We Are Devo

The Phlogiston Chronicles.Title: “Darwin’s Doubt: The Explosive Origin of Animal Life and the Case for Intelligent Design”

Author: Stephen C. Meyer

Rank: 78

Blurb: “Meyer argues that the theory of intelligent design — which holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection — is ultimately the best explanation for the origin of the Cambrian animals.”

Review: “There was no Cambrian explosion, so there’s no Cambrian explosion to explain.”

Customers Also Bought: “The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos is Designed for Discovery”

Footnote: Nature doesn’t give a shit what you think.

Darwin’s Doubt [Amazon]

Buy or Die [Stinque@Amazon Kickback Link]


Always found the ID loons fascinating – it’s like they really, really want to just say GODDIDIT but they have just enough sense to know that that conclusion is bullshit and won’t fly in secular schools, so they construct increasingly-elaborate fantasy “sciences” to try to plaster over the problems.

Absolute topper in this has got to be the “scientific young-earth” crowd: SERIOUS weirdosity to try to shoehorn literalist “created in a week” beliefs into a scientific framework.

@al2o3cr: I like the recourse to God as an explanation of yet-undetermined phenomena. It’s really a failure of imagination.

The Cambrian Explosion is the moment in the archaeological record when tons of critters suddenly appeared. Frustrated the hell out of Darwin; Stephen Jay Gould conjured “punctuated equilibrium” as an evolutionary theory that explained the facts on hand.

(I’ve always loved him for this: What would explain what is known? Then, as more facts emerge, revise the theory to account for them. I’ve always found that very productive, procedurally.)

I’m not a Cambrian Geek, but I included that review quote because it suggests another explanation: The Cambrian record is incomplete because the facts are unrecoverable, lost in the disintegrating muck of oceans. The surviving artifacts only reveal the end of that era, not what produced it.

Right or wrong, that’s how you do it: Question the presumptions that underlie the known evidence (Hey kids, it’s epistemology!), suggest an alternative that would also explain the nature of the facts on hand.

But my favorite part of the whole thing is the “also bought” book: If you wanna credit God for provisionally unexplained facts, why stop with evolution? Why not move on to the Earth itself, and our position in the Milky Way hinterlands? Of course! God stuck our planet here to give us a good view of everything else!

We may still be arguing over Darwin, but it’s Heliocentrism that really fucked things up.

Why can’t God be inexplicable and subject to her own laws? Why can’t evolution be the fingerprints of God?

Absence of evidence is never evidence of absence.

@Tommmcatt Can’t Believe He Ate The Whole Thing: The Great Metaphysical Question remains Creation: Not what came “before” the Big Bang (I’ve read some thoughts on that), but why anything exists at all. If the universe is an endless loop of Boom & Collapse, we’ve just moved the Creation question back a step.

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