Wednesday, December 31, 2008

William Lane Craig, worlds foremost wall puncher.

I haven't brought him up before but William Lane Craig is a gasbag. He's one of the foremost apologists alive today which is akin to the distinction of being the world's foremost wall puncher. His arguments are almost always nearly exact copies of the same argument somebody else used but he changed a few words to hide an error or two. "Oh, look at that he changed 'exists' to 'begin to exist' in order to avoid this one fairly philosophical objection."

Similarly he raises objections to the idea that an intelligent designer cannot be the ultimate explanation of something because, if you are required to say that something needs an intelligent designer then that designer needs a designer and you get into an infinite regress. To wit, he raises the objection that you don't need to know what caused something for that something to be the best explanation. Craig claims that you can suppose God Did It, without needing to answer the question "What just did God then?"

It would almost sound good so long as you don't give it a modicum of thought. The original claim is that an intelligent creator can't be the ultimate explanation of anything. The reason for the infinite regress isn't pulled out of thin air, but rather the exact same setup the intelligent creator was supposed to explain. Which has everything to do with the divergence of the series.

What caused these amazing arrowpoints and pottery shards?
-- People made them.
What caused those people?
-- Well, we have a long and well understood explanation of early human migration and human evolution. Each step is explained by similar smaller steps and other explanations as the problem is broken down into composite problems.

What caused this odd machinery on the moon.
-- I don't know. What parts does it have, can anybody on this planet make that, did we land anything there? What materials is it made from? We can break the problem up into smaller pieces.

What caused the universe?
-- God. What caused God? Nothing, super-god, God did, magic... none of these are smaller issues or less daunting than the original problem. The answer of God explains absolutely nothing and gives you another boatload of problems. The objection isn't that it instantly raises the question of the designer of God, rather it raises the bigger question of the designer of God. At the core is the problem which befalls all skyhooks. You need another skyhook to hold them up and they never have a foundation. Whereas the other supposed problems could easily be supposed to have cranes supporting them directly or cranes to support the cranes at most with a solid foundation in real world explanations.

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