Misrepresenting ID Arguments and Rewriting the History of Junk-DNA

Orac over at Scienceblogs is starting to develop a reputation as someone more interested in calling his opponents names than in accurately representing their positions. His latest misrepresentation involves ENV contributor Casey Luskin and his post on junk-DNA, which Orac called “breathtakingly idiotic” (perhaps like Judge Jones calling ID “breathtakingly inane,” as anything which poses a challenge to the status quo must be to a Darwinist?). Orac explained to his readers that Luskin’s argument was that “‘junk DNA’ somehow disproves evolution.” This is a blatant mischaracterization of Luskin’s argument. According to Luskin,

Is Panda’s Thumb Suppressing the Truth about Junk DNA?

The best way to rewrite history is to delete the views of those who remember it personally. The Scientist‘s editor Richard Gallgaher’s recent article on “junk”-DNA mentions that Dr. Andras J. Pellionisz suggested that The Scientist publish an “obituary” for “junk”-DNA. Gallagher wrote: Andras J. Pellionisz, to whom I am grateful for bringing this notable 35th anniversary to my attention, suggested that The Scientist publish an obituary to “formally abandon this misnomer.” Pellionisz’s objection is that scientific progress is being inhibited, and declaring junk DNA dead would align us with his own organization, the International PostGenetics Society (postgenetics.org), which disavowed the term on the 12th of October last year. Pellionisz is not alone. (Richard Gallagher, “Junk Worth Keeping,” The Scientist, Read More ›

Richard Gallagher Frames Intelligent Design Proponents While Rewriting the History of Junk-DNA (Part 3)

I stated in my previous post that “ID has long-predicted that junk-DNA has function, and ID was right.” So what has Neo-Darwinism done with respect to “junk”-DNA? The Panda’s Thumb post cited by Richard Gallagher in his recent attack on ID in The Scientist cites an ID-proponent that found that some Darwinian biologists predicted that “junk”-DNA would have function, and the implication is that Neo-Darwinism has not forestalled research into “junk”-DNA. So what if some biologists did buck the trend and investigate function for non-coding DNA? Good for them for being observant, and good for them for not relying upon the neo-Darwinian consensus! The fact remains that the entire false “junk” DNA paradigm was born out of the neo-Darwinian mindset, Read More ›

Richard Gallagher Frames Intelligent Design Proponents While Rewriting the History of Junk-DNA (Part 2)

In part 1, I explained that The Scientist‘s editor Richard Ghallager wrote a politically charged article to avoid acknowledging that ID proponents have long-predicted the death of junk-DNA. But have ID proponents made these predictions? In a previous post, I gave about 4 or 5 examples of predictions from pro-ID or ID-sympathetic scientists from 1994 to the near-present who were predicting the end of the junk-DNA mindset. But does ID logically predict that we should find more and more function for “junk”-DNA? In a post that Telic Thoughts called, “A Dubious “Opportunity” for IDers,” it was recounted that one evolutionary biologist challenged ID proponents to “Specify the basis” for predicting function for junk DNA. I’ve done this multiple times here, Read More ›

Richard Gallagher Frames Intelligent Design Proponents While Rewriting the History of Junk-DNA (Part 1)

I recently predicted recently that Darwinists would try to erase the historical fact that Darwinism led to the long-standing presumption that non-coding DNA was largely genetic junk. In the latest issue of The Scientist, editor Richard Gallagher does no less, citing sources that wrongly imply that Neo-Darwinism did not hinder research into function for junk-DNA, and even stating that “[t]he latest iniquity to befall junk DNA is the attempted hijack by proponents of Intelligent Design.” Gallagher’s usage of a terrorism metaphor fits well with Gallagher’s own admission that his article’s purpose is more rhetorical than factual: While I did start this editorial off with a working title of “The Life and Death of Junk DNA,” a few hours of browsing Read More ›