Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Vallicella debunks Krauss

Vallicella on Krauss. He also responds to a piece of classic Bulverism: If you criticize scientistic nonsense, you only do that because you are motivated by religion.

11 comments:

Cole said...

I still think that causal relations are temporal. Even when we are dealing with persons. If our persons were not in space-time and instead were timeless, and spaceless, they would become unchanging and frozen like abstract objects or the laws of logic. We wouldn't be able to do anything. This is why the universe either had no First Cause or there was a previous universe that gave birth to our universe, and a previous universe that gave birth to that universe and so on. This would explain the fine-tuning of our universe. Of course we can't be certain of any of this just as we can't be certain and say that God did it.

Crude said...

Victor,

Pretty much everyone is debunking Krauss. Did you see David Albert's review? It's pretty devastating, and he pretty much hands Krauss and Dawkins their heads in one fell swoop.

If you haven't checked out the Albert review Valicella links to, I'd suggest it.

Papalinton said...

"Pretty much everyone is debunking Krauss. Did you see David Albert's review? "

"Theoretical physics, as practiced in the mainstream media, seems to be moving from a mania about multiverses to a religious battle over nothingness. On one side we have physicist Lawrence Krauss, with his best-selling new entry into the atheism book sweepstakes: A Universe from Nothing. Krauss is backed by Richard Dawkins, who compares the book’s devastating effect on religion to that of Darwin’s.

On the other side we have philosopher David Albert, backed by a million dollars from the Templeton Foundation (see more here), who has a review out this morning in the New York Times characterizing Krauss as “pale, small, silly, nerdy” (his ideas, not him, I think).

The big debate here is over what one means by “nothingness”, which seems to me characterizable as nothing of interest. I guess though that there is a lot of money to be made in the nothingness business. The next opportunity for a big payday from nothingness will be on Thursday, 11 AM GMT, when Templeton will announce who gets this year’s $1.7 million dollar prize. I’ve no idea who will get it, just that it won’t be Krauss."
[ From: http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress ]

David Albert, backed by 30 pieces of silver from the Templeton Foundation. Blood money.

I rest my case.

As for Vallicella .......nuff said.

Ephram said...

Papalinton,

Do you believe, as a matter of principle, that each and every idea that has been plopped out by the incessantly churning factory of anti-religious thought is, by necessity, a nugget of immaculate gold? I ask because frankly I've never seen you utter a single critical word about any anti-religious book, article, post, or person.



"David Albert, backed by 30 pieces of silver from the Templeton Foundation. Blood money.

I rest my case."



Before you can rest a case you first need to make one. Just fyi.

Crude said...

I ask because frankly I've never seen you utter a single critical word about any anti-religious book, article, post, or person.

Oh, go easy on him, Ephram. It's not like he's understood most of what he's read. ;)

Besides, David Albert is, if memory serves, an atheist who's spoken at Beyond Belief conferences. So there you have an atheist Linton dislikes - one who dares to criticize one of his idols.

Blood money. That's freaking adorable.

Papalinton said...

Ephram
"Before you can rest a case you first need to make one. Just fyi."

You are absolutely correct. My bad. It is so easy to fall into the habit of discourse using the Apologetical stratagem.

You ask, "Do you believe, as a matter of principle, that each and every idea that has been plopped out by the incessantly churning factory of anti-religious thought is, by necessity, a nugget of immaculate gold? "

Response: Pretty much when one considers the alternative; of superstitious supernaturalism. And I admit to that fault. If that is the only choice you wish to accord me, between anti-religious thoughts and religious thoughts, on balance, I think anti-religious thoughts has the edge.

If by anti-religious you include science, then, without a doubt. If by anti-religious you include naturalism, then a qualified yes; qualified because I practice 'methodological naturalism' as the basis for viewing the world. I can't know for sure whether naturalism, per se, is true; all might be one gigantic computer simulation. But I am happy to live in an evolving understanding of the world. The arbitrary, fundamental and 'ultimate truths'[?] of christian theism is simply crass nonsense.

In regard to the Templeton Foundation: ""They are using the prestige and authority of science to improve the prestige and credibility of theology," says Daniel Dennett, a philosopher at Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. In his opinion, Templeton-funded discussions between scientists and religious figures do for religion what debates between ID proponents and evolutionary biologists would do for ID: "They create the perception that scientists and theologians are academic co-equals, which they are not."

Source: Science, March 26, 2010

I concur.

BenYachov said...

The lesson here is no Atheist that Paps likes can ever make an objectively bad argument & any Atheist who dare takes on a bad Atheist argument must be doing so because he was somehow paid off by Theists.

This saves Paps from the trouble of making an objective rational response to Albert's criticisms of Krauss.

Weird.

Feser likes Craig but criticizes Craig's criticism of the concept Strong Simplicty and rejects Craig's views on God & Time.

I prefer Feser over Craig because I think the content of the arguments are stronger. Not because of some empty appeal to politics.

Herbert McCabe is politically to the Far left compared to Feser but McCabe's Thomistic Philosophy is solid.

New Atheism like fundamentalism is for the mentally and emotionally inferior. Not to mention the uneducated.

BenYachov said...

As for the Templeton Prize.

"This year they gave the award to theoretical astrophysicist Martin Rees, a man who doesn’t believe God exists, claims to have no religious beliefs, and is skeptical that science and religion can have a constructive dialogue."

http://www.firstthings.com/blogs/firstthoughts/2011/04/08/the-templeton-foundations-award-winning-atheist/

Zach said...

He advocates the nonoverlapping magisteria wave of the hand that Templeton suck-ups love. There are some conflicts, but not as many as some people would say. Certainly not zero conflict, as the NOMA cult would advocate.

Papalinton said...

Rees? Everybody has a price.

William said...

Interesting, thanks Ben. from the quoted article:

"Martin Rees: Yes. Obviously. But I think just as religion is separate from science, so is ethics separate from science. So is aesthetics separate from science. And so are many other things. There are lots of important things that are separate from science.
"

Not nerdy, not dull, not silly, not pale, maybe a bit small in intent. Gets my vote :)