Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Wells’ Breathtaking Absurdity

Folks, if you’re a reasonably literate person scientifically and you’re new to the evolution/ID debate and you’re looking for a perfect example of the utter vacuousness of ID arguments, I urge you to read this column by Jonathan Wells in the Worldnutdaily. Even by ID standards, the irrationality of his arguments is absolutely stunning. I was going to do a line by line fisking of it, but PZ beat me to it and did a fine job. I would just add one thing. Wells finishes his essay with this line:

If I were a Darwinist, I would be afraid. Very afraid.

The obvious response: if I was a Moonie, bought and paid for by the totalitarian madman cult leader Rev. Sun Myung Moon and handpicked by him to “destroy Darwinism”, I would be ashamed. Very ashamed. I’d be even more ashamed if, as a follower of Moon, I had claimed that Darwinism is a “first and foremost a weapon against religion – especially traditional Christianity.” If anything is the enemy of traditional Christianity, it’s Rev. Moon’s insane pronouncements of being the new Messiah sent to finish the job that Jesus failed at. Why traditional Christians don’t call him on this more often is beyond me.


  1. #1 NJ
    September 27, 2006

    Ed, a serious question. What are they going to do when Moon dies and he doesn’t rise from the dead after three days? After all, he does claim to be the new, improved Jesus doesn’t he?

  2. #2 Keanus
    September 27, 2006

    PZ at Pharyngula, having read (and understood, unlike Wells) the Nature article that Wells attacks, shreds Wells’ arguments. Wells has made an ass of himself in writing his piece, although the typical readers of WorldNutdaily will never notice since they buy into anything that supports their preconceptions.

  3. #3 Left_Wing_Fox
    September 27, 2006

    NJ: Probably the exact same thing Hubbard’s supporters did in Scientology: claim he’s “ascended”, hide the body, and continue the cult.

  4. #4 pattypleb
    September 27, 2006

    Hi, Ed, frequent reader, first-time commentator here. I just read Well’s argument, if you can call it that (probably not, as none of his conclusions seemed to be related in any rational way to the information from which he allegedly drew them), and I was not surprised to discover, at the end, that he’d written a “Politically Incorrect” guide to Darwinism. I think you had a post about this a few days ago? “Politically” is apparently interchangeable with “factually” and “logically” in that appellation.

  5. #5 Greg
    September 27, 2006

    Wow! What a piece of freeze-dried poo that article is! 75% of Americans don’t believe in evolution? Oh, wait, nobody doubts that “evolution” happened, but 75% disbelieve “darwinism.” I’m sure THAT’S a good survey! So good that he doesn’t tell us where it comes from. Yep. That’s what we call the appeal to unverified public opinion fallacy.

  6. #6 KeithB
    September 27, 2006

    See here:

    For a really unfair (battle of wits with an unarmed man) takedown of the PIGID.

  7. #7 Jason I.
    September 27, 2006

    Sadly enough, I am afraid. But certainly not because of the resounding scientific progress that ID has made, or the astounding lack of evidence for the TOE and Darwin’s theories (FYI, that’s sarcasm). What really scares me is the complete apathy of most of the people I talk to when it comes to evolution, Darwin and ID. So many respond with “Come on, does it really matter?” or “I don’t care, it doesn’t bother me one way or the other”. There are small groups on either side fighting for what they perceive to be right, but it seems that the majority of people just don’t care. I’ve recently pointed out DeVos’s statements on ID to a number of people. The responses I’ve gotten range from “It’ll never happen, so I don’t care” to “ID doesn’t sound that bad, and they’ve got science to back it up”. But none of these people hold strong convictions one way or the other, because to them it’s a non-issue that has no impact outside of public school science classrooms. And it’s that attitude that I find truly frightening.

  8. #8 ZacharySmith
    September 27, 2006

    You know, there’s an analogy that I think illustrates the “thinking” of clowns like Wells in a nutshell.

    We don’t have all the pieces of the puzzle as to why and how the Titanic sank. Therefore, the Titanic never sank!

    Never mind the poor, rusted wreck on the ocean floor. All the “Titanicists” have is a theory – not facts!

  9. #9 SLC
    September 27, 2006

    The sad part of this is that Chris Mooney has debated Wells twice and has never nailed Wells on his association with Rev. Moon, despite my urging him to do so on his blog. Maybe Mr. Brayton should challence Wells to a debate; I don’t think he would have any hesitation in doing so.

  10. #10 mark
    September 27, 2006

    It also needs more frequent pointing out that True Father and Messiah Rev. Moon has the Washington Times as his organ (and UPI as his tool). I’ve heard local preachers speak against Mormons; I’ve yet to hear them refer to Messiah Rev. Moon as an agent of Satan. Maybe we need to see more Saturday night comedy shows satirizing Wells, as they have done Tom Cruise.

  11. #11 Prup aka Jim Benton
    September 28, 2006

    Where’s SOUTH PARK when you really need them?

    Actually, I think that most people don’t pay attention to Moon because they either think he’s dead, or that he’s lost his power. “He’s SO eighties, why bother to do a story on him?”

    Sadly, this isn’t so.

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