January 18, 2009

From Michael Elson:

Re: Enforcer of conformity: our own brains (Jan. 14): I am a non-conformist, and therefore I have my own opinions, which is no big deal at all. Conformists don’t have their own opinions, particularly in fields somewhat foreign to them. This is very easily illustrated in many ‘scientific’ papers that are studded with ‘theories’, and which are taught in universities as fact - or believed to be fact. Conformists worship science all round, which intends to mean that whatever a scientist says must be real smart, and therefore must be true. End of story. They simply don’t get their minds around what’s being said. This is quite probably because I figure that most people don’t properly think about what they’re listening to, or feel ‘unqualified’ to argue the point.

Take Darwin’s theories for instance, aside from the idiotic idea that the human race evolved from apes. The general basic concept of ‘evolution’ in the direction of Darwin’s theories, is that animal life evolves by accumulating ‘knowledge’ through experiences, which are passed on through genes to the next generation. I can live with that bit, but when he says that eventually a totally new species will evolve leaving the ‘original’ to die out such as with his daft ‘dog’ to horse bullshit in six easy steps, that’s going much too far. Where he fails miserably in his world famous dog to horse rubbish, is simply “Where are the intermediate fossils - and there should be millions of them - between each so-called evolved new species, all of which similarly evolve into the next exhibit, finally leaving us with a half-ton horse. All from a 15 kilogram ‘dog-like’ ancestor.” Answer that if you please.

What the general public fail to understand, is that a theory is merely an idea. Nothing more, nothing less. In the absence of contrary ‘evidence’ it is believed to the extent that it is still taught in universities as fact. In line with the above ridicule, is that when a species evolves to the level that we now find it, the theory continues to hypothesize that the ancestors have ‘died out’ during the evolutionary time span, always quoted as being ‘millions of years’. In that case, how is it that here we are, supposedly having been evolved from apes(!!) - and this from a scientist - yet the world still abounds with apes?? And again, where are all the intermediate fossils? There should be zillions of them, but they are still looking for the ‘missing link’, and should they find a single tooth (as in Java man) then around that alone is developed a link between that and modern man. A tooth, I ask you... .

With a theory like that, Darwin is surely a monkey’s uncle. Birds evolved from reptiles? Really? Because feathers are made of keratin and so are scales? Didn’t he know that horns, claws and hair, just to mention three, are also made of the same stuff? That then will include mammals - hundreds of different species. Again, if birds evolved from reptiles, how come we’ve still got millions of reptiles? However, all the above are questioned in the face of science, science that the layman swallows without thinking. And that is what conformity is all about. I have coined a phrase on that point: “Blind acceptance is clear evidence of a lack of thinking.” Klu­char­ev said: “Conformity is re­in­forced by the neu­ral error-mon­i­tor­ing ac­ti­vity which sig­nals what is prob­ab­ly the most fun­da­men­tal so­cial mis­take—that of be­ing too dif­fer­ent from oth­ers.” I find that to be utterly ridiculous. That of being too different from others, being a mistake. What are we then? A bunch of sheep? Speak for yourself - if you have an opinion that’s yours. If not, Baa-a-a-a.

From Linda Edwards:

Re: Climate-induced food crisis seen by 2100 (Jan. 10): I see no reason why there needs to be a food crisis at all if people abandon monocultures and adopt permaculture/food forest approaches. If we grow food where we live and design systems with plenty of diversity we can adapt quickly and easily.

The problem is, of course, that giant multinational agricultural companies will not like that idea, and they plough money into political parties. Many of these corporations would rather see millions starve than lose their profits. We need to take responsibility for our own food production and start where we live.

From Joel Heysel:

Re: Why is yawning contagious? (March 5, 2005): My dog is good at keeping eye contact and “reading” facial expressions. Being a deaf dog, she needs to be more aware of things with her other senses I guess. If she is looking at me and I yawn, she yawns…

From Henry Court:

Re: Through DNA, breathing new life into old museum specimens (Jan. 13): Saw the storey about these tigers extinction in the 1930’s. Well i got a suprirze for you. What if they are not extinct? I know for sure these tigers were alive a long time after the announced extinction and kept it a secret because i did not want it to end up in a zoo.

From Cynthia (a_s old ier_f or_ christ @ya hoo.c om):

Re: After jeers, recognition for “reverse evolution” theorist (March 3): I saw this program replayed on PBS Saturday night. I must say that I was upset at what I saw. I’m sure that this is not surprising, especially since it comes from yet one more Christian. But we must ask why anyone would believe such a lie as Evolution, especially Scientists, Professors and students! Unless of course, they believe that they are part of the so-called “fittest of survivors” (or otherwise known as “Survival of the Fittest” that Darwin taught)?!

The part that compared the bones of an Ape to the bones of a human, made it crystal clear that; we have only the fact that primates have ten fingers and ten toes in common with humans! Period!

I paid special attention to these people’s hands. They clearly did not look as those of ones’ who have walked upon them for more than a couple of days! In fact, as I watched them walking upon their hands, they did not do it in the same way as Primates do. Primates walk upon their knuckles and not upon their palms. Primates also do not walk with their butts in the air as those people do. Also, looking at the exterior of these people’s home, you could see satellite dishes in which to receive HD programming on the TV. Inside their home, they had a stove and pots and pans in which to cook with. If these people only walk upon their hands, what would be the need for such things? Also, what is their need to wear shoes upon their feet, but not their hands? Why did the women wear dresses? I clearly saw them having trouble with this. Why did they wear jewelry? My questions could go on forever!

What I gleaned from these people, is that they were paid generously to act like fouls (I meant to say fools) And, what does an “Economic Specialist” know about genetics anyway?! And not to mention all those stupid tests that did not prove a single thing! No matter how stupid one may be, our skulls are and will always be bigger than the Primate; for we were create with larger and more intelligent brains than them! I just thought I would write you, for you said on your site to send you comments.

From Vitthal Jadhav:

Re: Forgotten, but not gone: leprosy lives on in America (Nov. 9): I agree that most of the physicians are not aware of leprosy and need to be trained in the diagnosis and treatment of leprosy. Even in countries where Leprosy programmes are working we face problems with private doctors not being aware of Leprosy. We have reached stage of elimination and new cases are also going down. If in a country like USA new cases are detected even in migrants I feel awareness spreading for the Physicians is important.

Dr Vitthal jadhav
Past President
Indian Association Of Leprologists

From Pierre Francois Puech:

Re: Competition, not climate, killed Neanderthals: study (Dec. 29): The number, not competition, not climate, killed Neanderthals. The number allways win in a population competition, it has been the case for neanderthals opposed to anatomically modern humans. Studies of dental microwear of Zafarraya neanderthal from southern Spain (30-27, OOO BP) compared to the success group that occupied, 50,000 BP, the site of Hortus (south of France) has provided evidence that no changes occured in the way of life inferred from the menu (Puech P. -F. Usure dentaire, In “La Grotte du Boquete de Zafarraya” Barroso R. and Lumley (de) H. eds, Junta de Andalucia, Consejeria de Cultura, Sevilla.)

Pierre Francois Puech, pfpu e ch @y ahoo.fr
Habilité à Diriger des Recherches
Faculté de Medecine "La Timone"
lab. anatomy, Marseille, France.

From Edward Montserin:

Re: More men than women in ancient African exodus, geneticists say (Dec. 21): No concept on TRIBES, How they formed, why they formed.

All Animals (human as well) formed, to protect the pack, tribe, etc.

As the tribe became to large to control, the alpha male would disperse the younger males out of the tribe as they were a threat to him. When the younger males formed their own tribe. Tribal war Begun, re sites, areas to be conquered.

From David Friedman:

Re: More men than women in ancient African exodus, geneticists say (Dec. 21): Based on numerous studies I have read, I believe there is an alternatives explanation for tor the evidence found in the I chromosomes. If a small number of or even a single, matrilineal family group left Africa, perhaps in a search for greater resources or after losing a territorial battle with a more powerful group, a very narrow range of female DNA diversity would be present. With all females being closely related and most males coming from diverse backgrounds, over time the differences among X chromosome population would be minimized. This also seems consistent with mitochondrial DNA studies which seem to indicate a very narrow population left Africa in a first wave of migration.

From Don A. Campbell:

Re: God and science not an easy mix for many (Dec. 15, 2008): If God created the universe then God created science. There can be no conflict between the creator and the creation.

The conflict comes from a lack of understanding of the roots of the book regarded as the word of God. It was written down after a long oral tradition and in languages long dead that didn’t have the words or concept to allow the story to be scientifically accurate.

On top of that it has been translated and re-transacted while the very words in the languages changed meaning.

Place the fault on theologians who claim that only they can understand the meaning of the universe and they will tell us little about it.

Recall that the majority modern western of religions have their roots in a very narrow medieval mind set that focuses not on the task of man to husband the Earth and be a good steward. Rather, they follow Augustine, who said man is to focus not on how the heavens go but how to go to heaven.

The question is who do we trust, the creator, or those shilling for a particular theology.

Think hard about Adam in Eden. There was no Bible then, just an imbued understanding of how to get the job done.

We still have that original command to see to. We can’t get the job done without knowing how. The solution to the problems in the world of nature are not found in the text of the Book but in the text of creation. The laws established there are not “natural,” if there is a creator they are the will of the creator manifested. Those who turn from them do to the peril of the world and the task the very Book they claim to follow sets before man as his first task.

Don A. Campbell
Writer at Large
ca mpb ell@ch esa peake.net

From Hwa Yang Jerng:

Re: God and science not an easy mix for many (Dec. 15): The researcher’s comments demonstrate a superficial understanding of the concepts of “God” and how it may, or may not, relate to “science. It would be great if we could sit down with her and figure out what she actually understands about “science”, while we’re at it.

From Christine Colloby:

Re: Competition, not climate, killed Neanderthals: study (Dec. 29): Very interesting! Regarding the argument of whether we are descended from Neanderthal, or however else related, why do the scientists make such sweeping statements when the knowhow is only just coming into being that will help draw conclusions on how we are related? I believe it is imperative we explore the origins of Neanderthal (and Cro-Magnon). Interesting too, the Bible saying Neanderthal were the Nephilim. Neanderthal however do not appear to have been warriors. I think the cannibolism comes from the desperate times they lived in when nothing was wasted! As modern humans have been known to have utilised cannibolism in order to survive. Am I correct in saying NO site of mass burial has ever been found to show that Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon fought battles?

From Mark McWilliams:

Re: Photo captures three planets by distant sun (Nov. 13): I live in the northern hemissphere and therefore would not be able to view the Alpha Centuri stars let alone with a telescope capable of detecting planets, but I have read that there are two stars similar in size to our own star.

Being that they are a great deal closer than the star mentioned and that the stars are close to the size of our own why have not these people who have access to this equipment or even the Hubble take a look at that system? Is there something obvious to astronomers that is not obvious to me as to why not to look at the closest neighbors? On a different note: I believe it was one of your articles that mentioned the presence of water around/on on of the extra-solar planets found. Since water is made from the first and eight elements I do not believe that water is rare. in fact one of my theorys on comets is that the sun makes water and it is expelled along the solar disk to be accumulated by comets at the outer reaches of our solar system and then like rain drops after the comet has gained so much mass they are disturbed from thier ‘orbits?’ and ‘fall’ toward the Sun.

Since I believe space exploration is far better use of our money than the war department I truly regret that SkyLab was abandoned and let to fall to Earth after just a couple of missions. It should have stayed in orbit for at least 12 years, the Chinese zodiac and the sun spot cycle, to really get a far better idea of our own star and what to expect from others. On that note has anyone tried to see how much oour own star wobbles to see if they can find jupiter which is 10% the diameter of the Sun or about 0. 1% the mass of the Sun.

From Everett I. Baucom:

Re: Is global warming preventing an Ice Age? (Dec. 17): If Kutzbach and colleagues are right, we may really be in for a hellish future when the cycle swings back to a naturally warming period.

Everett I. Baucom, PhD
Deputy Director, NSF Science and Technology Center for
Environmentally Responsible Solvents and Processes
Adjunct Professor of Chemistry
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

From Michael Elson:

Re: God and science not an easy mix for many (Dec. 15, 2008): This is an excellent question. Belief in ‘God’ as perceived by Christians according to the Bible is quite unbelievable to me. I have written many papers on the subject, and will use some of their content to try to make my point here. How any thinking person can imagine in his wildest dreams that a man-like creature created the entire universe and everything in it, and from nothing..... amazes me. One doesn’t have to have a university education to have a brain, and to know how to use it. Nor does one need to try to envisage the universe either. Just a look at our own galaxy right above our heads should be enough for anyone.

And miracles?... Water to wine and feeding 5000 with a few loaves and a fish - that’s nothing compared to looking at the tiniest little insects that sometimes walk on my computer screen. They are less than 1mm in length, and they have a brain (ganglion), six jointed legs, feet, two compound eyes, fern-type antennae, mouth parts, a thorax with comparatively huge muscles to power their wings and legs, an abdomen with a single valve ‘heart’, blood vessels, a gut, reproductive organs, trachea and spiracles. And... . they can fly. And maybe I’ve left some parts out, but that to me is miraculous. But waste-of-time scientists don’t see the spark of life in those terms. They want to ‘prove’ that whatever they’re looking at has origins in whatever, twenty million years ago, etc. They are interested in the dead specimens. I’m interested in life - especially living insects.

However, I digress: The Amerindian nations of the Sioux and others, have a wonderful attitude (belief) towards creation - all creation, which includes the universe. That is, “Wakan Tanka”. This directly translates as “Great Mystery”, and to me anybody who thinks he has a better belief than that, has a lot of self-examining to do. For instance, how do they “know” who God is? Or if there is a ‘God’? And “know” who or what made mankind and all the wonderful creatures on earth, let alone the entire universe? All sense of true wonder is lost in attempting to please their invisible, mute omnipotent ‘God’. They are the first who will trample insects underfoot, casually swat the fly in the home and mercilessly hunt and destroy one of the most beautifully made beetles on the planet - the cockroach. What a marvel of design.

The flat answer to those questions is that they simply do not know. There is no person on the planet who “knows”. It is perfectly impossible to “know”. Most Christian people believe, not because they can understand how ‘God’ made everything from absolutely nothing, but in my opinion, they believe because they are afraid that “IF” there is a ‘God’, and they don’t acknowledge him as such, (as described in the Bible) they will spend eternity in hell.

Well, that is not a true belief. It’s like believing that Mad Bob of Zimbabwe is a kind hearted soul, in spite of his pogroms and other genocidal escapades, but is voted into power at every election. The down side is that if you vote for the opposition (what opposition?) you’ll be murdered. And so you will too. That equates with an eternity in hell..... So it’s better to believe ‘just in case’, and give him your vote.

Although I believe along the lines of Wakan Tanka, I don’t throw myself at imaginary feet and grovel out some self-pitying ‘prayer’. I stand up as a man, and marvel at all I see, sometimes wondering how it all came to be. That marvelling is in my head, and as thought is energy, my thoughts, my marvelling - are tarvelling to who knows where. I am in awe -especially of the tiny animals, the insects, and as far as vegetation is concerned, consider the tree, a true masterpiece of construction and purpose. Never mind the rhinocerous, elephant and whale. I could make them in my workshop, but they’d need the spark of life. But try and make my less than 1mm tiny creature? So in fact then, there is no answer to the question of God vs Science. First, there is no ‘God’ and secondly, our scientists haven’t a snowball’s hope in hell of ever finding out anything beyond a few years. Most of their papers ar brim-full of theories, and what is a theory? It is an idea. That’s all. You and I have had millions of them in our lives. It’s a good thing to have ideas. At least your brain is working, but when they are published world-wide, and end up being taught as fact in schools and universites - such as Darwin for one - then there’s no hope for mankind.

Wakan Tanka is the bottom line.