Coyne Attacks Behe Book’s Title

I do wish some IDer would explain why ID “scientists” only publish this evolution-killing evidence in popular press books aimed at scientifically untrained laymen instead of publishing in the primary scientific literature.


The scientific article at the heart of Mike Behe’s new book, “Experimental evolution, loss-of-function mutations, and ‘the first rule of adaptive evolution’,” was first published in the Quarterly Review of Biology eight years ago:


Why has he never addressed the Muller Two Step, which lies at the heart of his book, showing his argument is false? Which Irreducible Complexity Argument?

Maybe he has – I don’t know. Many things are said about Mike’s missing responses to critics which just aren’t true, because his critics don’t know what he has published, and where.

Your question is best addressed to Mike, directly. I was responding to Horton’s claim about IDers taking their case to lay audiences first.


9 posts were split to a new topic: Thornton and Nelson on Behe

In this case, he has not addressed it. I’ve asked him in the past. I am willing to do so again. From my point of view, this is getting to the point that I am not sure I can look the other way much longer. If he is going to take an argument to the Church, he has to subject it to the highest of standards. I am starting to see pattern of avoiding engagement from both Axe and Behe that is deeply concerning me.

This is not right. It has consequences. At what point are they going to step up to the plate and engage with scientists?

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Work on thinking first, writing second.

How can an article be “virtually ignored” AND “soundly rejected?” – to reject a scientific argument, one must first examine it, which means one is not ignoring it.

Your all-consuming animus towards ID, Timothy, affects your coherence. Bring your hatred under control, and what you say might be more worthwhile.


I agree with that. @Timothy_Horton, you are more convincing when you don’t act biased from the get go. The anger just bursts out from you, doesn’t it?

Fairly easily @Pnelson. You note its problems, recognize it is false, and then move on. The only engagement he has received is from scientists engaging the public, not in their scientific work.

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I should add that when Joe Thornton (at the time, at Oregon) began publishing his detailed work reconstructing evolutionary pathways in protein evolution, he framed his results explicitly in the context of challenging or refuting “irreducible complexity.” Google “Thornton, hormone receptors, 2006, irreducible complexity,” and you should pull up some of the citations and news stories.


33 posts were split to a new topic: Inviting Behe and Axe into Dialogue

Look at Behe’s faculty bio. It has a large disclaimer on it. I don’t know about you, but to have to have such a disclaimer on my official university faculty bio wouldn’t make me feel loved by my university and facility peers. Lehigh is a fine university with a fine Biologocial Science program with solid courses in evolution and co-evolution. Does Behe have any grad students or PhD students?

There was also some discussion here:

Coyne attacks Behe Book’s Title

3 posts were split to a new topic: Keep Requests to Split Topics off the Main Thread

Behe’s Darwin Devolves: Deep and Broad Implications for Biology

So deep and broad that since Behe first proposed this ID claim back in 2010 no one in biology has given his nonsense the slightest bit of credibility.

All good little ID foot-soldiers know if you rewrite your ID nonsense in popular press book form that magically makes it become true. Just look at how much Darwin’s Doubt has changed the views of professional paleontologists. :wink: