Joined: Oct. 2005
One week’s inactivity is really too early for a full-blown analysis of who’s not standing next to whom on the Kremlin, but the game is tempting so here goes: could O'Leary have changed a pattern of behavior in her latest posts? Many of her essays lately appear to have been double-posted on her website ( http://post-darwinist.blogspot.com/ ) and on UD (e.g., on the 20th she posted at both her website and at UD on both "many universes" and on past uses of the term “darwinist”). On the 23rd, she posted three essays on her website that would be completely in character for her on UD, but which haven’t appeared there yet.
Her new posts on her own site continue to contain a large component of dreck. Explaining why she deletes comments: “To Mr. Righteous but Wrong: I don't publish comments that contain known or probable factual errors.” (Apparently, she reserves that privilege for her own essays.) She also has a comment about an article by Dan Flynn, in which he argues that darwinists tolerate neither dissent nor examination of their assumptions while Idists have no positive evidence backing up their claims. Flynn concludes, “Supporters of Intelligent Design demote faith to science. Darwinists elevate science to faith. Both camps would be best served by staying within their own realm.” Denyse comments “Such insufferable smugness about the very nature of the universe and its knowability! - and, worse luck, all in defense of a merely silly idea like neo-Darwinism” (Insufferable smugness about knowability?? Silly idea like neo-Darwinism?? Projection! Projection!
She presents an uninformed statement from Tony Snow, “Here's how to make both sides happy: Let science teachers tell kids that science is a matter of inspired guesswork, not of invincible decree. ....... Also, let students know that a sizeable number of scientists believe in a Designer, since science involves a quest to discover and decode universal design.” and she adds, “But, like so many media types, he does not appear able to grapple with the possibility that Darwinism may actually be an incorrect theory of origins.” Science is in fact a lot more than “inspired guesswork” (has the man never heard of testing hypotheses?). That aside, I know that I was taught (and now I teach my students) that we should keep questioning everything, and that science deals in refutations, so all scientific conclusions are the best approximations so far available and should be considered tentative and subject to revision. I don’t think I’m unusual in that. Whenever the topic comes up, I try to emphasize that evolution is not a complete, correct, final answer. However, I have only seen valid criticisms of evoloution arise from within the academic mainstream: the contributions from the ID camp and the Jonathan Wells & Denyse O’Leary’s of the world are “shrill screed” of misunderstandings (Denyse’s specialty), misrepresentations (J. Wells’ specialty), and a mishmash of nonsense, and so the only attention they earn is scornful.
On Denyse’s blog at http://post-darwinist.blogspot.com/2006....or.html Tom Gilson ought to win some kind of award for saying, “I keep waiting for someone actually to engage the ID arguments.”