1. birgerjohansson says

    The last years paleo-dna breakthroughs occur almost every month, teaching us about gene fliow from archaic humans to modern humans, and showing which genes were favoured by selection pressure, while others disappeared. So evolution is doing fine, thank you.
    If you want to decompress after all stupidity, I recommend Stephen Colbert on Youtube.

  2. wzrd1 says

    Why is that, PZ? I mean, you always go to church and enjoy the skillful and melodious music during the service – while wearing a BSL-4 suit (out of an abundance of caution against a BSL-3 organism). ;)

    Oh yeah, my bad. Forgot the noteworthy lack of skill and melody in oh, so many congregations.
    Yeah, church sounds about as much fun as preparing and staining slides, doing so in a cheap, fleabag hotel. You know, an exercise fraught with frustration and risk of contamination during the entire process.

    Got my new fridge installed. Had it dropped off at the door and levered it over the step and threshold, then pushed it into place and after allowing the oil to settle, lit it up last night and it’s finally down to temperature. Tomorrow, off to the supermarket to get contaminated, I mean food to put inside of it. Why is it that refrigerators fail only after you’ve just stocked up with a freezer full of food? :/
    One upside, our state does have mandatory mask wear, compliance with which is actually moderately high – high enough that the refusing to wear a mask crowd look massively out of place and if one looks carefully, one can see the stress of being that much different from their peers is taking its toll.

  3. birgerjohansson says

    If It is at all possible, maybe you could have a Youtube conversation with Svante Pääbo or one of his colleagues about paleo-dna discoveries about human evolution the last 200.000 years, debunking the human exceptionalism that came up in the content with this creationist.

  4. birgerjohansson says

    If you have the energy, maybe you could have a calm Youtube conversation with David Wood, trying to get across why his worldview about evil secular leftists is wrong. With other evangelicals it would be meaningless, but Wood seems intellectually honest, a rare quality.
    (Also, re. Islam he loaths the theology of islam, but not the muslims- this is also a good sign of intellectual flexibility. )

  5. says

    The guy is wrong. If you don’t believe in evolution you will rape banks and rob people. Trump and the Republican Party are proof of that.

    On another note; many years ago Australia was treated to a visit from Galloping Gish and his Australian acolyte, Andrew Smelling. One of the results was a conference of scientists and teachers to discuss the pernicious influence of creationism in the education system. At the time there was one state education minister who mandated its teaching and a minister in another state who was pushing for it to be taught there. One question asked by a science journalist was :” What if tomorrow evolution was proved to be wrong?” After some fainting and clutching of pearls and a vigorous denial of that possibility, one prominent anti-creationist stated that if the findings were properly peer-reviewed and independently corroborated, after thinking of the implications he would head straight to his computer and start writing research grant applications. Thats science, a willingness to examine the evidence and change your views if new evidence arises.

  6. says

    @Birger Johansson

    a Youtube conversation with Svante Pääbo or one of his colleagues about paleo-dna discoveries

    Am I remembering wrong when I think I recall that there were problems with Pääbo’s earliest work with paleoDNA, like maybe underestimating contamination or something? I thought his earlier work was highly criticized but he’s been slowly working his reputation back into shape through methodological improvements and transparency.

    Again, I’m not a working scientist so knowing who’s reliable and who isn’t is something I don’t have to keep track of (and therefore generally don’t), but I’m pretty sure I heard some bad things about his early work and some concessions from the community that his work has gotten better.

    So my question is, if my memory is correct and his work wasn’t good but has gotten better, is it better to have a conversation with Pääbo or one of his close collaborators, or would it be better to have someone who has expertise on paleoDNA without that bumpy past?

  7. birgerjohansson says

    Crip Dyke @6
    -a good question, but the institution at Max Planck Institute has grown so it should be possible to find one with a clean slate, if there is any controversy.

  8. birgerjohansson says

    …..some of Pääbo’s pre-Max Planck discoveries may be obsolete or disproven, but I do not find anything about weird stuff later.
    BTW, he is a part of the LBTQ movement.
    His father- a Nobel Laureate- was a bigamist, which was only revealed after his death. SP seems determined to be up-front about his private life, if anything his book overshared about his life.

  9. mailliw says

    Took a look at Braden’s web site. Round up the usual suspects: Deepack Chopra, Templeton Prize nominee and management consultancy.

    A Deep Truth From Gregg | August 17, 2020

    ‘ Our ability to understand and apply the “rules” of the Divine Matrix holds the key to our deepest healing, our greatest joy, and our survival as a species.’

  10. birgerjohansson says

    “The Usual Suspects” (the film) was more creative than these tired creationists.
    Crip Dyke @ 6
    -try Susanna Sabin at MPI-SHH. She has jus recreated the highest quality ancient tuberculosis genome to date, from a Swedish 17-century bishop.

  11. mailliw says

    As an antidote to this nonsense I really recommend A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived: The Stories in Our Genes, by Adam Rutherford. A book that makes the very complex subject of genetics accessible to a layperson like myself.

  12. blf says

    “The Usual Suspects” (the film) was more creative than these tired creationists.

    More plausible / believable too.

  13. mailliw says

    @10 birgerjohansson

    The line “round up the usual suspects” comes from Casablanca, spoken by Claude Rains as Captain Louis Renault just before Bogart’s closing line “Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship”.

  14. birgerjohansson says

    Casablanca had nazis dressing up as nazis and singing nazi songs. None of this bland “we are just republicans who just ‘happen’ to want the destruction of democratic institutions”. And those guys even had Leni Riefenstahl and Albert Speer. Much better class.