Re: [asa] The Myth of the Rejected ID Paper (science stoppers and OOL)

From: Murray Hogg <>
Date: Sun Jul 06 2008 - 02:57:08 EDT

Hi Rich,

The comments in the below are, I think, very interesting.

It strikes me that anybody very familiar with Behe's position might
initially react by claiming that Miller has simply misrepresented ID.
After all, Behe has never claimed that design can be seen at the species
level, indeed he specifically repudiates the suggestion. At the Dover
trial, for instance, Behe testified that ID theory applies only at the
molecular level and he was clearly uneasy with the way in which the book
"Of Panda's and People" claimed that the giraffe's neck, bird's
feathers, fish's fins, etc could be seen as instances of design.

So when Miller asks why the designer would use "throw-away" designs it
implies a view that Behe does not, in fact, hold.

However (and it's a big however!), if one thinks a little more deeply
then I think that Miller's criticism really does hold water. After all,
it doesn't seem to make sense to suggest that organisms evolve but their
molecular systems are irreducibly complex. One would, I think, be forced
to either deny common descent OR to invoke some sort of continuous
creation. So I think it quite correct to say that accepting common
descent and advocating ID implies continuous creation - as any
evolutionary development of an irreducibly complex system is, by
definition, ruled out.

So from what seems initially to be a somewhat irrelevant observation, I
think the below actually delivers a rather serious blow to the attempt
of ID theorists to hold together the notions of common descent and ID.

Are you aware if Behe has attempted any response to such a criticism?

Murray Hogg
Pastor, East Camberwell Baptist Church, Victoria, Australia
Post-Grad Student (MTh), Australian College of Theology

> Yes, we do indeed agree. I also think that it is helpful to take ID
> seriously. In fact, Ken Miller used those very words of taking ID
> seriously in his latest book. I was impressed with the subtly of his
> critique and also found interesting why he calls ID a form of
> creationism -- another of the contentious charges against ID. He does
> this because of all the extinct species. Why would a designer use all of
> these throw-away designs? Weak ID does admit common descent so this
> seems to be somewhat of the problem. On the other hand, if it was a
> Creator rather than a designer then it doesn't matter about the extinct
> species because there is no need to build the parts of the "design" from
> these extinct species. Accepting both common descent and ID implies that
> to be consistent you must hold to continuous creation. You've noted the
> problems we have here with respect to politics and one of them is that
> in order for something to get into classes we must not mention God and
> is why I suspect there is a desire to be obscurant about the designer's
> identity. Here we have a case where if ID is true it proves much more
> than is claimed. Namely, this unknown designer really is the Creator and
> not some wacky space alien.
> Rich Blinne
> Member ASA
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Received on Sun Jul 6 02:57:46 2008

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