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Tags trial , evolution , intelligent design , dover id trial

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Old 29th October 2005, 01:32 PM   #321
69dodge
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Originally Posted by CFLarsen View Post
Just out of curiosity, but has anyone noticed any howlers from the Evolutionist side?

It can't merely be the Creationists who mess up...
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dove...tml#day12am490

cross examination of Behe

Quote:
Q. And so in the case of prokaryotes, which you said was a good example of what you were studying, 10 to the 16th in one ton of soil?

A. Yes.

Q. So a few tons of soil, and we've gone past that 10 to the 30th?
The lawyer apparently thinks that 1030 is roughly double 1016. oops.

And there's a long exchange starting at http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dove...ml#day12am1087. Too much to quote, but I can't figure out the lawyer's point. I don't think he knows what his own point is. He ends up saying, at http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dove...ml#day12am1197:

Quote:
Q. Sounds like a bigger mistake than Dr. Doolittle made, Professor Behe?

A. I'm not sure what you are referring to.

Q. Well, you spent a lot of time trashing Dr. Doolittle and his work, his article in the Boston Review. Your mistake here is quite a bit more substantial than misinterpreting a mice study, isn't it?

A. I'm not even quite sure what you are referring to as my mistake.

Q. I'll withdraw that question, Professor Behe. [...]
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Old 29th October 2005, 02:01 PM   #322
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Originally Posted by 69dodge View Post
The lawyer apparently thinks that 1030 is roughly double 1016. oops.
He might not be mistaken if doubling the amount of soil squares the number of prokaryotes for some geometric reason.

ETA Actually reading the transcript there makes it clear it probably doesn't!
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Old 29th October 2005, 05:05 PM   #323
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Originally Posted by Paul C. Anagnostopoulos View Post
Pesky, you say?~~ Paul
I imagine, if you are a proponent of ID as scientific, that those .pdf transcriptions would be damn pesky.

Then again, converting them to html isn't going to help in that respect....
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Old 30th October 2005, 12:59 AM   #324
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Originally Posted by Paul C. Anagnostopoulos View Post
This is getting surreal. Dr. A., where is the transcript with those bits?
It can be found in this damaged .pdf file, much of which is legible.
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Old 30th October 2005, 04:45 AM   #325
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I can't copy it but read the first Q&A on p. 73 wherein Dr. Behe uses Science Fiction as a rationale.....odd man.
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Old 30th October 2005, 06:58 AM   #326
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Originally Posted by Ed View Post
I can't copy it but read the first Q&A on p. 73 wherein Dr. Behe uses Science Fiction as a rationale.....odd man.
Finally, someone who agrees with me that Star Trek Design Theory should be taught in the classroom!
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Old 30th October 2005, 07:09 AM   #327
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Another fun article on the trial:

http://www.mndaily.com/articles/2005/10/11/65535

~~ Paul
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Old 30th October 2005, 08:25 AM   #328
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In following a link concerning tax protesters I found this quote which is particularly germane, I think:

Quote:
In this FAQ, you will read many decisions of judges who refer to the views of tax protesters as "frivolous," "ridiculous," "absurd," "preposterous," or "gibberish." If you don't read a lot of judicial opinions, you may not understand the full weight of what it means when a judge calls an argument "frivolous" or "ridiculous." Perhaps an analogy will help explain the attitude of judges.

Imagine a group of professional scientists who have met to discuss important issues of physics and chemistry, and then someone comes into their meeting and challenges them to prove that the earth revolves around the sun. At first, they might be unable to believe that the challenger is serious. Eventually, they might be polite enough to explain the observations and calculations which lead inevitably to the conclusion that the earth does indeed revolve around the sun. Suppose the challenger is not convinced, but insists that there is actually no evidence that the earth revolves around the sun, and that all of the calculations of the scientists are deliberately misleading. At that point, they will be jaw-droppingly astounded, and will no longer be polite, but will evict the challenger/lunatic from their meeting because he is wasting their time.

That is the way judges view tax protesters. At first, they try to be civil and treat the claims as seriously as they can. However, after dismissing case after case with the same insane claims, sometimes by the same litigant, judges start pulling out the dictionary to see how many synonyms they can find for "absurd."

The frustration of judges is well described in the following opinion of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, responding to an appeal raising some of the ridiculous constitutional claims described in this FAQ:

"We are sensitive to the need for the courts to remain open to all who seek in good faith to invoke the protection of law. An appeal that lacks merit is not always--or often--frivolous. However we are not obliged to suffer in silence the filing of baseless, insupportable appeals presenting no colorable claims of error and designed only to delay, obstruct, or incapacitate the operations of the courts or any other governmental authority. Crain's present appeal is of this sort. It is a hodgepodge of unsupported assertions, irrelevant platitudes, and leglistic gibberish. The government should not have been put to the trouble of responding to such spurious arguments, nor this court to the trouble of 'adjudicating' this meritless appeal." Crain v. Commissioner, 737 F.2d 1417, 1418 (5th Cir. 1984).
The court not only ruled against Crain, but imposed a damage award against him (essentially a fine) of $2,000 for bringing a frivolous appeal. Id at 1418.

So, when a judge calls an argument "ridiculous" or "frivolous," it is absolutely the worst thing the judge could say. It means that the person arguing the case has absolutely no idea of what he is doing, and has completely wasted everyone's time. It doesn't mean that the case wasn't well argued, or that judge simply decided for the other side, it means that there was no other side.. The argument was absolutely, positively, incompetent. The judge is not telling you that you that you were "wrong." The judge is telling you that you are out of your mind.
http://evans-legal.com/dan/tpfaq.html#purpose
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Old 30th October 2005, 09:10 AM   #329
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Originally Posted by Paul C. Anagnostopoulos View Post
Another fun article on the trial:

http://www.mndaily.com/articles/2005/10/11/65535

~~ Paul
Has anyone ever nailed Behe on his stupid mountain/Mt. Rushmore nonsense?

"So the mountain range wasn't designed? The designer didn't make these mountains? Oh he did make the mountains? How can you tell?"
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Old 30th October 2005, 09:56 AM   #330
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I thought this might be relevant. If not, its still funny.
http://www.uclick.com/client/wpc/nq/
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Old 30th October 2005, 09:59 AM   #331
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Thanks for that, Corey--I thought the same when I read it this morning.
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Old 30th October 2005, 10:15 AM   #332
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I know it's a little off topic, but:

I think we can all safely say (except for hammy), that evolution qualifies as science whether or not you personally believe it.

It has all the componants of the scientific method.

I'd like to ask hammy again, can he point out how ID is science? Or rather, who has ever demonstrated that it is?

A laundry list of nitpicky complaints against a robust scientific theory doesn't make ID science.
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Old 31st October 2005, 03:27 AM   #333
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Originally Posted by bagtaggar View Post
A laundry list of nitpicky complaints against a robust scientific theory doesn't make ID science.
Well, ID isn't really any more than this itself. The basic argument seems to be "If Darwinian evolution doesn't explain this, it must have been designed." See Behe's first answer in this recent interview, for example:
Quote:
So that if Darwin's theory doesn't explain it we're left with no other explanation than maybe it really was designed. That's essentially the design argument.
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Old 31st October 2005, 03:37 AM   #334
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I wonder if anyone ever said something along the lines of "if Lamarck's theory of evolution by inheritance of acquired characteristics doesn't explain it we're left with no other explanation than maybe it really was designed."
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Old 31st October 2005, 04:21 AM   #335
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I've just noticed that Talk Origins has transcripts of days 13 to 15 (Nilsen and Fuller) and a damaged pdf of day 16 am (Buckingham).

Fuller's cross includes:
Quote:
A. Let me see if I understand what I said.
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Old 31st October 2005, 04:47 AM   #336
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Originally Posted by Mojo View Post
I've just noticed that Talk Origins has transcripts of days 13 to 15 (Nilsen and Fuller) and a damaged pdf of day 16 am (Buckingham).

Fuller's cross includes:
I am being serious but why has he been put forward? The man seems incapable of answering questions even in his area of expertise.

(ETA)

Quote:
Q. You would agree that methodological naturalism has worked well for science?

A. Yes.

Q. And you would agree that it's largely responsible for most of the scientific progress we've seen?

A. No.

Q. If you could turn to Page 175 of your deposition. I'm going to read your answer there starting on Line 23. You say, I'm not doubting that methodological naturalism has worked for science and that it's largely responsible for lots of science that we've got, maybe even most of that we've got. Did I read that correctly?

A. Yes. I said maybe
Quote:
Q. And is it fair to say that you think the National Academy of Science's definition of a scientific theory is too static and too restrictive?

A. And this is -- remind me again. I'm sure I've commented on it, but can you remind me what that definition is?
Quote:
Q. And your counter-definition is a little bit different, and it would be an explanatory conception --

A. Can you direct me to a page? You just want to tell me? Okay.

Q. An explanatory conception of a range of phenomena and also that could serve as a basis for a research program, for an empirical research program.

A. Yes. That sounds good, yeah.
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Old 31st October 2005, 04:49 AM   #337
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I guess he's the best they can manage.

Most of their other "experts" seem to have run away.
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Old 31st October 2005, 04:56 AM   #338
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And the judge has a great sense of humour:

Quote:
Q. And what you're saying is that it's got no chance in the scientific community, the only chance it has is for a federal judge to order that it be taught in the schools?

A. Look, I'm --

MR. GILLEN: Objection to the characterization of his testimony, Your Honor.

THE WITNESS: Well, I am going to disagree with it. Sorry.

THE COURT: The best thing you can do when Mr. Gillen objects is not answer the question.

THE WITNESS: Sorry, sorry.

THE COURT: That doesn't help him. So we'll let that pass and we'll move on.

MR. GILLEN: I'll withdraw the objection.

THE COURT: I guess so. Mr. Walczak can proceed. That's known as the too-helpful witness.

THE WITNESS: Sorry.

THE COURT: But who you're helping depends on your answer. Mr. Walczak, you may proceed.
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Old 31st October 2005, 05:01 AM   #339
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Quote:
Q. I'm going to start reading with the question on Line 2. Quote, But what is your understanding of these counter-examples? Is it that they have -- that critics have taken these counter-examples and used some probabilistic method to determine what happened to them, or have they been raised as examples that Dr. Dembski needs to apply his method to to show that it works at all? And your answer is, Yes, the latter. I mean, but is this damning? Yes, I mean, I agree with you.

A. No, no, I'm not referring to that it's damning. I mean that the latter -- I'm not saying that the fact that they have raised counter-examples to -- suggests his method doesn't work at all. I am agreeing that that's the nature of the counter-example. I am not agreeing to it being damning.

Q. But you're saying that Dembski needs to apply his method, and he hasn't done that to the counter -- he hasn't applied his method to the counter-examples, and that's damning?

A. Let me just read this. Can you restate the question now? I've sort of -- restate the question, please, now that I've understood what I've said.
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Old 31st October 2005, 05:06 AM   #340
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I'm meant to be doing some work but...

Quote:
Q. And then, therefore, intelligent design is better?

A. Well, I don't know. Does he exactly say that?

Q. Well, I think that's what you said.

A. Well, I mean -- did I say that?

Q. Why don't you turn to Page 168 of your deposition. If you'll look at Line 21.

A. Yes.

Q. The question, Therefore, intelligent design is the best explanation? Answer: Yes, that's roughly what's going on.

A. Yes, I see. So the idea being that I'm saying -- he's saying it's -- you know, if it's not natural selection, it's therefore intelligent design. Okay. But Miller does the same thing in reverse when he tests Behe's experiment.
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Old 31st October 2005, 05:20 AM   #341
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A little aside

I've been having a conversation with an ID proponent via email. The usual cruft, but we've also been discussing Schneider's Ev program (she contacted me because of Ev). She asked a question that prompted me to run a different sort of model, and I thought the results were interesting.

Quote:
> So, Ev is evolving a new function. Yet, during
> ‘stasis’, at no given time the same configuration
> (sequence) for the gene (and, so, for the protein) is
> reached across the population (and, certainly, neither
> for the corresponding DNA binding sites). Rather, most
> organisms in the population have different sequences,
> which also keep changing in time for all organisms. In
> nature, basically all members of any given population
> have identical configurations for any given function
> (the corresponding genes, etc., are identical). This
> fact alone should invalidate the model, which simply
> predicts something that does not happen in nature.
> Just as expected from the evolutionist model for
> evolution, isn’t it?

Not all members have identical genes. There are a few different alleles. The reason this doesn't happen in the standard Ev model is because the mutation rate is orders of magnitude higher than it is in nature.

However, I ran a model with a large chromosome (2,048 bases) and few binding sites (8). This reduces the mutation rate per base. Here I am looking at generation 18,130 and I have a sequence logo of TTG_CC. Now let me step a bit ... the same creature remained the best for 37 generations. Now the new best creature has a sequence logo of TTG_Cc. That's an allele, wouldn't you say? More stepping ... that creature only lasted a few generation, but the new best one has TTG_CC. Same allele as the first one. ... Next creature, same allele. He lasts for a long time. ... Next creature, TTG_Cc. Two alleles so far. Let me step many generations ...

In about 2,000 generations I saw four alleles: TTG_CC, TTG_Cc, TTG_cC, and TtG_CC. Pretty cool, huh?

~~ Paul
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Old 31st October 2005, 05:24 AM   #342
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Originally Posted by delphi_ote View Post
But it's worse than just "not science." These are supposedly "Christians..."





And most importantly...

(Which was apparently literally written in stone at one point...)

Why is it they never seem to read their own book? Why do their fellow Christians never condemn them for this behavior?
Romans 8:1 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
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Old 31st October 2005, 05:53 AM   #343
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STOP! STOP! MY HEAD IS EXPLODING!!

This is pure torture...(of a perversely funny kind...)
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Old 31st October 2005, 06:15 AM   #344
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In his redirect examination, Fuller and the School board's lawyers are employing the "persecution" fallacy:
Quote:
Q. Earlier Mr. Walczak asked you some questions which looked at other sorts of scientific revolutions or paradigm shifts, and there was a suggestion that the case with intelligent design could be the same.

Do you see the situation confronted by intelligent design proponents as different from that of, say, the proponents of plate tectonic theory?

A. Well, I think there's a lot more opposition at the moment to intelligent design theory in terms of being able to get the institutional resources to be able to reach the critical mass to mount a research program.
We also have Fuller trying to turn the whole thing on its head and saying that ID should be taught because it isn't a properly developed scientific theory:
Quote:
But I think at the moment, because it's so -- there's such restricted access to it and there are so few people who have an incentive to work on it, that it isn't able to develop those kinds of connections. And so that's why I would say it does need to be mainstreamed.
They really ought to try to make up their minds...
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Old 31st October 2005, 06:34 AM   #345
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In other words, if we could indoctrinate a bunch of high school kids into ID, they might go to college and do research on it. That way we could get more research done.

I propose we do the same thing for Flying Spagetti Monsterism. It needs research, doesn't it?

~~ Paul
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Old 31st October 2005, 06:40 AM   #346
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Originally Posted by Paul C. Anagnostopoulos View Post
In other words, if we could indoctrinate a bunch of high school kids into ID, they might go to college and do research on it. That way we could get more research done.

I propose we do the same thing for Flying Spagetti Monsterism. It needs research, doesn't it?

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Old 31st October 2005, 01:06 PM   #347
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Originally Posted by delphi_ote View Post
That would explain a lot. Any idea where you heard that, Dan?...
Sorry it took so long to get back to you on this. Been a busy weekend. I've heard it a few places, here's one source:

http://www.stcynic.com/blog/archives...er_oath_in.php

Quote:
Update: It turns out there's good reason for my bafflement - Buckingham was not a defense witness but a prosecution witness called out of turn. Apparently for scheduling purposes they could not get him to Pennsylvania to appear during the plaintiff's case, so they had to interrupt the defense case and call him as a plaintiff's witness. So that clears up the confusion there. I certainly understand why we called him to the stand.
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Old 31st October 2005, 02:02 PM   #348
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Originally Posted by delphi_ote View Post
Also, can anyone explain to me why Buckingham can't get in trouble for perjury for this? I'm definitely not Mr. Law, but his false statements seem to be a little too convenient to not be deliberate.
I'm not a lawyer, so don't quote me, but perjury charges resulting from civil suits are exceedingly rare, mostly because the only alternative is they be ridiculously common. Most civil suits are a matter of one party's word against the other, so obviously only one can be telling the truth in court; the upshot of this is that, logically, every party who loses a civil suit could be charged with perjury, and it's generally thought that that would be excessive.

That said, Buckingham is arguably lying under oath concerning actions performed in his capacity as a public official (namely, an elected member of a school board), so there's a case to be made that it would be in the public interest to investigate him for perjury. After all, if a public offiicial feels he needs to dissemble about his performance, it's a safe bet he hasn't been doing his job properly, and the public deserves to know.
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Old 31st October 2005, 02:15 PM   #349
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Originally Posted by Euromutt View Post
I'm not a lawyer, so don't quote me, but perjury charges resulting from civil suits are exceedingly rare, mostly because the only alternative is they be ridiculously common. Most civil suits are a matter of one party's word against the other, so obviously only one can be telling the truth in court; the upshot of this is that, logically, every party who loses a civil suit could be charged with perjury, and it's generally thought that that would be excessive.
My understanding is also that they're incredibly difficult to prosecute. As I read the various reported details, although I certainly get the idea and the impression that Buckingham is a lying cheese-weasel, I don't think I can actually prove that any given statement is a lie. Almost everything he says is attributed to simple mis-remembering, backed up by an acknowledged and provable drug problem.

Do I believe that it's likely that he really has that poor a memory, while still being able to function in normal society? No. Can I prove it to the standards required in a criminal trial? Probably not? Would prosecuting him for perjury be seen as unnecessarily vindictive? Probably so. Would I recommend it if I were the local DA? Almost certainly not.

Would such a prosecution be in the best interests of justice? Possibly so -- at the very least, if he were tried, convicted, and sent up the river for a few years, that would definitely send a message to any other school boards that are thinking of lying their way out of the Lemon test. But the benefit is so small, and the chance of it happening it so remote -- and the chance of the local citizens putting up with it before voting the DA out of office -- are such that I doubt it will, or should, happen.
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Old 31st October 2005, 02:22 PM   #350
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I couldn't agree more with your assessment, drkitten, with the exception that, as an owner of a highly adorable ferret who will eat damn near anything he sees humans eat (he's kind of dog-like that way), I object to your characterisation of Buckingham as a "cheese weasel" on the grounds that this insulting to mustelids.
But other than that, spot on!
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Old 31st October 2005, 02:59 PM   #351
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I just found how the Discovery Institute is presenting the Dover trial, and it's rather interesting.

The ACLU is presenting all the testimony (in rather broad terms; they are not especially quick off the block, and some of the transcripts are garbled). The DI, by contrast, is specifically presenting only the direct examination of their own witnesses, and only the cross-examination of the plaintiffs'. They're also presenting the text of their various amicus briefs, not bothering to tell anyone that one of the briefs was rejected, and they're presenting Dembski's expert witness report, without bothering to mention that Dembski is no longer testifiying, and is therefore irrelevant.

If anyone wants to know just how dishonest the DI is, this may be a good way to show it....
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Old 31st October 2005, 03:44 PM   #352
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Originally Posted by drkitten View Post
I just found how the Discovery Institute is presenting the Dover trial, and it's rather interesting.

The ACLU is presenting all the testimony (in rather broad terms; they are not especially quick off the block, and some of the transcripts are garbled). The DI, by contrast, is specifically presenting only the direct examination of their own witnesses, and only the cross-examination of the plaintiffs'. They're also presenting the text of their various amicus briefs, not bothering to tell anyone that one of the briefs was rejected, and they're presenting Dembski's expert witness report, without bothering to mention that Dembski is no longer testifiying, and is therefore irrelevant.

If anyone wants to know just how dishonest the DI is, this may be a good way to show it....
Unfortunately, if DI's regular readers are anything like my relatives, they are regular readers because DI presents only what they are looking for, the affirming view, which appeases their discomfort with dissent. They will be suspect of any claims of DI's dishonesty and will accept any spin DI puts on such claims.
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Old 31st October 2005, 04:08 PM   #353
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Originally Posted by sphenisc View Post
Romans 8:1 Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

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2 Timothy 4:2-4 Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.
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2 Corinthians 11:13-15 "God's messengers?" They are counterfeits of the real thing, dishonest practitioners masquerading as the messengers of Christ. Nor do their tactics surprise me when I consider how Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is only to be expected that his agents shall have the appearance of ministers of righteousness--but they will get what they deserve in the end.
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Deuteronomy 18:20-21 A prophet who presumes to speak in my name anything I have not commanded him to say, or a prophet who speaks in the name of other gods, must be put to death. You may say to yourselves, 'How can we know when a message has not been spoken by the Lord?' If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the Lord does not take place or come true, that is a message the Lord has not spoken.
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Old 31st October 2005, 04:16 PM   #354
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Originally Posted by Dan Beaird View Post
Sorry it took so long to get back to you on this. Been a busy weekend. I've heard it a few places, here's one source:

http://www.stcynic.com/blog/archives...er_oath_in.php

Thanks for that, Dan. It's always good to have the facts at our fingertips. In light of this information, Buckingham's confused testimony makes a lot more sense.

I have to ask, though... why couldn't he take the 5th?
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Old 31st October 2005, 04:25 PM   #355
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Originally Posted by delphi_ote View Post
I have to ask, though... why couldn't he take the 5th?
Because it's a civil trial, and the Fifth Amendment states that on person "shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself."
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Old 31st October 2005, 05:47 PM   #356
delphi_ote
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Originally Posted by Euromutt View Post
Because it's a civil trial, and the Fifth Amendment states that on person "shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself."
Seems logical enough then that perjury is right out in a civil trial.
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Old 31st October 2005, 08:11 PM   #357
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Originally Posted by chipmunk stew View Post
Unfortunately, if DI's regular readers are anything like my relatives, they are regular readers because DI presents only what they are looking for, the affirming view, which appeases their discomfort with dissent. They will be suspect of any claims of DI's dishonesty and will accept any spin DI puts on such claims.
Does the phrase "There are some things Man is not meant to know" ring a bell with anyone?
That, to me, is the thrust of ID. GODDIDIT, so there is no reason to investigate further. Let's stop meddling in "Things man is not meant to know"

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Old 1st November 2005, 06:46 AM   #358
Dan Beaird
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Originally Posted by delphi_ote View Post
Thanks for that, Dan. It's always good to have the facts at our fingertips. In light of this information, Buckingham's confused testimony makes a lot more sense.

I have to ask, though... why couldn't he take the 5th?
He couldn't take the fifth unless the questions were couched in such a way that a truthful answer could be used to convict him in a criminal trial. Since nothing he's done is a crime per se there is no protection under the fifth.

I think the smart thing to do would be to have the defense call the witness and severely limit the lines of questioning. Isn't cross examination limited to subjects covered under direct? Maybe I'm thinking of re-direct...I'm no lawyer either, but I've seen one on TV.
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Old 1st November 2005, 08:09 AM   #359
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It appears that Dover school board member Alan Bonsell got into a little trouble with the judge yesterday: http://ydr.com/story/doverbiology/92434/

And here's Mike Argento's take on Bonsell's testimony.

Another transcript to look forward to.
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Old 1st November 2005, 09:17 AM   #360
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Quote:
On the one hand, school board members can use this to defend against the charge that they were motivated by religious belief in introducing intelligent design or creationism into the biology curriculum. If they were motivated by religion, how come none of them ever heard of the Ninth Commandment — you know, the one about bearing false witness?

On the other hand, it's really a sad day for America when public officials can no longer lie convincingly enough to get it past a federal judge.

I blame the public schools. I mean, just look at some of the bozos in charge of them.

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