Food for thought: Evolution and the long-necked giraffe

From page 48 of The Evolution of the Long-Necked Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis L.) – What do we really know? (Part 2) by biologist and genetic mutations expert Wolf-Ekkehard Loennig of the Max Planck Institute for Breeding Research:

In the first part of the paper we have come to the conclusion that the assertions on the evolution of the long-necked giraffes by Ulrich Kutschera, Richard Dawkins and Kathleen Hunt do not have a scientific basis. This is also true for macroevolutionary propositions of Mitchell and Skinner and others, which have been discussed in the second part. Although an absolute negative proof is nearly or completely infeasible, nevertheless the scientific data that are available to date on the question of the origin of the giraffe make a gradual development by mutation and selection so extremely improbable that in any other area of life such improbability would force us to look for a feasible alternative.

Yet biologists committed to a materialistic world view will simply not consider an alternative. For them, even the most stringent objections against the synthetic evolutionary theory are nothing but open problems that will be solved entirely within the boundaries of their theory. This is still true even when the trend is clearly running against them, that is, when the problems for the theory become greater and greater with new scientific data. This essential unfalsifiablity, by the way, places today’s evolutionary theory outside of science, one of whose defining characteristics is that theories can only be considered to be scientific if they are falsifiable, and when they set forth criteria by which they can potentially be falsified.

Just food for thought.

2 thoughts on “Food for thought: Evolution and the long-necked giraffe”

  1. “Quote mining?” Isn’t that what everyone does who quotes from someone else? I do note that he does provide extensive references. The quote above is from his summary, and he even has numerous links and references in his summary. I don’t think he’s trying to hide anything. To see his analysis of how a few evolutionary scientists work, you’d apparently have to go to part 1 of his paper (which I haven’t read).

    Re the “gaps” fallacy, I don’t think he’s making that error, he’s just saying that the hypothesis seems to work, and that it should be studied. Enger, by the way, would seem to agree that science should allow non-material causes to be considered. However, as I’ve said before, materialists are the ones who make the most use of the gaps fallacy: by presuming everything is material, they presume the gaps are filled with natural explanations. In reality, the gaps are the gaps, and if ID explains the gaps better than naturalism, then what you’ve got are 2 competing gaps hypotheses.

    Enger, again, makes some very interesting statements regarding science and religion. It seems that he might even agree with some of the ID folks on some philosophical points.

  2. You know, I took a glance at this paper (77 pages) and found it riddled with a large measure of quote-mining. I will be willing to look at it in more detail.

    But even in the quote you brought into here, he makes a complete mischaracterization of how scientists work; if he could actually demonstrate how this can be determined accurately and if a causal link can be drawn in this evolution of the giraffes, scientists would be very open to it, but they would demand some experimental evidence and would study it independently.

    Loenning is using the same fallacy as any other creationist – we don’t have all the answers, ergo God.

    The Panda’s Thumb also mentions this article:
    http://www.pandasthumb.org/archives/2007/05/now_thats_a_str.html#more

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