Monday, March 26, 2007

Evidence FOR design? Finally???

Under the heading "Germ Free Animal Lifespan Evidence of Design" (26th Mar, 2007), uncommondescent's DaveScot thinks he might have found some good evidence for intelligent design. Animals that live under germ-free conditions (i.e. they are infected by no viruses, bacteria or any [other] parasites) can live twice as long as "normal" animals. Writes he:
This got me thinking about evolution vs. design. The animals raised germ-free could not have evolved in the natural world without exposure to bacteria but they could have been designed for GF life. The fact that they live twice as long in a GF environment when eating a diet that is nutritionally complete except for being sterile seems to be favorable evidence that animals were created in and for a germ-free world.

What DaveScot fails to realise is that this would not be evidence for design but simply evidence that animals can live twice as long in a germ free environment. DaveScot has used the typical ID creationist tactic of taking an observation, make a "hypothesis" and then claim that his hypothesis supports the observation. Well, duh. I would have to, wouldn't it. But imagine the hypothetical scenario where the germ free animals only lived half as long; DaveScot could still "hypothesize" that the animals did this because they were designed to do so. And given that ID gives you no clue as to which of these two "hypotheses" to choose from, we are left with choosing the one that the observations fit (see my article regardig ID predictions for more info). I.e., ID supports whatever is observed; anything can be evidence for ID. And if there is no evidence against ID, you can hardly claim that there is any meaningful evidence for it.

So, I guess we got no evidence for ID in the end. All we got evidence of was an ID creationist's failure to understand what can be counted as evidence. Surprise, surprise.


At 6:24 PM, Blogger Edward Baker said...

I'm left wondering what sort of designer would design it to live in a germ free world, when the world's full of germs.

Looks like another triumph for real science.

My Blog: In Defence of Reason

At 3:51 PM, Blogger Hawks said...

Well, the designer could obviously have designed the germs after the animals (like after the fall, hint, hint).


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