Joined: Dec. 2006
|Quote (N.Wells @ Nov. 15 2007,12:43)|
|Casey Luskin refines his whining about Judgement Day, at http://www.evolutionnews.org/2007....ml#more |
|Paula Apsell’s Lessons Not Learned from the History of Science|
Paula Apsell was the executive producer of PBS/NOVA’s “Judgment Day: Intelligent Design” documentary, which tries to inaccurately paint ID as a creationist idea that has been refuted by science. But in fact, a few years ago Ms. Apsell produced a different NOVA documentary entitled “Mystery of the Megaflood.”
For a geologist like me, it’s a fascinating tale about how mainstream geologists took decades to accept that the view giant post-glacial flood was responsible for much of the bizarre geological features found in eastern Washington. According to Apsell’s “Megaflood” documentary, a geologist in the early 1900s named J. Harlen Bretz proposed a catastrophic local flood theory to explain this geology.
Bretz was ridiculed by his contemporary geologists because his ideas reminded them of a creationist Biblical global flood. The documentary says that Bretz challenged the “orthodox view” and was labeled as promoting creationist “heresy” that “defied all scientific convention.” Of course, Bretz’s theory was not a creationist explanation. He did not propose a global flood—he simply proposed that a localized post-glacial flood in eastern Washington caused the geological features he observed. But his critics used the “creationist” label to oppose his views as unacceptable. That is, until the evidence won out.
About 100 years later, Bretz’s view has been vindicated and because the evidence won out over false accusations that he was promoting creationism. Does this story sound familiar? Paula Apsell’s “Judgment Day” documentary does to ID precisely what Bretz’s contemporaries did to him: it tries to marginalize ID with false claims that it is creationism and makes fallacious claims that ID has been scientifically refuted. Emboldened by the misguided opinion of one federal judge, Apsell labels ID as creationist “heresy.”
Perhaps Apsell should review her own “Megaflood” documentary and take a lesson from history: 100 years from now, after ID’s scientific revolution is complete, Paula Apsell’s “Judgment Day” documentary may be shown in high school science classrooms studying ID to warn students not to wrongly label powerful scientific ideas as “creationist heresy” simply because they challenge the orthodox scientific view.
Casey might find it instructive to pursue this comparison just a little farther to learn the lessons from the J Harlan Bretz affair (that's J no period Harlan Bretz). In 1923, when Bretz first published, geologists had spent the previous hundred years and more crawling out from under the wreckage of bible-based geology, and thus had excessive aversion to anything that hinted even slightly of gigantic floods and other biblical megacatastrophes. It is true that most geologists' aversion was excessive, and blinded them to Bretz's correct interpretation of the channeled scablands.
However, here is where the story becomes instructive for ID and points them up as being ignorant in the ways of science and uninterested in research.
In 1927, a huge discussion about the Channeled Scablands was arranged at the Geologiical Society of America. Most people disagreed with Bretz. Following that, Bretz (and a USGS colleague, J.T. Pardee) continued working in the Channeled Scablands, collecting data to make their case. In the late 60's enough convincing evidence had been found that Bretz's interpretation became accepted. In 1979 (two years before he died), the Geological Society of America awarded Bretz its Penrose Medal, which is at worst one of the top two awards in Geology (we don't have Nobel prizes in our field, but the Geological Society of London offers an more or less equally prestigious award.)
So the take-home message is that if the scientific mainstream rejects your ideas unfairly, you should go out and do the research and obtain the evidence that will convince them.
It is additionally worth pointing out that in the 1920's Bretz's evidence was not as convincing as it was later, and did not fit comfortably into the knowledge base of the time concerning ice age events in the Pacific Northwest (some advances in the 1950's and 1960's made Bretz's story much more plausible). Most notably, Bretz did not launch a nationwide crusade to have his ideas taught in high school classes. He never called on processes for which there was absolutely no evidence, and he insisted on evidence-based discussion. As far as I recall from his papers, he never once misrepresented the arguments of the opposing side.
Also, geologists were worried that Bretz's ideas were Catastrophist, not Creationist.
What you are trying to say then, is that Bretz, through his own words and actions proves that he would not have a chance in hell to be successful in the Exciting World Of ID Theory.
I think Casey has this lesson down.
He is such a LLuskiniar!
Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10
Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08
UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11