Slept so poorly last night, but at least I'm up at 5:30 AM more or less ready to finish my wretched final paper for my statistics class. Eight classes down two to go to get my M.B.A. When it's all over, I'll probably spend 10 minutes congratulating myself before I move on to a new form of self-torture!
Have been contemplating the final chapters of Dawkins book "The Greatest Show on Earth." Finished it last week, and found that I love it not so much for the evidence it presents as for its concepts. (Digression: I tend to forget concrete factoids extremely easily but remember concepts without effort. That makes me a good writer but a bad debater. It's hard to debate when you've forgotten all the details of your evidence, but it's easy to look up that evidence and add it to your writing as long as you have the concepts in place.) It's been perhaps five years since I began shed my creationist skin and let my inner evolutionist out, so the evidence Dawkins presented for evolution did not change my basic viewpoint. It did significantly deepen it. If viewpoints can be deepened?
(1) The distributions of animal and plant populations around the world strongly point to evolutionary origins.
(2) Evolutionary theory does not depend on fossil evidence and would easily stand without it.
(3) Ecological systems are wasteful and operate of the basis of competition within the population.
(4) A well-designed system would operate with the good of the whole in mind, but nature is not like that.
(5) There is extensive pain and suffering in nature, but nature is not malevolent.
Now to finish that statistics paper. . .