Granville Sewell: Why Darwinists Are Wrong

The Discovery Institute has posted a new article by Granville Sewell. He’s not a Discoveroid “fellow,” but Wikipedia informs us that he’s a signatory to the Discovery Institute’s “A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism” petition. Sewell is very keen on using the Second Law of Thermodynamics as an argument for creationism — see Discovery Institute Gives Us Their Best Argument.

Our last post about Granville was Intelligent Design Is So Obvious, in which he declared:

[When] you seriously consider the possibility that all the magnificent species in the living world, and the human body and the human brain, could be entirely the products of unintelligent forces, you have been in academia too long and have lost contact with reality — you have lost your mind.

Granville’s latest article at the Discoveroids’ creationist blog is Why Should Evolutionary Biology Be So Different? It’s from his new book, Christianity for Doubters (Amazon listing). The publisher is Resource Publications, which produces books for religious study — exactly the sort of thing one would expect from a prominent Discoveroid. Here are some excerpts from Granville’s post, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

In the current debate between Darwinism and intelligent design, the strongest argument made by Darwinists is this: in every other field of science, naturalism has been spectacularly successful, why should evolutionary biology be so different?

That’s our strongest argument? We thought it was that we have evidence, while creationists have none. But we’re always willing to learn, so let’s read on. He quotes Joseph LeConte (1823 – 1901), a geologist who wrote in 1888 (only six years after Darwin died) that:

species seem to come in suddenly, with all their specific characters perfect, remain substantially unchanged as long as they last, and then die out and are replaced by others. Certainly this looks much like immutability of specific forms, and supernaturalism of specific origin.

[…]

[Nevertheless, we] are confident that evolution is absolutely certain … The origins of new phenomena are often obscure, even inexplicable, but we never think to doubt that they have a natural cause; for so to doubt is to doubt the validity of reason, and the rational constitution of Nature.

BWAHAHAHAHAHA! That’s Sewell’s authority? He continues:

Even most scientists who doubt the Darwinist explanation for evolution are confident that science will eventually come up with a more plausible explanation. That’s the way science works, if one theory fails, we look for another one; why should evolution be so different? Many people believe that intelligent design advocates just don’t understand how science works, and are motivated entirely by religious beliefs.

Jeepers — why would we think such a thing? Here’s more:

Well, perhaps the following story will help critics of intelligent design to understand why evolution is different.

Then he gives us a childish version of the tornado in a junkyard clunker. He’s done that before — see The Genius of Granville Sewell. After several tedious paragraphs, he summarizes by telling us:

Anyone who claims to have a scientific explanation for how unintelligent agents like tornados might be able to turn rubble into houses and cars would be expected to produce some powerful evidence, if they want their theory to be taken seriously. The burden of proof should be equally heavy on those who claim to have a scientific explanation for how a few unintelligent forces of physics alone could rearrange the basic particles of physics into computers and encyclopedias and Apple iPhones — and there is no evidence that natural selection of random mutations can explain anything other than very minor adaptations.

Amazing, isn’t it? Well, that may have been a popular view in 1888. Then he says:

My question to those who treat evolution as just another scientific problem is this: can you now at least understand why some of us feel that evolution is a fundamentally different and much more difficult problem than others solved by science, and requires a fundamentally different type of explanation?

Well, dear reader, now do you understand Granville’s frustration with your dogmatic Darwinism? His final paragraph is a reference to an article he wrote for the Discoveroids’ in-house journal, BIO-Complexity. We’ll leave it to you to visit the Discoveroids’ blog where Granville provides a link to that impressive article.

This is where we leave the Discoveroids today. We really don’t know what universe they inhabit, but it’s nowhere we want to be.

Copyright © 2016. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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9 responses to “Granville Sewell: Why Darwinists Are Wrong

  1. It isn’t so much that the creationists have no evidence. It’s that there is nothing to creationism. Evidence for what?
    There is no alternative to evolution. No one has suggested what happens, when and where, so that life turns out as it does (among the vast possibilities) without making reference to evolution.

  2. My question to those who treat evolution as just another scientific problem is this: can you now at least understand why some of us feel that evolution is a fundamentally different and much more difficult problem than others solved by science, and requires a fundamentally different type of explanation?

    Yeah, right; a fundamentalisttype of explanation.

    If Dr. Sewell were right, such obviously natural processes as food spoilage wouldn’t happen without the aid of an “intelligent agent.” His assumption is that atoms would behave absolutely randomly without such a Jehovah, er, without such an agent. But they don’t: there are such things as laws of nature, and it would be tremendously inefficient for an “intelligent agent” to do without them and intervene in every event down to the subatomic level.

    So my question to the good crackpot, I mean doctor (no, I was right the first time) is why his God, er, “intelligent agent” couldn’t have simply set up the initial conditions of the universe, including the laws of nature, to achieve His/Her/Its purposes though a process of evolution?

    But no, Genesis tells us how it happened and that’s that—not that there’s any religious faith involved, naturally. Gotta keep those court decisions in mind, after all.

  3. Except that Genesis doesn’t tell us what happened so that, for example, there is a similarity of eyes among the vertebrates, why air-breathing vertebrates tend to have four limbs, etc. Genesis is not interested in species or phyla. There is nothing about microbes – by any measure, the majority of life on Earth.
    Other than the Young Earth, there is nothing in the Bible which describes life in contrast to evolutionary biology.
    And, since there is nothing of substance to non-Biblical evolution denial, we are left wondering what the point of it is.

  4. docbill1351

    Crackpot Sewell is the definition of a broken record. He writes the same thing over and over and over and over – click! – and over and over and over again …

    He has made no progress on his notions, er, assertions in 30 years. Sort of makes me miss Jon Davison and his blueberries!

  5. “can you now at least understand ….”
    No. Because I still don’t get the answer to

    “in every other field of science, naturalism has been spectacularly successful, why should evolutionary biology be so different?”
    Could you care to answer it still, Dr. Sewer?

  6. Once again, a creationist comes up with what I like to call the 5 year old, or Tinker Bell, argument: “I don’t understand how ‘lectricity can light a bulb, so Tinker Bell must do it”. Adults generally substitute their preferred sky fairy for Tinker Bell, but the argument is pretty much the same.

  7. Just another person who thinks he’s a great philosopher because he asserts that evolution is hard to believe. That’s it. His probability arguments are just inventions to justify his belief that it didn’t happen.

    Although he asserts the improbability of what he doesn’t believe, he makes no arguments about the probability of what he does believe, i.e. that God made life. He produces no evidence, no coherent hypothesis, no explanation. Only that evolution is hard to believe, therefore God.

    I think I’m probably too old to ever see a time when an ID advocate lays out a testable hypothesis of when, where, what and how God, er, the Designer, did his work. And why he did it in such a way as to create the impression that life evolved over billions of years and continues to do so.

  8. @Ed
    Agreed.
    Only I would not restrict that to a testable hypothesis.
    Despite being told of all of those scientists who are doubters of Darwin, and all of the many people who rely on the Bible alone …
    There is no prospect of a hypothesis of what happens, when, where, how or why it happens that the world of life on Earth turns out as it does, if it doesn’t involve evolution.
    There is no hint of interest in that question among all of the deniers of evolution.

  9. Christine Janis

    “Anyone who claims to have a scientific explanation for how unintelligent agents like tornados might be able to turn rubble into houses and cars would be expected to produce some powerful evidence, if they want their theory to be taken seriously.”

    Is there any actual evidence that the “rubble” left by a tornado has less specified complexity than what was there previously? Perhaps the tornado has made things *more* complex (just less useful for humans).