We want to help the neo-theocrats at the Discovery Institute‘s creationist public relations and lobbying operation, the Center for Science and Culture (a/k/a the Discoveroids, a/k/a the cdesign proponentsists).
From time to time the Discoveroids post lists of their evidence and tests for intelligent design, and such efforts are always laughable. See Intelligent Designer or Zeus?, and also Tests for Intelligent Design.
Part of the problem is that their “theory” is so nebulous that it’s difficult to deal with. This is our oft-repeated description of their theory:
An unknown intelligence (whether it’s a solitary creature or a vast swarm is never addressed), with utterly unknown characteristics (mortal or immortal, sexual or asexual, plant or animal, physical or spiritual), whose home base is unknown, and whose ultimate origin is a mystery (evolved, created, or eternal), arrived on earth somehow (in a flying saucer, perhaps, or maybe on a comet), at some unspecified time (or several times), and then in some unspecified way (technological or magical), for unspecified reasons (boredom, or maybe cosmic fulfillment), did something (or maybe several things) to influence the genetic characteristics of some (but maybe not all) of the creatures on earth.
But the Discoveroids’ biggest problem is that they seem to know so little about science that they just don’t know how to do it. So we’re here to help.
This is what we propose — a sure-fire way to catch the intelligent designer in the very act! There may be many ways to go about this, and perhaps you, dear reader, can improve upon our method, but here’s our suggestion. Pay attention, because this may be the beginning of a genuine scientific revolution.
First, set up some Petri dishes of bacteria — all the same. The goal is to catch the designer in the act of enhancing one of them in some irreducibly complex way.
Then, on the same table with the Petri dishes, set out a glass of milk and a plate of cookies. That should attract the designer. If it’s not sufficient, then surely he’ll be attracted by prayer, so the Discoveroids should maintain a prayer vigil outside the door of the lab, with constant chanting and incantations. The door of the lab, of course, should be locked to insure the integrity of the results.
The interior of the lab should be equipped with hidden cameras, triggered by both heat and motion detectors. But that’s not all. The lab should also be equipped with an array of ghost detectors. We found an Amazon category for such equipment, and we’re confident that there must be something there to do the job: Ghost detectors at Amazon.
That’s the setup. Milk, cookies, ghost detectors, video cameras, and Petri dishes. Plus a prayer vigil outside. Very scientific, and we guarantee that these the procedures will easily survive peer review. But it may not work the first night. We suggest patience. The experiment should be run for ninety continuous days, which should surely be enough. And then what?
Isn’t it obvious? If the bacteria evolve some irreducibly complex feature, then surely the video tapes or the ghost detectors will reveal the presence of the designer — blessed be he! — on the scene at the time of the otherwise impossible event. And then … the theory of intelligent design will at last have publishable evidence that supports it.
And so, Discoveroids, why do you hesitate? We have shown you the way. The rest is up to you. Fame and glory shall be yours. And most of all, you will at last enjoy the respect of the science community. If you fail to put your theory to the test, then you are without excuse.
Copyright © 2012. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.