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    The number of horses in the Russian Empire peaked in in 1913 and was around 35 million in 1916 (the US had about 20 million horses in 1915, and the two countries accounted for half the global equine population). At the time, they were almost all used in agriculture. The Soviet horse population plummeted during...
  • @Mr. Hack
    The Hucul breed is undergoing a renaissance in Ukraine and other parts of Eastern Europe bordering on the Carpathian mountains. It' a durable breed capable of agricultural work but also has a good disposition and is helping to fuel the nascent green tourism industry.

    https://www.hutsulpony.com/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hucul_pony

    aaaawwwwwww. They’re so cute!

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  • The Hucul breed is undergoing a renaissance in Ukraine and other parts of Eastern Europe bordering on the Carpathian mountains. It’ a durable breed capable of agricultural work but also has a good disposition and is helping to fuel the nascent green tourism industry.

    https://www.hutsulpony.com/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hucul_pony

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    • Replies: @Greasy William
    aaaawwwwwww. They're so cute!
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  • @Spisarevski
    But how many horse girls does Russia have?
    I mean that's the question, isn't it.
    https://i.imgur.com/UOaWWAU.jpg

    Not a hard hat amongst them.

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  • @Almost Missouri
    What is not evident to modern, urban peoples is that if you already live on the land, keeping horses is not an especial luxury. A few acres of pasturage per horse is sufficient to maintain a horse for the year. The main expense is the effort of harvesting hay for the winter months. If you don't already make hay yourself anyway, you can hire it done or just buy hay from someone who does. In the US the cost is typically a few dollars per (old fashioned square) bale, which will last a horse a day or two, so it works out to a very few dollars per day, or about what you probably pay for car insurance, and that only during the winter. In climates that don't freeze and winter forage is less an issue, it is even cheaper. In deference to commenter Thorfinnsson, there is the opportunity cost that more economically productive cattle could have been kept on the same land, but in large, thinly populated countries like Russia and the US, shaving off a few acres here and there for a family horse or two is trivial.

    If you live in the city, however, then you have to pay someone to for care, grooming, stable, feed, etc., and you are looking at hundreds of dollars per month, so yeah, a luxury.

    In South Wales where mountain top sheep walk is not very expensive, it has been traditional for families of modest means to keep a pony. Three of them the other side of my fence, 2500 feet up in the 80′s. Mother, yearling, foal. Down here in the lowlands they are horses and expensive.

    He ones I see in Russia are broken down nags. Always in terrible condition.

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  • @Almost Missouri
    What is not evident to modern, urban peoples is that if you already live on the land, keeping horses is not an especial luxury. A few acres of pasturage per horse is sufficient to maintain a horse for the year. The main expense is the effort of harvesting hay for the winter months. If you don't already make hay yourself anyway, you can hire it done or just buy hay from someone who does. In the US the cost is typically a few dollars per (old fashioned square) bale, which will last a horse a day or two, so it works out to a very few dollars per day, or about what you probably pay for car insurance, and that only during the winter. In climates that don't freeze and winter forage is less an issue, it is even cheaper. In deference to commenter Thorfinnsson, there is the opportunity cost that more economically productive cattle could have been kept on the same land, but in large, thinly populated countries like Russia and the US, shaving off a few acres here and there for a family horse or two is trivial.

    If you live in the city, however, then you have to pay someone to for care, grooming, stable, feed, etc., and you are looking at hundreds of dollars per month, so yeah, a luxury.

    These people are morons who do not understand the concept of opportunity cost.

    Reminds me of one of my female executives who the other day told me the corporate F-250 isn’t a problem because it’s “paid off”.

    This is why I support slavery.

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    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @German_reader

    While the number of horses belonging to agricultural organizations has plummeted from 2.3 million (i.e. almost all of them) to 300,000 by 2016, the numbers belonging to farmers and individual entrepreneurs has increased from a few 10,000′s in the 1990s to 369,000 by 2016.
     
    If I understand correctly, this accounts for only half of the almost 1,4 million horses currently in Russia - who's owning the rest? Private persons? Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?

    After certain hours people are permitted to ride their horses on the sidewalks in central Moscow; I’ve seen them doing this in their riding costumes. It’s not a common sight, but it happens.

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  • @German_reader

    While the number of horses belonging to agricultural organizations has plummeted from 2.3 million (i.e. almost all of them) to 300,000 by 2016, the numbers belonging to farmers and individual entrepreneurs has increased from a few 10,000′s in the 1990s to 369,000 by 2016.
     
    If I understand correctly, this accounts for only half of the almost 1,4 million horses currently in Russia - who's owning the rest? Private persons? Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?

    What is not evident to modern, urban peoples is that if you already live on the land, keeping horses is not an especial luxury. A few acres of pasturage per horse is sufficient to maintain a horse for the year. The main expense is the effort of harvesting hay for the winter months. If you don’t already make hay yourself anyway, you can hire it done or just buy hay from someone who does. In the US the cost is typically a few dollars per (old fashioned square) bale, which will last a horse a day or two, so it works out to a very few dollars per day, or about what you probably pay for car insurance, and that only during the winter. In climates that don’t freeze and winter forage is less an issue, it is even cheaper. In deference to commenter Thorfinnsson, there is the opportunity cost that more economically productive cattle could have been kept on the same land, but in large, thinly populated countries like Russia and the US, shaving off a few acres here and there for a family horse or two is trivial.

    If you live in the city, however, then you have to pay someone to for care, grooming, stable, feed, etc., and you are looking at hundreds of dollars per month, so yeah, a luxury.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    These people are morons who do not understand the concept of opportunity cost.

    Reminds me of one of my female executives who the other day told me the corporate F-250 isn't a problem because it's "paid off".

    This is why I support slavery.

    , @Philip Owen
    In South Wales where mountain top sheep walk is not very expensive, it has been traditional for families of modest means to keep a pony. Three of them the other side of my fence, 2500 feet up in the 80's. Mother, yearling, foal. Down here in the lowlands they are horses and expensive.

    He ones I see in Russia are broken down nags. Always in terrible condition.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @TWS
    This is either the best trolling or the oddest sincere comment I've read in a long time. Idolatry, bestiality, international trade, bigotry, it's got it all.

    This is either the best trolling or the oddest sincere comment I’ve read in a long time. Idolatry, bestiality, international trade, bigotry, it’s got it all.

    Thank you for your kind remark.

    I am sincere.

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  • @ERM
    Do you have a Patreon? I'd like to donate toward getting you a sandwich board.

    Do you have a Patreon? I’d like to donate toward getting you a sandwich board.

    Thank you for your kind remark.

    I am a wealthy corporate executive and thus do not need Patreon. I also don’t want to be incentivized to spend too much time on non-business activities.

    I stay anonymous as I build my wealth, but I ultimately will enter politics.

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  • @songbird
    Young girls actually do crush on horses. It is kind of a weird phenomenon which seems to be based on horses being large, powerful animals. Obviously, it is platonic, but many go on to idolize the same traits in men. Ask them to imagine their ideal man and they will say a tall, strong man.

    So, it is easy to imagine horses being an especial weakness of women, who already like animals, and therefore it is easy to imagine them being the main movers behind causes to protect horses.

    Obviously, it is platonic, but many go on to idolize the same traits in men.

    Why is this obvious?

    Two women I’ve screwed have admitted to being screwed by horses.

    The only thing that makes horses different from the dogpill is that horses are less convenient.

    For the dogpill see here: https://www.answerbag.com/q_view/721968

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  • @Thorfinnsson

    In America in the past lived many horses (and mammoths , lions, camels, cheetahs), but they were exterminated by the ancestors of the Indians. This horse in America is reintroducing species.
     

    The horses that lived in North America 12,000 years ago were not the same as the feral horses in America today. These horses are the product of an additional 12,000 years of evolution, and for around half of that time artificial selection via controlled breeding has been operative as well.

    And in any case there's not just the matter of today's feral horses being invasive and thus under no plausible grounds for conservation protection, unlike, say, various menacing apex predators protected by the federal government (wolves, cougars, and grizzlies).

    There is also the fact that as grazers, horses compete for pasture with cattle and bison. As Anglos eat neither horse flesh nor horse dairy, this means that every feral horse in existence reduce our potential output of ruminant meat and dairy and increases the relative cost of grazing land. Even if we did eat horse, horse flesh is inferior in both taste and nutrition to beef.

    The only possible justification for feral horses would be to slaughter them for export, but beef commands a much higher price on the market than horse flesh despite being more economical to produce as well. And even if we were to establish a major horse flesh industry, why would we do so with feral horses?

    It must be official policy of the United States federal government to exterminate feral horses, and all the horses killed must be slaughtered and exported to horse-eating cultures in order to really stick it to the primitive horse worshipping cults that plague our land.

    Do you have a Patreon? I’d like to donate toward getting you a sandwich board.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson


    Do you have a Patreon? I’d like to donate toward getting you a sandwich board.
     
    Thank you for your kind remark.

    I am a wealthy corporate executive and thus do not need Patreon. I also don't want to be incentivized to spend too much time on non-business activities.

    I stay anonymous as I build my wealth, but I ultimately will enter politics.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Daniel H
    My father, born in 1923, grew up in the rural west of Ireland where everybody was dirt poor. A horse was an unreachable luxury on his 20 acre farm. His family hired another farmer to do the plowing (by horse, or course) once per year. Donkeys, though, were freely obtainable, and were quite useful to have on a small farm. They can work all day hauling a cart or carrying weighty objects on their back. Didn't need much care and there were no predators to cause any fright. They ran wild down by the lake and when one's donkey passed on it was easy to grab a foal and domesticate him. Nowadays, Ireland is prosperous and Donkeys are expensive to purchase. No more just grabbing a wild foal down by the lake, river or swamp. People don't use them as work animals anymore. Those who have them like them as pets. Friendly, colorful, useful critters.

    I’ve heard much the same thing about Ireland regarding donkey carts in the 1800s. They were a real boon to the common people. That was, I think, after the roads had been improved.

    Before that, supposedly, in really remote areas, when they needed a big load moved, they would capture a wild bog pony and then tie a load to its tail. Releasing it later, back into the bogs. They had a light bone structure, so they wouldn’t sink in, but feed on marginal land.

    Read More
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  • @German_reader

    While the number of horses belonging to agricultural organizations has plummeted from 2.3 million (i.e. almost all of them) to 300,000 by 2016, the numbers belonging to farmers and individual entrepreneurs has increased from a few 10,000′s in the 1990s to 369,000 by 2016.
     
    If I understand correctly, this accounts for only half of the almost 1,4 million horses currently in Russia - who's owning the rest? Private persons? Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?

    I traveled to Hamburg once, and was very surprised to find the city smelled like horse manure. Of course, that wasn’t the whole city, just a few square kilometers or so. Some rich people kept horses near where I was staying, but I’m not sure that really explained the whole smell, maybe gardeners used manure or something.

    So far, it is the only famous city that I associate with the smell of horse manure.

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  • @Daniel H
    My father, born in 1923, grew up in the rural west of Ireland where everybody was dirt poor. A horse was an unreachable luxury on his 20 acre farm. His family hired another farmer to do the plowing (by horse, or course) once per year. Donkeys, though, were freely obtainable, and were quite useful to have on a small farm. They can work all day hauling a cart or carrying weighty objects on their back. Didn't need much care and there were no predators to cause any fright. They ran wild down by the lake and when one's donkey passed on it was easy to grab a foal and domesticate him. Nowadays, Ireland is prosperous and Donkeys are expensive to purchase. No more just grabbing a wild foal down by the lake, river or swamp. People don't use them as work animals anymore. Those who have them like them as pets. Friendly, colorful, useful critters.

    Daniel H:

    For those visiting Ireland I would recommend The Donkey Sanctuary in Liscarroll, Mallow, County Cork. It’s an amazing place to make the acquaintance of those “Friendly, colorful and useful critters.”

    The Sanctuary is probably the best run and warm public venue that I’ve ever visited.

    The Irish Sanctuary is an offshoot of its English original.

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  • @TWS
    This is either the best trolling or the oddest sincere comment I've read in a long time. Idolatry, bestiality, international trade, bigotry, it's got it all.

    Young girls actually do crush on horses. It is kind of a weird phenomenon which seems to be based on horses being large, powerful animals. Obviously, it is platonic, but many go on to idolize the same traits in men. Ask them to imagine their ideal man and they will say a tall, strong man.

    So, it is easy to imagine horses being an especial weakness of women, who already like animals, and therefore it is easy to imagine them being the main movers behind causes to protect horses.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson

    Obviously, it is platonic, but many go on to idolize the same traits in men.
     
    Why is this obvious?

    Two women I've screwed have admitted to being screwed by horses.

    The only thing that makes horses different from the dogpill is that horses are less convenient.

    For the dogpill see here: https://www.answerbag.com/q_view/721968
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Daniel H
    My father, born in 1923, grew up in the rural west of Ireland where everybody was dirt poor. A horse was an unreachable luxury on his 20 acre farm. His family hired another farmer to do the plowing (by horse, or course) once per year. Donkeys, though, were freely obtainable, and were quite useful to have on a small farm. They can work all day hauling a cart or carrying weighty objects on their back. Didn't need much care and there were no predators to cause any fright. They ran wild down by the lake and when one's donkey passed on it was easy to grab a foal and domesticate him. Nowadays, Ireland is prosperous and Donkeys are expensive to purchase. No more just grabbing a wild foal down by the lake, river or swamp. People don't use them as work animals anymore. Those who have them like them as pets. Friendly, colorful, useful critters.

    Interesting comment.

    Thank you for sharing.

    I am not Irish, but I do use Aer Lingus to visit my father in France. In the warmer months there is a Dublin-Nice flight, and Dublin has US immigrations and customs preclearance! Aer Lingus transatlantic business class is also much cheaper than its competitors.

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    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • My father, born in 1923, grew up in the rural west of Ireland where everybody was dirt poor. A horse was an unreachable luxury on his 20 acre farm. His family hired another farmer to do the plowing (by horse, or course) once per year. Donkeys, though, were freely obtainable, and were quite useful to have on a small farm. They can work all day hauling a cart or carrying weighty objects on their back. Didn’t need much care and there were no predators to cause any fright. They ran wild down by the lake and when one’s donkey passed on it was easy to grab a foal and domesticate him. Nowadays, Ireland is prosperous and Donkeys are expensive to purchase. No more just grabbing a wild foal down by the lake, river or swamp. People don’t use them as work animals anymore. Those who have them like them as pets. Friendly, colorful, useful critters.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    Interesting comment.

    Thank you for sharing.

    I am not Irish, but I do use Aer Lingus to visit my father in France. In the warmer months there is a Dublin-Nice flight, and Dublin has US immigrations and customs preclearance! Aer Lingus transatlantic business class is also much cheaper than its competitors.
    , @Dan Hayes
    Daniel H:

    For those visiting Ireland I would recommend The Donkey Sanctuary in Liscarroll, Mallow, County Cork. It's an amazing place to make the acquaintance of those "Friendly, colorful and useful critters."

    The Sanctuary is probably the best run and warm public venue that I've ever visited.

    The Irish Sanctuary is an offshoot of its English original.
    , @songbird
    I've heard much the same thing about Ireland regarding donkey carts in the 1800s. They were a real boon to the common people. That was, I think, after the roads had been improved.

    Before that, supposedly, in really remote areas, when they needed a big load moved, they would capture a wild bog pony and then tie a load to its tail. Releasing it later, back into the bogs. They had a light bone structure, so they wouldn't sink in, but feed on marginal land.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @German_reader

    While the number of horses belonging to agricultural organizations has plummeted from 2.3 million (i.e. almost all of them) to 300,000 by 2016, the numbers belonging to farmers and individual entrepreneurs has increased from a few 10,000′s in the 1990s to 369,000 by 2016.
     
    If I understand correctly, this accounts for only half of the almost 1,4 million horses currently in Russia - who's owning the rest? Private persons? Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?

    Horses are also found with non-rich people.

    In many countries. For example, in Irish:

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  • @Thorfinnsson
    The US also has a major problem with feral horses, whose completely unacceptable existence is aided and abetted by numerous primitive cults that worship horses. These invasive pests even enjoy protection under Federal law, even though they are not native to this continent and compete with both useful livestock and wild bison.

    This evil woman, almost certainly guilty of equine bestiality, was instrumental in the campaign to protect this menace: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velma_Bronn_Johnston

    The same horse-worshipping (and worse) primitives succeeded in kept horse slaughter illegal until 2011, negatively impacting America's already disastrous balance of trade. There was even an effort to prohibit the transportation of horses to foreign slaughterhouses!

    I don't think anyone will be surprised to learn that this effort was led by a woman.

    https://www.govtrack.us/data/photos/300063-200px.jpeg

    Here it is folks, the face of evil (and, likely, horse lust).

    Fortunately horse slaughter is once again legal, and America is now happily exporting horse meat to cultures which do not labor under horse meat taboos as Anglos do.

    But we can't rest--these demented primitives so worship horses that they continue to labor against horse slaughter. They want to damage our companies, workers, and foreign trade in the name of horse worship.

    This is either the best trolling or the oddest sincere comment I’ve read in a long time. Idolatry, bestiality, international trade, bigotry, it’s got it all.

    Read More
    • LOL: utu
    • Replies: @songbird
    Young girls actually do crush on horses. It is kind of a weird phenomenon which seems to be based on horses being large, powerful animals. Obviously, it is platonic, but many go on to idolize the same traits in men. Ask them to imagine their ideal man and they will say a tall, strong man.

    So, it is easy to imagine horses being an especial weakness of women, who already like animals, and therefore it is easy to imagine them being the main movers behind causes to protect horses.
    , @Thorfinnsson


    This is either the best trolling or the oddest sincere comment I’ve read in a long time. Idolatry, bestiality, international trade, bigotry, it’s got it all.
     
    Thank you for your kind remark.

    I am sincere.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • But how many horse girls does Russia have?
    I mean that’s the question, isn’t it.

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    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    Not a hard hat amongst them.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @The Big Red Scary

    Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?
     
    Sure. A few people in my town have horses, and these people don’t seem posh. Some of them just like riding, others give riding lessons or take the horses to the park in the nearby city, where they probably can make a few hundred euros on a Saturday or Sunday giving rides to children.

    I suspect that horse-keeping is less expensive in Russia than America as Russia has a lower population density and much larger fraction of its land area is unproductive.

    Horse ownership in America is noticeably more common in our Western states, and I doubt it’s just because of their cowboy heritage.

    Of course in relative terms it may be more expensive owing to lower Russian wages.

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  • @German_reader

    While the number of horses belonging to agricultural organizations has plummeted from 2.3 million (i.e. almost all of them) to 300,000 by 2016, the numbers belonging to farmers and individual entrepreneurs has increased from a few 10,000′s in the 1990s to 369,000 by 2016.
     
    If I understand correctly, this accounts for only half of the almost 1,4 million horses currently in Russia - who's owning the rest? Private persons? Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?

    Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?

    Sure. A few people in my town have horses, and these people don’t seem posh. Some of them just like riding, others give riding lessons or take the horses to the park in the nearby city, where they probably can make a few hundred euros on a Saturday or Sunday giving rides to children.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson
    I suspect that horse-keeping is less expensive in Russia than America as Russia has a lower population density and much larger fraction of its land area is unproductive.

    Horse ownership in America is noticeably more common in our Western states, and I doubt it's just because of their cowboy heritage.

    Of course in relative terms it may be more expensive owing to lower Russian wages.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @melanf

    The US also has a major problem with feral horses, whose completely unacceptable existence is aided and abetted by numerous primitive cults that worship horses. These invasive pests even enjoy protection under Federal law, even though they are not native to this continent and compete with both useful livestock and wild bison.
     
    In America in the past lived many horses (and mammoths , lions, camels, cheetahs),

    http://fs71.trilulilu.ro/imgs/freespirit78/megafauna-de-america-del-norte_42f550056a5cfe.jpg

    but they were exterminated by the ancestors of the Indians. This horse in America is reintroducing species.

    In America in the past lived many horses (and mammoths , lions, camels, cheetahs), but they were exterminated by the ancestors of the Indians. This horse in America is reintroducing species.

    The horses that lived in North America 12,000 years ago were not the same as the feral horses in America today. These horses are the product of an additional 12,000 years of evolution, and for around half of that time artificial selection via controlled breeding has been operative as well.

    And in any case there’s not just the matter of today’s feral horses being invasive and thus under no plausible grounds for conservation protection, unlike, say, various menacing apex predators protected by the federal government (wolves, cougars, and grizzlies).

    There is also the fact that as grazers, horses compete for pasture with cattle and bison. As Anglos eat neither horse flesh nor horse dairy, this means that every feral horse in existence reduce our potential output of ruminant meat and dairy and increases the relative cost of grazing land. Even if we did eat horse, horse flesh is inferior in both taste and nutrition to beef.

    The only possible justification for feral horses would be to slaughter them for export, but beef commands a much higher price on the market than horse flesh despite being more economical to produce as well. And even if we were to establish a major horse flesh industry, why would we do so with feral horses?

    It must be official policy of the United States federal government to exterminate feral horses, and all the horses killed must be slaughtered and exported to horse-eating cultures in order to really stick it to the primitive horse worshipping cults that plague our land.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ERM
    Do you have a Patreon? I'd like to donate toward getting you a sandwich board.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Anonymous[164] • Disclaimer says:

    The Asylum was set up one day after Watson came across a set of detailed instructions on a set of toothpicks. Watson, distressed and fearing for the world’s sanity, built the Asylum to put it in and help it get better. The Asylum is a four-walled house turned inside out. That which one would be inclined to take as the door into the house opens into a lawn with benches and walking paths. This is the area that Watson calls Outside the Asylum. Thus, the inside of the asylum contains the entire world, save for that small area. Within that small outside area, Watson has mounted the instructions for the toothpicks, in order to discourage himself and others from going back into the asylum.

    “Hold stick near centre of its length. Moisten pointed end in mouth. Insert in tooth space, blunt end next to gum. Use gentle in-out motion.”
    —The toothpick instructions that convinced Wonko mankind in general was crazy.

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  • The US also has a major problem with feral horses, whose completely unacceptable existence is aided and abetted by numerous primitive cults that worship horses. These invasive pests even enjoy protection under Federal law, even though they are not native to this continent and compete with both useful livestock and wild bison.

    In America in the past lived many horses (and mammoths , lions, camels, cheetahs),

    but they were exterminated by the ancestors of the Indians. This horse in America is reintroducing species.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Thorfinnsson

    In America in the past lived many horses (and mammoths , lions, camels, cheetahs), but they were exterminated by the ancestors of the Indians. This horse in America is reintroducing species.
     

    The horses that lived in North America 12,000 years ago were not the same as the feral horses in America today. These horses are the product of an additional 12,000 years of evolution, and for around half of that time artificial selection via controlled breeding has been operative as well.

    And in any case there's not just the matter of today's feral horses being invasive and thus under no plausible grounds for conservation protection, unlike, say, various menacing apex predators protected by the federal government (wolves, cougars, and grizzlies).

    There is also the fact that as grazers, horses compete for pasture with cattle and bison. As Anglos eat neither horse flesh nor horse dairy, this means that every feral horse in existence reduce our potential output of ruminant meat and dairy and increases the relative cost of grazing land. Even if we did eat horse, horse flesh is inferior in both taste and nutrition to beef.

    The only possible justification for feral horses would be to slaughter them for export, but beef commands a much higher price on the market than horse flesh despite being more economical to produce as well. And even if we were to establish a major horse flesh industry, why would we do so with feral horses?

    It must be official policy of the United States federal government to exterminate feral horses, and all the horses killed must be slaughtered and exported to horse-eating cultures in order to really stick it to the primitive horse worshipping cults that plague our land.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • The US also has a major problem with feral horses, whose completely unacceptable existence is aided and abetted by numerous primitive cults that worship horses. These invasive pests even enjoy protection under Federal law, even though they are not native to this continent and compete with both useful livestock and wild bison.

    This evil woman, almost certainly guilty of equine bestiality, was instrumental in the campaign to protect this menace: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velma_Bronn_Johnston

    The same horse-worshipping (and worse) primitives succeeded in kept horse slaughter illegal until 2011, negatively impacting America’s already disastrous balance of trade. There was even an effort to prohibit the transportation of horses to foreign slaughterhouses!

    I don’t think anyone will be surprised to learn that this effort was led by a woman.

    Here it is folks, the face of evil (and, likely, horse lust).

    Fortunately horse slaughter is once again legal, and America is now happily exporting horse meat to cultures which do not labor under horse meat taboos as Anglos do.

    But we can’t rest–these demented primitives so worship horses that they continue to labor against horse slaughter. They want to damage our companies, workers, and foreign trade in the name of horse worship.

    Read More
    • Replies: @TWS
    This is either the best trolling or the oddest sincere comment I've read in a long time. Idolatry, bestiality, international trade, bigotry, it's got it all.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • The one form of gambling still allowed anywhere in Russia is on horse racing. From memory, about 30 race courses survived the short hiatus when it was illegal. There are probably more now especially in Muslim areas. The police also use horses to control football hooligans. The armed forces may still have some for rough terrain. Many traditional Cossacks keep saddle mounts.

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  • While the number of horses belonging to agricultural organizations has plummeted from 2.3 million (i.e. almost all of them) to 300,000 by 2016, the numbers belonging to farmers and individual entrepreneurs has increased from a few 10,000′s in the 1990s to 369,000 by 2016.

    If I understand correctly, this accounts for only half of the almost 1,4 million horses currently in Russia – who’s owning the rest? Private persons? Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?

    Read More
    • Replies: @The Big Red Scary

    Are there that many people in Russia who can afford such a luxury?
     
    Sure. A few people in my town have horses, and these people don’t seem posh. Some of them just like riding, others give riding lessons or take the horses to the park in the nearby city, where they probably can make a few hundred euros on a Saturday or Sunday giving rides to children.
    , @Dmitry
    Horses are also found with non-rich people.

    In many countries. For example, in Irish:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZHPn269TOBo
    , @songbird
    I traveled to Hamburg once, and was very surprised to find the city smelled like horse manure. Of course, that wasn't the whole city, just a few square kilometers or so. Some rich people kept horses near where I was staying, but I'm not sure that really explained the whole smell, maybe gardeners used manure or something.

    So far, it is the only famous city that I associate with the smell of horse manure.
    , @Almost Missouri
    What is not evident to modern, urban peoples is that if you already live on the land, keeping horses is not an especial luxury. A few acres of pasturage per horse is sufficient to maintain a horse for the year. The main expense is the effort of harvesting hay for the winter months. If you don't already make hay yourself anyway, you can hire it done or just buy hay from someone who does. In the US the cost is typically a few dollars per (old fashioned square) bale, which will last a horse a day or two, so it works out to a very few dollars per day, or about what you probably pay for car insurance, and that only during the winter. In climates that don't freeze and winter forage is less an issue, it is even cheaper. In deference to commenter Thorfinnsson, there is the opportunity cost that more economically productive cattle could have been kept on the same land, but in large, thinly populated countries like Russia and the US, shaving off a few acres here and there for a family horse or two is trivial.

    If you live in the city, however, then you have to pay someone to for care, grooming, stable, feed, etc., and you are looking at hundreds of dollars per month, so yeah, a luxury.

    , @AP
    After certain hours people are permitted to ride their horses on the sidewalks in central Moscow; I've seen them doing this in their riding costumes. It's not a common sight, but it happens.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • A persistent misunderstanding both in the world of HBD and general medical and psychological science at large is the notion of what constitutes a "disorder." When does a phenotype represent a physiological or behavioral malady? For behavioral issues, most people regard the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) as the "final word" on...
  • How can certain ailments that are profoundly maladaptive persist, for example flat feet, high arches, n fasciitis? Inability to walk seems highly unlikely to be selected in any environment yet such issues are quite common. I suspect there is more than evolutionary adaptation at work, that is, a tendency for any system to create spontaneous randomness from the functioning of the system itself, even in the absence of pathogens. Quantum biology?

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  • @Alice
    You said :

    Look, basic evolutionary theory shows that an allele can only come to high frequency through selection (or perhaps founder effects). Harmful mutations quickly disappear over evolutionary time – even a tiny fitness cost drives alleles to zero frequency with time. So if we see a phenotype that’s extraordinarily common, selection must have been involved.

    But that's an argument that something's selecting for schizophrenia, right? Age of onset isn't early enough to prevent reproduction. Whether or not schizophrenia is related to some other positive outcome or some is just a close variant of some sets of proteins involved in various aspects of intelligence, it isn't so maladaptive or it wouldn't be here, right? Or is the argument that it keeps getting created by genetic load, cropping up on lines that have almost too many healthy mutations to make it? It being caused by N various proteins or sites not getting made rather some small set of things that are being created?

    But that’s an argument that something’s selecting for schizophrenia, right?

    Schizophrenia isn’t caused by common alleles, nor is it at high frequency.

    Or is the argument that it keeps getting created by genetic load

    Correct. Mutation-selection balance. New mutations keep appearing, selection keeps weeding them out.

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  • @JayMan

    Then, with its 1/3rd prevalence rate, near-sightedness (in youth) isn’t a disorder?
     
    No, it's not.

    But I doubt you could find a culture in where it’s adaptive.
     
    It stems either from environmental mismatch, pathogens, or the causal alleles are indeed beneficial.

    Also, what if the condition is an unfortunate consequence of an adaptation, as is theorized for certain diseases among ashkenazi?
     
    I'm not sure that's actually the case for Ashkenazi ailments. But sure, sickle-cell anemia seems to fall under that category along with a handful of other things.

    Look, basic evolutionary theory shows that an allele can only come to high frequency through selection (or perhaps founder effects). Harmful mutations quickly disappear over evolutionary time – even a tiny fitness cost drives alleles to zero frequency with time. So if we see a phenotype that's extraordinarily common, selection must have been involved.

    You said :

    Look, basic evolutionary theory shows that an allele can only come to high frequency through selection (or perhaps founder effects). Harmful mutations quickly disappear over evolutionary time – even a tiny fitness cost drives alleles to zero frequency with time. So if we see a phenotype that’s extraordinarily common, selection must have been involved.

    But that’s an argument that something’s selecting for schizophrenia, right? Age of onset isn’t early enough to prevent reproduction. Whether or not schizophrenia is related to some other positive outcome or some is just a close variant of some sets of proteins involved in various aspects of intelligence, it isn’t so maladaptive or it wouldn’t be here, right? Or is the argument that it keeps getting created by genetic load, cropping up on lines that have almost too many healthy mutations to make it? It being caused by N various proteins or sites not getting made rather some small set of things that are being created?

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    • Replies: @JayMan

    But that’s an argument that something’s selecting for schizophrenia, right?
     
    Schizophrenia isn't caused by common alleles, nor is it at high frequency.

    Or is the argument that it keeps getting created by genetic load
     
    Correct. Mutation-selection balance. New mutations keep appearing, selection keeps weeding them out.
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  • It would seem that there should be a Big 5 or whatever personality inventory Gene model then for ethnic groups. If certain cultures promote and select for certain personality behaviors in their populations, shouldn’t you say the French, have a distinct personality disorder profile from, say, the Germans? Has anyone done that research?

    My Polish relatives and experience in Poland all seem to have what we call Borderline personality disorder as their national character trait. Certainly ain’t pathological for them. And such traits, along with pessimism and anxiety disorders seem awfully well adapted over the last 400 years of war…

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  • @JayMan

    As you say, anxiety disorders are likely the far end of a normally distributed trait (although they might not be – compare the recent paper showing that severe intellectual disabilities come from different sources than normal low IQ
     
    It's possibly the case. I'll have to dig into the literature to see if there is a paternal age effect on severe anxiety, which would be a big clue.

    But when a person with severe anxiety comes to a psychiatrist, saying “Don’t worry, the genetic structure of anxiety is normally distributed!” doesn’t help. They want something to make them less anxious, and it’s a reasonable request. In the same way, society can realize that antisocial personality can be adaptive under certain conditions, and also condemn and want to eliminate antisocial traits.
     
    .

    Largely agreed – though one point: antisocial traits aren't universally bad. Leadership and bucking convention are other products, and those are beneficial. But yes, finding ways to reduce the criminal genes would be helpful.

    Yes, this is susceptible to cultural biases, but I’m not sure we should be trying to factor that out. In a culture that requires you to sit still at school for 8 hours a day, having ADHD is bad. In a culture that doesn’t require that, maybe having ADHD is good or neutral. But we’re the first type of culture, so people complaining that their ADHD is giving them problems have a reasonable complaint.
     
    Yes. Though I think this knowledge should lead us to manage expectations on treating these cases.

    Knowing the genetic and evolutionary structures of things is interesting, but not really relevant to rewriting the DSM.
     
    I wouldn't say that. :)

    But these two notions of disorder –one, broken at the organic level vs. a continuum from acceptable to unacceptable experiences at the interaction/personality level were broadly understood from the beginning. That’s why DSM ha
    Yes, it seems the correct axes should be identifying these “bugs” vs “evolutionary features maladaptive in current culture”. But even here, be careful. The data on autism is especially interesting.

    Axis 1 disorders should be, largely speaking, understood to be broken brains that can not be made well. Axis 1 means you are not taking in reality and therefore cannot process it to reality. Maybe pharmacological solution could mediate or alleviate symptoms, but nothing could undo that your brain had a pathology. Schizophrenia, manic “bipolar” disorder with psychosis are good candidates.

    Axis 2 disorders then can address a different beast. Patients suffering from a) a mismatch between current culture and their genes for that culture that affect their thinking and mood. These are not maladaptive over the long haul, but perhaps badly matched to lifestyle. Anxiety disorders, for example, might be a clear indication that your genes aren’t meant to be a 80+ hour a week MD or work on skyscrapers. A therapeutic model that encouraged people to *change their circumstances to fit their genes* would be a boon to the happiness and productivity of people, if not to BigPharma.

    But personality disorders should be a third axis then. These are people whose individual genes make them maladaptive to OTHERS in the culture not just to themselves. This needs to be handled but how? Perhaps there’s a better environment for a narcissistic personality, than, say, being CEO of Apple, but maybe they’re isn’t *for them* even if we’d all be a lot happier without him as our boss.

    Still, though, what if a disorder isn’t due to a bad mutation or genetic load of bad mutations? Look at autism rates of Somalis in Minneapolis and Sweden. Something in their genes disproportionately aren’t adapted to something about life several tens of degrees if latitude from where they evolved. But if the issue there is similar to sickle cell or to flattening hemoglobin, where it’s not some genetic load but a lack of development of a general to help process, say Vitamin D, then maybe that doesn’t belong on the axis at all. Or, say, if Somalis lack some immunity to exposure to a virus that Norwegian genes have developed over the last 600 years, does that really for the “bad for species” label?

    We need a new model.

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  • According to the latest estimates, Russia might harvest as much as 133 million tons of grain this year. This would make 2017 a record harvest not just by post-Soviet standards, which were pretty dismal until the past decade, but relative to the RSFSR's peak of 127.4mn tons in 1978. (This is the case even after...
  • The famines were caused by Jewish communists who tried to starve the Russians.

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  • @European-American
    > I do agree that Australia is not the first country that comes to mind
    > as a “breadbasket” or a “major competitor” in agriculture

    Why not? Australia’s long been among the top 5 wheat exporters, top 10wheat producers. Last year it was 4th exporting and 9th producing country for wheat.

    AKarlin> if Russia were to also recover its Tsarist era borders,
    > especially the Ukraine and Kazakhstan, it would account for
    > about a third of world wheat exports.

    That’s a huge change from 2016, when they accounted for just a bit more than a 5th of wheat exports. Wheat production is highly variable from year to year, but still, that seems a massive change.

    By the way, let’s not forget that, in absolute production terms, the EU, China, and India are the top wheat producers, far above Russia and the US.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_wheat_production_statistics

    Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of wheat during 2016:

    United States: US$5.4 billion (14.8% of total wheat exports)
    Canada: $4.5 billion (12.4%)
    Russia: $4.2 billion (11.6%)
    Australia: $3.6 billion (9.9%)
    France: $3.4 billion (9.3%)
    Ukraine: $2.6 billion (7.2%)
    Germany: $1.9 billion (5.3%)
    Argentina: $1.9 billion (5.1%)
    Romania: $1.3 billion (3.5%)
    Poland: $806.9 million (2.2%)
    Bulgaria: $767.7 million (2.1%)
    Kazakhstan: $685.1 million (1.9%)
    Lithuania: $594.4 million (1.6%)
    United Kingdom: $526 million (1.4%)
    Czech Republic: $494.4 million (1.4%)
    The listed 15 countries shipped 89.9% of all wheat exports in 2016 (by value).

    Among the above countries, the fastest-growing wheat exporters since 2012 were: Poland (up 158.1%), Romania (up 82.3%), United Kingdom (up 22.7%) and Czech Republic (up 15.7%).

    Those countries that posted declines in their exported wheat sales were led by: Kazakhstan (down -57.2%), Australia (down -46.9%), Argentina (down -36.7%), United States (down -34.4%) and France (down -33.3%).
    http://www.worldstopexports.com/wheat-exports-country/

     

    Australia is in fact a major exporter of wheat as well as one of beef and other meat. However, what I meant in my previous reply to Priss Factor is that I think most people are aware of the fact that most of Australia’s land is very arid, and therefore it is difficult to imagine it being a major exporter of fruits, vegetables, sugarcane, rice, etc., especially when considered in proportion to its total land area.

    At present, meat (foremost among members of that category being beef by a great margin, though with sheep and goat meat also being significant) is the most important agricultural export of Australia. Wheat follows that at a great distance. The third most important category of agricultural exports from the country is intimately connected with the meat industry: animal hair (including wool).

    Meat and animal hair are not the first products associated in my mind with the word “breadbasket.”

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  • @üeljang
    Aussie beef is a well-known and popular imported product in Japan.

    From https://www.mla.com.au/marketing-beef-and-lamb/international-markets/japan/:

    MLA actively supports the marketing of Australian red meat in Japan and undertakes numerous marketing campaigns to encourage increased sales of Australian beef and lamb in this important market.

    Japan has been a critically important partner for the Australian beef industry, reigning as a top export destination since early 1990s, alongside the US. Japan is also the foundation of the Australian grainfed industry, consistently taking more than half of total grainfed beef shipments.

    Japan is also a key market for Australian lamb. Australian sheepmeat is served largely in the foodservice sector, but also seen at supermarkets.

    According to https://www.mla.com.au/prices-markets/overseas-markets/, Australia exported 70% of the volume of beef that it produced in the year 2016, with 26% of that 70% being exported to Japan, making Japan the number one importer of Aussie beef last year. Japan was closely followed by the USA (destination of 23.8% of the total export volume in 2016, a great reduction from the previous year) and Korea (destination of 17.7% of the total export volume in 2016). Judging from the other figures in this table, I suppose South Korea must have been the greatest importer of Aussie beef per capita last year.

    I do agree that Australia is not the first country that comes to mind as a "breadbasket" or a "major competitor" in agriculture with the aforementioned exception of the production of meat, and beef in particular.

    > I do agree that Australia is not the first country that comes to mind
    > as a “breadbasket” or a “major competitor” in agriculture

    Why not? Australia’s long been among the top 5 wheat exporters, top 10wheat producers. Last year it was 4th exporting and 9th producing country for wheat.

    AKarlin> if Russia were to also recover its Tsarist era borders,
    > especially the Ukraine and Kazakhstan, it would account for
    > about a third of world wheat exports.

    That’s a huge change from 2016, when they accounted for just a bit more than a 5th of wheat exports. Wheat production is highly variable from year to year, but still, that seems a massive change.

    By the way, let’s not forget that, in absolute production terms, the EU, China, and India are the top wheat producers, far above Russia and the US.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_wheat_production_statistics

    Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of wheat during 2016:

    United States: US$5.4 billion (14.8% of total wheat exports)
    Canada: $4.5 billion (12.4%)
    Russia: $4.2 billion (11.6%)
    Australia: $3.6 billion (9.9%)
    France: $3.4 billion (9.3%)
    Ukraine: $2.6 billion (7.2%)
    Germany: $1.9 billion (5.3%)
    Argentina: $1.9 billion (5.1%)
    Romania: $1.3 billion (3.5%)
    Poland: $806.9 million (2.2%)
    Bulgaria: $767.7 million (2.1%)
    Kazakhstan: $685.1 million (1.9%)
    Lithuania: $594.4 million (1.6%)
    United Kingdom: $526 million (1.4%)
    Czech Republic: $494.4 million (1.4%)
    The listed 15 countries shipped 89.9% of all wheat exports in 2016 (by value).

    Among the above countries, the fastest-growing wheat exporters since 2012 were: Poland (up 158.1%), Romania (up 82.3%), United Kingdom (up 22.7%) and Czech Republic (up 15.7%).

    Those countries that posted declines in their exported wheat sales were led by: Kazakhstan (down -57.2%), Australia (down -46.9%), Argentina (down -36.7%), United States (down -34.4%) and France (down -33.3%).

    http://www.worldstopexports.com/wheat-exports-country/

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    • Replies: @üeljang
    Australia is in fact a major exporter of wheat as well as one of beef and other meat. However, what I meant in my previous reply to Priss Factor is that I think most people are aware of the fact that most of Australia's land is very arid, and therefore it is difficult to imagine it being a major exporter of fruits, vegetables, sugarcane, rice, etc., especially when considered in proportion to its total land area.

    At present, meat (foremost among members of that category being beef by a great margin, though with sheep and goat meat also being significant) is the most important agricultural export of Australia. Wheat follows that at a great distance. The third most important category of agricultural exports from the country is intimately connected with the meat industry: animal hair (including wool).

    Meat and animal hair are not the first products associated in my mind with the word "breadbasket."

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  • @Priss Factor
    "Meanwhile, conviently, major competitors such as Australia and the US will be wracked by droughts."

    You misspelled 'conveniently' or did you mean 'conversely'?


    Russia is predicted to economically benefit more than any other country from global warming, and relatively speaking, agriculture can be expected to benefit more than any other sector. Meanwhile, conviently, major competitors such as Australia and the US will be wracked by droughts.

    Australia is a major player in agriculture? Didn't know that.

    I don't think global warming will affect most of US.
    Maybe California, but the Midwest, the breadbasket of the US, has hardly been affected by climate 'change'.

    Aussie beef is a well-known and popular imported product in Japan.

    From https://www.mla.com.au/marketing-beef-and-lamb/international-markets/japan/:

    MLA actively supports the marketing of Australian red meat in Japan and undertakes numerous marketing campaigns to encourage increased sales of Australian beef and lamb in this important market.

    Japan has been a critically important partner for the Australian beef industry, reigning as a top export destination since early 1990s, alongside the US. Japan is also the foundation of the Australian grainfed industry, consistently taking more than half of total grainfed beef shipments.

    Japan is also a key market for Australian lamb. Australian sheepmeat is served largely in the foodservice sector, but also seen at supermarkets.

    According to https://www.mla.com.au/prices-markets/overseas-markets/, Australia exported 70% of the volume of beef that it produced in the year 2016, with 26% of that 70% being exported to Japan, making Japan the number one importer of Aussie beef last year. Japan was closely followed by the USA (destination of 23.8% of the total export volume in 2016, a great reduction from the previous year) and Korea (destination of 17.7% of the total export volume in 2016). Judging from the other figures in this table, I suppose South Korea must have been the greatest importer of Aussie beef per capita last year.

    I do agree that Australia is not the first country that comes to mind as a “breadbasket” or a “major competitor” in agriculture with the aforementioned exception of the production of meat, and beef in particular.

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    • Replies: @European-American
    > I do agree that Australia is not the first country that comes to mind
    > as a “breadbasket” or a “major competitor” in agriculture

    Why not? Australia’s long been among the top 5 wheat exporters, top 10wheat producers. Last year it was 4th exporting and 9th producing country for wheat.

    AKarlin> if Russia were to also recover its Tsarist era borders,
    > especially the Ukraine and Kazakhstan, it would account for
    > about a third of world wheat exports.

    That’s a huge change from 2016, when they accounted for just a bit more than a 5th of wheat exports. Wheat production is highly variable from year to year, but still, that seems a massive change.

    By the way, let’s not forget that, in absolute production terms, the EU, China, and India are the top wheat producers, far above Russia and the US.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_wheat_production_statistics

    Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of wheat during 2016:

    United States: US$5.4 billion (14.8% of total wheat exports)
    Canada: $4.5 billion (12.4%)
    Russia: $4.2 billion (11.6%)
    Australia: $3.6 billion (9.9%)
    France: $3.4 billion (9.3%)
    Ukraine: $2.6 billion (7.2%)
    Germany: $1.9 billion (5.3%)
    Argentina: $1.9 billion (5.1%)
    Romania: $1.3 billion (3.5%)
    Poland: $806.9 million (2.2%)
    Bulgaria: $767.7 million (2.1%)
    Kazakhstan: $685.1 million (1.9%)
    Lithuania: $594.4 million (1.6%)
    United Kingdom: $526 million (1.4%)
    Czech Republic: $494.4 million (1.4%)
    The listed 15 countries shipped 89.9% of all wheat exports in 2016 (by value).

    Among the above countries, the fastest-growing wheat exporters since 2012 were: Poland (up 158.1%), Romania (up 82.3%), United Kingdom (up 22.7%) and Czech Republic (up 15.7%).

    Those countries that posted declines in their exported wheat sales were led by: Kazakhstan (down -57.2%), Australia (down -46.9%), Argentina (down -36.7%), United States (down -34.4%) and France (down -33.3%).
    http://www.worldstopexports.com/wheat-exports-country/

     

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  • “Meanwhile, conviently, major competitors such as Australia and the US will be wracked by droughts.”

    You misspelled ‘conveniently’ or did you mean ‘conversely’?

    Russia is predicted to economically benefit more than any other country from global warming, and relatively speaking, agriculture can be expected to benefit more than any other sector. Meanwhile, conviently, major competitors such as Australia and the US will be wracked by droughts.

    Australia is a major player in agriculture? Didn’t know that.

    I don’t think global warming will affect most of US.
    Maybe California, but the Midwest, the breadbasket of the US, has hardly been affected by climate ‘change’.

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    • Replies: @üeljang
    Aussie beef is a well-known and popular imported product in Japan.

    From https://www.mla.com.au/marketing-beef-and-lamb/international-markets/japan/:

    MLA actively supports the marketing of Australian red meat in Japan and undertakes numerous marketing campaigns to encourage increased sales of Australian beef and lamb in this important market.

    Japan has been a critically important partner for the Australian beef industry, reigning as a top export destination since early 1990s, alongside the US. Japan is also the foundation of the Australian grainfed industry, consistently taking more than half of total grainfed beef shipments.

    Japan is also a key market for Australian lamb. Australian sheepmeat is served largely in the foodservice sector, but also seen at supermarkets.

    According to https://www.mla.com.au/prices-markets/overseas-markets/, Australia exported 70% of the volume of beef that it produced in the year 2016, with 26% of that 70% being exported to Japan, making Japan the number one importer of Aussie beef last year. Japan was closely followed by the USA (destination of 23.8% of the total export volume in 2016, a great reduction from the previous year) and Korea (destination of 17.7% of the total export volume in 2016). Judging from the other figures in this table, I suppose South Korea must have been the greatest importer of Aussie beef per capita last year.

    I do agree that Australia is not the first country that comes to mind as a "breadbasket" or a "major competitor" in agriculture with the aforementioned exception of the production of meat, and beef in particular.

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  • You forgot to mention that this is despite of a disastrous summer, weather wise, across most of the main agricultural regions of Russia…. with flooding severely effecting the cop yield. Without this it would be even more

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  • This kid is pretty good.

    [MORE]

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  • Who owns the land in Russia these days?

    Was it bought up by oligarchs? Have large corporations taken over. Or is there a new generation of kulaks?

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  • the hidden benefit of agriculture if it’s organised right i.e. prosperous family farms, is it can be a healthy baby factory

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  • good stuff

    1) as the food industry in the West is poisoning everyone, if the sanctions allow Russia to maintain a healthy agriculture that will serve them well in the long term

    2) need to avoid letting outside agribusiness buy farmland for same reason – keep it collectively owned and lease it out to citizens on 100 year leases like Britain did after Black Death – long leases incentivize innovation while preventing the land being bought by outside corporations

    3) DOMES! – i want to see sci fi farming domes in the tundra – import Boer refugees to work them – cos it would be cool

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  • @Daniil Adamov
    Re: warming, the one that worries me is, doesn't that also manifest in the fairly damaging droughts and heatwaves we've been suffering from lately? Or do you think its benefits for agriculture will outweigh the drawbacks in the long run?

    Warmer oceans means more evaporation and overall a rainier planet, though of course local patterns will leave some regions drier.

    Google can help you to models, though of course these will have the double uncertainty of whether the precipitation model is accurate and whether the assumed amount of warming will actually happen. These guys have a map to offer:

    https://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/will-the-wet-get-wetter-and-the-dry-drier/

    Rainfall is pretty relevant to the “will Siberia turn into an agricultural region” question that some were talking about as the problem with Siberia is not just that it’s cold but that it’s very dry given how far it is from the oceans (and given the westerly prevailing winds for relevant latitudes distance from the Atlantic counts the most). A warmer Arctic Ocean would mean a rainier Siberia but that increase in rainfall will mainly affect the northern regions that will still be too cold.

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  • @Mr. XYZ
    I have a question--are future trends in Canada going to be similar to those in Russia?

    After all, Canada also has a lot of natural resources and it looks like global warming should also help it further develop its agriculture, no?

    I’m not sure about that. Most of Northern Canada is made of the Canadian Shield, a geologic province of worn down igneous and metamorphic rocks with little top soil, so even if they climate improves, the soil just isn’t there. It might help the clay belt regions in Northern Ontario and Quebec, but those places are pretty small.

    For the most part, the big agricultural regions of the country is the St. Lawrence-Great Lakes lowlands and the Prairies, which are just the Northern extensions of the corresponding US regions, and I think they suffer the same problems that those regions face.

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  • anon • Disclaimer says:

    It is impressive.

    Farmers are pouring the profits from their ruble fueled windfall into machinery and land rationalization and much of those gains are permanent. That is, won’t need the currency tailwind to maintain current efficiency. Much of the cost of ruble devaluation is borne by consumers and they need attention at some point.

    Russia also has an abundance of natural gas which can be the primary input for nitrogen fertilizer. And massive deposits of potash.

    However, grain is a commodity and not what a developed economy needs as a basis for growth. You did the arithmetic and it simply can’t be enough. If they supplied 100% of the world’s exports it would still be less than than their hydrocarbon exports this year.

    As far as global warming … there is no need to depend on it — although Russia is geographically positioned for some benefit to the extent it occurs. My understanding is that ‘weather isn’t climate’ and the correct term is ‘climate CHANGE’ … just in case there is evidence to the contrary.

    There are benefits from a strong agricultural sector beyond the purely economic impact.

    I think it is more of a story of Russia having the institutional strength to respond rapidly to an economic opportunity. It isn’t that I explicitly thought it couldn’t be done — but actually accomplishing it increases confidence.

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  • Re: warming, the one that worries me is, doesn’t that also manifest in the fairly damaging droughts and heatwaves we’ve been suffering from lately? Or do you think its benefits for agriculture will outweigh the drawbacks in the long run?

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    • Replies: @Jaakko Raipala
    Warmer oceans means more evaporation and overall a rainier planet, though of course local patterns will leave some regions drier.

    Google can help you to models, though of course these will have the double uncertainty of whether the precipitation model is accurate and whether the assumed amount of warming will actually happen. These guys have a map to offer:

    https://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/will-the-wet-get-wetter-and-the-dry-drier/

    Rainfall is pretty relevant to the "will Siberia turn into an agricultural region" question that some were talking about as the problem with Siberia is not just that it's cold but that it's very dry given how far it is from the oceans (and given the westerly prevailing winds for relevant latitudes distance from the Atlantic counts the most). A warmer Arctic Ocean would mean a rainier Siberia but that increase in rainfall will mainly affect the northern regions that will still be too cold.
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  • @Randal
    I think you misinterpreted my comment. I wasn't suggesting that the Russophobia they embody is fringe. Just that, in my experience, they are among the stupider fringe of those pushing said Russophobia. Though it's a while since I bothered to read much by Mensch and I've not followed Ioffe either apart from looking at her stuff when she was highlighted recently - I'm hoping Karlin has read them so I don't have to.

    Beneficiaries of positive discrimination and identity lobby influence, as well as the more old fashioned advantages women can have, imo.

    they are among the stupider fringe of those pushing said Russophobia.

    Yes, I misinterpreted it. Having said that–from what I observed, the “smarter” part of Russophobes is kind of stupid too if we are to judge by the results. You know, like this famous scene from Fifth Element where they shoot everything they’ve got from their spaceship at that “thingy” which wants to destroy earth. Effect is very similar.

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  • @Andrei Martyanov

    Have the stupider fringes of the Russophobe media (the likes of Mensch and Ioffe)
     
    Very wrong. They are NOT fringes--they are a mainstream. They are a concentrated embodiment of Western "Russia Studies" field.

    I think you misinterpreted my comment. I wasn’t suggesting that the Russophobia they embody is fringe. Just that, in my experience, they are among the stupider fringe of those pushing said Russophobia. Though it’s a while since I bothered to read much by Mensch and I’ve not followed Ioffe either apart from looking at her stuff when she was highlighted recently – I’m hoping Karlin has read them so I don’t have to.

    Beneficiaries of positive discrimination and identity lobby influence, as well as the more old fashioned advantages women can have, imo.

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    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    they are among the stupider fringe of those pushing said Russophobia.
     
    Yes, I misinterpreted it. Having said that--from what I observed, the "smarter" part of Russophobes is kind of stupid too if we are to judge by the results. You know, like this famous scene from Fifth Element where they shoot everything they've got from their spaceship at that "thingy" which wants to destroy earth. Effect is very similar.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Randal

    Russia is predicted to economically benefit more than any other country from global warming, and relatively speaking, agriculture can be expected to benefit more than any other sector. Meanwhile, conviently, major competitors such as Australia and the US will be wracked by droughts.
     
    Have the stupider fringes of the Russophobe media (the likes of Mensch and Ioffe) cottoned onto making global warming Russia's fault yet? After all, cui bono?

    Have the stupider fringes of the Russophobe media (the likes of Mensch and Ioffe)

    Very wrong. They are NOT fringes–they are a mainstream. They are a concentrated embodiment of Western “Russia Studies” field.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Randal
    I think you misinterpreted my comment. I wasn't suggesting that the Russophobia they embody is fringe. Just that, in my experience, they are among the stupider fringe of those pushing said Russophobia. Though it's a while since I bothered to read much by Mensch and I've not followed Ioffe either apart from looking at her stuff when she was highlighted recently - I'm hoping Karlin has read them so I don't have to.

    Beneficiaries of positive discrimination and identity lobby influence, as well as the more old fashioned advantages women can have, imo.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • I have a question–are future trends in Canada going to be similar to those in Russia?

    After all, Canada also has a lot of natural resources and it looks like global warming should also help it further develop its agriculture, no?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Hieronymus of Canada
    I'm not sure about that. Most of Northern Canada is made of the Canadian Shield, a geologic province of worn down igneous and metamorphic rocks with little top soil, so even if they climate improves, the soil just isn't there. It might help the clay belt regions in Northern Ontario and Quebec, but those places are pretty small.

    For the most part, the big agricultural regions of the country is the St. Lawrence-Great Lakes lowlands and the Prairies, which are just the Northern extensions of the corresponding US regions, and I think they suffer the same problems that those regions face.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Russia is predicted to economically benefit more than any other country from global warming, and relatively speaking, agriculture can be expected to benefit more than any other sector. Meanwhile, conviently, major competitors such as Australia and the US will be wracked by droughts.

    Have the stupider fringes of the Russophobe media (the likes of Mensch and Ioffe) cottoned onto making global warming Russia’s fault yet? After all, cui bono?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Andrei Martyanov

    Have the stupider fringes of the Russophobe media (the likes of Mensch and Ioffe)
     
    Very wrong. They are NOT fringes--they are a mainstream. They are a concentrated embodiment of Western "Russia Studies" field.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Yeah. Unless Monsanto changes all that.

    Read More
    • Agree: melanf
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • A persistent misunderstanding both in the world of HBD and general medical and psychological science at large is the notion of what constitutes a "disorder." When does a phenotype represent a physiological or behavioral malady? For behavioral issues, most people regard the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) as the "final word" on...
  • Should add this too, then!

    “FAS is unlikely to be a pure genetic confound. E.g. look at animal lit.”

    https://open.library.ubc.ca/cIRcle/collections/ubctheses/831/items/1.0094621

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @jambo
    Sad that you are making people claim that "FAS does not exist". Drink up, pregnant women. (Much like Econ professor, Emily Oster, in "Expecting Better"). As an adoptive mom of someone prenatally exposed (and a biological mom of three not exposed), it is frustrating to even see this discussed. Alcohol passes the placenta. It is a teratogen. It messes with cell differentiation. They have duplicated with mice the studies that show facial developmental problems by exposing them to alcohol. Seriously, the faces look the same (mice and humans!) And they know what days the facial bones form, etc. These are not heritable. These are environmental-gestation is a pretty important environment. But someone can still have a perfectly normal face and still have a damaged brain from alcohol exposure, because the brain is developing throughout the entire pregnancy. SO, if Mom can't get alcohol on those special days, face looks fine. I am not a scientist but it is revolting to have people try to use big words and yet say such disastrous things. Maybe some studies of the adoptive community would help? There is not yet an easy biomarker for prenatal alchohol exposure (though meconium at birth and also possibly hair tests at birth can show some alcohol use in latter trimester)https://www.verywell.com/meconium-test-exposes-drinking-during-pregnancy-63566. This line of comments is Anti-Science. Alternative facts. I fear for this society where nonsense can rise to the top. https://videocast.nih.gov/summary.asp?live=10172&bhcp=1

    (I know I replied to you on Twitter. This is for the benefit of the readers.)

    Genetic confounding is a concern: http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamapsychiatry/fullarticle/482482

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Sad that you are making people claim that “FAS does not exist”. Drink up, pregnant women. (Much like Econ professor, Emily Oster, in “Expecting Better”). As an adoptive mom of someone prenatally exposed (and a biological mom of three not exposed), it is frustrating to even see this discussed. Alcohol passes the placenta. It is a teratogen. It messes with cell differentiation. They have duplicated with mice the studies that show facial developmental problems by exposing them to alcohol. Seriously, the faces look the same (mice and humans!) And they know what days the facial bones form, etc. These are not heritable. These are environmental-gestation is a pretty important environment. But someone can still have a perfectly normal face and still have a damaged brain from alcohol exposure, because the brain is developing throughout the entire pregnancy. SO, if Mom can’t get alcohol on those special days, face looks fine. I am not a scientist but it is revolting to have people try to use big words and yet say such disastrous things. Maybe some studies of the adoptive community would help? There is not yet an easy biomarker for prenatal alchohol exposure (though meconium at birth and also possibly hair tests at birth can show some alcohol use in latter trimester)https://www.verywell.com/meconium-test-exposes-drinking-during-pregnancy-63566. This line of comments is Anti-Science. Alternative facts. I fear for this society where nonsense can rise to the top. https://videocast.nih.gov/summary.asp?live=10172&bhcp=1

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan
    (I know I replied to you on Twitter. This is for the benefit of the readers.)

    Genetic confounding is a concern: http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamapsychiatry/fullarticle/482482

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Updated, 9/11/15 9/4/15. See below! Throughout this blog, I've talked a lot about the American Nations – a concept, based on a book by Colin Woodard, that North America is divided into several ethno-cultural-political regional "nations". These nations are distributed approximately as shown above. The empirical bases of the existence of these ethno-cultural entities has...
  • […] Seed. Here the genetic data show that they remain alive and well. Previously, in my post Genes, Climate, and Even More Maps of the American Nations, we saw that the founding British colonists came from distinct parts of the British Isles and […]

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • A persistent misunderstanding both in the world of HBD and general medical and psychological science at large is the notion of what constitutes a "disorder." When does a phenotype represent a physiological or behavioral malady? For behavioral issues, most people regard the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) as the "final word" on...
  • @RandF
    Not fully disagreeing, but in a social species, for example ants, the drones serve a purpose. So ant colonies that pass on the gene mix that produce the right ratio of drones go on to survive.

    So, it's not necessarily a Darwinian as in deadly trait.

    Not fully disagreeing, but in a social species, for example ants, the drones serve a purpose. So ant colonies that pass on the gene mix that produce the right ratio of drones go on to survive.

    Humans aren’t eusocial like ants are; we don’t have queens that do all the reproducing. Selection acts on individuals and their close kin only in humans.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Not fully disagreeing, but in a social species, for example ants, the drones serve a purpose. So ant colonies that pass on the gene mix that produce the right ratio of drones go on to survive.

    So, it’s not necessarily a Darwinian as in deadly trait.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    Not fully disagreeing, but in a social species, for example ants, the drones serve a purpose. So ant colonies that pass on the gene mix that produce the right ratio of drones go on to survive.
     
    Humans aren't eusocial like ants are; we don't have queens that do all the reproducing. Selection acts on individuals and their close kin only in humans.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Szymon Baranowski
    But why is this article identifying behaviour of state as equal and same as behaviour of actual nations? These european democracies arent direct democracies as swiss one. For example in Germany most of medias are purely german and monopolied by political lobby. In such situation you cant even expect vote of peope to be their vote since they decide on base of information surrounding them that is mostly filtered world view created by nearly staterun media.

    How many Germans really wants to accept aliens from so exotic countries and how many more of them would do it if they could get daily real, not biased, not politically filtered informations about immigration.

    Also times when european nations of same universal greeko-romano-christian civilisation were involved on daily basis in wars against each other aren't far. Communism was crushed just 25 years ago, very lately finally ending WWII for east half of Europe. So how altruistic were these nations then, not long ago to kill each other everyday?

    Also how can Germany be seen as monolithic country with one dominant personality trait if it is geneticly a multilayer amalgamat of: Scandinavian protoGermans close to todays Danes (a mix of oldeuropeans mixed with minority of preslavs and later with coming Celts) later conquering Celts on south and Slavs o east, today being genetic proportional mix of 40% Celts, 40% old europeans and 20% Slavs.

    If genetics is a basis for people bahaviour than this genetic proportions should be seen also in actual shades of behaviour of such society.

    You have also Chechs. Slavic nation in 30% of celtic genes, not common in slavic countries, genes of western, german heritage, impact of long many ages long conquer and immigration process. Such 30% admixture is not enough to explain today Chechs behaviour who could be called cold Scandinavians of Slavdom or eastern westerners. The fact which changed national behaviour of Chechs much more comes from one most important moment in chech history. That is moment of their new identity being born in fire of national uprising. When Chechish nationalism flourished it was born in sharp opposition to german political, religious (catholic) and economical occupation. This uprising was crusched ending with todays nearly tehistic Chechs stance and cold, west-like identity, behaviour. It is also quality of elites and social or religious history which decids of future all society behaviour not only genes.

    How many Germans really wants to accept aliens from so exotic countries and how many more of them would do it if they could get daily real, not biased, not politically filtered informations about immigration.

    The survey reported what the survey reported. There are tons of other universalistic behaviors found only in NW Europeans:

    The Rise of Universalism

    Also times when european nations of same universal greeko-romano-christian civilisation were involved on daily basis in wars against each other aren’t far. … So how altruistic were these nations then, not long ago to kill each other everyday?

    Aspects of universalism go back a long time. The current embrace of immigrants from the developing world is just one example, used here to illustrate.

    Also how can Germany be seen as monolithic country with one dominant personality trait

    When did I ever say that?

    Germania’s Seed? – The Unz Review

    You have also Chechs. Slavic nation in 30% of celtic genes, not common in slavic countries, genes of western, german heritage, impact of long many ages long conquer and immigration process. Such 30% admixture is not enough to explain today Chechs behaviour who could be called cold Scandinavians of Slavdom or eastern westerners.

    Deep historic ethnic/racial admixture doesn’t matter as much as you seem to think. Evolution can operate pretty fast.

    It is also quality of elites and social or religious history which decids of future all society behaviour not only genes.

    Where do elites come from?

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • But why is this article identifying behaviour of state as equal and same as behaviour of actual nations? These european democracies arent direct democracies as swiss one. For example in Germany most of medias are purely german and monopolied by political lobby. In such situation you cant even expect vote of peope to be their vote since they decide on base of information surrounding them that is mostly filtered world view created by nearly staterun media.

    How many Germans really wants to accept aliens from so exotic countries and how many more of them would do it if they could get daily real, not biased, not politically filtered informations about immigration.

    Also times when european nations of same universal greeko-romano-christian civilisation were involved on daily basis in wars against each other aren’t far. Communism was crushed just 25 years ago, very lately finally ending WWII for east half of Europe. So how altruistic were these nations then, not long ago to kill each other everyday?

    Also how can Germany be seen as monolithic country with one dominant personality trait if it is geneticly a multilayer amalgamat of: Scandinavian protoGermans close to todays Danes (a mix of oldeuropeans mixed with minority of preslavs and later with coming Celts) later conquering Celts on south and Slavs o east, today being genetic proportional mix of 40% Celts, 40% old europeans and 20% Slavs.

    If genetics is a basis for people bahaviour than this genetic proportions should be seen also in actual shades of behaviour of such society.

    You have also Chechs. Slavic nation in 30% of celtic genes, not common in slavic countries, genes of western, german heritage, impact of long many ages long conquer and immigration process. Such 30% admixture is not enough to explain today Chechs behaviour who could be called cold Scandinavians of Slavdom or eastern westerners. The fact which changed national behaviour of Chechs much more comes from one most important moment in chech history. That is moment of their new identity being born in fire of national uprising. When Chechish nationalism flourished it was born in sharp opposition to german political, religious (catholic) and economical occupation. This uprising was crusched ending with todays nearly tehistic Chechs stance and cold, west-like identity, behaviour. It is also quality of elites and social or religious history which decids of future all society behaviour not only genes.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    How many Germans really wants to accept aliens from so exotic countries and how many more of them would do it if they could get daily real, not biased, not politically filtered informations about immigration.
     
    The survey reported what the survey reported. There are tons of other universalistic behaviors found only in NW Europeans:

    The Rise of Universalism


    Also times when european nations of same universal greeko-romano-christian civilisation were involved on daily basis in wars against each other aren’t far. ... So how altruistic were these nations then, not long ago to kill each other everyday?
     
    Aspects of universalism go back a long time. The current embrace of immigrants from the developing world is just one example, used here to illustrate.

    Also how can Germany be seen as monolithic country with one dominant personality trait
     
    When did I ever say that?

    Germania’s Seed? - The Unz Review


    You have also Chechs. Slavic nation in 30% of celtic genes, not common in slavic countries, genes of western, german heritage, impact of long many ages long conquer and immigration process. Such 30% admixture is not enough to explain today Chechs behaviour who could be called cold Scandinavians of Slavdom or eastern westerners.
     
    Deep historic ethnic/racial admixture doesn't matter as much as you seem to think. Evolution can operate pretty fast.

    It is also quality of elites and social or religious history which decids of future all society behaviour not only genes.
     
    Where do elites come from?
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • The concentration and centralization of the agro-business multi-nationals advances with gigantic strides: Potash Corp and Agrium have combined into a $30 billion monopoly over the world fertilizer market. Dow Chemical and DuPont combine in a $130 billion dollar deal in the seed and agricultural chemicals sector. ChemChina prepares to takeover Syngenta in a $44 billion...
  • You’re a little ahead of your time, Mr. Petras. All this is coming, but it’s not a hot button issue yet.

    No doubt you can claim to have seen it coming, but what can we do about it?

    Read More
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  • James was right to put ‘free market’ in quotes. This isn’t about free trade, it’s about the US forcing its GMO’s down everyone’s throats. Big Ag rules by its outrageous practice of patenting living organisms.

    Read More
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  • There is no line separating the “military banking complex” from the biotech flaps, the fertilizer and pesticide cartels, big pharma and big farma and the sensation of a python gradually wrapping up all the resources needed for life. Air,food, water, materials for shelter, or room enough even for a heart to beat and circulate blood are subject to the choke points enabled by an infantile, post literate civilization too silly to differentiate between need and want. Brats squalling at the cash register for all the toxic sweets that that they are willing to kill for because they are willing to die for these also.

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • A persistent misunderstanding both in the world of HBD and general medical and psychological science at large is the notion of what constitutes a "disorder." When does a phenotype represent a physiological or behavioral malady? For behavioral issues, most people regard the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) as the "final word" on...
  • @JayMan


    Children exposed to alcohol in the womb need to be compared to their full siblings who were not.
     
    At least with regard to antiepileptic drugs that is precisely what is observed.
     
    Link? That at least is plausible.

    Unfortunately Google doesn’t have the entire book online, but Chapters 7-12 of this book lay out most of the information known up to this point:

    Antiepileptic Drugs and Pregnancy: A Guide for Prescribers
    By MJ Eadie, FJE Vajda

    https://books.google.com/books?id=3lh1CgAAQBAJ&pg=PA188&lpg=PA188&dq=Nicolai+et+al,+2008+valproate&source=bl&ots=7NcMBwWg1W&sig=XbOo6IE3elJoEr_gTLU06O5cX_w&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwil-JCe0qLLAhWGloMKHSY1AyAQ6AEIITAA#v=onepage&q=Nicolai%20et%20al%2C%202008%20valproate&f=false

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  • @Stephen R. Diamond

    Key fact to keep in mind: ALL human behavioral traits are heritable.
     
    Consider this fact (if it is factual - http://www.livescience.com/17971-drinking-pregnancy-worst-trimester.html):

    Any drinking during pregnancy increases the odds of fetal alcohol syndrome, but the risk to the fetus is highest if a pregnant woman drinks during the second half of her first trimester of pregnancy, a new study finds.
     
    Now, drinking specifically in the second-half of the first trimester (that is, as opposed to drinking in the early first, or the second or third) is a behaviorial trait. We should expect that it's heritable. But doesn't the putative result add credibility to "FAS" being alcohol induced? First, because it articulates with an enivornmental explanation. Second, because specific second half of first trimester drinking is unlikely to be highly heritable; timing is likely to depend on contingencies.

    Would you humor me by indicating what's wrong with this logic?

    Second, because specific second half of first trimester drinking is unlikely to be highly heritable

    ALL human behavioral traits are heritable.

    In any case, see my reply to Ryan above on the type of evidence we would need.

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  • @ryan

    Children exposed to alcohol in the womb need to be compared to their full siblings who were not.
     
    At least with regard to antiepileptic drugs that is precisely what is observed. The facial and other birth defects which characterize fetal valproate syndrome are found only when a woman was taking valproate. If she was off medication or on a safe drug like Keppra with her other children they won't have the syndrome.

    The evidence so far here has not been kind to FAS.
     
    OK, I'll bite. What is this evidence?

    Children exposed to alcohol in the womb need to be compared to their full siblings who were not.

    At least with regard to antiepileptic drugs that is precisely what is observed.

    Link? That at least is plausible.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ryan
    Unfortunately Google doesn't have the entire book online, but Chapters 7-12 of this book lay out most of the information known up to this point:

    Antiepileptic Drugs and Pregnancy: A Guide for Prescribers
    By MJ Eadie, FJE Vajda

    https://books.google.com/books?id=3lh1CgAAQBAJ&pg=PA188&lpg=PA188&dq=Nicolai+et+al,+2008+valproate&source=bl&ots=7NcMBwWg1W&sig=XbOo6IE3elJoEr_gTLU06O5cX_w&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwil-JCe0qLLAhWGloMKHSY1AyAQ6AEIITAA#v=onepage&q=Nicolai%20et%20al%2C%202008%20valproate&f=false
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Children exposed to alcohol in the womb need to be compared to their full siblings who were not.

    At least with regard to antiepileptic drugs that is precisely what is observed. The facial and other birth defects which characterize fetal valproate syndrome are found only when a woman was taking valproate. If she was off medication or on a safe drug like Keppra with her other children they won’t have the syndrome.

    The evidence so far here has not been kind to FAS.

    OK, I’ll bite. What is this evidence?

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan


    Children exposed to alcohol in the womb need to be compared to their full siblings who were not.
     
    At least with regard to antiepileptic drugs that is precisely what is observed.
     
    Link? That at least is plausible.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @JayMan

    Say you studied the children of low IQ mothers who don’t drink and high IQ mothers who do. If you found the specific constellation of symptoms in the second group and never in the first, would that satisfy your standard of evidence?
     
    Nope. But you're getting closer. Key fact to keep in mind: ALL human behavioral traits are heritable.

    Key fact to keep in mind: ALL human behavioral traits are heritable.

    Consider this fact (if it is factual – http://www.livescience.com/17971-drinking-pregnancy-worst-trimester.html):

    Any drinking during pregnancy increases the odds of fetal alcohol syndrome, but the risk to the fetus is highest if a pregnant woman drinks during the second half of her first trimester of pregnancy, a new study finds.

    Now, drinking specifically in the second-half of the first trimester (that is, as opposed to drinking in the early first, or the second or third) is a behaviorial trait. We should expect that it’s heritable. But doesn’t the putative result add credibility to “FAS” being alcohol induced? First, because it articulates with an enivornmental explanation. Second, because specific second half of first trimester drinking is unlikely to be highly heritable; timing is likely to depend on contingencies.

    Would you humor me by indicating what’s wrong with this logic?

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    Second, because specific second half of first trimester drinking is unlikely to be highly heritable
     
    ALL human behavioral traits are heritable.

    In any case, see my reply to Ryan above on the type of evidence we would need.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @ryan
    You seem to presume the specific constellation of facial dysmorphisms can result from causes other than teratogen exposure or particular genetic syndromes. I don't know where you got this idea.

    I hope also to clarify that genetic disorders can cause facial dysmorphisms. See for example Down Syndrome:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Down_syndrome

    If a Microarray analysis shows a child has Down Syndrome then a geneticist will identify it as responsible for the dysmorphisms even if the mother drank or took a teratogenic drug. When the genetic analysis does not show defects known to cause dysmorphisms the genticist will attribute the dysmorphisms to teratogen exposure.

    Again I do not know of cases in which the constellation of dysmorphisms is present in children who do not have a genetic disorder like Down Syndrome or have not been exposed to a teratogen. If you do, I'd like to take a look.

    When the genetic analysis does not show defects known to cause dysmorphisms the genticist will attribute the dysmorphisms to teratogen exposure.

    Are you saying that the same facial dysmorphism characterizing FAS is present in specific genetic disorders? (What about the test scores.)

    Read More
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @ryan
    You seem to presume the specific constellation of facial dysmorphisms can result from causes other than teratogen exposure or particular genetic syndromes. I don't know where you got this idea.

    I hope also to clarify that genetic disorders can cause facial dysmorphisms. See for example Down Syndrome:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Down_syndrome

    If a Microarray analysis shows a child has Down Syndrome then a geneticist will identify it as responsible for the dysmorphisms even if the mother drank or took a teratogenic drug. When the genetic analysis does not show defects known to cause dysmorphisms the genticist will attribute the dysmorphisms to teratogen exposure.

    Again I do not know of cases in which the constellation of dysmorphisms is present in children who do not have a genetic disorder like Down Syndrome or have not been exposed to a teratogen. If you do, I'd like to take a look.

    I hope also to clarify that genetic disorders can cause facial dysmorphisms. See for example Down Syndrome:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Down_syndrome

    No shit…

    When the genetic analysis does not show defects known to cause dysmorphisms the genticist will attribute the dysmorphisms to teratogen exposure.

    Ah ha! That’s (one of) your problem. We don’t know what most of the DNA does. There could easily be many other alleles with similar effects.

    Since I have to spell it out for you guys, the only way to confirm a causal role of alcohol in such cases is to do a sibling comparison study. Children exposed to alcohol in the womb need to be compared to their full siblings who were not. That’s the only solid way to know. The evidence so far here has not been kind to FAS.

    Read More
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  • @JayMan

    Cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure is marked by clear genetic test results,
     
    Evidence?

    I think I stated the answer to this question very clearly earlier.
     
    No, you did not. Genetic confounding is not entering equation. Allow me to explain: you would need to find some way of testing for FAS that was able to control for genetic differences between people. There is one easy class of studies that can be done for this.

    You seem to presume the specific constellation of facial dysmorphisms can result from causes other than teratogen exposure or particular genetic syndromes. I don’t know where you got this idea.

    I hope also to clarify that genetic disorders can cause facial dysmorphisms. See for example Down Syndrome:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Down_syndrome

    If a Microarray analysis shows a child has Down Syndrome then a geneticist will identify it as responsible for the dysmorphisms even if the mother drank or took a teratogenic drug. When the genetic analysis does not show defects known to cause dysmorphisms the genticist will attribute the dysmorphisms to teratogen exposure.

    Again I do not know of cases in which the constellation of dysmorphisms is present in children who do not have a genetic disorder like Down Syndrome or have not been exposed to a teratogen. If you do, I’d like to take a look.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    I hope also to clarify that genetic disorders can cause facial dysmorphisms. See for example Down Syndrome:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Down_syndrome
     

    No shit...

    When the genetic analysis does not show defects known to cause dysmorphisms the genticist will attribute the dysmorphisms to teratogen exposure.
     
    Ah ha! That's (one of) your problem. We don't know what most of the DNA does. There could easily be many other alleles with similar effects.

    Since I have to spell it out for you guys, the only way to confirm a causal role of alcohol in such cases is to do a sibling comparison study. Children exposed to alcohol in the womb need to be compared to their full siblings who were not. That's the only solid way to know. The evidence so far here has not been kind to FAS.

    , @Stephen R. Diamond

    When the genetic analysis does not show defects known to cause dysmorphisms the genticist will attribute the dysmorphisms to teratogen exposure.
     
    Are you saying that the same facial dysmorphism characterizing FAS is present in specific genetic disorders? (What about the test scores.)
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Stephen R. Diamond

    you would need to find some way of testing for FAS that was able to control for genetic differences between people. There is one easy class of studies that can be done for this.
     
    Say you studied the children of low IQ mothers who don't drink and high IQ mothers who do. If you found the specific constellation of symptoms in the second group and never in the first, would that satisfy your standard of evidence?

    Say you studied the children of low IQ mothers who don’t drink and high IQ mothers who do. If you found the specific constellation of symptoms in the second group and never in the first, would that satisfy your standard of evidence?

    Nope. But you’re getting closer. Key fact to keep in mind: ALL human behavioral traits are heritable.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Stephen R. Diamond

    Key fact to keep in mind: ALL human behavioral traits are heritable.
     
    Consider this fact (if it is factual - http://www.livescience.com/17971-drinking-pregnancy-worst-trimester.html):

    Any drinking during pregnancy increases the odds of fetal alcohol syndrome, but the risk to the fetus is highest if a pregnant woman drinks during the second half of her first trimester of pregnancy, a new study finds.
     
    Now, drinking specifically in the second-half of the first trimester (that is, as opposed to drinking in the early first, or the second or third) is a behaviorial trait. We should expect that it's heritable. But doesn't the putative result add credibility to "FAS" being alcohol induced? First, because it articulates with an enivornmental explanation. Second, because specific second half of first trimester drinking is unlikely to be highly heritable; timing is likely to depend on contingencies.

    Would you humor me by indicating what's wrong with this logic?
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  • @JayMan

    Cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure is marked by clear genetic test results,
     
    Evidence?

    I think I stated the answer to this question very clearly earlier.
     
    No, you did not. Genetic confounding is not entering equation. Allow me to explain: you would need to find some way of testing for FAS that was able to control for genetic differences between people. There is one easy class of studies that can be done for this.

    you would need to find some way of testing for FAS that was able to control for genetic differences between people. There is one easy class of studies that can be done for this.

    Say you studied the children of low IQ mothers who don’t drink and high IQ mothers who do. If you found the specific constellation of symptoms in the second group and never in the first, would that satisfy your standard of evidence?

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    • Replies: @JayMan

    Say you studied the children of low IQ mothers who don’t drink and high IQ mothers who do. If you found the specific constellation of symptoms in the second group and never in the first, would that satisfy your standard of evidence?
     
    Nope. But you're getting closer. Key fact to keep in mind: ALL human behavioral traits are heritable.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • I googled “Flynn effect in testing children” and got 1.2 million results. All of the first ten dealt only w children.

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  • @Penelope
    Regarding the cause of early maturation and its deleterious effect on final IQ, I've more questions than answers. https://majorityrights.com/weblog/comments/a_possible_explanation_for_the_flynn_effect

    Flynn effect was erroneous, actually resulting from early maturation, so that today's 10 year old has the maturity of yesterday's 12 year old, but the final IQ will be lower. Cause of the early maturation? chemicals which are endocrine disruptors? [No, I would say antibiotic residue in meat & poultry] Any tests on Vegetarians?-- altho milk & eggs still affected. Is early maturation absent in rural villages where meat is unadulterated?

    The Flynn effect is seen in tests of adults, so try again.

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  • @ryan
    I think I stated the answer to this question very clearly earlier. Cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure is marked by clear genetic test results, a specific constellation of facial dysmorphisms, and IQ test results in which subtest scores do not correlate.

    Cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure is marked by clear genetic test results,

    Evidence?

    I think I stated the answer to this question very clearly earlier.

    No, you did not. Genetic confounding is not entering equation. Allow me to explain: you would need to find some way of testing for FAS that was able to control for genetic differences between people. There is one easy class of studies that can be done for this.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Stephen R. Diamond

    you would need to find some way of testing for FAS that was able to control for genetic differences between people. There is one easy class of studies that can be done for this.
     
    Say you studied the children of low IQ mothers who don't drink and high IQ mothers who do. If you found the specific constellation of symptoms in the second group and never in the first, would that satisfy your standard of evidence?
    , @ryan
    You seem to presume the specific constellation of facial dysmorphisms can result from causes other than teratogen exposure or particular genetic syndromes. I don't know where you got this idea.

    I hope also to clarify that genetic disorders can cause facial dysmorphisms. See for example Down Syndrome:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Down_syndrome

    If a Microarray analysis shows a child has Down Syndrome then a geneticist will identify it as responsible for the dysmorphisms even if the mother drank or took a teratogenic drug. When the genetic analysis does not show defects known to cause dysmorphisms the genticist will attribute the dysmorphisms to teratogen exposure.

    Again I do not know of cases in which the constellation of dysmorphisms is present in children who do not have a genetic disorder like Down Syndrome or have not been exposed to a teratogen. If you do, I'd like to take a look.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Penelope
    As of right now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates a growing number of children, one in 68, is believed to have an autism spectrum disorder. That's a 30% increase from estimates in 2012.Nov 16, 2015. That's an awful lot of imaginative diagnosis. You are probably aware that an MRI is often used to make the diagnosis objective.

    The mechanism through which autism is aquired by some children has been isolated, and a cure devised which has been successful in many cases. http://healthimpactnews.com/2015/is-the-u-s-medical-mafia-murdering-alternative-health-doctors-who-have-real-cures-not-approved-by-the-fda/ The trouble w being close-minded is that you shut yourself off from the possibility of new knowledge.

    As of right now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates a growing number of children, one in 68, is believed to have an autism spectrum disorder. That’s a 30% increase from estimates in 2012.Nov 16, 2015. That’s an awful lot of imaginative diagnosis.

    Yes it is. And that is the final word on the subject here.

    The trouble w being close-minded is that you shut yourself off from the possibility of new knowledge

    Look who’s talking…

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  • @JayMan

    What about situations in which right side of the bell curve parents have a mother who drinks during the pregnancy and the child is born with the pattern of defects which indicate fetal alcohol syndrome?
     
    Just answer this question: given the reality of genetic confounding, how do we know? A serious answer to that question may clear much of this up for you.

    I think I stated the answer to this question very clearly earlier. Cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure is marked by clear genetic test results, a specific constellation of facial dysmorphisms, and IQ test results in which subtest scores do not correlate.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    Cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure is marked by clear genetic test results,
     
    Evidence?

    I think I stated the answer to this question very clearly earlier.
     
    No, you did not. Genetic confounding is not entering equation. Allow me to explain: you would need to find some way of testing for FAS that was able to control for genetic differences between people. There is one easy class of studies that can be done for this.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Regarding the cause of early maturation and its deleterious effect on final IQ, I’ve more questions than answers. https://majorityrights.com/weblog/comments/a_possible_explanation_for_the_flynn_effect

    Flynn effect was erroneous, actually resulting from early maturation, so that today’s 10 year old has the maturity of yesterday’s 12 year old, but the final IQ will be lower. Cause of the early maturation? chemicals which are endocrine disruptors? [No, I would say antibiotic residue in meat & poultry] Any tests on Vegetarians?– altho milk & eggs still affected. Is early maturation absent in rural villages where meat is unadulterated?

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan
    The Flynn effect is seen in tests of adults, so try again.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • As of right now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates a growing number of children, one in 68, is believed to have an autism spectrum disorder. That’s a 30% increase from estimates in 2012.Nov 16, 2015. That’s an awful lot of imaginative diagnosis. You are probably aware that an MRI is often used to make the diagnosis objective.

    The mechanism through which autism is aquired by some children has been isolated, and a cure devised which has been successful in many cases. http://healthimpactnews.com/2015/is-the-u-s-medical-mafia-murdering-alternative-health-doctors-who-have-real-cures-not-approved-by-the-fda/ The trouble w being close-minded is that you shut yourself off from the possibility of new knowledge.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    As of right now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates a growing number of children, one in 68, is believed to have an autism spectrum disorder. That’s a 30% increase from estimates in 2012.Nov 16, 2015. That’s an awful lot of imaginative diagnosis.
     
    Yes it is. And that is the final word on the subject here.

    The trouble w being close-minded is that you shut yourself off from the possibility of new knowledge
     
    Look who's talking...
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Penelope
    "Harvard’s announcement continues:

    The average loss in IQ was reported as a standardized weighted mean difference of 0.45, which would be approximately equivalent to seven IQ points for commonly used IQ scores with a standard deviation of 15. Some studies suggested that even slightly increased fluoride exposure could be toxic to the brain. Thus, children in high-fluoride areas had significantly lower IQ scores than those who lived in low-fluoride areas. The children studied were up to 14 years of age, but the investigators speculate that any toxic effect on brain development may have happened earlier, and that the brain may not be fully capable of compensating for the toxicity.“Fluoride seems to fit in with lead, mercury, and other poisons that cause chemical brain drain,” http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/02/harvard-study-published-national-institute-health-journal-finds-fluoride-lowers-childrens-intelligence-7-iq-points.html

    There are many other references demonstrating fluoride's toxicity to the developing IQ.

    There are many other references demonstrating fluoride’s toxicity to the developing IQ.

    When you can find me one that’s not genetically confounded, let me know.

    We work from a higher standard of evidence around here.

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  • “Harvard’s announcement continues:

    The average loss in IQ was reported as a standardized weighted mean difference of 0.45, which would be approximately equivalent to seven IQ points for commonly used IQ scores with a standard deviation of 15. Some studies suggested that even slightly increased fluoride exposure could be toxic to the brain. Thus, children in high-fluoride areas had significantly lower IQ scores than those who lived in low-fluoride areas. The children studied were up to 14 years of age, but the investigators speculate that any toxic effect on brain development may have happened earlier, and that the brain may not be fully capable of compensating for the toxicity.“Fluoride seems to fit in with lead, mercury, and other poisons that cause chemical brain drain,” http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/02/harvard-study-published-national-institute-health-journal-finds-fluoride-lowers-childrens-intelligence-7-iq-points.html

    There are many other references demonstrating fluoride’s toxicity to the developing IQ.

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    • Replies: @JayMan

    There are many other references demonstrating fluoride’s toxicity to the developing IQ.
     
    When you can find me one that's not genetically confounded, let me know.

    We work from a higher standard of evidence around here.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Lorax
    Thumbs up for your erudition and emphasis on biology, but thumbs down on what you write about
    homoeroticism. This behavior is too widespread in human hunter gatherers and other primates for it not to convey some adaptive advantages. Man oh man do I have a great read for you and others interested in deconstructing the Rubic's cube of sexuality: "Sex at Dawn (the prehistoric origins of modern sexuality." I just can't believe what complete sluts we used to be. Here is a revealing excerpt: "Recognized as a way to to build and maintain a network of mutually beneficial relationships, non reproductive sex no longer requires special explanations. Homosexuality for example, becomes far less confusing,in that is is, as E. O. Wilson has written, "above all a form of bonding consistent with with the greater part of heterosexual behavior as a device that cements relationships." As you probably know, Wilson is known for his role as "the father of sociobiology" and "the father of biodiversity" (from Wikipedia)

    I wouldn’t bet on E O Wilson’s expertise outside of ants. He’s the fella that made up all that “Sixth Wave of Extinction” fantasy that has persuaded everyone to throw their brains away. I think his book came out in 1992, in which he claimed that 27,000 species were going extinct every year. As Willis Eschenbach has pointed out, that would mean half a million extinctions by now, but we are able to name exactly 6 mammals and 3 birds which have gone extinct in the past 500 years on the main continents. (A different story for islands & Australia) http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/01/25/always-trust-your-gut-extinct/

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  • @Lyov Myshkin
    This really fascinates me. Thanks, Jayman.

    Speaking of obligate homosexuality in humans I realize that in the animal kingdom there is a wide range of same sex behaviour that has been observed but I'm wondering if the author or anyone else knows how prevalent or not it is in the animal kingdom to eschew mating like many human homosexuals do?

    See a few comments up for a link covering it.

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  • @Penelope
    Such a vast increase in autism in a short period would mitigate against a hereditary origin. Vaccines or other environmental insults are suspect. ONE DAY OLD babies now receive their first vaccinations.

    IQ is known to be subject to environmental insult. Fluoride is well-documented to reduce children's IQ. The much-vaunted "Flynn effect" wherein IQ is purportedly increasing turns out to be an artifact of earlier maturation. Children's IQs are higher earlier, but due to the earlier maturation, IQ stops developing earlier, too. The result is that FINAL IQ is lower. Antibiotics fed our animals and poultry cause early maturation & development. One wonders about the antibiotic residues consumed by people, especially given their indubitable early maturation.

    Such a vast increase in autism in a short period would mitigate against a hereditary origin.

    There has been no increase in autism over the past century. The “increase” is a result of diagnostic changes.

    Vaccines or other environmental insults are suspect.

    Wiring the Brain: Autism: The Truth is (not) Out There

    ONE DAY OLD babies now receive their first vaccinations.

    Mine did.

    IQ is known to be subject to environmental insult.

    There aren’t many that are legit.

    Fluoride is well-documented to reduce children’s IQ.

    The much-vaunted “Flynn effect” wherein IQ is purportedly increasing turns out to be an artifact of earlier maturation. Children’s IQs are higher earlier, but due to the earlier maturation, IQ stops developing earlier, too

    Interesting. Nonetheless:

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  • @ryan
    What about situations in which right side of the bell curve parents have a mother who drinks during the pregnancy and the child is born with the pattern of defects which indicate fetal alcohol syndrome? I know of several clients who are quite smart ladies who took an antiepileptic drug during pregnancy and have children with severe cognitive impairment and the constellation of facial defects common to teratogen exposure, alcohol or otherwise. Is that baloney as well?

    The whole medical genetic community has just made up something which isn't real? There's no such thing as cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure?

    What about situations in which right side of the bell curve parents have a mother who drinks during the pregnancy and the child is born with the pattern of defects which indicate fetal alcohol syndrome?

    Just answer this question: given the reality of genetic confounding, how do we know? A serious answer to that question may clear much of this up for you.

    Read More
    • Replies: @ryan
    I think I stated the answer to this question very clearly earlier. Cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure is marked by clear genetic test results, a specific constellation of facial dysmorphisms, and IQ test results in which subtest scores do not correlate.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Stephen R. Diamond
    Why would women who drink while pregnant tend to pass on specific facial features: small eye openings, smooth pliltrum, and thin upper lip? (As distinguished from a propensity to various birth defects.)

    Why would women who drink while pregnant tend to pass on specific facial features: small eye openings, smooth pliltrum, and thin upper lip? (As distinguished from a propensity to various birth defects.)

    Are those defects truly specific to drinkers or to low-IQ women in general?

    Standard epidemiology is a bankrupt science.

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  • @Stephen R. Diamond

    It can’t be a disorder if it’s present in 1/3rd to 1/2 of the population. This is ruled out by basic evolutionary theory
     
    Then, with its 1/3rd prevalence rate, near-sightedness (in youth) isn't a disorder? But I doubt you could find a culture in where it's adaptive.

    Also, what if the condition is an unfortunate consequence of an adaptation, as is theorized for certain diseases among ashkenazi? Does this count as a disease or an adaptation?

    Then, with its 1/3rd prevalence rate, near-sightedness (in youth) isn’t a disorder?

    No, it’s not.

    But I doubt you could find a culture in where it’s adaptive.

    It stems either from environmental mismatch, pathogens, or the causal alleles are indeed beneficial.

    Also, what if the condition is an unfortunate consequence of an adaptation, as is theorized for certain diseases among ashkenazi?

    I’m not sure that’s actually the case for Ashkenazi ailments. But sure, sickle-cell anemia seems to fall under that category along with a handful of other things.

    Look, basic evolutionary theory shows that an allele can only come to high frequency through selection (or perhaps founder effects). Harmful mutations quickly disappear over evolutionary time – even a tiny fitness cost drives alleles to zero frequency with time. So if we see a phenotype that’s extraordinarily common, selection must have been involved.

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    • Replies: @Alice
    You said :

    Look, basic evolutionary theory shows that an allele can only come to high frequency through selection (or perhaps founder effects). Harmful mutations quickly disappear over evolutionary time – even a tiny fitness cost drives alleles to zero frequency with time. So if we see a phenotype that’s extraordinarily common, selection must have been involved.

    But that's an argument that something's selecting for schizophrenia, right? Age of onset isn't early enough to prevent reproduction. Whether or not schizophrenia is related to some other positive outcome or some is just a close variant of some sets of proteins involved in various aspects of intelligence, it isn't so maladaptive or it wouldn't be here, right? Or is the argument that it keeps getting created by genetic load, cropping up on lines that have almost too many healthy mutations to make it? It being caused by N various proteins or sites not getting made rather some small set of things that are being created?

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Lyov Myshkin [AKA "Nicholas White"] says:
    @Frank Messmann
    HBD is merely my avocation, so please excuse my ignorance: I assume that a possible pathogen causing homosexuality occurs in utero. Since some animals also display "homosexuality," I assume that you would argue that this, too, is pathogen-caused.

    This really fascinates me. Thanks, Jayman.

    Speaking of obligate homosexuality in humans I realize that in the animal kingdom there is a wide range of same sex behaviour that has been observed but I’m wondering if the author or anyone else knows how prevalent or not it is in the animal kingdom to eschew mating like many human homosexuals do?

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan
    See a few comments up for a link covering it.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • Such a vast increase in autism in a short period would mitigate against a hereditary origin. Vaccines or other environmental insults are suspect. ONE DAY OLD babies now receive their first vaccinations.

    IQ is known to be subject to environmental insult. Fluoride is well-documented to reduce children’s IQ. The much-vaunted “Flynn effect” wherein IQ is purportedly increasing turns out to be an artifact of earlier maturation. Children’s IQs are higher earlier, but due to the earlier maturation, IQ stops developing earlier, too. The result is that FINAL IQ is lower. Antibiotics fed our animals and poultry cause early maturation & development. One wonders about the antibiotic residues consumed by people, especially given their indubitable early maturation.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    Such a vast increase in autism in a short period would mitigate against a hereditary origin.
     
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzwPHAkc-NI

    There has been no increase in autism over the past century. The "increase" is a result of diagnostic changes.


    Vaccines or other environmental insults are suspect.
     
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GUGt1lbXaxk

    Wiring the Brain: Autism: The Truth is (not) Out There


    ONE DAY OLD babies now receive their first vaccinations.
     
    Mine did.

    IQ is known to be subject to environmental insult.
     
    There aren't many that are legit.

    Fluoride is well-documented to reduce children’s IQ.
     
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b91WNMKN5SE

    The much-vaunted “Flynn effect” wherein IQ is purportedly increasing turns out to be an artifact of earlier maturation. Children’s IQs are higher earlier, but due to the earlier maturation, IQ stops developing earlier, too
     
    Interesting. Nonetheless:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQey-2LP1E4

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @JayMan
    Sure.

    All the problems attributed to "fetal alcohol syndrome" could (and apparently do) stem from the traits of people who tend to drink while pregnant, which they then pass on to their children. The alcohol per se has nothing to do with it.

    What about situations in which right side of the bell curve parents have a mother who drinks during the pregnancy and the child is born with the pattern of defects which indicate fetal alcohol syndrome? I know of several clients who are quite smart ladies who took an antiepileptic drug during pregnancy and have children with severe cognitive impairment and the constellation of facial defects common to teratogen exposure, alcohol or otherwise. Is that baloney as well?

    The whole medical genetic community has just made up something which isn’t real? There’s no such thing as cognitive impairment from teratogen exposure?

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    What about situations in which right side of the bell curve parents have a mother who drinks during the pregnancy and the child is born with the pattern of defects which indicate fetal alcohol syndrome?
     
    Just answer this question: given the reality of genetic confounding, how do we know? A serious answer to that question may clear much of this up for you.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @JayMan
    Sure.

    All the problems attributed to "fetal alcohol syndrome" could (and apparently do) stem from the traits of people who tend to drink while pregnant, which they then pass on to their children. The alcohol per se has nothing to do with it.

    Why would women who drink while pregnant tend to pass on specific facial features: small eye openings, smooth pliltrum, and thin upper lip? (As distinguished from a propensity to various birth defects.)

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    Why would women who drink while pregnant tend to pass on specific facial features: small eye openings, smooth pliltrum, and thin upper lip? (As distinguished from a propensity to various birth defects.)
     
    Are those defects truly specific to drinkers or to low-IQ women in general?

    Standard epidemiology is a bankrupt science.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @JayMan

    This overlooks another phenomenon. A characteristic such as autism may be influenced by many genes; and the dose makes the poison. Lower doses may be adaptive, even in the present environment
     
    Don't bet your money on it.

    Pathological altruism – of course it’s pathological. It is an overdose of something that is beneficial (altruism). Beliefs can be pathological – for example the Xhosa Cattle Killing Movement. Perhaps that episode could be classed as an excess of something that might be beneficial in small doses (magical thinking).
     
    You know, I love seeing all the ways people defend this stupidness. It can't be a disorder if it's present in 1/3rd to 1/2 of the population. This is ruled out by basic evolutionary theory

    It can’t be a disorder if it’s present in 1/3rd to 1/2 of the population. This is ruled out by basic evolutionary theory

    Then, with its 1/3rd prevalence rate, near-sightedness (in youth) isn’t a disorder? But I doubt you could find a culture in where it’s adaptive.

    Also, what if the condition is an unfortunate consequence of an adaptation, as is theorized for certain diseases among ashkenazi? Does this count as a disease or an adaptation?

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    Then, with its 1/3rd prevalence rate, near-sightedness (in youth) isn’t a disorder?
     
    No, it's not.

    But I doubt you could find a culture in where it’s adaptive.
     
    It stems either from environmental mismatch, pathogens, or the causal alleles are indeed beneficial.

    Also, what if the condition is an unfortunate consequence of an adaptation, as is theorized for certain diseases among ashkenazi?
     
    I'm not sure that's actually the case for Ashkenazi ailments. But sure, sickle-cell anemia seems to fall under that category along with a handful of other things.

    Look, basic evolutionary theory shows that an allele can only come to high frequency through selection (or perhaps founder effects). Harmful mutations quickly disappear over evolutionary time – even a tiny fitness cost drives alleles to zero frequency with time. So if we see a phenotype that's extraordinarily common, selection must have been involved.

    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @Sean
    Well I thought the post referred to Germany taking refugees to illustrate the development of NW Europe is inevitably towards more universalism as time goes on. If'd say the evidence in living memory, from Germany especially, is that NorthWest European countries can be extremely universalist or parochially ethnic nationalist as the times require.

    Well I thought the post referred to Germany taking refugees to illustrate the development of NW Europe is inevitably towards more universalism as time goes on. If’d say the evidence in living memory, from Germany especially, is that NorthWest European countries can be extremely universalist or parochially ethnic nationalist

    Northwestern European countries aren’t monolithic. For that matter, neither is Germany.

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  • @JayMan

    Fair enough, but you ought to say that Germans are not what you mean by Northwest Europeans
     
    Except that the Germans are what I mean. The existence of both types of individuals in the population isn't ruled out.

    I'm getting bored with this exchange.

    Well I thought the post referred to Germany taking refugees to illustrate the development of NW Europe is inevitably towards more universalism as time goes on. If’d say the evidence in living memory, from Germany especially, is that NorthWest European countries can be extremely universalist or parochially ethnic nationalist as the times require.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    Well I thought the post referred to Germany taking refugees to illustrate the development of NW Europe is inevitably towards more universalism as time goes on. If’d say the evidence in living memory, from Germany especially, is that NorthWest European countries can be extremely universalist or parochially ethnic nationalist
     
    Northwestern European countries aren't monolithic. For that matter, neither is Germany.
    ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc.
  • @James N. Kennett

    Don’t bet your money on it.
     
    You've never met someone who is not quite on the Asperger's spectrum, but has enough of those characteristics to be considered weird? Such people design bridges; they run wafer fabs in which a hundred processes must be applied in the correct order and with precise adherence to the rules; and they keep the Internet running.

    You know, I love seeing all the ways people defend this stupidness. It can’t be a disorder if it’s present in 1/3rd to 1/2 of the population. This is ruled out by basic evolutionary theory
     
    If some characteristic causes a population to die out, then natural selection is vindicated, and of course "basic evolutionary theory" holds. You seem to be arguing that "maladaptive" implies "pathological", but then you appear to want certain exceptions. The Xhosa who killed their cattle and then starved to death had maladaptive, and therefore pathological, beliefs.

    You’ve never met someone who is not quite on the Asperger’s spectrum, but has enough of those characteristics to be considered weird?

    I don’t think the two things are related. One is a set of personality traits. The other is a disability. I will dig into the behavioral genetic literature to check on that.

    If some characteristic causes a population to die out, then natural selection is vindicated, and of course “basic evolutionary theory” holds. You seem to be arguing that “maladaptive” implies “pathological”

    I believe I put it this way:

    This also, by the way, highlights a key fact about the aforementioned genetic load. There is a key difference between afflictions stemming from environmental mismatch and disorders stemming from genetic load (such as autism, schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder). Where as the genes that cause substance abuse or altitude sickness are clearly adaptive in some environments (ancestral ones) and were selected for by evolution, the genes that lead to autism, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia are maladaptive in any environment.* Disorders caused by genetic load are true Darwinian diseases.

    Note the very important difference.

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  • @JayMan

    This overlooks another phenomenon. A characteristic such as autism may be influenced by many genes; and the dose makes the poison. Lower doses may be adaptive, even in the present environment
     
    Don't bet your money on it.

    Pathological altruism – of course it’s pathological. It is an overdose of something that is beneficial (altruism). Beliefs can be pathological – for example the Xhosa Cattle Killing Movement. Perhaps that episode could be classed as an excess of something that might be beneficial in small doses (magical thinking).
     
    You know, I love seeing all the ways people defend this stupidness. It can't be a disorder if it's present in 1/3rd to 1/2 of the population. This is ruled out by basic evolutionary theory

    Don’t bet your money on it.

    You’ve never met someone who is not quite on the Asperger’s spectrum, but has enough of those characteristics to be considered weird? Such people design bridges; they run wafer fabs in which a hundred processes must be applied in the correct order and with precise adherence to the rules; and they keep the Internet running.

    You know, I love seeing all the ways people defend this stupidness. It can’t be a disorder if it’s present in 1/3rd to 1/2 of the population. This is ruled out by basic evolutionary theory

    If some characteristic causes a population to die out, then natural selection is vindicated, and of course “basic evolutionary theory” holds. You seem to be arguing that “maladaptive” implies “pathological”, but then you appear to want certain exceptions. The Xhosa who killed their cattle and then starved to death had maladaptive, and therefore pathological, beliefs.

    Read More
    • Replies: @JayMan

    You’ve never met someone who is not quite on the Asperger’s spectrum, but has enough of those characteristics to be considered weird?
     
    I don't think the two things are related. One is a set of personality traits. The other is a disability. I will dig into the behavioral genetic literature to check on that.

    If some characteristic causes a population to die out, then natural selection is vindicated, and of course “basic evolutionary theory” holds. You seem to be arguing that “maladaptive” implies “pathological”
     
    I believe I put it this way:

    This also, by the way, highlights a key fact about the aforementioned genetic load. There is a key difference between afflictions stemming from environmental mismatch and disorders stemming from genetic load (such as autism, schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder). Where as the genes that cause substance abuse or altitude sickness are clearly adaptive in some environments (ancestral ones) and were selected for by evolution, the genes that lead to autism, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia are maladaptive in any environment.* Disorders caused by genetic load are true Darwinian diseases.
     
    Note the very important difference.
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