Re: economic irreducible complexity

Allan Harvey (
Wed, 27 Nov 1996 09:30:00 -0700

At 09:43 AM 11/27/96 -0600, Russell Maatman wrote:

>Why is it, in an effort to refute Behe's irreducible complexity argument,
>people cite some complex system _not_ mentioned by Behe, and then proceed
>to refute their own example?

*IF* Behe has a meaningful definition of "irreducible complexity", then it
is perfectly legitimate to examine other systems *IF* those other systems
meet the definition. A scientist shouldn't restrict up front the ways in
which other scientists are allowed to test his hypotheses. If you only
allow Behe's handpicked systems, that makes the effective definition of
irreducible complexity "these particular systems for which no evolutionary
explanation has been found", at which point the argument becomes circular.

| Dr. Allan H. Harvey | |
| Physical and Chemical Properties Division | Phone: (303)497-3555 |
| National Institute of Standards & Technology | Fax: (303)497-5224 |
| 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO 80303 | |
| "Don't blame the government for what I say, or vice versa." |