On the “Sisyphean Evolution of Darwin’s Finches”

ALX1, American Museum of Natural History, Bailey McKay, Bell Museum, Biological Reviews, Charles Darwin, Darwin's Finches, Evolution, finch beaks, Frank Sulloway, Galápagos Finches series, Galápagos Islands, Geospiza fortis, haplotypes, Jonathan Wells, Katma Award, Michael Behe, morphology, Peter and Rosemary Grant, Robert Zink, Sisyphus, University of Minnesota
Scientific data are followed by the myth: “Finch beak morphology observed on the Galápagos Islands was used by Darwin to formulate his theory of evolution.” Source
Read More

I Disagree with David Klinghoffer, But It’s My Fault for the Confusion

Against Method, arthropods, Brian Charlesworth, Cambrian Explosion, Charles Darwin, chordate, David Klinghoffer, Deborah Charlesworth, Douglas Futuyma, Evolution, Extended Evolutionary Synthesis, Galápagos Islands, history, Intelligent Design, Jerry Coyne, Macroevolution, molluscan, natural selection, neo-Darwinian synthesis, Nicholas Barton, organisms, origin of life, Paul Feyerabend, William Paley
In a post yesterday, David Klinghoffer cited my comments in a recent podcast and described his own view that intelligent design could be considered as a theory of evolution, making the point that intelligent design tries to explain the innovations that happened in the history of life (e.g., the origin of life itself, the burst of complexity during the Cambrian explosion, etc.). I’d describe the situation a little differently. Evolution is an implication — that is, an empirical consequence — of design. Design is the more general (i.e., comprehensive) idea, and the well-understood phenomena usually designated as “evolution” are in fact consequences of designed systems undergoing or responding to perturbation. If anything, then, it would be more accurate to say that “evolution is a sub-theory of design,” no matter how…
Read More

Galápagos Pilgrim: Paul Nelson on Biological Deign and History

Amblyrhynchus cristatus, Andrew McDiarmid, animals, Charles Darwin, cormorant, Discovery Institute, Evolution, flightless cormorant, Galápagos Islands, history, humans, Intelligent Design, marine iguanas, natural theology, philosophy of biology, pilgrimage, Podcast, Santiago Island, tameness, William Paley
Discovery Institute philosopher of biology Paul Nelson got back from his pilgrimage to the Galápagos Islands with some important lessons to share. He spoke with ID the Future host Andrew McDiarmid last week about his experiences. See, “Pilgrimage: On a Visit to Galápagos Islands, Paul Nelson Concedes, ‘Darwin Was Right!’”  Of course he was being “deliberately provocative” there, as he notes in a new podcast with McDiarmid. Download the episode or listen to it here. Andrew and Paul expand on the point that Darwin contributed a deeper understanding of history than design proponent William Paley possessed. In his own version of natural theology, Paley gave little sense that living creatures have histories, or that those histories make much of a difference. This was a shortcoming. But, like Charles Darwin before…
Read More

#4 of Our Top Stories of 2019: Apeman Waves Goodbye to Darwinian Gradualism

Afar region, Australopithecines, Australopithecus afarensis, Australopithecus anamensis, Belohdelie frontal, Charles Darwin, Cleveland Museum of Natural History, Darwinian gradualism, Daspletosaurus, David Gelernter, Ethiopia, Franz Hilgendorf, Galápagos Islands, Germany, Globorotalia foraminifers, Homo (genus), Human Origins, Little Foot, Lucy, Michael Rasser, Modern evolutionary synthesis, mount improbable, MRD, National Geographic, Natural History Museum, Neo-Darwinism, Niles Eldredge, paleontology, Paranthropus, Richard Dawkins, Royal Society, Sabine Hossenfelder, stasis, Steinheim freshwater snails, Stephen Jay Gould, stickleback fish, Stuttgart, vertebrate, Yohannes Haile-Selassie
Editor’s note: The staff of Evolution News wish you a Happy New Year! We are counting down our top ten stories of 2019. If you haven’t done so yet, please take a moment now to contribute to our work in bringing you news and analysis about evolution, intelligent design, and more every day of the year. There is no other voice, no other source of information, like ours. Thank you for your friendship and your support! The following article was originally published here on September 6, 2019. A few days ago a sensational new paleontological discovery made headlines around the globe. After 15 years of searching, and the recovery of 12,600 fossils including 230 hominin remains (Leakey Foundation 2019), finally a rather complete skull has been found and described for…
Read More

No Harm, No Foul — What If Darwinism Were Excised from Biology?

Adam C. Soloff, Amir Marcovitz, appendectomy, bacteria, bats, behavior, cephalectomy, Daphne Major island, Darwin Devolves, Darwin's Finches, Darwinism, Darwinspeak, dolphins, echolocation, Evolution, Galápagos Islands, Hippocratic Oath, homeostasis, Illustra Media, Immune System, introgressive hybridization, Jerry Coyne, Marcos Eberlin, Michael Behe, Michael T. Lotze, Peter and Rosemary Grant, pharynx, Philip Skell, phylogeny, PNAS, primum non nocere, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Richard Dawkins, sound generation, tonsillectomy, turtles, whales
Some biologists might shudder at the thought of eliminating Darwinism from their scientific work. A “Darwin-ectomy” sounds more painful than a tonsillectomy or appendectomy. To hard-core evolutionists, it might sound like a cephalectomy (removal of the head)! If Darwinism is as essential to biology as Richard Dawkins or Jerry Coyne argues, then removing evolutionary words and concepts should make research incomprehensible.  If, on the other hand, Darwinism is more of a “narrative gloss” applied to the conclusions after the scientific work is done, as the late Philip Skell observed, then biology would survive the operation just fine. It might even be healthier, slimmed down after disposing of unnecessary philosophical baggage. Here are some recent scientific papers in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) to use as test…
Read More