Evolutionary theory cannot be falsified (Introduction)

by dhw, Wednesday, March 29, 2017, 14:15 (61 days ago) @ Balance_Maintained

TONY: From David's Link:
QUOTE: "I don’t think a theory necessarily need be falsifiable to be considered scientific or true. Some theories are more difficult to falsify than others (evolution being one of them). The way I see it, testability and verifiability are more essential. Having said that, a theory that is falsifiable and verifiable is stronger than one that is merely the latter. "

TONY: This, to me is a horrible travesty of scientific thought.
Falsifiability: Wikipedia
"The term falsifiability is sometimes synonymous to testability. Some statements, such as "It will be raining here in one million years, are falsifiable in principle, but not in practice."
The concern with falsifiability gained attention by way of philosopher of science Karl Popper's scientific epistemology "falsificationism". Popper stresses the problem of demarcation—distinguishing the scientific from the unscientific—and makes falsifiability the demarcation criterion, such that what is unfalsifiable is classified as unscientific, and the practice of declaring an unfalsifiable theory to be scientifically true is pseudoscience."
"If a theory doesn’t make a testable prediction, it isn’t science."

TONY: While I agree that falsifiability is not the end-all-be-all of science, it IS important. Not only does it force scientist to focus on things that are practical and measurable, but it also creates a level playing field for discussion of scientific and theological philosophy. Why is it OK for evolution not to be falsifiable but not creation?
DAVID: What is sauce for the goose must be sauce for the gander.

For a change, we are all in agreement. Since your post was addressed to me, Tony, let me repeat the point that I was responding to:

DAVID: This is a quote from Cornelius Hunter who does not believe in the evolutionary process or Darwin theory:
https://designdisquisitions.wordpress.com/2017/03/26/quote-of-the-month-cornelius-hunte...

QUOTE: "Being an evolutionist means there is no bad news.
dhw: Being a theist means there is no bad news. Whatever happens happens because that is the way God wants it to happen. The God theory cannot be falsified.

Three points to be made here: 1) Hunter’s attack on the theory of evolution can be applied equally to the theory of God. “Sauce for the goose and the gander.” 2) We still talk of the “theory” of evolution, and I myself believe in it. I would never claim that it is “scientifically” true. (NB: Please remember the theory itself is not atheistic.) 3) Most important of all, I do not believe that science provides the only avenue to truth (whatever “truth” may be), and so in my own subjective quest for that truth, falsifiability as a criterion is actually irrelevant. The question is always "Can/Do I believe it?", not "Can it be falsified?"


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