Re: Behe responds to Dover debacle

From: George L. Murphygmurphy@raex.com <Murphygmurphy@raex.com>
Date: Wed Feb 08 2006 - 15:26:10 EST

Behe has responded in a long 'rebuttal' to the Dover debacle (http://www.discovery.org/scripts/viewDB/filesDB-download.php?command=download&id=697). What worries me is that his comments may confuse the Christian reader to believe that IC remains a valid and relevant indicator of Intelligent Design. This seems to be an excellent opportunity for ASA to educate.Compare Behe's 'response' with the trial transcripts for instance (http://www2.ncseweb.org/wp/?page_id=11)Pandasthumb's contributor Andrea Bottaro discusses some of the issues at http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives/2006/02/can_you_hear_me.htmlA particular salient observation is presented by O'Donnell at immunoblogging. 9http://immunoblogging.blogspot.com/2006/02/professor-behe-responds-to-dover.html) D'Donnell compares Behe's claims with the actual trial record and shows some internal contradictions.On the one hand Behe argued that the papers presented were unpersuasive, on the other ha
> nd he
> argued that he had not read the papers in question. Is Behe so convinced of the correctness of his claims that he can reject these papers out of hand?<quote>Dr. Behe needs to realise that science is not about making a claim and having everyone disprove what you think. Science is about proposing a testable hypothesis and then assembling positive evidence (or for that matter disproving the original hypothesis) that demonstrates your idea is correct. Rather than being a 'court stunt' as Behe derides the presentation of actual research articles (the irony of that can be left for the reader to determine) it demonstrates that breadth and depth of research into the evolution of the immune system. That Behe fails to do any research of his own, in other words assembling positive evidence for his claims, demonstrates the lack of any real science behind his claims very sufficiently.</quote>Speaking of positive evidence, during the trial Behe was involved in the following exchange<qu!
 ote>OK, says Rothschild, what ARE those mechanisms? Behe: Well, actually, I don’t have any mechanisms, but I know that there’s an intelligence involved. Rothschild: Wait a minnit! Isn’t “an intelligence involved” a *conclusion* that one would draw AFTER investigating the mechanisms? How can a scientist start by assuming his conclusion and then doing no research to defend it? Behe: Well, it’s obvious there’s an intelligence involved, so the mechanism must have involved the application of that intelligence somehow. Rothschild: OK, then, what IS the mechanism from whose investigation you concluded an intelligence. Behe: I do
> n’t NEED
> any mechanism, because I know the answer before I start. Rothschild: But in that case, why did you write that IC is ‘focused exclusively on the mechanisms’? How could you say that if you have no mechanisms?</quote?IC is all about mechanisms but really when pressed for it, none are presented. In  fact ID has nothing scientifically to contribute in this area other than by concluding that "the designer did it because he wanted it" and "the designer was able to do it because he did it"Wow. What really does ID have to contribute to science? Does it merely serves to keep science honest? Or does it propose scientifically relevant ideas? So far I have found ID to be scientifically vacuous.

I used to think - after reading Darwin's Black Box - that Behe was a fairly reasonable guy who had pointed out some legitimate concerns that evolutionary theory needed to deal with. It's rather sad that he's now completely discredited himself in the eyes of almost everyone except True Believers. He's well on the way to becoming the Milli Vanilli of science.

George L. Murphy
Received on Wed Feb 8 15:26:25 2006

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