To Paul Nelson's Reasonable Challenge on Evolutionary Pathways, Nick Matzke Has No Answer
In his current cover story for us, Paul Nelson issued a pretty direct, clear, concrete challenge to our frequent interlocutor, the ace Darwin defender and biologist Nick Matzke.
Paul observes, as the first of three propositions:
(1) A hundred and fifty years after the Origin of Species, the evolutionary pathways from unicellular eukaryotes to any of the animal body plans remain entirely unknown.
He then asks:
Now, (1) is simply the case. If you don't agree that (1) is a fact, choose any of the phyla -- or (Nick M., I'm thinking of you), if you don't like the taxonomic category "phylum," choose any animal species present in the Cambrian -- and send me the evolutionary pathway leading to that group from its unicellular eukaryotic ancestors. (Email me here.)
Dr. Nelson, nice guy that he is, even gave Nick an out -- you could think maybe he was referring to another Nick M. But Dr. Matzke walked right into it anyway. We had the following exchange on Twitter.
Translation from the original snark: No, Nick won't answer because he can't. Under his paradigm, there is no valid reply. Which of course is the point.
I'm now on Twitter. Find me @d_klinghoffer.