Thursday, 4 August 2011

Darwin's unfalsifiable test of falsification

Darwin wrote in ‘Origin of Species’ that ‘if it could be shown that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have come about by numerous gradual changes then my theory would fail utterly’. He then went on to say with his customary smugness  But I can find out no such case.’

This is often referred to as ‘Darwin’s test of falsification’, but can be easily discerned as a sly trick, designed to give the impression that the theory is falsifiable, when actually it isn’t. Of course Darwin could ‘find out no such case.’ of an organ that could not have arisen by natural selection acting on variation, because it was and is an imaginary process. Like C S Lewis, I have no difficulty in imagining a flying horse or a talking mouse. However, I make a distinction betwen fantasy and reality. Darwin had no difficulty imagining a bear evolving into a whale. But no such thing has ever been observed, and you cannot falsify a theory that is based on imagination.

Darwin is at pains to appear reasonable, but in fact is setting the reader up to be deceived. Nowhere does he explain what falsification of his theory would look like. That is because it was deliberately set up to be unfalsifiable. Nowhere does he give a single empirical observation of one animal or plant changing by more than cyclical variation within a species. Always the appeal to imponderables and ‘might have beens’. Read his book and see how often he uses the language of faith and imagination, expressions like 'I can hardly doubt' and 'it would be rash to say that this might not have happened'.

In my view, all known biochemical processes satisfy the test of falsification in that they could not have arisen gradually-since intermediate forms would have had no function so could not have existed. You cannot get from A to Z if you die at Q. The unrefuted Mike Behe sets this out in detail in Darwin’s Black Box. A couple of examples would include Krebs cycle, photosynthesis, blood clotting, the immune system and DNA check and repair. Each of these vital processes fails (utterly) if key components are missing, none can be credibly theorised to have arisen by natural selection acting on random mutation. Even if the mutations were incredibly lucky (and why would they be? real world mutations aren't) each stage of the process has to be (A) viable, (B) stable enough to be transferable to the next generation, and (C) a selective advantage at the level of the whole organism. Nothing like this has ever been observed, to create any biopchemicalprocess, nor given what we now know about biochemistry, is it theoretically credible. You can get from a fish to a bird by drawing cartoons showing the imaginary transformation, but you can't fudge the biochemistry that way. Its too unforgivingly precise.

Another good example of a mechanism which could not possibly have arisen Darwin style is DNA check and repair and DNA. Both systems are incredibly complex and depend utterly on each other, so what did one system do in the Darwinian dreamtime while its indispensable other half was evolving? Like climbing a ladder without rungs, it doesn’t work at all until it all works. The Darwinian can bluster, bombast and confabulate, appeal to authority, throw the smoke bombs of distraction tactics or the stink bombs of personal abuse, but can’t deal with these problems.

I may post some links to YouTubes which illustrate some of these irreducible complex systems which falsify Darwinism. Judge for yourselves.

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