AiG Scientist Monkeys With the Facts
John Stear

Young Earth creationists (YECs) employ many ruses in an attempt to give their "science" a semblance of respectability.  They quote selectively or out of context (see here and here); they use quotations from material that is decades old rather than current scientific studies; they use the argument from incredulity, (I don't believe it so it didn't happen!); they ignore the science of forensics by claiming, "You weren't there (in the past) so you don't know what happened!" and so on.  But perhaps their most frequently used ploy is to present a distorted version of the evolutionary process and proceed to refute it. It's called the "straw man" argument. For an excellent examination of this dishonest practise see this web site

David Catchpoole B.Ag.Sc.(Hons), Ph.D. who, as stated in his biography, is a "Creationist plant physiologist", demonstrates in his article Monkey madness the typical YEC straw man argument.  He refers to experiments carried out by British biologist Richard Dawkins.  In Dawkin's first experiment he used a computer program based on the YEC single step model and the result showed that the odds of a correct sequence of letters resulting were something like one in 10,000 million million million million million million years.  (Dawkins chose as the target a line from Hamlet, "Methinks it is like a weasel" containing 28 characters including spaces.) Catchpoole fails to mention that Dawkins rewrote the program using the same phrase and number of characters but incorporating a cumulative multi-step model.  Needless to say, the results of the two experiments were markedly different. 

To have cited Richard Dawkins in his article Catchpoole MUST have read the Dawkin's account of the experiment (see The Blind Watchmaker, pp. 46-48). And by inferring that such experiments are claimed to be evidence for evolution he is ignoring the fact that Dawkins clearly stated in his book that his simulation demonstrated selection NOT evolutionIt follows then that Catchpoole's omissions were deliberate and, consequently, dishonest.