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The Greatest Show on Earth



This 470 page book, plus 32 full-colour pages of beautiful photos, published in 2009 by Bantam Press, is, as would be expected, very well written and produced. It will delight evolutionists with its anti-creationist rhetoric and the many pages of, apparently, proof of the validity of the theory of evolution. Dawkins’ two favourite phrases are ‘ill-informed’ and ‘history-deniers’. Well, I have read this book (twice actually, to ensure I was neither missing nor misunderstanding anything) plus others he has written, so if I am still ill-informed, he has only himself to blame! Historians base their work on the writings of previous generations. There is only one being who was able to observe the origins of life on Earth, and His account of the event can be found in the Bible. So it is actually the evolutionists who are the history-deniers!

Indeed, from the sub-heading on the cover - The Evidence for Evolution - and the flyleaf, which tells us that in this book Dawkins...


“takes on creationists, followers of ‘Intelligent Design and all who question evolution,”


...the purpose of the book is made abundantly clear.

So the book is primarily about evidence not theory. While one would expect to find theory in it, the main purpose is to present the evidence validating the theory. This, of course, is what has always been missing in the evolutionist’s case, so I was all the more interested to read what evidence the ‘archbishop of evolution’ could give to us. Surely, if the evidence exists, it will be found in this book; and likewise if it does not appear then it does not exist? Knowing this was the point of the book, while I was waiting for it to arrive at my local library, I asked myself, “What do I expect such a book to contain?” (I have since bought a second-hand copy, shown in the picture!) The answer was four things:


  1. Physical evidence demonstrating evolution in action

  2. Evidence for the origin of life: i.e. the way evolution began

  3. Answers to the key points raised by creationists (since he “takes on creationists...”)

  4. An answer to the question posed to Dawkins that can be seen on You Tube (see below).


As an aside, if you view the You Tube clip above, when it finishes you may be offered a selection of other clips relating to the subject. These include offerings from evolutionists, furious at the less than flattering portrayal of their hero. If you view some of these you will find, assuming they are the same ones as at the time of writing, that they are almost entirely taken up with the usual evolutionary tactics of a smokescreen of insult and derision, straw-man arguments, and a complete inability to address the issue.

Those involved in producing the clip are accused of lying. About what? The fact that they were creationists who were interviewing him? The truth is Dawkins did know his interview was being conducted by creationists at the time the question was posed. See here for a full description and time-line of the event.

They are accused of manipulating the appearance of the encounter by their editing. In what way has anything been changed by editing? We are not told! The facts are that Dawkins was asked a question, and after a long pause he asked for the cameras to be switched off to give him time to think. When he declared himself ready to answer the question, his response had no bearing on it whatsoever. One YouTube clip supporting Dawkins shows the number of books he has written, as though this is some way gives him greater credibility. But this is precisely the point. A man who for decades has written many books on the subject, and given endless lectures, interviews and made numerous TV documentaries, was stunned into silence by, and then later shown not to have any answer to, a question that is right at the heart of the issue. The entire evolutionist case is that a very simple cell came into existence and then, through a very large series of mutations or evolutionary processes, its genome became ever larger and more complex, producing all the living things on the planet.

Another YouTube clip shows Dawkins realising, as a result of this question, that these are creationists. Why? Why is it only creationists who ask such a basic question? I thought the scientific process was supposed to include the interrogation of theories from every aspect, in order to ensure everything is covered, nothing is left out, and the theory, after the most rigorous of examination is shown to be valid. So why do evolutionists not ask for evidence of the most basic issue relating to their theory?

Evolutionists claim that through peer review in the scientific journals, theories are given this rigorous examination. But when those holding contrary views to their theory try to publish their evidence, they are censored - a practice that even some evolutionary scientists have fallen foul of when they try to prod one of the favoured theories of the day. See this statement, published in the New Scientist.

The fact is, as can be seen from the YouTube response to this clip, evolutionists are so wedded to their theory that instead of at least taking an objective, second look at what they assumed was proven fact, they respond with subjective howls of angry criticism.

They, and Dawkins, are desperate to keep creationism away from school classrooms and university lecture halls. There is a very easy way for them to destroy creationism once and for all in one fell swoop. Simply present some examples of genetic mutations or evolutionary processes, which can be seen to increase the information in the genome. Do this, and creationism will disappear overnight. Fail to do it, and they sound the death knell for Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. Thus far they have failed!

Now to return to the main point of this page:

In fact, points 1 & 4 are virtually identical. The question Dawkins was unable to answer is:
“Can you give an example of a genetic mutation or an evolutionary process, which can be seen to increase the information in the genome?”

According to evolutionary theory, a very simple form of life sprang up out of inanimate matter (point 2, which receives very little consideration in this book and no evidence whatsoever is given for it; therefore this essential aspect of evolution is totally devoid of evidence). So in order for all of life forms to evolve from that first simple cell, a constant increase of genetic information had to take place. As Dawkins makes very clear, it is the changes in DNA that create the changes in physical form and produce the different structures required by the millions of different living things. DNA, which is common to all living things, has four different ‘letters’ in its vocabulary. Sets of these letters are called ‘genes’ and the entire genetic information is the genome. Every cell that makes up the body of every living thing, contains the entire coding for that body. This is one of the most important aspects of the debate, since everything in a living form is determined by the coding in the genome.

So in a book that is providing the evidence for evolution, after completely failing to provide evidence for its beginning we at least expect to find examples of increase in the information in the genome. Anything else simply will not do. Other issues may be of secondary interest, and even essential for evolution to have occurred; but only examples of this kind of genetic increase can be real evidence for evolution.


What examples does Dawkins give to answer the question posed in the video? None! He doesn’t even mention it. Well, I suppose this is understandable, bearing in mind the huge embarrassment the event must have been to him. Even so, in a book effectively declaring itself to be the definitive guide to evidence for evolution, examples of an increase in the specified complexity of the genome are essential. 

An example of specified complexity would be a pack of playing cards, arranged in numerical and suit order. Shuffling the pack would make it less specified while not changing the complexity. Adding a second pack of shuffled cards would increase the complexity but would not make it any more specified. For a new organ to evolve, which is essential to enable all the forms of life on earth to form from a single cell, additional DNA coding must appear (increased complexity), accurately coding (increased specificity) for the new organ. See Specified Complexity for more details.

In fact nothing else could be evidence for evolution: other issues may be of importance, but unless the genome can be seen to be increasing with coding for faculties that previously did not exist, then they are largely irrelevant. More on this later.

In this book, Richard Dawkins effectively raises the white flag and declares to the world that he has no answer to the creationists. Why? Two reasons:

Firstly he ignores the key points made by creationists: for example, arguably one of the most important issues in their teaching is the fact that the Creator made everything perfect, and now through mutation it is deteriorating, which is supported by the observation that mutation invariably causes damage. Irreducible complexity is another major issue, since it proves that complex systems simply cannot evolve gradually, but he only makes mention of it once, with one highly dubious example as we’ll see later.

Secondly he distorts the creationist position alarmingly, and it is difficult to find any excuse for these ‘errors’. For example on page 9 he claims that no reputable scientist denies evolution, thus putting his blinkers on to the number of published scientists who do deny it (see here for a list of creation-scientists, past and present), and thereby demeaning their qualifications. Furthermore, in a footnote on page 212 he includes the blasphemous (because it attributes the work of Satan to God) parody of ‘All Things Bright and Beautiful’, written by Eric Idle, praising it as “splendid.” I shall not include any of it here, other than to point out that in one verse God is blamed for creating everything sick, cancerous, and all evil. This is diametrically opposite to the creationist position of a perfect creation, ruined by man’s sin in response to Satan's temptation. It also assumes that creationists believe all living things are now exactly the way they were when created. They do not believe this; but it is a lie perpetuated by the Natural History Museum when I visited.

He talks about 37 species of lemur coming off Noah’s ark and going to Madagascar without leaving any stragglers anywhere else, where the creationist position is that the common ancestors (one pair) of lemurs would have been on the ark, and it is natural selection that has produced the speciation where they survived since that event.

On page 270 he says the Creator planted species on different islands and continents. The creationist position is obviously that this is not what happened - following the dispersal of animals from the ark, natural selection then produced the pattern we now see. This is not Darwinian evolution, since these kind of changes can never produce a different kind of creature.

There are other examples in the book of the distortion of creationist thinking, but these will do for now. Dawkins complains bitterly about the misrepresentation of evolutionist teaching, but is quite happy to misrepresent creationist teaching. He clearly knows what the main-stream creationist position is, as he has obviously studied their websites: indeed, in a rare slip he actually commends Answers In Genesis for their website page which has ‘arguments that should not be used’. So he does not have the excuse that he does not know what they say.

Let me define ‘main-stream creationism’. There’s an awful lot of stuff on the Internet, and it is possible to find somebody saying almost anything on virtually every subject. Indeed, I have found evolutionists telling me we came from monkeys: a concept treated with scorn by Dawkins, and rightly so as this is not the evolutionist position, although they do say the common ancestor to man and chimp would have been an ape-like creature, so the distinction between that and monkeys is rather tenuous. They've also claimed mutation is not random.

Likewise it is quite likely one could find a creationist saying something equally silly (indeed, although I am doing my best to ensure everything in this website is accurate, being human I am very likely to have made a few slips here and there). I would suggest that ‘mainstream creationism’ is that which supports the position taken by Christians for most of the history of the Church - that the Bible can and should be taken literally - and therefore sites like Answers In Genesis and Creation Ministries International, to name but two, are places where not only is this position well expressed, but is also well supported by highly qualified scientists in all the key areas.

So I say Dawkins has run up the white flag. Not literally of course, but because he has avoided the key issues and used straw-man arguments. If he can answer creationists, then why not spell out accurately what they teach and then demolish these arguments? There can be only one answer: he is unable to do so and therefore is obliged to make up his own fantasy ‘creationist theories’ that he can destroy.

I shall go through the book, chapter by chapter, picking out particular issues. But in a book of this size, clearly it would be impossible to respond to every point without producing a book of similar size! See here for details of such a book, ‘The Greatest Hoax on Earth’, written by a scientist who replies to Dawkins’ ‘Greatest Show’ in far more detail than is possible here. Perhaps I should point out that, apart from a few tweaks here and there, my response to ‘Greatest Show’ on this page was written before ‘Greatest Hoax’ was published. First though, let us have a few definitions so we are clear about what we are considering.

You will note I frequently use the phrase ‘kind of animal’, or similar. There is a very good reason for the use of the word kind: see here for details.

On page 9, Dawkins complains about some creationists’ use of the word theory, and takes a few pages on the subject, coming up with his own word theorum, to avoid the problem of people saying “It’s only a theory!” He is very particular to ensure a precise definition of words, as can be seen from this, but at the same time plays fast and loose with the word 'evolution'! In this book he is constantly showing us ‘examples’ of evolution when it can be seen quite plainly they are not evolution at all but simply natural selection.

What is the difference? Indeed, many evolutionists will tell you there is no difference: when you see natural selection, you are looking at evolution, they would say. This viewpoint is very simplistic, and one of the main reasons the theory of evolution has survived for so long. Natural selection does create change to physical forms, which have therefore ‘evolved’ to something different from how they began. But when Darwin used the word evolution in the title of his famous book, he was referring to something much greater and very different: he meant the process whereby all living things have developed from a simple organism that sprang from inanimate matter. Saying,


“Natural selection causes evolution and therefore when you see natural selection you are looking at evolution”


is like saying,


“A spade creates a hole in the ground, therefore when you see a spade you are looking at a hole in the ground!”

We have already seen what Darwinian ‘evolution’ requires: an increase in the specified complexity of the genome. On the other hand, natural selection is the process whereby living things with features that enable them to survive best will be able to pass them on to future generations, where those with features less able to help them survive will tend to die out. The result is a shuffling or loss of pre-existing DNA coding: no new genetic information at all will appear. The only way for new information to appear is via mutation, but as this creates damage to the existing system, or at best neutral change (apparently - there is still not enough known about the function of DNA to be sure damage is not always the result), it cannot build up to produce new functions. More on this later. So although the result can be considerable physical change, it can never produce a different kind of living form, no matter how many billions of years it continues.

This is a key point made by creationists - certainly one of the most important - and yet Dawkins does not mention it once, which is extraordinary in a book supposed to be countering their arguments. Of course, avoiding the subject is quite understandable: to draw attention to it would immediately expose the large number of ‘examples of evolution’ he gives as false.

So there is a significant difference between the ‘evolution’ we do see as a result of natural selection (of which there are many examples in this book) and ‘evolution’ that means all living things have a common ancestor in that first simple cell. In order to distinguish between the two, I shall take a page out of Dawkins’ book and use 'Evilution' for Darwin’s meaning of the word, and 'natural selection' for the changes we see all around us that could never produce a different kind of living form. Just two days after the ‘word’ evilution came to me, I saw it on another website! So while it was independently arrived at, I cannot lay claim to being the first to use it!


While there are endless examples of natural selection in this book, and many examples of mutation that produce damage to existing systems, Dawkins does not give a single example of evilution - with one possible exception that turns around to bite him (see later). We are given a considerable amount of theory, however. So, for example, in chapter two we are told that if we travel back in time, we would be able to see a series of generations of rabbits, with those in the immediate generations (child, parent, grandparent) able to breed together. But the further we go back, the more the rabbits would change form, until eventually we would find they are shrew-like creatures. If we then travel forward in time, looking at a different branch of these ‘shrews’, we would again see very gradual change, leading ultimately to leopards.


OK, that’s the theory. Where’s the evidence? After all, this book is supposed to be about the evidence for evilution, not just the theory. He gives no such evidence. Certainly in later chapters he talks a great deal about fossils and the ‘missing links’ he says are not missing at all. Indeed, he tells us that we are very lucky to have any fossils, but that the ones we do have demonstrate the kind of change he is claiming. But do they do that?


Let us, for the moment, consider Richard Goldschmidt’s now discredited ‘hopeful monsters’. This idea, produced in order to account for the huge gaps in the fossil record...


(Gaps that Dawkins claims do not exist - in which case why do evolutionists come up with these ideas to explain the gaps?)


...says that instead of very gradual change, living forms produced off-spring significantly different from themselves, and so progressed in jumps from, for example, the common ancestor to modern man and chimps. What evidence could Goldshmidt produce in support of his theory? He will produce Java Man, Peking Man, Neanderthals and Lucy, etc. (creatures mentioned by Dawkins), and say,


“Here are the stages.”


Creationists dispute that these fossils are valid stages at all, but that is not the point being made here. The fact is that it is genetically impossible for parents to produce off-spring so significantly different from themselves and is enough to destroy the theory. See here for DNA evidence that Neanderthals were fully human. What evidence can Dawkins produce to demonstrate his gradual change theory? The only evidence he has available is that used by Goldsmidt in this fictitious exchange, to prove his theory.


The only way - the only possible way - Dawkins can say he has evidence for gradual change, is to produce a series, if only a short one, of living things, gradually changing into different kinds of living things. He claims to do this in chapter two, by referring to the various breeds of dog, on which he spends some considerable space. But this is not evilution, although he continually claims it is. It is natural selection since no new genetic information of any significance has appeared in the dog gene pool and dogs remain 100% dogs throughout the entire process.


Of course, this 'natural selection' is artificially produced by man-made intervention. In early 2010 concern was expressed by animal welfare groups regarding the poor condition of ‘specialised’ breeds, who suffer physically because of the deterioration caused through selective breeding. The large differences produced in dogs comes at a very high price - one that natural selection would refuse to pay!

The dog ‘gene pool’ is the total amount of different genetic information found in all the different breeds of dog and would have been found in the DNA of the original common ancestors of dog - the first breeding pair, which would, as Dawkins points out, have also been the ancestors of wolves. Through careful breeding, different parts of DNA code is eliminated from different branches of dog, producing the huge difference we now see in all the breeds. So although the DNA is different in the different breeds, the gene pool of all the descendants of their common ancestor remains the same apart from damage through mutation, and loss of genetic information where it has become extinct. Neither of these two factors could ever cause a new kind of creature to come into existence.

Of course, evolutionists in general, and Dawkins in particular, point to mutation as the means of introducing new information into the gene pool. On page 35, for example, he refers to the mutation that has produced the short legs of dachshunds, but then qualifies it by saying it would be unlikely to survive in nature. However, even if it could survive, it is not the kind of change required by evilution, since it is simply damage to an existing faculty, rather than the appearance of a new faculty not previously seen in the animal.

Dawkins spends quite some time on dogs, claiming that the kind of changes seen in them can continue indefinitely and lead to a completely different kind of animal. This is the mistake Darwin made, but at least he had some kind of excuse: he didn’t know anything about genetics. Dawkins has no such excuse. Dogs cannot change indefinitely. For example, it would be impossible to breed them down to the size of an ant, or up to the size of an elephant. It would be impossible to breed them with feathered wings, or with gills and fins to swim underwater like a fish. These changes require new genetic information to enter the dog gene pool, and there is no mechanism to enable it to take place. All mutation can do is to produce damage to existing DNA, and although many times Dawkins tells us to the contrary, once again it is theory unsupported by evidence: he gives not one single example of mutation producing this quality of information.

His best attempt to do this is in pages 116-133 where he goes into great detail to tell us about Richard Lenski’s experiments with the bacterium E. coli. In brief, Lenski divided twelve lots of E. coli into twelve flasks of nutrient broth (including glucose and citrate). Every day some of each of the twelve tribes were put in twelve new flasks of nutrient. This experiment began in 1988 and still continues. This means something like 45,000 bacterial generations had come and gone at the time of writing.

There was an increase in body size and fitness in all tribes (with some variation between the populations) over the first 2,000 or so generations. After 20,000 generations two of the tribes were investigated to find how they had both apparently discovered, independently, the same way of getting bigger. It was found that the same 59 genes had changed their levels of expression in the same direction.

This, of course, is not really surprising, although Dawkins thinks it so, since with large population sizes one expects beneficial change to appear and be preserved by natural selection. Dawkins says, “This is exactly the kind of thing creationists say cannot happen, because they think it is too improbable to have happened by chance.” (Page 124) Wrong! Natural selection is an integral part of creationism, and in no way does this finding contradict them.

After 33,000 generations, one of the tribes suddenly “went berserk,” increasing in numbers six-fold. It was discovered that in addition to the glucose that all the bacterium had been feeding on, a mutation had enabled this tribe to eat citrate. Since none of the other tribes changed in this way, it was clear something unusual had taken place. Dawkins says,


“we are looking for something more like the ‘irreducible complexity’ of creationist propaganda.”


Note the language: irreducible complexity is creationist propaganda. Irreducible complexity is a factor evolutionists have been denying ever since Darwin popularised the theory of evilution. Even Darwin pondered over the complexity of the eye, and this argument has remained a thorn in the evolutionists' side ever since. It is comparatively recently that Michael Behe’s phrase ‘irreducible complexity’, has been linked to the concept. Well, they can’t deny it any longer, since Lenski concluded that the tribe had experienced a double mutation. This was not a case where a single mutation would give some advantage, then a second one increase the advantage; but both mutations were required before any advantage could take place.


Dawkins says:


“There is a comic sequel to this triumphant tale of scientific endeavour. Creationists hate it... not only does it show new information entering genomes without the intervention of a also undermines their central dogma of ‘irreducible complexity’.”


This brings to mind my misspent youth, during which I had a regular weekly seat for Professional Wrestling. One of the regular set pieces was when the ‘baddie’, usually with an illegal move, had the ‘goodie’ on his back, apparently out for the count. He would gloat around the ring, oblivious of the fact that the goodie was now getting up, who with one move would gain the winning fall. Here Dawkins gloats of his triumph over the creationist, apparently unconscious of the fact that he has described an experiment that conclusively destroys evilution.


Firstly, evolutionists can no longer pretend that irreducible complexity does not exist. However, we can now see how difficult it is. With a population far higher than could ever have existed in the imagined line from the common ancestor to man, a double mutation occurred just once. Now look at the amount of mutation required in The Challenge, and you can see how impossible it is.


Secondly, compare this double mutation with that required to produce the flagellum. This tiny device, highlighted by Michael Behe, has caused a storm in recent years. The flagella has about 42 structural protein parts, and Behe has shown that until all of them are in place, the flagellum cannot function. Evolutionists have put a considerable amount of effort into trying to debunk this, but have only come up with the pump in the flagellum, which has about ten parts, as a possible intermediate stage. Therefore, they say, it is not irreducibly complex because the pump could have come first. However, research suggests that contrary to the flagellum evolving from the ‘pump’, it is the other way around. The ‘pump’ devolved from the flagellum (i.e. It is a loss of information, not an increase). Quote,


Where Do Type III Secretion Systems Come From? It seems plausible that the original type III secretion system for virulence factors evolved from those for flagellar assembly...”

See here for the comprehensive report. (Sadly the link is now broken)

But since getting just a double mutation is clearly so difficult, a ten-fold mutation would be many orders of magnitude more difficult, even assuming the ten parts of the pump would only require a ten-fold mutation. And what about the next step? After the pump a thirty-two-fold mutation would have to appear. You can be sure there are no other part-way stages, because if there were, with all the time and effort evolutionists have been putting into the problem they would certainly have found them by now. The ‘irreducible complexity’ apparently achieved by E. coli is the simplest form it could possibly be: a double mutation, and it is demonstrably such a rare event that anything of any greater complexity is clearly quite impossible.

Finally, according to Dawkins there are around one hundred, billion, billion E. coli in the world at any one time, and therefore, he says, just about every gene will have mutated somewhere in the world every day. And yet, with all that opportunity for evilution, E. coli is still E. coli. It has not even begun to turn into a different kind of organism.

Over all the years it has been around, the number of E. Coli generations will have been far greater than in all the mammals that could have ever existed in the entire history of the world, even by evolutionary reckoning. Additionally its DNA is far smaller than that of mammals, so the number of possible mutations is far smaller; this means all possible combinations can be achieved very much faster than with mammals. So if E. coli has not changed into something else, then neither could mammals. Therefore observation - the scientific evidence in other words - demonstrates the utter impossibility of evilution, and here is a more detailed report showing how the experiment has confirmed creation.

Michael Behe, unlike Dawkins, is a molecular biologist. In his book, The Edge of Evolution commenting on Lenski’s experiment, he says,

“A host of incoherent changes have slightly altered pre-existing systems. Nothing fundamentally new has been produced. No new protein-protein interactions, no new molecular machines. As with thalassemia in humans, some large evolutionary advantages have been conferred by breaking things. Several populations of bacteria lost their ability to repair DNA. One of the most beneficial mutations... was the bacterium’s loss of the ability to make a sugar called ribose... another was a change in a regulatory gene called spoT, which affected en masse how 59 other genes work ... it turned off the energetically costly genes that make the bacterial flagellum, saving the cell some energy. Breaking some genes and turning others off, however, won’t make much of anything... The fact that malaria, with a billion fold more chances, gave a pattern very similar to the more modest studies on E. coli strongly suggests that that’s all Darwinism can do.”

(Page 142)

Note it was the change in one gene that caused the change to 59 other genes. Dawkins told us about these 59 genes all changing, with the implication that it is something special to have the same 59 change in different individuals. Now we know it is simply the genes affected by that one regulatory gene, so it would have been unusual for any genes other than these 59, or fewer than 59, to change.
Lenski’s experiment is the only attempt Dawkins makes to provide evidence either for irreducible complexity or an increase in the specified complexity of the genome. He clearly fails on both counts! He has no answer to the question given to him in the YouTube clip.


The book, chapter by chapter

Page 1, Chapter 1: Only a Theory?


This chapter is simply stating the obvious: that there are two meanings to the word ‘theory’. He explains his use of ‘theorum’ (his made-up word for established fact). He begins by pointing out there are some Christians - some bishops and clergy - who do accept evilution, in contrast to those who do not. Interestingly, in contrast to Pigliucci, who violently disagrees with the idea, he says on page 8 that humans are distant cousins to bananas!

On page 17  he makes the point that biologists often make the distinction between the fact of evilution and the theory of what drives it, which he says is natural selection. Also on page 77, where he talks about the power of natural selection to drive evilution. So he shows here that there is a difference between evilution and natural selection, even though throughout the book he constantly points to the latter and claims to be looking at the former. Saying,


“Natural selection drives evilution, so when you see natural selection you are looking at evilution


is like saying,


“Michael Schumacher drives a Formula One racing car, so when you see Michael Schumacher you are looking at a Formula One racing car!”

Notice on page 17 he uses the word ‘theory’ in exactly the way he criticised creationists for using it earlier! This is why he came up with his invented word, ‘theorum’. Hardly consistent! In addition, he turns things on their head in this sentence. Natural selection is a fact that can be observed all around us; while evilution is the unproven theory atheists like Dawkins use to avoid the necessity of a creator. However, here, evilution is linked to ‘fact’ while natural selection is linked to ‘theory’.


Chapter One

Page 19, Chapter 2: Dogs, Cows and Cabbages

So called because the topic is the changes that can be produced via the artificial selection technique of breeders. Information is given about natural selection, but no examples of evilution are mentioned - all the examples he gives are of natural selection. He tells us that breeders are carving, not the actual bodies of dogs and cabbages, but the changes in the gene pool. But these changes are simply shuffling pre-existing genes, not producing new ones to create new physical properties, which is the prime requirement for evilution. He gives some examples of mutation - dwarfism, for example - but in every case these are damage to existing faculties and therefore ‘downhill’ change, where evilution requires ‘uphill’ change. Using these examples is like showing a boy half-way down a hill dropping a ball, watching the ball roll down the hill, and claiming this is evidence that sometimes a dropped ball will roll uphill!

He remarks how rapid these changes are: on page 37 he says you would think this degree of evolution would take millions of years rather than just a few centuries. But of course, they will be rapid when it is a simple rearrangement of existing genetic information: he is not looking at evilution here, but natural selection. He uses the analogy of a body-builder, complete with a full-colour photo of a female body-builder; but of course, this simply demonstrates what large physical changes can take place through exercise and diet, with no change in the genetic structure whatsoever!

This makes the creationist’s point for them: such rapid changes demonstrate how easily the massive speciation seen all over the world could have taken place in the few thousand years since the World-wide flood. Note, this is not evilution: finches remain finches, dogs remain dogs, fish remain fish, but within those ‘kinds’ natural selection has produced a huge variety. Once again, observation of happenings in the real world prove the creationist’s case.

On the final page of the chapter he asks why the natural selection of wild living things over millions of years shouldn’t display the same kind of changes human breeders have achieved over a few centuries. Well, there is absolutely no reason why it shouldn’t - indeed it does, apart from cases where careful breeding has produced characteristics that natural selection would eliminate: for example, bulldogs can only give birth to pups via caesarean section. - because this is not evilution but natural selection, for which we have masses of evidence. As a matter of fact the variation we see in dogs, far from being evidence for evilution, proves it to be impossible, since it demonstrates that once physical change passes a certain point, survival is only possible through human intervention; therefore the amount of change is limited and could never reach the point in the wild where a new kind of animal is produced.


Chapter Two

Page 43, Chapter 3: The Primrose Path to Macro-Evolution


This chapter, far from its title, says nothing about evidence for evilution. Largely concentrating on the interaction between different life-forms producing change via natural selection, all it gives us is the comparatively tiny change that comes from the shuffling of pre-existing genes. That is, tiny change in comparison with turning one kind of animal into a totally different kind. Thus far in the book to the end of this chapter, although the occasional reference is made to mutation in the process of natural selection, the only examples given are that of damage (e.g. legs becoming shortened): certainly no examples of the increase in the specified complexity of genetic information required for evilution.

On page 81 he once again points to the large ‘evolutionary’ difference between breeds of dogs as an example of how much more could be achieved over millennia. But since the mentioned dogs are still able to breed with each other, the change that has occurred, although apparently large in terms of body size and shape, is genetically very minor – no new kind of animal has even begun to emerge: they are all 100% dog, all members of the same species! Therefore this change could continue for billions of years and still not produce any kind of creature other than dogs. This is the mistake Darwin made: assuming the change seen in natural selection can continue indefinitely to create all living things. But since natural selection is unable to create an increase in the specified complexity of the genome, and mutation can only cause damage to it, this argument is invalid.


Chapter Three

Page 83, Chapter 4: Silence and Slow Time


As would be expected, this chapter deals with the various dating methods, claiming radiometric dating to be fool proof. He conveniently ignores the many examples we have of dating methods when they contradict evolutionary dating – for example igneous rocks known to have formed within the last century dated millions of years old, or diamonds dated thousands of years old by carbon dating, when the rock formations in which they were found have been dated millions of years old by other methods.


Since he believes radiometric dating is fool proof I would be interested to hear his thoughts on the fact that dinosaur remains have been carbon dated as no more than tens of thousands of years old at maximum. This destroys the evolutionary timetable, as there simply isn't enough time for everything to happen that they claim took place after dinosaurs became extinct. No doubt he would parrot the excuse that the dinosaur samples were contaminated: but since the tests were undertaken in the world's best laboratories that took every possible measure to prevent contamination, if they were contaminated then no radiometric tests can be relied upon because they must all equally be liable to contamination! He can't have it both ways - either carbon dating is reliable so evolution is impossible, or it is not and dating methods can't be trusted.


He also makes no mention of the fact that dates can very widely, and when they do so, the ones failing to report an expected age are ignored for more favourable ones. He also ignores the creationist argument that we have no idea what processes went into creating the world in the first place, which could easily have given a starting point very different from ‘zero’, that the rate of change could vary over the years due to different worldwide conditions, or that events could have taken place since the world’s creation to alter isotopes (either by adding or subtracting). Adam and Eve were created by very different processes than has been the case in all succeeding generations. So when one minute old they had the appearance of two or three decades. Likewise, rock formations taking a long period of time today were created instantly by different processes. So while God obviously did not deliberately give the Earth the appearance of age ‘to fool us’, in order for it to be viable it would have seemed much older than it actually was compared to present rates of change. Also a stronger magnetic field around the world in the past that would diminish rays from the sun and a world-wide flood would produce massive change in a very short period of time. See more on this in Big Bang or Big Con.

Dawkins tells us that all the various dating methods agree, proving the Earth is 4.6 billion years old. However, research undertaken within the past decade or so has demonstrated that it is not the case that all the dating methods always agree. Dr Andrew Snelling reports that when the same samples from the same rock units extracted from the Grand Canyon were tested with four different methods, the results were radically different. So, for example, the samarium-neodymium age was three times the potassium-argon age. In fact similar patterns emerged, with potassium-argon and rubidium-strontium always yielding younger ages than uranium-lead and samarium-neodymium (reported in 'Answers', Vol. 5 No. 1, Jan - Mar 2010, page 72). Since all these ‘clocks’ must have started ticking at the same time, the only conclusion one can reach is that each of the radioactive elements must have decayed at different, faster rates in the past. This being the case, clearly the whole radiometric dating system is back in the melting pot, and while rocks producing similar results must therefore be of similar age, the date of formation cannot be calculated by using the present rates of decay.

The arguments over fossils (see later) and dating techniques (in this chapter) remind me of a magician sawing a lady in half. We see her entering a box, her head, arms and feet protruding through holes and on view at all times. The magician then produces a saw and cuts the box in half, swinging the two halves around away from each other. The lady’s head, arms and feet continue to move. The box is put back together, opened up, and out steps the lady, unharmed. Everything we see tells us that she really has been cut into two pieces. But we know it is absolutely impossible that this has taken place, because she could not continue to live, and certainly could not be restored back to life if she really had been divided into two pieces.

Likewise, the ‘evidence’ in this book demonstrates the impossibility of evilution. The idea of inanimate matter turning into a living cell is as impossible as perpetual motion (see later) and Dawkins simply has no viable explanation for it. Every example of evilution Dawkins gives us proves to be either natural selection, or ‘downhill’ mutation. We are not given a single example of ‘uphill’ mutation. Therefore, no matter what other circumstantial evidence he produces, like the lady cut in half, we know there must be another explanation.

So the creationist explanation of his evidence of tree rings, mentioned in the few pages after page 88, and radiometric dating, treated with scorn by Dawkins, nevertheless becomes much more likely when bearing this point in mind. See here for 101 evidences of a young Universe.


Chapter Four

Page 109, Chapter 5: Before Our Very Eyes


Although claiming to give examples of evilution in this chapter, once again we are only seeing natural selection, with, in the case of E. coli (discussed earlier), mutation conferring survival advantage. This example is the closest he comes in the entire book to giving an example of genetic change producing evilution. But as we saw earlier, the kind of change that has taken place in E. coli is no different to what we see in the rest of the world: where mutation gives survival advantage it will be retained, but it produces damage to some existing system of the organism and therefore is the opposite process to that required for evilution to take place.

Other examples given of ‘evilution’ are elephant tusks becoming shorter (so nothing new has appeared here) and variation in lizards through their change of diet, with faculties that were rare in the species becoming common (but if they existed in a few previously, then nothing new has appeared). He also mentions guppies, with their camouflage changing according to the river bed (which is one more example of natural selection), and his favourite living fossil, the Lingula, a brachiopod living today. But as he points out, Lingulella fossils are virtually identical to those alive today and supposed to be more than half a billion years old. So with all this massive and rapid evilutionary change, why has practically nothing changed in this creature?


Chapter Five

Page 143, Chapter 6: Missing Link? What do you Mean, ‘Missing’?

At first sight, arguably one of the strongest arguments Dawkins comes up with in the book is found in this chapter, looking at candidates for the title of ‘intermediate species’, of which he sites quite a number of different types from different ‘geological periods’. However, as previously mentioned, there are two ways of looking at things and the two alternative theories for the half-shell of a fossilized aquatic turtle toward the end of the chapter, for example, demonstrate this point: the finders believe it was part-way to acquiring a shell, while other evolutionists think it originally had a complete shell, but had now lost half. But Dawkins completely misses the point of his failure to provide evidence to prove his gradual changing series of rabbits (for example) - he gives us the theory, but no supporting evidence.

We are told that evilution is not dependent on the fossil record on page 146, so using gaps in the record as evidence against it is paradoxical, he says. Indeed, elsewhere Dawkins criticises creationists for concentrating on fossils so much. But the reverse is the case. The creationist’s position is confirmed by observing the impossibility of living things turning into other kinds of living things and this is what they concentrate on most; however they are obliged to discuss fossils because evolutionists make such a big thing of presenting them as evidence for evilution. Proof that evolutionists accept there are significant gaps in the fossil record is the fact they have been obliged to come up with such desperate theories as ‘the hopeful monster’ and ‘punctuated equilibrium’.

On page 147 we have Haldane’s comment that an observation which would disprove evilution would be a rabbit fossil found in the Precambrian. This is a bit like asking why we don’t find rabbit fossils with trilobite fossils! The creationist position is that fossils are the dead remains of creatures buried where they lived: rabbits live on the land and trilobites at the bottom of the sea!

Dawkins makes an interesting observation on page 150 that we have no intermediate species between the common ancestor and chimps. Clearly they had to be evolving at the same time as humans. Although his excuse is that they live in forests so are less likely to be fossilised, how can we be sure that some of the species we are told are intermediates leading to humans are not actually intermediates leading to chimps? (I jest!)

An interesting development destroys what Dawkins claims on page 168 is the perfect missing link between fish and amphibian: the Tiktaalik. He tells us this was found in an area dated as the late Devonian. However, fossilized footprints from four-legged creatures - possibly some kind of lizard - have been found in Poland, dated from fossils in the same area as living 18 million years earlier than Tiktaalik! This means that it could not possibly be the missing link Dawkins claims, and has caused consternation in the evolutionary camp. They now either have to re-date all the other previously claimed intermediates as being considerably earlier than they have said up to now, or start all over again looking for intermediates since there are none for the revised period. Once again, evolutionary ‘proof’ has proved to be false, while creationist denials of their ‘fossil facts’ have proved valid!

Actually, according to Dawkins this find is very strong evidence against evilution. On page 146 he says,


“What would be evidence against evolution, and very strong evidence at that, would be the discovery of even a single fossil in the wrong geological stratum.”


These fossilized footprints, dated 18 million years earlier than the intermediate species from which the creatures that made them are supposed to have evolved, are precisely such evidence. Is Dawkins, and are his fellow-evolutionists, now going to accept that this ‘very strong evidence’ disproves their theory? Don’t hold your breath!


Chapter Six

Page 181, Chapter 7: Missing Persons? Missing no longer.


This chapter has a strong argument, which produces fossils supposedly at different stages of development to human from the common ancestor. However, it ends with the assumption that the huge changes that take place during a chimp’s lifetime...


"with a ‘human’ kind of head shape in infancy, which changes to muzzle protrusion as an adult"


...means that chimpanzee embryology ‘knows’ how to make a human-like head. So Dawkins considers it highly plausible that the intermediates to Homo sapiens, did so by retaining juvenile characteristics into adulthood. (Page 207) However, it is obvious from this that the age of animals when they died and became fossilized is critical: for example, the remains of  young apes will look much more ‘human’ than those of older ones. A significant number of dinosaurs have been reclassified because when originally identified, juveniles were assumed to be a different species from their older family members!

The chapter largely consists of the description of various proposed intermediates: Java Man, Peking Man, Georgian Man, Lucy, The Taung Child, Mrs Ples, Twiggy and a number of others. A couple of interesting points are Dawkins’ assertion that the common ancestor would probably have been more chimp-like than us (page 187), and the changes taking place within an individual’s lifetime would be greater than those seen between adults in successive generations. So evilutionary change would be very gradual indeed - a point he makes several times in the book, demonstrating the validity of The Challenge: there simply is not enough time for it all to happen! Of course, this is according to evilutionary theory - creationists would say no genuinely evilutionary change ever takes place.

So there is much speculation, based on a few supposed ‘intermediates’, some of which could just as easily be found in humans today when comparing, for example, Australian aborigines with Europeans, Chinese, Indians, etc. Indeed, this comparison was what caused evolutionists, only around a century ago, to hunt aborigines, and mount their bodies in museums around the world as examples of ‘the missing link’. This was highly insulting to the Australians, who are as intelligent and ‘modern’ as the rest of us! However, in humans, as in dogs for example, we get variety of shape, colour and size, through the same principle of natural selection. So it is almost certain that all the intermediates evolutionists claim lead from the common ancestor to modern human are either variations in monkeys or apes of some kind, or variation in humans: they are either fully animal or fully human.


Chapter Seven

Page 209, Chapter 8: You Did it Yourself in Nine Months


In this chapter we are given detail of how embryos form and develop, and some of the molecular processes involved. However, while there is lots of theory of how this will create evilution, there is not one single example of an increase of specified complexity in the DNA and therefore no evidence of evilution.

In a most peculiar argument on page 212, Dawkins claims that even if creationism were true, God has never fashioned a living body in the same way a potter fashions the things he is making. What He did was create something like a computer programme for producing the body parts. I fail to see the point Dawkins is making here. What is the difference between shaping a physical form or creating instructions for producing the form? He has still designed it and produced it. The computer program for the human body is found in the DNA in every cell, and when He created Adam and Eve, He did so by forming their bodies with trillions of those cells.

On page 214 he tells us that if we believe Adam was ‘made’ rather than born, you imply he didn’t have genes. How illogical is that? As a matter of fact since the Bible tells us God made Adam and animals from the dust of the Earth, the first living things really were literally fashioned by God. The trillions of living cells that made up the bodies of all those things were formed by Him, each one containing all the genetic information for the continuity of life: both for the individuals themselves and for the following generations.

As a side-issue, Dawkins tells us that in a young universe, light beams had to be created ready-made stretching all the way to us from the distant stars. He clearly has no understanding of the latest creationist research on this matter! For example see here or here.

However, to continue Dawkins’ odd argument, on page 214 and following pages, he claims DNA is not a blueprint for life. The argument seems to be that a blueprint is one-to-one mapping from paper to finished product, where DNA is instructions for constructing the necessary parts. I fail to see the distinction. Both are a means of describing and producing a finished product. DNA is very like the digital language used by computers. But you can take a blueprint, scan it into a computer, and then you have a digital blueprint. Has it stopped being a blueprint because it is now in digital form? Of course not! Calling DNA ‘a blueprint’ is a simple way of describing the job it does.


He says you can’t take an animal’s body and reconstruct its DNA in the way you could take a building and reconstruct what the blueprint would have looked like. That is true, but only because our understanding of DNA is so limited. We know exactly what part of DNA causes sickle-cell anaemia, for example, so that part of DNA could certainly be reconstructed when the ailment is observed in a person. So why, given enough time for research, should it not be possible in the (long-distant, perhaps) future to be able to do the same thing for the rest of human DNA?

Over the next few pages he goes into some detail demonstrating how bodies are formed, as cells divide and multiply, through the cells acting according to local rules. He claims that because they function in this way, there is no global plan or blueprint (page 223). So because a cell has divided in order to create two, although the genetic information is identical in both halves, the surrounding chemicals are not, so the same genes are not turned on and the cells develop differently. This is how the very different functioning parts of living bodies appear.

It is standard biology, but the conclusion he reaches from it is extraordinary: because the development of the embryo is by local rules, therefore there is no architect - no designer! Why not? Surely this method of creating new generations of living things is the epitome of brilliant design? What better way to enable a new generation to emerge than to implant in every living cell the entire blueprint for the developing organism, and then enable each cell as it is created to utilise the correct bit of the blueprint to build the completed thing? Not only does this demonstrate the brilliance of our Creator, but it destroys evolutionary doctrine which claims all this came about by a serious of mistakes! Mutation is a mistake in copying DNA information. How mutation could create and develop DNA defies both observation and common sense! There is no known example of information arising from random processes.

On the final page of this chapter, he sums up his argument by saying that the changing speed of the chemical reactions in cells will then result in the affecting the rate of growth of ‘the embryonic primordium’ of the jaw, which in turn will alter the shape of the whole face. So when it comes to examples, the best he can do is talk about a change in shape. This is a long way short of producing change that can turn one kind of creature into another, which requires the appearance of features not previously seen in the species.


Chapter Eight

Page 251, Chapter 9: The Ark of the Continents


The first part of this chapter looks at the fact that when different populations of a species are isolated from each other, they diverge into different forms through natural selection, using a variety of different species to make the point. He outrageously ignores completely the creationist’s acceptance of natural selection and its massive effect in producing so many different species within the created ‘kinds’, and comes up with a straw-man argument pretending to have thereby demolished it! So on page 268 he claims if Noah’s flood was reality we should see decreasing species diversity as we move away from the resting place of the ark. This is a ludicrous argument since the great speed of change through natural selection that he mentions several times in the book proves that even if it took the animals a thousand years to scatter across the globe, there is still plenty of time for the speciation we can now see to have taken place.

The second section relates to a single land mass called Gondwana dividing up and producing the countries we now see around the Earth. Through his uniformitarian viewpoint, this, along with radioactive dating of rocks and fossil distribution, he claims proves evilution over millions of years. Uniformitarianism is the belief that all change in the past must have taken place at the same speed we see today. While years ago it denied the possibility of large-scale change through sudden disasters, today’s version accepts that such sudden events do occur, but insists that they are separated by periods of stability that can last millions of years.


He mocks the creationist’s viewpoint of large-scale change occurring rapidly rather than slowly, but yet again with a radically distorted version of what they say, and demonstrates his ignorance of what the Bible teaches in the process. So on page 283 he talks about


“South America and Africa speeding away from each other faster than a man can swim for forty days continuously.”


The flood lasted around a whole year, not just forty days (which was the length of time it rained). But much research has been done in this subject with observable scientific evidence supporting the creationist's position. See here and here, for example.


Chapter Nine

Page 285, Chapter 10: The Tree of Cousinship


This chapter concentrates on homology: the similarity of structure of different species and the claim that it demonstrates they therefore are evolved. So on page 288 he points to the bat’s wing and the human hand as being homologous, and on 291 the horse’s hoof and human middle fingernail likewise. The creationist would point out that a common designer will use similar designs for similar purposes in different things. For example an aeroplane and a car both have round wheels, even though their primary mode of travel is radically different.

On page 297 we have another example of lack of logic. He claims that a common designer would give at least some mammals feathers: why does the bat not have them? But the same argument applies equally to evilution: why didn't that give bats wings?


Dawkins would have us believe the eye has evolved independently many time over. In his book, River Out of Eden, he claims that:


"serviceable image-forming eyes have evolved between forty and sixty times"

(page 78)

Of course he gives not a scrap of physical evidence for this claim - just a computer simulation! So if such complex organs can evolve so easily, why didn’t evilution produce feathers for bats? It’s the same argument: he can’t have his cake and eat it! Mammals do not have feathers because they do not need them!

On page 309 is a drawing of crustaceans by Haeckel, whom he describes as


“a distinguished German zoologist and an excellent zoological artist.”


However, he avoids mentioning the huge fraud of embryological recapitulation perpetrated by Haeckel and unbelievably this is still presented as factually accurate in some text books used in schools today. Embryological recapitulation is the notion that human embryos go through various evolutionary stages that produced man - it only survived because of the massive distortion in his drawings, but was exposed as a fraud over 100 years ago.

He then goes on to look at genetics and compares the genes of different species, both for similarity and for mutations. So on page 315 he claims the fact that DNA is common in all living things proves they descended from a common ancestor. However, there is nothing here to counter the creationist’s argument that an intelligent designer would use similar designs for similar creatures.

On page 317 he begins a section perpetuating the fallacy that human DNA is 98% similar to chimps’. Over the following few pages he goes into great detail, explaining this similarity is calculated by observing how well one strand of human DNA will attach to one of chimp DNA to produce the double helix found in our cells. However, one wonders how accurate this is if it takes no account of the length of the DNA strand. For example, one zip-half of 100 teeth could connect perfectly to another zip-half of 200 teeth to produce a complete zip, but that does not mean the two halves are identical: clearly there is only a 50% similarity because one is twice the size of the other. Likewise, chimps’ DNA is around 12% larger than human’s, so the idea that there is a mere 2% difference is clearly wrong. Research has proved this is all nonsense.

Dawkins ends the chapter with the claim that 95% our DNA is ‘useless’ or has no purpose, and this proves it could not have been designed. But if it were true this would be contrary to evilution as such a large amount of useless material is a waste of resources and should have been eliminated long ago. However Dawkins is clearly wrong, as 80% of DNA has now been found to have function, with the likelihood this will progress to 100% after further research. The amount written off as ‘useless’ by Dawkins was more the result of his lack of knowledge about DNA than reality. See Junk DNA for the evidence, which shows how out of touch with reality is the Dawkins’ claim.

However, his claim that 'junk DNA' was scientific evidence to disprove creation, means that now it has been proved not to be junk, this must be scientific evidence for creation. He can't have it both ways - if junk proves evilution, then not-junk proves creation!


Chapter Ten

Page 337, Chapter 11: History Written All Over Us


The first section of this chapter looks at vestigial organs and claims the loss of these things proves evilution. So losing the use of an organ is given as evidence that evilution can create an organ! That is obvious nonsense and is like saying a tsunami destroying a coastal village is evidence that a tsunami can create one.


The chapter then develops into looking at the ‘bad design’ found in living things. But this argument is a two-edged sword: if any of these are badly designed, then according to Dawkins it is evilution that is guilty. So, on the one hand it can create the most astoundingly complex organs, but on the other make silly mistakes. That is inconsistent. In fact these examples of ‘poor design’ are either the result of mutation making a perfect design deteriorate, or the poor understanding of Dawkins regarding why they are the way they are.

After giving several examples of vestigial organs, on page 352 he tells us that most mutations are disadvantageous, but if they are small they can produce improvement - indeed if they are very small there is up to a 50% chance that they will do so. This proves that evilution requires very small mutations, and demonstrates the basis of the argument to be valid in The Challenge that shows that evilution is totally impossible. However, the fact that some mutations can give survival advantage, which can be observed, is not evidence that a large number of mutations can build up to create a different kind of faculty not previously present in a species.

On page 354 we have the old chestnut of the human eye being ‘wired backwards’. See here for a comprehensive report explaining why the human eye is the way it is, by ophthalmologist Peter W V Gurney.

On page 357 Dawkins wonders why the like of whales have not evolved gills. Quite! If evilution were fact then they would have done so, since there is a very obvious disadvantage to breathing air when one’s habitat is in water and mostly under it! Eyes can evolve many times over independently, but gills cannot, it seems! In fact the design of whales is such that they can comfortably remain under water for comparatively long periods, and this goes to show the incredible imagination and variety utilised by our Intelligent Designer.

On page 359 he refers to human embryos having gills, but that fallacy has long since been debunked. The resemblance is superficial while the embryo is developing in its early stages, and it is entirely down to the fact that human sight and imagination is able to see patterns and recognise known shapes from them even when they are not there. Then, on page 360 begins a section where Dawkins describes the long laryngeal nerve in the giraffe’s neck. However, in spite of going into some detail about this, he fails to mention that this nerve supplies parts of the heart, windpipe muscles and mucous membranes, and the oesophagus as well as the larynx. So its long journey does serve a useful, necessary, purpose. The fact its body works so well, in spite of the onslaught of negative mutation, is evidence to incredible design.

There is another element completely ignored by Dawkins in this context. The one aspect of evolution that everyone without exception agrees is fact: the evolution of every living thing from a single, fertilised cell to a fully-formed adult. For a human the fertilised cell ‘evolves’ through various stages in the womb until approximately nine months later it is born a baby, which then continues to evolve until by mid to late teens it is an adult. At every point it has to be capable of life, which means that there will be organs in the adult’s body that could probably be different, or even not there, had it not been for the requirements of life at an earlier stage. In other words we will certainly see relics of our evolutionary past in our bodies; but it is not an evolutionary past of billions of generations over millions of years, but of our own development over about two decades.


I referred to billions of generations deliberately. Since we humans have over three billion base pairs in our DNA, and the bacterium E. Coli experiment proves change can only take place one at a time (or very rarely two at a time), it is clear it would take billions of generations for it to appear as a result of random mutation. And since Dawkins tells us there will be far more generations that have no mutations, it is clear it would be very many billions to result in humankind. How all that fits into the comparatively few millions of years available, is a problem for evolutionists to explain.

We are told about fish evolving lungs when they left water, on page 366. Of course, once again this is theory rather than evidence, and I could find no logical explanation or evidence in the book how the miracle took place. There is absolutely no advantage to a fish under water in developing lungs, when its gills are clearly essential in order to extract oxygen from its environment. At one point Dawkins talks about fish in an area where, with retreating waters, they are left stranded on land. But all that happens in those cases is that they die. They do not suddenly sprout lungs, which would take a very long time to appear with the tiny incremental development Dawkins has told us must take place. This is one of the many examples in this book purporting to be about ‘evidence’ for evilution, where there is none for the huge leaps of faith we are expected to take.

Another old chestnut appears on page 369, with the complaint that bad backs in humans are because backs evolved for four legs, not two. Apart from the obvious contradiction - if evilution was so great and backs were so poor it would have produced something better - the fact is that four-legged animals suffer from bad backs just as much as two-legged humans! The cause is sickness, damage, aging and mutation, none of which would have been the case had the creation remained the same as it was when originally created.

Another evolutionary contradiction comes on page 370, when Dawkins describes the koala’s pouch, which opens at the bottom instead of the top. He says it is because they evolved from Wombat-like creatures. However he says it is now impossible for evilution to alter to opening from the top because the intermediate koalas would be worse off. Exactly! This is precisely why evilution is impossible. If this difficulty is true for koalas, it is equally true for every other living thing, because, in precisely the same way, any change to vital organs would make the mutant worse off, thus preventing new organs from even making a start at appearing or developing from something else. For example, most breathing creatures have lungs like bellows: they breathe in and out. However, birds have a kind of one-way system in their lungs, which is very different. If koalas can’t change the direction of their pouches, then neither could the imagined forerunner of birds change the direction of air-flow from a ‘bellows system’ into the avian ‘one-way’ system of breathing.


Chapter Eleven

Page 373, Chapter 12: Arms Races and Evolutionary Theodicy


This chapter says absolutely nothing about evilution, as it entirely consists of how natural selection functions and the resulting suffering experienced by the victims of those stronger than themselves. In this chapter he does take time to criticise an intelligent designer for making such suffering, but ignores totally the creationist’s position that this is because of the evil that was introduced into the world after its completion, radically distorting the original perfect design.

The chapter begins with the explanation that all of life is dependent on the energy from the sun. On page 376 we have the first of his statements that perpetual motion is impossible, because, whatever the process, some energy is always lost to a system. More on this shortly.

The next few pages describes the waste in trees competing for light by trying to grow higher than their neighbouring trees: it would save them all a considerable amount of energy if only they were able to come to a mutual agreement and all remain the same height. This is supposed to be evidence against intelligent design, but once again we have the uniformitarian view that everything we see has always been that way.

He then goes on to describe the suffering caused to the prey by the hunter, and on page 388 says that unlike a designer, natural selection is unable to consider if there might be a better way for life to be designed. Of course, this completely ignores the creationist position that God did create everything so it could exist with the absence of suffering; but because man chose to rebel against him, this made the opening for the enemy of God and man - Satan - to cause the chaos we presently see around us. The fact is that God Himself has made the way open to rectify the situation, by taking on Himself a huge amount of suffering (at the cross), and He will step in the moment the time is right to restore the world to His original intention. No-one knows when this will be, or why we are still waiting; but with all the evidence of such a loving and incredibly intelligent and wise God, we can trust Him to get it right!



Chapter Twelve

Page 397, Chapter 13: There is Grandeur in this View of Life

This chapter takes its subheadings from the last paragraph of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species and is a kind of summary/conclusion of Dawkins’ book.

On page 402 Dawkins says,


“Even if it were true that evolution, or the teaching of evolution, encouraged immorality, that would not imply that the theory of evolution was false.”


He criticises people for being unable to understand this logic. But creationists do not claim that evilution is false for this reason, and there is plenty of evidence for their position. But it is quite reasonable to point out the obvious consequences of evolutionary teaching: with no after-life and no Creator, then the laws of natural selection reign supreme and there is no reason why one should not steal, kill, rape, lie, etc. If it provides what the individual wants, then do it - in 200 years hence no-one will exist who experienced the consequences, so why not? At its heart, the theory of evilution removes all reason for morality and responsibility for the welfare of others.

On page 405 he points out that the difference between life and non-life is information, which is stored mostly in DNA. This is after his earlier mocking of creationists for their reference to information in DNA! However, nowhere does he give any explanation where the information came from. No-one has ever observed information appearing as a result of random accidents, yet he believes the great god of mutation, which is random mistakes in copying DNA, has produced the vast amount of highly complex instructions stored in the DNA of all living things. You have to admire his faith! So he says on pages 405-406 that information will gradually build up and improve as a result of the copying errors. Where is the evidence for information increasing through random activity? This book is supposed to be about evidence. Where is the evidence for this claim? He gives absolutely none! Random change to a computer program will not improve it but damage the function the altered part controls. When did random change to a computer program ever improve its performance?

On page 409 he points out that change to the system of DNA would be fatal: i.e. change to the way it functions rather than change to the information it contains. The DNA code is ‘translated’ into a ‘64-word dictionary’ before it is used, but if any of those words were to change their meaning, then just about every protein in the body would instantly change. Quite! This is precisely why creationists point out that the gradual build up from a very simple system (see later) to what we see in DNA today is impossible. The intermediate stages would be fatal!

In passing, on page 410 he tells us that the Earth’s rotation is gradually slowing down. This is one of the observations against an ‘old’ Earth. Calculating with the uniformitarian viewpoint of the evolutionist, its speed of rotation would have been impossibly fast billions of years ago.


Then in pages 415-416 we are told three times that perpetual motion machines are impossible. I’m still puzzled why he should suddenly ‘go off on one’ in this way, but it is useful. How can he be so sure perpetual motion is impossible? Because it conflicts with all the relevant laws of science, no-one has ever seen it happen, and no-one can even begin to propose a way in which it could be done. Now let me write those two sentences again, using a different subject.

How can we be sure abiogenesis is impossible? (Abiogenesis is inanimate matter spontaneously changing into a living organism.) It is impossible because it conflicts with all the relevant laws of science, no-one has ever seen it happen, and no-one can even begin to propose a way in which it could be done.

The two are identical situations for identical reasons. If perpetual motion is impossible, then so is abiogenesis. If abiogenesis is possible, then so is perpetual motion. Yet Dawkins’ entire belief system is built on the impossible happening, contrary to all observation and all laws of science. Then he mocks creationists for their beliefs, which he claims are contrary to science!

He tells us that the creationist’s claim that evilution conflicts with the second law of thermodynamics shows they do not understand the second law, just as they do not understand evilution. He claims there is no conflict because of the sun. However, you can keep a starving animal in the sun for as long as you like, but without food it will starve to death. You can leave a car with an empty petrol tank in the sun for billions of years, but it will never start. The sun is not enough: there has to be a mechanism to harness energy from the sun. Such a mechanism did not exist prior to abiogenesis, so there was no means for the energy of the sun to start life on Earth.

Every living thing dependant on vegetation for food, whether directly by eating vegetation or indirectly by eating things that eat vegetation, is without the means to harness the sun’s energy for themselves. So the sun can shine as much as it likes, it will have absolutely no effect on any mechanism evolutionists can claim to be a means of evilution.

On page 416 Dawkins tells us the start of life had to be simple since the opposite of simple is ‘statistically impossible’. But by definition that first spark of life had to have the means to absorb and utilise energy (as just mentioned), and the ability to reproduce. So immediately the ‘simple start’ is rendered impossible, since these two requirements cannot be simple enough to be both ‘possible’ and viable at the same time.

The smallest genome known to man, of the Carsonella ruddii, has 320,000 nucleotides in its DNA. However, it is incapable of independent life, relying on its host for survival. The smallest known genome for a free-living organism is a microbe called Pelagibacter, which has 1,308,759 nucleotides. So the difference in size to enable independent life is about ten times larger than the smallest known life form; but even the smallest, which is incapable of life on its own, according to Dawkins is statistically impossible to appear spontaneously from inanimate matter. Instead he believes some organism, significantly smaller than that and based on a system no one has seen or can even guess at, was capable of independent life. In the imaginary world of evolutionist’s fantasy, anything can happen; but in the real world, which we can observe and test, abiogenesis is shown to be impossible.

He tells us that the spontaneous generation of life had to have happened once, whether you believe in evilution or creation. No it didn’t! The origin of life, if created by an Intelligent Designer, could in no way be described as ‘spontaneous’.

During the six pages in which abiogenesis is discussed - the only time the subject is considered in the entire book - Dawkins considers various ideas of how it could have taken place, with his own opinion that it could have been based on RNA which later evolved into the DNA/RNA information system at the heart of all living things. Of course, this is a complete contradiction of his earlier statement that any change to the way DNA works would be fatal! If this were so then it would have been absolutely impossible for it to gradually build up from a simpler system. No theory of abiogenesis even scratches the surface of producing a viable means for life to begin simply and then develop into the living things we see today, if for no other reason than the difficulty Dawkins himself expressed in changing the way DNA functions, which we considered earlier.

The book is concluded with a ten-page appendix of statistics, giving the proportion of those believing evilution or creation in the USA, UK and Europe. This is followed by 40 pages of notes, bibliography, acknowledgements and index.


Chapter Thirteen



The On-line magazine ‘Edge’ pose a question for the beginning of each New Year, and for 2005 they asked,




The question can be seen here and all the responses here. Amongst the 119 responses was the following from Richard Dawkins:

"I believe that all life, all intelligence, all creativity and all "design" anywhere in the universe is the direct or indirect product of Darwinian natural selection. It follows that design comes late in the universe, after a period of Darwinian evolution. Design cannot precede evolution and therefore cannot underlie the universe."

So in 2005 he admitted he could not prove his belief, which is therefore based not on science but faith; and in The Greatest Show he demonstrates this fact perfectly.

The last two evolutionist books I have read both aimed to prove the validity of evilution and the error of creation. The first was Denying Evolution, by Massimo Pigliucci (see here for my response to it), and the second this book by Dawkins. I have to say that of everything I have ever read on the subject, Denying Evolution and The Greatest Show on Earth have confirmed for me the error of evilution and the truth of creation more than anything else. Both books [1] avoid what creationists really say, producing a stream of straw-man arguments and therefore fail to address the real issues. {2} They can give absolutely no idea how inanimate matter could spontaneously become a living organism. [3] They demonstrate the complete inability to give any physical evidence for evilution, instead producing masses of evidence for natural selection pretending this is evilution, which as we have seen is like saying Michael Schumacher is a formula one racing car, or like calling a spade a hole in the ground.

These three facts persuade me fully that the evilutionist simply has nothing other than his desire to avoid the necessity for a Creator on which to base his beliefs.


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