'Tornado in a Junkyard'
Geoff Metcalf interviews author and Darwin-debunker James Perloff

By Geoff Metcalf
Author James Perloff's latest book, "Tornado in a Junkyard," convincingly argues that no solid evidence exists for macroevolution -- the conversion of one animal type into another.

The book examines the growing body of scientific evidence that validates the beliefs of the majority of Americans who, polls claim, do not believe in Darwin's theory of evolution. Among the issues he tackles are: the lack of transitional forms in the fossil record, the impossibility of mutations serving as evolutionary building blocks, the lack of evidence for "ape-men" and the mathematic impossibility of life beginning by itself.

So persuasive is Perloff's book that actor Jack Lemmon, who played the legendary pro-evolution attorney Clarence Darrow in the 1999 TV-movie "Inherit the Wind," said, "My congratulations to Mr. Perloff for an outstanding piece of work."

Perloff was interviewed by WND reporter Geoff Metcalf.

Question: James, the subtitle of your book is "The relentless myth of Darwinism." I use a line that states, "Some people don't like facts that contradict their preconceived opinions." Isn't that really what your book is all about?

Answer: Right. Well, unfortunately, Darwinism is being taught as a fact today in schools. It is being taught as though it is as provable as the law of gravity, even though Charles Darwin himself called it "grievously too hypothetical."

Q: What sparked you to get into this?

A: It is the state of America and the decline it has had. If you look at America compared to 40 years ago -- who ever heard of weapon detectors at school entrances, and illegal drugs, what were they? They were confined to a small subculture in America. Look at the divorce rate, the teen suicide rate, and we all know what happened at Columbine High School could not have happened 40 years ago.

We are in a different culture, and the real question is, what is at the root of the decline?

Most of us who are conservative or Christian would agree it is related to a loss of faith, a growing disrespect for traditional moral values. And where do those come from?

Certainly they come from the Bible for us in Western society. And what caused disrespect for the Bible and moral values? I don't think it is an oversimplification to say it was the widespread acceptance and teaching of Darwinian evolution. Darwinism said that man was not created by God, but evolved from fish and apes, and that life itself was not created by God, but was created simply by chance, from chemicals in an ancient ocean.

When evolution is taught as fact in schools, it makes God seem irrelevant in the minds of children. Julian Huxley, probably the most outspoken evolutionist of the 20th century, said, "Darwinism removed the whole idea of God from the sphere of rational discussion."

Geoff, I am a former atheist -- a flaming atheist at one time. I used to make obscene jokes about God and Jesus Christ. I was not raised religiously, but I had an open mind.

Once I heard evolutionary teaching in school, I concluded the whole Bible was a myth. I know my experience was not unique.

This is a quote from Harvard professor E.O. Wilson, who is a bitter critic today of biblical Christianity: "As were many persons from Alabama, I was a born-again Christian. When I was 15, I entered the Southern Baptist church with great fervor. I left at 17 when I got to the University of Alabama and heard about evolutionary theory."

That pretty much sums up what happened to my baby boom generation.

Q: This isn't just a creationist rebuttal of Darwinism. I learned a great many things reading your book. The fossil record does not support Darwinism does it?

A: No.

Q: You quote this zoologist who defrauded generations by actually forging drawings. I remember seeing those drawings in high school.

A: Right. Ernst Haeckel was the man who created those drawings. Most of us have seen those drawings in biology textbooks in school. They show developing human embryos next to developing animal embryos, and the human embryos and the animal embryos look virtually indistinguishable. This was said to prove we share a common ancestry with those animals.

Well, what most people don't know is, those pictures were fakes. At Jena University, which is where he taught, Haeckel was charged with fraud by five professors, and was convicted by a university court for making those pictures. His deceit was thoroughly exposed in a book called "Haeckel's Frauds and Forgery," published way back in 1915.

They quoted many leading authorities of the day. F. Keibel of Freiburg University said, "It clearly appears Haeckel freely invented embryos or reproduced the illustrations of others in a substantially changed form." In spite of conviction for fraud, and in spite of his exposure, Western educators continued to show these pictures in biology textbooks as proof of the theory of evolution.

This matter was finally resolved by Dr. Michael Richardson. He's an embryologist at Saint George's Medical school in London. He found there is no record that anyone ever actually checked Haeckel's claims by systematically comparing human and other fetuses during development. So he assembled a scientific team that did just that. They photographed the growing embryos of 39 different species.

Q: What did Richardson find?

A: He said, "This is one of the worst cases of scientific fraud. It is shocking to find that someone once thought to be a great scientist was deliberately misleading. It makes me angry. What Haeckel did was to take a human embryo and copy it, pretending that the salamander and pig and all the others looked the same at the same stage of development. They don't! These are fakes."

Q: We have all seen these pictures of evolution -- ape to ape to Neanderthal to Cro-Magnon man to homo sapiens. You have some observations and state there is a shocking lack of evidence regarding the ape-man theory.

A: First of all, the amount of physical evidence is lacking. Lyall Watson wrote in Science Digest that "... the fossils that decorate our family tree are so scarce, there are more scientists than specimens. ..." And he writes, "The remarkable fact is that all the physical evidence we have for human evolution can still be placed, with room to spare, inside a single coffin."

Q: What about all the work that Leakey did?

A: My book discusses australopithecines, but probably a good place to begin discussing apemen is with the Piltdown Man, which was evolution's greatest showcase for 40 years.

What it consisted of, Geoff, was just an orangutan jaw that someone stained to look old. They filed down the teeth on it to make it more human looking. It succeeded in fooling Britains' leading scientists, Arthur Smith Woodward, the British Museum geologist, to Arthur Keith, the anatomist, to Grafton Eliot Smith, neurologist. They were led by evolutionary preconceptions into believing this was an ape-man.

Or take the case of Nebraska man, which was a single tooth shown to Henry Fairfield Osborn, director of the American Museum of Natural History. He said it belonged to an ape-man. He showed it to two specialists on teeth at the American Museum of Natural History, and they confirmed it was from an ape-man. Many others did the same. But it turned out when they did further digging at the site in Nebraska, that it actually came from a peccary, which is a relative of the pig. This happened again and again in the study of fossils. People were proved to be wrong when led by preconceptions.

Q: Was this an effort to manufacture evidence to support their preconceived theory?

A: Whoever made the Piltdown man fraud was certainly trying to do that. A lot of these people were, I think, just honestly led by their misconceptions.

Q: Yeah, but that was one case of fraud. There were a whole bunch of others.

A: Actually, the most recent case of apparent fossil fraud was the archaepraptor. It's not in my book because it is so recent, but the archaepraptor was promoted in National Geographic as the missing link between dinosaurs and birds. And National Geographic even had a picture in the magazine's November issue showing a baby T-rex with feathers on it, and the fossil was put on display at their Explorers Hall.

Turns out the fossil is a fake. It is a bird fossil put together with parts of a dinosaur fossil. Storrs Olson, curator of birds at the National Museum of Natural History at the Smithsonian, said, "National Geographic has reached an all-time low for engaging in sensationalistic, unsubstantiated tabloid journalism. It became clear to me that National Geographic is not interested in anything other than the prevailing dogma that birds evolved from dinosaurs. Truth and careful scientific weighing of evidence have been among the first casualties in their program, which is now fast becoming one of the grander scientific hoaxes of our age." These problems with hoaxes have been going on for a long time.

Q: What about the scientific stuff like carbon dating and radiometric techniques?

A: That kind of takes us off of Darwin's theory and moves us into a whole different field. However, we do have a chapter on that in my book on carbon dating and evidence for an "old earth."

Q: One of the key things you note, regarding the assumption there is a natural progression from ape to man, is that the evidence is lacking.

A: The whole fossil record itself of animal life does not support Darwin's theory. He recognized this himself in his own time. Here's what he said: "The number of intermediate and transitional links between all living and extinct species must have been inconceivably great if this theory be true."

Now, he didn't find those fossils in his own day, and he assumed they would show up, but they haven't. Steven J. Gould of Harvard, certainly a leading evolutionist, went on record a few years ago as saying the absence of transitional forms is the trade secret of paleontology. Colin Patterson, the director of the British Museum of Natural History says, "Gould and the American Museum people are hard to contradict when they say there are no transitional fossils. As a paleontologist myself, I am much occupied myself with the problems of identifying ancestral forms in the fossil record. I will lay it on the line: There is not one such fossil for which one can make a watertight argument."

What should be seen out there in the fossil record are animals progressing through their various stages of development. We just don't see it. It doesn't matter if we're talking about fish, which suddenly appear in the fossil record. You have invertebrates, and you have vertebrates; you have no intermediate transitional fossils between them. And actually, since all animals appear complete when first seen in the fossil record, and they are not in transitional stages, then the Bible is right -- animals were created by God whole.

Q: You mention also that mutations are almost universally destructive.

A: Right. This is really important, because Darwin's theory dies on this alone. Evolution says fish became men over a long period of time. So where did the fish get the genes to become man? Darwin's theory says that fish developed these little legs over a long period of time of yearning to come on land. But a fish couldn't develop legs or anything else unless they first had the genes for them.

Q: Wait a minute. What about that Madagascar fish?

A: Well, that was the Coelacanth, which they said was extinct for 70 million years. They said it was a transitional form between fish and amphibians. But then 70 million years later, in the 1930s, one was caught off the coast of Madagascar, and we have caught about 200 since then. Examination has proven it is not an intermediate form. It has no amphibian characteristics. It is 100 percent fish.

Q: You note in the book that Darwin didn't know about genetics, but thought -- incorrectly -- that animals could just adapt in an unlimited way. Modern evolutionists say fish must have mutated the genes to become men. What about that?

A: Dr. Lee Spetner of Johns Hopkins University wrote a book called "Not By Chance: Shattering the Modern Theory about Evolution." Spetner spent years studying mutations at John Hopkins on the molecular level, and he said: "In all the reading I have done in the life sciences literature, I have never found a mutation that added information. All mutations studied on the molecular level turn out to reduce the genetic information and not increase it."

If we look at the living world around us, it consists of billions of pieces of genetic information. According to evolution, life started as a single cell, so mutations must have engineered every feature of life on earth. But we now know that mutations always delete information from the genetic code. Richard Dawkins, probably the most outspoken Darwinist in Britain, was asked if he could name one example of a mutation creating new information. He couldn't come up with one example. Mutations are harmful. They cause sickle cell anemia, cystic fibrosis, Down's syndrome. They never give you an improvement over the normal man or organism.

Q: What about humans and chimps? Genetically, aren't they something like 99 percent identical? Doesn't that suggest some common ancestry?

A: The 98-99 percent similarity is actually not based on comparison of the genetic code of chimpanzees and human DNA. Human DNA has about 3 billion of its 4 nucleotides, which are the alphabet of the genetic code. Only a small percentage of those sequences have been identified. The claim of 98 percent is based on a process called DNA hybridization. I don't want to get too technical, but it consists of splitting some human DNA into single strands. They found they could rather conformably make it form a double strand with chimp DNA. And they infer from that the 98-99 percent similarity. But let me say this -- since men and chimps look so similar, it wouldn't be surprising that the DNA, which dictates their physical appearance, would also turn out to be somewhat similar. I would expect human DNA to be more similar to chimp DNA than to whale DNA on the same ground that you would expect two software programs for word processing to be more similar than a spreadsheet application.

Q: Wait a minute. That response about the chimp DNA just doesn't ring true. In your book, you are critical of people accepting Darwinism despite all the facts that are contradictory to evolution. Yet in response to the question about 98 percent similarity between chimp and human DNA, you seem to scoff at that as being insignificant. I think it's kind of significant.

A: I'm saying the figure is more arbitrary than people are led to believe. It is not based on actual observation of the DNA code sequences. But let me say this about similarities:

Darwinists make an assumption that similarities prove ancestry. Now, there is some logic to that. If you look a group of siblings and they resemble each other and they resemble their parents, we conclude that similarities result from inheritance. But Darwin stretched the conclusion. He'd look at a man and a tiger and he'd say the man has four limbs; the tiger has four limbs. The man has two eyes; the tiger has two eyes. They both have ears, a heart and so on. And he would conclude that the man and the tiger therefore have a common parent. But is that true? Do similarities always prove relationships? Animals need four limbs to efficiently walk, just as cars require four wheels to be efficiently driven. Similarities do not always result from a genealogical relationship. They also result from the necessities of intelligent design.

Q: Scientists will contend that evolution is a fact. Has anyone ever actually evolved anything?

A: It has never happened. In fact, no one has ever actually changed one species into another. Geneticist Thomas Hunt Morgan who won the Nobel Prize for his work on heredity wrote, "Within the period of human history, we do not know of a single instance of the transformation of one species into another if we apply the most rigid and extreme tests used to distinguish wild species."

Colin Patterson, the director of the British Museum of Natural History, said, "No one has ever produced a species by mechanisms of natural selection. No one has gotten near it."