"Poof, there goes another major prop in the battle against intelligent design"
Richard Dawkins' concession that the design we see in nature could be the result of alien activity continues to be a hot topic. CSC senior fellow David DeWolf e-mailed me with some interesting insights.
The point of Dawkins' concession in the movie [Expelled] is not that panspermia is a preferable alternative to evolutionary theory, but rather THAT IT CAN BE STUDIED SCIENTIFICALLY. (Sorry for shouting, but I get excited about these things.)
Dawkins concedes that you could scientifically investigate whether or not the origin of life reflected natural processes or whether it was likely the result of intervention from an external, intelligent source. If you concede this point, which Dawkins appears to do on camera, then Robert Pennock, Eugenie Scott, Judge Jones et al. are dead wrong in postulating "that ID is an interesting theological argument, but that it is not science." (Kitzmiller, 400 F.Supp.2d 707, 746.)
Whether intelligent design is a *true* theory of course is another question. You could find that there is "overwhelming evidence" (cue the orchestra here) that a Darwinian mechanism is responsible for the first life on earth, but you have to show that it is more likely than a competitor explanation, which involves intelligent agency.
Poof, there goes a major prop in the battle against ID.