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Old 02-12-2007, 06:00 AM   #1
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http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/12/sc..._r=1&th&emc=th
Somehow it seems intellectually dishonest to follow one "paradigm" to get a degree when you really believe another. :bop:
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Old 02-12-2007, 06:17 AM   #2
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:wall:

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Old 02-12-2007, 06:20 AM   #3
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Is this not an example of a mental illness - where he is able to think rationally for some of the time - but then call on his (dis)ability to partition his brain and beleive something completely different at other times ?

Stop the Holy See men!
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Old 02-12-2007, 06:22 AM   #4
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His subject was the abundance and spread of mosasaurs, marine reptiles that, as he wrote, vanished at the end of the Cretaceous era about 65 million years ago.
[...]
For him, Dr. Ross said, the methods and theories of paleontology are one “paradigm” for studying the past, and Scripture is another. In the paleontological paradigm, he said, the dates in his dissertation are entirely appropriate. The fact that as a young earth creationist he has a different view just means, he said, “that I am separating the different paradigms.”
:wall: indeed.

"The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish." ~Albert Einstein
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Old 02-12-2007, 06:56 AM   #5
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I think the case here is that he was "faking it" just to get the credentials. YECs with a degree like this are probably pretty rare.

"Faith is the great cop-out, the great excuse to evade the need to think and evaluate evidence. Faith is belief in spite of, even perhaps because of, the lack of evidence." -Richard Dawkins
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Old 02-12-2007, 07:42 AM   #6
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From the late abortion of a thread (http://ravingatheists.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=6989) :

Quote:
I wrote
So, he does "pretend science" that is described as "impeccable." But what is his motivation? Is it to simply learn the lingo of scientismo so he can score a high-paying job with the Discovery Institute or some such thing? (Instead of a salary they just leave some cash on his mattress.)

But how does he reconcile the obvious conflict of paradigms with himself? He likens it to an economist who favors socialism but studies supply-side to broaden his understanding, but that's not a good comparison, since economists can -- and do -- argument vehemently over the efficacy of either system. No scientist can argue YEC.

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Old 02-12-2007, 08:56 AM   #7
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I don't think I've ever disagreed with PZ Myers, but I believe he's off-base here:

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PZ M. wrote
I think the University of Rhode Island might want to review their doctoral programs a bit. It looks like someone can slip through with only the most superficial knowledge of their field, and can admit to faking it throughout their entire training. This kind of slack in the standards diminishes the luster of degrees from RI.
I disagree that this Christ-puncher had "only the most superficial knowledge of their field." I think he mastered his field, and manages somehow reconcile his leprechaun-belief with science. Maybe "reconcile" isn't quite the right word -- I'm assuming he denies the science in some way. I wonder what his courses are like at Liberty U. Does he say, "This is what the Scientismo's 'believe' but we know it's wrong."??

Oddly, our new jeetard Xanny could actually contribute to this discussion, if he weren't such an assmonkey.

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Old 02-12-2007, 09:53 AM   #8
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I disagree with PZ too. Unless there is a way to use a lie detector test to admit students into programs. The thing is that this reality denier probably deep down knows that he is wrong about being a YEC and would pass the polygraph test if asked how old the earth is.
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Old 02-12-2007, 09:58 AM   #9
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I don't think you need to "believe in" an idea in order to understand it well or to make a valuable contribution to the field. In order to obtain a graduate degree, you need to produce sound, original research. Dr. Ross's advisor described his work as "impeccable", which indicates that he is able to apply the scientific method to a problem and make an original contribution. In that sense, Dr. Ross has rightfully earned his degree. However, just because someone has produced valid work in the past, doesn't mean they won't produce junk science in the future. Dr. Ross will not be able to publish in the mainstream science literature if he uses creationism as a starting point, which means his scientific career is effectively over unless he is willing to produce more work under the "paleontological paradigm".

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baconeatingatheistjew wrote
I disagree with PZ too. Unless there is a way to use a lie detector test to admit students into programs. The thing is that this reality denier probably deep down knows that he is wrong about being a YEC and would pass the polygraph test if asked how old the earth is.
Do you think such a selection criterion would even be ethical?
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Old 02-12-2007, 10:21 AM   #10
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PZ M. once said similar things about tenure here.

He would vote against granting tenure to an ID assmonkey on the grounds that it's crackpot science. But I can't imagine how the paleontologist in question ever uses "science" to promote YEC.

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Old 02-12-2007, 10:31 AM   #11
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In order to get tenure, you also have to produce a lot of good research (in general--politics is part of it too). A scientist who produces a lot of junk science by using ID as a starting point would probably not get tenure anyway. Unless, of course, they're willing to shift their "paradigm" and produce good work, in which case the situation would be similar to Dr. Ross's.
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Old 02-12-2007, 11:02 AM   #12
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Do you think such a selection criterion would even be ethical?
*************************
Probably not. Real science weeds these guys out regardless. I don't think this story means much except it will be one more PHD who Fundies can use on their list of "scientists" who question evolution and think the world is young....yet have not produced one paper to confirm their beliefs to be true.
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Old 02-12-2007, 11:10 AM   #13
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Quote:
BEAJ wrote
I don't think this story means much except it will be one more PHD who Fundies can use on their list of "scientists" who question evolution and think the world is young....yet have not produced one paper to confirm their beliefs to be true.
I agree, but the more 'real' scientists they get on board, the easier it is for them to claim there's some kind of 'controversy.' Behe, e.g., is a real biologist, who makes a lot of money posing as a 'maverick' challenging the whole field of evolutionary biology. Joe and Jane Sixpack don't understand the distinction between Behe's horseshit and real science, but they sense he at least talks the talk, which is good enough. ANd then the Christers wail, 'O why won't they "teach the controversy?'" That's the problem with this latest assmonkey; he adds fuel (I'm guessing dung) to the fire.

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Old 02-12-2007, 11:19 AM   #14
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Still, the popular scientific rebuttals to Darwin's Black Box at least provide a valuable learning experience to those who seek it out.
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Old 02-12-2007, 12:15 PM   #15
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no matter how many phd's they have on their side, they won't be able to publish anything that supports yec, because the data simply does not support that position.
but now we know how a yec phd rationalizes his point of view....and it is the same way they rationalize faith...

One of the most irrational of all the conventions of modern society is the one to the effect that religious opinions should be respected....That they should have this immunity is an outrage. There is nothing in religious ideas, as a class, to lift them above other ideas. On the contrary, they are always dubious and often quite silly.
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