Pharyngula

The old thread is dead, a new one lives. Now dance, monkey boys and girls! Dance!

Comments

  1. #1 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 22, 2009

    Now dance, monkey boys and girls! Dance!

    I resent that. lol

  2. #2 PZ Myers
    December 22, 2009

    You may resent it…but are you dancing?

  3. #3 Sili
    December 22, 2009

    The thread hath given, the thread hath taken away, blessed be the name of the thread.

  4. #4 Sili
    December 22, 2009

    Also: What the hell was that?

    (Needs more Daft Punk and men grabbing their crotches.)

  5. #5 Feynmaniac
    December 22, 2009

    The thread is dead. Long live the thread!

  6. #6 WowbaggerOM
    December 22, 2009

    Wowbagger doesn’t, as a general rule, dance.

    If I have enough drinks at the AGC next year (and they put on some decent music, not the same 80s claptrap that everyone else plays) then maybe I will get up and shake my skinny white-boy ass – and then you’ll see why Wowbagger doesn’t, as a general rule, dance…

  7. #7 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Whoop! Fresh dancing! Needs more bacon, and more men.

  8. #8 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 22, 2009

    You may resent it?but are you dancing?

    Yes. . .

    But not to the song you think I’m dancing to.

  9. #9 Owlmirror
    December 22, 2009

    dance, monkey boys and girls! Dance!

    Don’t you mean “dance like a monkey ?

  10. #10 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    #7 Lynna said

    Whoop! Fresh dancing! Needs more bacon, and more men.

    Sorry Lynna. I can dance (I enjoy American square dnacing) but I’m already spoken for. I could get some bacon out of the freezer. There seems to be a slot in the front of the computer with a turntable – I could send some over if you like…

  11. #11 Sven DiMilo
    December 22, 2009

    yay!
    New subThread UPDATE. (History of The Thread)

    I’ll dance!

  12. #12 SEF
    December 22, 2009

    @ windy #884 of previous thread:

    Did they have a lot of those in the ’80s?

    Yes. I was musing on that to myself just recently (ie I hadn’t been back online to see your post yet) and wondering whether the Indiana Jones movie was one of the earliest in the batch.

  13. #13 Sven DiMilo
    December 22, 2009

    I forgot:
    15208

  14. #14 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    #10

    “dnacing” What the **** is “dnacing” I blame the Rev.
    [Ed. I blame the typist …]

    (To any newcomers, Ed. is my alter ego. Too clever for his own boots and always wise after the event.

    [Ed. Leave it at “always wise” …]

  15. #15 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Thank you, Alan B. Yes, please do send bacon via the bacon slot in your computer.

    Going by the opening scene in the video, I think PZ is giving us the finger (with musical accompaniment), and then commanding us to dance to the huge pulsating brain at the centre of Pharnygula … or something like that.

  16. #16 Mr T
    December 22, 2009

    What utter garbage that video was. More lesbians and bacon indeed.

    Never once did I even see “a huge evergrowing puslating Brain” or anything related to “the Centre of the Ultraworld”, whatever that is.

    Does no one believe in Truth? in Advertising® anymore?

  17. #17 Sastra
    December 22, 2009

    Hey, I just read one of these all the way to the end!

    Okay, this one. Just now. But even small accomplishments deserve a victory dance.

    Well, a small one.

  18. #18 Mr T
    December 22, 2009

    Yes, that’s right: I said “puslating”.

  19. #19 Sven DiMilo
    December 22, 2009

    Was there actually crotch-grabbing? Is there a pulsating brain? I only made it through the first 2:35 or so. Shit sets my teeth on edge.

  20. #20 a_ray_in_dilbert_space
    December 22, 2009

    Lynna says, “Thank you, Alan B. Yes, please do send bacon via the bacon slot in your computer.”

    Wow! Reiki bacon!

  21. #21 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    Square dancing? What are these guys on?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CoE-COZJVr8&feature=related

  22. #22 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Sastra, I appreciated your efforts in repeatedly handing James-the-Mormon his ass. He dropped it every time, but hey, your efforts cannot be faulted.

  23. #23 WowbaggerOM
    December 22, 2009

    My work filter blocks videos – what’s it a video of?

  24. #24 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 22, 2009

    But I do dance like a monkey. Especially if there is a mermaid.

  25. #25 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    #23 Wowbagger

    The final of “Strictly Come Dancing” UK

    (no, not really!)

  26. #26 Joffan
    December 22, 2009

    Meanwhile, the Pharyngulan catchphrases, last seen hereas:
    10. Oh, sniny!
    9. How is it there are PYGMIES + DWARFS?
    8. Happy Monkey!
    7. Goats On Fire!
    6. I demand a camera.
    5. I would never inflict oral sex on a woman.
    4. Cyberpistol
    3. Trophy wife
    2. Bacon, lesbians and beer
    1. Pharyngulate this poll.< 'blockquote>
    possible additions:
    “naked lesbians masturbating with bibles”* and
    “tentacled overlords”
    “Deep Rifts” have been mentioned too.

    *I think #2 on the quoted list should just be bacon… that’s enough of an in-joke on its own.

  27. #27 hyoid
    December 22, 2009

    You probably don’t need any Chardonnay to make that happen, but it don’t hurt! WoooHooo!

  28. #28 SEF
    December 22, 2009

    I haven’t spotted these pharyngula catchphrases being mentioned yet as contenders for the top ten(-ish) list:

    frackin’ cracker
    boobies

  29. #29 David Marjanovi?
    December 22, 2009

    What we need are BIG words, preferably words that cannot be pronounced by the hoi polloi. This is where biology and cladistics comes in. Nobody else is going to use or misuse:

    […]
    Taxonomic Nomenclature

    Does anyone use that term? Taxonomy and nomenclature are rather separate endeavors…

    (Except when the rank of a taxon determines the ending of its name, which happens a lot outside the PhyloCode.)

    Processed pseudogenes

    What does it mean to process a pseudogene???

    Heteropy

    “Having different eyes”? Huh?

    Also, Micropachycephalosaurus hongtuyanensis. So there.

  30. #30 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    #24

    Sounds a bit like a ceilidh I went to a while back – pity the band was a bit worse for the Guinness!

  31. #31 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    I object to “bacon, lesbians and beer” — not an objection on principle, but as a component of the Pharyngula catch-phrase list. I agree that bacon can stand alone. But I don’t think lesbians should stand alone. Lesbians masturbating with bacon-lubricated bibles can hold their own.

    Or:
    Lesbians, bacon, bibles, and masturbation
    Or:
    Lesbians, bibles and masturbation

    Floyd Rubber (no explanation needed)

  32. #32 David Marjanovi?
    December 22, 2009

    Argh, not eyes, face!!!

    Oh, sniny!

    Ooh, sniny. Rhymes with woo.

    Trophy wife

    Trophy Wife™. Trademarked right from the beginning.

  33. #33 MosesZD
    December 22, 2009

    What is this thread supposed to be about? I forgot months ago…

  34. #34 Mr T
    December 22, 2009

    There is a pharygulan catch-phrase which may be in competition with “tentacled overlords”: namely, “clenched tentacle salute”.

  35. #35 SEF
    December 22, 2009

    I wasn’t in the thread when it was about the science of the watchmen – because that seemed to be something I hadn’t seen or read (or whatever mental digestion method might be appropriate to whatever it is).

    I’m not sure there is a “supposed to be” about it though. It appears to have become a more reliably available open thread (ie than the original sporadic open threads used to be) for dumping off-topic or peripherally relevant stuff into.

  36. #36 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    I support “clenched tentacle salute” as the standard for congratulations.

    MosesZD, this thread is about the science of Watchman, geology, pseudo-geology, geological puns, beer, bacon, pie, lesbians, bibles, masturbation, and mormons (to name just a few of the subjects).

  37. #37 Sven DiMilo
    December 22, 2009

    The Thread is supposed to be about What It Is.

  38. #38 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    #29 David Marjanovi?

    All taken from the index of “Evolution”, by Douglas Futuyma (2006 3rd printing).

    Micropachycephalosaurus hongtuyanensis
    “small thick headed lizard” or something similar but the thickened skull is missing from the fossil named by Mr Dong so one of the smaller dinosaurs but with the longest generic name may not be a member of the Pachycephalosauria after all.

  39. #39 ~Pharyngulette~
    December 22, 2009

    [glazed look]

    Sorry… “Huge, pulsating, ever-growing” what now? I stopped paying attention after reading those three adjectives. Tee hee.

    Oh, naughty, naughty Pharyngulette!

  40. #40 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 22, 2009

    pity the band was a bit worse for the Guinness!

    Guinness!!!!!111!!!

  41. #41 F
    December 22, 2009

    Thanks for the video, PZ.

    Oops. What I meant to say was, “Aaaaaaaah! aaaaaaaah! aaaaaaaaaah! (whimper).”

    Thank you, O Pikachu of Anthropology. That was the perfect antidote.

  42. #42 WowbaggerOM
    December 22, 2009

    What is this thread supposed to be about?

    <Simpsons Quote>Sounds like someone’s got a case of a “supposed to’s…”</Simpsons Quote>

  43. #43 eddie
    December 22, 2009

    DM, OM (quoting someone from the old thread (piss be upon it)):
    “…cannot be pronounced by the hoi polloi”.
    Kinda ironic given how the greek oi polloi (ee polee) is mispronounced.
    Also, I’m only halfway down the mormon prophesy thread and Sastra hasn’t turned up yet. There must be some kind of Pharyngula catch phrase for the delicious anticipation of this.

  44. #44 Dania
    December 22, 2009

    Let’s not forget SIWOTI syndrome.

    Isn’t that, like, the raisin date of this whole thread?

    Oh, wait…

  45. #45 Carlie
    December 22, 2009

    I resent that.

    CHIEF: Max, I don’t know what I’m going to do with you. You bungle assignment after assignment.
    MAX: I resent that, Chief.
    CHIEF: Do you deny it?
    MAX: No, but I resent it.

  46. #46 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    I’m exhausted by working out Micropachycephalosaurus hongtuyanensis.

    I’m off to bed! Glad to have seen in the new thread! Long may it live!!

    Needs more fossils. And can’t we find a YEC delugionist from somwehere? They are spoil sports!!

  47. #47 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 22, 2009

    Thank you, O Pikachu of Anthropology. That was the perfect antidote.

    You’re welcome. But not for me. All it did was make me surf for more videos and get a major case of SIWOTI. Youtube in general tends to do that to me.

  48. #48 Carlie
    December 22, 2009

    Blockquote fail. Sorry.

  49. #49 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009

    I have posted this video here before but, damn, I love this song. Some of the goofiest , ahem, dancing to be found. Sadly, I also move about like that. Yes, I am a spazz.

  50. #50 F
    December 22, 2009

    Teh Guinnessnesses.

  51. #51 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009

    And to stress the point even further, there was a time I would try to dance like the guy in this video. I was much younger and carried less weight then. Yes, there were times I scared people on the dance floor.

  52. #52 Dania
    December 22, 2009

    And can’t we find a YEC delugionist from somwehere?

    Is it just me or there haven’t been many creationists popping up at Pharyngula lately?

  53. #53 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    #49 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM

    Where’s the little man with the big green head on his flying saucer?

    http://www.dan-dare.net/Homepage%20Images%20NoF.htm

    (I was brought up on “The Eagle”. Wish I still had the original comics …)

  54. #54 Sven DiMilo
    December 22, 2009

    Hey, Janine, check out this guy’s dancing style:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6kk_jM0vGM&feature=related

    (that’s my little brother on drums)

  55. #55 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    #51

    Yes, there were times I scared people on the dance floor.

    [Ed. Alan B still scares people on the dancefloor!]

  56. #56 Alan B
    December 22, 2009

    Still going to bed 12:45 or thereabouts! Sorry I can’t stay and play.

  57. #57 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    PZ posting almost-forgotten bits of early 90s British ambient dance music?

    This place never ceases to surprise and delight.

    (Although I agree more lesbians and bacon would most certainly be welcome.)

  58. #58 Rorschach
    December 22, 2009

    Dania @ 52,

    Is it just me or there haven’t been many creationists popping up at Pharyngula lately?

    I blame it on registration.
    From a random comment the other day( can’t remember where) it seems we are not only losing creationists, but also the odd reply from scientists/people mentioned in PZs posts.

  59. #59 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    I’m only halfway down the mormon prophesy thread and Sastra hasn’t turned up yet. There must be some kind of Pharyngula catch phrase for the delicious anticipation of this.

    Sastra Lust

  60. #60 WowbaggerOM
    December 22, 2009

    Still waiting to hear what it is I’m not seeing…

  61. #61 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 22, 2009

    I’m still trying to decide if I like Devo’s deconstruction of a Rolling Stones classic.

    In counterpoint, here’s Victor Borge’s Variations on Happy Birthday to You:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ajg7FlPv0HU&feature=rec-fresh+div-r-1-HM

  62. #62 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Still waiting to hear what it is I’m not seeing…

    Okay, there’s a giant hand giving the viewer the finger, and that is in place of an Apollo rocket on a launch pad. Then the video launches with slow music and eerie female voice(s) accompanied by many beautiful landscapes that mostly flat and include water, sunsets and foliage — but most of the landscapes are just off-the-normal-color-scheme enough to make you think you have been drinking or computering too long. Up-tempo music begins when the scene changes to an oddly-green rave(?) or dance club scene that features many young women. There is one arresting view of a tabletop or bartop or stage dancer, a woman seen from below. She is wearing butt-cheek revealing miniscule underwear and fuck-me boots with a ragged top. We see mostly her butt, and then her butt some more. Is that enough?

  63. #63 a_ray_in_dilbert_space
    December 22, 2009

    Yeah, you know, every year I go to the same conference and see the same scientist and engineers. And every year at least once some cruel bastard has a social event that involves dancing. It is not pretty. This year as I was getting on the bus to head back to the hotel, I said “So concludes another edition of ‘Dancing with the Straight White Males.'” Snickering was heard from the few females on the bus.

    Trivia: Do you know the Wierd Al video “White and Nerdy”? If so, do you know who the guy is going all Grand Mal in the background?

    Wait for it?

    Donny Osmond! I was so relieved that after so many years of being the joke he does at least get the joke. Kind of like William Shatner.

  64. #64 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Oh, yeah, Wowbagger, the song begins as “Loving you is easy because you’re beautiful …. la la la la la”

  65. #65 cicely
    December 22, 2009

    I waited for the new thread to post this, because I don’t want it lost in the shuffle. For fans of Charles Stross’ Laundry series (The Atrocity Archives, etc.), he’s given us a lovely present over at Tor, here: http://www.tor.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=story&id=58511. It’s seasonally appropriate, too.

  66. #66 Dania
    December 22, 2009

    I blame it on registration.

    Yeah. Fucking spammers.

    And how much longer will we have to put up with this crappy registration system? I don’t think people who sign in with Google are happy with it…

  67. #67 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    More for Wowbagger. Towards the end, there’s a rooster crowing, and trance drumming.

  68. #68 NixNoctua
    December 22, 2009

    Well, since this is an open, completely random thread: Hey, Gyeong Hwa Pak, why are you called “the Pikachu of Anthropology”? And what does that even mean?

  69. #69 WowbaggerOM
    December 22, 2009

    This would have to be the day where I’m not going straight home from work, meaning that, at best, it’s probably going to be another ten or so hours before I get home and can watch it.

    Is the song by any identifiable musical act?

  70. #70 badgersdaughter
    December 22, 2009

    Does anyone use that term? Taxonomy and nomenclature are rather separate endeavors…

    I’m a girl geek who manages an engineering database, and I’ve used it to be arch; our products are named primarily based on their standard classification.

    Yes, weird, I know.

    I don’t think people who sign in with Google are happy with it…

    No. NO. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOahem.

  71. #71 Joffan
    December 22, 2009

    So updated list of Pharyngulanian phrases…

    10.Raisin date
    9. Deep rifts
    8. Naked lesbians masturbating with bibles
    7. When will Cuttlefish get here?
    6. Goats On Fire!
    5. Oooh, sniny!
    4. Frackin’ cracker
    3. Happy Monkey!
    2. Bacon
    1. Pharyngulate

    I am parking the following as less-used or user-specific (I might be biased by the period I have been visiting):

    Clenched tentacle salute / tentacled overlord
    How is it there are PYGMIES + DWARFS?
    I demand a camera
    I would never inflict oral sex on a woman.
    Get in the feckin’ sack
    Cyberpistol
    Trophy Wife?
    Floyd Rubber

    The following are used on Pharyngula but also widely elsewhere with the same meaning:

    SIWOTI {syndrome}
    Pearl clutching and the fainting couch
    His Noodly Goodness / Ramen etc.
    Python/Hitchhiker/Discworld stuff
    crocoduck

  72. #72 badgersdaughter
    December 22, 2009

    Can’t use two blockquotes in one post? What century is this?

  73. #73 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 22, 2009

    Hey, Gyeong Hwa Pak, why are you called “the Pikachu of Anthropology”? And what does that even mean?

    I chose that name after PZ put up registration again. *Shakes fist at PZ

    Pikachu is my favorite pokemon and also one of my nicknames. Anthropology is my major and (sadly) my field of expertise. Would it be more clear if I changed it to the Pikachu who is completing an undergraduate program in Anthropology with emphasis in Southeast Asian studies and Hominid Evolution?

  74. #74 F
    December 22, 2009

    The Mekons!

    The Elastik Band was damn cool as well.

    I’ll trade you a few from one of my favorite bands. Me, I must look like a dork.

  75. #75 NixNoctua
    December 22, 2009

    haha, no. It would be funny, though.

  76. #76 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Can we call you “Pak the Pikachu”?

  77. #77 Lynna, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Wowbagger, the video/music is by “The Orb; compactdisco”

  78. #78 F
    December 22, 2009

    Well, Mr. Gyeong, that proposrd mane would be commensurate with the length of the Google Author Profile Page usernames, and much more legible.

    (And forgive me if Gyeong is not your surname.)

  79. #79 F
    December 22, 2009

    Argh. It seems I had put too many links in one post. What is the limit again?

  80. #80 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    3 or 4 links – I can’t remember

  81. #81 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 22, 2009

    a_ray

    Now now, aren’t you perpetuating the stereotype that nerdy men can’t dance? You’d be surprise! (well sorta).

    Lynna,

    Pack the Pikachu? That doesn’t sound humane. lol

    F,

    You are right to assume that Gyeong is my surname. In traditional E.A. and Burmese rendering, the first part of the name would be the surname. But!!!!!!! Gyeong isn’t a typical Korean surname while Pak is! Try and guess which is right!!! Bwahahahahaha!!!!!!!one!!!!!!!!!

  82. #82 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 22, 2009

    What is the limit again?

    Two to four or five or sometimes six, depending on how the SB gods are feeling right then.

  83. #83 Dahan
    December 22, 2009

    @26,

    So if I understand all those references, it means I spend to much time here and have for a long time, doesn’t it.

  84. #84 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Alan B, I think that is where the Mekons got their name.

    As for my dancing, it once got a write up. Back in 2000, The Old Towne School Of Folk Music in Chicago had The Mekons, Richard Thompson and Patti Smith as part of their festival. Yes, I was very geeked about it. A friend of mine who wrote for the Chicago Reader was there to review the show. As part of the review, he mentioned one young woman who was doing three dance moves at the same time during a Patti Smith song. He later let me know that he was writing about me. I thought that was very sweet.

    All in all, it was a great day.

    One of my favorite dancer with guitar, Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney.

  85. #85 REINDEERS + ELVES?? 386sx
    December 22, 2009

    What is the limit again?

    I wonder if there is a limit on embedded youtube videos…

    I wonder….

  86. #86 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    Lynna @ #76,

    It’s by The Orb. I’ve no idea what the ‘Compactdisco’ thing is all about. I supect the video was made by a fan (I doubt it ever had one originally) due to the ‘U.F.Off’ album cover featuring in the video. That album was a greatest hits compilation (of sorts – the never really had any hits), that came out nearly a decade after A Huge Pulsating Brain was released as a single.

  87. #87 llewelly
    December 22, 2009

    Pikachu is my favorite pokemon and also one of my nicknames. Anthropology is my major and (sadly) my field of expertise.

    How disappointing. I was hoping it was an honorific indicating your status with the Evil Atheist Conspiracy.

  88. #88 F
    December 22, 2009

    Thanks for the response, folks. Apparently, six was too many for the SB gods today. They DO NOT WANT.

  89. #89 WowbaggerOM
    December 22, 2009

    Ah, The Orb. Thanks for that – I’m vaguely familiar with their work. At least now I’ve got some idea.

  90. #90 PZ Myers
    December 22, 2009

    SB gods? SB gods? There are no SB gods. I would think by now you would have learned there are only…SB demons.

    By the way, registration is off for a little while.

  91. #91 Amicus
    December 22, 2009

    F – I guess you’ll just have to try fewer at a time to get it to work. Do you have any links to good songs or artwork that you want to share?

    Wonderful day it was today but I’m looking for some upbeat tunes for the evening.

  92. #92 F
    December 22, 2009

    Is this Unix?

    Sending term signal to SB daemon….

  93. #93 Benwa_Mandelbrot
    December 22, 2009

    Oh no, it was on an album way before U.F.Off. The Orb’s Adventures Beyond the Ultraworld, if I recall correctly.

    There was even a video which was probably the one PZ posted. The people I lived with back in 1992 owned that too, if I recall rightly. And I may not; much of that time is obscured by a shroud of time and smoke.

    I’m mildly entertained to see PZ may be a fan. I saw The Orb play live about 8 years ago in the states but they seemed a bit fed up with the US leg of their tour as their constant cavalry bugle and Monty Python samples seemed to imply.

  94. #94 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    Oh no, it was on an album way before U.F.Off. The Orb’s Adventures Beyond the Ultraworld, if I recall correctly.

    I’m prety sure you’re right. What I meant was the fact the U.F.Orb cover features in the video suggests that the video was not made at the same as the track. I’ve no idea whether was ever an original video but I’ll take your word for it.

  95. #95 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    That said, someone could simple have edited the U.F.Off album cover into the original video…

  96. #96 F
    December 22, 2009

    Hokay, Amicus. But it depends on what you mean by “upbeat”. (Have a listen to some Soma FM channels.)

    I’ll split and re-post my previous entry. But first, since you are Amicus…

  97. #97 F
    December 22, 2009

    [Tab A]

    I’ll trade you a few

  98. #98 Rey Fox
    December 22, 2009

    I think it’s high time we admitted that there’s functionally no difference between these threads and the “Open Threads” of days of yore.

    “Sastra Lust ”

    Yeah. It got so bad on that thread that Sastra actually started gloating.

  99. #100 benwa_mandelbrot
    December 22, 2009

    Yeah, well, I may not be entirely unimpeachable as a source, especially regarding the video. Everything looked like that, back in them days.

    I’ve thought about it and decided that PZ posted the video as a professional courtesy to Dr Alex Paterson.

  100. #101 Sven DiMilo
    December 22, 2009

    The difference, Rey Fox, is that those were individual open threads and this is One Big Long Permanent Open Thread. The Thread that Will Not Die!!

  101. #102 F
    December 22, 2009

    And, OK. Since I expected something better from The Orb, I listened past the beginning. Much better. But listening to the first two minutes of that tune were not unlike being RickRolled…

  102. #103 Amicus
    December 22, 2009

    Any Cyndi Lauper fans?

  103. #104 Mr T
    December 22, 2009

    some upbeat tunes for the evening.

    First a moderately upbeat tune:

    Cannonball Adderley – One for Daddy-O

    “Is that what you wanted, Alfred?”

    Now for the next number dedicated to my lovely listeners at Pharyngula Internet Radio:

    James Brown – Funky President

    (There are some skips in the audio, but I think the video content more than makes up for this.)

    It doesn’t get much more upbeat than this…

    Fania All-Stars w/ Celia Cruz – Kymbala

  104. #105 NewEnglandBob
    December 22, 2009

    The video had too much green in it.

  105. #106 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    benwa_mandelbrot @ #100,

    I never realised Alex Paterson collaborated with Robert Fripp! Goodness only knows what that must have sounded like.

  106. #107 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    The video had too much green in it.

    Oh come on, everyone knows green is pretty.

    (Anyone who links to the the Mark Ronson/Santogold version will get slapped.)

  107. #108 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009

    F, you fucking corn dog, you forgot one of the coolest songs ever. Mr Narrator, this is Bob Dylan to me.

    (F knows I am not calling him names here.)

  108. #109 mmelliott01
    December 22, 2009

    If I can’t monkey dance, I don’t want to be part of your monkey revolution.

    Goats Monkeys on fire!

  109. #110 F
    December 22, 2009

    Atcherly, Janine, that was in there. But not the version you posted.

    Let’s go drink and pogo!

  110. #111 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009

    Oops. It must have been from the block of Double Nickels songs.

  111. #112 F
    December 22, 2009

    It was here:
    trade you

    For the PharynguTube Files. :)

  112. #113 aratina cage
    December 22, 2009

    Ahh, The Orb. I haven’t heard them in a while. The song “Pomme Fritz” (below) ends with an audio sample from a Saturday Night Live commercial skit for Spud Beer™.

    “You’ve just had a heavy session of electroshock therapy, and you’re more relaxed than you’ve been in weeks. All those childhood traumas magically wiped away, along with most of your personality.”

  113. #114 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    Aw hell, since we’re spreading some Orb love (PZ started it!) today, I’ll share this moment of brilliance. To put it context, this was from a mainstream UK music chart show that normally plays host to talentless lip-syncing manufactured pop bands of the kind Simon Cowell has spent his career inflicting on us.

  114. #115 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009
  115. #116 Peter Zachos
    December 22, 2009

    Ah, The Orb. How I miss them.

    “SLUGS again!… … yes, there were the slugs; babies, mommies, and daddys, beside enormous and great fat grandaddy slugs, all eating their way toward the juicy green lettuces…..”

  116. #117 Mr T
    December 22, 2009

    These aren’t terribly upbeat, but I really miss Astor Piazzolla:

    Piazzolla – Tristezas de un doble A (part 1)

    Paz & Assad – Bordel

    Kronos Quartet – Four for Tango

  117. #118 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    aratina cage – thanks for that! I’d long since forgotten that track.

    Last bit of Orb spam before I go to bed:

  118. #119 The Chimp's Raging Id
    December 22, 2009

    OK, this is really last my comment of the day: since when were <object> tags allowed around here?

  119. #120 Antiochus Epiphanes
    December 22, 2009

    Micropachycephalosaurus?? Do you guys just sit a chimp in front of a keyboard with Fisher-Price like buttons representing Greek roots?

    I guess sometimes the chimp, he just smashes a whole lotta buttons at once, and now you got a small thick head lizard. Ain’t the chimp’s fault really.

  120. #121 F
    December 22, 2009

    Balancing Act?

    Watch out. Volume is super low on the second link.

  121. #122 Amicus
    December 22, 2009

    I went looking for some upbeat tunes to share, and now I got a couple stuck in my head — Electric Car and The Mesopotamians.

  122. #123 F
    December 22, 2009

    H

  123. #124 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009
  124. #125 F
    December 22, 2009

    For those with the acquired taste, Movement. With the extra weird bonus of a French voice-over at the beginning. Of a kinda bad video. :p

  125. #126 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009
  126. #127 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009
  127. #128 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009
  128. #129 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009
  129. #130 Owlmirror
    December 22, 2009

    It appears that an unlimited number of links are allowed — as long as the links are to other Sb pages without using “http://scienceblogs.com” as a prefix.

    Let’s see if this works if I’m not signed in:

    Feathers and filaments of non-avian dinosaurs, part I

    Feathers and filaments of dinosaurs, part II

    Epidexipteryx: bizarre little strap-feathered maniraptoran

    The puddle that was once a sea

    How to Reject a Paper: Advice from a Chain Letter

    Trunks trunks trunks

    South African wildlife – Wait, that’s not a trunk…

    How do you masturbate an elephant?

    (Sorry about those last three… it just sort of made sense to chain them like that)

  130. #131 Owlmirror
    December 22, 2009

    Success !!

    +1

  131. #133 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009
  132. #134 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 22, 2009
  133. #135 F
    December 23, 2009

    Wow. I outta come here for music more often.
    A pensive Aphrodite

  134. #136 Amicus
    December 23, 2009

    Janine- Thanks for the link to “Play like your mom just died” :)
    There was an apparent mistaken identity concerning F. Ha. I guess there are a number of folks who could claim that moniker.

  135. #137 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  136. #138 Sven DiMilo
    December 23, 2009

    pensive Nefertiti

  137. #139 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  138. #140 Amicus
    December 23, 2009
  139. #141 Owlmirror
    December 23, 2009

    Joffan @#71:

    You forgot “Typo cooties“.

    Hm. How about some Google research ( using site:scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2009 )?
    (Accuracy not guaranteed.)

    (Sorting by Ghit count, lowest to highest)

    “Raisin date” : 7

    Cuttlefish (This is tricky — any ideas? ) :
      “Where’s Cuttlefish” : 5
      “When will Cuttlefish get here” : 2
    On the other hand…
      Cuttlefish : 766 (including the actual animal)
      “by: Cuttlefish” : 310

    “tentacled overlord” : 10

    +inflict +”oral sex” +woman : 20 (this may be too high)

    sniny : 32 total
      “Oooh, sniny” : 4
      “Ooh, sniny” : 3
      “Oh, sniny” : 1 (this thread)

    “Typo cooties” : 35
      cooties : 65 (some of which may not be in reference to typos)

    +(Cyberpistol|”cyber pistol”) : 38

    +lesbians +masturbating +bibles : 41

    “fainting couch” : 90

    Clenched tentacle salute : 99

    “Frackin’ cracker” : 102

    (“clutch * pearls”|”clutching * pearls”): 107
      (“Pearl clutching”|”clutch pearls”|”clutching pearls”) : 72

    +PYGMIES +DWARFS : 150
      +PYGMIES +DWARVES : 42

    Ramen : 114

    “Deep rifts” : 190

    SIWOTI : 311
      “SIWOTI Syndrome” : 140

    “Happy Monkey!” : 183

    Pharyngulate : 202

    “Get in the” +(feckin’|fecking|fookin’|fooking|foockin’|foocking|fuckin’|fucking) +sack : 224

    crocoduck : 226

    “Floyd Rubber” : 226

    “Goats On Fire” -“on Goats On Fire” : 446 (“Goats On Fire” alone has 1500 hits, but most of these are from hits on the sidebar for the comment thread with that exact name from unrealted threads — once Google’s cache for Pharyngula has cycled through these, a more accurate count may be had with just the phrase alone)

    +(demand|want|give) +camera : 463 (this is way way too high; people do talk about photography here)(but the exact phrase “I want a camera” has 1 Ghit )

    “Trophy Wife?” : 550

    Bacon : 633 (!!)

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    PS: (No feckin’|fecking|fookin’|fooking|foockin’|foocking|fuckin’|fucking way I’m going to search for all possible Hitchhiker/Monty Python refs. And the Pastafarians can feed me free lasagna if they want me to find all possible refs to the FSM.)

  140. #142 https://me.yahoo.com/a/uQJNQ6kv3Z_jmKavTTmmPZCoMeSnOw--#fa080
    December 23, 2009

    I think that the best part is the occasional jet fly-by. It’s exciting!

  141. #143 F
    December 23, 2009
  142. #144 TheVirginian
    December 23, 2009

    I will absolutely never comment on an undying thread. Never! Especially one where people talk about bacon, lesbians and pulsating brains. It would be unthinkable for me to ever …

    Uh-oh! Too late. Dang! I think Nyarlathotep keeps possessing me or something. I wish Lord Cthulhu would hurry up and rise, so I can be eaten and end this perverse habit of accidentally posting on an undying thread!

    Or as the Necronomicon says, “When the Shantak bird lies down with the Nightgaunt, and the Shoggoth lies down with the Great Race, on that day mighty Cthulhu shall rise. He who is first will be the last to be eaten, and he who is last shall be the first eaten. O, and blessed are the Cheesemakers!” Not sure why Abdul Alhazred thinks cheesemakers are special, unless he’s trying to tell us that Lord Cthulhu is telling us the value of capitalism and free enterprise.

  143. #146 Lynna, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Janine @129: Thanks for that link. What a damned good way to end this day. I’ll go back to that one tomorrow.

  144. #147 blf
    December 23, 2009

    What is this thread supposed to be about? I forgot months ago…

    This thread is where all the used electrons no longer need bu the internets go to spin, waiting for another chance to fly through the ether.

  145. #148 atheismisdead
    December 23, 2009

    lttl sh*t pz thnks h cn dbnk Gd..

    y r gng t b trtrd nd mrdrd wtht mrcy…

    Lks lk yr wbst s ndr ttck frm sprntrl frcs?

    http://dyn.pltc.cm/mmbrs/frms/thrd.cfm?ctd=2&sbctd=7&thrdd=3449994

    y rlly nd t dd cmmnt mdrtn t yr blsphmy?

  146. #150 Gyeong Hwa Pak
    December 23, 2009

    You know, he who shall not be named appeared on my blog. It was a surprise, considering that I only have one follower, and there is not a single thing on it to suggest my religious affiliations. Yet he said he’d shut down my “atheist blog.”

  147. #151 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  148. #152 Bebette
    December 23, 2009

    @Janine 129
    Its about time someone got the true religion up in here:

    “As it is written henceforth…that on the Eighth Day, the Cosmic Strumpet of MOTHER NATURE was spawned to envelop this Third Planet in FUNKACIDAL VIBRATIONS. And She birthed Apostles Ra, Hendrix, Stone & Clinton to preserve all funkiness of man unto eternity…”
    (Funkadelic “Wet Epic Debauchery,” liner notes, Standing On The Verge Of Getting It On, 1974)

  149. #153 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  150. #154 mythusmage
    December 23, 2009

    Time again for yours truly to continue a mostly ignored tradition on the Thread Undying. That is, looking at certain subjects in a non-standard ways.

    This time around we’ll be looking at plate tectonics. More specifically, at what is possible, how many plates there are, and where the extra plate boundaries are.

    Let us look first at the Eurasian plate. A single plate, one of the seven classical. Yet there is a huge glitch in this picture. A glitch exhibited most plainly in the largest body of fresh water in the world, Lake Baikal. A body of water that could be called the world’s largest, smallest, only fresh water ocean. An ocean because it has a floor with black smokers and deep ocean life. Lake Baikal is a feature of a rifting system tearing the Eurasian Plate apart from east to west. A rifting system that will create a new ocean, but one most people are not aware of.

    Then you have the North Atlantic Plate. A plate that incorporates granitic and basaltic rocks. A plate where the North Atlantic Seafloor somehow merges with the rock of the North American continent. At least, that’s the impression I’m given.

    My point is, the seven plate model is a simplistic one; a model that ignores and denies the complexity of tectonics on Earth. Earth’s crust is not divided into seven great plates, but numerous smaller plates and sub plates. In addition, these plates are not unitary bodies, but lithic clumps that are as prone to breaking up as any other frangile conglomeration of material. The closest we have to solid plates are the granitic plutons that formed back in the Hadean, and around which other material collected to form the continents we know today.

    Whih leads us to sea floor, which is another subject entirely.

    For sea floor arises from spreading centers and rifts where volcanic eruptions of widely varying sizes and durations produce basaltic rock. Basaltic rock that is pushed away from the point of origin and over time constitutes new sea floor.

    Old sea floor? That is pushed even further away, eventually to meet and be subducted beneath continental rock. Or to meet another patch of sea floor where both are forced down into the mantle.

    With the apparent exception of the North Atlantic seafloor, for it is said that one plate cannot move away from another.

    But what is the North Atlantic sea floor doing? Pushing North American and Europe away from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge? And what happens to North Atlantic sea floor when it encounters North America or Europe? It is subducted beneath the continents where it is melted and processed by the mantle.

    Shouldn’t there be volcanic activity because of this? How do you know there isn’t? I’m not up on geologic activity in eastern North America, but I have heard of such as hot springs in the Appalachians, and the East coast of the U.S. and Canada does have earthquakes. I suspect the same holds true of western Europe.

    What is happening here is this; the North Atlantic sea floor is pushed into the North American continent and forced under at the edge of the continental shelf. This subduction is a slow one, and combined with North America being pushed west by sea floor movement results in an exceptionally low level of volcanic activity. Were North America to be moving east, then volcanic activity would be greater and thus more notable. Apply this to Europe, and to South America and Africa where the South Atlantic is concerned, and you get an anomalous tectonic phenomenon where tectonic science is concerned.

    What it comes down to is, tectonics doesn’t entirely work as we think it does, and it is more complex that we think it is. We have far more than 7 large plates — maybe as many as thirty, and how these plates interacted in more complicated than we think they do.

    And there you have my Thinking Differently comment for this episode of the Thread Undying.

  151. #155 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  152. #156 John Morales
    December 23, 2009

    MM:

    My point is, the seven plate model is a simplistic one; a model that ignores and denies the complexity of tectonics on Earth.

    Wikipedia (my emphasis):
    The lithosphere is broken up into what are called tectonic plates. In the case of Earth, there are currently eight major and many minor plates (see list below).

    And there you have my Thinking Differently comment for this episode of the Thread Undying.

    Seems to me like Thinking Ignorantly.

    What’re your sources for your effusions?

  153. #159 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Fuck it! Here are The Dirtbombs! Good night!

  154. #160 F
    December 23, 2009
  155. #161 F
    December 23, 2009

    “Basaltic rock that is pushed away from the point of origin and over time constitutes new sea floor.”

    Pulled.

  156. #162 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Just when I thought I could, they pull me back in. If you want me, you can find me. It’s a one time thing, it just happens a lot.

  157. #163 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  158. #166 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  159. #167 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  160. #168 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  161. #169 destlund
    December 23, 2009

    The Orb? Wow. That’s a blast from the past. I knew I liked you, PZ. And not just because you’re so damned pleasant.

  162. #170 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  163. #171 F
    December 23, 2009
  164. #172 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  165. #174 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 23, 2009

    Bilingual New Years greeting to you!

    Sorry about signing in and out so frequently but my browsers are being glitchy.

  166. #175 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  167. #177 F
    December 23, 2009
  168. #178 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009
  169. #179 F
    December 23, 2009
  170. #180 F
    December 23, 2009
  171. #181 F
    December 23, 2009
  172. #182 F
    December 23, 2009
  173. #183 ChrisH
    December 23, 2009

    Orb? Haha, saw them live back in arounr 95. I was expecting some vague wibbling but they were unbelievably intense.

    You need someting a bit bouncier to dance, erm, properly….

  174. #184 a_ray_in_dilbert_space
    December 23, 2009
  175. #185 firemancarl
    December 23, 2009

    All hail mighty King Pharyngula and his horde of bacon munching zombie heathens who watch lesbians masturbate with bibles( or whatever their particular taste in porn may be)!

    Ha! Friend of mine posted this on his facebook page.

    Remember the real reason we celebrate Christmas. I asked Jesus how much do you love me? Jesus replied this much and stretched his arms on the cross and died. If you believe in God, put this in your status…… What Jesus did on the cross was because he was thinking of you…. will you stand up for him and put this in… your status? Don’t say Happy Holidays. Tell everyone Merry Christmas

    I dunno if I have the heart to set him straight on what Dec. 25th is really about…

  176. #186 Alan B
    December 23, 2009

    #154 mythusmage

    Until you produce some references there is little to discuss. What I don’t understand is whether you are ignorant or you misunderstand what you read or you are someone who throws a handgrenade into the market place to enjoy the flurry of excitement.

    Take one point at a time and give us some evidence. Try this paragraph for a start:

    But what is the North Atlantic sea floor doing? Pushing North American and Europe away from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge? And what happens to North Atlantic sea floor when it encounters North America or Europe? It is subducted beneath the continents where it is melted and processed by the mantle.

    I can produce evidence that much of this is nonsense and it is in the public domain. What are you basing your comments on? Is it your thinking or some tom-fool article from somewhere?

  177. #187 Sven DiMilo
    December 23, 2009

    Yo, I’ma let you finish, but I would like to formally enter my nomination for the coveted title of Worst and/or weirdest holiday music video of all time. Of ALL TIME!!

    and so here it is, the clearly demented Jon (Yes) Anderson with a multicultural cast of dozens and a completely gratuitous cheesy spaceflight intro sequence:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0GYW9Y3pRBs

  178. #188 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 23, 2009

    wow

  179. #189 madbull
    December 23, 2009

    My house is filled with Gods (pics and idols) who somehow become very impure if touched by a menstruating female. I feel like im playing a hugely complex video game while navigating through this mania home avoiding any accidental contact with the revered non existents.(Cant risk annoying a house full of the highly deluded, especially when they are your immediate family)
    Thats life being an ex Hindu female atheist living in religious family.
    Cant complain too much though, Hindus are funny to watch and they make really cool yumm food for the deities. Guess who gets to eat all the ‘prasad’ when the Gods dont bother to :D

  180. #190 Sven DiMilo
    December 23, 2009

    that was pretty funny, madbull–thanks for enhancing The Thread

  181. #191 Sili
    December 23, 2009

    Alan B,

    (And pardon me if I’ve mixed you up with someone else – besides Ed. that is.)

    Do you have any tips about what might make me more attractive to the BNFL if I were to spam them with my CV?

  182. #192 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

  183. #193 ChrisH
    December 23, 2009

    …?

  184. #194 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

  185. #195 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

  186. #196 Lynna, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Should we include “disemvowelled” on the list of Pharyngula catch phrases?

  187. #197 AJ Milne
    December 23, 2009

    ‘Kay… so you can’t so much dance to this…

    but it’s all like, a propos for me for this time of the year, performed as it was by the legendary ‘n lamented Silver Hearts from, of all places, Peterborough, Ontario, more or less the land of most of my upbringing… and once introduced tongue in cheek as being ‘a song about Highway 7′. And speaking as someone who once drove the roads of that country in the range of 40,000 km per year as a reporter working in the area, I can honestly tell you: it might as well be…

    … and I can also say the now sadly gone Silver Hearts were a thing to behold live–it really does help to have a sousaphone, a trombone, and a theremin onstage with your standard washboard, piano, fiddles ‘n guitar to make a properly spooky ‘n danceable (some of there stuff was, tho’ not this) cemetery polka, apparently…

    … as to firemancarl’s, please feel free to return my modified version to yer friend… my personal and biased opinion is it’s much, much better:

    My Christmas Story

    Remember the real reason we celebrate Christmas… ‘cos all the cool cultures had fun celebrations ’round the winter solstice, many involving proper drunken revelry ‘n drinking toasts to their various crazed ancient god kings, and when we were trying to take over with our own nasty little cultish crap, just killin’ folks who wouldn’t sign onto our particular hokum was only so practical. There was too many of ‘em, and even if we could have got ‘em all done, who’d have been left to tithe?

    Sure, we did some killing and mutilating, absolutely, where terror was doable, sure, but for the larger population, there were still those old traditions to content with, and sometimes, it’s just more practical to coopt.

    So we worked Jaysus into that celebration, stuck his birthday right next to the old celebrations in midwinter, told ‘em sure, bring yer damned trees inside for it, we don’t care… And if some of the booze ‘n revelry is preserved, hey, whatevs, it’s all good…

    … anyway, there’s this guy I know who, having had a tough time, feeling he couldn’t get a girl even to look sideways at him, and getting a little needy, the way you sometimes do when that’s the way of things, asked Jesus how much he loved him instead…

    Jesus didn’t answer, seein’ as, if he ever even existed, he’s now dead. But then my friend reads his email, and some guy he knows had sent him this tedious, predictable fantasy about Jesus stretching out his arms on the cross…

    … so the guy I know calls that guy up. Asks him over. Then asks him, buddy, can you act that bit out? That bit where Jesus stretches out his arms? ‘Cos that might help me believe…’

    Jesus guy’s all like: ‘Oh, I dunno… I’m no messiah…’ And my friend’s all like: ‘No, see, it’s just that it’s so hard for me to picture… Help me out, here…’

    So the Jesus guy does it, stretches his arms out, kinda sheepishly…

    And right when his arms are way the fuck out, my friend kicks him right in the balls.

    Jesus guy’s on the floor writing and swearing, saying: ‘What the fuck did you do that for?’

    And my bud’s all: ‘Well, pal, someone deserves to get it in the jewels for that kind of dumbfuck obvious emotional blackmail. I figured since you were the one to try to pass it on, you’d do quite nicely…’

    ‘…but don’t get all bitter. I mean, think of this as your free persecution for the year. Go home, tell people what a great, suffering messiah you made. You know you want to…’

    … Thus endeth the lesson.

    (… hey… you can tell him that’s my Christmas story… And anyone who thinks religionists are tedious, blithering wankers playing a rusty, manipulative old saw and who should probably be kicked in the balls for that a whole lot more can feel free to put it on their profile page…)

    (/In other news, you could probably dance to this, if you wanted to. Me, I’m dedicating it to any wankers who might still be stupid enough to send me chain email wallpaper like that. Appropriate, insofar as they’re going straight onto my spam list if they start making any kind of habit of it.)

  188. #198 Hypatia's Daughter
    December 23, 2009

    The year that that horrendous song was released, I was on a car trip from Toronto to the Florida Keys.
    A new release gets played EVERY half hour by EVERY radio station in the USA.
    I hate you, PZ, for making me relive the memory of being trapped in a car for over 3 days and hearing “LA LA LA LA LA” and that squeaky scream every half hour…………

  189. #199 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

  190. #200 firemancarl
    December 23, 2009

    OT but, I really wanna see the movie about Hypatia. There was a porn star named Hypatia Lee. Go figure. Some of the porn womenz is smart, like Nina Hartley who has a BS or Masters in Nursing.

  191. #201 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

  192. #202 nigelTheBold
    December 23, 2009

    6. I demand a camera.

    I demand a chimera!

  193. #203 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

  194. #204 Alan B
    December 23, 2009

    #199, 201

    Who’s in the videos?

  195. #205 Alan B
    December 23, 2009

    #191 Sili

    I was never employed by BNFL. I worked with Central Electricity Generating Board, National Power (Nuclear), National Power, British Energy. Same company, just changing itself around me depending on the whim of the Government and private industry.

    We generated the electricity, using the nuclear fuel provided by BNFL who then dealt with the reprocessing and storage.

    I am several years out of date BUT are you sure BNFL is going to want to employ anyone?

    see:

    http://www.bnfl.com/

  196. #206 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Alan B, you are right.

  197. #207 Sili
    December 23, 2009

    I have no clue. I’m just brainstorming for possible employers that might like inorganic chemists (and not be too horribly dull). Radionuclides came up, and I recalled you talking about shocking conditions in Chernobyl-like reactors.

    And, yes, I was lazy and used BNFL as an umbrella-term for all those subsidiaries.

    Merry Christmas and Happy Monkey to one and all. I’ll be heading out to brave the trains later. I’m sure I’m going to spend a delightful Christmas with my sister’s in-laws.

  198. #208 Dania
    December 23, 2009

    Re Pharyngula in-jokes:

    I don’t think it should go on the top ten list (if we ever do such a thing) but, for the sake of completeness*, I thought I would mention this.

    *runs for cover*

    *And also because now that it crossed my mind I can’t help but to share it with everyone else. ‘Cause I’m evil like that.

  199. #209 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 23, 2009

    This is the most awesomest awesome ever.

  200. #210 Sili
    December 23, 2009

    You know those Beware of dog signs?

  201. #211 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Sorry Dania and Chimpy but an antidote is needed.

  202. #212 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 23, 2009

  203. #213 Sven DiMilo
    December 23, 2009

    OH YEAH?
    Let’s see how you‘d do against a really slow big guy in a confining reptile suit, smart guy! (at least until you figured out how to make black powder from common objects in the alien environment)

    PZ!!!!! Chimpy’s makin fun of James T. Kirk!!!!

  204. #214 Dania
    December 23, 2009

    So, the lizard can lift and throw that rock, but has to struggle with Kirk while holding him? Wow…

  205. #215 lose_the_woo
    December 23, 2009

    Wow, the last time I saw the Kirk/lizard fight was probably more than 30 years ago. I remember being scared!

    So when the lizard throws the boulder at Kirk, why do I feel that there may have been a bit of fudging regarding conservation of momentum (unless the lizard weighed about a ton or so)?

  206. #216 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Chimpy, you only have yourself to blame.

  207. #217 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 23, 2009

    holy

    shit

  208. #218 MrFire
    December 23, 2009

    The following are used on Pharyngula but also widely elsewhere with the same meaning

    Related items in that category:

    – The stupid! It burns!

    – Weapons-grade stupid/Black Hole of stupid

  209. #219 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 23, 2009

    All my friends must be punished!

  210. #220 David Marjanovi?
    December 23, 2009

    All the snow is gone :.-(

    I hates me some Christmas Thawing (Weihnachtstauwetter).

    Kinda ironic given how the greek oi polloi (ee polee) is mispronounced.

    Well, that’s the modern pronunciation, not the classical one, which was… well… as written.

    Can’t use two blockquotes in one post? What century is this?

    Of course you can use an unlimited amount of blockquotes. I suppose you just mistyped the word “lbcoqkutoe”.

    Is this Unix?

    Sending term signal to SB daemon….

    Sending kill signal to SB daemon…

    killall

    Micropachycephalosaurus?? Do you guys just sit a chimp in front of a keyboard with Fisher-Price like buttons representing Greek roots?

    2) Well, this one was supposed to be a close relative of Pachycephalosaurus (the one with the 25-cm-thick skull roof when adult), and it’s a lot smaller, so that was a logical name.
    1) Yes, in fact… yes. :-) Except it’s Greek and Latin in random order. Often people take a root from one language and declare it, in the paper, to be from the other, and neither peer-reviewers nor editors ever notice.

    +inflict +”oral sex” +woman : 20 (this may be too high)

    In contrast, it’s probably too low because you didn’t search for (woman|women). Some have used the latter (ehem) spelling, and this may even be original (I forgot).

    Let us look first at the Eurasian plate. A single plate, one of the seven classical.

    Where

    the fuck

    did you take “seven classical” from!?! Has any geologist ever said any such shit?

    I’ve not even seen that nonsense in books for children. Or anywhere. This is the first time I encounter the concept of “seven plates”.

    ~:-|

    Then you have the North Atlantic Plate.

    No, there’s no such thing. There’s the Eurasian plate, and there’s the North American plate, and the two meet at the mid-Atlantic ridge, where they grow.

    But what is the North Atlantic sea floor doing? Pushing North American and Europe away from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge? And what happens to North Atlantic sea floor when it encounters North America or Europe? It is subducted beneath the continents where it is melted and processed by the mantle.

    Shouldn’t there be volcanic activity because of this? How do you know there isn’t? I’m not up on geologic activity in eastern North America, but I have heard of such as hot springs in the Appalachians, and the East coast of the U.S. and Canada does have earthquakes. I suspect the same holds true of western Europe.

    <reaches through tubes of Internet, clasps hands around mythusmage’s neck, and shakes him>

    Dude, the white slime you exude all over your skin is the Dunning-Kruger effect. What you’re saying is like “why are there still monkeys“.

    You know more even about physics than about geology!!!

  211. #221 J Dubb
    December 23, 2009

    Need a dose of anti-vax stupid? Well here you go. Our local free newspaper (Cleveland, OH area) has a column called “Enhanced Interrogation” where they interview someone. The title of the column is really ironic, because in the one I read, they presented a totally credulous, uncritical review of a local anti-vaxxer osteopath (Dr. Sherry Tenpenny). To make matters worse, most of the comments are on her side. Check it out.

    http://www.clevescene.com/gyrobase/enhanced-interrogaiton-dr-sherri-j-tenpenny/Content?oid=1804743&show=comments

  212. #222 Alan B
    December 23, 2009

    #209 Rev. BigDumbChimp

    Your cover version isn’t a Shadow to the original.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ax7PoQd0euk

  213. #223 nigelTheBold
    December 23, 2009

    @J Dubb —

    Hey! Another Clevelander! I’m not really a Clevelander, but I’ve been living here for the last 5 years.

    Grue, I miss Alaska.

  214. #224 F
    December 23, 2009

    Oh Chimpy, @ 212, also included, but not shown, are the worst geology and chemistry scenes, ever.

    You picked a winner.

  215. #225 F
    December 23, 2009

    #221:
    Teh Scene! It burns!
    (And so does the river.)

  216. #226 Alan B
    December 23, 2009

    #224

    I respectfully disagree. #154 is a powerful contender for worst geology. And it doesn’t even need a video.

    He can prove me wrong if he produces some evidence – how about it mythusmage?

  217. #227 F
    December 23, 2009

    Hmm. I’m not so sure all instances of the SB daemon have stopped running.

  218. #228 F
    December 23, 2009

    Thanks, Alan. I almost mentioned it, but I was only speaking to scenes in our visual media.

    But, I’ll offer something that is likely worse, and visual as well.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oJfBSc6e7QQ
    There are more…

  219. #229 F
    December 23, 2009

    Since we’re embedding now, and there is a primate involved…

  220. #230 MrFire
    December 23, 2009

    Just to restore some balance…

  221. #231 F
    December 23, 2009

    Lulz. If we’re going in that direction…

  222. #232 F
    December 23, 2009

    And

  223. #233 JeffreyD
    December 23, 2009

    Well, getting ready to head to the train station, so want to wish you all a Happy Holiday of your choice (xmasaturnaliasolsticesomething).

    My favourite xmas song follows, brings a tear to my eye. This was a GOOD xmas with my family. (smile)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P37xPiRz1sg

    Ciao y’all

  224. #234 F
    December 23, 2009

    Enjoying my PharynguTube playground:

    Sometimes

    I think

    the best bits

  225. #235 Endor
    December 23, 2009

    You know, I am a total Star Trek nerd – Captains Picard and Sisko, exclusively – but I’ve never seen an ep of the Original Series. And now I don’t want too. CHEESY.

    And James T. Kirk shatner-style was made to be mocked. Just sayin’

  226. #236 Sven DiMilo
    December 23, 2009

    I’ve never seen an ep of the Original Series. And now I don’t want too. CHEESY.
    And James T. Kirk shatner-style was made to be mocked. Just sayin’

    These are FIGHTING WORDS MOTHERFUCKER

  227. #237 Endor
    December 23, 2009

    P.s. Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula – for #216, I now worship you.

  228. #238 Endor
    December 23, 2009

    Bring it on, Sven! Captain Picard could take out Captain STD any day!

  229. #239 F
    December 23, 2009
  230. #240 Dania
    December 23, 2009

    Hmm… So, I read comment #154.

    Wow. mythusmage, you’re not “thinking differently” about plate tectonics. You’re thinking wrongly. You got basic facts wrong.

    Then you have the North Atlantic Plate. A plate that incorporates granitic and basaltic rocks. A plate where the North Atlantic Seafloor somehow merges with the rock of the North American continent. At least, that’s the impression I’m given.

    How on earth did you get that impression? It looks like you think that there’s a convergent boundary somewhere along the North American coast. There isn’t.

    Earth’s crust is not divided into seven great plates…

    Who said it was?

    With the apparent exception of the North Atlantic seafloor, for it is said that one plate cannot move away from another.

    I’m lost. What are you going on about here? Plates can’t move away from each other? What? You do know that the Mid-Atlantic Ridge isn’t the only divergent boundary on the planet, right?

    But what is the North Atlantic sea floor doing?

    Expanding.

    And what happens to North Atlantic sea floor when it encounters North America or Europe? It is subducted beneath the continents where it is melted and processed by the mantle.

    No, it isn’t. Again, where did you get that idea from? The North Atlantic sea floor is not a single plate!

    I’m not up on geologic activity in eastern North America, but I have heard of such as hot springs in the Appalachians, and the East coast of the U.S. and Canada does have earthquakes. I suspect the same holds true of western Europe.

    I’m in western Europe and there are indeed hot springs over here but, AFAIK, they’re all associated with active faults within the Eurasian plate or with diapirs. NOT with a nearby subduction zone!

  231. #241 aratina cage
    December 23, 2009

    You know, I am a total Star Trek nerd – Captains Picard and Sisko, exclusively – but I’ve never seen an ep of the Original Series.

    Hohoho! That is going to make some people mad. But Picard is my fave. I was just watching him kick alien ass and blow up unclefucking terrorists the other day on “Starship Mine”. Watch him go on this clip.

  232. #242 Joffan
    December 23, 2009

    mythusmage’s basic error seems to start with the idea that the Mid-Atlantic ridge is a cause of sea floor spreading, whereas actually both are results of the continents on either side moving apart. The seafloor to the east of the ridge is attached to the continental plate to the east, and similarly to the west. If the congregation will forgive a little metaphor, the Mid-Atlantic ridge is a continuously-reopened wound which the vulcanism is attempting to heal.

  233. #243 PZ Myers
    December 23, 2009

    Would anyone get cranky if I cut the length of these threads in half and restarted at 500 comments? Or some other number that you prefer?

  234. #244 Joffan
    December 23, 2009

    There’s a nice site here that has a good map of the plates (3rd diagram) and directly below that a possible illustration that could have misled mythusmage, but would be reasonable as an illustration of a seafloor section along a line from Chile to Japan, which indeed has a mid-ocean ridge and subduction at both margins.

  235. #245 aratina cage
    December 23, 2009

    Would anyone get cranky if I cut the length of these threads in half and restarted at 500 comments?

    Heck no.

    +1

  236. #246 Joffan
    December 23, 2009

    Restart every 666 comments please PZ

  237. #247 Dania
    December 23, 2009

    With all these embedded videos, I think most people will get cranky if you don’t close this thread before the 1000 comments mark…

  238. #248 Dania
    December 23, 2009

    Restart every 666 comments please PZ

    I second that!

  239. #249 Dania
    December 23, 2009

    I think it was Alan B who posted this link waaay back in The Thread, trying to get Alan C to actually learn something (never happened). I thought mythusmage could benefit from it too, so I’m reposting it.

  240. #250 Sven DiMilo
    December 23, 2009

    Would anyone get cranky if I cut the length of these threads in half and restarted at 500 comments? Or some other number that you prefer?

    Not I, for ’tis your blog and we but merely comment on’t.

    Remember, it’s always a while before PZ notices and rolls it over, so targeting 666 would produce subThreads comprising 674, 683, or 699 comments or whatever. Actually, it’s better that way.

  241. #251 Dania
    December 23, 2009

    Some have used the latter (ehem) spelling, and this may even be original (I forgot).

    Found it! Yes, he did say “a women”.

    And speaking of funny typos by crackpots on Pharyngula: “Fairy Specified Amino Acid Residues”.

  242. #252 Alan B
    December 23, 2009

    #249

    Yes. ‘Twas me. A good simple introduction from my current University.

  243. #253 Kel, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Probably because I won’t get another chance to get on here before Boxing Day, I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. Though the rain gods look like they will stop my plan to drink white wine in the sun.

  244. #254 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 23, 2009

    How about some Bobby Burns?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gjr5boTgis4

  245. #255 Carlie
    December 23, 2009

    Though the rain gods look like they will stop my plan to drink white wine in the sun.

    I swear, I have listened to that song at least 40 times in the last couple of weeks since I first heard it. Love it. And have a good holiday yourself. :)

  246. #256 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Thank you, Kel. Same to you and have a safe 4th of July.

  247. #257 F
    December 23, 2009

    Happy Christmas to you too, Kel. And to everyone.

    Though the rain gods look like they will stop my plan to drink white wine in the sun.

    Have a look around for any unusual trucks parked nearby. And if you find him, just ask Rob McKenna to move along somewhere else.

  248. #258 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 23, 2009

    Toni Childs singing Zimbabwe:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-y_Bmb3RYkI

  249. #259 David Marjanovi?
    December 23, 2009

    But Picard is my fave.

    Now if only Jean-Louc could pronounce his own name… :-}

    the rain gods

    Which reminds me.

  250. #260 monado
    December 24, 2009

    Lauper fans: yes.

    Tectonic plates: the basic principle is that the SiAl rocks are floating on the SiMg (pronouced See-ma?), which is denser, like clots of bubbles on a pot of boiling jelly. The SiAl comprises the continents, more or less.

    Oh, and there are now “white cities” as well as “black smokers”.

  251. #261 monado
    December 24, 2009

    The subduction happens at the other edge of North & South America, where the Coastal Ranges & Rockies and the Andes are the result.

  252. #262 Jadehawk, OM
    December 24, 2009

    I hates me some Christmas Thawing (Weihnachtstauwetter).

    ha! we still have snow. though, if the weather forecast is to be believed, it’s supposed to rain later today, which will either melt the remaining snow; or alternatively encase it in a layer of ice, thus depriving me of my Christmas dinner.

    Merry Squidmas everyone (again)

  253. #263 windy
    December 24, 2009

    These are FIGHTING WORDS MOTHERFUCKER

    fight! fight!

    Merry PonFarrmas everyone!

  254. #264 Sven DiMilo
    December 24, 2009

    T’Pring is such a fox.

  255. #265 Sven DiMilo
    December 24, 2009

    Don’t mind me, I’m merely trying to fill up the Recent Comments all by myself.

  256. #266 Sven DiMilo
    December 24, 2009

    bah!
    foiled again!
    damn you, pixelfish!!!

    15462

  257. #267 WowbaggerOM
    December 24, 2009

    Can I rain on your parade too, Sven?

  258. #268 Sven DiMilo
    December 24, 2009

    Rain away.
    Parade’s over.
    Train’s left the station.
    Window of opportunity slammed shut.

    I’ve moved on to some other pointless goal.

  259. #269 Dania
    December 24, 2009

    Yeah, I was watching the Recent Comments and restraining from commenting* to let you fill it up. But someone had to ruin it.

    *Not that I had anything interesting to say… Just Merry Squidmas. :)

  260. #270 Sven DiMilo
    December 24, 2009

    While wasting time in some other thread, I had occasion to post these 3 links in a row, so I thought I’d just bundle ‘em up and post them over here as my Holiday Squidmas Cephalopodmas Solstice (or whatever) Card to You-all

    http://i.imgur.com/HoFee.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/8rDQH.jpg
    http://i48.tinypic.com/2dl69vs.jpg

    (If I really cared, I guess, I’d dummy one up for the Thor-in-Thursday gag, and maybe, like, change the colors of the links to green and red or something. But there you go.)

    have a nice day
    -SD

  261. #271 mythusmage
    December 24, 2009

    Since so many have gotten the dynamics of the North Atlantic ocean floor so wrong, here’s a quick and dirty review.

    What happens at the Mid Atlantic Ridge? Mantle material comes welling up, most likely because of massive hotspots. This magma rises up through the cracks that mark the rift itself, get deposited on the sides of the rift, and cool and solidify there. Over time this accumulation becomes too heavy and the material and question slumps away from the rift, pushing the ocean floor further away even further away. Given time this ocean floor material is pushed up against and under the bordering continent.

    This is how I learned it from a number of reports and documentaries on the Mid Atlantic Ridge.

    At the other end of the basaltic conveyor belt you have a different situation. Where the North Atlantic ocean floor meets the North American continental shelf you have a discontinuity. You switch from basalt to granite and sedimentary rocks. You go from a largely horizontal surface to a near vertical rise which at the top becomes the sloping continental shelf. Where the North Atlantic ocean Floor meets North America you have a sudden change in minerology and density. A change that in other situations would lead a geologist to consider the two masses to be geologically separate bodies.

    What am I getting at here? Namely that certain people are letting a reliance on the voice of authority to overrule observation and fact.

    To put it another way, there are too many differences between ocean floor and continental material for the two to ever be a part of the same body. The floor of the North Atlantic and the continent of North America are too different in composition to ever be considered part of the same tectonic structure.

    Now add in the fact that the floor of the North Atlantic is disappearing. Last I heard the ocean floor, even at its oldest, is younger than the ocean. What is happening to the North Atlantic’s ocean floor?

    Consider how new material is added at the Mid Atlantic Ridge. Consider how it is pushed aside by new material being produced every day of the year. Consider what that ocean floor runs into after a few hundred billion years. A dense rock meeting a lighter rock. What happens in similar situations around the world?

    The denser basalt gets subducted.

    Now true, in most cases the two tectonic bodies are moving towards each other. The difference with the North Atlantic/North American formations is that the latter is being pushed away by the former. But, from what observation tells us the ocean floor is moving faster than the continent, and as a result is being subducted between the lighter rock. As a result you get a very low level of volcanic and earthquake activity.

    Now for a complication. For it turns out that eastern North America is moving west slower than it other wise would thanks to a spreading center, a hot spot sort of like the one that gave us Iceland and Hawaii. We call this spreading center the Nevada Basin.

  262. #272 Sven DiMilo
    December 24, 2009

    Attention associates: geology clean-up on aisle 271

  263. #273 SC OM
    December 24, 2009

    [Taking a moment from grading, wrapping, and preparing for the whirlwind beginning in a few hours to say: Squidmas Greetings and Happy Solstice to everyone!]

    I have also been authorized by Josh to post on his behalf the following response to comment #154:

    WTF? Uh, citation needed.

    I assume this applies to #272 as well.

    PS: I’ve been meaning to ask you, David M., if anyone familiar with US television has said you remind them of Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory.

  264. #274 Lynna, OM
    December 24, 2009

    While I see the logic behind the comparison of Sheldon on “The Big Bang Theory” TV sitcom to our own David M., I staunchly maintain that David M. is far sexier. The difference is in the addition of more humor (and with a broader range), and a more refined sense of irony. It’s also likely that David M. speaks more languages than Sheldon. Sheldon takes himself too seriously.

    Happy, merry, very, whatever, Post Winter Solstice to one and all. May all your vibrations be pleasant and properly aimed.

  265. #275 Dania
    December 24, 2009

    This magma rises up through the cracks that mark the rift itself, get deposited on the sides of the rift, and cool and solidify there. Over time this accumulation becomes too heavy and the material and question slumps away from the rift, pushing the ocean floor further away even further away.

    Did you even read comment #242? ‘Cause you’re still making the same mistake.

    This is how I learned it from a number of reports and documentaries on the Mid Atlantic Ridge.

    Citations, please.

    What am I getting at here? Namely that certain people are letting a reliance on the voice of authority to overrule observation and fact.

    Evidence that the North Atlantic sea floor is somehow being subducted underneath the North American continent, please.

    The floor of the North Atlantic and the continent of North America are too different in composition to ever be considered part of the same tectonic structure.

    And no geologist ever thought of this, right?

    So appropriate…

    Now add in the fact that the floor of the North Atlantic is disappearing.

    [CITATION FUCKING NEEDED]

  266. #276 Dania
    December 24, 2009

    … And Happy Newtonmas Eve! :)

  267. #277 mythusmage
    December 24, 2009

    Dania, #275

    How are the Eurasian and North American plates pulling the Mid Atlantic Ridge apart? I’ve shown you the mechanism whereby upwelling magma pushes the ridge apart, and you give me fairy tales.

    You want citations? How about any number of videos and technical reports on the MAR? Reports that pretty much agree that it is upwelling magma that is forcing the ridge apart and pushing ocean floor away.

    And how do you have such disparate materials forming a continuum? I can see where sedimentary rock can form a part of a continent, even basaltic rock when it forms a part of a continent’s structure. But ocean floor? The differences are too great. Difference in material composition, mineralogy, structure. Thanks to how it arises ocean floor is composed of literally millions of microstructures which clump together to form a false solid. Think of the floor of the North Atlantic as a clot of basalts and you’ve pretty much described what it is.

    To make matters even worse, continents aren’t all that solid. Even plutons like the Canadian Shield and Ayers Rock have their cracks and fissures, everything else just looks solid.

    The engine behind the Mid Atlantic Ridge and the spreading of the Atlantic Ocean has been studied and well established. Show us how your mechanism works.

  268. #278 F
    December 24, 2009

    The North Atlantic is shrinking? Ya don’t say…
    http://scienceblogs.com/highlyallochthonous/2008/06/earthquake_in_iceland.php

    Hotspots? Pushed? Slumping?
    Yeah. Citations. But good luck.

  269. #280 Dania
    December 24, 2009

    (Argh. Damn SIWOTI. It’s Christmas Eve, I shouldn’t be here!)

    I’ve shown you the mechanism whereby upwelling magma pushes the ridge apart, and you give me fairy tales.

    Wait… what?? Fairy tales? I thought the basic mechanism that makes tectonic plates move was kind of established: convection currents. You’re talking about “massive hot spots”, ocean floor being “pushed” by magma and material “slumping” away from the rift… I have no idea what you mean. That’s why I’m asking for citations.

    Look, I’m not a geologist. I know my understanding of the theory of plate tectonics is far from being perfect. I’m just trying to understand what the hell you’re talking about.

    You want citations? How about any number of videos and technical reports on the MAR? Reports that pretty much agree that it is upwelling magma that is forcing the ridge apart and pushing ocean floor away.

    Bring them on. It looks like I’m not the only one asking for citations.

    To make matters even worse, continents aren’t all that solid.

    I know that. Didn’t I mention active faults as being the cause of some hot springs in western Europe? But how is that relevant?

  270. #281 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 24, 2009

    To make matters even worse, continents aren’t all that solid.

    No shit. Ever hear about the New Madrid earthquakes?

    1812, February 7, 09:45 UTC, New Madrid, Missouri
    Magnitude ~7.4 – 8.0

    This is the fourth earthquake of the 1811-1812 series. Several destructive shocks occurred on February 7, the last of which equaled or surpassed the magnitude of any previous event. The town of New Madrid was destroyed. At St. Louis, many houses were damaged severely and their chimneys were thrown down. The meizoseismal area was characterized by general ground warping, ejections, fissuring, severe landslides, and caving of stream banks.

  271. #282 eddie
    December 24, 2009

    Greg Palast has a poll that seems to needa bit of help. What d’you think of the issue involved?

  272. #283 eddie
    December 24, 2009

    Re PZ Myers @243:

    Cutting to 200 comments a thread might seem too strict a limit but would help us who use mobile browsers. Surely I’m not the only one.

  273. #284 F
    December 24, 2009

    I just thought I might throw a hint into the theatre:

    The Pacific is shrinking.

  274. #285 Alan B
    December 24, 2009

    Plate tectonics, the story so far.

    #154 mythusmage produces a new sub-thread:

    Time again for yours truly to continue a mostly ignored tradition on the Thread Undying. That is, looking at certain subjects in a non-standard ways. This time around we’ll be looking at plate tectonics.

    He then produces a whole load of “stuff” which:

    1) Bears no relationship to reputable Geology or even to delugionism
    2) and for which he provides not one shred of evidence.

    Several people challenge him asking for evidence and references.

    #186 I am one of them.

    Until you produce some references there is little to discuss. What I don’t understand is whether you are ignorant or you misunderstand what you read or you are someone who throws a handgrenade into the market place to enjoy the flurry of excitement.

    No response to #186.

    #226 I remind mythusmage:

    I respectfully disagree. #154 is a powerful contender for worst geology. And it doesn’t even need a video. He can prove me wrong if he produces some evidence – how about it mythusmage?

    No response to #226.

    Several more people point out the difficulties in mythusmage’s arguments. More requests for evidence. Several helpful websites put forward.

    #271 mythusmage:

    Since so many have gotten the dynamics of the North Atlantic ocean floor so wrong, here’s a quick and dirty review.

    More nonsense (prove me wrong with evidence, mythusmage!). No response to any requests for evidence.

    #275 Excellent cartoon comment!

    #277 mythusmage:

    You want citations? How about any number of videos and technical reports on the MAR? Reports that pretty much agree that it is upwelling magma that is forcing the ridge apart and pushing ocean floor away.

    Still no references / citations / evidence. Just “videos” and “technical reports”.

    The engine behind the Mid Atlantic Ridge and the spreading of the Atlantic Ocean has been studied and well established. Show us how your mechanism works.

    No, mythusmage. I doesn’t work that way. You are describing features and suggesting mechanisms which, as far as I can tell, have not been observed. You are challenging the status quo. You have to put the evidence up or we will simply assume you don’t know what you are talking about and the hand grenade in the market place conclusion stands.

    Current status (up to 284): More comments on mythusmage’s nonsense. Still no citations / evidence / technical or peer reviewed reports from mythusmage. It appears there is lots of evidence (mythusmage says so). There are (wow!) videos too (be still my beating heart!) but mythusmagre cannot find any or can’t be bothered or – fill in your reason.

    To mythusmage. You may think I am harsh and sarcastic but what do you expect when you come to a site where science is vigorously discussed? Science requires evidence. Present it or shut up.

    Once you have produced some evidence as to where the status of plate tectonic theory is so far adrift and why your approach is so much better, then we can talk.

    I am expecting you to be able to use Google and Google scholar (if nothing else). Find specifics and come back to us.

    Until then I declare B*** S***.

    (By the way. Don’t snow us with dozens of references in a shotgun approach. Give us your best shot in 2 or at the most 3 reports to start with. We can always call for more information as the discussion develops.)

  275. #286 Joffan
    December 24, 2009

    More fundamentally mythusmage, there are no subduction zones on the east coast of North America or the west coast of Europe. This is simply wrong.

    Your hotspots would be a nice hypothesis if this hadn’t already been assessed, and found wanting. The upwelling doesn’t have zero effect, but it is not an important mechanism. As a thought experiment, however, I sugest you consider the effect of the upwelling magma which doesn’t break through. This (the majority) is the part that sets up the convection cell, running along the underside of the crust and dragging it along. And the cooling at subduction zones gives a significant pull to plates that have them.

    Dania’s link at 249 is excellent and well worth your time. Look at the section on the statistics of the different plate movement rates.

  276. #287 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    December 24, 2009

    Well, Alan B #285 said everything I’ve been thinking since this idjiotic non-scientific review of plate tectonics was initiated. The burden of proof isn’t upon the present theory, but rather those trying to initiate a new paradigm. But without scientific evidence, nothing will change. Words and ideas are meaningless without evidence. We are waiting…

  277. #288 Alan B
    December 24, 2009

    By the way!

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everybody on this thread.

    May the new year ROCK for you.

    [Ed. And from me as well.]

    [and a special greeting to Lynna’s brachiopods from one of my brachiopods – Plectothyris fimbria (J. Sowerby).]

    http://www.nhm.ac.uk/jdsml/nature-online/earthlab/specimen.dsml?sgroup=fossil

    & search for Plectothyris]

  278. #289 Epikt
    December 24, 2009

    Season’s greetings and best wishes to all.

    Some seasonal music.

  279. #290 eddie
    December 24, 2009

    First off, an antidote to the OP.

    Now; the snowman show.

    Now, IMHO the greatest cover version evah!

    And finally; Short and sweet.

    Happy Wossname!

  280. #291 Dianne
    December 24, 2009

    Ok, I’m pathetic for linking to the Spiegel again instead of trying to find a site in English, but someone seems to have jumped on the Pope during Christmas mass.

  281. #293 NixNoctua
    December 25, 2009

    Yay! A… rock…. how thoughtful of you, ‘Tis!

    (/comment written out of boredom)

  282. #294 F
    December 25, 2009

    Alan B., that was so sexy, I went looking, and it led me to this:
    http://www.cotswoldsaonb.org.uk/userfiles/file/Publications/AONBImportance(1).pdf
    Yum.

    Chrismas-y colors:
    http://www.mindat.org/photo-255691.html

  283. #295 Alan B
    December 25, 2009

    # F

    Not a million miles away from me. I have led field trips on Cleeve Common near Cheltenham. Marvellous!

  284. #296 Rorschach
    December 25, 2009

    Only sent one ecstasy OD to ICU today, was surprisingly quiet yay !

    Xmas music !!

    500 miles, The Journeymen

    So this is Christmas-Robbie W

    Feliz Navidad-Jose Feliciano

    Happy Holidays everyone..:-)

  285. #297 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 25, 2009

    So what loot did everyone get?

    I got two books, Terry Pratchett’s Unseen Academicals and Nathaniel Philbrick’s Sea of Glory. This latter work is about the 1838-42 Exploring Expedition. I love books about bits of history I know little or nothing about (which includes a great deal of history).

    I also got socks, underwear, a gift card to Borders bookstore, and a bottle of Domaine De Ravignan 1978 Vintage Armagnac.

  286. #298 Rorschach
    December 25, 2009

    So what loot did everyone get?

    Bottle of Tawny Port from ex dad in-law.
    I’m lacking social contacts I think…:-)

    Then again, got my boy his first Cricket bat today and he seems a fucking natural the way he punished that cherry…:-)

  287. #299 Jadehawk, OM
    December 25, 2009

    I’m getting my flight to Germany for the worldcup sponsored.

    best squidmas gift EVAR (even if it means I’m not getting a birthday gift this year)

  288. #300 Rorschach
    December 25, 2009

    I’m getting my flight to Germany for the worldcup sponsored.

    By who?? I wish I did lol….Well I see you there then I hope !! Planning on arriving June 27 at this point.

  289. #301 Jadehawk, OM
    December 25, 2009

    By who??

    by the worlds most bestest grandma :-p

    though, it does help that I’m the only grandchild she can spoil like that: my brother’s wishes are a total mystery to anyone, since he communicates in grunts only, and my cousin has more stuff and money than he knows what to do with (bastard showed up in a BMW Z4 :-p )

  290. #302 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 25, 2009

    I’m getting my flight to Germany for the worldcup sponsored.

    Now that is a present to be envied.

  291. #303 Carlie
    December 25, 2009

    I got a Dr. Horrible wall calendar and a corduroy purse with an embroidered mushroom on it. :)

  292. #304 a_ray_in_dilbert_space
    December 25, 2009

    Did somebody say “rock”? Squidmas came early for me this year. My wife and I went to Sri Lanka, and I came back with a backpack full of rocks, gems and tea! It was an interesting trip back as I kept wondering whether some of the radioactive specimens (thorite and ekanite) might get me tackled going through security. Fortunately, these guys are mainly alpha emitters, so I was able to shield them down to background levels.

    Anyway, suffice to say that I’ve got enough rocks to keep me anti-social through a dozen Christmas dinners.

  293. #305 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    December 25, 2009

    I got a D3 cable modem, and a Borders gift card. The Redhead got another jewelry armoire.

  294. #306 Lynna, OM
    December 25, 2009

    My son’s name is Theo, and he sent me Theo Chocolates from Seattle (www.theochocolate.com). I wish he owned that company! I’m all too fond of chocolate, but have never had anything finer than their caramels in dark chocolate, with hefty chunks of sea salt on top.

    My daughter sent me a very long cashmere scarf that can’t decide if it wants to be blue or purple. Very nice. She also sent me “Reading the OED” from which I gleaned a new insult “Horn Face” (for the kind of guy whose girl steps out with other men); and here’s a new game: Hot Cockles: A rustic game in which one player lay face downwards, or knelt down with his eyes covered, and being struck on the back by the others in turn, guess who struck him. [an aside: I note the OED knows how to use “lay” and “lie” and all the permutations thereof].

    Hot Cockles almost turned me into a Hypergelast, a person who will not stop laughing.

    I also got a shipment of pears from Harry & David, smoked and fresh salmon from my brother that lives in Alaska (he catches the salmon himself — also does his own smoking thereof).

    Oh, yes, and there are even more gifts of chocolate. Gotta go now. I’m waddling out into the cold after a breakfast of chocolate and coffee. I’m delivering salmon and other goodies to my brother Steve’s house, where we’ll have a heathenish lunch and talk about, what else, rocks.

    Love to all … and I fucking mean that.

  295. #307 Kristjan Wager
    December 25, 2009

    Got a nice gift-free Christmas. I don’t mind giving gifts, but often I find receiving gifts awkward.

    Related video

  296. #308 Lynna, OM
    December 25, 2009

    Alan B @288

    [and a special greeting to Lynna’s brachiopods from one of my brachiopods – Plectothyris fimbria (J. Sowerby).]
    http://www.nhm.ac.uk/jdsml/nature-online/earthlab/specimen.dsml?sgroup=fossil
    & search for Plectothyris]

    Awww, how cute? Ahh, and ahhh again. (I’m still looking in my other open tab.)

    Thank you, and may your rocks rock hard.

  297. #309 Lynna, OM
    December 25, 2009

    ‘Tis Himself, thank you for the jingle bell rock. I actually sent out a picture of a rock, along with execrable doggerel, for my Christlessmas Cards this year. I’ll see if I can put up a blog page for it later today. For now, must dash and dance and prance.

  298. #310 Carlie
    December 25, 2009

    Kristjan – I guessed that was going to be the video you linked to! What a fun song.

    ‘Tis, I’m sorely wanting to make that picture my facebook profile page. :)

  299. #311 Alan B
    December 25, 2009

    Today’s haul of loot? Amongst other items:

    1) A bottle of Croft’s Pink Port (like a solid rose with a port flavour). Unusual but pleasant.

    http://www.croftpink.com/

    With some Stilton, probably my favourite cheese.
    (It’s the Penicillium roqueforti)

    2) A bottle of Penderyn Peated Single Malt Welsh Whisky from several minor (age only) family members.

    Distinctive and slightly unusual but this is a very drinkable whisky in its own right. Made using a very special single pot still that belies the youthfulness of the whisky, and makes it taste much older.

    Tasting Notes : The nose has sweet, herbal and vegetal notes, but also meaty yeastiness. The palate has rye-like mintiness with hints of ginger and sweet vegetal touches again. The finish is long, warming and soothing.

    The only distillery in Wales.

    Now that the insanity of threatened postal strikes is over, I plan to get hold of a number of guides to local geology walks to try in a short while.

    All the family except my son and his wife in Arizona.

    A small amount of the white stuff which has caused the usual traffic calamities …

    Best wishes to all!

  300. #312 Alan B
    December 25, 2009

    #306 Lynna “Horn Face”

    There has long been an association in Europe between cuckolds and horns. A man is said to wear cuckold’s horns when his wife is unfaithful and only he doesn’t know – hence the horns which he can’t see but everyone else can.

    There appears to be a reference in “Much ado about nothing” by William Shakespeare but it may go back much further.

    (Now, didn’t you want to know all that …)

  301. #313 Dania
    December 25, 2009

    A man is said to wear cuckold’s horns when his wife is unfaithful and only he doesn’t know – hence the horns which he can’t see but everyone else can.

    I don’t know about the UK, but here we have an offensive term that basically translates as “tame horn” and is used to indicate a man who knows he’s being cheated on by his wife but does nothing about it.

    (Yes, I know you were all dying to know that…

    … but, hey, +1!!)

  302. #314 David Marjanovi?
    December 25, 2009

    Newtonmas and Easter on the same day! Hooraaaaay!!! No more snow, and 15 degrees. Celsius, not Fahrenheit ? I wish. B-(

    Yesterday evening there was strong rain, and today morning again. Growl.

    Tectonic plates: the basic principle is that the SiAl rocks are floating on the SiMg (pronouced See-ma?), which is denser, like clots of bubbles on a pot of boiling jelly. The SiAl comprises the continents, more or less.

    <sigh> These (Sial and Sima ? and yes, magnesium is Mg, not Ma) are the terms Wegener used. “Sial” is basically the same as what is now called continental crust, mostly granite, and “Sima” is basically what is now called oceanic crust, mostly basalt.

    One of Wegener’s biggest errors was that he believed the sima extended underneath the sial. In fact, oceanic crust and continental crust lie next to each other except in the ? narrow ? subduction zones. That’s among the key features that distinguish the modern theory of plate tectonics from Wegener’s theory of continental drift.

    Since so many have gotten the dynamics of the North Atlantic ocean floor so wrong, here’s a quick and dirty review.

    <reaching through tubes of Internet, clutching hands firmly around mythusmage‘s neck, and whacking his head periodically against his screen>

    What happens at the Mid Atlantic Ridge? Mantle material comes welling up, most likely because of massive hotspots.

    No. It rises up because the plates on each side are being pulled apart.

    North and South America move westward, dragging the western half of the Atlantic seafloor with them. This opens a crack in the lithosphere (not just the crust), into which magma from the asthenosphere seeps. This forms new oceanic crust and new, uh, subcrustal lithosphere on both sides.

    What is it that moves the Americas westward?

    Not ridge push, but slab pull. Look these terms up.

    The Pacific seafloor sinks down vertically in the subduction zones off the west coast of the Americas. The Americas are sucked in.

    So strongly, in fact, that North America has started breaking apart at its westernmost edge (Alaska excepted). That’s how Baja California and the San Andreas fault came to be.

    It’s also, on the other side, how Japan was separated from China. Look up the term pull-apart basin.

    This magma rises up through the cracks that mark the rift itself, get deposited on the sides of the rift, and cool and solidify there.

    So far, so good…

    Over time this accumulation becomes too heavy and the material and question slumps away from the rift, pushing the ocean floor further away even further away. Given time this ocean floor material is pushed up against and under the bordering continent.

    <whack> Wrong. The sinking is vertical, <whack> it’s why the midocean ridges are ridges, <whack> and it’s why the sea level rises in <whack> times of strong tectonic activity: the <whack> sinking is slowed when the <whack> asthenosphere under the rift is hotter. <whack>

    This is how I learned it from a number of reports and documentaries on the Mid Atlantic Ridge.

    <whack> So you’re getting <whack> your information <whack> from the TV? <whack>

    At the other end of the basaltic conveyor belt you have a different situation.

    <whack> The other end is the west coast <whack> of North America, not the east one. <whack>

    Where the North Atlantic ocean floor meets the North American continental shelf you have a discontinuity. You switch from basalt to granite

    True.

    and sedimentary rocks.

    No, the sediments lie on top of both.

    You go from a largely horizontal surface to a near vertical rise which at the top becomes the sloping continental shelf.

    <whack> “Vertical” my ass! If you were on a <whack> continental slope, you <whack> wouldn’t notice it’s inclined. <whack>

    (<whack> Look up “continental slope” <whack> and “continental rise”. These are <whack> technical terms. <whack>)

    Where the North Atlantic ocean Floor meets North America you have a sudden change in miner[a]logy and density.

    Yes…

    A change that in other situations would lead a geologist to consider the two masses to be geologically separate bodies.

    <whack> Except that “tectonic plate” isn’t <whack> defined as “geologically separate body”. <whack> It’s defined as “lithosphere <whack> material that moves as a unit at the moment”. <whack>

    That’s why we talk of a “Eurasian plate” even though it consists of a large number of continents that collided throughout the last 270 million years or so: there hasn’t been any movement at the Ural Mountains or the Variscan chain or the Hercynian chain or the Kunlun Shan for a long, long time. There was a separate Bohemian plate in the Devonian; there is no more.

    <whack> Many plates contain both continental <whack> and oceanic crust. It’s normal. <whack>

    What am I getting at here? Namely that certain people are letting a reliance on the voice of authority to overrule observation and fact.

    <whack> You, that is. The voice of authority <whack> is that of TV, and the observations <whack> and facts you overrule are <whack> those that you don’t know. It’s <whack> a textbook example of the Dunning-<whack>-Kruger effect. <whack>

    Now add in the fact that the floor of the North Atlantic is disappearing. Last I heard the ocean floor, even at its oldest, is younger than the ocean.

    <whack> Wrong, <whack> wrong, <whack> wrong. <whack>

    <whack> At the US east coast <whack> and at the west coast of Morocco through <whack> Senegal or so, the oceanic crust <whack> is Middle Jurassic in age, <whack> just like the ocean! <whack> No subduction has happened. <whack> Except off the Lesser Antilles, <whack> which lie on the Caribbean plate, which <whack> is a piece of broken-off <whack> Pacific floor that moved in <whack> between North and South America <whack> when they were drifting apart <whack> (now they’re coming together again, because <whack> the Earth is round ? all straight <whack> lines that aren’t parallel meet sooner or later). <whack>

    <whack> What ignorant source was it that <whack> made up the claim that there’s any <whack> North Atlantic seafloor missing?!? <whack>

    Consider what that ocean floor runs into after a few hundred billion years. A dense rock meeting a lighter rock. What happens in similar situations around the world?

    <whack> Once again: the Americas are moving <whack> with the eastern Atlantic seafloor. <whack> The seafloor doesn’t meet them. It <whack> doesn’t move relative to them. <whack>

    (Also, please refrain from writing “a few hundred billion” when you mean “170 million”…)

    from what observation tells us the ocean floor is moving faster than the continent

    Wrong.

    For it turns out that eastern North America is moving west slower than it other wise would thanks to a spreading center, a hot spot sort of like the one that gave us Iceland and Hawaii. We call this spreading center the Nevada Basin.

    The whole thing still moves west. It’s just that the part west of this feature ? which might one day become a pull-apart basin, though more likely it’ll just fade out ? is moving west even faster than the part east of it all the way to the mid-Atlantic ridge.

    I’ve been meaning to ask you, David M., if anyone familiar with US television has said you remind them of Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory.

    Hasn’t happened so far, and I know neither the character nor the rest of the sitcom… comment 274 tells me it’s a sitcom… can someone help me out? :-) As for how many languages I speak, see near the beginning of the previous incarnation of this thread. Or, wait, probably the one before.

    How are the Eurasian and North American plates pulling the Mid Atlantic Ridge apart? I’ve shown you the mechanism whereby upwelling magma pushes the ridge apart, and you give me fairy tales.

    See “ridge push” and “slab pull” above.

    You want citations? How about any number of videos and technical reports on the MAR?

    Yeah, how about them?

    How about them!?!

    Bring them on already! We’re waiting!!!

    The engine behind the Mid Atlantic Ridge and the spreading of the Atlantic Ocean has been studied and well established.

    Exactly. You just slept through it.

    No shit. Ever hear about the New Madrid earthquakes?

    The key term here is triple junction. When continents break, it’s common that three straight fractures go out from a point at angles of 120°. Usually, two of them go on to become an ocean, while the third dies. Sometimes horses are changed in midstream ? the Baffin Sea is older than the North Atlantic on the other side of Greenland; Greenland first stayed with Europe, then switched sides.

    The Mississippi valley (roughly) is such a third branch of which the other two formed the Gulf of Mexico (between North and South America) in the Middle and Late Jurassic and then ended up subducted in the complex geology of the region. It’s almost dead, but not quite. Every few hundred years it still makes a bit of noise…

    I’m getting my flight to Germany for the worldcup sponsored.

    :-|

    As long as you’re against the Germans…

    (Asportual male here.)

    I’m all too fond of chocolate, but have never had anything finer than their caramels in dark chocolate, with hefty chunks of sea salt on top.

    Salt in chocolate sounds crazy, but I’ve had that general kind of chocolat aux éclats de caramel et aux cristaux de sel de Noirmoutier or so. Bought it when it was on special offer (and limited edition) at a big, cheap supermarket in Paris. A delight. A delight, I’m telling you. :-9

    Munching cookies baked by mother and sister right now. :-) :-) :-)

    Loot. Arrrrr! My brother got a satire book: Alles, alles über Deutschland. Subtitle: “Half-knowledge in compact form”. Sticker: “The book to the sticker”. From this and the back cover (“[…] in cooperation with renowned parascientists […]”), it seems like there actually is such a thing as a non-Bavarian German with an internationally comprehensible sense of humor. I shall find out.

    (…Actually, the book doesn’t tell if the author is Bavarian. Hmmm.)

    I got a book with satires about Austrian politicians of the last 10 years. Can’t explain any of those inside jokes. :-þ

  303. #315 David Marjanovi?
    December 25, 2009

    I just got a comment held for moderation. There was not a single link in it, and no Viagra, Cialis, or Caledonian either. Was my geology rant too repetitive?

  304. #316 David Marjanovi?
    December 25, 2009

    Ah, it’s through now.

  305. #317 pixelfish
    December 25, 2009

    No loots here, except for the loot I got in World of Warcraft. (You get presents under the Winter Veil tree.) My boyfriend and I agreed, that having got the apartment unpacked and incidentally, full to bursting, we weren’t going to get more loots to throw the unpacked-and-clean balance off. Instead we’re having a nice Squidmas dinner and treating ourselves to massages sometime next week. :)

    Not getting presents or worrying about presents is surprisingly stress-free.

    I played Civ all night long last night, and gave myself (India) the continent to show me that I love me.

  306. #318 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    December 25, 2009

    Was my geology rant too repetitive?

    Not for me. Very lucid and clear. And in general agreement with what I have read over the years. If held, I suspect it was for length, not for whacking the pseudoscientist.

  307. #319 Dania
    December 25, 2009

    All I’m going to say is that one of my squidmas gifts has just finished destroying my christmas tree. But I can’t get mad at the “gift”. Too cute. :P

  308. #320 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 25, 2009

    David, you must be tired from all that whacking. Nice geology lesson for the rest of us, though.

  309. #321 PZ Myers
    December 25, 2009

    Wow. You got a beaver for Christmas?

  310. #322 SC OM
    December 25, 2009

    … can someone help me out? :-)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyQz8jWAl7s

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6OOPqqxsyQ

    Wow. You got a beaver for Christmas?

    Reading up a thread often proves interesting.

  311. #323 Dania
    December 25, 2009

    Wow. You got a beaver for Christmas?

    Worse. Much worse.

    In his cute furry little head, everything looks like a toy. And he has claws… and small pointy teeth….

  312. #324 destlund
    December 25, 2009

    The roomie and I are about to have xmas dinner at her mom’s house. I find it a little backwards to have xmas dinner on xmas day, but I’m guessing it’s a Cajun thing. Anyway it’s a costume dinner. Last year it was Ten Commandments (I was Memnet), and this year it’s welfare stereotypes. I tried to go for welfare queen, but it didn’t work out. So now I’m the druggie thug teen boyfriend.

  313. #325 Cath the Canberra Cook
    December 25, 2009

    Hello! May I just remark that I coated my turkey with buttered BACON yesterday? I’m sure that fits with the thread…

  314. #326 Owlmirror
    December 25, 2009

    I just got a comment held for moderation. There was not a single link in it, and no Viagra, Cialis, or Caledonian either. Was my geology rant too repetitive?

    I think the problem was the gumby blockquotes you used. There were six of them, and even though they all pointed to the same URL, which was local to scienceblogs, the URL counter doesn’t seem to care about that.

    If you use an internal URL, it might work better — something like this:

    <blockquote style=”border-left: 2px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); background: transparent url(/pharyngula/tiny_gumby_trans.gif) no-repeat scroll 0% 0%; min-height: 64px; padding-left: 52px; font-family: ‘Comic Sans MS';”>Silly Text</blockquote>

    Which should look the same, but I’ll of course test it:

    Silly Text

  315. #327 Owlmirror
    December 25, 2009

    And now I’ll test six of them in a row. Sorry if this gets repetitive:

    Silly Text 1

    test

    Silly Text 2

    blah

    Silly Text 3

    foo

    Silly Text 4

    does

    Silly Text 5

    this

    Silly Text 6

    work?

  316. #328 Owlmirror
    December 25, 2009

    Success !!

    +1

  317. #329 Lynna, OM
    December 25, 2009

    Explanation of crusts, ridges, plates, subduction and so forth was greatly appreciated. Thanks, David M. — but all that whacking made me tired.

    Owlmirror gets the gumby genius award.

    Did no one get a beaver for Christmas?

    On the Mormon Prophecy thread someone (llewelly?) posted a link to Rachel Maddow tearing gleefully into the John Birch Society. The JBS is sponsoring the 2010 CPAC meeting where all the conservative Republicans (is that redundant?) get together and make action plans.
    http://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2009/12/john_birch_society_sponsors_ma.php
    They’re back.

  318. #330 F
    December 25, 2009

    Lynna, that makes your scarf a very nice indigo, no? Mmmm. Indigo.

  319. #331 Lynna, OM
    December 25, 2009

    Mmmm. Indigo … maybe. I’m thinking it over. Maybe indigo with a hint of lapis lazuli. Anyway, I love color and should learn more about the chemistry behind it.

  320. #332 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 25, 2009

    Did no one get a beaver for Christmas?

    Sadly, no. When I was 8 I got a coon skin hat like Fess Parker wore on the Davy Crockett tv show. Does that count?

  321. #333 F
    December 25, 2009

    Reading up a thread often proves interesting.

    Not unlike pissing up a rope, what?

  322. #334 Carlie
    December 25, 2009

    Anyone watch the new Doctor Who yet?

  323. #335 Feynmaniac
    December 25, 2009

    This Christmas was a 0.8 on the Time Cube scale. I have WAAAY too many uncles with personality disorders. Actual conversation:

    “Look at this picture. It’s your cousin. Isn’t she hot?!”
    “Yeah, she’s pretty.”
    “A nice girl for you…”
    “But she’s my cousin.”
    “She’s hot though.”
    “But she’s my cousin.”
    “So what? When I was 13 I used to make out with a very fat cousin of mine all the time.”

    He then preceeded to tell me some of his strip club anecdotes and showed me some pictures on his cell phone of the pink panther fucking minnie mouse. This man is 48 years old.

    Merry Christmas everybody.

    /venting

  324. #336 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 25, 2009

    When I was 13 I used to make out with a very fat cousin of mine all the time.”

    Okay, Uncle Ernie. Um. Er. Say, how ’bout them Colts? Think they’ll stay undefeated?

  325. #337 boygenius
    December 25, 2009

    Re: F@333

  326. #338 F
    December 25, 2009

    I was waiting for the axe to fall David M. to post. I was not disappointed.

    If bored, perhaps a short statement on the Taconic, Alleghanian, Appalachian orogenies. Just to sow confusion and bewilderment. Happy Wotsit. :)

    I did not know that about the New Madrid fault – that it is part of a triple-junction system. Cool.

  327. #339 F
    December 25, 2009

    boygenius @ 337

    Ween. :D However did you know?

  328. #340 AJ Milne
    December 25, 2009

    I’m generally more source than sink in the gift department ’round here. So yestereve was the standard endless wrapping session so stockings are properly stuffed…

    But y’know… Gotta wrap somethin’ for yourself so Daddy has something to unwrap too on the morn’… So I wrapped myself a pair of awesome Cloudveil pants I scored at MEC a few weeks ago at a clearance price. They’re augmenting a very well-used pair more meant for colder/drier conditions.

    I love these things. Built to take a serious beating.

  329. #341 boygenius
    December 25, 2009

    F:

    NOT a Ween fan, just an amateur musicologist who will listen to anything and everything at least once. Some songs just lodge themselves into your subconscious. I almost put up a disclaimer when I posted the Ween link but I figured the grown-ups on the Everlasting Thread could handle it better than the general public on the main site. (What with teh misogyny & all.) My actual musical tastes basically parallel those of Sven. Improv., baby, improv.

  330. #342 F
    December 25, 2009

    Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology @ 81

    I don’t know how I missed you comment here. I was looking for a response, because I just had to know.

    You are right to assume that Gyeong is my surname. In traditional E.A. and Burmese rendering, the first part of the name would be the surname. But!!!!!!! Gyeong isn’t a typical Korean surname while Pak is! Try and guess which is right!!! Bwahahahahaha!!!!!!!one!!!!!!!!!

    This succinctly yet forcefully describe my quandary. It happens occasionally when I am unsure if someone from a culture which places a surname first is presenting his name in a “westernized” manner, particularly when each part of the name seems, to my limited ability to discern, equally likely to be a surname or a personal name!

    It was a challenge. But it ended simply in a guess, based only on a subtle feeling that you might place your surname first. Bwahahahahaha!!!!!!!one!!!!!!!!!, indeed! :D

  331. #343 boygenius
    December 25, 2009

    AJ Milne@340

    Merry Squidmas to you! Cloudveil gear rocks. Too bad for me that my riding/skiing days are basically over due to a L5-S1 herniated disc. I now get to live vicariously through Warren Miller films and other awesome back-country extreme skiing/boarding videos.

  332. #344 SC OM
    December 25, 2009

    I’ve been enjoying this of late (checked out the rest and didn’t love it):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qf0r5CZxrIE

    Just got this CD as a gift:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlpgNsJsNKI

    Pretty song.

  333. #345 F
    December 25, 2009

    OK, boygenius. Maybe something more like this would be up your alley? Improv is a big place. :)

  334. #346 boygenius
    December 25, 2009

    F,

    Improv. is indeed a big place. Ornette certainly knows how to fill it. Cacophony has its place in a composition, but personally I don’t think it needs to be all-consuming. I had something more like this in mind:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1igVj3w8KE

  335. #347 386sx ¾
    December 25, 2009

  336. #348 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 25, 2009

    It was a challenge. But it ended simply in a guess, based only on a subtle feeling that you might place your surname first. Bwahahahahaha!!!!!!!one!!!!!!!!!, indeed! :D

    Your wrong, it’s Kim!

  337. #349 Epikt
    December 26, 2009

    boygenius:

    Improv. is indeed a big place. Ornette certainly knows how to fill it.

    More post-Trane than post-Ornette, but I like it.

  338. #350 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 26, 2009

    Why are there even grammatical contractions?! *grumbles*

  339. #351 SC OM
    December 26, 2009

    Lizzie Borden* is still ahead in the count. It’ll be fun to watch David get out in front.

    *(of legend)

  340. #352 F
    December 26, 2009

    Your wrong, it’s Kim!

    Hokay, you have lost me now! You win!

    Let me work this out.

    You are right to assume that Gyeong is my surname.

    So it would be sensible to assume this…

    Your wrong, it’s Kim!

    but it is incorrect in fact? :^0

    Your secret identity?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWmBxWN9jM0 @ 9:26

  341. #353 F
    December 26, 2009

    Well, I’m going to have to dissect the formatting on that one. I had the opportunity to preview, and I threw it all away.

  342. #354 Cath the Canberra Cook
    December 26, 2009

    Damnit, is no-one paying any attention to me? I said “buttered bacon”. Did you not hear me? BUTTERED. BACON. HOW AWESOME IS THAT?!

  343. #355 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 26, 2009

    Hokay, you have lost me now! You win!

    Let me work this out.

    You are right to assume that Gyeong is my surname.

    So it would be sensible to assume this…

    Your wrong, it’s Kim!

    but it is incorrect in fact? :^0

    Your secret identity?

    It’s teh interwebs! The surname to my pseudonym can be anything that I want. (One of them IS my real surname. Take a guess!)

  344. #356 Mr T
    December 26, 2009

    Cath, is it bacon-flavored butter?

  345. #357 Rorschach
    December 26, 2009

    Just got this CD as a gift:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlpgNsJsNKI

    Pretty song.

    A voice like Tweety, but nice music ..:-)

    Cath, is it bacon-flavored butter?

    On holiday the other week I walked past a Hotel, they had their menu outside on a board, one of the items was “prime rib steak wrapped in bacon”. The concept appears utterly strange to a european, but nevertheless I thought of Pharyngula…:-) (but didnt take a photo)

  346. #358 Kel, OM
    December 26, 2009

    Two days on the coast, now I’m back home and with proper computer access again. Christmas was fun and all, but fuck I’m glad to be home. Now to spend the next week relaxing…

  347. #359 Rorschach
    December 26, 2009

    Two days on the coast, now I’m back home and with proper computer access again

    I have a rather antiquated laptop that I don’t use much, but I got one of them wireless dongles for it to take it up to the gold coast with me, that was awesome ! Downing beers at Cooly Hotel and surfing the net at the same time, very 21st century !

    +1

  348. #360 Kel, OM
    December 26, 2009

    Really need to get a laptop & wireless broadband before mid-march.

  349. #361 Rorschach
    December 26, 2009

    Really need to get a laptop & wireless broadband before mid-march.

    Are you planning on live-blogging the convention? Does that mean you’re coming? :-) Hope you do !
    I’ll do no such thing, I be nursing my headache from the previous night while pretending to be listening to the speakers…:-)

    Oh, and, ahem, I want to date a particular jewish girl, who I think sort of values her religion, and lives its traditions to a degree, any tips ? Pitfalls, caveats, do-not-ever-go-there topics? Be glad for any help from the religiously schooled horde here…:-)

    I reckon this thread has so far lacked a good relationship advice sub-thread anyway :D

  350. #362 WowbaggerOM
    December 26, 2009

    Really need to get a laptop & wireless broadband before mid-march.

    So you are coming? Awesome. Got your ticket yet?

  351. #363 boygenius
    December 26, 2009

    @Epikt:

    That’s good shit. I prefer a little structure to my improv.

    @Cath:

    Of course we all butter our bacon.

  352. #364 Cath the Canberra Cook
    December 26, 2009

    Thank you Mr T, boygenius, I feel much better now. I think I needed to chuck a little wobbly after biting my tongue so hard around this year’s Xmas guests.

    I am pretty damn cross that I’m expected to bite my tongue no matter where I am. Is it not correct that if I shut up at SIL’s place, she should shut up at mine? Grrr. Lee Fucking Strobel. The “no proselytising” sign on my door is not evaded by covering it with wrapping paper and tinsel and giving it to someone who is not me.

    Bacon, with butter on, has a purpose. If you butter the bacon liberally, it sticks to the turkey much better. And a totally bacon covered turkey is a very fine thing.

  353. #365 Kel, OM
    December 26, 2009

    Are you planning on live-blogging the convention? Does that mean you’re coming? :-) Hope you do !

    Possibly, that is if I get a laptop and wireless broadband.

    So you are coming? Awesome. Got your ticket yet?

    Yes, I bought my ticket months ago when I thought it would sell out. No idea for how to get there or accommodation yet, but I’ll figure that out in time.

    I wonder what time it will finish up on the Sunday. Devin Townsend is playing in Melbourne that night so if I can I’ll go from a Dawkins talk to some Devy Metal!

  354. #366 Jadehawk, OM
    December 26, 2009

    Well I see you there then I hope !! Planning on arriving June 27 at this point.we shall have to watch at least one game together :-)

    :-|
    As long as you’re against the Germans…
    (Asportual male here.)

    pffft

    and anyway, weren’t we supposed to descend upon Paris to celebrate that PhD you’re supposed to be getting sometime around then…?

  355. #367 Jadehawk, OM
    December 26, 2009

    let’s try this again, without the blockquote fail :-p

    Well I see you there then I hope !! Planning on arriving June 27 at this point.

    we shall have to watch at least one game together :-)

    :-|
    As long as you’re against the Germans…
    (Asportual male here.)

    pffft

    and anyway, weren’t we supposed to descend upon Paris to celebrate that PhD you’re supposed to be getting sometime around then…?

    —–

    oh yeah, in all the excitement I forgot to mention the loads of Mon Chéri’s i got from various family members who know that the U.S. is an uncivilized country where they don’t exist :-)

  356. #368 John Morales
    December 26, 2009

    Rorschach,

    Oh, and, ahem, I want to date a particular jewish girl, who I think sort of values her religion, and lives its traditions to a degree, any tips ? Pitfalls, caveats, do-not-ever-go-there topics?

    I’ve been monogamous since my teens, but FWIW I suggest you be upfront about being atheistic if/when the issue comes up. Doesn’t mean you can’t accomodate her religious needs…

    (Unless you want to be a heel.)

  357. #369 Rorschach
    December 26, 2009

    we shall have to watch at least one game together :-)

    Quarterfinal against Rehakles and the greeks would be fun..:-)

    and anyway, weren’t we supposed to descend upon Paris to celebrate that PhD you’re supposed to be getting sometime around then…?

    Oh I’m all for that ! Nothing like a 250 Euro per night Hotel in Paris ! (Unless you want to stay in La Defense, where you can get away with 100 Euro, but might as well be in Trier or Luxemburg as far as travel to the city is concerned)

    oh yeah, in all the excitement I forgot to mention the loads of Mon Chéri’s i got from various family members who know that the U.S. is an uncivilized country where they don’t exist :-)

    In all honesty, I hate Mon Cheri….:-) Never got the whole chocolate with spirits business…
    I am very pleased that Ferrero Rocher has made it to Australia, however !

  358. #370 WowbaggerOM
    December 26, 2009

    No idea for how to get there or accommodation yet, but I’ll figure that out in time.

    I’m going to fly over; flights from Adelaide aren’t that much. I haven’t sorted any accommodation yet – though I do seem to remember a vague possibility of there being space on the floor of Chez Rorschach – though that’s yet to be confirmed…

  359. #371 Rorschach
    December 26, 2009

    Yeah well, chez Rorschach does yet have to be opened, and I will be moving away from my pole position 2 minutes from the convention centre to god knows where about 3 days before the party starts, talk about bad timing….:-)
    The BoS and I are working on it though, there will be somewhere to crash for everyone that’s for sure, so keep tuning in for updates LOL

  360. #372 Jadehawk, OM
    December 26, 2009

    …Rehakles…

    definitely need more coffee. That took me a couple minutes to figure out, hehe

    Oh I’m all for that ! Nothing like a 250 Euro per night Hotel in Paris ! (Unless you want to stay in La Defense, where you can get away with 100 Euro, but might as well be in Trier or Luxemburg as far as travel to the city is concerned)

    lol, how adorably privileged of you. Hotels are for people with real jobs. As a Starving Artist™, I would be looking at the 3 Duck Hostel, for 18 Euro ;-)

  361. #373 WowbaggerOM
    December 26, 2009

    The BoS and I are working on it though, there will be somewhere to crash for everyone that’s for sure, so keep tuning in for updates LOL

    Well, I’m having lunch with my ex-flatmate who’s over from Melbourne tomorrow; I’ll hit staying with her up as an option if need be. It’s really only for the purpose of what little sleep is required between the conference functions and tearing up the town with the godsless drunken hordes anyway!

  362. #374 Rorschach
    December 26, 2009

    It’s really only for the purpose of what little sleep is required between the conference functions and tearing up the town with the godsless drunken hordes anyway!

    Now that’s the spirit…:-) It will all resolve in a month or two, but the BoS and I both have more mundane issues to attend to at the moment unfortunately lol…

    Hotels are for people with real jobs. As a Starving Artist?, I would be looking at the 3 Duck Hostel, for 18 Euro ;-)

    Yeah, but we could just all convene at David’s place, right? As long as he owns a plasma…:-)

  363. #375 Jadehawk, OM
    December 26, 2009

    on a different subject, this FSTDT quote needs to be posted at the Intersection, because accommodationism works soooo well *rolleyes*

  364. #376 Rorschach
    December 26, 2009
  365. #377 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 26, 2009

    Pshaw. This is the only Austrian song:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sFHujvkacNY&feature=fvw

  366. #378 mythusmage
    December 26, 2009

    Once again I fell behind. Sometimes life kind of overwhelms me and I need to gafiate for awhile (get away from it all, or gafia). Now I’m back to add a bit more to the sub-topic on tectonics and rifting.

    Previous comments have mention such things as the Madrid Fault and the Great Basin of Nevada. Once you know what to look for both are rather obvious geological features, but there was a time when such things were considered unpossible in the middle of a plate. Plates were inviolate things that stayed intact unless and until subducted beneath another plate. An then we discovered the East African Rift Valley. A tectonic plate was being torn apart, how rude.

    Well, now that we knew such things happen, we could look for it in other locations. In North America we’ve found at least two; the spreading center under Nevada, and the now inactive rift valley in the in the middle of the United States we named the Madrid Fault. (The Yellowstone supervolcano is a spreading center, but much more active than the Great Basin spreading center of Nevada. So we call it a supervolcano and treat it as something different from a regular spreading center.)

    The Great Basin complicates things where North America’s movement is concerned. When the Great Basin is doing is making North America is larger. Magma is welling up, adding volume and area the the continent, and more specifically to the United States. Now, since our borders are based on latitude and longitude, this means that every year a few square inches of American territory becomes Canadian or Mexican territory under international law. Where the North American plate is concerned, the Great Basin is in effect pushing North America east of it eastward. This in the face of the westward motion imparted by the Mid Atlantic Ridge. As far as I know eastern North America is still moving westward, but at a lower speed than the floor of the North Atlantic. A relatively fast moving ocean floor meeting a slower moving continent that happens to be moving in the same direction as the ocean floor. The denser basalt is not going to be forced under the lighter granite?

    So where is the trench where the floor of the North Atlantic and North America meet?

    Except for a short stretch south of the United States the trench is buried under the talus of the continental shelf off the eastern coast of North America. It’s a hidden trench, much like that between continent and ocean floor at locations where the respective plates are moving towards each other.

    How to test this? Set up a line of markers on the ocean floor about a mile from the continental shelf and another line of markers on the continental shelf itself and monitor them. My prediction is that the ocean floor markers will get closer to the continental shelf markers. In addition, as time goes by the ocean floor markers will be buried beneath the continental shelf talus slope material. Obviously this would be a long term project, taking a decade or so before the movement becomes obvious. In science patience can be more important than critical thinking.

    I’ll be looking at the Madrid Fault and the new born Mid Atlantic Ridge later, for now I hope you all are having a good St. Stephen’s Day (The Feast of Steven Good King Wenceslas went out on in the song). Also known as Returns Day in the United States.

  367. #379 Dania
    December 26, 2009

    mythusmage, weren’t you going to provide citations?

  368. #380 Dania
    December 26, 2009

    Also, it would be nice if you addressed other’s comments instead of repeating the same unfounded assertions over and over again.

    David @314:

    from what observation tells us the ocean floor is moving faster than the continent

    Wrong.

    You @378:

    As far as I know eastern North America is still moving westward, but at a lower speed than the floor of the North Atlantic.

    No citations, no evidence… How are we supposed to take you seriously?

  369. #381 Sven DiMilo
    December 26, 2009

    Boxing Day, yes?

    Ah, The Thread giveth: Ornette, the Dead* @ The Capitol (classic show) and Dave Holland right in a row? Oh so nice.
    And, straight-lines like these?

    all that whacking made me tired
    Did no one get a beaver for Christmas?

    IRL, I got some clothing, but my daughter got a drumset from the Rich Aunt and I’ll be treating that as a gift to me as well.

    *I was coincidentally present (at least in body) both of the times that Ornette Coleman sat in with the Dead. More of historical than musical interest, unfortunately.

  370. #382 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    December 26, 2009

    No citations, no evidence… How are we supposed to take you seriously?

    I agree. Without evidence via citations to the scientific literature, you have nothing but blather, and are essentially trolling to get a rise out of the real scientists. Another wasted post, unless our SIWOTI experts wish to give you more thorough scientific whacking.

  371. #383 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 26, 2009

    my daughter got a drumset from the Rich Aunt

    “If thy neighbor aggrieves thee, buy each of his children a drum.” -Attributed to Confucius

  372. #384 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 26, 2009

    Good King Sauerkraut, look out!
    On his feets uneven,
    While the snoo lay round about,
    All kerchoo acheiven’.

    It’s a pity Walt Kelly wasn’t around for the last ten or so years. He would have fun with Clinton, BushCo, et al.

    His most famous cartoon.

  373. #385 Feynmaniac
    December 26, 2009
  374. #386 Lynna, OM
    December 26, 2009

    ‘Tis Himself, the Walt Kelly cartoon (link @384), reminded me of Ian Frazier’s article, A Reporter at Large, ?Travels in Siberia-I,? from The New Yorker, August 3, 2009

    I do so enjoy a trash-free expedition in the backcountry of Idaho, that to think of it being common to throw one’s trash here and there … well it’s more than my poor mind can bear.

    Ian Frazier told of stopping to eat lunch and having his guide clear a spot of just enough trash to lay out the luncheon, the after-lunch debris being left to add to the growing piles. There was also an overnight camp set up in a campground that Frazier described as being like “camping in the town dump.”

    Here in the U.S. we are actually quite good at cleaning up our own messes some of the time. I wonder if people will adopt the cavalier attitude of Frazier’s Russian companions if everyone starts leaving their trash along the roadsides and in the backcountry? Bleh.

    In our own country, one can drive from Idaho to Las Vegas and see very little roadside trash, until, that is, one approaches Vegas. The trash is the first indicator that you’re closing in on an abomination.

  375. #387 Lynna, OM
    December 26, 2009

    Feynmaniac @385: Wow! That was some goat before it was burned. See http://epi.gavle.se/gk/t_english.aspx?id=9138

    The Gävle Goat has been burned down 22 times since then. This year we celebrate his 40th birthday and the best present we could give him is to keep him alive. We have therefore impregnated him with flame retardant chemicals, which will keep him fire proof. We did try this some 10 years ago, but the chemicals were then washed off by the rain.
    The new chemicals are water and snowproof – and often used in airplanes – so we are very confident that the Gävle Goat will make it this year.

    Do not open this door! Do not push the button! Do NOT burn the goat!

  376. #388 F
    December 26, 2009

    OK, Pikachu. Allow me to re-phrase that:

    Given that any display name may or may not be a pseudonym, and that your display name, if I understand correctly, is a pseudonym: Would I be correct in thinking that Gyeong would be the surname in this case? (From previous posts, it would seem so.)

    I have absolutely no intention of trying to guess or find out your legal name. :p I only wanted to know if I was correct in my form of address. :D

    But it has been fun!

  377. #389 F
    December 26, 2009

    Burn the goat
    (Don’t burn the goat, baby)
    Burn the goat
    (Don’t tip the goat over)

  378. #390 Kel, OM
    December 26, 2009

    The BoS and I are working on it though, there will be somewhere to crash for everyone that’s for sure, so keep tuning in for updates LOL

    If nothing else, I’ll do my usual crashing at a youth hostel that has served me well for any gig I’ve been to in Sydney.

  379. #391 F
    December 26, 2009

    Dania:

    Apparently, mythusmage is going to set up an empirical study, so perhaps well have a reply in 10-20 years.

    Getting a grant for this study may take a very long time, so perhaps the answer will be much longer in coming.

  380. #392 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 26, 2009

    Given that any display name may or may not be a pseudonym, and that your display name, if I understand correctly, is a pseudonym: Would I be correct in thinking that Gyeong would be the surname in this case? (From previous posts, it would seem so.)

    Yes, I actually do respond to Mr. Gyeong. So you are correct.

  381. #393 Knockgoats
    December 26, 2009

    Whaddya mean, burn the goat? Goats are there to be knocked, not burnt!

  382. #394 Alan B
    December 26, 2009

    #378 + 379 + 380 + 382

    Totally agree with Dania and Nerd. As I have said before, I really don’t feel like wasting my time on every troll that comes here. This one spouts nonsense as has been demonstrated. He has been challenged to provide evidence. He has not. He cannot. He has failed.

    PROVE ME WRONG mythusmage!

  383. #395 WowbaggerOM
    December 26, 2009

    If nothing else, I’ll do my usual crashing at a youth hostel that has served me well for any gig I’ve been to in Sydney.

    I’m a long way from being a youth so me staying at a youth hostel would probably meet the dictionary definition of ‘creepy’…

  384. #396 Lynna, OM
    December 26, 2009

    Mr. Fire now has competition. My brother and I do have other fans, and some of them have been sending us touching missives.

    The fan letter below is memorable because, if I read it correctly, I am no longer the embodiment of Satan, but have become a reflector of the light of God:

    Dear Leland & Lynna,
         To each of us comes a special gift – a way to bring light & reflect the light of God in our life.
         You so exemplify this.
         This tender & loving tribute [Backcountry Roads, Idaho book] to God’s beauty has the place of honor in our waiting room at Living Hope Clinic. Thank you. Mrs. Rice

    I appreciate anyone’s appreciation of my work, including Mrs. Rice’s. At least this fan did not come right out and say, “You do believe in God, you just refuse to admit it. Without God, you couldn’t do this.” (Yes, we’ve been told that, and more … several times.)

    The concept of “God’s beauty” gives me pause, but nevertheless, here I am, yours truly,
    Reflector of the Light of God

  385. #397 F
    December 26, 2009

    Mr. Gyeong:

    Hooray! Evil laughs accepted and thoroughly enjoyed.

    It has been an honor making your acquaintance. :-bd

  386. #398 Dania
    December 26, 2009

    One more thing:

    So where is the trench where the floor of the North Atlantic and North America meet?

    Except for a short stretch south of the United States the trench is buried under the talus of the continental shelf off the eastern coast of North America. It’s a hidden trench, much like that between continent and ocean floor at locations where the respective plates are moving towards each other.

    Assuming this is right and there is a subduction zone on the east coast of North America, shouldn’t there be volcanoes over there (as well as more earthquakes)? Wouldn’t its geology be radically different from what it is?

    If mythusmage were right, wouldn’t there be evidence?

  387. #399 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 26, 2009

    The concept of “God’s beauty” gives me pause, but nevertheless, here I am,
    Reflector of the Light of God

    I would take Mrs. Rice’s letter as a compliment. Having looked at Leland’s photographs and having more than a nodding acquaintance with your prose, I’m sure your book is a pleasure to look through and read.

  388. #400 SEF
    December 26, 2009

    The ones who are really after people’s children are the death-cultists – and they are being calculatingly dishonest rather than genuinely caring with their own wedge strategy.

  389. #401 David Marjanovi?
    December 26, 2009

    Condolences to Feynmaniac and to my stomach.

    If held, I suspect it was for length, not for whacking the pseudoscientist.

    Nothing has ever been held for length on ScienceBlogs, and mine was just 9 laptop screens long anyway. :-)

    I think the problem was the gumby blockquotes you used. There were six of them, and even though they all pointed to the same URL, which was local to scienceblogs, the URL counter doesn’t seem to care about that.

    “How stupid of me not to think of this myself!”
    ? T. H. Huxley

    Your wrong, it’s Kim!

    Joker FTW. I wonder if Negaduck could surpass him, but, alas, I’ve never watched an entire episode of Darkwing Duck…

    And a totally bacon covered turkey is a very fine thing.

    Or so I’ve read.

    pffft

    Actually, if I’ll be in Vienna, I’ll likely watch part of it simply because the TV will be on (my sisters will watch).

    and anyway, weren’t we supposed to descend upon Paris to celebrate that PhD you’re supposed to be getting sometime around then…?

    Paris and/or Vienna, yes. I’ll have the actual defense in one place and “a presentation of a summary” in the other.

    Oh I’m all for that ! Nothing like a 250 Euro per night Hotel in Paris ! (Unless you want to stay in La Defense, where you can get away with 100 Euro, but might as well be in Trier or Luxemburg as far as travel to the city is concerned)

    Hah. La Défense, the place where Mitterrand built his own arc de triomphe, is the end of Métro line 1. It’s just barely outside the city proper.

    Concerning prices, try to find a Formule 1, an Etap’hotel (not sure about the spelling), or simply a youth hostel (there’s one very close to where the Bastille was), though of course youth hostels have other disadvantages.

    Yeah, but we could just all convene at David’s place, right? As long as he owns a plasma…:-)

    No TV whatsoever in my room (though I understand some of the neighbors have one), and I’ll have to stack you vertically ? 17 m² including kitchen sink, fridge, shower, sink, cupboard, desk, and even the bathroom walls. Apart from that, you’re all welcome :-)

    Will it be streamed live through the tubes of teh intarwebz? In that improbable case there’s hope on the TV issue, as long as the connection stays fast enough, which it doesn’t always do.

    On an even more different subject, here are 3 songs from Austria :

    Nobody shall ever mention Austropop again, for the entire genre is of evil, as is The Sound of Music.

    It’s great material for parody, though. I know a great one of a famous Austropop song, I just don’t know how to search for a YouTube video of it… wouldn’t make sense anyway if you don’t know the kitschy original, and you can’t make sense of either unless you understand generic southeastern German dialects…

    An then we discovered the East African Rift Valley. A tectonic plate was being torn apart, how rude.

    More specifically, it has broken in two. The continent is breaking apart, and if this went on, a new ocean would form. (Most likely it won’t, though. Most of the rift is in fact dead.)

    (The Yellowstone supervolcano is a spreading center, but much more active than the Great Basin spreading center of Nevada. So we call it a supervolcano and treat it as something different from a regular spreading center.)

    It’s all part of the same pull-apart basin structure. Look up the term Basin and Range.

    Magma is welling up, adding volume and area the the continent

    Nope. The continent gets slightly broader (east-west), taller, and thinner; it doesn’t gain any volume. The region between the Rocky Mountains and the west coast is lifted up like the top half of a growing bubble. Extension. Thinning.

    Now, since our borders are based on latitude and longitude, this means that every year a few square inches of American territory becomes Canadian or Mexican territory under international law.

    There isn’t any north-south extension as far as I know.

    Where the North American plate is concerned, the Great Basin is in effect pushing North America east of it eastward.

    No, because the Great Basin is not fixed to a longitude. It moves westward, in fact.

    This in the face of the westward motion imparted by the Mid Atlantic Ridge.

    So you still haven’t bothered to look up ridge push and slab pull.

    Do you know what that makes you?

    As far as I know eastern North America is still moving westward, but at a lower speed than the floor of the North Atlantic.

    :-| Thank you for demonstrating that not only creationists are capable of repeating an already disproved claim as if nobody had ever contradicted it. <applause>

    It’s a hidden trench

    It’s hidden in your head.

    For crying out loud, a trench without evidence for it in an area where a lot of oil exploration has been done would be a <whack> miracle!

    How to test this? Set up a line of markers on the ocean floor about a mile from the continental shelf and another line of markers on the continental shelf itself and monitor them. My prediction is that the ocean floor markers will get closer to the continental shelf markers. In addition, as time goes by the ocean floor markers will be buried beneath the continental shelf talus slope material. Obviously this would be a long term project, taking a decade or so before the movement becomes obvious.

    This sounds entirely reasonable, so why did I put it in Comic Sans?

    Because it was done long ago, using satellites, you ignorant slut. The movements of a lot of the Earth’s crust is known down to the millimeter per year.

    Because it’s a textbook case of the Dunning-Kruger effect, in other words!

    I’m a long way from being a youth so me staying at a youth hostel would probably meet the dictionary definition of ‘creepy’…

    That’s not how it works. Being a youth merely makes staying there cheaper.

  390. #402 F
    December 26, 2009

    If mythusmage were right, wouldn’t there be evidence?

    Shh. Yes.

    Apparently all that evidence is too old, or something.

  391. #403 David Marjanovi?
    December 26, 2009

    and you can’t make sense of either unless you understand generic southeastern German dialects…

    Sorry. For those you actually need to know some specifically Viennese vocabulary.

    Anyway. Let’s talk about something more enjoyable. The “Brachiosaurusis Giraffatitan, though, and Breviparopus is not an animal, it’s the footprints of an animal which may or may not have been a “brachiosaurid”. Also, some of the beasts are known from a single bone or a few, so the reconstruction is mostly that of Giraffatitan scaled to another size… still, it’s awesome.

  392. #404 Sven DiMilo
    December 26, 2009

    Look up the term Basin and Range.

    Even better, the book, by John McPhee.
    (Just gave my father another McPhee masterpiece for xmas.)

  393. #405 Sven DiMilo
    December 26, 2009
  394. #406 windy
    December 27, 2009

    Yes, I actually do respond to Mr. Gyeong. So you are correct.

    Which honorific should I use to get my comment accepted on your blog? ;)

    (or maybe you didn’t want to discuss geographical info given your recent experience with Mabus?…)

  395. #407 Kel, OM
    December 27, 2009

    Today I wrote a refutation of William Lane Craig’s argument from existence. i.e. why is there something rather than nothing. Feedback would be appreciated.

  396. #408 llewelly
    December 27, 2009

    I propose the next iteration of this thread be titled: The Kraken at the Bottom of Pharyngula Deep.

  397. #409 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 27, 2009

    It has been an honor making your acquaintance. :-bd

    And thank you for playing guess my name!

    Joker FTW. I wonder if Negaduck could surpass him, but, alas, I’ve never watched an entire episode of Darkwing Duck…

    Everyone always side with the Joker these day.

    Which honorific should I use to get my comment accepted on your blog? ;)

    None really. Originally, I put up moderation because I didn’t want a horde of Khmer/Thai nationalist putting up propaganda. Just mabus happens to be the only one that commented. Just push the comment link (it’s in Korean though. I’ll change it to German in a bit lol.)

  398. #410 windy
    December 27, 2009

    Just push the comment link (it’s in Korean though. I’ll change it to German in a bit lol.)

    Jawohl, sehr gut.

  399. #411 Jadehawk, OM
    December 27, 2009

    I’ll have to stack you vertically

    don’t give him ideas, please.

    also, eventually you’ll need to inform us a wee bit more precisely where/when we’re supposed to show up on your doorstep. :-p

  400. #412 windy
    December 27, 2009

    I’m a long way from being a youth so me staying at a youth hostel would probably meet the dictionary definition of ‘creepy’…

    This is hostel, JA???

  401. #413 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 27, 2009

    Kel, OM #407

    I would have left a comment on your blog but there’s never a visible verification with that software (it’s been a glitch on my computer for some months).

    The “there just gots ta be a creator” special pleading is a favorite among the more philosophical types. Aquinas loved it and it’s been a mainstay for theologians over the centuries. You explain various objections to the argument well.

    How does “everything was created except for one thing” differ from “everything was created except for a thousand things” or whatever number you can posit including infinity? It amazes me that supposedly intelligent, educated philosophers like Lane Craig keep trotting out this argument. It was answered about 750 years ago shortly after Aquinas first mentioned it. I suppose if they can’t come up with new arguments for the existence of gawd then they’ve got to recycle old, already discredited arguments in hopes that the listener is either ignorant or not paying attention.

  402. #414 MrFire
    December 27, 2009

    Happy Belated Bacchanalia to all.

    I would have made inane comments earlier, but fuck if Scienceblogs/Typepad/? and its ear-fuckingly irritating system didn’t fuck me over again and again.

    Anyway, my present was the Nintendo Wii. Mrs. Fire’s present, however, was all the playing time associated that machine…

    *sets off nuclear bomb to distract her…fails…*

    Mr. Fire now has competition.

    I will always be your first, and you never forget your first.

    *adds finishing touches to entire wall of Lynna-related paraphernalia in dingy, creepy basement*

  403. #415 Lynna, OM
    December 27, 2009

    ‘Tis @399

    I would take Mrs. Rice’s letter as a compliment. Having looked at Leland’s photographs and having more than a nodding acquaintance with your prose, I’m sure your book is a pleasure to look through and read.

    Oh, yes, I agree with you. And I do take Mrs. Rice’s letter as a compliment. It is strange to get so many compliments that connect Leland and I to God — goes with the territory, I guess … literally.

    I sold a book to a nurse at the office of my general-practice doctor (now there’s a miracle, finding a G.P. who’s good at the job, but also well-connected to the necessary specialists); and this nurse takes the book and begins to run her hands over the photographs, read bits of prose, etc. as she turns the pages. Presently, she says, “God’s work!” giving him authorial and photographic credit. It’s a compliment all right, but it’s still weird.

    Mr. Fire @414

    *adds finishing touches to entire wall of Lynna-related paraphernalia in dingy, creepy basement*

    All right! Now that’s what I call true fandom. However, you’ll never get the vibrating lingerie. I’ve hired a bodyguard. [Has bodyguard check her six.]

  404. #416 Lynna, OM
    December 27, 2009

    In the text at the link SEF gave @ 400, there’s also this comment:

    The archbishop faces a difficult new year because of a continuing revolt over the ordination of women as bishops, with potentially hundreds of clergy converting to Roman Catholicism in protest over the issue, and the prolonged disintegration of the Anglican communion over gay and lesbian clergy. Added to this already combustible mix is a papal visit, the first from Benedict XVI. It will be their most public encounter since the papal decree allowing Anglicans to defect to Rome en masse.

    So, the Anglicans have lost not just the little heathen children, but they are also losing the reactionary, misogynist, and homophobic men to the Catholics. I don’t know but what it might be a good thing to have all those hetero-male-entitlement freaks in one place where it’s easier to keep an eye on them.

    I do happily note that you cannot make religion palatable by adding women and gays to the clergy. Less off-putting, perhaps, but still an institution loaded with harmful precepts.

    And where was the Anglican clergy when 70,000 women in the UK were being shipped off to get their genitals mutilated; or, now, in an improvement in efficiency, being mutilated by “cutters” who are brought in from Somalia and other countries that find it imperative to slice and dice their women’s nether regions? It might help in terms of recruiting teenagers if the church did something dramatically useful, like campaigning for women to retain their genitals intact.

  405. #417 Lynna, OM
    December 27, 2009

    Sven @404: I have that book. It’s one of the few that I occasionally reread. I’m sure that geologists quibble with some of McPhee’s explanations, but I still find his prose thrilling because he has that rare ability to stretch my thought process far back in time. Vivid and memorable. Hope your relatives enjoy the trip.

  406. #418 Lynna, OM
    December 27, 2009

    Kel @407: William Lane Craig annoys me, therefore I exist.

    Kel, the parts of your refutation that I liked best gave specific examples, like this:

    Take mountains for example. Now while one could argue that the forces of plate tectonics are greater than the mountains themselves, but the cause is not personal by any means.
         Stars would be another example. The collapse of hydrogen clouds is external to the star itself, but the process that allows for the formation of stars is by no means greater than the star itself. And again, it’s by no means personal. Only 300 years ago, Newton’s laws posited the motion of the stars and planets, but the creation of planets and stars was the work of an almighty creator.

    In the second example, the formation of stars, you gave us a twofer. We got the non-personal process, but we also got the example of this process being viewed as the work of an almighty creator as recently as 300 years ago. That in itself should make Craig leery of pronouncements about personal creators for the universe.

    In the case of this sentence, “The only personal structures made by personal beings are humans”, I get what you are trying to say (and it’s clearer in the context of the paragraph), but it still stops me. I read it three times, and it still prompts me to come up with exceptions. Maybe a rewrite is in order there?

    The discussion of an “intelligent mind” being a physical manifestation, and not an abstraction was well done. I liked that.

    Also well done was the presentation of Victor Stenger’s argument that nothing is more unstable than something.

    “Promiscuous theology” — :-) But should it be “incestuous theology”?

  407. #419 David Marjanovi?
    December 27, 2009

    Ryanair tells me: “You can stay at a Hotel in Paris for ?14 per night. BOOK NOW!

    also, eventually you’ll need to inform us a wee bit more precisely where/when we’re supposed to show up on your doorstep. :-p

    Not so impatient! :-) A thesis defense can’t be planned half a year in advance!

    Today I wrote a refutation of William Lane Craig’s argument from existence. i.e. why is there something rather than nothing. Feedback would be appreciated.

    From there…

    The argument goes as follows:

    1. Anything that exists has an explanation of its existence: either its own nature or an external cause.

    That “external cause” needs a very wide interpretation if it’s supposed to hold. I’m thinking of quantum fluctuations here, the random, unpredictable, and uncaused appearance of particle-antiparticle pairs (or of particles outside this dichotomy, like photons) ? “caused” only by the fact that it’s not forbidden by the laws of physics.

    This appearance causes a disappearance, which comes (on average) the sooner the heavier the appeared pair is. Funny thing is, the total energy of the universe (mass + potential energy) appears to be 0…

    Why do so many philosophers appear to believe they don’t need to know anything was discovered in physics in the last 100 years!?!

  408. #420 Dania
    December 27, 2009

    Did I miss something or has no one mentioned this yet?

    Venomous prehistoric raptor discovery

    Pretty cool.

  409. #421 MrFire
    December 27, 2009

    Kel @407:

    Pardon my philosphy-related ignorance, but does Lane Craig’s position amount to the Cosmological Argument, dressed-up with rectally-sourced assertions?

  410. #422 Lynna, OM
    December 27, 2009

    Dania, the close-up view of the teeth was really impressive. Saber-tooth-like, and with a venom delivery system. Deadly.

  411. #423 raven
    December 27, 2009

    The archbishop faces a difficult new year because of a continuing revolt over the ordination of women as bishops,

    Anglicans in the UK, wikianswers:

    So, how many of these 25 million actually attend church? Well, during four weeks in October 2000, the church counted it’s congregation and found that an average of 1.7 million attended services throughout the week but only 1.4 million attended on Sunday. Like all churches in the western world Anglican congregations are falling but according to C of E statistics cathedral attendances in general and all attendances over Christmas and Easter are continuing to rise.

    Religions can always have battles over the smallest things.

    A lot of xian denominations ordain women. In fact several sects were founded by women, the Xian Scientists by Mary E. and the Seventh Day Adventists by some prophetess.

    The amount of difference it actually made was around zero. My natal protestants sects started ordaining women sometime in the mid-20th century. A few kooks screamed and formed their own tiny splinter sect. No one else noticed or cared.

    Looks like the UK Anglicans have more serious problems than that. Half the population checks the Anglican box. Only 1-2 million bother to go to church. The women as clergy issue looks like they are rearranging the deck chairs on the Titantic.

  412. #424 David Marjanovi?
    December 27, 2009
  413. #425 aratina cage
    December 27, 2009

    Sven, thanks for that beautiful rendition of Over the Rainbow! It made me smile for different reasons than Gyeong Hwa Pak’s Killer Kitty laugh. :3

    Anyway, my present was the Nintendo Wii. -Mr. Fire

    Sweet. I finally got to try one out a month ago and was very impressed. While playing the tennis game I could see why the wrist straps were necessary. I came awfully close to bowling the Wiimote right into my TV, too. *goes back to playing Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks on the Nintendo DS*

    Oh ya, love the new nick, Lynna (Reflector of the Light of God).

  414. #426 raven
    December 27, 2009

    The 13,000-year old tree that survives by cloning itself title from the blog

    Not Exactly Rocket Science

    Someone found a tree that is older than twice the age of the universe.

    These aren’t single trees but clones that keep sprouting from stumps and root suckers.

    This one is a Palmer Oak in California left over from before the end of the ice age.

    There are a few such old living things known. One is a creosote bush in California that is 12,000 years old, a holly bush in Tasmania that is thought to be 43,000 years old and the only and last member of its species, and a spruce tree in Scandinavia that is 8,000 years old. No doubt if we looked harder we would find more examples.

    I’m sure the fundies have some explanation for why trees and bushes can be much older than the age of the universe. Something incredibly dumb.

  415. #427 David Marjanovi?
    December 27, 2009

    Did I miss something or has no one mentioned this yet?

    It’s almost certainly all wrong, what with the tooth having slipped way out of their sockets and having their hollow roots crushed. Start here (and don’t forget to read the comments).

  416. #428 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 27, 2009

  417. #429 David Marjanovi?
    December 27, 2009

    Teeth even.

  418. #430 Lynna, OM
    December 27, 2009

    David @427 and 429: Ah, David M., always the first to throw cold water into the face of those who haven’t shown enough skepticism where skepticism is needed. Thanks for the link. Dino teeth — definitely not my field of expertise.

  419. #431 Sven DiMilo
    December 27, 2009

    One is a creosote bush in California that is 12,000 years old

    King Clone. I have seen it. I have also found it on Google Earth; not so easy.

  420. #432 windy
    December 27, 2009

    A thesis defense can’t be planned half a year in advance!

    Technically it’s supposed to be, but I don’t know if that ever happens…

  421. #433 Dania
    December 27, 2009

    Start here (and don’t forget to read the comments).

    Ah, thanks. Reading it now…

  422. #434 monado
    December 27, 2009

    Lynna [#59], waiting for Sastra, OM:

    Sastricipation.

  423. #435 aratina cage
    December 27, 2009

    I think it was strange gods before me who coined the term “Sastrology” for Sastra’s highly anticipated teachings.

  424. #436 https://me.yahoo.com/a_ray_in_dilbert_space#6e51c
    December 27, 2009

    David says, “A thesis defense can’t be planned half a year in advance!”

    My thesis defense was kind of a rush job–mainly because my thesis itself was written in a hurry. I think I managed to convince my adviser that I needed to finish grad school before I went postal.

    It was December 1987 (yup, that long ago!). I was at home with my folks for Xmas and saw a news story on the upcoming New Hampshire Primaries. Looking at the candidates fielded against George H. W. Bush (aka Mistake#1), I thought, “Ohhh! That doesn’t look good!” I resolved to write my thesis, defend and be out of the country before the primaries. To graduate in May, you had to defend by late April. That gave me 4 months to write up (and validate) my results. By early April, I had a draft that wasn’t too embarrassing to send out to my committee, and now I had to find a date for the defense. Big problem. The only date we could find where everyone could make it was 4:00 PM on the last Saturday in April. So that is when we had the defense.

    The defense was kind of uneventful, aside from when I got to gently smack down the prof who was my nemesis in the department–well, that and the fact that I was wearing two black shoes that didn’t match. But, hey, I’m a physicist. Nobody else noticed. And then I was a PhD, which is a whole helluva lot better than being a grad student.

    So, David. Hang in. Write hard, and remember, the only person I know who won a Nobel for his doctoral dissertation was Louis Debroglie–well, and maybe Bob Schreiffer.

  425. #437 MrFire
    December 27, 2009

    Oh, and Lynna @415:

    However, you’ll never get the vibrating lingerie. I’ve hired a bodyguard.

    Too late. I’ve been wearing them for a month. Feels great. Surprised you didn’t realize I’d replaced your bodyguard with a blow-up doll this whole time.

    Yours in Psycho-stalkerdom,

    Mr. Fire

  426. #438 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 27, 2009

    I just spent all my christmas money on anthro-related books. XD

    ????

  427. #439 mythusmage
    December 27, 2009

    So I go and google the words “Atlantic Ocean Age” and get this.. Through that page, and a few intermediaries (forgot to take notes), I find this page on divergent plate boundaries.

    ‘Tis a simple schematic, but it suffices to inform us all that we all got it wrong. The East North Atlantic and West North Atlantic plates are not being pulled by anything with upwelling magma filling the expanding gape, they are being pushed apart by the upwelling magma. My thinking that it was all the work of the accumulated ridge material slumping under its own weight is also wrong, though the mass of the ridge might still contribute.

    In effect, the upwelling is forcing the rift apart, then carrying the ocean floor along east or west, depending on the direction the upwelling is diverted. Instead of pulling from the distal edge, the floor of the Atlantic Ocean is on a sort of conveyor.

    Now from the evidence the Atlantic as an ocean is some 150 million years old. That appears to be the age of the oldest ocean floor, found off the coast of North America and Western Europe. The rest is at least 10s of millions of years younger.

    That’s the age of the ocean floor. It is possible, as with the Red Sea and Lake Baikal, that the nascent Atlantic Rift formed ocean floor pretty much from the start. However, it’s far more likely that the Atlantic Ocean began as a rift valley, much like the East Afican Rift Valley, and longer ago than 150 million years ago.

    Now this is what I’ve read, but it appears that Pangea was in the process of breaking up even as it formed. By the early Triassic the supercontinent was showing cracks and one of this may well have been the start of the Atlantic Rift Valley.

    A low spot between the future continents of North America and Eurasia with a string of lakes much like that now found in East Africa. As time passed the valley widened, the continental crust overlaying it thinned, then in time was torn asunder to be replaced by oceanic crust. This may have been as recently as 150 million years ago, meaning that we still have the original ocean floor, but I’m thinking the oldest North Atlantic Ocean floor is long vanished beneath the bordering continents.

    What justifies this thinking? Inertia. It takes work to get an object to move. You’ve got an upwelling; new, malleable, thin ocean crust; and old, stiff, thick continental crust. The result is the new weaker crust, being denser, sliding under the older stronger lighter crust. Subducting in other words.

    So if the Atlantic Ocean floor is no longer subducting under North America and Western Europe, when did this happen, and why? And how do you know it doesn’t? Can you admit to gaps in your knowledge, without qualifiers?

    That’s it for this comment, another to follow on the subject of oceanic versus continental plates.

  428. #440 llewelly
    December 27, 2009
  429. #441 Kel, OM
    December 27, 2009

    It amazes me that supposedly intelligent, educated philosophers like Lane Craig keep trotting out this argument.

    My guess is that the arguments keep the faithful faithful.

    That in itself should make Craig leery of pronouncements about personal creators for the universe.

    That’s my main problem with such pronouncements. It’s nothing more than a worshipping of gaps. One could announce that planets / stars need a creator or that life needs a creator or that complex structures need a creator, but all it does is argue from ignorance. It’s as bad as an a priori proof that there could philosophically only be seven planets.

    “Promiscuous theology” — :-) But should it be “incestuous theology”?

    No, that is promiscuous teleology. Read here, or pick up a copy of Supersense where the author discusses it. Pick up Supersense anyway, it is a fantastic read!

    Pardon my philosphy-related ignorance, but does Lane Craig’s position amount to the Cosmological Argument, dressed-up with rectally-sourced assertions?

    He also pulls out the Cosmological Argument, and comes to the same conclusion. But I’m with you, it seems to be arguing the same thing, just dressed up as two separate “lines of evidence” for his Bayesian model.

    Why do so many philosophers appear to believe they don’t need to know anything was discovered in physics in the last 100 years!?!

    I find it funny that he’s arguing this while debating a physicist. Funny thing is that it seems that WLC is revered among some circles because of his “knowledge” of physics.

  430. #442 mythusmage
    December 27, 2009

    Call me strange (an accurate observation after all), but I just don’t see how continental and oceanic crust as ever being part of the same tectonic plate. Not all plate boundaries are as obvious as we like to think.

    My problem with a combined continental crust/oceanic crust plate lies in the differences between the two. The differences in chemistry, minerology, and structure. The differences between largely basaltic material and largely granitic material. You have a profound discontinuity between the two. It’s like expecting a functioning blending of chicken muscle and cow muscle. Too many differences between the two.

    What does this mean? It means that the Earth has more crustal plates then we now think, divided into two broad groups.

    The largest, in number and area, are the oceanic plates; with the the floor of the Pacific Ocean have the largest in number and area of those. It is the oceanic plates that move the continental plates for the most part, with mantle currents taking up the slack.

    Viewing tectonic plates this way we can see that such structures as California west of the San Andreas Fault are mini continental plates, being carried along by a Western Pacific plate as it moves north. Again, it’s a matter of discontinuities arguing against thinking of the two structures as parts of a larger structures.

    In short, such things as the North American and Pacific Plates as simplifications and so invalid.

    The seven or eight major plates, and all the minor plates, are simply where the plate boundaries are obvious, and that’s it. Most plate boundaries are obscure and require close study to discern. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

    The lesson here? Things are rarely as simple as we’d like to think, especially when the number of elements and their interactions becomes large.

  431. #443 David Marjanovi?
    December 27, 2009

    Write hard,

    Hardly. :-) Most or all of it will consist of published papers, so most of the writing is already done.

    and remember, the only person I know who won a Nobel for his doctoral dissertation was Louis Debroglie–well, and maybe Bob Schreiffer.

    There’s no danger of me winning one at all. There is none for biology ? the closest one is the one for Physiology Or Medicine, which is really far from my field… :-)

    ????

    Who loves very what? Also, the link doesn’t work.

    […] I find this page on divergent plate boundaries.

    ‘Tis a simple schematic, but it suffices to inform us all that we all got it wrong.

    <headdesk>

    That’s the level you can find in coffee-table books for elementary-school children. What makes you stupid enough to assert that the geologists themselves don’t know why it’s oversimplified???

    You are egnorant, correct spelling.

    The East North Atlantic and West North Atlantic plates

    There is no such thing. There’s a North American and a Eurasian one.

    are not being pulled by anything with upwelling magma filling the expanding gape, they are being pushed apart by the upwelling magma.

    Show me that the northern Atlantic is a case of ridge push and not one of slab pull, instead of just asserting it.

    If it’s ridge push, why are there all those pull-apart basins on both sides of the Pacific? Huh? Huh?

    Now from the evidence the Atlantic as an ocean is some 150 million years old. That appears to be the age of the oldest ocean floor, found off the coast of North America and Western Europe. The rest is at least 10s of millions of years younger.

    That’s mostly correct, except that it’s Africa, not Europe, that North America broke away from first. The Atlantic Ocean started as part of a rift between the northern and the southern continents, between North America + Europe + Asia on the northwest side and South America + Africa + all those fragments around the Mediterranean (like the Adriatic plate and Pannonia) on the southeast one. North America and Europe, and South America and Africa, stayed together for longer.

    Also, it’s not 150, but 170 or so.

    It is possible, as with the Red Sea and Lake Baikal, that the nascent Atlantic Rift formed ocean floor pretty much from the start.

    The Red Sea once was an ordinary rift.

    Are you sure there’s oceanic crust under Lake Baikal?

    A low spot between the future continents of North America and Eurasia with a string of lakes much like that now found in East Africa. As time passed the valley widened, the continental crust overlaying it thinned, then in time was torn asunder to be replaced by oceanic crust.

    Correct.

    This may have been as recently as 150 million years ago, meaning that we still have the original ocean floor,

    See above.

    but I’m thinking the oldest North Atlantic Ocean floor is long vanished beneath the bordering continents.

    Demonstrably wrong.

    So if the Atlantic Ocean floor is no longer subducting under North America and Western Europe, when did this happen, and why? And how do you know it doesn’t? Can you admit to gaps in your knowledge, without qualifiers?

    You’re foolishly arguing against the existence of a couple of facts you didn’t know exist. For instance, North America and its half of the Atlantic seafloor don’t currently move against each other (remember those satellite measurements?), so that’s how we know there’s no such subduction currently, apart from the fact that there’s no andesitic volcanism and no pull-apart basin and so on and so forth along the coasts of the Atlantic. Next, the geology of the eastern margin of the North American continent is very well known, from drilling and seismology ? knowledge of that area down to the base of the crust is important for oil companies and stuff ?, so we know there’s no trace of current or former subduction there. There just isn’t. Instead, the continental and the oceanic crust lie next to each other, and the continental crust extends far deeper down than the oceanic one.

    Furthermore, the western margin of the Americas has been a subduction zone for much longer than the Atlantic is old. Probably ever since the Rheic Ocean closed in the… Devonian, I think. In other words, the slab pull was already there before the heat trapped under Pangea became sufficient to break it in the middle.

    Call me strange (an accurate observation after all), but I just don’t see how continental and oceanic crust as ever being part of the same tectonic plate.

    I don’t call you strange. I call you egnorant. Unfortunately, egnorance is such a common condition that I’m pretty familiar with it.

    It’s like expecting a functioning blending of chicken muscle and cow muscle.

    It fucking isn’t. It’s like a chicken muscle and a cow muscle lying on the same slab of subcrustal lithosphere and moving together.

    You do know that, as I mentioned before, the plates consist not only of crust but also of uppermost mantle? The crust-mantle boundary has a definition that has turned out to be counterintuitive. The entire lithosphere consists of plates, not just the crust.

    (This is again something Wegener didn’t know about.)

    That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

    Did I understand that right? You announce in all seriousness that you refuse to ever learn about any facts that have already been discovered and that contradict your pitiful level of understanding of plate tectonics?

  432. #444 Kel, OM
    December 27, 2009
  433. #445 Dania
    December 27, 2009

    …I find this page on divergent plate boundaries.

    ‘Tis a simple schematic, but it suffices to inform us all that we all got it wrong.

    Of course you had to choose the most simplistic animation you could find. Of course you had to ignore this much more detailed summary of the forces that affect the movement of plates from the link I gave you before, as well as David’s excellent comments. Of course.

    That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

    In other words, you’re proudly announcing that you’re no better than creationists.

    Random mutations cannot produce new information. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

    The Grand Canyon is the result of Noah’s Flood. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

    … Seriously?

  434. #446 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 27, 2009

    Rev BDC,

    Here’s another take on Bohemian Rhapsody:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qE6emvdmg-M

  435. #447 David Marjanovi?
    December 27, 2009
  436. #448 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 27, 2009

  437. #449 https://me.yahoo.com/a_ray_in_dilbert_space#6e51c
    December 27, 2009

    Kel says, ” One could announce that planets / stars need a creator or that life needs a creator or that complex structures need a creator, but all it does is argue from ignorance. ”

    I say that the creator needs a creator, but by definition, the creator is the uncaused cause. As Douglas Adams says “‘Oh dear,’ says God and vanishes in a puff of logic. You gotta kind of be careful trying to figure out the completely unknown with only logic and intuition as your guides. Or you can just say, “Sod it. I’ll work on some thing I know exists and will make peoples’ lives better.” But hey, that’s just me.

  438. #450 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 27, 2009

  439. #451 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 27, 2009

    Who loves very what? Also, the link doesn’t work.

    this was the link

  440. #452 Amicus
    December 27, 2009

    OT-
    Councilman under fire for atheism. He declined to mention God in swearing-in ceremony.

    Atheist Holiday Display Vandalized in LA.

    Now I need to find some good news.

  441. #453 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 27, 2009

  442. #454 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 27, 2009

  443. #455 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 27, 2009

  444. #456 MrFire
    December 27, 2009

    Given PZ’s titular embed, I thought I might take it back to where some argue the trance movement began. I cannot believe that this amazing track is coming up to its eighteenth birthday.

  445. #457 windy
    December 27, 2009

  446. #458 Kel, OM
    December 28, 2009

    I say that the creator needs a creator, but by definition, the creator is the uncaused cause. As Douglas Adams says “‘Oh dear,’ says God and vanishes in a puff of logic. You gotta kind of be careful trying to figure out the completely unknown with only logic and intuition as your guides.

    Of course you might come across a TAG proponent, who only thinks a triangle has three sides because God is there to define a triangle as having three sides (Just got to watch that God doesn’t make seven-sided triangles) – then God is impervious to logic because if she is illogical he can just change logic to make her own existence logical ;)

  447. #459 Rorschach
    December 28, 2009

    Janine @ 448,

    this can not stand !

    Gabriella Cilmi–Sweet about me

    Go Dandy !

    And all this embedding is breaking my interwebz !

    Of course you might come across a TAG proponent, who only thinks a triangle has three sides because God is there to define a triangle as having three sides (Just got to watch that God doesn’t make seven-sided triangles)

    I think the Blake Stacey version of that is : “Can god make a triangle whose angle sum is not 180 degrees ?”

  448. #460 Kel, OM
    December 28, 2009

    I’ve seen a triangle that doesn’t add up to 180 degrees, it had 3 right angles. Jut make a triangle on a curved surface and it won’t add up to 180.

  449. #461 Rorschach
    December 28, 2009

    Yeah, I’ve heard that before…Probably was Blake too..:-)

    Anyway, the non-curved-surface ones then !

  450. #462 John Morales
    December 28, 2009

    Kel, how dare you trivialise Alien Geometries! :|

  451. #463 windy
    December 28, 2009

    Anyone got tips for nature travel or other activities around Orange County? And please don’t say “saddlebacking”.

  452. #464 Kel, OM
    December 28, 2009

    Yeah, I’ve heard that before…Probably was Blake too..:-)

    I heard it from Lawrence Krauss.

    Anyway, the non-curved-surface ones then !

    Which is why I go for a non-three sided triangle, otherwise it adds too many qualifiers and gets way too mathematical to people, lets face it, who wouldn’t know 2+2=4 unless they found it in religious apologetics.

  453. #465 Nerd of Redhead, OM
    December 28, 2009

    OT, off on a quick trip to visit my parents. Be back in a few days.

  454. #466 Sven DiMilo
    December 28, 2009

    Orange County, California?
    What the hell are you doing there?

    I lived in Costa Mesa for 2 years (postdoc) and as far as I can tell they keep all the nature in OC locked up in Camp Pendleton.
    There’s always Adventureland…

  455. #467 Antiochus Epiphanes
    December 28, 2009

    David

    That’s the level you can find in coffee-table books for elementary-school children.

    I don’t think you understand how this statement demonstrates the profound differences between elementary education in the US and Europe.
    1. European children make use of books.
    2. European children make use of coffee-tables.

    Intellectually and in regard to habiliments, American children are MUCH different.

  456. #468 frozen_midwest
    December 28, 2009

    windy – try some of the activities listed here

    http://www.orangecountywild.com/

  457. #469 Alan B
    December 28, 2009

    Surplus to requirements

    (No, I’m not talking about YEC – I would have started with “Share and Enjoy” …)

    I am clearing my papers (prior, no doubt, to collecting even more). I have a reprint of:

    Table Mountain Serpentinite
    Extrusion in California Coast Ranges
    by William R Dickinson, Stanfrod Uni, Stanford Ca.
    Geological Society of America Bulletin
    v. 77, p451-472, 9 figs., 4 plates, May 1966

    (The only reason for offering it is that it has a large, full-colour geological map of the Table Mountain Area of Ca at a scale of 2.5 inches to the mile, about 20 inches high and larger lengthwise. Apart from being folded the map is imaculate.)

    I realise it is dated but if it’s of any real use to anyone, let me know or I will throw it away.

  458. #470 Lynna, OM
    December 28, 2009

    Australians are waking up to the misuse of taxpayer funds for religious events like Catholic World Youth Day, but not for secular events:

    SUDDENLY, religion is making inroads again into Australian politics and our secular society. Not only have we now got a devout believer as Prime Minister but the Opposition Leader is even more devout.

    The election of Christian hard-liners to positions of power and influence in NSW doesn’t stop at Macquarie Street. NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione is a devout Baptist who worships at the influential Hillsong Church. He is responsible for the first official police Bible, bound in police blue with an official NSW Police crest on the cover. On Scipione’s watch, all new NSW police graduates from the Goulburn Academy are routinely offered one of these special Bibles.
         While Scipione is doing good work in trying to curtail alcohol-based violence, he has made no secret of the fact he brings his Christian faith into his policing work. Out at Hillsong that means treating homosexuality as a disease to be cured rather than an identity to be lived. But is it a fair whack that taxpayers are funding police Bibles?

  459. #471 Lynna, OM
    December 28, 2009

    Alan B., I’d like to have the Table Mountain map, but what will it cost you to mail it?

  460. #472 mythusmage
    December 28, 2009

    David Marjanovic, #443

    The schematic is as detailed as it needs to be to to explain the mechanism involved. Upwelling mantle material rises, hits the crust, and splits into two horizontal streams. Crust is carried along on the streams with magma fills in the gap so created. The plate doesn’t need to be pulled to be moved, the convection cell does the job just nicely.

    Now let us get it right here, the floor of the Atlantic Ocean is not being pushed or pulled. The floor of the Atlantic Ocean is — at least in part — being carried along on a current of mantle material that rises at the Mid Atlantic Ridge then splits into two horizontal sheets moving east or west. No ridge push, and no slab pull. Neither are necessary.

    Where the oldest Atlantic Ocean floor is concerned, how do you know it still exists? You do remember inertia. It takes effort to get something to move. Inertia means things are not going to move unless you work at making them move. It is my thinking that when the the first oceanic crust formed under the nascent Atlantic it was subsequently forced under the continental crust east and west of it by the mantle current. And I think it possible that this subduction continues to this day.

    Now your contention (and correct me if I’m wrong) is that the bordering continents are pulling at the Atlantic Ocean floor. Now you have continental rock abutting oceanic rock, with apparently a strong enough connection for the continental crust to pull the oceanic crust as it moves. Is the connection that strong. Can such a connection be strong enough. For that matter, is there such a connection at all?

    No subduction? Is that the interpretation of data because there is no subduction, or because researchers don’t expect subduction because of the surrounding circumstances? Is no subduction seen because the situation is unlike known subduction situations. Are we dealing with a biased interpretation because researchers are unfamiliar with the specific conditions surround the boundary between the floor of the Atlantic Ocean and its bordering continents. Are we dealing with a unique situation we don’t yet recognize as unique because we have not yet learned to see it?

    Now let me address your simile fail. I was not comparing chicken muscle and cow muscle directly with oceanic and continental crust. I was pointing out, Mr. Order of the Molley winner, that the two muscle types are different things, much as the two types of crust are. That while the two tissues are broadly alike, there are differences in structure and in details that can be identified upon examination. My point is, as with reptilian and mammalian muscle, there are too many differences between oceanic and continental crust for the two to be found in the same structure. You say the schematic I pointed you too is a gross simplification of the true situation. It is my contention that the current picture of plate tectonics is a gross simplification of the true situation.

    You’ve shown me the current thinking on the matter. I see problems with it. As a description of what goes on it doesn’t satisfy me. You have become fixated on one explanation and refuse to entertain any alternative. Even when a possible alternative is presented to you. You have forgotten that science is about uncertainty and let the misguided assurance of experts sway your thinking.

    Even worse, you have let your emotions overcome your good sense. I don’t pretend to know everything, I only present scenarios and possibilites. I present my understanding based on what I know, guided by the fact that people often miss the obvious and let their biases, preconceptions, and previous learning influence how they judge matters. I’m a contrarian and I do not accept what anyone says just on their say so. You convince me with evidence, not assertions, and you’ll get a lot further when you show me you have considered what I’ve been saying honestly. That you have not done, and you show no indication you’re even capable of it. No, you make statements based on what you think is supported by fact, giving no consideration to the possibility you might be wrong.

    Finally a question for you and Dania (comment 445). What gave you the idea I was thinking like a creationist? What gave you the idea I was using creationist argumentation? I present a scenario, an hypothesis supported by what evidence I’ve been able together, and then state that I’m standing by what I’ve just said unless and until provided evidence that speaks against it. Have I or have I not admitted to being wrong when shown that I am wrong?

    I’m now off to look at those pages you directed me to. For the moment I shall ask of you that you refrain from letting your emotions overrule your good sense.

  461. #473 mythusmage
    December 28, 2009

    Okay, I’ve had a look at the page in question and I noticed one thing. According to the author slab pull occurs only where subduction occurs. No subduction, no slab pull. Since the floor of the Atlantic Ocean, according to David Marjanovic, is not, indeed can not, be subducting beneath North America, how is slab pull occurring in this situation?

    I contend that lacking subduction there can be no slab pull. In other words, the floor of the Atlantic Ocean is moved east or west solely by the heat generated movement of upper mantle material carrying oceanic plate material along with it. That being the case, it means that subduction is possible at the far edge of the plates, which would make slab pull possible. But a subduction and slab pull at a rate that doesn’t leave the evidence left by faster subduction events.

    Besides, the lesson in question addresses a generic convergent boundary between two oceanic plates, not the boundary as it exists around the basin of the Atlantic Ocean. The two are not equivalent.

    So if Dania is correct, and the basins in the floor of the Atlantic are caused by pulling, how? No subduction, no slab pull, no basins. Yet we have basins. How do we get those subduction dependent features without subduction?

    (I’ve bookmarked the parent site and will be doing further research on the subject.)

  462. #474 mythusmage
    December 28, 2009

    Follow Up

    Then again, maybe not. Turns out that Open University requires the payment of fees for full use of resources. You can access some material as a guest, but not everything. A pity.

  463. #475 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    I see problems with it. As a description of what goes on it doesn’t satisfy me.

    Are those evolution-denialist-like catchphrases I see?

    You have become fixated on one explanation and refuse to entertain any alternative.

    And evolution-denialist-like projection?

    You have forgotten that science is about uncertainty and let the misguided assurance of experts sway your thinking.

    And evolution-denialist-level hypocrisy from the guy who said “That’s my story and I’m sticking to it”?

    I’m a contrarian and I do not accept what anyone says

    Is there any difference between that and being a denialist?

    Do Not Taunt the Octopus

  464. #476 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    Hm.

    Gotta use max-width to scale images down.

  465. #477 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    …Except that max-width doesn’t work with background images. Lovely.

    +1

  466. #478 David Marjanovi?
    December 28, 2009

    I don’t think you understand how this statement demonstrates the profound differences between elementary education in the US and Europe.

    I thought about that, but: such books are in no way part of any school curriculum, they’re just commercially produced books; and there isn’t even a German equivalent for the term “coffee-table book”.

    The schematic is as detailed as it needs to be to to explain the mechanism involved.

    How could you tell?

    You can’t, and it’s not detailed enough.

    Follow Dania’s link already.

    Upwelling mantle material rises, hits the crust, and splits into two horizontal streams.

    See, that happens rarely, if ever. Vertical rising exactly below a rift is not the normal situation. Apparently there’s one rise below Africa and another below the eastern Pacific.

    As Dania’s link says, it is common for a plate to move in the opposite direction from the asthenosphere under it.

    Plus, the simplistic scheme ignores the fact that it’s not the entire mantle, but just the asthenosphere, that moves here; the uppermost mantle layer is solid and forms part of the lithosphere together with the crust. The entire lithosphere, not just the crust, forms the plates.

    No ridge push, and no slab pull. Neither are necessary.

    Neither of them can at all be avoided, because gravity itself cannot be avoided.

    Read the page Dania linked to, you ridiculously porphyritic granitoid.

    Where the oldest Atlantic Ocean floor is concerned, how do you know it still exists?

    Two independent lines of evidence:

    1) There is no sign of past or present subduction at either margin of the Atlantic, except for the trench off the Lesser Antilles. Geologists know what subduction looks like, and they’re not blind.

    2) Paleomagnetics shows that North America and Africa drifted apart exactly at the time from which the oldest known Atlantic seafloor dates. What an unusual, unexpected coincidence. Don’t you think so?

    Is the connection that strong. Can such a connection be strong enough. For that matter, is there such a connection at all?

    Yes, yes, and yes, respectively. Show me otherwise.

    Show me especially where the alleged zone of weakness between the continental and the oceanic crust continues into the subcrustal lithosphere. Come on, we’re waiting.

    No subduction? Is that the interpretation of data because there is no subduction, or because researchers don’t expect subduction because of the surrounding circumstances? Is no subduction seen because the situation is unlike known subduction situations. Are we dealing with a biased interpretation because researchers are unfamiliar with the specific conditions surround the boundary between the floor of the Atlantic Ocean and its bordering continents. Are we dealing with a unique situation we don’t yet recognize as unique because we have not yet learned to see it?

    You wouldn’t know subduction if it bit you into your ignorant ass.

    My point is, as with reptilian and mammalian muscle, there are too many differences between oceanic and continental crust for the two to be found in the same structure.

    I understood that full well. What you’re not understanding is that:

    1) “plate” is defined as “lithosphere material that moves as a unit right now”, no fucking matter how coherent it is or of how many plates it once consisted.
    2) The difference between “lithosphere” and “crust”.

    You say the schematic I pointed you too is a gross simplification of the true situation. It is my contention that the current picture of plate tectonics is a gross simplification of the true situation.

    So… you use an oversimplification of an oversimplification as your source of information and present it to us as correct?

    Did someone shit into your brain?

    You’ve shown me the current thinking on the matter. I see problems with it.

    Because you don’t understand half of the current thinking on the matter, you’re not able to recognize any problems in it as such, even if you do happen to see them.

    As a description of what goes on it doesn’t satisfy me. You have become fixated on one explanation and refuse to entertain any alternative. Even when a possible alternative is presented to you. You have forgotten that science is about uncertainty and let the misguided assurance of experts sway your thinking.

    Dunning-Kruger effect.

    You present a hypothesis that is manifestly wrong, but refuse to entertain the possibility that your knowledge might possibly be insufficient. Instead, you have fallen in love with your hypothesis and defend it desperately and futilely.

    How do you know the experts are misguided?

    You don’t ? you simply assert it.

    Even worse, you have let your emotions overcome your good sense.

    See, that’s a creationist argument. If I don’t address your ignorance, you’d say I couldn’t refute your arguments, so they must be true. When I do, you are shocked ? shocked! ? that a scientist hasn’t undergone the full kolinahr as part of his training, and conclude that I must be wrong, because otherwise I wouldn’t defend anything, would I. Ooh, how rare it is for a scientist to have SIWOTI syndrome… in fact, the only scientist I know who lacks it started his career as an actor and now spends way too much of his time being offended because most of his colleagues treat his pet hypothesis with SIWOTI syndrome.

    Have you no shame?

    I present my understanding based on what I know

    …which is, visibly, not much.

    I’m a contrarian and I do not accept what anyone says just on their say so.

    Then follow the link already.

    You convince me with evidence, not assertions, and you’ll get a lot further when you show me you have considered what I’ve been saying honestly.

    That’s exactly what I’m doing.

    I’m not being polite; but I consider the egnorant nonsense you’ve been spewing perfectly honestly.

    No, you make statements based on what you think is supported by fact, giving no consideration to the possibility you might be wrong.

    Imagine a mirror.

    What gave you the idea I was thinking like a creationist? What gave you the idea I was using creationist argumentation?

    Your own words perhaps?

    Yes, your own words. You exhibit the Dunning-Kruger effect. You’re making arguments from ignorance and defend them instead of doing something against your ignorance. You’re making arguments without even knowing that they were disproven decades ago ? without even trying to find out whether they have been disproved. You’re willfully ignorant. And to top it off, now you’re making the “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” argument about tone.

    One logical fallacy after another, coupled with egnorance.

    In short, the creationist way of argumentation.

    I present a scenario, an hypothesis supported by what evidence I’ve been able together, and then state that I’m standing by what I’ve just said unless and until provided evidence that speaks against it. Have I or have I not admitted to being wrong when shown that I am wrong?

    You have not.

    You have not even fucking tried to find out whether you’re wrong.

    You have not even followed Dania’s link.

    You’re so embarrassing, I’m getting a stomach ache.

    I’m now off to look at those pages you directed me to.

    Ah, now. After you write all this cretinist-style stuff. After you make a pitiful moron of yourself.

    How stupid.

  467. #479 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    …And TVTropes frowns on embedded images.

    Sigh.

  468. #480 Dania
    December 28, 2009

    What gave you the idea I was thinking like a creationist?

    Well, this was typical creationist behavior. If the North Atlantic sea floor was currently moving faster than North America, this would support your hypothesis. But it isn’t, and David contradicted your claim. What did you do? You asserted it again without evidence to back it up.

    You said you were sticking to your story when the facts don’t support it. You think that oceanic and continental crust are too different to be part of the same tectonic plate… Just like creationists, you think you know more about a subject than people who have dedicated their lives to its study.

    You say this…

    I present a scenario, an hypothesis supported by what evidence I’ve been able together, and then state that I’m standing by what I’ve just said unless and until provided evidence that speaks against it.

    … which leaves me wondering if you’ve been reading David’s posts.

    Yes, I think you’re acting like a creationist.

    Since the floor of the Atlantic Ocean, according to David Marjanovic, is not, indeed can not, be subducting beneath North America, how is slab pull occurring in this situation?

    *headdesk*

    Go reread David’s comments. You haven’t understood them.

  469. #481 Antiochus Epiphanes
    December 28, 2009

    there isn’t even a German equivalent for the term “coffee-table book”.

    Sure there is. Can’t you just stick a bunch of German words together to make one (or, if you prefer, make sure that at least one of the roots is Latin)?

    Howzabout…”Kaffeetisch Buch”
    or if you aren’t into the whole whole brevity thing, “Einwachgeologischgeschichtsbuchfurkinderdiekafeetrinken” (Insert your own diacritical marks and pardon my schitty German).

    Do we have to register this with some sort of governing body, or is its publication validating enough?

    Anyway, I have nothing better to interject than this, but I have been reading with interest. I was never into geology until two summers ago when I read some of McPhee’s work. I think I’ll go back and read it again.

  470. #482 Dania
    December 28, 2009

    And when rereading them, pay special attention to this:

    What is it that moves the Americas westward?

    Not ridge push, but slab pull. Look these terms up.

    The Pacific seafloor sinks down vertically in the subduction zones off the west coast of the Americas. The Americas are sucked in.

    So strongly, in fact, that North America has started breaking apart at its westernmost edge (Alaska excepted). That’s how Baja California and the San Andreas fault came to be.

    and this:

    Furthermore, the western margin of the Americas has been a subduction zone for much longer than the Atlantic is old. Probably ever since the Rheic Ocean closed in the… Devonian, I think. In other words, the slab pull was already there before the heat trapped under Pangea became sufficient to break it in the middle.

  471. #483 Alan B
    December 28, 2009

    #471 Lynna

    Postage. Don’t know. I’ll find out.

  472. #484 David Marjanovi?
    December 28, 2009

    According to the author slab pull occurs only where subduction occurs. No subduction, no slab pull. Since the floor of the Atlantic Ocean, according to David Marjanovic, is not, indeed can not, be subducting beneath North America, how is slab pull occurring in this situation?

    Of course there’s subduction ? at the western margin of the North American plate! The Pacific Ocean is being subducted beneath North America (California excepted), and this vacuum pulls the entire North American plate westwards. The eastern margin of that plate is the mid-Atlantic ridge.

    That being the case, it means that subduction is possible at the far edge of the plates, which would make slab pull possible. But a subduction and slab pull at a rate that doesn’t leave the evidence left by faster subduction events.

    Namely what?

    Besides, the lesson in question addresses a generic convergent boundary between two oceanic plates, not the boundary as it exists around the basin of the Atlantic Ocean. The two are not equivalent.

    Indeed not ? there are no plate boundaries at either sides of the Atlantic, except for the convergent boundary with the Caribbean plate (and the thing to the east of the Scotia Plate, which carries the islands between South America and Antarctica ? sorry, I had forgotten to mention those).

  473. #485 David Marjanovi?
    December 28, 2009

    Howzabout…”Kaffeetisch Buch”

    Kaffeetischbuch would be fine, except it has no obvious meaning ? because it’s not an established term, all the connotations of the English one are missing.

    “Einwachgeologischgeschichtsbuchfurkinderdiekafeetrinken”

    That’s not a word, that’s half a sentence. :-) Geologieeinschlafgeschichtenbuch für Kinder, die Kaffee trinken is the version with the longest single word I can contrive, and it doesn’t sound quite natural. :-)

  474. #486 Sven DiMilo
    December 28, 2009

    Where do the Germans put their heavy, large-format, often-lavishly-and-colorfully-illustrated books?
    Where do they put their freakin coffee?

  475. #487 eddie
    December 28, 2009

    I see shelleytherepublican are desperate for traffic, so they have put up a poll: They’re asking “Who’s your dream ticket for 2012?” Even tho Limbaugh/Palin has two of the options to add up, it’s still not beating Beck/Palin.
    I’m still hoping Billy Bob Neck can get on the ticket.

  476. #488 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 28, 2009

    Geologieeinschlafgeschichtenbuch für Kinder, die Kaffee trinken

    Deutsch hat zu viele lange Worte.

  477. #489 Antiochus Epiphanes
    December 28, 2009

    “Who’s your dream ticket for 2012?”

    Elvis Costello and Bruce Springsteen doing Clash covers.

    Or maybe just the Pogues.

    We are talking about a concert here, right?…oh. Oh no.

  478. #490 eddie
    December 28, 2009

    SEF @400;

    Might that be the CoE’s last desperate attempt to stop their pedos going catholic?

  479. #491 eddie
    December 28, 2009

    Sorry. I now have read down to 416. More catching up…

  480. #492 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 28, 2009

    Folks, let’s do each other a big favor. Each YouTube video that’s imbedded takes several seconds to load. That causes the whole thread to slow down loading. If you just give links, then the thread loading is a lot faster. So please stop imbedding videos. Especially videos that everyone will look at once (or maybe not at all) but will be slowing down loading for days to come.

  481. #493 PZ Myers
    December 28, 2009

    What ‘Tis said. An occasional video imbed for effect is OK, but too much is too much.

    One thing to keep in mind: if the burden gets too large, I’ll have to go in and remove the object tag from the list of permissible html. Then all those videos go poof, and some of you will just have blank comments left.

  482. #494 Sven DiMilo
    December 28, 2009

  483. #495 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    Since the image link @#475 is being redirected:

    Do Not Taunt the Octopus

  484. #496 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    Sven, you’ll have to speak up a bit.

  485. #497 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    I mean, don’t get me wrong, terse is fine…

  486. #498 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    …but if you’re trying to say something coherent, it has to be there, yanno?

  487. #499 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    Speaking of page load times…

    Am I the only one using Noscript+Flashblock?

    Just curious.

  488. #500 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009

    I mean, it must be pretty tedious for those who can’t opt to not view the flash stuff.

  489. #501 Lynna, OM
    December 28, 2009

    Bible verses served up with burgers:

    At all In-N-Out Burger outlets, patrons will receive a biblical chapter-and-verse reference on some of your packaging, whether they want it or not….Only the book and verse is listed, not the actual scripture.

  490. #502 boygenius
    December 28, 2009

    @Cath #364

    For someone residing in the land Up Over rather than the land Down Under, could you please explain the phrase: “chuck a little wobbly”? I like the sound of it but I would hesitate to use it without clarification. I think I know what it means, but I would hate to use it in an inappropriate context.

    Also:
    For what it’s worth from a noob, I agree with ‘Tis & PZ. Too much embedding = too slow page loads. (Although I am guilty of doing it once or twice myself.) Isn’t posting a link sufficient?

  491. #503 John Morales
    December 28, 2009

    I too encourage restraint.

    Owlmirror, I do run NoScript but don’t bother with FlashBlock. OTOH, I have enabled ScienceBlogs.

    boygenius, Google should be your friend.

    http://chukkawobbly.blogspot.com/

    (I.e., it’s akin to spitting the dummy)

  492. #504 boygenius
    December 28, 2009

    Owlmirror,

    Not to be tedious, but what is this Noscript+Flashblock you speak of, and how do you implement it on FireFox?

    (Again, I’m pretty much a noob when it comes to blogs, especially ones with registration services, etc.)

  493. #505 John Morales
    December 28, 2009

    boygenius, in FireFox go to
    Tools → Add-ons → Get Add-ons to, um, get add-ons. :)

  494. #506 boygenius
    December 28, 2009

    John Morales,

    *Sigh*

    Yes, Google is my friend. I am spitting the dummy as we speak. Sorry for the interruption.

    As you were.

  495. #507 Owlmirror
    December 28, 2009
  496. #508 boygenius
    December 29, 2009

    All right, thanks John and Owlmirror. Now I have noscript & flashblock installed. However, I am now unable to sign in without disabling them. Don’t spoon-feed me anymore, let me tinker a bit and figure it out on my own. It’s the only way I’ll ever learn. :-)

  497. #509 Owlmirror
    December 29, 2009

    Of the sites that noscript shows as having javascripts on Scienceblogs, the only one that I am allowing is scienceblogs.com itself.

    The following are all blocked:

    google-analytics.com
    outbrain.com
    addtoany.com
    researchblogging.org
    quantserve.com
    postrank.com
    doubleclick.net

    I mention this not to spoon-feed, but out of curiosity to wonder if any other noscript users have a different configuration.

  498. #510 F
    December 29, 2009

    And thank you for playing guess my name!

    You’re welcome! I wish I had known I was playing that game!

  499. #511 John Morales
    December 29, 2009

    I only forbid quantserve and doubleclick here, mainly because I couldn’t be stuffed fine-tuning, but also because I don’t want PZ to lose too many stats.

    I used IE until version 8 (ptui!), relying mostly on my hosts file to avoid crud, and it’s still fairly up to date.

    Quantserve gets stats for USA, and doubleclick is an advertisement service.
    (I don’t see any ads on this site) :)

  500. #512 windy
    December 29, 2009

    What the hell are you doing there?

    Socializing and soaking up light and vitamins, mostly… I’ve been trying to cut down on frivolous flying, but put this one down to medical physiological necessity.

    frozen_midwest;

    http://www.orangecountywild.com/

    Thanks! I might also go here at some point.

  501. #513 Rorschach
    December 29, 2009

    Am I the only one using Noscript+Flashblock?

    Flashblock yes, noscript no. And I block those stat sites within FF, also google.com, even though I only allow session cookies anyway.

    Lynna @ 470,

    thanks for linking to that article, I dont normally read newspapers here, for a conservative paper like that that was quite an achievement !
    And the comments to the article are, to say the least, encouraging !

  502. #514 Sven DiMilo
    December 29, 2009

    Now Catalina I can recommend. Probably too cold for snorkelling, but they should still be selling fish tacos at the pier. Hike up into the interior–nobody else does–and you can get some amazing views.

  503. #515 F
    December 29, 2009

    I don’t seem to need to bother with Flashblock any more – not for quite a while.

    NoScript – Turn off notifications, it is one of the reasons some people quit NoScript. (Actually, it is because they can’t be bothered to configure anything aside from their desktop themes and wallpaper.)

    I had allowed researchblogging.org in the past, for some reason. Otherwise the same as Owlmirror’s forbidden list.

    You just allow certain domains, which are usually obvious, if you seem to be missing expected content. (On some sites, CDNs like akamai and edgesuite must be allowed.)

    AdBlockPlus is quite handy. I use it w/o importing or subscribing to pre-defined filter lists. ‘Collapse blocked elements’ is the bees knees.

  504. #516 F
    December 29, 2009

    That was supposed to be a possessive s. Bee’s.

  505. #517 Dania
    December 29, 2009

    I run NoScript (same configuration as Owlmirror) and because of this thread I decided to forbid youtube.com. The page loads much faster that way and if I want to see a video I just click on it.

    Thanks to AdBlockPlus, I haven’t seen any ads in a while. :)

    Flashblock: I don’t have it installed, but I think I will give it a try

  506. #518 Dania
    December 29, 2009

    .

  507. #519 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    re: #483

    Lynna: On second thoughts, I know it’s coming to a good home. It’ll be in the mail soon as I can get to the Post Office.

  508. #520 Janine, She Wolf Of Pharyngula, OM
    December 29, 2009

    As one of the biggest offenders about embedding videos, I am sorry. I will keep this in mind.

  509. #521 MrFire
    December 29, 2009

    The In-N-Out Burger bible verses are found in the various ass-cracks of the packaging: appropriate, really. I’m waiting for the day when I pull the flap over and it tells me I’ve won a car!

    In the meantime, make mine a double-double, no-cheese, animal-style, extra lettuce.

  510. #522 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    #474 mythusmage

    Good. Now you are reading some better “stuff” we can talk a bit more.

    The material of which the diagram is a part is an introduction to plate tectonics. On the front page:

    http://openlearn.open.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=2717

    you will find that it is estimated that you will need about 15 hours to study it properly so it is not a trivial one page, leaving lots of questions unanswered. It is a (small) part of a module that fits into a range of degree courses with the Open University. For a 3 year UK degree course it comes at a about second year level (hence the reference number S[for science]279). [The large majority of UK degrees are 3 years rather than the 4 years which I understand is more normal in the US.] The full module will go into more detail with audiovisual material, exercises etc. etc.

    The Open University (OU) is a University based on distance learning – i.e. students live at home, carry on working (or not), have families, look after relatives etc. etc. Study is fitted into the normal day as you wish. An honours degree is 360 points. Except under unusual conditions, you are only allowed to take 120 points in a year and this is considered to be the equivalent of a third of a full time degree. You can take less – many do 30 points on some years, more on others. Currently, I am one level 3 course away from a pass degree and three level 3 courses away from an honours degree (having already got a B.Sc. in Chemistry 40+ years ago).

    The OU is a major University with more students than any other in the UK. When I took the second year geology module (S260 at the time), there were over 1000 home kits sent out. This number has halved more recently but there are few Universities that can claim that they have over 500 students taking a level 2 geology course. Everybody received a quality metallurgical microscope, a set of about 30 rock specimens, about 30 mineral specimens and about 30 high quality casts of fossils (so everybody was looking at the “same” specimen). Each of the rock samples had a thin section slide to examine under the microscope. I only mention this to give you some background into what you are reading.

    The OU, like any other organisation, wishes to interest potential students and also wishes to provide an educational service to UK society (and anyone else who might be interested). Part of this is the “Open Learn” Learning Space. You will find a list of all the courses available at:

    http://openlearn.open.ac.uk/course/

    Any or all of them are available free, no charge whatsoever.

    You can do a course without anyone knowing or you can join in on a discussion web site if you wish (I am not sure how this works – I have not used it). There is a wide range of courses, from parts of Year1, Year2 and Year3 degree modules (with a few post graduate). These are taken from the whole range of OU faculties including Science, Arts, Maths, Social Studies, Law etc. etc.

    Taking one of these free courses will not count towards a subsequent degree (they are not examined). However, you will only be charged if you enroll in one of the modules which will then build towards a degree (BS or BA depending on the range of modules you’ve taken).

    I would suggest that you go through the entire Plate Tectonics material – it really is worth the 15 hours. There are a number of geology courses that you can follow up with or brush up your maths if that is an interest, or find out about the Tay Bridge disaster (at post graduate level) or Textiles in Ghana or Welsh History and its Sources …

    Have a browse, have a go!! And that goes for anyone on this thread. You will almost certainly find something of interest.

  511. #523 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    I’m skimming through the tectonics discussion. I’m not even sure where to begin.

    Actually, yes I do. And here it is: Granitic doesn’t equal granite.

    I understand what you’re trying to say, but when the bulk density of a mass of continental crust is reduced down to calling the whole thing granite, it’s hard for me not to just stamp “Alan Clarke” on the entire discussion and move on. And no, it’s still not really okay to do if you’re just being broad brush to try and make a point. Not in the context of a discussion that I’m supposed to take seriously. It’s fine if it’s just an off-the-cuff blog comment. It’s not fine if you’re trying to convince me that you have novel hypotheses to advance. I mean, there are a lot of lemurs in Madagascar, but if you were trying make a general statement to contrast the marine mammals of the Indian Ocean with the terrestrial mammals on Madagascar, would you really think it’s okay to say something like: “Well, we’ve got marine mammals in the Indian Ocean, but once you get onto the land, say around Toamasina, things change. You go from marine mammals to Mirza coquereli.”?

  512. #524 Sven DiMilo
    December 29, 2009

    Used to be, in Southern California you couldn’t swing a dead cat without hitting the car of some douchebag who thought it hilarious to modify his (always, always “his”) In-n-out Burger bumpersticker to read “IN-N-OUT URGE” heh heh heh.

    One wondes how the apparently xtian overlords of the corporation feel about that.

  513. #525 Carlie
    December 29, 2009

    I also use Noscript and Flashblock. Noscript is a pain in the ass, but eventually you get all the usual suspects on the good list and it’s ok. When I want to do something crazy like browse multiple store sites with crazy scripts(looking for a specific thing, for instance), I just go use IE for a few minutes.

  514. #526 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    #502 boygenius

    For someone residing in the land Up Over rather than the land Down Under, could you please explain the phrase: “chuck a little wobbly”?

    “Land up Over” and “Land Down Under” are geographic terms of uncertain meaning. As an Englishman (stands up straight, hums “Land of Hope and Glory” from Elgar’s Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1**), I can only say how it’s used over here.

    “Chuck a wobbly does not sound English” (or at least British). I doubt whether Her Majesty (God Bless Her) ever “chucks” anything. Throw, sir, Throw. Throw a wobbly.

    It can be used in a literal way. Thus, there was a footbridge in London which swayed whenever people walked on it (interesting concept, when you think about it …). The Garundia***, a paper well known for its typing errors used the sentence:

    Short of a herd of wildebeest charging across it, it was hard to know whether or not the Millennium bridge in London would throw a wobbly when it reopened yesterday.

    (I am not aware that they ever did try the herd of wildebeest: there was nothing in the gnus about it.)

    [Ed. handpalm]

    However, a wobbly (or wobbler) is generally taken to be “a fit of panic, nerves, anger”. Thus, to throw a wobbly means “To burst out into a verbal uproar”

    I did find one example of its use:

    “He threw a wobbly when he found her having sex with the plumber on the kitchen floor.”

    Not, admittedly, a common feature of life in my household but I understand it has been known to happen elsewhere.

    ** http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THYgeETrkPs&feature=related

    *** Otherwise known as The Guardian

  515. #527 Dania
    December 29, 2009

    or wobbler

    A wobbler is something that woobles. What is it that woobles but doesn’t fall down, again? ;)

  516. #528 Dania
    December 29, 2009

    wobbles, even.

  517. #529 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    I’m glaring at you now. You can’t see it, but it’s happening…

  518. #530 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    wobbles, even.

    And you did it twice!

    Priceless.

  519. #531 Dania
    December 29, 2009

    And you did it twice!

    I was probably thinking about the other word and it ended up as mixture of the two.

    Humpf.

  520. #532 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    *giggle*

    +10

  521. #533 Owlmirror
    December 29, 2009

    @Josh:

    Hsst !! Chicxulub.

  522. #534 Owlmirror
    December 29, 2009

    What is it that woobles but doesn’t fall down, again?

    I have no fucking clue.

    <*looks innocent*>

  523. #535 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    Hsst !! Chicxulub.

    I’m on it. I don’t have an opinion just yet. I find Keller et al. to be dreadfully hard slogging sometimes, so I’m reading in increments (otherwise they put me right to sleep).

  524. #536 Owlmirror
    December 29, 2009

    I find Keller et al. to be dreadfully hard slogging sometimes, so I’m reading in increments

    Thanks for the effort, then.

    (otherwise they put me right to sleep)

    Don’t forget to check your six…

  525. #537 Sven DiMilo
    December 29, 2009

    Hsst !! Chicxulub

    Gesundheit!

  526. #538 Lynna, OM
    December 29, 2009

    Alan B @519

    Lynna: On second thoughts, I know it’s coming to a good home. It’ll be in the mail soon as I can get to the Post Office.

    Thanks so much! I will share the map with my brother, Steve, of course.

  527. #539 eddie
    December 29, 2009

    Owlmirror @507 didn’t mention Mos Def exactly, so I will:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EsGwLFchRg

    “Right here’s where the end’s gon’ start at!”

    Also, I think your gumby experiment was not the success you thought it was. Weren’t you trying to show what _would_ get put in moderation?

  528. #540 mythusmage
    December 29, 2009

    Nota Bene: This is a revised version of the original comment, edited to remove most of the link. If you’d like a copy of the original, drop me a line at mythusmage (at) gmail (dot) com. Anyway, here’s the edited comment;

    The western edge of the North American plate borders the Eurasian Plate at the Chersky Range, the Okhotsk Plate at the Ulakhan Fault (an east moving transform boundary), the Aleutian Trench where the North American Plate first meets the Pacific Plate, the Explorer, Juan de Fuca, and Cocos plates. (remnants of the Farallon Plate; the Nazca Plate borders the South America Plate.). The Pacific Plate meets the North American again at the San Andreas Fault, which stretches between the Juan de Fuca and Cocos plates

    The San Andreas and Ulakhan faults are transform boundaries; with the San Andreas moving generally northwest while the Ulakhan is moving easterly There is some compressional activity at the San Andreas, since the Pacific Plate is moving generally northward while the North American Plate is moving generally west. For this reason the San Andreas could be called a combination boundary, exhibiting both transform and convergent activities. The Ulakhan is more a pure transform fault, only with both bordering plates moving to the east.

    (Adding to the complex situation at the San Andreas Fault is the Basin and Range Province in western North America, which is separating the Rockies in the east from the Sierra Nevada in the west. It would appear that the Basin and Range rifting system is breaking off the western part of the North American plate from the eastern part.)

    The rest are convergent boundaries, with the North American Plate overriding the Farallon remnants and compressing the Eurasian Plate.

    As you can see at most boundaries the western North American Plate is either pushing the bordering plate down (subduction) or crumpling it up. The two exceptions is the Ulakhan Fault, which is pretty much a transform boundary, and the San Andreas, which appears to be a combination transfrom/convergent boundary. Complicating matters is the Basin and Range Province, which is ripping the North American Plate apart.

    After all that exposition the first thing to note is that at no point is the western edge of the North American Plate being subducted under any other plate. No subduction, no slab pull. From the evidence available the most reliable conclusion is that the North American Plate is being moved west largely by ridge push plus possible western movement by the convection cell underlying it.

    A possibility is that since the North American Continent is composed of continental crust, while the Pacific (at the Aleutian Trench), Explorer, Juan de Fuca, and Cocos plates are oceanic crust (which means the latter are denser than the former), North America is overriding the others and, in effect, being transferred from the North American Plate to the others, eventually — when the remnant plates disappear, to become part of the Pacific Plate.

    Then again, the Basin and Range Province might be the last sign of the old Farallon Plate, with the original eastern edge rising again as part of a rifting system tearing apart the tectonic plate that destroyed it.

    And that is what I got from my research.

  529. #541 mythusmage
    December 29, 2009

    Dania, #527

    Once a man was driving down a country road in California’s Central Valley. As he drove he passed by a diary farm with a herd of cows quietly grazing as a bull watched the scene. As he came abreast of the bull the area was hit by an earthquake, which cased all the cows to fall down in jumbled heaps. The bull only swayed from side to side.

    The man stopped his car and got out. As he was doing this another tremblor hit and the scene was repeated. Perplexed he approached the bull and asked, “How is it the cows were knocked down by the quakes, but you weren’t?”

    The animal looked him in the eyes and said, “We bulls wobble, but we don’t fall down.”

  530. #542 Owlmirror
    December 29, 2009

    Also, I think your gumby experiment was not the success you thought it was. Weren’t you trying to show what _would_ get put in moderation?

    Avoiding moderation is always the implicit goal of any post. But you’re right, I did not confirm the original hypothesis that background image links in a comment would invariably force that comment into moderation.

    Great. Now I have to test it. Thanks heaps.

  531. #543 Owlmirror
    December 29, 2009

    For the sake… of SCIENCE!!

    Silly Text 1

    Does

    Silly Text 2

    this

    Silly Text 3

    get

    Silly Text 4

    dumped

    Silly Text 5

    into

    Silly Text 6

    moderation?

  532. #544 Owlmirror
    December 29, 2009

    Let the record show that the six-gumby-comment post, using image URL links with http://scienceblogs.com as prefixes, did indeed go into comment moderation upon being posted.

    Hypothesis not falsified !!

    Science works !!

  533. #545 eddie
    December 29, 2009

    From Diskworld Monthly:

    * From: “Kristina Dombroski”
    *
    My friends and I had a Discworld party once where we made several dishes from Nanny Ogg’s Cookbook. The Strawberry Wobbler was quite humorous (we also made a “female” version using wine glasses for the guys present), although no one really cared for the flavour. We also made Sergeant Angua’s Vegetable Stew, which was pretty good (but the Dumplings kept dissolving in it; we couldn’t figure out how to make it work); Brodequin Roti Facon Ombres, which we found quite tasty; and Nanny Ogg’s Special Nibbles with the Genuan Spice Mix, which were a hit. I also made Chocolate Delight with Special Secret Sauce at another time, and that was okay, but I’ve had better.

    I imagine throwing such a thing would have serious consequences.

    Also, OU FTW!

  534. #547 vanitas
    December 29, 2009

    Alan B @ 522
    Thanks for the info re OU. Wanted to do a course or two with them in the past but it cost too much (UK citizen but no address in UK at the time, was living in Spain). May just check out the options now that I have the requisite address (now living in France but UK contract). Unfortunately there aren´t enough years left to pursue everything I would like to learn!

  535. #548 vanitas
    December 29, 2009

    Dania
    A weeble wobbles but it doesn´t fall down!

  536. #549 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    #546 vanitas

    Unfortunately there aren´t enough years left to pursue everything I would like to learn!

    I know 3 people who were in their mid-80s and working towards a Geosciences degree. One was unable to leave the house but lapped up eveything he could. The other two, a married couple, I met on SXR260 which was a geology summer school with field trips every day and working until 9 p.m. (then an exhausting hour or so over a few pints …) They were mid-80s and they were 2 of the most active students – physically and mentally. There is no upper age limit at the OU.

    Also, the Government is reducing funding specifically to the OU even though it provides an important means to achieve their target of 50% to go to University**. This is in addition to the general reduction in funding recently announced. It will only get more expensive.

    ** However, if a University takes more students than set by the Government, they will now be fined a hefty amount! No. I don’t understand it either!

  537. #550 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    #526

    [Ed. handpalm]

    That’s the trouble with Ed. He thinks he’s so clever:

    [Ed. handpalm = [Ed. facepalm]

    Josh: Can you explain this?

    http://newsimg.ngfiles.com/60000/60474_Tactical_facepalm.jpg

  538. #551 David Marjanovi?
    December 29, 2009

    After all that exposition the first thing to note is that at no point is the western edge of the North American Plate being subducted under any other plate. No subduction, no slab pull.

    Except that the subduction of the Pacific Plate under the North American plate generates suction that sucks the entire plate westwards. There is no compression between the North American continent and the Atlantic seafloor, nor has there ever been.

    to become part of the Pacific Plate.

    When movement between plates ceases, they become one plate. Happened to Europe and Asia…

    Then again, the Basin and Range Province might be the last sign of the old Farallon Plate, with the original eastern edge rising again as part of a rifting system tearing apart the tectonic plate that destroyed it.

    No, the original eastern edge melted long ago. The Basin and Range and the Gulf of California are just what happens when a midocean ridge (the Eastern Pacific Ridge) hits a subduction zone. Quadruple junctions aren’t stable, they become two triple junctions.

  539. #552 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    Josh: Can you explain this?

    That’s an odd picture. It looks like some sort of police STOP team or SWAT team or something; some sort of tactical response unit. They don’t look military to me, even though they’re decked out in a quasi-hi-speed manner.

    I think they are demonstrating a hand signal* (i.e., it’s just a show), but it’s not one I’m familiar with. Unless it’s a weird variant of “cease-fire,” then it doesn’t appear to be a signal that we use (they’re cutting down a good bit of visibility, even for the very short time that it takes them to execute the signal–that’s not great**; additionally, it looks like it requires a lot of arm displacement*** and movement–also not something that’s not particularly tactical****).

    *When we’re in bad guy territory and being all creep around, we tend to communicate with subtle hand signals, since even whispering into the team radios makes more noise than you want.
    **If you’re a point guy or something, then I’d argue that whatever the hell that signal is amounts to a reduction of security–cardinal sin.
    ***I’m actually a fan of developing intra-team SOPs whereby by-the-book signals are modified so that they involve less motion. You lose some distance visibility in thick brush/low light, but you gain security in that you’re waving your arms around less. *shrug*
    ****For a second, I also thought that they were giving the signals with their firing hands, which would be absolutely unforgivable. But I don’t think they are. Even though they’re holding the weapons in a strange way, they’re most likely right-handed and thus are probably giving the signal with their non-firing hand.

    Okay, that was probably more explanation than you wanted, but you asked.

  540. #553 llewelly
    December 29, 2009

    there isn’t even a German equivalent for the term “coffee-table book”.

    gro

  541. #554 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    #551 Josh said:

    Okay, that was probably more explanation than you wanted, but you asked.

    No. On the contrary. That was the kind of assessment I was looking for. I simply could not understand why any system of signalling would:

    Block an important part of your visibility.

    Presumably, you would not be using (or practising) hand signals for a situation where there were no enemy combatants. The last thing, therefore, you would want to do would be to take your hand so far from your weapon.

    Also, what kind of situation would require a hand signal directly in front of the face which would not be seen from behind or the side (palm flat to the face and blackened)?

    Looked good fun but did not seem to have any sense or logic behind it which I find unusual for the military. A form of quasi Natural Selection comes in here i.e. people who do stupid things are less likely to be alive to pass on the “good idea”.

  542. #555 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    While you are around, Josh, would you care to explain, “Check your six”? Seems just about everyone knows the term but I had not met it before being on this (unending) thread.

    At first I thought it meant keeping an eye open for where your half platoon members were. In UK, at least many years ago when I was in the Combined Cadet Force at school, a platoon was about 10 men lead by a corporal with 2 lance corporals. Hence “Check your six” could be an instruction for the LCs to make sure they knew what their half-platoon was doing thus enabling the Corporal to think more about what the platoon as a whole was up to.

    Now I suspect that it refers to being alert to what is going on around you. “Tactical awareness” presumably if you want long words. But why 6? Front, Rear, L, R, Above, Below?? “Below” presumably being watch what you are about to tread on (IED, tripwires), esp. important in a guerilla-type war.

    Is this better?

  543. #556 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 29, 2009

    I think they are demonstrating a hand signal* (i.e., it’s just a show), but it’s not one I’m familiar with. Unless it’s a weird variant of “cease-fire,” then it doesn’t appear to be a signal that we use

    You don’t have a signal for “I’m a dumbass”?

  544. #557 Carlie
    December 29, 2009

    Looks to me like they were practicing to do a Thriller video, like that prison in the Philippines did.

  545. #558 Sven DiMilo
    December 29, 2009

    “Watch your six” is in analog-clock-space. Like, “bogies at 2 o’clock!”

  546. #559 Sven DiMilo
    December 29, 2009

    That “tactical facepalm” is pretty funny. i agree with Carlie that it’s some kind of choreography. Check the guy in back’s stance–either he’s a Marvel superhero or he’s dancing.

  547. #560 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    At risk of confusing mythusmage, there is also the concept of the Wilson cycle. As I understand it, over a long period of time (I remember typically of the order of 500 Ma) plate tectonics could undergo a reverse whereby, for example, the Atlantic Ocean (N & S) could close.

    The mechanism proposed is that the very oldest oceanic plate material (i.e. that closest to Africa) would cool and shrink/sink and start to subduct under the edge of the African continent. That part is currently at a greater depth than the rest of the Eastern Atlantic Ocean. This would then set up a subduction zone and the newly-started slab pull would then cause the closure of the Atlantic ocean with N/S America closing up to Europe/Africa. The floor of the Atlantic Ocean would be subducted below Europe and Africa.

    The Wilson cycle was not emphasised in the OU courses on plate tectonics I have taken and I dug out most of the idea from US University sites and by digging around in the literature.

    Is the long-term Wilson cycle still considered valid?

    (Incidentally, it is my understanding that, Yes there were separate American/European and “Asian” plates and they did join with the suture zone being the Urals, stretching out onto the archipelago of Novaya Zemlya. I presume that this is still accepted?)

  548. #562 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    #557 Sven DiMilo

    “Watch your six” is in analog-clock-space. Like, “bogies at 2 o’clock!”

    So, with 12 o’clock in front, “Watch your six” would mean, “Mind your back”? Or, in pantomime terms

    “He’s behind you”
    “Oh no he isn’t”
    BANG
    “Oh yes he was!”

    I thought “bogies at 2 o’clock!” was used by mothers to tell their child to wipe its nose!
    (Sorry, poor joke)

  549. #563 Dania
    December 29, 2009

    the Atlantic Ocean (N & S) could close.

    Well, that’s what these maps show.

  550. #564 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    #544 eddie

    Also, OU FTW!

    Only with the meaning, For the World. Not the other one!

  551. #565 Dania
    December 29, 2009

    But, from that page, it looks like the floor of the Atlantic ocean (and the ridge itself) will be subducted beneath the Americas, not Africa and Europe.

  552. #566 Alan B
    December 29, 2009

    Bed calls. Up early(ish) tomorrow to hear England beat S Africa in the second test.

    With such drawish pitches and poor bowling attacks, will this be enough to win the series (1 win to England, rest draws)? Somebody needs to pull out some gardening/groundsman’s skills and find out how to produce a strip that will allow a bit more excitement and, more particularly, a result. Too many flat pitches (see Kennington Oval).

  553. #567 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    Yep, as Sven said, “watch your six” refers to the fact that we orient on an analog clock when in the suck. The direction to your front is always “your twelve,” and the natural, I guess, result is statements like: “I’ve got movement on my 3–RPG and a rifle–350 meters!”

    “Watch your six” is team slang for “watch your ass.”

    Now I suspect that it refers to being alert to what is going on around you. “Tactical awareness” presumably if you want long words.

    Very close to spot on. We actually refer to it as situational awareness, or SA.

    But why 6? Front, Rear, L, R, Above, Below?? “Below” presumably being watch what you are about to tread on (IED, tripwires), esp. important in a guerilla-type war.

    It turns out that people can process clock directions faster than they can L, R, etc., although we definitely modify the directions with up or down, especially when taking fire.

  554. #568 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    I kinda figured they were doing some choreography, but it never occurred to me that it might be set to music. Creepy…

    You don’t have a signal for “I’m a dumbass”?

    Yeah. We do. It’s the signal we award Purple Hearts for…

    The last thing, therefore, you would want to do would be to take your hand so far from your weapon.

    That’s why they are always done with the non-firing hand. You don’t ever want your firing hand to be that far from the trigger housing.

    Also, what kind of situation would require a hand signal directly in front of the face which would not be seen from behind or the side (palm flat to the face and blackened)?

    Yeah, it’s odd to be sure. We have a signal for ceasing fire that’s kind of like the one that they’re doing, whereby the hand is waved up and down in front of the face, palm facing out. It’s also a reduced visibility, large range of motion signal. But if that signal is given in a combat situation, it’s given after rounds have been fired. When that happens, you’re not tactical anymore; everyone knows you’re there*.

    *And any QRF is rapidly headed your way.

  555. #569 Sven DiMilo
    December 29, 2009

    “in the suck” is my new favorite term.

    Reminds me of living in Boston. There’s an intersection where like 5 or 6 big roads come together where the little bridge crosses the Charles in Watertown (here), which is more-or-less commonly known as “The Fuck.” As in:
    “What’s the quickest way to Home Depot from here?”
    “The Fuck.”

  556. #570 Sven DiMilo
    December 29, 2009

    By the way, the library and Armenian Museum visible in that map are the locations for some of the junky scenes in Infinite Jest.

  557. #571 Josh
    December 29, 2009

    Funny, I rather like Boston. But driving in it…well that’s something else entirely.

  558. #572 Antiochus Epiphanes
    December 29, 2009

    @Alan B….I am starting to follow some of the geology, but I’m sorry… I just don’t know that much about Pokemon (post #565).

  559. #573 F
    December 29, 2009

    Carlie:
    Temporarily allow all of this page

  560. #574 Rorschach
    December 29, 2009

    The analog-clock is also used in Medicine to describe pathology around the anus, by convention when examined with the patient prone on their back with the legs spread.
    For example in such sentences as ” Patient X has a thrombosed hemorrhoid at 3 o’clock”.

    :-)

  561. #575 David Marjanovi?
    December 29, 2009

    Is the long-term Wilson cycle still considered valid?

    I’m not sure. Personally, I doubt it, because the Pacific opened 700 million years ago and still hasn’t closed, even though no seafloor older than 200 million years survives there. Some oceans close very quickly (such as the Penninic one, which opened in the Late Triassic or so and is now gone except for some parts of the Mediterranean, leaving pillow lava in the Alps), others don’t. I think the cycle is a coincidence.

    Incidentally, it is my understanding that, Yes there were separate American/European and “Asian” plates and they did join with the suture zone being the Urals, stretching out onto the archipelago of Novaya Zemlya. I presume that this is still accepted?

    Of course.

  562. #576 F
    December 29, 2009

    Yeah, it’s odd to be sure. We have a signal for ceasing fire that’s kind of like the one that they’re doing, whereby the hand is waved up and down in front of the face, palm facing out. It’s also a reduced visibility, large range of motion signal. But if that signal is given in a combat situation, it’s given after rounds have been fired. When that happens, you’re not tactical anymore; everyone knows you’re there*.

    *And any QRF is rapidly headed your way.

    This signal is for when we’re already past that. It means:
    Oi, I’ve been fucking shot in the head.

  563. #577 Owlmirror
    December 29, 2009
    the Atlantic Ocean (N & S) could close.

    Well, that’s what these maps show.

    Reunite Gondwanaland !!

    *clenched-tentacle salute*

    Only with the meaning, For the World. Not the other one!

    FTW more usually means For The Win, so … ??

  564. #578 mythusmage
    December 29, 2009

    Let me see if I got this right; if motion was to stop at the Chersky plate we would then have a Northern Hemispherical superplate. What would we call this structure, the Eurasian-American plate?

    As to the possible closing of the North Atlantic, the Basin and Range Province might be the cause of that, assuming it becomes more active and starts pushing on the eastern portion of the North American Plate harder.

  565. #579 Sven DiMilo
    December 29, 2009

    What would we call this structure, the Eurasian-American plate?

    I shall call him “Squishy.”

  566. #580 Rorschach
    December 30, 2009

    Mystery of dinosaur disappearance solved !!

    Why did all the dinosaurs die out?

    And there is this interesting vid that promotes a book called The Atheist’s Guide to Christmas

  567. #581 Sven DiMilo
    December 30, 2009

    I’m pretty happy that I am not “Patient X” right now.

    In fact, I’m pretty happy period. My grades are finally done and in, gifts are finally packed up and mailed (yeah, both a little late this year *shrug*) and I am drinking a last Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale (so freakin good if you like bitter, and I mean bitter hoppy ales) at 5 AM because I’ve been up all night. And now I will sleep the sleep of the just.
    The just plain beat.

  568. #582 Sven DiMilo
    December 30, 2009

    shit I forgot: 15777

    Also:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNzilDmPpCg

  569. #583 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    Congrats on completing the grades, Sven. I’ll toast to that, but will have to do so with water (getting suited up for a very unwarm prework ruck–beer would be a bad idea right now).

  570. #584 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    So we come full circle to my original contention, that the floor of the Atlantic Ocean is subducting under the North American Continent. After all the rumble and fuss we have learned that the situation regarding the North American Plate does not match that of any plate that is subducting under another plate, but is more that of a plate that is overriding neighboring plates.

    With one exception of course, that of the Puerto Rico Trench, with the North American Plate is subducting under the Caribbean Plate, while at the same time sliding past it. Making the Puerto Rico Trench a combination Transform/Convergent boundary. But that, it would appear, is a special case, all in all the North American plate in large part is overriding everything it meets.

    And yet, as Dania has pointed out, the floor of the Atlantic Ocean has basins, much like that of plates that are being subducted. Basins that develop as a result of slab pull. But, so far as we know, there is no slab pull.

    As a matter of fact, we have a rift system in North America — the Basin and Range Province — that is pushing east on Eastern North America. At the same time the Mid Atlantic Ridge is pushing west on the same part of the world. Countervailing forces basically.

    Something’s going on here. I’m thinking that there is slab pull involved, but the trench in question is under North America, having been pushed there over tens of millions of years. However, we seem to have found no evidence of such a trench. I have no answer to that, except to note that we tend to overlook things that contradict what we expect to see, or interpret things as we expect them to be. As the old saying goes; the hidden we can spot right away, the obvious takes a bit longer.

    In other words, we don’t see evidence of a trench under eastern North America because we don’t expect to see that evidence, and what evidence we do see gets interpreted as arguing against a trench. There can’t be a trench, therefor there is no trench.

    So there’s the situation; there is evidence pointing to slab pull regarding the floor of the North Atlantic, yet other than a minor trench no obvious site where slab pull could be taking place. There might be a trench hidden under eastern North America, but no evidence of such has been found, or, if found, interpreted as arguing against the presence of a trench. Since there is, according to the accepted wisdom, no evidence for a trench, there is no need to go looking for a trench.

    So we find ourselves at an impass.

  571. #585 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    For a look at earthquakes in New York State visit the Lamont-Doherty Cooperative Seismographic Network. Turns out that the New York area is a earthquake active place.

  572. #586 Rorschach
    December 30, 2009

    David Marjanovic,

    just for the fun of it, and the austrian accent(he talks a while in that one) :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zrmlJm9JNJA

    :-)

  573. #587 Dania
    December 30, 2009

    After all the rumble and fuss we have learned that the situation regarding the North American Plate does not match that of any plate that is subducting under another plate, but is more that of a plate that is overriding neighboring plates.

    So? You seem to be forgetting that trench suction force is pulling the entire North American plate westwards!

  574. #588 Dania
    December 30, 2009

    Turns out that the New York area is a earthquake active place.

    Which seems to be related to the existence of seismically active faults there.

    Also, look at this map from the site you linked to. Look at the zones which we know to be subduction zones. Now look at the east coast of North America and at the west coast of Europe. What conclusions can you draw from those data?

  575. #589 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    There might be a trench hidden under eastern North America, but no evidence of such has been found, or, if found, interpreted as arguing against the presence of a trench. Since there is, according to the accepted wisdom, no evidence for a trench, there is no need to go looking for a trench.

    Well, to put an active trench* under eastern North America, there are a number of observations (and “anti-observations”) that you’re going to have to explain.

    For example, why isn’t the crust of eastern North America being actively crumpled in a major way? Why are the Atlantic Coastal Plain sediments, which are for the most part poorly lithified or unlithified, happily sitting there with close to flat dips all the way up and down the eastern seaboard? How is a ton of oceanic crust getting stuffed under eastern North America with nary a notice by the continental rocks under which it’s being stuffed? What, subduction leads to orogeny except in eastern North America? Or better yet, subduction leads to orogeny except in eastern North America, this time**?

    Where is all of the heat from the subducting slab going? Why isn’t West Virgina an active volcanic province? Or Ohio? Given the lack of major crustal thickening (ala the Himalyas) exhibited in the region, there is no reason to think that a good number of the rising diapirs wouldn’t make it to the surface. Or is there no partial melting going on at depth in this case?

    Then, of course, you need to account for the age distributions of the oceanic rocks.
    ________________________
    *But what you’re really trying to advocate is that the oceanic crust we see in the Atlantic continues under the observed rocks of the North American continent and then subducts further inland, right? You’re not really advocating a trench, per se, are you? It’s not necessary (think India) and to do so you have to additionally create a detachment at depth whereby the subducting oceanic crust is bending where it smacks into the continental crust (and thus creating a trench). To put a trench in all of this makes it even more complicated (and again, it isn’t needed). I think you’re saying trench, but what you want to be saying is subducting portion of the Atlantic oceanic crust.
    **Or are you also going to argue against the evidence for the various orogenies that are recorded in the Appalachians?

  576. #590 SC OM
    December 30, 2009

    How is a ton of oceanic crust getting stuffed under eastern North America with nary a notice by the continental rocks under which it’s being stuffed?

    That made me laugh. I wish I knew enough geology, and had enough time, for some anthropomorpic continental-rock puns…

    Oh, well. Before I hit the road,

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U990QFyvN3M

  577. #591 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    anthropomorpic continental-rock puns

    Sadly, I don’t think this will work as a band name, but I really wish it would.

  578. #592 Walton
    December 30, 2009

    SC, when you have time, there is a reply waiting for you on this thread.

  579. #593 SC OM
    December 30, 2009

    Walton, I saw it, and plan to respond at some point later today (tomorrow morning at the latest). About three hours behind schedule today. :/

  580. #594 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    About three hours behind schedule today. :/

    I never could get the hang of Wednesdays.

  581. #595 PZ Myers
    December 30, 2009

    That’s an interesting definition of “impasse” that mythusmage must be using.

  582. #596 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    That’s an interesting definition of “impasse” that mythusmage must be using.

    Quite.

  583. #597 Antiochus Epiphanes
    December 30, 2009

    How is a ton of oceanic crust getting stuffed under eastern North America with nary a notice by the continental rocks under which it’s being stuffed?

    I don’t know why this is making me hungry for pizza, but its subliminal effect is strong.

  584. #598 Alan B
    December 30, 2009

    Does anyone remember if I have posted about Southstone Rock in the Teme Valley area? I don’t think I have but I don’t want to bore people even more than usual.

    If not, I’ve got some interesting info together in the “Share and Enjoy” real rocks series.

    [Ed. Well, he thinks it’s interesting.]

  585. #599 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    I don’t know why this is making me hungry for pizza

    OFFS, now I want pizza. And I’ve just now finished a tasty club sandwich.

  586. #600 David Marjanovi?
    December 30, 2009

    Sorry, I can’t watch any YouTube videos at the moment. Later.

    As to the possible closing of the North Atlantic, the Basin and Range Province might be the cause of that, assuming it becomes more active and starts pushing on the eastern portion of the North American Plate harder.

    There’s no pushing going on there (there’s no midocean ridge), and the Basin and Range isn’t somehow fixed to the lower mantle or anything. No, the entire Basin and Range moves westward, its western part a bit faster than the eastern part. That’s because of things like the trench suction force, which is strongest at the western edge of the continent, and the San Andreas transform fault.

    But that, it would appear, is a special case, all in all the North American plate in large part is overriding everything it meets.

    Except the western edge of the Eurasian plate, which it meets at the mid-Atlantic ridge.

    And yet, as Dania has pointed out, the floor of the Atlantic Ocean has basins, much like that of plates that are being subducted.

    Whuuut?

    There is no pull-apart basin in the Atlantic Ocean.

    As a matter of fact, we have a rift system in North America — the Basin and Range Province — that is pushing east on Eastern North America.

    No, the Basin and Range is being pulled apart.

    I’m thinking that there is slab pull involved, but the trench in question is under North America, having been pushed there over tens of millions of years. However, we seem to have found no evidence of such a trench. I have no answer to that, except to note that we tend to overlook things that contradict what we expect to see, or interpret things as we expect them to be. As the old saying goes; the hidden we can spot right away, the obvious takes a bit longer.

    In other words, we don’t see evidence of a trench under eastern North America because we don’t expect to see that evidence, and what evidence we do see gets interpreted as arguing against a trench. There can’t be a trench, therefor there is no trench.

    This sounds entirely reasonable if and only if you have no idea whatsoever what traces subduction leaves. See comment 588 for the most obvious ones. Moreover, I have pointed out that North America and the floor of the eastern North Atlantic do not move relative to each other. You have yet to address these points.

    So we find ourselves at an impass.

    Translation: you find yourself too lazy to spend a couple of hours in teh intart00bz.

  587. #601 Keymaker
    December 30, 2009

    Here’s a link to make a 100% edible Flying Spaghetti Monster. /www.evilmadscientist.com/article.php/edibleeyes

  588. #602 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    Alan, regarding the Wilson Cycle. It hasn’t been falsified. But it’s of limited utility. I just dug around in one of my old structure texts. Turns out the text of the passage I was looking at is online. From Twiss and Moores, 1992, Structural Geology, W.H. Freeman and Company, NY, 532 pages:

    http://books.google.com/books?id=14fn03iJ2r8C&pg=PA493&lpg=PA493&dq=Twiss+Moores+Wilson+Cycle&source=bl&ots=JgeoxjUGRL&sig=nXk_OFa_LvdciQNt2p-gfTsCl-0&hl=en&ei=jJQ7S6ibAZHnlAfdkZGbBw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CAoQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=&f=false

  589. #603 Dania
    December 30, 2009

    Great. Now I want pizza too. Damn you, Antiochus Epiphanes!

    And yet, as Dania has pointed out, the floor of the Atlantic Ocean has basins, much like that of plates that are being subducted.

    Whuuut?

    There is no pull-apart basin in the Atlantic Ocean.

    I don’t know (or didn’t know) whether there are basins in the Atlantic Ocean or not, but I have not “pointed out” anything regarding basins in the Atlantic Ocean. Not sure where mythusmage got that idea from, but it wasn’t from me.

  590. #604 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    Okay, pizza for all.

    And yet, as Dania has pointed out, the floor of the Atlantic Ocean has basins, much like that of plates that are being subducted. Basins that develop as a result of slab pull. But, so far as we know, there is no slab pull.

    I actually am not sure even how to deal with this assertion. Plates that are being subducted develop basins? Do you mean fore-arc basins? In what part of the Atlantic are you talking about? Pictures/maps/sections/seismic lines/citations?

  591. #605 NJ
    December 30, 2009

    Why isn’t West Virgina an active volcanic province?

    Not to give the nutcase any ammo, Josh, but there are some Tertiary intrusives in West Virginia. And as I recall, there is a magnetic anomaly in the NC Coastal Plain sediments that is probably a buried intrusion.

    Obviously all of the geophysical data collected on the coast would indicate an active trench if there was one present. But these intrusions are interesting.

    And just to muddy the waters further, the East Tennessee Seismic Zone has quakes with strike-slip motion.

    A passive boundary doesn’t mean a dull one, does it? Not that you implied that…

  592. #606 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    Dania, #586

    How? Doesn’t the plate in question have to be subducting in order for slab pull to be a factor?

  593. #607 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    Dania, #589

    And why are there seismically active faults in New York State.

    BTW, I don’t have full access to the (pay) article, and the available abstract is sketchy

  594. #608 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    Josh, #590

    Could it be a quiet subduction zone? A subduction zone, that is, where oceanic crust is descending into the mantle slowly, melting slowly, and so not building up to the point the molten material is rising to the surface in eruptions. Could the Atlantic Trench (to give it a name) be an atypical subduction zone?

  595. #609 Sven DiMilo
    December 30, 2009

    Could the Atlantic Trench (to give it a name) be an atypical subduction zone?

    Yes! Yes it could!!!
    ‘Cept there’s, like, no evidence of its existence is the problem.

  596. #610 Lynna, OM
    December 30, 2009

    Alan B :

    Does anyone remember if I have posted about Southstone Rock in the Teme Valley area? I don’t think I have but I don’t want to bore people even more than usual.

    As far I know, you haven’t graced us with info on Southstone Rock in Teme Valley.

    As far as boring us goes, I think the only one that’s bored is Ed.

    You could have Ed. establish a boredom baseline that does not include him, and always strive to stay above it. Ed can take a poll among his friends … if he has any.

  597. #611 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    Not to give the nutcase any ammo, Josh, but there are some Tertiary intrusives in West Virginia.

    I know. There’s some of it in Virgina, too. Tertiary (Eocene) isn’t now (if he is trying to subduct the slab now, then the volcanism needs to be much more recent than Eocene). Besides, while enigmatic, as far as I know, the problematic igneous rocks in West Virgina are mafic/intermediate in composition. Not really going to help his case much. If he is going to subduct a slab below the Appalachians, then I want to see recent felsic volcanism on the scale that is preserved in the Devonian and Silurian intrusive suite in Maine (at the very least, the scale of the Silurian intrusives):

    http://www.maine.gov/doc/nrimc/mgs/pubs/online/bedrock/bedrock11x17.pdf

    A passive boundary doesn’t mean a dull one, does it? Not that you implied that…

    Nope. Not in the least does it mean a dull one. And I agree with you: those intrusives are interesting. The earthquakes, too. Even a passive margin is going to accommodate stress, and much of the northeastern US is underlain by highly fractured crystalline rock. Any of those blocks can potentially move against each other to relieve stress. That’s why NY/NE have the earthquake risks that they do, despite being not particularly active regions.

  598. #612 Lynna, OM
    December 30, 2009

    I admire the tenacity of mythusmage, but I must say that he/she is beginning to resemble an atypical subduction zone, one in which all intelligent comments proffered by Dania, David M., and Josh are quietly pulled into the overheated brain of mythusmage. There, the knowledge is subjected to metamorphic forces that warp it into unrecognizable flights of imagination.

  599. #613 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    Josh, #590 revisited

    As a wild guess, because the subduction is happening slowly. It is a gentle subduction, a quiet subduction. An atypical subduction that does not behave as it’s supposed to. After all, just because something is unnecessary doesn’t make it impossible.

  600. #614 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    Could it be a quiet subduction zone? A subduction zone, that is, where oceanic crust is descending into the mantle slowly, melting slowly, and so not building up to the point the molten material is rising to the surface in eruptions. Could the Atlantic Trench (to give it a name) be an atypical subduction zone?

    Even if it’s melting slowly, if you’re partially melting that slab of oceanic crust, then where is the heat going?

    And again, if you’re going to actually advocate a trench, then you’re making the case even more complex, because you’re essentially saying that the oceanic crust is sliding under the eastern part of eastern North America, and then running into some other, thicker part of eastern North America and then bending down, thereby creating a trench. I don’t think the physics works at all.

    It would definitely be atypical, because you’re trying to hide it beneath the Appalachians (or further west, I don’t know–you haven’t specified). But you need to deal with the heat/partial melt problem and you absolutely have to explain how this slab is sliding under eastern North America and not deforming it. The speed at which it’s moving isn’t really relevant; the fact that it doesn’t appear to be crumpling the crust…is.

  601. #615 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    North America and the floor of the eastern North Atlantic do not move relative to each other

    As far as we know.

  602. #616 vanitas
    December 30, 2009

    #575 Rorschach – if your patient is on his back, isn´t he supine?

    #550 Alan B – there´s lots of energy and life, just not enough time to learn about everything I want to know. Never was any good at prioritizing…I want it all!

  603. #617 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    David Marjanovic, #601

    Insofar as the North American Plate is moving west, wouldn’t structures found as part of the plate be moving west with it?

    Where my willingness to go looking on the Web is concerned, it ever occur to you that I don’t know how to do that effectively.

    I have Aspergers Syndrome, the confusion and chaos inherent to the Web frustrates the fuck out of me, and discourages my searching. Search engines don’t help matters any, what with their disorganized and irrelevant results. Not knowing what to ask doesn’t help matters any.

    Adding to this is the fact you, and others, come across as relying on the voice of authority. I don’t trust authority. I have seen how reliance on authority hurts, and can hurt very badly. You tell me I’m wrong, but you don’t show me how. Or if you do show me how, when I check out the lead, I find it doesn’t say what you think it says.

    In short, you keep telling me I’m wrong, you don’t take the time and effort to show me how I’m wrong. You don’t explain yourself. Merely saying that Star-Bellied Sneetches are superior does nothing to prove Star-Bellied Sneetches are superior.

  604. #618 Alan B
    December 30, 2009
  605. #619 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    I went looking for ocean basins in the Atlantic Ocean, but found only the Blake Basin at Wikipedia. Ad that entry a stub.

    A Google Search produced this page

  606. #620 Dania
    December 30, 2009

    How? Doesn’t the plate in question have to be subducting in order for slab pull to be a factor?

    Except I said “trench suction”…

    And why are there seismically active faults in New York State.

    There hasn’t to be an active tectonic boundary for there to exist active faults. It’s not like tectonic plates are coherent, intact pieces of lithosphere. They’re complex, dynamic systems constituted by lithospheric material that just happens to move as a unit at the present moment.

  607. #621 Celtic_Evolution
    December 30, 2009

    You tell me I’m wrong, but you don’t show me how. Or if you do show me how, when I check out the lead, I find it doesn’t say what you think it says.

    We must not be reading the same thread… :-/

    I don’t have the requisite knowledge to contribute intelligently to this discussion, but I’ve been following it with great interest… and in doing so I just can not see how you can possibly make this assertion. There have been countless responses by persons for whom geology is what they do in this thread, and many, many of those responses have not only included their own expertise, but have included references and materials for you study.

    You have claimed an inability to access some of the materials… well, I’m sorry but that is not the fault of the posters here… I have been able to access them and they illustrate precisely what is being explained to you.

    You have a problem with “trusting authority”, well fine… but these guys (gender neutral) are not simply spouting off what they think… they are explaining to you what their years of experience AND rigorous study of the actual evidence have told them… when your authority is evidence, it’s actually ok to accept it until you can find evidence that directly contradicts it.

    You are asserting several “could be” possibilities and making “as far as we know” statements… which is fine for the purposes of inquiry and self-education… but frankly, until you provide some material evidence for them, they are merely unsupported suppositions.

  608. #622 Dania
    December 30, 2009

    After all, just because something is unnecessary doesn’t make it impossible.

    So…?

    Ah, I see. You cannot prove there is no teapot orbiting the sunsubduction zone, therefore its existence is not impossible.

    True, but… not a very convincing argument, is it?

  609. #623 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    Update

    Other North Atlantic Basins include the Guiana, North American, Cape Verde, and Canaries basins. No Wikipedia write ups however.

  610. #624 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    Dania, #623

    I see, I’m obviously wrong, so my objections don’t need to be considered seriously.

  611. #625 Celtic_Evolution
    December 30, 2009

    I see, I’m obviously wrong, so my objections don’t need to be considered seriously.

    That’s creationist-speak right there, my friend.

    If you’re objections weren’t considered, people like David and Dania and Josh would not have wasted (a considerable amount, I might add) their time responding so diligently to your questions / objections.

    Stop pretending to be persecuted. If you want your assertions / objections to the current base of knowledge to be considered seriously, then start providing some level of actual supporting evidence for your suppositions.

    If you can’t or are unwilling to, then why exactly should they be taken as anything more than unsupported supposition?

  612. #626 Dania
    December 30, 2009

    I see, I’m obviously wrong, so my objections don’t need to be considered seriously.

    No, that’s not what I meant. I was trying to make the point that without evidence to back up your claim it really doesn’t matter whether it is impossible or not. It’s not impossible, alright. But is there any good reason to admit it is true?

  613. #627 Celtic_Evolution
    December 30, 2009

    dammit…

    you’re = your

  614. #628 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    Celtic Evolution, #622

    My problem is I keep seeing people flat out denying the possibilities. Most recently Dania (#621) reminded us that she was talking about trench suction, not trench pull. That apparently the descent of the Pacific Plate (and others) is pulling the North American Plate west. My question is; how? Is the subduction of those Pacific Ocean plates producing sufficient ‘pull’ on the North American Plate to keep it moving west. I just don’t see Dania and David and others explaining their positions all that well. They are coming across as doctrinaire and authoritarian.

    My point is, there is more to the story. There is still more to be learned, more to be discovered. Unfortunately I just don’t see certain people admitting that. Going by what Marjanovic and Dania are saying, we know it all and we don’t need to learn any more. That’s the impression they give me, and they’re doing nothing to correct that impression.

    So here’s a question for all you geologists out there; why are there earthquakes in New York State? I know it’s possible for faulting to occur intraplate, but why are such plates active when there is apparently nothing to move them?

    And while I’m at it, what powers Leanon Spring in New York State?

  615. #629 Alan B
    December 30, 2009

    “Share and Enjoy”

    Real Geology Series

    I live in the West Midlands of England although I choose not to be more specific than that. An American would probably consider the countryside as quintessentially English with patchwork fields, orchards and woodlands. Unlike so much of the scenery from the arid regions of America, there is little in the way of exposed rock except for occasional quarries which quickly get overgrown unless effort is made to keep them clear to expose the geology beneath. There is a beauty and a subtlety in the English landscape.

    The River Teme (Ref. 1) flows through some of this scenery on its way to join the River Severn at Worcester. It rises in mid-Wales in an indeterminate area where springs run following rains and the source then moves further uphill while dry periods can push the source downhill. Throughout its length the river is designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) which gives it some legal protection.

    It flows through regions well known in British and World geology. The castle at Ludlow (Ref. 2), stands on a river cliff, partly surrounded by a loop in the river.

    Further down the river flows roughly North to South and acts as the county border between Worcestershire and Herefordshire. In this region it flows through a steep sided, but flat-bottomed, valley. The valley bottom is covered with alluvium while the Western hillside is composed of rocks from the Pridoli sequence of the Silurian, overlain by the Early Devonian. The hillside is too steep for crops and animals and a mixed deciduous woodland has been allowed to grow. There are many steep valleys with swift-flowing tributary streams. Many of these arise from springs where permeable limestone beds overly marls (calcareous clay) with lenticular siltstone and sandstone beds.

    All of this was laid down under fluvial conditions and the limestone bands are calcretes, locally known as cornstones. There is one particularly extensive calcrete, now called the Bishop’s Frome Limestone (after a town in the type area). This covers much of S Wales and the Welsh Marches (England/Wales borderland).

    We park on the road running (Ref. 3) near the edge of the hillside and walk across a muddy field. As the path steepens we enter the woodland. The path itself can be extremely slippery, especially following heavy rain and occasionally trees collapse and block the path. To the left is a deeply incised fast-running stream: the path is well above the stream. In many places the stream (if you were to clamber down, looks a bit like these pictures (Ref. 4 and 5). The general area is well known for bryophytes, liverworts and mosses.

    About halfway up the hillside a track leads off the the left through woodland that is becoming increasingly like a scene from “Lord of the Rings”. The stream gets louder until you suddenly see this view in front of you (Ref. 6 and 7). You have reached Southstone Rock.

    More next time.

    Ref. 1 http://www.welshicons.org.uk/html/river_teme.php

    Ref. 2 http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/618671

    (This side of the bridge is the start of the geology trail which ends at Ludford Corner:
    http://www.shropshiregeology.org.uk/sgspublications/Trail%20Guides/Teme%20Bank%20Trail%20Leaflet.pdf)

    Ref. 3 The single road through Shelsley Walsh (Grid Reference SO722629) does not have a name. The road is met at the north end by the B4203 at Stanford Bridge. The southern end of this road is met by the B2404 which runs from Martley to Tenbury Wells. The Grid Reference for Southstone Rock is: SO708639.

    Ref. 4
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/baldyd/2665413388/sizes/l/

    Ref. 5 rbg-web2.rbge.org.uk/bbs/meetings/mtgs04/mtgs041.htm
    and scroll down to the subheading Mill Coppice, just above Wednesday 7th April. While not the stream of interest, it is similar and shows another group of mad scientists (not geologists this time) floundering around in mud.

    Ref. 6 http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/777675

    Ref. 7 Photo on Page 3 of: http://www.bromsgrove.gov.uk/cms/pdf/Geodiversity%20Action%20Plan.pdf

  616. #630 mythusmage
    December 30, 2009

    Celtic Evolution, #626

    That’s creationist-speak right there, my friend.

    Your evidence?

    And what makes you think I think I’m being persecuted? People are not persecuting me, they’re just not explaining themselves all that well.

    Maybe a post on this topic at Mythusmage where people can post tons o’ links in comments and there’s a much shorter moderation queue would help.

  617. #631 Alan B
    December 30, 2009

    #629 mythusmage

    Did you mean to give a link to Leanon Spring?

    Google gives nothing for “Leanon Spring”. If you want an answer, I need a link (remember us asking you for links previously?).

  618. #632 Alan B
    December 30, 2009

    A long while ago on this thread which has no visible ending there was reference to a “Journal” full of non-science from somebody putting forward crazy ideas. At the time it seemed to be recognised by several regulars.

    1 Can anyone remember what it was?

    2 Could mythusmage be getting his “stuff” from there or somewhere similar? To date he has been coy (to say the least) about his source of information.

    The “Journal” went out of its way to produce wacky ideas with genuine-sounding evidence (until you looked hard at it). I vaguely remember that plate tectonics came into it. Ring any bells?

  619. #633 Dania
    December 30, 2009

    My problem is I keep seeing people flat out denying the possibilities.

    Make that denying the possibilities for which there’s no evidence whatsoever. Actually, it’s not even denying. We’re just asking for evidence and/or explaining to you why that possibility is being discarded. Since when is that unreasonable?

    Most recently Dania (#621) reminded us that she was talking about trench suction, not trench pull. That apparently the descent of the Pacific Plate (and others) is pulling the North American Plate west. My question is; how?

    I’m certainly not the best person to answer your question, but from the OU link:

    For the overriding plate, another theoretical force analogous to the ocean driving force has been proposed, which is derived from convection induced in the mantle above the subducted plate. Cooling of the mantle wedge against the upper surface of the subducting plate induces convection that sucks more mantle into the wedge. This is the trench suction force, FSU, which serves to pull the plate towards the trench.

    Sorry, I’m not a geologist, I can’t explain it to you any more clearly than this. I’m also learning from this discussion…

    They are coming across as doctrinaire and authoritarian.

    Why? We’re just behaving like regular, skeptical scientists. You, on the other hand, are starting sound more and more like a creationist… I mean, “doctrinaire”? Seriously? Like in “doctrine of Darwinism“? Like not trusting the geologists because you think you know more about geology than them? What next, a conspiracy?

    Going by what Marjanovic and Dania are saying, we know it all and we don’t need to learn any more.

    Now, that’s just stupid. We’re saying no such thing. You’ve been making unfounded/wrong assertions, and we (but mostly him) have been calling you on it. FFS, you’re on Pharyngula, what did you expect?

  620. #634 Alan B
    December 30, 2009

    #603 Josh

    I plugged in that link (many thanks) but it just goes to the info about the book and does not appear to display any pages. What have I done wrong or not done right?

    Alan

  621. #635 Lynna, OM
    December 30, 2009

    Can anyone explain to me how a tuyere (tuyére) works? My brother Steve has a 1902 Champion blower for his forge. He ordered two replacement tuyere(s?) for it and I’d like to understand the physics.

  622. #636 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 30, 2009

    My understanding Lynna is that the tuyere is just the contact piece between whatever is blowing the air into the furnace and the furnace. Used to deliver a hot blast to the furnace to up temps to increase the efficiency.

  623. #637 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 30, 2009

    Can anyone explain to me how a tuyere (tuyére) works?

    A tuyere is a venturi tube through which air passes into a hearth or furnace. A venturi is a constriction or narrowing of a tube which causes a gas or liquid flowing through it to increase velocity (and decrease pressure). As you know, blowing on a fire causes it to burn hotter. A tuyere has the same effect. It’s just a tube, the air (or sometimes oxygen) is supplied by a bellows or compressor.

  624. #638 Alan B
    December 30, 2009

    #633

    Could it be Pratt in Journal of Science Exploration??

  625. #639 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 30, 2009

    But I’m [mis?]remembering that from 1991 and my forging class at UGA so I could be way off.

  626. #640 Owlmirror
    December 30, 2009

    Plate tectonics movement depicted visually from GPS data:

    The International Terrestrial Reference Frame Velocity Field

    Note that the ITRF has stations in the North Atlantic as well as on the continents.

  627. #641 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    #603 Josh

    I plugged in that link (many thanks) but it just goes to the info about the book and does not appear to display any pages. What have I done wrong or not done right?

    Shit. I tried that link before posting it, too. Sorry.

    Here, try this (this is how I got it):
    Google: Twiss Moores Wilson Cycle.

    It should be the first link that pops up (it’s a books.google.com link)

  628. #642 David Marjanovi?
    December 30, 2009
    North America and the floor of the eastern North Atlantic do not move relative to each other

    As far as we know.

    Well, yes, but we know pretty far. Satellite measurements, you know, to a precision of a millimeter per year.

    Insofar as the North American Plate is moving west, wouldn’t structures found as part of the plate be moving west with it?

    Of course… what’s your point?

    the confusion and chaos inherent to the Web frustrates the fuck out of me, and discourages my searching. Search engines don’t help matters any, what with their disorganized and irrelevant results. Not knowing what to ask doesn’t help matters any.

    In that case, ask us (especially the actual geologists, i.e., not me, but Josh and Alan B), instead of egnorantly asserting that whatever we might know that you don’t know is wrong.

    Isn’t that logical?

    Why do you instead insist on talking about stuff you don’t understand???

    In short, you keep telling me I’m wrong, you don’t take the time and effort to show me how I’m wrong. You don’t explain yourself.

    Because I don’t know where to start. I’m not sure how much you have actually understood, so I don’t know at what level to explain anything.

    I recommend you use the following strategy:

    1. Go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plate_tectonics . I have not bothered to check whether such an article really exists, I guessed the URL ? Wikipedia articles tend to have easily guessable addresses. Usually, when you google a noun, the first result is a Wikipedia article anyway.
    2. Check out the links in that article, even those to concepts that you think you already understand, both those to other Wikipedia articles and the external ones (somewhere near the bottom of the article). That will take a few hours, if not days.
    3. Come back here and ask about everything you’re not completely sure you’ve understood.

    I haven’t cited primary literature because most of what I know about plate tectonics comes from a university course the syllabus of which isn’t online (or available as a book or anything). It was called “Introduction into Geology”. Four hours per week, lasting a semester, intended for paleontology undergrads…

    Finally, I have real trouble getting over the fact that, when Dania gave you a link to an interesting site, you ignored it and posted a long egnorant rant before you followed the link. At least your willful ignorance didn’t last!!!

    Other North Atlantic Basins include the Guiana, North American, Cape Verde, and Canaries basins.

    All true, and all irrelevant thrice over. What you should be looking for is a pull-apart basin in the eastern edge of the North American continent, and there is none.

    Dania, #623

    I see, I’m obviously wrong, so my objections don’t need to be considered seriously.

    So… you can’t even recognize a parsimony argument when you see one?!?

    Is the subduction of those Pacific Ocean plates producing sufficient ‘pull’ on the North American Plate to keep it moving west[?]

    Yes, as demonstrated by the Basin and Range province (the initial stage of a pull-apart basin) and the Gulf of California (a continuation of the same pull-apart basin).

    The “Journal” went out of its way to produce wacky ideas with genuine-sounding evidence (until you looked hard at it). I vaguely remember that plate tectonics came into it. Ring any bells?

    Yes. It was really wacky, basically denying plate tectonics altogether.

    Google gives nothing for “Leanon Spring”.

    Lebanon perhaps?

    So here’s a question for all you geologists out there; why are there earthquakes in New York State? I know it’s possible for faulting to occur intraplate, but why are such plates active when there is apparently nothing to move them?

    Not being one of the two geologists, and being too lazy (at half past 1 am) to look for more information, I can only guess. I bet, however, that the reason lies in the fact that passive continental margins are messy affairs, which in turn is because the upper part of a plate (I forgot if it’s all of the crust or just the top) is brittle while the lower part is ductile. When a continent breaks in two, the lower part becomes thinner because it’s being pulled apart, while the upper part bursts into a lot of separate blocks (smaller and smaller ones closer to the spreading center) that slide vertically and obliquely against each other. This sliding may not have completely ceased, I guess. Too bad I can’t just draw what I mean, or dig up the syllabus of that geology course ? no working scanner here.

  629. #643 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    Although I have to say, whereas it was annoying for you, I’m glad we ran that experiment. I have avoided using the books.google.com stuff that often pops up when I’m searching to provide sources for comments. After your experience, I will continue to omit those links.

  630. #644 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 30, 2009

    I haven’t read all of the mythusmage postings but what I’m getting is that he expects any possibility he comes up with to be taken seriously despite the glaring lack of evidence he’s provided and in spite of all the evidence flat out showing it to be completely off base from what we know.

    Is that about right?

  631. #645 David Marjanovi?
    December 30, 2009

    Journal of Science Exploration

    Yes!

    The International Terrestrial Reference Frame Velocity Field

    Wonderful! (Even though the map omits a couple of plate boundaries.)

    Is the Geological Map of the World online yet?

  632. #646 Dania
    December 30, 2009

    Thank you, Owlmirror (#641). I was looking for something similar, but you were quicker. :)

  633. #647 Lynna, OM
    December 30, 2009

    Alan B @630: Southstone rock certainly has a lot character. Yay for Tuff.

  634. #648 Lynna, OM
    December 30, 2009

    Thanks, Rev BDC and ‘Tis Himself for the tuyére info. ‘Tis, may I use your explanation if I post photos of the forge parts on my website? I will give you credit.

    I looked tuyére up via google and found a lot of generalities, plus a lot of highly technical articles, with very little in between.

  635. #649 Owlmirror
    December 30, 2009

    @Josh: A books.google link really only needs two parts: the ID — “id” — , and the page number — “pg“.

    In your link, the id field is “14fn03iJ2r8C” and the page field is “PA493“.

    Thus your long link @#603 can be truncated down to:

    http://books.google.com/books?id=14fn03iJ2r8C&pg=PA493

    Which works for me, at least, to go directly to page 493, which has the Wilson cycle in the 2nd column.

    Alan B — does the above work for you?

    If not, you should be able to put 493 into the Google books page viewer to go to that page.

  636. #650 Owlmirror
    December 30, 2009

    On the other hand… Alan B, what browser are you using?

    Firefox 3.5 appears to be clever enough to translate &amp; characters in URLs into actual & characters, but more primitive browsers may not do this.

  637. #651 Owlmirror
    December 30, 2009

    I meant “‘&amp;’ strings“.

    Why does Sb translate ‘&’ into ‘&amp;’ inside of a URL anyway?

    Bah.

  638. #652 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    So here’s a question for all you geologists out there; why are there earthquakes in New York State? I know it’s possible for faulting to occur intraplate, but why are such plates active when there is apparently nothing to move them?

    As I said before, not being at a plate boundary is not a reason for there not to be a stress field. Stress rules the day. The crust of the Earth is basically all connected–or perhaps I should say that there isn’t any part of the Earth’s crust that’s really in true isolation from the rest of the crust. You’re talking about the cracked shell of a hard-boiled chicken egg. You cannot press a tooth pic against an edge of a piece of that shell without having some effect on the entire egg crust.

    The spreading that occurs at Mid-Atlantic ridge imparts stress upon the rocks at the Mid-Atlantic ridge. But it also imparts stress upon the rocks of New England, and the rocks of the southern Appalachians, and to a lesser extent the rocks of Missouri. The subduction that occurs on North America’s western side imparts stress upon the rocks of North America’s western side. But it also imparts stress upon the rocks of Kansas, and the rocks of Missouri, and so on.

    Much of the bedrock that comprises New York state and New England, and Pennsylvania, and western Maryland and western Virginia is what’s called crystalline rock (igneous and metamorphic (some sedimentary rocks arguably qualify)). It’s very hard and it is full of fractures. Indeed, you will be very hard pressed to find an outcrop of crystalline rock anywhere that doesn’t have some fracturing exposed in it. This is also true of pretty much any clastic rocks that are well-cemented. The blocks that side on either side of pretty much any of these fractures can potentially move against each other because of imparted stress; the vibrations that result from these slips are earthquakes. Additionally, there are tons of old, not currently active faults (fractures in rocks along which movement has occurred) crisscrossing the entire region. Once a body of rock has broken, it’s pretty much broken unless the area is metamorphosed (some fractures can “heal” via mineral precipitation as well), so over time, the number of potential slip surfaces in an area tends to increase, not decrease.

    You combine this bedrock of fracture crystalline rock with a stress field and you have an earthquake risk of some severity.

    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/1978/RG016i004p00621.shtml

    http://gsabulletin.gsapubs.org/content/84/6/1861.abstract

    http://bssaonline.org/cgi/content/abstract/71/6/1875

    Post-glacial rebound of course also plays a role:
    geology.geoscienceworld.org/cgi/content/abstract/12/11/677

  639. #653 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    Which works for me, at least, to go directly to page 493, which has the Wilson cycle in the 2nd column.

    That worked for me as well, which is awesome.

    Thanks.

  640. #654 David Marjanovi?
    December 30, 2009

    Is that about right?

    Yes.

    tuyére

    è, not é.

    some sedimentary rocks arguably qualify

    I know about a legendary radiolarite… a 1.90 m tall guy told me he took a jackhammer, swung it through a wide arc against that rock, and it made “dinnnng” and came back up to the same height with no damage to the rock whatsoever. They killed eight chisels in one day in the vain attempt to get an ichthyosaur forefin or something out of that rock.

  641. #655 Sven DiMilo
    December 30, 2009

    Geology is boring.

    There.
    I said it.

    PZ is a poopyhead.

  642. #656 John Morales
    December 30, 2009

    “an ichthyosaur foreskin”?

    Oh, never mind…

  643. #657 'Tis Himself, OM
    December 30, 2009

    ‘Tis, may I use your explanation if I post photos of the forge parts on my website? I will give you credit.

    Certainly.

    I was taught about tuyeres and venturi tubes in Navy Machinist’s Mate A School over 40 years ago. I haven’t thought about them in all that time. It’s amazing what memory will dredge up sometimes.

  644. #658 Josh
    December 30, 2009

    They killed eight chisels in one day in the vain attempt to get an ichthyosaur forefin or something out of that rock.

    Fuckin’ A, man. I can tell you about some sandstones I’ve met in my day. Break rock hammers like quartz will break teeth.

  645. #659 Lynna, OM
    December 30, 2009

    tuyére, è, not é.

    Ah. Thank you, David M. I didn’t notice that I’d made that mistake.

    Thank you ‘Tis. I’ll use your Navy Machinist’s Mate A School memories.

    I’ve experienced venturi effects when crossing mountain passes or traversing mountain saddles. If the pass or saddle is narrow enough, it can funnel some harrowing winds across the trail.

  646. #660 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 30, 2009

    Fuckin’ A, man. I can tell you about some sandstones I’ve met in my day. Break rock hammers like quartz will break teeth.

    Really? Only sandstone I have an intimate knowledge of is in Zion Nat. Park, high up on a vertical face.

    And let me tell you, that shit ain’t so tough in many places. Frighteningly so.

  647. #661 Gyeong Hwa Pak, the Pikachu of Anthropology
    December 30, 2009

    PZ is a poopyhead

    Hey how come Sven gets to call PZ names. I want to call PZ names too. :)

  648. #662 Owlmirror
    December 30, 2009

    a 1.90 m tall guy told me he took a jackhammer, swung it through a wide arc against that rock

    It could not have been a jackhammer (powered by a compressor, also called a pneumatic drill), if he swung it.

    Probably a sledgehammer, yes?

  649. #663 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 30, 2009

    In other news, Rush Limbaugh taken to hospital in Hawaii with chest pains.

  650. #664 MrFire
    December 30, 2009

    I got the book Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds in my seasonal gift harvest. I am bracing myself for the section on ‘Witch Mania’, which does not sound like it will show humanity at its best…

  651. #665 eddie
    December 30, 2009

    Rev @66a

    …Rush Limbaugh taken to hospital…

    Might this be related?…

    http://www.xkcd.com/682/

  652. #666 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 30, 2009

    Apparently he was having chest pains which would make one think it was heart related.

    Which of course is confusing because I long thought he had no heart.

  653. #667 eddie
    December 30, 2009

    And tres appropriate comment number. mine, not the mistype of the Rev’s.

    Speaking of xkcd: This ought to be made real;

    http://xkcd.com/591/

  654. #668 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 30, 2009

    I’m the neighbor of the beast

  655. #669 llewelly
    December 30, 2009

    In other news, Rush Limbaugh taken to hospital in Hawaii with chest pains.

    Did those conservatives try that prayer thing again? I don’t think it works.

  656. #670 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 30, 2009

    I wonder if they’ll give him oxycontin for pain?

  657. #671 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    In other news, Rush Limbaugh taken to hospital in Hawaii with chest pains.

    That’s how it started for Carlin, too.

    Now, my first thought when I read this was, maybe I shouldn’t duck down to the shops to get more cigarettes for tonight….
    Which brings me to new year resolutions, since Melbourne AU is now only 8 hours away from the new year and I have dutifully commenced Vodka consumption !

    NY resolutions anyone, or will PZ give us a separate thread for that ?

  658. #672 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 31, 2009

    Every year I make a resolution to not make a resolution.

  659. #673 eddie
    December 31, 2009

    I’m saying a new thread for it, but PZ has set the bar high for titles. Still, with all the horror references and a new year, I’m thinking it might be “Dawn of the Thread”.

  660. #674 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    Ah, here is a true miracle folks, to go with the season :

    Wasn’t the doctors and the CPR and the drugs, was divine intervention :

    http://news.ninemsn.com.au/world/989255/mum-son-come-back-to-life-after-dying

  661. #675 boygenius
    December 31, 2009

    And yet another seasonal miracle:

    http://www.hulu.com/watch/117741/nbc-today-show-goldman-reunion-a-christmas-%E2%80%98miracle%E2%80%99

    Perhaps Sean Goldman is the second coming?

  662. #676 llewelly
    December 31, 2009

    PROOF that atheists indoctrinate their children with their disturbing worldview! Listen in horror as these atheists podcasters baldly admit teaching their innocent children the Orwellian concept of “freethought”!

  663. #677 llewelly
    December 31, 2009

    Now, my first thought when I read this was, maybe I shouldn’t duck down to the shops to get more cigarettes for tonight….

    You’d only get seven more years out of quitting. What would do with those seven years? Continue to live your GODLESS life of SIN and DEPRAVITY?

    JESUS makes you smoke so you’ll die sooner, and therefor sin less, and not burn so badly when you get to HELL. Be grateful for those cancer sticks. They’re the love of God.

  664. #678 llewelly
    December 31, 2009

    Still, with all the horror references and a new year, I’m thinking it might be “Dawn of the Thread”.

    Horror? “Dawn of the Thread” brings to mind images of emotionally charged teens playing musical instruments, and riding telepathic teleporting dragons through the sky, who save the world by burning up the horrible thread that falls from the other planet.

  665. #679 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    Be grateful for those cancer sticks. They’re the love of God.

    You make it sound so dirty and really unattractive !

    You’d only get seven more years out of quitting

    Do you work for an insurance company? :-)
    7 years only if the cancer doesnt wipe me out somewhere in between…

    Nice link btw, listening now.

    Continue to live your GODLESS life of SIN and DEPRAVITY?

    I wish.

  666. #680 eddie
    December 31, 2009

    llewelly @679 – teleporting dragons

    I don’t much like leGuin myself but know her admirers really love it. Maybe PZed will use that phraase in the next title.

  667. #681 John Morales
    December 31, 2009

    So, I notice Daniel Florien at unreasonable faith has a video of Bertrand Russell showing “new atheists” were around back then.

  668. #682 Katrina
    December 31, 2009
  669. #683 Katrina
    December 31, 2009

    Stupid html. That’s Anne McCaffrey. Glad the link works anyway.

    And what’s with the submission failure because I wanted to post two comments in a row?

  670. #684 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    And what’s with the submission failure because I wanted to post two comments in a row

    That sounds interesting, let’s talk about it in private…:-)

    But srsly, SB doesnt like it if you post too many comments in too short a time, spammers and all, I’m not sure what the time period is exactly, 2 minutes or something.

  671. #685 Josh
    December 31, 2009

    And let me tell you, that shit ain’t so tough in many places. Frighteningly so.

    Yep. The amount of variation in sandstone hardness/cementation/resistivity isn’t trivial. I’ve seen Mesozoic sands that you can pull apart with your fingers because they are completely unlithified. I’ve also seen sandstones that are so hard they break jackhammer bits. A buddy of mine and I once spent two full days chopping away at a ridiculously resistant sandstone/siltstone* exposure trying to remove a fossil. And in that same study area there are sandstone ledges that I won’t walk on because I predict they’ll crumble beneath me.

    *Most of the outcrop was siltstone. A mudrock. Not even a sandstone.

  672. #686 Josh
    December 31, 2009

    Oh, and in case anyone was curious as to what the hell kind of rock David was referring to in comment #655, he was talking about deposits that result from silica-rich biogenic oozes*.

    This is a nice discussion:

    http://www.mnhn.fr/mnhn/geo/PDW/De%20Wever%20et%20Baudin%201996.pdf

    *Yes, I did just want an excuse to write that in a comment. Why do you ask?

  673. #687 Alan B
    December 31, 2009

    Sorry about lack of response to several helpful comments – time zones beat on-line conversation every time!

    #638 My own comment. Don’t you just love that name: D. Pratt? I know he can’t help the name he was born with but …

    #643 David Marjanovi? Thanks David. I thought “Leanon Spring” might be Lebanon Spring but why should I go off on a wild goose chase and risk a put-down at the end because I’d guessed wrong. He gives the wrong name (apparently) to what looks like a link (light blue and underlined) but goes nowhere. He then bails out and is not available for comment. It’s well past time he sorts out his etiquette if he wants to make progress here.

    #648 Lynna, OM “tufa” not “tuff” but it is easy to get them mixed up! More to come to explain …

    #651 Owlmirror asked which browser I use.
    IE8 with Vista. (I know, I know but there was no option when I bought my PC and to be fair, I have not had the problems so many others have had. I was not an early-adopter.) I’ve tried Firefox and I have nothing against it but I do not really have the nous to understand why I should think it is better. For me there’s a lot to be said for something that works (even if not as well as it might).

    Haven’t had a chance to try the book yet (Josh/Owlmirror) – I will when I get back.

    Interesting that David thinks Wilson Cycles have gone out of style. I’ll have to follow that up (eventually!).

  674. #688 Dania
    December 31, 2009

    Oh, and in case anyone was curious as to what the hell kind of rock David was referring to in comment #655, he was talking about deposits that result from silica-rich biogenic oozes*.

    That’s so, hmm, enlightening;)

  675. #689 Josh
    December 31, 2009

    Very broadly speaking
    tufa: ambient temperature freshwater carbonate rock, usually from carbonate precipitation in springs or streams (to be distinguished from lacustrine limestones and from hot water travertines)

    tuff: a suite of deposits composed of fine-grained volcanic detritus. Tuffs are complex and it would take a while to get really into them here, but for the purposes of this comment, they are volcaniclastic* sediments, as opposed to tufas, which are water-derived carbonate sediments.

    *These kinds of rock result from the deposition of volcanically-produced particles (generally blown out of a vent) as opposed to resulting from coherent bodies of molten material that flow as a mass and then cool. They are sedimentary deposits of volcanic origin.

  676. #690 Josh
    December 31, 2009

    That’s so, hmm, enlightening;)

    Ahhh, I see. It’s going to be that kind of a day, is it?

    Okay…

  677. #691 Dania
    December 31, 2009

    It’s going to be that kind of a day, is it?

    I don’t know. It could be because I haven’t had coffee yet…

  678. #692 Josh
    December 31, 2009

    I don’t know. It could be because I haven’t had coffee yet…

    Ahhh, okay. I just had several cups, while glaring at the ice outside my window, the amount of which is a little disheartening.

  679. #693 Dania
    December 31, 2009

    I’m doing the same, now. Except it’s rain instead of ice. It’s a beautiful sight anyway… I can see three big cedars and some pines in front of my window.

  680. #694 Dania
    December 31, 2009

    Did I say rain? ‘Cause it’s starting to look more like hail. Ah, there you have it. Ice.

  681. #695 Josh
    December 31, 2009

    There is a small pine across the street and a bushy holly tree outside my window. Both are draped in ice crystals that glitter faintly from the weak light of the sky brightening to the east. The berry clusters on the holly tree take on the look of some odd confection as the ice encloses them; sugar-glazed cranberries or something. The kind of thing you’d decorate a holiday place setting with, but which none of the guests would actually eat.

    It’s a beautiful morning, but I’m not particularly excited about trudging out into it. I think I’ll bust out the gore-tex.

  682. #696 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    There is a small pine across the street and a bushy holly tree outside my window. Both are draped in ice crystals that glitter faintly from the weak light of the sky brightening to the east.

    You people somehow live on the wrong side of the world !

    It’s 2330 now, 30 mins to go to 2010, and it’s raining, still 25 degrees tho, better then the 35 we had during the day.

    I am pleasantly, if not sufficiently, inebriated at this point.

    All the best to everyone for 2010 !!

  683. #697 Dania
    December 31, 2009

    There is a small pine across the street and a bushy holly tree outside my window.

    There’s a holly tree in front yard, but it’s probably a male. No berries.

    It’s 2330 now, 30 mins to go to 2010

    Happy New Year, Rorschach! We’ll still have to wait a bit, you know…

  684. #698 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    Thank you, Dania, you too !! I be here nursing my headache when you guys celebrate tomorrow…:-)

  685. #699 Josh
    December 31, 2009

    Happy New Year, Rorschach! We’ll still have to wait a bit, you know…

    Indeed, we do. It appears that it will be a moist one here.

  686. #700 Dania
    December 31, 2009

    Wonderful. I’m watching New Years’ fireworks from Sydney on TV!

  687. #701 JeffreyD
    December 31, 2009

    Happy New Year, Rorschach. Kinda cold here in Charleston, SC this morning – 7C/43F, but warming up to about 54F later. It is rainy, though. Many of the people in the ice belt here in the US hate it when I give the local weather.

    Take care, Jeffrey

  688. #702 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    All the best and a happy new year JeffreyD !! Hope all’s well mate !

  689. #703 JeffreyD
    December 31, 2009

    Rorschach, been an odd year, but I am still on the sunny side of the dirt. (smile)

    Take care, brudder.

  690. #704 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    been an odd year

    Amen to that !
    Same here for sure…..

    But then again, life is absurd and we should expect odd years to be the rule not the exception…:-)

    New Year song :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rMUX_4B-Hr4&feature=channel

  691. #705 JeffreyD
    December 31, 2009

    Rorschach, thanks for the Scorpions vid, nicely done. For me, this has been the “make it through the decade” song –

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=knII3S0MZtY

    Ciao

  692. #706 Cosmic Teapot
    December 31, 2009

    Nips in. Waves.

    Happy New Year everyone.

    Nips out again.

  693. #707 Rorschach
    December 31, 2009

    For me, this has been the “make it through the decade” song -

    Oh !!! Tom Waits !!

    I wouldnt have made it past my 16th birthday without Tom Waits mate…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5kHx1itU8c

  694. #708 JeffreyD
    December 31, 2009

    Off for a little coffee and brekkie. Ciao and Happy New Year to the rest of the clan.

    Jeffrey

  695. #709 JeffreyD
    December 31, 2009

    Ok, one more. Thought you might be a Tom Waits fan. I love his stuff and it got me through a lot. My voice is a lot like his, but mine is deeper and less melodious. (smile)

    OK, coffee and goodies call.

    Ciao

  696. #710 Rev. BigDumbChimp
    December 31, 2009

    Yep. The amount of variation in sandstone hardness/cementation/resistivity isn’t trivial. I’ve seen Mesozoic sands that you can pull apart with your fingers because they are completely unlithified. I’ve also seen sandstones that are so hard they break jackhammer bits. A buddy of mine and I once spent two full days chopping away at a ridiculously resistant sandstone/siltstone* exposure trying to remove a fossil. And in that same study area there are sandstone ledges that I won’t walk on because I predict they’ll crumble beneath me.

    Yeah I can remember numerous climbs in Zion where I could place protection and pull it straight out myself in one spot but move it up to a different crack and it would be fine. Makes running out pro on a long climb ultra sketch.

    Let’s not even discuss the Fisher Towers.

  697. #711 Carlie
    December 31, 2009

    JeffreyD, great way to say it. Going to steal it for my facebook status now. :)

  698. #712 Josh
    December 31, 2009

    Makes running out pro on a long climb ultra sketch

    Yeah–seriously fractured sandstones? Damn. Although highly vesicular basalts can be similar. You zip right up the columnar jointing, no problem. And then you come to the vesicular zone at the top of the ancient flow and suddenly everything is a spiderweb of cracked blocks…

  699. #713 Alan B
    December 31, 2009

    Happy New Year to everyone!!

    Currently around 15:45 in the UK so things are running down for another public holiday and the same old repeats on the telly.

    Here’s a piece of music everyone thinks is trash because it is so simple – 3 chords (or so I’m told) by a group that can hardly sing but everytime they do I challenge anyone NOT to have a smile on their face:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-8K8Hj8bxE&feature=related

    Status Quo – Officers of the Most Noble Order of the British Empire – presumably for services to entertainment – even their greatest fans would quail at the thought of it being for services to music!

    I know. I know. The Most Noble Order of the British Empire is out-of-date nonsense. But it’s fun.

    I love Status Quo because they play the same pieces at every concert because that’s what the fans from 5 to 105 want. They aren’t there to plug a new album or to play other people’s hits. They thump out the same old stuff and people leave happy.

    One totally true story of incompetence at the BBC. Status Quo were booked to play against a background of a tremendous firework display so what did the producer do? Set the sound to the fireworks and the picture to Status Quo playing. 2 uglier performers it is harder to imagine! (And they only share 1 nose – it gets passed back and forth between concerts.)

  700. #714 PZ Myers
    December 31, 2009

    Celebrate the New Year with a New Thread.

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