Vpu vs Behe, Round Amillionty

A couple weeks ago, Teh Discovery Institute held some kind of revival ‘conference’ at a local Evangelical church. The Usual Suspects were there– Caseytits, West, some other guy, but also my HIV Evolution BFF Michael Behe. I ended up not being able to go due to a scheduling conflict. I was at a conference on HIV Evolution, which as we all know, according to the worlds most preeminent HIV researcher Michael Behe, doesnt exist.

So Ive been Googling around trying to get a recap of what went down.

Apparently, nothing.

As the kids say, “not a single fuck was given that day”.

Not one blog post or news article or message board comment by any Evangelical, who went to the event and was moved to post a word. There is only this second-hand recap from our awesome Americans United local prez, Mike Fuller.

*sarcasm* DARN YOU CHARISMATIC CREATIONISTS!! They must have put everyone in a trance of some kind! Some people call it ‘sleep’, but I know better! Im on to them!


Funny coincidence!

Know who spoke at my Uni yesterday? Edward Stephens! Hes talked about “The Role of Vpu in HIV-1 Pathogenesis” (hes got about 20 papers on Vpu up on PubMed (alone, not including all his other HIV-1 work)). Really neat talk about how Vpu has evolved differentially in all the subtypes from the SIVCPZ Vpu ancestor. LOL, turns out the HIV-1 versions dont look or behave like SIVCPZ Vpu. HIV-1 Group M stumbled upon several amino acid changes (different ways in different subtypes, while some subtypes havent, like Subtype F) that increased viral release in infected human cells. Almost like Vpu is a ‘new gene’ working in a ‘new way’, making ‘new protein-protein interactions’ in response to ‘new selective pressures’, aka new functions/phenotypes from random mutation and natural selection. Also, tetherin might not be the only ‘new’ protein its interacting with now.


LOL! Dr. Stephens, what a rube! Wasting his life on Evilution, speaking to fellow scientists, discovering new things and helping us understand the world around us, helping us relieve the strain of a deadly epidemic on humanity– when he could be leading sermons for 150-200 dozing patrons in church basements like the great Michael Behe, degrading, distorting, and ignoring the hard work of others, while contributing nothing of value to humanity himself (while still collecting a paycheck).



  1. #1 Neil
    April 12, 2011

    “Evilultion” . Assuming that wasn’t a typo Ms Erv ?

    Do you read questioningaids.com. Recently they had a thread postulating what HIV scientists actually do most of the time. None of them believe HIV exists to the point where they will take their devotion to the grave. Theire conclusions were roughly that scientists are in the pay of big PHARMA so they publish whatever they are told to my their paymasters. No “scientist” is actually doing any useful research etc etc. HIV = AIDS paradigm etc etc.

  2. #2 PZmivart
    April 12, 2011

    You probably would have been disappointed anyway. It was a different event than what we are used to seeing from the DI here in OK. Way more basic and foundational. It wasn’t the usual, “Check out this cool new stuff related to the things you think about”… More like “None of you think about this and you should.”

    Probably why no one really reported on the conference after the fact.

    I think Behe did lose the crowd a bit at crossing when he said that common descent was inconsequential but he didn’t touch any deeper issues then the BactFlag and geological distribution.

    Different kind of event.

    Nothing really new or exciting.

  3. #3 Sili
    April 12, 2011
  4. #4 SLC
    April 12, 2011

    Hey, how about joining Tara Smith, PZ Myers, and Jerry Coyne in taking a whack at celebrity HIV/AIDS denier Lynn Margulis who embarrassed herself one more time in an interview with Discovery Magazine.

  5. #5 William Wallace
    April 13, 2011

    Adults often have better things to do than blog. Just saying.

  6. #6 Prometheus
    April 14, 2011

    Ed Blick (retired engineer and active YEC) is one of the speakers at a tax protest meeting this afternoon.

    Bible literal=Earth 10,000 years old=No global Warming=No more taxes

    or something.

    Ed is fun. He was an aerospace guy and loves to explain how eagles can’t fly without divine intervention over a big mouthful of food somebody else is paying for.

    Here is an oldie but a goodie from Blickworld:


  7. #7 Sili
    April 14, 2011

    Adults often have better things to do than blog. Just saying.

    Sez the guy commenting.

  8. #8 Arkady
    April 14, 2011

    Tangentally related, but I just got back from a UK conference that had a talk on something potentially very cool. A CMV-based vaccine incorporating the gag-domain of the nastiest strain of SIV, resulting in 50% of macaques showing total immunity and partial immunity in most of the others. Soon to be published in Nature, unsuprisingly…

    Cautious optimism as ever with HIV vaccine stuff tho 😉

  9. #9 minimalist
    April 14, 2011

    Adults often have better things to do than blog. Just saying.

    “Those grapes were sour, anyway!”
    – Willy Wally, late of (the widely-unread) ‘blog.coincidencetheories.com’

  10. #10 vkhutchison
    April 14, 2011

    Ed Blick has said nothing new in at least 15 years. His arguments are the same ones he has used over and over. In an op-ed a few years ago he attacked evolution (and me), which I answered with another op-ed. His letters to editors almost always say the same things. He wrote a letter to the editor about a talk I gave before the local Democrats a few years ago, but he did not attend the talk and based his comments only on a news account that was quite short and incomplete. He knows almost nothing about the modern concepts of evolution and the evidence that continues to accumulate.

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