PNAS Authors Resort to Teleological Language in Failed Attempt to Explain Evolution of Irreducible Complexity

Summary: A recent article in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) purports to explain the evolution of a relatively small molecular machine in the mitochondria that transports proteins across a membrane, thereby allegedly refuting irreducible complexity. Phrases and assertions like “‘pre-adaptation’ to bacteria ahead of a need for protein import,” “parts accumulate until they’re ready to snap together,” “machineries emerge before there’s a need for them,” or intelligently “engineered” macromutations are part and parcel of this latest failed attempt by critics of intelligent design (ID) to answer Michael Behe’s argument of irreducible complexity. As would be expected, when evolutionists are forced to resort to such goal-directed and teleological language and mechanisms, this shows that inherently, blind and unguided Read More ›

Intelligent Design Implications Disclaimed as Biomimicry Increasingly Discussed in Scientific Literature

A recent Reuters article titled “IBM uses DNA to make next-gen microchips” explains, as the title suggests, that microchip manufacturers are finding it cheaper and more efficient to use DNA as a framework on which to build microchips. The news story is based upon a new article in the journal Nature Nanotechnology proposing that DNA can form a template for building microchips: “DNA origami, in which a long single strand of DNA is folded into a shape using shorter ‘staple strands’6, can display 6-nm-resolution patterns of binding sites, in principle allowing complex arrangements of carbon nanotubes, silicon nanowires, or quantum dots.” This article is part of a much bigger trend, as scientific journals are increasingly discussing biomimetics. The journal Philosophical Read More ›

Ken Miller’s Double Standard: Improves His Own Arguments But Won’t Let Michael Behe Do the Same (Updated)

In a recent post, I noted that Ken Miller misrepresented Michael Behe’s arguments on the irreducible complexity of the blood clotting cascade in his book, Only a Theory. When I blogged at the end of last year about Miller’s similar mistakes at the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial, Dr. Miller responded by making me aware of something I did not previously remember: apparently Michael Behe wrote the section in Of Pandas and People on blood clotting. The treatment of the blood clotting cascade in Pandas (1993) could possibly be subject to Miller’s arguments, but as I showed, Behe’s treatment of the topic in Darwin’s Black Box (1996) would not be refuted in any way by Miller’s arguments. To summarize and review, Read More ›

Ken Miller’s Only a Theory Misquotes Michael Behe on Irreducible Complexity of the Blood Clotting Cascade

Recently, I posted responses to some errors in Kenneth Miller’s book Only a Theory and promised to end the series with a look at Dr. Miller’s treatment of the irreducible complexity of the blood clotting cascade. (For those prior posts, see here and here.) Discussing Ken Miller’s treatment of the blood clotting cascade in Only a Theory first requires a little backstory. Last December 2008 and early January 2009, I published a series of 3 posts that responded to Ken Miller’s arguments, during the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial, about irreducible complexity and the blood clotting cascade (BCC). (For the posts, see Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.) Those posts showed that in his Dover trial testimony, Dr. Miller misrepresented Read More ›

Peppered Moth Now Reverts Back to Gray: Evidence of Oscillating Selection?

In the world of peppered moths, gray is the new black. The “peppered moth” became famous after textbooks started using it as an iconic example of evolution. It’s still employed in some current textbooks: Douglas Futuyma’s 2005 edition of Evolution states, “By the 1930s, however, examples of very strong selection came to light. One of the first examples was Industrial Melanism in the peppered moth (Biston betularia). … There is considerable evidence, obtained by several independent researchers, that birds attack a greater proportion of gray than black moths where tree trunks, due to air pollution, lack the pale lichens that would otherwise cover them.” (p. 393) While Futuyma is right to further note that “other factors also appear to affect Read More ›