- Fred Williams, 2/14/2000
Our debate really boils down to just two possibilities: either life is
the result of natural or chance processes (evolution), or it is the result
of a supernatural process (creation). I will first outline what I find
to be overwhelming evidence for creation, then begin rebutting Buddika=s
opening argument and the alleged evidence for evolution, and close with
a challenge to Budikka regarding several problems that are devastating
Perhaps the greatest evidence for creation is the creation itself. The
sheer complexity of every living organism cries out design. A single cell
is far more complex than anything man has ever designed. Each cell contains
a code, or DNA, which contains information roughly the equivalent
of 4000 large books1. It would
require about 10,000 human cells to cover the head of a pin, and each
human being is composed of more than 75,000,000,000,000 interacting cells2! In addition,
components within the cell have a symmetrical bias. Amino acids are all
left-handed, nucleotides are all right-handed. Yet when
synthesized outside the body or found in nonliving matter, they are mixed
in equal proportions. There are many other symmetric relationships such
as this that gives unmistakable evidence of a Designer.
All of this in the backdrop of a universe that is remarkably fine-tuned
to allow life on earth. The earth=s
distance from the sun, its nearly circular orbit, its axis tilt, its mass,
spin rate, and radius are precisely what they need to be to sustain life.
The moon is at an ideal distance to produce tides. Jupiter=s
distance and mass is absolutely essential to maintain earth=s
orbit and to prevent comets and asteroids from smashing into earth. Carbon
dioxide and oxygen/nitrogen ratios are where they need to be. The charge
and masses of fundamental particles have remarkably tight tolerances;
any small change renders life impossible. These are just a few of many
examples of finely tuned parameters that allow life on our planet.
When we look at a mountainside, we reasonably attribute its contours
to natural, random processes. But when we look at Mount Rushmore, we immediately
recognize design. If we were unaware of this mountain and happened
across it, we would be completely certain that wind and erosion did not
bring about the president=s
faces on the mountainside, but instead was carved out by a designer or
Evolutionists often try to argue that evidence for creation is not scientific.
They do this by claiming that anything that falls outside of nature is
not testable and therefore not in the realm of science. Yet we can scientifically
determine with reasonable certainty that Mount Rushmore is not the result
of random chance. We see highly specific patterns. It is complex
patterns from space that the SETI Institute (Search for Extraterrestrial
Intelligence) is looking for. If they detect a complex signal not attributable
to chance or a natural process, then they will reasonably deduce the signal
comes from an intelligent source. When we sift for clues in a fire,
if we find some pattern not attributable to random chance, we reasonably
attribute the fire to an intelligent source (arson) and not to
accident. We arrive at these conclusions scientifically. Yet when it comes
to origins, evolutionists refuse to apply this kind of scientific examination.
This demonstrates that evolution does not have its roots in scientific
inquiry but instead in a philosophical world-view with a dogmatic commitment
to naturalism. To adhere to sound scientific practices such as signal
deciphering and arson investigation, while ignoring this same practice
regarding origins, is simply anti-science.
Information requires an information giver. No one has ever been
able to demonstrate how complex information can come about by natural
processes. Since the cells of organisms contain massive amounts of complex
information, it reasonably follows that the organism was created from
a vastly superior intelligent source. One of the tenets of NeoDarwinism
is random mutation. Yet randomness without fail destroys information.
The second tenet of NeoDarwinism, natural selection, cannot bring about
new information since it is a blind process without any target in mind.
Evolutionist Richard Dawkin=s infamous simulation AMethinks it is Like a Weasel@ in his book The Blind WatchMaker
only created information when a target was selected by an information
giver! The odds of success of the simulation was 100%. Information
is the reduction of uncertainty3. There was
100% certainty a result would be obtained, meaning no information
The Fossil Record shows sudden appearance of fully formed organisms,
followed by stasis. It does not show gradual change as the Darwinists
predicted. There are plenty of evolutionists who acknowledge this, and
those that do usually support punctuated equilibrium (species are
typically in stasis, and are allegedly punctuated by occasional
bursts of rapid evolution). One leading punctuationist wrote: AThe observation that species are amazingly
conservative and static entities throughout long periods of time has all
the qualities of the emperors=
new clothes: everyone knew it but preferred to ignore it. Paleontologists,
faced with a recalcitrant record obstinately refusing to yield Darwin=s
predicted pattern, simply looked the other way@4.
Unifying Biological Patterns indicate a sole Designer. There
are many underlying biological universals that run through all of life,
such as the genetic code, DNA and RNA, amino acids, etc. Find something
based on a different type of genetic code. You can't. Or maybe try to
find a species based on silicon and not carbon. You can't. If you did,
then this could be an argument for either evolution or multiple designers.
Naturalistic origins cannot even begin to explain this unifying pattern.
A single Designer is the only realistic explanation.
has all the ear-markings of design. It utterly frustrates naturalistic
explanations, and wreaks havoc on evolutionist attempts to establish phylogenies
(lines of decent). Convergence is abundant in nature6.
It is unlikely that all these convergencies happened upon the same solution
along independent lines of decent. For example, evolutionists say that
the incredibly complex eye evolved in separate species at least 40 separate
times!7 This alone
truly strains credibility of any naturalistic explanation!
Symbiotic Relationships - The many mutual dependencies between
organisms, such as the cleaner fish and shark depicted on my web site,
also provides a compelling argument for design. Naturalistic explanations
of this phenomenon require fanciful, non-scientific stories.
Problems with the Theory of Evolution - Rebuttal to Budikka=s opening argument
Evolution often takes multiple definitions, so let me define it as the
molecules-to-man, Neo-Darwinian theory of common decent via random mutation
and natural selection that leads to large scale change, such as
the evolution of new organs. Evolutionists very often try to sell small-scale
change such as species variation, which they call micro-evolution, as
evolution. Since everybody agrees that small scale change occurs, they
can create the illusion that large scale evolution occurs by calling the
small scale change evolution!
Budikka allegations - misquotes, smoke & mirrors
Buddika wasted not time in making the usual evolutionist allegations:
ACreationism is the art of combining the world's
most diverse collection of fallacious reasoning, dishonesty, misquotation,
smoke, and mirrors.@
Its ironic that Buddika immediately resorts to this in the beginning
of his post, since his very opening argument is laced with misquotes and
Asmoke & mirrors@!
First consider that he quotes Dr. Chandra Wickramasinghe as a Acommitted
creationist@! This is not true!
Dr. Wickramasinghe in fact fact is adamantly opposed to creation! (Dr.
Wickramasinghe does reject neo-Darwinian evolution, recognizing the sheer
impossibility of a protein forming by chance. But instead of embracing
the idea of a Creator, he supports the idea that life came from space,
aka panspermia. All he has done is push the problem to another time and
place. He is like many others who refuse to acknowledge their accountability
to a Creator. This a priori philosophical world-view shows that
their views regarding origins are religious and not scientific. See www.panspermia.com)
Next Budikka twists the words of the creationists he quotes to make it
appear these creationists do not think there is evidence for creation.
What the creationists are saying is that there is no testable scientific
evidence, ie empirical evidence for creation. Of course there isn=t,
since the creation event occurred thousands of years ago and it is not
something that can be reproduced in the lab! What Budikka isn=t
telling you is that these same creation scientists also state that evolution
is not testable and is therefore not empirical science.
Though both creation and evolution are outside the realm of empirical
science, we can still treat them as scientific models that we can examine
to determine which one best fits the evidence. I can quote evolutionst
scientists who support the fact that SETI is scientific (the search for
intelligent life from outer space). In this case they support the notion
that searching for an intelligent source is scientific. So when
evolutionists claim that it is not scientific to apply this same practice
to looking for an Intelligent Source for life, they are clearly
applying a double-standard.
Budikka=s Attacks on Creationists
Budikka=s next course of action
is to attack creationists. I have been debating creation/evolution for
about 3 years now, and unfortunately this is a very common tactic among
evolutionists. If you cannot attack the evidence, then attack the messenger!
He cites several URLs to Talk.Origins, a dogmatic web site that
is rabidly anti-creation (another very common tactic is to refer to Talk.Origins
as if it is the end-all harborer of unerring truth). Well, I am here to
debate the evidence and not the character of those Budikka chooses to
attack. He can debate this somewhere else. Obviously some mistakes such
as quoting out of context will happen, I=ve sure made my share. But most of the evolutionists
attempts to dig up dirt end up as frivolous claims that only serve to
divert attention from the evidence.
Next Budikka invokes argument from authority when he states that most
scientists believe in evolution. But a majority is never a criteria to
establish something as truth. Most scientists contemporary to Galileo
opposed his ideas of a heliocentric system. It is also an undeniable truth
that most of these scientists have a pre-established
worldview based in materialism and humanism. A well known evolutionist
geneticist, Dr. Richard Lewontin, once wrote a very revealing comment:
AWe take the side of science
in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of
its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and
life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated
just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment to materialismYwe cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.@ 8
Finally, Budikka states: AVirtually
none of the creationists have degrees in any biological or paleontological
science@ . This is not true. In fact, of the
literally thousands of scientists who support creation, the largest group
consists of scientists with advanced degrees in biology. Some are listed
here, and yet more here.
Also note that virtually all of the great scientists of the past were creationists, including
Newton, Kepler, Pasteur, Lord Kelvin, Pascal, Boyle, Maxwell, etc, all
revolutionary pioneers in their respective fields. (For even more on this
subject, see Dr Ed Holroyd=s
superb article, Scientists for Creation).
Budikka=s Attacks on the Bible
Budikka=s next course of action
is to criticize the Bible! I thought this was supposed to be a debate
on creation/evolution! Again this is an incredibly common tactic by evolutionists.
I will say they are very consistent! One must wonder why you never see
them attacking Hindu scripture, Buddhism, the Muslim Koran (which he actually
subtly defends), Mormonism, etc. Why is it these religious writings are
never criticized? If they think the Bible is full of myths, why do they
spend so much time and energy criticizing it? Why does it bother them
so? I certainly don=t waste
my time on UFO abduction or Elvis-is-alive web sites!
Again, this debate was established to debate origins, not the character
of men or the validity of the Bible. So I won=t
spend much time here, other than to say that Budikka=s
allegations against the Bible are standard regulation and have been refuted
all over the web. I have an introductory Bible Evidences site,
and for more in-depth information would recommend ChristianAnswers.Net and Contradictions
Refuted. Let me also add that Budikka cites from AThe
Jesus Seminar, an organization of [liberal] Biblical scholars@. What he left out was the word I added!
The Jesus Seminar is a rouge fringe of far left liberal Atheologians@ who do not even remotely reflect mainstream
Bible scholarship. They have an obvious disdain of the God of the Bible,
and they reject all the fundamental tenets of Christianity. See http://www.christiananswers.net/q-eden/edn-t017.html
Budikka=s invoking of the peer-reviewed
science journal card!
Budikka then uses a ploy right out of the standard evolution handbook,
claiming that creation must be false because creationists do not publish
articles in the major peer-reviewed science journals! Creation scientists
have many published articles in the journals of their respective fields,
provided the article does not deal with origins. Anybody familiar with
the major science mags knows of their dogmatic protection of their sacred
cow of evolution, and their snubbing of anti-evolutionists who try to
challenge it. The major science mags represent a members-only club
of evolutionists. So a creationist being heard in these mags is like expecting
a pro-lifer to be allowed a voice at a NOW convention! Because of this
censorship, creationists long ago gave up trying to publish creation-related
material in these magazines, and instead publish in their own peer-reviewed
journals, such as the CRS
Quarterly, or the CREATION
ex nihilo Technical Journal.
Evolution *is* a religion
Budikka states: AScience
is not religion. There is no mythology, no god, no ritual, no prayer,
and nothing that must be taken on faith.@
Webster=s lists one definition
of religion as Aa cause, principle,
or system of beliefs held to with ardor and faith@.
This is exactly what belief in evolution is, since it takes incredible
faith to believe that life came about by blindly guided random processes,
such that given enough time scales can turn into feathers, or that fish
can turn into men. The faith required to believe a single cell formed
by chance is beyond comprehension, something Sir Fred Hoyle calls "nonsense
of the highest order."9
Webster calls it Areligion@.
Budikka redefines evolution
Budikka then attempts to bolster his claim that evolution is not faith
by immediately redefining evolution to include observable changes! I warned
of this tactic when I began my rebuttal of Budikka=s
opening argument. The FAQ he cites
defines it as Achange in the
frequency of alleles within a gene pool@.
This is a fact that creationists have never disputed. Of course allele
(gene version) frequencies change! What creationists dispute is the illusion
that there is no limit to this change such that new genes come about that
lead to improved features and new organs. Note the author of the FAQ attacks
traditional definitions from a science dictionary and standard dictionaries,
because it vaporizes the mirage that allows him to claim evolution as
Me thinks Budikka should rethink his allegation that creationists use
smoke and mirrors, and to look in his own mirror.
Budikka on origins
Budikka states AEternity
necessarily extends as far into the past as it does into the future, and
this being so, how could this god have ever reached the time when he began
to create this universe? It is impossible.@
An infinite God is the only possibility. There must be a first
Cause, and the only logical possibility is that First Cause was always
here and was not Himself created. Atheistic evolutionists are forced to
postulate that something came from nothing, and that is a logical impossibility.
It also defies the laws of thermodynamics.
Budikka strawmen & more smoke
insist that science prove and demonstrate every single step from the Big
Bang to the present@
This is a blatant strawman. No creationist I know of Ainsists@ this.
Budikka: Athere is only
one Theory of Evolution, which maintains the consistent position of an
Earth approximately 4.5 billion years old@
This is simply not true. The Atheory
of evolution@ has shown to be
a grab bag of answers depending on the question or situation. A theory
that explains everything explains nothing, which removes it as a scientific
theory. Consider for example the warring evolutionary camps between gradualists
and punctuationists. Also, the Atheory of evolution@
has not maintained a consistent age of 4.5 billion years. Seems like ever
20 years or so another couple million or billion get added on. Also, maintaining
something does not make it true.
Budikka=s comments on Cleaner Fish series
Budikka first attempts to label my representation as deceptive: AThis web site is an example of how creationists
muddy the water, because it does not accurately describe wrasse activity.
They primarily pick parasites from other fish, not "food from their
Budikka failed to do proper research. From Britannica: AThe larger fishes recognize the cleaner fish
and will not devour it. They allow free passage into their cavernous mouths
and gill chambers, in which the cleaner fish feeds upon leftovers and
parasites. Each Labroides maintains a "cleaning station," which
is visited regularly by larger fishes such as groupers, eels, jacks, and
Budikka then gives his just-so story: AAn
evolutionary scenario for shark-wrasse interaction is simple: those sharks
which allowed the cleaner fish to rid them of parasites were not plagued
by infection. They remained healthier for longer, and reproduced more
of their kind, who were similarly disposed to allow the wrasse to clean
them. Now how hard was that?@
Stories are not science. Budikka=s
story also failed to address how the cleaner fish=s
bravery evolved. But I=m sure
he can come up with another story. The point is, there are many, many
other examples of symbiosis in nature. Are we to believe all the just-so
stories that need to be cooked up for all these dependent relationships?
What about the Nile crocodile that allows a certain type of bird (the
Egyptian plover) to walk right in and clean its mouth? What about the
inter-dependencies of honey bees? The Yucca plant and Yucca moth? The
list goes on and on, just like the just -so stories will go on and on.
Budikka also enlightens us on why there are not many shark chomping incidents
on humans - because we don=t
taste very good! So I guess through the years sharks learned to recognize
a human when he saw one and realized Ahey, there=s
one that isn=t going to taste
very well! Let=s move on to that caviar over there!@ This is refreshing to know next time I=m in the water with a shark! :)
Budikka then spends a good deal of time complaining about parasites.
This is not germane to the problem symbiosis poses for evolution. Nevertheless,
here are some links to creationist explanations of parasites and viruses.
Finally, I think it is important to expose a hypocrisy on Budikka=s part. He states AThey
spend all their time trying to destroy@.
Most of Budikka=s first
post is laced with attacks against creationists and the Bible, and in
his words Aa short-sighted , incompetent, or malicious
god!@ This only serves the point that belief
in evolution has its roots more in a dogmatic world view than in science.
Budikka=s comments on Giraffe series
Budikka continues his assault on the Creator, stating AHe had to kludge together a system in
the giraffe of which a human engineer would be ashamed.@
First, since I am an engineer I can state that I am certainly not Aashamed@
of this circulatory design, and am in fact quite awed. I think Budikka
would be hard-pressed to find any expert in giraffes who would agree with
his assessment that the system is a shameful Akludge@. Instead, they would state that it is amazingly
complex and quite effective at servings its purpose. Go here
to read more about this Akludge@, and see if the scientists involved in this
research are Aashamed@.
Budikka fails to address the point of the series, and mistakenly erects
a strawman: AThis web site asks how evolution could generate
an animal with such a disadvantage (as the giraffe is at when drinking),
but this disadvantage is the same whether the animal evolved or was created.@
My web site asks no such thing. My web site asks how evolution can account
for the valves in the giraffe=s
neck that must be fully formed and in place before the giraffe could ever
take a drink.
Budikka questions why such a creature would be created in the first place.
Well, luckily Budikka was not a consultant in the design process, as we
would have a very drab and boring creation of like-sized animals and like-sized
trees! The Giraffe shows exquisite creativity, and its peculiarity serves
to thwart any naturalistic explanation of its origin. The Creator is sending
a message with the Giraffe - if you believe the Giraffe came about by
blind, chance processes, you might as well believe in Santa Claus or the
(BTW, after further research, I do agree with Budikka that Aelastic blood vessels@ is a more accurate depiction than Aspecial reservoir@,
so I will make the appropriate change on my web site)
Budikka=s comments on Whale
Budikka offers nothing new here, so I won=t
spend much time on it. Budikka tells a story of a whale found in 1919
with Aa strange appendage near its tail, which
turned out to be a leg, including a femur, a tibia, an ankle, and a foot.@ My first question would be ADid they also find pantyhose on the legs?@ :) This is the imagination it takes to get
a wolf-like mammal to turn into a whale! Seriously, Budikka=s story has long been debunked.
Also notice Budikka totally failed to address how the whale evolved from
a vastly dissimilar ancestor, considering complex mechanisms such as its
buoyancy system and sonar. All we get are tales of various fossils that evolutionists piece together
of various mammals.
Closing Challenge to Budikka
I have reached our agreed limit, so I will wait until my next post to
include a rebuttal to Budikka=s
charges against my remaining 3 series. I would like to close with a couple
challenges to Budikka.
Challenge #1: Invertebrate fossils constitute 95% of the entire fossil
record. From these fossils we find a wide range of fully-formed, remarkably
complex species such as the trilobite, jelly fish, clams, etc. Here=s
the problem: These complex life forms appear in the fossil record, WITHOUT
A SINGLE TRACE OF ANCESTORS! Since we have unearthed literally trillions
of these fossils, we should have trillions upon trillions of ancestor
examples in pre-Cambrian strata BUT WE FIND NONE! This alone should end
the debate! No just-so story can justify this huge evolutionary calamity.
Why do we find trillions of invertebrates, but no ancestors? There simply
is no evidence whatsoever of evolution in the fossil record where it should
be the most abundant. The fossils often used as transitional examples
are mammalian, which make up less than 0.1% of the record! The reason
is that these fossils more easily allow wild speculation and fantasy to
rule the day, as shown by the many failed examples put forth from this
group, such as Piltdown, Nebraska Man, Ramapethicus, the horse series,
Mesonychid, etc. I would like to save Budikka time by suggesting he shouldn't
bother citing Kathleen Hunt=s
Talk.Origins FAQ (its is a virtual certainty this would have been his
response), since she provides no examples in this category, as her fantasy
list is mostly mammalian, from that 0.1% group. Also, please do not show
us pictures of clams turning into clams.
Challenge #2: Several recent articles in Nature magazine brought to our
attention the surprisingly high mutation rate among humans. Based on data
from Crow=s article11, a whopping
40 births per female are needed to get one offspring without a deleterious
Realistically there are only three possibilities: 1) the data gathered
is faulty (unlikely), 2) rates were drastically lower in the past (very
unlikely), 3) the assumption of man/monkey common ancestry is wrong (the
most reasonable answer).
Note that higher mutation rates are no problem for the YEC creation model
(6-10K yr). On the other hand, if you lower the rate, then evolution slows
to a virtual stall since the cost of bringing a hypothetical beneficial
mutation to fixation greatly increases (aka Haldane=s Dilemma).
Also, Crow=s attempt to invoke
truncation selection is a just-so story with no evidence to support it,
and in fact you will not find it in genetics text books. Again, stories
are not science. Finally, Crow erects one heck of an illusion when he
claims it helps explain the advantage of sex to evolution! This is nonsense,
since sex slows evolution, causing many evolutionists to recognize
sex as one of the great paradoxes of evolution! Creationists agree that
sex slows the propagation of harmful mutations, but this makes it a conservation
In conclusion, I hope my opening argument in this debate demonstrates
to the objective reader the overwhelming evidence for a Creator, and the
amount of hand-waving an evolutionist must do to support an idea void
of any real evidence. I await my opponent's response, particularly to
the specific challenges above.
Budikka Post #2:
Return to Debate Table
1 - Carl Sagan, The Dragons of Eden,
New York: Random House, 1977, p. 25.
2 - Encyclopaedia Britannica Online,
3 - See evolutionist Dr Tom Schnieder=s excellent primer here.
4 - Eldredge and Tattersall, The Myths
of Human Evolution, 1982, p 45-46
5 - Convergence is used to describe a
trait that cannot be attributed to common decent. Its very definition
is anti-evolution. An example of convergence is the remarkable similarity
between human and octopus eyes.
6 - Gould, The Panda=s Thumb, 1980, p 271
7 - E. Mayr, The Growth of Biological
Thought: Diversity, Evolution, & Inheritance, 1982, p 611.
8 - Richard Lewontin, 'Billions and
billions of demons', The New York Review, January 9, 1997, p. 31.
9 - See http://www.carm.org/evolution/evodds.htm
10 - Encyclopędia Britannica Online,
11 - J. Crow, AThe odds of losing at genetic roulette@, Nature 397, p 293 - 294.
12 - Given p = probability diploid genome
is free of error, female needs to produce at least 2/p to pay this cost
and maintain the population (one for her and one for her mate). Hence,
the birth rate needed to produce one offspring without new deleterious
mutation is B = 2e^U. Crow uses U = 3. This gives B = 40.