Stewart and The Dude go at it

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The Dude
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Stewart and The Dude go at it

Post by The Dude »

Before the MormonDiscussions board went into hiatus there was some discussion here about Dr. David Stewart's FAIR presentation regarding DNA and the Book of Mormon. Since then, his paper has been published in the latest issue of the FARMS review, and he decided it was a good time to come back and debate me in the Pundit's Forum on the FAIR MB. For those who cannot log into FAIR and read the full thread, much of it has been posted at Kevin Graham's site:

Stewart and The Dude go at it

I still need to copy over Stewart's last major post, which was a few weeks ago, and was considered by many vocal FAIRites to be his big comeback. I will do that soon, along with the 3 non-scientific posts that followed where we tried to re-square our respective positions. My major scientific rebuttal will be posted on FAIR in the next few days.

*Stay tuned*

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Post by Dr. Shades »

To your knowledge, was there any alteration to the paper between when it was delivered at FAIR vs. when it was published in the FARMS Review?

I'm just wondering if he incorporated any of your corrections or just let the falsehoods stand.

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Post by The Dude »

Dr. Shades wrote:To your knowledge, was there any alteration to the paper between when it was delivered at FAIR vs. when it was published in the FARMS Review?

I'm just wondering if he incorporated any of your corrections or just let the falsehoods stand.


There were some small changes, but I can't be sure they came about because of things I said. For one thing, it may have already been in press by the time Jan announced the FAIR paper was on line and I started trashing it. Also, some changes might have been things asked for by "reviewers." For example, the horrific quote from "Marting Tanner" that is almost the centerpiece of Stewart's dismissal of DNA dating methods, was originally referenced as just a personal communication from Martin Tanner. Now it at least reads: "LDS apologist, Martin Tanner", so people don't think Tanner is some expert on human genetics. I asked Dan Peterson yesterday if material in the FARMS review is peer reviewed. He answered:

Daniel Peterson wrote:Here's the basic process for the FARMS Review, which is not the process for FARMS as a whole:

Every manuscript that is submitted is carefully read and commented upon (and either approved or rejected) by me (Ph.D. in Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, UCLA), my two associate editors (Ph.D. in political philosophy, Brown; doctoral work in political science, Columbia), the Review's production editor (Ph.D. in family sciences, BYU), and the FARMS/Maxwell Institute publication director (M.A. in ancient Near Eastern studies, BYU). Manuscripts are always offered for reading (and comment and possible rejection) to other members of the FARMS/Maxwell Institute leadership as well, which includes people trained in religious studies at UC Santa Barbara, in Hebrew Bible at Harvard, etc. Not uncommonly, when special expertise is required (for example, on matters of genetics), we send manuscripts out to people possessing the required expertise. Every manuscript is subjected to meticulous source checking by student employees.

This is not peer review as it is practiced for, say, the main articles section of the Journal of the American Oriental Society or Analysis. (The rest of FARMS follows conventional peer review.) But the FARMS Review is, first and foremost and by design, a collection of review essays, and so its review procedures are properly compared to those involved with book reviews elsewhere. (Moreoever, you're correct that I, at least, see the FARMS Review as something of an opinion journal.) To put it in perspective: I've written several academic book reviews for non-LDS journals. To the best of my knowledge, none of them has been subjected to peer evaluation (or even to multiple readings by editors) at all. My only contact has been with the relevant book review editor, and not even with the overall editor of the journal. Reviews published in the FARMS Review undergo a much more rigorous evaluation process than I've experienced with book reviews published, for instance, in Al-Masaq, the Religious Studies Review, al-‘Arabiyya, the Review of Religious Research, The Medieval Review, the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, or The International Journal of Middle East Studies.


So he agrees with me that FARMS review is essentially an opinion journal. Presumably, Stewart's paper was reviewed, maybe even by a genticist (since Dan explicitly mentioned that as potentially required expertise). So what, the geneticist saw stuff that was complete garbage and thought, "oh well, it's just his opinion"?? LOL! I have no idea what the point would be of reviewing other peoples' opinions, unless you were trying to stamp out heresy or something.

rcrocket

Post by rcrocket »

The Dude wrote:So he agrees with me that FARMS review is essentially an opinion journal.


One of my FARMS papers went through almost a year of peer review by two different historians in addition to the normal editorial review. It went through 10 or more drafts. I was sent back to original sources several times to justify my "opinions."

FARMS indeed goes through peer reviewing, but it doesn't hold itself out as a scientific or historial journal. Nor does the Evangelical Review or the Catholic publications which often provide articles on science and history. But, their peer review is just as rigorous, I am sure, as the professional journals I have published in.

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Post by Rollo Tomasi »

Plutarch wrote:FARMS indeed goes through peer reviewing, but it doesn't hold itself out as a scientific or historial journal. Nor does the Evangelical Review or the Catholic publications which often provide articles on science and history. But, their peer review is just as rigorous, I am sure, as the professional journals I have published in.

If this be true, then how was it ever possible for Lou Midgely to publish in FARMS?
"Moving beyond apologist persuasion, LDS polemicists furiously (and often fraudulently) attack any non-traditional view of Mormonism. They don't mince words -- they mince the truth."

-- Mike Quinn, writing of the FARMSboys, in "Early Mormonism and the Magic World View," p. x (Rev. ed. 1998)

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OUT OF MY MISERY
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Post by OUT OF MY MISERY »

Okay now who is this Plutarch???

And why was his paper not subject to peer review/I know all about peer review.

Does anyone remember Stephen Glass??

He wrote for the New Republican and almost all of his stories made it through the fact checking phase and they were published as fact when in fact they were pure fiction.
Stephen Glass simply wanted the money and the fame so he wrote lies, when in fact the truth is often more interesting than lies and the truth will always always stand up to any one's challenge, because it can be verified.

So what is the diference between peer review and fact checking/or fact verifying???
When I wake up I will be hungry....but this feels so good right now aaahhhhhh........

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Post by harmony »

coffeecat wrote:Okay now who is this Plutarch???


We all know and love him as Bishop Lee, Lee Bishop, Null Hypothesis, the Dragon, and of course, rcrockett.

And why was his paper not subject to peer review/I know all about peer review.


It was subject to FARMS' peer review, an entirely different process.

Does anyone remember Stephen Glass??

He wrote for the New Republican and almost all of his stories made it through the fact checking phase and they were published as fact when in fact they were pure fiction.
Stephen Glass simply wanted the money and the fame so he wrote lies, when in fact the truth is often more interesting than lies and the truth will always always stand up to any one's challenge, because it can be verified.


Sounds like Nibley. Or was it Midgley? (who had the obscure footnotes that, when checked, turned out to be unrelated to what they were footnoting or some such? Beastie/Trixie is the one who took the lead on that discussion, I believe.)

So what is the diference between peer review and fact checking/or fact verifying???


Good question.

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Post by OUT OF MY MISERY »

I am anxiously awaiting the answer Harmony as are you.

We will see.

I guess I could GOOGLE it, but I will not.
When I wake up I will be hungry....but this feels so good right now aaahhhhhh........

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Post by The Dude »

I updated the thread over at Kevin's board. Follow the link in the opening post on this thread.

I still have to add my latest... wow, it's really long. I'll do it tomorrow. (This is for all the banned folks. I put a lot of time into that pundit thread, so I hope the FAIR mods will bear with me reposting it over in purgatory. <smile>)

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Post by The Dude »

I added the latest. If you got banned on Sunday morning and didn't get to read my pundit post on Sunday night, go check it out on Kevin's site.

Yoda

Post by Yoda »

The Dude wrote:I updated the thread over at Kevin's board. Follow the link in the opening post on this thread.

I still have to add my latest... wow, it's really long. I'll do it tomorrow. (This is for all the banned folks. I put a lot of time into that pundit thread, so I hope the FAIR mods will bear with me reposting it over in purgatory. <smile>)


Your animal magnetism and charm has kept you in good favor with the FAIR gods. Those of us consumed by the Dark Side of the Force appreciate your efforts. :)

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