Gene Expression

Archives for February, 2007

Drink whole milk, get pregnant

A story just came out today about drinking high fat vs. low fat milk, and the positive effect on fertility that the former can have. Remember the report that drinking milk increases twinning? Issues like this should be kept in mind when considering the spread of lactose tolerance, anything that increases fitness should spread. Why…

Recent Human Evolution in the house

Early man ‘couldn’t stomach milk’ Working with scientists from Mainz University in Germany, the UCL team looked for the gene that produces the lactase enzyme in Neolithic skeletons dating between 5480BC and 5000BC. These are believed to be from some of the earliest farming communities in Europe. The lactase gene was absent from the DNA…

Buddhism, a religion or not?

The comments for the post where I imply that Sam Harris is a religiously inclined individual addressed the topic of whether Buddhism is a religion or not. This is a common issue, and I tend to cause some irritation whenever I declare that Buddhism is a theistic religion, because that’s not what you would read…

Cultural selection….

John Emerson has a long post about the relationship between irrationality and the emergence of new cultural forms. Worth reading. The other day I had a thought: many cultural traits are basically hitch-hiking along. Consider circumcision and the ban against pork consumption for Muslims, in places like Indonesia when tribes convert to Islam they abandon…

Bonus Kat

Kat

Most of you know I’m not very into politics…but I do have two political weblogs in my RSS which pound it hard, Matt Yglesias on the “Left” and Daniel Larison on the “Right.”1 I humbly request that Robert Wright have these two face off on Blogging Heads, just to see if English will allow them…

Sam Harris, God Intoxicated Man?

Sam Harris says: I do not deny that there is something at the core of the religious experience that is worth understanding. I do not even deny that there is something there worthy of our devotion. But devotion to it does not entail false claims to knowledge, nor does it require that we indulge our…

Things that make you go hm….

Bora sayeth: Are you sure? How can a hierarchical, Chain-of-Being, authoritarian, sexist, racist, homophobic, xenophobic, religious ideology be ‘normal’ when it does not understand the world correctly? Isn’t it maladaptive to hold erroneous views of nature (and human nature) and try to organize societies to fit that view instead of trying to organize societies in…

South Park mega-site

For those of you who don’t know, check out Allabout-SP.net/, which has an archive of all the South Park episodes. I don’t own a TV mostly because most of the stuff is crap but still compulsively addictive…but the great thing about South Park is that I enjoy 80-90% of the episodes, so there is a…