Here is my followup to Part I of my reply to the comments on Matt Young’s review of my book. (My reply to Young’s review itself is here.)

(1) eric writes:

In contrast IDers want significant classroom time spent on it (far more than 10 minutes), with no mention of why its wrong, or why 150 years ago this idea was rejected.

While I’m sure some IDers are like that, it’s worth noting that the whole Dover trial was about whether a statement should be read to the students before they learned about evolution in 9th grade biology class; reading that statement would take about 30 seconds.

(2) John Kwok writes:

I think Monton has bought into the Wedge ever since his graduate school days at Princeton, where, incidentally, he apparently overlapped with a Princeton Theological Seminary student named William A. Dembski.

For the record, I never met Dembski when I was at Princeton; the first time I met him was years later, when he came to University of Kentucky to debate Michael Shermer. And also for the record, I don’t buy into the Wedge strategy, nor am I a proponent of the Wedge strategy.

(3) Wheels writes:

his selection of reviews for Seeking God in Science consists half of Discovery Institute fellows and the other half philosophers friendly to ID’s framing of the issue, and hostile to real science. Of the latter, Groothuis has also decided that ID isn’t traditional Creationism and argues that it’s not religious, that “Darwinism” has problems ID addresses, etc. etc. (Roberts doesn’t seem to have much out there to be cited, but his page at Chapel Hill has papers where he re-jiggers and defends the Fine-Tuning argument for Design, as well as a lot of other things which are lost on me but might be interesting to those more familiar with contemporary philosophy.)

I assume Wheels is talking about the people who contributed blurbs for the back cover. These are by Groothuis (theist), Dembski, (theist), Berlinski (agnostic), and Roberts (atheist). Only Dembksi and Berlinski are affiliated with the Discovery Institute. Roberts is a pre-eminent philosopher of science at one of the top philosophy departments in the country, UNC-Chapel Hill.

(4) Glen Davidson writes:

Pennock doesn’t leave Monton’s nonsense alone in US New & World Report. That was before Monton’s book was published, which apparently was sometime last summer.

And Pennock does a bad job addressing my arguments, as I point out here (well worth reading for anyone who has read the Pennock piece, in my opinion).

(5) raven writes:

It is up to Monson, if he is an IDist, to explain who the Designer(s) are and what evidence there is for design.

We shouldn’t have to guess or wonder. He is a college professor and should be capable of simple communication.

I’m not an IDist. I do talk about what evidence there is for design in my book. You don’t have to guess or wonder; it’s out there for you to read.

(6) Gary Hurd writes:

I am thinking that writing for a creationist audience, touted and flouted by the Discotutes, will pay more than real work. And I would not be surprised that the DI sent a little “love” to Monty.

I have not received any money from the Discovery Institute.

(7) raven writes:

chances are Monton is getting paid somehow by the DI. They have a budget of 4 million USD/year and it all goes to PR and propaganda. We don’t really know though, just a guess.

I would ask him point blank but it is useless. My experience is that when you corner these people, they refuse to answer or lie or simply run.

raven should have actually tried asking me point blank.

(8) Matt Young helpfully writes:

The following is not whining and is completely off task, but it may explain why I do not think Professor Monton wrote his book for the money:

I published my first book, an optics book, in 1977. At that time royalties were typically 10% of list price. Between that book and a book on technical writing, I probably had a couple of years in which my royalties amounted to the low five figures, counting to the left of the decimal point.

Typical royalties today, I think, are 7.5% of sales, or about half what they were in the 1980’s. On subsequent books, I have received royalties each year in the middle or even upper five figures, but now I have to count on both sides of the decimal point.

I haven’t received any royalty money from my book yet; I think I will in February. I also don’t know what the sales figures are. I’ll be happy to make the information public when I do get the royalty money and sales figures. But Matt is right, I didn’t write the book for the money; academic books just don’t sell that well. I wrote the book because I thought many of the criticisms of intelligent design were unfair, and that the best way to further the cause of reason was to give state the case for intelligent design the best way one can, and then to give the best criticisms one can of intelligent design. To give unfair or misguided or emotionally driven or culturally biased criticisms of intelligent design is really just helping out the intelligent design proponents, by making it look to the neutral observer like their critics are intellectually unsophisticated people.

(9) Frank J writes:

I’d bet that Monton agrees with the 4.5 BY that mainstream science and most DI Fellows claim, and accepts common descent.

Yes, that’s right.

(10) John Kwok writes:

Am not sure Matt Young realizes how much of an apologist Monton has been for the Dishonesty Institute, but anyone reading Monton’s CV would realize how much he’s been one, and especially one quite dedicated to the DI’s conception of Intelligent Design even before the Kitzmiller vs. Dover trial.

For those who are interested, here’s his CV:

http://spot.colorado.edu/~monton/Br[…]ton%20cv.pdf

I encourage people to look at my CV, because I really don’t know what Kwok is talking about here; I have not been an apologist for the Discovery Institute, as far as I can tell. Also, in Chapter 1 of my book, I take issue with the Discovery Institute’s conception of intelligent design.

(11) Brenda writes:

I believe Monton was driven to his position by his companions’ obnoxious attitude towards Creationism. Not with the arguments themselves, but the attitude. When Monton tried to give a Creationist the benefit of the doubt /here and there/, he was verbally attacked, as if he were “one of them”. He just wanted to distance himself from that s#!t, and look where he wound up. Everyone here at PandasThumb, keep up the good work and you’ll see scores of Bradley Montons.

In part Brenda is right, but it’s not just the obnoxious attitude toward intelligent design that bothered me; it was the bad arguments. The second half of Chapter 2 of my book, where I criticize Pennock’s take on intelligent design, gives evidence of what motivated me to write the book. But Brenda is absolutely right that I’m being unfairly attacked as if I am one of the creationists, when in fact I’m not.

(12) Brenda also writes:

Mike Elzinga charges: “Your loyalties are misplaced. And you should learn some real science so that you can tell the difference between what is real and what is fake.”

Your jumping to conclusions about me (and in both cases they’re wrong) is irritating. It’s that kind of thing that irritated, and pushed away, Monton, too.

I will agree that the jumping to conclusions by the various commenters in this thread is irritating. It’s an example of really bad reasoning, and it’s concerning that people who think of themselves as scientifically-minded people are engaging in such bad reasoning.

(13) phantomreader42 writes, addressing Brenda:

The reason you’re ineffectual is that you don’t have the slightest fucking idea what the hell you’re talking about, and you can’t be bothered to live up to your own bullshit standards for five seconds.

That provides an answer to this request by Wheels, regarding my blog:

Would be nice of you to turn on comments.