I get what the author is saying; and it is persuasive. However, what’s MISSING from his statements is what’s important. Emergent properties of systems ARE built in; they are unexpressed UNTIL certain conditions are met.
So, you can poke an an atom in a box and you’ll never find a molecule.
This is the criticism about reductionism
This doesn’t mean they’re not following the laws of physics; they are. But there are unexpected consequences of grouping behaviors – and those grouping behaviors CAN bear down on lower systems and influence them.