The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Evolution or Devolution?

Sometimes I get the feeling I am living in a world of morons. But I do not wish to insult morons. As I have written before, among my morning routines is a sort of a "walkabout" though the news stories in Google News. Most online news articles have little "of interest" boxes where other story headlines are displayed. The LA Times, for instance, has a MOST VIEWED list on the right of their various story pages. On one this morning, I found this article...

-Study finds humans still evolving, and quickly-

So I clicked on it. You see, I find a lot of human science interesting. And evolutionary research particularly interesting. I will attribute that to being human and to being curious.

And then I am disappointed by what I find. You see, the kids I grew up with who had a stronger interest in science than I (aka, the nerds) always seemed smarter than me. Maybe they still are but those reporting on their accomplishments seem much less so.

For instance...

Among the fastest-evolving genes were those related to brain development, but the researchers aren't sure what made them so desirable, Hawks said.

A researcher couldn't figure out why brain power might be desireable in evolution? My first inclination here is to reread that as...

"I, the reporter, didn't understand why smart people might be extremely useful to have around."

But maybe I am wrong because...

"Nobody 10,000 years ago had blue eyes," Hawks said. "Why is it that blue-eyed people had a 5% advantage in reproducing compared to non-blue-eyed people? I have no idea."

I don't know... why didn't you ask Paul Newman or Frank Sinatra when they were alive?

We seem to be evolving away from common sense...

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