Rebuke: A long-term toxicology study on pigs fed a combined genetically modified (GM) soy and GM maize diet

A nice anti-gmo study was posted on IFLS. Let's take a look!


"We have found that gmo-fed humans have a mass of 48-114 kg, whereas  non-gmo fed humans have a mass of 38.4 - 84kg.  Therefore, it has been shown that non-gmo fed humans have less mass."

Rebuke: A long term toxicology study on pigs fed a combined genetically modified (GM) soy and GM maize diet.

Well, let's take a look at the abstract.
A significant number of genetically modified crops have been approved to enter human food and animal feed since 1996, including crops containing several GM genes `stacked'into the one plant. We randomised and fed isowean pigs (N=168) either in a mixed GM soy and GM corn (maize) diet (N=84) or an equivalent non-GM diet (N=84) in a long-term toxicology study of 22.7 weeks (the normal lifespan of a commercial pig from weaning to slaughter). Equal numbers of male and female pigs were present in each group. The GM corn contained double and triple-stacked varieties. Feed intake, weight gain, mortality and blood biochemistry were measured. Organ weights and pathology were determined post-mortem. There were no differences between pigs fed the GM and non-GM diets for feed intake, weight gain, mortality and routine blood biochemistry measurements. The GM diet was associated with gastric and uterine differences in pigs. GM-fed pigs had uteri that were 25% heavier than non-GM fed pigs (p=0.025). GM-fed pigs had a higher rate of severe stomach inflammation with a rate of 32% of GM-fed pigs compared to 12% of non-GM-fed pigs (p=0.004). The severe stomach inflammation was worse in GM-fed males compared to non-GM fed males by a factor of 4.0 (p=0.041) and GM-fed females compared to non-GM fed females by a factor of 2.2 (p=0.034) [Source]

Seralini



Another review of 19 studies of mammals fed GM soy or maize has recently been
conducted (Séralini et al., 2011). 

Yes, because it's IFLS that was sold out. Seralini? Really? Seralini is a bought out, fraudulent pseudoscientist. If you're talking "Conflicting interests", he's the avatar of it.

Autopsy


If you look at the autopsy result section, you will note a peculiarity. Their conclusion (25% uterine weight difference) does NOT include the measurement uncertainty. Using their data, I can however evaluate a lower limit for their uncertainty. If we evaluate this, we find that the uterine weights of the non-gm fed and gm fed groups become 0.084+- 0.0197 [mass units] and 0.105+-0.0226 [mass units]. As you can see, the data is well within 1-sigma range of each other and there is thus NO significant difference. Their error is simply too large (20%!). Actually, the error is even larger; I just approximated it neglecting the error in "uterine weight" measurement using the error in "body weight" measurement.

If we look at the stomach inflammation, table 4, we see that the amount of samplings is just really low. In particular, 35 non-gmo males and 32 gmo-males had stomach inflammations, while 34 non-gmo and 32 gmo females had stomach inflammations.

If anything, that just shows pigs get stomach inflammations. Randomly assigning groups isn't really going to help there; indeed, with only ~36 individuals per group, splitting up the groups isn't exactly common or necessary. Especially into four groups. If we took two groups, for instance (nil-mild, moderate-severe), then there is NO difference.

How did they split?
 Inflammation was classified as nil, mild, moderate, or severe based on a combination of the area of current inflammation and level of redness and swelling.
Actually, that tells us nothing. You see, a "combination of factors A and B" tells us nothing about how they combined it. As a result, there is no way to check this; if you are "combining" factors A and B you're going to have to add a table of the data! What were the areas of current inflamation? What was the level of redness and swelling?

Conclusion

We have seen that, for the conclusion of increased uterine weight:
Lower-bound calculation for the measurement error shows that the weights are well within 1-sigma range of eacher other.
As for the  inflammations:
Determination of categories was found to be impossible due to vague wording and omission of data. It was shown that pigs get stomach inflammations often, and that there was no significant difference in the number of pigs getting a stomach inflammation. 


As a result, the conclusions are false. I really don't want to imply these authors were intentionally reporting this wrongly, but I do think they need to do a course on error analysis. The uterine-weight error is just really, really sad. That shouldn't happen - they teach it in the first year of the B.Sc. in Delft.

The second error is more suspicious. They know, or should know, that they should max reproducibility; why not include that table? Why not show the data? A simple table with the raw data should be possible, yes? "Non-GMO fed males, severe inflammation; surface area x, redness/swelling y".  That's all it needed.

Response: 8 Shocking reasons GMO's are bad for you

An anti-GMO article was posted on IFLS; Let's respond.

The 8 shocking reasons are false. Let me show you.

Response: [8 Shocking reasons GMO's are bad for you].

1. Health consequences are largely unknown.

[health consequence of gmo] on scholar.google gives a great many results. This article seems rather nice: http://rameznaam.com/2013/04/28/the-evidence-on-gmo-safety/

2. GMOs are unlabeled in America.

And the european union has banned gmos! That's good to know, as I live there and didn't know that. Indeed, the EU doesn't  know it either; http://ec.europa.eu/food/food/biotechnology/index_en.htm .

On a sidenote, they aren't labelled in our shops either.

3. Genetic modification reduces genetic diversity.


That's not even true; we introduce a variation artificially, but they still vary. Indeed, the aim of GMO's is often to increase the robustness of the crop to many kinds of things, including those noted in this reason. I'm not sure how this is supposed to reduce genetic diversity; especially as the crops we would use otherwise are applied in the same way. It's not as if we reuse the seeds; rather, we have seeds from a seed-farm, and we use those on a yield-farm. As a result, genetic diversity is reduced in all of them - by simple artificial selection on what plants are of 'proper quality'  to sell their seeds.

4. Once the mutant genes are out of the bag, there is no going back.



I thought that, just now, we wanted more variability; and now, suddenly, hybrid transgenic/naturals are wrong. The japan thing isn't backed up, and I can find only a reproduction of the story among a great number of anti-gmo websites.

On a sidenote, while the idea of the gmo crops is to be more robust, that is not guarantee that they are also better in the wild. If anything, native plants are often stronger just because they are widely spread in the home country, which is also the kind of home they're adapted to. Certainly, foreign plants can wreak havoc - ask new Zealand - but that's not a gmo thing. It's a foreign plant thing.

GMO's are made by horizontal gene transfer to induce certain things we want. This is faster, stronger and rather more predictable than waiting for nature to do it.

5. GMOs are not the answer for global food security.

No increase in yield nor a decrease in pesticides, which is what they're made for. Does that sound fishy? [Onfarm field trials carried out with Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) cotton in different states of India show that the technology substantially reduces pest damage and increases yields, ,http://www.ask-force.org/web/BioEconomy/Qaim-Zilberman-Yield-Effects-2003.pdf] So, the increased yield part is a lie. How about pesticide reduction? . [On a global basis GM technology has reduced pesticide use, with the size of the reduction varying between crops and the introduced trait. It is estimated that the use of GM soybean, oil seed rape, cotton and maize varieties modified for herbicide tolerance and insect protected GM varieties of cotton reduced pesticide use by a total of 22.3 million kg of formulated
product in the year 2000, http://www.ask-force.org/web/Benefits/Phipps-Park-Benefits-2002.pdf].

6. Genetically engineered foods have not been proven to be safe, but the few studies conducted don’t look so hot.

 Isn't this the same as reason #1? Anyway, take a look at this:
Results of feeding studies with feed derived from GM plants with improved agronomic properties, carried out in a wide range of livestock species, are discussed. The studies did not show any biologically relevant differences in the parameters tested between control and test animals. [http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18328408]
 So.. It doesn't look to good, right?


7 .Big biotech firms have very sketchy track records.

Yes, so what? You were assaulting genetically modified organisms - not the companies. The issue was the technique  or, rather, the commercial results of it. Don't move the goalposts; we were talking about GMO's and their safety, not the corporate track record.

8. GMOs require massive amounts of pesticides, herbicides and fungicides.

Earlier, I provided an article that shows they have globally reduced pesticide use. Herbicides and fungicides are in the same category; or maybe not. The crops are affected less by the pesticide/herbicide/fungicide - which is a good thing, generally .

The GMO's do not require more or less of those than the 'natural' plants, or rather, the artificially selected plants, do. They're just affected less by the measures used.

9. Summary

The bottom line is that genetically modified organisms have not been proven in any way to be safe, and most of the studies are actually leaning the other direction, which is why many of the world’s countries have banned these items whose DNA has been genetically engineered. In America, they aren’t even labeled, much less banned, so the majority of the populace has no idea that they are eating lab-created DNA on a daily basis.
Now you do; your best defense is to purchase certified organic food, which cannot contain any GMOs, and to tell your friends and loved ones to do the same.
Time for my version. The bottom line is that the article doesn't actually use scientific research nor attempts to back up anything they state; it is a set of strawmans, lies and red herrings.

The european union in particular hasn't banned gmo's - that's a really, really big lie.

Author's opinion. 

Personally, I'm all for transgenics. I'm also all for proper legislation, standardised assessments and so on. In fact, that's exactly what is being worked and improved on.

I certainly agree that there are unknowns. However, those unknowns can be all kinds of things; where anti-gmo conspiracists only assert that they will be negative, we also don't know if there are any postives.

And don't misunderstand the technique. I want to point out some things:
If the rDNA sequences encode a gene that is expressed, then the presence of RNA and/or protein products of the recombinant gene can be detected, typically using RT-PCR or western hybridization methods.[8] Gross phenotypic changes are not the norm, unless the recombinant gene has been chosen and modified so as to generate biological activity in the host organism.[9] Additional phenotypes that are encountered include toxicity to the host organism induced by the recombinant gene product, especially if it is over-expressed or expressed within inappropriate cells or tissues. (
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recombinant_DNA).
So, the effect of the technique can be easily validated. As a result, non-intentional effects can be easily tracked - if so, the crop will be deemed unusable and removed.

However, anti-gmo conspiracists assert you that it will be negative, that the 'big gmo' pays to circumvent health agencies and so forth. It's all nonsense.

GMO crops, or rather, transgenics, offer a very pleasant option for farmers; more yield, less things like pesticides, wider applicability - the latter is important for developing countries, for instance on the african continent.

Demonising them with all kinds of stuff is counterproductive. It's okay to be sceptical, to call for proper legislation and independent assessment. I'm with you on that. I'm not with you on this-stuff-is-evil nonsense.


Response to [...] measles vaccine: fourteen things to consider.

I haven't checked for a while, so I was rather surprised when I looked at the views - almost 1400 now.

I wanted to thank everyone reading and sharing these posts - they're written with the goal to look at things, to elaborate and illuminate; contributors to that should be thanked. And really, don't be shy to point out mistakes in this - I am not an expert in these topics, nor am I an accomplished writer.


Response to [...] measles vaccine: fourteen things to consider.

So, holiday season. I have a lot of time on my hands and there's another one of these vaccine posts.
Time to look at one:
m
Measles and measles vaccines: fourteen things to consider. ~by Roman Bystrianyk (co-author Dissolving Illusions: Disease, Vaccines, and the Forgotten History) [vaccinecouncil.org, http://goo.gl/RTFi5E]

 The measles. Let us consider what we know about it. To be honest, I really don't know much about it - so let's turn to wikipedia:

  • Four day fevers
  • Coughs
  • Head cold
  • Red eyes
  • Rashes
  • Complications
Among complications, there are simpler ones such as diarrhea and serious ones such as Pneumonia, i.e. inflammatory condition of the lung].

And lastly that between 1987 and 2000, the case fatality rate in the USA was 3 per thousand cases. That's the USA. I find this rather large - that period is rather large, but it is a period with modern healthcare.

Let's read the article!
Measles – it’s a highly infectious disease we don’t think much about today. After all, a vaccine was developed 50 years ago that “defeated” the problem. [1] But wait… despite a measles vaccine being around for half a century, measles is still considered a major threat by health authorities.
Diseases with reasonably high death rates and complications are often considered a major threat.
At its fifty year anniversary there were universal positive accolades in the media. Anyone who questions the value of measles vaccines or any vaccine is quickly pilloried because the science of the measles vaccine is supposedly beyond reproach. Proponents say that only conspiratorialists and lunatics would question it.
Ah, framing. This paragraph will make anybody criticising it a 'proponent'. Maybe it's far simpler - maybe most people defer to authority, and authority defers to data. Let's put a little quote here. The annual number of reported measles cases in the United States has declined from between 3 million and 4 million in the prevaccine era to <100 cases in association with the highest recorded immunization rates in history. [Official journal of the american academy of pediatrics, http://goo.gl/WFIOYC].

You'll note that I put in this little link telling you where it came from. They just put down an implication that it doesn't work, while this sentence and the source clearly state it does work.

Well, it turns out there are fourteen things we haven't been told.

1. Measles death rate had declined by almost 100% before the use of a measles vaccine.

They start with early death rates; then state that:
[...] The death rate from measles in the United States had already dropped by approximately 98%. 
I wanted to check the source for that statement - it's number three on their list. Looking at that, I find some mishmash of things, not a clear source for one of them. Based on the source they reported they used, I find the following data for 1950-1981  [CDC, Reported Cases and Deaths from Vaccine Preventable Diseases, United States, 1950–2008]:


I made this with gnuplot, by the way - a very neat tool. The styling is done using gnuplotting.

Anyway, this is logarithmic on the y-axis. As you can see, a drop starts around 1963, and by the time we've reached 1967, we have a reduction in both cases and deaths of nearly two tiles. You might be interested to learn that this means that 4 years after reduction, there was something of an 80% reduction in both death rate and the number of cases. We see a small resurgence, after which the second dose is introduced - after that,the decline continues and we go to an actual near 100% reduction of both cases and deaths.

So what's up with that graph? I have no idea. I'm going to suppose they made a typo in Excel or something; they disagree with one of their sources - I literally copy-pasted the table into a text file and used it as a data file. I have no Idea what they did. In fact, they disagree hugely with the wikipedia graph as well [http://goo.gl/7ySDjD].

Moving on, it might be the next claim has some truth:

Some New England states had no deaths at all from measles. During this year, the whole of New England (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut) had only 5 deaths attributed to measles. Deaths from asthma were 56 times greater, accidents 935 times greater, motor vehicle accidents 323 times greater, other accidents 612 times greater, and heart disease 9,560 times greater.

By now you realise I'm going to first compare their claims with their sources. It's a thing called scepticism - and it is interesting to do when we're talking conspiracy-theory posts.

The new england claim is true. Is that surprising? Not so much. In the USA, 1963 - as we can see at the top of table I-18, we see that 364 people died due to the measles. That's exactly the same number as before [http://goo.gl/PYzoqM].

Does that mean the disease is not dangerous? Not really. Recall from earlier that the disease causes all kinds of things, including pneunomia. Death isn't really a thing in there; in fact, the disease is listed as highly infectious - not as highly deadly.
In England the measles vaccine was introduced in 1968. By this point measles deaths were extremely rare. The actual death rate from measles in England had fallen by an almost full 100%.  
I can't find the source they say they used; it is apparently a book. Luckily, we have other bloggers; He did find the source [http://goo.gl/WLndMN]. He clearly states and refers to the sources, and also explains what that data says; he also points out that measles death isn't measles incidence - the latter was most greatly reduced by vaccines.

As the measles in a modern society - that is, a society with proper nourishment, sanitation and healthcare - isn't a mortal disease, the fact the antivaxxers _only_ show you the death graphs is rather illuminating. It's a red herring. Look at the graph I included. It's the raw data. In that 31 year period, the population grew, but incidence lowered from 319124 to 3124. And as is _clearly_ illustrated in that graph, the biggest drop is after the vaccine.

2. The 1963 measles vaccine caused a severe disease called atypical measles.



The original Killed Measles Vaccine (KMV) could indeed interact with the 'wild' measles vaccine to cause atypical measles. 
The early vaccine that was experimented with was a weakened, live measles vaccine. This vaccine resulted in a much higher fever in about half the children that received it. Meaning, they had a 106 degree fever as opposed to the 103 degree fever they might have had with natural measles. 
It's called the KMV - Killed Measles Vaccine. They back this up with a quote/reference to the New York Times - which is not a scientific journal or whatsoever. It is also not accessible on the web.
The next claim is that someone wrote:

To temper this problem, measles-specific antibody was given in the form of immune serum globulin alongside the live vaccines. This practice blunted the obvious reactions (fever and rash) to the live virus in the vaccine, but had serious potential consequences. 
 Given that they try to put references at multiple places, why doesn't this specific assertion have a reference?
I have  no problem accepting the next lap of text - they've already setup this assertion, and the second immediately tells you that this is a bad thing. But it's an assertion - why did they not back this up?

Wait a moment
 - it says "alongside the live vaccines". But the vaccine in question is KILLED measles vaccine. That's not a live vaccine.


Time to hit google again. Let me quote you the following:
Atypical measles occurs only in persons who received inactivated (“killed”) measles vaccine (KMV) and are subsequently exposed to wild type measles virus. Modified measles occurs primarily in patients who received immune globulin (IG) as post-exposure prophylaxis and in young infants who have some residual maternal antibody.  [http://goo.gl/0Z2Nup]
What is said here is that it can happen in patients that received IG after they came in contact with the pathogen, which is rather rare, and infants - infants! - that have some residual maternal antibody. If you're reading this with me, this tells you that infants are a high-risk group for atypical measles - aren't you glad with the extreme decrease in measles incidence and herd immunity? 
In other words, suppressing the measles rash and fever, which may have seemed like a good idea at the time, interfered with the normal immune response. Interfering with the body’s immune response, in attempt to compensate for a worse vaccine reaction, may have resulted in future problems in the adults that received this treatment. The use of immune serum globulin was recommended to be discontinued in 1968, but continued long after that. This practice continues to this day. 

 I can't access the Lancet, so I really can't check their source material. I can find no evidence of severely high incidence rates of atypical measles in populations receiving the immune globulin - I can find several references to it being normal practise after exposure to the pathogen:
As per guidelines, post-exposure prophylaxis was provided within six days of exposure. [http://goo.gl/02ljNY]

 So apparently, the risk isn't as high as they want you to believe. In fact, it seems quite obvious; in those rare  cases where post-exposure prophylaxis is encountered, the chances of you encountering someone with the pathogen again are extremely small; the chance that that causes atypical measles is rare - using whatever I can find - or 50%, using what they said.

They go on about atypical measles being bad for a bit - but we understand. Atypical measles is bad. Measles is bad. That's the reason for vaccines. Assertions won't help you there.

3. Measles was supposed to be eradicated in 1967

Wouldn't it be nice if each and every of our plans would be realised?

In the year 2000, cases had declined, and measles was finally declared eliminated from the United States – 33 years after the original elimination target date. However, in 2012 the CDC pulled back from that declaration, stating that measles reappeared and was spreading. Of the total number of cases, 200 were attributed to foreign travel, but the source for 22 cases was never determined. 
Let me get this straight: 222 cases of the measles were reported, and 200 were attributed to foreign travel. The source for 22 cases was never determined.

Okay, sure. It wasn't determined. But the other 90% were foreign travel - is it hard to believe these cases were due to contact with people travelling to foreign countries, or even something such as inproper hygiene or animal exposure?

From 385156 cases in the year of the first vaccine, we went to 222 today. You know for sure that 200 of those are foreign. And you're still, somehow, finding something to say against the vaccine. The numbers are weak with this one.

 4. A single shot was said to provide lifelong immunity  

So? Scientists can be hopeful as well, right?
However, unlike natural measles infection, the measles vaccine does not appear to provide such long lasting protection. Protection afforded by vaccination appears to wane in number of years. Length of protection is estimated in this study to be approximately 25 years. 
Guess why.
These observations suggest that even in mothers who experienced natural measles in childhood, recurrent exposure to natural measles is necessary in order to maintain adequate antibody levels for effective passive immunity of their infants. [http://goo.gl/LmqYL1].

Your body doesn't often carry along waste. If it's not used, it can be removed; it gets trashed. If you do not encounter the measles for 25 years - that's more than a single generation, as humans are fertile from the onset of puberty - then it is obviously not a threat and the antigen isn't needed. If you have the immunity - even at low levels - then the response is quicker, harder and your body knows the disease is around.

The fact that lifelong protection isn't afforded is a celebration of the efficacy of the vaccine; the reduction in incidence and herd immunity.

5. Large epidemics still occur in highly vaccinated populations

Let me start by saying I once did a simulation. We're talking extremely contageous disease in a possibly crowded environment. Even with high-vaccination rates, there is a chance that a second person is infected. If so, the third person has a higher chance - and it snowballs.  This occurs for any population with lower than 100% immunity rate.
 In the pre-vaccine era, measles freely circulated providing for natural boosting in the population. After natural measles infection during childhood, reoccurrence of measles was rare. The solid, lifelong protection afforded by natural infection has been replaced with a vaccine-induced immunity that wanes with time. Waning immunity among the vaccinated, combined with lower natural disease boosting will create substantial numbers of measles-susceptible people in highly vaccinated populations.
Indeed, life was better when most children died before school-age.
Dr. James Cherry, commented that, in the post-vaccine era, measles had become a “time bomb.” [29] Is this why the CDC and health officials go into a state of panic when measles cases erupt in well vaccinated populations? Do officials know that at some point waning immunity will start an epidemic even in a very highly vaccinated population? Think of the impact of this dynamic as the truly immune seniors die out of the population, and are replaced by vaccine “immune” people. 
What he actually said is:
Both diseases have been effectively controlled in the pediatric population that, in the prevaccine era, harbored them. However, with the shift in prevalence to adolescents and young adults, it is possible the diseases may be "time bombs." [http://goo.gl/MFNqlm]
Waning immunity is not a threat as long as you simply don't encounter the disease. That's it, right? If everyone on the world is immune for 25 years, then where is the disease going to come from? Apparently, nowhere, as most adults still don't get it even with waning immunity.

 6. Babies have become more susceptible to measles.

Yep. It's a good thing that the disease is nearly eradicated. Hey, maybe, if you do vaccinate, it will stay that way. Or do you want to encounter babies?

[An appeal to emotion can be turned around, in this case.]

7. Immunity is not always immunity: Shifting sands.  

Yes, injections are nasty. Yes, sometimes the story told is too hopeful. That doesn't take away the facts.
The facts are that vaccination has greatly reduced both incidence and mortality of a great number of diseases, has reduced child-death greatly and overall has had a very positive influence.

8. Immunity without antibodies

When a person gets an infectious disease for the first time, the body’s immune system uses its innate powers, which mostly involve cellular immunity. In the process, it prepares for the future. The next time that same infectious agent comes around; the body will use its memory of the first experience so that it can react faster. This is done with or without antibodies. 
Antibodies are also part of the immune system. They are the 'innate' defense, the first line, the default defense. Apparently, in the case of measles, a secondary line can also be sufficient.

That doesn't say anything about vaccines. On a sidenote, the information we started with tells us that these people are also a high-risk group for complications.

 9. Vitamins A and C are key to normal measles recovery. 

As was pointed out before - even by  the antivaxxers themselves - many diseases were already on the decline due to better healthcare, sanitation, nutrition and so forth. Is it a surprise that vitamins A and C are important?

What happened to all those USA statistics we had earlier? We're suddenly shifting towards South Africa, with entirely different nutrition/sanitation situations.

It goes on about this, and I'm really not going to fact-check the whole bogus. Seriously, if vitamine C would actually cure all those things, what do you think would happen?

That's right, the pharmaceutical industry would supply you with vitamine C. Vitamines are an industry - a large one. If research into Vitamin C as a cure was actually hopeful, someone would get it funded.

10. High titer measles vaccines increased death rates in poor countries.  

This section starts with a completely random assertion. It moves on towards another quote from a paper that supposedly contains the quote they use; but it is behind a paywall. I can't even find an abstract/summary for this paper.

The study authors concluded that instead of looking for antibody response they should have been looking for long term outcomes to measure real results of their experiments. 
Did they?

11. You can get measles and shed measles virus from the MMR vaccine.  

First question: How high do you think the chance is that you get the measles without the vaccine?

Moving on. The plural of  'anecdotes'  is not data. [Elise Andrew]. 

12. Is it really “measles” in the first place?

Yes, doctors are always wrong after they spent a decennium learning that stuff.
“Flu” is basically defined as a 100°F or higher fever or feeling feverish (not everyone with the flu has a fever), a cough and/or sore throat, a runny or stuffy nose, headaches and/or body aches, chills, and fatigue. So if you have that you think you have the flu. Right? Actually no. What is often poorly understood is that a person actually has a syndrome (influenza-like illness, or ILI) that can be caused by various agents. Only a proportion of this syndrome is caused by influenza A and B viruses, but differential diagnosis on clinical grounds alone is not possible. So in other words, just because you or your doctor think you have the “flu” doesn’t mean you have the influenza virus. 

We were talking about the measles.

It goes on with a lot of random bullshit. Yes, doctors know what you know.

They know that a set of symptomps don't necessarily mean that which you think it does.

However, the measles in the era before and after the vaccine was diagnosed through a set of criteria. The simple fact that the criteria weren't met - or people didn't even come to the doctor with the symptomps - is sufficient.  Especially as the data for all those other diseases is _also_ available.

Instead of making allegations, why don't you actually datamine this? Why don't you evaluate if such a increase in other diseases was found?

13. Declining disease incidence? 

We already went over this.

14. Measles is not serious in well-nourished people. 

That it is more serious in mal-nourished people does not mean that it is less serious in well-nourished people. It's still a disease, with its complications and its high risk groups.
 For every 1,000 children who get measles, one or two will die. Adults can also get measles especially if they are not vaccinated. Children under 5 years of age and adults over 20 are at higher risk for measles complications including pneumonia, and a higher risk of hospitalization and death from measles than school aged children and adolescents. [http://goo.gl/YplW2G]
I find this serious. That's the CDC  in the USA.

Conclusion

My conclusion isn't very surprising. A number of errors (lies) was found, a large number of fallacies was found, and a few sources couldn't be checked due to a paywall. Furthermore, the article is written in a very convincing way - you need a healthy amount of scepticism.

Most striking is the difference in the very first graph - their graph doesn't look like mine, and I just copy-pasted the table data and plotted it.

Also, it's not really fourteen points. The second point is interesting, but its value is greatly reduced by the random assertion in the middle. From the third point onwards, it is really weak.

For all the other sources - including the paywall one - guys, really? Look at the number of citations. We're talking low-impact papers, where I meant 'impact' as a way of showing how many people read and used it in their field of expertise (I can access the number of citations).

There's a thing called peer-review. This means several things. It means that your paper is checked before being admitted to the journal. But that's not all. Peer-review also means that your results can be reviewed and reproduced by your peers. For the paywalled papers, I could not find any evidence of the results being reproduced at all.







Response to [Everything We Have Been Taught About Our Origins Is A Lie]


It's time for a longer response, yet again. This article has popped up a few times on IFLS.

It's starts out with this:
In June 1936 Max Hahn and his wife Emma were on a walk beside a waterfall near to London, Texas, when they noticed a rock with wood protruding from its core. They decided to take the oddity home and later cracked it open with a hammer and a chisel. What they found within shocked the archaeological and scientific community. Embedded in the rock was what appeared to be some type of ancient man made hammer.
Alarm bells are already ringing - as they always do when something shocks the "archaeological and scientific community". A quick search tells us that stone tools were used starting about 2.6 million years ago.

 A team of archaeologists analysed and dated it. The rock encasing the hammer was dated to more than 400 million years old. The hammer itself turned out to be more than 500 million years old. Additionally, a section of the wooden handle had begun the metamorphosis into coal.  The hammer’s head, made of more than 96% iron, is far more pure than anything nature could have achieved without assistance from relatively modern smelting methods.
Really, a team of archaeologists? Not a laboratory equipped with carbondating equipment? Wait, not even carbon-dating - if it is 500 million years old, it follows that radiocarbon dating won't work - it allows for some 70 thousand years, but that's the limit. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. This paragraph simply doesn't live up to that - it leaves open some questions:

  • Is there a report on that analysis? There should be. Where is it?
  • What methods were used? Did the methods allow for the result? 
  • Who analysed the samples?
  • If it took 100 million years for the object to get buried in rock, how did it survive?
In 1889 near Nampa, Idaho, whilst workers were boring an artesian well, a small figurine made of baked clay was extracted from a depth of 320 feet. To reach this depth the workers had to cut through fifteen feet of basalt lava and many other strata below that. That in itself does not seem remarkable, until one considers that the very top layer of lava has been dated to at least 15 million years old! 
So? That doesn't tell you anything. The lava layer could've gotten on top in any later date. Or the layer of clay could've gotten buried. And again, this begs the question - what is the source of this anecdote?
It is currently accepted by science and geology that coal is a by-product of decaying vegetation. The vegetation becomes buried over time and is covered with sediment. That sediment eventually fossilises and becomes rock. This natural process of coal formation takes up to 400 million years to accomplish.Anything that is found in lumps of coal or in coal seams during mining, had to have been placed or dropped into the vegetation before it was buried in sediment.  
Other sources claim that 20 million years can suffice for high quality coal. Why would it have been placed or dropped into the vegetation before it was buried in sediment? Coal is formed at high pressures and temperatures. When a vein of coal gets pushed closer to the surface at a later date, it isn't at that high pressure. If you recall, you can draw with a piece of coal - apparently, it isn't that hard after all. As a result, things can get stuck in the coal. For instance, a tool made of rock and metal would be harder than coal is.

Apparently, they're setting up something. Let's read on...
In 1944, as a ten year old boy, Newton Anderson, dropped a lump of coal in his basement and it broke in half as it hit the floor. What he discovered inside defies explanation based upon current scientific orthodoxy.
Inside the coal was a hand crafted brass alloy bell with an iron clapper and sculptured handle.
When an analysis was carried out it was discovered that the bell was made from anunusual mix of metals, different from any known modern alloy production (including copper, zinc, tin, arsenic, iodine, and selenium).
The seam from whence this lump of coal was mined is estimated to be 300,000,000 years old!
Interesting. Again, where is the evidence of the anecdote? And beyond that, it doesn't matter what age the seam is - we want to know how old the bell is. Seriously, how hard is it? And of course it is different from any modern production - we know how to refine, how the seperate metals, how to get that alloy exacly as we want it.

A bell is made by making a mold in sand or the like. Then you build up a fire, throw ore in it and pour the molten liquid into the mold. Then you let it cool down, finally resulting in a bell. In later times, it would also be polished and the sand used would be more specific. But the process is entirely open for getting other metals - impurities in your ore - mixed in with the brass.

Now, you can also find people evaluating the bell and coming to other conclusions. For instance, that it's a modern-day souvenir from india that was either placed near the coal - in a sort of slurry/coal mud, that was later hardened by moisture vaporation - or maybe wasn't found there at all.

Remember, this was a ten year old child. He took a polygraph test when he was 60 years old - that's going to tell you anything. Europians don't even believe in the merits of such a test. Especially for a ten year old, who does not necessarily see any problem with lying about such a thing.

So, about this bell:
  • It was not dated.
  • It was not established that the bell was even found in the coal layer.
  • It was not established that the bell originated in the coal layer.
  • It was not established that the bell was of a strange alloy.
The list of such items goes on and on and on.
Indeed, the author keeps on rambling about things allegedly found in coal seams. I'm fine with that, but you might want to establish your argument for once.

Out of place artefacts (Ooparts) are so named because conventional scientific wisdom (an oxymoron if ever there was one) states that these artefacts shouldn’t exist based upon currently accepted beliefs regarding our origins and history. These discoveries are “out of place” in the orthodox timeline of human history.  
Translation: Ooparts are anecdotal stories with no established thruths in them, propogated by misinformation, lies and strawmans. As a result, people think they falsify history.

The usual methods of the conformist scientific community, when faced with such anomalies is to attempt to debunk their reported age, or perhaps endeavour to discredit the source of the report or even the reporter. If this approach fails then usually the artefacts themselves are banished to the shadowy vaults of museums and warehouses, never to be seen again.   
Outrageous! Scientists ask you to provide evidence, backup your claims and don't believe your anecdote? Sorry, but this requires a meme.


If these unusual artefacts were “one offs” then perhaps one could be forgiven for accepting the view espoused by the mainstream scientific and archaeological community that they are hoaxes or misreported stories. However, when one realises that thousands upon thousands of these anomalous artefacts have been discovered and reported over the years, then one may need to re-evaluate ones acceptance of the integrity of mainstream archaeology and science.
There is also a body of evidence for the existence, and a tutorial for the identification of lizard people. That doesn't make it true. Argumentum ad populum is a logical fallacy. So is  argumentum ab auctoritate:
Occasionally an honest archaeologist will attempt to reveal to the public the true age and origin of such anomalous objects. They will question the accepted beliefs of their mainstream peers. They usually find that their career ends quite abruptly.
There it is! A honest archaeologist! Amazing. So, how likely is this? There are engineering professors that subscribe to the religious concept of creationism. There are biology professors that believe in some form of creationism, IDiocy or the like. Your scientific career ends when you misuse your authorithy in some way that compromises your scientific integrity. Say, lying to people and or not providing evidence. Fabricating data. There's a professor of mine that is a christian. He distantiates himself from creationism and intelligent design - in fact, his conclusion (based on the chapter referred to on wikipedia) is rather common for a dutch christian. It's the same one I had when I was an autistic child. Simply put, he sees two seperate places in which a christian deity, or any deity at all, could have acted: In genesis, were atheists put abiogenesis, and in singling out a homonid species to grant a soul/spirit.

I could discuss this further, but that's besides the point. Prof. Dekker is a professor in biophysics, teaches the subject biophysics (which mostly introduces the biology of cells for physicists) in the first year of the bachelor and is well respected.

So no, you can be a respected scientist and be against the accepted beliefs of maintream peers. You just have to be honest in your research - provide  evidence and use logic to find conclusions. And it might be a good idea in public to follow the same ideas.

Unfortunately, the majority just accept what they are taught in school and university without question. That is how our educational system is designed. It does not encourage individuality and originality. It purely indoctrinates one with established beliefs and dogma.
It's this one again. I was once an intern at a high school. I'm also, regrettably, a smoker, so at one point I was outside with other smoking teachers. One was a teacher in the dutch language, and she was really excited and happy about a student. You see, this student opposed her. He stated his case, clearly, referencing outside sources. She checked, and he was right. She was excited that this student followed his instinct and made a clear case. She was happy that he could do that, that he felt secure in doing this during her class. And lastly, she was both for him following the scientific method.

If one requires evidence of this “mainstream” mentality, one need look no further than the realms of psychiatry. Modern psychiatry seeks to demonize and declare mentally ill anyone who deviates from what is regarded as the norm.These so called “mental health professionals” have even invented a new mental disorder named Oppositional Defiant Disorder, or ODD (love the irony of the abbreviation).This newly invented condition is listed in the latest instalment of the industry’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM, which dubs people who do not conform to what those in charge declare to be normal, as mentally insane.So there you have your proof – I’m obviously an unmitigated nutter and completely insane. At least that is what those in authority would like everyone to believe!Anyway, I digress. 
No. Seriously, I saw several of these articles on my facebook when ODD was added to the DSM-IV. Once again, this author comes up with a logical fallacy. This is argumentum ad absurbem - an attempt to argue that since 'mainstream' is absurd, it can't be true. It's not an actual argument. It is also a straw man - an intentional misrepresentation.

You see, they only posted part of the specification for ODD. The DSM IV is accessible for all, and you can clearly see what the requirements are.It requires a period of six months, during which you often lose your temper, ague, defy, refuse, annoy and do this on a higher frequency than normal. Also, it requires that the person suffers from significant impairment in life.

Seriously, people, psychiatry is there to help people. It's a kind of medical science. This disorder is specifically when someone somehow has made his or her own life impossible. It's when someone is against everything and everyone. It's when someone will park his car on the highway because the sign says they should be on the parking lot. This is for someone who becomes so defiant that its life is impossible. That's when your defiance becomes a disorder, disrupting your life.

On one side of the field we have the Darwinists and their theory of evolution, trying to establish the extremely flawed view that we have somehow evolved into highly intelligent sentient beings from a primordial blob of gunge, miraculously brought to life by an electrical storm billions of years ago. (Perhaps one of this cults followers could explain to me when “consciousness” evolved, and provide proof – I await with baited breath!)  
Sorry, there are little darwinists out there. There are neo-darwinists, because you know, science often makes progress in 155 years.  And that's another straw man. This author better have a farm, because having this many straw mans in your house is really creepy.

Abiogenesis is not a part of the theory of evolution. Certainly, it is extremely likely that life started only once. That's because we all have the same system in us - DNA or it's progenitor, RNA. But the thing is, that wasn't known when Charles Darwin wrote the Origin of Species. DNA wasn't known at all.

Charles darwin determined that there was some mechanism by which biovariation in individuals propagated to the next generation. We didn't know enough to determine the mechanism in that time - but it was identified that there was one. By the way, this is something you know as well. It's why a racing horse has a promising career as a breeding stallion. The horse is fast, and you want to keep that. It's the reason our dogs look the way they do. It's why our corn is large and fruitful.

He then explained his theory; that natural selection influenced how such traits progressed to the next generation. It's extremely simple. Say we have a population of a thousand mice. At the start, we have some mutations and ten mice have some advantage. That's 1% - let's make it lower. Two mice have an advantage.
All pairs of mice produce five more mice. All mice have a 40% survival rate, but the two mice have such an advantage that their survival rate is 50%.

Let's say these two survive, due to their advantage. That's actually not certain, but it sometimes happens. In that case, these two mice produce five new mice with the same inherited characteristic. On average, 2.5 of these mice will survive. You probably know how this will end, but the next generation has 2.5 * 5/2 * 1/2 = 12.5 / 4 = 3.125 mice with the characteristic. Wut, numbers. Let me explain. We have an average of 2.5 mice. Each pair of mice produces five more mice - so one mouse produces 5/2 = 2.5 mice. And 50% of these survive. As a result, our first generation of 2.5 mice produces 2.5 mice per mouse, of which 50% survives. 2.5 multiplied by 2.5 is 6.25, and 50% of that is 3.125. As you can see, each generation is a factor of 1.25 larger - that's a geometric series. The nth generation will have two times 1.25 to the power of n mice with the advantage.

Now, let's look at the original mice - those without the characteristic. These mice produce 2.5 mice per mouse, of which 40% survives. Now, that's 5/2 * 2/5, which is 1 mouse per mouse. That population remains the same.

I wonder when the original mouse is only 1% of the entire population. The calculation is simply (998) / (2*1.25^ n + 998) = 1/100, which results in n = ln(99*499)/ln(1.25) = 2800ish generations.

And that's how new traits become dominant. It's that simple. I now used 40% and 50% survival rates, but these numbers are completely and utterly arbitrary. Suppose that the survival rate is the same, but the 'new mice' just live longer. They produce a second nest. That would mean that the geometric factor is two times larger. Now that's an effect.

Abiogenesis is not part of the theory of evolution by means of natural selection. It really isn't. If it did happen - and there is evidence that it is possible for it to happen - then it wasn't with some sort of electrical storm. That's frankenstein, people. Abiogenesis would happen by self-replicating molecules forming in some kind of circumstance. There's actually quite a few ways in which it can happen. T.O. has a FAQ on it.
Mind you, it's not determined yet - but this is not an evolution thing. It's an atheist thing.

Consciousness. The mythical term that a great many people get hung up on. Seriously, let me give you an anecdote. I started living on my own somewhere in 2010. My parents acquired a kitten shortly thereafter. This kitten was really energetic, and I played with it in the garden whenever I was at my parents. After a year or so, my visits became less frequent, due to having a life where I live.

When I come home, the cat jumps up. It'll walk to me, then walk to the door. It knows who I am, and it wants to play. Seriously, she forces me to come and play.

My cat is conscious. It might not be highly intelligent, but that doesn't matter. It's conscious. I do not know which philosophical view it holds, or even if it believes in the great deity of cats, or longcat, or even the nine circles of catnip. I do know it recognises me and knows some characteristics.

Now, what is consciousness? I think this author refers to some kind of soul or such.


Consciousness is the quality or state of self-awareness, or, of being aware of an external object or something within oneself.[1][2] It has been defined as: sentienceawarenesssubjectivity, the ability to experience or to feelwakefulness, having a sense of selfhood, and the executive control system of the mind.[3] Despite the difficulty in definition, many philosophers believe that there is a broadly shared underlying intuition about what consciousness is.[4] As Max Velmans and Susan Schneider wrote inThe Blackwell Companion to Consciousness: "Anything that we are aware of at a given moment forms part of our consciousness, making conscious experience at once the most familiar and most mysterious aspect of our lives."[5]
Philosophers since the time of Descartes and Locke have struggled to comprehend the nature of consciousness and pin down its essential properties. Issues of concern in the philosophy of consciousness include whether the concept is fundamentally coherent; whether consciousness can ever be explained mechanistically; whether non-human consciousness exists and if so how it can be recognized; how consciousness relates to language; whether consciousness can be understood in a way that does not require a dualistic distinction between mental and physical states or properties; and whether it may ever be possible for computing machines like computers or robots to be conscious, a topic studied in the field of artificial intelligence.
That's from wikipedia. Want more? I can also refer you to Stephen Novella. I'm sure you'll be able to find his fragments somewhere. He was quite convincing in talking about consciousness - in particular that we can influence it so heavily with medicine that it is extremely likely to be entirely biological. As an anecdote, I know for a fact someone became significantly more upbeat after receiving an insuline pomp. His glucose levels influenced his 'consciousness' so heavily that fixing it made him look extremely upbeat and happy.

The reality is that the origin of the human race is a total enigma. No one, anywhere, actually knows how old humanity is or how and where it originated. It is a complete mystery. Yet from birth one is indoctrinated into one or the other of the above factions, with no questions asked or alternative opinions allowed.  
No. The reality is that we have evidence for a great many things, in particular evolution. It is extremely likely that 'consciousness' is an emergent property. It is apparently possible for abiogenesis to happen, but that doesn't mean it did happen. Atheists think it likely that it did happen. Theists think that some deity or pantheon did it, begging the question who made their deity. Both occupy a religious position.

I'm not a believer in scientism. I don't believe fervently that science will ever solve the question of whether or not abiogenesis happened. I'm not sure there is evidence to prove it did happen, or not.

The problem the mainstream has with these anomalous Ooparts is that they throw into question every single established belief there is regarding our past.
No, actually we just have a problem with misinforming and lying to the public.

The discovery of Ooparts completely annihilates the [comparatively recent] theory of evolution. If, as this hypothesis would have us believe, modern humans only evolved 200,000 years ago (or thereabouts), one has to ask how man made artefacts, found in substrata originating millions of years ago, could be explained?  
Another strawman. Evolution and human origin are two seperate things. The theory of evolution is about a mechanism in nature. Human origins is about the history of our species, of how that mechanism worked  for us.

And remember, 2.5ish million years ago, Homo habilis used tools. Most remains of this homonid species are found with tools. And the oldowan toolset already included simple stone hammers and axes. Finding a hammer/axe of that age won't disprove the current story of human origins.

And disproving human origins doesn't disprove the theory of evolution.

However, in 1968 a palaeontologist named Stan Taylor began excavations of fossilised dinosaur footprints, discovered in the bed of the Paluxy river near Glen Rose, Texas. What he unearthed shocked and dumbfounded the scientific community. Alongside the dinosaur tracks, in exactly the same cretaceous fossilised strata, were well preserved human footprints.
The immediate reaction of evolutionists, archaeologists, and science in general, was to debunk the find as a hoax. “They were carved into the rock by hoaxers” or “They are not human footprints, but more dinosaur footprints that have been eroded to look human” were the arguments most commonly proposed.However, their line of reasoning falls somewhat flat when one asks why only the human prints were eroded and not also the 3 toed dinosaur prints? Additionally one has to consider, if the human prints were carved as a hoax, how did the hoaxers manage to carve further human footprints that continued under bedrock that was later removed from the side of the river bed? 
Every single time we do not accept their "evidence"as faith, we're somehow debunking things as a hoax. You know, talk.origins has an entire archive  on this topic. It's all good fun to hypothesize that something is a human track. But we're not exactly talking footprints. It's mostly holes and stuff; nothing close enough. The scientists that evaluated the track hold that there is no evidence that these tracks were human.

Since the initial discovery, hundreds more human footprints have been discovered and unearthed, both in Paluxy and in many other places around the globe. Either those hoaxers have unlimited time and budget – or someone is telling porkies!  
Everyday, thousands of ghosts are sighted, miracles happen and lizard people show their face. The thing is, this never happens when a scientist is around to document data.

Indeed, somoene is telling lies. It's the people making the claims, maybe? Onus probandi. They make the claim, but they do not attempt to prove it; they just state the tracks are human, with conviction; and they feel we have to falsify that.

Surprise, science doesn't work that way. You don't hypothesize and if it isn't falsified, it stands. You make a hypothesis. When that hypothesis is tested and holds true, the hypothesis is likely true. If it doesn't hold true, it's falsified. And it's gone.

Falsifying something is enough to disprove it. This is true. But not finding evidence to the contrary doesn't mean it's true. I have yet to find any evidence falsifying a hypothesis that the Jedi are coming for me to train me in the ways of the Force. However, that doesn't mean they're coming, mostly because the Jedi are fiction.

Oh right, fiction. That brings me back to these alleged human tracks. I think I have made my point.

Next one needs to consider another find discovered in 100 million year old cretaceous limestone. A fossilised human finger, which was found along with a childs tooth and human hair. This finger has been subjected to numerous scientific tests and analysis. Sectioning revealed the typical porous bone structure expected in a human finger. Additionally a Cat-scan and MRI scan identified joints and traced tendons throughout the length of the fossil. This is one find that science cannot explain away as a hoax 
So, which homonid species was it? Where is your evidence? How was the finger dated? Limestone, if you recall, is a rock used for a few thousands of years as a building material. A miner losing his finger in a rockslide isn't that weird.

Over the past few decades, miners near the little town of Ottosdal in Western Transvaal, South Africa, have been digging up hundreds of mysterious metal spheres. These spheres measure between 25 and 100 mm in diameter, and some are etched with three parallel grooves running completely around the equator. Two types of spheres have been found. One is composed of a solid bluish metal with flecks of white, the other is hollowed out and filled with a spongy white substance.These spheres are reportedly so delicately balanced that even with modern technology, they would need to be made in a zero gravity environment to attain these characteristics. These objects have become known as the Klerksdorp spheres.Geologists have attempted to debunk these artefacts as natural formations or “limonite concretions”. They fail to explain sufficiently how these formations occurred naturally with perfectly straight and perfectly spaced grooves around the centres.
Perhaps the real reason for such fervent attempted debunking by the scientific community, is that the rock in which these spheres where found is Precambrian – and dated to 
2.8 billion years old!Whether one wishes to accept these out of place artefacts as genuine or not is I suppose, down to personal beliefs. 


 Just read the wikipedia page. And if you do not believe the evidence for its formation, at least read the paper reporting on it. I'm fairly certain the author of this field of logical fallacies hasn't.

Summary - this author has woven a net of straw mans, lies and other logical fallacies, combined with anecdotal evidence. Nearly everything in the article is either wrong, false, a lie, a straw man, just randomly dismisses scientific papers or the like.

It's extreme nonsense. These are my thoughts on it.








Simulating projectile trajectories with (simple) air resistance.

Update: I originally wrote this script after learning that a lot of undergraduate students - as I was, at the time - thought that, because over the three years the B.Sc. lasts - they had always neglected air resistance, so it must be negligible, right? Of course it wasn't - it just indicated a model that was more difficult to solve. This is a simulation of a very simple air resistance on a sphere; you see how much the trajectories are *not* parabolas.


These are simply the calculated trajectories when you include simple air resistance.

The simple air resistance is just 1/2 rho v^2 A c_d. Everything in there is estimated,
with the exception of the velocity v, which is calculated.

You can also see why, at one point, projectile trajectories were thought to be triangular. In common day terms, it was thought that the energy given made an artificial movement, after which the energy would slowly be used, then the natural movement would kick in and it'd fall straight down. Yes, that's what they once thought.

Matlab script is included.

projectilemotion.m
close all;
format compact;
clear;

cd = 0.43; %Dimensionless
rho = 1.225; % kg/m/m/m
vStart = 340;
vAngle = pi/4;
m = 0.340e-1; %kg
g = 9.81; % m/s/s/kg

%[x,y] = projectilefunction(cd,rho,vStart,vAngle,m,g);
%plot(x,y);
%xlabel('Horizontal distance, metres');
%ylabel('Vertical distance, metres');

vLin = linspace(1,340,25);
aLin = linspace(0, pi/2, 25);

vNum = 1;
aNum = 1;

s = 1; 

%Attempt to save gif
[xpos,ypos, conv] = projectilefunction(cd,rho,vStart,vAngle,m,g);
plot(xpos,ypos);
title(sprintf('Trajectory for vStart=%2.2e, angle=%2.2e pi', vStart, vAngle/pi));
xlim([0 25]);
ylim([0 25])
xlabel('Horizontal Distance (m)');
ylabel('Vertical Distance (m)');

figure(1);
frame = getframe(figure(1));

[im,map] = rgb2ind(frame.cdata,256,'nodither');
im(1,1,1,25*25) = 0;
%end attempt
for vStart = vLin
    for vAngle = aLin 
        [xpos,ypos, vs, conv] = projectilefunction(cd,rho,vStart,vAngle,m,g);
        fprintf('Max distance %2.2e, max height %2.2e \n', max(xpos), max(ypos));
        plot(xpos,ypos);
        title(sprintf('Trajectory for vStart=%2.2e, angle=%2.2e pi', vStart, vAngle/pi));
        %legend(sprintf('Trajectory for vStart=%2.2e, angle=%2.2e pi', vStart, vAngle/pi));
        xlim([0 1]);
        ylim([0 1])
        xlabel('Horizontal Distance (m)');
        ylabel('Speed size (m/s)');  
        Frames(s) = getframe;
        
        s = s + 1;
        
    end
end
movie(Frames, 1);

Joshua Feuerstein - the lying, strawman, ignorant rapper

I've taken the liberty of writing a WOT about this video.

You may have shared this because you believed in this. Or because you found it amusing.
It doesn't matter. This video has been shared a great many times, and apparently people
think that's a good thing. So enjoy.
------

Let's listen for a bit.

So he has some anecdote with an arrogant atheist. I disagree,
it doesn't take much faith to believe in a magical unicorn that
created everything.

(I) Let's start with his first straw man ; it's the claim
that the theory of evolution (henceforth, TOE) doesn't fit the "parameters
of parentheses of science" because it "has not been observed".

The scientific method wants a hypothesis that is then evaluated with a number
of secondary hypotheses; if the experiment is positive, then it is likely the
hypothesis, and possibly the underlying explanation, is true. If not, then the
intersection of the hypothesis and the secondary hypotheses is falsified; that
means that either the hypothesis or any of the secondary hypotheses is false.

Evolution fits that perfectly. Many hypotheses have been generated and confirmed;
think of the fossil record, or antibiotic resistant bacteria. Consider the tiktaalic,
as Bill Nye posited at the debate.

And Evolution hasn't been observed? Consider the emergence of Oenothera gias. Of
primula kewensis. Tragopogon, raphanobrassica, geleopsis tetrahit, madia citrigacalis,
brassica, adiantum pedatum, woodsia abbeae. And that's just plants. The list goes on
[http://goo.gl/8cGWqJ].

So, let's call it a strawman and not a lie. It's a very common myth.

(II) "It is called the theory of evolution". A scientific theory is a consistent
body of explanations that is both logical and generates numerous hypotheses that,
and this is important, have been tested and confirmed.

(III) I'm not sure why he mentions 'a big bang', but that's not part of the TOE at all.
It's also a fact. Anyway, he moves on that through a huge 'accident' the first cell came
and everything derives from it. That's not even true.

Yes, it's a chance thing. That doesn't mean it's an accident. You require some particular
circumstances to get the first self-replicating molecules. From there on, evolution hops
on board, because it's that simple. The reason we assume abiogenesis of a single common root
is that all life we know is based on the same things; specific molecules that make up
deoxyribonucleic acids. It might be that it's the result of several abiogenesis events,
but it's likely to find a single root. It's just an inference from the common foundation of life
on our planet.

(IV) "You really think everything came from a single cell? How much faith does
that take." Actually, none. Because the TOE explains that perfectly, but unfortunately
this rapper doesn't actually have any education in that subject, as illuminated by
his gross misunderstanding and the spewing of common myths.

It's extremely simple. Things vary. Sometimes, that variation is positive for survival.
Sometimes it's neutral. Sometimes it is negative. In the latter case, there's a distinct
drawback. If information is transmitted to your offspring - remember genetics? - then a
drawback means you have less descendants, and so that genetic information is decreased
in frequency. A positive variation will cause more descendants to have that genetic
information, changing (increasing) the frequency of the allele.

By the way, the chance in frequency of alleles is what evolution _is_. Anyway, neutral
variations aren't selected upon. But the transmittance of genetic information isn't perfect.
An allele that is in 50% of the population might be 49%/51% in the next. That's genetic drift.
It looks like _brownian motion_ as explained by einstein in 1915 or something. And while the
average of such drift is zero, there's a distinct difference between 'the average of all positions'
and the 'average distance of all positions'. What does that mean? The average of -1 and 1 is 0;
the average distance is 1. Why? -1 has a distance (-1,0) of 1. And 1 has a distance (0,1) of 1.
Genetic drift, as this is called, might also change allele frequencies. It's the one that is
always active, even if natural selection isn't.

(V) The (second) law of thermodynamics! It never, ever, ceases to amaze me how many people
that _have not had a course in thermodynamics_ think they can use this. The second law of
thermodynamics doesn't say that "chaos produces order".

The second law of thermodynamics states that the macroscopic property of entropy either remains
the same or increases in a closed system. That's because it moves towards maximum entropy, or
thermodynamic equilibrium.

Apparently this person thinks that common things such as metals, crystals, mountains, the earth,
semiconductors, humans, my desk, and so on and so forth, cannot exist. Because, you know, he
doesn't understand what he's saying.

For one thing, a human body - or a cell - is not an isolated system. It requires sustenance,
which alone is sufficient. The circumstances within each organelle are such that the state of
maximum entropy is that which serves the 'purpose' of that organelle. The organelles themselves
mostly drift around freely.

Consider this, as falsification of the straw man second law he poses. I have a hundred
thousand paper cups with water. The temperatures are randomly distributed. That's chaotic,
right? I have a hundred thousand paper cups, all with different temperatures.

Now, I place all of those cups in contact. Maybe they have metal bottoms and I put them on
a metal plate. Somehow, at least, heat can be exchanged between the paper cups.

If I wait some time - say, a day - then thermodynamic equilibrium, the state with maximum
entropy, is achieved. Now, what is this state? This is the state where all the hundred thousand
paper cups have the _exact same temperature_. That's order, isn't it?

It is? But I thought you couldn't get order from chaos?

Let's get off the woo woo trains. I placed the cups in contact, so it isn't a closed system for
each cup in particular. In some, the entropy decreased (hot to cold) and in some, it increased (cold
to hot). Each and every heat exchange happening has generated some entropy. As a result, the state with
each cup at the same temperature has higher - maximum - entropy. Even though it seems more orderly,
that's just a false analogy.

"Everything works like a clock. It has order". No. It has equilibrium. That's the false analogy again.
The states it is working in, the equilibrium, are the states of maximum entropy. It's the distribution of
energy (micro states) and the number of micro states (macro state) with a certain distribution of energy
that make up entropy. The fact is, equilibrium, in which energy is distributed fairly, has far more micro states
in its macro state, and is far more likely. If you're interested, you can look at statistical mechanics. The
deviation of such a thing goes with reciprocal of the root of the number of atoms. So for a few grammes of
material, that's a deviation of 1E-12. That's right. You can't measure it at macroscopic scales.

(VI) A tornado moves through a junk yard and produces a shiny Lamborghini. That's a cute false
analogy. As it doesn't remotely looks like abiogenesis - which is a different matter than the TOE
- let us ignore this.

He goes on to claim that "Science believes that in this accident, somehow came this perfectly working
world, human life, people and animals and plants .... everything on earth was created perfectly."

Apparently not. War. Famine. Cancer. Erm, the fact we don't have velociraptor mounts.

"That could never happen through an accident". Again, it's  not an accident, its the result of
physical laws acting upon whatever is there. It's called emergence. Consider conway's game of life.
Or evolutionary programming techniques.

(VII) "It had  to be by intelligent design". Oh, no more God? Intelligent design is a scam. It goes
something like this.

I, personally, see a load of things I like.They seem to work, and have purpose and such. I think
things with purpose are designed. And because I don't know what words I use, I suppose that a verb
implies the noun. So there you have it, there's a designer. And because I really like what I see,
I think he's intelligent to boot.

Things with purpose aren't necessarily designed. If you disagree, please give me the criteria for design.
Plot twist, it's not "this has a purpose". If I defend myself with a stick, that stick has purpose. Even
though it's just a stick.

Likewise, cells are machines; machines are designed; designed implies a designer. That's false;
cells are like machines, but they do not necessarily belong to the class of machines that are designed.
Design doesn't imply a designer, simply because a verb doesn't equal a noun.  It's both equivocation
(to be designed=to have a designer) and circulus in probando or assuming the conclusion.

(VIII) One final thought. It's amazing that he tries to use etymology and fails. It's on wikipedia, for fucks sake.
Universe, old french univers, latin universum, poetic unus vorsum. Good strawman.

So, good attempt, but no. Also, which god? He hasn't made it likely that it's his God in particular.
What about zeus? odin?  jupiter? The great bob? The spaghetti monster?