Gene Expression

Limelight on a stupid commenter

Update: It maybe that “idiot commenter” speaks English as a second language , and so was not expressing his skepticism with sufficient nuance for my taste. That being said, this post stands as a warning to those who would waste my time.

-God Bless, Razib

This commenter starts out by admitting that he didn’t follow all my reasoning in my post on Neandertal admixture, but proceeds to take a patronizing tone. What bullshit. I know that some of my posts make recourse to terms which are a bit technical, in fact, terms which I myself didn’t grasp well until a few years ago, and whose conceptual implications and structure were somewhat fuzzy until only recently. But, it really isn’t rocket science, and the basic analytic framework isn’t much beyond 8th grade algebra, at least in its most general and broadest scope.

Homework for those who have problems “following the reasoning”:

1) Coalescent theory.

2 Selection coefficient.

3) Introgression.

4) Neutral theory.

To respond to a few specific issues that idiot commenter brings up:

a) Introgression of alleles (ergo, traits) maybe non-trivial despite trivial ancestry across the genome.

b) Species concept debates make me highly skeptical of claims for crisp cladogenesis at a specific time and place.

c) I suspect that there are multiple fitness optimums for a given environment, so the same adaptive strategy may not be found across all cognate environments for a given species.

On the specific issue of why if there was admixture between Neandertals and moderns moderns do not exhibit Neandertal robust physiognomy, there are many reasons one could posit. Consider a plausible reason: modern human clothing was better at insulation than Neandertal clothing, so an extreme body morphology which maximized volume in relation to surface area was not needed (and this body form might be deleterious for whatever reason, since the Inuit approach Neandertal proportions one might look to them to see what those negative consequences might be for stocky robusticity). Nevertheless, this simply won’t work for skin color, there are adaptive reasons why light skin is beneficial at high latitudes, and before a diet rich in vitamin D fortified foods emerged there was no cultural work around. Now, toward idiot commenters, why did I point to skin color and MC1R? Because the coalescence for the polymorphism extant on this locus suggests a last common ancestor around 800 K BP. Do the baby math.

And finally for idiot commenters, introgression does not imply massive interbreeding or appreciable modern Neandertal ancestry! That is why there is a specifical term for it.

Addendum: And no one better fucking tell me I should be nicer to commenters. In case you didn’t knotice, I don’t blog to maximize a comfortable readership, or foster a sense of “community.”

Addendum II: I should also note that there is a strong alternative candidate for why MC1R is so polymorphic: frequency dependent or diversifying selection. The various tests for selection though give conflicting results, so there is a cloud of doubt on this topic, so the possibility of introgression still stands as a non-trivial probability. It is interesting to note that in Europeans MC1R is strongly polymorphic but in East Asians it is being strong by positive selection toward fixation on one allele.

Comments

  1. #1 The idiotic commenter
    July 26, 2006

    LOL-LOL-LOL

    You have a charachter, man. But I truly didn’t expect my “idiotic” (yet very reasonable) comment to be so much celebrated – and much less in such short time.

    You are right that English is a second language to me but I hope that you don’t expect me or anyone else to “beg your pardon” or use other such phrases to express just a divergence of opinions. That would be “fucking idiotic” actually.

    MC1r is only relevant in humans regarding red hair (the gentics of other pygmentation traits are obscure yet as far as I know). Are you suggesting that red hair is a Neanderthal trait? Why? Is there any evidence that Neanderthals had red hair? Nothing but their bones and some MtDNA is known about their bodies. We can guess that they were rather hairy or light skinned due to climatic adaptation (for which they had much more time than sapiens anywhere out of Africa) but it’s still only a speculation.

    I think that you are misusing the concept of “archaism”. Neanders, sapiens and other contemporary branches of humankind were equally old. I know you must know that. Then why do you seem to equate introgression with Neanders? Isn’t it much more logical that those traits have been digged from our own sapiens genetic stock?

    800 Kyears, with the typical margins of error of genetics, can well mean 1500 Kyears or 200. What are you trying to imply from that?

    Well, nice to meet you. Have fun.

  2. #2 razib
    July 26, 2006

    MC1r is only relevant in humans regarding red hair (the gentics of other pygmentation traits are obscure yet as far as I know)

    no.

    We can guess that they were rather hairy

    why? this is what is depicted, but do we know this? inuit are not hairy. neither are lapp. these are the peoples who most resemble neandertals in body proportions.

    Isn’t it much more logical that those traits have been digged from our own sapiens genetic stock?

    our own ancestral lineage is reputed to have emerged from africa 50-100 K BP. ancient allelic lines can be preserved via balancing selection, but there are obvious reasons why that is unlikely on some loci (e.g., M1CR is constrained in african populations because light skin is very deleterious).

    but genes don’t necessarily know population/demographic level assocation. that’s my point: conceiving of separate “genetic stocks” that are sealed off from each other is artifical. there maybe little admixture, but genes can leak across populations nonetheless. e.g., 70% of north indians are lactose tolerant. it seems that this allele in eurasians arose in northern europe, where 90% of the population is lactose tolerant. does that imply that north indians are 70% derived from northern europeans? no, it does not, it means that the allele swept through populations where it was beneficial. as a point of comparison, 30% of south indians are lactose tolerant, but just because north indians and north europeans form a clade vs. south indians on this locus does not mean that that reflects the totality of their genomic content.

  3. #3 Luis
    July 26, 2006

    Well, it will take me a while to dig in the Google page for “skin color” – yet all the first page adresses to your blog. It will be interesting anyhow.

    My guesses are just guesses. In general all or most animal species adapted to cold climates are quite hairy and, as I said, neanders had a long time to adapt to those conditions – maybe 12 times more than any Eurasian modern human, including Inuits, assuming the “out of Africa” mainstream theory for our species. But anyhow it’s just a guess, nothing I can defend beyond my own logic.

    You have point in that a minor but adaptative “leak” between (sub)species can be selected possitively or even (if the trait is trivial) be lucky in the genetic drift. But still it is only a “maybe”.

    The lactose example also suggest me many ideas. First, it is quite obvious that it was trivial (non-adaptative) for pre-Neolithic peoples (huter-gatherers just don’t drink milk as adults), therefore it doesn’t seem to be any reason for its selection among them – genetic drift should be blamed instead. Yet some of the selection may have happened in Neolithic and post-Neolithic times and that may have helped Northern Europens to survive in their rather dark enviroment. It’s tricky. Also North Indians and North and Eastern Europeans do share at least part of their patrilineal lineages (R1a) – the gene may have been more strongly associated (by mere drift) with the population that spread that Ychr haplogroup, whichever their origin, and been selected in Northern Europe even more strongly due to climatic adaptation already in a Neolithic context, where it became useful. I’m not sure if that gene could have any adaptative meaning in Indian context – are northern Indians more attached to cows and other milking cattle than southern ones?

  4. #4 razib
    July 26, 2006

    even (if the trait is trivial) be lucky in the genetic drift

    not in the cases i’m talking about. perhaps, but that would be hitchhiking, and be carried along with the positively selected allele.

    Yet some of the selection may have happened in Neolithic and post-Neolithic times and that may have helped Northern Europens to survive in their rather dark enviroment.

    the coalescence is 10,000 BP for eurasian alleles. selection started then.

    I’m not sure if that gene could have any adaptative meaning in Indian context – are northern Indians more attached to cows and other milking cattle than southern ones?

    yes, north indian cuisine uses “ghee” (butter), south indian uses coconut oil.

  5. #5 pna
    July 27, 2006

    Addendum: And no one better fucking tell me I should be nicer to commenters. In case you didn’t knotice, I don’t blog to maximize a comfortable readership, or foster a sense of “community.”

    and why shouldn’t people request a little bit of civility from you? i mean, really, what exactly are you going to do about it if people do “fucking tell you to be nicer to commenters”? delete their comments? Throw your toys out of the pram again?

    bearing in mind (from my understanding from other bloggers with SB) you get paid by seed magazine to contribute your thoughts, it’s not really “your house” is it? I’m curious how seed magazine would feel knowing that you are so incessantly rude to people (potential readers of seed magazines) who disagree with you?

    i get a lot from your blog, you post some good and worthwhile posts. but you really do come across as a complete jerk sometimes.

  6. #6 Orac
    July 27, 2006

    And no one better fucking tell me I should be nicer to commenters.

    You know, you really should be nicer to commenters. Such nastiness, while temporarily amusing and satisfying, leaves a bad taste.

  7. #7 Orac
    July 27, 2006

    earing in mind (from my understanding from other bloggers with SB) you get paid by seed magazine to contribute your thoughts, it’s not really “your house” is it? I’m curious how seed magazine would feel knowing that you are so incessantly rude to people (potential readers of seed magazines) who disagree with you?

    FYI, SEED Magazine exercises no editorial control over the blogs. It’s in the contract with each blogger. Potential advertisers are informed of this fact before signing on the dotted line. I doubt SEED will do anything. Why? Are you planning on complaining?

  8. #8 Oran P. Kelley
    July 27, 2006

    Have you ever considered how much time you spend on your blog complaining about commentors? Most of the time these commenters are considerably more considerate that you generally are, and yet you, without fail, label them as “rude.” And many times these people have perfectly reasonable (though perhaps incorrect) points to make, which you usually respond to with invective and peevishness.

    Do you have a problem with self esteem? Are you trying to scare away anyone who doesn’t worship at the church of razib? Your reactions to questioning is comically insecure–you really ought to get ahold of yourself.

    Or maybe not–maybe it’s better that you go ahead and just behave like a poorly socialized (cliche) Neanderthal.

  9. #9 outeast
    July 27, 2006

    It’s Razib’s blog, he can pick the tone. He’s already says he’s not particularly interested in giving ground to the ignorant (among whom I certainly count myself, so I generally keep schtumm here) in comments, so if his attitudes end up discouraging commenters I don’t imagine he really gives a fuck. Personally, I don’t like that attitude – but his posts are often very interesting, so I figure who cares? There’s a lot of dialogue on ScienceBlogs. Maybe someone has to occupy the oppsite pole to PZ’s super-open house!

  10. #10 Oran Kelley
    July 27, 2006

    Here’s another example of Razib’s fine way with intellectual opposition. kemibe made some perfectly innocuous points regarding a post and Razib immediately flies off the handle, calling him an asshole. You can go back and find it yourself easily enough and read it through. Razib’s response is totally out of proportion to kemibe’s comment.

    ____________

    “your comment is stupid for one primary reason: you aren’t addressing the falsities in question, but setting up a straw man for a snarky little quip. go shit in someone else’s backyard.”

    How convincing. Talk of straw men and shit. Describe again the falsities in question? (I’m well aware of conflicts between what Dan Brown implies and what most Christians believe, but I’m asking you about genuine falsehoods.)

    “the non-existence (or existence) of jesus is totally irrelevant to the problems with the book, as i imply above where i list the major issues (the existence, or non-existence, of jesus is not on that list).”

    Just because you omit something doesn’t mean it’s not germane (you, perhaps fancying yourself an omniscient analyst who leaves no angle unexamined, may disagree). Again, I’m hardly ignorant of the disparities between what Bible scholars have wasted hundreds of thousands of hours studying and what Code presents. I’m curuious as to why you feel that it’s vital to place mythology beyond the realm of poetic license or even flat-out mockery.

    “The Da Vinci Code is part of a bigger movement in our society to devalue specialized knowledge…”

    I see. Do you consider the Bible specialized knowledge? I always thought of it more as revealed “knowledge.”

    “but perhaps english isn’t your first language?”

    No, but English with a capital “E” is, and in this language “themself” is not a pronoun found in any dictionary.

    “history is not just about births and deaths, it is about the ideas and social environment of various groups. as it happens, dan brown promotes transparently fallacious truisms about ancient christians, and the classical world, which distort the view of many well educated (see above, there are facts i offer up, instead of snarky little faux-witticisms in response to non-existent assertions).”

    You agree that Brown’s erroneous claims and those he manipulates or gets wrong are both “superstitions.” I’m having a hard time reconciling this (accurate) stance with your greater gripe about devaluing knowledge, which few confuse with superstition.

    “yes, let’s talk epistemology the next time we hear of a suicide bomber killing themself in the name of god. explain to them that god doesn’t exist, and here are the philosophical reasons why. there are plenty of things that are false in the world that people believe in, telling them its false is pretty besides the point when they’ve got a bomb in your face.”

    Hmmm, what do we call this trick? The “appeal to radicals and nutbags”? Be as dismissive as you like, but how many of those offended by this film are the suicide-bomber type, Razid? How many Bible scholars or even mainstream Catholics with half an eye open are going to change their minds about their faith on account of a film that depicts events they know don’t mesh with what history has taught them? And how many otherwise bored godless mo-fos like me care how Jesus is portrayed? (Ehrman, by the way, is in my Amazon queue x 2 thanks to a prior recommendation.)

    As for those whose ideas about Christianity have been swayed by the movie or the book, guess what — it’s not the job of film producers to make incurious or plain stupid people smart. If people are too lazy to do their own reading and rely on Hollywood for their history lessons, they’re beyond even your expert help.

    Finally, you can screech and holler about Brown all you want, but he’s lining his pockets, and everyone clamoring about what a no-goodnik he is has only given him a huge boost.

    “in a word, you’re an asshole. hope i don’t see you around anymore :)”

    Likewise, but I can see you’re truly an asshole after my own heart! I’ll be seeing you, don’t worry. ;o)

    Posted by: kemibe | May 23, 2006 09:43 PM

  11. #11 Oran Kelley
    July 27, 2006

    Or here: http://scienceblogs.com/gnxp/2006/07/there_are_no_facts_only_opinio.php

    Bow down to my expertise on ethnic relations in Iran or suffer the consequences!!

    Now is it just me or does it strike you as odd that someone would be inspired to espistomological refelction by someone mildly demurring from an opinion on ethnic relations in Iran? Someone diagreed with my opinion. Damn those relativists!

    I mean, come on!

    This isn’t about someone being hostile to innane questions, this is about someone whose opinions are apparently hypersensitive to any skepticism whatsoever. If all Razib wants to hear is applause, he should turn off the comment capability.

  12. #12 pna
    July 27, 2006

    FYI, SEED Magazine exercises no editorial control over the blogs. It’s in the contract with each blogger. Potential advertisers are informed of this fact before signing on the dotted line.

    Nor would I expect SEED to exert any editorial control or direction over their bloggers. But then, that’s not what what I was saying, was it?

    Razibs comment:
    “I don’t blog to maximize a comfortable readership, or foster a sense of “community.”

    Does seem to contradict this somewhat:
    “Our mission is to build a community of like-minded individuals who are passionate about science and its place in our culture, and give them a place to meet. [snip] Our role, as we see it, is to create and continue to improve this forum for discussion, and to ensure that the rich dialogue that takes place at ScienceBlogs resonates outside the blogosphere.”

    I’m not sure how making disparage remarks about commenters is compatible with providing like minded individuals a place to meet or encourage discussion.

    I doubt SEED will do anything. Why? Are you planning on complaining?

    Nope. Why’s that, do I sound like the complaining type?

  13. #13 razib
    July 27, 2006

    hey assholes, i spend way more time posting and forming my posts than you do commenting how i’m an asshole.

    if SEED wanst to fire me, again, fine.

    and pna, what fucking blog do you run to be an expert? and oran, how many readers do you get with your attitude?

    some of you might notice that i don’t exhibit the same attitude toward all commenters. wonder why?

  14. #14 Petulancer
    July 27, 2006

    You guys should just have sex already, get it over with.

  15. #15 razib
    July 27, 2006

    You guys should just have sex already, get it over with.

    i’m monogamous!

  16. #16 razib
    July 27, 2006

    ou get paid by seed magazine to contribute your thoughts

    btw, i get paid based on traffic.

    and let me try a little transparent flattery: other science bloggers complain and kvetch about the stupidity of public figures and other bloggers, i bitch about commenters. you know why? cuz i hold my commenters to higher standards than i hold blogs. simple as that. the rest is deduction. SEED will get its share in the future based on search engine queries, if you post a lot on obscure topics (like i do) you are scooping up the “long tail.” i know from my other blog, 3/5 of the uniques are search engine referrals.

  17. #17 Oran Kelley
    July 27, 2006

    My blog?

    It’s a vanity publication, obviously, which I attend to pretty inconsistently. I get few readers, but more than I expect. The blog isn’t there to make me famous, just somewhere to put stuff I’ll never place in print or which is inappropriate for print anyhow.

    So you’ve hit me in a very sensitive spot commenting on how few readers I get :-). It has nothing to do with my attitude, whatever it is.

    So why DO you do this blog if it isn’t to create a community and it (obviously) isn’t to inspire lively conversation, why do it?

    Don’t give me the line about only shutting down people who are lazy or dumb or whatever: at least half the time you go off on a commenter YOU are the one who is being lazy and witless. I’d refer you to either of the examples I pointed out.

    So what’s the point of this exercise? To preach the bible of maximal sustainable racial difference to the amen corner? with occasional asides on other topics (and, by God, don’t contradict me)?

  18. #18 razib
    July 27, 2006

    isn’t to inspire lively conversation

    if you read this blog you know very well it inspires lively conversation quite often. look at the comment thread with luis above. as long as people take an interest in the topic and aren’t dismissive i’m open to engaging with them. note that luis’ first comment implied i was posting pseudo-science, when he is clearly less versed in genetics than i. if you want an example of the conversation i want to foster, see here.

    and to correct you, i am not interested in just “lively” conversation, i’m interested in conversation where the principals engage each other and forward the dialogue by making their positions explicit, full fleshed out, and ask respectful queries.

  19. #19 Oran Kelley
    July 27, 2006

    i hold my commenters to higher standards than i hold blogs

    How about some standards for yourself? You’re not being rude to people you know better than: you get rude when you get bested. You’re nothing but a sore loser.

    And I’m afraid I, too, am unavailable for sexual experimentation at this time.

  20. #20 razib
    July 27, 2006

    You’re not being rude to people you know better than: you get rude when you get bested. You’re nothing but a sore loser.

    no i’m not. you can cut & paste however you want (i’ve given you that freedom). but i don’t grant that i’m rude to people who “best” me. this isn’t about being “bested,” as if we are children in high school pre-calc trying to set the curve. like i said, no one is forcing you, or those who think i’m rude to those who “best” me, to read. and i’m not going to close comments, because there are people out there i’d want to here from. and you can ask john emerson who important ideological purity is for me :)

    people who correct and error better be polite about it though, this isn’t a symmetrical field, i put a lot more time & effort into a free service (no one is forcing you to read, certainly not i) than readers do commenting. i cover a lot of topics, some of it some detail, so i am wrong plenty, there’s no shame in that. but i’ve told you specifically that i don’t want to be told i’m wrong, i want step by step elucidation so i can learn from it. if i wanted to inflate my ego i’d post about political shit all the time and develop a following of fellow travellers. commenters do not have a sequential corpus of posts and entries one can refer to, so it emerges in a vacuum. i am rude to people who tell me i’m wrong and expect me to connect the times because i spend enough time as it is posting, it seems only fair that if it is an area that the commenters expertise or knowledge in they should (i demand this) elaborate so we can all understand the issues in more detail. otherwise, don’t comment.

    (this is all modulated if you have a blog which one can reference and judge. e.g., if rob skipper left a comment correcting something i said about fisher in a short and spare fashion, that’s OK, he has left enough of a trail that i can take that on authority)

  21. #21 Oran Kelley
    July 27, 2006

    My read is that you “engage” in conversation ONLY if your interlocutor is willing either a) to be submissive or b) if your interlocutor is willing to substantially agree with your point of view and argue only about details.

    Your explicitness line is a load of BS, too. Whenever you or your buddy godless launch onto this line I wonder about your reading ability, because it is always quite plain to me what you interlocutor is saying, and yet you hollar about lack of explicitness and then procede to ignore what the person has written.

    Straight out of the propaganda minister playbook.

  22. #22 razib
    July 27, 2006

    My read is that you “engage” in conversation ONLY if your interlocutor is willing either a) to be submissive or b) if your interlocutor is willing to substantially agree with your point of view and argue only about details.

    oran, you’re a major league asshole. why don’t you go read another blog? all you are here to do is just waste my time. wtf is wrong with you anyhow? if a blog is being run in a way i don’t like, i don’t read it. and don’t talk to me about propoganda, kommissar kelly. you with “advice” on how other people should run their blogs.

  23. #23 razib
    July 27, 2006

    if your interlocutor is willing to substantially agree with your point of view and argue only about details

    also, there is a grain of truth in this. i delete all creationists because i’m not open to their “point of view.” if someone comments here, they better assume evolution is a fact. if not, there are other forums where they can argue to their heart’s content. i’m interested in genuine evolutionary questions. that being said, bora disagrees with me in the details (in the emphasis more) of particular evolutionary issues, but i find his comments acceptable because the dialogue is fruitful to me (i don’t know for him, but that’s his business). yes, i set the parameters of discussion, and we are hashing out details. if some premises are not givens, i see no point in engaging because it would be a waste of time. i find immediate attempts to get into meta-philosophical issues obnoxious because it hijacks the thread from the get-go.

    you, oran, seem to engage in copious attempts to critique the meta-aspects of a post and the blog. i’m not interested in that shit, take it elsewhere. like on your blog. what’s yours is yours, what’s mine is mine. not what’s yours is yours, and, and what’s mine is also partly yours because you have an opinion which just has to get out there.

  24. #24 agnostic
    July 27, 2006

    I did a Google Scholar search on this issue, but only found the following citation:

    Jagov, U. R. A. (2006). The “Moron” Kelley effect: when exasperated ignorance matters more than doing the damned homework. Am. J. of Stup. Ass. Commenters, 42(3), 21-2.

  25. #25 razib
    July 27, 2006

    You know, you really should be nicer to commenters. Such nastiness, while temporarily amusing and satisfying, leaves a bad taste.

    and FYI orac, being nasty does not amuse or satisfy me in the least. like you i don’t have a lot of marginal time, so i don’t like it being wasted. the commenter that started this thread was:

    a) patronizing
    b) clearly ignorant of population genetics
    c) accused me of peddling psuedo-science to boot

    i don’t spend my marginal time blogging to be on the receiving end of such a reaction, plain and simple as that. if you aren’t going to add value, be nice. if you’re going to be nasty know your shit inside & out.

  26. #26 The idiotic commenter
    July 27, 2006

    “How about some standards for yourself? You’re not being rude to people you know better than: you get rude when you get bested. You’re nothing but a sore loser”.

    With my very brief experience in this blog (came around just yesterday), I must say that you seem to be damn right, Oran Kelly. Not just in that comment but I rather agree in your overall criticism of Razib’s “Brahmin” (snobbish) manners.

    On the other hand the issues he touches are also rather interesting, at least at times. Else, I wouldn’t have been back, believe me.

    He can maybe be excused for that reason and also because he seems to be still quite young.

    Enjoy,
    Luis.

  27. #27 razib
    July 27, 2006

    On the other hand the issues he touches are also rather interesting, at least at times. Else, I wouldn’t have been back, believe me.

    i only want commenters who find this material “rather interesting.” if being rude scares off those who are only lukewarm or “passing through” than my task is completed.

  28. #28 The idiotic commenter
    July 27, 2006

    “the commenter that started this thread was:

    a) patronizing”

    Criticism is “patronizing”? Or is it that it make you feel insecure?

    “b) clearly ignorant of population genetics”

    Well, I know quite a little more than the average person. I’m no biologist though.

    In this sens I’m sure you can teach me much but you won’t get many people to listen to you if you just insult them to start with.

    “c) accused me of peddling psuedo-science to boot”

    I didn’t. You took the Nessie metaphore as such. I said that you had nothing to claim what you were claiming, that it was all just a “maybe”, just as Nessie. In fact, Nessie (or life in Titan, if you prefer a more scientific comparison) might exist but that doesn’tmake it a scientific fact. It’s almost the same with the far-fetched hypothesis on sapiens-neanderthal hybridation that you seem to have adopted without any evidence to hold it up.

    Sorry, but facts are facts and hypothesis are just mental constructs till they can be proven.

    Luis.

  29. #29 razib
    July 27, 2006

    without any evidence to hold it up.

    there is strong evidence which will be published within the next few months which i have known for nearly a year. additionally, i have pointed you to articles which point to “long branches” in the gene genealogy extant in the liteature. that is evidence.

    your whole digression into hybridization was totally irrelevant, as i illustrated via a simple model where a small probability of fixation for one event can imply inevitable fixation when that event occurs more than once. if you flip a coin enough times the chance that it will be tails at some point approaches 100% as you continue flipping. you started out by assertion “I can’t make sense of some of your reasonings.” if you couldn’t, you shouldn’t have offered a critique since either i’m nonsensical or there are reasons/structures you don’t understand. your whole initial comment was off base because you obviously didn’t internalize the logic of my initial post. if someone didn’t understand what you had said, but proceeded to respond to you and rebut you point by point without understanding what you’d said, wouldn’t you be irritated?

    when i come into a blog where technical discussions are going on, i don’t just comment off the cuff, especially if i know that i might be missing something. this is not rocket science, if you kept reading you would figure out exactly what i meant, as most of my long time readers have. at that point the dialogue could have been furthered simultaneously as we’d have started off from the same position.

  30. #30 ehem
    July 27, 2006

    razib, there are fools everywhere.

    the correct response to a fool is silence.

  31. #31 razib
    July 27, 2006

    i believe that facultative mixed-strategies are optimal.

  32. #32 Luis
    July 28, 2006

    “if someone didn’t understand what you had said, but proceeded to respond to you and rebut you point by point without understanding what you’d said, wouldn’t you be irritated?”

    No. Only personal attacks and lack of compassion provoke my anger normally. Ignorance can be disappointing but not irritating. As you can see here, I have little problem in going once and again over the same point if necessary – I’m rather pedagogic and patient – and young people specially tend to appreciate it (when they don’t just get bored).

    Also if you know something that nobody else knows, that’s no reason to insult. In fact it should be a reason to explain that reason behind your point. Anyhow, besides your word about that paper (that probably won’t be as conclussive as you seem to think) I have no evidence. And while that paper may contain evidence, assuming that you know something you have not made explicit is not any kind of evidence.

    The more you talk, the more clear that there’s nothing to it. And, if there is something, it’s so hidden in some scholarly corner that we just can’t discuss about it. Not even you: you can’t show the evidence that you say now that it backs your claim, then you just can’t defend your point – so you’d better keep silent till that supposed evidence is published and you can use it as support for your viewpoint and the rest can check it to see what’s all about.

    In any case, you can’t call me idiotic and patronizing just because I don’t know something that only you and few colleagues of you know. You are the one that is being idiotic, patronizing and totally irrespectful.

  33. #33 razib
    July 28, 2006

    As you can see here, I have little problem in going once and again over the same point if necessary – I’m rather pedagogic and patient – and young people specially tend to appreciate it (when they don’t just get bored).

    what blog do you run luis? i’d like to see you in action to confirm this. i’d like to see your patience multipled by hundreds of readers….

  34. #34 Luis
    July 28, 2006

    I don’t have hundreds of readers (nor I think I ever will). I just started a blog a few month ago to write about my pet-loves and pet-hates. Only three different commenters so far – so guess I’m writing mostly for myself. Not that I meant much more either.

    It seems I can’t post the URL nor include it in the field (anti-spam filter or something). I’ll email you with it.

  35. #35 M. Möhling
    December 30, 2009

    > i believe that facultative mixed-strategies are optimal

    Spoken as befits true-blue Genghis’ spawn–keep’em in constant fear and surprise. But. Razib, I’m socially challenged, too, as possibly many of us guys here are (greetz fly to the girls), but you’re coming across as funny here. You write 10x more than many others, and better, but after having identified someone as an ‘asshole’ and named him accordingly (questionable practice, but hey, be your guest) there ought to be no need to address him any further or to acknowledge his existence in any form. Yet you do, though your claim to be pressed for time is more than plausible. As this compatriote of mine (would you believe he’s so clever?) once remarked, it’s hard to explain to an idiot that he’s an idiot. So why do you try? (I’m not taking sides here, it’s about what you think of the guy, not me) Something going awry. Really, have some quality time with the missus and/or ze katz. Repeat as needed.

  36. #36 M. Möhling
    December 31, 2009

    Sorry for reviving an old thread. It got late yesterday and seemingly I got lost in space and time. What the hell, Happy New Year.