Liveblogging Texas MCCVI: Garnering support

Charles Garner, creationist chemist from Baylor: Are there weaknesses in theories? Sez we can substitute explanations or hypotheses, but these are not interchangeable. Claims theory is being redefined, which is nonsense. Can be weaknesses. Gets into origins of life, beginning with proteins, especially chirality. We're going to get several minutes of stereoselectivity in peptide formation; shoot me.

Now he's playing with big numbers, trying to scare people. Origin of life "astonishingly improbable," about like the odds of someone winning the lottery, and yet…

Wants a standard about OOL to focus on the complexity of living things, rather than generally looking at how one gets interesting biomolecules.

Several kinds of weaknesses: First, not enough evidence at all, which he thinks is the big issue with the ability of natural selection and mutation to effect major changes. Objects to take-it-or-leave-it approach to evolution. Cites Disco. list. Professor Steve Steve disapproves.

Now he goes on to bogus historical vs. experimental science distinction. Schafersman: "Terrible, terrible." A videographer for Disco. is taping me blogging and Professor Steve Steve glaring at Steve Meyer.

Now we're reading a dictionary. He's shocked that 15 minutes have passed. I'm shocked that the universe hasn't experienced heat death.

Seems to be advocating that students debate the merits of dark matter.


Leo: How can people say that theories haven't got weaknesses? He sorta vamps, but thinks that's philosophically wrong.

Dunbar: Some sort of gibberish. Jebus I'm tired of this. Ah, she's proposing that the claim about weakness opening the door to creationism is testable, and false, therefore it'll never be used. "Am I misapplying the scientific method?" Yes. He thinks she's right. Opposes teaching creationism. Evolution in danger of being treated as a religion.

Knight: Is S&W == bad a red herring? We were talking about IDC in 2003 because of S&W, so why do you deny the link betwn creationism and S&W? Also, how did we start talking about origins of life when we were talking about evolution? Third, how can evolution be taught dogmatically? Anything you don't allow to be questioned is a religion. O RLY? Or maybe you call it a law. Maybe once you'd call ID an alternative to evolution. I don't know anyone doing that, he says, standing in from of the Disco. 'Tute crew.

Cargill: How do you teach evolution if S&W not in TEKS? If teachers can't figure out how to present valid science in the classroom, they don't deserve their jobs. Evolution is important, and teachers should be comfortable. More Cargillish rambling.

Mercer: Is it true that evolution isn't about OOL? Yes. Don't let evolution be a monolithic block. Valid to doubt parts without challenging the whole. Meandering nonsense, then a plug for shitty movie Expelled.

Miller: New standards make it easier to teach critical thinking. He proposes language to block ID from textbooks.

Hillis is up next, but I've got a phone interview to prepare for. Then, perhaps, massive alcoholism. Perhaps that will purge this intolerable nonsense from my memory.