Talk:James Maxwell

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Evolution comments by a physist?

What does the beliefs of a person who studied physics and atomic structure have to do with biology? These are about as distinct disciplines as computer science and law... and I know that my background in CS doesn't give me any insight into the goings on of the courts. Maybe if he was a biologist it would be noteworthy, but what authority does he have to state opinion that should be respected on biology? --Mtur 19:32, 3 April 2007 (EDT)

Well, if that's your approach, then what authority did Darwin have to comment on evolution either???
Comments by anthropologists are self-serving. We also want to know what bright people have to say from their independent vantage points.
More generally, and this hardly seems necessary to repeat, don't delete facts from this website for liberal reasons not in our rules. Thanks.--Aschlafly 19:36, 3 April 2007 (EDT)
Aschlafly, your position is absurd. This is supposed to be an encyclopedia. The fact that some editors here are obsessed with the theory of evolution seems to have affected their ability to see clearly. Maxwell was a physicist. His expertise was in physics. Should the article on the Wright Brothers include their views on evolution? Maybe every biographical page should contain that person's views on evolution (except for anthropologists!). That is what follows from your logic. Frankly, I suspect that if Maxwell were alive today he would feel a little sheepish about his views on evolution (which, in fairness to him, were expressed well over 100 years ago). --Horace 19:51, 3 April 2007 (EDT)
P.S. I suspect your comment above questioning Darwin's authority to comment on evolution might garner this site a couple of links from other sites (but not the good kind). --Horace 19:53, 3 April 2007 (EDT)
P.P.S. You refer to deleting information for "liberal reasons". I stated my reasons clearly when I made the deletion. Exactly what is it that makes those reasons liberal? --Horace 20:00, 3 April 2007 (EDT)
You have deleted this factual information twice now. This should justify blocking your account. But I won't do that, and will give you the benefit of the doubt.
James Maxwell was an eminent English scientist, and far smarter than Charles Darwin. Let the reader know Maxwell's views on evolution, and let the reader decide. Do not engage in liberal censorship of conservative facts here. This is not Wikipedia. Thank you.--Aschlafly 11:02, 4 April 2007 (EDT)
I have moved your comments to where they belong chronologically. You will see that this highlights the fact that you ignored my question about why my edit was "liberal". Indeed you make the same unfounded assertion again!
Your assertion that James Maxwell was "far smarter than Charles Darwin" sounds shrill and somewhat desperate. Whether he was smarter or not is irrelevant. He was a physicist and biology was not his area of expertise. Information must not only be factual, it must be relevant. If it is not relevant it amounts to no more than gossip. As you are aware the Conservapedia rules prohibit gossip. I will remove it unless you can provide a LOGICAL reason why it should remain.
Finally, I do not appreciate you threatening me. I only removed the information a second time after receiving no response to my post above. I could equally say that you have reverted two of my edits. Are you suggesting there something special about your edits? Are we lowly editors forbidden to touch anything that you do? I didn't see that in the rules. Could you please advise at your earliest convenience. If it is a rule I don't want to transgress it. --Horace 20:45, 6 April 2007 (EDT)
It's an interesting fact, so no reason to remove it.Jaques 20:51, 6 April 2007 (EDT)
It is gossip-esque. It is not relevant to a physicist. It is unsourced. If it was and interesting point and thus relevant to a biography in general, it should be attached to every biography. --Mtur 22:00, 6 April 2007 (EDT)
  • Yes, well, Horace, perfect logic. If one does not receive a response, within the specified time period set by you, one is allowed to proceed! I would love that for driving, since I regularly speed. Maybe if I asked for an exemption, and didn't receive an answer in, say, 24 hours, I should be allowed to without penalty! --~ Sysop-TerryK MyTalk 21:11, 6 April 2007 (EDT)


I did not specify a time period but as we appeared to be discussing the matter and he did not respond I made the assumption that I had convinced him of his error. Do you have anything to say on the substantive issue? --Horace 21:18, 6 April 2007 (EDT)
  • Lots. But Horace, only you and a few others see the need to try and convince a man what he believes in is false. That is presumptuous and rude beyond belief. It is also illogical. You might as well be spitting into the wind. And, you know it. So, it all goes back to motive. What is yours? We will all wait for the Students to decide, as this place belongs to the Students and Andy. Any decisions they make are the "right" ones, because this place is theirs, not ours. If we dislike their decisions, each of us has to decide, based upon individual conscience, if we can support and participate based upon those decisions, whatever they might be. In the meantime, howling at the wind, beating on the door, is only distracting and disruptive, I submit. --~ Sysop-TerryK MyTalk 21:31, 6 April 2007 (EDT)
TK, could you please elaborate on the importance of this passage in the article and how a physicist's views on biology are relevant? If they are relevant, should that be part of every biography that appears on this site? --Mtur 21:33, 6 April 2007 (EDT)
So, is there any reason why it is there? --Mtur 21:36, 6 April 2007 (EDT)

Reply to the above

Conservapedia does not censor non-gossipy facts of interest to users. Go to Wikipedia for that kind of censorship. Maxwell's views on evolution are not gossip. We won't be seeing that in the National Enquirer.

The liberal desire to censor this fact cannot prevail here. Maxwell was a brilliant scientist and a fellow Englishman of Darwin. Evolutionists cite the views of scientists in support of evolution (e.g., National Academy of Science), and it is certainly fair game to mention the views of scientists against evolution. And, yes, Maxwell was far smarter than Darwin. It's not "desperate" to state the obvious on a talk page. Just look at how they did in school, and where they ended up after school.

There are fundamental differences between Conservapedia and Wikipedia. Including this fact about Maxwell's views illustrates that difference. We let the reader decide, and we do not censor this information here. Wikipedia will welcome those who prefer an environment that censors this information.--Aschlafly 22:25, 6 April 2007 (EDT)

WHY IS IT A "LIBERAL DESIRE TO CENSOR"? I'm sorry to shout but I have asked several times and you have just ignored the question. I think I put my position pretty clearly and it has nothing to do with political ideology.
Regretably you, however, appear to have the attitude that this factlette about Maxwell is of some significance because it promotes your worldview. That is not a legitimate reason for its inclusion. I am sure I have read somewhere here that you are some sort of lawyer. I would have thought that issues of relevance would be second nature to you.
If you tell me that it is Conservapedia's policy to include reference to evolution in every biographical entry then (whilst I will regard it as bizarre) I will comply. But I will not think it a good policy because it is not scholarly.
But, if that is not the policy then, in an entry of this length on one of the world's greatest physicists I regard the reference to his views on evolution as just totally out of place. I also regard your suggestion that I am seeking to sensor your views as highly ironic having regard to the well known goings-on around here (including, but not limited to, your threat to me above).
I am not interested in engaging in an edit war. The problem is that I cannot help but see this matter as being driven by your desire to promote your own worldview overriding your desire for a scholarly article. I would be delighted if you could point out the error in my assessment of the situation. I have a genuine wish to see the best quality entries on this site. I am of the view that the inclusion of Maxwell's views on evolution merely confirm in the minds of a substantial number of readers that scholarship takes a back seat to ideology here. And I regret to say, I think that at the moment they are probably right. --Horace 03:11, 7 April 2007 (EDT)
In any case it appears that the assertion that Maxwell rejected Darwin's evolution is incorrect. See here.
Accordingly, I have removed the reference. I would be happy to discuss the matter further if you would like to do so but the article referred to above seems pretty clear and comprehensive. --Horace 17:09, 7 April 2007 (EDT)
You have again reverted my edit without any explanation whatsoever.
Did you read the article referred to above at all?
Did you consider explaining your action?
Have you just decided that you don't care about facts at all?
I really am genuinely mystified. How do you explain your behaviour to yourself? --Horace 22:56, 7 April 2007 (EDT)
Horace, Maxwell rejected evolution. I've added the quote. I don't think anyone seriously disputes this. Good Easter to you!--Aschlafly 15:00, 8 April 2007 (EDT)
The quote isn't about animal evolution (and thus Darwin's theory) at all; he's making an argument that molecules can't evolve, a completely separate matter. ==Jtl 17:43, 8 April 2007 (EDT)
That's a new one ... that the "theory of evolution" doesn't refer to Darwin's theory? Even when spoken by Maxwell in 1873, when everyone was talking about Darwin? People may disagree with Maxwell's view, but there's no doubting that he rejected the theory of evolution. And please don't say this is "quote mining". See talk.origins terminology.
A good Easter to you, Jtl.--Aschlafly 21:51, 8 April 2007 (EDT)
When used without qualification in the late 20th and early 21st century, the "theory of evolution" refers to Darwin's theory (as modified), yes. Possibly so in 1873 as well; I don't know and don't make any claim to. What's important is that it's clear that that in this quote, it does not. "No theory of evolution can be formed to account for the similarity of molecules"; simply by saying "no theory of evolution", Maxwell is suggesting there can be multiple different theories of evolution accounting for different things; otherwise he would have said "the theory of evolution". But more importantly, he continues to qualify what kind of theory he's talking about here: one which might attempt to "account for the similarity of molecules". If he's referring to Darwin's theory, then he's saying the blindingly obvious: Darwin's theory of evolution doesn't account for the similarity of molecules; that's correct, but not interesting. Darwin's theory doesn't attempt to account for that similarity.
I don't think the question of whether this is quote mining is a necessary one to deal with here. Taken solely on its own terms, this quote is clearly not speaking about Darwin's theory of biological evolution.
A good Easter to you, as well. --Jtl 22:31, 8 April 2007 (EDT)

On Maxwell and Evolution

From http://www.charlespetzold.com/etc/MaxwellMoleculesAndEvolution.html

No theory of evolution can be formed to account for the similarity of molecules, for evolution necessarily implies continuous change, and the molecule is incapable of growth or decay, of generation or destruction.
None of the processes of Nature, since the time when Nature began, have produced the slightest difference in the properties of any molecule. We are therefore unable to ascribe either the existence of the molecules or the identity of their properties to any of the causes which we call natural.

The only writing that I can find by James Maxwell on evolution is this poem[1]

At quite uncertain times and places,
The atoms left their heavenly path,
And by fortuitous embraces,
Engendered all that being hath.
And though they seem to cling together,
And form "associations" here,
Yet, soon or late, they burst their tether,
And through the depths of space career.
So we who sat, oppressed with science,
As British asses, wise and grave,
Are now transformed to wild Red Lions,
As round our prey we ramp and rave.
Thus, by a swift metamorphosis,
Wisdom turns wit, and science joke,
Nonsense is incense to our noses,
For when Red Lions speak, they smoke.
Hail, Nonsense! dry nurse of Red Lions,
From thee the wise their wisdom learn,
From thee they cull those truths of science,
Which into thee again they turn.
What combinations of ideas,
Nonsense alone can wisely form!
What sage has half the power that she has,
To take the towers of Truth by storm?
Yield, then, ye rules of rigid reason!
Dissolve, thou too, too solid sense!
Melt into nonsense for a season,
Then in some nobler form condense.
Soon, all too soon, the chilly morning,
This flow of soul will crystallize,
Then those who Nonsense now are scorning,
May learn, too late, where wisdom lies.

As such, I am changing the sentence on the article page from

Maxwell rejected the theory of evolution of fellow Englishman Charles Darwin.

to read

Maxwell did not believe that the theory of evolution had any application to molecules and atoms.

If anyone wishes to change it to something else, I strongly suggest that they have a citation of something written by Maxwell that applies to the particular type of evolution in question (if it is about biology, then about biology - Darwin didn't make any claim that molecules had any application to his work in the Origin of Species). --Mtur 13:10, 9 April 2007 (EDT)


It took me less than 15 minutes to find this:

In the heavens we discover by their light, and by their light alone, stars so distant from each other that no material thing can ever have passed from one to another; [359] and yet this light, which is to us the sole evidence of the existence of these distant worlds, tells us also that each of them is built up of molecules of the same kinds as those which we find on earth. A molecule of hydrogen, for example, whether in Sirius or in Arcturus, executes its vibrations in precisely the same time. Each molecule therefore throughout the universe bears impressed upon it the stamp of a metric system as distinctly as does the metre of the Archives at Paris, or the double royal cubit of the temple of Karnac. No theory of evolution can be formed to account for the similarity of molecules, for evolution necessarily implies continuous change, and the molecule is incapable of growth or decay, of generation or destruction. None of the processes of Nature, since the time when Nature began, have produced the slightest difference in the properties of any molecule. We are therefore unable to ascribe either the existence of the molecules or the identity of their properties to any of the causes which we call natural. On the other hand, the exact equality of each molecule to all others [2]


So does this mean he favored the Theory of evolution, opposed it, or what? --Ed Poor 13:26, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

It means that he had no opinion on biological theory of evolution. He just said it had no application to molecules. There is no 'higher' or 'lower' form of a molecule. While they may combine and break apart, this is not evolution any more than the changing state of a three ball billiards game is evolution. --Mtur 13:29, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
I read the quote above as (1) being an opinion on the biological theory of evolution and (2) a repudiation of that theory. --Ed Poor 13:32, 9 April 2007 (EDT)


It still reads to me as making no explicit claim, one way or another, as to biological evolution. If anything, it's implicitely contrasting molecules, which don't have descent-with-modification and thus can't have a theory of evolution, with things which do have "continuous change", "growth and decay" and "generation or destruction", and thus might have theories of evolution. Without anything more explicit, I'd be disinclined to come to any conclusion firm enough to include in the article, but it sure sounds to me like he's at least open to the possibility of biological evolution. --Jtl 13:34, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

More from Maxwell

On the other hand, the exact equality of each molecule to all others of the same kind gives it, as Sir John Herschel has well said, the essential character of a manufactured article, and precludes the idea of its being eternal and self-existent. Thus we have been led, along a strictly scientific path, very near to the point at which Science must stop,—not that Science is debarred from studying the internal mechanism of a molecule which she cannot take to pieces, any more than from investigating an organism which she cannot put together. But in tracing back the history of matter, Science is arrested when she assures herself, on the one hand, that the molecule has been made, and, on the other, that it has not been made by any of the processes we call natural. Science is incompetent to reason upon the creation of matter itself out of nothing. We have reached the utmost limits of our thinking faculties when we have admitted that because matter cannot be eternal and self-existent it must have been created. (Page 176)

Creationist?

Creationism currently defines creationism as the "Belief in the literal interpretation of the account of the creation of the universe and of all living things related in the Bible." Assuming a 'creationist' is someone who believes in and/or espouses 'creationism' under this definition, then no, I don't think it's proper (from these quotations) to conclude that Maxwell was a creationist. It does seem likely that he believed in a creator of some sort who created the molecules, but that's a far cry from the "literal interpretation of the account of the creation of the universe and of all living things related in the Bible.". -- Jtl 16:02, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

Very good point. It would be quite odd to see some of the well known modern atheist/pantheist scientists get listed as both atheist and creationist. The category has been removed. --Mtur 16:06, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
That's a new one ... that the "theory of evolution" doesn't refer to Darwin's theory? Even when spoken by Maxwell in 1873, when everyone was talking about Darwin? People may disagree with Maxwell's view, but there's no doubting that he rejected the theory of evolution. And please don't say this is "quote mining". See talk.origins terminology. A good Easter to you, Jtl.--Aschlafly 21:51, 8 April 2007 (EDT)

--~ TK MyTalk 16:40, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

When used without qualification in the late 20th and early 21st century, the "theory of evolution" refers to Darwin's theory (as modified), yes. Possibly so in 1873 as well; I don't know and don't make any claim to. What's important is that it's clear that that in this quote, it does not. "No theory of evolution can be formed to account for the similarity of molecules"; simply by saying "no theory of evolution", Maxwell is suggesting there can be multiple different theories of evolution accounting for different things; otherwise he would have said "the theory of evolution". But more importantly, he continues to qualify what kind of theory he's talking about here: one which might attempt to "account for the similarity of molecules". If he's referring to Darwin's theory, then he's saying the blindingly obvious: Darwin's theory of evolution doesn't account for the similarity of molecules; that's correct, but not interesting. Darwin's theory doesn't attempt to account for that similarity.

I don't think the question of whether this is quote mining is a necessary one to deal with here. Taken solely on its own terms, this quote is clearly not speaking about Darwin's theory of biological evolution.

A good Easter to you, as well. --Jtl 22:31, 8 April 2007 (EDT)
Ooh, this is fun. --Jtl 18:08, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Molecules have nothing to do with the Origin of Species. That is what Darwin put forward. Biological evolution - the power of nature to select traits that allows the species to flourish. Maxwell said that since all molecules are equal and there is no 'better' molecule, evolution has no place in physics. It is not a refutation of biological evolution. --Mtur 17:01, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
In the mean time, can you please cite any writing by Maxwell that suggested that believed in creation as specified in the Bible. Until then, the bit about being a Creationist is unsourced and suspect. --Mtur 17:04, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
  • Well, I was just taking my cue from Andy, Mtur. --~ TK MyTalk 17:14, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Folks, Maxwell meant what he said. Darwin's theory of evolution was the talk of the day in England. Maxwell never, ever endorsed Darwin's theory, despite the likelihood of intense liberal pressure to do so. It's farfetched, almost comical, to suggest that Maxwell was not talking about Darwin's theory of evolution in 1873 when he referred to the "theory of evolution."
This is Conservapedia, and we don't twist and contort and censor quotes to satisfy a liberal desire. Maxwell's quote and opposition to the theory of evolution cannot seriously be refuted. We'll let the reader the decide, and we're not going to censor this.--Aschlafly 17:35, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
I'm fine with leaving the quote on the page, without the claim that he was talking about biological evolution. If he's going to be classified as a 'creationist', though, we need either a definition of creationist other than 'someone who believes in the Biblical creation story' or a much different quote. All that said, I still maintain that the quote is very clearly not talking about Darwin's theory of biological evoution. --Jtl 18:08, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
  • This is Conservapedia, and we don't twist and contort and censor quotes to satisfy a liberal desire. Maxwell's quote and opposition to the theory of evolution cannot seriously be refuted. We'll let the reader the decide, and we're not going to censor this.
I didn't twist, contort, remove or censor the quote. I didn't modify any part of the article Andy had contributed to or (so far as I can tell) commented on. I removed the classification claiming that Maxwell as a creationist. Although it's not defined here, I assume a creationist is someone who believes in creationism, which is defined here: "Belief in the literal interpretation of the account of the creation of the universe and of all living things related in the Bible." Nothing in the quote speaks to Biblical literalism of any sort, nor has any other evidence been offered despite repeated requests for it. I think the reversion and the protection are wholly inappropriate. --Jtl 18:22, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
In his day, many people tried to apply the ideas of biological evolution to other disciplines. You had Social Darwinism as an example of this. The right or wrongness of Social Darwinism has no application to biological evolution. Some suggested that molecules evolved too - Maxwell is saying that this is not the case. This is again, not a commentary on biological evolution. If anything is to be said, it should be "James Maxwell did not belief that the theory of evolution could be applied to molecules." In this context, it is a rather boring statement and does not have any informational value. I still cannot find any indication that Maxwell was a creationist - any citations showing that be did belief in the literal truth of the Bible would be useful for disputing this. Until then, the category should not be applied to Maxwell. --Mtur 18:36, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

Category

Moved from user talk:Ed Poor

Could you look at the talk page for James Maxwell and address if the creationist category is applicable? --Mtur 17:06, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

I think Andy already did. --~ TK MyTalk 17:10, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

Ed, I see that much has gone on on the Maxwell page in my absence. Could you do me a favour? I see that Maxwell's quote is allowed to speak for itself, which is not a bad solution. The only problem is the link within the quote to the Theory of Evolution page. That link means that the quote is not really allowed to speak for itself at all. The whole dispute was over the meaning of the phrase "theory of evolution". By linking it you have effectively changed the quote and nominated a particular meaning. Could you remove the link? I also suggest that the creationist category be removed in light of the way the discussion has gone (but, baby steps I suppose). --Horace 20:18, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Done. [3] --Ed Poor 20:23, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Ed do you see any reason why the creationist category should continue to be applied? There don't appear to be any sources indicating a belief in the biblical creation (and its a bit hard to add {{fact}} to a category). --Mtur 20:30, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
I don't care one way or the other. But see my latest change to Creationism and then comment here again, would you? --Ed Poor 20:35, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Creationism is the belief that the Earth and everything in it was created by God or some other supreme being.
From this, would it be reasonable to say that every religious scientist is a creationist? You have Steven Hawking saying "You still have the question: why does the universe bother to exist? If you like, you can define God to be the answer to that question" (Black Holes and Baby Universes, p. 159) and "If we find the answer to that, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason -- for then we should know the mind of God." on page 193 of A Brief History of Time. I would be willing to bet that you would even have a few Indian scientists who believe that Brahma created the world - would you classify them as Creationists? I am certain you wouldn't be able to put the later in any of the groups defined at Creationism#Creationist categories.
If you are going to have the category of Creationists, then it should be reserved for individuals who have expressed more than a belief in a creator (and thus a creation) but that they are advocates of creation and write about it or have spoken about it. Otherwise, every single biography here would likely have such a category which would make it nearly identical to the union of "Creationist" and "Atheist", and that isn't that helpful at all. It would make more sense to add the category of Creationist to Zach Johnson, St. Augustine and Martin Luther who has said more about creation than James Maxwell has. --Mtur 21:37, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Sounds like you've got a handle on this. Would you like to take charge of [[:Category:Creationists]] then? --Ed Poor 21:58, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Nope. I don't know the where abouts to find out the philosophical leanings of various Christian writers (or Jewish writers? or Islamic writers (they've got essentially the same creation story)?). It is much easier to find the negation - "this person wrote nothing about creation" than trying to dig through everything published about Zach Johnson to see if he did say anything about creation. This is much better left up to the experts on the various fields who is writing about the person. --Mtur 22:03, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
  • This has already been addressed by Andy. Why is it still being discussed?--~ TK MyTalk 22:04, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
As it stands, if you are to include James Maxwell as a creationist, you will need to include nearly every single person in the biography category (including Steven Hawking) as a creationist. This makes the category useless for the purpose of finding people who have material that is actually pro-creationism. I cannot find any material written by James Maxwell that shows that he supports a biblical view of the creation of the universe. --Mtur 22:18, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Have you reviewed my change to the intro of Creationism? (see diff here) --Ed Poor 22:20, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
  • Well, I guess Andy disagrees with you, Mtur. This isn't a Democracy on policy issues. You can now run off and report more "chilling" sarcasm. Once something like this has been addressed from the "top" is there a good reason people will not let it go? I don't consider rendering yet another added category useless as a "good" reason. And Andy has already told all of you directly, there isn't any evidence he wasn't a Creationist. --~ TK MyTalk 22:26, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Is absence of evidence of not a Creationist to be taken as evidence that he was a Creationist? Of the 148 articles (lacking many) in currently in Category:biographies (which is already mentioned as being too large), how many would be labeled with Creationist if that was the case? Would this be any more useful than Category:biographies itself? --Mtur 22:45, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

Your problem is, mistaking my own opinion for that of Andy's. My job, part of it, is to uphold his thoughts and wishes. Like I keep saying, he addressed this issue. Isn't that the "deciding" factor now? --~ TK MyTalk 22:57, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

TK, you seem to have lost sight of the task. Articles should be factual. If Aschlafly is wrong then the article should be changed. Simple as that. --Horace 23:00, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
  • Not in someone else's house, Horace. That would be impolite. I am sure we agree far more than disagree, however since the more Wiki of you continue to act as if this is Wikipedia, or other Wiki's you have used, and treat everyone here like they are "Conservative", there will be little progress, and I assume that is what you, among others, want. Certainly my own experiences show me that. --~ TK MyTalk 23:19, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

Anti-evolutionist?

Is someone who is against Social Darwinism also an anti-evolutionist? How do you classify an astronomer who accepts stellar evolution but not biological evolution? Maxwell was saying that molecules do not evolve. That has nothing to do with biology. Any attempt to mix biological evolution and what Maxwell said is misleading. --Mtur 23:23, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

Creationist?

There are no writings of Maxwell that anyone can cite that indicate that Maxwell believed in the creation of the universe as specified in the Bible. Attempting to make a creationist category with the assumption that no evidence to the contrary is enough for inclusion leads to a bloated category that lacks any educational value. --Mtur 23:25, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

It seems to me that you can't be an anti-evolutionist or a creationist before the two distinctions existed, especially not on incidental evidence. That's like saying that George Washington would've been a Republican, because he loves America & favors a strong army. The correlation is tenuous, and it's just guesswork anyways.-AmesGyo! 23:29, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

TK, Andy never said anything about the {{category:creationist}} tag. He spoke about the quote, which is still there. Ed Poor added the creationist tag originally and then tried to remove it, but you keep reverting it based on a misunderstanding of what Andy was talking about. --Jtl 23:36, 9 April 2007 (EDT)

  • I think whenever any Sysop decides upon his own, or in consultation with users, to reverse any action by another Sysop, there isn't any misunderstanding, other than a total lack of respect. I think whenever any small group of users decides, on their own, to move categories or disambiguation pages, it shows an elitist and disrespectful attitude, as well. Such actions are no different, logically, than the high-handed attitude some of you complain about, in talking of the actions of a "certain Sysop", in my humble opinion. You gentlemen cannot have your cake, and eat it to, you know. Either the little clique of technocrats school the rest of us, or stop your unilateral actions without discussing it fully, and in public. Yes, this means whatever is considered "housekeeping" chores as well. Otherwise we are indeed acting elitist and self-centered, no? --~ TK MyTalk 23:47, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Well I'm glad your up for a discussion. I really think that Mtur put the position well above under the headings "Anti-evolutionist" and "Creationist". Could you answer those points? I find it difficult to understand why either of those tags ought to apply to Maxwell (and I imagine Maxwell would too). --Horace 23:52, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
  • You finding something difficult to understand, isn't the point. Respect is. So long as there are a few of you who actually believe you are right, and everyone else is totally wrong, and defend your arbitrary unilateral small clique actions that way, how can anyone feel welcome here, anymore than your favorite Sysop makes people feel? My guess is that you guys are so caught up in your own feelings about Conservative, you fail to realize just how unwelcoming and hostile you all appear to be. I can understand that, but I have certainly gone out of my way, more so than other Sysop's have, to arrive at some accommodation. At every turn I have been marginalized. Now, you reap what you've sown. --~ TK MyTalk 23:59, 9 April 2007 (EDT)
Look, I am just trying to engage in the core business here. I know you don't much like me and I know why. Could we have a go at sorting this issue out? I was saying that I was glad you were willing to discuss it. Let's discuss it. Why do you say he should be labelled a creationist? (or an anti-evolutionist for that matter)? --Horace 00:04, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
  • I am sorry if you actually think I dislike you, Horace, I am sure Ed or others would tell you that isn't true. You know how to reach me, and until today, could also be reached on IRC, but I am done trying to meet people half way, because I was never afforded that. If some here want to revel in their superior Wiki skills, they can do so. I guess without sharing information it makes them feel superior, because I know whenever I haven't understood their intentions, I was called names, and worse. It is enough for me that Andy says there isn't anything to support not calling him a Creationist. Since it is his place, and the matter, aside from the disrespect, a small matter in the order of the Univserse, I see no reason to do everything to the article but claim Andy is wrong, to strip it of that possibility. --~ TK MyTalk 00:18, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
TK, I've never dealt with you before. I've never posted about the other sysop you're talking about. I'm not part of any cabal or clique. So, will you please read what I'm saying? Andy never said anything about the category tag. The category tag isn't supported by the facts which have been offered. I believe the editor who initially put it in place now agrees with that. Can you please just deal with the issues at hand? --Jtl 00:40, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
  • The editor who put it in place has told me he now doesn't see a reason to remove it. One man's facts are another man's fiction. I have no "facts" to prove to me Jesus was indeed the son of God. But I believe it as much as I know who my parents are. Maxwell said:
"No theory of evolution can be formed to account for the similarity of molecules, for evolution necessarily implies continuous change, and the molecule is incapable of growth or decay, of generation or destruction. None of the processes of Nature, since the time when Nature began, have produced the slightest difference in the properties of any molecule. We are therefore unable to ascribe either the existence of the molecules or the identity of their properties to any of the causes which we call natural."

It is clear to me, from that sentence, he is saying he doesn't believe in Evolution. --~ TK MyTalk 01:14, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

1. Where did Ed Poor say that he sees no reason to remove it? 2. conservapedia rules require citations, not just belief. 3. the quote is talking about evolution of molecules, not about biological evolution. 4. even if he doesn't believe in biological evolution, that doesn't make him a creationist under the definition here as it existed when the category was first put in place. 5. the current definition of 'creationism' is so loose as to be almost meaningless, and I expect it to be reverted sometime soon. Even if 1-4 don't convince you, will you at least agree to remove the category if and when the definition of creationism reverts to one claiming a belief in a literal reading of the Bible? --Jtl 01:21, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
  • I clearly think that paragraph is "proof". I will now, since none of you like to cooperate, refer the article on "Creationism" to the Students to decide as well, so will be locking it. As for Ed, ask him. --~ TK MyTalk 01:25, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
I'm sorry, I thought discussion of this page belong on this talk page. Was I mistaken about that? I don't see how I've done anything but cooperate. --Jtl 01:28, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
  • Well, I guess you wouldn't, given the number of times Andy and others, including me, said that sentence was "proof" for us. Who are you, any of you, to say your read is more valid? I can see from the insistence of others here, there cannot be any accommodation, because some of you insist only your interpretation is correct. So, I guess the Student Panel will decide. And, until people start to accommodate, and respect religious opinion, they will have to keep on deciding. Doesn't bother me in the least. --~ TK MyTalk 01:35, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
I've explained how I read the quote and why I think it means what I think it means. Neither you nor Andy has done so despite repeated requests. In your reading, why does he talk about molecules? And how am I not respecting your religious opinion? Does your religion tell you that Maxwell was a creationist? -- Jtl 01:51, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
  • Maxwell clearly states molecules do not change, among other things. I think to an open-minded person, the statement stands on its own, as his rejection of Darwinism/Evolution. --~ TK MyTalk 02:21, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
Thank you, now we're getting somewhere. What in the quote leads you to the "among other things"? That is, where does he talk about evolution of anything other than molecules? Or do you believe that Darwinism includes evolution of molecules? --Jtl 02:27, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
I wasn't aware that one could pick and choose among what would evolve and what wouldn't, lol. --~ TK MyTalk 02:38, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
Sure you can. Darwin's theory and its successors (which have been important enough to generally be what's meant by just "the theory of evolution") have to do with the evolution of living things from earlier living things. You could also have theories of planetary evolution or of political evolution or weather evolution or cultural evolution, for example. By my reading, Maxwell is denying that a valid theory of molecular evolution can be created. So now: what in the quote leads you to the "among other things"? Or do you really believe that Darwin's theory claims to account for how molecules themselves evolve? --Jtl 02:43, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
Those were serious questions, TK, and I'd like serious answers. --Jtl 13:38, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
  • You do understand, Jtl, I am not at your personal call? Forgive me, life sometimes intervenes. I will re-state for you, I think the quote stands on its own, enough to provide an opening, a wide one, big enough to preclude anyone saying he believed in Evolution, and a bigger opening to say he was a Creationist, or maybe even a ID person. I question why you are so intent to ram your ideas through, contrary to what Andy and I have said.......--~ TK MyTalk 16:08, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
It, it would be a great help, if you paid attention here, and responded to questions. Restating doesn't answer the question. What part of the quote makes you think he's talking about anything other than evolution-of-molecules? Alternately, do you actually believe that Darwinian evolution includes evolution of molecules? Those seem like simple questions to me; the second one is even a yes/no. Can I have answers, pretty pretty please? --Jtl 16:44, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
Ahhh, I see.....nothing useful on that subject, eh? Just as I thought. --Jtl 18:04, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
Do you have any indication that he did not believe in biological evolution? He only mentions molecules in the quote. Do you have any work that shows he believed in Creation as specified in the Bible? If not, then almost every single biography should be labeled as a Creationist at which point it becomes meaningless. I would be happy to add 150+ Category:Creationist tags to every single one of the biographies that is not a person who is an atheist. The level of evidence for adding such a tag should be more than just saying "creation" or "a theory of evolution cannot be applied to {something not biological}". Lacking this, it is devoid of any educational value. --Mtur 16:17, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

Odd, according to whom? Oh, yes, YOU! Andy and I disagree. But I can understand your insistence that you and Jtl are the ones seeing it "correctly", and perhaps you think Andy and I are merely "confused"? Thinking clouded out of some Bible-thumping zeal? --~ TK MyTalk 16:23, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

Strictly historical disclaimer needed.

Which I provided. Reverting. Deal with it. Debate it if you don't like it but don't mindlessly revert/protect.-AmesGyo! 16:36, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

Oh, Christ TK! Locking because you're too afraid to talk about it? Go ahead and lock your talk page, now, too.-AmesGyo! 16:37, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

Outsider's (in that I haven't participated in either editing this article or previous discussion) -- the 'liberal', 'atheist', 'elitist' (add whatever other labels you'd like) people are trying to prevent y'all from looking like fools. Y'all keep insisting on it, which is why this wiki is doomed to failure. But thanks for providing a lot of hours of entertainment at your willful misreading of anything the slightest bit ambiguous (and that's generous, given the clarity of what Maxwell was talking about in his quote) to support something for which there is no rational support, it being inherently irrational (ie, Creationism, which is a factual claim, not an insult -- belief despite no physical evidence is inherently irrational, in a narrow definition of the term). MyaR 16:38, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

  • No, I locked it because I am against people like you, Ames, stating an absolute: "Deal with it!" It is you, and the others who feel they are "elite" who are going to deal with it. MyaR, looking like fools to Secularists isn't something new to Christians, we have been seen as buffoons often. It says something about other people, who come to a Christian and Conservative site, and keep trying to "save us" from our ways. It doesn't shake our faith. ;-) --~ TK MyTalk 16:39, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
Um, I think you missed my point -- it's a reading-comprehension foolishness, not a belief one. MyaR 16:43, 10 April 2007 (EDT)


One - stop using tab characters. Two - don't lock and avoid debate on an issue in which the facts are clearly in my favor. You cannot disprove the disclaimer I added - "Maxwell was not a biologist, ToE wasn't a full scientific theory at that point" - so why delete them?-AmesGyo! 16:40, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

My opinion is that Maxwell is a creationist. I don't care if he's categorized that way or not. I leave that decision to you, sir. --Ed Poor 16:23, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

--~ TK MyTalk 16:47, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

Opinions, especially "poor" ones (pun intended), rarely go to the facts. If you want, keep the category and keep the disclaimer, too. Just the disclaimer needs to be there, or it is simply factually incorrect.-AmesGyo! 16:49, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

It doesn't make one bit of difference, since you "elites" eliminated the category, by removing all that was in there.....good show...good intellectual non-freedom. Just like the removal of the archives in abuse. Manipulations of this Wiki by users who will not share information, and seek to conceal by it is ideological censorship. A reckoning is coming soon. --~ TK MyTalk 16:53, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

Are you *threatening* me?! Wow. I refuse to be threatened by someone who misspells "manipulation." But I didn't delete the "creationist" category, and I'm happy to let that stay. I just hope you don't censor the facts as to the state of the evolutionary theory at the point that Maxwell made those comments.-AmesGyo! 16:54, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

  • You manipulated by removing all other articles from the category. You are bankrupt in thought and deed to need to insult and marginilize others by pointing out spell checker errors, Ames. The reckoning will come from the Students, not me, otherwise I am sure Andy would have removed you long ago. Enjoy your "elite" status with the others.  :-) --~ TK MyTalk 16:58, 10 April 2007 (EDT)
Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. Teresita 17:05, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

Another spelling error... tee hee. I'll let it stand. Good luck in the real world, TK. You're going to need it away from this tiny little haven.-AmesGyo! 17:07, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

Another mockery, Ames? You really want to be a martyr bad, don't you? It won't legitimize your point of view, because other than marginalizing others, and insulting them, you don't have one. --~ TK MyTalk 17:52, 10 April 2007 (EDT)

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