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Darwinian Theory in a Nutshell: Random Events Can Produce the Antithesis of Randomness

Darwinian “theory” has been artificially and unjustifiably elevated into the domain of legitimate, rigorous science. It is nothing of the sort. It is increasingly nonsensical speculation based on a conclusion reached in advance.

Yes, living things have evolved. They share many characteristics. Natural selection is a fact. Random mutations can do some things.

Beyond that, Darwinian theory is utterly vacuous, and explains nothing of any ultimate significance. Boiled down to its essentials, Darwinian theory is a bizarre cult-like belief that random events can produce the antithesis of randomness.

In no other area of science would such obvious nonsense be accepted without scrutiny or dissent.

One can learn the essentials of Darwinian theory and its claims in a few hours. It’s really just that shallow.

Those of us who are involved in real science — in which rigor is demanded, and in which fantastic, evidentially and rationally unsupported stories like those proposed by Darwinists are laughed at — recognize this shallowness and the transparently absurd claims made on behalf of the theory.

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31 Responses to Darwinian Theory in a Nutshell: Random Events Can Produce the Antithesis of Randomness

  1. The thing that impresses me is that evolutionism actually took out of biology the idea of laws and mechanical processes to explain results.
    I find they always invoke evolutionish processes to matters better explained by mechanical biological processes.
    Evolutionism is all about randomness and happanchance.
    Yet in physics etc they do nothing but talk about laws affecting things.
    Evolution seems to have taken away laws from biology.
    I think biology results just need sharper people to figure the laws.
    Biology stills waits for its Newton.

  2. Gil, are you saying that the vast numbers of scientists who do accept the Darwinian theory of evolution are “not involved in real science”?

  3. Dr Liddle:

    Let me bite on this, after the recent exchange in which you finally conceded a most important point.

    Kindly tell me, is the following a priori materialistic frame of thought (from of course Lewontin’s 1997 NYRB article), in any legitimate sense, scientific:

    . . . To Sagan, as to all but a few other scientists, it is self-evident [[actually, science and its knowledge claims are plainly not immediately and necessarily true on pain of absurdity, to one who understands them; this is another logical error, begging the question , confused for real self-evidence; whereby a claim shows itself not just true but true on pain of patent absurdity if one tries to deny it . . ] that the practices of science provide the surest method of putting us in contact with physical reality, and that, in contrast, the demon-haunted world rests on a set of beliefs and behaviors that fail every reasonable test [[i.e. an assertion that tellingly reveals a hostile mindset, not a warranted claim] . . . .

    It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes [[another major begging of the question . . . ] to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute [[i.e. here we see the fallacious, indoctrinated, ideological, closed mind . . . ], for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door. [And if anyone thinks the immediately following words JUSTIFY what was just cited, please read the full clip, notes and following clips at the just linked.]

    Notice, how Lewontin highlights that it is the majority of scientists (in his circles, which are elite circles) who are operating in this way.

    And if you follow the linked, you will see that his is the same frame of thought that is driving the US NAS, as they offer in effect a definition of science for use in schools, in public policy reasoning and the like.

    I would say, in Lakatosian terms, we are looking at a deeply degenerate paradigm, not a progressive one. One that is in the grips of a metaphysical a priori, which fatally compromises and censors it from being able to seek the unfettered truth about our world in light of empirical evidence and inference to best albeit provisional explanation. (And I have not forgotten your “no evidence” dismissive rhetoric.)

    I am afraid, it is reasonable to at least ask whether — or even to outright assert that — such is pseudoscience, not genuine science.

    GEM of TKI

  4. I’m sorry, kf – which important point am I supposed to have “finally conceded”?

    As for Lewontin – he is wrong, IMO, unless by “cannot” he means “we are unable to”, which would be true.

    Science doesn’t have an “a priori adherence to material causes”, it simply doesn’t have the methodology to discover any other kind.

    That doesn’t mean we can’t infer design, of course, and we do, regularly.

  5. Elizabeth:

    Gil, are you saying that the vast numbers of scientists who do accept the Darwinian theory of evolution are “not involved in real science”?

    If it is untestable, scientifically, is it science?

    Dr Behe asked:

    Let’s turn the tables and ask, how could one falsify the claim that, say, the bacterial flagellum was produced by Darwinian processes?

    We are still waiting for an answer…

  6. 6

    The interesting issue of evolutionary theory is not if natural selection occurs – it does; nor if random mutations occur – they do; nor even that a combination thereof can result in some environmental advantage – they do.

    The question is if that process, which is observable and testable, is fundamentally the same process that over time builds far more complex, interdependent, highly functional features.

    Unless one has observed such processes building such features, and have vetted those processes as “natural” selection and as “random” mutation in some way; or have provided a falsifiable analysis of some sort that demonstrates (not claims, but demonstrates) such forces to be reasonably capable of acquiring those kinds of biological targets, then to assert that the known process is capable of acquiring those targets is premature.

    Evidence that a phenomena can get you to one location is not evidence it can get you to any location; because a man can walk down to the corner store doesn’t mean that, given enough time, he can walk to the moon. That is known as a hasty generalization.

    Is there evidence that natural selection and random mutation can get to a bacterial flagellum? Claiming that a path exists to the location is not the same as demonstrating one’s walking mechanism can follow that path to that location. A path exists to the moon; I cannot walk to the moon, but a different method can.

    What reason does anyone have for believing that their observable process can get get to where they claim it can get (as scientific fact, yet!), other than “just so” narratives that assume the consequent and provide no method for falsification? It has never been vetted and observed to acquire such a target; it has never (to my knowledge) been demonstrated reasonably capable of acquiring such targets (via a realistic simulation or mathematical analysis); it is only assumed to be able to acquire such targets.

    And this is passed off not only as science, but as scientific fact as well-demonstrated as gravity!

  7. Don’t forget that Darwinism is based on errors (random mutation) but it somehow produced error control systems.

  8. Actually, “Darwinism” isn’t. Darwin did not know how variance was created, and there is still a lot we don’t know about it.

    And I think you have to be very careful with the word “error” – novel variants of sequences are those present in neither parent. These arise from a variety of mechanisms, including recombination.

    But if we stick to cloning for now, even then, an “error” is only an “error” in the sense that it is not a faithful copy of the parent organism. Clearly a copying system that has very little fidelity won’t result in evolution; equally clearly a perfect copying system won’t. And so there is no mystery as to why what evolved were systems that do a reasonable, but not perfect, job of self-replication.

    You might even call a system that ensure perfect self-replication an “error” because that would preclude the ability to adapt. I once accidentally did that in my code – commented out the line that added random variance – and my critters wouldn’t adapt. My error was to omit the “error”-making.

  9. Elizabeth,

    I suspect you will be writing Dawkins, Coyne, Provine, Margulis et al., and tell them they are wrong. The point being according to the theory of evolution all genetic changes are accidents/ errors/ mistakes. And that is what ID challenges.

  10. I’m just saying, be careful of the word.

    I’m not saying anything that contradicts any of the people you mention.

  11. “Errors” and “mistakes” are words that just anthropomorphise the process. As far as nature is concerned, the process is just one molecule being replicated in a manner that means it isn’t an exact copy of the precursor.

    If a crystal grew in such a manner that an impurity caused part of it to grow off-axis, would you bother to call it an “error” or “mistake”?

  12. Gil, are you saying that the vast numbers of scientists who do accept the Darwinian theory of evolution are “not involved in real science”?

    Correct. It’s pseudoscience. It has some degree of validity within a limited domain, but extrapolations made from the mechanism of random errors filtered by natural selection to explain complex, tightly functionally integrated information-processing systems is simply unwarranted on any grounds of either evidence or rationality.

    The Darwinian literature is littered with unsupported speculation that would be unacceptable in any domain of legitimate scientific investigation.

  13. Darwinism: Dumb luck creates intelligence.

    Is there any wonder why intelligent people reject the theory?

  14. Yes, it’s testable, so yes, it’s science.

    I did already answer that question, though – no, it wouldn’t be easy to falsify that claim, but one could have a good shot at verifying it, as Matzke and Pallen did.

    On the whole, science doesn’t proceed by falsification, it proceeds by fitting models to data. Darwinian evolution fits the data very well. If a model comes up that fits the data even better, then Darwinian evolution will be discarded.

    What generally happens, though, and is happening as we speak, is that the broad Darwinian model is constantly extended and adjusted to account for specific observations.

    The biggest change, apart from genetics, I would say, since Darwin’s day, has been the incorporation of drift.

  15. All Matzke and Pallen did was provie more just-so stories, although a bit more sophisticated than Dawkins’ versions.
    No one has actually run a proper experiment as they do in other fields of science. For example, change the type III sectretory system by actually modifying nucleotides step by step in a living bacterium, or in big jumps if you like if you find only large scale ‘miscopying’ will allow you to jump to the next structure.
    Why has no one done this? then you could boast. Instead someone just writes a just-so story.
    Its comical, like trying to explain gravity with a just so story and not doing any physical experiments.

  16. How can it be tested?

    Matzke and Pallen did not verify anything beyond alleged homologs of the proteins that make up the bacterial flagellum, exist. They still have no idea if accumulations of genetic accidents can produce one.

    Darwinian evolution fits the data? There isn’t any evidence Darwinian evolution can construct new, useful and functional multi-part systems. Darwinian evolution fits the model of breaking stuff.

    Dawrinian evolution fits the data if and only if “data” = evolutionary imagination.

  17. It is the evolutionists who use that word. That is my point.

  18. Just follow the link and scroll up a tad . . .

  19. GR: Da’s a point, mon! G

  20. “Darwinian ‘theory’ has been artificially and unjustifiably elevated into the domain of legitimate, rigorous science. It is nothing of the sort. It is increasingly nonsensical speculation based on a conclusion reached in advance.”

    Now for the egregious contradictions:

    “Yes, living things have evolved. They share many characteristics. Natural selection is a fact. Random mutations can do some things.

    Beyond that, Darwinian theory is utterly vacuous….”

    How could the author not see the egregious contradictions? “Darwinism is false, but….” Before Darwin published in 1859, science held species immutable (Darwin 1859:6). For the author to observe rightly that Darwinism is “nonsensical,” then in the next breath say all the main claims are true (mutability and selection), indicates a serious flaw in logic and thinking (to say the least).

    Ray Martinez (Old Earth, Paleyan IDist-species immutabilist)

  21. as to; ‘Before Darwin published in 1859, science held species immutable’

    Did the ranchers, before Darwin, who bred their animals to accentuate desired inherent traits think that their ‘species were absolutely immutable’??? Did the farmers who bred their crops to accentuate desired inherent traits think that their crops were absolutely immutable???

    Evolution? – The Deception Of Unlimited Variation – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4113898/

  22. “Darwinian Theory in a Nutshell: Random Events Can Produce the Antithesis of Randomness”

    In other words unguided processes can and do produce orderly results. The claim is highly illogical. Darwinists cannot identify any effect that justifies the “unguided” description. Until they do these processes do not exist.

    Ray Martinez, Old Earth, Paleyan IDist-species immutabilist

  23. It is surprising that the OP mentions natural selection – Darwin’s primary explanation for the production of order and environmental fit – only to then exclude it from the description of the theory’s essentials (“Darwinian theory is a … belief that random events can produce the antithesis of randomness”).

    While mutations are generally accepted to be random with respect to fitness, selection is the antithesis of this randomness. If you exclude non-random componenets from evolutionary theory then, sure, you’re left with a theory of randomness alone generating non-random patterns. It is, however, a strawman.

  24. There’s more to it then a lack of order. Natural forces at work produce notable non-random arrangements – stalactites, stalagmites, crystals, and pyrite cubes come first to mind. I don’t think anyone is suggesting that undirected natural forces can produce a degree of order. Even the predictable nature of rivers running in one direction.

    This opposite of randomness goes a step further. It shows the type of construction that is only observed to come from purposeful design. You can’t create a device with numerous interworking parts that require steps to assemble without having any interest in the function or even awareness of those steps.

    Even if you don’t exclude the non-random components, what’s left doesn’t achieve that level of organization except in high-level hypothetical narratives.

  25. Correction:
    I don’t think anyone is suggesting that undirected natural forces can can’t produce a degree of order.

  26. This opposite of randomness goes a step further. It shows the type of construction [a device with numerous interworking parts] that is only observed to come from purposeful design.

    Excluding biology, which is contentious for the purposes of this discussion, we have only the single reference point – ourselves. And once we look closer, the types of constructions in biology and those of our own making bear little resemblance. IOW, what you’re doing is making selective use of threadbare data to support your claim.

  27. You called them “constructions.” Are they that dissimilar?

  28. 28
    William J. Murray

    On the whole, science doesn’t proceed by falsification, it proceeds by fitting models to data. Darwinian evolution fits the data very well. If a model comes up that fits the data even better, then Darwinian evolution will be discarded.

    How would we know if the data fits very well or not, if the “fit” isn’t arbited by a means of falsification?

    Neo-Darwinists provide no predictive, falsifiable metric for their macroevolutionary narrative. Their process – RM* + NS* – has never been observed to generate macroevolutionary features; they are assumed to have done so via a hasty generalization. Because RM* & NS* can acquire some evolutionary locations does not mean it can acquire all evolutionary locations; it is not the job of the skeptic to demonstrate it cannot – it is the job of the person advancing that position to demonstrate their process can do what they claim.

    Since the “natural” in selection, and the “random” in mutation cannot be directly observed, the only means by which to demonstrate such forces capable of producing any feature whatsover – micro or, especiallly, macro – is via some kind of stochastic/simulatory analysis that faithfully uses known math and observations that establishes a mean for “natural” and “random” contributions to the equation.

    Without such a successful, retrodictive analysis, claiming that RM* & NS* are factually cappable of acquiring **any** categorical evolutionary location is extremely premature.

    Since ID researchers have lately been running the numbers, neo-Darwinists are in the unenviable position of having to deny and attack the methods and the people who are actually doing what they should have done in the first place, before enshrining their model as scientific fact – run the real numbers. If you can’t run the real numbers that would demonstrate your proposed process to be capable (since it has never been observed to be capable), then you have no business calling your idea anything other than a hypothesis.

    It’s amusing how ID is attacked for not presenting a falsifiable metric, then when it does, neo-Darwinists do not like the metric, but when asked for their own metric (which would be the same metric) they say that “on the whole, science doesn’t proceed by falsification”.

  29. William,

    You are far more eloquent and convincing than I.

  30. ‘Constructions’ was used as a continuation from the quote.

    Yes, they are dissimilar. For example, eukaryotic genomes do not look anything that humans have designed or constructed. Critically, they are full of apparently non-functional, repetitive unconserved sequences. Yet these sequences make sense from an evolutionary perspective under population genetics – i.e. the interplay between selection and drift in small populations. Note, when I say non-functional, this is not simply because we do not know of a function, but because of several lines of argument that point to their probable non-functionality.

    You may well argue that the genome has hidden, unknown functions, and you may be right if you made this argument – at least for fragments of the genome. This does not alter the fundamental problem: the genome still does not look like a product of intelligence alongside the single reference point we have for products of intellgence.

  31. Natural selection is energy temporarily constrained in a mass format. Period.

    Is Evolution Predictable

    Of course it is.
    Nearly. Approximation, proportional to extent of included factors.
    And AFTER comprehending what evolution is…

    A.
    Is Evolution Predictable
    http://news.sciencemag.org/sci.....f4669c78af

    B.
    From DH comment on
    http://www.sciencenews.org/ind.....ine_humans

    Origin And Nature Of Natural Selection

    Life is another mass format, a self-replicating mass format.
    All mass formats are subject to natural selection.
    Natural selection is the delaying conversion of mass to the energy fueling cosmic expansion.
    Cosmic expansion is the reconversion of all the Big Bang singularity mass to energy.

    Natural Selection Updated 2010, Beyond Historical Concepts:

    Natural Selection applies to ALL mass formats. Life, a self-replicating format, is just one of them.
    Natural Selection Defined:

    Natural selection is E (energy) temporarily constrained in an m (mass) format. Period.

    Natural selection is a ubiquitous property of each and every and all cosmic mass, spin array, formats, from the biggest black hole to the smallest physical particle. Mass strives to increase its constrained energy content in attempt to postpone its reconversion to energy and to postpone addition of its constitutional energy to the totality of the cosmic energy that fuels the cosmic expansion going on since Big Bang.

    Dov Henis
    (comments from 22nd century)
    http://universe-life.com/

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