Would an intelligent designer deliberately build a biological system that self destructs. Can something be intelligently designed that is reproductively unfit? Absolutely!
But first consider the essay ID’s Broken Watchmaker Analogy, where a Darwinist unwittingly concedes an important point (in an otherwise confused, ignorant and illogical rant):
Products of intelligent design typically have capabilities that exceed usefulness and complications that would be profoundly maladaptive in a living system
By that line of reasoning, the existence of humans evidences design. Why? Compared to bacteria, humans are profoundly maladaptive. Darwinists like Bryan Sykes concede the human species might exist for only 100,000 more years. The question then arises, in light of this, why are we here? Why aren’t we dead 100 times over (to quote geneticist Kondrashov who asked the same question)?
The problem for Darwinism is the fact creatures like humans are endowed with so many capabilities that are costly from a reproductive standpoint. Indeed, lost upon the Darwinists is the fact Natural Selection ought to select against certain designs and not for them.
Are there examples of intelligently designed self-destructing systems which have no survival advantage to themselves but serve utility to their intelligent designers? Yes. Fireworks come to mind, and even more to the point, intelligently designed biological organisms designed by Monsanto known as Terminators, Traitors and Zombies.
These plants are designed so that farmers can grow crops from seeds only once. Termintor/Traitor/Zombie organisms do not reproduce. Thus farmers making food from Terminator/Traitor/Zombies have to keep going back to the intelligent designer (Monsanto) in order to stay in the business of farming.
Now if we used Darwinist logic, since Monsanto Terminator/Traitor/Zombie plants can’t reproduce, by definition their fitness is ZERO. And since their fitness is zero, they don’t survive as a species, thus they can’t be intelligently designed. But clearly Darwinist “logic” isn’t logic at all, just theology pretending to be science. Nussbaum was right, not even meaning to be right. He gave justification as to why “bad design” (in terms of Darwinian fitness) is actually good design.
Certainly living systems feel the need to survive or at least behave like they feel the need to survive. When this need of survival is unmet because of sickness and starvation, it is easy to presume there is no intelligent designer since it is presumed an intelligent designer ought to work to satisfy the need of the organism to live and reproduce since the designer created the organism. But this is a presumption only, and contrary to evidence! Monsanto gives a powerful counter example to Darwinist theology masquerading as science.
Unlike Darwinists, I’m willing to call theological speculations theology, and not even pretend to call them science. And here is my speculation. The intelligent designer Monsanto deliberately made maladaptive, sickly organisms so as to assert Monsanto’s importance in the scheme of things. Is it too much of a stretch then to think the Intelligent Designer of the Universe has intelligently designed life and the universe to eventually self-destruct so that He asserts His importance in the scheme of things?
If supposing God made humans immortal without making humans aware of their need of Him, would that be a good design? Maybe, maybe not, but suffice to say unless Darwinists can answer such questions, they have no business insisting maladaptive, self-destructing, “imperfect” systems are evidence against God’s intelligent design much less passing off such speculations as settled science.
The Apostle Paul in Romans 8:20 and 2 Cor 4:17 pointed out that life and the universe are deliberately subject to self-destruction in order to highlight God’s importance and God’s greater works. I’ve often said intelligently designed games like football have meaning because of the possibility of losing teams. There is no reason an Intelligent Designer must make everything perfect. If every football team were perfect, the super bowl would be utterly meaningless.
Would God make an imperfect design? Yes. Recall in John 9:3 what Jesus said, “This man was born blind so that God’s power could be shown in him.” Health is meaningful because of the possibility of sickness, life is meaningful because of the possibility of death, perfect designs are meaningful because of the existence of imperfect designs.
Now, admittedly these are all theological speculations on my part, and in no way are they intended to represent the views of the ID community. I merely write them to point out, that unless the Darwinists can utterly prove that the Intelligent Designer will only make perfect designs, they have no business asserting bad designs are evidence against intelligent design, and they certainly have no business passing off shaky philosophical and theological speculations as settled science.
I arrived at these theological speculations because even I have wondered why so great an Intelligent Designer would make such an imperfect world. I’ve provided in these paragraphs my answer to the “bad design argument”. Even “bad designs” like the blind man’s blindness in John 9:3 can (in the end) be good designs. And similarly the “bad designs” of the plagues of Egypt and the “bad design” of death have made possible the events we associate with Passover and Easter.