The Evolution of Irreducible Complexity
April 6, 2006
It must be open season on Intelligent Design (ID). Yesterday, Nature tried defense with a new missing link claim (04/06) and today, Science is printing a story to tackle ID’s offensive line, irreducible complexity (see U of Oregon press release and EurekAlert). The Discovery Institute immediately jumped to the match, with Mr. Irreducible Complexity himself, […]
Experimental Biologists Look to Animals for Inspiration
April 5, 2006
Whether insects, fish, birds or mammals, animals have a lot to teach scientists and engineers. Here are some recent stories that begin to answer, “How do they do that?” with hopes that humans might be able to mimic their feats. Hard sponges: Aimee Cunningham in Science News (03/25/2006; 169:12, p. 184) described the astonishment Joanna […]
War Stories: Darwinism vs. ID
April 3, 2006
How are things going in the Darwin Wars? The rhetoric is still flying, and there have been gains and losses on both sides. Here are assorted war stories from battle stations and strategic summits: Golden Rule at Hahvahd: The Harvard Gazette held a panel discussion on “How Do We Teach Evolution.” Richard Lewontin sees the […]
How Dry I.D.
March 27, 2006
Greg Schirf of Wasatch Brewery is riding the wave of publicity over the intelligent design controversy in Utah. He came out with a new “intelligently designed” beer: Evolution Amber Ale. The press release expresses his alarm over the alleged erosion of separation of church and state, but how serious (or sober) he was may be […]
New Book: Traipsing Into Evolution
March 23, 2006
The Discovery Institute has published a new book, Traipsing Into Evolution, analyzing the Dover decision. (Traipsing is defined as walking or traveling about without apparent plan but with or without a purpose.) An article on Evolution News introduces the contents, and describes the authors: “The book was written by David K. DeWolf, professor of law […]
Can Scientific Journals Perpetuate False Ideas?
March 17, 2006
An unusual paper appeared in PNAS this week.1 Four social scientists from Columbia and Yale argued that scientific papers can actually perpetuate false ideas rather than correct them. The abstract says that an influential paper can generate momentum that becomes merely cited as fact by subsequent authors: We analyzed a very large set of molecular […]
The Darwin Empire Strikes Back
March 14, 2006
It would seem the ID republic is imprisoned on its own ice-world of Hoth, scrambling to escape as the empire has mobilized its machinery against the rebels. The AAAS, for instance, held its “Evolution on the Front Line” event in St. Louis and has posted its weaponry on its Center for Public Engagement with Science […]
Analysis: The Dover Decision
March 10, 2006
Dr. Kevin L. Anderson of the Creation Research Society wrote an analysis of Judge Jones’ decision in the Kitzmiller v. Dover School District case. Since this appeared in a members-only newsletter, Creation Matters, we sought and obtained permission to reproduce it: Click Here. A very different view was expressed by David Johns (School […]
Anti-ID Media Resorts to Mockery, Misrepresentation
March 2, 2006
Evolution News, a blog of the Discovery Institute ID think tank, was launched in 2004 to try to correct misrepresentation in the media. It never seems to have a shortage of material (see their 3/2/2006 post). Even though the Discovery Institute maintains public documents on its website defining what intelligent design is and what it […]
Whats Darwin Got to Do With It?
February 28, 2006
Is evolutionary theory useful? We saw Donald Kennedy et al. claiming last week (see 02/24/2006) that doctors need training in evolutionary thinking. This week, Christopher Beard (U of Pittsburgh Medical Center) claimed that a study of dinosaur evolution can help doctors understand human lower back pain (see EurekAlert). These, however, are announcements after the fact. […]
Darwinists Rattle Sabers Against I.D.
February 24, 2006
Has there ever been a controversy among scientists more acrimonious than the current one over intelligent design? It seems all the big science Goliaths are determined to eradicate intelligent design from the earth, yet the I.D. Davids are standing their ground. “History is written by the victors,” wrote Henry Gee in Nature this week (see […]
Bloviating on I.D. Is It Garrulous?
February 17, 2006
TV commentator Bill O’Reilly has brought two obscure words to the attention of his viewers: ”bloviating” (discoursing at length in a pompous manner) and “garrulous” (wordy and rambling, tiresomely talkative). A number of talking heads and writing hands have taken to bloviating about intelligent design (ID) recently. Readers may wish to get out their blovimeters […]
Alien Engineering: Is It Intelligent Design?
February 16, 2006
The SETI Institute finished airing a 2-part series on the History Channel called Alien Engineering (it will be rebroadcast on Feb. 18). The series, featuring SETI Institute scientists Seth Shostak and Frank Drake, asks the following questions: Prepare for an exercise in imagination. Suppose that an alien spacecraft crashed in the desert and we humans […]
Ohio School Board Votes Down Critical Analysis of Evolution
February 15, 2006
In more apparent fallout from the Dover case, the Ohio State Board of Education (OSBE) voted 11-4 to strike language from the high school science standards that stated simply, “Describe how scientists continue to investigate and critically analyze aspects of evolutionary theory.” The same standards specifically mentioned that intelligent design would not be taught. No […]
Liberal Pastors Rally to Defend Darwin on Evolution Sunday
February 11, 2006
Imagine this scene at a local church in your community: Our text for this morning’s sermon is taken from Origin of Species, chapter 15: “There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet […]