This morning I got up and turned my computer on. I began randomly browsing the web, glass of water in hand. I almost choked to death. Carumbas Blog got my attention. According to that blog, intelligent design can never be science because intelligent design isn't falsifiable.
To quote the author of the blog:
"ID cannot be science because it can never be falsified – a requirement of a scientific hypothesis. ID never can be falsified – and therefore cannot be science - as long as one possibility for the designer is an omnipotent and omniscient God. Such a God, by definition, can do anything and do so for reasons that we mere humans might not be able to understand. As long as such a God is a possible designer – even if not the only possibility – any natural phenomenon is possible. Because of that, until the possibility of an omnipotent and omniscient God is specifically excluded as a possible designer, ID cannot possibly be science."
Right off the bat Randy Crum (the author of the blog) gets it wrong. What we essentially have here is Mr. Crum constructing a man made out of straw and then proceeding to destroy it. Let's deconstruct his straw-man.
To do this, we need to define intelligent design. In a word, intelligent design holds that certain features of the biological world are more adequately explained by an intelligence rather than a mindless process like Darwinian evolution.
So can intelligent design be falsified? You bet. If for example one observed the evolution of a biochemical system that required several dozen specifically arranged amino acid residues, then intelligent design proponents would stay up till 4 o'clock in the morning pondering over how they could have messed up so badly. Mr. Crum of course, by his argument, would argue that this wouldn't really falsify intelligent design because if an omnipotent God was the designer, then the designer could "do anything and do so for reasons that we mere humans might not be able to understand." However this is fallacious because it is irrelevant whether or not the designer did things we could understand; what is the real issue here is whether intelligent design is a more adequate explanation for something in the biological world than a mindless process. Even if God decided to allow such a described biochemical system to evolve in real-time, intelligent design would still have been falsified because to us humans intelligent design would cease to be a more adequate explanation for the origin of said biochemical system.
And I thought Darwinians didn't use straw-men arguments.