Tag Archives: Francisco Ayala

Clairvoyant Darwinists don’t even need to read Intelligent Design books to “review” them

See ID critics do not read ID books before reviewing them « Wintery Knight.  Those are book “no-views,” not book reviews.  This reminds me of how the Darwin fans will rush to Amazon to give one star to books like Stephen Meyers’ Signature in the Cell when they obviously haven’t read it.  You’d think their transparent dishonesty would embarrass them, but apparently they haven’t evolved to hold that sort of morality.  I was very disappointed that someone from Forbes would be so sloppy.  Their editorial content is usually held to much higher standards.

My guess is that they know if they actually read the books they’d have to respond to the arguments, and not their straw-man versions of what Intelligent Design is.

“As a friend of ours puts it, Jonathan Wells’s The Myth of Junk DNA is in the process of being “Ayala’ed.” To “Ayala” a book is to attack it in review without having bothered to read or even read much about it, simply on the basis of what you think it probably says given your uninformed preconceptions about the author. The term comes from the wonderful instance where distinguished biologist Francisco Ayala pompously “reviewed” Stephen Meyer’s Signature in the Cell for the Biologos Foundation website while giving clear evidence of not having cracked the book open or even looked at the table of contents.

Thus we have several posts from University of Toronto biochemist Larry Moran, criticizing Myth while being totally open about not having read it first. Moran wrote no fewer than four posts on the book in this fashion, claiming as an excuse that Myth would not be published in Canada until May 31. (In fact, the book was available for purchase from Amazon since early May.) And now, as Casey already noted, we have Forbes science writer John Farrell, citing Moran as his source — a “double Ayala,” so to speak, where you attack a book without reading it citing as justification a review by someone else who also hasn’t read it.

Farrell thinks the myth of junk DNA is itself a myth — that “scientists never dismissed junk DNA in the literature.” In other words, Wells has set up a straw man. Of course, not having looked at the book, Farrell can’t have consulted Dr. Wells’s fifty pages of notes documenting his argument. The notes may be downloaded for free here. (Also available in Canada.)”

So this is what criticism of intelligent design amounts to… denouncing a book before reading it.

Read the whole post.