Home » Intelligent Design » That was a review? “A protein called reflexin…”

That was a review? “A protein called reflexin…”

Science writer and biologist John Timmer recently published an online review of the textbook Explore Evolution, a review which has picked up some play around the web. To gain a sense of the review’s accuracy, consider this:

Another PhD the authors found is Christian Schwabe, who apparently has established a career studying a protein called reflexin, along with its relatives.

Reflexin? Nope. Not a protein. And not what Schwabe has studied.

The rest of the review is at this level, or below. We look forward to replying to Mr. Timmer.

  • Delicious
  • Facebook
  • Reddit
  • StumbleUpon
  • Twitter
  • RSS Feed

3 Responses to That was a review? “A protein called reflexin…”

  1. You should not expect too much from Mr. Timmer. His previous writings indicate he has not bothered to comprehend the basics written by ID proponents.

    On the other hand, he’s very knowledgeable on a variety of other subjects. And I’ve been an Ars reader long before they launched Nobel Intent and Timmer started his regular lashing out at ID proponents.

    The part that frustrates me is the vagueness of his review. Trying to track down the root of his assertions becomes more time-consuming when he doesn’t provide basic details. An example:

    An entire section of the book is devoted to Discovery Fellow Michael Behe’s contention that complex, multiprotein systems cannot evolve, a concept called “irreducible complexity.” Again, PubMed reveals no significant presence of this concept in the scientific literature. There are 18 papers, only three of which address it directly; all of them conclude that “irreducibly complex” systems can evolve. Indeed, scientists have proposed at least three mechanisms by which irreducibly complex systems can evolve, any one of which would invalidate Behe’s contention that they can’t. EE mentions only one of these, and again concludes that nobody really knows what’s going on.

    I can probably guess which 3 papers he’s speaking of. All of them conclude that “irreducibly complex” systems can evolve…why? List the three mechanisms? Are we talking about systems composed of 2-4 components? Or systems where functionality can be bridged with stepwise 2-4 functionality leaps? EE mentions a mechanism…which one? What page? He says the book “concludes that nobody really knows what’s going on.” Again, what page, quote, anything.

  2. It’s funny. I can just hear them now, the opponents of Galileo I mean, even though his idea couldn’t be totally proved or disproved at the time (see: When Science and Christianity Meet by Lindberg and Numbers, 2003, ch.2).

    Heck, we should have learned from Karl Popper by now that induction alone isn’t going to cut it.

    True, Galileo’s ideas were panned out later, maybe unlike ID. I don’t have a PHD in statistics or biochemistry so I wouldn’t even be able to judge.

    As philosopher of mathematics Bertrand Russell says, when the big boys are doing their arguing, it’s best for the rest to just sit out sometimes and suspend judgment.

  3. And not what Schwabe has studied.

    Actually, Schwabe published at least one paper in which he was wrong about what he thought he was studying. What he claimed to be Ciona instestinalis relaxin was actually porcine relaxin. Thus, I don’t know if one should trust his whale data. In addition, doesn’t his GPH (abiotic preformation of genomes) rely on pure chance and is thus even less ID friendly than evolution theotry? IIRC, Schwabe denies any design or designer.

Leave a Reply