If there is no design, there is no designer

As a companion piece to the one on Gary Gutting’s suggestions about god’s simplicity, here is Dawkins on why the whole idea is a non-starter (TGD p 121):

Creationist “logic” is always the same. Some natural phenomenon is too statistically improbable, too complex, too beautiful, too awe-inspiring to have come into existence by chance. Design is the only alternative to chance that the authors can imagine. Therefore a designer must have done it. And science’s answer to this faulty logic is also always the same. Design is not the only alternative to chance. Natural selection is a better alternative. Indeed, design is not a real alternative at all because it raises an even bigger problem than it solves: who designed the designer?

You see he’s not just talking about why the failure of the argument from design makes god seem improbable, he’s also talking about why the argument from design fails. This is central. The argument from design fails because the appearance of design is just that; it’s an illusion; and that makes sense because the designer is nowhere to be found, and not at all likely, and that in turn makes sense, because there is no design, so we might as well stop looking for a designer. There is no need to pace to and fro talking about how god can be simple and identical to all its qualities; we can just bag the whole thing. There is no design; there is no designer; let’s go have a glass of wine.

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