Sunday, 17 June 2007

The Wedge.

This is too good to be true! William Dembski, at his "Uncommon Descent" blog, ponders the following:

It will be interesting to see how the National Center for Science Education Selling Evolution deals with the growing number of non-religious ID proponents. Check out the following link:

I have three predictions.
  • The NCSE will do nothing.
  • Bloggers all over the blogsphere are going to trumpet this link with unbridled and raucous hilarity.
  • William Dembski will delete his blog entry, and the guy he is linking to will be dropped from the ISCID.

Here's the link to Dembski's blog article. Let's see how long it remains a live link matching what I have quoted above.

My second prediction is a bit unfair. The story has already been picked up at Stranger Fruit, paralepsis, Afarensis, …

The ID proponent that William Dembski asks us to check out is William Brookfield. The chance that Dembski actually checked this out himself first is about nil. Why I am so sure? Is it because I've noticed that Brookfield fails to say anything remotely useful about ID? That's true enough; but that's never bothered ID folks before. No, the problem is going to be a little bit less "safe for work" than that…

This is solid gold ad hominem. Brookfield provides links to his own home page, the Brookfield Institute of Transparadigmic Science. Read, enjoy. It looks plausibly like just another random crank, but it gets better… so much better that one suspects a parody and sting operation.

From his page:
ID Pleasurian philosophy is a non-religious amalgam of ID science and Hefnerian Playboy philosophy. It serves as a strategically unified and archetypal counter proposal to orthodox ascetic religions such as Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism and Islam. It is also somewhat resonant with Wiccan and “mother nature”- based pagan cults (in the west) and Tantric Buddhism (in the east). Pleasurian-ism is an earthy, sensuous and physically celebratory form of “monistic idealism” or infocognitive monism.” Pleasurian science is naturally driven by the "pleasure of finding things out."

ID and Hefnerian Playboy philosophy? Can it get any better than this? Incredibly; yes. Brookfield also describes his position as an ID scientist in Pleasuria. Here is an extract; probably from Brookfield's partner Steve Saba. I'm not kidding. Caution. The first link in this extract may not be safe for work…

As an Intelligent Design Scientist I naturally support the WEDGE :-)

See for more (mis)information on the "Wedge" :-)

Links are as in the original. The first link goes to the wedge that is illustrated at the top of this article. Really; I'm not kidding. I carefully sorted through all the pictures of "the wedge" available at that site to pick the one least likely to make my blog lose family appeal. The second link goes to pages for Barbara Forrest's book Creationism's Trojan Horse: The Wedge of Intelligent Design.

The point of this is not to be critical of Brookfield himself. His proposals for an "ID Pleasurian philosophy" sound quite fascinating; and I'm sure he'll get a big boost in recognition as a result of Dembski's blog article. He's got a wicked sense of humour; I love it! My main interest is to see how long Dembski maintains the link with Brookfield's research.


  1. Check the Pleasuria tagline: "God is within you. It is therefore your sacred duty to show God a good time." (cue the waa-waa guitar.)

  2. Dumbstruck doesn't really pay much attention to what he's saying, does he? (Yeah, the play on his name is kind of low-brow, but what can you do when someone becomes a one-man unintentional comedy act?)

    I also notice that none of his commenters have yet clicked beyond the obvious.

  3. As noted on Clever Beyond Measure, this may be Dembski's version of a Sokal ploy to win his own $200.

  4. Ι think Uncommon Descent are the ones who have been hoaxed here. Check out the comments. I won't tell you what to look for. It's subtle; but I have a good feeling about this one. I've saved it, to repeat here in case they twig and try to delete everything.

  5. Oh damn. I thought I was the first to notice the parody comment. (I just blogged about it.) Sweet.

  6. Bingo, Hermagoras. I had exactly the same reaction, but lacked the time to put up a blog. You've done well.

    By the way; blogwhoring is welcome here. The link to your expose is Let the Mockery Continue. Nice take down. Go check it out, everyone else.

  7. I see you've started commenting over there. Remember, that way leads to the Dark Side.

    Although you make a good point - I've recently been musing on writing an article for PCID on what the study of the natural world tells us about the Designer. It seems that these ID folks need a bit of help on this.


  8. How very interesting!

    I have just had a visitor to Duae Quartunciae from the Uncommon Descent blog admin pages. Kudos to them if they leave up the blog article! And welcome.

    My prediction that the Uncommon Descent blog article would disappear has so far failed. I may have miscalled that one.

    As for whether Brookfield would be dropped from the ISCID; that's going to be a bust as well. The group appears to be almost defunct; but it turns out that Brookfield is not actually a fellow of the society; merely a member, and this appears to be open to anyone, and gives access to journals and other materials. There's no implicit endorsement, and so no reason to drop Brookfield. I guess I was wrong on that one.

    I bet Dembski just suggested one time to Brookfield that he sign up; which I guess could be called "invited to join". But I gave this much more significance than it deserves.

    Brookfield has found a friend to join his ICON-RIDS, and that all promises to be very entertaining. Good luck, guys.

    Finally, the predictions that blogs all over the net will pick up this story with ribald glee has been confirmed. It's pure ad hominem, of course... but quite appropriate to wonder how well Dembski checked out this blog before advising others to check it out.

  9. Hi Duae,

    Welcome back to the blogosphere. I just wanted to thank you for your post here and the great picture of the wedge!!


  10. Thanks very much for the welcome back, William. I'm pleased you like the wedge image. I enjoy it too, and the humour and good spirit in which you take it is great.

    Best wishes -- Chris (Duae Quartunciae)