Dan Popp
Darwin's razor
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By Dan Popp
September 24, 2018

Here's something I've been wondering about.

According to Darwinism, we need three things for new kinds of plants and animals to come into being: 1. We need accidents in the reproductive process that result in mutant organisms. 2. Some of these mutations must be beneficial. 3. The beneficial mutations must be so significant that the new variation out-competes the parent organism, and the old organism dies out.

Whether requirements 2 and 3 are matters of religious belief rather than scientific observation is a topic for another time. I'd like to think about the implications of that third qualification – the "survival" part of the "survival of the fittest."

Imagine an organism. It is well adapted to its environment, and we know that because it will survive intact for hundreds-of-thousands of years. Or some very long period of time. We need all that time in order to get a "good" mutation, you see. So it survives global warming, then global cooling, then warming again. It perseveres through years of floods and decades of drought. It endures disease, scarcity of resources and abundance of predators. It is a very robust organism. It has to be, or it will never last long enough to get the happy accident.

And then, one day, it happens. The slight, barely-noticeable-but-somehow-significant change. And astonishingly, this tiny (and it has to be tiny, according to Darwinism) difference is such an improvement that it makes the previous model obsolete. Do you see the problem? Our indomitable organism that survived in its environment all this time, is so fragile that it's wiped out by the slightest improvement in its competition.

This is what I call Darwin's razor. The organism must be balanced on the atom-thin edge of being (almost) perfectly adapted to its world – or it could not live to see its better progeny – but so precariously perched that when the progeny arrives the parent is dispatched to the dustbin of prehistory.

Now imagine that this has happened each time any organism gained any beneficial mutation, any baby-step on the path toward a new species. How many miracles is that? Trillions? A googolplex? Certainly a lot.

OK, surely I've gotten that wrong. If the new, marginally superior variant always killed off the standard model, there would be only one species of plant and one species of animal on the planet. That is not what Darwinism claims, someone will say to me. Yet, without the scenario of the improved organism surviving at the peril of its parent, we have just erased selection, which supposedly is the mechanism that runs the whole species-generating show.

The miracle of the razor's edge must happen whenever Darwinism posts any progress on its road to nowhere. The organism and its environment must be well suited to each other for a long time, and contrariwise they must be so ill matched that an almost imperceptible change brings the curtain down instantaneously.

This must occur – but it did not occur in the case of man, at least.

Humans, chimpanzees and bonobos have a common ancestor, we're told. But how can this be if we need Darwin's razor to produce new species? Common Ancestor (not yet found, surprisingly!) did well enough in his environment to reproduce long enough to grasp the holy grail of the good mutation. But the good mutation did not kill off Great Granddad. No, the golden child reproduced long enough to get another beneficial mutation, and another, and another, until, voilą, a bonobo. Meanwhile, the Common Ancestor is still multiplying away, long enough to give rise to something that morphed into something else, etc., that eventually became a chimpanzee.

Now, miraculously, bonobos did not kill off Great Granddad, and chimps did not kill off either GG or bonobos. So our Common Ancestor procreates along in the same manner until he gets the miracle-cubed of the third improved mistake. This new organism reproduces right alongside Granddad and bonobos and chimps until it arrives at humans. Then I guess all three together were enough to put the old monkey out of his misery.

Darwin's great breakthrough was that natural selection explains different species, but as I just outlined, Darwinists say that some species, including our own, arrived without selection. Darwin's razor must work. Yet it cannot work, or man wouldn't be here. And if it did work it would be a very high order of miracle, the kind of thing Darwin intended to displace.

© Dan Popp

 

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