holocaust denial claims are listed, fails to actually answer many of the specific claims. In contrast, the ID article follows pretty well every ID claim with a rebuttal of that claim.
The bulk of the article looks at the history of holocaust denial and the participants. The ID article has a much smaller proportion devoted to such aspects. This makes comparisons a bit harder.
Another difference is that there is much eyewitness evidence in support of the holocaust, unlike with ID (who has seen the original development of the blood-clotting mechanism?). Thus you would expect the Holocaust denial article to be more critical of the idea than the ID article, but it is the ID article that is more critical!
You admitted earlier that there is some bias in the article, and you are now claiming that the bias is properly sourced. You are confusing two issues. The criticisms are, for the most part it seems, properly sourced. But the bias is in the article itself, in having so many criticisms, and so prominently, as mentioned above.
Philip J. Rayment 07:28, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree, Tomandlu. I've spoken to P. Rayment about this very subject before- the articles on pseudoscience that we have here do not mention the major criticism of the pseudoscience because there hasn't been an outspoken response by the scientific community to those claims. As in the above-mentioned page on Hollow Earth beliefs, the reason it does not go into a serious discussion of controversy and commentary on its validity because the reliable sources that Wikipedia relies on for documentation have not seriously spoken up about it.
If Hollow Earth was a hotbutton issue to ID, about which parallels other than the pseudoscience angle could be drawn, then it would be more useful, but as it stands, ID has caused sufficient objection in the academic community, in my opinion, to merit the sourced criticism provided in the article. --HassourZain 16:20, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
It was the Flat Earth article that Tomandlu made the comparison with, not the Hollow Earth article that you previously tried to compare ID with.
Yes, ID is different to both those ideas because it is more actively promoted. But it would be nice if you actually admitted that your argument had failed and that you were switching to a different argument. At least Tomandlu did half-heartedly admit this.
But the prime point of this alternative argument is to show that the comparisons with Flat Earth, Hollow Earth, Holocaust denial, etc. are not valid comparisons. They are not arguments that the ID article requires more rebuttal. That is, it does not automatically follow that because a subject is more promoted that it therefore has to include more criticism, to the point of because an article about why ID is wrong instead of an article about ID.
Philip J. Rayment 07:28, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
To be fair, I never said that because ID was "more promoted" that its article should reflect more criticism- I said that because it is more widely criticized and spoken out against that it should include more cited criticism. --HassourZain 21:50, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
Sorry for misdescribing it; you are correct on that point. And despite impressions that I might have given, I'm not opposed to documenting that widespread criticism exists. But that is still no excuse for turning an article that should be about ID into an article criticising ID. Philip J. Rayment 02:09, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Mr. or Ms "r-b-j" isn't objecting to diddlysquat about what the article says, nor about what it documents or explains about intelligent design. This user is objecting to the way it feels to Rbj, and because it doesn't read the way Rbj would like it to read. And moreover this user is arguing, essentially, that the many editors who wrote this article are, essentially, idiots who'd better come 'round to seeing it r-b-j's way so they won't be called idiots without any sense of shame anymore. Beyond the fact that r-b-j has made several statements already that betray either a major lack of having studied this topic or an insistence on seeing it from some as-yet-undetermined POV of r-b-j's choice, I should point out that it appears to me that perhaps r-b-j hadn't reviewed the massive talk archives on the subject. If so, the feeling of r-b-j iwould be more understandable than it currently is, and can be better addressed if r-b-j were to gain a better understanding of how both the broad tone of the article as well as virtually every little point within it have been gone over quite intensively by many, many editors. ... Kenosis 15:21, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
for the most part (heck, for the entire part) i agree with you guys about every major deficit of ID (with capital letters) coming from the DI. i fully agree with Robert Stevens that this "ID was created to advance the cause of a specific religion and to subvert science". i fully agree with that. it is my belief and judgement about both the quality of the "science" and the intent of the proponents of ID (capital "I" capital "D") that are affiliated with DI. but you wrote an introduction, particularly the first sentence that betrays bias and that poisons the credibility of the rest of the article. it makes it more difficult for a neutral reader (say a decent reporter for a decent journal such as NYT) to overlook this initial declaration of emnity for ID and get into the facts regarding the phony claims of scientific method or of "controversy" (as in "teach the controversy"). if you, like me, oppose what the DI is trying to do, you are hurting the cause by opening with such a blatently biased statement. for contrast, look at the Nazism article and you have to get down to the bottom of the intro to see the legitimate synopsis that
Nazism is not a precise, theoretically grounded ideology. It consists of a loose collection of ideas and positions: extreme nationalism, racism, eugenics, totalitarianism, homophobia, anti-Semitism, anti-communism, and limits to freedom of religion.
which is worse? Nazis or DI? who is treated more gently?
this defense of the status quo ignores the points and references to Wikipedia policy i made above about WP:NPOV#Fairness_of_tone and Criticism_of_Wikipedia#Censorship.
if you look a little bit, you will see some participation from me in the talk page that is in the archive. e.g. i didn't just stumble upon this yesterday. but it is getting increasingly clear that there is an echo chamber going on here when blatent bias in the tone of the article is being mutually praised by the participants. as i have suggested before, for an neutral tone in an opening sentence, you might do well to define a group of people or a philosophy as they or it defines themselves or itself. then pick it apart with the hard facts.
something like:
Intelligent design is the belief that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection." It has been determined by scientific consensus to be a pseudo-science, not adhering to the scientific method, and by legal ruling to be "not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God." Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life and have stated goals for the teaching of ID alongside of Darwinian evoluton as a plausible alternative to evolution. Opponents understand this as a disguised strategy to reintroduce Creationism to the classroom after being banned from state supported education by the Edwards v. Aguillard ruling.
stuff like that. i don't mean that to be verbatim, but you can see that the tone is far less harsh, yet still states the facts (and the facts do not support ID as science). but by making such nasty opening sentence (calling it an "attack" rather than a "dispute") or by jumping immediately to the conclusion (that it is a teleological argument, which it is in my opinion, but it is denied by the other side) biases the tone of the article.
try not to confuse my criticism of the opener as one of a supporter of ID. i am not. far from it. i just don't want this (along with so many other systemically biased articles in Wikipedia, to play into the hands of Rush Limbaugh or the DI or James Dobson or others of their ilk and that is what you guys are doing. this could very well become an example of the "liberal bias of Wikipedia" that some NYT reporter uses in reporting about this ongoing controversy and with that kind of tone cited, readers will very well nod their heads in agreement. you guys have to be able to look at this from the enemy's perspective and you are not. r b-j 01:45, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
and Kenosis: "And moreover this user is arguing, essentially, that the many editors who wrote this article are, essentially, idiots who'd better come 'round to seeing it r-b-j's way so they won't be called idiots without any sense of shame anymore.", i never once said anything about anyone here being idiots. the issue is bias in tone and particularly that of the very first sentence, at least the appearance of bias and not caring what such appearance of bias looks like to others, friend, enemy, or disinterested observer alike. i'm outa here for now (traveling). i'll get back to it later. r b-j 01:54, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
The last paragraph above is duly noted. So the participating editors are not idiots, but merely lacking in a sense of shame, which, according to Rbj, they ought have. And the participating editors are not necessarily comparable to Nazis, or even Nazi sympathizers, but merely have written the article in what ought be regarded as a shameful manner, by merit of the allegation that the tone of this article, in the opinion of User:Rbj, is more negative towards the Discovery Institute than the tone of the article on Nazism is negative towards Nazis. Yet the participating editors of this article on intelligent design are known by Rbj to be shame-less about the state of this article, a sitiuation of which they ought be ashamed. Gimme a break. ... Kenosis 02:33, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
at least one thing is misnoted in my previous paragraph. i said nor implied nothing comparing Nazis or Nazi sympathizers to the "participating editors". i was comparing the introductions of two articles depicting different things, both considered bad by the present company but at one time or another had some measure of support from humans. one is depicted in a manner contrary to proponents in the very first sentence ("so ID must be decidedly undisputedly bad, hunh?") and the other is depicted in a completely neutral manner in tone, but in the final sentence of the introduction you first start getting the idea that these guys are or were doing something wrong ("so Nazis must be less decidedly and less undisputedly bad, that so?"). what do you need a break from? illumination? r b-j 07:40, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
As I see it, there is one very important and noteworthy distinction between ID and most other forms of pseudoscience (astrology, hollow-Earthism, "pyramid power" or whatever): and that's the "Trojan Horse" issue. From the outset, ID was created to advance the cause of a specific religion and to subvert science (we know this from the Wedge document, among other things). That's why I think it's fair to say so from the outset, in the introdution. Generally, this is not the case for all pseudoscience: astrology, for instance, isn't a movement recently founded with the intention of presenting astrology as a branch of astronomy or of overthrowing astronomy. The need to convey this information to the reader will inevitably give this article a different "feel" to most other pseudoscience articles. --Robert Stevens 17:08, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
Well said, Robert, My feeling is that Rbj should be ashamed of him(or her)self for introducing this with an inflammatory heading, and since Rbj imagines "that i am farther left of center than any of you", it raises the intriguing question if that means Trotskyite or Communist, or just a lack of imagination about how far left one or two of us are. More to the point, a rough redrafting of the intro has been introduced, and I've no objection to it being discussed under a less unsuitable heading if someone wants to start that off. .. dave souza, talk 15:30, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
The notion as put forward by Rbj that this article should be written with a cautious eye to how Rush Limbaugh and the political right will view Wikipedia editors is not in keeping with WP policy, guidelines and convention, nor is it in keeping with the consensus developed by many participants about how to write this particular article. Among the many assertions above, mixed as they are with ad hominems, shame-on-you's, associations with divisive political isses, such statements as "you guys have to be able to look at this from the enemy's perspective and you are not" assume incorrectly that this article should be written, or perhaps already is written, from a vantage point of political friends and enemies. It is an approach that, in my opinion, the editors should continue to diligently avoid in consensusing issues about this WP article. ... Kenosis 16:43, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
Oh give it a rest. The article is accurate and neutral. FeloniousMonk 06:35, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

This article is in no way neutral. In fact, it calls into question the validity of the Wikipedia project. If it were neutral, both sides could agree to the content. From reading the many postings, it is obvious that the majority of participants are against ID and so have joined together to write an article against ID. That's OK, just don't pretend this is anything more than that. Too bad that Wikipedia isn't living up to its own standards. Duke97 03:38, 27 March 2007 (UTC)duke97

Rbj's proposal

After parsing through the ad-hominems and arguments about article tone in comparison to certain other article(s) on the wiki, this is what I see as substantive in the section above. Rbj has proposed that the article lead read as follows:

Intelligent design is the belief that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection." It has been determined by scientific consensus to be a pseudo-science, not adhering to the scientific method, and by legal ruling to be "not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God." Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life and have stated goals for the teaching of ID alongside of Darwinian evoluton as a plausible alternative to evolution. Opponents understand this as a disguised strategy to reintroduce Creationism to the classroom after being banned from state supported education by the Edwards v. Aguillard ruling.

Sure, if the consensus had been to write it this way, it would presently read this way, with clusters of footnotes and wikis wedged in there. Fair enough. The only thing new that I see here is a proposal by Rbj for the inclusion of the specific statement that opponents understand ID as a "disguised strategy to reintroduce creationism to the classroom after being banned from state supported education by the Edwards v. Aguillard ruling." Yes, we can find citations enough to include this in the lead, I imagine. But to me it gives the appearance, at this stage in time, of being more negative in tone than the present lead. I'd be interested to see how the participating editors would phrase such a sentence so as to make clear that ID is a legal strategy in the article lead, assuming of course that a consensus could ultimately be achieved to include this insight that early in the article ... merely hypothetically at this point in time. ... Kenosis 15:41, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

Hmm. We might get more support with "However, opponents claim this is a disguised stratagy..." Adam Cuerden talk 19:45, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
it's fine by me. i reiterate that it was an example of how to set a decently NPOV tone, not as a vebatim (and referenced) proposal Kenosis seemed to ignore that. r b-j 05:39, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
Given the wedge document, how is it disguised?Trishm 22:47, 3 March 2007 (UTC)
The Wedge Document was not intended for public consumption; it was leaked. ... Kenosis 01:27, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
on that we certainly agree. r b-j 05:39, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
I am aware of the leak. The question is is it still disguised? Isn't it blatant once you have read the Wedge strategy? Or do we pretend the game is the same, and ignore unintended leaks?Trishm 22:45, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

ID=DI?

While your considering whether or not to make the introduction more of a criticism, here's something else to consider. The introduction says, "Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute...". I know I've read somewhere here that this article is supposed to be about ID as promoted by the Discovery Institute, or something like that, but (a) should it be?, and (b) is that clear? I'd suggest that the line quoted above misleadingly gives the impression that there are no significant proponents of 'intelligent design' outside the Discovery Institute. So doesn't something like the following deserve a mention?

Dr Henry Morris, the founder of the modern YEC movement, recently wrote a review of The Design Revolution, by the scientific leader of the IDM, Dr William Dembski. Morris pointed out, with ample justification, how YECs developed many of the insights now claimed by the IDM, long before the IDM was even thought of. For example, the late Dr Richard Bliss long ago used the electric motor of the bacterial flagellum as an example of design, now a favourite of the IDM (the IDM doesn’t seem to have caught up with YECs on the ATP synthase motor); Morris himself has long differentiated horizontal and vertical changes, equivalent to noninformation-gaining and information-gaining; triple doctorate A.E. Wilder-Smith influenced many IDM people, such as Drs Charles Thaxton and Dean Kenyon, about the whole information concept. Also, in 1991, CMI (then called Creation Science Foundation) was using the information concept to elucidate the boundaries of the created kinds, years before Johnson and Dembski came on the scene.

There's more following that, in which Dembski acknowledges that YECs gave him his ideas. Anyway, something for you to consider (if you haven't already). Philip J. Rayment 22:58, 3 March 2007 (UTC)

The editors have been over this many times before, indeed since prior to my participation in the article. You will find it in various places throughout the archives, including those linked to in "points that have already been discussed", #20, at the top of this page, and also a continuation of a lengthy discussion in Archive 33
There's only one "intelligent design" worth writing an article about, and that's the approach taken by the Discovery Institute affiliates after Edwards v. Aguilard, starting with Charles Thaxton's publication of the book Of Pandas and People in 1989, proceeding forward with the formation of the Discovery Institute in 1990, around which the IDM revolved and within which all the leading proponents of ID operated for about the succeeding decade and a half. It's all in the article, or at least the important points, including references, about 150 of them, if you count the ones that recently were consolidated by combining multiple references into single footnotes. ... Kenosis 01:50, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
this Harvard astronomy/astrophysics prof might not agree that all "intelligent design" worth writing about is what comes from DI. he differentiates between the term in small case and the same that is capitialized (the latter term he associates with DI)r b-j 05:33, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
A lot of ID proponents are YECs. But that doesn't mean that all YECs are IDists, or that ID is synonymous with YEC, or for that matter than all YECs are the same. All major ID proponents are associated with the DI. That is not a causal statement. I have no idea whether they joined the DI because they were IDists, or whether they became IDists because of their association with the DI. We aren't asserting causality, we are reporting on a correlation pointed to by others. Guettarda 02:05, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
Speaking as just one WP user-cum-editor here, I personally don't care whether the advocates of ID are YECs, OECs, panentheists, pantheists, theists, theistic evolutionists, or whatever. ID is primarlily a legal strategy to get "God" into the public schools.
But I wouldn't want the article to sound too negative towards ID, so I maintain it should be left as already consensused, having extensively argued the numerous points in the article with no less than 3mB of Talk. Note that the teleological argument for the existence of God, which resigns itself to being, ho-hum, "philosophy" and/or "theology", has gotten about 32 kB (a kB being one-thousandth of a mB [1/1000 or 1/1024, depending on which measurement method is used] ) of talk in its entire history, about as much as this article gets in a typical week. ... Kenosis 04:37, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
don't presume any of the rest of us don't know what a kilobyte or meg is. or what a teleological argument or what is science. you play into the hands of the DI by doing exactly what they want: you are giving them cred to be the definers and owners of the concept. a lot of people wish a pox on both your houses. r b-j 05:33, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
I removed Rbj's comment placed in the middle of my submission above, which stated: ":: that's a false statement. the DI stuff is such a legal strategy but not everyone who asserts at least a note questioning if something qualifies as "intelligent design" is at all for teaching this in the science class or anywhere in the schools at all. Owen Gingerich is you are painting the whole use of the word with the same colored brush. but it ain't so. r b-j 05:33, 4 March 2007 (UTC)" Rbj, please feel free to quote me as needed, but please don't break up my submissions with your own responses to them. ... Kenosis 05:51, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
you make multiple (variably problematic) points, each that has to be responded to specifically. people can check the edit history but i'll restate this as below, it's just easier to thread off the separate points where they are.
Kenosis said:

I personally don't care whether the advocates of ID are, [...], theistic evolutionists, or whatever. ID is primarlily a legal strategy to get "God" into the public schools.

that's a false statement. the DI stuff is such a legal strategy but not everyone who asserts at least a note questioning if something qualifies as "intelligent design" is at all for teaching this in the science class or anywhere in the schools at all. Owen Gingerich again is the counterargument that you are painting the whole use of the word with the same colored brush. but it ain't so.r b-j 06:09, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
The idea or concept that the universe is "intellgently designed' is not at all new, except that ordinarily different words have been used for the idea that the whole world is not just set with numerous competitive "gods" or merely random sets of chance, but instead appears to the person(s) making the teleological argument that the whole world involves a coherent plan of some kind in advance of the events--despite the obvious conflicts. That's all more than fair enough as philosophy or theology or religion. Among the main problems with the view that "ID" is somehow merely a teleological argument are: (1) The words "intelligent design" had no (read that "0" or "zero") notability until the DI affiliates used these words in an attempt to end-run or end-around the 1987 Edwards v. Aguilard decision by the US Supreme Court. (2) The use of the words "intelligent design" to mean a purported scientific theory claiming to be competitive with evolution by natural selection is far and away the dominant usage in today's lexicon, all backed by verified sources in this article. (3) Even the churches by-and-large have disavowed any knowledge of this "theory" as presented by the DI; for one thing, it presents the odd dillemma of what to do with the concept of "faith" and "hope" when it is replaced by assertions of "scientific proof" of God and a sure bet about [fill in your preferred rendering of what happens to people when they don't play ball with the rules of the Church]. (4) The reliable sources in public media have by-and-large identified the words "intelligent design" in a way that is consistent with the current content of the WP article on intelligent design. There are other points, but these are, as I said, among the major ones ... Kenosis 06:23, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
so you're letting DI own the terms of debate. whatever it is that DI says is i.d. (small case) is, that is what i.d. is? r b-j 06:50, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
Interesting way of putting it, whoever "you" is in the statement "so you're letting DI own the terms of debate". There exists only one intelligent design worth arguing about or writing an article in WP about, and that's the DI's ID. So the persons or groups who formulated and used the legal strategy help to define the terms of the debate, initially at least. Others have responded, such as the scientific community, and various other communities, and as of December 2005, the US Federal Court system has had its initial say on the issue. To date there's been no visible indication that other federal district or appellate courts would likely rule much differently than in Kitzmiller v. Dover. ... Kenosis 13:45, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

<reduce indent> That's like saying that usage of conservative is letting capitalists own the terms of debate, when many left-wingers support conserving things. The term in common usage as published overwhelmingly means "a new 'science' claimed by the DI". Thanks for the link to Gingerich, he makes the same point that the term is "owned" by the DI crew. His closing quote relates to something I was just thinking – the biblical account and faith "addresses entirely different questions: not the how, but the motivations of the 'Who.'" So sit down in front of your Ché poster and put on "Won't Get Fooled Again". .... dave souza, talk 10:24, 4 March 2007 (UTC)


The editors have been over this many times before, indeed since prior to my participation in the article. You will find it in various places throughout the archives, including those linked to in "points that have already been discussed", #20, at the top of this page, and also a continuation of a lengthy discussion in Archive 33

Oops, sorry. I suppose that I should have had at least a quick look there first. However, having a quick read of the sections you mentioned, I can't see anything that completely addresses the matter I raised.

There's only one "intelligent design" worth writing an article about, and that's the approach taken by the Discovery Institute affiliates ... It's all in the article, or at least the important points, including references, about 150 of them, if you count the ones that recently were consolidated by combining multiple references into single footnotes.

First I'll remind you of my questions: "(a) should it be?, and (b) is that clear?". I can see reason why it should be just about the Discovery Institute (so the answer to "(a)" is a partial "yes"). However, I think the answer to "(b)" is "no".

The article starts off by describing ID as a concept. As a concept, ID is wider than just the Discovery Institute. As I quoted above, YECs claim to have been using ID concepts since before the Discovery Institute got involved (and I can personally vouch for this). However, as the name of a particular concept, and as a movement to do with that concept, I'll accept (in the absence of contrary evidence) that it is associated with the Discovery Institute. And on that basis, I'll also accept that the article should be about the Discovery Institute's version of that concept. However, I don't believe that this is clear from reading the introduction. Without getting into other arguments about how the introduction should be changed, perhaps the existing opening sentence should read something like "Intelligent design is a particular argument for the existence of God as promoted by the Discovery Institute" (emphasis simply to show differences).

However, even granted that the article should be about the Discovery Institutes's ID, the article does cover the history of the concept (in the section "Origins of the concept") from the 4th century BC to the present, but skips any mention of YECs using the concept prior to the rise of the modern ID movement.

Philip J. Rayment 12:59, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

You say "The article starts off by describing ID as a concept." Where? .. dave souza, talk 13:29, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
The first sentence. But to clarify, that is my term, not one that the article uses in that sentence. To put it another way, it is not describing ID as a movement ("ID is a movement/industry/business/etc. that promotes the idea of...", nor as a term ("ID is the name/term/etc. used by..."), but as an idea/concept/notion/principle/argument/etc.
The ID movement is something particular to the last couple of decades, and involves (mainly?) the Discovery Institute. The ID name is a recently-coined term for the old teleological concept. The ID concept has been around for a long time, even though the name and the movement are recent. That's the distinction I'm discussing, even if my terms are not 100.00% correct. Is that clear enough?
Philip J. Rayment 14:13, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, in some sense the underlying concept has been around for ages, at least since Plato. As the article explains, ID is a modern reformulation of the teleological argument that claims to be a scientific theory competitive with evolution by natural selection, which has been advanced by affiliates of the DI. As a growing number of reliable sources are stating, it is a legal strategy designed to teach a form of creationism in the public schools in the US. ... Kenosis 14:28, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
And actually, PJR, ID was indeed introduced as a "concept" in the lead paragraph up until about a month or six weeks ago, when, after a somewhat protracted discussion, it was changed to "based on the premise that..." The reason for the change, to quickly summarize, was the new consensus to specifically identify ID as a teleological argument in the opening paragraph, with a citation to Kitzmiller v. Dover, rather than wait till the second and third subsections of the "overview" to state this to the reader of the article. So, not long ago, by using "concept" you'd have been using exactly the same word as the article did for almost all of 2006 and the beginning of 2007. ... Kenosis 20:30, 4 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for all that clarification, and you could add that the article still has a heading "Origins of the concept". But my question remains, is the fact that this is about the Discovery Institute's "version" of intelligent design clear, particularly in the introduction? And there is still the matter of the history of ID skipping the YECs' use of the ID concept and arguments, even if they didn't use the term. Philip J. Rayment 02:06, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
I should think so. The second sentence says: "Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute,[3][4][5] claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life.[6]" Footnotes 3, 4, and 5 actually are about eight footnotes combined into three, and Footnote 6 cites to the Discover Institute's website. ... Kenosis 02:38, 5 March 2007 (UTC) ... As to the other forms of philosophical or theological arguments or speculations used in various theological approaches, they can be found in the relevant articles dealing with topics such as teleological argument, anthropic principle, fine-tuned universe, and others that are quite commonly used without dependence on the words "intelligent design". ... Kenosis 03:57, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
Rayment, there is no other "version" of ID. Read the archives. Also read the the Dover trial ruling, which said "As Plaintiffs meticulously and effectively presented to the Court, Pandas went through many drafts, several of which were completed prior to and some after the Supreme Court's decision in Edwards, which held that the Constitution forbids teaching creationism as science. By comparing the pre and post Edwards drafts of Pandas, three astonishing points emerge: (1) the definition for creation science in early drafts is identical to the definition of ID; (2) cognates of the word creation (creationism and creationist), which appeared approximately 150 times were deliberately and systematically replaced with the phrase ID; and (3) the changes occurred shortly after the Supreme Court held that creation science is religious and cannot be taught in public school science classes in Edwards. This word substitution is telling, significant, and reveals that a purposeful change of words was effected without any corresponding change in content ..." Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, page 32 Considering that it's already covered here and at Of Pandas and People that some the most notable first promotors of ID, the authors of Pandas, Percival Davis and Dean H. Kenyon, are YEC's who simply did a "find and replace" from "creation science" to "intelligent design" in creating Of Pandas and People, there's no "of the history of ID skipping the YECs' use of the ID concept and arguments" as you claim, only your unawareness of the history of ID. FeloniousMonk 06:32, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
FeloniousMonk, please refrain from the patronising and insulting remarks.
You appear to be contradicting yourself. On the one hand I'm supposed to believe that this article is about something that is virtually confined to the Discovery Institute, as distinct from the same basic arguments also used by YECs, and on the other hand you are claiming that ID is indistinguishable from the arguments used by YECs. So which is it?
Kenosis, I don't understand the relevance of the footnotes you referred to, with regard to my questions.
I should think so. The second sentence says: "Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute...
I gather that you are arguing that the introduction is clear that this is only about the Discovery Institute "version" of ID. But that's not what that's saying. In effect, the article is now saying/implying/presuming that there is one version of ID, with the Discovery Institute being the main promoter of that. What I'm arguing is that there is more than one "version" of ID, but that this article is about the Discovery Institute "version". Somebody reading this article would think that virtually nobody except the Discovery Institute is promoting the idea of an intelligent design of nature.
I'll try asking it in a different way. I gave a suggested new introductory sentence above. What (in principle; don't worry too much about the precise words) is actually incorrect or misleading about that proposed sentence?
Philip J. Rayment 07:44, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
You mean other than the fact that it is inaccurate? What you're going on and on about is simply the Teleological argument, not ID, which has a very clear history, which you'd know if you'd bother to read the Kitzmiller testimony and ruling. 151.151.73.169 18:44, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for that unhelpful comment. In what way is it inaccurate? Philip J. Rayment 02:26, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Why did I get the feeling the answer would be unsatisfactory to the poser of the question in advance of giving the answer? Because the thought the answer was wrong?, or because the question keeps changing? Philip J. Rayment posed a question above, which read as follows: "But my question remains, is the fact that this is about the Discovery Institute's "version" of intelligent design clear, particularly in the introduction? " His supposition that the response I gave was in response to that question is correct. Now the question is different, and is more obviously designed to make the point that there is some version of ID different than the one that's gotten all the press coverage of late, some back-alley version, or merely philosophical version that's worthy of note under the words "intelligent design". That's not the way the reliable sources found by the many editors of this article have used the words "intelligent design", and there's no reason to suppose that there's the DI's version, and then there's some other version. There's only one version that's notable, and that's the one put forward by the DI affiliates following Edwards v. Aguilard's closing the door on teaching creationism in public school science classes. This remains true even if the YEC's are now using the words, the concept, or both. Other such arguments are presented in the article about the class of argument called teleological argument, or in their own respective articles. ... Kenosis 19:35, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
I don't know. Why do you get that feeling? The only way the question keeps changing is by me putting it in different words in an attempt to make myself clearer, because I've asked the question several times now without getting much of an answer at all. I don't know why you would think that I wouldn't accept your answer, given that I've already accepted your answer to one of the two questions I asked. I accept that this article should be about the Discovery Institute's idea of intelligent design. But what has not been adequately answered is my second question about whether the article is clear about that.
You say that I believe that there is a different version of ID. Other than my use of "version" with quote marks (which is done to indicate that it is not necessarily the appropriate word), I can't see where I indicate that there is more than one version. My suggested opening sentence does not do that.
I suspect that you are getting hung up on my use of the word "version" in quotes. So I'll rephrase the question (note that I'm rephrasing it, not changing it): is the fact that this is about the Discovery Institute's version of the teleological argument clear, particularly in the introduction? I don't believe that the reference to ID's main promoters being from the Discovery Institute does that, by the way.
Philip J. Rayment 02:26, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
RE the first paragraph above: It is clear that the question keeps changing, or at least repeated in somewhat different phrasing, in order to elicit an answer which will assist in making a claim that there is some ID that's worth writing about other than that put forward by the DI affiliates in response to Edwards v. Aguilard. At some point, despite good faith responses already given, it becomes clear there is no satisfactory answer to PJR's question(s) about it, other than an answer which might imply that there is some other notable use of "intelligent design" than that which is widely written about in the press, by the scientific community, by the legal community, and by the WP editors in the article on "intelligent design".
RE the second paragraph above: If there is a proposal to try to find a new consensus for the intro, by all means start a new talk section and put forward the desired proposal, justifying the purpose and keeping in mind the many editors who've been involved in arriving at the current consensus.
RE the third paragraph above: The answer to the question, again, in any of the restated variations implying that the question wasn't answered, is "yes, I should think it's quite clear". When the article says "it's leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute" (the longstanding consensused language), it ought be plain that the ID the article is talking about is that engineered by the Discovery Insitute affiliates, the leading proponents of the approach, the "engine" behind the intelligent design movement as one of the cited reliable sources put it. ... Kenosis 03:08, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

I would question that your answers are in good faith if you are presuming that I have an ulterior motive. I am not trying to elicit an answer that indicates that there are other IDs than the Discovery Institute's. I have already acknowledged that it is appropriate that this article be about the Discovery Institute's version of the teleological argument.

As for starting a new section to propose a new consensus for the introduction, that effectively is what this section is! Admittedly when I started it I didn't have any wording for a new introduction in mind, but it was to discuss whether or not there was a problem with the article that would require a change.

As for whether it's clear, I don't believe that it is, and I've asked for an explanation of how my proposed new introductory sentence is incorrect or misleading. I figured that if somebody actually tried critiquing my proposal I might get a better idea of why they think that the introduction is sufficiently clear now, but apart from claiming that it is already clear and citing the reference to the Discovery Institute in support (a reference which I've already said does not make it clear, in my opinion), nobody has actually explained what's wrong with my suggestion.

Philip J. Rayment 09:45, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

This is already well underway to becoming tendentious argumentation. For now, "suit youself", so to speak. If need be I'll take the extra time to review and identify in writing evidence of PJR's developing pattern of eliciting statements from others, then cherrypicking them for minutiae in support of the argument he originally set out to make in opposition to an already extensively discussed and thoroughly consensused aspect of this article. (Please also see WP:point. That said, I express my personal appreciation for PJR's use of the talk page to bring up issues rather than simply attempting to impose preferred approaches on the article itself without discussion.)

As I already indicated, if there's a proposal for a different way of writing the article lead, by all means start a new talk section and put forward the desired proposal, justifying the purpose and keeping in mind the many editors who've been involved in arriving at the current consensus. Please also keep in mind that the article was just thoroughly peer reviewed and given a "featured-article" rating by the broader WP community, thereby requiring a stronger justification for significant changes than would be the case with, say, a start-class article, or, say, an agreed to be in need of "cleanup" or references.. ... Kenosis 15:22, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

I give up. I wonder about your priorities when you suggest taking the extra time to analyse my debating style, yet are unwilling to explain what is wrong with my proposal for a new introductory sentence. Tomlandu (below) has seen the same problem, but in both cases the answer seems to be that consensus has been reached (despite many people being unhappy with the article, incidentally), and you see no need to change it, but no actual explanation as to why the current wording is better than that proposed or clear defence of the clarity of the article on this issue. Philip J. Rayment 01:03, 7 March 2007 (UTC)
I give up too. I believe Tomandlu and Orangemarlin have indicated that their points are in response to the questions posed by Rbj and PJRayment in this section, and the discussion thereof. As other long-tem participants in this article appear to be re-engaging a bit more below, I think I'd like to take a break and defer to them for now. ... Kenosis 02:44, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

Moved Behe testimony in intro

I moved the Behe testimony in the intro out of the section dedicated to the the scientific community's response of to ID to the following paragraph. As an notable ID proponent Behe is not part of the greater scientific community, meaning his testimony was out of place in that section. I shifted it to the next section, the Dover trial, which makes more sense seeing Dover is where Behe gave his testimony. FeloniousMonk 06:31, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

A suggestion about ID=DI

I tried to read through the various commentaries about this topic, and it seems like everyone is getting angry with each other. From my observation point, it does appear that the Discovery Institute has hijacked "Intelligent design." It's almost like Intelligent Design is a registered trademark of the Discover Institute. It is almost impossible to separate the theory from the theorists. Now you all know I think Intelligent design is a load of hooey, but you can assume good faith on what I'm about to propose. I think that this article should describe the "generic" version of Intelligent Design, whereas the Discovery Institute article should describe their version of Intelligent design. In other words, the DI version, should be a subset of the generic version. I'm not going to take whatever is written below personally, but I wanted to digest everything written above and output it into its simplest form. I do apologize in advance if I've oversimplified what PJR and FM are discussing. Orangemarlin 17:42, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

It is Kenonis who has been discussing it with me. About all FeloniousMonk did was to insult. Philip J. Rayment 02:43, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Uh, the "generic version" of Intelligent Design is the Teleological argument, and it already has it's own article. You're way off base here. 151.151.73.169 18:41, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

I am not sure, but if I go out on the street and ask 100 people what intelligent design is, at least 99 of them will describe something associated with the DI. So in light of this, should the present situation not remain?--Filll 19:00, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

I agree with Filll and the anon. I am not convinced that there was any "hijacking" either. While the underlying elements are not new, this combination is a new contribution by (primarily) Johnson, Behe and Dembski. Certainly it is built on its intellectual antecedent, but it isn't just recycled ideas. Bad idea, maybe, but cobbled together into something new. Guettarda 19:13, 5 March 2007 (UTC)

I'm not taking any of this personally. It's just that the discussion between PJR and FM was getting rather long--I threw up a suggestion. Never going to do that again around this article. Orangemarlin 20:17, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
Never you mind my boy. All suggestions welcome. Anyhoo, it wasn't so much hijacking as finding a little used term and using it as something quite distinct from the ancient argument for the existence of God, converting old fashioned creationist use of this argument into a new argument for the existence of an intelligent designer who we all think is God but if we don't say so we can claim it's science and get it into school science lessons, but don't tell anyone. Pretty sure if you went out onto the street pre 1990 and asked the question, at least 99% would say huh? or refer you to a kitchen outfitters. .. dave souza, talk 20:23, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
Filll and Guettarda at least make sense to me. The anonymous editor probably needs to read WP:CIVIL. Orangemarlin 23:53, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
He was mild compared to the incivility of FeloniousMonk towards me. Philip J. Rayment 02:43, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Well, I was trying to find a compromise position between you two. I failed. Orangemarlin 02:55, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Maybe a review is in order:
... Kenosis 01:34, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Despite what the anonymous editor said above, it really appears that ID does equal DI. It isn't used until the mid-90's. I was in Biochemistry programs, studying something about genes or molecules (I was trying to get A's, not really trying to understand the stuff), and I don't recall ever hearing the words, Intelligent and Design together, except to say that "this Apple II computer really was designed by some intelligent guys." Being bored with my science education, I took a bunch of courses in Religion and comparative religions, and nowhere was Intelligent Design mentioned. I really think it is a DI invention. IMHO. Orangemarlin 02:59, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Might it not be worth adding/modifying the opening section to clarify this? There are two good reasons to do so 1)It's worth clarifying and 2)critics of the "tone" of this article will use this as an excuse to say "oh, it's just about the DI, not ID, and the DI got it wrong, and wikipedia is just attacking a strawman".
Something like:
Tomandlu 09:56, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

I think what Gregory Peterson has to say sheds some interesting light on the matter:

"According to one view, theories of intelligent design are as old as the philosophical traditions of the West... While the modern ID movement draws from this historical well, its primary affinity is with the more scientifically (some might say scientistically) minded design arguments of the eighteenth and nineteenth century...
"The great difference between modern proponents of IDT and their predecessors is, to put in succinctly, one hundred years of evolutionary theory.
"The framework for IDT comes almost entirely from Dembski and Michael Behe… IDT conceives itself as ... providing not just an alternative scientific account for biological origins, and specified complexity but an account that breaks down the wall between theology and science. Indeed, if Dembski and Behe are correct, IDT would truly be the most significant scientific theory even, for it would in essence prove the existence of God." (He goes on to say that he doesn't believe ID can do what it claims).

From: Peterson, Gregory R. 2002. The intelligent-design movement: science or ideology? Zygon 37:7-23. Guettarda 18:31, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

A related point was made in a recent American Chronical article [25]:
"Similarly, in his book 'Darwin’s Black Box' Behe compares life (like a bacteria’s flagellum) to a carefully-designed mousetrap. Remove one piece, i.e. the spring or hook, and it becomes useless; thus, a biological mousetrap couldn’t have evolved from singular individual springs and hooks because, as Behe claims, they would have been useless on their own. He relates this to a flagellum, which operates like an “outboard motor” for bacteria. If you remove any of the proteins responsible for it, then it doesn’t work at all."
"Darwin himself pointed out the fallacy of this argument," write Robert and Dr. Steven Novella of the New England Skeptical Society, a fact that calls into question the scholarship and/or intellectual honesty of anyone who would trot it out a century and a half later."
"The Novellas point out what evolutionary biologists have known for some time. "There is no reason within evolutionary theory to assume that the flagellum had to evolve directly to its current usage." In other words, what is being used for one function has likely been adapted from earlier functions. Dr. Novella points out that there is "compelling evidence that some of these crucial proteins were once used as part of a membrane pump in the cell walls of bacteria."
I don't think any of the proposed changes to the introduction make much sense after reading articles like these. 151.151.73.168 19:43, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm not sure - or, to be more accurate, I'm not sure that a convincing case has been made for *NOT* making any change. IMHO the article should make clear in the introduction why it links ID with the DI so explicitly. If the issue of the definition of the term is controversial, then we should at least be able to highlight that the term has no usage prior to its promotion by the DI. It's a pertinent and significant point. I'll make what I consider an appropriate edit. Tomandlu 22:42, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Well, the first problem with that statement is and no significant use prior to the institute's promotion of the term exists - that isn't quite in keeping with the time line (since the idea comes before the institute). Guettarda 22:48, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
The idea is within the class of argument known as the teleological argument wich goes back to Aquinas, Cicero, Plato, etc., of which the specific version we're talking about is the synthesis of arguments put forward by the DI affiliates. Were it not for Edwards v. Aguilard, there would be no need to have called it "intelligent design". But they did call it "intelligent design", so those are the words by which we refer to this particular synthesis of teleological arguments today. That's what this article is about. The article already explains that the basic idea has a long history, and that there were also instances of the words that can be found in several places, though they had no significance, no notability that would merit an entire article.

The various isses that come into play are already in the article, but they can't all be stated in the lead section, so we need to pick which of the major points to introduce to the reader in the lead. The editors have already consensused this as follows. The first paragraph would provide a rendering of what ID is, including identifying its proponents; the second would deal with the response of the scientific community; the third paragraph would summarize ID's current legal status. Those of us who were involved before and choose to still be involved in the talk page mainly just report how the existing consensus was arrived at, and try to summarize how the article got to the current stage, refer users to earlier discussions in the archives, etc.. The content can of course be reconsensused at any time. But the onus to provide justification is currently on those arguing for a different approach, not on those seeking to maintain the version that was just reviewed and given FA-status by the wider WP community. ... Kenosis 23:09, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

Fair enough - feel free to revert my edits. Personally, I have no problem with the article as it stood, but I was trying to resolve accurately an accusation that was laid on the introduction - namely that it didn't make it clear in the intro why the article linked ID primarily with the DI. Tomandlu 23:26, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I readily understand. ... Kenosis 23:34, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
BTW I've had a quick skim through the article (mainly section 1), and although it's implied in both the origins of concept and term sections, no where does it specifically state that there is a strong justification for explicitly linking ID with the DI (or would making such a statement count as original research?). In retrospect, I'm not convinced that it needs inclusion in the intro, but it might have a place somewhere. Tomandlu 23:45, 6 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, that's the problem. The DI is behind ID, but it isn't really accurate to say that it's responsible for ID. Guettarda 02:22, 7 March 2007 (UTC)
Tomandlu, I removed what you added and reformatted to the earlier version. You had added: "The term "intelligent design" is strongly linked to the work of the Discovery Institute, and only isolated usage exists prior to that (see Origins of the term)." ... Kenosis 23:31, 6 March 2007 (UTC)

Tomandlu's suggested change creates a false distinction: The DI are not the only ID proponents that avoid referencing God in their claim; starting with the Foundation for Thought and Ethics all ID proponents pose their claim in that manner. And the main (if not the only) reason for doing it in such a manner to avoid running afoul of 1987's Edwards v. Aguillard (and to create a "big tent" for theists of all persuasions). FeloniousMonk 05:24, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

Noneheless, the leading proponents are all affiliated with the Discovery Institute, including Charles Thaxton who also is associated with the Foundation for Thought and Ethics. If I recall correctly, after repeated discussions now viewable in the 34 archives, not one proponent who is notable on the issue is not affiliated with the DI. ... Kenosis 10:07, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

At some point, IMO, a note about Edwards v. Aguilard will need to be integrated into the lead. I suggest discussion begin cautiously and without any rapid maneuvers involving anything less than a very clear-cut consensus. As the third paragraph is already agreed to be devoted to legal standing, perhaps an appropriate approach might ultimately be to replace the sentence about Behe's testimony in Kitzmiller with a sentence about Edwards v. Aguilard. That, if anything, was the "smoking gun" in Kitzmiller-- the fact that drafts of Of Pandas and People prior to Edwards v. Aguilard used the word "creationism" and derivatives thereof, while the drafts of the same book after Edwards v. Aguilard used the words "intelligent design" without any corresponding change of content other than swapping all the uses of word "creationism" with the words "intelligent design". So in some sense Thaxton may properly be regarded as the grandfather of intelligent design (though I know of no sources that say this) with Philip Johnson, a lawyer, being widely regarded as the "father" of intelligent design. Thus it's primarily a legal strategy to avoid running afoul of Edwards v. Aguilard and develop a method of offering a competing "science" in keeping with the caveat the Supreme Court offered in that case. Enter, voila! the Discovery Insitiute. ... Kenosis 10:07, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

IMHO the main point remains - if ID=DI we need to say so directly and provide appropriate references. If it doesn't, then the article should reflect this, otherwise it can be legitimately accused of bias. There seems to be strong evidence for the former, rather than the latter, but as it stands the article seems vulnerable to criticism in this regard. Tomandlu 10:14, 7 March 2007 (UTC)
Understood. The sentence "It's leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute,[seven sources provided within three footnotes] claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory ..." already says this. ID = DI is just shorthand used on the talk page in response to those (of which I was one until doing the research) who may say "well, how can all of the leaders of an idea like this be affilated with one advocacy group or "research"-group/think-tank?" Turns out to be an organized campaign, not merely an idea that arose out of free and independent academic discourse, or scientific research developed with any actual peer review. Point being: what different language expresses this accurately, concisely, in keeping with the many sources provided and/or available to be provided in the article? If an alternative is suggested that can be consensused to be an improvement, then discussion should begin about it. But thus far I don't believe we've seen such an alternative that can be agreed to be a concise, accurate, properly sourced improvement over the longstanding language.

The issue of ID being verifiably a response to Edwards v. Aguilard, on the other hand, is an issue that might reasonably be presented separately in the lead as part of the concise introduction to the legal issue(s) already agreed to be presented in the third paragraph.Please read the WP article on the Edwards case (and/or other summaries elsewhere), and note carefully the door that the Supreme Court left open for the approach that ultimately was taken by the IDM (except that the scientific community quickly said "no way", and the Kitzmiller court also said "no way".) Just a thought for now, and sourcing still needs to be lined up and discussed on that issue. The need for careful discussion of this arises out of the inherently controversial nature (or is it supernature?) of the topic, out of a respect for long-debated and intensively discussed consensus, and out of the fact that the article was just thoroughly peer reviewed within WP and that significant changes on the heels of the very recently conducted Featured Article review should be approached accordingly. ... Kenosis 11:50, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

[I]f ID=DI we need to say so directly and provide appropriate references - It's the latter part that is the problem. The article currently says what the available references support. If you have some references that say it more directly, please point us towards them. Guettarda 13:14, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

I have to admit, I've come around 180 degrees on this one now. Re-reading, although the DI rightfully has a significant place in the article, the article does not state that ID=DI - it just lists and provides references for the various ways in which they do connect... and that is how it should be. ID (the phrase) did not originate with the DI (however insignificant usage may have been prior to the DI). Furthermore, ID doesn't end with the DI - various groups seem to be claiming ownership of the phrase - or at least roundly criticising each other for various perceived ideological failings. All in all, it's become clearer to me why the article is nuanced as it is, and I congratulate the long-term contributors and editors of the article. I can only apologise that I have not been as diligent in studying the full archives on this talk page as I might have been - what can I say? That they're not nearly as funny as the Deathstar discussion page? Tomandlu 19:54, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

Your generous comments are definitely appreciated. Thanks Tomandlu. ... Kenosis 22:00, 7 March 2007 (UTC)
I did follow your invitation to read the Deathstar talk page. I was laughing so hard I was crying. I really do not know what to say. I suggest that everyone read this absolutely amazing document.--Filll 21:11, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

A Spade is a spade after all....

I broadly support the article as it stands - but i wonder if there might be an opportunity to make something clearer. What people seem to either misunderstand or not accept is what the article is about - does this opening offer any benefits in terms of clarity at the lead?

'Inteligent Design is a term coined by members or affiliates of the DI in early 1990s, and is an argument.... current article continues.....

whaddya reckon? - Petesmiles 02:17, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

No, it's gets the sequence wrong. ID predates the DI. Guettarda 02:19, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

Then we're not only describing the DI version of ID - i was certain we were. Or is it that they subsequently joined / became the DI? Petesmiles 02:20, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

Yes - DI ID predates the DI :) Guettarda 02:58, 7 March 2007 (UTC)

A distinctly American phenomenon

User:KarlFrei left a note on my talk page after I removed the word American from the second sentenece of the article. Breifly it had read: "it's leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the American Discovery Institute,[3][4][5] claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life.[6]" (here) .

He wanted to know why I removed it, so I gave a brief explanation and said essentially "Well, let me go ask on the Talk page". So I'm asking, just in case. Kenosis 11:54, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

I don't see any harm in the clarification, although I'm not aware of any other DI's with which the DI could be confused.
With regard to amer. phenom., the section on the UK is pretty clear. There is no prohibition against religion in schools - rather the opposite, since RE is mandatory (although it is not limited to christianity iirc). However, the dispute, such as it is, is that Truth in Science are pushing for ID to feature in science rather than RE or more appropriate arenas. Tomandlu 14:17, 8 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, the issue has been settled fairly quickly in other countries. When it was proposed in Australia and the Netherlands, they quickly found other people to take over the positions as minister of public education. In the UK, they merely clarified which classroom(s) it should be limited to, which is not biology class. ... Kenosis 15:17, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

The point was not to avoid confusion but to localize the phenomenon at an early stage in the article. I will wait to see if anyone objects to putting this word back in. --KarlFrei 14:22, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

I think that although the DI is american, some of its outreach is foreign, to places like the UK and Turkey and other countries. Also, some of the DI fellows are foreign like that Polish guy etc.--Filll 18:44, 8 March 2007 (UTC)
"american-based" might therefore be more appropriate, but only marginally. It's worth bearing in mind the wikipedia does tend to have an unconcious american bias (imho) (although you wouldn't think so from reading conservapedia). if it adds to clarity without adding orig research or bias, it seems ok to me (i.e. I can't see any reason to oppose the change). Err... vote "OK"?
User:KarlFrei please note that this is a controversial article that has reached featured status (a fairly rare phenom.). It is understandable that editors are very cautious regarding edits. No offence is intended by the caution in this matter IMHO.Tomandlu 22:50, 8 March 2007 (UTC)
I certainly understand that this is a controversial topic, but I honestly had not expected that there would be controversy about this particular word (American). --KarlFrei 10:53, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
Well, it should probably be "US" anyway... :) Tomandlu 12:24, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
ID is as American as Coca-Cola. I don't say that as a joke. Coca-cola is very much associated with American culture yet for better or worse is international - pushed by commercial interests. ID likewise is American but is being pushed into the iternational stage by religious interests. --Michael Johnson 13:12, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
Alright, how about something like this? A sentence at the end of the first paragraph, stating:

We would, of course, need to thoroughly discuss and achieve a clear consensus for an addition such as this before implementing it. ... Kenosis 14:38, 9 March 2007 (UTC)

OT RFC regarding sep of church and state and ID

If a science-teacher in the US wanted to explain why ID violated principle of science (not falsifiable etc.), would they be able to do so? i.e. given that judge jones at kitzmiller said ID was essentially religious, would that mean that science-teachers could not discuss it as bad science?

This is decidedly OT for this discussion page, but if anyone has any particular insight, etc. please add to my talk page. tnx Tomandlu 22:57, 8 March 2007 (UTC)

Why not? There's nothing wrong with discussing ID, just with teaching it as science. Guettarda 13:22, 9 March 2007 (UTC)

New comment

This article is an example of why people don't take Wikipedia or "NPOV" seriously. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 70.108.101.57 (talkcontribs)

Care to explain what you mean? Guettarda 23:09, 13 March 2007 (UTC)
why should User:70.108.101.57 go around the maypole for the zillionth time when it's obvious that exactly why this article is such an example of why people don't take Wikipedia or "NPOV" seriously. you have (in very recent times): Talk:Intelligent_design#Astonishment_at_the_first_phrase_of_the_article, you have me citing:
WP:NPOV#Fairness_of_tone:
If we are going to characterize disputes neutrally, we should present competing views with a consistently fair and sensitive tone. Many articles end up as partisan commentary even while presenting both points of view. Even when a topic is presented in terms of facts rather than opinion, an article can still radiate an implied stance through either selection of which facts to present, or more subtly their organization — for instance, refuting opposing views as one goes along makes them look a lot worse than collecting them in an opinions-of-opponents section.[dubious ] We should write articles with the tone that all positions presented are at least plausible,...
Criticism_of_Wikipedia#Censorship:
Wikipedia's policy is to fairly represent all sides of a dispute by not making articles state, imply, or insinuate, that only one side is correct; however it can be difficult to maintain this policy.[2]
and nothing but empty denial (it ain't just a river in Egypt) without even beginning to take on the content of the critique. e.g.: Oh give it a rest. The article is accurate and neutral. FeloniousMonk 06:35, 5 March 2007 (UTC)
you guys don't even bother to engage the criticism and then just declare victory (for your POV). you are so enmeshed in your POV that you are unable to see it from a neutral stand and certainly not from the enemy's POV. this article begins with a blatent POV and this place is such an echo chamber that the defenders of this blatent POV are blinded by this very POV. r b-j 00:57, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
The only reason people don't take Wikipedia seriously is because anybody can jump on and run serious editors of scientific articles raggard with their quack religious POVs. -- Michael Johnson 01:18, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
So you admit that this is a scientific article? :-). Seriously, I totally endorse r b-j's comments, and this reply from Michael Johnson is wrong in so many ways:
  • It is an example of the "empty denial ... without even beginning to take on the content of the critique" r b-j mentioned.
  • It denigrates his ideological opponents ("quack religious POVs").
  • It implicitly denigrates editors with opposing views (they must be non-serious editors).
  • It is blatantly false, in that some people have said that they don't take Wikipedia seriously because of the anti-creation and/or anti-ID stance it takes.
Philip J. Rayment 02:03, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Philip, with respect, this really cuts to the quick of the problem. No-one with a biological background (and let's not get into discussion about the handful scientist supporters of ID) can seriously consider ID anything more than religious quackery. ID as a POV would not get a run in Citizendium, for instance. I doubt very much if Encyclopaedia Britannica would pay an ID supporter to write about evolution, either. The concept is so alien to science that supporters had to write their own science textbook. Personally I would be more than happy with the Gould compromise - this is religion, this is science. But it is the creationists who consistantly seek to insert their POV into science articles. And I'm comfortable that some creationists don't take Wikipedia seriously, so long as it reflects the best scientific interpretation of the natural world we have today. And, I must add, so long as it continues to change to reflect growth in our scientific knowedge. -- Michael Johnson 02:24, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
That "handful" probably numbers hundreds, by the way. Small in percentage terms, but not exactly a "handful".
The problem with Gould's non-overlapping magisterium—one problem anyway—is that we are not talking about theology vs. scientific observations, but about history—what actually did happen. Like it or not, both "religion" (at least some, including Christianity) and evolutionism make conflicting claims about what did happen—about the history. They do overlap, whether you like it or not.
Your claim that it is creationists who consistently seek to insert their POV into science articles is itself a POV that you have not demonstrated, and one that I reject. Sure, there may be a few who do, but no more than anti-creationists inserting their POV into articles, especially articles ostensibly about creation (and ID).
And I don't know what you meant by "this really cuts to the quick of the problem", because nothing in your reply actually answered anything that I said, or that r b-j said, unless you were trying to justify your use of denigration as a debating tactic.
Philip J. Rayment 12:01, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
You are right about one thing, my comment probably didn't belong here, and my apologies to all. So I will put the remainder of my reply on your talk page. -- Michael Johnson 12:30, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Those sort of derogatory comments don't belong anywhere. Philip J. Rayment 03:33, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Please don't think I am apologising for calling ID quackery, it is and I certainly do not withdraw from that. -- Michael Johnson 04:16, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, um...what derogatory comments? Guettarda 04:30, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
So because you (Michael Johnson) consider it quackery, you therefore think that it's okay to denigrate other editors who consider it legitimate science? Guettarda, see my post above dated 02:03, 14 March. Philip J. Rayment 12:12, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
No, because the scientific community does. And if the scientific community considers it quackery or pseudoscience, why shouldn't we?151.151.73.171 17:59, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Not all the scientific community does, and whilst I accept that most members of the scientific community consider it wrong and/or unscientific, I very much doubt that the large majority go around publicly maligning people who hold to it as having "quack religious POVs". And even if they do, the majority is no guarantee of correctness, and maligning others for holding particular views is uncivil. Philip J. Rayment 12:30, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Oh, ok Philip. I agree with you that we should not be implying that broad swathes of editors (or even specific ones) are not serious. Guettarda 18:39, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
It is a pity you don't take things in context. The comment was people don't take Wikipedia seriously. My responce was that one reason was that anyone can edit it with their quackery. So no biology professor would refer their students to Wikipedia because at any point in time the article could be totally distorted. And it does run editors raggard, reversing edits and answering trolls. I'm not saying that most such editors are not serious in their intent nor that their views are not sincerely held. But that does not change the fact that this is one reason Wikipedia is seen as an unreliable source in the scientific community. I will add that there was a certain frustration behind my quip, in that there is no doubt the bulk of the vandalism and trolling on evolution-related sites is at the very least creationist-inspired, and for that I am sorry. Lastly I did offer to take this disussion off page, because it is off topic, but Phillip seems intent on draging it out. -- Michael Johnson 19:51, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
You maligned on this page, you deserved to be called on it on this page. I'm happy for other discussions to be on my talk page. Philip J. Rayment 12:30, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Sorry, I didn't mean to endorse Philip's characterisation of your comments as "derogatory", and I agree with what you said overall. All I meant is that, if Philip felt you characterised him as "not being serious", then it would be better to phrase comments in a way that they couldn't be taken personally...even unintentional offense is hurtful. That said, it's highly frustrating to have deal with the sort of nonsense that comes across this page. Some of it is cluelessness but some of it is externally organised disruption (thanks, in at least one case, to trolls from Dembski's blog). But if Philip was offended by what you said, it's worth acknowledging the fact that he was offended by what was said. As you did. I asked because I couldn't figure out what was going on, because I hadn't looked far enough up the page. Guettarda 20:10, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Just one final comment. A few lines down we have an editor who accuses most other editors here of "naked bias" and says that editors "scoop up some feces and serve it". Not one comment from Phillip. Hmmm... -- Michael Johnson 21:10, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
I haven't been reading everything on this page. Regardless, "naked bias" is not a a gratuitous insult, but a straightforward description which, incidentally, I would agree with. Looking now at the other phrase in context, I see that it was used metaphorically, which is not the same as an outright gratuitous insult. Philip J. Rayment 12:30, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
So we basicly have two standards - one for editors Philip supports, one for editors he doesn't. Note I didn't refer to any particular editor, or any particular edit, my comments were very general in nature. All I can say in conclusion, Philip, is if the shoe fits, wear it. -- Michael Johnson 00:47, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
you're correct that there are two standards. one is WP:NPOV: "Wikipedia is devoted to stating facts in the sense as described above. Where we might want to state an opinion, we convert that opinion into a fact by attributing the opinion to someone." and the other is this article which declares in the definition of Intelligent design that it is an argument for the existence of God when that is the Teleological argument. it doesn't attribute that to anyone, just says it as an equivalence. in the lead sentence, no less. the critique of "naked bias" is not metaphor. the scatological is metaphoric, of course. r b-j 02:57, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
[edit conflict]Wikipedia articles are supposed to be written from secondary and tertiary sources. This article does that. Obviously, this means that the article differs from the DI party line...or does it? It's impossible to write a canonical ID article because they talk through both sides of their mouth constantly. What is ID? It depends on who their audience is. Is ID an argument about God? Oh, no, it might be space aliens (wink, wink).
No, I am not asking the anon to "go around the maypole for the zillionth time". Why should I ask someone to waste their time repeating specious arguments? How about maybe raising some real issues, something with substance? Maybe. The article presents the dispute fairly in a neutral and balanced manner. It works from secondary and tertiary sources, as we are supposed to. Sure, it doesn't present the ID talking points and propaganda as if they were true - but that's the point of Wikipedia articles.
Even the version of the NPOV policy that you quoted is tagged as "dubious", and it's (quite properly) gone from the page. There's a reason why bits of Wikipedia policy pages cannot be quoted in isolation - that "opinions-of-opponents" stuff contradicts the way articles are supposed to be written. It's poor form and generally a bad idea to segregate criticisms from the party line.
If you and the anon believe that NPOV is a joke because it fails to replicate the party line...then it would seem like neither of you understand what NPOV is all about. Sorry. Guettarda 01:48, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
denial ain't just a river in Egypt. as i wrote before, you guys didn't even engage the criticisms of lack of fairness of tone nor of censorship. you just keep repeating to each other that the article is fair and balanced and that those who challenge that have "quack religious POVs". the funny thing is that i don't side with the claims or aims of ID at all (i am convinced it's pseudoscience from the mostly American religious right and that to put it in the biology classroom in a state-supported public school is nearly criminal), yet i can easily see the bias in the article. at least in tone and in insinuation. it's so blatent it slaps the reader on the face. the bias of the article became more obvious and blatent when the lead sentence was changed (with this bogus "consensus") to attack ID from the very beginning. at least, in the first sentence, try to neutrally present what ID says it is (and qualify that as "claim" or "belief", not as fact), even if you (or the scientific community or some federal judge in Pennsylvania) do not agree with what ID claims what it is. there is plenty of space left, both in the intro and in the rest of the article to let the legitimate scientific and legal deconstruction of ID be documented. you don't have to do that in the very first sentence and to insist that this deconstruction happen right out of the blocks betrays the bias in the article. it's very easy for someone reading it to pick up on that bias and this does the article, nor Wikipedia as a whole, no good. r b-j 02:04, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
  • "[Y]ou guys didn't even engage the criticisms of lack of fairness of tone nor of censorship" - not true, I addressed the only substantive point I could find, that you were quoting something that not only wasn't on the policy page, it should never have been there in the first place. Presenting the party line in one section and the criticism in a separate section makes for a very poor article, and has been discouraged as long as I have been on Wikipedia.
  • "[Y]et i can easily see the bias in the article" - and yet, you don't come up with anything from secondary sources to support your POV. Dozens, if not hundreds, of papers have been published which look at the question of what ID is. Many of them are sympathetic to ID, but they still end up with the conclusion that ID is an argument for the existence of God.
  • "[T]he bias of the article became more obvious and blatent when the lead sentence was changed (with this bogus "consensus") to attack ID from the very beginning" - no, actually the article has gotten more accurate. ID is presented as "science", not as dogma. If it were religious dogma, then yes, the DI definition should be used. But it isn't. It has been studied and analysed by dozens of people, and the conclusion - from philosophers of science, from scientists and from theologians, is that ID is an argument for the existence of God. NPOV requires us to present all sides fairly. The article does that, and does it very well. Guettarda 04:24, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
If you and the anon believe that NPOV is a joke because it fails to replicate the party line...
That is not what r b-j said. Twisting criticism into a straw-man argument is not a valid form of debate.
Philip J. Rayment 02:08, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes Philip, it is what he said. That and a lot of insults. If you can't figure that out from what he has said, have a look at the changes he wants to make to the article. And would you please stop using that formatting. It's distracting, and rude to your fellow editors...sort of like using a highlighter in a library book. Guettarda 04:24, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
No, r b-j did not say that it should replicate the party line. That is your interpretation of his comments. He said that it should be NPOV, but there is a difference of opinion on what is POV and what isn't. Philip J. Rayment 12:01, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
True, he didn't use those words, so if you want to be overly literal, he didn't "say" so. But it's pretty obvious if you look at the entire context of what he has said and what he was done (for example, replacing the existing intro with the DI party line). If someone's "opinion on what is POV and what isn't" is that DI party line is NPOV and a balanced description that weighs all positions fairly isn't NPOV, then it would appear that their understanding of NPOV shares nothing but a name with Wikipedia's NPOV policy. Guettarda 14:02, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
No, it's not obvious, except to people who are determined that this remains an article discrediting ID. It is your interpretation of his intentions put in a manner to justify dismissing his arguments. Philip J. Rayment 03:38, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Er, what point are you trying to make? Yes, there are other ways to interpret his words. But he then backed up his words with deeds. The issue of trying to interpret Rbj's words has been moot for days. Why is it so important to you to be right about being wrong? Guettarda 03:58, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm trying to make the point that you are representing your interpretation as fact in order to dismiss an argument that you don't agree with. Philip J. Rayment 12:15, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Wow. Deja vu. I swear this discussion, in almost the same exact words was done before, maybe 3 months ago. And I don't drink or take drugs. Orangemarlin 03:21, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

it won't go away, because the POV, even at the very outset, is evident. (and i am no creationist nor from the religious right.) if they don't fix this blatent POV pushing, there will always be people who stumble across the article and will object to this naked bias. i just want to see it toned down a little and a little intellectual honesty displayed. r b-j 03:49, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
How is it POV to describe a subject accurately? If it is a scientific hypothesis (which is how is has always been presented) then it should be described accurately. If it's a theological doctrine or a political slogan, then that's a different matter. But if that's the case, we still can't take the DI's definition at face value, since they say it isn't theological or political. ID has been presented as a scientific hypothesis. As a result, its predictions and implications are the predictions and implications of the hypothesis. Dembski or someone can't come along and by fiat declare that certain implications must be ignored. It doesn't work that way. One can propose an idea, one can be an advocate of an idea...but no one owns an idea, no one can declare certain implications non-existent. Guettarda 14:11, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
The article seems accurate and well supported to me. Exactly where is this "evident POV" you keep yammering about? 151.151.21.100 17:05, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Why is that whenever someone's POV is perfectly protected, then the argument is made that somehow an article is wrong. There is absolutely no scientific evidence of ID. ID assumes faith in a supernatural being. Those may not support someone's POV on the subject, but they are, in fact, verifiable and supportable statements. Yes they are POV, but it is a completely neutral POV. Does it support many of the editor's belief set? Yes, because many of the editors on here are scientists. This article is a fair and well-written article that would give any casual reader quite a bit of information about ID. If they believe in this Christian stuff, they may click on a link and find it interesting, even supportive of their belief set. If someone doesn't care about Christian stuff, they might want to know about ID, and after reading it think to themselves, yup, ID is all about some supernatural being guiding the world. That sounds very neutral to me. If you want the article to state, "ID is science," well, that's just too much POV. RBJ, this is a great article. BTW, from my very Jewish standpoint, Wikipedia is Christian-centric and apologetic website, and I'm glad that there are a lot of people who try to bring balance. Your world would just be a bunch of Christians running things. How sad. Orangemarlin 17:58, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

...another gentle attempt to make it clearer....

I've just visited Philip's talk page (having posted there, and I'm afraid taken ages to check back in - sorry, Philip..) - and reading the comments above reinforces my thinking that we might be served by making a small change.....

here's another attempt that might help (further to my previous in the Spade section above....)


'Inteligent Design is a term made notable by members or affiliates of the DI in early 1990s, and is an argument.... current article continues.....

does that help? cheers, Petesmiles 02:16, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Where do you propose this addition? Guettarda 04:27, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

rbj's opening....

you know, first impression is that it's pretty good.... I think i like it! (will cogitate further.....) Petesmiles 02:49, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

well, if you continue to feel that way, i hope you defend it (and/or improve it) because there are some hard-core POV pushers here who fancy themselves as NPOV (cough, cough) who will certainly act to revert it. i cannot defend this by myself. also i have no need for it to be left verbatim, only that the previous blatent POV intro be toned down. r b-j 02:58, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Well, most editors don't. And I guess you'll accuse us of being hard-core POV pushers. Nice. Orangemarlin 03:23, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
you can't call it "consensus" and if you counted all of the editors who pop in here and complain about the bias in the article, i doubt the use of the word "most" in addition. i'm done with it for the day. r b-j 03:28, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Make inflammatory edits, then claim that anyone who reverts it is a POV pusher - a classical case of Poisoning the well Raul654 03:26, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
it's not inflammatory, but the intro that you guys keep insisting on putting in there is. r b-j 03:28, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
and it's mistaken to say it's Poisoning the well, because i have been repeatedly bringing this up ever since i discovered the new POV version (and variants). the judgement of hard-core POV pushing is evident from the POV intro that violates multiple WP guidelines regarding NPOV in tone as well as insinuation that one particular side is the "correct" side came from earlier discussion. it is after the fact, not pre-emptory. r b-j 03:32, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
It is inaccurate and uses the rhetoric of ID promoters; therefore it is less neutral, not more. 151.151.21.100 17:03, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Info boxes

As having two info boxes on one page often leads to bad behaviour (click the "hide" button on the table of contents, and they bunch up hideously) can I suggest we either make the creationism, evolution, and intelligent design templates the same width, so they can be put in a holding box together; or make combined templates for use wherever needed? Any thoughts? Adam Cuerden talk 03:59, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Ha! Fixed! Adam Cuerden talk 04:39, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

...i may be missing something...

but i really didn't see anything inflammatory in rbj's introduction. I know he's abrasive, and pretty much downright rude sometimes on the talk page - but to delete his intro. with a summary of 'rv POV pushing' just doesn't seem right to me...

Anyways - in the spirit of collaboration etc. perhaps someone could just say what they thought was horrible about his intro. - it didn't seem that big a change to me.... here it is to save you history trawling.....

Intelligent design is the belief that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."[3] It has been determined by scientific consensus to be a pseudoscience, not adhering to the scientific method, and by legal ruling to be "not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God."[4] Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute,[5][6][7] claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life.[8] Opponents claim this is a disguised strategy to reintroduce Creationism to the science classroom after being banned from state supported public education by the Edwards v. Aguillard ruling.

... thanks all... Petesmiles 04:13, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Petesmiles, for your information, i get more abrasive (or ruder) when people scoop up some feces and serve it to me calling it caviar. it is this naked POV and intransigence that is the feces and the excuses ("oh, this introduction we worked so hard on, boo-hoo" or "the article is fair and accurate the way it is") that is the purported caviar. and then when they bring the check ("Rbj, it is your edits that are inflammatory") that they are asking for it. it doesn't matter that it "just doesn't seem right" to you. they don't care and they control the article. r b-j 00:12, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Actually, Petesmiles, it's not just "opponents" who "claim" ID is a disguised strategy to reintroduce creationism to the science classroom. The Bush-appointed judge in Kitzmiller has also concluded thusly, as have many scientists and the writers in the mainstream press that have written about it. Often, one begins with either an open mind or a bit of healthy skepticism, and upon understanding what it is, may indeed become an opponent of what it seeks to do. Thus this is more than just a claim of ideological or political opponents of whatever underlying agendas may be involved or intertwined with the desire to teach intelligent design as an alternative to evolution in the public school science classrooms. ... Kenosis 16:11, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
where, in the NPOV intro i put in, did i say it's just opponents who claim ID is a disguised strategy..? the fact is, that opponents of ID do claim that. before i suggested using the word understand, instead of "claim" but it was suggested by Adam Cuerden that "claim" might be a better word. but since i'm so unreasonable, i decided to take Adam's suggestion and use that word. r b-j 00:17, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
"undirected process such as natural selection" is an odd phrase to use. It's not exactly wrong, but it's.... one of the more bizarre short descriptions of natural selection.
However, the main problem is this: The lead guidelines ask for it to be set out as a series of self-contained wholes. The first sentence, first paragraph, whole introduction, and whole article all ought to be as accurate at explaining the whole as the space permits. However, criticism is now banished from the first paragraph, leaving it with only the views of its proponents. This is, to some extent, POV-pushing, albeit probably accidental. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Adam Cuerden (talkcontribs)
Conflated with specified complexity, this is more accurate: Intelligent design is a fringe view, and should be identified as such, according to the WP guidelines. I think the reversion was probably a little harsh in description, but it must be said that it's much harder to tell it's a fringe view from r-b-j's overly-equally-balanced portrayal than the previous. Adam Cuerden talk 04:53, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
why are you taking issue with that "odd phrase" when it's in your "preferred version"? i didn't stick it in. i wear your "overly-equally-balanced" label with honor. that's what we do here in Wikipedia if we stick to the rules. (the reader can read down a little farther than the first sentence to figure out that, indeed, within the scientific community, ID is fringe. they don't need to have that shoved down their throat in the lead sentence.) r b-j 00:12, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
It is wrong - it's one of those creationist code phrases, like "Darwinism". It's a way to trying to call evolution "random". Which it isn't - it is "guided", by the environment, but other species, etc. It's also constrained by the past. "Misleading" is the best way to characterise that phrase...intentionally misleading, one would assume, since it's part of the standard creationist way of wording things. Guettarda 04:50, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
True. I suppose that's why I'm so wary of it - it's accurate to a point, but it's leaving a lot out. Adam Cuerden talk 04:53, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Fundamentally, the newer intro is more accurate, and is more in keeping with how scholars have described ID. ID attempts to prove intelligent design, which necessitates a designer, which, as Elliot Sober (for example) has shown, has to be God. If ID were simply the argument that there are elements of the natural world that are best described by something other than existing evolutionary theory, it would be a trivial hypothesis which simply says "we don't know everything yet". However, it goes further, it asserts that we can show that there are things that are designed by an intelligent force which, as others have shown, can only be God (pretty much by definition becomes a God). Thus, "we can prove God exists". Thus, it is an argument for the existence of God...it's the assertion that the existence of God can be proven through science. Guettarda 05:00, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
that is an analysis of the argument. fine, it's the same conclusion i make, but it's a conclusion that i (and you and a bunch of other people make). it is not the definition of ID. you are putting the analysis of what one side makes of ID into the very definition of it, and that is intellectually dishonest. r b-j 00:12, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
And, by the way, linking "universe" to "fine tuned universe" probably violates the principle of least surprise. Guettarda 05:07, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

(after edit conflict....) Hi Adam - sorry to pick you up on your version confusion, but is the fact that rbj introduces criticism in the opening para a plus point for that version? - I would think so.... Also, I do really like beginning with a proponent's quote that sets the stall out straight away (ie. it is a pretty misleading statment, but that's what ID is!).... cheers, Petesmiles 05:03, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

it doesn't matter what the fact is, Pete, they don't care. you can bring up the facts and repeat them until you are blue in the face and it will make no difference. r b-j 00:12, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Aye, sorry about that, I was muddling speified complexity with it for some reason - I suppose this means I should go back to sleep again after replying here, even if I just work up a couple hours ago. His introduction of criticism is somewhat useful, but it's somewhat blunted, vague criticism - it says it's been criticised, but not really anything significant about the criticism. It's very easily done - the old Creation-evolution controversy was full of these "criticisms that aren't really" - I don't think it's intentional, but if you're doing this back and forth thing, tthe criticisms really do need to match the force of the statements of the opposing side, particularly when the criticism is of a fringe view. Adam Cuerden talk 05:14, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
One other point I have to note, as I was looking up at the paragraph in the edit box while critiquing it: The references no longer supported R-b-j's phrases, and would have needed completely redone. Adam Cuerden talk 05:16, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

The question was asked, "Why do myself and others consider Wikipedia a joke." I saw a recent ABC news piece that showed how many Wikipedia "editors" lie about or inflate their credentials to win turf wars on Wikipedia. This article is a case study in fascist tendencies and couldn't be further from NPOV. One need look no further than the first paragraph. How is it that an idea can be both an "old religious argument" and at the same time "all" of its leading proponents are associated with a modern institution? Answer: it's not possible unless the editors are unreasonable and pushing some sort of a POV. I'm not sure what they gain by spending their valuable life energy on pushing a POV. However, it's pretty obvious that these editors can't play by their own rules when they not only lock down the page so it can't be editted, but they also remove all "controversial" or "disputed" tags from the page. What they fail to realize is that the more fascist their tendencies when editting this article, the more they reveal themselves to be a joke --- in other words something not to be take seriously. 70.108.101.57 11:34, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the laugh, presumably in terms of Godwin's Law you've just conceded the argument?  ;) .. dave souza, talk 18:03, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Raspor? Everwill? 151.151.73.170 18:44, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, I was thinking Raspor-Everwill. Guettarda 18:57, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
It's Raspor. Same IP address geographic location. Will that guy ever learn. Orangemarlin 18:59, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
More to the point, will we (by which I mean, I) ever learn...to ignore people who look/sound like Raspor-Everwill? Guettarda 19:04, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
  • "[M]any Wikipedia "editors" lie about or inflate their credentials" - really? Can you provide a link to that story? I am only aware of one notable case. Anyway, I have never seen anyone use their credentials in place of logic here (I have seen people use Dembski's credentials, but that's another matter).
  • "This article is a case study in fascist tendencies and couldn't be further from NPOV" - interesting. Any support for this assertion? Anything? No?
  • "How is it that an idea can be both an "old religious argument" and at the same time "all" of its leading proponents are associated with a modern institution?" - I don't know, maybe you could read the article and look at the supporting references. Instead of just looking at the first paragraph, maybe you should read the article.
  • "Answer: it's not possible unless the editors are unreasonable and pushing some sort of a POV" - or, maybe, it's what the references say. Try reading the article.
  • "I'm not sure what they gain by spending their valuable life energy on pushing a POV" - I don't know why people do that, but what does that have to do with this article?
  • "However, it's pretty obvious that these editors can't play by their own rules when they not only lock down the page so it can't be editted" - the article isn't protected - it's semi-protected because of continual problems with vandalism. You can edit four days after you get a username.
  • "[B]ut they also remove all "controversial" or "disputed" tags from the page" - only mis-used tags are removed.
  • "What they fail to realize is that the more fascist their tendencies when editting this article, the more they reveal themselves to be a joke" - more of a joke than say, people who use words like "fascist" in a context like that? I don't think that's possible. Guettarda 13:54, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

RE anon IP 70.108.101.57's question above How is it that an idea can be both an "old religious argument" and at the same time "all" of its leading proponents are associated with a modern institution? .: The reason that Intelligent design is both is that it is a rhetorical device used to cast a set of teleological arguments as "science". Prior to the 1987 U.S. Supreme Court decision Edwards v. Aguilard, the words "intelligent design" were (1) rarely used, and (2) not notable-- they were not considered a topic and no one even wrote an article about a topic called "intelligent design", let alone a book. In the Edwards case, the Court struck down a Louisiana law requiring that creation science be taught alongside evolution, but also said that "teaching a variety of scientific theories about the origins of humankind to school children might be validly done with the clear secular intent of enhancing the effectiveness of science instruction."

So, the planning began. Looking back on the events that followed, Discovery Institute co-founder Stephen Meyer later said that in 1988 he heard Charles Thaxton use the words "intelligent design" at a conference. Then in 1989, Thaxton's organization the Foundation for Thought and Ethics published the creationist book Of Pandas and People, in which all uses of the word "creation" and derivatives thereof were changed to "intelligent design". In 1990-1991, the Discovery Institute was formed, collecting together all the major proponents of the idea that creationism could be cast as science under the term "intelligent design". The Discovery Institute and its subsidiary the Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture (presently the Center for Science and Culture), along with its other offspring the ISCID, have as fellows, directors or administrators, all notable authors on what has since become the topic of intelligent design.

While "intelligent design" is certainly not scientific in the modern sense of the word, it's worth reading and understanding the material about this unique socio-political, ideological phenomenon of modern law and politics in the United States. It's also an interesting study of a unique modern synthetic version of the teleological argument. Acutally studying the topic before ranting about the Wikipedia editors who worked intensively reasearching, discussing and consensusing the content of this WP article, sometimes appears to be the hardest part for some of the commentators on this talk page. I hope that helps put it into some perspective. ... Kenosis 14:25, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

rbj's changes made the intro less accurate and less neutral, he added ambiguities and repeated the rhetoric of ID promoters.
Looking at rbj's method and history, I can understand why people here are reluctant to engage him or extend a full assumption of good faith on his part. 151.151.73.171 17:37, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
what ambiguity? name it. what rhetoric of ID promoters did i include that is not in the current version? i did not bring in any new statement that is not already there in the intro. repeating falsehoods do not make them true. r b-j 00:12, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
i don't hide behind anonymous IPs or socks. so my history is tracable. once in a while i lose count of reverts in the past 24 hours. i am not ashamed of my history. in fact, the last block was immediately reversed by Jimbo because it was illegitimate. the block before that happened when i waited about 23.5 hours for a revert that ended up as my 4th in the 24 hour period. the complained uses (Colecan or something) lied and said i made 8 reverts. r b-j 00:24, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Valid point on anon 151. Look at his/her block record. RBJ, your discussion points ARE inflammatory, so that's why you don't get a good response. Orangemarlin 01:08, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Pete, rbj's opening words "Intelligent design is the belief that "certain features..." suffers from the same ambiguity that led to the earlier intro along the lines of "Intelligent design is the concept that "certain features..." being incessantly argued as meaning that "Intelligent design" was the concept held by the Pope, uncle Tom Cobbley and all. It might be worth giving cautious consideration to the formulation that "Intelligent design is a modern term for an argument which is presented by its proponents as "the theory that certain features...". However, "theory" here supports their basic argument, that ID is a "new kind of science" which "overthrows materialism". Just a thought, .. dave souza, talk 18:18, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
what ambiguity are you talking about?? ID is a belief. i didn't say it was fact and i didn't say it was true or false. but i did say what the scientific consensus is about it (unambiguously) and what the most recent major legal ruling is about it (also unambiguously). what you guys are doing is that you are taking what the scientists and this judge say about ID (which i concur with, BTW) and you put it in the lead sentence as definition without qualification. that is bias. r b-j 00:13, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
This article is about the "hypothesis", not the "belief". The "belief" is covered in the creationism article. A hypothesis has implications and conclusions, which cannot be ruled out by fiat. That's what this article is about. Guettarda 01:18, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

my take on the chat above......

I've read the chat above - and i think there's actually a bit of progress being made....

Re : Kenosis' point about Opponents - could we substitute 'others'? - i see what you mean that to refer to an 'opponents' perspective sounds like those people are somehow biased or involved.

Re : Guettarda - you say that the newer intro is fundamentally better, but that we should change the universe link - I quite agree - does that sum up your input?

Re : Adam - you mention that perhaps the criticism isn't strong enough, and that the references are a bit broken. Obviously if the references are no longer relevant then we need to fix them - which doesn't seem insurmountable. My thoughts on the criticism are that it's actually better to have it in the first para than left to the second - and it's only an introduction, so an indication that the criticism exists, and where it comes from is good for me....

Re : Dave - as you probably remember, I was one of the folk who really didn't like calling ID a concept, because i felt that conflated the age-old thinking with the DI too much... but somehow i don't read this intro in that way. I guess I feel that it's accurate - as rbj said in his own...er.. unique... way ID is exactly that belief... and I don't think it comes across as therefore by definition making the Pope an IDer... I'm still a little undecided on this though....

anyways... My reading of most points above is that we may get consensus for a modified version of rbj's intro - cheers all for now.... Petesmiles 00:34, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Newer = the current version, not to older one that was changed a few months ago. Guettarda 01:03, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Gotcha - ok - i had misunderstood - and i see your point above - can you figure out any other way to ease rbj's (and other's) concerns? Petesmiles 04:32, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

No, not really. I don't see any way to satisfy Rbj, since his conception of what ID is lies outside of the scope of the article. He says that ID is a belief. No, it isn't. It's a hypothesis, and what purports to be a new way of doing science...a way of science that allows us to prove the existence of God (or at least, of a god or gods). What Elliott Sober calls "mini-ID", the most minimalistic form of ID, which is designed to pass the Edwards standard and be acceptable all stripes of creationists, from YECs, to OECs, to theistic evolutionists, says simply that "some things" are too complicated to have evolved without "intelligent guidance" (which, it is pretty easily demonstrated, is and can only be God), and we can prove it. Without the last bit, ID cannot hope to call itself scientific, but by its very presence, it becomes a form of the teleological argument. Of course, there's a lot of ID beyond "mini-ID", so simply using a mini-ID definition not only fails NPOV (since it reports slogan as fact), it also fails because it doesn't fully and accurately describe the pro-ID positions. The property of all views of ID is that it is an argument for the existence of God, even if the DI is wishy-washing in their official language describing it to the world. Guettarda 04:55, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Of course there is no way to satisfy him. He questions the party line. 70.108.101.57 10:32, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

Hi Raspor. Welcome back. Not really...... dave souza, talk 13:21, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

Capitalisation of ID

This may have been mentioned before. Shoudln't Intelligent Design be capitalized thus? This keeps ID (a notion based on Judeo-Christo godly creation) from just design by intelligence (of nonspecific, unstipulated, undiscussed nature). I think these two concepts need very clear distinction. I almsot always see ID either capitalised or acronymed.--ZayZayEM 05:57, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Much earlier, there was a consensus to avoid using capital letters. This would require a new discussion and consensus if it's to be done differently. Also there was a consensus to avoid using "ID" to the best feasible extent in the article text, in favor of using the words "intelligent design" as a general rule. This too can be re-consensused if there's a good argument for it and adequate agreement. ... Kenosis 11:13, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm basically bringing back up this point and this one again. So I'm not really alone in this viewpoint that a distinction needs to be made between the Discovery Institute "Intelligent Design" (capitalised) and just the idea of "design by intelliegence". If this article (and the series) is only about Discovery Institute Judeo-Christo inspired ideas, it should be very very clear on the matter. Consensus by editors on capitalisation is not an argument, Wikipedia should most definitely not be truth by democracy. If editors repeatedly come across this article and can go "hey something is amiss" it means the article is not clear on the matter and may confuse passing readers too. --ZayZayEM 11:21, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
No, it does not mean what you say here, ZayZayEM. It means the topic is complicated and controversial, as well as a magnet for people who refuse to accept the verified facts of the matter about the topic.

This article was just thoroughly peer reviewed and parsed by many independent WP editors, and was rated Featured Article status. That does not necessarily mean that it can't be improved, nor that the editors should not seek to improve it. But there are numerous interacting issues involved in this subject. Please read the archives and thoruoghly understand the subject before making such blanket assertions as that because people say "hey something is amiss" that there's something wrong with the article. At least ninety percent of the complainers on this talk page have demonstrated either that they don't yet understand the topic, or have a predetermined point of view. And of that over-ninety percent, more than occasionally the ones who come to understand the topic also begin to understand how the language of the article was arrived at, often even without reading the voluminous talk-archives on this topic (linked to at the top of this page). Occasionally, these days, someone makes a point that ultimately represents an improvement to the article. Thus far, though, there's been no proposal for another way of expressing the point that all the leading proponents of intelligent design are affiliated with the Discovery Institute. If there is a recommendation that can achieve a consensus upon thorough discussion of it, it would be helpful to see it presented. Thanks. ... Kenosis 12:54, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Again consensus doesn't mean a lot. Even for a FA. Wikipedia is not knowledge by democracy. I said that repeated similar complaints against an article means that something isn't clear, not that something is necessarily amiss (that is what the editors think - they aren't necessarily right in their assumption either)--ZayZayEM 14:36, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Intelligent design should not be capitalised because it isn't a proper noun. ID is supposed to be a scientific hypothesis. Dembski doesn't capitalise it [26], Pennock doesn't capitalise it [27], so why should we? Guettarda 13:53, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
If indeed that was actually the only question intended to be presented here, thanks very much Guettarda. ... Kenosis 03:38, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, this place makes you paranoid. Reminds me a little of my first impression of you, when you started editing this article ;) Guettarda 03:44, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Ahh yes -- the nice men in clean white coats are on their way to pick me up--and maybe a few other WP editors too. ;-) Here, the magic words "proper noun" would have helped in the initial question. Butafter my initial response I got sidetracked by the links offered by the questioner to this point and this one, both of which appeared to indicate that the issue was more centrally the relationship of the DI to ID, and how to express this relationship in the article. I now presume (correct me if I'm wrong) that the primary question was that if there is such a close relationship between ID and the DI, why not express it as a proper noun. Thanks for clarifying the intended scope of the original question, both to Guettarda and ZayZayEM. ... Kenosis 04:55, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Thank you Guettarda. You responded to my concerns with appropriate information. --ZayZayEM 14:36, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

What a hoot

I got a real chuckle out of this "article". My favorite sentence was "It stands in opposition to conventional biological science ..." Thus must explain why this idea/theory/whatever should be obliterated by the resident assassins. It must be annihilated, discrediteda and stamped out because "it stands in opposition. *Heh*

Perhaps I'm a little too old to play in the Wikipedia sandbox but back when I went to school in the sixties I was taught to accept and live with diverse viewpoints, especially on matters that can't be conclusively proven. There's obviously a lot of hard feelings surrounding this topic. But, for the life of my I can't figure out why all the ego is invested in such a meaningless turf war.

So, please allow me to posit this one tidbit of wisdom for residents to ponder: it's possible for reasonable people to disagree and yet not "stand in opposition".

BTW, I just signed up for an account so I could help edit this article, but it seems that I can't do so. I'm not sure why I'm locked out, but no worries. A good friend recently told me that there is nothing stupider than arguing was arguing on the Internet, so please count me out if you're up for a flame war. ElderStatesman 20:45, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

since this article is semi-protected (because of controversy), you need to wait 4 days (i think that is the time). then you should be able to edit the article like any other editor. but the self-appointed owners of the article will likely revert anything you do to the article. personally, i don't consider the article a hoot at all, but very sad evidence of Wikipedia failing its own ideals. r b-j 22:43, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
sorry you feel that way RBJ. Why, then, does it matter to you? Because ID is a pseudoscience, and you're trying to foist your POV on all of Wikipedia? I think the article is quite balanced. In fact, I think it's a rehash of right-wing Christian dogma, but I'm not a censor either. Orangemarlin 23:30, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
ElderStatesmen--you're wrong. Evolution is a fact, established by so much evidence, it would take thousands of years just to read it all. Creationism, of which ID is a subset, is a pseudoscience, and that's that. The article is about ID, but it does not have to endorse it or pretend that it is a legitimate science. Orangemarlin 23:32, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
Elderstatesman, the statement that intelligent design stands in opposition to conventional biological science is just a fact. You claim otherwise? This is a true statement and is NPOV. All the evidence appears to be on the side of conventional biological science. This does not mean that conventional biological science is correct, or will win out eventually, although at the moment this certainly appears to be the eventual outcome with a very high probability. However, that is not up to us to say. History will eventually decide what happens. Also, the article, and most of the contributors, have no objection to someone who wants to believe in creationism or intelligent design. We have no problem with diverse viewpoints. I would gladly encourage them. However, it is a lie to claim that intelligent design at the moment is a viable scientific alternative. It would be dishonest to claim that intelligent design was a viable scientific theory at this time, either on Wikipedia or in the secular publicly funded science classrooms. At a time when education and knowledge is increasingly important, we basically throw our money down the toilet by promoting blatant nonsense as truth, or lying to our students. Few people have any objection to teaching intelligent design in philosophy classes or debate classes or social study classes or current event classes or religion classes or English classes or history classes or any number of other classes, but it has no place at the moment as science, since all of the powers that be, including the courts, have ruled that it is not science. Do you not believe in the rule of law? Do you not believe in capitalism? Are you a socialist or a communist or interested in theocracy? Do you want to remove the separation of church and state? If you believe in capitalism and the rule of law and separation of church and state, then you will join with us in opposing the forced teaching of intelligent design and related religious ideas as science in secular publicly funded science classrooms. This is nothing more than the aggressive imposition of some narrow extremist religious opinions on the rest of the population, by force, and by forced taxation to promote some narrow religious theocratic agenda. So just try to learn a bit about the situation before you join the chorus of people who claim it is unfair that we do not force some religious agenda on others who do not want it. These are not the principles on which the US was founded, and many other countries have similar principles.--Filll 02:13, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Uh ... ?
I guess you missed the part about disagreeing while not standing in opposition? You're blurring the line between fact and opinion. Your opinion, the opinions of others, the opinions of many, even the opinions of all are not facts. ElderStatesman 18:33, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Intelligent design stands in opposition to conventional biological science. That is not opinion. It is the basis of intelligent design. If it didn't disagree with conventional science, it wouldn't be interesting. -- Ec5618 18:41, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Branching this article

This is a really great article. It is extremely informative, and very well documented. However, it needs to be branched a little, to reduce the length and make individual topics easier to find, easier to expand upon. The branches themselves can then be referenced from elsewhere. I have been working on Jewish reactions to intelligent design. I modified the box. How about Scientist reactions to intelligent design, mainstream protestant, Catholic, etc? More pictures would break the article and make it easier to read, helping readers to keep their eyes in the right location, and helping the reader use a scroll bar to skim through the article. --Metzenberg 07:16, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

"Scientific reactions to" is dangerous: It strongly risks POV fork, with only criticism in it and only praise in the main article. Undue Weight means we have to make it clear that, in the relevant field, ID is a fringe opinion and evolution widely accepted; I'm not sure how we could do that with only a summary of the scientific viewpoint, or how the scientific reaction page wouldn't have to repeat the ID arguments in order to explain the criticism, making them cover much the same ground. What about something more tangental; a part of the scientific opposition that goes on a bit too long, say? Adam Cuerden talk 08:30, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Adam is right. Separating the scientific community's reception of ID to a subarticle with nothing more than a paragraph or two summary here would create a POV fork and gives the minority view (those of ID proponents) undue weight. We already have List of scientific societies rejecting intelligent design.FeloniousMonk 16:33, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Actually, the list of scientific organizations works perfectly here as a reaction to scientists. I would consider the scientific organizations that support intelligent design more appropriately categorized as religious organizations. --Metzenberg 04:12, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
There are no scientific organisations that support ID, AFAIK. Guettarda 05:41, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Irreducible Complexity

I noticed that the criticism of IC is longer than the description of it. If you go to the evolution article, it contains no criticism. The whole ID article is littered with criticism that is not useful. I know people hate this topic but it should be informative and NPOV and should be reduced. Wyatt 15:38, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

The Evolution article is on a subject widely accepted in the scientific community. ID and all related concepts have been trashed repeatedly by them. Have a look at the section of WP:NPOV on Undue Weight. Adam Cuerden talk 16:35, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Adam is again correct. Also, you're selectively citing only part of the policy. Please read WP:NPOVFAQ#Pseudoscience. It says "The task before us ...is to represent the majority (scientific) view as the majority view and the minority (sometimes pseudoscientific) view as the minority view; and, moreover, to explain how scientists have received pseudoscientific theories. This is all in the purview of the task of describing a dispute fairly." Since ID and IC claim to be not just scientific but better science than evolution but are both considered pseudoscience by actual scientists, the amount of article real estate given over to the reception of IC by the scientific community (which you term criticism) is appropriate, perhaps even too short given the complete rejection of IC by the scientific community. FeloniousMonk 16:42, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Junk Science POV

Words are very powerful, and its not necessary to call ID pseudoscience and junk science. If there were any criticism like this in another article it would be deleted quickly. Wyatt 15:38, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

It's the opinion of a court ruling, numerous scientific societies, etc. ID has very little scientific support.
Basically, NPOV: Undue weight says - and I'm paraphrasing a bit - that context matters. ID portrays itself as a science, but is roundly attacked by scientists, hence its article has far more criticism than evolution (a widely acepted science, strongly accepted by scientists, but bashed by religion). For contrast, Homeopathy is not exactly scientific, and the dilution aspect has a common scientific view about it presented, but tends not to arouse huge amounts of ire as long as it keeps to minor ailments, but when used on malaria and such, is roundly attacked. It thus contains an intermediate levil of criticsm. Adam Cuerden talk 16:39, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
The two are separate, distinct views, and both are notable. Thus they warrant noting. FeloniousMonk 16:44, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Actually, Category:Pseudoscience is well populated with Wikipedia articles. -- Cat Whisperer 17:19, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

The "Asteroid Impact / Dinosaur Extinction" theory was not supported by the scientific community when I was in college. That didn't mean the theory was junk science. This discussion appears to be agenda-driven and not fact driven. ElderStatesman 18:39, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

It certainly was pseudoscience or junk science until evidence became available to support it. The same was true of plate tectonics and any number of other scientific theories. They are viewed with suspicion and as fringe beliefs until there is evidence to support them. When there is evidence that discredits them, they are viewed even less favorably. And that is the situation in which intelligent design finds itself. There is no evidence that supports intelligent design, and immense volumes of material that demonstrate it is complete nonsense. If the Dover trial was not about science, people like Behe and Johnson might very well find themselves in jail for perjury. Behe is lucky that he has tenure because otherwise I am positive he would be fired for incompetence, or never be hired for any position having to do with science.--Filll 18:44, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Some observations:
  1. The main goal of ID is to replace current accepted scientific theory with a new "theory." To me this sounds like ID is opposing science.
  2. Nobody is opposed to ID as a scientific theory as long as, like any other scientific theory, it adheres to the scientific method. The reason it is not accepted as science is because nobody has presented something even resembling a scientific theory.
  3. The fact that the scientific community changes opinion on things is the principal reason why science is superior to faith-based concepts. Science, when confronted with new ideas and evidence, has no problem amending currently held views. Faith, on the other hand, is resistant to such change because it is mainly based upon dogma which is inherently rigid. Nomen NescioGnothi seauton 19:10, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
I see some problems in saying that replacing a currently accepted theory with another is unscientific. And then going on in point #3 saying that science when confronted with new ideas has no problem amending them. Seems like two contradictory statements to me. 69.3.253.171 19:25, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
Replacing a theory with one that is not based upon the scientific method is of course unscientific. Replcing/amending a theory when confronted with new scientific evidence is what makes science science. No contradiction at all. Nomen NescioGnothi seauton 19:29, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
"The main goal of ID is to replace current accepted scientific theory with an unscientific theory. To me this sounds like ID is opposing science." Is this what you really meant to say in #1? I do not think ID is opposing science since it is a concept. Maybe you are intending to say that the DI is opposing science? I guess it depends on how you define 'scientific'. 69.3.253.171 20:26, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
If you want to split hairs, many of the proponents of ID oppose standard scientific interpretations and practice. They have admitted this and even proclaimed it proudly over and over and over in repeated lectures and debates and interviews. Have you not been paying attention? Their goal is to chuck out "materialistic" science and replace it with witchcraft and the supernatural. I define science the same way the courts do and the National Academy of Sciences. How do you define it?--Filll 20:31, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
I had not heard about their trying to have witchcraft taught in public schools. And I guess again it revolves around on how one defines 'supernatural'. By some definitions electrons and human thought would be considered 'supernatural' since they are not able to be directly measured. You seem very, very much against the DI. Are you sure with so much hostility towards it you can be an objective editor? I know a judge with the same emotional attitude that you have towards a defendant would have to recuse himself. 69.3.253.171 20:42, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

ID consistantly mangles scientific facts. Have a look, for example, at Padian's evidence in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District - not to mention outright fraud, like claiming the tasmanian wolf and grey wolf were identical in appearance: by using a colour-shifted slide of the grey wolf flipped horizontally as the Tasmanian wolf picture. This makes it, if anything, worse than Immanuel Velikovsky's wandering planets. Adam Cuerden talk 19:51, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

As I said, these people are little better than crooks. They lie, they cheat, they really are unethical. They deserve to be held up to public ridicule and completely discredited. It is outrageous that we are even having this discussion. If they continue down this track, they might very well get a response from the mainstream and science and their true natures revealed. Up until this point, they have mainly been ignored as a lunatic fringe.--Filll 20:01, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

"Junk science" is agenda-driven science - science which seeks to misused data to advance some particular point of view. A lot of ID proponents have done just that. More importantly, the article says that ID has been described as junk science (and that description is notable). Thus, the "junk science" issue is both a reasonable characterisation and is supported by references. I can't see why it shouldn't be in the article. Guettarda 21:28, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

There are distinct differences between "intelligent design" and theories such as "Asteroid Impact / Dinosaur Extinction" [sic], plate tectonics, early forms of cosmology, etc., that were not accepted by the scientific community when first proposed, Some of the main differences are already put forward in the article, with citations. But here's a quick list of why ID is pseudoscience or junk science and not a protoscience:
  • 1) Intelligent design is not falsifiable or empirically verifiable under any circumstances. That is, it can't be shown false even if it is, and there's no way to double check it for correctness or develop a statistical analysis of the results of experiments or studies.
  • 2) ID suffers from lack of an adequately specific operational definition. What on earth is intelligence anyway? Some say dogs have intelligence. Some mystics say even rocks have consciousness. But ID doesn't even specify this much about what's meant by the term "intelligent"; rather, it essentially presumes that "intelligence" means "intelligent enough to have designed the features of the cosmos to which we refer".
  • 3) ID, as stated in the article, is not correctable, dynamic, tentative or progressive. (citations given in the article)
  • 4) ID starts from a predetermined conclusion and seeks to speculate probabilities for events about which there is no set of statistical data to draw upon. It is based upon a sample of 1, which is the universe in which we currently exist.

This is just a quick overview. Perhaps, for persons who do not understand why ID is not science, at least not in any recent modern sense of the word "science", it would be fruitful to review the citations already in the WP article on intelligent design for starters. If the citations provided are asserted to be inadequate to gain an understanding, perhaps some additional, more informative citations can be added to the article. ... Kenosis 03:27, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Evolution is very agenda driving! Jonathan Well's book Icons of Evolution has shown the invalid and skewed examples that have been used to prove evolution are really unscientific. This is also shown by Mary_Midgley's book "Evolution as a Religion" also shows how materialism philosophy is contrary to the world and destructive. If I tried to criticize the evolution page this way, it would not stay long without being reverted. Wyatt 21:07, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Compare and Contrast

If you want a good laugh compare and contrast the comments of the editors of this article with the same editor's comments regarding the so-called Jesus Myth. On this page the only thing that matters is the consensus opinion. But on the Jesus Myth page the consensus of a billion Christians is less important than the musings of a bit of Wiki-original research. It's really quite funny to see how easily the exact same editors speak from both sides of their mouth. ElderStatesman 00:08, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Article Disappointing to an Evolutionist

Much of the article seems devoted to demonstrating that ID is junk science. I consider that to be an inappropriate emphasis. Dfarrar 03:44, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Dfarrar, how would you, as a "statistician with interests in applications to natural and environmental sciences", define "junk science"? ... Kenosis 03:52, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
http://www.researchintelligentdesign.org/wiki/Defining_intelligent_design
http://www.skepticwiki.org/wiki/index.php/Intelligent_Design
Here are two other wiki ID articles. Both seem much more balanced. And I think if anyone serious wants to discuss how ID is not science they should sign up to www.researchintelligentdesign.org where there is more tolerance to opposing views. 69.211.150.60 13:21, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the link. This article should be edited down to the bare bones and then the controversy should be routed away to these two links. ElderStatesman 13:38, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Sarcasm doesn't work in text. If that wasn't sarcasm I'm a bit frightened.--ZayZayEM 13:52, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
Boo! ElderStatesman 14:27, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
Much more balanced? They both describe intelligent design as scientific. It isn't. One cannot dismiss the scientific method, and try to redefine science, while being scientific. -- Ec5618 14:34, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Behe admitted in Kitzmiller that defining science as he suggested to let ID into it would also allow Astrology. Adam Cuerden talk 15:08, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Are you saying Astrology does not qualify as science? Nomen NescioGnothi seauton 11:11, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Good point; surely Astrology's scientific status depends on whether Mars is in the ascendant?  ;-) More seriously, why is showing ID for what it is (junk science) rather than what its proponents would like it to be (science) a problem? Despite huge efforts from its proponents, ID has yet to make any impact in the scientific press. Anyway, this article didn't get featured status for nothing. --Plumbago 11:38, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Astrology has been falsified. To some the would mean the theory was scientific. I think the confusion is the exact definition of 'evolution' and 'scientific'. Change in allelles? Some think modern genetics has helped advanced medicine in the last 50 years rather than the assertion of common descent. In the article does it show that one can believe in mutations and yet not accept the fact that speciation occurs through natural selection. Has speciation through natural selection falsifiable? Can we show that speciation throught natural selection has been tested? 69.211.150.60 12:45, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Moved from top of talkpage

I do not think that ID suggest to replace evolution, but rather prefers to have an alternative view point.

I find it increasingly interesting that even though both evolutional theories and ID look at the historical facts of the earth and it's contents, have these different view points.

One of the arguments against ID is that it is not possible to repeat it in experiments and therefor it is not scientific in its approach, but the same can be said of evolution; it cannot be repeated under scientifical scrutiny, only to interpretation. Most findings are open to interpretation and agreement based on preconceived convictions and the outcome of this interpretation will align with the reader/student/scientist pre-convictions.

I sometimes wonder whether this reluctance to give ID the same hearing as evolution is not influence by what it confronts us with; our exposure and accountability to a "higher force". As to the question of future research, ID proponents are as dependent on discovery as are proponents of evolution. The THEORY of evolution has not supplied us with medical applications, but a single minded interpretation of what could have happened in the past, so why expect this from ID.

True open minded scientists will be open to all arguments, even if they do not like the result for the sake of "truth".{POJ 9 March 2007 JHB}

repeatability is only one of the requirements of science, and in any event it is not correct to state that evolution is not repeatable or observable. The primary problem with ID is that it is not falsifiable - unlike evolution. This is not a minor problem. Tomandlu 12:36, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
As Tomlandu said, you seem to misunderstand science and evolutionary biology. It's false to say that "evolution has not supplied us with medical applications" - evolution is the basis of almost all medical research. And although "repeatability" isn't what demarcates science from non-science (testability/falsifiability is), evolution is repeatable in many important ways. More importantly.
Intelligent design fails as science because it fails to make testable, non-trivial predictions. While Dembski suggests that you can show "design" through the elimination other, explainable, improbable occurrences, he makes design the default assumption, not a testable mechanism (ie, he suggests that design can be scientific without needing to be testable). Behe's irredicible complexity is anecdotal and fundamentally flawed.
Evolutionary biology is testable and falsifiable, makes hundreds of non-trivial predictions, and is supported by an overwhelming amount of evidence. Guettarda 16:09, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
I really wouldn't listen to Michael Egnor's (I presume this is where it's coming from: It's an argument I've never seen made by anyone else) rather bizarre views on Evolution in medical research. They really aren't typical. Adam Cuerden talk 21:35, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
A quick comment or two: a "higher force" (id est "God" or gods) is not a testable hypothesis -- it is outside of science, belonging to the realm of the supernatural or paranormal.
The resistance a bacterium develops to antibiotics is a function of evolution (hence new meds are developed in response to the mutations). Without the mutation that causes the resistance, the bacterium becomes extinct, and as the only definition of the "purpose of life" that means anything is survival, extinction would render the bacterium purposeless. (Break into the theme song from The Meaning of Life). &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 11:41, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Reference edit

Does this need restoring?

136[["Monkey Girl: Evolution, Education, Religion, and the Battle for America's Soul," Ecco/HarperCollins, ISBN 9780060885489, [February 2007] ]]

Maybe it was intended as a See Also? SheffieldSteel 23:00, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

TBH, I wouldn't mind seeing a brief "further reading" section somewhere around the bottom of the article. No doubt it'll involve some debates about what to include, but such a section could be useful to readers interested in further research in text rather than online. ... Kenosis 03:25, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

"Further reading" seems to fit, according to Wikipedia:Citing_sources#Further_reading.2FExternal_links - I've added one in and put this title in it. Tomandlu 09:39, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Intelligent Design, teleology and the lib of congress

A bit OT, but I was amused to spot that the library of congress always equates intelligent design with teleology... search for "intelligent design" as a keyword, then take a look at the subjects/content tab for any relevant book. Tomandlu 12:17, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Fascinating. For once the government gets it right. Use this link to do your LoC search. Mr Christopher 20:09, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Personal opinion here

As someone who doesn't find intelligent design terribly compelling (though I am a Christian), I think this page is a piece of crap. It's interesting that the page on voodoo is much more respectful and even-handed in the handling of its subject than this one is. As a result, the voodoo page is also much more informative. I think the people who created this page should step back and let some fresh voices take over. Maybe a new first sentence should be constructed (perhaps something like "Intelligent design is the idea that the complexity of the universe is best explained by the existence of an intelligent creator"), and go from there.

As it stands, it should be called "Objections to Intelligent Design".

This issue (or similiar) comes up all the time. Voodoo, afaik, is not trying to overturn science by, for example, suggesting that pathologists are ignoring zombies. This article deals with the controversy because there is one. That doesn't rule out bias in the article, and by all means propose meaningful changes that might reduce that bias. However, trying to remove the controversy would be inappropriate Tomandlu 16:20, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
If you believe the people behind intelligent design are trying to take over science, that's still hardly justification for not even allowing one sentence of a NPOV before the editorializing comes in. --Kgroover 13:41, 21 March 2007 (UTC)


Intelligent Design is not trying to do anything. Intelligent Design is a concept. Concepts are only dangerous when they are suppressed. P.S. I'm considering switching to Voodooism after reading the Voodoo article. ElderStatesman 17:50, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
I thought sock puppets evading bans are not allowed to edit. Why are you still here? 151.151.73.168 19:28, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
A determination will be made if he is or not. An IP check will be done (I guess, I don't know for sure), and if he is one, then so long. Otherwise, he can edit until he is either cleared or found guilty. Orangemarlin 19:40, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
ElderStatesman created his account at 20:36 on March 17, just a few hours after FM blocked the 70.108.101.57 sock puppet at 15:59 on March 17. You can request a IP check yourself at WP:RFCU if FM is not around. 151.151.21.103 20:20, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Actually, User:Everwill has the same article editing pattern [28] 151.151.21.103 20:23, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Lead sentence

I'd first like to say that I care little about creation, intelligent design, or evolution. My interest was peaked during discussion on the WP:NPOV talk to take a look at the topic. While reading the lead (in fact the first sentence), I saw what I think is a POV. The definition is instantly framed per the opinion in the dover ruling based on the testimony of Dr. Haught as to what is implied by an Intelligent designer. It is obviously the proponent view “official position” that it does not acknowledge that the designer is God. Therefore, how can the main NPOV definition be that it is an argument for God when the primary intent is to not acknowledge who a designer is. Could intelligence other then God be the source under Intelligent Design (Alien race, matrix simulation, multiple "Gods", or some unknown non-deity intelligence)? Sure. How many different ways and world views could be applied to this? While it is of the opinion of Dr. Haught and the court (under the case presented) that western culture assumptions would associate God when discussing ID, it is not the definition of ID. ID is a teleological argument on the creation of life that is primarily used as an argument for the existence of God. Wikipedia should not go extracting and interpreting definitions per a U.S. court case with regard to a theory being presented in some public school as the primary definition for the subject. Morphh (talk) 20:23, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

I suppose the question that needs answering is, is there meaning of the phrase "Intelligent Design" that (a) significantly differs from that presented in this article (b) satisfies wikipedia's notability criteria?
SheffieldSteel 20:39, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
It is certainly notable and the view of those defining Intelligent Design "theory" that it does not specify God. I don't see why you would specify such a limited definition, when the position is clearly otherwise. While the intent is certainly to argue "God", I'm not sure it can be defined solely as an argument for God. It doesn't even mention God, so how can that be a neutral definition? You could state that the Dover... court ruling concluded that ID was an argument for God. This would be a true and a neutral statement, although I don't think it would be a good lead sentence. It just seems like it is taking one opinion (opposite of the defined official position) and using it as the definition. Morphh (talk) 20:58, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
You're merely repeating the rhetoric of IDers. You're advocating for an intro that only presents one side's view, one which was ruled bogus in a federal trial. From the Dover ruling: "We initially note that John Haught, a theologian who testified as an expert witness for Plaintiffs and who has written extensively on the subject of evolution and religion, succinctly explained to the Court that the argument for ID is not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God. He traced this argument back to at least Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century, who framed the argument as a syllogism: Wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer. (Trial Tr. vol. 9, Haught Test., 7-8, Sept. 30, 2005). Dr. Haught testified that Aquinas was explicit that this intelligent designer “everyone understands to be God.” Id. The syllogism described by Dr. Haught is essentially the same argument for ID as presented by defense expert witnesses Professors Behe and Minnich who employ the phrase “purposeful arrangement of parts.” [29] It concludes: " In making this determination, we have addressed the seminal question of whether ID is science. We have concluded that it is not, and moreover that ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents." [30] So: Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God just as the article says. What the problem with that again? 151.151.73.169 21:36, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
I think the US court decision is merely one source, and I don't think you should attach too much weight to its appearance. As I understand it, the Wedge document is also a pretty good indicator of what ID is all about and there are plenty of good secondary sources.
I think that because this article is about an inherently duplicitous tactic (i.e. disguising religion in order to get it into science classes) the normal rules don't apply; it is not necessary to use ID's definition of itself, because that definition is purposefully misleading as to ID's true nature.
SheffieldSteel 21:48, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Yep. The 'Religion and leading proponents' and 'Controversy' sections of this article (as well as the Intelligent designer and Intelligent design movement articles) covers Morphh's ojections, he just needs to read past this article's intro. 151.151.73.169 21:54, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps I am repeating their rhetoric, though I wouldn't know. I've haven't really looked at the issue. You're correct that I haven't read through the article - nor do I really want to. No offense - I'm sure it is a great article, just not that interested in the topic. I was just browsing and it seemed to me to be very heavy pushing an opponent view in the first sentence. I don't care to make it an proponent view. The idea is to make it a neutral view. There is no balance with the wording. It quickly states what was decided in the verdict, which I'm sure the other side was debating. This is not neutral - the opponents won the case so they define the term. You should state what it is before injecting a POV one way or another. It should just state that it is the argument that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection. Then go into the fact that the federal court has ruled ID to be an argument for the existence of God and was rejected for introduction into science classes. Are they appealing the verdict? I see other countries listed but you're using a U.S. court opinion for the definition of what ID's intent is. The lead appears too short per WP:LEAD. The lead does not summarize the article per WP:FAC and I'm questioning the compelling and brilliant prose. I'm starting to wonder if this should be put up for WP:FAR and I haven't even read past the lead. Morphh (talk) 1:20, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
If you're not nterested in the topic, haven't read anything on the topic, haven't read the article and don't want to read it, how can anyone take your comments seriously. Your posts boil down to, "I don't like stream-of-consciousness" writing, someone told me Joyce wrote in that style, Joyce wrote Ulysses, ergo Ulysses sucks." I can just see that as the book review in the NYT. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 11:14, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

a few notes:

1. multiple times various "controlling" editors here have mischaracterized my own POV regarding ID, Creationism, etc. i've only mentioned it a couple of times because it shouldn't matter what my POV is. but, for the record, i am extremely far from sympathetic to the position of DI or the ID proponents from the (mostly American) evangelical right. i understand it to be non-science and to politically push to have it taught, in a science class in a public school, is both unconscionable and is still illegal (thank God). but, even though the text of the article should NOT be reflective of any of our POVs, and it has been my repeated position to get the POV out of, at the very least, the lead sentence which should be a completely neutral definition, not a conclusion of an analysis, nonetheless, you guys seem to miss what my POV is. e.g.: Your world would just be a bunch of Christians running things. How sad. that is, simply either very stupid, or a deliberate lie.

2. the blatent POV of lead sentence is clearly being noticed (and objected to) by many others than myself. looking at this talk page, i can count at least 8 different objections to that specific lead sentence of which i am only one. i am not the only one who sees it.

3. i have itemized precisely what, in WP:NPOV that this lead sentence violates, you guys (the "controlling" editors who think they own the article) continue to deny that it violates NPOV, but you still make no case defending this very lead sentence. and "you" have repeatedly said false things about the very WP guidelines about this. it is on a policy page that "Wikipedia is devoted to stating facts... Where we might want to state an opinion, we convert that opinion into a fact by attributing the opinion to someone." this article declares, in the definition of Intelligent design, that it is an argument for the existence of God when that is what the Teleological argument is by definition. it doesn't attribute that conclusion to anyone in the lead sentence, it just declares it as an equivalence. this is a naked violation of NPOV and you guys have done nothing but immaturely deny it and insist on perpetuating it. there's enough of you with this same POV that you support each other both in the talk page (an echo chamber) and in reverts (meat puppets).

4. the great hypocrisy is then you accuse me of injecting my POV e.g. when it is precisely the opposite. the intro that i floated stated what ID was defined to be, immediately followed that with the fact that it is utterly rejected by the scientific community and cited the most current legal ruling that it was considered to be an old argument for the existence of God. that's not the article saying it's crappy science and an argument for the existance of God, but the article saying who says it's crappy science and who says its an argument for the existance of God.

your (the cadre of controlling editors) claim that it's NPOV in the only form you allow is untrue, you are so blind that you think your own POV is NPOV, and your justifications for insisting on this do not hold water. you are making Wikipedia look bad and you are providing evidence for the critiques of Wikipedia. E.B. would never open with such a blatent POV conclusion. the dictionaries do not define ID as such (e.g. The assertion or belief that physical and biological systems observed in the universe result from purposeful design by an intelligent being rather than from chance or undirected natural processes. and some doofus here kept insisting that my use of the word "belief" instead of "hypothesis" somehow made it POV or wrong, like "duh"...). you guys are blind to your own POV and this place is an echo chamber. r b-j 02:11, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

IMHO there is a reasonable argument for changing the first sentence to "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of an intelligent supernatural creator...". However, I don't buy the notion that we have to say "or aliens, etc." How in God's name were they meant to have evolved if evolution doesn't work? For the DI, supernatural creator = christian god, but that is their POV - it is not explicit in the basic principle of ID. The wedge doc, etc. is covered in depth in the article. Tomandlu 09:54, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
Given that the DI and its fellows, including the not-so-intelligent designers of ID have all equated the designer with the Abrahamic god on what grounds can you state that "supernatural creator" would be accurate? You seem to be arguing that there's an overarching ID theory, and that the DI presents merely it from the Abrahamic perspective. We've been over this countless times in the past and such an assertion is blatantly erroneous.
BTW: only a person can be humble, his opinion cannot be. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 11:27, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
there is plenty of opportunity to point out the rhetorical inconsistancy of the DI or ID crowd (where they want to point to this "intelligent designer" but want to deny, for the sake of the Establishment Clause, that this "intelligent designer" is God). the article should do that, but to come to that conclusion, which is not semantically in the definition of ID, in the very first sentence betrays your POV. it makes it obvious that this is an anti-ID article written by anti-ID editors. it tells the world that Wikipedia is NPOV, except for when Wikipedia editors choose to put their own POV in articles of their choosing.r b-j 16:51, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
"...it tells the world that Wikipedia is NPOV" Yes, it is. it is our policy to be neutral. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 11:30, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
That is at least one area of thought that ID opens: that beings from say another planet could have an environment which allows evolution to work in a different manner or faster. Or beings could be from an area we have no knowledge of right now similar to the way we had little knowledge that America existed in say 100 A.D. And ID does not say evolution does not work. It is just saying that at least one aspect of one species was formed by an intervention. Some bacteria can live at very high temperatures. If we send a probe to say Venus with bacteria modified genetically and somehow it takes hold and survives and evolves would not those organisms be described as intelligently designed? Yes it seems like a certain group is using this concept to promote their political agenda (is that illegal? or unethical?) but does that mean that the concept is invalid? 69.211.150.60 11:53, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
whether it's invalid or not (i think it is), we report about it as it is, not what we think of it. instead of simply saying it's invalid, quote and attribute someone saying it's invalid. that's what the NPOV guidelines say to do and this is what you guys are refusing to do, specifically in the lead sentence and that has no excuse. r b-j 16:51, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
IMHO this is a solution looking for a problem. Since the DI haven't actually found anything irreducibly complex, why do we need a vague hypothesis postulating creative aliens? BTW if something should be found the all agree is irreducibly complex, then you can bet that the DI and similiar would suddenly declare that anyone positing the existence of (evolved) creative aliens was a "darwinist" changing the rules... no, IMHO, ID = supernatural creator at the very least, and the Christian god by any other measure. I only favour "supernatural creator" since, IMHO, it doesn't change the article, but it does rebuff at least one of the ID crowd's complaints... and it's a complaint that has some value Tomandlu 13:35, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
this is not a position paper rebutting the ID crowd. it's supposed to be an NPOV Wikipedia article. how can you guys blatently keep repeating your intent for it to counter the POV of the D crowd. instead of making Wikipedia take the position of countering the ID POV, quote someone countering the ID crowd and attribute that quote! that's what the NPOV guidelines say to do and this is what you guys are refusing to do, specifically in the lead sentence and that has no excuse. r b-j 16:51, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
"...quote someone countering the ID crowd and attribute that quote!" Have you even read the article past the lead section? Have you bothered to look at the copious references section, which contains quotes galore? Please, what your asking for already exists. If you can't actually read the article and its references, why are you bothering to bitch about anything? Why are you slinging accusations about that are unfounded? Why are you wasting everyone's time? &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 11:35, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree with you here, though I would remove "supernatural" unless this is actually specified in ID. From my limited understanding, it could very well apply to an intelligent natural creator(s). You could probably just state "intelligent creator(s)" and not get stuck on loose terms. I'm not sure if we would need to add the plural aspect as the term creator could probably cover "creators" as well but something to consider. The term "design" covers both these without specifying. I also agree that we should not specify other things in the lead (such as aliens). I only used this as an example to make the point. I would just word the first sentence as "Intelligent design is a teleological an argument that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection. Attempts to include intelligent design into science classrooms of the State of Pennsylvania public schools has been denied in federal court, with the conclusion that it was an argument for the existence of God." I also added the second sentence as an example of how the first sentence could be followed up to include the information in a neutral way. Morphh (talk) 14:03, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
If you include the words "teleological arguement", then what has really changed?
Ahh yes - Ok.. remove "teleological". I thought this term had a wider scope then it does - my mistake. You are correct. Morphh (talk) 14:36, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
I've made some changes to the lead but it still needs some work. It should be expanded and summarize the article per WP:LEAD. I'm really surprised this got through FAR. The lead is the most important part of the article. Morphh (talk) 16:44, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
Remove teleological to what end? Is it too accurate? Remove a reference to the Abrahamic god to what end? Is it too true? Does including it crimp the IDists plans to pretend ID isn't creationism dressed up in a cheap tuxedo? &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 11:38, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

I would like to propose an new opening sentence. Instead of: "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God, based on the premise that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection." I would suggest something like: "Intelligent Design (also known as ID) is an idea that has been proposed as a reasonable alternative to biological evolution. It states that certain features of the universe and of living things are too complex to have evolved according to the doctrine of evolution, and that an intelligent being designed life as we know it." 151.213.185.54 19:17, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Comment

I feel as if this should be changed to "Theory of Intelligent Design" --James, La gloria è a dio 22:54, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

No. Thanks for your input. Orangemarlin 23:01, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
So you do not agree that this is one of te theories out there that talks about how the universe was created? Do not let your POV get in the way of wikipedia being as accurate as it can be. Peace:) --James, La gloria è a dio 23:05, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Hi James - if you click through some of the archive links at the top of the page, you'll read (in volumes and volumes...) the reasoning as to why, basically, Intelligent Design doesn't really earn the label 'Theory' - there are a whole bunch of important arguments that support this, and we've reached a pretty long-standing consensus about this one - take a look, parts of the archives are pretty interesting reading anyways! Petesmiles 23:59, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

yes, it's not a "theory" in the same sense that General relativity or even evolution (or the historical germ theory of disease) are theories that tie together into a unified form a lot of different observational evidence and also makes testable predictions. it's a belief and some who believe it want to put it in the same category of scientific, but it isn't that. it can (along with virtually anything) be called a philosophy and even a theology. maybe even a philosophical theory, i dunno. but it's not a scientific theory because it does not contain the elements of such.r b-j 02:58, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
If ID can be called a theory, cannot the Easter Bunny or any other magical figure be called a theoretical concept? If you insist on teaching your religion in my classroom, I must insist on also including mine. We must open each school day with the Pledge of Allegiance and a moment of tree worship.--W8IMP 05:55, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree with the above. Intelligent design presents itself as a scientific explanation; however, it does not qualify as a scientific theory and therefore the label is inaccurate. In any case, it is superfluous: intelligent design alone suffices quite nicely. — Knowledge Seeker 07:41, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
Let's look at the intent of James. He is trying to force the word "theory" onto ID and Creation Science in order to give it equivalence with Evolution. Nice try, but we're not buying. Orangemarlin 08:20, 21 March 2007 (UTC)


Orangemarlin, please stop being so combative. No one is selling anything so no one cares if you buy anything. Please try to curtail the injection of your personal opinions. Shouldn't this minority theory receive as much respect and latitude as the Jesus Myth theory is given? ElderStatesman 13:38, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

OK, Raspor/Everwill. Whatever you say. Orangemarlin 19:47, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
Orangemarlin is on solid ground. The tag on James' sig "La gloria è a dio" is sufficient to betray his reasoning. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 11:42, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Input appreciated

I would greatly appreciate input in discussions surrounding content of Jewish reactions to intelligent design. My interference appears to have gotten this and Jewish opposition to evolution blocked. I apologise. But I think both articles need serious attention less they waltz into OR and essay gray areas.--ZayZayEM 09:43, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

A Modest Proposal

Can we agree that the phrase and link to Teleological argument for "argument for the existence of God" in the lead is unnecessarily biased? I think the main article makes the relevant points regarding the duplicity of the ID movement without us needing to hand them a phrase to hang a legitimate complaint on, so to speak. Tomandlu 22:20, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

of course it's biased and any bias, once identified, is unnecessary. i doubt that the editors who believe they own the article (but will deny that in addition to the denial of bias) will agree with you since they took such exception when i and several others have pointed that out. r b-j 22:26, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
No, it's not biased: It is an accurate description and properly sourced. It needs to go back in - rbj's replacement is far more biased as it merely repeats the rhetoric of IDers to hide their religious agenda. At the least original content relied on a neutral analysis of ID and not one side's PR copy. 151.151.73.166 23:46, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
it certainly was biased, particularly the lead. have you taken a look at the Encyclopedia Britanica version or the Columbia U Encyclopedia version (at answers.com)? why is it that only the Wikipedia version declares, at the outset, a conclusion that ID is equivalent to the teleological argument without even attribution? i have repeated multiple times the Wikipedia policy: we do not put in opinion unattributed. we put in the opinion as that of someone else (some scientists or collaboration of scientists or some judge or judicial ruling, etc.). that is prominately in WP:NPOV and you guys are refusing to do that. you are insisting that this opinion that ID is one and the same as the teleological argument is simple fact and even definition. the latter is certainly not true (it is not the definition) and you have no support for it. the former (that it is fact) is a very reasonable conclusion after analysis. put the facts forth and let the reader draw their own conclusions. i think they will come to the same place you do and see ID for what it is. but you don't have to jump to the conclusion of the story and introduce that as definition in the lead sentence. that is simply intellectually dishonest. r b-j 23:55, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes I agree. Even look at skeptic's wiki. It is much more balanced. And isn't there supposed to be a 'consensus'? There must be 10 editors that think the present first sentence is biased. It seems like just a few are able to have the article the way they want it. 68.109.232.53 00:21, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
the hardcore POV pushers have repeatedly claimed there was consensus and that their POV version of the intro was the consensus version when there was no such consensus. they have a real problem of intellectual honesty here regarding that and many other points they insist on. r b-j 00:31, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
then please defend it. the hardcore POV-pushers are gonna come back and revert it. they have done that multiple times before, even after editors like User:Petesmiles and others have endorsed a version very similar to this. i cannot defend it by myself and reason makes no difference to these hardcore POV pushers. it doesn't matter to them how weak their argument is or how reasonable yours is. they don't care and there is, at this point, only one response to people who do not think that their own shit stinks and that is make it perfectly clear to them that it does. r b-j 00:45, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
  • I believe you:) They are the same way on the Evolution article. I have actualy just got back from a block because I reverted it back to my version that says it is a theory 5 times. I got blocked for 3RR. I will try to work this out on the talk page. Peace:) James, La gloria è a dio 00:50, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Darwinian evolution is a bona-fide scientific theory that is well accepted in the scientific community. it adheres to the scientific method, is for the most part consistent with observational evidence, makes predictions that can be tested and either verified or not. that is, it is falsifiable. to say that Darwinian evolution is "just a theory" is indicative of not understanding the difference between a scientific theory and a mere hypothesis. special relativity, general relativity, quantum mechanics are also theories in the same sense. but ID is none of those, it cannot be falsified because there is no experiment or machine that can measure the existance of a trancendent intelligent designer. it is not a scientific theory, but more of a philosophy. string theory, despite its name, suffers from some of the same problems. no one has yet proposed an experiment that can support or refute it, so it is not (yet, anyway) falsifiable.
the other problem with ID is the political one where the proponents of ID in the DI are really not being intellectually honest when they try to deny that the intelligent designer is not necessarily God so that they can hope to see ID taught alongside evolution in public schools in the U.S. (where it would be illegal). r b-j 01:03, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Oh please. It's clear to anyone who's widely read on the topic that your version parrots the Discovery Institute's campaign dissembling ID from their religious agenda. Your changes are hopelessly one-sided and will never fly. The claim that the designer need necessarily be God is a particular viewpoint, that of the ID crowd, and is shown to be a carefully calculated tactic elsewhere in the article (showing your intro to be lopsided).
Read the Dover ruling: In Judge Jones' analysis he found that the claim the designer is not necessarily God to be not only a tactic, but an ill-conceived bogus tactic: "ID's "official position" does not acknowledge that the designer is God. However, as Dr. Haught testified, anyone familiar with Western religious thought would immediately make the association that the tactically unnamed designer is God, as the description of the designer in Of Pandas and People is a "master intellect," strongly suggesting a supernatural deity as opposed to any intelligent actor known to exist in the natural world. Moreover, it is notable that both Professors Behe and Minnich admitted their personal view is that the designer is God and Professor Minnich testified that he understands many leading advocates of ID to believe the designer to be God. Although proponents of the IDM occasionally suggest that the designer could be a space alien or a time-traveling cell biologist, no serious alternative to God as the designer has been proposed by members of the IDM, including Defendants’ expert witnesses. In fact, an explicit concession that the intelligent designer works outside the laws of nature and science and a direct reference to religion is Pandas’ rhetorical statement, "what kind of intelligent agent was it [the designer]" and answer: "On its own science cannot answer this question. It must leave it to religion and philosophy." A significant aspect of the IDM is that despite Defendants' protestations to the contrary, it describes ID as a religious argument. In that vein, the writings of leading ID proponents reveal that the designer postulated by their argument is the God of Christianity." Ruling, page 25 Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District
After that do I really need to post all fifty or so quotes of Dembski, Johnson, Behe, Wells, and Meyer all saying that the designer is God? Because I can... Given that I have all the leading design proponents saying to the faithful that the designer is God and the Dover trial ruling, the most weighty and in depth neutral analysis of ID yet done saying it is an argument for God, any attempt to leave the most central point of ID out of the intro in favor of repeating the partisan ID tactic of denying the connection simply will not stand. What's funny about this all is that rbj and the DI have denied Christ now more times than Peter. FeloniousMonk 03:37, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
[personal attack removed] #1: "It's clear to anyone who's widely read on the topic that your version parrots the Discovery Institute's campaign dissembling ID from their religious agenda." i included no statement from the DI that you did not already have in the intro. i retained the attribution and reference. i qualified the statement as a "belief" not a fact. the extra statement i put in is the definition from the American Heritage Dictionary as shown on Answers.com.
[personal attack removed] #2:"Your changes are hopelessly one-sided .." no, it is taking no side.
[personal attack removed] #3: "The claim that the designer need necessarily be God is a particular viewpoint,.." i made no such claim nor did i repeat any such claim. i only removed the equivalence in definition of ID to the Teleological argument because there is no external citation of definition of ID and the teleological argument. no other definition of ID, other than your biased version you foist onto Wikipedia, equates ID to the teleological argument. a lot of different people have gone on record making that equivalence and, as per WP:NPOV, such quotes from notable people should be made and attributed in the article. that's how you turn an opinion into fact and that is what you are refusing to do. so attribute such a claim ("that the designer need necessarily be God") to someone who actually makes it. it's not me.
[personal attack removed] #4: "...shown to be a carefully calculated tactic elsewhere in the article (showing your intro to be lopsided). " where, in "my" intro is it lopsided. i don't take issue with any fact that the ID proponents are using this as "carefully calculated tactic" to further creationist goals and, in fact, included in the lead a clear but neutral statement about opponents viewing ID to be a "disguised strategy" to do the same.
FM, somehow, you got it into your head that i support ID or think it's science or something like that. i dunno how you come to the same kinda conclusion that Fearless Leader does: "If you ain't fer us,,you agin' us." you think that just because i want to remove your uncited POV that that the definition of ID is the teleological argument that somehow i am pro-ID. that's just stupid and arrogant. i dunno why you guys want to be stupid and arrogant and make the article look so stupid and arrogant. many have claimed to have worked so hard on it, and then to squander that effort and Wikipedia's credibility on such a blatent POV intro is just stupid and arrogant. r b-j 06:23, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Maybe the fact that you repeatedly replace content based on secondary and tertiary sources with DI talking points? Or is that just your understanding of Wikipedia - that articles are supposed to be based primarily on talking points and propaganda? 35.9.6.175 06:28, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

I'm confused by this section - I don't see what any of this has to do with eating babies. 35.9.6.175 06:28, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Heh - I thought that it had slipped under the radar... Tomandlu 09:22, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

not so hot.....

don't like the new intro - pretty grotty to read (aside from other problems...) - i think the original proposal - without the extra sentence - was better... i'll cogitate further...... Petesmiles 00:57, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

that "extra sentence" is from the American Heritage dictionary and is cited. the reason i put it in was that repeatedly one of these hardcore POV pushers kept saying that i was repeating the PR of the DI guys by including in the definition that ID is a belief (not fact) that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection" even though they were using the same quote. even though i could not understand the criticism (when they quote it, it's okay, but when someone else does, it's promoting the DI POV, like "duh...") i was trying to prophylactically innoculate the intro from that criticism. if you can do it better or want to revert to the other version that i floated, it's fine by me, but these guys argue in such a convoluted and inconsistent manner that i don't want to throw them red meat.
also, Pete, we're getting down to the place where we got a bunch of self-satisfied editors who do not think their own shit stinks (they don't think their bias is a POV, they think that whatever it is they think is true and/or fair and/or neutral simply must be true or neutral). it doesn't matter how blatently biased or indefensible their argument is, how their conclusions do not follow from the premises that are mutually agreed, nor how they have ignored the Wikipedia policy that i have cited several times. they don't care. reasoning with them does nothing. they are a brick wall. i think, rather than just cogitate, you need to consider what you are willing to stand up for. r b-j 01:13, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Due to edit waring on the part of people pushing the new intro, I have edit protected this article. Raul654 02:42, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Good call. Rbj seems determined to whitewash the intro. He insists on presenting the Discovery Institute's campaign dissembling ID from their religious agenda as fact and the definitive definition of ID. FeloniousMonk 03:16, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
such an echo chamber. lessee... WP:ANOT: "[When you are an administrator you don't just block and unblock who you want, you don't delete and undelete what you want, you just don't go around editing protected pages when you want, and you can't just go protecting and unprotecting what you want." it's no coincidence that you reverted it to the version that matches your own POV and then you protected it. Admin Abuse. r b-j 06:00, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Pretty strong accusation, there rbj...one hopes you can back it up (I don't think you can). BTW, Kenosis had the last revision (thus torching one-half of your conspiracy theory). Try again. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 12:24, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Changes to the lead on March 21, 2007

About today's effort to change the article lead from the longstanding version, if there's to be a new consensus, it should be achieved prior to implementing substantial changes to the article. Thus far all there are are a lot of complaints, but no consensus about how it should read.

The last version attempted read as follows:

  • Intelligent design is "the assertion or belief that physical and biological systems observed in the universe result from purposeful design by an intelligent being rather than from chance or undirected natural processes."[1] It has been determined by scientific consensus to be pseudoscience, not adhering to the scientific method, and by U.S. legal ruling to be "not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God."[2] The Discovery Institute claims that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life.[3][4][5][6] Opponents claim this is a disguised strategy to reintroduce Creationism to the science classroom after being banned from state supported public education by the Edwards v. Aguillard ruling. (wikis eliminated in this rendering of the text)

For one thing, citations have been removed. For another, the last proposed sentence of this version has no citaions. For yet another thing, the proposed intro is a linguistic mess that puts the statement about scientific consensus prior to the statement about claims of being a scientific theory. Get a consensus on this page, please, not just a bunch of complaints with no coherent resolution to the complaints. (I've had my three permissible reverts, so I will be refraining from any further defenses of the consensus for now.) ... Kenosis 02:48, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Totally agree with this summary. I'd have reverted the changes made had I seen them. FeloniousMonk 03:11, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I see no effort here by the current lead supporters to work with and compromise. It is obvious that the current lead is unacceptable and pushes a POV, which is argued above. Examples have been discussed. When trying to implement the changes, they are reverted back with no contribution or compromise. Back to the drawing board.. another lead is created and reverted. As an experienced editor and new comer to this article with little interest or support in ID (my only interest is POV violation), I find the intro to be blatantly biased. I'm a hair away from adding a POV tag. Look at my 6000+ edits and my profile - I have never edited a religious article, I am a scientist, and a transhumanist. I have no dog in this fight. Consensus does not need to be fully developed here to make changes to the lead. The citation was removed as it was no longer needed - it was replaced. The last one may not need a citation if the topic is discussed in detail in the article but could have one added or challenge it with a fact tag. Reorder it if you think it flows better another way... reverting created the problem you're discussing. For the record to build consenus - I support the changes above with the described corrections. I also support this intro http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Intelligent_design&oldid=116808375. In either case, the lead needs to be expanded and summarize the article - it has issues with WP:WIAFA 2(a). Morphh (talk) 3:42, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
First of all threatening editors with a POV tag does not seem to be very sporting. So I'll counter your threat by reverting any tag you place on it. I am going to assume good faith with some of what you wrote, despite the threatened tag. Let's stick with facts, but first a commentary. Usually, and I mean almost always, when an editor comes in here and states something to the effect that, "I am not very religious, but ....." usually means that they are very religious, and they want to foist their POV on us. So, assuming you're who you say you are, exactly what is POV about this article? That it's pseudoscience? That's a verifiable, factual statement. That it's junk science? Ditto. That it's a religious dogma to describe creation? Well, that would be 3 for 3. I'm failing to see the POV problem here. Using verifiable sources, and when I say verifiable, Federal Courts and the National Academy of Sciences pretty much sit at the top of the heap for me, we are accurately describing this religious dogma. Orangemarlin 03:52, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Sorry about the threat of a POV tag but reverts are not very sporting either. I honestly don't know that I've ever added one (the tag) to an article myself. I was frustrated by the lack of compromise, reverts, and it seemed to be a disputed issue. I also was not talking about an article POV tag but a section (the lead) or a sentence tag. I have not read the entire article - like I said, I really don't care about the topic. So I don't dispute the arguments you make above. My first issue is with the first sentence. "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God," This is an opinion - not a fact. It is certainly a highly supported, well documented, and court decided opinion about what ID is intended to push but that does not make it a fact about what it is. Wikipedia can not state this as fact (as it is disputed by advocates). You have to go with a neutral definition that describes ID without bias regarding if it means "God" or not. Follow up the sentence with what the overwhelming opinion of the intent of ID. Other issues are secondary but here are a couple "Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute, claim". This is an absolute statement and seems to be non-neutral tone. It would be better worded "The Discovery Institute claims..." "The U.S. National Academy of Sciences has stated that intelligent design " and other claims of supernatural intervention in the origin of life" are not science because they cannot be tested by experiment, do not generate any predictions, and propose no new hypotheses of their own." Not sure why it is necessary to make this quote (which adds emphasis - seemingly negative). Just discuss ID here.. "NAS has stated that ID is not science because...". Other areas are the size of the lead and summarization of the article. The intro sounds like an attack piece. I think a nice summarization of the article in the lead with neutral tone is needed. I'd rather not be editing this article and I might pull out of the discussion. I just sort of got sucked into it by making some comments that I thought were obvious. Morphh (talk) 4:50, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I asked you this once before, and I'm going to ask again: If you're not nterested in the topic, haven't read anything on the topic, haven't read the article and don't want to read it, how can anyone take your comments seriously. Your posts boil down to, "I don't like stream-of-consciousness" writing, someone told me Joyce wrote in that style, Joyce wrote Ulysses, ergo Ulysses sucks." I can just see that as the book review in the NYT. Given the above, do you really think you have any credibility here? &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 19:15, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Be civil - Credibility with copyedits or assisting with an article can go far beyond the subject expertise. Peer-review happens all the time with little knowledge on the topic. I often review articles that are policies, plans, and events taking place in other countries. I participate in several wikiproject collaboration efforts that do the same. You don't have to be an expert on ID to address writing style and policy. The lead should be concise and summarize the article, neither of which is done here. I'm offering suggestions in good faith. It is good practice that you get someone outside of the article with little vested interest to copyedit and check policy. Morphh (talk) 19:50, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I was quite civil, thanks. The point is this: if you know nothing about the subject and don't care to know anything about the subject, it is very difficult to take your suggestions very seriously. This is a complex topic, and this article has been very difficult to write due to a variety of reasons, so having someone who knows nothing about it would be like the NYT having its sports page editor edit the science section. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 20:23, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Well... I found the comment that I have no credibility here quite rude - WP:BITE. You don't have to take me very seriously - take the policy seriously. Read WP:LEAD - Do you not conclude that this lead requires a lot of work to meet these guidelines? I need to know very little about the topic to state that it does. So, you can either try and address the issue or call other editors worthless and stick your nose in the air. I'll watch to see how seriously I should take you. Morphh (talk) 20:53, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Believe it or not, Wikipedia isn't my life...it's an amusing pastime. How seriously you choose to take me neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 20:51, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
WP:NPOV is "absolute and non-negotiable and cannot be superseded by other policies or guidelines, or by editors' consensus." From everything I've seen you've been shown again and again how your changes are not neutral, but you simply refuse to accept it. For someone who claims to "have no dog in this fight" you seem unusually willing to repeatedly revert over a period of several days to get your way and be willfully resistant to all evidence and reason that you may be mistaken. How long would you have long-term contributors suffer sublimation of their energy into repetitive debates over long settled issues that produce no results? FeloniousMonk 04:20, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Exactly - WP:NPOV is what I am trying to defend. It was due to all the discussion on the WP:NPOV talk (which I frequent) that I was investigating this article. I've only made two reverts over two days. My changes here have been (from the discussion above) mostly supported. I guess I refuse to accept a revert without discussion or compromise on what is clearly a POV violation. It certainly doesn't seem long settled - User:Tomandlu above stated that he counted 8 different objections to the lead sentence. Morphh (talk) 4:50, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
The main issue seems to be whether the intelligent designer is God. The current lead states, as a purely factual matter, that the intelligent designer is indeed God. In my opinion, it is the purely factual presentation of this that is slightly POV, and I think the lead should be reworded to state that, although the "official view" is that the intelligent designer may or may not be God, this has been found to be a deceptive stratagem on the part of ID proponents to disguise a religious argument for the existence of God as science. -- Cat Whisperer 05:28, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
What evidence do you have that any prominant ID advocate believes or has done any research to suggest the intelligent designer is ANYTHING but god? Not Behe winking and saying it could be a space alien, or Dembski doing the same. But a leading ID proponent who is doing actual research to support the intelligent designer is a space alien. Can you cite one paper where a leading IDer does anything other than suggest it could be a man from mars? And let's not forget ID was the subject of an important court case and the court did not find the it could be a little green man from mars assertion to be very compelling or believable. What you are suggesting is that the article take a sympathetic discovery institute POV which is not likely to happen any time soon. Mr Christopher 14:58, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Regarding the new introduction:

  • Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God,[1] based on the premise that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."
  • Intelligent design is "the assertion or belief that physical and biological systems observed in the universe result from purposeful design by an intelligent being rather than from chance or undirected natural processes."
There are two major differences here.
  1. Defining ID as a form of the teleological arguments vs not doing so
    This is supported by a number of sources, including the Kitzmiller ruling. In addition, it has not been realistically challenged by any ID proponent (Behe admits that the space alien idea is "unsatisfying", iirc). Sober has shown how intelligent design reduces, philosophically to an argument for the existence of God. Peterson, who considers ID scientific, just not progressively scientific, considers it an argument for the existence of God. So this assertion is well supported, and not seriously challenged (ID proponents say things like "ID theory does not speculate about the identity of the creator).
  2. Defining ID as a "belief or assertion"
    This is problematic, and unreferenced. ID proponents have always stated that ID is a scientific hypothesis. Certainly, it is framed in the language of science. It is not a "belief or assertion" - ID proponents have varying beliefs about the nature of God, they include YECs who reject common descent, and people like Behe who seem willing to accept 95% of neo-darwinian evolution.
  • The scientific community states unequivocally that intelligent design is not science;[7] many scientists and at least one major organization of science teachers have also termed it pseudoscience,[8] and some have termed it junk science.[9] The U.S. National Academy of Sciences has stated that intelligent design "and other claims of supernatural intervention in the origin of life" are not science because they cannot be tested by experiment, do not generate any predictions, and propose no new hypotheses of their own
  • It has been determined by scientific consensus to be pseudoscience, not adhering to the scientific method, and by U.S. legal ruling to be "not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God."
  1. The original version is descriptive and does not go beyond the references. The latter version has strange language ([i]t has been determined by scientific consensus) and is at the same time both overly broad (in its attribution of descriptors like "pseudoscience" and "not science") and overly narrow (in saying that a U.S. legal ruling has said... when in fact this was really said by many academics, including those who testified in the case).
  • Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute,[3][4][5] claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life.
  • The Discovery Institute claims that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life. Opponents claim this is a disguised strategy to reintroduce Creationism to the science classroom after being banned from state supported public education by the Edwards v. Aguillard ruling.
  1. I think it's better to attribute the claims to individuals, especially those who made a serious intellectual contribution to ID, and not to an amorphous organisation.
  2. The proposed version leaves out the fact that all of the leading proponents are associated with the DI.
  3. The final statement about Edwards seems a bit disjointed, and is attributed to unnamed "opponents".

Overall, I don't see how the change is an improvement to the article. 35.9.6.175 06:21, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

what i thought was a pretty good point raised by the 'other intro' advocates.....

I would first of all say that just because a bunch of people say that an article is biased, it doesn't follow that it necessarily is. But i thought that perhaps the best point raised was that no other sources say that ID is a teleological argument as the first / foremost definition (of course it is, but other sources seem to go on to explain that later) - so we appear to be doing something a little bit original - is this at all true? Petesmiles 04:44, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

No, there are lots of other sources. As best I recall, both Sober and Peterson describe it that way. I'm pretty sure lots of others do as well. Nothing at my fingertips, but it's easy enough to support. 35.9.6.175 06:22, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
i haven't found a single dictionary or encyclopedia (other than this biased Wikipedia version) or newspaper article or any source that defines ID to be the same as the teleological argument. there are lot's of notable people who say so, and that they say so must be included and attributed in the article but this lead statement states this equivalence as fact and not attributed to any person's opinion or conclusion. that is intellectually dishonest, as well as contrary to the language (that i've cited several times) and spirit of WP:NPOV . there are lots of people who have come to that conclusion (that ID is an argument for the existence of God) and such conclusions should be cited in the article. but it's not the definition and to make it such is "doing something a little bit original ". r b-j 06:37, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
The Library Of Congress classifies all ID material as teleological. Dembski's books and all others are considered teleological by the United States Library of Congress. Did you not read the note from above with a link to it? Mr Christopher 20:09, 22 March 2007 (UTC) Click here and spare yourself the scrolling Mr Christopher 20:11, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

would it be fair to say (rbj) that this is the crux of the current argument? - that you don't feel that kicking off with the teleological argument thing fits with NPOV? - I don't know about Sober and Peterson, but you clearly dispute that it's properly sourced - do you have any specific problems with the reference given? I'm trying to find a basis for useful discussion that doesn't involve all sides telling each other they're idiots...! Petesmiles 06:49, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

A quick google search turns up this from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy and course at the U. of Chicago... 35.9.6.175 07:04, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

From memory, Behe has referred to the argument as a predecessor for ID, and no doubt similar statements have been made by other ID proponents, However, Johnson presented both the argument and the centrality of God in ID in his statements in the BBC documentary A War on Science

"The Darwinian theory of evolution is the grand creation story of our culture. Every culture has a creation story, creation myth if you like, and the creation story is the basis for every kind of knowledge in that culture. And for that reason, the experts who have the authority to tell the creation story to the public have great power. And they always have, or at least want, a monopoly of that power. They don't want to share it to anybody."

"The problem with the Darwinian story is not that it's altogether false, certainly, but perhaps it's true within a much more limited scale than is usually claimed."
"The Darwinists claim we must keep God and any form of supernatural creation out of science, and nature had to be capable doing all of its own creating."
"We saw an opportunity to change the world. By moving debate away from this bible versus science stereotype, and into the question of whether the scientific evidence, when examined impartially, really justified and supported the grand claims of Darwinism."

These paragraphs were separated by narration and, before the last paragraph, interviews with Behe and Dembski, with the narrator stating "Together they claimed it was evidence for a supernatural power. They had forged the seemingly impossible, evidence of a creator based on science, not religion." I've not trawled through all of Johnson's writings, but as presented on the BBC he openly states the argument for the existence of God as the basis of ID. .. dave souza, talk 09:01, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Dave, I'm glad you pointed that out (in a nice little box to boot  ;) -- too many folks here seem to be oblivious to the facts of ID, to ID's genesis in religious dogma, and the agenda of its proponents. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 12:27, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I don't see anyone debating the intention or the aspect that it is founded in religious dogma. Several of you keep stating that editing the sentence is denying what ID really is, which I don't think is the intention or the case. The current sentence states the majority opinion as fact - this is a problem. I don't even think we need to remove the statement from the first sentence, so long as it is worded slightly different to be neutral. Example:

Intelligent design is the argument that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause and not an undirected process such as natural selection, which is generally considered an argument for the existence of God.

Define what ID is to someone that doesn't know anything... "argument for God" tells me nothing - "argument that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause and not an undirected process such as natural selection" tells me what it is. I don't care which definition is used.. this one or the one from American Heritage Dictionary. I also would not put a quote in the lead sentence - put this in our own words. Morphh (talk) 13:22, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
This completely misses the deceptive nature of ID. How about:

Intelligent design is the argument that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause and not an undirected process such as natural selection. Proponents of intelligent design state that the intelligent designer may or may not be God; however, this has been found to be a deceptive stratagem to disguise a religious argument for the existence of God as science.

-- Cat Whisperer 14:54, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
This lead works for me and I would Support. This does not state that ID is an argument for God but has been found to be an argument for God after first explaining what ID is. Morphh (talk) 15:07, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Works for me too - Support. As one final changes, I would suggest that "religious argement for the existence of God.." could have the link to Teleological argument. Tomandlu 15:27, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
This would be far more in the direction of my preference; in any case, I find it far more neutral and accurate than the current intro. My only objection would be that the second sentence needs to cite the sources provided (the court ruling, etc.) supporting it, and it should also indicate, for the sake of accuracy, that it's been found to be a teleological argument for the existence of god. I find the first sentence to be entirely accurate, and ultimately, I believe the best beginning to the article that can be found--it provides a clear and overwhelmingly well-supported definition of what intelligent design is. As per the MoS, this is exactly what the first sentence of any article should do--after that point it's perfectly legitimate to begin discussing opposing viewpoints of the issue at hand. AmiDaniel (talk) 17:36, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
To begin with, I would disagree strongly with saying "this has been found to be a deceptive stratagem to disguise a religious argument for the existence of God as science". That would never float. The ID movement intends to use it as a Wedge, that's true (and documented), but I don't think there has been any "deception" about what ID is...maybe the occassional "wink and nod" like Behe's space aliens. ID is a teleological argument. That is totally different from whether ID is scientific. The "revolutionary" aspect of ID, the reason that its proponents say that it heralds a paradigm shift in biology, is the assertion that a teleological argument can be scientific, that they can prove the existence of God (or at least, an "intelligent designer", wink, wink) through scientific means. 35.9.6.175 18:43, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I don't have a problem characterizing perjury [31] as deception, but if others do, then I am certainly open to rewording. I just put my intro out there as an attempt to start the lead with the "generic" definition of ID, and then immediately proceed to how ID proponents have been caught red-handed lying about what ID is in order to evade restrictions on teaching religion in the public schools. I think this is a better approach than the current intro, which just altogether ignores how proponents define ID because they are lying about it. -- Cat Whisperer 19:18, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I'll be blunt: the proposed is a bullshit intro. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 19:19, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Addendum: It's too long, the language is somewhat convoluted and ambiguous (are they presenting God as science?), it needs sourcing, and takes too long to get to the point. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 20:29, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
"ID is a teleological argument" is pretty generic. A pro-ID blog is called Telic thought. The point of connecting ID back to Socrates is made all the time. That ID is a teleological argument is the least controversial thing about it. It's a valid question whether we want to start with big words (teleological argument) or smaller ones (argument for the existence of God) or perhaps some other way of putting it, but I think that it's the most succinct, and the least inaccurate, way of wording it. 35.9.6.175 19:28, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Regarding the perjury issue - we need to make sure we don't confuse the ID hypothesis with the ID movement. For completeness, the article should (and does) describe them both. But they are not one and the same. I'd happily call the movement deceptive (and worse), as per the Wedge document, but the ID hypothesis itself is far more nuanced. 35.9.6.175 19:31, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
There is no actual "ID hypothesis"; there is only the ID movement and their various claims. None of which amount to anything near a hypothesis. Were there an actual "ID hypothesis" a notable number of relevant and idependent professionals would be associated with it. Instead, all we have are a small loose group of like minded but diverse cronies organized by the DI marching around in lock step all bleating the same claims. 151.151.21.101 19:51, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
By "ID hypothesis" I mean the assertion that it's possible to scientifically show that some sort of a god exists. I'm not saying that the hypothesis is testable... Dembski's "explanatory filter" only rules out other known explanations, it doesn't have a way to rule out design, and Behe's IC is simply an argument from ignorance... but there is a hypothesis (that you can scientifically prove the existence of God) which is intimately intertwined with, but is not identical to the wedge-drive ID movement. One can show that the ID hypothesis fails on philosophical and scientific grounds entirely on its own, which is far more powerful than saying that it fails simply because of the deceit and duplicitousness of the ID movement. 35.9.6.175 20:58, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

(un-dent) Intelligent design is the ideology behind the Discovery Institute's campaign to introduce Christian teachings into science classes. It was the immediate successor of the Creation Science campaign and the forerunner of the Teach the Controversy campaign.

Job done. You can then take your time describing the ideology and worry about whether or not it's teleological or an argument for the existence of Dog. SheffieldSteel 17:40, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Undue weight

I'm also wondering about the "undue weight" policy that is implied here. Doesn't most of the population and a portion of the scientific community believe in God and thus the ID's premise? Why is so much weight given to rejecting the idea when most of the world believes it? This is just a outsider observation - I have no intent to challenge it.. just curious as to the thought behind it. Morphh (talk) 13:22, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

To believe in god does not equate to believing in ID. Most belivers I know think ID is a load of crap yet they still believe in god. Most of the world does not believe in ID, in fact the IDers have very little popular support outside of the fundy community. Again, belief in god does not equate with belief in ID. You would do well to familiarize yourself with the subject matter. Mr Christopher 14:30, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Also, I find it amusing how easily you contradict yourself. Above you wrote "My first issue is with the first sentence. "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God," This is an opinion - not a fact" and now in this section of the talk page your are saying belief in god = belief in ID. Amusing if not disruptive. Mr Christopher 14:33, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I did not contradict myself. The scope of ID seemed to include anything intelligent creating life. GOD = ID does not mean ID = GOD in my mind. From my incompetent view on the subject, it seemed to me that belief in God means you believe in an intelligent designer to life (that being God). The argument presented is does an intelligent designer mean God (which I assume is a personal God) as a fact. The answer is no and Wikipedia should not present it as fact. It is the major opinion that ID = GOD. My intention was not to be disruptive. It just seem to me that if you believed in God, then you believed that something intelligent created life but perhaps I'm missing something. Like I said, I'm not challenging the undue weight consensus. It was just a naive observation I guess... Morphh (talk) 15:27, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but it was a very naive observation. That people believe in a deity does in no way mean they believe that deity created life through a miracle. And if you'll glance at the article, intelligent design is a very specific concept, as promoted by the Discovery Institute, not the general teleological argument you seem to take it to be. -- Ec5618 15:57, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Intelligent design is a specific (though poorly demarcated) assertion that (a) there are things in nature than cannot be explained by "naturalistic means", and (b) it is possible to show this scientifically. So there are two parts to ID - first, that it is a teleological argument, and second, it this can be demonstrated scientifically.
Morph's problem is a common one, and is unfortunate. Lots of people misunderstand ID, in part because it tends to be presented in different ways to different audiences, and being vague is part of the strategy. 35.9.6.175 16:22, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for the clarification. Shouldn't we clarify the definition to address this common misunderstanding? For example, "Intelligent design is an attempt to use science to argue that certain features of the universe...". Morphh (talk) 17:30, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm not sure - I mean, I don't mean to be rude about this, but... there's not really been any research, only speculation, so can we really call it science per se? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Adam Cuerden (talkcontribs)
There is no science going on in the ID world. No attempt whatsoever to prove anything ID related. ID is a public relations con, pure and simple. Well and a cash cow for some of its advocates. So we cannot say they are attemtping anything scientific. Unless of course you can find evidence to the contrary. Mr Christopher 17:40, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, most people agree/know that ID is a complete load of bullshit that has nothing to do with science. Yet at the same time, most people agree/know that Scientology is a complete load of bullshit that has nothing to do with science, religion, or anything other than scamming people out of money--yet look at the way that article begins: neutral and factual, without trying to sway its readers. NPOV is not "majority POV", but rather "neutral POV." It's important to keep that in mind. AmiDaniel (talk) 17:47, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Obviously...which is why the article doesn't start out by saying "ID is a complete load of bullshit that has nothing to do with science", but rather, with a balanced, neutral view of it. 35.9.6.175 18:30, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Would I get banned if I could just write that once in the intro. Please. I'd be so happy if I could. ID, Creationism, and all the other variations of this theme (Flood Geology, Noah's Ark, Alien Abductions) are such a load of horse manure. NPOV is so frustrating sometimes. But I'll down a scotch and get over it. Orangemarlin 19:58, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I've found that a beer or two (so long as the beer was intelligently designed by master brewers) eased the pain. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 20:32, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
The problem with beer is that if it's not intelligently designed, my body has evolved to react violently and produce a global flood which would create havoc amongst all kinds of animals. If you know of a well designed brew, please write an NPOV article about it, and we'll try to keep it from being vandalized. Orangemarlin 21:03, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
No, ID is a post-Darwinian form of the teleological argument which is framed in the form of a scientific hypothesis, although (for various reasons) it really isn't scientific (except perhaps if Lakatos' model of science is used, in which case it is a degenerate(?) scientific research programme). It doesn't use science (as generally defined), more the metaphor of science. And the article says that. Maybe it needs a section on "what ID is not", but quite frankly, I am unaware of a source which delves into that (in part because there are, as Sober describes, two IDs, a "mini-ID", which was designed to pass Edwards, and a number of larger models of ID, which have not been clearly demarcated, and include both Wells' denial of common descent and the old earth, and Behe's apparent embrace of 95% of modern evolutionary biology. 35.9.6.175 17:41, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Sober is far from a non partisan source on the topic. People here will take his views in context and with a grain of salt I'm sure. 151.151.21.101 19:57, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Self-Creation

The Design Argument: David Hume vs. Post-Science:

One of the oldest and most popular arguments for the existence of God is the design argument – that all the order and 'purpose' in the world bespeaks a divine origin. A modern manifestation of this belief is creationism.

The following debate is from the front page of the Self-Creation.org site of Dr. Hugh Ching, founder of post-science, http://www.self-creation.org and Wikipedia on David Hume http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Hume

Hume: For the design argument to be feasible, it must be true that order and purpose are observed only when they result from design. But order is observed regularly, resulting from presumably mindless processes like snowflake or crystal generation. Design accounts for only a tiny part of our experience with order and 'purpose'.

Post-Science: From the post-science discovery of the solution of completely automated software, post-science expects that in one or two thousand years mankind will start to think about creating itself based on a completely automated software. In the process of self-creation, we have to have a design and must decide the purpose of our creation, as whoever created us must have done. However, the problem of completely automated software involves around five hundred, or virtually an unlimited number of, variables, and is about two orders of magnitude more complex than an average problem in science, which has roughly five variables. Post-science, in its reexamination of the existing creation, finds that the current creation has almost at an optimal design, from which post-science finds little which can be surpassed and, thus, conclude that we most likely are also created. In particular, post-science realizes that evil is created as a survival mechanism for the weak to compete against strong, and pain and suffering are designed as warning devises and a way for mankind to learn lessons on non-violable laws of nature in the absence of its creators.

Hume: Furthermore, the design argument is based on an incomplete analogy: because of our experience with objects, we can recognise human-designed ones, comparing for example a pile of stones and a brick wall. But in order to point to a designed Universe, we would need to have an experience of a range of different universes. As we only experience one, the analogy cannot be applied.

Post-Science: With the permanent creations based on the completely automated software, we will have two types of permanent entities, ours is primitive and the existing seems to be optimal. One example is the solution to touch. Touch is still not even recognized as a problem, but post-science and our creators have it solved. Here, if the solution is correct, is an order of the creation yet undetected, by the people who try to refute creation.

Hume: Even if the design argument is completely successful, it could not (in and of itself) establish a robust theism; one could easily reach the conclusion that the universe's configuration is the result of some morally ambiguous, possibly unintelligent agent or agents whose method bears only a remote similarity to human design.

Post-Science: Post-science believes that the origin of life starts from unintelligent raw materials. To advance from raw materials to anything intelligent takes almost infinite amount of time, which the universe has. This transient stage of the development of intelligence is based on random chance and is very disorderly. And, mankind would be very unfortunate, if we are still in this transient stage. Post-science believes that our living system is currently in a steady state of self-creation. Post-science would welcome any design which can surpass the existing design of life. However, post-science admits that art, particularly, beauty is still lacking in the creation, but, on the other hand, it realizes that love holds a dominant position in the universe and that our creators rather create those they have loved rather than those who are most beautiful.

Hume: If a well-ordered natural world requires a special designer, then God's mind (being so well-ordered) also requires a special designer. And then this designer would likewise need a designer, and so on ad infinitum. We could respond by resting content with an inexplicably self-ordered divine mind; but then why not rest content with an inexplicably self-ordered natural world?

Post-Science: Self-creation needs not worry about prior creators. However, self-creation might go on ad infinitum only forward, but not backward in time. Before self-creation is the transient stage of creation. Maybe the next stage of the progress of development of the living system, or the intelligence of the universe, will be the “inexplicably self-ordered natural world" as well as the "divine mind.”

Hume: Often, what appears to be purpose, where it looks like object X has feature F in order to secure some outcome O, is better explained by a filtering process: that is, object X wouldn't be around did it not possess feature F, and outcome O is only interesting to us as a human projection of goals onto nature. This mechanical explanation of teleology anticipated natural selection. (see also Anthropic principle)

Post-Science: Self-creation’s purpose is for the future, not the past. With only a few thousands of years of recorded history, post-science is starting to speculate on self-creation. This shortness of the recorded history makes leaving any sign of self-creation unnecessary. Self-creation will include evolution as a design specification in anticipation of uncertainty the design.

But, before we get too ambitious with our design plan we should understand the existing situation. Sure, post-science would not rule out the possibility of progress, for example, shortening the period of irrationality and suffering from 10,000 years of recorded history, when mankind is conscious of its own suffering, to, say, 1,000 years and making our natural life span longer to or infinity, but the later is in conflict with the former; imagine what can happen if Stalin and Mao had lived much longer or if Hitler were as intelligent as Kant. We can also include paranormal phenomena into out design, but, if self-creation is correct, sometime in the distant past, pain must have been considered a paranormal phenomena before pain was discovered. The first creator to propose the creation of pain must be one of the most ridiculed being in the universe! Today, if I propose to program a computer so that it can feel pain, my proposal will equally be rejected, but the existence pain is already proven.

The following is an explanation of Self-Creation from http://www.Self-Creation.org

The self-creation of the living system should be the goal of our existence, for what we have self-created will be able to do anything we can do. In the process of self-creation, we will know from our own design specifications, the meaning of our lives and the purpose of our existence. Self-creation is based on the technology of complete automation, and the goal of complete automation is to self-create the living system. Complete automation starts with the construction of Self-manufactured General Purpose Robots with the ability of touch. The Robots will be programmed with completely automated software.

The solution to touch is first revealed in the 1978 book "Table Tennis Scientific Analyses" which describe the prolonged contact between a book and a racket during impact. The solution to touch, patents "Completely Automated And Self-generating Software System" Pat. No. 5,485,601 in 1996, and "Quantitative Supply And Demand Model Based On Infinite Spreadsheet" Pat. No. 6,078,901 in 2000 form the foundation for complete automation.

The vision of self-creation is guided and guaranteed by the existing living system. DNA is the ultimate completely automated software in a chemical computer. Humans represent the optimal model of Self-manufactured General Purpose Robots.

All the engineering creations of the current scientific culture are created for temporary existence. In particular, software are partially automated and designed for temporary existence. Complete automation deals with permanent entities and analysis extending to infinity in time and space. Our society will become increasingly complex. Complete automation is the solution to unlimited complexity.

Rational decision-making based on the Infinite Spreadsheet is also the solution to peace, based on rational arbitration. The bulk of current software budget is on maintenance, which can be greatly reduced by the completely automated software. The goal of self-creation narrows down the choices of technologies we should develop. The vision of complete automation should be one of the most important breakthroughs in the coming knowledge economy.

The technology of complete automation includes the solutions of software, value, and touch based on jumpulse. The Complete Automation Laboratory is headed by Dr. T. L. Kunii (homotopy theory), Prof. C. V. Ramamoorthy (Ram Number of Universal Permanent Numbers), Dr. Hugh Ching (the Infinite Spreadsheet and completely automated software), and the late Dr. Ta-You Wu (Father of Chinese Physics).

The Laboratory is formed to introduce the concepts of complete automation and permanence to the world, which is currently dominated by the scientific views of temporary creations and partial automation. The Laboratory hopes to move the world from the destructive knowledge of science to the constructive knowledge of post-science. It also hopes that cooperation will replace competition, which is necessary in determining right from wrong only in the absence of the solution to value.

The belief of self-creation will put life science at center-stage of knowledge. Science uses past phenomena to predict the future and is, therefore, backward looking. Social science is based on value, which depends on future consequences. Social science has to be forward looking. Life science deals with creation and sees the world from the point of view of the creator.

Most traditional religions are preoccupied with social science and the struggle between good and evil. If the living system is created, it should be all created for good purposes. While religions try to eradicate evil, self-creationism considers evil an important part of creation. From the point of view of life science, evil is created as a survival mechanism for the weak to compete against the strong. Without this survival mechanism, a large part of creatures will perish. Most wars are justified on the principle of the struggle against evil. The elimination of this justification will greatly enhance peace and will allow the rational method of arbitration to replace armed conflicts. With peace, mankind can start to embark on the path of constructive development of our world. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Chien Yi Lee (talkcontribs) 01:06, 23 March 2007 (UTC).

And the lion will lie down with the lamb. But is there a reliable source calling it intelligent design? .... dave souza, talk 01:18, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
And I am under the impression that a single bird in the hand is actually worth two in the bush, but what exactly are you talking about, Chien Yi Lee? Mr Christopher 18:17, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Discussion on Talk:Intelligent Design?

I was temporarily confused when I found a completely different discussion on Talk:Intelligent Design, which turns out to be several years old. I am changing that page to redirect here. -- Cat Whisperer 20:49, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

I've merged the histories of that aticle and talk page into this one, although I apologize if anyone noticed that the article disappeared for a few minutes--for some reason the database locked up when I was half-way through, and I then had further issues with my inet connection. In any case it's done now :). AmiDaniel (talk) 21:09, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Link Suggestion

[ResearchID.org] is a wiki site on ID, I would recommend it for inclusion in the list of pro-id websites.

It's a low-volume wiki with a handful of contributors. What does it have that isn't covered more autoritatively elsewhere? Guettarda 07:26, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Maybe it's all DI can muster? I'd still hesitate to say i'd actually half-heartedly support its addition to the link list.--ZayZayEM 12:03, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Not to belittle Joe Campana's (who's a good guy) effort, but ResearchID is moribund, largely the product of just two or three editors, and not notable as a ID site. Its single claim to fame was when the DI blog linked to an article there once. FeloniousMonk 17:27, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

ID & A god

Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God,[1] is the very first line of the article. This is refrenced, but is refrenced from a anti-ID person's testimony. There is no such claim made as a part of the ID theory by at least the great majority of ID advocates. Is this even an attempt at neutrality?--Erkin2008 07:28, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

Add another one to the list of editors that do not think the first part is neutral. Several editors have been trying to argue this very point and the article was protected due to the edit war that ensued. The article states this as a fact, when the reference is only an opinion. Morphh (talk) 11:43, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
A very notable and neutral opinion, you fail to properly note, I'll point out. Erkin's reasoning, that only ID proponents get to describe what ID is, doesn't follow and isn't supported by policy. FeloniousMonk 16:52, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Since courts and other neutral observers state that ID is religious dogma, that necessary means a god is involved of some sort. I guess the alternative is the intelligence are green men from Mars. To me, they're one in the same, but we're trying to stay neutral. Sticking with the lead, it does not matter what the affiliation of a reference is, as long as it verifies the statement. The lead is only calling a spade a spade, not clubs. Please, without typical histrionics, explain why mentioning that ID is an argument for the existence of G_d violates WP:NPOV in any way?Orangemarlin 15:20, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
I suppose it comes down to sourcing. Are there sources which deny that ID is a teleological argument? Guettarda 15:44, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
It comes down to common sense. If it isn't God what is the point of having ID? Even little green man do not disprove evolution. Although Martians may have brought life to earth they are also subject to evolution, how does that constitute an alternative to evolution? Nomen NescioGnothi seauton 16:05, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
"A pyramid scheme is a wonderful opportunity to increase your income for very little work. Pyramid schemes have been criticised in certain quarters and court cases..." What its advocates will publicly say about a thing isn't always the best description of it. SheffieldSteel 16:20, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Does not everyone agree with the definition... "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."? This part seems to be fact agree with by both parties. While this part of the sentence is generic fact, the first part is opinion (yes a very notable opinion that is neutral); however, that does not change the fact that it is opinion and there is a differing opinion. You can't start out the definition of ID stating an opinion as fact and state that it is NPOV. Go with the basic definition of what ID is and then state the majority opinion and then state the minority opinion. ID is ... basic def ... However, ... argument for God... Proponents argue that .... not argument for God... Why is this such a problem!!! This does not reduce reduce the argument or make it the proponent definition (it would not say ID is not an argument for God in the first sentence). It shouldn't make the claim either way in the first sentence and it certainly shouldn't state it as fact. Second sentence can go into opponent definition and third sentence can describe proponent view. Morphh (talk) 17:35, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
The Majority opinion of ID is that it's junk science, is a religious argument for Creationism, presupposes the existence of a supernatural being and shouldn't be taught in schools. The minority opinion is yours. Orangemarlin 17:58, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
For one, I never said it was my opinion - I actually think it is junk science and a religious argument as well. However, this is not the point - you made my point. Majority opinion, minority opinion. Currently, the majority opinion is stated as FACT in the lead. I don't think either should be in the lead sentence... just a common definition. Morphh (talk) 18:05, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

<reduced indent> It is the common definition. Case closed. Orangemarlin 18:34, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

The first sentence, or what is ID

The issue of the first sentence keeps coming up. We need to figure out a solution. I'd say the simplest option is to unpipe the link - people are less likely to complain about big words than they are about simple English. That's a way to make things more peaceful, but it really doesn't achieve what I believe to be the goals of the project.

So, to start out - what is ID? What sources agree with the lead, and more importantly, what sources disagree with the lead? And, obviously, we want sources who know what they are talking about, not letters to the editor in some small town in Iowa written by some random local (and that's not a hypothetical, it's what has really happened in the past). Guettarda 15:57, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

The method for structuring the into for the last few years has been to state what ID is, concept/argument/etc.; followed by a sentence or two stating what proponents claim it is and its relevance, in other words the ID position. This is followed by how ID has been received by the relevant professionals, the scientific community; and wrapping it all up is its legal status since that is an important part of its legitimacy and whether or not ID proponents achieve one their more notable goals, bringing ID into the high school science classroom. This format is a literal application of the NPOV policy: state what the topic is, attribute views to those who hold them and in the proportion they are held, and state why. So, to answer your question, the only notable, putatively neutral analysis of ID to date was the judge's ruling in the Dover trial, and there ID was found to be a religous argument for God. If there's a more notable non-partisan source available, please present it. FeloniousMonk 17:07, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
To come to this opinion, the court had to start with the basic definition of ID "Intelligent design is the argument that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause and not an undirected process such as natural selection". Do you suggest that the court did not take this as the root definition? What is implied by the opinion is that the root definition was deemed to be an argument for God. It is their opinion that ID (root definition) is used as an attempt to argue for the existence of God in the classroom. I don't think the court denies this common definition. Morphh (talk) 17:49, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
To repeat ID's own definition of itself ("Intelligent design is the argument that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause and not an undirected process such as natural selection") as fact is to portray an opinion as a fact and repeat a partisan viewpoint. The court found that the definition of ID put forth by ID proponents was carefully crafted by them to mask the definition's religious foundation in order to better promote their aims. It's all in the Dover ruling, but you have to read the entire ruling: [32] FeloniousMonk 18:38, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Let's flip it around... Could you make the statement that ID is not the argument that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause and not an undirected process such as natural selection? This is the base definition and without it neither argument makes any sense. "ID is an argument for God" is not a definition. It tells you nothing about what it is. It is an opinion on what the definition's meaning and intention is. The proponent view is that it does not imply God and the opponent viewpoint is that it does imply God. Neither of these change the base definition. Morphh (talk) 19:20, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Morphh, do you have any sources that support your assertion that ID is not a teleological argument? Forget about the courts for a moment - this isn't based on the court decision, it only summarises dozens, if not hundreds of other sources. Has anyone (other than the editors on this page) said that ID is not teleological? Please, do provide the sources upon which you have based your opinion. Guettarda 19:04, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
It seems inherent in the deception that they specifically avoided any link to "God" in Intelligent Design. Everyone here keeps saying that such is the proponent position so I assume that they hold such a position somewhere. I haven't read through the case - I'm just going off of what I remember in the news. It seems we make this argument here in Intelligent designer and the sub-article. You do have a good point though... I'm assuming this argument exists based on discussion and news I've heard. If I'm not willing to do the research on this subject (which I'm really not interested in doing), I should probably shut up. :-) Morphh (talk) 19:20, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

It's becoming clear that there is no agreed upon factual definition of ID. In that case, the majority opinion should prevail, but that majority opinion should not be presented as fact. How about changing the lead from "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God" to "Intelligent design has been found to be an argument for the existence of God"? -- Cat Whisperer 19:37, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

This would be better but I still think the generic definition should go first. I think the prose would flow better and it would make more sense but this wording would be an acceptable compromise. Morphh (talk) 19:46, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
has been found to be runs into a WP:WEASEL problem. No matter how you slice it, ID = teleology in a more modern package. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 21:23, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
So long as it has a source with it, it shouldn't be an issue. Weasel runs into issue when using seemingly support statements without attributing opinions to verifiable sources, lending them the force of authority without letting the reader decide whether the source of the opinion is reliable. Since a source is used to verify the statement, the reader can decide whether the source opinion is reliable. Morphh (talk) 21:31, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
There is no WP:WEASEL problem. That guideline defines weasel words as "words or phrases that seemingly support statements without attributing opinions to verifiable sources". However, the statement is attributed to a verifiable source, a U.S. District Court which found intelligent design to be a teleological argument. The relevant Wikipedia policy here has already been identified; it is WP:NPOV. This policy requires that we assert facts, including facts about opinions — but do not assert the opinions themselves (bold in the original). The current first sentence is a clear violation of this policy, and needs to be changed. -- Cat Whisperer 21:41, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree with Cat whisperer. There is no WEASEL violation. This wording seems more satisfactorily NPOV. Consider: If a court had found ID to not be a teleogical argument, would that instantly make it not one? Perhaps the lead could include both DI's def and a statement that it has been found to be essentially a teleological argument.--ZayZayEM 01:27, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

I hope this isn't going in a big circle, Cat, but to repeat Guettarda's request above, do you have any sources showing ID isn't a teleological argument (you see, it's sourced right now as a fact) - that, and the point Felonius makes above give those supporting its removal a fair hill to climb.... Petesmiles 21:49, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

The WP:NPOV policy makes the following definition of fact: "By 'fact' we mean 'a piece of information about which there is no serious dispute.'" As you said, the statement in question is currently sourced as a fact. So in regard to your request, are you saying that you believe that there is no serious dispute about this piece of information, and you are asking me to provide sources which exhibit this dispute? -- Cat Whisperer 22:00, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
An interesting question, please do. It should be noted that the principal proponents of ID present it as an argument for the existence of God, while saying that is might not be God, and that they don't really believe it could be anything else. A verifiable source claiming ID isn't the teleological argument would be useful. . .. dave souza, talk 22:39, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
How about this statement from a New York Times article [33] about President Bush's remarks supporting intelligent design: "Intelligent design does not identify the designer, but critics say the theory is a thinly disguised argument for God and the divine creation of the universe." Yet the first sentence in the current article lead states, as a matter of fact, that ID identifies the designer as God. The New York Times is a reliable source, and President Bush's position is certainly notable. Additionally, it seems to me that if a U.S. District Court had to decide the issue of whether ID is a teleological argument, then that issue is clearly a matter of dispute. -- Cat Whisperer 01:17, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
This material is already in the article for those who care to actually read it. It can't all be put in the lead. The lead, after careful consensus among many editors pro, con and ostensibly neutral, was agreed to consist of three short paragraphs. The first would synopsize ID in a brief sentence or two and identify who its proponents are. The second would summarize the response of the scientific community, and the third would briefly describe ID's legal status. That can of course be re-consensused given an adequately strong mandate to do so. But I, for one, don't see this kind of mandate being put forward here, nor have I seen a proposal for alternate language that appears to be an improvement over the existing language. ... Kenosis 03:39, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
The issue isn't whether this material appears later in the article; the issue is the blatant NPOV violation in the current lead sentence, in its presentation of one opinion in a disputed issue as factual. -- Cat Whisperer 05:20, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

From wiki: teleological argument:

"While most of the classic forms of this argument are linked to monotheism, some versions of the argument may substitute for God a lesser demiurge, multiple gods and/or goddesses, or perhaps extraterrestrials as cause for natural phenomena, although reapplication of the argument might still imply an ultimate cause. One can also leave the question of the attributes of a hypothesized "Designer" completely open, yielding the following simple formulation:

Every design has a designer. The universe has highly complex design. Therefore, the universe has a Designer. "

So wiki is saying that a teleological argument does not necessarily imply a 'supernatural' creator. Something to think about. 68.109.232.53 22:42, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

well yes, the whole thing is worth thinking about - but we really run the risk of heading into original research - the best way to make progress is probably to find some sources - just to echo dave above, are there any saying ID isn't a teleological argument? - Petesmiles 23:52, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

We can define a thing in many ways:-
  • the motive behind its creation
  • the means of its operation
  • the results of its existence
  • what its critics have said
  • what its defenders have said in reply
  • how it has been advertised to the public
  • how it has been advertised to a specific subset of the public
I'd like to suggest that the entries near the top of the list are preferable, but really I'd like to hear other people's ideas.
SheffieldSteel 00:44, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
The New York Times article I quoted above after Dave's request presents the issue in a very NPOV manner: "Intelligent design does not identify the designer, but critics say the theory is a thinly disguised argument for God and the divine creation of the universe." I would even be happy with a more strongly worded statement: "Intelligent design claims not to identify the designer, but it has been found to be a thinly disguised argument for God and the divine creation of the universe." This would then cite the U.S. District Court decision. -- Cat Whisperer 01:44, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
We still need some type of common definition before it. Think of it from the view that the reader knows nothing about ID. What is a thinly disguised argument? I think the above sentence would make an excellent second sentence. Morphh (talk) 1:56, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

To Cat Whisperer: would you have any objections to the current intro if the link was de-piped? Guettarda 02:53, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Yes, I still would. If either of the phrases "teleological argument" or "argument for the existence of God" is used, it should not be in the context of a basic definition of ID (as it currently is, because of the use of the simple verb "is"). Thus, my two suggestions to fix the NPOV problem have been: (1) move the phase to the second sentence; or (2) replace the verb "is" so that it states a (strong and convincing) opinion instead of a fact. -- Cat Whisperer 03:09, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree. Morphh (talk) 3:13, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Let's leave sentence order aside for a moment and focus on this one sentence. What is wrong with the verb "is"? Guettarda 03:39, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

To clarify - on what basis are you opposed to the description of ID as a teleological argument? As I asked earlier - upon what source(s) are you basing your position? Guettarda 04:08, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
The verb "is", as used in the sentence "Intelligent design is ..." indicates a factual definition. However, we are unable to agree on any factual definition. The American Heritage Dictionary definition is seen as unduly favoring ID by those who support the current lead. However, the current lead presents the majority opinion (court decision) as a basic and factual definition of ID, when it is neither. I've quoted a solid, secondary source in the New York Times article above, which states "Intelligent design does not identify the designer" in direct contradiction to the current lead. -- Cat Whisperer 05:12, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
This isn't about us being able to agree about what ID is. It's a matter of reporting on what sources say. The DI talking point: "[i]ntelligent design does not identify the designer" does not contradict the assertion that ID is a teleological argument...not to Dembski, who is one of the leading intellectual forces behind ID, not to Johnson. Similarly "[y]et actual statements from intelligent design theorists have made it clear that the scientific theory of intelligent design does not address metaphysical and religious questions such as the nature or identity of the designer." Very true - by definition, ID does not ask questions about the nature or identity of the designer. But that does not stop it from being a teleological argument. ID seeks to prove the existence of [The Designer], it does not seek to address the nature and identity of [The Designer]. The argument from design is not an argument about whether God is the triune Christian God, the monotheistic Jewish or Muslim God, Kali or Ogun. So obviously, the teleological argument has little to do with the nature or identity or God.
More importantly, ID proponents have repeatedly referred to ID a teleological argument. Dembski, the main driving force behind ID has repeatedly spoken of ID as teleological.
  • Dembski, "Making the task of theodicy impossible" - "Science rejects it [intelligent design] for invoking an unnecessary teleology" [34]
  • ISCID Encyclopedia of Science and Philosophy - "According to the teleological argument, the order and complexity exhibited by the world are properly attributed to a purposive cause rather than a blind, undirected process. Historically, in looking for evidence of purpose, the argument has focused on the world as a whole, its laws, and structures within the world (notably life). The teleological argument has two recent incarnations. One employs the Anthropic Principle and focuses on the fine-tuning or “just-so” aspects of the physical universe required for human observers. The other constitutes a revival of design-theoretic reasoning in biology and is known under the rubric Intelligent Design." [35]
  • Dembski contributed two chapters and Behe one to Manson's "God and Design: The Teleological Argument and Modern Science" [36]

If the main players behind ID call it a teleological argument, then so should we. The quotes from the DI can be read in more than one way. They do not reject ID as a teleological argument, just that it cannot ask questions about the nature of God (unlike Haldane, who was able to determine that God had "an inordinate fondness for beetles"). I cannot find any reliable source which questions the assertion that ID is teleological. So again, please, will you back up your assertion with a source? Guettarda 06:41, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Well, it was nice to see someone besides Clinton parse the meaning of is (although he was more clever).
In any case, is is the correct word. See [37]. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 18:55, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

1st sentence: What can we agree on?

While there are citations for all these positions, all of them have criticisms.

  • "ID is a product of the DI" (perhaps not very informative)
  • "ID is a campaign by the DI" (ditto)
  • "ID is an argument for the existence..." (assertion of fact disputed)
  • "ID was found be an argument for the existence..." (arguably more accurate but doesn't actually say what it is)
  • "ID is an attempt to sneak religion into science class" (not NPOV)

I'm not sure we can evolve (if you'll pardon the expression) the current lead sentence to something which will have consensus. It seems to me that to answer the simple question "what is ID?" we need to step back from trying to pin it down so directly - because it's too confrontational - and look instead at how we want to approach defining it. That's what I was trying to get at above.

SheffieldSteel 04:30, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

The first sentence currently says:

Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God,[1] based on the premise that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."
  • "Intelligent design is an [argument for the existence of God/teleological argument]" - I am unaware of any source which disagrees with this assertion, at least broadly construed.
  • based on the premise that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause" - this could be better worded and better sourced.

I do see one problem with this sentence - that the definition of ID is incomplete...it lacks the idea that the hand of the designer is "empirically detectable". This is important, because the assertion that the hand of God can be detected is the essential element that makes ID "scientific", and it is also important because it ties back to the fact that ID is a teleological argument. Guettarda 04:46, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Maybe we should let the ID camp define it for themselves after all:- "Intelligent design should be viewed as a ground-clearing operation that gets rid of the intellectual rubbish that for generations has kept Christianity from receiving serious consideration." (Dembski, "Intelligent Design's Contribution to the Debate Over Evolution", Designinference.com website, February 2005)


G'night all SheffieldSteel 05:12, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
I could take your suggestion to some ridiculous level. We could let White Supremacists write the lead to the article about Hitler. Or let Microsoft edit their article. To be neutral, editors from all walks of life should come to a consensus. I think the ID lead has a consensus, save for the shrill voices of a couple of editors that are attempting to hide the fact that the only Intelligent Designer would be some supernatural being, or green men from Mars. This is completely silly. Orangemarlin 06:28, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Why let WS write the lead. As long as what they say is accurate. Shrill voices of a couple of editors. More than a couple. Seems like more dislike the lead than like it. Should not there be a consensus? The lead sentence should contain what both sides agree with and then the different sides could follow. 69.220.43.85 15:59, 25 March 2007 (UTC)


Here is a primary source, from the Discovery Institute, which argues against ID as a teleological argument. It states:

Does intelligent design postulate a “supernatural creator?”
Overview: No. The ACLU, and many of its expert witnesses, have alleged that teaching the scientific theory of intelligent design (ID) is unconstitutional in all circumstances because it posits a “supernatural creator.” Yet actual statements from intelligent design theorists have made it clear that the scientific theory of intelligent design does not address metaphysical and religious questions such as the nature or identity of the designer.

I personally find the New York Times article secondary source to be more reliable than our analysis of primary sources, which starts to get into issues about original research. -- Cat Whisperer 05:38, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

You are citing the NYTimes as a source for something it does not say. The current source, the Kitzmiller trial, is a far more reliable source. A judge's opinion is a neutral weighing of the evidence. There are lots of other sources available - pro-DI, anti-DI and neutral. We have outlined a lot of them on this page - the Library of Congress, the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. In addition, ID proponents refer to ID as teleological. If anyone is doing OR it would be you, trying to read meaning into a DI talking point which could easily be read several different ways (and, based on ancilliary sources, I would almost certainly read it in a very different manner than you did). As I asked in the section above, how about providing a source which actually says it isn't a form of the teleological argument, not one which you interpret as saying that? Guettarda 06:55, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
This is exactly what the Discovery Institute blurb says. The phrase "the scientific theory of intelligent design does not address metaphysical and religious questions" has the same semantic content as "not a teleological argument". -- Cat Whisperer 13:23, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
No, it doesn't. You have chosen to interpret it that way. But this isn't about your interpretation of ambiguous statements, this is about sourced content. Guettarda 15:09, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
If you don't see any contradiction between the current lead and the DI blurb, then how about writing the lead sentence to state, "Intelligent design is a teleological argument that doesn't address metaphysical and religious questions, based on ..."? -- Cat Whisperer 16:09, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

This stuff has been hashed, rehashed, rehashed again, etc. If the issue here is that the longstanding language used until several months ago (when it was advocated and eventually agreed that if it's an argument for the existence of God, it should be called so right up front) is preferable, then that argument should be made on the talk page. But right now all I see is many disparate complaints, with no visible improvements. The statement, as "Cat Whisperer" made in the section above (that "The issue isn't whether this material appears later in the article; the issue is the blatant NPOV violation in the current lead sentence, in its presentation of one opinion in a disputed issue as factual.") is an example. "Cat Whisperer"'s statement just above ("I personally find the New York Times article secondary source to be more reliable than our analysis of primary sources, which starts to get into issues about original research") is another example. The New York Times article is only one of numerous secondary sources, including the Kitamiller decision, incidentally. That NYTimes article, dealing with GWBush's having briefly gotten behind the ID movement in the Summer of 2005, was well prior to the disclosure of a wealth of facts about ID in a federal court. Cat Whisperer's attempt to use the Discovery Instiute's propoganda to justify a particular interpretation of the NYTimes article is essentially an argument to follow the semantic campaign of misdirection for which the Discovery Institute has become somewhat famous (by merit of the many reliable secondary resources, many of which are already cited in the WP article).

This point of advocacy in the last couple of talk sections really amounts to an argument to "cherry pick" the sources to have the WP article read some other way than the way it currently does, based on a particular POV, which in this instance is the POV that "Cat Whisperer" has. Unfortunately it's just one of many POVs that've been rendered around here, neglecting as it does the numerous other sources that add up to one thing, and one thing only. That one thing is that ID is a theological argument disguised as science, the leading proponents of which are all affiliated with the Discovery Institute. The scientific community has said "no way", and so has the federal court system. That's what the reliable secondary sources say about the matter of intelligent design, and that's what the WP article says about the matter of intelligent design. ... Kenosis 09:38, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

I'm not trying to present any POV here. I'm trying to correct the current lead, which, in violation of WP:NPOV, presents a particular POV (that of the court opinion) as a fact. I am quoting sources to show that the issue (of whether ID is a teleological argument) is a disputed issue, and thus not a fact under Wikipedia policy. -- Cat Whisperer 13:35, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
I strongly disagree. The sources that I've seen describing ID are either internal sources describing itself, or closely related parties. An NPOV version of the lead would include all sources to make a sound description. The DI is attempting to obfuscate Intelligent Design to a) make it more palatable to those who don't want a supernatural being involved in science, or b) make it sound like a science. A Federal Court, with a Republican judge, is about as neutral as you can get on this topic. To call them otherwise is rather specious. I do not support a change in the leadOrangemarlin 15:08, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
The problem is that Dembski, Behe and the ISCID encyclopaedia all consider it teleological. So it isn't right to say that DI-related sources are describing it as not being teleological. As I said above, DI sources, neutral sources, and anti-ID sources all call ID teleological. On one side we have Behe, Dembski, Jones, Forrest, Pennock...and on the other side we have Cat Whisperer. I must be an idiot to waste my time with this conversation. Guettarda 15:14, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Another example for consideration: Morphh (talk) 12:28, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Intelligent design is an argument that physical and biological systems observed in the universe result from purposeful design by an intelligent cause rather than from chance or undirected natural processes.[9] Intelligent design claims not to identify the designer,[10][11] but it has been found to be a thinly disguised teleological argument for the existence of God and the divine creation of the universe.[12]

I like it. We should keep the second sentence from the current lead, the one that begins "Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute, ...", perhaps introduced with "However" due to the modified intro. -- Cat Whisperer 13:49, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
"but it has been found to be a thinly disguised teleological argument for the existence of God" Um, no. That's both horribly POV and totally inaccurate. I'm no fan of ID, and while there is plenty of room to accuse them of dishonesty, this isn't one of the cases. ID proponents call it a teleological argument. Guettarda 15:07, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
What Guettarda said. And the whole sentence sounds argumentative and POV--it appears the editors are criticizing the honesty of ID (which is valid, but not very NPOV). In other words, this lead is a whole lot worse when it comes to NPOV. Orangemarlin 15:11, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
  • (1) Start by saying what ID is.
  • (2) Describe what its proponents say.
  • (3) State the most notable criticisms.

The problem with the first sentence being "ID is an argument that physical and biological systems observed in the universe result from purposeful design by an intelligent cause rather than from chance or undirected natural processes" is that it is actually #2, i.e. what its proponents say - and not even that, but what they say in public, which is very different to what the Wedge document says. If we are going to include this sentence, we need at minimum to make those points clear, and personally I think the public image should be balanced by presenting the private strategy information. Preferably, the above sentence would be moved to second position, replaced by something more factual. Point 1 has to be absolutely above and beyond dispute, or we will never achieve consensus. So what can we agree on? I can only think of something along the lines of "ID is a conjecture/campaign/theory/argument put forward by the DI". Needless to say, #3 is the easy bit.

SheffieldSteel 15:37, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

I agree with SheffieldSteel's analysis. Of course, ID is a teleological argument. That is what the pro-, neutral and anti-ID people say. Then the pro-ID people split some hairs and say that it does not speculate about the nature and identity of the Designer, but that doesn't stop them from calling it teleological. Guettarda 15:52, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Questions: Does teleology have to imply a 'God'? could it be gods or superintelligent beings?
And is prayer supernatural? Just want some opinions on this, thanks 69.220.43.85 15:55, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
According to the definition you posted above, it does not have to imply God. In this case, stating it is a teleological argument would be fine so long as you didn't add "for the existence of God" as a factual statement. So all this debate on if it is a teleological argument is moot if the definition of teleological argument does not require it to be God. So what we're really debating is the statement of "God" as fact and not that it is a teleological argument, if the definition posted is accurate. Morphh (talk) 18:13, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

I don't think we will ever come to an agreement "absolutely above and beyond dispute" regarding the definition of ID. I am willing to settle for any rewording of the first sentence that does not present the majority opinion as absolute fact. -- Cat Whisperer 15:59, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Yes.. or you could do what they did on the teleological argument article for the first sentence - "is an argument for the existence of God or a creator based on perceived evidence of order, purpose, design and/or direction in nature." Morphh (talk) 18:25, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

I am willing to settle for any rewording of the first sentence that does not present the majority opinion as absolute fact - so you are saying that, despite the fact that no one but you disagrees with the assertion - not pro-ID, not neutral, not anti-ID, no one but you - you want the article changed? Sorry - we can't publish your OR. Get it published somewhere else, and maybe then we can add it to the article. Guettarda 18:33, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

There are many groups and individuals that feel that extra-terrestrials had some influence on the development of life on earth. Would those be considered supporters of intelligent design? Are we trying to say here that the only intelligent designer could have been 'God'? 68.109.234.155 18:38, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
And many people think they were abducted.
Cat and Morphh: ID is a teleological argument, period. See Dembski, Behe, Sober, Pennock, the Library of Congress, Amazon.com, the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy and the ISCID Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Really, enough of this nonsense. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 18:45, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
(In reply to 68.)This article is about ID as its most broadly used. Things like the Raelian beliefs are not covered in this article. And, for the moment, I am trying to focus on the "teleological argument" issue. How we want to phrase the teleological argument is another issue - one that was discussed in the past, but which we can revisit if need be. But that's just semantic. I'm trying to settle this structural issue first. Guettarda 18:47, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
So? Many people believe in reincarnation. I think billions. Could intelligent design be described as a belief? 68.109.232.53 20:14, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm fine with using the definition of teleological argument - "an argument for the existence of God or a creator based on perceived evidence of order, purpose, design and/or direction in nature." The first sentence does not state this is an teleological argument, based on ..., which would be fine. It states it is an argument for the existence of God (stating it as fact), when such is disputed. Even the definition of teleological argument disputes this. Morphh (talk) 19:14, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
There are approximately 5 people involved in this discussion, 6 if you count my editorial commentary about certain ideas. The point is probably 25-30 people were involved recently in improving this article, and none of them have spoken up. I would suggest we put this to a "vote" (I know it's not really a vote, but a sense of consensus is what I usually call it). Right now, we are going in gigantic circles with the same discussion repeating itself several times. Once we gain consensus, I say we archive it, and refer to it whenever this comes up again. What say the 5 others who are involved right now? Orangemarlin 20:05, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Given that the first sentence states, "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God,[1] based on the premise that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause..." links directly to Teleological argument and is cited and explained, I'm not even all that clear what Morphh and Cat are on about. Everything is neatly and concisely explained, accurate, verifiable, etc. What comes next, a debate about the second sentence? &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 20:13, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
I know. This is so frustrating. It seems like every few weeks, a few people show up, and we have to go through all of this again. I've been editing here for around 4 months, and I swear I'm starting read the same things again. I think I'm just going to write a program that goes to the archives, and posts random debates from the past. Then post random replies to the new debates. It could be fun, and I wouldn't have to do much. But I'm ready to debate line 28. And the pictures, they obviously are POV and should be changed.Orangemarlin 20:42, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
The challenge is that it is not "accurate". "for the existence of God" is an opinion, not a fact!!!!! The reference shows it as an opinion, there are other opinions show that it does not specify God. What is so difficult here. You can not state this as fact - period! To do otherwise is POV. You can say it is a teleological argument as such does not state God as fact. However, this sentence does, which is obviously debatable. If people keep coming to this article and rehashing the same debate - maybe.. just maybe.. you should look at rewording it so you don't have the issue. I expect people leave the debate due to exhaustion rather then being convinced it is correct. This talk is just brutal and gets nowhere as no one is willing to compromise. I don't see what is being lost by rewording it. Morphh (talk) 21:04, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
The teleological argument for the existence of God, often simply called a teleological argument, is a standard, accepted term for a class of argument in the fields of philosophy and theology. It is most assuredly not an opinion, as Morphh asserts above, that an argument that displays the features of a teleological argument is therefore classified as a teleological argument. The arguments put forward under the term "intelligent design" clearly display the features of any teleological argument, and are thus called a teleological argument. This, of course, was the central to the decision in Kitzmiller v. Dover. Such lines of reasoning use illustrations of perceived order, purpose, and/or direction in one or more aspects of the world to extrapolate to an argumentative conclusion, which is that there is a God (however that may be defined), or creator(s), which had or has a purpose in advance of the events and which is argued to have a role in causing those events. What ID does not display are the features of a scientific theory, as is alleged by its principal advocates, It's already in the article, for those who care to actually read it, with plenty of relavant links and citations to follow up on, for those who care to delve yet further. If any of these resources accessible through the WP article are inadequate to gain a thorough understanding of this complex subject matter, I should think there's still more room for improvement and would personally appreciate suggestions about what they are and how to integrate such additional references into the article. ... Kenosis 01:24, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
It's clear we are at an impasse. I'm not sure what purpose a vote would serve, or even what we would be voting on. However, it is not at all surprising why people continue to show up complaining about the NPOV problem in the lead; my prediction is that this pattern will continue until the problem is actually fixed. -- Cat Whisperer 21:07, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Experience has taught differently with respect to this article. The complaints, really, have come from all sides. So I wouldn't assume that because there are complaints, that "fixing" something will end the complaints. Maybe it's time to move onto another point. ... Kenosis 01:24, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
My statement was in reference to ID and its definition, which is debated. I was not making an argument that teleological argument is opinion. I'm also not arguing that ID is not a teleological argument as teleological argument does not require such to be God. You could say that ID is a teleological argument and I would be perfectly fine with that. However, I don't think it is neutral to say that ID is an argument for God - stating such as fact. Morphh (talk) 2:12, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
The notion that ID refers to anything but God is merely a rhetorical device used by proponents to try to avoid running afoul of Edwards v. Aguilard. The court in Kitzmiller v. Dover didn't buy into the proponents' semantic game, nor are we in WP obliged to buy into that semantic game. It's religious apologetics, theology, and/or philosophy, generically known as an agument for the existence of God. This remains true despite Dembski's obfuscation of it by his statement that it could be space aliens, which after one gets done analyzing the infinite regress, is an argument for the existence of God. Sorry to disillusion anyone, but that's just the way it is. ... Kenosis 10:20, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
The fantastic strides in molecular biology and other sciences have made people rethink much of Darwinian theory. I read that the human DNA only has 1 gig of memory. That amount is not enought to do what it does. And the accumulative results of so much experimentation is showing the the theory should be looked at. Gould has made some changes. 68.109.232.53 20:49, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Excuse me? Where would you get THAT idea????? Please show one, just one is all that you have to do, verifiable source that even slightly confirms what you have just written. Evolution is a fact, and every piece of experimental data has only confirmed that fact. Molecular biology even more so. Get your facts right, please. Orangemarlin 20:53, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
An idea for thought. This is reminding me of lets say we have a situation where a crime was committed and through DNA it has to be one of two brothers. Then the prosecutor can 'believe' it is bro #1. Seems like ID is saying that we can reasonable scientifically impute that life was designed but it is up to each individual's faith system to 'believe' who that designer is. Of course a Catholic or a Muslim will believe that 'God did it'. Thereore the first sentence should not mention 'God' 68.109.232.53 20:40, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Huh??? Orangemarlin 20:53, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
I think it is a valid point. We can scientifically assume a lot but after that it is up to belief or faith. And it is possible to impute something things scientifically about the 'supernatural'. The problem is 'supernatural' does not have an adequate scientific definition. This probably cannot be explained here adequately. 68.109.232.53 20:59, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Once again, huh? There is no "faith" in science. Don't try to compare your mythmaking to science. Orangemarlin 04:06, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Morphh wrote "for the existence of God" is an opinion, not a fact - ok, so you are saying that Dembski doesn't understand what ID is, that only you and Cat Whisperer understand what ID is? Then by all means, please provide your sources which say that ID is not a teleological argument.

Cat Whisperer wrote: It's clear we are at an impasse - not really. You want to throw out sources material and replace it with your own opinion, despite the fact that the sourced material is supported by pro-, neutral and anti-ID sources. Replacing sourced material with your own opinion violates our fundamental policies. Deciding whether to accept or ignore Wikipedia policies isn't an impass - it's up to you to sort out whether you are willing to edit in accordance with our core policies or not. Guettarda 05:47, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Ok, a bit further down the page Morphh wrote: "You could say that ID is a teleological argument and I would be perfectly fine with that. However, I don't think it is neutral to say that ID is an argument for God - stating such as fact"
That was the point I made from the start. I am trying to sort one point out at a time. There was a discussion before about whether we should use language that no one understands, or whether we should pipe the link. That's a separate (and fairly trivial) point. We need to settle the substantive issues first, and the semantic issues second. As long as we can't agree on the overall form of the lead, the article will remain protected anyway. So please, let's focus on one thing at a time. Guettarda 05:54, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Suggestion

Intelligent design is a concept put forward by the Discovery Institute

[13][6][7] as a challenge to the scientific theory of evolution. Its proponents argue that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection", [3] and that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life. [14] It has been found by a US Federal judge to be an argument for the existence of God [15]

Does this at least have some potential? SheffieldSteel 22:10, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

(assume that more criticism is to follow, if you like. I just wanted to concentrate on the 'sharp end' for now SheffieldSteel 22:11, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
That works for me. Morphh (talk) 22:44, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
I like it too. It puts firstly that this article i clearly about a DI-specific concept and its motive. This is followed by what the concept is. Finally it makes note that has been found to be a rehashed teleological argument. Suggestions for improvement: 1) I don't think that DI's "it's a theory" and "it's better than science" push needs to be highlighted here. 2) In addition to being found to be teleological argument - hasn't ID also been found to be creationim redux and pseudoscience by reliable sources?--ZayZayEM 04:03, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

It doesn't seem that well balanced to me (sorry) - the 'it has been found' clause, which is an attempt to be neutral unfortunately has the opposite effect in my opinion, and of course ID that the DI has now appropriated is alot older than the DI. I have not yet been convinced that there's anything wrong with straight up saying that ID is a teleological argument - that seems to me to be clear, sourced and neutral. To my mind this suggestion is not as good as the current one... Petesmiles 23:51, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

To begin with, this doesn't meet your original suggestion which I liked (say what ID is, describe what the proponents say, describe what others say). We should start with the non-controversial point - that it's a teleological argument. In addition, this version has some potential factual accuracy issues: it can be read to say that the idea was proposed by the DI (which it wasn't, it was first used in its modern sense a couple years before the founding of the DI); it isn't a challenge to evolution so much as it is a challenge to modern science as a whole ("methodological naturalism", aka "the scientific method" is common to all sciences); it suggests that the fact that it is teleolgical is somehow a finding of the Kitzmiller trial, when in fact it's a characteristic of ID that is uncontroversial (except on this page). And, finally, the definition leaves out a fundamental component of the pro-ID definition of ID - the idea that design can be detected. Without the idea that design can be detected, ID could never pretend to be science. But with it, it's a form of the teleological argument (not that anyone disputes that, except on this page). Guettarda 05:38, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

I don't like it. Firstly, though a Federal court believes it's an argument for the existence of a supernatural being, that's not as important as the fact that almost every scientist thinks it's pseudoscience, or junk science. This argument of whether or not it's a religion begs the statement that it isn't science at all. Orangemarlin 05:45, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Just FYI, here is an example of what an NPOV writeup on Intelligent Design looks like. Contrary to Guettarda's assertions, the only original research going on here is in the current lead paragraph. -- Cat Whisperer 10:56, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Must say I'm impressed by the "References, links, more ..." she uses for her article. Not a reliable source :) .. dave souza, talk 11:23, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Yep, it's based heavily on an older version of this article - you know, one that hadn't been through a contentious FAC process, one that wasn't as accurate and well-referenced as this version. Guettarda 11:59, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Contrary to Guettarda's assertions, the only original research going on here is in the current lead paragraph. I see - another example of CW's expert sources of information - an article based on our article. Obviously that's a much more reliable source than, say, the Kitzmiller verdict, or someone's totally unsupported opinion. This gets funnier every day. Guettarda 12:10, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
This is a waste of time. Why are we engaging in this conversation with certain editors that basically want to change the lead from a perfectly fine NPOV to a very POV version. I'm not getting it. Orangemarlin 15:36, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
My point was that the current lead is unique, among articles about ID (whether pro-, anti-, or neutral), in how it chooses to define ID in the leading sentence. And that uniqueness is a bad thing, not a good thing. -- Cat Whisperer 17:54, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

I was just thinking that maybe the simplest way to address the issue may be to just replace "God" with "a creator". So the sentence would read:

Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of a creator, based on the premise that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."

God and creator are synonymous for most, but there is enough difference that it is not stating God as fact. The word creator would allow the flexibility to cover both views. You could use the same wikilinks. I still think a base definition of the argument should be offered before declaring what the argument means, but this would at least resolve the major dispute here. Morphh (talk) 13:33, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

I think that is a decent compromise. The anti-IDers would want 'God' and the pro-IDers would want designer. So creator falls between the two nicely. 69.211.150.60 13:54, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Um, no. Replacing "god" with "creator" solves no problems and makes some worse. It doesn't answer the question of whether it is appropriate to use "argument for the existence of God" in this case to describe the teleological argument, since it does nothing to change the meaning of the piped text. On the other hand, it replaces a more standard term with a less standard term. Guettarda 13:55, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
And I'm not an anti-ID'er per se. I'm a pro-NPOV, and hiding the basic fact that ID is most definitely an argument for the existence of some supernatural being is a bit silly. I think a neutral court stating that is an argument for "god" is good enough for me. This lead was not only good enough but it was excellent. Then we have a few editors come in here and make a specious argument to change it is kind of troubling. Orangemarlin 15:32, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Couple of questions hopefully to clarify some of these issues.
What should we call:
A person who believes that microevolutiion is possible but feels that some species and physical systems could not have appeared without intelligent assistance.
A a person who believes that all systems and species could have appeared without any intellgent assistance
A person that believes that God, aliens or some yet unknown entity design some aspects of life.

68.109.234.155 16:40, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Hmmm...I think we should call a person by whatever name they are given or chose to go by. Bob, Anne, Rookmin, Mr Popo, Hat, Errol, Man Man, George, B. Wordsworth, Uncle Bhaku, Laura...
Intelligent design isn't just the belief in these things, it's the assertion that they can be tested empirically. Guettarda 17:36, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
The reason I asked is that many people who try to comment here are sort of written off and called 'creationists'. And some people call themselves 'evolutionists' And there was that world view test where they called people rationalists etc. You understand of course that someone can be named 'Bob' and be an anarchist or an atheist don't you. Would a person who is not sure God exists be called an atheist. Sorry you did not see my point.
I disagree with you though I do think design can be detected. It is done everyday. Now we can show that rock was not designed correct?

68.109.234.155 17:54, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Hi raspor. Why are you back? 151.151.21.102 18:20, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
"I disagree with you though I do think design can be detected. It is done everyday." Feel free to describe your method of ascertaining whether something is designed or occurs spontaneously. Please not a philosophical treatise but a definition suffices: when we have so and so it is designed, when we have so and so it is spontaneous. Nomen NescioGnothi seauton 19:49, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
I do not think we are allowed to debate issues here. http://www.venganza.org/ here is a site where people debate. I am stating that I agree with substituting 'creator' for 'God' in the first sentence. I also think a section defining terms like darwinist, evolutionist, creationis, etc would be a good idea. What term would we use for a person who supports ID? And what does that person believe. I think it would be informative 68.109.234.155 20:39, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
I do not think you recognised the rethorical part of my question. Since you are unable to define designed and spontaneous, in such a way we can use it to determine what part of the world is created, your suggestion is utterly useless. Thank you for pointing that out for us. Nomen NescioGnothi seauton 23:15, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
I do not think spontaneous is the correct term. I assume that most peope here are familiar with design inference. I do not think you are really trying to work with me in good faith. 68.109.234.155 23:59, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Call it not-designed if you want. The point still stands: there is no way of ascertaining whether something is designed or not, aside from the highly scientific "this is so complex it must have been created." Nomen NescioGnothi seauton 15:25, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

SETI determines design somehow and is supported by the status quo. It seems like you are saying complexity indeed is a feature of a designed entitiy. To me as complexity goes up likelyhood of design goes up. But it is not conclusive. Cells have similarities to man-made machines. Nothing else in nature looks like a man-made machine more than living organisms. 68.109.234.155 15:36, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

I don't think this is a good sentence without context: "It has been found by a US Federal judge to be an argument for the existence of God [15]." It should say, this theory is not given equal time in the public education system because the US Federal judge has considered it a teleological argument and voilates the seperation of Church and State. Wyatt 21:16, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

[T]his theory is not given equal time in the public education system because the US Federal judge has considered it a teleological argument and voilates[sic] the seperation [sic] of Church and State.

No. Once again, the article needs to be factually accurate. Jones did not say it violated the establishment clause because it was teleological, but rather that it was overtly religious. In addition, the legal standing in public education doesn't belong in the lead. On top of that, the fact that ID is a teleological argument has nothing to do with the Kitzmiller case - the Library of Congress calls it teleological, the proponents call it teleological...everyone calls it teleological. Guettarda 21:27, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Do you have a reliable source that everyone calls ID teleological, or is this just your own original research? -- Cat Whisperer 00:34, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
Cat, I think your ideas for improving the article have been very good. Is there a way to vote on this. Is there not supposed to be a 'consensus?' 68.109.234.155 00:39, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Whether classifying ID as a teleological argument is uncontested

Cat, i really feel that Guettarda has produced lots of sources showing his viewpoint - perhaps you wouldn't mind bringing one forward supporting what appears to be yours - that ID is not a teleological argument.... Petesmiles 00:40, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

The issue isn't whether "ID is a teleological argument". The issue is whether classifying ID as a teleological argument is uncontested by all sides in the debate. Perhaps this point has been lost in some of the snide and sarcastic replies I have received. And I don't recall a single one of Guettarda's sources claiming that classifying ID as teleological is uncontested. Yet this is the key point in justifying the current lead sentence as a fact rather than as merely a neutral and widespread opinion. -- Cat Whisperer 00:56, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
Pete, when you say teleological are saying it means proving 'God' or just something that is directed? 68.109.234.155 00:50, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
It seems that the debate boils down to, if we can attribute "ID is teleological" to reliable sources, but cannot attribute "ID is not teleological" to reliable sources, can we simply state that ID is teleological? SheffieldSteel 02:44, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
On this issue, yes. I think that's what the many WP editors involved in this article had already done here. ... Kenosis 03:42, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

The issue here is that we have multiple sources which really don't agree on much about ID saying that it is teleological. There's more to it than attribution - the simple fact is that intelligent design is a design argument. Pretty much by definition, ID is a design argument, and design arguments are teleological. Argument from design redirects to teleological argument...that redirect has stood since April 2002 without being challenged. ID is a design argument. ID is teleological because it is a design argument. When CW says that ID is not teleological, is s/he saying

(a) ID is not a design argument, or
(b) design arguments are not teleological?

Guettarda 04:18, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

When I say that some ID supporters claim that ID is not teleological, I believe they are saying that (b) not all design arguments are teleological. -- Cat Whisperer 11:00, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
Cite? .. dave souza, talk 11:06, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
Since no one seems impressed with the two I have found so far, I will look for a third. In the meantime, do I correctly take the above responses to mean that there is not even a single cite for the claim that the teleological nature of ID is uncontested, and that determination made here is purely the result of original research by the Wikipedia editors involved? -- Cat Whisperer 11:27, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
This is not original research. It is sourced by the Kitzmiller trial. Research is not the same as original research. I am now supporting the current "Intelligent design is an argument for teh existence of God". Simply put ID is an argument, to be more specific it should be called a teleological argument--ZayZayEM 11:47, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
"The two you found so far"?? Guettarda 11:56, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

<unindent> Subsection break added as this is getting long. Cat Whisperer, please note that teleology means perceiving purpose, which is inherent in ID's argument against "scientific materialism". Neither it nor the teleological argument require the purpose or design to be provided by God, but they commonly do, and in the case of ID all the proponents state that they believe the designer is God, though they hold out the possibility of it being something else that just happens to match God's job description, in order to claim that it's science in terms of US legislation. Unsuccessfully. .. dave souza, talk 12:34, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

It appears to me that we're debating the wrong thing. What the major conflict is: Whether classifying ID as God is uncontested. This is what the first sentence states as fact. It does not say ID is a teleological argument (although it links there), which could be defined more broadly per the TA definition. It says ID is the argument for the existence of God, which is of course contested. Morphh (talk) 13:18, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, you're right, we're debating the wrong thing, but we really need to sort this one out first...if we don't, then the revert war could break out again over the teleology thing as soon as the article is unprotected. Guettarda 14:11, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
As pointed out earlier the only published notable and neutral analysis of ID is the Dover ruling, and it says ID is a teleological argument for God and goes on to state that any reasonable observer would reach the same conclusion. That makes the only issue here whether there is an equally notable and neutral source published that says it isn't, otherwise the Dover ruling stands as an uncontested source. There's been many claims, arm waving and attempts to discount the Dover from those here intent on seeing that out of the article, but the one thing they haven't presented is a source. Until then it stands. 151.151.73.169 15:55, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
Incorrect - the source neither has to be equally notable or neutral. It does have to be notable, which I think it is. The article has to be neutral, not the source. You can have opponent and proponent sources, so long as you write the article neutrally. Just because the source is not neutral or equally notable, does not mean you can state the other opinion as fact. Morphh (talk) 16:00, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

I've spent several hours searching the web, but I haven't come up with anything that is reliable enough to affect the discussion here. The ID writeup which Guettarda says was based on a prior version of this article states: "The modern concept of intelligent design is distinguished from the teleological argument in that ID does not identify the agent of creation." A pro-ID source agrees that ID is teleological, which it defines as "Exhibiting or relating to design or purpose, especially in nature."

Morphh has convinced me that we are (or at least, I am) debating the wrong thing. The word "teleological" seems to be malleable enough to accommodate sufficient senses to satisfy all sides of the ID debate. I'm also convinced that Morphh understands my objections well enough to represent my views, in case that will help with the discussion here. I disagree completely with user 151.151.73.169's analysis of the situation; WP:NPOV makes absolutely no provision for stating a neutral opinion as fact, even when all dissenting opinions are biased. -- Cat Whisperer 01:02, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

if fact the WP:NPOV policy says that:
[NPOV] requires that, where there are or have been conflicting views, these should be presented fairly. None of the views should be given undue weight or asserted as being the truth ... Wikipedia is devoted to stating facts in the sense as described above. Where we might want to state an opinion, we convert that opinion into a fact by attributing the opinion to someone. So, rather than asserting, "The Beatles were the greatest band," we can say, "Most Americans believe that the Beatles were the greatest band," which is a fact verifiable by survey results, or "The Beatles had many songs that made the Billboard Hot 100," which is also fact. In the first instance we assert an opinion; in the second and third instances we "convert" that opinion into fact by attributing it to someone.
this example of NPOV policy could just as well be stated as Where we might want to state an opinion, we convert that opinion into a fact by attributing the opinion to someone. So, rather than asserting, "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God" we can say, "A federal court in 2005 has ruled that Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God" the latter is a fact. the first is an opinion that is stated as fact without attributing it to anyone. r b-j 07:11, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps the just-suggested approach (explicitly mentioning the federal court in the first sentence of the article's body text) might be understandable if the court were the only source for this statement. But, it's only one of many sources that have classified ID as religion disguised as science. A number of those very many additional sources have also explicitly referred to the teleological argument. Given the variety of word-combinations with which the sources have stated this basic aspect of ID, the WP editors are quite within their discretionary rights, by WP rules and common sense rules, to state that ID is an argument for the existence of God right in the lead sentence rather than waiting until the "overview" section to explain this very fundamental aspect of ID. ... Kenosis 02:03, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
BTW, Kenosis, you are ignoring the fact that i, too, am a WP editor (and there are many other dissenters). you seem to think that only the editors whose "common sense" leads them to side with the many opinions that ID is an argument for the existence of God "are quite within their discretionary rights" to put this where they think it should go, "in the lead sentence rather than waiting until the "overview" section to explain this very fundamental aspect of ID." it is a fundamental aspect of ID, but it is disputed. while it is not disputed (to any significant degree) among scientists that ID is not science, it is disputed among people in general and the editors of WP (there was never any real consensus) that ID is one-and-the-same, equivalently, by-definition, the teleological argument. a teleological argument is, by definition, an argument, by some means, for the existance of God. that is a component the definition. except for these particular WP editors, who insist on controlling the whole article, no other widespread source of definition for ID says it's the teleological argument. there are plenty of sources that examine ID and conclude that it is, but that is not the same as definition. r b-j 03:11, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
I can find nothing in WP:NPOV that supports an article presenting any side's opinion as fact, even when that opinion comes from multiple independent sources. On the contrary, WP:NPOV is quite explicit that this is never to be done. It is certainly reasonable to present the idea that ID is an argument for the existence of God in the first sentence, but this can be done as described in WP:NPOV, by attributing the opinion to its sources (not just the court opinion, but scientific consensus and any other sources you care to cite). What could be more in line with common sense than properly attributing an opinion to its sources? -- Cat Whisperer 02:20, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Um. That's what the 150 footnotes are for (some of them have been combined into single notes with multiple sources under a single footnote). How about this: just put all the footnotes right in the body text ... Kenosis 02:48, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
I have an easier solution. How about rewording the first sentence, as described in WP:NPOV, to state an attributed opinion instead of a fact. I've already suggested: "ID has been found [1][2][3] to be ...". Another possibility is: "According to numerous sources [1][2][3], ID is ...". I'm sure there are many other ways to reword this opening sentence so it conveys exactly the same information, but as an attributed opinion instead of as a fact. I don't understand why people are finding so many difficulties to following this "absolute and non-negotiable" Wikipedia policy. -- Cat Whisperer 03:05, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
it doesn't matter that the court is not the only source. i think that we mutually agree that this is a relatively young term (it's not 500 years old). it is so young, that the coiners of the term are contemporary. they haven't even kicked the bucket yet. they're still around. so they coined this term, and they have a not-so-honest-nor-honorable agenda to use this term, along with other media of their own creation, to have a philosophical and existential topic (which is one that they are sympathetic with) presented/discussed in science classes. that's not a good agenda, but these IDers coined the term ID. now it's fine to point out the root of their agenda (that if there's some seemingly unanswerable question about the complexity of origins, that a concept of "intelligent designer" is plausible, then their goal is to make God "scientific" somehow). i don't like this either.
but no one here coined the term. they did. now point out what is sneaky about the ID/DI organization/movement, but i do not see why that justifies usurping the authorship of a term, what recently was a sorta neologism, and redefining it to something else. that ID becomes an argument for the existance of God, is a conclusion that many reasonable people with authority come to is fine, the article should state it and attribute it as per WP:NPOV. but to change the definition when neither the dictionaries nor E.B. do, take ownership of the definition, and change it to the conclusion that you, i, and many reasonable people come to is blatently inserting a particular POV (which happens to one you're sympathetic to) and that is not NPOV. no where close. r b-j 02:24, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Federal Court

I don't see why there is so much emphasis that the US Court has ruled it a religious system? I think that is valueable in the context of the Separation of Church and state, but doesnt disprove Intelligent Design. The USA is just one part of the world, and its decisions change, and the Federal Courts have also considered the things like 'in god we trust' as unconstitutional. I think this shouldnt be in the header, and many in a "equal time in schools" section. Wyatt 21:21, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Jones is an independent observer who summarised the material - thus, it's a good, neutral source. That's why the Kitzmiller ruling is a useful source. Guettarda 21:29, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Read wikisource:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science, Wyatt, and you'll learn a little. .. dave souza, talk 22:10, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
The reason is that it confirms that ID is a religious doctrine and not science. It's from a neutral, verified source (what better source than a court ruling). That's why we care about the ruling. Yes, the issue was separation of Church and state, so it was nice that a court would tell us that ID is a religion. Thank you for making the point! Orangemarlin 17:19, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
You are correct, Wyatt, the court did not "disprove" intelligent design. Nothing can disprove intelligent design because it is not a falsifiable idea (it cannot be disproven because it is magical and not scientific). What the court determined, amongst other things, is that ID is not scientific, that it is religious creationism being dishonestly peddled as science in order to wedge its way into our public school system. That judgement is given a lot of significance because, as mentioned, it was a neutral party who heard expert testimony from both sides of the debate and ruled accordingly. Mr Christopher 21:09, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
Yep, the bottom line is that if you wish to believe that a god or gods or aliens created life on earth, or the earth itself for that matter, go for it. Just don't try to sell your beliefs as science. &#0149;Jim62sch&#0149; 22:15, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

those words and that link.......

From reading the above about the lead, the issue might be cleared up a little by confirming / changing consensus on the wording / link in the first sentence. I initially proposed the plain english 'argument for the existence of God' and suggested it link to teleological argument, because i really didn't like having 'teleological' in the opening sentence - i thought it set the wrong tone, and was less clear and readable. I still feel this is the case.

The broo ha ha surrounding this link might indicate that i don't represent the consensus - input welcomed....?

ps. if i read the above correctly, we're all in agreement that ID is a teleological argument right? - Petesmiles 03:21, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

it turns out to be a teleological argument, but is not defined to be that. (except here in the current naked POV version. none of the widespread english dictionary definitions say that it is equivalent to a teleological argument nor does E.B. mention such in its lead.) r b-j 06:57, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
Am I the only editor confused by this response? If it is a teleological argument it should be defined as one.--ZayZayEM 00:58, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
There is a difference between an a priori definition and an a posteriori conclusion. I believe Rbj's point is that by starting off the article with the conclusion instead of the definition, we have confused those readers who were expecting the article to start at the beginning and end up at the end. -- Cat Whisperer 01:17, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
Petsmiles, perhaps you might look to how the discussions went and how the article content was formed just prior to when you first proposed this subsumption of the word "teleological" into a link rather than in the actual visible text of the first sentence of the article. As I recall, there was an extensive discussion prior to that stage about whether the obvious aspect of ID (that it is some kind of argument for the existence of God being portrayed as science) was sufficiently central to the article content to present that insight in the very first sentence of the article. The consensus at that point, several months ago, was that it was sufficiently central to put it in the first sentence. If there's now to be a new discussion to remove the idea that ID is some kind of argument for the existence of God disguised as science ... well, go ahead and make the argument. But after the reams of material submitted under oath in Kitzmiller v. Dover, I personally don't see how the WP editors at large could see their way clear to denying the obvious as presented by the WP:Reliable sources used as a basis to write this WP article. ... Kenosis 03:51, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

..I quite agree that it should be right up there - i don't think i was really clear enough - i think some are saying that there's a problem with the current wording - i.e. that it should just say teleological argument - not the plain english version... cheers, Petesmiles 04:31, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

My understanding of the above discussion is that switching back to using the term "teleological" (from the current "argument for the existence of God") was proposed as a way to achieve a definition of ID that is less contested than the current wording. However, I agree with Petesmiles that "teleological" is less clear and less readable, as well as not setting the right tone. -- Cat Whisperer 15:48, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
Also, I have never had any problem with presenting the idea that ID is an argument for the existence of God disguised as science, even in the first sentence. This problem is that this idea should not be presented as a fact, but as a widespread and neutral opinion. -- Cat Whisperer 15:51, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
I hope I'll be pardoned for my response to Cat Whisperer based on emotional tone. But the notion that the article has a "tone" because it mentions an argument for the existence of God in the first sentence, or anywhere in the article, is not in my estimation adequately specific to address anything about the current form of the article. ... Kenosis 02:28, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
In my above comment, I was just trying to say that I dislike the use of "teleological" on stylistic grounds; in particular, it seems to be used in somewhat different senses by different sources, so that its use here is rather vague and unsatisfying. -- Cat Whisperer 03:14, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, it would seem to make more sense to describe the argument using plain english rather then refer to the other article for the definition. Morphh (talk) 3:17, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Just so we're clear that this is a problem we need to address. - I currently count 14 editors on this talk page that object to the first sentence stating the existence of God as fact. Morphh (talk) 0:19, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Morph, it doesn't matter if it's 14 or 40 or 400. they don't care and they control the article. did they ever respond to any of the explicit references to WP:NPOV that many of us have pointed them to? they simply do not want to convert the opinion that "ID is an argument for the existance of God" to the fact that "[a court ruling or the scientific community] say that ID is an argument for the existance of God" and they control the article. why should they pay attention to dissent? what is important to them is not the neutral POV but their POV and that's what goes into the article. the POV of the controlling editors. r b-j 00:36, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I agree with you. Although the policy states 'consensus' this is not the case. Certain articles are 'owned' by a group of editors. I think the admins are part of the owners. Like when it looked like they did not have the numbers on the latest changes they froze the article. Wiki many times tends to be very left wing. The Natl Academy of Science is something like 95% atheist. It is a very interesting real life situation in power politics though. It is very educational and entertaining. 68.109.234.155 00:49, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Raspor, please give one bit of proof that the National Academy of Sciences is something like 95% atheist. When I was in graduate school, I was taught by a member of the NAS, and I believe he was one of the top people in the hierarchy of his church. So given that I know a member of the NAS, and you don't, I guess my apocryphal data is more reliable than yours. Orangemarlin 21:25, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
What???
One thing to keep in mind is we have a group of new faces here every single month who all want/demand to change the first sentence. This has been going on for 2 years at least and we've changed the opening sentence dozens of times. Never has that resulted in everyone having warm fuzzies. Also note that ID is mostly a dishonest con perpetuated by the DI and their stooges, so the definition is a delicate issue. The um, people here who whine about the lack of enthusiasm for yet again changing the opening sentence would do well to grow up for starters. Mr Christopher 21:45, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Deja vu all over again. We might be arguing this point when I'm 95. Orangemarlin 16:44, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
Just tell them you are not going to change it. So what if most people think it is biased. Who are they? They should make their own wiki if they don't like it here. 68.109.234.155 23:53, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Is there any way to run an actual poll or survey on the main page or even here on the talk page to find out what the majority think about the opening sentence? --Kgroover 15:15, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

<arbitrarily reduced indent>A poll? So intellectual articles should be based on votes? Glad science doesn't work that way, nor should Wikipedia. It is based on what is verifiable. Orangemarlin 16:44, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

no, no, no, no... these intellectual articles should be based on whatever you say. it doesn't matter what other people say, even a lot of other people. it doesn't matter what the dictionary defines for ID or what the Encyclopedia Britannica says in its lead for ID, or what the definition in the coinage of the term is, it only matters that a very small number of Wikipedia editors who include a couple of admins (and like to practice throwing their weight around) say. if you say that ID is synonymous with the teleological argument, then that must be the most truthful and neutral POV definition of it. who cares what the other authoritive sources say? r b-j 20:32, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
Digging through your sarcasm, I beg to differ. In fact, neutral, reliable and verifiable sources conclude that ID is a teleological argument for the existence of a supernatural being. Orangemarlin 20:58, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
they conclude that ID is a teleological argument. but they do not begin with that. it isn't the definition (except here at Wikipedia). the point (from me) has always been that it's fine and good to point out all of these sources (for the most part representing conventional thought in biological and other sciences) say that ID is a teleological arguement. that they say so is a verifiable fact. but what you guys continue to sidestep is that WP:NPOV says to convert opinions into facts by attributing them (in the text). repeating the policy (again):
NPOV requires that, where there are or have been conflicting views, these should be presented fairly. None of the views should be given undue weight or asserted as being the truth ... Wikipedia is devoted to stating facts in the sense as described above. Where we might want to state an opinion, we convert that opinion into a fact by attributing the opinion to someone. So, rather than asserting, "The Beatles were the greatest band," we can say, "Most Americans believe that the Beatles were the greatest band," which is a fact verifiable by survey results, or "The Beatles had many songs that made the Billboard Hot 100," which is also fact. In the first instance we assert an opinion; in the second and third instances we "convert" that opinion into fact by attributing it to someone.
this example of NPOV policy could just as well be stated as Where we might want to state an opinion, we convert that opinion into a fact by attributing the opinion to someone. So, rather than asserting, "Intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God" we can say, "A federal court in 2005 has ruled that intelligent design is an argument for the existence of God" or "the vast majority of the scientific community rejects the notion of intelligent design as science." the latter two are facts and are attributed to the court or group stating such. the first is an opinion that is stated as fact without attributing it to anyone. you guys just keep repeatedly refusing to apply the NPOV policy to yourselves (vis-a-vis this opening sentence in this article). and it's without excuse. r b-j 03:46, 31 March 2007 (UTC)
and BTW, the last edit i made that was repeatedly (and falsely) attacked as being the DI POV introduced no statement or citation that had not already existed in the lead except for the dictionary definition in the beginning (is the American Heritage Dictionary in the pocket of the DI?) and bringing to the lead (from farther down in the article) the fact that opponents of ID believe (and rightly, IMHO) that the introduction of the new term, "Intelligent Design" is a disguised strategy to reintroduce creationism to the science classroom after being banned by the Edwards v. Aguillard ruling. do you disagree with that? again, for reference:
Intelligent design is "the assertion or belief that physical and biological systems observed in the universe result from purposeful design by an intelligent being rather than from chance or undirected natural processes."[16] based upon a belief that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."[3] It has been determined by scientific consensus to be pseudoscience, not adhering to the scientific method, and by legal ruling to be "not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God."[17] Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute,[18][6][7] claim that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the evolution and origin of life.[19] Opponents claim this is a disguised strategy to reintroduce Creationism to the science classroom after being banned from state supported public education by the Edwards v. Aguillard ruling.
so you guys are so much smarter and fairer and more neutral than the dictionary that defines ID as "the assertion or belief that physical and biological systems observed in the universe result from purposeful design by an intelligent being rather than from chance or undirected natural processes"??? or the E.B. that opens with "Argument intended to demonstrate that living organisms were created in more or less their present forms by an "intelligent designer""??? or the Columbia University Encyclopedia that opens with "Intelligent design, theory that some complex biological structures and other aspects of nature show evidence of having been designed by an intelligence"??? and then there is Wikipedia that opens with "Intelligent design (ID) is an argument for the existence of God". my, i stand in such awe of such unique wisdom and evenhandedness that even the Enclopedia Britannica, the Columbia University Encyclopedia, and the American Heritage dictionary pale in comparison to. you guys are just soooo good and those other sources must be in the pocket of the DI since they don't, at the outset, identify ID as synonymous with the teleological argument. r b-j 04:05, 31 March 2007 (UTC)
Um. The American Heritage Dictionary listing was published in 2004, well prior to the wealth of facts about ID submitted under oath in Kitzmiller v. Dover. Perhaps someone can elucidate for us when the Encyclopedia Britannica listing was published? ... Kenosis 04:20, 31 March 2007 (UTC)
you're sidestepping the NPOV issue. attribute it. do you think that makes a difference? that the E.B. or the dictionaries will change their definition as a result? (you would need to back such up with proof.) no one else (that is, no other widespread reference such as an encyclopedia or dictionary) says that ID is synonymous with teleological argument. just Wikipedia that is not reviewed by professional editors (indeed you do not allow such since you fancy yourself more qualified than they). such confidence you have that your POV is so much more neutral than the dictionaries or the professionally written and reviewed references. holy shit! such wise and neutral authors that pass such stringent and creditialed editorial process. E.B. must be jealous. r b-j 04:30, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

Intelligent design (ID) encompasses a number of theories arguing that life and living things show signs of having been designed with purpose, rather than coming into being purely by the force of naturalistic law. More specifically, whether what we observe as morphological difference between species is in fact the result of intention, rather than chance. There is considerable disagreement over whether Intelligent Design qualifies as being "scientific" or merits consideration as a "hypothesis". Adherents to intelligent design view it as a valid challenge to the prevailing theory of strictly naturalistic evolution. Some of its proponents have described it as a "wedge" to gain entry into mainstream scientific discourse, as it purports to point out the weakness of the mainstream theories. Evolutionary biologists frequently and loudly dismiss it as pseudoscience. Most believers in intelligent design are creationists or theists, although a small minority believe in some kind of extra-terrestrial interference with life on Earth. Most evolutionists, by contrast, ascribe to the philosophy of pure naturalism, that is, the idea that life came into being without any divine intervention.

Here is an older version 68.109.234.155 00:12, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

The Wikipedia Bias on Intelligent Design...

  1. ^ "The Examined Life". 2005-11-04.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  2. ^ "The Examined Life". 2005-11-04.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  3. ^ a b c Discovery Institute, Center for Science and Culture. Questions about Intelligent Design: What is the theory of intelligent design? "The theory of intelligent design holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection."
    Primer: Intelligent Design Theory in a Nutshell Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness (IDEA)
    Intelligent Design Intelligent Design network.
  4. ^ "ID is not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God. He traced this argument back to at least Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century, who framed the argument as a syllogism: Wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer." (Known as the teleological argument) Ruling, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, December, 2005
  5. ^ "Q. Has the Discovery Institute been a leader in the intelligent design movement? A. Yes, the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture. Q. And are almost all of the individuals who are involved with the intelligent design movement associated with the Discovery Institute? A. All of the leaders are, yes." Barbara Forrest, 2005, testifying in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial. Kitzmiller Dove Testimony, Barbara Forrest
    • "The Discovery Institute is the ideological and strategic backbone behind the eruption of skirmishes over science in school districts and state capitals across the country." Politicized Scholars Put Evolution on the Defensive Jodi Wilgoren. The New York Times, August 21 2005.
    Who is behind the ID movement? Frequently Asked Questions About "Intelligent Design", American Civil Liberties Union.
    • "Discovery Institute, a Seattle-based think tank established in 1991. The institute, which promotes a conservative public-policy agenda, has occupied a lead role in the ID movement recently, most notably through its Center for Science and Culture, which boasts a number of leading ID proponents among its fellows and advisers." The Evolution of George Gilder Joseph P. Kahn. The Boston Globe, July 27 2005.
    "Who's Who of Intelligent Design Proponents," Science & Religion Guide Science and Theology News. November 2005. (PDF file)
  6. ^ a b c Intelligent Design and Peer Review American Association for the Advancement of Science.
  7. ^ a b c "The engine behind the ID movement is the Discovery Institute." Defending science education against intelligent design: a call to action Journal of Clinical Investigation 116:1134–1138 (2006). doi:10.1172/JCI28449. A publication of the American Society for Clinical Investigation.
  8. ^ Stephen C. Meyer, 2005. Ignatius Press. The Scientific Status of Intelligent Design: The Methodological Equivalence of Naturalistic and Non-Naturalistic Origins Theories. See also Darwin's Black Box.
  9. ^ [38]
  10. ^ [39]
  11. ^ [40]
  12. ^ [41]
  13. ^ "Q. Has the Discovery Institute been a leader in the intelligent design movement? A. Yes, the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture. Q. And are almost all of the individuals who are involved with the intelligent design movement associated with the Discovery Institute? A. All of the leaders are, yes." Barbara Forrest, 2005, testifying in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial. Kitzmiller Dove Testimony, Barbara Forrest
    • "The Discovery Institute is the ideological and strategic backbone behind the eruption of skirmishes over science in school districts and state capitals across the country." Politicized Scholars Put Evolution on the Defensive Jodi Wilgoren. The New York Times, August 21 2005.
    Who is behind the ID movement? Frequently Asked Questions About "Intelligent Design", American Civil Liberties Union.
    • "Discovery Institute, a Seattle-based think tank established in 1991. The institute, which promotes a conservative public-policy agenda, has occupied a lead role in the ID movement recently, most notably through its Center for Science and Culture, which boasts a number of leading ID proponents among its fellows and advisers." The Evolution of George Gilder Joseph P. Kahn. The Boston Globe, July 27 2005.
    "Who's Who of Intelligent Design Proponents," Science & Religion Guide Science and Theology News. November 2005. (PDF file)
  14. ^ Stephen C. Meyer, 2005. Ignatius Press. The Scientific Status of Intelligent Design: The Methodological Equivalence of Naturalistic and Non-Naturalistic Origins Theories. See also Darwin's Black Box.
  15. ^ "ID is not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God. He traced this argument back to at least Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century, who framed the argument as a syllogism: Wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer." (Known as the teleological argument) Ruling, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, December, 2005
  16. ^ The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004.[42]
  17. ^ "ID is not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God. He traced this argument back to at least Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century, who framed the argument as a syllogism: Wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer." (Known as the teleological argument) Ruling, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, December, 2005
  18. ^ "Q. Has the Discovery Institute been a leader in the intelligent design movement? A. Yes, the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture. Q. And are almost all of the individuals who are involved with the intelligent design movement associated with the Discovery Institute? A. All of the leaders are, yes." Barbara Forrest, 2005, testifying in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial. Kitzmiller Dove Testimony, Barbara Forrest
    • "The Discovery Institute is the ideological and strategic backbone behind the eruption of skirmishes over science in school districts and state capitals across the country." Politicized Scholars Put Evolution on the Defensive Jodi Wilgoren. The New York Times, August 21 2005.
    Who is behind the ID movement? Frequently Asked Questions About "Intelligent Design", American Civil Liberties Union.
    • "Discovery Institute, a Seattle-based think tank established in 1991. The institute, which promotes a conservative public-policy agenda, has occupied a lead role in the ID movement recently, most notably through its Center for Science and Culture, which boasts a number of leading ID proponents among its fellows and advisers." The Evolution of George Gilder Joseph P. Kahn. The Boston Globe, July 27 2005.
    "Who's Who of Intelligent Design Proponents," Science & Religion Guide Science and Theology News. November 2005. (PDF file)
  19. ^ Stephen C. Meyer, 2005. Ignatius Press. The Scientific Status of Intelligent Design: The Methodological Equivalence of Naturalistic and Non-Naturalistic Origins Theories. See also Darwin's Black Box.