I noticed that you listed the text source as "now defunct skepticwiki.org". That site doesn't appear to be defunct and I'd prefer that we not use large quotes from other sites (defunct or not) without permission and citation. Sans Deity 16:24, 26 April 2007 (CDT)
- As to permissions: they use a free license, so that wouldn't be a problem. But, well, since they aren't really defunct (as I was led to think by our U's buggy proxy), and the original text is not to be lost, I'll rewrite it (may happen in a day or two). In the meanwhile, I'll revert it to the previous version and add a Work in progress template. --Zx-man 17:05, 26 April 2007 (CDT)
Falsification of Evolutionary Theory
Irreducible complexity is not a potential means by which one could falsify evolutionary theory. It is an argumentum ad ignorantiam. You cannot even in theory demonstrate that a system is irreducibly complex, you can only demonstrate that is reducible or state that you don't know how to reduce it.
In other words, there is no potential example of an irreducibly complex system which says, "evolution couldn't have caused this"; rather, every possible example would simply say, "we don't know how evolution caused this yet."
The only way I can think of to falsify evolutionary theory as a whole is to demonstrate a mechanism that prevents, and has always prevented, mutations from accumulating. And that would be difficult indeed, since we have already demonstrated that they do accumulate :)
Any other means of falsifying evolution I've seen wouldn't really falsify it. For example, Yahweh showing up and creating a unicorn right in front of me would not be a demonstration that selection does not also happen. Though if it turned out I hadn't gone insane, I might tend to believe him if he told me it didn't.