Friday Fluff – October 22nd, 2010

By Razib Khan | October 22, 2010 10:19 am

1. First, a post from the past: The Round-Eyed Buddha.

2. Weird search query of the week: “straight jacket sex.”

3. Comment of the week, in response to Glenn Beck, Evolution, Global Warming & Tea Parties:

People who don’t believe in evolution don’t comprehend evolution. Evolution is a struggle to survive as a species. How else can you explain Neanderthal man and the dead end they came to? They existed, despite the Bible’s not bothering to mention them. The traits that ensured modern man’s survival were passed on genetically. That’s what evolution is; the passing on of traits that are more suited for the survival of the species.

This is all self evident. It doesn’t threaten religious orthodoxy except in the most simple-minded way. You have to wonder if the people who dismiss evolution because it somehow conflicts with their religious beliefs have ever taken the trouble to actually read Darwin’s “Origin Of The Species”? I’m gonna go out on a limb here and guess no.

Evolution is not only a fact, it’s a necessity. It’s all about a species being able to adapt to it’s environment in order to survive. Many species in the history of this planet have gone extinct. How do you account for it? Was it God’s will, or something more plausible? How about this? They ceased to exist as a species because of their failure to adapt to their environment. In other words, their failure to evolve.

Homo-sapiens didn’t become the dominant species on this planet because we had so much spirituality and trust in the Lord. How did we do it? Here’s a clue, our eyes are located in the front of our heads like any natural predator, we stand upright and have opposable thumbs. The homo-sapiens with eyes in the front, who grasped weapons and stood on their hind legs to hunt, survived and passed these traits along. The traits most suitable for survival were passed along. Get it? It’s called natural selection.

As to how evolution gacked up a human hairball like GLenn Beck is another matter entirely. I think he must be some kind of double agent planted by the left in order to make conservatives look like a bunch of clueless, bloviating demagogues. Mission accomplished.

Often people who believe in evolution don’t comprehend evolution

4) From last week: “Genomic sequencing will be able to predict offspring I.Q. as well as looking at parental values + regression in….”. Here were the outcomes:

Never – 26%
More than 30 years – 14%
16-30 year – 34%
11-15 years – 10%
5-10 years – 14%
Less than 5 years – 2%

View Survey

5) And finally, your weekly fluff fix:


MORE ABOUT: Friday Fluff

Comments (7)

  1. trajan23

    Razib, you must be the biggest conservative ailurophile since H.P. Lovecraft.

  2. Eric Johnson

    > This is all self evident. It doesn’t threaten religious orthodoxy except in the most simple-minded way.

    I quite disagree. I suspect it would be a very powerful experience to have a book of infallible truths from god about both the seen and the not-seen, all the more when it is extremely fine in terms of literary qualities. And certainly many religions are highly scriptural in both elite and common practice. Islam, I understand. Protestantism, and Judaism (at least Western), of course. I’m less certain about the rest.

    I think heliocentrism was less antagonistic to the power of scriptures. It was one little thing – I mean, it’s big, but the planets don’t concern our lives (not in the old Christian West, anyway)… only our reveries. You could maybe imagine that a human instrument of god might have erred, or intentionally mis-transferred for reasons worthy or unworthy, the divine information about geocentrism (though I’m not actually sure whether it is in the Bible?). ‘Origin’ was different. Darwin brought it out long after Woehler had synthesized urea. This had not finished of the question of vitalism at all, but anti-vitalism had certainly been conceivable for decades before Darwin’s bombshell, and many a man had gotten in some practice in conceiving it. Thus it was possible thereafter to see the world as totally mechanical, “hot by agreement, cold by agreement; bitter by agreement, sweet by agreement; in reality, atoms and void.” Though certain cosmic questions did remain (and I think still remain), the scientific world-picture had suddenly become stunningly more ramified, expansive, and competitive.

  3. åse

    This seems so trivial after Eric’s post, But, I’d like a ‘how the heck should I know? I don’t know enough about client science to make an informed decision, and the din I hear from all sides have the hallmark of … well, other than science, so god knows… well, maybe not god… whether the planet is warming, and whether people are doing it.” option.

    Of course, no need to expand on that option in that way. An, I don’t know would suffice. And, that is my vote.

  4. jeet

    They’re never going to find it if they don’t know that it’s spelled “straitjacket”.

  5. Mary

    “Here’s how you walk like a Halloween cat. And try to look less fluffy.”

    I think we’re due for another ice age as in the past, caused by convergence of axial tilt, earth orbit shape, etc. If human activity can mitigate the severity of the next ice age, that would be good, right?

  6. Anthony

    Re: your poll. I have a belief, and a speculation. My speculation is that global warming did occur during the 20th century, and may continue into the 21st century, but that it is largely (not exclusively) non-anthropogenic. My belief is that there is insufficient reliable evidence to choose between the options on the poll, which is not an available poll choice.


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About Razib Khan

I have degrees in biology and biochemistry, a passion for genetics, history, and philosophy, and shrimp is my favorite food. In relation to nationality I'm a American Northwesterner, in politics I'm a reactionary, and as for religion I have none (I'm an atheist). If you want to know more, see the links at


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