zotz: (Reasonable and compassionate)
'Spineless' animals under threat of extinction, say the BBC.

Well, frankly, I don't see what they expect us to do about it. Nobody becomes extinct these days except by choice, and if they aren't prepared to put their back into it and their nose to the grindstone then it's really their own lookout. When my ancestors were facing extinction on the African savannah, did they sit back and moan about it? No, they did not. They got on their bikes and drove Homo erectus to extinction instead, and I think there's a lesson for us all there.
zotz: (Default)
It's always nice to read a news story which finishes with such helpful information as "Scientologists believe humans are tainted by the remnants of aliens' souls who were dumped on Earth and blown up with nuclear bombs".

Also being reported, Killing badgers doesn't seem to work. Not when you're trying to stop the spread of Bovine TB, anyway. It seems they've had a big badger cull in Ireland and it hasn't helped at all. This fits nicely with earlier work suggesting that the spread of bovine TB correlates much better with movements of cattle (D'oh!) than with the presence or absence of badgers, so on the whole we can file this in the "No shit, Sherlock?" cabinet.

And in addition to yesterday's video-related japeries, you may wish to have a look or listen to Dan le Sac's "Thou shalt always kill".

And before anyone asks, no I didn't watch the Urovision song contest. I knew it was going to be dreadful. What were you all thinking? I had dinner with Lara and Seth and then we went to the pub with Dr Mr Paul Blair. Much more fun.
zotz: (Default)
The world continues to go to hell in a handbasket, but on the upside there's a new way to annoy people in pubs, and it's even got a cool name.

I've also been meaning to mention this BBC story. Hear that noise? That's the sound of the international biomedical community taking the antivaccine scare and sodomising its corpse like a Dutch mallard. This interesting page cites papers showing that the intestinal oddities that Andrew Wakefield thought were new and linked to MMR had in fact been seen and commented on well before that vaccine was developed - and seem to be harmless.

MMR should of course not be confused with MRR.
zotz: (Default)
And, also, Graham is happier again because once more the General is not. I understand that the Prez has also fallen off his bicycle.

I have scanned a couple of images that I must remember to show you. Please remind me, if I don't do so in the next day or so.

Also, I notice that Sister Ray claim to have an early Hüsker Dü album called Ultracore. Anyone heard of this? I know of a song (on Land Speed Record?) of that name, but no album.
zotz: (Default)
Trying to check on an item in the Grauniad on the subject, I found this in Nature:

In a bizarre war of the sexes, little fire ants have evolved a novel way to fight for their gender's genes, according to new research.

The sperm of the male ant appears to be able to destroy the female DNA within a fertilized egg, giving birth to a male that is a clone of its father. Meanwhile the female queens make clones of themselves to carry on the royal female line.

The result is that both the males and females have their own, independent gene pools, leading some to speculate whether each gender ought to be technically classified as its own species. "We could think of the males as a separate, parasitic species that uses host eggs for its own reproduction," says Denis Fournier of the Université Libre in Brussels, Belgium, who led the work.


The page is here, but I think you may need a sub to see it. Any way up, that's the weirdest thing I've seen for a while. The implications make my head hurt.

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