Friday, March 6, 2015

Hunting with wolves and the whites of their eyes

By Donald Sensing

How hunting with wolves helped humans outsmart the Neanderthals

A fascinating hypothesis that homo sapiens became the earth's dominant species when we domesticated wolves as hunting partners.

Modern humans formed an alliance with wolves soon after we entered Europe, argues Shipman. We tamed some and the dogs we bred from them were then used to chase prey and to drive off rival carnivores, including lions and leopards, that tried to steal the meat.

“Early wolf-dogs would have tracked and harassed animals like elk and bison and would have hounded them until they tired,” said Shipman. “Then humans would have killed them with spears or bows and arrows.

“This meant the dogs did not need to approach these large cornered animals to finish them off – often the most dangerous part of a hunt – while humans didn’t have to expend energy in tracking and wearing down prey. Dogs would have done that. Then we shared the meat. It was a win-win situation.”
And the whites of their eyes?
Consider the whites of our eyes, she states. The wolf possesses white sclera as does Homo sapiens though, crucially, it is the only primate that has them.

“The main advantage of having white sclera is that it is very easy to work out what another person is gazing at,” added Shipman. “It provides a very useful form of non-verbal communication and would have been of immense help to early hunters. They would been able to communicate silently but very effectively.”

Thus the mutation conferring white sclera could have become increasingly common among modern humans 40,000 years ago and would have conferred an advantage on those who were hunting with dogs.
HT: Gerard.

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Obama Triumph: U.S. Reaches ‘Full Under-Employment’

By Donald Sensing

Obama Triumph: U.S. Reaches ‘Full Under-Employment’

(2015-03-06) — The Obama administration today celebrated a new milepost in what it calls “our progressive recovery” as government figures show thejobless rate dropped to 5.5%, wages remained stable, and the labor-force participation rate slipped to 62.8 percent.

“Thanks to President Obama’s leadership, we’ve reached full under-employment,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest. “Nearly everyone who still has any hope of getting a job, has at least one job — and often more than one. A lot of newly-employed people have thanked the president as they wash his golfballs, or pick the turf out of his cleats. It’s heartwarming.”

Thursday, March 5, 2015

The Hillary controversy baloney

By Donald Sensing

Presumptive automatic Democrat nominee Hillary Clinton has been keeping a very low profile in recent weeks - since the first of the year, at least - and the political rumor mill is that she is ducking answering tough questions about taking millions of dollars from foreign governments and donors to the Clinton Foundation, or about her private email server handling all her official email while she was secretary of state.

So the commentati are trying to figure out just who is behind all this bad news coming out rapid fire about Hillary. For sure reporters aren't taking credit for originating the stories. So who did?

The Elizabeth Warren camp is one answer, since Warren is the darling of the Marxist wing of the Democrat party (which is pretty much the whole party).

Here's my answer. The person behind all this bad news is coming out about Hillary Clinton is ... (drum roll, please) .. Hillary Clinton.

I wrote in 2011 that if she was to reach for the presidency again it would have to be in 2012.
2012 is, effectively, Hillary's last chance. In 2016 she'll turn 69 just before election day. Only Ronald Reagan has been elected at that age level; Hillary surely recalls that Bob Dole and John McCain, each with extensive government experience and both bona fide war heroes and only a little older, were rejected by the electorate. 
I was not the only pundit who predicted Hillary would run in 2012; a number of Democrat figures said so, too. Well, we were all wrong, obviously. But I stand by my original rationale that she will not run in 2016, for the same reasons I said then.

And she is leaking all these controversies to give herself cover when she declares her non-candidacy, with which the left-wing media are feverishly cooperating.

So what's her plan instead of elective politics? Same as it has always been: money. She has opened her coffers to foreign donations for one simple reason: she wants the money, the more the better.

Hillary will not run for president in 2016 and never intended to. And when she surveys the rubble and wreckage President Obama and she have wrought in his first term, worsened since then, she is glad to have millions of dollars to retire from elective politics and get on with the senior stateswoman act, which will have it's own financial rewards.


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Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Hillary's private server

By Donald Sensing

ABC News blog:

This week, we asked Amy Chozick, national political reporter for the The New York Times, who covers Hillary Clinton, about when the former secretary of state might announce her 2016 intentions, her possible competition and one thing that surprised Chozick about Clinton.
And the thing that surprised Chozick about Clinton:
5] Covering Clinton, what is one thing that has surprised you about her? Amy Chozick: Hmm. She likes to drink. We were on the campaign trail in 2008 and the press thought she was just taking shots to pander to voters in Pennsylvania. Um, no.
Leading to this comment on FB: 
When they told her they were putting a private server in her basement, she thought they meant a bartender ...
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Islamist jihadis are mostly well off and educated

By Donald Sensing

The Education of ‘Jihadi John’ - NYTimes.com

These speakers claim to preach Islam, but they peddle a highly politicized, often violent strain of my faith. It is easier than one might think for bright, capable people like Mr. Emwazi to fall for the myopic worldview of the preachers of hate. Young people from relatively prosperous, educated backgrounds have long been overrepresented in jihadist causes.
So writes a former, highly-radicalized Muslim. Read the whole thing.

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A liberal moves to Realityville

By Donald Sensing

Another Obamacare Supporter Just Got A Hard Dose Of Reality

Her blog post ends with this sentiment (emphasis added) -
 
It saddens me to say this, but I no longer believe that the government should mandate health care. It’s not because I’ve abandoned the basic principles behind health care reform. Quite the contrary. But a great idea, is just an idea, if you can’t execute.And the government has proven time and time again, it can’t execute. So I’m over it until someone figures it out.
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Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Is tech making us stupid, demented and depressed?

By Donald Sensing

Is your satnav harming your brain? Scientists warn over-use of modern technology may be linked to memory loss and depression in later life

They even call it "e-mentia." Using tech devices literally changes our brains. And probably not for the better.

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Why Our Children Don't Think There Are Moral Facts

By Donald Sensing

Why Our Children Don't Think There Are Moral Facts - NYTimes.com

The most important training we can give our children is moral training. And school curricula deliberately teach them instead that there is no morality, there is only opinion.

The curricula teach that only that which can be proven is true. But truth is not at all wholly dependent on proof.

For example, it could be true that there is life elsewhere in the universe even though no one can prove it. Conversely, many of the things we once “proved” turned out to be false. For example, many people once thought that the earth was flat. It’s a mistake to confuse truth (a feature of the world) with proof (a feature of our mental lives). Furthermore, if proof is required for facts, then facts become person-relative. Something might be a fact for me if I can prove it but not a fact for you if you can’t. In that case, E=MC2 is a fact for a physicist but not for me.
The curricula insist that anything that is not provable is mere opinion. (That such a claim makes the entire curricula mere opinion seems to have escaped its authors.)
Kids are asked to sort facts from opinions and, without fail, every value claim is labeled as an opinion. Here’s a little test devised from questions available on fact vs. opinion worksheets online: are the following facts or opinions?

— Copying homework assignments is wrong. 
— Cursing in school is inappropriate behavior.

— All men are created equal.

— It is worth sacrificing some personal liberties to protect our country from terrorism.

— It is wrong for people under the age of 21 to drink alcohol.

— Vegetarians are healthier than people who eat meat.

— Drug dealers belong in prison.


The answer? In each case, the worksheets categorize these claims as opinions. The explanation on offer is that each of these claims is a value claim and value claims are not facts. This is repeated ad nauseum: any claim with good, right, wrong, etc. is not a fact.

In summary, our public schools teach students that all claims are either facts or opinions and that all value and moral claims fall into the latter camp. The punchline: there are no moral facts. And if there are no moral facts, then there are no moral truths.
If this sounds like 1984 just remember that we are 31 years well beyond that.

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Monday, March 2, 2015

Question answered

By Donald Sensing


From BOTWT.

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Saturday, February 28, 2015

.-- .... -.-- / .. / -. --- .-- / .-.. .. -.- . / ...- . .-. .. --.. --- -.

By Donald Sensing

You can translate the headline of this post by pasting it here.

For all the grief Verizon gets, in my view it has redeemed itself, at least for some time to come for doing this: Verizon issues statement in Morse code to protest net neutrality ruling

On Verizon's policy blog Thursday, the company posted a statement it titled "FCC's 'Throwback Thursday' move imposes 1930s rules on the Internet."
And here it is, translation below:
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“Today’s decision by the FCC to encumber broadband Internet services with badly antiquated regulations is a radical step that presages a time of uncertainty for consumers, innovators and investors. Over the past two decades a bipartisan, light- touch policy approach unleashed unprecedented investment and enabled the broadband Internet age consumers now enjoy. “The FCC today chose to change the way the commercial Internet has operated since its creation. Changing a platform that has been so successful should be done, if at all, only after careful policy analysis, full transparency, and by the legislature, which is constitutionally charged with determining policy. As a result, it is likely that history will judge today’s actions as misguided.
“The FCC’s move is especially regrettable because it is wholly unnecessary. The FCC had targeted tools available to preserve an open Internet, but instead chose to use this order as an excuse to adopt 300- plus pages of broad and open- ended regulatory arcana that will have unintended negative consequences for consumers and various parts of the Internet ecosystem for years to come.
“What has been and will remain constant before, during and after the existence of any regulations is Verizon’s commitment to an open Internet that provides consumers with competitive broadband choices and Internet access when, where, and how they want.”

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Is Islam the next big thing in America and Europe?

By Donald Sensing

Why the next religious revival in the West may be Islamic

Short version:

But Islam does win converts in the West, and there are good reasons to expect that some of the next great religious awakenings in the Western world will be Islamic ones.

For one, Islam is a living faith, whereas the established Christian churches are mostly dead. Islamic imams make headlines for proclaiming what they believe. Christian theologians and pastors make headlines for announcing what they doubt or no longer believe. 
"Oh, whatever" does not make a successful religious doctrine. Islam is satanically deceptive and is all too easily (and obviously) turned into a cult of death. But what it does not lack is certainty, even in the so-called "moderate" variety. 

Then there is this:
Muslims happily share and teach core texts, sayings, and the history of their faith. These offer consolation, understanding, and a guide to life far more compelling than Western popular culture. By contrast, most Western Christians know very little about their own beliefs.
The vast majority of Christians either do not want to share their faith or do not know how or do not really want to know how, or all three. Muslims know all of these things in relation to their faith. Their reasons are not valid (because Islam is a false religion top to bottom), but they do know them. 

Another factor: for a few decades now, at least, mainline Western churches have promoted a deity whom I called "the metrosexual Jesus" back in 2007:
One of the main thrusts of liberal Bible scholarship over at least the last 40 years has been to devise arguments that the Bible does not really mean what it says.

But what is distinctive about modern scholarship is what one of my colleagues, a Ph.D. candidate at the liberal Vanderbilt Divinity School, observed: In addition to interpreting the Scriptures in ways that suit them (not a new thing at all) liberal scholars have "demythologized" the Bible in radical ways. So radical, in fact, that it is barely recognizable in many of their works as revelatory of the divine.

"Modern biblical scholarship wants to liberate people from the Bible instead of immerse them into it," he said. "The Bible is presented as oppressive, patriarchal, exclusionary and ‘privileging’ certain people at the expense of others. Therefore, scholarship is highly concerned with providing reasons to reject the teachings of the Scriptures rather than embrace them."
I referenceLeon Podles’ book, The Church Impotent: The Feminization of Christianity. Amazon’s book description states thus:
After documenting the highly feminized state of Western Christianity, Dr. Podles identifies the masculine traits that once characterized the Christian life but are now commonly considered incompatible with it. ... He contends that though masculinity has been marginalized within Christianity, it cannot be expunged from human society. If detached from Christianity, it reappears as a substitute religion, with unwholesome and even horrific consequences. The church, too, is diminished by its emasculation. Its spirituality becomes individualistic and erotic, tending toward universalism and quietism. In his concluding assessment of the future of men in the church, Dr. Podles examines three aspects of Christianity-initiation, struggle, and fraternal love-through which its virility might be restored.
A reader comment on the Amazon page made the following point: 
If Christianity keeps appealing to "feminized men" and rejecting the masculine, we just may see a masculine spirituality go hypermasculine to the cry of "Allahu Akbar!
And so it seems. 

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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Nyet Neutrality

By Donald Sensing



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