Evolution Encyclopedia Vol. 3
EVOLUTION AND PHILOSOPHY
"Evolution is sometimes the key mythological element in a philosophy that functions as a virtual religion." -*E. Harrison, "Origin and Evolution of the Universe, " Encyclopedia Britannica: Macropaedia (1974), p. 1007.
"Our theory of evolution has become . . one which cannot be refuted by any possible observations. It is thus `outside of empirical science,' but not necessarily false." -*L. Birch and *P. Ehrlich, "Evolutionary History and Population Biology, " Nature 216 (1967), p. 352.
"It can, indeed, explain anything. You may be ingenious or not in proposing a mechanism which looks plausible to human beings . . but it is still an unfalsifiable theory." -*R. Wall, "Discussion, " in the Mathematical Challenges to the Neo Darwinian Interpretation of Evolution (1967), p. 71.
"After this step-wise elimination, only one possibility remains: the Darwinian theory of natural selection, whether or not coupled with Mendelism, is false. I have already shown that the arguments advanced by the early champions were not very compelling, and that there are now considerable numbers of empirical facts which do not fit with the theory. Hence, to all intents and purposes the theory has been falsified, so why has it not been abandoned?
"I think the answer to this question is that current evolutionists follow Darwin's example-they refuse to accept falsifying evidence. "-*S. Lovtrup, Darwinism: ?lie Refutation of a Myth (1987), p. 352.
The title of this brief chapter may sound uninteresting, but within it you will find another method used by dedicated evolutionist to defend evolution. Because in some circles that method is being used successfully, it needs to be presented and refuted.
Throughout this set of books we have observed, time and time again, that evolution simply has no proof supporting it. We have also seen that there is a strong body of evidence against it. Thirdly, we have been happily surprised to find so much evidence in favor of creationism. Frankly, the situation is becoming desperate for the evolutionists. In chapter 29, History of Evolution, we discussed several high-ranking scientific meetings that were held to discuss ways to salvage evolutionary theory. But each time, so much additional negative data has been presented, that the assembly adjourned having accomplished little more than futile discussions and open arguments.
1 - SOLVING THE NO-EVIDENCE PROBLEM
Emerging from the desolating prospects of the situation, a hero of sorts has arisen who has developed a theory which, it is hoped, will provide an iron-clad coating of protection for the sorry mess known as evolutionary theory. Whether or not that was his intention we do not know, but that is the way it has worked out.
The man's name is *Sir Karl Raimund Popper, formerly Professor of Logic and Scientific Method at the London School of Economics, and now Professor of the Philosophy of Science at the University of London. He is highly honored for the rescue operation he has offered to the beleaguered descendants of Darwin. He is now referred to as "the greatest living scientific philosopher."
What is all this about? Here it is:
For over 150 years, evolutionists have tried to find some type of evidence somewhere that can clearly show they have a correct theory. The 20th century brought with it a wealth of new discoveries, techniques, and advanced scientific equipment. But the result has only been to deluge the evolutionist cause with powerful reasons why evolution is simply an impossible theory. All the new evidence confirms the old: the theory cannot work, and is totally unscientific in every sense.
But then Popper came along and took a stale argument that had often been used in the past by evolutionary debaters as a final defense, just before fleeing the podium and the penetrating questions of creationists.
Popper took the old dodge and turned it into "a scientific philosophy," and it is this: Evolution cannot be proved or disproved; it resides in a magical other world beyond scientific facts and commonplace reality. Evolution cannot be disproved, for it cannot be falsified. It is alike unprovable and unfalsifiable.
The inference from this view of Popper is that mankind must accept the errors of evolution just as they read, without offering questions or objections. Do not think, do not reason; just accept it as is.
So there it is: ' Karl Popper's philosophy of science as it relates to evolutionary theory. It is a refuge for weary evolutionists where they can hide from the storm of facts coming at them from all sides.
The heart of Popper's theory is to be found in this word "falsifiable." Popper says that "Evolution is not falsifiable." By this, he means that it cannot be proven false. But he also agrees that it therefore cannot be proven true either. We must just accept it on faith, trusting in an intelligence, deeper than our own, the intelligence which resided in the men who invented the theory of evolution.
Talk about "humanism"! That is about as humanistic as can be had. Blow out your brains and simply accept what the atheists tell you, without thinking, without questioning, without evidence, without disagreeing. To do otherwise is not to have the correct philosophy of science.
Popper's thinking goes deeper than the above summary. He says that if a hypothesis cannot be falsified in any of its predictions, then it is not a valid scientific hypothesis; it is not scientific. It is outside the realm of scientific investigation.
Evolutionists do not worry themselves about the "nonscientific" part, but jump on the "not falsifiable" part, and loudly proclaim: "According to Popper, you must accept our theory as it is; it cannot be disproved!"
At the urging of evolutionists, Popper in 1980 relaxed his position somewhat, declaring that, although evolution still could not be falsified, yet it might be scientific after all. That revised position was an attempt to give the evolutionists the best of both sides of the matter.
OUTSIDE AND ABOVE SCIENCE-In chapter 25, Laws of Nature, we learned that a variety of evolutionists claim that the teachings of evolution are above and outside of the laws of nature. We will now learn that the adherents of this peculiar theory believe that evolution is outside of and above science and all its findings!
"I think it was Medawar who said that one thing about the theory of evolution is (and he quoted Popper) that it is not falsifiable, that whatever happens you can always explain it."-V. Weisskopf, "Discussion, " in the Mathematical Challenges to the Neo-Darwinian Interpretation of Evolution (1967), p. 64.
*Birch and *Ehrlich boast of the traps -scientific powers of evolutionary theory:
"Our theory of evolution has become . . one which cannot be refuted by any possible observations. Every conceivable observation can be fitted into it . . No one can think of ways in which to test it. Ideas, either without basis or based on a few laboratory experiments carried out in extremely simplified systems, have attained currency far beyond their validity. They have become part of an evolutionary dogma accepted by most of us as part of our training."- *L.C. Birch and *P. Ehrlich, Nature, April 22, 1967.
"Our theory of evolution has become . . one which cannot be refuted by any possible observations. It is thus 'outside of empirical science,' but not necessarily false." -*L Birch and *P. Ehrlich, "Evolutionary History and Population Biology," Nature 216 (1967), p. 352.
*Wald says it can explain anything, for it is infallible.
"It can, indeed, explain anything. You may be ingenious or not in proposing a mechanism which looks plausible to human beings . . but it is still an unfalsifiable theory. "-R. Wald, "Discussion, " in the Mathematical Challenges to the NeoDarwinian Interpretation of Evolution (1967), p. 71.
The colorful words of *Pareto surely apply to such mentality:
"Give me a fruitful error any time, full of seeds, bursting with its own corrections. You can keep your sterile truth for yourself. " Vilfredo Pareto, quoted in Asimov's Book of Science and Nature Quotations, p. 84.
TOO LARGE A SUBJECT TO PRESENT EVIDENCE FOR--Evolutionists tell us that evolutionary theory is so wonderful and great, and so many factors are involved, that it is impossible for scientists to gather together the evidence needed to support all the variables. There is no lack of supportive evidence, but it requires just too much work to go out and collect it. But the truth is that, at great expense and at the cost of men's entire lives, they have searched in vain for the evidence for over 150 years.
Here is how *von Herzen puts it:
"Where many physical variables are relevant over a broad range of time and space scales, as for most earth science hypotheses, formal 'proof' becomes difficult or impossible. The validity of an hypothesis then becomes a subjective judgment, either individually a by many persons, and is frequently dependent on the way the original hypothesis is framed." R.P. von Herzen, "Reply to Tatsch, " in Transactions of the American Goophysical Union, 60(34)626 (1979).
On this basis, it would not be possible to send a rocket into outer space, for so many details would need to be worked out that scientists could not possibly do it all; they would have to throw up their hands in despair and give up the project. Yet such is not the case. In genuine areas of science, men persevere, solve the problems and push the project through to success.
Someone will object that evolutionary theory should be treated differently than other areas of scientific endeavor. No, it should receive the same treatment. Here is why: (1) Evolution is nothing more than a set of several hypotheses. (2) Each of these hypotheses can be checked for accuracy in relation to known facts. If evidence is found supporting their claims, then the hypotheses can stand. If evidence is not found that clearly supports the intent of each hypothesis,-then the hypothesis should be dropped. Verification or falsification is keyed to evidence. And there is plenty of that. In this book we have viewed quantities of factual evidence uncovered by scientists over the past 200 years. If each aspect of evolutionary theory has no evidence supporting it, then it has been falsified and is useless, and should be discarded. We do not have to waste time treasuring a theory which has no evidence in its favor!
For example: evolutionary theory teaches that 345 to 395 million years ago, the Devonian stratum was laid down worldwide. That purported fact can easily be proven or disproven. Simply dig down to the level the evolutionists call "Devonian" and see if there is any valid evidence for declaring it to be 345 to 395 million years old. The evidence supporting the theory will be found in the stratum if it is to be found at all. But no such evidence exists. There is nothing in the stratum, in the so-called "index fossils" within it, or in any of the other fossils in it-to date that rock at "345 to 395 million years old." The statement is just a fiction. There are no dates etched into the rocks or on those fossils.
To describe it in *Popper's vocabulary: The theory requires certain dates for the Devonian; therefore it PREDICTS that actual dates will be found in strata called "Devonian" by those holding to the theory. Searching for those dates, and then not finding them, FALSIFIES that part of the theory of evolution.
The same would apply to all the other aspects of the theory. One by one, they could be examined and discarded, if scientists dared to do so.
NOT REPEATABLE Patterson declares that evolutionary theory is safe from the prying eye of scientific analysis, for it deals with events "which are unrepeatable."
"If we accept Popper's distinction between science and non-science, we must ask first whether the theory of evolution by natural selection is scientific or pseudo-scientific (metaphysical) . .Taking the first part of the theory, that evolution has occurred, it says that the history of life is a simple process of species-splitting and progression. This process must be unique and unrepeatable, like the history of England. This part of the theory is therefore a historical theory, about unique events, and unique events are, by definition, not part of science, for they are unrepeatable, and so not subject to test."--Win Patterson, Evolution (1978), pp. 145-148.
' Dobzhansky agreed:
"The evolutionary happenings . . [of paleontology and paleobiology are] unique, unrepeatable, and irreversable."-'T. Dobzhansky, "On Methods of Evolutionary Biology and Anthropology, " in American Scientist 45 (1957), p. 388. Elsewhere, Patterson again reiterated the past occurrence of evolution, and agreed with Popper that the theory was "metaphysical" and not "scientific."
"So, at present, We are left with neo-Darwinian theory: that evolution has occurred, and has been directed mainly by natural selection, with random contributions from genetic drift, and perhaps the occasional hopeful monster. In this form, the theory is not scientific by Popper's standards. Indeed, Popper calls the theory of evolution not a scientific theory but `a metaphysical research programme'."--Colin Patterson, Evolution (1978), p. 149.
If any evidence could be found in defense of the theory, you can be assured the evolutionists would be quick to bring it forward and triumphantly declare their theory to now rank in the category of "science."
Does evolution only deal with "unrepeatable" events? As far as the random evolving of each species is concerned, yes that would be true. Each species is unique and therefore-if evolutionary theory were true-the chance production of each species would indeed be a once-in-forever, non-repeatable occurrence.
But, to the sorrow of the evolutionists, there is more to it than that: For each such species, a series of non-repeatable transitional species leading up to it from the species it evolved out of-should also be found. Evolution is ongoing, and millions of species now exist. So the fossil record should provide us with an abundance of evidence for transitional species in the past. We should find them all through the fossil record, for there are millions of species. We should see large numbers of the transitional forms alive today also. But such is not the case; all we find are separate and distinct species. The largest single section of scientific quotations on a single topic-to be found anywhere in this book-deals with admissions by scientists in chapter 17, Fossils and Strata, that there are only distinct species and only gaps between those species in the fossil record. That one (one!) point alone totally annihilates the possibility that biological evolution has occurred on this planet. We know from genetic and amino acid data in chapter 10, DNA and Protein, that an immense species barrier exists within each species; a barrier which cannot be crossed. But, before leaving the matter of "unrepeatable," let us consider one more factor:
If random action of harmful mutations and so-called "natural selection" is supposed to be able to produce only one of a kind of each type of new species-and never again be able to duplicate the feat,-then no new species could be produced, for each non-repeatable event would have to happen TWICE at the same time and nearly the same location-in order to produce both a male and a female! If that did not occur, the single new species could not breed and reproduce more of its kind.
Evolution reminds us of a giant puzzle, which keeps getting bigger the more we work at it. The more we try to solve it, the more there is to solve. It is a never-ending task.
Of course there is a simple solution: just trash the whole theory.
POPPER SPEAKS Let us for a few moments turn our attention to *Karl Popper. Whether intentionally or not, Popper would remove evolutionary theory from the category of scientific endeavor, eliminate the need to have it subjected to tests, evidence, proofs, or disproofs--and declare it to be a "metaphysical research programme." This would place evolution in the same category with cult worship, idolatry and similar things. And perhaps that is the best that can be said for it.
In contrast, creation science is based on scientific facts, and provides an abundance of scientific evidence drawn from all quarters of the natural world in its defense. In addition, creation scientists have united with secular scientists in uncovering a wide range of evidences disproving evolution. None need concern himself about whether it is "testable," "untestable," or "falsifiable;"--evolution has already been abundantly disproved! And it is not necessary to take our word for it; anyone can examine the facts and evidence for himself; this set of books, other books, and all nature is filled with it.
Here is what *Karl Popper has to say about the theory of evolution:
"There will be well-testable theories, hardly testable theories, and non-testable theories. Those which are non-testable theories are of no interest to empirical scientists. They may be described as metaphysical." -*Karl Popper, Conjectures and Refutations (1963), p. 257.
"I have come to the conclusion that Darwinism is not a testable scientific theory, but a metaphysical research programme-a possible framework for testable scientific theories."-Karl Popper, Upended Quest (1976), p. 151.
*Gliedman brings up an interesting point that is almost humorous: He explains that Popper's supposition in regard to evolutionary theory fits Popper's own standard-and is not itself testable either! Here we truly have the blind leading the blind! Scientists are not supposed to test the pro and con evidence regarding evolutionary theory, just because Popper says so. But they must not test Popper's theory about the theory either, for THAT is not supposed to be testable either! Neither the theory of evolution, nor Popper's teflon coating placed upon it is to be subjected to normal scientific analysis!
"Popper is the most famous philosopher of science of our age. . 'What experiments can you do to test Popper's theory of scientific theories?' asks Eccles. 'Can you put Popper's theory on the mat and try to falsify it the way he says that a scientist should try to falsify an empirical scientific theory? The answer is 'no' because Popper's theory of scientific method is not science; it is metaphysics." John Gliedman, "Scientists in Search of the Soul, " in Science Digest 90:77-78 (1x82).
Having won the armor plating for their theory that they wanted, the evolutionists then stopped to consider the negatives attached to the plating: Popper had said evolution was not "scientific." So they worked on him awhile until he revised his opinion of the matter:
First, he modified it in 1978 in a discussion of natural selection, which, along with mutations, comprises the primary mechanisms by which evolutionary processes are supposed to occur:
"I have in the past described the theory [of natural selection] as 'almost tautological', and I have tried to explain how the theory of natural selection could be untestable and yet of great scientific interest. My solution was that the doctrine of natural selection is a most useful metaphysical research programme . .
"I still believe that natural selection works in this way as a research programme. Nevertheless, I have changed my mind about the testability and the logical status of the theory of natural selection; and I am glad to have an opportunity to make a recantation."-"Karl Popper, "Natural Selection and the Emergence of Mind, " in Dialectics 32(339):344-345 (1978).
A further admission in favor of evolution came in 1980. *Popper said that even unique events can often be tested.
"I here wish to affirm that these and other historical sciences have in my opinion scientific character; their hypotheses can in many cases be tested. It appears as if some people would think that the historical sciences are untestable because they describe unique events. However, the description of unique events can very often be tested by deriving from them testable predictions or retrodictions." *Karl Popper, Letter to New Scientist, August 20, 1980, p. 611.
"Popper has to some degree relaxed his position in a way that favours Darwinism, admitting (in a letter to the New Scientist dated 20 August 1980) that 'the description of unique events can very often be tested by deriving from them testable predictions or retrodictions'. It could, for example, be argued that the Darwinian model would be falsified if fossils of advanced animals were discovered lower in the earth's strata than those of their assumed ancestors; only a single human finger-bone discovered in authentic Devonian strata would topple a huge edifice of contemporary science, and set the whole world thinking along new lines. To this extent the evolutionary model itself may be judged scientifically valid, even though the Darwinian explanation of how it came about remains, for the time being, unproven. "-Michael Pitman, Adam and Evolution (1984), pp. 21-22.
Thus, evolutionary theory could essentially retain its teflon coating, while again being raised to the status of a science. Yet, ironically, a wealth of scientific evidence able to falsify it has been produced. In the above quotation, Pitman mentioned just two points of potential falsification as possible examples. Elsewhere in this set of books we have cited evidence for those two points, along with many others. But the evidence is ignored, for the same men who guard the well-protected, but now "scientific," theory-are the very ones who would have to judge as to the validity of the evidence disproving evolution. And they will not consider it.
Pitman said, "if fossils of advanced animals were discovered lower in the strata than their assumed ancestors," this would provide the needed evidence against evolution. Read chapter 17, Fossils and Strata for examples of such evidence. The strata are so mixed up that a variety of fossils are regularly found in "wrong" strata. "downwashing" and "reworking" are the excuses given to hide them. When entire massive layers of strata are below their proper area, they are said to be "overthrusts" that journeyed there across level land hundreds of miles.
Pitman said, "only a single finger-bone " in Devonian strata would topple the edifice of evolution. Read chapter 18, Ancient Man, and you will find that type of evidence. Entire human skeletons, as well as man-made tools have been found in strata far below their "proper" level. Human footprints have been found in Cambrian strata, complete with sandals!
The same year that *Popper said evolution might in some way be "scientific" after all, another scientist also expressed his concern to maintain protection for the evolutionary strata theory against its critics, while still affirming that the theory was "scientific":
"I sought to distinguish between theories and other scientific statements, not between science and non-science. . In denying that classifications are scientific theories I do not mean to deny that classifications can be scientific. " -'D. Kilts, Theories and Other Scientific Statements" in Systematic Zoology 29, p. 191 (1980).
Thus, the theory can be scientific and yet nicely protected. *Brady explains why the theory is unassailable:
"Most recent critics have already understood this and are actually arguing that the theory is not falsifiable in its operational form. Under examination, the operational forms of the concepts of adaptation and fitness turn out to be too indeterminate to be seriously tested, for they are protected by ad hoc additions drawn from an indeterminate realm."-'R. Brady, "Natural Selection and the Criteria by Which a Theory is Judged," in Systematic Zoology, 28:600 (1979).
Elsewhere, *Brady explains that the theory lacks the "potential" for falsification, whatever that is supposed to mean.
"The theory has no empirical support. Its strength comes from its logical power to generate explanations for every manner of organic adaptation rather than from the evidence, which, as we have seen, contains no potential for falsification."-'R. Beady, "Dogma and Doubt," in Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 17 (1982), p. 88.
2 - ADAPTING THE THEORY
TO THE OBJECTIONS
CRITICS SAY: "UNFALSEFIABLE" Not only is the claim of "unfasefiable" used as a defense by the beleaguered evolutionists, but many scientists echo the word,-not as a defense but as a charge.
Thinking scientists are disgusted with the manner in which the evolutionists receive the barrage of evidence continually brought forth against their beloved theory. They either ignore it, play it down, excuse it, or try to twist it around and use it as an addition to their already heavily-patched up theory.
Neo-Darwinism is a shapeless mass, composed of blobs of one objection after another which have been rationalized and stuck onto the whole.
"Neo-Darwinists [are] liberal in their willingness to accept virtually anything within their paradigm. Of course, defenders of the faith thereby weaken their main claim: how can neo-Darwinism be considered a meaningful theoretical construct if all presumptive conflicting observations are immediately considered to be part-and-parcel of the theory?
"This every-widening scope of new-Darwinism is both a boon and a bane for its critics. A boon, because if neo-Darwinism continues to swallow up any and all challenges, then eventually it will forfeit any claim to be taken seriously as a scientific theory; a bane, because critics have an increasingly difficult time focusing on the core of neo-Darwinism as it becomes more and more amorphous [shapeless]."-'J. Craycraft, "Book Review of Beyond Darwinism," in Cladistics, 1 (1985), p. 300-301.
In chapter 23, we provide a brief review of the high points in a broad-ranging book in defense of evolution. Most of the evidence in that book consisted of information that either had nothing to do with evolution (some animals change coat color in the winter), or that runs counter to it (Mendel's discoveries).
Recognizing that the general public knows little about science, evolutionists discuss a variety of neutral or contrary evidence as though it supported the theory!
"Neo-Darwinism, the theory that evolution can be adequately explained in terms of natural selection of random variations [working on small mutational changes], is not falsifiable. Many of the potential falsifiers that have been suggested turn out to be tests not of neo-Darwinism but of something else, frequently of the hypothesis that evolution has occurred. Others, such as those having to do with non-adaptedness and gradualism, are inherently incapable of providing conclusive tests. The remainder . . are so hedged about with qualifications as to make the theory invulnerable . .
The synthetic theory possesses a remarkable elasticity: when under attack it expands to include almost anything, but once the pressure is relaxed it contracts to the definition given by Maynard Smith."-*P. Saunders and *M. Ho, "Is NeoDarwinism Falsifiable? and Does It Matter?" in Nature & System, 4 (1982), p. 191.
That elasticity is born of desperation. Lacking any evidence to support it, no one can really say that the theory of evolution is scientific.
"If then, as seems reasonable, science is to be thought of as an adaptive or feedback process, why is it that another adaptive process, evolution, seems to have difficulty in establishing its scientific credentials? . .
"This unpredictability, of course, makes experimental falsification of the theory very difficult, and so, by Popper's criterion, leaves the scientific status of the theory unsure."-'J. Sparkes, "What is this Thing called Science?" in New Scientist, 89 (1981), p. 158.
THE DREAM WORLD OF THE EVOLUTIONISTS Truly, evolutionary theory is an astounding product of thought and imagination. Whereas creationism is based solidly on scientific evidence, evolution has no significant facts to support it, is outside of natural law, defies challenges, ignores many objections, and shapes others in order to absorb them.
The theory makes a worshipful god out of random events.
"The irony is devastating. The main purpose of Darwinism was to drive every last trace of an incredible God from biology. But the theory replaces God with an even more incredible deity: omnipotent chance."-'T. Roszak, Unfinished Animal (1975), pp. 101-102.
It would be all right for evolution to explain everything-if in each instance the evidence supported it, as is the case with creationism. But because evolutionary theory consists only of theories without any scientific support, it appears ludicrous in the eyes of thoughtful scientists.
"I have always been slightly suspicious of the theory of evolution because of its ability to account for any property of living beings (the long neck of the giraffe, for example). I have therefore tried to see whether biological discoveries over the last thirty years or so fit in with Darwin's theory; I do not think they do . . To my mind, the theory does not stand up at all."-'H. Lipson, "A Physicist Looks of Evolution, " in Physics Bulletin, 31, (1980), p. 138.
*Bethell explains that foolish statements are difficult to test.
"Darwin proposes no criterion of fitness other than that of survival itself . . It follows that 'the survival of the fittest' is not a testable theory, but a tautology. Which one survives? The fittest. Who are they? Those that survive."-'T. Bethell, "Darwin's Unfalsifiable Theory, " in Kronos, Summer 1982, p. 33-34.
Darwinism dares not speak specifically about anything. All statements that it presents must be generalized; never must details be given. This is because the facts found throughout nature contradict the theory, so all efforts toward discussion of details must be avoided when trying to answer the objections.
"Natural selection is almost always handled in general temps . . This means that it has no explanatory power when specific problems arise."-"Norman Macbeth, Darwin Retried (1971), p. 44.
When objections are raised, or when new discoveries discredit the theory even more, its defenders reply that all is well; at some time in the future evidence will be found supporting evolution and showing that it is true after all.
"When the most learned evolutionists can give neither the how nor the why, the marvels seem to show that adaptation is inexplicable. Yet those who cannot explain it will not admit that it is inexplicable. This is a strange situation, only partly ascribable to the rather unscientific conviction that evidence will be found in the future. It is due to a psychological quirk [in the minds of its advocates]."-"Norman Macbeth, Darwin Retried (1971), p. 77.
Scientific concepts are able to predict the type of facts that, when found, confirm those concepts. Evolution cannot do this. But *Macbeth says that that is the least of the problems; not only can evolution not predict other facts, it cannot explain those it immediately deals with.
"We agree that Darwinism cannot predict, but we must remind Professor Mayr that it also cannot explain." *Norman Macbeth, Darwin Retried (1971), p. 104.
The strength of evolutionary theory is to be found, not in providing verifying evidence, but in efforts expended to explain away contradictory evidence. (In the following statement, "empirical" means based on experience, experiment, or observation.)
"The theory [of evolution] has no empirical support. Its strength comes from its logical power to generate explanations for every manner of organic adaptation rather than from the evidence, which, as we have seen, contains no potential for falsification. The theory may be true, but whether it is or not, it cannot be said to have shown evidence of this truth, and the widespread acceptance of the theory must rest on some other grounds."-`R. Brady, "Dogma and Doubt," Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 17 (1982), p. 88.
The evolutionists even presume to dictate which objections to their theory they will consider!
"The neo-Darwinist claim to sufficiency, is of great importance in evolutionary biology for it completely delimits [highly limits] the type of explanation that is either desired or even acceptable, and therefore the sort of research that is to be carried out." -*P. Saunders and *M. Ho, "Is Neo-Darwinism Falsifiable? - And Does it Matter?" in Nature & System 4:179 (1982).
"When, for instance, several experiments turn out contrary to the predictions of a certain theory, we do not care whether the scientist who invented the theory is prepared to change his mind. We do not say that his theory cannot be tested, simply because he refused to accept the results of the test."-'L Laudon, "More on Creationism, " in Science, Technology & Human Values, Winter 1983, pp. 37-38.
It is not whether evolution provides good explanation of natural events; it does not even provide bad ones!
"One distinguished empiricist philosopher, Carl Hempel, has drawn a conclusion, viz., that the theory of natural selection is not really an explanation of organic evolution at all-not even a bad one."-*Carl Hampel, quoted in *S. Toutmin, "Science, Philosophy of," in Encyclopaedia Britannica, Vol. 16 (15th ed.; 1974), p. 375.
* Macbeth describes them well: The theories of the evolutionists are only hunches and pipedreams.
"Unfortunately, in the field of evolution most explanations are not good. As a matter of fact, they hardly qualify as explanations at all; they are suggestions, hunches, pipe dreams, hardly worthy of being called hypotheses."-'Norman Macbeth, Darwin Retried (1971), p. 147.
The theory belongs in the Department of Sociology, not in the Science Building.
"I think the fact that a theory so vague, so insufficiently verifiable and so far from the criteria otherwise applied in 'hard' science, has become a dogma, can only be explained on sociological grounds."-'A. Koestler, Janus. A Summing Up (1978), P. 179.
M. and S. Hall disagree; they think it belongs in the adult fiction section of the library.
"Evolution has no claim whatsoever to being a science.
"It is time all this nonsense ceased. It is time to bury the corpse. h is time to shift the books to the humorous fiction section of the libraries." Marshall and Sandra Hall, The Truth: God w Evolution? pp. 39-40.
But actually, it really belongs with the fairy stories in the library of the Child Psychology Department.
"When we try to understand adaptation we are reduced to 'just so' stories, because the possibilities are limited only by imagination."-R. Brady, "Dogma and Doubt," in Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 17 (1982), p. 88.
ONLY A PEGBOARD FOR THEORIES-*Peters explains that the theory is useless as far as predictions are concerned, because it is only good for providing pegs to hold theories!
"I argue that the `theory of evolution' does not take predictions, so far as ecology is concerned, but is instead a logical formula which can be used only to classify empiricisms [theories] and to show the relationships which such a classification implies. . these theories are actually tautologies and, as such, cannot make empirically testable predictions. They are not scientific theories at all."-'R.H. Peters, "Tautology in Evolution and Ecology," American Naturalist, (t976) Vol. 110, No. 1, p. 1. (Emphasis his.)
It just is not scientific.
"A hypothesis is empirical or scientific only if it can be tested by experience . . A hypothesis or theory which cannot be, at least in principle, falsified by empirical observations and experiments does not belong to the realm of science."-'Francisco J. Ayala, "Biological Evolution: Natural Selection or Random Walk?" American Scientist, Vol. 62, Nov.-Dec., 1974, p. 700.
Evolutionary theory is shot full of holes, but men continue desperately to patch them over with additional "modifications." Sunderland explains that after a century of tacking on "modifications," the theory has shown itself to be useless.
"It is generally recognized that the original version of a theory might not be entirely correct but not necessarily false in every respect either. Thus, it is permissible for scientists to attempt to salvage a theory that has flunked a test by making secondary modifications to the theory and trying to make it fit new facts not previously considered. A theory loses credibility if it must be repeatedly modified over years of testing or if it requires excuses being continually made for why its predictions are not consistent with new discoveries of data. It is not a propitious attribute for a theory to have required numerous secondary modifications. Some evolutionists misunderstand this and attempt to point to the continuous string of modifications to evolution theory as a justification for classifying it as the exclusive respectable scientific theory on origins. They often make the strange claim that creation theory could not be scientific because it fits the evidence so perfectly that it never has required any modification. That line of reasoning is like saying that the law of gravity is not scientific since it fits the facts so perfectly that it never needs modification."-Luther Sunderland, Darwin's Enigma (1988), p. 31.
3 - THE TWO-HEADED THEORY
A THEORY WITH TWO FACES In midst of such turmoil in the scientific world, to their fellow scientists, the evolutionists smile and declare that the problems can be explained away, and that at some time in the future the evidence in favor of the theory, which is now almost totally lacking, will be found. Therefore, until then, their scientific colleagues should remain patient and regard the theory as an unverified truth that is non-falsifiable.
But, at the same time, to the public and in textbooks for students, they make far different statements. Clothes have been changed and now, in place of the defensive armor, they wear the kingly robes of royalty, and with a great show of permanence and infallibility declare that evolution is a proven fact, all scientific evidence agrees with their theory, and scientists universally consider it true.
School teachers--even biology teachers--are thought to be ignorant dupes that can be treated like the general public, when it comes to which evolutionary voice they will hear.
The *National Association of Biology Teachers, a subsidiary of the *National Education Association, published a list of statements by scientists that evolution was a fact supported by all available evidence, that it was fully acknowledged as such by scientists, and that it was proven and universally accepted as early as the 1860s! Part of it was quoted in chapter 34 (Evolution and Education).
Blatantly incorrect-historically and scientifically-as they are, those quoted statements are most astounding claims, and to think they were actually printed in the journal of the National Association of Biology Teachers, and printed for high school, college, and university biology teachers to read!
4 - CREATION SCIENCE IS TESTABLE
CREATION SCIENCE IS TESTABLE Facts are facts, evidence is evidence. If the facts and evidence are missing, then the proof is not there. If the facts and evidence are present, then a theory is established. It is as simple as that.
The evidence has always been lacking for evolutionary theory; it continues to be so, after more than 150 years of searching.
The evidence for Creation and the Flood is available. It is in the laboratories of the geneticists and the fossil collections of paleontologists. It is in your backyard, in the woods, in the sky overhead, in the oceans surrounding you. All nature testifies of its Creator. The occurrence of the worldwide Genesis Flood is also borne out by many, many facts.
There is not one living creature that could have made itself, or come forth out of nothing. Not one. In it all, we see the clearest evidence of the most complicated planning and workmanship. Thoughtful purpose and careful craftsmanship is everywhere to be seen. We may know how to build houses, rocket ships, and computers, but the smallest creature is far more complicated. (You may recall that, in an earlier chapter, we quoted a scientist who said the smallest creature is infinitely more complicated than man's most advanced computer.)
Read again the description of the galactic systems in chapter 4, The Stars. No man could make a star, and there is no way a created intelligence could place them in such complicated orbits which whirl near and even through one another without crashing. Yet it is obvious that an extremely high-level intelligence did just that! And think of the power of such a Being to be able to set stars into orbits, and then maintain them in those orbits!
"Oh," someone will say, "that is not scientific evidence." Facts are evidence; that is what science deals with: tangible, real facts about real objects. We take those facts and draw intelligent conclusions based on those facts. One intelligent conclusion is that neither the orbiting stars, nor plants and animals made themselves; only God could make them.
But another response is made: "The facts are scientific, but your conclusions are not." It takes both actual facts and intelligent conclusions to produce science. These are the only facts mankind has. They have been gathered from this world and the entire universe. As for the conclusions, there is no other intelligent, overall interpretation of the ultimate meaning of those facts that can be made.
To say it again: There are facts in the natural world, and there are intelligent conclusions about those facts. We cannot with impunity ignore the facts and call that "science," nor can we refuse to think carefully about the facts and draw conclusions-and then say we are "scientific" in not doing so.
It may well be true that evolution is not subject to testing, for it has no evidence in its favor. How can something which has no facts be tested? Alice In Wonderland can't. So why bother testing-just throw it out as is. But creation science is far different; it is testable. The facts are abundantly available, a variety of tests can be applied, the great majority of conclusions will be in harmony with one another and with the facts.
It is of highest interest that evolutionists distort the situation in both directions: (1) They contend that their theory is not testable, hence not falsifiable,-for they dare not face the fact that there is no evidence supporting it. (2) They contend that the positions of creation science are also neither testable, nor falsifiable. Evolutionists say that, for they dare not acknowledge the evidence for Creation and the Flood, because that evidence is both overwhelming and supportive of those two events. Here are statements by candid, evolutionary scientists who believe that creation science is testable:
"We discover. . that creation-science is testable and falsifiable."-'L Laudan, "More on Creationism," in Science, Technology & Human Values, Winter 1983, p. 38.
*Quinn says that a statement which is refutable, is falsifiable.
"In a recent collection of essays, Stephen Jay Gould claims that ' "scientific creationism" is a self-contradictory nonsense phrase precisely because it cannot be falsified' . . Ironically, in the next sentence Gould goes on to contradict himself by asserting that 'the individual claims are easy enough to refute with a bit of research.' . . Since they are easily refuted by research, they are after all falsifiable and, hence, testable. This glaring inconsistency is the tip-off to the fact that talk about testability and falsifiability functions as verbal abuse and not as a serious argument in Gould's anti-creationist polemics." -*P. Quinn, "The Philosopher of Science as Expert Witness, " in *J. Gushing, et. al. (ad.), Science and Reality: Recent Work in the Philosophy of Science (1984), p. 43.
*Quinn says: "When creation scientists make testable assertions, as they have, it is up to the evidence and not to them whether those assertions are disconfirmed to the point of being falsified."
"Ruse goes on to say, even if creation scientists do expose their theories to tests, 'when new counter-empirical evidence is discovered, creation scientists appear to pull back, refusing to allow their positions to be falsified.' This remark too . . is utterly beside the point. The requirement is that a theory be falsifiable by empirical evidence, not that its adherents admit that it has been falsified if and when it has been. Once creation scientists make testable assertions, as they have, it is up to the evidence and not to them whether those assertions are disconfirmed to the point of being falsified. Hence, Ruse's main reasons for considering creation science untestable and unfalsifiable turn out to be, upon inspection, nothing more than two irrelevant ad hominem arguments."-'P. Quinn, "The Philosopher of Science as Expert Witness," in 'J. Gushing, et. al. (ed.), Science and Reality: Recent Work in the Philosophy of Science (1984), p. 47.
SCIENTIFIC LIMITATIONS Yes, indeed, there are limitations to science. But there is also an abundance of facts available to us. (1) Is solid evidence available on which to base conclusions? (2) Is enough of it available? In the case of creation science, there is an abundance of clear-cut evidence. But, in contrast, 150 years of meticulous research on behalf of evolution has been unable to produce little more than a handful of disconnected facts in favor of evolution.
Here are a number of statements dealing with factors we should be aware of when trying to draw scientific conclusions.
Isaac Newton is generally recognized as the greatest scientist of the past five centuries. Among other things, he developed several rules for arriving at correct solutions. He must have known how to use the rules, for, using simple discoveries, he drew invaluable conclusions in a number of scientific fields. Interestingly enough, using his highly-trained mind and his rules (which are fully accepted by modern scientists), he concluded that creation science was correct, and that the evolutionary theories of his day were incorrect.
"Sir Isaac Newton's 'Rules for Reasoning in Philosophy' were violated by Darwin who probably did not know of their existence, for he did not discuss this important matter. Following are the first two rules:
"Rule 1: We are to admit no more causes of natural things than such are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances.
"Rule 2: Therefore to the same natural effects we must, so far as possible, assign the same causes . . Rule 1 is often called 'Occam's Razor.' "-Howard 8. Holboyd, "Darwinism is Physical and Mathematical Nonsense," in Creation Research Society Quarterly, June 1972, p. 10.
In contrast, science has gradually moved into a groveling attempt to defend unprovable theories, instead of objectively accepting the obvious conclusions presented by the facts.
"Popper warns of a danger: 'A theory, even a scientific theory, may become an intellectual fashion, a substitute for religion, an entrenched dogma.' This has certainly been true of evolutionary theory."- 'Colin Patterson, Evolution (1977), p. 150.
"This belief in the supremacy of science is called 'scientism'-a philosophy in which science becomes the only valid approach to all knowledge. Certain of the most popular science writers have adopted scientism as a way of life and deeply influenced American thought."-George F. Howe, "Noted Physicist Sees Limitations to Science," in Creation Research Society Quarterly, March 1978, pp. 225.
Yet, at best, scientists are only men, not gods.
"In some cases, gross overestimates are made as to what science can do.
"Both our universities where pure science is king and our industries dominated by technology are largely staffed by prosaic individuals tackling prosaic problems with what amounts to not much more than complex kitchen equipment and cookery books. "-'D.F. Horrobin, Science is God (1969).
"Two years ago I saw a paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and the author wrote, 'Let's assume the gene has a constant selective value; let's assume there is no gene flow from any other population.' He made about five assumptions, each of which was unrealistic, and then he went on to prove something very beautiful mathematically, but it was meaningless."-J. Moors. "Evolution and Public Education," BioScience 32 (1982), p. 606.
"There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of a trifle investment of fact."
"In the space of one hundred and seventy-six years the lower Mississippi has shortened itself two hundred and forty-two miles. This is an average of a trifle over one mile and a third per year. Therefore, any calm person, who is not blind or idiotic, can see that in the Old Oolitic Silurian period just a million years ago next November, the lower Mississippi River was upward of one million three hundred thousand miles long and stuck out over the Gulf of Mexico like a fishing rod. And, by the same token, any person can see that seven hundred and forty two years from now, the lower Mississippi will be only a mile and three-quarters long, and Cairo and New Orleans will have joined their streets together, and be plodding comfortably along under a single mayor and a mutual Board of Alderman. There is something fascinating about science. One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of a trifle investment of fact."-'Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi~ (1874), p. 158.
We did not take time in this study to quote or analyze the details of *Popper's theory of scientific study. Frankly, it is quite stilted. One individual who recognizes that fact is *Paul Feyerabend. His view of the scientific method is much more direct and to the point.
"A real maverick in dealing with science and scientific progress is Paul Feyerabend of the University of California at Berkeley. He believes that working scientists break every principle in the rationalist's rule book and adopt the motto 'anything goes.' . . He believes that if Karl Popper's falsification theory of science-that theories cannot be confirmed, only refuted, and when refuted must be abandoned-is taken seriously, all theories must be abandoned."-'F. Kippler, "Extraterrestrial Intelligence: A Skeptical View of Radio Searches,.. Science 219 (1983), pp. 111-112.
"It is interesting to note that Feyerabend believes that today we are choosing our theories because of their emotional appeal, not because they have substantiating evidence."-'David Raup, "Evolution and the Fossil Record, " Science 213 (1981), p. 289.
6 - EVOLUTION IS TESTABLE ALSO
HOW TO TEST EVOLUTION Evolutionists maintain that their theory is not testable, and therefore not falsifiable. Wendell Bird was the attorney who argued the case for creation science before the Supreme Court in 1987. He later wrote an excellent two-volume work, The Origin of the Species Revisited, which contains a wealth of valuable information.
On pages 11 &120 of Volume 2, he provides several simple tests of some of the major conflicting claims of evolution and creationism. Here are the first two:
"(1) Affirmative Evidence: Paleontology argument of abrupt appearance. Falsification method: By fossils showing a systematically nonabrupt appearance of complex natural groups and higher categories.
"[By this is meant that Creation and/or the Genesis Flood would require a sudden appearance of living creatures, and this would be shown in the fossil strata. Therefore, the evidence which would falsify (disprove) the statement would be the finding of a gradual appearance of fossils over what would amount to a lengthy time period.! "(2) Affirmative Evidence: Paleontology argument of gaps: Falsification method: By fossils showing systematic transitional forms between such fossil categories.
"[By this Bird means that the finding of transitional forms in the fossil record would provide powerful evidence in favor of evolutionary theory and disprove Creation, which requires that no species crossovers have occurred.]" W.R. Bird, Origin of the Species Revisited, Vol. 2 (1989), p. 118.
So then, all that is required is to compare the theory with the FACTS! It is as simple as that! Evolutionists declare that none of us were back there when it happened, so we cannot test the theory now. But there is an abundance of residual evidence from ancient times that we have at our disposal today. In that evidence, as well as in the world about us right now, we should find an abundance of half-way or transitional species; so many, in fact, that there should be no distinct species anywhere! We should find slow, gradual transitional appearance and changeover, instead of abrupt appearance in the fossil record.
Hundreds of other evidential factors should be found also. We have discussed many of them in this series of books.
Yet the evidence just is not there.
But when we turn to creation science, we find that the evidence fits! Repeatedly, we find: it fits! Both positions are indeed very testable, but only one of them passes the tests.
How do the evolutionists respond to such an impasse? On one hand, they declare that creationism is "unscientific," and therefore can be ignored from the testing program. On the other, they declare evolutionary theory to be "not testable."
Not testable, not falsifiable. Evolution is just a dream world: imagine it, enjoy it, expand on it, apply it to everything. No problem, because its not really there anyway.
And that is what scientists have accepted as the basis of 20th century science.
PHILOSOPHY OF EVOLUTION
STUDY AND REVIEW QUESTIONS
1 - State Popper's basic position in
regard to evolutionary theory. Point out the flaws in his thinking.
2 - Discuss the errors in the following
statement: "The theory by which scientific data is analyzed, correlated,
interpreted, and applied--is not itself to be tested to see if it is true."
3 - After reviewing the entire chapter,
point out five flaws in Popper's theory about the theory.
4 - Is evolutionary theory testable?
Write a half-page report explaining why it can. Cite examples of ways various
aspects of it can be tested.
5 - Can creation science be tested?
Write a half-page report showing that it can, citing examples in which
various aspects of nature must have been created, and could not have come
into existence merely by chance.
6 - Critique this statement: "All it
takes is to compare the theory with the facts; if they do not agree, then
the theory is erroneous."
7 - In this chapter, we have read
Popper's official analysis of evolutionary theory. In a brief paragraph,
write your analysis of evolutionary theory. Go over your paragraph several
times and try to improve on it, then rewrite it again into final form.
8 - Compare your analysis with those of others. In content and scope, how are they similar; how do they differ? Form a committee and select out the best parts of each analysis, and write a more comprehensive one.
You have just completed
Chapter 37 EVOLUTION AND PHILOSOPHY
Chapter 38 FALLACIES of EVOLUTION