A Challenge For Defenders of ID
A defender of intelligent design writes:
I would ask: how many books by ID proponents have you read?He then goes on to demand:
Darwin's Black Box?
The Edge of Evolution?
Signature in the Cell?
If all you've read are the fumbling critiques by folks like Dawkins, Matzke, talkorigins etc. then perhaps you shouldn't be so dismissive.
putting aside the historical origins of the ID movement, do you agree that one can conceptually distinguish design inferences from the supernatural? And if not, then why not?
Now this commenter may be inclined to believe whatever pseudo-scientific gobbledy-gook he reads by a fellow theist that is supportive of his religious beliefs. He seems to think that if only atheists would read and understand these books, they would be convinced of their truth, just as he is. But atheists dismiss them without giving them a fair hearing. And the implication is that without actually reading these books, atheists have no grounds on which to be critical of them.
At the same time, it is clear that he is just as dismissive of critical reviews of these books as he accuses atheists being - reviews by people who actually know what they're talking about. Reviews exist for a reason. They can help us to get a good overview of the material, to understand positive and negative aspects of the material, and to decide whether it is worth investing our time and money.
So here's my challenge to him and any other defenders of this stuff: before you dismiss these reviews as being "fumbling", you really should read and understand them. So go ahead. And then you can tell us exactly what each of them gets wrong about these books. I'll be waiting.
And as to the second question he asks, it was answered before he asked it, in my previous post.
Behe - Darwin's Black Box
In this review, Robert Dorit discusses fundamental fallacies in Behe's claims about irreducible complexity, and reveals how he is out of touch with recent research in biochemical science.
Here Peter Atkins discusses how Behe misrepresents scientific information, scientific method, and his own creationist position.
And David Ussery gives a fairly extensive review covering shortcomings in Behe's presentation of scientific and philosophical concepts.
Behe - The Edge of Evolution
Mark Chu-Carroll deconstructs the mathematical argument that is the central thesis of Behe's book. This review's style is not sympathetic to Behe, but he makes a strong case based on his much more solid understanding of Behe's mathematical assumptions and implications.
This review by Richard Dawkins also attacks Behe's math with simple, familiar examples that that directly contradict Behe's claims, and clearly illustrate why he is wrong.
Meyer - Signature in the Cell
Darrel Falk is a fellow Christian who believes in intelligent design, and he's also a scientist who questions Meyer's knowledge of the relevant scientific fields, here.
Francisco Ayala, in this review, provides reasons for religious people to doubt whether intelligent design is really intelligent.
Meyer - Darwin's Doubt
Matzke (a real scientist, unlike Meyer) does a masterful job of destroying Meyer's credibility in Darwin's doubt here. This review is not a fumbling critique, but it clearly reveals that Meyer's book is a fumbling attempt at fooling the scientifically uneducated.
And here, Smilodon's Retreat has done a series of posts showing how Meyer has failed to do the pertinent research, gotten scientific facts wrong, quote-mined and misrepresented the words of scientists.
Dentin - Nature's Destiny
Papalinton (to whom the comment was directed) has provided this review by Mark Vuletic, giving his philosophical perspective.