Browsing the archives for the Science category

Patents on Human Genes
By: Barry Belmont

Today the ACLU, PUBPAT, and the U.S. Solicitor General made their arguments appealing a decision made a few years back to allow companies the right to patent human genetics. The ACLU and PUBPAT brought a lawsuit in May 2009 against the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Myriad Genetics and the University of Utah Research Foundation, [...]

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‘Capitalist Science’
By: Barry Belmont

The two key lifestyle choices in my life — science and ‘libertarianism’ — often coexist in a peaceful harmony with one another. Their mutual emphasis on free expression, evidence, and procuring accurate pictures of the human condition lead to a synergy in so many aspects that I’m rarely at a loss for how to approach any particular [...]

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xkcd: Pseudoscience and Economics
By: Barry Belmont

If you haven’t seen this yet, you should:

4 Comments Posted in Science
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The Tragedy of the Commons
By: Barry Belmont

So for those of you interested in theory behind the experiment to be conducted today at 12:15, consider this blurb from Garrett Hardin: The rebuttal to the invisible hand in population control is to be found in a scenario first sketched in a little-known pamphlet (6) in 1833 by a mathematical amateur named William Forster Lloyd [...]

1 Comment Posted in A Series of Experiments, Science
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The (Seventy-)Seven Percent Solution
By: Barry Belmont

Recently published research out of North Carolina State University has identified a “tipping point” for national debts. That is, at a certain point in which the national debt actually begins to have an adverse effect on economic growth. The results? If a country’s public debt reaches 77 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP), bad [...]

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UN to Appoint Earth Contact for Aliens
By: Barry Belmont

Taken from news.com.au. THE United Nations was set today to appoint an obscure Malaysian astrophysicist to act as Earth’s first contact for any aliens that may come visiting. Mazlan Othman, the head of the UN’s little-known Office for Outer Space Affairs (Unoosa), is to describe her potential new role next week at a scientific conference [...]

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Vaccinations: Part 1 of Several
By: Barry Belmont

So, being an avid follower of the Skeptic’s movement for a good portion of my life, I have been bombarded with refutations of “anti-vaxers” for the past several years. For some reason, I have tried to pay it little mind, usually placating myself with “Well, it’s just a parent’s decision to raise their child” much [...]

3 Comments Posted in Libertarianism, Science
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The Effects of Authority: The Milgrim Experiment
By: Barry Belmont

If you want to feel sad, angry, and hopeless over the nature of the human condition, watch these three segments (about 15 minutes total) from a BBC documentary about aggression. In it the film makers replicate the infamous Milgrim Experiment wherein a subject is persuaded to inflict extraordinary harm on another human being by the [...]

2 Comments Posted in A Series of Experiments, Science, The State
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Moral Objectivism, Stated Eloquently
By: Barry Belmont

There are such things as objective moral truths. For anyone who disagrees:

1 Comment Posted in Science, Videos
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Physicists Study How Moral Behaviour Evolved
By: Barry Belmont

This article originally appeared on the physicsworld.com news section [hence, the British-ism in the title]. It is written by Edwin Cartlidge, a science writer based in Rome. For those of you with a particular interest in the ‘game theory’ approach to the development of social cohesion. Physicists Study How Moral Behaviour Evolved A statistical-physics-based model [...]

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