The Intelligent Design creationist hit their peak sometime before 2005, and then plummeted rock-like into the depths of negligibility with the Kitzmiller decision, that made it clear they were just another gang of ignorant creationists with no scientific credibility. They still try to seem relevant, though, and go through the motions. One of their soft spots now is those other creationists — they try a little too hard to distance themselves from the more common breed of science denier.
An example: I relayed that creationist petition from Joe Hannon, something certainly fit for mockery. I did not mention the Discovery Institute, but David Klinghoffer is now castigating everyone who said anything about it, calling it “fake news” and a “phony petition”, and saying we “embraced a whopper”, because he couldn’t find anything about a Joe Hannon anywhere.
Uh, it’s a real petition. You can sign it and everything. It’s also a real (and very bad) argument of the kind made all the time and all over the place. It’s fairly typical of the popular and profitable kind of creationism sponsored by groups like Answers in Genesis — perhaps Klinghoffer would like to pretend the $100 million plus Ark boondoggle in Kentucky doesn’t exist? These are very silly arguments, but people do make them — and Mike Pence made them on the floor of Congress — so it’s weird to berate people for refuting them.
As for “Joe Hannon”: real person, fake name. We (the recipients of his email) had a brief conversation about it, and are convinced that it’s a fairly well known crank, atheistoclast AKA Joseph Bozorgmehr, on the basis of the style and nature, and also because he sometimes posts as Joseph Esfandiar Hannon Bozorgmehr.
It’s actually pretty easy to figure out who “Joe Hannon” is — he’s notorious for his bad arguments, and for his frequent fake identities. I’ve banned him multiple times, and Larry Moran, as well as everyone at the Panda’s Thumb, knows exactly who he is.
Atheistoclast is Joseph Esfandiar Hannon Bozorgmehr from Manchester, United Kingdom. He infected other postings on Sandwalk under the name “Reza” [Darwinism and Junk DNA].
He’s been banned from Pharyngula and was banned from RichardDawkins.net except that he created 95 new identities in order to get around the ban.
He is a holocaust denier. He used to run a business “selling components – just nuts and bolts – to the Iranian nuclear and missile industries” but it was shut down because of sanctions. Now he rants against British conspiracies.
Bozorgmehr has even been cited by…Evolution News & Views, the online propaganda organ of the Discovery Institute, claiming that he had disproven the efficacy of gene duplication in evolution (he hasn’t; it’s a very bad paper). Will EN&V admit that they “embraced a whopper”?
Klinghoffer’s only argument is that Hannon’s email and petition
reads like a parody to me. That’s not a good argument against rebuttals, though, since everything the Discovery Institute publishes, including Klinghoffer’s ridiculous opinion pieces, sounds like a parody to me.