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Klinghoffer: “Evolutionary science is in a depressed condition,” despite hype


51rCibFn5xL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg From David Klinghoffer at Evolution News & Views, on Tom Bethell’s new Darwin’s House of Cards: A Journalist’s Odyssey Through the Darwin Debates,

he records his own investigation of the evidence, including interviews with lions of science and philosophy such as Stephen Jay Gould, Richard Lewontin, Colin Patterson, and Karl Popper. Lo and behold, it’s not beyond the intellectual reach of a reporter to get to the bottom of the controversy and to estimate the plausibility of Darwin’s theory.

Not a religious apologist or a cheerleader for any competing view, but rather an old-fashioned skeptic, Bethell has been doubting Darwin since he was an undergraduate at Oxford University.

Evolutionary science is in a depressed condition, despite all that the media do to put a bright face on the situation. They never tell you what biologists say behind closed doors, in their technical literature, or to a journalist with the temerity to ask difficult questions. A random individual on Twitter tweeted to me the other day, “Natural selection is the only theory that fits the facts. That’s why it’s a theory and not a long-discredited hypothesis like ‘intelligent design.’ Get out of your bubble.”

The naivety is heartbreaking, foisted on us by the credulous, pampered media. In fact, Darwin’s theory, of boundless novelty generated via stuff blindly swishing around together, fits few or none of the facts. Get out of your own bubble, friend. Picking up a copy of Tom Bethell’s wonderful book (published by Discovery Institute Press, thank you very much) would be a fine start, an act of self-liberation and great read, as well. More.

Actually, Bethell is simply what a journalist should be: A writer who explores genuine problems and doubts, as opposed to papering them over.

<em>Teapot</em> Cobalt BlueIt’s a good question why science journalism, in particular, is so heavily invested in cheerleading instead. It reminds one so much of the denominational religious media, in that one cannot even expect an honest discussion of the actual problems.

At first, that was mainly the problem of people trying to get at the facts of a case. But with the decline of mainstream gatekeeper media, it is becoming a problem for the science journalists themselves. Oh well, nothing like exporting a problem back to the people who can solve it.

See also: A veteran journalist on why Darwinism is falling apart: He’s right about Darwin’s followers ruling without evidence and many recent events, including the Royal Society rethinking evolution, show the tension. The principal question remains then the same as with peer review scandals, why does such corruption go so long unamended?

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