Swine Flu, Viruses, and the Edge of Evolution

Update: On May 4, 2009, The New York Times, perhaps unsurprisingly, came out with a story casting the swine flu as an example of evolution, titled “10 Genes, Furiously Evolving.” Similarly, the staunchly pro-evolution site LiveScience.com has an article on the swine flu that opens by mocking Darwin-skeptics, stating: “Anyone who thinks evolution is for the birds should not be afraid of swine flu. Because if there’s no such thing as evolution, then there’s no such thing as a new strain of swine flu infecting people.” As is discussed in Luskin’s piece below, such a claim is a cheap-shot that completely mis-states and misrepresents the position of Darwin-skeptics. A few years ago, the media was abuzz over the scare of Read More ›

Nature Paper Shows “Junk-RNA” Going the Same Direction as “Junk-DNA”

When large-scale function was detected for non-coding DNA (once called “junk” DNA) Darwinists, knowing that their viewpoint had long boasted that junk-DNA was evidence for common ancestry and that they were losing that argument, responded in one of two ways: Some sought to rewrite history by claiming that evolutionary biology predicted all along that we’d find function for junk-DNA. Others, however, pushed the “junk” back to RNA. They effectively argued, “Sure, we know that most of the genome is being transcribed into RNA, but that doesn’t mean that the RNAs have function. Much of the transcriptome might in fact be junk.” Evolutionist biochemist Larry Moran, for example, argued that either “[t]he so-called transcripts are just noise from accidental transcription” or Read More ›

Science Paper Admits Evolution Mechanism of “Adaptive Radiation” Lacks Empirical Evidence

A recent article in Science titled “Adaptive Radiation: Contrasting Theory with Data” admits that the evidence documenting the precise workings of a key macroevolutionary mechanism — “adaptive radiation” — is missing. The article concedes that “how exactly radiation occurs, and how it differs among taxa and in different settings, as well as why some lineages radiate and others do not, are still unclear.” When studying evolutionary biology in college, I learned that new types of organisms have commonly appeared abruptly in the history of life. Since Darwinian evolution is supposed to proceed by “numerous, successive, slight modifications,” this data made little sense in the light of evolution. Our professors always reassured us that rapid evolution or abrupt appearance of major Read More ›

Origin of Life Researchers: Intelligent Design of Self-Replicating RNA Molecules Refutes Intelligent Design

A recent Nature news article remarks about the production of the first self-replicating RNA molecules capable of catalyzing their own replication. Origin of life researchers are excited about this because they think it shows one possible step in their story about how life might have arisen via natural processes, without intelligent design (ID). One big problem with their story: under no uncertain terms did natural processes produce this molecule. One line from the Nature article says it all: “Joyce and his colleague Tracey Lincoln made paired RNA catalysts.” (emphasis added) One pro-ID chemist explained to me privately the precise design parameters that were required to produce the self-replicating enzymes and to use it to produce life: The system is completely Read More ›

Loss of Function in Stickleback Fish = Loss of Another Argument for “Macroevolution” for Francis Collins

In his book The Language of God, theistic evolutionist scientist Francis Collins contends that diversity within populations of stickleback fish demonstrates that there is no distinction between “macroevolution” and “microevolution.” According to Collins, “It is not hard to see how the difference between freshwater and saltwater sticklebacks could be extended to generate all kinds of fish. The distinction between macroevolution and microevolution is therefore seen to be rather arbitrary; larger changes that result in new species are a result of a succession of smaller incremental steps.” (p. 132) Aside from the fact that this provides another example refuting the Darwinist myth that ID proponents invented terms like “macroevolution” or “microevolution,” a closer look at the facts shows that Collins’ story Read More ›