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Random mutations and the steady corruption of life's digital download


Random mutations and the steady corruption of life's digital download

Advances in science, instead of buttressing key neo-Darwinian predictions on the origin and complexity of life, threaten to undermine them to the point of collapse, says scientist, philosopher, and clergyman Kirk Durston.

According to Darwinian theory, the genetic information allowing complex life forms to function began at zero and with 3.8 billion years of random mutation and natural selection, encoded life in all its diversity. Darwinism predicts the functional information of life must increase over time.

Intelligent design offers an opposite prediction—natural processes steadily corrupt the digital information of life. An intelligent source downloaded information into the genomes of life, and over time, random mutation’s deleterious effects have exceeded its benefits.

“The beauty of these two mutually incompatible predictions in science is that the falsification of one entails verification of the other,” Durston wrote in a blog post for the Discovery Institute. “So which prediction does science falsify, and which does science verify?”

The evidence is stacked against the macroevolution of Darwinism.

Citing his own work with 35 protein families, Durston estimates “the rate of destruction is, at minimum, eight times the rate of neutral or beneficial mutations.” New functions may evolve, but on average, the loss of functional information across the genome significantly outstrips any gain.

Other observations falsifying Darwinian dogma include the slow erosion of digital information in the world of bacteria as the process of mutation inserts and deletes genetic information. The fruit fly, one of the most studied life forms in evolutionary biology, registers a consistent DNA loss across the entire genus, Durston notes. Barring the development of genetic interventions, Durston predicts humans in the industrialized world can anticipate a loss in fitness over the course of the next few centuries due to the accumulation of deleterious mutation.

All of the scientific evidence points to the biological world slowing down.

“Microevolution is good at fine-tuning existing forms within their information limits and occasionally getting something right, but the steady accumulation of deleterious mutations on the larger scale suggests that mutation-driven evolution is actually destroying biological life, not creating it,” Durston writes.

No surprise there, Durston adds. Evolutionary biology is the only area of science that fails to recognize that regardless of the storage media or copying procedure, natural processes degrade information.

“For neo-Darwinian macroevolution to work, it requires something that is in flat-out contradiction to the real world,” he concludes.

Dick Peterson Dick is a World Journalism Institute graduate and a former WORLD correspondent.

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