We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Saturday, May 26. 2018
3.5 Billion-Year-Old Fossils Challenge Ideas About Earth’s Start
Mussels test positive for opioids in Seattle's Puget Sound
Inside JFK’s door-to-door search for a French call girl — and why she had to look like Jackie
All the ways marijuana can hurt your health
Five Ways to Know if You Can Talk to Someone about Climate
Academia: "It has come to my attention..."
That guy is the author of The Welfare Trait: How State Benefits Affect Personality
Jordan Peterson Plays in the Left’s Cultural Sandbox
They demonize him because is is radical - radically-normal
College course explores ‘feminist critique of masculinity’
Any wife is an expert on that
Political Correctness at Stanford Law
Can you say anything that is not racist?
'End Capitalism, Don’t Enable It,' And Other Crazy CA Candidate Statements
Three FBI Agents Set to Testify: Including Lead Investigator in Clinton Email Probe
If Trump’s Team Was Colluding With Russia, Why Did It Keep Asking Wikileaks For Things?
Sharyl Atkisson on Spygate: Sure looks like FBI's operation against Trump was political
France: Macron Buries Plan to Rehabilitate 'No-Go Zones'
They have already tried everything
UK Police State: Activist Tommy Robinson to Serve 13 Months in Prison for Livestreaming Report on Child Grooming Gang
The Israel-Palestine Standoff
Tracked: May 27, 09:00
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Tracked: May 27, 09:47
Tracked: May 27, 10:33
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Sharyl Atkisson on Spygate: Sure looks like FBI's operation against Trump was political
Atkisson's has an exhaustive timeline on her site too.
"we will never understand what Rogers did for our country," and we would never have known of the spying and FISA violations without him as the intelligence community was caught unaware by the upset presidential race and was working hard to cover up its illegal conduct.
Is Narragansett still around? How about Ballantines Ale?
Memories! As a Warwick boy form Kent County, we called it "Nasty Gansett" - but sure liked Ballantine ale.
Nichols and May Narragansett beer commercials were much memorable than the product they were pushing.
“Gansett sponsored the Red Sox, and Kurt Gowdy read the ads on the radio.
Don't forget Carling's Black Label beer - "Mabel! Black Label" Heard that many a time during a Bo Sox game.
I recently went to Bethel, NY to see the Woodstock Museum (definitely a great visit - highly recommended) and went to Hector's - which I believe is where Janis and other musicians partied.
They still serve Ballantine's there, and we had one for old time's sake.
Re: France: Macron Buries Plan to Rehabilitate 'No-Go Zones'
They have already tried everything
No, they have NOT "already tried everything". No problem there that dead ragheads would not quickly fix. If the French flics were told to kill Mere Citizens, they would do so without a second thought. Just as our "finest" do over here on the west side of the Pond. But canna touch no ragheads.
The neanderthal nanny that penned the anti-cannabis screed left off one other way in which you can be harmed - One may be arrested, incarcerated, fined and one's life effectively destroyed for doing that which our Liberties should stringently allow...
Should you be able to use any drugs under that canard ("doing that which our Liberties should stringently allow...")? Should you also be allowed to drive and work if you are a drug user? Should you be allowed to benefit from welfare and other social programs while on drugs? Should you be allowed to have and raise children while using drugs? Is it OK to share your drugs with others especially minors? Is it OK to sell your drugs even at cost? Where do these mythical rights of yours end?
What most people, especially the druggies, fail to understand is that the drug laws are not enacted to make your life miserable and deny you your "rights". They were enacted to protect the rest of us who suffer from the effects of your illness, and to protect our children who drug users like to exploit. We would be happy if drug users would go off to a remote island and enjoy their drug of choice until they die and just leave us alone. But obviously YOUR drug problem is our crime problem. 80% of burglary and robbery is the result of druggies trying to get money for drugs. 90% of homicides are directly and indirectly related to drug use and drug trade. Most sexual abuse especially of minors is a direct result of drug use. So you see we are pretty sick and tired of you druggies and your claim to some kind of "right" to ride roughshod over the rest of us.
So smoke your stupid pot if you can't or won't quit it but don't bother us or our children and stop using our tax money as your personal bank account and stay off our highways. We will do our best to ignore you and only put you in jail when you commit non-drug crimes.
Your sign says "Keep off the grass"... mine says "Get offa my lawn"
^ Typical rightist statism. By your thinking everything must appeal to the State for approval.
No? Then draw a line in the sand that isn't entirely arbitrary, which is to say, which isn't the rule of your mob.
Like I say, typical rightist statism. Typical well-I-think relativism that converts the vote into the tyranny of the majority.
You can express whatever opinion you wish. You just can't vote it into law. But you will anyway.
That is not all rightist statism. I appeal not to the state legislature but to my survival. I do not care one way or the other over drug usage but I do care that my doctor, nurse, or dentist is not under the influence or that a mechanic that works on my car or aircraft is not under the influence. That is a responsibility that is a requirement in order to live under natural law in western culture. There are already too many legislative mandates that overrule natural law and it is why we are in a cold civil war throughout western culture. Those legislative mandates are not from anarchy end of the political spectrum but are from the authoritarian end of the spectrum...mainly Marxism and Islamism.
Not only is that statist, it's entirely typical signalling from the rightist version of it that thinks it can solve for any hazard and remain free. But until you define your limits you haven't defined your limits, and without hard or even philosophical limits, it obviously has none but your mob.
Your second and third sentences conflict - they have nothing but this nebulous 'natural law' to bind them to your arbitrary ideal, which is likewise unstated.
On its natural trajectory your method, appealing to its emotional need for safety, becomes - and already is - precisely the arbitrary mob I said it would be. What else could it be. You've defined democracy, not natural law.
Well, I've read through this three times and still can't spot it. What's your point? Are you saying that we should not reasonably strive to live within a high trust society when we invest in it with our own? Should we all be doing our own brain surgery? What? No disrespect intended, just curiosity.
That's too bad because the point is at the core of your high trust society. The question is when it gives - of gave - way to subjective collective whim.
Start with OneGuy (who I mistakenly ran together with Indy): In his righteousness we find the following, parsed for all the implied or asserted authorities and exclusions.
Should you be able [...] Should you also be allowed [...] Should you be allowed to benefit from welfare and other social programs while on drugs? Should you be allowed to have and raise children [...] Is it OK [...] Is it OK [...] drug laws are not enacted to make your life miserable and deny you your "rights". They were enacted to protect the rest of us[...] and to protect our children [...] We would be happy if [...] die and just leave us alone [..] our crime problem [...] we are pretty sick and tired of you druggies and your claim to [...] ride roughshod over the rest of us [...] don't bother us or our children and stop using our tax money [...] stay off our highways [...] we will put you in jail when you commit non-drug crimes.
And so on and so on, with all of it being subjective, dismissive, and rooted in place only by a majority.
Doubtless ire goes up when someone like me expects some explanation how this mob legitimately establishes itself, with its state-licenses, public roads, onerous law enforcement, industrial prison complex, corruptible justice system, unrepresentative and quasi-constitutional public taxes and the eternal, unpayable debt to pay for it, but to the rightist statist all that's assumed to be self-evidently proper conservatism.
It's not conservatism, it's creep and the displacement of formative principles, and none of it'll be clawed back until it's reexamined.
Got it, thanks. Too bad our society is driven to both increasing complexity and population density, I guess, in ways the Founders never could have envisaged. There is no cure to statism in view of these facts (IMHO), there is only the fight to keep it within a manageable state of metastasis and out of the reach of mob thinking. High trust communities can exist in this framework, but only with a concerted effort from all involved. Unfortunately our society has been conditioned over our lifetime to scorn patriotism and civic responsibility and yes, pride in the homeland. Looks like these principles are making a little bit of a resurgence now though. Good luck.
So you think that it is OK even a good thing to give drug users welfare and let them drive while high and give drugs to children and exploit the children. And you think this is your "right" as a sovereign citizen and screw the rest of you? Did I get that right or is your EGO even BIGGER than I think?
Welfare isn't a right. Exploiting children isn't a right. DUII isn't a right. It isn't your right to rob and steal to support your drug habit.
Perhaps you are right and there should be no laws and no morals nto interfere with your "rights". We should solve our own problems with a spear or a club and live like neanderthals. In some ways I like that; allow any parent to just shoot the little shits that give their children drugs. I like it!!!
Since welfare isn't a right I'm sure the right has worked out a plan to abolish it, taking druggie abuse off the table.
You're not bright enough to understand what you've said.
If we had laws like Asia mandating the execution of drug dealers and drug traffickers, the drug war would end quickly, so would a lot of problem created by allowing illegal aliens to enter the country. Now ruthless Mexican and Central American gangs control much of our southern border and inner cities, facilitating the flow of drugs and trafficked human beings as well.
If we had laws like Asia,,>>
Asia has just as much drug abuse as anywhere in the world.They seem to like 'go fast' as drug of choice.
It will probably be lawsuit city for awhile, although with all the resistance lawsuits in the mill and being prepared, the supply of radical lawyers to file these things may be running low, and the law-making judge supply may go down as well as the current stock ages and leaves the bench and constitutional judges are appointed in their place.
Of course Hillary doesn't understand the electoral college, it's a remnant of the days when we had a Federal government instead of a National government, a republic instead of a democracy. It's why she speaks of "a crisis in our democracy" without any understanding of why exactly we are not a democracy. She doesn't understand why the Constitution includes checks and balances against the eventuality that bad people will gain the power to do bad things (like Donald Trump) even at the cost of limiting the power of good people to do good things (like Hillary Clinton). And what could be better than allowing Hillary Clinton the power to establish re-education camps for the stupid people who disagree with Hillary Clinton, psychiatric prisons for the crazy people who disagree with Hillary Clinton and firing squads for the evil people who disagree with Hillary Clinton?
...re-education camps.... Obama's Netflix project will take care of that for her. As an aside, think we'll ever see who's paying for Obama's folly, assuming it ever gets off the ground?
I think she understands all of the Constitutional checks and balances perfectly clear. She understands the reasons for the electoral college, she just despises them, as all wicked tyrants do.
Should Jordan Peterson be "Time's" Man of the Year? He's castigated for speaking truth to power. I don't agree with everything he says, but all he's doing is speaking up for and giving good advice to the young men that society today seems hell-bent on destroying. It's evidence of the sad state of today that he's even seen as controversial. But then, you also have academicians anonymously making false accusations to limit academic thought; the whole climate change/warming drama of scientists limiting any genuine discussion of the facts and models in play; a major Presidential candidate complaining that the electoral system (published for 200 plus years) is "rigged". It's no wonder common sense advice is criticized. We are living in interesting times.
The interesting things about really old fossils that might be life or might only be only some kind of lifeless iterative chemical process is that, for the origin of life, those are the same thing. What I'm always looking for is research that can give some insight into the transition between those two. We talk of the beginning of life as if it consisted of functioning DNA or at least RNA, but the harder question is the origin of RNA out of iterative chemical processes.
Texan99: We talk of the beginning of life as if it consisted of functioning DNA or at least RNA, but the harder question is the origin of RNA out of iterative chemical processes.
While reconstructing the actual historical process might be intractable without direct evidence (perhaps from exobiology), we have some notion of how the RNA can be formed in plausible prebiotic conditions. See Patel et al., Common origins of RNA, protein and lipid precursors in a cyanosulfidic protometabolism, Nature Chemistry 2015.
Obviously; I keep up with this research as one of my primary hobbies, and don't need a superficial internet link to persuade me of its existence. But "some notion" is about like saying primitive man had some notion about orbital mechanics.
We're just beginning to get a glimmer how mechanical principles might play a part in the beginning of life. We're so early in the process that's it's mostly hand-waving so far. The gap between natural iterative processes in what we're pleased to call "plausible prebiotic conditions" and a functioning RNA molecule that can respond to evolutionary pressures is, in our present state of understanding, still an abyss in search of a genius bridge-builder. No one is even close to explaining how mechanical processes might have resulted in an abstract 3-"letter" code for ordering a chain of amino acids, let alone the other, more abstract epigenetic information coded in RNA or DNA.
Don't get me wrong: I think someone will figure out something someday. But we're nowhere near it yet.
Texan99: a superficial internet link
Superficial internet link? We provided a citation to a scientific research paper published in Nature Chemistry that directly addressed the question you raised, "the origin of RNA out of iterative chemical processes."
Texan99: But "some notion" is about like saying primitive man had some notion about orbital mechanics.
The paper shows how lipids, and precursors to RNA and even DNA could have arisen from a common primordial chemistry.
Texan99: The gap between natural iterative processes in what we're pleased to call "plausible prebiotic conditions" and a functioning RNA molecule that can respond to evolutionary pressures is, in our present state of understanding, still an abyss in search of a genius bridge-builder.
That wasn't your question, which was the origin of RNA.
Once you have RNA, then RNA could have acted as a catalyst to accelerate the process producing RNA, as well as acting as a catalyst in its own replication, something already shown by other experiments. The lipids, of course, create the necessary segregation via primitive vesicles. See the Szostak Lab for an overview.
Sure, once you have RNA, it's clear sailing. But getting to RNA is quite a trick. Yes, you can show that "precursors of ribonucleotides, amino acids and lipids" can pop up spontaneously; that kind of research has been commonplace for some time now, starting with the Miller-Urey experiments in the 1950s.
The problem is, the essential and mysterious part of RNA is one heck of a lot more than a precursor of a ribonucleotide. It is a collection of abstract codes--as in, "ACU means 'put an alanine here.'" If you don't get what a leap it takes to reach that part, you don't even know what the argument is about. Instead, you rely on a citation to something that involves some superficially similar words.
Texan99: It is a collection of abstract codes--as in, "ACU means 'put an alanine here.'"
RNA doesn't require translation, but can act directly as a catalyst, as well as being the storage medium.
Texan99: Don't get me wrong: I think someone will figure out something someday.
You are correct that there are still a lot of unanswered questions.
Re Indigenous ways of knowing
Even the author of the article misses a logical error:
“[Someone] could say that ‘trust-me-we-know eugenics is good science.’ Or ‘trust me, we know that the sun rotates around the Earth.’
Actually eugenics is bad policy not bad science. Thousands of years of animal husbandry prove it works. We unconsciously use it in selecting a mate. But as government or social policy, it's awful.
jay: Actually eugenics is bad policy not bad science.
Quite so. Though it's worth noting that it was the imprimatur of science that misled so many people.
Or ‘trust me, we know that the sun rotates around the Earth.’
It turns out that most people only know that the Earth moves from reliance on authority, something learned in school, and not determined first-hand from scientific methodology.