Daily Archives: November 17, 2007

Discovery Institute Wants The Sympathy Vote

In the above video, posted on YouTube, the Discovery Institute questions the fairness of the Kitzmiller vs. Dover, Intelligent Design trial. No surprise there, since they lost miserably. The specific criticism is aimed at the Judge, who stated that no peer reviewed scientific papers have been published supporting ID. Here’s the text from the video’s description:

Judge Jones said that ID “has not generated peer-reviewed publications.”

FACT: Judge Jones is simply wrong. Discovery Institute submitted an amicus brief to Judge Jones that documented various peer-reviewed publications, which he accepted into evidence. This is a fact based question which is hard to get wrong. The fact is there are peer-reviewed papers supporting intelligent design. 

Like an obsessed conspiracy theory group, the DI is playing on the sympathy card by claiming that “the man” is keeping them down. (Yes, yes, all biologists are power hungry mad men, who want to dominate the world. They rake in millions of dollars, drive black BMW’s, and laugh demonically as they suppress the “truth”.) But we have to ask, what are these “peer-reviewed publications” the DI speaks of?

If you go to their link of pubilcations supporting Intelligent Design, you’ll find a list of books and articles, written or edited by members of the Discovery Institute, or pundits of ID.  For example,  MERE CREATION: SCIENCE, FAITH & INTELLIGENT DESIGN (William A. Dembski ed., 1998)is an anthology of opinion pieces, not a scientific journal. Their definition of “peer-reviewed” is literal, having their friends review their work, not actual scientists, who have a critical eye. The other publications are a mish mash of articles from philosophy, mathematics, or lesser known, and not at all reputable, magazines.  

 Talk Origins, the evolution website, has a fine analysis of the so-called “peer-reviewed” publications. Here’s what they say about Jonathan Wells’ contribution to science.

Wells (2005) was published in Rivista di Biologia, a journal which caters to papers which are speculative and controversial to the point of crackpottery (J. M. Lynch 2005). Its editor, Giuseppe Sermonti, is a Darwin denier sympathetic to the Discovery Institute.

A meager list of forty or so publications, none vetted, is nothing to gloat about, or wave proudly in front of a judge or the public.


Filed under Intelligent Design