Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Evolutionary Theory Rewritten (Again)

Evolutionary theory has been rewritten yet again. We once thought, but now we understand ... you know the drill. Evolutionary theory is contradicted, overturned, reversed, rethought and rebaked at an alarming rate. It is uncanny how a fact could be so wrong. And with each new embarrassment we are told that science is advancing. If this is progress we would hate to see what failure looks like.

The latest rewrite has to do with that grand icon of evolution, the evolution of early man in Africa and migration out of Africa. But the narrative is now confounded by palaeontological findings in Eurasia. As one evolutionist put it:

Before our findings, the prevailing view was that humans came out of Africa almost 1 million years ago, that they already had sophisticated stone tools, and that their body anatomy was quite advanced in terms of brain capacity and limb proportions. But what we are finding is quite different ... The question is whether Homo erectus originated in Africa or Eurasia, and if in Eurasia, did we have vice-versa migration? This idea looked very stupid a few years ago, but today it seems not so stupid.

Evolution is unique in that it is a fact that is consistently wrong.


  1. Does the last sentence in paragraph one need an edit?

  2. Samuel Skinner

    Obviously you have never read an old history book. History is as fluid as biology and as multifaceted. The reason is unlike things like physics or astronomy where there is a shared lab, the evidence is in many pieces scattered across the planet.

  3. So you actually think that science revising itself in light of new data is a weakness?


  4. Anonymous,

    To me the point seems to be that you can't have it both ways. On the one hand, we're told again and again that the "fact" of evolution is as settled as gravity.

    If true, would we not expect to see revisions to gravitational theory as often as we see revisions to evolutionary theory? Imagine a physicist publishing something like Hunter's citation:

    "Before our findings, the prevailing view was that, [barring some other stronger force, gravity caused objects with sufficient mass to fall when dropped]. But what we are finding is quite different ... The question is whether [gravity really is as well-understood as we thought it was]. This idea looked very stupid a few years ago, but today it seems not so stupid."

    But of course this never happens because gravity really is a settled question.

  5. "So you actually think that science revising itself in light of new data is a weakness?"

    Be careful. Evolutionists use this argument to protect their theory. It is not a matter of whether revising theories is OK, or not OK. It is a question of the types and extent of revisions that occur. See this:

  6. Great post! Love this blog.

    Too bad the Darwinists can't figure any of this obvious stuff out.

    Revising a theory endlessly? Indeed. That's all we've seen since 1859.

    Should we have endlessly revised flat earth scenarios? Or thrown it out the door?

    Darwinists however never get the hint that their theory is the greatest scientific blunder of all time, vastly surpassing flat earth by orders of magnitude. At least back then they had some viable excuse in lack of technology.

    After 150 years of speculations and failure to produce the most vital piece of evidence - demonstrating that macro-evolution is a viable extrapolation of micro-evolution - one would have thought they'd give up.

    But as you say so often, "it's driven by religion". Worse, it is upheld with a religious fervor that should make the Pope blush.

    I think Sir F. Hoyle hit the nail on the head in saying, "Because the old believers said that God came out of the sky, thereby connecting the Earth with events outside it, the new believers were obliged to say the opposite and to do so, as always, with intense conviction. Although the new believers had not a particle of evidence to support their statements on the matter, they asserted that the rabbit producing sludge (called soup to make it sound more palatable) was terrestrially located and that all chemical and biochemical transmogrifications of the sludge were terrestrially inspired. Because there was not a particle of evidence to support this view, new believers had to swallow it as an article of faith, otherwise they could not pass their examinations or secure a job or avoid the ridicule of their colleagues. So it came about from 1860 onward that new believers became in a sense mentally ill, or, more precisely, either you became mentally ill or you quitted the subject of biology, as I had done in my early teens. The trouble for young biologists was that, with everyone around them ill, it became impossible for them to think they were well unless they were ill, which again is a situation you can read all about in the columns of Nature [magazine]." (Hoyle, F., "Mathematics of Evolution," [1987]

  7. Anonymous 5:50- The confusion over having it both ways come from evolution being both fact and theory. Evolution as fact- i.e. common descent, is as settled as gravity. Evolution as theory has undergone and will undergo many revisions. One would expect it to undergo far more than gravity because it's a far more complicated process than gravity, with a great many more historical details. The theory of gravity has also been revised over time- e.g. from Newton to Einstein. And btw- gravity is also fact (things fall) and theory (how they do so).

    Mr. Hunter- science has had over 150 years to progress since Darwin. That he might have made some bad calls isn't especially shocking. Again, Newton isn't considered the be-all and end-all of gravity, and we don't throw out gravitational theory just because Newton had a thing for alchemy.

    Also, that website you reference makes many strange claims. As for example; in the "Mechanisms of biological change," we read:

    We now know that the molecular mechanisms that produce genetic variation are incredibly complex. Whereas early evolutionists might have envisioned a simple sort of blending action or random perturbing force, we now have discovered a highly-intricate Mendelian machine behind variation. Biological variation does not simply arise spontaneously.

    This is a non-sequiter. That genetic variation is a complex process is irrelevant. Also, we do know that biological variation arises spontaneously (at least from our human, non-divine vantage point). It's called "mutation" and is no great nystery. There's also gene duplication, genetic drift, sexual selection, and probably more that professional biologists would know more about than I do. Complexity by itself is not an argument against evolution. Organized complexity is exactly what evolution is supposed to create.

    Hitch- what is the process that prevents micro changes from building up over time to macro levels?

    Anonymous from 4:06 who'll now go by "Boo" to avoid confusion.

  8. Boo 5:04AM Hitch was saying that there's no evidence to show that macro evolution is a viable extrapolation of micro evolution. But if you know of such proof, please let's have it.

  9. Are you asking for proof or evidence? Cause they're not the same thing. Science doesn't actually deal in proof.

    Evidence- changes happen, and there is nothing to stop them from accumulating. Organisms exist in a nested heirarchy of traits. Speciation has been observed. The most reasonable conclusion is that macroevolution happens. If you know of any reason why changes should not accumulate, or any better explanation, feel free to provide it.