Monday, July 02, 2007

Behe and his critics

Michael Behe Responds to Critics of His New Book

6 comments:

Edward T. Babinski said...

BEHE?

The head of the Human genome project (who is both a Christian and an evolutionist) Francis C. Collins, critiqued I.D. and also Behe's earlier hypothesis (that Behe has since dropped), namely of a "super cell" in the beginning that's frontloaded with excess DNA to be put into use much later as the world evolves. Collins pointed out such a hypothesis did not make sense because if a super cell was indeed filled with tons of information to be used "much later" that information would have to be supernaturally preserved over long periods of time because unused portions of the genome are known to undergo continual mutations.

Behe once wrote, "if random evolution is true, there must have been a large number of transitional forms between the Mesonychid [a whale ancestor] and the ancient whale. Where are they?" He assumed such forms would not or could not be found, but three transitional species were identified by paleontologists within a year of that statement. In Darwin's Black Box, he posited that genes for modern complex biochemical systems, such as blood clotting, might have been "designed billions of years ago and have been passed down to the present … but not 'turned on'." This is known to be genetically impossible because genes that aren't used will degenerate, but there it was in print. And Behe's argument against the evolution of flagella and the immune system have been dismantled in detail and new evidence continues to emerge, yet the same old assertions for design reappear here as if they were uncontested.

Behe now admits that almost the entire edifice of evolutionary theory is true: evolution, natural selection, common ancestry. His one novel claim is that the genetic variation that fuels natural selection–mutation–is produced not by random changes in DNA, as evolutionists maintain, but by an Intelligent Designer, The Great Mutator.

Behe's current situation reminds me of a similar situation in the past that the true father of the I.D. movement, Michael Denton, got himself into. After he wrote his first anti-evolutionary book he was praised by the folks at ARN, and became a member of the Discovery Institute. Then Denton admitted in an interview that he had not even known about the fossil evidence of inbetween species, like mammal-like reptiles. He also wrote his book before the various genome identification projects had taken off. Denton's views were altered significantly and in his second book he admitted that the genetic distance between species even between humans and chimpanzees was relatively small (as I like to point out, that genetic distance between humans and chimps is smaller than the genetic distance between near identical sibling species of fruit flies), and so Denton now accepts that evolution has taken place. He also had his name removed as a member of the Discovery Institute.

Christian and biologist, Ken Miller, responds to Behe

The continuing dismemberment of Behe (Links to reviews of his new book)

Pushing Behe over the edge

Malaria according to Nat. Geog. (& Behe)

Behe blows it

Silence over Behe's book

We don’t have an intelligent designer (ID), we have a bungling consistent evolver (BCE). Or maybe an adaptive changer (AC). In fact, what we have in the most economical interpretation is, of course, evolution.
—Lisa Randall, physicist

Mark K. Sprengel said...

Babinksi?

*yawn* just another of the gang of Loftus

has Johnny "noticed" any new blogs that "apparently" just started Eddie?

John W. Loftus said...

Actually Mark, I am among Babinski's followers. I owe a lot of my motivation to him. You, however, are of the gang of Holding, and just like him you never attempted to answer anything Ed said except to offer ad hominems, which is exactly what Holding does.

Have you seen my recent interview, where I address what you refer to? And have you seen my recent review of The Wisdom to Doubt which speaks at one point of the hostility and misplaced loyalty that hinders the pursuit of truth?

Didn't think so.

After you read them carry on as if you didn't, another Holding trait.

Anonymous said...

Little Johnny sitting on a rock...thinking about his stinky socks. Seriously, you and Babinski are simply of no challenge to J.P Holding because he is literally the trump card for you atheists Of course you owe Babinski for motivation in deliberately lying. In that interview, you had a nice way to justify it and provided what you'd call ad hominem ("obnoxious blowhard", " I sunk to his level"). Instead of admitting that you just lied and moved on with it, you instead sought to attack J.P Holding. Can you ever address his arguments are you just too big of a baby to do so? You've lost your head for years... The attacks were simply not justified and not backed up with evidence. Attacking the individual isn't wrong when it's true.

Anonymous said...

Babinski writes:

The head of the Human genome project (who is both a Christian and an evolutionist) Francis C. Collins, critiqued I.D. and also Behe's earlier hypothesis (that Behe has since dropped), namely of a "super cell" in the beginning that's frontloaded with excess DNA to be put into use much later as the world evolves. Collins pointed out such a hypothesis did not make sense because if a super cell was indeed filled with tons of information to be used "much later" that information would have to be supernaturally preserved over long periods of time because unused portions of the genome are known to undergo continual mutations.

Anonymouse: That doesn't seem like a very good argument against Behe's kind of front-loading as Behe's front-loading doesn't require that the "excess DNA" be preserved in its original form. How mutations would affect this could be seen on a front-loading explanation to be either a) controlled by God or b) foreseen and selected for with a specific goal in mind.

Anonymouse

Anonymous said...

Babinski writes:

Then Denton admitted in an interview that he had not even known about the fossil evidence of inbetween species, like mammal-like reptiles.

Anonymous:

Can I have a link to, or citation of this interview?

thx,

Anon