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(ABC)   "Intelligent design" scientist sues NASA for wrongful termination. Judge: He was let go because he was combative and did not keep his skills sharp. Obvious: See first two words of this headline   (abcnews.go.com) divider line 121
    More: Fail, NASA, wrongful termination, intelligent design, jet propulsions, Jet Propulsion Laboratory  
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6165 clicks; posted to Geek » on 03 Nov 2012 at 11:38 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-11-03 08:55:27 AM  
"I'm not an atheist and I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangements of the books, but doesn't know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God."

- Albert Einstein
 
2012-11-03 08:57:05 AM  
Of course, Einstein didn't really believe in the concept of a personal God with heaven and hell, just that there is structure to the world/universe...
 
2012-11-03 09:29:11 AM  
Becker argued at trial that a supervisor told Coppedge to "stop pushing your religion,"

Intelligent Design isn't a moral or a value. It's just . . . . stupid.
 
2012-11-03 11:06:18 AM  
Wait, so he was a computer specialist and not an actual scientist? Okay. I can see that. If he was an actual scientist and was preaching ID, then I'd have to wonder how he made it that far into his career. I've yet to meet a scientist who didn't believe in Evolution, although I'm sure they sadly exist.
 
2012-11-03 11:43:03 AM  
Seems to me the only mistake JPL made was hiring this whackadoo in the first place.

Sadly, though, he'll become another martyr in the ID cause...
 
2012-11-03 11:44:16 AM  
The major problem with most Intelligent Design arguments is that they argue for a Designer with a rather low intelligence. Frankly, as religion they qualify as blasphemy. The fact that their proponents aren't smart enough to realize this is a strong argument, on its own, for not taking them seriously.
 
2012-11-03 11:46:40 AM  
This situation reminds me of this e-mail from Doom 3:

| From: Derek Wayland
| Subject: MFS Compressor Numbers
| Date: 11-02-2145
| Body:
|
| Walter,
|
| I wanted to personally thank you for your latest modification proposal for
| the dilation matrix. The boys here at CPU have crunched your numbers and
| after some deliberation we've agreed that this is the most fantastically
| bogus theory that we've ever seen.
|
| If you are remotely interested in not getting your gnome-loving
| dragons-slaying power-leveling ass fired, I'd suggest you lay off the
| role-playing and learn some basic math.
|
| Good luck on your next review :)
| -Derek
 
2012-11-03 11:47:47 AM  
JPL attorney Cameron Fox, however, contended Coppedge was a stubborn and disconnected employee who decided not to heed warnings to get additional training, even when it became clear the Cassini mission would be downsized and computer specialist positions eliminated.

I used to work at a large university which was run very similar to a government bureaucracy, and we had the same problem with some employees, particularly during the late 1990's when computer support jobs effectively changed from mainframe support to regular old desktop support. For whatever reason, these people had it stuck in their heads that just because they had been hired to do one job, such as supporting SAS on a mainframe, they couldn't possibly be required to learn how to do a similar job, like supporting SAS on a personal computer.

Many, many similar lawsuits later we were down all of the inflexible people who wouldn't learn new skills, and they all applied the same playbook: they were targeted for (pick one): being female, being a minority, being old, not having a degree, etc. Whatever legal cover they thought they could hide under, they would try it. In the end, they were all let go for the exact same reason: they were given ample opportunity and resources to continue their employment and they rejected all of it.

Plenty of larger companies will, indeed, use the RIF (Reduction in Force) plan to get rid of bad employees, but the bad employees are usually granted an opportunity to move into another job and they fail miserably at whatever requirements the company sets out for them. If, after the company gives you a plan to move into another a job and your first course of action is to sue, it probably won't end well for you.
 
2012-11-03 11:54:17 AM  

gopher321: Of course, Einstein didn't really believe in the concept of a personal God with heaven and hell, just that there is structure to the world/universe...


I'm open to a theory of intelligent design that admits that any design that didn't make subsequent supernatural intervention by the designer completely obsolete wouldn't be intelligent enough. Put the question somewhere where the answer makes no material difference, and it makes no material difference.
 
2012-11-03 12:00:59 PM  
Dear ID proponents: Kill Yourself. God wants you to.
 
2012-11-03 12:13:03 PM  
Bet this guy ran to HR every time someone said something even remotely insulting...
 
2012-11-03 12:16:36 PM  
"Intelligent design" scientist

No such thing
 
2012-11-03 12:18:03 PM  
So he was fired for being inflexible AND for preaching religion at work. I'm AOK with this.
 
2012-11-03 12:21:13 PM  
So that's what Bevets used to do. Makes perfect sense.
 
2012-11-03 12:24:38 PM  
In science, an acceptable argument must have a clearly set forth chain of evidence. If a single link in the chain is broken, the argument fails. Intelligent Design is fundamentally anti-scientific, as its main argument boils down to: "The only way you can understand any of this is to just believe what I say." No. That's absurd. That's not science. In fact, it's about as far from the practice of actual science as you can get.
 
2012-11-03 12:25:55 PM  
Why would you work for NASA if you don't believe in science? That's like being a birther and working for the Obama campaign.
 
2012-11-03 12:34:26 PM  

MrEricSir: Why would you work for NASA if you don't believe in science? That's like being a birther and working for the Obama campaign.


Can you think of a better way for one of them to indulge their "persecuted victim" complex?
 
2012-11-03 12:34:49 PM  

Nem Wan: gopher321: Of course, Einstein didn't really believe in the concept of a personal God with heaven and hell, just that there is structure to the world/universe...

I'm open to a theory of intelligent design that admits that any design that didn't make subsequent supernatural intervention by the designer completely obsolete wouldn't be intelligent enough. Put the question somewhere where the answer makes no material difference, and it makes no material difference.


Man's unfailing capacity to believe what he prefers to be true rather than what the evidence shows to be likely and possible has always astounded me. We long for a caring Universe which will save us from our childish mistakes, and in the face of mountains of evidence to the contrary we will pin all our hopes on the slimmest of doubts. God has not been proven not to exist, therefore he must exist.
 
2012-11-03 12:36:16 PM  
So I guess he really lost his job because he....



Couldn't evolve to fit his workplace.

yyyyyyyyeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh
 
2012-11-03 12:41:36 PM  

UNC_Samurai: Nem Wan: gopher321: Of course, Einstein didn't really believe in the concept of a personal God with heaven and hell, just that there is structure to the world/universe...

I'm open to a theory of intelligent design that admits that any design that didn't make subsequent supernatural intervention by the designer completely obsolete wouldn't be intelligent enough. Put the question somewhere where the answer makes no material difference, and it makes no material difference.

Man's unfailing capacity to believe what he prefers to be true rather than what the evidence shows to be likely and possible has always astounded me. We long for a caring Universe which will save us from our childish mistakes, and in the face of mountains of evidence to the contrary we will pin all our hopes on the slimmest of doubts. God has not been proven not to exist, therefore he must exist.


He's chillin' with Shiva, Vishnu and the Tooth Fairy at the moment...
 
2012-11-03 12:56:33 PM  

UNC_Samurai: God has not been proven not to exist, therefore he must exist.


Just to check, does everything that hasn't been proven not to exist exist, or does God get a special rule?
 
2012-11-03 01:06:40 PM  
Granted, I'm just a research psychologist, but I am a PhD-holding empirical-research-publishing person who is also a believer. And yet somehow I grasp the difference between "I believe in God and if you want to talk about it some time outside of work I can do that" and "I believe in God and will waste my work day pestering you about it whether you want me to or not".

Falls in the same category as pestering people about politics while they're trying to work.
 
2012-11-03 01:06:48 PM  

justtray: So that's what Bevets used to do. Makes perfect sense.


Does Bevets even exist any more? Or was he slapped down for being little more than a rage-bot-troll to induce people to click on his links, directing them to his home page, and generating ad revenue for himself?
 
2012-11-03 01:10:07 PM  
Coppedge also is a board member for Illustra Media, a company that produces video documentaries examining the scientific evidence for intelligent design. The company produces the videos that Coppedge was handing out to co-workers, Becker said.

So he was doing work for his second job while at NASA? Fired.
 
2012-11-03 01:22:46 PM  
FTA: Coppedge is active in the intelligent design sphere and runs a website that interprets scientific discoveries through the lens of intelligent design. His father wrote an anti-evolution book and founded a Christian outreach group.

Ahhh, so he was fired for having horse shiat where his brain should be.
 
2012-11-03 01:23:59 PM  
"I refuse to prove that I exist," says God, "for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing."
"But," say Man, "the Babel fish is a dead giveaway, isn't it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguments, you don't. QED."
"Oh dear," says God, "I hadn't though of that" and promply vanishes in a puff of logic.
 
2012-11-03 01:24:00 PM  

kroonermanblack: justtray: So that's what Bevets used to do. Makes perfect sense.

Does Bevets even exist any more? Or was he slapped down for being little more than a rage-bot-troll to induce people to click on his links, directing them to his home page, and generating ad revenue for himself?


You say that as if it would be disapproved of.
 
2012-11-03 01:25:15 PM  

born_yesterday: kroonermanblack: justtray: So that's what Bevets used to do. Makes perfect sense.

Does Bevets even exist any more? Or was he slapped down for being little more than a rage-bot-troll to induce people to click on his links, directing them to his home page, and generating ad revenue for himself?

You say that as if it would be disapproved of.


I see what you did there.
 
2012-11-03 01:29:13 PM  
From his BIO it seems he was too busy telling fairy tales to get on with the real business of science and getting the damn cassini to keep its funding.

Sounds like he inherited the genes for stupid from his dad...
 
2012-11-03 01:31:20 PM  
My favorite Intelligent Design proponents are the ones who wear man-made lenses in front of their eyes.
 
2012-11-03 01:38:07 PM  

gopher321: Of course, Einstein didn't really believe in the concept of a personal God with heaven and hell, just that there is structure to the world/universe...


Sadly, Einstein's personal beliefs also caused him to initially refute the idea of an expanding universe (which he later said was his biggest blunder), and also caused him to believe that quantum mechanics (A field he helped create) was fundamentally wrong, so the last decades of his life were spent searching for a theory of everything that didn't include QM.
 
2012-11-03 01:39:24 PM  
"It is quite obvious that all religion was created by madmen"
- Jesus Christ, his sermon on the mount
 
2012-11-03 01:56:20 PM  

raerae1980: If he was an actual scientist and was preaching ID, then I'd have to wonder how he made it that far into his career. I've yet to meet a scientist who didn't believe in Evolution, although I'm sure they sadly exist.


You don't have to believe in crazy things like probability and facts and math to remember the details long enough to trick everyone else into thinking you're actually competent....
 
2012-11-03 01:58:30 PM  
An extremist who's combative and doesn't see value in exploring opposing perspectives. Say it ain't so!
 
2012-11-03 02:07:43 PM  

RandomAxe: The major problem with most Intelligent Design arguments is that they argue for a Designer with a rather low intelligence. Frankly, as religion they qualify as blasphemy. The fact that their proponents aren't smart enough to realize this is a strong argument, on its own, for not taking them seriously.


The major problem as I see it is that it is arguing authority based on ignorance. I can only think of one way to explain this, so as I can't conceive another might exist mine is therefore correct.

Besides, I can think of another explanation for the rise of complex systems. One that does not require an outside factor to be brought in at all. (pops)
 
2012-11-03 02:09:39 PM  

Bhruic: UNC_Samurai: God has not been proven not to exist, therefore he must exist.

Just to check, does everything that hasn't been proven not to exist exist, or does God get a special rule?


God hasn't been proven to exist, or been predicted by a theory grounded in proven principles. Therefore you can no more use him to discuss the physical universe than you can use owlbears to discuss DNA. Science does not allow for pulling unfalsifiable shiat out of your ass.

In many ways, Intelligent Design is one of the most obscene attacks on the majesty of God imaginable. "I cannot see how this could occur without God, so God had to do it" translates directly as "I am too stupid to come up with a way this makes sense without magic hand-waving by God" which translates directly as "Since God had to handwave to make it work, God is stupider than me, because not only did He have to handwave, but He was so dumb about how He did it that I was able to see the flaw that required handwaving". Accepting Intelligent Design is simply calling God a complete and utter farking retard moron, because a truly infinitely perfect omni-omni deity could - and almost be definition of being perfect, would have to - create a universe that was completely and utterly indistinguishable from one arising from random chance; otherwise His Design would not be perfect because of the obvious problems. And they are some ass-glaring flaws, since we know they are visible for people with virtually no education, single-digit IQs, and the reasoning skills of low-end rocks. Intelligent Design only works if you posit the most un-Intelligent Designer possible
 
2012-11-03 02:14:01 PM  

NutWrench: In science MOST FARK POLITICS THREADS, an acceptable argument must have a clearly set forth chain of evidence. If a single link in the chain is broken, the argument fails. .....


fixed that for us

;)

/yes i just used a smiley
 
2012-11-03 02:19:23 PM  
"god is dead if you're alive"

-Moral Majority Lyrics
Jello Biafra
 
2012-11-03 02:27:20 PM  

phalamir: God hasn't been proven to exist, or been predicted by a theory grounded in proven principles. Therefore you can no more use him to discuss the physical universe than you can use owlbears to discuss DNA. Science does not allow for pulling unfalsifiable shiat out of your ass.

In many ways, Intelligent Design is one of the most obscene attacks on the majesty of God imaginable. "I cannot see how this could occur without God, so God had to do it" translates directly as "I am too stupid to come up with a way this makes sense without magic hand-waving by God" which translates directly as "Since God had to handwave to make it work, God is stupider than me, because not only did He have to handwave, but He was so dumb about how He did it that I was able to see the flaw that required handwaving". Accepting Intelligent Design is simply calling God a complete and utter farking retard moron, because a truly infinitely perfect omni-omni deity could - and almost be definition of being perfect, would have to - create a universe that was completely and utterly indistinguishable from one arising from random chance; otherwise His Design would not be perfect because of the obvious problems. And they are some ass-glaring flaws, since we know they are visible for people with virtually no education, single-digit IQs, and the reasoning skills of low-end rocks. Intelligent Design only works if you posit the most un-Intelligent Designer possible


You....but.....I....
.................newsletter
want it.
 
2012-11-03 02:33:02 PM  

Gordon Bennett: RandomAxe: The major problem with most Intelligent Design arguments is that they argue for a Designer with a rather low intelligence. Frankly, as religion they qualify as blasphemy. The fact that their proponents aren't smart enough to realize this is a strong argument, on its own, for not taking them seriously.

The major problem as I see it is that it is arguing authority based on ignorance. I can only think of one way to explain this, so as I can't conceive another might exist mine is therefore correct.

Besides, I can think of another explanation for the rise of complex systems. One that does not require an outside factor to be brought in at all. (pops)


The problem is intelligent design imports certain assumptions in a circular or question begging fashion.

A) something exists implies Someone exists.
B) Because complexity in the human experience implies intelligence, all complexity implies intelligence.
C) Primary Intelligence is required for sufficiency, rather than a product arrived at.

All of these can be questioned, and should be questioned by a 'science' with such close ties to metaphysics.
 
2012-11-03 03:03:46 PM  

Son of Thunder: Granted, I'm just a research psychologist, but I am a PhD-holding empirical-research-publishing person who is also a believer. And yet somehow I grasp the difference between "I believe in God and if you want to talk about it some time outside of work I can do that" and "I believe in God and will waste my work day pestering you about it whether you want me to or not".

Falls in the same category as pestering people about politics while they're trying to work.


i wish more people were like you. intelligent and open minded. farking people online are so often a wall of what little they learned in a few college courses. arrogant, stupid, lacking in imagination, creativity and the ability get past the bill of goods someone sold them. i don't like doors that are welded shut. there is just way too much unknown to pretend otherwise. --- and i also don't like people that don't realize they are paid to work not to pontificate, piss off or pull their puds.
 
2012-11-03 03:07:55 PM  
Could the whole "intelligent design" thing be God trolling the fundies? :)
 
2012-11-03 03:09:29 PM  

raerae1980: Wait, so he was a computer specialist and not an actual scientist? Okay. I can see that. If he was an actual scientist and was preaching ID, then I'd have to wonder how he made it that far into his career. I've yet to meet a scientist who didn't believe in Evolution, although I'm sure they sadly exist.


I don't know how far they get in their programs, but I have known a LOT of Bible-thumpers who were in science programs for the purpose of destroying scientific legitimacy. A couple smarter types were wanting to get into particle physics so they could do away with ideas like constant decay rates of radioactive isotopes, others were angling toward geology so they could academically dispute continental drift. Most of them though were pursuing biology degrees so they could "disprove evolution." Of course they wanted to keep it secret from fellow scientists, but they were dumb enough to brag about it to liberal arts students. On one level, we were amused but on another, that's just not cool. If there's enough of them out there, they could do some real damage.
 
2012-11-03 03:16:57 PM  

0Icky0: My favorite Intelligent Design proponents are the ones who wear man-made lenses in front of their eyes.


My low-level cyborging lets me see what you did there.
 
2012-11-03 03:37:54 PM  

phalamir: Bhruic: UNC_Samurai: God has not been proven not to exist, therefore he must exist.

Just to check, does everything that hasn't been proven not to exist exist, or does God get a special rule?

God hasn't been proven to exist, or been predicted by a theory grounded in proven principles. Therefore you can no more use him to discuss the physical universe than you can use owlbears to discuss DNA. Science does not allow for pulling unfalsifiable shiat out of your ass.

In many ways, Intelligent Design is one of the most obscene attacks on the majesty of God imaginable. "I cannot see how this could occur without God, so God had to do it" translates directly as "I am too stupid to come up with a way this makes sense without magic hand-waving by God" which translates directly as "Since God had to handwave to make it work, God is stupider than me, because not only did He have to handwave, but He was so dumb about how He did it that I was able to see the flaw that required handwaving". Accepting Intelligent Design is simply calling God a complete and utter farking retard moron, because a truly infinitely perfect omni-omni deity could - and almost be definition of being perfect, would have to - create a universe that was completely and utterly indistinguishable from one arising from random chance; otherwise His Design would not be perfect because of the obvious problems. And they are some ass-glaring flaws, since we know they are visible for people with virtually no education, single-digit IQs, and the reasoning skills of low-end rocks. Intelligent Design only works if you posit the most un-Intelligent Designer possible


I like the cut of your jib, but you're way overthinking this.
ID is a vector for religion into public schools and government. Period.
 
2012-11-03 03:39:52 PM  

Lsherm: For whatever reason, these people had it stuck in their heads that just because they had been hired to do one job, such as supporting SAS on a mainframe, they couldn't possibly be required to learn how to do a similar job, like supporting SAS on a personal computer.


I ran into one guy when I was training manager at a Computer City. I was busting to try to get back into programming/networking after a recession, and this guy walks into the classroom (there was no class at the time, I was doing paperwork) and tells me that he's a computer programmer.

We started talking, and pretty soon, I find out he works as an electrician. "What kind of computer programming do you do?" I asked, a little disenchanted, as I figured a guy with his experience not working would mean my chances were almost nil....

"IBM systems 260 assembly language" Even though this was in the 90's, I don't think there had been any system 260's for about 20 years... "When they upgraded the systems, they didn't need system 260 assembly programmers any more..."

Pretty soon, I was out of Computer City, and getting certified on Novell, and MS systems.
 
2012-11-03 03:55:53 PM  

maddogdelta: Lsherm: For whatever reason, these people had it stuck in their heads that just because they had been hired to do one job, such as supporting SAS on a mainframe, they couldn't possibly be required to learn how to do a similar job, like supporting SAS on a personal computer.

I ran into one guy when I was training manager at a Computer City. I was busting to try to get back into programming/networking after a recession, and this guy walks into the classroom (there was no class at the time, I was doing paperwork) and tells me that he's a computer programmer.

We started talking, and pretty soon, I find out he works as an electrician. "What kind of computer programming do you do?" I asked, a little disenchanted, as I figured a guy with his experience not working would mean my chances were almost nil....

"IBM systems 260 assembly language" Even though this was in the 90's, I don't think there had been any system 260's for about 20 years... "When they upgraded the systems, they didn't need system 260 assembly programmers any more..."

Pretty soon, I was out of Computer City, and getting certified on Novell, and MS systems.


... he seriously never tried to learn anything outside of assembly language for old IBM systems?

I mean, shiat, I'm just a college student and I know C and C# well enough to do development. How'd he get through life not branching out?
 
2012-11-03 04:07:07 PM  
So what happens when we find out some aliens were messing with our DNA along the way?
 
2012-11-03 04:08:47 PM  

Bhruic: UNC_Samurai: God has not been proven not to exist, therefore he must exist.

Just to check, does everything that hasn't been proven not to exist exist, or does God get a special rule?


God always seems to get a special rule.
 
2012-11-03 04:09:13 PM  
well better get out the summon bevets cards.
 
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