Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Phillip Johnson is Getting All "Sciency" Again.

Good old Phil, founder of the Intellectually Bankrupt Intelligent Design movement, is at it again. Back in 1989, he came up with the bright idea of dressing "creation science" up with scientific-sounding jargon and relabeling it as ID to try to disguise it's religious roots. This worked quite well for him among creationists (or some of them, anyway), and resulted in the confused brouhaha we have going on today.

ID has consistently, however, run into one specific roadblock: the concept of methodological naturalism. Since ID requires a supernatural component at some level/point, it is difficult to say that it is truly a scientific pursuit and retain any credibility (not that Johnson has a surfeit in that department).

So folks like William Dembsky, Sal Cordova, and the other Disco Institute buffoons tried their hand at arguing that methodological naturalism is flawed or unnecessary. Still, no deal.

So, Johnson has gone back to his roots and is inventing new terminology to dress his tattered old ideas up in: this time, he takes on naturalism using "Theistic Realism", which is really just "goddidit" gussied up a bit. Allen McNeill over at The Evolution List has an excellent analysis of this argument, and why it fails. It's worth reading.

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