30 November 2010
My latest hero is a 19-year-old Canadian called Gabriel Latner, and for three reasons. The first is that he presented the most brilliantly audacious defence of Israel since Moses parted the Red Sea. The second is that he told his "ally" in a Cambridge Union debate, Lauren Booth (the dingbat half-sister of Cherie Blair) -- "I am going to nail you to the f***ing wall up there." He duly did. The third is that he is banned from life from the Cambridge Union for swearing in front of a lady. Yes, I know, that's where feminism has got us -- equality whenever it suits; otherwise a reversion to the swooning damsel of yesteryear.
Gabriel, who is also Jewish, was proposing the motion in the CU that Israel is a rogue state. He asked the fundamental question: well, what does rogue actually mean? He referred to the dictionary. 'Aberrant, anomalous, misplaced, occurring (especially in isolation) at an unexpected place or time'. In other words, just like Israel.
His first argument was statistical. There are 195 countries in the world; Christian, Muslim, secular. But Israel is the only country in the world that is Jewish -- therefore, a rogue. That he is a better rhetorician than mathematician came in his next assertion, that the chance of any randomly chosen state being Jewish is 0.0051pc. Not true, Gabriel. Two decimal places out; it is 0.51pc.
His next argument came from its treatment of Darfurian refugees, the survivors of the Sudanese Janjaweed war of genocide, who are scorned throughout the Middle East, and even shot on sight in Egypt (Dear old Egypt). But they are welcomed in Israel, with the Israeli government even sending out its soldiers into the Sinai to rescue what are, in essence, illegal immigrants. Clearly, a rogue again.
Thirdly, the Israeli government engages in an activity that the rest of the world shuns -- it negotiates with terrorists. Yasser Abed Rabbo is one of the lead PLO negotiators in talks with Israel. He was formerly a leader of the PFLP -- "an organisation that engaged in such freedom-promoting activities as killing 22 Israeli high-school students".
Gabriel argued that (amongst other governments) the British government would never negotiate with terrorists -- but he was on weaker ground here. Lauren Booth's semi-brother-in-law, yes Phony Tony, even had terrorists staying with him at his personal residence at Chequers. But his point is that to negotiate with murderers -- as Israel does -- is surely the mark of a rogue.
Fourth, Israel has a better human rights record than any of its neighbours. Quite so. As Gabriel himself said, there has never been a liberal democratic state in the Middle East -- except for Israel.
And of all the countries in the region, Israel is the only one where lesbians, gays and bisexuals enjoy equality. In Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, and Syria, homosexual conduct is punishable by flogging or imprisonment, or both. In Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen, homosexuals are put to death. Yet again, Israel is the rogue, for not killing queers, lezzies and trannies.
And fifthly, Israel is the only democracy in the entire Middle East. Again, clearly a rogue! Gabriel then added a sixth argument -- that Israel wilfully and forcefully disregards international law. Look how in 1981 the Zionists destroyed Saddam Hussein's nuclear bomb plant. The rogues!
Gabriel's co-sponsor of the motion, Lauren Booth, was clearly caught unawares by his brilliant definition of rogue. This convert to Islam divides her loyalties ecumenically between Shia and Sunni mosques in London, which makes her the Islamic equivalent of a Free Presbyterian-Roman Catholic.
She later complained about Gabriel's private use of the F-word to her (and I don't mean Fatima, the shrine at which she was converted to Islam). Well we know that if a man had complained about someone using the F-word to him, he would have been told to grow up, but poor Lauren is a WOOO -- Whingeing Owner Of Ovaries -- and the President of the Union, a silly boy named James Counsell, ordered Gabriel to apologise. The latter refused, (good man, Gabriel) and has accordingly been banned from the Cambridge Union for life.
Then & Now: NYT On Publishing Illegally Obtained WikiLeaks Reports and Illegally Obtained ClimateGate Data
Here's what the NYT had to say during ClimateGate:
“The documents appear to have been acquired illegally and contain all manner of private information and statements that were never intended for the public eye, so they won’t be posted here.” Andrew Revkin, Environment Editor, New York Times Nov 20, 2009.
That sentence almost invents new punctuation used to denote sniffing and chin-elevating.
Here's what they say today:
“The articles published today and in coming days are based on thousands of United States embassy cables, the daily reports from the field intended for the eyes of senior policy makers in Washington. The New York Times and a number of publications in Europe were given access to the material several weeks ago and agreed to begin publication of articles based on the cables online on Sunday. The Times believes that the documents serve an important public interest, illuminating the goals, successes, compromises and frustrations of American diplomacy in a way that other accounts cannot match.” New York Times editorial 29/11/2010
James Darymple calls this ideological bias. I'm thinking that's not a strong enough term. That's kind of a so-what sort of thing. Everyone's ideologically biased.
The Times is ideologically biased, for starters. But what they really are -- and all the media is -- is dishonest in service of leftist ideology.
I realize that's what we generally mean when we say "bias," but maybe we should start spelling it out for those who haven't gotten the message. Bias sounds like a penny-ante charge. Dishonesty doesn't, and we need to make clear what the charges against the MFM are.
The human brain is truly awesome. A typical, healthy one houses some 200 billion nerve cells, which are connected to one another via hundreds of trillions of synapses. Each synapse functions like a microprocessor, and tens of thousands of them can connect a single neuron to other nerve cells. In the cerebral cortex alone, there are roughly 125 trillion synapses, which is about how many stars fill 1,500 Milky Way galaxies.
Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine have spent the past few years engineering a new imaging model, which they call array tomography, in conjunction with novel computational software, to stitch together image slices into a three-dimensional image that can be rotated, penetrated and navigated.
They found that the brain’s complexity is beyond anything they’d imagined, almost to the point of being beyond belief, says Stephen Smith, a professor of molecular and cellular physiology and senior author of the paper describing the study:
And as Smith explains:
One synapse, by itself, is more like a microprocessor—with both memory-storage and information-processing elements—than a mere on/off switch. In fact, one synapse may contain on the order of 1,000 molecular-scale switches. A single human brain has more switches than all the computers and routers and Internet connections on Earth.
Evolutionists are certain, however, that all of this—and all the rest of biology by the way—just happened to arise on its own. They can’t explain how, but they’re absolutely certain it is a fact. After all, any other explanation is not scientific and in any case chimpanzees and humans have way too much in common. Anyway the world is too evil and god never would have made all those beetles, so evolution must be true. With evolutionists, it's all about philosophy and theology. Religion drives science and it matters.
Liberal-progressives, giving them the benefit of doubt, are motivated by sincere faith that their secular materialist religion can transform human nature and perfect political society. To force everyone into equality of income and station, liberal-progressives employ mainly heavy taxation and strangling regulation. When voters inevitably resist, stronger measures must be brought to bear (for example, making it a crime not to buy Obamacare’s nationalized health insurance).
Liberal-progressivism, communism, National Socialism, and Fascism all are manifestations of the same underlying secular religion that rejects faith in our Creator God and substitutes worship of the political state (which amounts to liberal-progressive self-worship). Dependents on the welfare state are obviously more easily herded by the collectivized political state, as the German Empire’s Chancellor Otto von Bismarck observed when he created the world’s first welfare state in the 1880s.
President Obama and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi are firmly persuaded that nationalizing health care is an essential component of Franklin Roosevelt’s so-called Second Bill of Rights, which substituted “security” in the arms of Big Brother for freedom from arbitrary government power limned in the original Bill of Rights. Liberal-progressives equate individualistic self-reliance with greed. Liberal-progressives, confident that they alone know what is best for society, aim to bring the masses under as nearly complete regulation of their everyday lives as possible.
Our present-day welfare-state servility differs only in degree, not in substance, from government under Lenin, Stalin, Hitler, Mao, and Pol Pot. Liberal-progressives, looking down from their academic ivory towers, express their plans in vast computer models covering entire industries at one shot, abstractions entangled in 2,000± pages of incomprehensible legislation, implemented through tens of thousands of regulations promulgated by hundreds of new bureaus. That separation from reality affecting individual people, cramming everyone into one-size-fits-all regulatory boxes, too easily becomes the cold-heartedness of Stalin, who allegedly said, “One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is just a statistic.”
Guy Sorman, on the City Journal website, reminds us of the hideous results stemming from this mode of thinking.
The crimes of the Khmer Rouge are inextricable from Marxist/Leninist ideology.
The true explanation, the meaning of the crime, can be found in the declarations of the Khmer Rouge themselves: just as Hitler described his crimes in advance, Pol Pot (who died in 1998) had explained early on that he would destroy his people, so as to create a new one. Pol Pot called himself a Communist; he became one in the 1960s as a student in Paris, then a cradle of Marxism. Since Pol Pot and leaders of the regime that he forced on his people referred to themselves as Communists—and in no way claimed to be heirs of some Cambodian dynasty—we must acknowledge that they were, in fact, Communists.What the Khmer Rouge brought to Cambodia was in fact real Communism. There was no radical distinction, either conceptually or concretely, between the rule of the Khmer Rouge and that of Stalinism, Maoism, Castroism, or the North Korean regime. All Communist regimes follow strangely similar trajectories, barely colored by local traditions. In every case, these regimes seek to make a blank slate of the past and to forge a new humanity. In every case, the “rich,” intellectuals, and skeptics wind up exterminated.
29 November 2010
Darwinist media organizations have embarked upon a new wave of propaganda aimed at portraying a fossil recently described in the journal Nature as a missing link. The fossil in question is that of a fish, discovered in Arctic Canada by the paleontologists Neil H. Shubin and Edward B. Daeschler in 2004. Given the scientific name Tiktaalik roseae, the fossil is estimated to be 385 million years old. Evolutionists looking for possible candidates for their tales of a transition from water to land are putting the fossil forward as an intermediate form by distorting its “mosaic” features.
However, the claim of a transition from water to land is no more than a dream, because the physiological gulfs between terrestrial animals and fish cannot be overcome by any of the fictitious mechanisms of the theory of evolution. The latest attempt to make Tiktaalik roseae fit this scenario, which is supported out of blind devotion to the theory of evolution and rests on no scientific evidence whatsoever, is based on preconceptions and intentional misinterpretation. The facts the Darwinist media have concealed in their Tiktaalik roseae propaganda are set out below.
Tiktaalik roseae: A mosaic life form which is no evidence for evolution
There are three well-preserved fossil specimens of Tiktaalik roseae. Some 3 meters long, the creature exhibits various mosaic characteristics. (Mosaic life forms contain features belonging to different groups of life forms.) As in fish, it has fins and scales. Features such as its flat head, mobile neck and relatively powerful rib structure are found in terrestrial animals. The creature, whose name is derived from the Inuit language Inuktitut and means “a large, shallow-water fish,” also has bones in its pectoral fins. Evolutionists distort these mosaic properties according to their own preconceptions and maintain that the animal is a transitional form between fish and terrestrial life forms.
Mosaic life forms, however, are very far from being the intermediate forms required by the theory of evolution. The present-day Platypusthat lives in Australia, for instance, is a mosaic creature that possesses mammalian, reptilian and avian features at one and the same time. But nothing about it constitutes any evidence for the theory of evolution. Mosaic life forms are not what evolutionists need to find in order to back up their claims; they need to find “intermediate forms,” which would have to be with deficient, only half-formed and not fully functional organs. Yet every one of the organs possessed by mosaic creatures is complete and flawless. They have no semi-developed organs, and there are no fossil series that can be proposed as evidence that they evolved from some other life forms.
The theory of evolution hypothesizes that a process based on random mutations, in other words on chance, took place. According to this claim, the millions of living species on Earth must have evolved from a vast number of intermediate forms, all subjected to chance mutations, and as a result had deformed, abnormal structures, and the fossils of these so-called intermediate forms should have been found. To put it another way, the fossil record should be overflowing with the remains of life forms that can only be described as freaks of nature. However, this is known not to be the case. When species emerge, they do so suddenly, with all their distinguishing features fully developed, and with no series of freaks among them. In his 1999 book Fossils and Evolution, Tom Kemp, curator of Zoological Collections at the Oxford University Museum, describes the position as follows:
In virtually all cases a new taxon appears for the first time in the fossil record with most definitive features already present, and practically no known stem-group forms. (Tom Kemp, Fossils and Evolution, Oxford University, Oxford University Press, 1999, p. 246)
The general picture concealed by evolutionists
Evolutionists attempt to give the impression that fossils actually support the idea of evolution. Yet the “missing link” concept is one that has been invented solely in the light of the needs of the theory of evolution and has no counterpart in the fossil record itself. The lack of fossil links alleged to connect species to one another has been known ever since Darwin’s time. Excavations by paleontologists since Darwin’s day have also failed to resolve this situation, which represents such a grave impasse for the theory of evolution and, on the contrary, have further confirmed the absence of any missing links among living groups.
E. R. Leach, author of the book Rethinking Anthropology, wrote this in his article in Nature:
Missing links in the sequence of fossil evidence were a worry to Darwin. He felt sure they would eventually turn up, but they are still missing and seem likely to remain so. (E. R. Leach; Nature, 293: 19, 1981)
A. S. Romer, one of the most eminent paleontologists of his time, said this on the subject:
"Links" are missing just where we most fervently desire them [to point to a transition between species] and it is all too probable that many "links" will continue to be missing. (A. S. Romer, in Genetics, Paleontology and Evolution, 1963, p. 114)
David B. Kitts, professor of geology and the history of science at the University of Oklahoma admits the absence of the intermediate forms required by the theory of evolution:
Evolution requires intermediate forms between species and paleontology does not provide them. (David B. Kitts, "Paleontology and Evolutionary Theory," Evolution, Vol. 28, September 1974, p. 467)
The picture that emerges from the fossil record is completely compatible with creation. The record reveals that living things appeared suddenly and lived for long periods of time without undergoing any change at all. These facts can clearly be seen in an evaluation of evolution’s fossil impasse by the American paleontologist R. Wesson in his 1991 bookBeyond Natural Selection. Stating that the gaps in the record are real, Wesson goes on to say that the absence of a record of any evolutionary branching is quite phenomenal. Species are usually static for long periods. Species and genera never show evolution into new species or genera but are replaced by another, and change is usually abrupt. (R. Wesson, Beyond Natural Selection, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 1991, p. 45)
Some 250,000 fossil species have been collected to date, and there is absolutely no trace of intermediate forms in any of them. Evolutionists are behaving irrationally and unscientifically by ignoring this and embarking on campaigns of missing link propaganda.
The Error of Biological Inference from Skeletal Remains
When the bodies of vertebrates are fossilized, they generally leave no remains behind apart from bones. However, bones leave traces of only a very limited part of vertebrate biology, about 1%. When evolutionists begin interpreting the fossil remains of an organism, most of the information about its biology has been lost. Evolutionists, with almost no information concerning the organism’s soft tissue biology “fill” the gap in their knowledge according to the demands of the theory of evolution, which they have adopted as a dogma long beforehand.
The intermediate form claims that evolutionists produce solely by looking at bones is no more than vague conjecture. In his book Evolution: A Theory in Crisis, the molecular biologist Michael Denton makes the situation very clear:
Because soft biology of extinct groups can never be known with any certainty then obviously the status of even the most convincing intermediates is bound to be insecure. (Michael Denton, Evolution:A Theory in Crisis, Burnett Books: London, 1985, p. 180)
Even the most convincing appearing intermediate forms for evolutionists can subsequently let them down very badly. One excellent example of this is the Coelacanthphenomenon.
Sensational reports show that evolutionists have learned nothing from the Coelacanthphenomenon
As with the latest fossil Tiktaalik roseae, the Coelacanth is a fish that evolutionists once fondly imagined to be a missing link in the transition from water to land. Evolutionists examined 400-million-year-old fossil Coelacanths, which was once believed to be extinct, and drew a number of evolutionary conclusions from the remains. For example, they maintained that the bony structures in its fins were feet that helped the animal walk across the sea floor, and they also claimed that it possessed primitive lungs. The important point here is this: All these assumptions were made in the absence of any information about the Coelacanth’s soft tissue biology.
The erroneous nature of producing evolutionary fantasies in the absence of any information about the animal’s soft tissues emerged following an important discovery in 1938. A living Coelacanth was caught, showing that it was not, as had previously been thought, an extinct life form at all.
Furthermore, many more living specimens were caught in subsequent years. Evolutionists immediately set about examining the fish’s anatomy and way of moving in its natural environment, and saw that the missing link assumptions they had ascribed to it were completely incorrect. The fish, which they had assumed to live in shallow waters and to move by crawling over the seabed, actually lived at depths of around 180 meters,and they also observed that its fins never made contact with the seabed at all. The structure they imagined to be an evolving lung turned out to be a fat-filled swim bladder that had nothing to do with respiration whatsoever.
The realization that the Coelacanth, which had once seemed such a convincing-looking intermediate form for evolutionists, was just an ordinary species of fish clearly shows that the intermediate form claim being made about this latest fossil is also based entirely on uncertainties and speculation, because it, too, is based on imaginative interpretation of soft tissues from the fossilized remains of an extinct life form. In short, the ongoing propaganda through the media is based on nothing more than the exaggeration of scientifically vague information in the light of evolutionist dreams.
Evolutionists’ missing link propaganda actually works against their own claims
Whenever a discovery is depicted as a missing link, the evolutionist media always give the impression that a most extraordinary finding has been made, whereas this actually conflicts with their claims regarding the truth of evolution.
Were the theory of evolution true, then the geological strata would be full of fossil intermediates, and their numbers would be far greater than that of all the species living today or that ever lived in the past. Therefore, the discovery of missing links would be such a routine matter that it would have no news value at all.
Alternatively, if, as evolutionists claim, there were as much evidence for evolution as there is for the force of gravity, then reporting on missing link discoveries would be as nonsensical as reporting on a stone thrown into the air falling back to the ground. In the same way that we would regard a news report along the lines of “We threw a stone into the air and it actually fell back to Earth” as utterly insignificant, so we would regard reports reading “Paleontologists have discovered a new missing link” as equally insignificant. In short, if evolution were a “fact,” there would be no need for any missing link propaganda at all.
The evolutionary series in which Tiktaalik roseaehas been placed is based solely on preconception
One can see in some newspapers that the latest fossil has been inserted as an intermediate form between Acanthostegaand Eusthenopteron. By doing this, evolutionists are seeking to give the impression that the fossil record supports evolutionary transitions and that the evidence for this is mounting up with every passing day. The fact is though that these series represent no evidence that the organisms in question evolved at all. For example, laying out a row of screwdrivers in order of size does not show that they are all descended from one another.
In fact there is no known evolutionary line of descent from Eusthenopteron to Tiktaalik roseae or from Tiktaalik roseae to Acanthostega. These life forms are separated from one another by morphological gulfs based on profound differences and millions of years of time. Evolutionists reveal only their own prejudices with the series into which they place Tiktaalik roseae. Henry Gee, editor of the journal Nature and also a paleontologist, admits that “missing links” and evolutionary series are the work of preconceptions:
New fossil discoveries are fitted into this pre-existing story. We call these new discoveries “missing links”, as if the chain of ancestry and descent were a real object for our contemplation, and not what it really is: a completely human invention created after the fact, shaped to accord with human prejudices. . . . Each fossil represents an isolated point, with no knowable connection to any other given fossil, and all float around in an overwhelming sea of gaps.(Henry Gee, In Search of Deep Time, Beyond the Fossil Record to a New History of Life, p. 32)
(For information on the invalidity of evolutionist claims regarding Acanthostega and Eusthenopteron see, http://www.darwinismrefuted.com/natural_history_1_07.html)
The myth of the transition from water to land: an illusory and dogmatic claim
The theory of evolution maintains that change in living things is based on the selection of beneficial differences among those produced by random mutations. However, it is a known fact that mutations have no power to cause anything to evolve by adding new information to living things’ DNA. Mutations damage the genetic information in living things’ DNA, producing effects that leave them deformed or dead. That is because the DNA sequences are exceedingly sensitive, and the effect on these of any mutation based on chance can only be harmful.
For example, no random changes to the letters comprising a manual for an electronic device will turn it into a novel; it will merely damage the information in that manual. In the same way, it is totally impossible for mutations in a fish’s DNA to acquire it a powerful skeletal structure capable of weight-bearing, to construct temperature regulating systems or systems for the use of water (involving such a complex organ as the kidney), or to cause gills to turn into lungs.
It is clear that if a fish does not undergo rapid change in different ways, such as in terms of its respiratory system, excretory mechanism and skeletal structure, it will inevitably die. Such a chain of mutations must take place that it must immediately acquire the fish a lung, turn its fins into legs, add a kidney onto it, and provide its skin with a water retaining structure. Systems of such vital importance to the animal either have to change instantaneously, or else not at all. Such a change is impossible through evolution, which is proposed as a chance-based and aimless process. Any rationally thinking person can see that the only possible explanation is to accept that fish and terrestrial life forms were created independently.
In short, the scenario of a “transition from water to land” is at a complete dead-end. Evolutionists have no consistent fossil evidence they can point to. In her bookVertebrate History: Problems in Evolution, the evolutionist paleontologist Barbara J. Stahl writes:
None of the known fishes is thought to be directly ancestral to the earliest land vertebrates. Most of them lived after the first amphibians appeared, and those that came before show no evidence of developing the stout limbs and ribs that characterized the tetrapods." (Barbara J. Stahl, Vertebrate History: Problems in Evolution, Dover, 1985, p. 148)
Conclusion: Evolutionists have to realize they will never get anywhere with outmoded propaganda techniques left over from Adolf Hitler
As has been demonstrated, the “missing link”notion is an unscientific one with no factual counterpart in the fossil record and used solely because of the requirements of the theory of evolution. The way that the Darwinist media cling so strongly to the idea is a method they resort to in order to spread their own ideologies among the public. Evolutionists have no evidence with which to spread their theory, which is the greatest scientific deception in history. All they can do in the face of the collapse, one by one, of such fossils as the Coelacanthand Archaeopteryx, and equine series once defended as evidences of evolution, consists of frequently and loudly ensuring that the missing link fraud is kept on the public agenda.
All these endeavors are a propaganda technique, as described in the Nazi leader Adolf Hitler’s statement that a lie would be believed by many if repeated loudly and often enough.
Evolutionists must accept the fact that paleontology demolishes their theory, and must realize that constantly repeating their missing link tales will not alter the fact in the slightest.
Our moral superiors have more important things to worry about.
Personal doctors on call 24/7. Coverage that knows no caps. No exemptions for pre-existing conditions.
Those are the sorts of benefits members of Congress currently enjoy on the taxpayer’s dime, and the kinds of benefits Americans on a government-run public health care plan will never see if Obamacare passes.
“One thing is certain: Congress will exempt itself from whatever lousy health care system it forces on we little people,” said Michael Cannon, director of health policy studies at the Cato Institute. “Congress will get better insurance than you do because politicians always get a better deal under government-run health care.”
While it’s not news that Congressional health insurance plans are posh, CBS News recently uncovered the details of plans – right as the details of the Baucus health care bill are being hashed out.
Members of Congress can choose from five different plans, and have access to both the VIP Bethesda Naval Hospital and a reserved spot Ward 72 at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, an elite division usually reserved for military members. Their everyday medical concerns can be taken care of at a doctors office located inside of Congress.
Their premiums are the same as those of insurance plans with half the benefits, and the plans last a lifetime; not until Medicare kicks in do ex-Members or loose their Congressional health benefits. Congress has repeatedly voted down any provision that would switch their insurance plans to the lower-grade public option if Obamacare goes through.
Anyone who thinks conservative rhetoric occasionally gets overheated should check out the quotes of liberal talk show hosts collected by the Media Research Center in The Real Radio Hatemongers (PDF). Here is some vintage Mike Malloy from the executive summary:
"Do you not understand that the people you hold up as heroes bombed your goddamn country? Do you not understand that Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh and Bill O'Reilly are as complicit of the September 11, 2001 terror attack as any one of the dumbass 15 who came from Saudi Arabia?" (Mike Malloy)
"[Representative Michele Bachmann is] a hatemonger. She's the type of person that would have gladly rounded up the Jews in Germany and shipped them off to death camps.… This is an evil bitch from Hell." (Mike Malloy)
"[Dick] Cheney, by the way, looks very ruddy. I couldn't get over that. Like, he must have feasted on a Jewish baby, or a Muslim baby. He must have sent his people out to get one and bring it back so he could drink its blood." (Mike Malloy)
"I'm waiting for the day when I pick up the newspaper or click on the Internet and find that [Rush Limbaugh has] choked to death on his own throat fat, or a great big wad of saliva or something, whatever. Go away, Limbaugh, you make me sick." (Mike Malloy)
Montel Williams is another charmer:
"So, Michele [Bachmann], slit your wrist! Go ahead! I mean, you know, why not? I mean, if you want to — or, you know, do us all a better thing. Move that knife up about two feet. I mean, start right at the collarbone." (Montel Williams)
If liberals spew this much venom while they're getting their way, imagine how pleasant they will be when the Moonbat Messiah has been flushed out of the White House and conservatives are in a position to clean up the gargantuan mess progressives have been making of the country.
On a tip from Oiao.
It is a problem in the calculus of variations (optimizing functionals rather than mere functions) and is analogous to the optics problem of predicting the path of light through a medium with variant refractive index. But this approach requires analytical wind fields, described with functions, rather than numerically derived winds described, for instance, on a grid. In practice the optimal routing problem is solved using various iterative methods. Amazingly, migratory insects also solve this type of problem.
Research using entomological radar has found that migratory insects such as butterflies and moths perform their own flight planning in order to optimize their flights across continents. They select the right time to ride the wind, and they determine the right altitude and flight heading to reach their destination (rather than where the wind is going). As one of the researchers explained:
Migratory butterflies and moths have evolved an amazing capacity to use favourable tailwinds. By flying at the heights where the wind currents are fastest, migratory moths can travel between their summer and winter grounds in just a few nights.
And what is the evidence that this amazing capacity evolved? What mutations produced it? And how did evolution create the ability of the insects know when to start their journey and where they should go? You know the answer: “We’re not sure but we know they evolved because evolution is a fact.” Religion drives science and it matters.
28 November 2010
27 November 2010
First, don’t panic. This is important as these people have guns. Lots of guns.
You are probably worried about property values, neighborhood safety, and a general deterioration of area living conditions. While adjustments to your daily life are certainly important for your general state of quiet and peace, there are things that you can do to lessen the impact.
Step one is to begin keeping a detailed journal. I prefer to write in the morning while my mind is fresh and having had time to quietly mull over the previous day. Writing in the evening will most always lead to a level of frustration and anger from what you have recently seen that will cloud your reflections.
In addition to relating your personal feelings, use the journal to take note of more mundane happenings. Times of vehicle coming and goings, license plate numbers, descriptions of visitors.
Frequency of deliveries such as UPS are also collectable information as most deliveries to such homes will be weapon related. Ammunition, guns, militia equipment…etc. This information will be invaluable to local law enforcement agencies when something happens in your general community. It is only a matter of time.
SECURE YOUR PROPERTY
I can’t recommend a good solid fence enough. These Tea Party People always have dogs. Usually large and dangerous. They are bred for security and often join them in the woods for their militia training. Small neighborhood children are particularly at risk and they must be taught to avoid them.
A good high fence will also help you avoid having to look at the blight your neighborhood will take on during election cycles. Tea Party homes are always covered with obscene racist yard signs. NOTE: it will do no good to place up a competing collection of Progressive candidate signs, as they will only encourage them to place even more.
Start a collection of local phone numbers to Government agencies. Keep them handy.
In addition to the important Fire, Police, and Medical, have names and contact information for such agencies as Public Health, and Code Enforcement.
Tea Party people tend to collect junk cars, trucks, or anything with wheels. Most often in a non working condition. They are quite anti-government and will most probably avoid weekly garbage pickup. Instead waiting until they have accumulated a pile large enough to put into one of the many pick up trucks that will be parked at odd angles up and down the street. They then tend to dump the garbage into secluded natural forests, wetlands etc. If possible, follow them and photograph their dumping. They care not for the environment.
A security system that feeds video directly onto the internet is your best bet to record activities.
Cameras mounted on top of your house that show not only the house, but the street as well. Print out individual photos and create a wall to gather information and place specific information on the individuals.
Talk with others at local Progressive meetings and share information. You will be surprised to find others like yourself that you can compare information with. In this way you will be able to generate a greater base of information and actual Tea Party Cell information. They never act alone.
PROTECTING YOUR CHILDREN
The Tea Party and Religion go hand in hand. Where you find one…the other is close to follow.
Protecting your children from not only the physical danger of being in close constant contact with Tea Party people, is but one of the many new challenges you will face.
Sundays deserve a particular note of caution. You will begin to notice and have to explain to children about their behavior of dress on Sundays and a general spate of activity at the residence. Tea Party people are fairly “worked up” after attending one of their racist religious meetings. It is a time for them to spread their magic and meet in small groups to plan.
They return to the neighborhood all hoped up and sooner or later will knock on your door and try to hand you or your children their literature. Even going so far as to try and enlist your children into their groups. Often sending their children directly to yours. Be on guard.
By creating a secure area for yourself, and your family you lessen the direct impact a Tea Party family will have on your neighborhood and lives. Talking with your children will alive some of the anxiety you are feeling. Becoming a part of your local Progressive groups, ACLU, local Democratic Party, and others, will provide you with a support group.
You are not alone.
In the end, your journal and constant contact with local government agencies will make living conditions so unbearable in your neighborhood for the Tea Party family that they will move. I am not saying it will be easy, or happen overnight.
President Obama has given us the tools, and the inspiration, to stand up and make change. It is your responsibility as a Progressive to point out injustice and correct it. No matter the cost.
My thoughts are with you.
They're praying to failed President Obama now:
It's a cult.
Posted by Gateway Pundit at 9/29/2009 07:59:00 AM Comments (299) |
I think these articles are read best together. The two ideas here seem begging to be synthesized.
Wretchard discusses the "fainting" reaction of the left to any utterance of blasphemy.
Both articles are at heart about faith, dogma, zealotry, and blasphemy. As is often pointed out, a faith that lacks confidence in itself must create a system of double-think, of coercive consent, because that faith will likely fail entirely if exposed to any sort of critique or evaluation.
The faith cannot abide questions, because it has no respectable answers. So the process must be aborted before it has begun: The orthodoxy must create an emotional reaction of revulsion to any questioning, so prevent the faithful from taking that step.
This emotional reaction is of course the "fainting spells" Wretchard speaks of -- it is not enough for the insecure left to deem a position wrong; if it's merely wrong, it needs to be argued about, and it can't survive that. It must instead be morally aborrent, so that the zealot reacts to the toxin of questioning much like a jogger coming across a decomposing body on the side of the road -- it must be internalized that the correct response to such a horror is to retch, and faint, and call the authorities post-haste.
This is how the leftist faith protects itself from the infection of doubt. (Meanwhile, of course, patting itself on the back for being so open-minded and adept at "negative capacity" and so on and suchlike.)
Political correctness is one of the primary inoculants used, of course; questions of policy must not be questioned (or even thought about terribly hard), but instead an immediate emotional response of hatred, revulsion, shock, horror, and outrage must be instilled in the faithful to short-circuit such blasphemous thoughts.
There is a sidebar thought here, which I always yap about: Leftists, having abandoned conventional, traditional, normal morality (even about murder-- try getting a leftist to have a genuine emotional, moral response of anger to the perpetators of 9/11, or a horrific murder committed by a minority), still have that instinctual drive to render moral judgments and demonstrate moral outrage. But the usual objects of such outrage are foreclosed to them; it would be "unsophsticated" to blame the Muslims who flew the planes in the WTC and Pentagon and Pennsylvania ground for their crimes; it would be "judgmental" to judge a murderous minority for his outrages.
But the impulse to judge, to burst out in moral outrage, still exists in them, and burns as bright in their hearts as in the hearts of any fire-and-brimstone revival preacher. But the natural objects of moral scorn now being deemed off-limits for such scorn, their moral outrage is directed towards other matters. Misdirected, I would say; you can't get an emotional, moral response out of them about the 19 Muslims who killed 2996 people, but bring up Halliburton or the "Trans-Caspian Pipeline" and their eyes will light up with rage.
Similarly with any minority found to have committed an outrageous murder; they will pass on rendering judgment on him, but mention "The System" or "Jim Crow" and you will find on your hands a person ready to judge and all in favor of some retributive justice.
This is why they seem so alien to us: they have trained themselves to not have the natural (and right) feelings of moral outrage about the things they should be morally outraged about, instead directing their outrage about murders and rapes towards... abstractions like "The System" or entirely innocent parties (like "society").
I don't know exactly how that fits in to the blasphemy/innoculant regime, but it's in there somewhere.
Oh: In case it needs to be said, no, I'm not focusing on minority murderers because only minorities commit murders.
It's that leftists do not consider white people a protected class, obviously, so a white murderer is allowed the moral scorn (at least some of it) that is natural and right. A leftist doesn't mind callling a white murderer a scumbag and killer and etc. It's only when the murder is committed by a member of a protected class that they engage their talents of misdirection of moral rage and begin looking to vent their outrage at abstractions and innocent third parties.
And, of course, sometimes the victims themselves -- as Ward Churchill demonstrated when he called the victims of 9/11 "Little Eichmanns."
When a horror is perpetrated, the reaction of horror will come out. But good little leftists have trained themselves nicely to rarely direct it at the actual monsters committing the horror.
All his simplistic policies have turned to ashes
President Barack Obama walked into the Oval Office in January 2009 during a severe economic downturn led by a meltdown in housing prices -- and promptly made things worse.
By bailing out banks, insurance companies and auto firms -- done to a lesser extent by the previous administration -- Obama rewarded poor performers and punished their better-managed competitors. Prevented from pouncing on wounded rivals and thus increasing market share or buying the assets of the wounded at fire sale prices, Ford, for example, watched GM and Chrysler get a cash infusion from taxpayers. Despite GM's recent "successful" public offering, taxpayers lost billions of dollars.
Obama and the Democratic congressional supermajorities passed a nearly trillion-dollar economic "stimulus" package and then proceeded to award fiscally irresponsible states with "stimulus" funds, helping postpone the day of reckoning when states must meet their budgets by reducing spending and cutting the size of government. Stimulus supposedly "saved or created" 3.5 million jobs, but it merely succeeded in transferring money from the pockets of producer taxpayers into the pockets of others.
Obama spends billions to "invest" in mythical "green jobs of the future." Investing is the job of the private sector, which uses private funds to produce a product that addresses a need or desire. Success is determined by the willingness of the consumer to pay good money for said product. A bad bet means somebody loses his own money -- a possibility that the private investor weighed before he chose to risk his capital.
But government "investments" are driven by politics, with decisions made by bureaucrats operating under rosy scenarios with romantic wish lists. When taxpayer money goes down a rathole -- as is far more likely than with privately invested money -- nobody gets fired, but the country is impoverished a little bit more.
ObamaCare puts 30 million Americans on the rolls of the medically insured. Since its passage, insurance companies -- citing the cost of ObamaCare mandates, rules and regulations -- jacked up their premiums and cut coverage. Over 100 waivers have been granted to companies and organizations that, but for these waivers, would have had to drop coverage, increase copays or reduce medical benefits. Nice to have friends in high places.
The AARP, a staunch proponent of ObamaCare, announced a reduction in benefits for its own employees, lest the tax kick in for so-called "Cadillac plans." To "bend the cost curve," ObamaCare promised cuts in Medicare reimbursement. So doctors are dropping their Medicare patients.
The administration signed into law new banking and financial regulations that keep intact the very government agencies that helped precipitate the housing meltdown -- Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. Under policies aimed at allowing everyone with a pulse and a dream to buy a home, these "government-sponsored entities" allowed the players in the housing market -- banks, borrowers, investment banks and buyers of "exotic securities" -- to play with taxpayer money.
The Obama administration's various government efforts to "keep homeowners in their homes" are floundering, serving only to postpone the necessary market re-pricing of homes that are now worth less than they once were. Cash for Clunkers induced people who were going to buy cars anyway into making their purchases earlier. When the program ended, car buying slumped. The result was more taxpayer dollars removed from the hands of producers and put into the hands of recipients.
The administration, with some Republican support, increased the minimum wage and several times extended unemployment compensation -- both well-intended policies, but job killers nonetheless.
Obama promised to raise taxes on the rich, who, under Bush, got tax cuts they "didn't need" and "didn't ask for." So the rich sit on their money, not knowing whether they will be allowed to spend or save or invest it -- or whether Washington has other ideas. Most Bush-era tax cuts expire at the end of the year, and if not extended, rates will go up on income, capital gains, dividends and estates.
The recent Republican takeover of the House and loss of the Senate's Democratic supermajority likely mean that the rates will be extended for all -- including the dastardly, job-creating rich. But businesspeople cannot plan -- and are thus reluctant to hire -- until they know whether their taxes are going to increase.
Candidate Obama demagogued against trade agreements that "shipped jobs overseas," and promised to tweak the Bush administration-negotiated treaty with South Korea. According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the pact would create 250,000 jobs in America and it would open up exports to a NAFTA-sized market. But during his recent trip to Asia, Obama failed to get the South Koreans to go along with his changes aimed at benefiting the American auto and beef industries. The South Koreans said no, insisting that they had a deal and that if the U.S. won't do business with them, other countries will.
For two years, Obama has practiced Obamalism: Spread the wealth; redistribute income; punish success; reward ineptitude; and encourage the victicrat-entitlement mentality by making the lack of health insurance the responsibility of others.
Americans are pretty generous. Three-quarters of American families give to charity -- and those who do, give an average of $1,800. Of course that means one-quarter of us don't give at all. What distinguishes those who give from those who don't? It turns out there are many myths about that.
To test them, ABC's "20/20" went to Sioux Falls, S.D., and San Francisco. We asked the Salvation Army to set up buckets at their busiest locations in both cities. Which bucket would get more money? I'll get to that in a minute.
San Francisco and Sioux Falls are different in some important ways. Sioux Falls is small and rural, and more than half the people go to church every week.
San Francisco is a much bigger and richer city, and relatively few people attend church. It is also known as a very liberal place, and since liberals are said to "care more" about the poor, you might assume people in San Francisco would give a lot.
But the idea that liberals give more is a myth. Of the top 25 states where people give an above-average percentage of their income, all but one (Maryland) were red -- conservative -- states in the last presidential election.
"When you look at the data," says Syracuse University professor Arthur Brooks, "it turns out the conservatives give about 30 percent more. And incidentally, conservative-headed families make slightly less money."
Researching his book, "Who Really Cares", Brooks found that the conservative/liberal difference goes beyond money:
"The people who give one thing tend to be the people who give everything in America. You find that people who believe it's the government's job to make incomes more equal, are far less likely to give their money away."
Conservatives are even 18 percent more likely to donate blood.
The second myth is that people with the most money are the most generous. But while the rich give more in total dollars, low-income people give almost 30 percent more as a share of their income.
Says Brooks: "The most charitable people in America today are the working poor."
We saw that in Sioux Falls, S.D. The workers at the meat packing plant make about $35,000, yet the Sioux Falls United Way says it gets more contributions of over $500 from employees there than anywhere else.
Note that Brooks said the "working" poor. The nonworking poor -- people on welfare -- are very different, even though they have the same income. The nonworking poor don't give much at all.
What about the middle class? Well, while middle-income Americans are generous compared to people in other countries, when compared to both the rich and working poor in America, Brooks says, "They give less."
When asked why, many say, "I don't have enough money to spare." But it's telling that the working poor manage to give.
And the rich? What about America's 400 billionaires? I'll report on them in next week's column.
Finally, Brooks says one thing stands out as the biggest predictor of whether someone will be charitable: "their religious participation." Religious people are more likely to give to charity, and when they give, they give more money -- four times as much.
But doesn't that giving just stay within the religion?
"No," says Brooks, "Religious Americans are more likely to give to every kind of cause and charity, including explicitly nonreligious charities. Religious people give more blood; religious people give more to homeless people on the street."
And what happened in our little test? Well, even though people in Sioux Falls make, on average, half as much money as people in San Francisco, and even though the San Francisco location was much busier -- three times as many people were within reach of the bucket -- by the end of the second day, the Sioux Falls bucket held twice as much money.
Another myth bites the dust.
John StosselJohn Stossel is host of "Stossel" on the Fox Business Network. He's the author of "Give Me a Break" and of "Myth, Lies, and Downright Stupidity." To find out more about John Stossel, visit his site at johnstossel.com.
This past Sunday, science lost a bold and courageous voice for objectivity with the passing of Dr. Philip Skell. A member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS) since 1977, "Phil" was Emeritus Evan Pugh Professor at Pennsylvania State University, and his research included work on reactive intermediates in chemistry such as carbene molecules, free-atom reactions, and reactions of free carbonium ions. A 1997 article in the journal Pure and Applied Chemistry described some of Skell's significant scientific contributions as follows:
Another class of intermediates, containing divalent carbon atoms, were suggested by John Nef early in this century but his ideas were generally rejected. However, the concept was revived with vigor when Philip Skell showed that: CCl,, dichlorocarbone, was formed as a reaction intermediate. Carbene chemistry almost immediately became the subject of extensive physical organic research.Penn State University describes Skell's research thusly:
Philip S. Skell, sometimes called "the father of carbene chemistry," is widely known for the "Skell Rule," which was first applied to carbenes, the "fleeting species" of carbon. The rule, which predicts the most probable pathway through which certain chemical compounds will be formed, found use throughout the pharmaceutical and chemical industries.Later in his career, Phil became a skeptic of neo-Darwinian evolution. His main position was that Darwinism does not serve as the cornerstone of biological thought that many claim it does. In 2007, I had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Skell and doing three interviews with him for Discovery Institute's ID the Future Podcast.
In the first interview, Skell explained that the NAS is an "exclusive club," and that the election of NAS scientists is a generally secret process; the reasons for electing scientists are not always disclosed even to those who are elected. He speculated, however, that it was his research on carbene that got him elected. In this podcast, he maintained that many NAS members have a "bias in favor of" evolution--a bias he shared until he read the writings of fellow chemist Michael Polanyi.
In the second podcast, Skell elaborated on how Polanyi's work influenced his own thinking. After reading Polanyi, Skell asked himself whether Darwinian evolution was truly vital to his own research developing antibiotic drugs. Skell then queried other bioscience researchers and learned that they too had made no reliance upon Darwinian evolution in their work. This led Skell to investigate the history of Nobel Prize awards, and he could not find a single one where Darwinian evolution had directly dictated the research that led to the award.
In a 2005 article published in The Scientist, Skell reported this survey of his peers--more than 70 scientists in fact--on whether Darwin's theory directed their research. According to Skell, "The responses were all the same: No." In an eloquent statement that has been referenced many times since, Skell recounted that in many areas of biological research "Darwin's theory had provided no discernible guidance, but was brought in, after the breakthroughs, as an interesting narrative gloss." He further elaborated:
[T]he modern form of Darwin's theory has been raised to its present high status because it's said to be the cornerstone of modern experimental biology. But is that correct? ... Darwinian evolution - whatever its other virtues - does not provide a fruitful heuristic in experimental biology. This becomes especially clear when we compare it with a heuristic framework such as the atomic model, which opens up structural chemistry and leads to advances in the synthesis of a multitude of new molecules of practical benefit. None of this demonstrates that Darwinism is false. It does, however, mean that the claim that it is the cornerstone of modern experimental biology will be met with quiet skepticism from a growing number of scientists in fields where theories actually do serve as cornerstones for tangible breakthroughs.The article generated some spirited rebuttals, leading to a vigorous response from Skell:
(Phil Skell, "Why Do We Invoke Darwin? Evolutionary theory contributes little to experimental biology," The Scientist Vol. 19(16):10 (August 29, 2005).)
One letter mentions directed molecular evolution as a technique to discover antibodies, enzymes and drugs. Like comparative biology, this has certainly been fruitful, but it is not an application of Darwinian evolution -- it is the modern molecular equivalent of classical breeding. Long before Darwin, breeders used artificial selection to develop improved strains of crops and livestock. Darwin extrapolated this in an attempt to explain the origin of new species, but he did not invent the process of artificial selection itself.Before dismissing Skell's position, the reader must understand that Skell should know whether Darwinian evolution provides guidance for producing antibiotics: some of own his early research helped pioneer the widespread use of antibiotics during World War II.
Thus Skell was a rare voice in the NAS who was willing to dissent from the majority neo-Darwinian viewpoint. In 2008 the NAS published a booklet, Science, Evolution, and Creationism, declaring that "[t]here is no scientific controversy about the basic facts of evolution," and asserting that evolution by natural selection is "so well established that no new evidence is likely to alter" it. Skell published a rebuttal to the NAS's booklet in the journal Politics and the Life Sciences, explaining that it did not speak for all NAS members, and that the NAS was guilty of "overselling of the theory of evolution." He continued:
The public should view with profound alarm the unnecessary and misguided reintroduction of speculative historical, philosophical, and religious ideas into the realms of experimental science, coming from various sources, including this current publication of the National Academy of Sciences. Are we perhaps setting the stage for a return to that earlier, worldview-bound, pre-modern type of science, only this time with the substitution of Scientism for the earlier worldviews?Phil also got involved with defending objectivity and academic freedom in evolution-education. He encouraged a middle-of-the-road approach, avoiding extremes that would force religion or dumbed-down evolutionary dogmatism into the science classroom. Instead, in a 2005 letter to the South Carolina Education Oversight Committee, he recommended:
(Philip Skell, "Review of National Academy of Sciences, Science, Evolution, and Creationism (Washington, D.C.: NAS Press, 2008)," Politics and the Life Sciences, Vol. 27(2);47-49 (October 9, 2008).)
Both these extremes are mistaken. Evolution is an important theory and students need to know about it. But scientific journals now document many scientific problems and criticisms of evolutionary theory and students need to know about these as well.As a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, Skell had personal inside access to the thought and behavior patterns of many top scientists. This makes it all the more striking that his 2005 letter maintained that the claim that there are no scientific criticisms of neo-Darwinian evolution is a bluff promoted to the public. He wrote:
Many of the scientific criticisms of which I speak are well known by scientists in various disciplines, including the disciplines of chemistry and biochemistry, in which I have done my work. I have found that some of my scientific colleagues are very reluctant to acknowledge the existence of problems with evolutionary theory to the general public. They display an almost religious zeal for a strictly Darwinian view of biological origins.In a third podcast interview, Dr. Skell offered advice to a hypothetical young scientist who was skeptical of Darwinian evolution. Here, he urged great caution:
The academic community is incredibly intolerant of anyone not paying loyalty to Darwinian ideas, and have no hesitation in railroading such an individual out of the community, having them fired, and making life generally miserable for such a person. So for a young person to let his professors know that he might be skeptical of Darwinism ... even such a mild disowning of the Darwinian point of view is considered so dangerous among many of the professional biologists that such a person is railroaded out of the profession. The best advice I can give them is until this climate changes ... that a young prospective scientist in the biosciences keep that entirely to themselves and make it something which is not known to the academic structure on which they depend both for their education for their degrees and for recommendation to positions in the future.Dr. Skell further explained that that climate of academic freedom has "deteriorated" over the course of his career, and that although it is "not an easy matter to judge," he believed that it is "more dangerous today for anyone to be declared a Darwinian skeptic of whatever color than it has been in the past."
In keeping with his commitment to academic freedom, in 2005 Skell put his name as the first signer on an amicus brief submitted to the court during the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial stating "[i]t is crucial that advocates of new scientific theories be granted freedom of inquiry to question reigning scientific ideas if scientific progress is to be possible."
On this Thanksgiving, I personally am very thankful for having been given the opportunity to get to know Phil Skell a little over the past few years. He was a real gentleman, and had a great sense of humor, and a big smile. It's my understanding that he was quite athletic until just a couple years ago.
Dr. Skell will always have my most profound respect as someone who was willing to risk an impeccable scientific reputation for the sake of seeking scientific truth, vocally defending it whatever the personal cost. I have no doubt he will be missed by many.
The chromophore photoisomerization is the beginning of a remarkable cascade that causes action potentials to be triggered in the optic nerve. In response to the chromophore photoisomerization, the rhodopsin causes the activation of hundreds of transducin molecules. These, in turn, cause the activation of cGMP phosphodiesterase (by removing its inhibitory subunit), an enzyme that degrades the cyclic nucleotide, cGMP.
A single photon can result in the activation of hundreds of transducins, leading to the degradation of hundreds of thousands of cGMP molecules. cGMP molecules serve to open non selective ion channels in the membrane, so reduction in cGMP concentration serves to close these channels. This means that millions of sodium ions per second are shut out of the cell, causing a voltage change across the membrane. This hyperpolarization of the cell membrane causes a reduction in the release of neurotransmitter, the chemical that interacts with the nearby nerve cell, in the synaptic region of the cell. This reduction in neurotransmitter release ultimately causes an action potential to arise in the nerve cell.
All this because a single photon entered into the fray. In short order, this light signal is converted into a structural signal, more structural signals, a chemical concentration signal, back to a structural signal, and then back to a chemical concentration signal leading to a voltage signal which then leads back to a chemical concentration signal. There is, of course, a wealth of yet more detail which makes the information conversion process far more complicated.
Optical oil drops
And there is a seemingly endless stream of variations on this cascade. One fascinating variation is the use of special oil to filter and focus the incoming light before it ever reaches the first step of exciting the light-sensitive chromophore molecule. In chickens, for example, these brightly colored oil droplets seem to improve color discrimination as they focus the light toward the target chromophore molecules.
And these droplets are not just any kind of oil. The oil and its optical properties are finely tuned and specific to the different types of light sensitive cells. In fact the oil provides a convenient method for determining the cell type, which allowed researchers to map the optimal pattern the different cell types fall into. It is all part of what one writer called “a masterpiece of biological design.”
Evolutionists describe this as a consequence of evolutionary pressure:
Our results indicate that the evolutionary pressures that gave rise to the avian retina’s various adaptations for enhanced color discrimination also acted to fine-tune its spatial sampling of color and luminance.
Evolutionary, or selective, pressure is an internal contradiction in evolutionary thought. One can hardly blame evolutionists for their use of such action themes. It sounds better than the just-add-water account which holds that random biological variation produced nature’s marvels. But in fact there can be no such pressure in evolution’s the-world-is-a-fluke hypothesis.
The whole idea in evolutionary theory is that random mutations are, well, random. Biological variation is random with respect to need. There can be no “pressure” to produce any smart designs. And the evolutionist’s hole card, natural selection, doesn’t help. It only kills off the failures (of which there must have been a great many). Every mutation, one after the other, leading to nature’s gems such as the fine-tuned oil droplet in light sensitive cells, must have occurred for no reason. Only after they occurred could natural selection appreciate the brilliance of these random events. And that’s a fact. Religion drives science, and it matters.
Just as the Wright brothers implemented controls to achieve stable airplane flight, flying insects have evolved behavioral strategies that ensure recovery from flight disturbances.
This is yet another example of evolutionary euphemism. Recovery from flight disturbances is a complex, fine-tuned capability integrating sensors, algorithms and actuators. Not the stuff of random mutations. So the evolutionary euphemism compares it with the Wright brothers and their flying machines.
Pioneering studies performed on tethered and dissected insects demonstrate that the sensory, neurological, and musculoskeletal systems play important roles in flight control.
Indeed, sensory, neurological, and musculoskeletal systems need to be tightly coordinated.
High-speed video and a new motion tracking method capture the aerial “stumble,” and we discover that flies respond to gentle disturbances by accurately returning to their original orientation. These insects take advantage of a stabilizing aerodynamic influence and active torque generation to recover their heading to within 2 degrees in less than 60 ms. To explain this recovery behavior, we form a feedback control model that includes the fly’s ability to sense body rotations, process this information, and actuate the wing motions that generate corrective aerodynamic torque.
The fly’s sensors are tiny sensors known as halteres, structures that evolutionists have considered to be rudimentary—evolutionary leftovers. Now we’re told they just happened to evolve fantastic gyroscopic sensing capabilities, which just happened to be sent to the fly’s neurological circuits, which just happened to compute meaningful flight control maneuvers, which just happened to be sent to the fly’s musculoskeletal system. No wonder evolutionists resort to euphemisms.
Thus, like early man-made aircraft and modern fighter jets, the fruit fly employs an automatic stabilization scheme that reacts to short time-scale disturbances.
An automatic stabilization scheme for short time-scale disturbances that just happened to arise? Religion drives science, and it matters.
26 November 2010
"Married and Gay Couples Not All that Different," proclaimed the headline of a news article portraying homosexual households as remarkably similar to married couples. "We're the couple next door," claimed one partnered homosexual. "We have a dog and a cat. I drive a Volvo. I'm boring." Such down-home portrayals of homosexual couples are meant to provoke the question: Since gay couples really differ only in that both partners are of the same sex, what rational basis exists for denying them full marriage rights?
Are homosexual households, as the article suggests, simply another variant of human relationships that should be considered, along with marriage, as "part of mainstream American society"?
On the contrary, the evidence indicates that "committed" homosexual relationships are radically different from married couples in several key respects:
Finally, this paper will present evidence from gay activists themselves indicating that behind the push for gay marriage lies a political agenda to radically change the institution of marriage itself.
Gay activists often point to high divorce rates and claim that married couples fare little better than homosexuals with regard to the duration of their relationships. The research, however, indicates that male homosexual relationships last only a fraction of the length of most marriages.
· A 2001 National Center for Health Statistics study on marriage and divorce statistics reported that 66 percent of first marriages last ten years or longer, with fifty percent lasting twenty years or longer.
Source: National Center for Health Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2001)
· A 2002 U.S. Census Bureau study reported similar results, with 70.7 percent of women married between 1970 and 1974 reaching their tenth anniversary and 57.7 percent staying married for twenty years or longer.
Source: Current Population Reports: U.S. Census Bureau (2002)
Male Homosexual Relationships
The 2003-2004 Gay/Lesbian Consumer Online Census surveyed the lifestyles of 7,862 homosexuals. Of those involved in a "current relationship," only 15 percent describe their current relationship as having lasted twelve years or longer, with five percent lasting more than twenty years. While this "snapshot in time" is not an absolute predictor of the length of homosexual relationships, it does indicate that few homosexual relationships achieve the longevity common in marriages.
Source: 2003-2004 Gay/Lesbian Consumer Online Census
· In The Sexual Organization of the City, University of Chicago sociologist Edward Laumann argues that "typical gay city inhabitants spend most of their adult lives in 'transactional' relationships, or short-term commitments of less than six months."
· A study of homosexual men in the Netherlands published in the journal AIDS found that the "duration of steady partnerships" was 1.5 years.
· In his study of male homosexuality in Western Sexuality: Practice and Precept in Past and Present Times, Pollak found that "few homosexual relationships last longer than two years, with many men reporting hundreds of lifetime partners."
· In Male and Female Homosexuality, Saghir and Robins found that the average male homosexual live-in relationship lasts between two and three years.
Lest anyone suffer the illusion that any equivalency between the sexual practices of homosexual relationships and traditional marriage exists, the statistics regarding sexual fidelity within marriage are revealing:
· A nationally representative survey of 884 men and 1,288 women published in the Journal of Sex Research found that 77 percent of married men and 88 percent of married women had remained faithful to their marriage vows.
· A 1997 national survey appearing in The Social Organization of Sexuality: Sexual Practices in the United States found that 75 percent of husbands and 85 percent of wives never had sexual relations outside of marriage.
· A telephone survey conducted for Parade magazine of 1,049 adults selected to represent the demographic characteristics of the United States found that 81 percent of married men and 85 percent of married women reported that they had never violated their marriage vows.
Research indicates that the average male homosexual has hundreds of sex partners in his lifetime:
· The Dutch study of partnered homosexuals, which was published in the journal AIDS, found that men with a steady partner had an average of eight sexual partners per year.
· Bell and Weinberg, in their classic study of male and female homosexuality, found that 43 percent of white male homosexuals had sex with 500 or more partners, with 28 percent having one thousand or more sex partners.
· In their study of the sexual profiles of 2,583 older homosexuals published in the Journal of Sex Research, Paul Van de Ven et al. found that "the modal range for number of sexual partners ever [of homosexuals] was 101-500." In addition, 10.2 percent to 15.7 percent had between 501 and 1,000 partners. A further 10.2 percent to 15.7 percent reported having had more than one thousand lifetime sexual partners.
· A survey conducted by the homosexual magazine Genre found that 24 percent of the respondents said they had had more than one hundred sexual partners in their lifetime. The magazine noted that several respondents suggested including a category of those who had more than one thousand sexual partners.
"Commitment" in Male Homosexual Couples
Even in those homosexual relationships in which the partners consider themselves to be in a committed relationship, the meaning of "committed" or "monogamous" typically means something radically different than in heterosexual marriage.
· A Canadian study of homosexual men who had been in committed relationships lasting longer than one year found that only 25 percent of those interviewed reported being monogamous." According to study author Barry Adam, "Gay culture allows men to explore different...forms of relationships besides the monogamy coveted by heterosexuals."
· The Handbook of Family Diversity reported a study in which "many self-described 'monogamous' couples reported an average of three to five partners in the past year. Blasband and Peplau (1985) observed a similar pattern."
· In The Male Couple, authors David P. McWhirter and Andrew M. Mattison reported that, in a study of 156 males in homosexual relationships lasting from one to thirty-seven years:
As the following chart shows, the extremely low rate of sexual fidelity among homosexual men dramatically contrasts with the high rate of fidelity among married heterosexuals.
Sources:Laumann, The Social Organization of Sexuality, 216; McWhirter and Mattison, The Male Couple: How Relationships Develop (1984): 252-253; Wiederman, "Extramarital Sex," 170.
According to McWhirter and Mattison, most homosexual men understood sexual relations outside the relationship to be the norm and viewed adopting monogamous standards as an act of oppression.
In their Journal of Sex Research study of the sexual practices of older homosexual men, Paul Van de Ven et al. found that only 2.7 percent of older homosexuals had only one sexual partner in their lifetime.
Brad Hayton provides insight into the attitudes of many homosexuals towards commitment and marriage:
While the rate of fidelity within marriage cited by these studies remains far from ideal, there is a significant difference between the negligible lifetime fidelity rate cited for homosexuals and the 75 to 90 percent cited for married couples. This indicates that even "committed" homosexual relationships display a fundamental incapacity for the faithfulness and commitment that is axiomatic to the institution of marriage.
If homosexuals and lesbians truly desired the same kind of commitment signified by marriage, then one would expect them to take advantage of the opportunity to enter into civil unions or registered partnerships, which grant them legal recognition as well as the legal rights of marriage. However, surprisingly few homosexuals and lesbians choose to enter into such legally recognized unions where such arrangements are available, indicating that such couples do not share the same view of commitment as typified by married couples.
In April 2000, the governor of the state of Vermont signed a law instituting civil unions for homosexuals. The bill conferred 300 privileges and rights enjoyed by married couples upon same-sex partners who register their relationship with the town clerk and have their union solemnized by a member of the clergy or the justice of the peace.
Estimating the homosexual and lesbian population of Vermont: The number of homosexuals and lesbians in the state of Vermont may be estimated based on national studies. Contrary to the widely promulgated but inaccurate claims that up to ten percent of the population is homosexual, research indicates that homosexuals comprise one to three percent of the population. For example, a recent study in Demography relying upon three large data sets--the General Social Survey, the National Health and Social Life Survey, and the U.S. Census--estimated the number of exclusive male homosexuals in the general population to be 2.5 percent and the number of exclusive lesbians to be 1.4 percent.
According to the 2000 Census, the adult population of Vermont is 461,304. Based on the Demography study, a reasonable estimate of the number of homosexuals and lesbians in Vermont would be approximately 5,600 (2.5 percent of the adult male population) for male homosexuals, and approximately 3,300 (1.4 percent of the adult female population) for lesbians, for a total of approximately 8,900 homosexuals and lesbians. [Note: these are only rough approximations for purposes of statistical comparison.]
Number of homosexuals and lesbians in Vermont who have entered into civil unions: USA Today reports that, as of January 2004, only 936 homosexual or lesbian couples (for a total of 1,872 individuals) have entered into civil unions. This indicates that only about 21 percent of the estimated homosexual and lesbian population of Vermont has entered into civil unions. Put another way, 79 percent of homosexuals and lesbians in Vermont choose not to enter into civil unions.
By contrast, in Vermont, heterosexual married couples outnumber cohabiting couples by a margin of 7 to 1, indicating a much higher level of desire on the part of heterosexual couples to legalize their relationships.
For purposes of comparison it may be useful to examine two countries that have granted special rights to homosexuals, including marriage-like civil unions, which grant gays and lesbians virtually all of the rights of marriage.
In 1995 Sweden passed the Registered Partnership Act which created civil unions for homosexual couples. In 2003 that law was amended to give registered homosexual couples the same right to adopt or have legal custody of children as married couples. The percentage of homosexual or lesbians in Sweden that enter into civil unions may be estimated as follows:
Estimated homosexual and lesbian population of Sweden: Extrapolating from the Demography estimates in the U.S., a similar percentage of the homosexual and lesbian population of Sweden would be approximately 140,000 (2.5 percent of the adult male population of 3,531,554, and 1.4 percent of the adult female population of 3,679,317).
Number of homosexuals and lesbians in Sweden who have registered their unions: The number of registered same-sex unions in Sweden is reported to be about 1,500 (for a total of 3,000 individuals) out of the estimated homosexual and lesbian population of 140,000. This indicates that only about two percent of Swedish homosexuals and lesbians choose to enter into legally recognized unions. Put another way, about 98 percent of Swedish homosexuals and lesbians do not officially register as same-sex couples.
A landmark law allowing same-sex "marriage" was instituted in the Netherlands on March 31, 2001, with a highly publicized communal ceremony that included two lesbian "brides" and six homosexual "grooms." The Netherlands instituted a "registered partnership" law in 1998 that accorded legal status to homosexual relationships similar to that of marriage. The new law, which explicitly recognizes same-sex matrimony, is restricted to Dutch nationals. However, as the following analysis shows, the percentage of homosexuals and lesbians that have entered into marriage-like civil unions is very low.
Estimated homosexual and lesbian population of the Netherlands: Extrapolating from demographic figures for homosexuals and lesbians in the U.S., a similar percentage for the Netherlands would be 242,000 (2.5 percent of the adult male population of 6,161,662, and 1.4 percent of the adult female population of 6,311,338).
Number of Dutch homosexuals and lesbians who have registered their unions: A news report by the Gay Financial Network predicted that "some 10,000 gay couples could be married" in the first year following the legalization of gay "marriage" in the Netherlands. In reality, far fewer chose to solemnize their relationships. The Office of Legislative Research released a report in October 2002 stating: "The Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs reports that 3,383 of the 121,776 marriages licensed between April 1, 2001, and June 30, 2002, involved people of the same sex."
Thus, as of October 2002, only 2.8 percent, or 6,766 individuals (3,383 licenses) out of an estimated homosexual and lesbian population of 242,000, have registered their unions as "married."
Sources:U.S. Census Bureau, Married-Couple and Unmarried-Partner Households: 2000, 2; Black, "Demographics," 141; U.S. Census Bureau Census 2000 Summary File 1; Bayles, "Vermont's Gay Civil Unions," 1; Census 2000 Special Reports, 4; Shane, "Many Swedes Say 'I Don't,'" 1; "ORL Backgrounder," 1.
The much lower rates of homosexual and lesbian civil "marriages" in Sweden and the Netherlands must be viewed in the light of much lower marriage rates in both of those countries, a trend that the introduction of gay "marriage" in the 1990s has not reversed. Thus, as writer Stanley Kurtz argues, the granting of marriage rights to homosexuals and lesbians "has further undermined the institution" of marriage: "Scandinavian gay marriage has driven home the message that marriage itself is outdated, and that virtually any family form, including out-of-wedlock parenthood, is acceptable."
Conclusion: Level of Relationship Commitment Among Homosexuals
Data from Vermont, Sweden, and the Netherlands reveal that only a small percentage of homosexuals and lesbians identify themselves as being in a committed relationship, with even fewer taking advantage of civil unions or, in the case of the Netherlands, of same-sex "marriage." This indicates that even in the most "gay friendly" localities, the vast majority of homosexuals and lesbians display little inclination for the kind of lifelong, committed relationships that they purport to desire to enter.
Inflated Statistics for Homosexual Households in the United States
Claims regarding the numbers of children being raised in homosexual and lesbian households vary widely and are often unsubstantiated. According to a study on homosexual parenting in the American Sociological Review, researchers have given figures "of uncertain origin, depicting a range of...6 to 14 million children of gay or lesbian parents in the United States."
According to the study's authors, Judith Stacey and Timothy J. Biblarz, the higher estimates are based upon "classifying as a lesbigay [sic] parent anyone who reports that even the idea of homoerotic sex is appealing." Instead, the authors favor a figure of about one million, which "derives from the narrower...definition of a lesbigay parent as one who self-identifies as such."
However, even the lower figure of one million children being raised in gay and lesbian households does not stand up to statistical analysis.
The U.S. Census Bureau reports that there are 594,391 same-sex unmarried partner households in the United States (301,026 male homosexual households and 293,365 lesbian households). This indicates that only one percent of the total of 59,969,000 households contain same-sex partners. Assuming the Stacey/Biblarz estimate that one million children have a homosexual or lesbian parent, this would mean that, on average, every homosexual household has at least one child.
However, the 2000 Census figures show that only 33 percent (or 96,810) of female same-sex households and 22 percent (or 66,225) of male same-sex households have their own children living with them. These 163,035 same-sex couples (or 326,070 individuals) comprise only 8 percent of the estimated homosexual and lesbian population. Put another way, 92 percent of the estimated adult population of homosexuals and lesbians in the U.S. do not live with children. By comparison, the 2000 Census showed that 46 percent of married couple households have at least one child living in the household. However, this figure underestimates the total number of married couples who have had children, as many older couples have grown children who are no longer living at home.
*Sources:Black, "Demographics," 141; Census 2000 Special Reports, 4.
The Stacey/Biblarz estimates may include children being raised by single homosexuals, some of whom are raising their own biological children conceived in a previous heterosexual relationship. Nevertheless, these calculations indicate how absurdly inflated most of the estimates are concerning the number of children being raised by homosexuals. Far from being the proven success that some claim, homosexual parenting remains very much the exception rather than the rule.
Implications for Homosexual Parenting
Gay activists attempt to minimize the differences between homosexual and heterosexual households in order to make homosexuality look as normal as possible. However, as already shown, only a small minority of gay and lesbian households have children. Beyond that, the evidence also indicates that comparatively few homosexuals choose to establish households together--the type of setting that is normally prerequisite for the rearing of children.
The Human Rights Campaign, a homosexual advocacy organization, claims that the U.S. population of gays and lesbians is 10,456,405, or five percent of the total U.S. population over 18 years of age. However, as we have seen, the best available data supports a lower estimate of 2.5 percent for male homosexuals and 1.4 percent for lesbians. This would lead to a figure of approximately 4,040,000 homosexual men and women in the U.S. population. Thus, only about 30 percent of homosexuals (1,202,418 out of some 4 million) choose to live in a household with a person of the same sex.
The above indicates that only a small minority of gays and lesbians choose to live in partnered relationships, and furthermore, only a small percentage of partnered homosexual households actually have children. The evidence thus does not support the claim that significant numbers of homosexuals desire to provide a stable home for children.
Even those homosexual relationships that are loosely termed "monogamous" do not necessarily result in healthier behavior. The evidence indicates that homosexual and lesbian relationships are at far greater risk for contracting life-threatening disease compared with married couples:
· The journal AIDS reported that men involved in relationships engaged in anal intercourse and oral-anal intercourse with greater frequency than did those without a steady partner. Anal intercourse has been linked with a host of sexually transmitted diseases, including AIDS.
· The exclusivity of the relationship did not diminish the incidence of unhealthy sexual acts, which are commonplace among homosexuals. An English study published in the same issue of AIDS concurred, finding that most "unsafe" sex acts among homosexuals occur in steady relationships.
· A study of steady and casual male homosexual relationships in Amsterdam found that "steady partners contribute to (HIV) incidence more than casual partners. This can mainly be explained by the fact that risky behavior with steady partners is much greater than that with casual partners (30 versus 1.5 UAI [unprotected anal intercourse] acts annually)."
· These findings confirmed an earlier study by the Dutch Department of Health and Environment, which found that 67 percent of HIV-positive men aged 30 and younger had been infected by a steady partner. The study concluded: "In recent years, young gay men have become more likely to contract HIV from a steady sexual partner than from a casual one."
"Exclusive" Lesbian Relationships Also at Risk
The assumption that lesbians involved in exclusive sexual relationships are at reduced risk for sexual disease is false:
· The journal Sexually Transmitted Infections concludes: "The risk behavior profile of exclusive WSW (women who have sex with women) was similar to all wsw." One reason for this is because lesbians "were significantly more likely to report past sexual contact with a homosexual or bisexual man and sexual contact with an IDU (intravenous drug user)."
Greater Risk for Suicide
Homosexual and lesbian relationships experience a far greater rate of mental health problems compared to married couples.
· A twins study that examined the relationship between homosexuality and suicide, published in the Archives of General Psychiatry, found that homosexuals with same-sex partners were at greater risk for overall mental health problems and were 6.5 times more likely than their twins to have attempted suicide. The higher rate was not attributable to mental health or substance abuse disorders.
Research indicates very high levels of violence in homosexual and lesbian relationships:
· A study in the Journal of Interpersonal Violence examined conflict and violence in lesbian relationships. The researchers found that 90 percent of the lesbians surveyed had been recipients of one or more acts of verbal aggression from their intimate partners during the year prior to this study, with 31 percent reporting one or more incidents of physical abuse.
· In a survey of 1,099 lesbians, the Journal of Social Service Research found that slightly more than half of the lesbians reported that they had been abused by a female lover/partner. The researchers found that "the most frequently indicated forms of abuse were verbal/emotional/psychological abuse and combined physical-psychological abuse."
· A study of lesbian couples reported in the Handbook of Family Development and Intervention "indicates that 54 percent had experienced 10 or more abusive incidents, 74 percent had experienced six or more incidents, 60 percent reported a pattern to the abuse, and 71 percent said it grew worse over time."
· In their book Men Who Beat the Men Who Love Them: Battered Gay Men and Domestic Violence, Island and Letellier postulate that "the incidence of domestic violence among gay men is nearly double that in the heterosexual population."
Gay and lesbian vs. other opposite-sex intimate partner relationships
Surveys conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice confirm that homosexual and lesbian relationships had a far greater incidence of domestic partner violence than opposite-sex relationships including cohabitation or marriage.
· The National Violence against Women Survey, sponsored by the National Institute of Justice, found that "same-sex cohabitants reported significantly more intimate partner violence than did opposite-sex cohabitants. Thirty-nine percent of the same-sex cohabitants reported being raped, physically assaulted, and/or stalked by a marital/cohabitating partner at some time in their lifetimes, compared to 21.7 percent of the opposite-sex cohabitants. Among men, the comparable figures are 23.1 percent and 7.4 percent."
Source: "Extent, Nature, and Consequences of Intimate Partner Violence," U.S. Department of Justice: Office of Justice Programs, 30.
Marriage vs. Other Types of Intimate Partner Relationships
· A Bureau of Justice Statistics (an agency of the U.S. Department of Justice) report found that married women in traditional families experience the lowest rate of violence compared with women in other types of relationships. Women who were not married to their "intimate partner" (i.e., were cohabiting), experienced a rate of violence four times higher than that of married women (11.3 per thousand vs. 2.6 per thousand). 
Source: "Intimate Partner Violence," Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report, Bureau of Justice Statistics, January 31, 2002: 4.
Homosexual and Lesbian Couples vs. Married Couples
When homosexual and lesbian relationships are directly compared with married couples, the difference in the domestic partner violence is pronounced:
Sources: "Extent, Nature, and Consequences of Intimate Partner Violence," U.S. Department of Justice: Office of Justice Programs: 30; "Intimate Partner Violence," Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report:11.
By their own admission, gay activists are not simply interested in making it possible for homosexuals and lesbians to partake of conventional married life. Rather, they aim to change the essential character of marriage, removing precisely the aspects of fidelity and chastity that promote stability in the relationship and the home:
· Paula Ettelbrick, the former legal director of the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, has stated, "Being queer is more than setting up house, sleeping with a person of the same gender, and seeking state approval for doing so....Being queer means pushing the parameters of sex, sexuality, and family, and in the process transforming the very fabric of society."
· Homosexual writer and activist Michelangelo Signorile speaks approvingly of those who advocate replacing monogamy with sexually "open" relationships:
· The views of Signorile and Ettelbrick regarding marriage are widespread in the homosexual community. According to the Mendola Report, a mere 26 percent of homosexuals believe that commitment is most important in a marriage relationship.
Former homosexual William Aaron explains why even homosexuals involved in "committed" relationships do not practice monogamy:
The evidence is overwhelming that homosexual and lesbian "committed" relationships are not the equivalent of marriage. In addition, there is little evidence that homosexuals and lesbians truly desire to commit themselves to the kind of monogamous relationships as signified by marriage. What remains, then, is the disturbing possibility that behind the demands for "gay marriage" lurks an agenda of undermining the very nature of the institution of marriage.
Timothy J. Dailey, Ph.D., is senior fellow in the Center for Marriage and Family Studies at the Family Research Council. Dr. Dailey and Peter Sprigg recently co-authored Getting It Straight: What the Research Says About Homosexuality.