Wednesday, February 28, 2007

No Wings

… a further continuation of No Engines, No Wings – Won’t Fly

Earlier I compared Darwinian Evolution to a simulator that gives us what seems to be a reasonable explanation of life on Earth but, when exposed to further scrutiny, turns out to be a fraudulent. It looks good but it won’t fly. First, the Darwinian model has no power to get started because it lacks an explanation for the Origin of Life. But that’s not all.

Beside the notable absence of a Darwinian engine to get it off the ground, there is an equally glaring lack of evidence for its ability to explain the wide range of biological diversity we see in life on Earth. Darwinian evolution has no wings to keep it airborne.In a nutshell, Darwin’s Theory assumed that life began in the aforementioned “warm little pond” with a simple, single-celled organism and then, through eons of gradual, adaptive change, underwent differentiation that led to all the various forms of life we see today. Descent with modification was the phrase Darwin used to describe the growth of his evolutionary tree.With first life as the base of the tree’s trunk, the branches depict the various kingdom and phyla that lead to the genera and species in the tree’s extremities. Sounds great … Doesn’t fly.
Think about it. If this tree of life grew as claimed, we should find literally billions upon billions of “intermediate” forms of life fossilized all over the Earth. The patterns we would expect to uncover should show barely detectable differences in body forms as plants and animals made the minute transformation between their original and current forms. Not only so, but the pattern formed by those billions of fossils should also reveal the equally minute transformation of life from the simplest form (originating in the “warm little pond”) to the most complex advanced life we are surrounded by today (you).

So what do we find? In the 150 years since Darwin proposed this idea, the lack of transitional fossil evidence is the most glaring deficiency in Evolutionary Theory. There simply isn’t any. Though Darwinian devotees are quick to run some of their “missing links” up the media flagpole, the examples they use are lame to insufficient.Take Archaeopteryx for instance. Darwinians love to claim this as proof that it is the “transitional form” between reptiles and birds. One problem with this theory is that actual birds (Protoavis) have been found and dated to exist 75 million years prior to archaeopteryx. Not only so but the bones of modern birds have also been found in geological strata dated to the same time as archaeopteryx. In other words, it appears that birds in some form have been around long before good ‘ole archaeopteryx, while birds as we know and love them today were flitting around with archaeopteryx. How then can it be that archaeopteryx is a transitional form between reptiles and birds? It can’t be.

Those Darwinists, and their text books, that still claim it as such are doing so by an assumption they have made about how Evolution works. They certainly have not done so based on actual fossil evidence. In fact, the same kind of opposing evidence surrounds the oft-touted claims concerning horses, whales, moths or finches. There simply isn’t any justification for the gradualism Evolution is meant to produce.As Phillip Johnson puts it, “…if evolution means the gradual change of one kind of organism into another kind, the outstanding characteristic of the fossil record is the absence of evidence for evolution.” (Darwin on Trial, 50)

The actual fossil evidence gives no support to Darwin’s tree of life. Rather, as Jonathan Wells points out in his book, Icons of Evolution, “the resulting [fossil] pattern is less like a tree than a tangled thicket” (54). What the fossil record shows is that, in complete opposition to the expectations of Evolutionary biology, organisms show up suddenly, completely formed and wildly complex – even the “simplest” forms of life. Once they appear they vary only slightly within genetically defined boundaries for an average million years, and then, just as rapidly as they appear, they disappear into extinction.

Sudden Appearance > Stasis > Extinction

Don’t take my word for it. Listen to Niles Eldredge, a committed evolutionist and contemporary of the late Stephen J. Gould, who, with Gould, first proposed the notion of punctuated equilibrium to describe what we actually find in the fossil record (as opposed to what the Darwinism claims we should find). Says Eldredge:
We paleontologists have said that the history of life supports [the story of gradual adaptive change], all the while really knowing that it does not.
How’s that for a ringing endorsement of Darwinian Evolution? We have to give Eldredge and Gould credit for being intellectually honest enough to admit that the fossil evidence does anything but offer confirmation of Evolution. Their “punctuated equilibrium” is nothing but an attempt to merge the sudden appearance and stasis described above with the naturalistic explanation for life they assumed from the beginning. In order for hard core Darwinists to still demand that their theory is true, they have to ignore the fossil evidence.

They insist that small changes add up to big ones by assuming macroevolution to be true. In other words, to accept the Darwinian Evolution (in the third sense) is to also deem the scientific evidence irrelevant. That’s a mighty fragile branch to stand on in defense of naturalism – and a mighty arrogant claim to be made by those who dismiss Creationist explanations as the wishful invocation of an unprovable “God of the Gaps.”

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