Politics

The Primate Diaries

Category archives for Politics

Good-bye ScienceBlogs, and Thank You

Three years ago I didn’t even know what science blogging was. Frustrated as a freelance writer, I typed “science blog” into my search engine and was thrilled when this network showed up first on the list. Here was a community of researchers and writers whose love of learning and the sharing of knowledge was communicated…

At ScienceBlogs we value our independence. Just consider the recent posts over the laughable PepsiCo nutrition blog to see how seriously people take this. But one thing that would never happen is for anything we write to be edited without our consent. As I wrote yesterday, I am disappointed in the Huffington Post’s decision to…

My response to David Klinghoffer’s piece in the Huffington Post has just been published: Creationists are fond of laying the blame for Nazi eugenics on Charles Darwin. They insist that his materialist argument that humans evolved from animals and his conception of natural selection inspired the Nazis to implement a widespread policy of artificial selection…

Darwin and Hitler, Again?

Image: via PZ Myers PZ Myers has a new post condemning Discovery Institute ideologue David Klinghoffer’s recent post connecting Darwin to the eugenic policies of Hitler. He trots out some of the same points that have been refuted time and again. Darwin elaborated a picture of how the world works, how creatures war with each…

A new study shows that chimps sacrifice their own advantage if they earned it unfairly.Image: Owen Booth / Creative Commons Fairness is the basis of the social contract. As citizens we expect that when we contribute our fair share we should receive our just reward. When social benefits are handed out unequally or when prior…

With yesterday’s announcement of the historic nuclear arms treaty signed by Russia and the United States (that would reduce existing stockpiles by as much as 30%) I thought I would repost my piece on Edward Teller’s nuclear legacy from September, 2003 that was originally commissioned by The Nation magazine (though ultimately went unpublished). Also see…

Blackwater’s Mercenary Humanism

Today Ed Brayton (fellow Scibling at Dispatches From the Culture Wars) is reporting in the Michigan Messenger that the mercenary company Blackwater may face federal weapons charges for “illegally stockpiling automatic weapons” at one of their US facilities. Given the slate of bad news piling on for Blackwater, I was amused to find this 2007…

Ann Coulter is a vicious and mean-spirited demagogue and I’m ashamed that I share more DNA with her than chimpanzees or bonobos. She represents the worst kind of reactionary partisanship and should be condemned by all quarters in the spirit of basic decency. That being said, however, I don’t believe a government should have any…

Harvard Medical School physician and researcher J. Wes Ulm has a fascinating paper in the new edition of Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, the quarterly academic periodical put out by Johns Hopkins University. His paper “The Cachet of the Cutthroat” investigates the legacy of ideas that formed the basis of laissez-faire social Darwinism: Ultimately, Social…

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…