Creationist Error: An Epistemological Classification
Type 0: Change the scientific method in such a way that evolution cannot claim scientific validity. In order to do this, their redefined scientific method must also exclude most of science.
Example a: Claiming that everything not confirmed by eyewitnesses cannot be scientific.
Example b: Denying that the confirmation of a prediction made by a theory tends to confirm a theory (i.e. denying the whole of the scientific method) as a specific example, much of their rubbish about intermediate forms is based on this form of reality-dodging. See also "microevolution doesn't prove macroevolution".
Example c: Claiming that the gaps in our knowledge invalidates what we do know. E.g, we cannot produce a definitive hominid family tree, ergo we can't say that humans belong in the same clade as apes.
Example d: Complaining about "uniformitarian assumptions".
Example e: Omphalos-type arguments.
Type 1a: Get the theory of evolution wrong.
Example a: Anyone using the words "pure chance".
Example b: Complaining that natural selection doesn't increase genetic diversty. Of course it doesn't. Duh. And that is not what the theory claims.
Example c: Claiming that recapitulation is part of the theory of evolution.
Example d: "The theory of evolution is unfalsifiable ... blash, blah ... survival of the fittest ... blah, blah ... tautology, blah, drivel, blah."
Type 1b: Get the history of evolution wrong.
Example a: I once saw a long and extremely erudite creationist paper proving that animals can't be descended from plants "as evolutionists claim".
Example b: "Evolutionists claim that fish 'conquered the land' and then evolved lungs. But the first fish would have dies because a creature without lungs wouldn't be able to breathe out of water."
Type 2: Fail to deduce the consequences of the theory of evolution.
Example a: "If men are descended from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?"
Example b: "One harmful mutation would cause the exitinction of the species."
Example c: "Living fossils contradict the theory of evolution."
Example d: The stuff about genetics in Of Pandas And People.
Type 3a: Get the facts wrong.
Example a: The belief that the neck of the giraffe displays unique morphological traits.
Example b: The Paluxy footprints.
Example c: "Archaeopteryx has all the anatomical features of a modern bird."
Example d: "No new species have been observed."
Type 3b.i: Point to a handful of errors of fact detected and put right by scientists over the last century and a half, and claim that this is all the support the theory of evolution has. Claim that all of these, whether fraudulent or honest error, were fraudulent attempts to prop of a theory in desperate need of support.
Example a: Piltdown Man.
Example b: Nebraska Man.
Type 3b.ii: Claim that lots of facts undisputed by scientists have been proven fraudulent.
Example a: Their disgusting and libellous ravings about the peppered moth.
Example b: "Heidelberg Man is a fake."
Example c: "Archaeopteryx is a fake."
Example d: "Dinosaur bones are made of papier-mache" --- no, I didn't make that one up.
Type 3b.iii: Attribute to scientists claims of observations which they have not made, nor claimed to have made, and then use real facts to prove that these imaginary claims are wrong.
Example a: "Many times people will imply, if not say outright, that we have a complete fossil record."
To this we may add a number of type 1 and type 2 errors in such subjects as thermodynamics, information theory, et cetera. These may also arguably be regarded as type 2 errors with respect to evolution. Also, there are type 2 errors concerning geology, for example polystrate fossils.
Note that I say "errors" rather than lies. The creationists need to drivel out their endless nauseating paranoid nonsense about "fraud" and "lies" and a "con" because their opponents are educated, informed, and intelligent.
By contrast, creationists are, at best, ignorant of the scientific method, the theory of evolution, and the facts; and, at worst, too stupid to grasp the basic concepts required to attain such knowledge.
Moreover, let me point out that it would only be necessary for the creationists to make one type of error, if it was done deliberately.
For example, if you're willing to change the scientific method (type 0), then it would not be necessary to change the theory of evolution (type 1), because if you can redefine "science" as you choose, then you can show that the actual theory of evolution was "unscientific" according to your new definition: you wouldn't need to make up a new theory of evolution as well.
Or, again, if someone is prepared to deliberately derive false conclusions from the theory of evolution (type 2) then these consequences would be in contradiction with real facts, and it would not be necessary to make type 3a errors.
Or, again, if all the evidence for evolution turned out to be fraudulent (type 3b) then it would not be necessary to make type 0, type 1 or type 2 errors.
Now a deliberate liar, I believe, will try to tell as few lies as he finds necessary to achieve his goal, because this reduces the chances that he will be caught.
But in any case, it is absurd to suppose that anyone would spend their time arguing, for no reward, for a point of view which they knew to be false. If a creationist thought that all his arguments were wrong, he wouldn't be a creationist. If he thought that some creationist arguments were wrong, he'd avoid those because he'd want to win the argument. The same applies to evolution, of course.
Instead, what creationist rubbish bears witness to is an accretion of error. If one creationist is dumb enough to make a mistake about some subject, then another creationist is dumb enough to learn to recite that mistake, without checking whether it's true, or even what it means (how many creationists, do you suppose, could say what the Second Law of Thermodynamics is?)
To quote Kent Hovind: "I may not always be right, but if I am saying it in my seminar then I don't know it to be false."
I have coined a word for people like this. I call them "asincere", where asincere is to insincere as amoral is to immoral.
There is, of course, already an English word for such people. Unfortunately, it is obscene.
To quote the philosopher Harry Frankfurt, slightly bowlderized:
The *********er ignores these demands altogether. He does not reject the authority of the truth, as the liar does, and oppose himself to it. He pays no attention to it at all. By virtue of this, ******** is a greater enemy of the truth than lies are.
It's a type 1 error if they claim that recapitulation is part of the theory of evolution; it's a type 2 error if they claim that recapitulation is a consequence of the theory of evolution; and it's a 3b.i error if they point out that Haeckel was a stinkin' liar.
Creationist: Let's debate the theory of evolution ...
Creationist ... as dictated to me by the voices in my head. And let's debate the statements that you've made ...
Creationist: ... as relayed to me by the magic pixies. And let's examine your underlying assumptions ...
Evolutionist: Fine by me.
Creationist: ... as explained to me by Jack Chick. And let me challenge your opinions ...
Evolutionist: Challenge away!
Creationist ... which I just made up.
The weird thing about these childish daydreams is that some creationists cling to them in the face of the actual opinions of evolutionists, no matter how clearly expressed. This is the final state of mental paralysis; a retreat into a comforting fantasy world from which there is, it seems, no return.
As randman is still drivelling on, let's use him as a case study.
Randman: My view is he has avoided and evaded the reality of genetic loss which others do admit occurs via isolation...
Me: I have proved that in the long term, if total population and mutation rate are constant, this increases genetic diversity.
Randman: You claim you have proven genetic diversity always increases, right?
Me: No, of course not. What a ridiculous lie.
Randman: So it's a lie, eh? You forget you wrote this. "I have proved that in the long term, if total population and mutation rate are constant, this increases genetic diversity."
I mean, it's astonishing. The guy is telling ridiculous lies in order to ... to do what? To convince me that my opinion is that "genetic diversity always increases". But he can't. I'm the world's leading authority on what I think. I can also read exactly what I said. So can everyone else.
This, after he has fled screaming to the moderators to beg that he should not be challenged or debated.
Randman, your beliefs are both challenged and debated, for example by me, but you are too much of a coward and a hypocrite to face up to this like a man, so you have to hide from any challenge or debate like a pathetic coward.
So you run crying to the moderators to protect you from challenge or debate. And then, when you have suppressed any challenge or debate, you pretend that your ideas are "unchallenged and undebatable" like the cowardly liar that you are.
Here is a challenge. Here is an offer of debate. I expect you to run from them like the whining lying coward that you are.
And that's the bottom line, isn't it? When Randman wishes to lie and lie and lie and lie about the claims of "evolutionists", the thing that really terrifies him, more than anything, is to have a real "evolutionist", such as myself, tell the truth.
So the poor little thing had to go blubbering and whimpering to the moderators to say that since he started the thread, he ought to be able to whine out his drivel of lies without any opposition.
And then, having got himself confined to his pitiful padded cell where no-one can debate him, the lunatic anounces that his halfwitted lies are "unchallenged and undebatable".
Randman: your lies are challenged, and debate would be easy. If you weren't a coward. If you hadn't run snicelling and crying from anyone who might challenge or debate you.
Hey, randman, come to any thread where you haven't blubbered and whimpered and begged to be sheltered from debate, and you will find yourself both challenged and debated.
I will debate you, if you don't run away. I will tell the truth. And you, it seems, are terrified of this.
C'mon. My truth against your lies. Or do you know that all your lies are ****?
When you find that real evolutionists kick your butt every time, invent some imaginary evolutionists in your head, ascribe to them opinions you know perfectly well real people don't hold, and then score a solitary rhetorical victory over the imaginary voices in your head.
Perhaps it's worth explaining to you one more time that if you can't understand some subject, that does not imply that the subject is stupid. There is an alternate explanation.
I do realize you are probably young, and I have no wish to play my normal full-out game against a much weaker opponent because it troubles my international sense of fair play.
If you are claiming that you are deliberately dumbing yourself down ... then that would explain a lot.
You can stop now. We won't mind.
In one small paragraph you have managed to say one of the the most illogical things one could almost imagine.
Again, your incomprehension of a statement does not necessarily mean that the statement is illogical. It could mean that your unique and distinctive mental qualities render you unfit to distinguish logic from a hole in the ground.
You may be having psychotic, irrational hallucinations every time you believe someone can check your work, or that you have done any work at all.
Either that, or you are ignorant of a subject that you are, in fact, ignorant of.
The opposite of order is chaos. You don't get to tell me what chaos means-it has a universal meaning, which you don't get to decide.
In mathematics and science, chaos has a very specific meaning, which you don't get to decide. You know, like you didn't get to decide what "natural selection" means? Remember? 'Cos of you not being able to rewrite the vocabulary of science just to suit the damnfool mistakes you want to make about it.