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Dr. Michael Behe’s New Blog on Uncommon Descent

With the new technical enhancements behind the scenes on Uncommon Descent, we are now able to add individual blogs.  That said, we are happy to announce that the first individual blog we have added is that of Dr. Michael Behe.  All of his previous posts from his Amazon blog have been imported to his UD blog.   Dr. Behe plans to post on his new blog in the future.

If you haven’t read his previous posts, you can now do so more conveniently.  We hope you enjoy it, and find it useful.  I have added a permanent link to his blog under “Intelligent Design Links.”

Address:  http://behe.uncommondescent.com

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43 Responses to Dr. Michael Behe’s New Blog on Uncommon Descent

  1. That’s great! Welcome Dr Behe! Will your blog here continue to be a comment free zone?

  2. Most welcome! Looking forward to this.

  3. Fantastic news. I read Dr. Behe’s blog, top to bottom, in a span of a few days not too long ago.

    While his detractors resorted to smear tactics and acted like irrational thugs, Behe remained cool, calm and collected and very efficiently ripped them to shreds. He came across as an intellectual of the highest caliber, several levels above the average raving lunatic Darwinist. I’m sure that’s why he’s so hated amongst them.

  4. Great to see Prof. Behe here and contributing. And I hope he continues to keep those comments switched off. It’ll be nice to go to a blog to read the blogger, for a change, rather than these 100-500+ comment intramural skirmishes.

  5. 5

    Null, who’s forcing you to read the comments?

  6. Fantastic!

    Congratulations UD.

  7. This is great news for UD. I have always felt — from a very microbiology-challenged perspective — that of all the ID arguments put forward, Dr. Behe’s have the greatest potential for some form of viability. Although I’m unequipped to take part in them, I’m sure his threads will make for interesting reading.

  8. Michael Behe and I have something in common: It was Michael Denton’s book, Evolution: A Theory in Crisis, that first alerted both of us that Darwinian orthodoxy was in big trouble with the evidence.

  9. Doomsday, who cares that I’m not forced? I think Behe (and many others) has interesting ideas, and feel comments end up as a typically useless distraction.

    If you disagree, that’s fine. You can just go ahead and ignore my comments. ;)

  10. Nakashima,

    Will universities continue to be a non-ID, non-critical of Darwinian zone?

    Frankly, you’re nothing but double-standard hypocrite.

    Or, are you now defending Dr. Behe’s rights to teach ID in university level and critical commentary about unguided evolutions in schools across America?

    We’ve had 50yrs of hypocrisy from your side. The day you become critical of your own sides fascist like controls you’ll gain more respect, but you are losing mine more every day with your hypocrisy.

    I know Mr. Nakashima, why don’t you lead the Dawkin’s plan to force parents to teach atheism. You can make little snide comments to parents, seems to befit you at this time.

  11. Congrats to UD! Looking foward to blogging by Dr. Behe.

    Lets see, that makes 10,000 Darwinian robots to around 10-20 Intelligent agents for ID.

    Yep – thats a fair, let the games begin in earnest. Gnashing of teeth by Darbots henceforth gnash!

  12. Mr DATCG,

    I share the view of others that Dr Behe has worked harder to make ID intellectually respectable than many others. As such, i don’t see why he needs to have a no comment policy. He can hold his own or ignore comments as he chooses. Allowing comments would increase his blog traffic, for sure.

  13. Nakashima,

    Do you or don’t you support ID and critical classes of unguided evolution at university level?

  14. Nakashima,

    Allowing open classes with scientist and professors critical of Darwinian processes would “increase” interest by students and provide “teachable moments” for all, including Darwinist, IDist, etc.

    This is what a “liberal” education use to represent in America. Today, fascist-like orgs rule the roost and only allow hard core unguided evolutionist teach ID classes.

    This is hypocrisy and double standards. Yet you will not admit it.

    And yet, universities allow atheist to teach Judeo-Christian history courses for the last 40yrs.

    Your side has turned into nothing but an ugly dicatorship. If you truly believed in what you said about Dr. Behe, then you would campaign for ID’s rights at the university level.

    But you don’t do you?

  15. Blog traffic only matters so much. If UD wants to up that, there’s plenty of pictures of attractive women and adorably subtitled cats that could be provided. I’m pretty sure “I can has cheeseburger!” will win hands down over discussions of microbiology 9 out of 10 times.

    Now, I’m all in favor of Behe engaging criticism. Of course, he does that on his blog as is – oddly, he’s been posting his responses to published criticisms of his work that (if memory serves) said magazines refused to publish. Maybe he can have some back and forth exchange with someone – but his blog doesn’t need comments for that to take place.

    If people are really interested in offering Behe criticisms of his work, why not do some of that peer-reviewed publishing that ID proponents are always told to do? Or email him directly (he’s a university professor, after all, they tend to be approachable)? And of course, there’s more than a few blog options – personal and community.

    Either way, again, I hope he sticks with the closed comments policy. It keeps the focus where it should be – hell, UD could go with more of that in general. (And mind you, I’d be excluded along with everyone else, so..!)

  16. Well Mr. Nakashima?

    What will it be? Continued hypocrisy, double-standards?

    Or, are you and all the others like PZ Meyers, Pandas Thumb, Dawkins, et al., willing to commit to fair and open debate by qualified professors to open up the classroms?

    Or do you insist on playing the cheap heckler straining at gnats on a blog?

  17. Nullsalus,

    There is a place for debate, open forums, blogs and closed.

    Right now all debate is silenced at universities by the Darwinites.

    Lets see if Mr Nakashima starts writing Panda, Dawkins, Meyers, etc., asking for open classroom debates, teaching, opponents to Darwinism and proponents of ID.

    Afterall, if he wants traffic to increase at universities, certainly he’d be in favor of ID professors teaching at higher level classes, pointing out the weakness and failures of Darwin and Modern Synthesis.

    I’ll have to wait until the morning to see if little green men came down to give us the answer, or at least to Richard Dawkins.

  18. DATCG,

    Agreed on both counts. Just voicing my opinion here.

    And yes, I’m not all that fired up about the way speech is handled on college campuses in general. I wasn’t too hot about it even before ID. I think some past treatment of ID proponents (Guillermo Gonzalez in particular) has been deplorable. But again, university hypocrisy about this sort of thing is nothing new. It’s more than an “ID problem”, it’s a broad culture problem.

  19. Coincidentally I read Dr. Behe’s blog on amazon last week. His arguments against probability of two favourable mutations in two different genes sound quite convincing – regarding that mutations which could deteriorate the information at other places of the same genes are probable as well.
    This is a fact that darwinists prefer to forget.

    It was also professor Ruppert Riedl who counted “probabilities” of the parallel mutation at several genes at the same time that led him to his concept of so to say directed evolution (but I am still not sure if he remained darwinist or not) . Gould quoted Riedl in his “breathrouking” “spandrel” article.

    These are problems that darwinists are as usually lost to plausibly address.

    http://cadra.wordpress.com/

  20. TCS,

    With the new technical enhancements behind the scenes on Uncommon Descent, we are now able to add individual blogs. That said, we are happy to announce that the first individual blog we have added is that of Dr. Michael Behe.

    Awesome! I just noticed that right above the link to Dr Behe’s blog, there is another link to some of Dr John A. Davison’s papers. I wonder if he could be cajoled into blogging here as well?

  21. 21

    Shawnboy

    You are right about Behe being “cool, calm and collected”. I told him once I thought one reason he was so effective is he treats all critics with respect, no matter how undeserving. After his talk at Texas A&M 3-4 years ago, he went out for a beer with some of his critics. I wish I could be as cool…when someone views the video “Journey through the Cell” and then says “I suppose the evidence for design is in part II?”…I’m sorry, the temptation is just too great for me… :-)

  22. Mr DATCG,

    You might be aware that there is an attempt to teach a college course based on SETI. Given the close connection many people draw between SETI and ID, let’s see how well that goes.

    I think ID has a place in many college courses. Certainly courses in the history of science, the sociology of science, philosophy, and 20th Century American political science. If you had a professor and a likeminded set of students, you could probably et a graduate seminar run.

    I did half my MS degree in computer science as a series of ‘special projects’. I just came across a student from Indiana, Dov Rhodes, whose thesis for a BS in Physics was based on criticising Nilsson and Pelger, and quoted liberally from Berlinski’s essay.

    I think for a full undergrad course on ID, you need a college level textbook and a lot more published research.

    BTW, is the Templeton Foundation part of the Darwinian Borg collective also? My understanding was that they are in the business of supporting the alignment of science and religion. Why isn’t ID a big part of what they do? They could help break the closed cycle of grants, publication, and teaching positions that you are complaining about.

  23. VMartin (20),

    “Coincidentally I read Dr. Behe’s blog on amazon last week. His arguments against probability of two favourable mutations in two different genes sound quite convincing – regarding that mutations which could deteriorate the information at other places of the same genes are probable as well.
    This is a fact that darwinists prefer to forget.”

    No they don’t – the point is that harmful mutations (which I assume is what you mean when you say “mutations which could deteriorate the information at other places of the same genes”) will adversely affect the organism so that it has a selective disadvantage, either because it doesn’t survive or is at a reproductive disadvantage compared with those organisms that do not have the harmful mutation.

    Of course harmful mutations occur. That doesn’t mean that any advantageous mutation will also be accompanied by a harmful one, as you seem to imply. That is a strawman.

  24. What is the moderation policy for comments on these individual blog? I ask because Dr Behe’s Amazon blog does not allow comments at all.

  25. Something for Behe to think about as he doubles down on his blog posts:
    http://i962.photobucket.com/al.....arroll.jpg

  26. Well, that’s a very interesting chart, Khan. There is a difference between Behe and Carroll, though, that is not quite captured in those charts. 100 years from now, no one will know who Carroll was. Behe will be honored as a thinker way ahead of the pack of conformist mediocrities (not that I’m saying that’s what Carroll is, but still, there will be no reason to remember him in 100 years).

  27. I like the idea of Behe coming here as opposed to Amazon. I think it will get his posts more notice. I have emailed Michael a couple times and he has been incredibly generous in his accessibility. I really hope he will take the time to respond to the posts here at UD. I understand both Michael and Bill Dembski are very busy but if I had one complaint about Bill it would just be that he doesn’t take the time to respond to posts on this site as much as i would like to see. I dont know how hetic Bill’s life is – so I refrian from judging.

    At any rate, I think a more open dialogue between the ID theorists and the more or less followers at this time- like myself- would be good for ID’s progress.

  28. Matteo,
    Since ~9,000 research papers have already cited Carroll, I don’t think anyone’s going to forget about him anytime soon.

  29. Gaz,

    A harmful mutation does not get you anywhere new. Yes it might help to weed out the population- getting rid of the bad- but it is the explanation of super comnplex novelty that we are trying to explain in origins. Behe’s point is that if you look at the the probability of positive mutation occuring as opposed to negative one- postive ones are far more rare. And this is the reality of the second law of thermodynamics. Whenever an “undirected” change occurs it almost always falls into the expanse called disorder. Oriigins is about explaining order not disorder- and this is the problem with natural selection. Natural selection does not get us anything new. Only mutation and changes within the living organisms can evolve its form.

  30. Nakashima,

    My understanding was that they are in the business of supporting the alignment of science and religion. Why isn’t ID a big part of what they do?

    My understanding of why Templeton doesn’t do more with ID, is because ID is not religious :) You can’t have it both ways.

  31. Skew,

    And if we allow ID professors to teach college classes, does that mean we can have Buddhist monks, African witch doctors, and astrology buffs teach also?

    Sure, for whatever those guys do in their off-time is their business, but if they taught the science of ID, let them teach. No different than an atheist teaching ID, or a theist.

  32. “You might be aware that there is an attempt to teach a college course based on SETI. Given the close connection many people draw between SETI and ID, let’s see how well that goes.”

    I brought up SETI intentionally because I am quite aware of their course curricullum and work with San Francisco University developing High School courses.

    This is rank hypocrisy by the scientitific establishment. You can look for intelligence in the Cosmos, you can think of “advanced civilizations” that may have seeded earth and work with NASA to advance this thought process to 12th graders.

    It is not a matter of “how” it goes. It will go forward since it has been well funded and received by the greatest research and exploration organization on the planet – NASA.

    “I think ID has a place in many college courses. Certainly courses in the history of science, the sociology of science, philosophy, and 20th Century American political science.”

    So to does a critical review of Darwin’s failures and “successes” over time. Lets put the full history of the Darwinian movement under the historical microscope by professors that are its opponents. Fair is fair, correct? In a “liberal” institution that supposedly speaks about “diversity” of opinion?

    “If you had a professor and a likeminded set of students, you could probably et a graduate seminar run.”

    Bingo… at this point, that is all I’d expect. Because I know that ID is not fully fleshed out. But then, neither is Darwinism. It changes day to day depending upon who you talk to. The TOL exist, or the TOL failed 20yrs ago. What is it?

    As you read my previous post, I am asking for classes that are critical and skeptical of Darwinian science that can be open to students for the difficult questions that are still unknown, in order to think outside of Darwin’s Black Box. Certainly, classes like this, at upper levels are worthy of consideration. For example, a look at some work by Eugene Koonin, Baptiste, et al, not just ID critics, would show the large changes taking place in technical discussion that many are not aware of coming out of most high schools. If delaying to a junior or senior level cours and grad level, fine, but skepticism should be taught, critical thought, open discussion encouraged. This is what colleges use to stand for, but they’ve become nothing but cultural and idealogical retreats for the left in most areas.

    “I did half my MS degree in computer science as a series of ’special projects’. I just came across a student from Indiana, Dov Rhodes, whose thesis for a BS in Physics was based on criticising Nilsson and Pelger, and quoted liberally from Berlinski’s essay.”

    Without looking it up, it is nice to see that. But physics is more open to criticism. Whereas Darwinism is like a religion, defended as if it 2 + 2 = 4. And it must be promoted through our entire culture starting at elementary. It is simply indoctrination. I went through it and looking back, I realize just how stupid many of the teachers look now teaching something that is still unknown, story telling and riddled with huge problems more every year.

    “I think for a full undergrad course on ID, you need a college level textbook and a lot more published research.”

    We agree and published work should be allowed, instead of stymied or treated with scorn and ridicule. Where a scientist with two PhDs life is thrown into turmoil because the Darwinian guards did not like what he published.

    That type of action is dispicable in a free nation. It it intimidation, silencing of free dissent and un-American on part of the Darwinistas at the Smithsonian.

    Of course I refer you to Dr. Sternberg.

    Frankly, ID is happening at universities all over America and the world today. It is called – Reverse Engineering. This type of research is more fruitful when thinking from a Design Viewpoint, instead of an unguided Darwinian view.

    That this research is not considered ID is an untold truth by most in the education business.

    If we allowed our educational systems to open up, allow the different views of students to be heard without scorn, intimidation, ridicule and outright shunning by professors. If we allowed an open educational hueristic whereby students were encouraged to look for Design characteristics at an earlier age, the children would be much more capable by the time they reach college for advanced research.

  33. Nakashima,

    If looking for Design in nature by our best institutions is good enough for the best engineers, then it should be good enough for high school kids.

    If an MIT engineer is seeking and learning about nanoscale optic engineering, then, by teaching children at lower grade levels to understand and look for design in nature will advance their understanding at a much faster pace to solve problems in the future.

    By teaching children that nature is an accidental mess without any meaning, guidance or design criteria it dumbs down children’s minds, it dumbs down the curriculum and it dumbs down the potential for interest in the sciences. It ends up being nothing but a mantra of dumbing down for about six years before entering college level courses.

    Instead, if kids are taught about the fastest motors in the world that exist within our body are engineering marvels, that excites the mind, inspires kids to think more about the possibilities. Design Detection can be a huge way of fruitful knowledge building for the future.

  34. Mr Hayden,

    “intelligent design is just the Logos theology of John’s Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory”

    I have to believe that anyone who could fulfill the bright promise inherent in that quote would get funding from the Templeton Foundation!

  35. I’m glad that Professor Behe’s blog will be in a place that gets more notice, but is UD the best place for it? Afterall, Behe argued strongly for common descent in his book, The Edge of Evolution. From Denyse O’Leary’s comments, I take it that common descent is frowned upon around here. Hence the title of this blog.

  36. But what if, Grazhdanin Nakashima, the Templeton Foundation would tend to be more like The BioLogos Foundation?

    Anyway I wonder why when an ID advocate expresses an opinion from his personal philosophico-religious convictions it proves he can’t be “scientific”, whereas of course we know that an atheist persuasion would never corrupt one’s science.

  37. Nakashima,

    I have to believe that anyone who could fulfill the bright promise inherent in that quote would get funding from the Templeton Foundation!

    Believe whatever you want, but that doesn’t change the fact that Templeton isn’t exactly generous to ID in its efforts at equating science and religion. And if it were, you would use that as an argument that ID was religious. Some folks are hard to please. But then again, I remember you posting the bird with different colored feathers and calling it speciation, so maybe you’re very easy to please when it suits your purpose.

  38. I think having Professor’s Behe blog posted on UD will be a welcome addition. Not having a professional scientist post here was a big gap. But it’s a shame that it appears comments won’t be posted. It’s really the comments and the interaction between opposing views that make it interesting and thought-provoking. So I hope Behe reconsiders.

    Denyse O’Leary also stopped allowing comments on her blogs – I don’t even bother to look at any of them at all now.

  39. It’s all a matter of time—how much time does a busy man have? It takes time to keep up with and respond on these blogs. Teaching, research, it all takes time—and who knows? maybe Professor Behe has another book in the works.

    But having his responses to critics here is a big plus. Hope they stay up at Amazon too.

  40. JTaylor,

    I’m sure Denyse misses you terribly.

  41. Clive: “I’m sure Denyse misses you terribly.”

    I don’t know for sure, but assuming that at least a part of Ms O’Leary’s mission is to reach out to fence-sitters like myself, it seems an odd choice to not make her blogs more enticing to visit. But then perhaps she’s really just more interested in preaching to the choir. But I welcome Behe’s addition the site and hopefully a move away from polemic writing to actual science.

  42. Frost (30),

    Thanks for the reply. You wrote:

    “A harmful mutation does not get you anywhere new. Yes it might help to weed out the population- getting rid of the bad- but it is the explanation of super comnplex novelty that we are trying to explain in origins.”

    I think most Darwinists hold the view that it’s the same thing. No Darwinist believes that super complex items just spring up in one generation.

    “Behe’s point is that if you look at the the probability of positive mutation occuring as opposed to negative one – postive ones are far more rare.”

    Very likely, but the key fact is that its the prganisms with the positive mutation that are most likely to leave descendants. It doesn’t matter if only 1 mutation in a million is positive, the point is that the positive mutation statistically allows the organisms with it to leave more descendants and hence propagate it still further.

    “And this is the reality of the second law of thermodynamics. Whenever an “undirected” change occurs it almost always falls into the expanse called disorder.”

    Check the second law of thermodynamics – that tendency towards “disorder” (actually, increasing entropy) applies only to isolated systems. Genomes aren’t isolated systems, the chromosome carrying them interact with other molecular systems.

    “Origins is about explaining order not disorder- and this is the problem with natural selection.”

    Not at all – as I mentioned, the second law of thermodynamics applies only to isolated systems, and these aren’t.

    “Natural selection does not get us anything new.”

    It certainly does – even those who think only in microevolution terms have conceded that.

    “Only mutation and changes within the living organisms can evolve its form.”

    Yes, that and natural selection.

  43. Additional Information about astrology being a science of Art because it deals with numbers and this is a confirmation that Dr. Behe thinking is in line with reality because astrology is a ~science~ of art and people should be able to pursue it in college as well if they want to make a life doing it.

    I would like to also add that the mother of all sciences is math and this is what intelligent design is rooted into because GOD = INFINITY and this is a SUPER-natural number thus making our world a SUPER-natural world that we are living in because if we start counting EMPIRICAL evidences piece by piece in this universe we will count forever thus making our world SUPER-natural.

    Math is the mother of all sciences because we must + evidences to make our arguments.

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