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Dogs v. Wolves May 7, 2012

Posted by Administrator in Education, Mechanistic Relativism, Science.
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The Scientific American examines a study on the social adaptation differences between dogs and wolves.  The question being asked is this: Are social adaptations made by the species a function of genetics (nature) or environmental learning (nurture).

Researchers took two cohorts of dogs and wolves at four to six days after birth, and had them hand-raised by humans.  The human “parents” had  a protocol to follow that insured the subject animals were fed, carried and cared for by “parents”, and were regularly exposed to new humans to acclimate them to the presence of them.

Then at six weeks, a series of experiments were run to determine if, given a situation where interaction with a human were advantageous to the subject animals:

In one simple task, a plate of food was presented to the wolf pups (at 9 weeks) or to the dog puppies (both at 5 weeks and at 9 weeks). However, the food was inaccessible to the animals; human help would be required to access it. The trick to getting the food was simple: all the animals had to do was make eye contact with the experimenter, and he or she would reward the dog with the food from the plate. Initially, all the animals attempted in vain to reach the food. However, by the second minute of testing, dogs began to look towards the humans. This increased over time and by the fourth minute there was a statistical difference. Dogs were more likely to initiate eye contact with the human experimenter than the wolves were. This is no small feat; initiating eye contact with the experimenter requires that the animal refocus its attention from the food to the human. Not only did the wolf pups not spontaneously initiate eye contact with the human experimenter, but they also failed to learn that eye contact was the key to solving their problem.

(The table in the original article shows quite clearly the difference.  This was not a mere statistical significance.  There is no question there is a difference between species.)

The long and the short of this is that it seems there is a genetic difference in social interactions.  Wolves will NOT interact with humans, while dogs will.

My one beef with this article is this:  “In one sense, this is a remarkable example of tool use.”  And of course, the title of the article refers to this as well, when in fact this study says NOTHING about tool use, but draws the distinction between social preferences in wolves and dogs.  The term tool use is fraught with political intrigue.  Goes against that idea, once again, that humans are unique.  I cannot see dogs viewing us as “tools”.  A tool is a passive object, capable of nothing on its own till activated by the user.  (Think of ANY workshop tool, or the twigs chimps use to prize termites out of their mounds.  Without the animated force of the tool user, the tool just sits there.).  So, to view humans as tools for dogs to use is, in my mind, a gross misuse of the term.

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First Teh Pain, then Teh Funnay UPDATED January 20, 2009

Posted by Administrator in Creepiness, Cultural Pessimism, Humor, Idiots, Liberal Hypocrisy, Liberal self-loathing, Mechanistic Relativism, wtf?.
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First, click the link down below and watch the video. (WARNING: Hardcore Obamaniacs are going to be immune to Teh Funnay, and may well find the video to be spiritually enlightening. If so, stop after having watched the video). (SECOND WARNING: If you are not thrilled with Mr. Obama or are, like me, completely appalled at the Cult of Personality that has come to surround our 44th President, the video will be more than a little disturbing and quite possibly stomach-churning). Movie link:

List of the Deranged: Ashton Kutcher, Demi Moore, John Singleton, Anthony Kiedis (oh. . my . . .GOSH the man is unhinged), Will.I.Am, George Lopez, Marisa Tomei and (the following are those that it kills me to see having had anything at all to do with this gawdawful paean of self-serving hogwash that didn’t involve a flame-thrower and a public petition to have the Kushton/Moorobot deported to Antarctica), Laura Linney, Aaron Eckhart and Bryce Dallas Howard.

It is hypocrisy of the first water that any of the ideas suggested in this video are somehow ennobled for being done during the Obama Administration, but were dismissed or outright ridiculed as insignificant when done during the Bush Administration.

BONUS POINTS to anyone who can identify who I think is a closet-conservative poking fun at the Kutcher/Moorobot’s sanctimonious hypocrisy; but because they are so blinded by Messianic Fervor, they cannot see the obvious foolishness of their posturing.

NOW FOR TEH FUNNAY: If you are feeling more than a little nauseated after having watched that modern-day hommage to Leni Riefenstahl, perhaps clicking the link down below for IowaHawk’s hysterical. . .I mean HYSTERICAL take on that selfsame video will assist you in curing your urge to vomit. http://bighollywood.breitbart.com/dburge/2009/01/20/i-pledge/

UPDATE:

Then, look and see how these consciousness-raised assholes pick up after themselves?

Effing HYPOCRITES!!!!

“No, Laeticia.  Picking up da trash ain’t no job fo’ us LIBERALS!”

Assholes.  That’s just all. Assholes presenting us a microcosmic glance into the future.  Having pissed all over the Capital, they leave the mess for someone else to clean up.

Now, on to the rest of the country.

President Hope Change Defines Sin August 11, 2008

Posted by Administrator in Cultural Pessimism, Idiots, Liberal Hypocrisy, Mechanistic Relativism, Politics.
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From the FirstThings blog, via Mark Shea:

From the Westminster Shorter Catechism:
Q. 14. What is sin? A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, the law of God.

From the Baltimore Catechism:
Q. 278. What is actual sin? A. Actual sin is any willful thought, word, deed, or omission contrary to the law of God.

From Senator Obama:
Q. Do you believe in sin?
OBAMA: Yes.
Q. What is sin?
OBAMA: Being out of alignment with my values.

Not that there is anything to the chatter about Senator Obama’s “Messiah complex,” mind you.

Mark finds this funny.  I do not, though I usually agree with Mark.  This is a classic example of why this inexperienced, silly little Illinoisan should NOT be President.

He now gets to define right and wrong, all on his own.  God help us all if he is elected.

Book-sorting according to Amanda the Berserk August 10, 2008

Posted by Administrator in Creepiness, Cultural Pessimism, Humor, Idiots, Liberal self-loathing, Mechanistic Relativism, Pandamansanity, wtf?.
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Previous articles outlining her pathological idiocy.

The End of Parenting is Near June 20, 2008

Posted by Administrator in Creepiness, Cultural Pessimism, Family, Idiots, Leviathan, Liberal Hypocrisy, Liberal self-loathing, Mechanistic Relativism, Parenting.
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The Nanny State shows increasing signs of ascendancy when a Quebec court decides that dad has been too harsh in forbidding his daughter from attending a school trip.

Madam Justice Suzanne Tessier of the Quebec Superior Court ruled on Friday that the father couldn’t discipline his daughter by barring her from the school trip.

The judge’s decision, made from the bench, applies only to the girl’s unusual circumstances, lawyers for both sides said, trying to dispel visions of grounded teenagers rushing to the nearest courthouse to overturn their parents’ punishments.

Madam Justice’s “logic”?

Lucie Fortin, the lawyer representing the 12-year-old, said the judge found that depriving the girl of the school trip was an excessive punishment.

She said the girl has already been forbidden to use the Internet and her father also punished her by cancelling her participation in an extracurricular event.

The trip, a three-day outing within Quebec supervised by teachers and volunteer parents, marked her Grade 6 class graduation from elementary school.

“She’s becoming a big girl. … It’s a unique event in her life,” Ms. Fortin said.

How in the name of all creation does a freaking court decide if poor little Spoiled BratGirl is a “big” enough girl to override Dad’s legitimate discipline concerns?

This crap is going on in Canada, I know. But it may well meander its way down here, at which point, if I am still a parent, I must consider moving to another country that still recognizes the family as the primary social unit of society.

What is the logical end of this sort of State intervention? What kinds of kids can we look forward to?

See, now little spoiled Mackenzie can now sue her dad and get the correct car with the correct color.

This is no little cavil I am ranting about here. This is nothing less than the huge signpost that society as we know it is about to crumble.

Talk about rising divorce rates, homosexual marriage, rising teen pregnancy and STD transmission rates. Yes, those are all there as well. Take away a parent’s right to discipline, and now the State is signaling that it is the primary arbiter of society. And we all know how well the State does when it manages the monopoly on some service/commodity: It all goes to hell.

This is, simply put, really bad, bad news.

ANCHORESS as usual has more info, as well as coverage on the Canadian school that called Child Welfare on a family because a teacher’s aid felt the child was being abused based on what a local psychic had been telling her, and the school administration bought this nonsense!! Anchoress also talks about Canada’s outlawing of spanking and its lockdown on free speech.

Modern Scientific Atheists: Children with superior motor control, that’s all. June 19, 2008

Posted by Administrator in atheism, Cultural Pessimism, Mechanistic Relativism, Pharyngulism.
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On the left, Richard Dawkins. On the right, PZ Myers (picture brought to you from the Sixth Circle of Dante’s Inferno.)

(They are) curiously limited. (They are) mechanic(s) of the brain. (They have) cut it to pieces with (their) scalpels and found no soul. Therefore there is none. Like the Russian astronauts who circled the earth and did not see God. It is the empiricism of the mechanic, and a mechanic is only a child with superior motor control.

-Dr. Sam Weizak from Stephen King’s Dead Zone.

Singularities Make Me Nervous March 28, 2008

Posted by Administrator in atheism, Creepiness, Cultural Pessimism, Death and Dying, Faith, Liberal self-loathing, Mechanistic Relativism.
6 comments

Ray Kurzweil wants to live forever, and claims that he will be able to do so after the upcoming “singularity’ occurs. He states that soon, we will be able to replace most if not all of our organs, and then after that, digitally “download” our consciousnesses onto computers, so that in the event we keep ourselves downloaded, we can live forever. Currently, he takes over 180 vitamins a day to prolong his life (so damned many pills, he has to hire help to manage which pills to take when) and sees a Denver-area physician once a week for longevity treatments. This physician charges $6000 per visit.

Somehow, some way, we all yearn for the unreachable, the immortal, the divine. There is that impossible desire within each of us for that level of perfection that cannot be achieved here on earth.

Aquinas taught many. many moons ago that this yearning for a perfection that we cannot know from experience here on earth shows that there must in fact be a God; how else can we explain this inexplicable yearning?

Kurzweil feels this. But as a committed rationalist, he must pursue his arid vision of digital immortality, and he sinks ridiculous sums of money into that pursuit.

What a tragedy it shall be for the man when he finally does die, sees that the old Manichean dualism is but a sham and a freeway to waste and misery.

(The title comes from a Larry Niven novelette of the same label and can be found in his short story collection Tales of Known Space. I recommend it without reservation. A scientist thinks he has the secret to unlimited power by harnessing the potential found in a quantum black hole. Of course, the man loses control of the forces he is manipulating and they destroy him. A timeless tale. Kurzweil is re-living it as we speak.)

1 Word March 4, 2008

Posted by Administrator in Creepiness, Cultural Pessimism, Mechanistic Relativism, Politics.
2 comments

Creepy.

I can’t help it.  I listen to the chanting on this video, apparently the brainchild of Will.I.Am. of the Black-Eyed Peas, and I start flashing back to videos of hundreds of crazed brownshirts stamping their feet, hurling their arms straight out and screaming “Sieg HEIL” at the appearance of their Fuhrer.

Now, I understand that Obama is no fascist, and I am not trying to compare him to Hitler.  But I AM comparing the fawning of his sycophants to that of the unthinking adulation and obedience the Germans gave to der Fuhrer.  And that adulation is dangerous, both to Obama, his followers and the country at-large.

HT: Anchoress 

In Which Myers Shows still more of his closet love of Christianity. . . May 11, 2007

Posted by Administrator in atheism, Cultural Pessimism, Idiots, Liberal self-loathing, Mechanistic Relativism, Pharyngulism.
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. . .seriously. He spends SO much time slamming it, both Fundamentalism and Catholicism, he reeks of the homobigot who is scared to come out of the closet.

One of his most recent idiocies is entitled “Christianity’s Sins Against Science.” He then outlines 12 categories of offense. I thought I’d spend some little time showing just how stupid they are. Please note, I am not engaging in rational arguing throughout. For the most part, I am sniping at a man who is -deep down- terrified of Christianity.

Oh. And as a quick aside, one might level the charge against me that I am a closet Myers admirer, since I spend so much time deriding him. Only in one sense. He is overweight and past 40, as am I. We both have beards and teach. But he gets to teach at the UNiversity, where he gets breaks ALL THE TIME. I am jealous of those breaks. Nothing else.  I’ve got the better marriage, much better break on the kids (his and mine) and the wiser outlook.  Oh, and I guess we’re both curmedgeons, in a way.

Anyway, his list: (more…)

Reality check on teen sexual activity and development May 8, 2007

Posted by Administrator in Cultural Pessimism, Education, Liberal Hypocrisy, Liberal self-loathing, Mechanistic Relativism.
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SNAP.

The basics: Kids from intact families develop sexual habits at a more reasonable (and appropriately delayed) rate than their blended-family peers, and that delay in the development of sexual activity makes for a generally happier life.

Wow. Whodathunkit?

via SC&A.

Updated links:

SC&A

Mamacita.