Mailbag: Chance and evolution

I have read your Evolution blog for a while now. It seemed to me that you might be able to provide a brief comment on the anti-Darwin position put forward here. The science is well beyond me but I find it hard to accept that such a fundamental rejection of Darwin would have gone unnoticed .It is [name redacted] opinion that the rich and the upholders of capitalism such as those who own and/or run scientific journals have suppressed the knowledge he and his collaborators have uncovered that refutes Darwinism in whatever form it takes. I apologise for sending this via email as it does not seem your preferred way of receiving mail. If you do comment on this I don't care if you use my name as I don't profess any scientific expertise so have no reputation in that sphere to sully by displaying my ignorance. [link to mailing list entry redacted]

Thank you for writing, I don’t mind e-mail at all.

Generally speaking, the answers to questions like these are quite easy to find. The Talk.Origins archive has a good list of answers to creationist criticisms of evolution, including the one you note here.

http://www.talkorigins.org

The “protein changes are wildly improbable” claim has been made recurrently by creationists and others who either have not taken the time to understand the basics of natural selection. Or, much worse, snake oil salesmen who understand very well but deliberately try to mislead others.

I can suggest this essay by John Wilkins, philosopher of science who also maintains an active weblog:

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/chance/chance.html

The essay includes an annotated bibliography of sources that may also be helpful, and quotes another work by Richard Dawkins which addresses itself to the same question.

The entry from the mailing list that you forwarded appears to be the work of someone intent on wasting others’ time.