David Berlinski Writer, Thinker, and Raconteur

What Darwin Got Wrong and What Fodor and Piattelli-Palmarini Finally Get Right


What is encouraging about Jerry Fodor’s and Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini’s arguments in What Darwin Got Wrong is just that Fodor and Piattelli-Palmarini had the nerve to make them. What is discouraging about their arguments is just that it has taken them so long to acquire their nerve. Where have you been fellahs?

Every argument that they advance others have advanced before them. Who in particular? Me, for sure. I have called attention to the striking analogy between Skinner and Darwin for more than fifteen years now. 

And, finally, what is dismaying about Fodor and Piattelli-Palmarini’s arguments is the reaction that they have already evoked in The New Scientist. Letters following publication of their article display with unfailing eagerness the characteristic attitude of the Darwinian community toward criticism.

Arguments against Darwin? If they cannot be rationally rebutted, then say with assurance that we knew it all along. If that does not work, blame everything on creationism. And if that still does not work, snicker.