Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

UD’s Pro-Darwinism essay Challenge

FYI-FTR: But, Wiki and Theobald’s 29+ evidences prove evolution is the best explanation of life and its branching tree pattern! — NOT

In recent exchanges  in and around UD on origins and the tree of life, Theobald’s 29 evidences claims (and by implication the sort of summary presented by Wikipedia in its articles on Abiogenesis and Evolution) have come up. [NB: to carry forward discussions, I suggest here on. I intend to do a for reference in support of discussion here in this FTR post.] That leads me to point out the case of the UD pro-darwinism essay challenge and the strange absence of and reluctance to provide a guest essay here at UD over the course of a full year, Sept/Oct 2012 – Sept/Oct 2013. The big issue seemed to be that in my challenge as explained, I required tackling the Read More ›

ID Foundations, 22: What about evolutionary trees of descent and homologies? (An answer to Jaceli123’s presentation of a typical icon of evolution . . . )

As has been noted, sometimes people come to UD looking for answers to questions about what they have been taught regarding “Evolution”; typically in the context of indoctrination under the Lewontinian ideological a priori materialism that he outlined thusly in his infamous 1997 NYRB article: [T]he problem is to get [the general public] to reject irrational and supernatural explanations [–> note the implicit bias, polarising rhetoric and refusal to address the real alternative posed by design theory, — which was already topical in those days some months after Behe’s first book on Irreducible complexity. Namely, assessing natural (= chance and/or necessity) vs ART-ificial alternative causes on empirically tested reliable signs] of the world, the demons that exist only in their Read More ›

A rough draft, outline composite answer to the UD essay challenge . . .

It seems we can now put together at least a draft outline composite response to the UD pro-darwinism essay challenge of a year ago, based on Jerad’s remarks at 70 in the one-year anniversary thread, and a key concession by EL at 149 in the same. In the interests of moving the discussion on the merits forward [I am open to improved drafts or a full form submission . . . ], first here is the Smithsonian chart of the Tree of Life, the context: Now, PART I: ____________ EL, 149: >> “As yet we have no empirically supported naturalistic theory of abiogenesis.” >> ____________ For PART II, we will need to highlight that Jerad is responding to some earlier remarks Read More ›

UD Pro-Darwinism essay challenge unanswered a year later, I: Let’s get the essence of design theory as a scientific, inductive inference straight

Today marks a full year since I issued an open challenge to Darwinists to ground their theory and its OOL extension and root, in light of actually observed capabilities of blind watchmaker mechanisms of chance and necessity through an essay I would host here at UD. The pivot of the challenge is the modern version of the very first Icon of Evolution, Darwin’s Tree of Life (which in an incomplete form is the ONLY image in original editions of Origin of Species), here typified by a case from the Smithsonian:   I first did so in an exchange thread, specifically responding to Jerad, then headlined it some days later. In lieu of prompt serious replies, I set up Wikipedia articles Read More ›


On Sept 23rd, I put up an essay challenge as captioned, primarily to objecting commenter Jerad. As at October 2nd, he has definitively said: no. Joe informs us that Zachriel has tried to brush it aside: Try Darwin’s Origin of Species (1859). It’s a bit dated and longer than 6,000 words, (the 6th edition is 190,000 words), but Darwin considered it just a long abstract, and it still makes for a powerful argument. This is, frankly, a “don’t bother me” brush-off; telling in itself, as a definitive, successful answer would have momentous impact on this blog. Zachriel’s response reminds me, all too strikingly, of the cogency of  what Philip Johnson had to say in reply to Lewontin’s claims in his Read More ›