Bruce Chapman

Dennett Defends Dawkins, Rues Ruse’s Ruse, Scotches Scott

This story from England is a month old, but took a while getting over the Pond to my in-box . Dennett and Dawkins say in public what Eugenie Scott says in private. Ruse may actually be sincere (though sincerely wrong), and not a ruse deviser at all. He was morally compromised some time ago when he took to quaffing beer with known “creationists in disguise” (as the ACLU’s favorite judge would call them). Ever since then Ruse has been incapable of sober materialist judgement. Recently in his Seattle debate with Steve Meyer, Peter Ward, too, criticized Dawkins, and with a bit of a snarl, I thought–all happily captured and preserved on tape. Dennett should rise again to the defense of Read More ›

Casey Luskin

What’s Really Happening in Mississippi?

According to a recent news article, in Mississippi, a “New Law Allows for Creationism in the Classroom“. While this sounds like a believable headline, let’s find out if the facts bear it out. According to the article, this is what the law actually says: “No local school board, school superintendent or school principal shall prohibit a public school classroom teacher from discussing and answering questions from individual students on the origin of life.” (“New Law Allows for Creationism in the Classroom“) Hmmm… All I see is a law that permits students to ask any question they want and allows teacher to answer that question. There’s nothing about creationism. There’s not even anything about intelligent design. For all we know, if Read More ›

Casey Luskin

Misquoting Michael Behe in the U.K.

“Templeton-Cambridge Journalism Fellow” John Kelleher has made an egregious misquote of Michael Behe in the Times’ Educational Supplement (TES Teacher, May 5 2006, pages 8-11). The article is “The Inside Story In the beginning: evolution, creationism or intelligent design?” It is the cover story with wording “BLUEPRINT FOR LIFE EVOLUTION OR INTELLIGENT DESIGN?,” and does not appear to be available online, but those who read it report that Kelleher’s article wrongly implies that Michael Behe is an odd sort of creationist that believes the fossil record does not reflect any earth history. Not only does this article completely misrepresent Behe, who accepts an ancient age of the earth and even accepts common descent, but it twists a passage out of Read More ›

Casey Luskin

Evolution By Intelligent Design is Intelligent Design

A short news article in Molecular Systems Biology is another example of scientists discussing the controversy that doesn’t exist over irreducible complexity. In an article discussing how some molecular biologists increased the selectivity of certain enzymes for their substrates by inducing mutations, they conclude: “Finally, they assumed that the mutations were additive–that the effect on selectivity of combining two mutations could be predicted by adding the effect of each mutation done singly. With this assumption, it was straightforward to predict combinations of single mutations identified as controlling selectivity without decreasing the total productivity. The striking result of this design is that the simple additivity assumption was validated–the authors obtained several triple to quintuple mutants with nearly perfect selectivities for the Read More ›