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Topic: "Scientists Say" blather (Read 43050 times)

"Scientists Say" blather
Are you, too, bothered by internet news reports that "scientists say" this or that. I find it utterly annoying. Who are these scientists? Are cosmologists qualified to say anything meaningful about high energy physics, biologists about the orbit of Enceladus?

What think you?

  • ersi
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #250
...nothing about "continuum" straw men as usual...
Raccoon even made a pretty painting of the continuum, so it's not a strawman, but a real reference. Not a reference to you though. Don't take it overly personally when I am putting a complicated Wikipedia article into broader perspective.

Let's make a thought experiment. For the sake of clarity, let's exaggerate it dramatically. If it works in the worst case, it works in any case.
Let's suppose a health gene. "H" is the dominant allele of health, and "x" is the recessive allele of death. "HH", "Hx" and "xH" are healthy individuals, while "xx" are dead born babies.
Healthy individuals will pass along the "x" death allele to the next generations, bearing mostly healthy children, and eventually bearing dead babies. Theoretically it can last forever.
Good one. This is how it applies to sex genes. Males are XY. Females are XX. There is no YY, it needs X to be alive at all.

There are, however, XX male syndrome, XY gonadal dysgenesis and other disorders of the sex gene, clearly identified as disorders.
  • Last Edit: 2016-07-05, 17:55:14 by ersi

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #251
I supposed you've never heard of , then?
"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

  • Belfrager
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #252
A matter of attitude.

  • OakdaleFTL
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #253
The beat[down] goes on... fMRI is not just stats done badly, it's buggy stats software too! (And the obligatory "lose the data" mania of "soft" scientists.)
The Reg reports...

BTW: Sang's link above is intersexed , if anyone is interested.
进行 ...
"Humor is emotional chaos remembered in tranquility." - James Thurber
No one listens to me as much as I do and even I have my limits...
"Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts!" - Richard Feynman

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #254
society is an orgasm
:lol:  :faint:


....

Quote
  Rather he knew it or not Befrager evoked Emile Durkheim organic theory of sociology when he compared society to an organism.
Long since fixed... :p
"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

  • OakdaleFTL
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #255
Long since fixed
Perhaps you'd consider reading what you post...? :) You know: To check links, grammar, spelling; all that stuff that doesn't matter -- in your "I'm me" world!
进行 ...
"Humor is emotional chaos remembered in tranquility." - James Thurber
No one listens to me as much as I do and even I have my limits...
"Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts!" - Richard Feynman

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #256
Either that or I was up just shy of two days straight. But the fact remains Belfrager didn't actually quote me, he quoted Ersi. More importantly, both of them ignore the science indicating that they're just plain incorrect. Not politically so, but factually so.

I admit the strong possibility of being incorrect about what XXY chromosomes signify, but they're unable to admit their pseudo-philosophy about "natural law" ignores nature and that they grasp for strawmen. For instance, Ersi grabs hold of the fact their isn't a specific "gay gene" found as of yet, but ignores that the researchers can predict homosexually with a 70% accuracy merely by looking at a person's genetic algorithm and all other evidence of a biological basis for homosexuality. "Nature" (or perhaps even God if you're a theist) seems to have create homosexuality in the first place. All the pseudo-philosophy in the world can't disprove this. This is good news if we live under a rechtsstaat system, but extermination for LGBT if another Hitler comes to power.
"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

  • OakdaleFTL
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #257
both of them ignore the science
"the science"...
Sang, you don't have the chops to understand the science; you just go with whatever seems to support your viewpoint.

What ersi and Belfrager argue for isn't really "natural law" -- it's human experience, for centuries. You'd reject such, because you want the world to be a different way...
For the most part, it already is: Homosexuality (and damned near every other perversion) is already accepted by Western democratic nations.
But you want more! You want everyone else to say "Atta boy!" You want people who abhor your proclivities to commend them...

You're a lost child.
进行 ...
"Humor is emotional chaos remembered in tranquility." - James Thurber
No one listens to me as much as I do and even I have my limits...
"Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts!" - Richard Feynman

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #258
Much of human experience "for centuries" is now considered both illegal and immoral. Do you really need me to produce a list? Without legal marriage, same-sex couples would continue to live together regardless; as they have "for centuries." How is this any better, besides your feelings not getting hurt by the word "marriage?" Well, Belfrager laughably suggests that society would collapse. Same-sex couples have been cohabituating and functioning as married couples "for centuries" without this happening. (Same-sex couples is not mere political correctness. Both members might not actually be gay. So "gay couple" or another term that implies they're both homosexual would be an incorrect term.)
Sang, you don't have the chops to understand the science; you just go with whatever seems to support your viewpoint.
And yet you can't tell me what's wrong with the research. You appear to be science challenged whenever the research approaches a conclusion outside of American conservative dogma.  It doesn't matter if the topic is the relative intelligence of African Americans, the climate, or this. I don't understand all the nitty-gritty of genetics, but neither do you. Neither does Belfrager, nor Ersi. Nobody here has a PHD in genetics. But I do understand that when a topic is research from multiple angles (in this case starting with crude twin studies, to brain scans of heterosexuals and homosexuals, and now the genetic algorithms) and every bit of the research points in a certain direction, there's something to it.
But you want more! You want everyone else to say "Atta boy!" You want people who abhor your proclivities to commend them...
Don't tell me what I want. What I want is to be left alone by the self-righteous hypocrites.
"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

  • OakdaleFTL
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #259
What I want is to be left alone by the self-righteous hypocrites.
I've never met anyone so self-righteous as you, Sang! And let's not talk about hypocrisy... :)
I don't need to have a Ph. D. in genetics to recognize bogus "science" -- nor to call out those who tout the same, for self-interested reasons.
When you say "every bit of research" you mean "every bit of biased self-interested pseudo-science": To you, only the "result" matters -- the quality of the science is besides the point. I've seen this repeatedly.
As long as you can claim enough others agree with you, that clinches the case for you. But, if that's good enough, even Newton's conception of gravitation would fail: Almost everybody knows that heavier bodies fall faster than lighter ones!

Did you have any pet fMRI studies you'll miss especially? :) (You know, like the "ground-breaking" study that found that conservatives were more prone to authoritarianism? Did you miss the recent addendum? :) The one that said Oh, by the way, the data said exactly the opposite -- but that doesn't matter? :) ) It's hard to keep up, when you never learned how to -oh, what's that term? Oh, right: Think critically!
(For you -and some others- that's a buzz-word. God forbid, you should actually have to do it...)

There's a reason the media get away with shoddy or out-right dishonest reporting of scientific "results" -- and laziness ain't it.
  • Last Edit: 2016-07-06, 12:32:03 by OakdaleFTL
进行 ...
"Humor is emotional chaos remembered in tranquility." - James Thurber
No one listens to me as much as I do and even I have my limits...
"Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts!" - Richard Feynman

  • ersi
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #260
 
For instance, Ersi grabs hold of the fact their isn't a specific "gay gene" found as of yet, but ignores that the researchers can predict homosexually with a 70% accuracy merely by looking at a person's genetic algorithm and all other evidence of a biological basis for homosexuality.
But I do understand that when a topic is research from multiple angles (in this case starting with crude twin studies, to brain scans of heterosexuals and homosexuals, and now the genetic algorithms) and every bit of the research points in a certain direction, there's something to it.
Do you mean this article? The DNA test 'that reveals if you're gay': Genetic code clue is 70% accurate, claim scientists

Why not this one? Homosexuality may be triggered by environment after birth'

Which way is it? Environment or genes? Scientists say this, scientists say that, whichever way the wind blows, whatever rocks your boat.

In this case, confusion prevails as long as you go by the headings. In reality, both of these articles report about the same genetic study. Let's look a bit beyond the heading in the first article, the 'Genetic Code' article, "Known as epigenetics, these changes are thought to occur in the womb." The other one, the 'Environment after Birth' article is also about genetics, the same study (at least the same name gets interviewed).

So, the genes that are being talked about are not inherited genes, but genetic changes after conception. The second article picks up 'after birth', but the answer is the environment in both articles.

There is no biological basis to homosexuality, rather there are biological consequences. Raccoon got framed by journalists, poor guy.

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #261
Which way is it? Environment or genes?
Or even neither. I told you before that a person can be born a certain way (yes ways that have nothing to do with sexual orientation) and it does not have to be genetic.
I do immediately notice a problem with that article from the first paragraph, however.

Quote
The new research by the University of California has not yet been published but is being presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Human Genetics in Baltimore.
You'll note that those links do not lead to the research.

Observe this paragraph.

Quote
Scientists studied 37 sets of identical male twins, who were born with the same genetic blueprint, to tease out which genes were associated with homosexuality. In each pair, one of the twins was gay 
Again, the links do not lead to the research but to another Telegraph article about how lifestyle choices and environment could impact future generations. It does note DNA could be altered by the environment but says nothing about homosexuality. 

Thus far, the article is very much on the original topic of this thread - poor science reporting. This is to expected of a conservative publican. I get it. Give conservatives the the headline they were hoping for.

Now this part is possible.

Quote
Prof Darren Griffin, Professor of Genetics, University of Kent, added: "While there is strong evidence in general for a biological basis for homosexuality my personal impression has always been one of a multiple contributory factors, including life experiences
In fact, he mostly agrees with my position that the cause of homosexuality is not known for certain but there is strong evidence for the biological basis.

So while I was hoping for actual links to the research instead of institutions in question (including the first page a prospective student of the University of California would see while in the application process :faint: ) it in no way directly contradicts anything I've said. Maybe there's a biological basis for homosexuality and life experience helps further push a person in the direction for some and for others being sexual intimate with a woman is all but impossible. This is possibly related to the spectrum of human sexuality, in which a person may not be totally gay nor straight regardless of how they identify (hence the terms "gay" and "bisexual" steadily falling out of favor for  "queer" and even "sexually fluid" . )

"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

  • ersi
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #262
Quote
Prof Darren Griffin, Professor of Genetics, University of Kent, added: "While there is strong evidence in general for a biological basis for homosexuality my personal impression has always been one of a multiple contributory factors, including life experiences
In fact, he mostly agrees with my position that the cause of homosexuality is not known for certain but there is strong evidence for the biological basis.

So while I was hoping for actual links to the research....it in no way directly contradicts anything I've said.
Your conviction is that homosexuality is genetic. The scientist's position is that there are multiple contributory factors. You said that scientists can predict homosexuality by 70 percent accuracy, and this is indeed how the 'gene code clue' article puts it, but if we were to get actually scientific, I suggest that the more appropriate word is correlation, not prediction. Moreover, from our earlier context it's clear that you meant that homosexuality is inherited, but the articles say that the topic is epigenetics, secondary phenomena on genes due to environment. Such are the discrepancies between you and science.

And the 'gene code clue' article, which seems to be more sensationalist in general, has this,
Quote
The findings, however, do not mean scientists could predict the sexuality of a child before it is born - as the tests were carried out on adults.
Well, if it can predict homosexuality only in adult homosexuals, then "predict" is the wrong word!

Edit. The 'gene code clue' article has this gem of logic too,
Quote
Identical twins usually - but not always - have the same sexuality. This finding has led scientists to believe there is a genetic component to being gay.
If we are talking genetics in the relevant sense (i.e. gene inheritance and thou shalt be determined by thy genes), then identical twins must absolutely invariably have the same sexuality (because otherwise they are not genetically identical, duh). From the fact that identical twins do not always have the same sexuality, the exact opposite conclusion follows than the one stated in the article. Given that identical twins do not always have the same sexuality, there is no genetic component to being gay, as long as we are talking genetics, not epigenetics./edit

Here's a secret. My job is closely related to journalism. That's where I have been earning my living all these years, so I am part of this corporate media conspiracy to mind-control you. The fact that you call it a conspiracy theory is part of the conspiracy.
  • Last Edit: 2016-07-06, 18:01:04 by ersi

  • Frenzie
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  • Administrator
Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #263
epigenetics, secondary phenomena on genes due to environment.
Here's a quick primer: http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2008/07/22/epigenetics/

  • ersi
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #264
epigenetics, secondary phenomena on genes due to environment.
Here's a quick primer: http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2008/07/22/epigenetics/
Or another primer https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epigenetics
Quote
In the science of genetics, epigenetics is the study of cellular and physiological phenotypic trait variations that result from external or environmental factors that switch genes on and off and affect how cells express genes.[1][2] Hence, epigenetic research seeks to describe dynamic alterations in the transcriptional potential of a cell. These alterations may or may not be heritable,...
Until scientists debate some more clarity into the definition of epigenetics, it's obvious that the journalistic report about predicting homosexuality on genetic basis was not about predicting homosexuality on genetic basis.

Edit. The good thing is that we all learned a bit about genetics in the course of this. Even Barulheira learned. Now we are all much smarter and won't repeat the same mistakes again, right?
  • Last Edit: 2016-07-06, 22:18:01 by ersi

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #265
Or another primer https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epigenetics
Wiki even has an article on on epigenetic theories of homosexuality

I already said much of this in simpler terms, when I noted that "born this way" includes what happens in the womb. What I didn't include was "epi-marks."

Quote
Effects of fetal androgen exposure[edit]
While in the fetal stages, hormonal influences of androgen, specifically testosterone, cause feminine qualities in regard to sexual development in females and masculine qualities in males. In typical sexual development, females are exposed to minimal amounts of testosterone, thus feminizing their sexual development, while males are typically exposed to high levels of testosterone, which masculinize their development. Epi-marks play a critical role in this development by acting as a buffer between the fetus and androgen exposure. Moreover, they predominantly protect XY fetuses from androgen underexposure while protecting XX fetuses from androgen overexposure.[6] However, when androgen overexposure happens in XX fetuses, research suggests they can show masculinized behavior in comparison to females who undergo normal levels of androgen exposure. The research also suggests that excess androgen exposure in females led to reduced heterosexual interest in adulthood than did females with normal levels of androgen.
 

Of course XX fetuses are female, so that last sentence would serve as an explanation for lesbians. What of androgen underexposure for XY fetuses. In my experience this seems a somewhat flawed itself even within the crude stereotypes of the LGBTQ community. Certainly there are "butch" lesbians and "lipstick" lesbians. There are also "twinks" and "fem" male homosexuals as well as "bears" (who often act and appear more masculine than most heterosexual males) Androgen over/under exposure could explain "butch" lesbian and and "fem" homosexuals fairly easily . Their epi-marks failed to give them the "normal" amount of androgen exposure. But it doesn't seem to explain homosexuals of either sex that easily blend in with a heterosexual crowd and don't stand out because of behavior nor appearance.
"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #266
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3296090/

From the abstract:

Quote
The evidence supports a role for prenatal testosterone exposure in the development of sex-typed interests in childhood, as well as in sexual orientation in later life, at least for some individuals. It appears, however, that other factors, in addition to hormones, play an important role in determining sexual orientation. These factors have not been well-characterized, but possibilities include direct genetic effects, and effects of maternal factors during pregnancy. Although a role for hormones during early development has been established, it also appears that there may be multiple pathways to a given sexual orientation outcome and some of these pathways may not involve hormones.
"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

  • ersi
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #267
I already said much of this in simpler terms, when I noted that "born this way" includes what happens in the womb...
Quote
While in the fetal stages, hormonal influences of androgen, specifically testosterone, cause feminine qualities...
Quote
The evidence supports a role for prenatal testosterone exposure in the development of sex-typed interests in childhood
In other words, drip hormones on foetuses and whatever comes out was "born this way"? This case is closed. You are on detention, but I am ready to take out my genetics doctorate soon.

  • Barulheira
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #268
Let's not forget child abuse.

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #269
n other words, drip hormones on foetuses and whatever comes out was "born this way"? This case is closed. You are on detention, but I am ready to take out my genetics doctorate soon.
Of course, because you know better than the actual biologists and geneticists. In fact, that's not all that different from what the article you, yourself, posted.  . remember?

Quote
Epigenetic changes are known to be triggered by environmental factors such as chemical exposure, childhood abuse, diet, exercise and stress.
Androgens are chemicals. The womb is an environment. In fact, the scientists that were supposed to be opposing the research noted a strong biological basis for homosexuality but there maybe more factors involved.
"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

  • ersi
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #270
The same way as predicting homosexuality in adult homosexuals is not predicting, also biological basis of homosexuality when the biology is screwed up with chemical/hormonal imbalance is not biological basis. Those journalists are pulling your leg. You are too easily misled.

Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #271
:facepalm: You do understand that's self-contradictory, right? The chemical/hormonal imbalance would serve as the biological basis in that scenario.
"What kind of man would put a known criminal in charge of a major branch of government? Apart from, say, the average voter."
― Terry Pratchett, Going Postal

  • ersi
  • [*][*][*][*][*]
Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #272
No. It would be biological consequences or, at best, biological correlations.

The difference between biological basis and biological consequences is the direction of causality. "Biological basis" would imply that biology causes a certain appearance/behaviour. "Biological consequences" means the behaviour/environment leaves traces on biology. You of course don't think it's a difference worth noting.

  • ersi
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #273
Scientists say God can easily be calculated. They even did it.

As any good scientific investigation, it starts with the definitions:
Quote from: Calculating God from the God Particle, http://file.scirp.org/pdf/JMP_2016012914521576.pdf
Because this is a scientific paper (and not a theological one), the god we are seeking will be that of Spinoza
and Einstein--where the Universe is thought to be identical with divinity.
Science, theology, and philosophy have different aims and emphases, but the play of definitions is central to them all.

  • OakdaleFTL
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Re: "Scientists Say" blather
Reply #274
This is probably the best place to post this, considering the likely audience: http://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/saving-science
(I give the unadorned URL so that no one is deceived or misled... It's an essay; a little long, but well worth the time it takes to read it. If you wonder how I found it, you're not reading Judith Curry's blog! For which, shame on you... :) )
进行 ...
"Humor is emotional chaos remembered in tranquility." - James Thurber
No one listens to me as much as I do and even I have my limits...
"Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts!" - Richard Feynman