Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Forrest on Dembski and Kitzmiller

Barbara Forrest has a new article at CSICOP about the Dover trial and Dembski’s “vise strategy”. This is a fun read as we watch Dembski’s predictions collapse upon him:

Grousing that “only the evolution critics are being interrogated,” Dembski was “waiting for the day when the hearings are not voluntary but involve subpoenas in which evolutionists are deposed at length.” When “that happy day” came, Dembski predicted, the Darwinists “won’t come off looking well.” On May 11, Dembski portrayed “evolutionists” as too chicken to participate: “[E]volutionists escaped critical scrutiny by not having to undergo cross-examination . . . by boycotting the hearings.” He proposed a “vise strategy” for “interrogating the Darwinists to, as it were, squeeze the truth out of them,” childishly illustrated with a photograph of a Darwin doll with its head compressed in a bench vise. On May 16, he outlined his strategy: “interrogating Darwinists” about “five terms: science, nature, creation, design, and evolution.” Under subpoena, they would be compelled to answer, hence the “vise” metaphor.

Dembski already knew that such a day of legal reckoning was approaching. Exactly one month later, on June 6, he sat across from me when I was deposed as an expert witness for the plaintiffs in the first ID legal case, Kitzmiller et al. v. Dover Area School District. He attended my deposition as the adviser to the lead defense attorney, Richard Thompson of the Thomas More Law Center, and was scheduled to be deposed himself on June 13 as a defense witness. Besides being on opposite sides, there was another big difference between us: I showed up for my deposition. Dembski “escaped critical scrutiny by not having to undergo cross-examination” when he withdrew from the case on June 10.

Ah, blessed irony. The rest of the article tells the tale of the IDers frantic attempts to prevent Forrest from testifying at the Dover trial, and gives some background information on the whole Dover situation.

P.S. And thanks to Barbara for tracking down an amicus brief filed by Phillip Johnson in the Freiler case for me last week. Not only did she dig through her voluminous files to find it for me, she shed her own blood in the process. Her email saying she’d found it and was mailing it out explained that the white out on the page was to cover up the blood that dripped when she cut herself while fighting with the stapler. Now that’s dedication.


  1. #1 Shygetz
    August 1, 2006

    The first casualty in the War on IDiots.

    Barbara, your sacrifice will not be forgotten…

  2. #2 Ed Brayton
    August 1, 2006

    I don’t like the term IDiots, for the obvious reason that most ID advocates, for all their other flaws, are certainly not stupid. But it should be noted that Barbara’s loss of blood is not the first casualty of the battle against ID. My good friend Skip Evans nobly sacrificed his sanity and now lives in a remote cabin in the wilds of Montana, where he is often seen wandering the woods naked and talking to small woodland creatures in an odd combination of yiddish and pig latin. A mind is a terrible thing to waste…

  3. #3 wamba
    August 1, 2006

    Apparently Dembski is not the only DI minion assigned to dissuade Forrest from testifying. In the Discovery Institute’s amicus curiae, p. 33, Theodore W. Geier signed his affliation as Ph.D. Forrest Hydrology.

  4. #4 Skip Evans
    August 1, 2006


    The time in the cabin and wandering the mountains came after listening to Kent Hovind for 9 hour within a 27 hour period. I’m pretty sure I hold the record with that one.

    I have since relocated to the quaint little mining town of Butte, where I run a small Internet software company, Big Sky Penguin. I still make it out to the cabin on weekends, and occassionally hit the road to check out crazy creationist events. See the latest at:

    Kent was scheduled to appear not too far from here in just a few months, and I was planning another roadtrip. But as we all know, Hovind may not be able to make it.

    I am, oddly enough, mildly disappointed.

    I have, however, marked my calendar for the opening of The Hamster’s museum in Kentucky, and may try and make any grand opening event they have.


  5. #5 JimC
    August 1, 2006

    I don’t like the term IDiots, for the obvious reason that most ID advocates, for all their other flaws, are certainly not stupid.

    Well in this area they certainly are, or at the very least dishonest.

    Although when one continues to make such vacous arguments minus any evidence the ‘IDiot’ label often seems to fit ok.

  6. #6 Ed Brayton
    August 1, 2006


    There are many things we can say about men like Dembski, Behe, Meyer, Wells and the like; that they are stupid is not one of them. I don’t doubt that many of their followers are stupid, but that’s true of pretty much anyone’s followers.

  7. #7 RBH
    August 1, 2006

    Barbara is the operational definition of “steel magnolia”.

  8. #8 bourgeois_rage
    August 1, 2006

    Skip, I live in Cincinnati, when is the Museum in N. KY supposed to open? I was not aware that a date had been set.

  9. #9 Ginger Yellow
    August 1, 2006

    Luskin seems pretty damn stupid to me. I know he’s only a flack, but then ID is just a fancy PR job anyway.

  10. #10 wamba
    August 1, 2006

    Skip, I live in Cincinnati, when is the Museum in N. KY supposed to open?

    recent articles say May 2007.

  11. #11 Bob Munck
    August 1, 2006

    Was it a Swingline stapler? Red?

    They’re all secret creationists, you know.

  12. #12 skip
    August 1, 2006

    The museum is scheduled to open in 2007 some time. Check answersingenesis.org for more info.

  13. #13 Lettuce
    August 1, 2006

    Re: IDiots…

    I’ve always pronounced that Eye-DEE-its.

    Tends to make the point that it’s the ID part I’m objecting to, and think is “idiotic,” not the general intelligence of the person in question.

    Some of them don’t see the distinction; and in that case I don’t really care.

New comments have been disabled.