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“Spengler” speaks out on David Gelernter (the Yale computer guy who dumped Darwin)


Lots of people seem to want to talk about the Yale computer scientist who admitted that he is past all that approved Darwin flapdoodle.

“Spengler” is David Goldman, who writes about a number of international issues, and he had this to say:

The paradoxes, contradictions and utter weirdness [of current science] have been with us for so long, and have proved so resistant to investigation, that physics has lost its ability to make grand statements about the nature of reality.

Biology hasn’t fared any better. An enormous literature documents the collapse of Charles Darwin’s theory in light of evidence (or lack of it), artfully summarized in Claremont Review of Books by the distinguished computer scientist David Gelernter. The Cambrian explosion of new species, Darwin’s critics observe, should have been preceded by pre-Cambrian forms, but those simply do not exist…

And that is not the worst of it. The new science of DNA proves mathematically that the odds of a random mutation leading to an improvement in the adaptability of a living organism are effectively zero, Gelernter shows. Even a small protein molecule has a chain of 150 amino acids. If we rearrange them at random we mostly obtain gibberish. In fact, “of all 150-link amino acid sequences, 1 in 1074 will be capable of folding into a stable protein. To say that your chances are 1 in 1074 is no different, in practice, from saying that they are zero. It’s not surprising that your chances of hitting a stable protein that performs some useful function, and might therefore play a part in evolution, are even smaller,” Gelernter explains. That is Establishment science, not the murmurings of the Creationist fringe.

Spengler, “Pseudo-science, the Bible and human freedom” at Asia Times

So there he is, discussing these questions as if evidence mattered, rather than thumping the tub for approved opinion. Hey, it takes me (O’Leary for News) right back to 1996 when a poli sci prof asked me to read David Berlinski’s article (The Deniable Darwin) that had just appeared in Commentary and get back to him as to what I thought of it.

I had not thought much about these matters before. But I read it and got back to him. So far as I could see, Darwinism was in big conceptual trouble but was very much the fixed belief of an entrenched establishment.
In that case, evidence means nothing and refutation is a punishable insult to one’s betters. And so it proved. Facts don’t change because we don’t like them. But they can cease to matter to us, as they have ceased to matter to popular establishment Darwinism.

Responding to Goldman, David Klinghoffer writes,

So then, against the backdrop of materialist science’s failure, what accounts for the rise of modern determinist mythologies, led by astrology and transhumanism, that have captured the imagination of Generation X and Silicon Valley? Read Goldman’s article, but I’ll try to summarize: Behind the phenomenon is a resurgent paganism, with its shamans like Yuval Harari, “this strange little vegan who spends two hours a day in meditation,” exciting the tech elite “because he visualizes them as a new class of demigods,” and with its repellant, narcissistic moral perspective: “The New Atheism turns out to be the old idolatry packaged into a smartphone app.” :

David Klinghoffer, “David Goldman on Gelernter’s Darwin Apostasy” at Evolution News and Science Today

Well, that would explain the current boom in witchcraft and astrology. See Skeptic asks, why do people who abandon religion embrace superstition? Belief in God is declining and belief in ghosts and witches is rising.

But here’s a question: When the smart people abandon Darwinism, who’s left and what does that mean for what happens next?

See also: Brit Commentator Melanie Phillips Weighs In On David Gelernter Dumping Darwin


David Gelernter in a more accustomed role… asking rude questions about Facebook’s $billions

Also: Spengler writes a good deal about demography. Here’s a review that I (O’Leary for News) wrote of his work.

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