Monday, October 02, 2006


Tricks of the Trade

I've recently dealt with the Discovery Institute's Casey Luskin for the Quote Mine Project about his claim that Judge Jones got it wrong as to whether ID has published any peer-reviewed articles. Besides the fact that the Judge did not rule as Luskin said he did and ignoring the highly suspect nature of the "peer-review," I made the point (hardly original with me) that:
Given that Luskin can only point to five articles after nearly two decades of ID "research," far less than the output of peer-reviewed papers supporting evolution in one week, the whole argument boils down, at most, to a quibble as to when "vanishingly small" counts the same as "none."
That point was neatly brought home by a comment by Andy Groves over at Pharyngula, in a piece about the Nobel Prize Andrew Fire and Craig Mello received for the discovery of RNAi:
I've said it before, and I'll say it again for the benefit of ID supporters out there - this is what a real scientific revolution looks like. Fire and Mello published their paper in 1998 (two years after "Darwin's Black Box" came out, for those who are interested). Since then, the number of primary research papers on RNAi, siRNAs and miRNAs stands at 12399, using the search terms

(RNAi OR siRNA OR miRNA) NOT review

12400 papers in eight years. That's 1550 a year, or just over four papers a day.
Hmmm . . . an average of four papers a day versus only five papers almost 20 years after ID was first being touted as science. And isn't it strange how this "young science" of RNAi is generating so much work, while ID is still only offering excuses?
As Andy said:
Would Bill Dembski, the Isaac Newton of information theory, care to comment?

I think Dembski would just have to remind us all of the magician's oath.

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