Monday, November 09, 2009

Philosophy and Evolution

I have been reading various authors over the years from Stephen Jay Gould to Richard Dawkins and many others. This is the first serious philosophy book on the subject I have tried. "Be prepared" is what I recommend, philosophy has never been my strong suite so this has been a learning process for this little black duck. Dennet has been at this game for a long time and taken this field with a level of intelligence that makes you think when he criticizes your favorite author (Steven Jay Gould) and clears up a question of difference when no difference exists ( Scientists tend to argue their own hypothesis against their most prominent opponent, also a scientist), thus allowing the Philosopher to sought out the debate, maybe. Of course, Gould is not the only specialist in Evolution to be taken to task, so I still need to add some books to my Library, like E.O. Wilson's Sociobiology

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Epigenetics and Evolution

Epigenetics is proving interesting in its pull on the evolutionary tangent of new species by the way it impacts via the environment on local species as their environment changes. Along with mutation in the DNA itself, but such mutation (creationists insist on calling it random mutation) is not the only source for the variations required by Natural Selection.

Thinking about Surprise

Duane Boyce has written an essay of interest of those of us who follow Science and Religion and it is worth reading even if you do not read the book he is writing about. Surprise is what we should expect in this day and age where our understanding of science and history is greater by the work of the many historians and scientist over the past 200 years or so. All this work should not be ignored simply because it does not fit our world view. Indeed we should be expecting changes occurring to our world view just like science has to deal with every time a new discovery occurs. The movement of the continents recently, within my life changed how we all see this world and it to Geologists a certain amount of time to accept it. Now it is common knowledge and no ones challenges it seriously. Yet that was a Surprise for us at the time and took a while to adjust our world view to accept it. Thus our Creationist brethren need to value Surprise when it happens, and not fight a boundary war with science which they can only loose.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Notice today

This is just to advise my readers I will be blogging tomorrow night, but not tonight, too tired and grumpy. Clifford M Dubery

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Giant Snake in the Amazon in our Hot and Humid Past

This is asking questions about the future for our nature with Global Warming.  Maybe they will all adapt to the changes in the environment quite satisfactory as long as Man species Homo Sapien Sapien does not interfere and wipe them out all together. Man's hunting has caused the physical size of phyla 's to trend down at the moment so there maybe two forces actiong on th enevironment concerning size.

Monday, January 19, 2009

I saw this on Times Online and thought you might be interested

For God’s sake, have Charles Darwin’s theories made any difference to our lives?

What absolute nonsense goes for an article in the Times these days.  Straw dog version of Evolutionary Biology  (Darwinism) is shot down by exaggerated religious concerns and the odd reference to show that it no longer holds its place in science.  Nonsense, absolute rubbish.  Interview some real biologists and stay away from philosophers who haven’t kept up with the literature!!!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Adaptation in Humans

Dmitri Petrov, James Cai, Michael Macpherson, Guy Sella are Stanford Geneticists who have looked in on the adaptationist nature of humans trough the lens of the human genome. The news article at under the heading Stanford researchers show adaptation plays a significant role in human evolution. Here we find that they a have approached this by actually looking for the evidence in the genome itself.  Making a prediction, looking for the evidence, confirming or not, then publishing. What happens next with this I don't know, but we know it doesn't prove Lamarckism because it starts of early explaining that the random mutations are what the adaptations are made from.  The point is more about the preservation of advantageous adaptations and discarding those that are disadvantageous.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Beipaiosaurus was covered in the simplest known feathers

Beipaiosaurus was covered in the simplest known feathers

In Ed Yong’s blog above, these peculiar creatures are explained and further explanations on the origins of Feathers in Birds is covered. It seems that the more we dig, the more Homo Sapien Sapien keeps finding his origins and the origins of all the creatures that exist today, which is becoming more urgent as they too are becoming extinct rapidly.

More links on the feathers and dinosaurs are:

It seems that these variations have been going on for literally Millions of years.

Committee adopts new administrative handbook

It appears the controversy over Louisiana's changes to the Education curriculum has meant nothing to the Science Teachers.  The Discovery institutes bluster and smoke and mirrors has failed.  Maybe they will have to be more explicit in future so our recalcitrant science teachers understand that Evolution is evil and all text books that mention such a thing should be burned!  Burned I say!


Clifford M Dubery


Committee adopts new administrative handbook


Posted: Jan 14, 2009 08:44 AM


Updated: Jan 14, 2009 09:06 AM


By Caroline Moses

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -A state education committee adopted a new administrative handbook Tuesday, as part of the recently passed Louisiana science education act. The handbook does not specifically ban teaching creationism or intelligent design. Supporters say it doesn't need to because teaching religion in public schools is already banned. But that's why opponents say this entire debate is a costly distraction from the real issues facing state public schools.


"It's up to BESE to implement this in our policy," said Dale Bayard who is chairman of the state education board.  Senator Ben Nevers of Bogalusa passed a law last session called the "Louisiana science education act." It gives state education committees the authority to decide what can be taught in state schools. But the committee was a little vague about what's allowed. "It's up to us to provide students with every possible element of new discovery and that's the intent of the act," said Bayard.


Gene Mills with Louisiana Family Forum asked Senator Nevers to sponsor the original legislation. He says the intent is to promote "critical thinking" in classrooms, especially science classes. "Where teachers can approach students to inquire about controversial science subject matter," said Mills. But Louisiana Federation of Teachers president Steve Monaghan says not a single teacher in his organization has complained about current science materials. "The time spent on this issue may be in total excess of what the problem was because we don't believe there was a problem in the science classroom anyway," said Monaghan.


Even the committee chair Dale Bayard who is in favor of the legislation agreed. Lesson plans may not change much. But he says their hours of debate do help further the discussion. "We don't discourage any discussion that's important," said Bayard.  "I believe what this has done is create a stage for what unfortunately seems to be an embedded political movement. We're going to find ourselves getting tied into knots over issues people are invested in by faith, emotion, and miss the big picture," said Monaghan.


Monaghan predicts there will likely be future legal battles over the new law and handbook. Bayard says he is not worried about possible litigation. Thursday, BESE will review the committee adoption. State school board and committee member Dale Bayard expects they will ratify the committee's decision. For more information on this discussion.. Go to Caroline's 9News extra on the home page.