Posts Tagged ‘Intelligent Design’

Darwinian Natural Selection Is Self-Defeating

James A., Ph.D.

Hypothesis: Darwinian evolution is self-defeating because it requires something to determine that a part of a functional system know that it’s functional before it is “saved” for future usage. For example. The bacterial flagellum motor consists of multiple parts that rival an outboard motor on a boat (to borrow Michael Behe’s analogy). Each part must be present simultaneously for the motor to work. To explain the origins of this machine,  Evolution would posit that the individual parts developed gradually over time, with natural selection “keeping” the parts that function, and rejecting those that don’t, and eventually, natural selection produces a fully functionally advantageous part. (Granted, I understand Evolutionists will complain that Darwin never attempted to explain the origins of anything, which I think is a disingenuous response because whenever a Darwinian evolutionists attempts to rebut a creationist who is explaining the origins of something, the Darwinian responds with the exact same arguments he/she would use if they were merely by ipse dixit assuming arguendo the origins of the thing to be explained.)

Here’s the problem. How does natural selection “know” that any evolved part is functional in the first place? How does natural selection know what any individual part is supposed to do? Without any guided, external intelligent governance, this requires natural selection to have amazing foresight because there’s nothing for natural selection to compare the part to in order to know that it will be useful for something in the future. For example, say natural selection develops a metal flap for a carburetor that later proves useful in regulating gasoline for a combustion engine. Since no engine is yet present, on what basis does natural selection “decide” that the flap should be saved and somehow stored for future use? Why would natural selection save the metal flap at all? How does it know it WILL need it? The only rebuttal I’ve heard from atheists I’ve presented this argument to is “evolution doesn’t ‘know’ things”, which is really a red herring and a “it just is” argument. However, natural selection would HAVE to know to produce its predictions.

A second problem is that of memory. For natural selection to know not to repeat the same mistakes of the previously rejected components, it must have the ability to remember that the manner in which a previous part was constructed was improper, and thus should not be used as a template for the part in the future. But where does natural selection get this memory from? Without some idea of what the part will even be, how does natural selection maintain the memory required for knowing that any previously deficient part is in fact, deficient?

And finally, since natural selection rejects and eliminates what isn’t functional or doesn’t provide some kind of essential survival benefit (which wouldn’t be a benefit if “it” wasn’t functional), how did any fully functional mechanism like the flagellum or any of its parts arise at all if natural selection relies on gradual processes? If the metal flap on the carburetor took a billion years to get right, but then took a billion more years to develop the spring with correct tension to ensure the metal flap properly opens and closes to allow proper fuel ratios, wouldn’t the metal flap have been a failure in the first place since it was impossible to determine whether the flap functioned correctly without the spring and hence rejected by natural selection? Why did natural selection keep that part in the first place? Without the concurrent functioning parts, natural selection should have rejected the very part that it “saved” since it is implausible that a billion years should expire without any evidence that the metal flap was an actual functional part. Naturalists would have to create an arbitrary standard (that begs the question and affirms the consequent) for why natural selection can preserve one part over billions of years but yet reject others parts as non functional when neither part can show that at the moment natural selection “decides” to save something, that it SHOULD BE saved at all.

Because natural selection as interpreted by materialists, naturalists, and Darwinian atheists can not account for the memory of natural selection, it’s amazing foresight, how it decides whether a functional part is actually functional, on what basis does it determine that a part should be saved for future usage, or why natural selection didn’t reject the very part it preserved, I am arguing that this type of selection is self-defeating, and Darwinian natural selection is false.