Thursday, February 12, 2009
wo hundred years ago today Charles Darwin was born. He is unquestionable one of the most important scientists and thinkers of all-time. His book, ON THE ORIGIN OF SPECIES, was first published in 1859 and has never been out of print. It is as relevant today as it was 150 years ago. He spent over thirty years researching and writing it knowing it would create a controversy--a controversy that, unfortunately, exists to this day.
As I drove around town today, I heard talk radio host Gary Dole of 570 News make disparaging remarks about the Theory of Evolution because he was a "man of faith." I groaned and turned off the radio. (It's not the first time he's done that. He interviewed and praised the makers of a documentary on the trash science known as Intelligent Design.)
It would help if people were educated on the subject, but that would be too much to ask. It doesn't help when newspaper columnists write about it with a complete misunderstanding of evolution. (See Brian Milner's article The Natural Selector in today's Globe and Mail.)
The article is about a new fade in picking investments. Look for companies that are able "to evolve" in a changing environment. Since few people understand Darwin's work, no one questions such misuse, but here I am. I will try.
While a corporation may choose and change its strategy, a living organism cannot and does not choose to adapt or change its DNA. Changes simply happen (another discussion) at which point three things can happen. The change is positive, neutral or negative. Where a parent passes on the changes to its offspring, the survivors will in turn pass on the changes provided it survives and in this way a species evolves. A change in environment doesn't change a species. A particular specimen of a species changes and it this change is beneficial, the change persists in future generations. For this reason using Darwin to talk about evolving corporations is non-sense and disservice to his important work.
Again, mainstream media shows us you can't rely on them for knowledge and fundamental truths. They fail us over and over. Just look at how, according to them, January 1, 2000 was the start of a new millennium. That's true, if a millennium is 999 years long.
Posted 2009/02/12 at 20h45ET in Theory of Evolution.