Friday, October 07, 2005

Kern: Intelligent Design Is Going to Win

Douglas Kern offers five reasons why he thinks that so-called Intelligent Design "theory" is going to prevail over Darwinism in the 21st Century.

1) ID will win because it's a religion-friendly, conservative-friendly, red-state kind of theory, and no one will lose money betting on the success of red-state theories in the next fifty to one hundred years.

2) ID will win because the pro-Darwin crowd is acting like a bunch of losers.

3) ID will win because it can be reconciled with any advance that takes place in biology, whereas Darwinism cannot yield even an inch of ground to ID.

4) ID will win because it can piggyback on the growth of information theory, which will attract the best minds in the world over the next fifty years.

5) ID will win because ID assumes that man will find design in life -- and, as the mind of man is hard-wired to detect design, man will likely find what he seeks.
Read the whole piece for Kern's reasoning. It seems to me that Kern is arguing is what ID opponents view as its fundamental flaw--it's too vague or broad and ill-defined to be a real scientific theory--is exactly what makes it (ahem) more "adaptable" than Darwinian theory. We'll see.

UPDATE: Robert McHenry offers a rebuttal:
The ID party pretend that a commitment to the scientific method is just another blind ideology. They pretend to be the victims of a scientific establishment that cannot brook contradiction. This merely shows either that they do not understand science, which lives by informed criticism, or that knowledge is not, in fact, what they are about.

After several readings I honestly could not decide whether the tone of Mr. Kern's article is the triumphalism of a partisan who believes that his side is justly winning or the enthusiasm of the late convert in the service of a new master. Perhaps it was neither of these. I do know that he confuses the product, a theory, with the method, science; that he confuses pattern with design; that he doesn't understand randomness; that he idly invokes a "metaphysics of information"; that he believes, on no evidence, in "memes"; and that he thinks that allowing appeals to the supernatural will have no ill effects on the practice of science and that adulterating their science classes will not cripple the education of our youth.

But let me clear about one thing. I am aware of no evidence that he is a poopy-head.
OOOOO.K. Max Boot also has problems with Kern's analysis and offers a point-by-point rebuttal.

Then there is Kurt Anderesen, who blames relativism.
For several decades the philosophical ground has been softened up by the relativism and political correctness of the secular left, which succeeded in undermining the very idea of objective reality and of calling a spade a spade—so now, in the resulting marsh, fantasies like intelligent design (or Scientology or feng shui or 9/11 as a CIA plot) take root and spread like weeds. Liberals pioneered squishy-minded indulgence of their key constituencies’ unfortunate new ideas, like reparations and criminalized hate speech; now it’s the right’s turn.
Indeed.

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