Posted by PvM on May 27, 2006 11:52 AM

The book, Intelligent Thought: Science versus the Intelligent Design Movement edited by John Brockman contains 16 essays by Edge contributors such as Jerry Coyne, Leonard Susskind, Daniel Dennett, Neil Shubin, Richard Dawkins, Stuart Kauffman, and others on the topic of ‘Intelligent Design’. What caught my eye however were not the essays as much as the comments by various scientists on Intelligent Design. I was pleasantly surprised to see how the concept of scientific vacuity of Intelligent Design is surfacing more and more.

“Evolutionary biology certainly hasn’t explained everything that perplexes biologists, but intelligent design hasn’t yet tried to explain anything at all.” –Daniel C. Dennett, Philosopher

Not only is ID markedly inferior to Darwinism at explaining and understanding nature but in many ways it does not even fulfill the requirements of a scientific theory. –Jerry A. Coyne, evolutionary biologist

The geneticist Theodosius Dobzhansky famously declared, “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.” One might add that nothing in biology makes sense in the light of intelligent design. –Jerry A. Coyne, evolutionary biologist

The supernatural explanation fails to explain because it ducks the responsibility to explain itself.—Richard Dawkins, evolutionary biologist

What counts as a controversy must be delineated with care, as we want students to distinguish between scientific challenges and sociopolitical ones. —Marc D. Hauser, evolutionary psychologist

Incredulity doesn’t count as an alternative position or critique. —Marc D. Hauser, evolutionary psychologist


  1. Orlando Weekly: Review of : Intelligent Thought SCIENCE VS. STUPID By Jason Ferguson
  2. These essayists are scientists, leading lights in their field, and possibly some of the smartest people in the world; the topic is “Intelligent Design,” and you can imagine the ease with which these men (and woman) demolish the wobbly speciousness of the pseudoscience behind ID’s creationist claptrap. Though some of the scientists readily admit to playing right into ID-promulgators’ hands — the whole trick behind getting ID taught in schools is to pretend that there’s a “legitimate debate in the scientific community” — in the end, they don’t seem to care.

    By elegantly and eloquently explaining the airtight science behind Darwinism (not a theory anymore, by the way, but a scientifically proven fact) and deftly swatting away the distortions and dogma that define ID, Brockman and the other contributors to Intelligent Thought may not end the “debate” with this book, but they’ve managed to provide an excellent and readable primer on evolution and the power of the scientific method.