Creationist Wisdom #1,069: Design Is Everywhere

Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the Bristol Herald Courier of Bristol, Virginia. It’s titled Despite Talley’s column, maybe we are more than just dust, and the newspaper has a comments feature.

Because the writer isn’t a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name. His first name is Tim. Excerpts from the letter will be enhanced with some bold font for emphasis and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]. Here we go!

You’ve heard the phrase “Kick them when they’re down”; well, Ben Talley does just that in his “Dust in the wind” Education Beat column last Sunday (Jan. 24). To folks who are mentally, emotionally and even physically exhausted from all that 2020 has thrown at them, he delivers the coup de grace (a final blow or shot given to kill a wounded person) [Thanks for the definition!] by declaring that humans are just dust — cosmic dirt in a cold, indifferent, purposeless universe.

Humans are just cosmic dirt? That’s horrible! This is the column that has Timmy so upset: All we are is dust in the wind. Timmy says:

As one famous scientist once put it: “The cosmos is all that ever is, or was, or ever will be.” [Timmy can’t remember Carl Sagan’s name!] Boy, that’s encouraging! Science claims that the Darwinian mechanism of mutation and natural selection is responsible for the origin of life. [No, that was chemistry, not evolution!] If this mechanism is an accurate description of reality, then by necessity, evolution must also be responsible for creation of the cell and the vast quantity of instructional information it contains.

That was bad, but now brace yourself for an ark-load of blather about “information.” Timmy tells us:

Can nature create information? Science assures us that it can. But there is a little problem with all of this that science does not willingly disclose to the public. The problem is that the staggering complexity of the cell itself defies any explanation for its existence through a chance-based process like Darwinism.

It appears that Timmy has totally swallowed the Discoveroids’ concept of “information,” about which see Phlogiston, Vitalism, and Information, and also Intelligent Design Is the Science of Information. He continues:

The complexity of life is far, far beyond the reach of chance. [BWAHAHAHAHAHA!] We know that chemicals left to themselves do not make a biological cell. The only other causal agent known to mankind is design.

Timmy says “we know” that you can’t get a biological cell from chemicals “left to themselves.” That claim isn’t based on a law of nature, and it’s actually quite likely that it will happen — given enough time and the proper environment — see Casey and the Miller-Urey Experiment, #2. What other creationist clunkers does Timmy have for us? Let’s read on:

Our common experience as intelligent beings tells us the only plausible source of things like design, information and instructions is intelligence.

Ooooooooooooh! That’s our common experience. Another excerpt:

Life looks designed. Maybe it is.

Hey — that’s a terrific argument! And now we come to the end:

We do not have to strain to see design in nature. It is all over the place. And whoever the Designer is, mankind is His greatest work. Maybe we are more than just dust.

That was an amazingly persuasive letter, don’t you agree, dear reader?

Copyright © 2021. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

17 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #1,069: Design Is Everywhere

  1. Everything is designed.
    In fact, even things that don’t exist, or can’t exist, are designed. A mile high building can be designed. A perpetual motion machine, a flying carpet, a utopia can be designed.
    That means that there is nothing that needs to be explained about being designed.

  2. “Timmy has totally swallowed the Discoveroids’ concept of “information,”
    Not only this, he also expertedly pulls off their (and general creacrap) clunker “chance-based process”. Nothing is less chance-based than natural selection. As for mutations – Timmy might look up the Wikipedia article on the Law of Large Numbers and try to apply it to mutations.

    “Our common experience as …..”
    My common experience as an intelligent being tells me that whenever something is designed we can figure out which means the designer used and which procedures he followed. “And God said” does not qualify.
    My common experience as an intelligent being also tells me that things like snowflakes and grains of sand look designed and contain lots of information. Still their “creation” is way within “the reach of chance”.
    As for instructions – Timmy should tell us what they are. Then we humans can build life as well.

    Really, Timmy wrote a fine overview of everything that’s wrong with IDiocy.

  3. BTW, wasn’t it Carl Sagan who said that we are “star dust”?

  4. chris schilling

    “Life looks designed. Maybe it is.”

    Stalin looked benevolent. Maybe he was.

    Ghandi looked thin. Maybe he was hungry.

    The young Paul McCartney looked doe-eyed. Maybe his parents were deer.

  5. Dave Luckett

    Tim is inveighing against merely a different kind of religious thought to his, not against actual agnosticism or atheism, heaven forbid. The columnist he denounces informs us that God is Love, and (echoing St Paul) Love never dies, although we die and are forgotten. There’s at least an acknowledgement of reality in that, which is more than you can say for Tim’s contribution. That’s what happens.

    Pretty soon the last people who can actually remember my grandfather will die, and with them, his actual memory. My sister and I were speaking together of him only last week. I wrote a book in which he appears as a character. It was published, but, like all my attempts to add a stone to the Parthenon, it was like throwing petals down the Grand Canyon and listening for the crash. It, too, is now forgotten, or soon will be.

    I can’t for the life of me see what exercises Tim about the idea that we are, or will become, dust. Unless it’s thanatophobia, again. I seem to be noticing that a lot, lately.

  6. I have missed your posts lately and need to get back to your posts.Your links get posted on OESE news sent to members and subscribers.
    Thanks for keeping at it!

  7. chris schilling

    “[M]ankind is His greatest work.”

    The heavens declare their indifference to Tim.

  8. Victor Hutchison, you’ve been away a few years. Welcome back.

  9. Mankind is his greatest work.
    And mankind is so flawed that we all deserve eternal damnation.

  10. Charley Horse X

    One of my favorite quotes…“Every atom in your body came from a star that exploded and the atoms in your left hand probably came from a different star than your right hand. It really is the most poetic thing I know about physics…you are all stardust.”― Lawrence M. Krauss

    I will argue that mankind was his greatest work. Womankind and dogs are closer to the top of that list.

  11. chris schilling

    Tim made so many outstanding points, it’s hard to pick a favourite.

    But the piece de resistance (the most important or remarkable feature), the creme de la creme (the best person or thing of a particular kind), the chef d’oeuvre (masterpiece) has to be: “maybe we are more than just dust.”

    Truly, a pensee (a thought or reflection put into literary form) for the ages.

  12. Genesis 3:19
    … dust thou art …

  13. @ChrisS: are you by accident familiar with the Dutch saying (in translation of course) “praising someone into the grave”?

  14. chris schilling

    @FrankB
    No — but it’s a good one!

  15. Christine Marie Janis

    My common sense tells me that the sun and the moon are the same size, and that the chair that I’m sitting on is made of entirely dense solid material.

  16. My common sense tells me that I am related to chimps and other apes.

  17. What I find interesting is a much simpler natural design problem than the origin of cells
    is ignored. Are crop circles the result of design or undirected naturalism? Sure there are scams (pranks with planks), but there are others that are not man made. Those who have observed this crop formations have witnessed an orb circling the field, then the crop circles appear. Assuming this is true, we have no understanding as to the capabilities of these orbs. These orbs might also be have the ability to form single celled organisms in addition to forming complex patterns in wheat fields. These crop circles are repeatable which is great for scientific study (they keep happening), and much easier to study, yet they go largely ignored by scientist. Could the debate between design and Darwinism be solved in a wheat field? Wouldn’t scientist look silly if they ignored, then later found out that orbs were responsible for the origins of life?