The thing that's so shocking about the failure of all previous attempts at an ID journal is that the young earth creationist movement has actually done quite well at creating its own pseudoscientific infrastructure. They have several journals that imitate the peer-review of proper scientific journals. Sure, authors have to swear that their results won't contradict a fundamentalist reading of the Bible, and the actual arguments they make tend to fall apart once you start pushing on them, but many of the papers are quite sharp, and do a decent job of testing hypotheses within the straightjacket imposed on them by fundamentalist ideology.While it is quite true that the modern-day recent earth creationist movement has a large infrastructure, their imitation of peer-review is a very poor one and is anti-scientific at its core. Rosenau is correct to call it a straightjacket but it results in a discipline that cannot even be called peer-reviewed because everyone that reviews the articles is sympathetic to them and, for the sake of the theology, doesn't dare disagree with them. This results in a skewing of the data in such a way that the results the results do not stand up to an even cursory examination. It also, as Randy Isaacs found out with the RATE project, results in intellectual dishonesty.
In the past I've cited Wood as a reminder to anti-creationists that it's not enough to simply dismiss creationism as irrationality run amok. Wood's approach is rational, but premised on faulty assumptions. Rationality is dependent on the quality of the minds inputs and presuppositions, and some folks tend to wrongly claim that simply being rational would solve all our problems.This is wishful thinking. Wood, at one point, addressing the nature of evidence, wrote:
I also point it out in the hopes that Wood will, at some point, confront the special pleading he's using, and will realize that if he extends his arguments to their logical results, he'll have to abandon his creationism. His critiques of ID creationism and of old earth creationism are spot on, and if he'd only turn the same analytical approach toward his adherence to young earth creationism, interesting things might happen.
As a point of application, I think modern creationists would be much better served if we stopped coddling their every doubt and fear with new "evidence for creation" and instead helped to wean them off evidence altogether. A truly close Christian walk with Jesus should render evidence irrelevant. This is where we really want to be, not buffeted about by the wind and waves but confidently walking through the storm with our eyes fixed unwaveringly on Christ.As I have written before, I believe that this represents some sort of dualism in that the clear evidence from creation is not just rendered as secondary in importance, but ignored. The researchers of the RATE project found unequivocal evidence of over 500 million years of radioactive decay yet still managed to conclude that there was support for a young earth. Why? Because the evidence had to be subjugated to the theology. If, as Wood suggests, we should be called upon to "wean them off of evidence altogether," what does the evidence mean? Why would God create a beautiful and wondrous creation filled with majesty and awe only to have us ignore it?
One might argue that Wood means that we, as Christians, should focus entirely on our walk with God and not even bother at all with the questions of origins. For most people, this is an entirely appropriate perspective and it has always been my position that Christians should think carefully before exposing themselves to scientific areas that might affect their faith but for which there is little importance in their daily lives.
But we know from his other posts that Wood is a card-carrying recent earth creationist, who runs the Center for Origins Research at Bryan College. The focus of this research is "baraminology," which is the study of the search for the original created kinds. Their view of creationism is this:
Creationism isn't some modern, extremist anomaly. It was the dominant view of western culture and the church for nearly two millennia. From ancient commentaries on Genesis to medieval books on Noah's Ark to Renaissance monographs on Flood geology, we are seeking to recover the history of that intellectual domination.Much is left out of this definition. For example, while creationism was the dominant view in western culture for nearly two millenia, what is not said is that once we began to acquire the tools to examine planet earth and the cosmos, beginning in the 1400s, creationism became less and less sustainable until, by the late 1800s, no practicing geologists and very few practicing clergy supported it. It was only the work of the Seventh Day Adventists in the early 1900s that led to a resurgence of this view, one that was (and is) totally without established scientific support. To recover that intellectual domination would carry scientific achievement back six hundred years and negate all of the advancements that have been acquired since then. Is this really what he wants?
It reminds me of something that Conrad Hyers once wrote, and I paraphrase: "if the Bible is found to be in accordance with science of the 20th century, it is necessarily out of accordance with the science of the 19th century and that of the 18th century and so on." Why does Wood presuppose that the science of six hundred years ago is the correct model?
Now playing: Jean Michel Jarre - Zoolook (Remix)