Is There an Alternative to Common Descent

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Is there an alternative to common descent? Can there be partial common descent? The dynamic-creation model, with its created types and mini-trees, breaks the living world into arbitrary fragments, whereas common descent unifies all life. In fact, common descent unifies all disciplines of biology. The creation model does not explain the similarities between the basic types (dogs and cats), and that is a serious deficiency, because Darwin already had an elegant explanation for the similarities between taxonomic groups.

Creation restricts natural selection and mutation in an arbitrary way. Therefore, the dynamic-creation model fails to be a consistent and complete framework for dealing with biological data. It cannot replace common descent. It can be understood only as an attempt to reintroduce the Genesis kinds and not as the result of a genuine attempt to capture the diversity and unity of life. Despite the claim that it is dynamic and modern, and even though it factually contains more evolution than its formulation reveals, the model offers no progress beyond Buffon, the eighteenth-century French zoologist. It is essentially a pre-Darwinian view of life. Since no real innovative work is done by nature after the divine creation of the basic types (only variation within bounds), it is essentially a static theory.

Behe's irreducible complexity and Dembski's complex specified information likewise are inadequate to explain the similarities we see between, for example, cats and dogs. Dembski has not even made up his mind about the truth of common descent. Without an explanation of the similarities, these proponents open a real gap in their theories of life. So far nobody has produced a full alternative explanation for all the observations that common descent neatly explains.

Therefore, I can safely say that there is currently no alternative to common descent. It is the only nonarbitrary and consistent theory of descent in biology compatible with the evidence.

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