Evolution vs. Intelligent Design
By Arnold Kling
In my latest essay, I write,
While I have little faith in individual corporations, I have more faith in decentralized market processes. For example, although I have no admiration for any oil company in particular, I believe that we will never run out of oil. I trust markets in the aggregate to send the right price signals to encourage development of alternative energy sources. We do not need the Intelligent Design of a government energy policy to achieve that objective.
UPDATE: a reader forwards this link
The (false) belief that large, innovative software designs can be completely specified in advance and then painlessly magicked out of the void by the normal efforts of a team of normally talented programmers. In fact, experience has shown repeatedly that good designs arise only from evolutionary, exploratory interaction between one (or at most a small handful of) exceptionally able designer(s) and an active user population — and that the first try at a big new idea is always wrong. Unfortunately, because these truths don’t fit the planning models beloved of management, they are generally ignored.
From Eric Raymond’s hacker’s dictionary.
UPDATE II: It turns out that Mathematician John Allen Paolos is as puzzled as I am that people can be biological evolutionists and economic creationists, or vice-versa.
What would you think of someone who studied economic entities and their interactions in a modern free market economy and insisted that they were, despite a perfectly reasonable and empirically supported Smithian account of their development, the consequence of some all-powerful, detail-obsessed economic law-giver? You might deem such a person a conspiracy theorist.
And what would you think of someone who studied biological processes and organisms and insisted that they were, despite an perfectly reasonable and empirically supported Darwinian account of their development, the consequence of some all-powerful, detail-obsessed biological law-giver?