Ah, that lovable organization–the Discovery Institute

Did I say “lovable”? Perhaps I meant something else.

In any case, I just came across this article by the Discovery Institute, written by Logan Gage, basically stating that genetic similarity is not evidence of common descent.

One of the worst parts of the article, in my opinion, is when the article misrepresents Francis Collins, author of The Language of God.

The article states:

As Francis Collins, head of the project which mapped the human genome, has written of DNA sequence similarities, “This evidence alone does not, of course, prove a common ancestor” because an intelligent cause can reuse successful design principles.

This quote can be found on page 134 of Collins’ book. Of course, what the DI article is not telling you is that Collins then states, “As we shall see, however, and as was foreshadowed above by the discussion of ‘silent’ mutations in protein-coding regions, the detailed study of genomes has rendered that interpretation virtually untenable–not only about all other living things, but also about ourselves.”

Collins then goes on to discuss the order of genes along human and mouse chromosomes, AREs (ancient repetititve elements), and more as evidence supporting common ancestry.

At the end of all (or at least, all the ones I have read) the DI’s articles on their site is this statement:

The misreporting of the evolution issue is one key reason for this site. Unfortunately, much of the news coverage has been sloppy, inaccurate, and in some cases, overtly biased. Evolution News & Views presents analysis of that coverage, as well as original reporting that accurately delivers information about the current state of the debate over Darwinian evolution. Click here to read more.

Ironic how they appear to be the champions of “accuracy”, shedding light on the “misreporting” surrounding evolution, yet are so clearly misleading in their own articles.

No…wait…not ironic. Just sad.


2 Responses to “Ah, that lovable organization–the Discovery Institute”

  1. Anony Moose Says:

    This is silly. Gage does not misrepresent Collins. The Collins quote he uses says only that Collins recognizes that genetic similarity ALONE does not prove common ancestry. And that is Gage’s whole point.

    Gage does not say Collins does not believe in common ancestry. And he is under no obligation to give an entire summary of The Language of God. BTW, he and Casey Luskin have a whole book chapter attempting to refute the Collins’s evidence for common ancestry.

    It seems to me that Gage probably quotes Collins on this point PRECISELY BECAUSE Collins believes in common ancestry. (That is why he says “And you don’t have to take my word for it,” i.e., the word of someone skeptical of common ancestry.) This is what a good academic does because if she only quotes people that agree with her, her point is not persuasive. A charge of dishonesty is a stong one, even for a blog. You should save it for a real misrepresentation.

  2. Where does Behe fit into all of this? I thought he was in bed with those clowns at the Discovery Institute. Luskin frequently lauds Behe’s work in ‘Darwin’s Black Box’. But if he’s read Behe’s latest book, ‘The Edge of Evolution’, he’ll see that Behe has no problems with common ancestry. You can also hear Behe himself confirm this notion on a recent Reasons To Believe podcast.

    IDists have got to figure out which flavor of crap they really like, otherwise it makes them look even sillier than they already are.

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