Discussion of Big Science Today, by an Important Member of the National Association of Scholars

No, he can’t. But words may come out.


Behe method is to infer design through the purposeful arrangement of parts. The flagellum fits this with 40 well matched proteins that provide mobility for a bacterium. From this we can infer design is involved in its ultimate origin and most likely part of the original design of the bacteria.

We can have a reasonable doubt the flagellum evolved as it does not make sense to have a non mobile bacteria. The alternative is to try to figure out if it has evolved which has to date not been successful. The possibility of it being part of the original design is a quite useful alternative to consider.

I’d go for “pseudo-scientific apologetics”

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My question was how concluding that the flagellum originated via a miracle could be of use to science. You forgot to tell us that.


Considering that many (most?) bacteria are immobile, perhaps you are misjudging just what it is that doesn’t make sense.


Behe faux-method is to assert design through asserting the purposeful arrangement of parts.

There, fixed it for you. :smiley:

It is actually a perfectly useless and infertile faux-alternative. It neither suggests further lines of inquiry, nor useful techniques. You simply look at something, say Goddidit, and stop dead. This “tool” does nothing except stop the user from inquiring further. It is analogous to a self-lobotomy.

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“Purpose” relates to some sort of utility or benefit for the designer. Of what utility or benefit to a designer is the bacterial flagellum, @colewd? The more specific you can be, the better.


It doesn’t care if it couldn’t be of any use for science, for if correct, the conclusion would be very valuable for humanity. However, I can see at least one useful aspect for science, the fact that if correct, the conclusion would prevent scientists from waiting their time to search for something that doesn’t exist. IWO, it would allow a better allocation of resources.

The phrase ‘if correct’ does an awful lot of work here. How would we ever know if the inference to a miracle is indeed correct? Science doesn’t produce proofs. And if we don’t know that it is correct, you are basically stopping science for an invalid reason.

A very damaging, if not outright dangerous, mindset.


True, but there is a condition: “If Walruses Ordain” (see Giltil’s clarifying remark, below) So, happily, we don’t go this dangerous route unless we have explicit orders from the walruses, who are not ID Creationists.

I think that there are ample reasons to think that life from non life required the action of an intelligent agent. Therefore, IMO, searching for a purely naturalistic explanation is a Sisyphean endeavor. Not a very desirable situation.

So because you think that, you think that scientists should be stopping doing work on subjects that we don’t have answers to.

What about those of us who don’t actually think that? Are we still allowed to investigate further? Or would you cut off our funding, if you had that power?


I do agree that, if the flagellum was designed, it would be very useful for scientists to take steps to determine this was the case.

I also agree with you that it would be a waste of time to spend time and resources investigating possibilities that one has every reason to believe are not true.

With that in mind, it is interesting to note that evolutionary scientists are making efforts, and having considerable success, in determining the process by which the flagellum evolved.

Intelligent design scientists, OTOH are not spending a single second nor a single red cent trying to figure out how it could have been “designed.” Maybe they know something you don’t?


Those “ample reasons” seem to be nothing but fallacious appeals to gaps, unknowns, and assertions based on unsubstantiated premises.


Not really. Because I think that, I wouldn’t recommend a young scientist who would ask for advice about his orientation to embark on a path that I consider to be a dead end. But in the event he would still want to work in the field, would I have the power to prevent him to do so, I would not exercice this power.

Many creationists thought the sun was young and its present heat generated by gravitational contraction. Should scientists just have responded, that is it, and given up on solving the missing neutrino’s problem? The Higgs and Gravitational Waves defied detection for decades, some maintained all probable Higgs masses had been fruitlessly explored. Should scientists have just declared these problems unsolvable and redeployed?

Some problems are very hard, but methodical naturalism as least holds out the promise, the potential, of possible discovery. ID presents no heuristic. It renders design to be a synonym for unsolvable, and trumpets unsolved as unsolvable. When so declared, as you say, it is pointless to search further.


There is no method.


Fair enough.

Neither of these is true, Gil. It’s so basic that it’s covered in the first paragraph of the Wikipedia article.

Not accusations, @Eddie. Demonstrations.

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