Monday, March 24, 2014

#969: Melvin Mulder

Melvin Mulder is an apparently retired MD and creationist – currently “he is available to conduct PowerPoint seminars throughout the U.S. and Canada – suitable for general audiences, churches, high schools, colleges, Bible schools, and seminaries,” and has produced a series of 15-minute radio segments in which he lays out his “reasoning”. Yes, Mulder is devoted to outreach on behalf of creationism rather than research, which is hardly an uncommon priority among creationists or cdesign proponentsists. Nor is it particularly surprising that he possesses an almost perfect lack of understanding of evolution.

His misunderstanding is finely laid out in his book Beyond Intelligent Design (there used to be a Wikipedia description, but it was axed – still available here). The arguments should be familiar: the wonderfully question-begging argument that the information in DNA implies that there was an intelligent designer (since only intelligent agents can produce meaningful information), that irreducible complexity needs a better explanation than “chance assemblage of mindless matter” (and yes, it seems to have eluded him that evolution  precisely gives one an alternative to “chance assemblage”, which is also a rather fundamental part of understanding the idea), and references to the Discovery Institute-produced petition A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism, which according Mulder’s poorly calibrated powers of reason is supposed to show that acceptance of evolution is decreasing.

He also praises the usual suspects, from Phillip Johnson to Michael Behe, for having made evolutionary biologists scramble. Since these guys have, in Mulder’s mind, already showed that scientific naturalism is a goner, Mulder happily asserts that it is now scientifically reasonable to assume a young-earth six-day creation.

His evidence is rather scant, but he does at least complain that ID does not insist that the Biblical account is the only source of true information about creation, and that ID could in principle appeal to non-believers, which takes away the need for revelation to disclose truth; thus ID is not really a serious alternative. He also takes the fact that some people at some point have been critical of Big Bang to be conclusive proof that the theory has failed – adding a bit about the starlight problem and polonium halos, phenomena he doesn’t understand and about which he therefore feels confident to say whatever he wants. He doesn’t need any positive evidence for his preferred young earth creationism. Revelation, you know. The Bible. Jesus.

Diagnosis: Delusional moron. He doesn’t have much influence, but he does at least try to spread the word. Well, word did reach us, and now he’s got a shiny new entry among the big loons of America, exposing his bullshit for everyone to see.

No comments:

Post a Comment