Despite Dennet and Gould, evolutionary biology has challenged the old assumption that "NAtural selection" is in play in all situations. Lately, data is becoming more and more convincing that almost all evolution is ADAPTATIONAL. So the concept of the similarity of a meme and a gene may be somewhat passe Iatleast in the araeas of evolutionary biology),
Ideas are usually progressive whereas evolution is adaptive. In that sense it doesnt overcome and transcend anything, it merely allows, via "spandrels" the occurence of "new uses for old equipment" as Miller says.
Heres a nice bit of fluff from Wikepedia on spandrels as coined by Gould and Lewontin
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Spandrel in the Basilica di San Marco, Venice, used as an analogy to the biological use of the word spandrelIn evolutionary biology, a Spandrel is a phenotypic characteristic that is a byproduct of the evolution of some other character, rather than a direct product of adaptive selection. The term was coined by the Harvard paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould and population geneticist Richard Lewontin in their influential paper "The Spandrels of San Marco and the Panglossian Paradigm: A Critique of the Adaptationist Programme" (1979).
In this paper Gould and Lewontin employed the analogy of spandrels in Renaissance architecture: curved areas of masonry between arches supporting a dome that arise as a consequence of decisions about the shape of the arches and the base of the dome, rather than being designed for the artistic purposes for which they were often employed. Properties that they singled out were the necessary number of four and their specific three-dimensional shape. In the biological sense, a 'spandrel' or 'exaptation' (as Gould and Lewontin referred to them) might be the result of an architectural requirement inherent in the Bauplan of an organism, or to some other constraint on adaptive evolution.
Their suggestive proposal generated a large literature of critique, which Gould characterised (Gould 1997) as being grounded in two ways. First, a terminological claim was offered that the "spandrels" of Basilica di San Marco were not spandrels at all, but rather were pendentives. Gould (1997) responded, "The term spandrel may be extended from its particular architectural use for two-dimensional byproducts to the generality of 'spaces left over', a definition that properly includes the San Marco pendentives."
Other critics, such as Daniel Dennett, further claimed that these pendentives are not merely architectural by-products as Gould and Lewontin supposed. Dennett argues that alternatives to pendentives, such as corbels or squinches would have served equally well from an architectural standpoint, but pendentives were deliberately selected due to their aesthetic value. Critics argue that Lewontin and Gould's oversight in this regard illustrates their underestimation of the pervasiveness of adaptations found in nature.
The view mof ideas and evolution is nice, comfortable, and as Mencken said, probably all wrong.