We deploy that delightful illustration whenever Casey Luskin, our favorite creationist, writes about junk DNA. The last time we posted about this was Casey and Junk DNA, Yet Again.
For background (which our regular readers can skip), you need to know that since the earliest days of this humble blog, the Discovery Institute has been claiming that there’s no such thing as junk DNA. They insist that the genome is perfectly designed, without flaws, and every little scrap of it is designed to be functional. After all, their transcendental designer — blessed be he! — wouldn’t do it any other way.
Whenever the Discoveroids make that claim, we point out that there are other organisms — regarded as less complicated that we are — that have genomes far larger than ours. Consider the Polychaos dubium. The genome of that amoeba has 200 times more base pairs than ours. And then there’s the humble onion. Although not as spectacular as the amoeba, the onion’s genome is five times larger than ours. What does that say about the work of the designer? What wonders lurk within the onion’s DNA that the designer deliberately left out of ours?
The Discoveroids went bonkers over the ENCODE project. Casey posted Our Top 10 Evolution-Related Stories: #1, ENCODE Project Buries “Junk DNA”. We wrote about it here: The Discoveroids’ Top Story for 2012. Since then there have been studies that continue to confirm the fact that most of our genome is junk (see Hey Casey! Our Genome Is 93% Junk), but the Discoveroids can’t abandon their fantasy that the genome is perfect, from beginning to end.
Aside from the sloppiness of the genome, the Discoveroids have other problems. The “design” of humans, for example, is far from a skilled design — see Buffoon Award Winner — The Intelligent Designer. It doesn’t happen very often, but they sometimes have to admit that the designer’s work isn’t perfect — see Discovery Institute: The Designer Can Be Sloppy. Considering the designer’s chaotic work product, it’s amazing that the Discoveroids can recognize something as being his heavenly handiwork, yet they insist that they have that ability.
Casey Luskin — our favorite creationist — is determined to stay with his claim that our DNA is perfect, or perfect enough that it must be the result of design. His latest post at the Discoveroids’ creationist blog is ENCODE, Evolution, and the Percentage of the Genome That’s Functional. Casey says, with bold font added by us:
ENCODE researchers got together in Potomac, MD, from June 29-July 1 for the ENCODE 2015: Research Applications and Users Meeting. … Apparently some of those researchers are backing away from ENCODE’s initial claims that 80 percent of the human genome is functional, and now claim that it’s more like 50 percent functional.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Is Casey upsset? Amazingly, no. He claims that they’re backing down “to avoid incurring further wrath from evolution-defenders,” and he asks:
Here’s what I wonder: Do any of them [evolution-defenders] appreciate that even the 50 percent of our genome that they already believe is functional refutes unguided evolution …? So whether it’s 50 percent functionality or 80 percent functionality, that’s bad for unguided evolutionary models!
Huh? To begin with, far more than 50% of the genome appears to be junk. But even if it were only 50% (Casey desperately hopes it doesn’t get any worse), how does a genome that is half junk cause problems for evolution — or provide support for intelligent design? This is from the end:
My guess is that it will take specific studies of specific elements before some ENCODE proponents have the guts to stand up to critics and once again affirm a figure beyond 50 percent. That will require a lot of research and a lot of time. But as I said, even the 50 percent they do admit as being functional is itself FAR beyond what evolutionary biology predicted. For proponents of unguided evolutionary models, it seems, the game is already up.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Evolution made no prediction about junk in DNA. But when all that junk showed up, evolution could accommodate it. An organism merely has to be adequate for survival, not perfect. But it’s different for a divinely designed organism — that must be perfect.
Sorry, Casey. Even if the genome were “only’ 50% junk, your designer has a lot of explaining to do. And so do you.
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