Intelligent Design (ID) is a concept proposed by some who are unable to accept evolution. They assume that (1) life, with its nearly infinite variety, is far too complicated to be the result of a series of chance events; (2) that only an intelligent being could have created life and (3) that, since evolution does not answer every question about the genesis and progression of life, a totally different scenario should be considered. Although they imagine that the time between the origin of the universe and the present is only several thousand years, so far they have not proposed that we dump the other findings of physics and cosmology just because these disciplines have not answered every question about the universe.
In fact, life is even more complex than it appears to be. In addition to the innumerable obvious differences among life forms, there is a seeming infinity of tiny but crucial characteristics, so obscure that many of them have only recently been discovered. [For example: the epigenome, thousands of chemical tags distributed along the DNA strands that react to signals external to the cell and turn individual genes on or off.] However, there is a gradual but simple process that would automatically result in a system having all of life’s variety and complexity. That process is 3,500,000,000 years of accumulating adaptations (i.e. those “chance events” which were not harmful) to varied and changing environments, along ever more numerous diverging lines, each adaptation a potential origin for another line (species) or, for simpler organisms in the distant past, a potential origin of a more inclusive group, such as genius, family, etc.
A system composed of interacting parts, each of which is essential for the system’s functioning, is said to be irreducibly complex. Without any of these essential parts, the system is useless. ID advocates claim that, since most organisms contain many such systems, these organisms/systems cannot have come into being [evolved] piecemeal. However, the fact that such systems cannot function without all of their necessary parts is no reason to believe that those parts did not develop concurrently from simpler parts of simpler systems. This happens in animals and plants as they mature from fertilized eggs or seeds into mature individuals; it also happens as species develop. Supporting evidence (ignored by ID advocates) is obvious and plentiful.
ID (actually ersatz Creationism) is nothing but willful ignorance and defective reasoning in support of childish fantasy. It is based on those three (above) assumptions and on the tsunami of delusional evidence and junk science (such as irreducible complexity) produced to back it up.
All of the observed evidence supports evolution. Evolution is not only a principle of biology, it is absolutely the fundamental purpose of life, which is to survive by adapting to different and inconstant environments, i.e. by evolving.
ID proponents point to the “order of the universe” as evidence for a creator. Order? Black holes; exploding stars; dead and dying stars; cosmic rays; colliding meteors, comets, planets and galaxies; dark matter; dark energy; the paradoxes of quantum mechanics! Most of gravity‘s effects are orderly but, except for these, there is no more order in the universe than there is in a house fire.
They also argue that the earth is so perfectly attuned to our needs that it must have been created with humans in mind. Perfectly attuned? Myriad horrible diseases (infectious as well as DNA errors like cancers, autoimmune and hereditary); plagues and pestilence; parasites and mosquitoes; lethal poverty; famines; “acts of God” such as hurricanes, tornados, droughts, floods, earthquakes, landslides! For a large percentage of humanity life is "a cesspool of misery and suffering."
Another of the obscure characteristics of life mentioned above is found in chromosomes, those incredibly long, slender molecules that carry the DNA instructions for replication of all living things. Excepting the simplest organisms, for most of their length (over 97% in primates) these molecules contain no instructions at all. Much of this non-coding DNA has packing or regulatory functions. Between genes there are large sections of repetitive sequences (small sequences of nucleotides repeated thousands of times) that may have no purpose and, within genes, there are smaller unused sections called introns that are probably obsolete code.
More than 99 percent of the species that have inhabited Earth could not adapt, that is evolve, and are extinct. Furthermore, the paleontological record is replete with evidence that every existing species has been modified over time. Many of them contain, in their skeletons or their DNA, vestiges of structures that were needed by their ancestors but are useless in the current version. For example: the human appendix, the shark-like gill slits and the tail that appear in the early stages of the human embryo, legs and pelvic girdle in whales, fossil snakes with leg and hip bones have been found, pythons and boas also have vestigial thigh bones. A complete list would be very long.
Is this design? Where is the intelligence?
Reality is that which,
when you don't believe it,
doesn't go away.
-- Peter Viereck & Philip Dick
When only one source is accepted
and everything else ignored,
the magnitude of the stupidity
is proportional to the depth of study.
Replies are closed for this discussion.
Offensive? Maybe to some Xians who can't have the perfection of doG questioned in their hearing (much less his existence). Not to anyone else around here. Generally people who are posting here don't worry about offending the religious; if they come here, they have to understand that seeing something blasphemous comes with the territory.
It's a common argument to point to flaws in the "design" we see in living things, and then go from there to assert that the "design" is so kludged up, it can't be a consciously-thought-out-design by a perfect engineer.
It does resemble a series of small, "just big enough to get by, but not the best possible change" modifications, over and over and over again.
Which is exactly what one would expect out of a process like natural selection.
One example... there is some nerve in a giraffe that goes all the way down the neck, loops around the aorta, then goes back up into the head. In their shorter-necked ancestors this wasn't absurd, not much anyway, but as the neck became longer and longer, the nerve was merely lengthened, not rerouted so as not to go around the aorta. Rerouting would have been a much more complex change, and not "worth" the trouble just because a neck is a millimeter longer than it was in the parent organism. Since it was never worth the trouble at any given single step in the evolution of the giraffe's long neck, it never got done. (Those of you who work in software or other forms of engineering, on large projects, should find that phenomenon eerily familiar.)
** ID -> IDiot
...the falsity of “intelligent design” is established by the existence of those who believe it.
Dawkins is your man. Here's a short-ish essay. Or you might want to read "The Blind Watchmaker", also by Dawkins.
I would also recommend "Climbing Mount Improbable" by Dawkins, as it does an excellent job explaining how evolution result in some really sub-optimal "designs" that work well enough to get the job done, but no actual sentient designer would have any trouble improving.
@ Gallup's Mirror,
" you have no idea what you are talking about", In humor I can become seemingly sharp tongue and venomous but it was just in fun. I'll never call you a slobbering Neanderthal again. But I still do not admirer your debating skills. If you want your arguments to have weight you just can't continue to make unsubstantiated acquisitions, I am confident that you are not a parrot,but that is honestly the way your debating still come across. Better to counter with facts and articles rather just making acquisitions, it really comes across unlearned, no offensive intended just an honest critique. You come across as someone fresh out of college with not a lot of reading behind them taken what the Prof said hook line and sinker and anyone that challenges your paradigm:"you have no idea what you are talking about".
The infighting stops now. Keep it on original topic. ~ADMIN
And like a broken record, you keep reiterating " I explain to you how evolution works" (sic). I assure neither you nor the most recent theories on the origin of phyla, as explain to anyone how evolution works. When they are cornered, they will chime that the reason why these phylum seem so distant is because there are extinct missing links. This devise was used in the article that I posted. On faith they believe in missing links. On faith physicist believe in a multiverse. However these claims are unfalsifiable, as such, do not prove the theory despite Occam's razor being used. And from an engineering vantage point, an inappropriate use of Occam's razor.