Casey: New Discoveroid “Peer Reviewed” Paper

The sad tale of how the Discovery Institute desperately seeks to gain scientific respect is seen in the latest post by Casey Luskin, our favorite creationist. His new effort at the Discoveroids’ creationist blog is Peer-Reviewed Paper: Development Needs Ontogenetic Information that Cannot Arise from Neo-Darwinian Mechanisms.

Wowie — a peer reviewed paper! That certainly sounds exciting. Let’s see what Casey has to tell us. We’ve added some bold font for emphasis:

Jonathan Wells has published a new peer-reviewed scientific paper in the journal BIO-Complexity, “Membrane Patterns Carry Ontogenetic Information That Is Specified Independently of DNA” [link omitted]. With over 400 citations to the technical literature, this well-researched and well-documented article shows that embryogenesis depends on crucial sources of information that exist outside of the DNA.

BIO-Complexity? BWAHAHAHAHAHA! We’ve written about that thing before — see Discovery Institute: Creationist “Peer-Review”. It’s the Discoveroids’ own, captive vanity journal. A look at the Editorial Team of that esteemed journal reveals some well-known Discoveroid names, including its managing editor, Douglas Axe, and these names on their Editorial Board: Michael Behe, William Dembski, Ann Gauger, and Jonathan Wells. Wells is, as you noticed, not only on the journal’s board, he is also the author of the paper in question.

Axe, Gauger, and Wells are also affiliated with the Discoveroids’ captive “research” lab, Biologic Institute, a venerable facility to which the Discoveroids gave a “grant” of $291,300, as we recently pointed out in Discovery Institute: Their 2012 Tax Return. You may judge for yourself, dear reader, the independence of BIO-Complexity’s distinguished group of “peers” as they review the work of their Discoveroid colleague. The Discoveroids’ imitation of the accouterments of science has caused their “theory” of intelligent design to be described as a cargo cult.

Okay, we know where this paper was published. Now what’s been discovered? Casey tells us:

This ontogenetic information guides the development of an organism, but because it is derived from sources outside of the DNA, it cannot be produced by mutations in DNA. Wells concludes that because the neo-Darwinian model of evolution claims that variation is produced by DNA mutations, neo-Darwinism cannot account for the origin of epigenetic and ontogenetic information that exists outside of DNA.

Casey’s article is unusually long, with lots of quotes from Wells. We’re not going to dig into it — not until the topic shows up in something we regard as a more reliable publication. You can click over there and read it, if you like. Here’s Casey’s conclusion:

This is cutting-edge biology — but Wells grounds it in literally hundreds of citations to the peer-reviewed literature. Papers like this show that when freed from the “central dogmas” of neo-Darwinian evolution, a theory of intelligent design can open up promising and fruitful avenues of research and thinking in biology.

Yeah? Well, Casey is excited, but that’s not quite sufficient to get us interested. For the moment, we’ll withhold our enthusiasm and continue to regard Discoveroid “research” as important to biology as The Time Cube is to cosmology.

Copyright © 2014. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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21 responses to “Casey: New Discoveroid “Peer Reviewed” Paper

  1. docbill1351

    I skimmed through Wells’ paper and it’s just a bunch of incoherent creationist bafflegab. No value whatsoever.

    The shorter Wells: Tricksy things happen. Must can haz magic unicorn.

    No matter how much the Gerb squeaks about their “peer-reviewed journal” nobody is fooled. It’s about as peer-reviewed as The Watchtower, and just as relevant. Bunch of losers, all.

  2. Curious… the words “intelligent design” or “intelligent” or “design” don’t appear anywhere in the ‘paper’.

    So, instead of supporting ID, this only attacks evolution… again. Nothing to see here.

  3. waldteufel

    The Gerb is so cute when he takes out his official Discovery Institute lab coat, reverently dons it, examines himself in the mirror and says: “Gee, I’m a scientist now, just like those mean Darwinists.”

    Like docbill, I skimmed through Wells’ paper and detected nothing of interest or import. Then I clipped my drivel filter over my eyeglasses, and the words disappeared completey from his paper.

    There is no new work shown in the paper, no experiments or field observations made by the author. This is not “cutting edge” biology, Casey, this is a third-rate literature review with no original work evidenced.

    Until the Discoveroids start publishing papers giving positive experimental and/or observational evidence supporting intelligent design in main stream peer-reviewed scientific journals, their writings can be easily ignored as the rantings of kooks.

    Sorry, Casey, the Disco Toot is cargo cult “science” all the way down. Now, hang up your lab coat and go back to your gibberish generator. There’s a good lad.

  4. Aww c’mon, folks, admit it: isn’t Casey cute when he plays at being a big grown-up scientist?

    Bet he wants to be an astronaut when he grows up.

  5. This “paper” is akin to Meyer’s work, i.e., it appears no actual scientific work has been done by the author to provide evidence for his assertions. It is just another “review” conducted by the dishonesty institute folks, like Meyer’s works. There were references to the 1890’s, Wallace, and so many others. A critical examination of the references is in order for quote mining and irrelevance.

    Just for a laugh, here’s a recent AIG related story:
    Sinking Ship?: Creationist Ministry Continues To Over-Promise On Ky. ‘Ark Park’
    https://www.au.org/blogs/wall-of-separation/sinking-ship-creationist-ministry-continues-to-over-promise-on-ky-ark-park

  6. And big gwon-up Caseums writes

    Wells concludes that because the neo-Darwinian model of evolution claims that variation is produced by DNA mutations, neo-Darwinism cannot account for the origin of epigenetic and ontogenetic information that exists outside of DNA.

    Read that one carefully; it’s hard to write something like that which is at one and the same time a tautology and fallacious. Something like, “Megalonyx concludes that because the piano keyboard can only produce different notes by pressing different keys, it is impossible to write a concerto for a violin.”

    …But…but…don’t the Discoveroids claim that it is DNA–which is a wondrously and specified complex Da Vinci code–which is proof of Design by some Great Oogity-Boogiter?

  7. Gerbilicious gushes that “[w]ith over 400 citations to the technical literature, this well-researched and well-documented article shows that embryogenesis depends on crucial sources of information that exist outside of the DNA.”

    I’m no scientist, so I’ll ask for help: Does the number of footnotes a paper have determine its relevance or importance?

    And, (With apologies to @Megalonyx, who did it first) I’ve watched over 400 baseball games and have determined that the infield fly rule cannot adequately explain who won the 2010 World Cup, thus soccer/futbol is a hoax.

  8. Mark Germano asks: “I’m no scientist, so I’ll ask for help: Does the number of footnotes a paper have determine its relevance or importance?”

    Einstein’s first paper on special relativity had virtually no references in it.

  9. waldteufel

    Mark, the importance of a paper is generally gauged by how many other scientists reference it, not by how many references it makes.

    Again, Wells’ paper is not research reporting new findings by the author doing any experiments, tests, or observations. I see no reason for any working scientists to reference it — except for giggles.

    Casey’s goofy little puff-piece about Wells’ paper just underscores his ignorance about what real science is and how it proceeds.

  10. docbill1351

    References are only important to the Gerb when the Gerb says references are important.

    Remember Behe at Kitzmiller, like Picard and Dathon at El-Adrel, at which Behe was presented with 50-plus tomes on the evolution of the immune system and Behe waved them away saying “they don’t address the problem” which was absurd, of course. Gerby referred to the literature slam as a “lawyer’s trick” using the weight (literally) of many references to prove a point. Gerb, he again’ it! Nope, bad lawyer, bad! Tricksy books not prove point!

    Now, here is the same Gerb WOW-ing over the 400-plus references Wells pulled out of his nether region. References so obscure that you’d need a Bing wrapped in a Yahoo embedded in a Google to find them.

    No, you won’t find the word “intelligent” anywhere near this steaming pile of schlock.

  11. docbill1351 says: “this steaming pile of schlock.”

    But … but … it’s peer reviewed!

  12. docbill1351

    Hmmmm, that could provoke a discussion. Should a steaming pile of schock be served steaming or cold?

    I know Gaak is best served live and warm, and my Doc Bill’s Gasp-atchio is best served cold (and after a bottle of tequila), I don’t know about Wells’ Schlock.

    Opinions?

  13. waldteufel: “Mark, the importance of a paper is generally gauged by how many other scientists reference it, not by how many references it makes.”

    Reminds me of the old Starkist ad — “Sorry, Charlie — Starkist wants tuna that tastes good, not tuna with good taste.”

    “Sorry, Casey…”

  14. Downe-House

    I am sorry to say I only skimmed the information; I got to where there was non-DNA genetic information and shut down. I think I learnt about female RNA being transferred some 25 years ago – or did I miss the point?

  15. docbill1351 confesses

    I don’t know about Wells’ Schlock.

    This is not a beverage, but the juices that appear in the bottom of the roasting pan when making the celebrated dish, Beefs Wellsington, for which the recipe is

    INGREDIENTS
    3lbs assorted gripes and beefs about empiricism
    1/2 lb rolled-out puff pastry
    1 gal vitriol
    2 cups full-fat non-sequiturs
    1 cup fermented canine feces

    METHOD
    Preheat your think-tank to 70 IQ. Roll up the gripes, beefs and non-sequiturs in the pastry and place in a roasting pan. Pour over the vitriol, and glaze the pastry with the canine feces. Place on a middle shelf of the think-tank for 2 hours, or until the pastry is golden brown, airy and unsubstantial, and the aroma overpowering. Pour the resulting wells’ schlock into a gravy boat, place the Beefs Wellsington on an ornamental paper serving plate, and voila!

    Bon appetit!

  16. Megalonyx, that’s the grand-champion, funniest, cleverest post I’ve read! A true classic. No number of LOLs, ROTFLs, or straight-out Guffaws can do it justice.

    Destined to join Starbucks as a Seattle classic.

  17. Aaaaarrrggghhhh! I left out a vital ingredient! To enjoy the classically iconoclastic version of Beefs Wellsington, it must be served with a garnish of regurgitated peppered moths!

  18. Megalonyx, your recipe for Beefs Wellsington sounds interesting, but I lack the refinement to be a connoisseur of such delicacies. Being a true Curmudgeon, I believe that nothing compares to an old-time, down-home, deep-dish toad pie!

  19. Our Curmudgeon proclaims

    nothing compares to an old-time, down-home, deep-dish toad pie!

    Well, particularly for onanistic Creationists, spotted dick (completely safe for work) takes some beating…

  20. docbill1351

    I do recall through an alcoholic haze eating, at the same dinner, mind you, toad in the hole, bubble and squeek, neeps, chipolata, spotted dick and, I seem to remember, candle wax (although that takes a little more explaining).

  21. Mark Joseph

    @docbill1251:

    The shorter Wells: Tricksy things happen. Must can haz magic unicorn.

    Best laugh of the day!