Wednesday, July 04, 2007

A UD Exchange Over 'Edge of Evolution'

There is a lively exchange ongoing at Uncommon Descent over Behe's new book 'Edge of Evolution.' Ken Miller, the honest Darwinist, is the name of the post authored by Sal Cordova. Sal takes Miller to task for his dishonest statements directed at Behe.

There are many commenters who include Sal, a critic of Behe who goes by the moniker of JAM and Jehu, an effective defender of ID, who I've noticed at both UD and TT. Much of the exchanges center around chloroquine resistant malaria. Here is a sample comment by Jehu:

"Wrong again. Here is what White says, “This suggests that the per-parasite probability of developing resistance de novo is on the order of 1 in 10^20 parasite multiplications .” Notice JAM that is “per-parasite probability.” White distinguishes between “developing resistance” and the “de novo selection of resistance.” The calculation of the per parasite probability of developing resistance 10^20 is based only on the population of malaria in people who are sick, where probability of selection of de novo resistance is very high. As White states, “Taken together, the balance of evidence strongly favors acute symptomatic infection as the source of de novo antimalarial resistance.” Gametocytes carrying the resistance genes reach transmissible densities when the resistant biomass has expanded to a population size close to that necessary to produce illness (>107 parasites). Furthermore the relative fitness of CQR strains is .76 or .85, so it is not immediately deselected for lack of fitness in an environment without selective pressure for CQR. At any rate, Behe offers 10^20 as a rough estimate only so your is completely de minimas.

You started off accusing Behe of claiming that CQR always required mutations at 76 and 220. When it was pointed out that Behe said “almost always” you claimed Behe contradicted himself. When Sal asked you to produce a quote where Behe contradicted himself you dishonestly cited pages that said nothing of the sort. When I called you on your pitiful lies you changed your story"

Criticism of Behe has been over the edge. Separating accurate critiques from the inevitable dishonest carping is something that regretably will be, for the most part, the exclusive preserve of ID blogs.



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