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May 23, 2005


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no, you can’t refuse!

Under those circumstances, I think many others would equally have decided they were a bunch of bastards and refused to help them get their gong, however self-destructive (I would have done the same). But it doesn't quite explain going into the altie camp.

Boo! No fair! My edition of Shermer's book doesn't have that chapter! *sobs*

Good point – it was in a later edition. He wrote it after being asked why smart people believe in weird things, during the promotional tour for the book. Here’s">http://www.sciam.com/print_version.cfm?articleID=0002F4E6-8CF7-1D49-90FB809EC5880000">Here’s an online summary.

It's sad to see this kind of thing happen to scientists.

I am fighting my own battles with a religious family. Being the only one who is in medicine and science in general I was told about this wonderful new tape I have to watch called...you guessed it..."What the Bleep"

I get quoted the old "even scientists said so" all the time. It's so hard for poeple to uinderstand that "scientists" does not mean "science". Even they can be quacks!

Don't they have to be doing science to be considered scientists? This lady is more like an "Artist Formerly Known as Scientist ;)

Re the idea that consciousness may be a property of single cells, this is something which cannot be rejected on a priori gorunds. Refer the kink below:



Re the idea that consciousness may be a property of single cells, this is something which cannot be rejected on a priori grounds. Refer the link below:



Continuing on my posting as I read all the entries:

Skimmed your link, skepticwatcher: Didn't go far before bumping into apparent non-sequiturs.

Re Re the idea that consciousness may be a property of single cells, this is something which cannot be rejected on a priori grounds. Refer the link below etc.,

Looking over the list of references for the link, I found nothing explicitly referring to the hagfish, a living fossil something like the first fish, as an experimental animal. As one of my government agency's experts on fish and birds, I cannot claim that any article I have read is correct, incorrect, or tangential with reference to the origin of vertebrate consciousness, and/or with reference to Candace Pert's hunch that Darwin may have been right with regards to the conservation of emotions throughout evolution. However,I have found one article (only one) that may serve as a starting point for the investigation of the hagfish brain. I will let the article stand on whatever are its own merits.

Northcutt, R.G. (1996). The agnathan ark: the origin of the craniate brain. Brain, Behavior, and Evolution 48:237-247.

In relation to Candace Pert's book, the following quote is a hypothesis without a clear mutually exclusive alternative hypothesis:

"dopaminergic, serotonergic, peptidergic, and other neurons presumed to specifically release substances as neurotransmitters are toxic noradrenergic neurons that have accumulated these substances" [taken from Van Winkle, E. (2000). The toxic mind: the biology of mental illness and violence. Medical Hypotheses 2000; 55(4): 356-36]. Similarly, Candace Pert's assertion in her 1971 articles that a brain receptor exists for endorphin does not have a mutually exclusive test that the receptor is a modified noradrenergic or cholinergic receptor.

Again, similarly, Darwin's and Candace Pert's "hunch" -hypothesis that emotions are conserved throughout evolution is presented in Pert's book without reference to a mutually exclusive alternative hypothesis. Testable hypotheses might involve living lower vertebrates and living fossil ancestors to vertebrates such as the hagfish (see my other post above). I consider conservation of brain synaptic neurotransmitters (and perhaps emotions) in vertebrate evolution as implied rather than tested by Van Winkle's "hypothesis" that the human brain has only two known synaptic receptors and that all other receptors are modified copies of such receptors. Van Winkle's implication of the brain in emotion throughout his paper does not provide any testable alternative hypothesis that emotions (specifically his misnamed brain "fight-or-flight response") might actually be a body phenomenon, as Pert proposes.

Pert's assertion of about 100-200 non-synaptic receptors, each involving a "conserved" emotion, is without data (so far as I know) on purification, crystallization, and established molecular structure and subsequent derivation of cytological function for such receptors, whether they are electrophysiological, second-messenger, or so forth, or what interactions occur between them. Development of testable mutually alternative hypotheses should be done by each scientist prior to his own study, and use of the proper organisms similarly should not be based on hypotheses scattered throughout the literature. My "hypotheses" on use of hagfish and lower vertebates are for preliminary criticism of existing procedural flaws only, which is only appropriate for a forum like this, not for final use in rigorous testing and peer-reviewed publication, especially not in its embryonic simplicity.

I put this and my other post above together in a few hours, certainly without any genius, but I hope to see studies that show that not only hard work but superior intelligence is necessary for genius, despite Einstein's suggestion that mostly hard work is involved.

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