Pharyngula

Behe gets another thumbs-down

Has anyone seen a positive review of Behe’s book from a science source? Discover Magazine joins the ranks of those that find it awful:

As unpersuasive as Behe’s ideas are scientifically, they are even less convincing philosophically. Behe professes agnosticism on whether the designer was a dope, a demon, or a deity, although he seems peculiarly inclined toward the second possibility. His is a strangely impoverished worldview, one that leaves little space for awe, much less for future scientific advance; he never even raises the obvious question of who the designer is and how it works. Contrast this with Darwin’s starry-eyed summation in Origin of Species: “There is grandeur in this view of life . . . from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.”

That’s pretty much my opinion, too. It’s a bizarre exercise in bogus math and bad biology to arrive at a sterile conclusion, with no reasonable future scientific efforts proposed.

Comments

  1. #1 Sampo Rassi
    July 30, 2007

    Darwin’s closing summation of “The Origin” is, to me, one of the great passages written on the philosophy of non-theistic worldview. I became familiar with it after reading Science of the Discworld III: Darwin’s Watch, which is a really rather funny look at the life of the man and his discovery, as seen from the eyes from a bunch of wizards floating through space on a flat, turtle-borne world.

    BTW, has anyone else seen this: Stephen Hawking recanting evolution? A rather silly bit of hoaxing, which fundamentally misses the point. We don’t believe in evolution because Hawking or Dawkins of Hitchens or Myers tells us, (and not just because we don’t “believe” in it per se). The rational viewpoint is simply not authoritarian.

    Even if Darwin had recanted on his deathbed, nothing would be different today.

  2. #2 Blake Stacey, OM
    July 30, 2007

    Added to the list, although it’s certainly one of the less technical entries present.

  3. #3 mojoandy
    July 30, 2007

    Has there yet been a thread on Behe’s Amazon response to the review by Richard Dawkins in the NYT?

    (Sorry, I’ve been on vacation in France and – quelle horreur – have been behind on Pharyngula and the blog search didn’t turn up anything.)

    It’s comical how the majority of his response doesn’t seem to me (particularly the laughable pot/kettle business) to actually address the points made by Dawkins. Any actual biologists (as opposed to anti-Behe fanboys like myself) have comments on the meat of Behe’s rebuttal?

  4. #4 Blake Stacey, OM
    July 30, 2007

    mojoandy (#30):

    It’s comical how the majority of his response doesn’t seem to me (particularly the laughable pot/kettle business) to actually address the points made by Dawkins. Any actual biologists (as opposed to anti-Behe fanboys like myself) have comments on the meat of Behe’s rebuttal?

    Jerry Coyne does a bit of that, although his piece is mostly a rebuttal of Behe’s response to Coyne’s original review.

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