From: Howard J. Van Till (
Date: Sat Sep 27 2003 - 11:28:51 EDT

  • Next message: John W Burgeson: "Re: RFEP & ID"

    From: "Sarah Berel-Harrop" <>
    > It is true that there are "evolutionists" who have derided
    > "hyperadaptionist" accounts of evolution. Lewontin &
    > Gould prominent examples. Their complaint has been that
    > the construction of evolutionary scenarios based upon
    > selectionist accounts amounts to plausible (and in some
    > cases, not-so-plausible) "just-so"stories. The spandrels
    > paper one example of another way to explain something's
    > evolutionary history (the gene or trait is a byproduct of a
    > prior choice). There are also views involving utterly random
    > occurences. .....
    > Lewontin in particular ... discusses
    > differences in genes and proteins as what this author
    > here terms as non-functional, Lewontin typically calls
    > it noise. What was he talking about? The example I
    > am thinking of involves 200 or so variants of I think
    > hemoglogin, maybe myoglobin - that is not to mention
    > the differences at the genetic level which are not even
    > expressed - of which maybe three have an apparant
    > difference in function. L says it's silly to look for a
    > functional, adaptionist explanation for those differences.
    > This author says, there's a function out there somewhere,
    > you just haven't found it and if you do it will connote
    > design.


    Thanks for the instructive comments. It now looks to me as if Hunter, in the
    excerpt provided by Jack Haas, is taking an active disagreement within
    biology and crediting ID with being the insightful critic of evolutionary
    biology from the outside with a novel paradigm (look for function, based on
    knowing how an unknown Intelligent Designer would have done things) not
    generally found within biology itself. Do I have it right?

    Howard Van Till

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