Thursday, February 28, 2008

Mount Improbable

Richard Dawkins has achieved fame speculating on the mechanisms of evolution. One of his books a decade ago was "Climbing Mt. Improbable." The "fact" of evolution is not in question for him and his followers, but he speculates cheerfully on its mechanisms. We may ask just how "improbable" production of effective new organs or new species by happy accident really is.

Evolutionists mostly agree that the "rare and rapid" changes which characterize the entire fossil record (punctuated equilibrium) must occur in a population of organisms which has become isolated from the main population. The change to a new species is said to occur in a large number of the isolated organisms all at once, using the theoretical processes of random mutation and natural selection. Voila! That is supposed to explain how a new species is produced. We may ask, "Is there is anything wrong with that picture?"

The idea that new species have been produced in such a manner is subject to doubt on many counts. Random mutations (harmful to the organisms 99.99% of the time) and natural selection would need to successfully produce new and vital proteins/genes, then new cell types, followed by new tissues, new organs, and new body plans before a new species could be recognized. This random process needs to occur in every specimen of the isolated group. The likelihood of this scenario is remote beyond comprehension. Lack of transitional fossils casts doubt on any gradualistic process.

Let's conclude our discussion with a few quotes from two scientists with no theological basis for their views. David Berlinski, self-proclaimed agnostic, has expressed strong skepticism for evolution's paradigm. "Evolution is the object of superstitious awe," he says, and claims evolution's "...difficulties are resolved by 'sleight of hand.' " Berlinski also says, in reference to evolutionary claims such as the mechanism of PE, "Religiously-based objections may reflect nothing more than skeptical good sense." Michael Denton has also raised significant questions about evolution's claims: "Ultimately, the Darwinian theory of evolution is no more nor less than the cosmogenic myth of the Twentieth Century."