Monthly Archives: September 2008

Who’s Fanti’s Coach, I Wonder?

Remember the Brunswick County (North Carolina) School Board and their stated intention to see about inserting creationism into the science curriculum? Apparently, they’ve gotten the word that what they proposed has a legal history, and is unconstitutional. Remember how I said it could come to pass that antievolution advocates might contact board members and try… Read More »

Frontiers of Science Workshop

Last Saturday, there was a “Frontiers of Science” workshop led by Rob Pennock. This was part of a series of workshops given for secondary school science teachers on science topics, and Prof. Pennock took up effective lab instruction in evolutionary science as his topic. The featured subject was use of the Avida-ED software platform as… Read More »

The State of North Carolina Education Folks Know History

Not long following the Brunswick County School Board announcing plans to get intimate with creationism, there is a report that the state officials have clarified for BCSB and its counsel that, yes, the 1987 Supreme Court decision in Edwards v. Aguillard put paid to notions that evolution could be balanced with creationism in the classroom.… Read More »

Dolphin Biopsy Study Hits the Press

I suspect an editor at the Miami Herald didn’t get the picture from Cammy Clark’s report on Jennifer Lewis’s research on bottlenose dolphins, for it appears with the headline, “Dolphin researcher’s method decried as `cruel’”. Well, yeah, if you look hard enough for people ignorant enough, you can get that sort of reaction. It doesn’t… Read More »

Collecting More OAS Information

Given the comment on my earlier thread pointing out a surgical alternative to use of CPAP machinery, I’ve been doing some looking into treatment of obstructive airway syndrome (OAS). This evening, I came across another alternative, oral appliances (OAs). These are structures applied in the mouth that are supposed to provide an open airway mechanically,… Read More »

Another School Board Poised to Make a Mistake

A report in the Wilmington (NC) Star-News recounts interaction at the meeting of the Brunswick County School Board. It’s the same old religious antievolution. When asked by a reporter, his fellow board members all said they were in favor of creationism being taught in the classroom. The topic came up after county resident Joel Fanti… Read More »

Computational Chemistry and … Evolution?

Research at Florida State University in computational chemistry has uncovered evidence that an enzyme that initiates processes involving DNA and RNA does the job via two mechanisms, one of them slower than the other. Wei Yang is an assistant professor in FSU’s Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and a faculty member in the university’s Institute… Read More »

A Study on Whistles — And Only Whistles

There’s a study in the Journal of Comparative Psychology that comes somewhat up my alley. Quick, Nicola J. and Vincent M. Janik. 2008. Whistle Rates of Wild Bottlenose Dolphins (Tursiops truncatus): Influences of Group Size and Behavior. J. Comp. Psych. 122(3):305-311. OK, so what are the authors reporting as results? A lot of that is… Read More »

The Tammy Bruce Factor

Tammy Bruce has an op-ed piece plumping for Sarah Palin, “A feminist’s argument for McCain’s VP”. Bruce apparently likes a inverted form of the genetic fallacy in which she seeks to gain approval for her arguments by identifying herself as liberal and feminist. Bruce sees things starkly, as befits a Fox News analyst. Between Hillary… Read More »

A Thirty-Year Interval

Back in high school (Santa Fe Catholic Regional High School, Lakeland, FL), I went to many of the football games as a photographer for our yearbook. One nice thing about football games is that people tend to be in good spirits, at least before the game commences. I don’t remember exactly which game the following… Read More »

Pledge to Learn Something About American History

Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin answered some questions from the Eagle Forum back in 2006. One of them shows that Palin was sleeping through civics and doesn’t follow news of hot-button cases concerning the Pledge of Allegiance. 11. Are you offended by the phrase Under God in the Pledge of Allegiance? Why or why… Read More »