Intelligent Design Exposed

January 1, 2008

Dembski: “Pathetic” Comment

Filed under: In their own words,Intelligent Design,Scientific Vacuity — idexposed @ 7:04 pm

William Dembski wrote:

As for your example, I’m not going to take the bait. You’re asking me to play a game: ”Provide as much detail in terms of possible causal mechanisms for your ID position as I do for my Darwinian position.” ID is not a mechanistic theory, and it’s not ID’s task to match your pathetic level of detail in telling mechanistic stories. If ID is correct and an intelligence is responsible and indispensable for certain structures, then it makes no sense to try to ape your method of connecting the dots. True, there may be dots to be connected. But there may also be fundamental discontinuities, and with IC systems that is what ID is discovering.

Source: William Dembski Organisms using GAs vs. Organisms being built by GAs thread at ISCID 18. September 2002



  1. […] So perhaps Crowther can enlighten us: How does ID explain the bacterial flagella? Oh, I forgot, ID is not in the business of answering such pathetic requests… […]

    Pingback by Definitions: Design and Complexity « Intelligent Design Exposed — May 4, 2008 @ 7:17 pm | Reply

  2. That May 4, 2008 comment is strangely truncated, but I’ll reply anyway. The genetic engineering needed to produce a structure like the bacterial flagellum seems to be within reach of human technology, given a few hundred years or less. So it is easy to hypothesize that the first one was genetically engineered in a laboratory ca. 4 billion years ago, and the resulting strain of bacteria sent by a species of an intelligence like our own, and sent to earth via a space probe.

    This is the theory of directed panspermia, and Behe mentions it in Darwin’s Black Box and mentioned it at the Dover trial, so I’m surprised no one has answered that first comment in over three years.

    Directed panspermia is the brainchild of Nobel Laureate Francis Crick, and the origins-of-life researcher Leslie Orgel. In _Life Itself_, Crick says something not too far from what I wrote in the first paragraph.

    The senders could well have developed wholly new strains of
    microorganisms, specially designed to cope with prebiotic
    conditions, though whether it would have been better to try to
    combine all the desirable properties within one single type
    of organism or to send many different organisms is not
    completely clear.

    In the Usenet newsgroup, I have been adding details to the theory of directed panspermia. I usually use the spelling “panspermy” to make it a bit less easy to confuse with the panspermia theories of Arrhenius and Hoyle.

    Of course, this is not a form of creationism. Neither Crick nor I hypothesize that the panspermists were the result of a creation event. Life could well have arisen naturally on their world. I happen to believe that this combination of events is more likely than earth life being the result of home-grown abiogenesis. I have explained some of the reasons for my beliefs in, and it is an ongoing undertaking.

    Comment by Peter Nyikos — June 2, 2011 @ 3:51 am | Reply

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