There must have been at least a dozen posts during the past couple of months about Michael Behe at the Discovery Institute’s creationist blog. It appears that they’re trying to build him up to being the Grand Old Man of creation science. That’s a difficult task, even if they write a thousand posts about him. We’ve been ignoring their effort because none of it is amusing — just pathetic.
Behe, a Discovery Institute Senior Fellow, is a professor of biochemistry at Lehigh University. He has tenure, so he’s never been Expelled. His colleagues at Lehigh are so impressed by his brilliance that they publicly disassociated themselves from him by issuing this statement: Department Position on Evolution and “Intelligent Design”. Also, as most of you know, he was the Discoveroids’ star witness in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District. We wrote about his catastrophic appearance there in Michael Behe’s Testimony.
Although we’ve been ignoring the Discoveroids’ attempt to canonize Behe, we can’t overlook their latest effort: Best of Behe: Design for Living, written by Behe himself. It’s a repeat of something he wrote long ago that appeared in the New York Times back in 07 February 2005 — before the Kitzmiller trial. Those were the glory days of the Discovery Institute. Their movement was new, and it had not yet experienced what became an unbroken record of courtroom losses and academic setbacks. They imagined that with their wedge strategy, they were on the threshold of revolutionizing science with their nonsensical version of Oogity Boogity.
Behe’s article begins with an introductory editor’s note, which says:
In celebration of the 20th anniversary of biochemist Michael Behe’s pathbreaking book Darwin’s Black Box [link omitted] and the release of the new documentary Revolutionary: Michael Behe and the Mystery of Molecular Machines [link omitted], we are highlighting some of Behe’s “greatest hits.”
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Here are some excerpts from Behe’s long-ago appearance in the Times, with bold font added by us for emphasis:
As one of the scientists who have proposed design as an explanation for biological systems, I have found widespread confusion about what intelligent design is and what it is not. First, what it isn’t: the theory of intelligent design is not a religiously based idea, even though devout people opposed to the teaching of evolution cite it in their arguments.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Then he says:
Rather, the contemporary argument for intelligent design is based on physical evidence and a straightforward application of logic. The argument for it consists of four linked claims. The first claim is uncontroversial: we can often recognize the effects of design in nature. For example, unintelligent physical forces like plate tectonics and erosion seem quite sufficient to account for the origin of the Rocky Mountains. Yet they are not enough to explain Mount Rushmore.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! See Mt. Rushmore Is Designed, Therefore …. After that he tells us:
Which leads to the second claim of the intelligent design argument: the physical marks of design are visible in aspects of biology. This is uncontroversial, too. The 18th-century clergyman William Paley likened living things to a watch, arguing that the workings of both point to intelligent design. Modern Darwinists disagree with Paley that the perceived design is real, but they do agree that life overwhelms us with the appearance of design.
The resemblance of parts of life to engineered mechanisms like a watch is enormously stronger than what Reverend Paley imagined. In the past 50 years modern science has shown that the cell, the very foundation of life, is run by machines made of molecules. There are little molecular trucks in the cell to ferry supplies, little outboard motors to push a cell through liquid.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Paley ‘s watchmaker analogy. Behe continues:
The next claim in the argument for design is that we have no good explanation for the foundation of life that doesn’t involve intelligence.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! It’s the God of the gaps. Let’s read on:
The fourth claim in the design argument is also controversial: in the absence of any convincing non-design explanation, we are justified in thinking that real intelligent design was involved in life. … The strong appearance of design allows a disarmingly simple argument: if it looks, walks and quacks like a duck, then, absent compelling evidence to the contrary, we have warrant to conclude it’s a duck. Design should not be overlooked simply because it’s so obvious.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! The Discoveroids’ “theory” is automatically true by default, and although they have zero evidence for their designer’s existence, the rest of the world has the burden of proving that they’re wrong.
In Behe’s final paragraph, he appeals to public opinion:
[W]hatever special restrictions scientists adopt for themselves don’t bind the public, which polls show, overwhelmingly, and sensibly, thinks that life was designed. And so do many scientists [Hee hee!] who see roles for both the messiness of evolution and the elegance of design.
Yeah. Scientists may limit themselves by following the Scientific method, which demands evidence, testing, and falsifiability, but the Discoveroids are far above that sort of thing.
So there you have it — a flashback from Behe. And in case you haven’t noticed, his “science” argument hasn’t improved since then.
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