The Primate Diaries

Archives for March, 2010

RaceWire is reporting that Thomas Hagan, one of three men convicted for the assassination of Malcolm X (and the only to plead guilty), was released after his 17th attempt at parole yesterday. Hagan, at the time of the murder, was known as Talmadge X and was a militant member of the Nation of Islam. According…

An adolescent female orangutan practices her ape stroke.Image: Anne Russon / New Scientist Orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus) are not the most dexterous of creatures (especially for primates) and this is particularly true when they’re in water. Zoos across the country have removed the moats surrounding their exhibits precisely because of their tendency to sink. However, researchers…

    Image Source: Monkeys in the NewsMonkeys In the News has alerted me to an Associated Press story today about a Nevada research lab, part of Charles River Laboratories, that is one of the world’s largest suppliers of clinical and laboratory research services to pharmaceutical and biotech companies. The company was fined after thirty monkeys died…

Four Stone Hearth #88 at Ad Hominin

The monthly anthropology blog carnival Four Stone Hearth has just been posted. CiarĂ¡n was kind enough to include two of my recent posts and there is a wealth of information for those interested in all aspects of anthropology.

Why I Am Not A Humanist*

           Looking nonhumans in the eye.      Image: Elephant Man by Chris Gallucci In 1927 Bertrand Russell wrote his now famous essay “Why I Am Not A Christian” and outlined the general reasons for why he rejected such an ideology. This approach has been followed by other writers such as Ibn Warraq in Why I Am Not A…

Atheism and Science at The Huffington Post

My essay The Unseen and Unknowable Has No Place in Science has just gone up this morning in the Religion section of The Huffington Post:     Yes, religion is incompatible with science. This doesn’t mean, of course, that religious people are incapable of doing science. Far from it. There are certain questions that don’t probe…

Scientia Pro Publica #23 at Pleiotropy

The latest edition of Scientia Pro Publica has been divided between eight blog posts based on theme. True to form, a single edition has influenced multiple posts in the blogospheric version of pleiotropy. Beginning | Biology | Conservation | Ethics | Medicine | Physics | Psychology | Conclusion This edition is massive with contributors from…

Helpful Cichlids in the Gladiator’s Show

Image: The Daffodil Cichlid of Lake Tanganyika / Koen Eeckhoudt In 1888 “Darwin’s Bulldog”, Thomas Henry Huxley, declared that nature was little more than a “gladiator’s show” whereby only “the strongest, the swiftest, and the cunningest live to fight another day.” Brutal competition was the only important factor in the natural world, in which a…

(updated below – Update II – Update III)    CIA peppered bread with LSD in 1951            Image: The Telegraph Yesterday the UK newspaper The Telegraph published an article revealing that a mysterious 1951 outbreak of mass hysteria in France was actually the result of a secret experiment performed by the Central Intelligence Agency when they spiked the…