Ecology

The Myth of Pristine Nature

A review of Rambunctious Garden: Saving Nature in a Post-Wild World

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Rambunctious Garden

“Nature is almost everywhere. But wherever it is, there is one thing nature is not: pristine,” writes science journalist Emma Marris in her engaging new book Rambunctious Garden: Saving Nature in a Post-Wild World. She adds, “We must temper our romantic notion of untrammeled wilderness and find room next to it for the more nuanced notion of a global, half-wild rambunctious garden, tended by us.” Marris’ message will discomfort both environmental activists and most ecologists who are in thrall to the damaging cult of pristine wilderness and the false ideology of the balance of nature. But it should encourage and inspire the rest of us.

Marris begins by exposing the vacuity of the notion of the ecological baseline. “For many conservationists, restoration to a pre-human or a pre-European baseline is seen as healing a wounded or sick nature,” explains Marris. “For others, it is an ethical duty. We broke it; therefore we must fix it. Baselines thus typically don’t act as a scientific before to compare with an after. They become the good, the goal, the one correct state.” What is so good about historical ecosystems? I too have noted that ecologists when asked this same question become almost inarticulate. They just know that historical ecosystems are better.

So many ecologists set the historical baseline as the condition of ecosystems before Europeans arrived. Why? The fact is that primitive peoples killed off the largest species in North and South America, Australia and Pacific Islands thousands of years ago. For example, after people showed up about 14,000 years ago, North America lost 60 or so species of tasty mammals that weighed over 100 pounds, including giant ground sloths, mammoths, mastodons, cheetahs, camels, and glyptodonts.

Marris argues that the cult of pristine wilderness was created by nature romantics like John Muir. Muir is famous for advocating that the Yosemite Valley be turned into a national park. As Marris notes, wild nature for Muir was a necessity for “tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people” suffering from “the vice of over-industry and the deadly apathy of luxury.” And for some people it might beâ€"but that is not a scientific claim about ecosystems and their “integrity.”

In fact, Marris reports that there is precious little scientific support for the ideology that pristine nature is somehow “better” than the mélange that humanity has created by moving species around the globe. For example, she visits Hawaii where half of the plant species now living on the islands are non-native. One brave younger ecologist, Joe Mascaro, studies novel ecosystems that are developing on Hawaii that incorporate both native and non-native species. Among other things, Mascaro “found that the novel forests, on average, had just as many species as native forests” and “that in many measures of forest productivity, such as nutrient cycling and biomass, novel forests matched or outproduced the native forests.”

Marris contrasts Mascaro with another ecologist, Christian Giardina, who helps manage the Laupahoehoe Natural Area Reserve in Hawaii from which he wants to extirpate non-natives. Yet even Giardina muses over dinner, “Are we so religious about this biodiversity ethic that we need to be called on it?” He answers his own question: “If you really dig down to why we should care, you end up with nothing. You are running on faith that we should care.”

Although Marris doesn’t cite him, she is plowing much the same intellectual ground as University of Maryland philosopher Marc Sagoff. Sagoff has challenged ecologists to name any specifically ecological criterion by which scientists can objectively determine whether an ecosystem whose history they don't know has been invaded or not. Are invaded ecosystems less productive? No. Are they less species-rich? No. And so on. In fact, Sagoff points out that there is no objective criterion for distinguishing between "disturbed" ecosystems and allegedly pristine ones.

Marris also cites research that shows that the notion of the “balance of nature” is scientifically specious. Early in the 20th century influential ecologist Frederic Clements developed the theory that each ecosystem tended toward a stable climax that, once achieved, was perfectly balanced unless disturbed by people. Each participant in the climax ecosystem fitted tightly into niches as a result of coevolving together. However, ecologist Henry Gleason, a contemporary of Clements, countered that ecosystems were assembled by chance just depending on what species got there first and were successful in competing with other species as they arrived. For the most part, 20th century ecologists fell into the Clements’ camp.

Now we know now that Gleason was far more right than Clementsâ€"ecosystems are largely assembled by chance. For example, northern temperate forests are composed of an assemblage of species that mixed together as they raced northward out of various refugia as the glaciers retreated.

Although Marris mentions it briefly, one of the more fascinating novel ecosystems is the accidental rainforest created on Ascension Island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. A little over 150 years ago, the British navy began receiving shipments of trees and shrubs from all over the world from the collections at Kew Gardens in London. Once planted, they took hold and have transformed the bare peak once known as White Mountain into Green Mountain today. Species don’t need to coevolve to create fully functioning ecosystems [PDF]; they make the best of what they have.

Only when the ecologically-correct ideologies that blind us are upended can we can see the real nature that is all around us. Baselines are properly transformed into aesthetic choices rather than “scientific” mandates. For example, Marris discusses the ambitious Pleistocene Rewilding proposal in which proxy wild species from Africa might be used to replace those North American species killed off by early peoples. African cheetahs might chase after pronghorns, and elephants graze where mastodons once did.

A small version of rewilding is the fascinating Oostvaardersplassen [PDF] experiment where researchers are designing an ecosystem that aims to mimic what Northern Europe might have looked like 10,000 years ago. It is stocked with herds of Konik horses and Heck cattle, thought to be respectively similar to the tarpan horses and the aurochs that once roamed Europe. The newly constructed ecosystem has attracted many wild species that have long been absent from the Netherlands. It is still missing predators, but wolves are apparently moving westward from Eastern Europe.

Marris argues that the conservation and appreciation of nature can take place at far less exotic locations, such as backyards, city parks, farms, and even parking lots. If biodiversity is what is of interest, she notes that the Los Angeles area is home to 60 native tree species, but now hosts 145 species. “With eight to eleven tree species per hectare, L.A. is more diverse than many ecosystem types,” she writes. Another researcher has identified 227 species of bee living in New York City. And if some of us choose to conserve some areas as “pristine” with regard to some preferred aesthetic baseline, that’s O.K. Certainly science can be used to help achieve that goal, but such areas become essentially wilderness gardens maintained by “perpetual weeding and perpetual watching.”

This gracefully written and well-argued book deserves a wide readership. One hopes that readers will take to heart Marris’ chief insight about conservation: “There is no one best goal.” She bravely and correctly concludes, “We’ve forever altered the Earth, and so now we cannot abandon it to a random fate. It is our duty to manage it. Luckily, it can be a pleasant, even joyful task if we embrace it in the right spirit. Let the rambunctious gardening begin.”

Ronald Bailey is Reason magazine's science correspondent. His book Liberation Biology: The Scientific and Moral Case for the Biotech Revolution is now available from Prometheus Books.

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    1. Katherine Mango-Ward says he has “no chance” of winning yet he polls better than most of the other candidates against Obama. In CNN’s poll he polls BETTER than any other candidate including Romney. He’s #3 in the latest gallup national poll, yet she goes on TV and just dogs on him as a “finge candidate”.

      Fuck you Reason. Cancelling my subscription and never visiting your site again. It is obvious you are corrupt and bought out too.

      1. That is…

          1. this has gone way off topis so i am just going to leave this here:

            http://www.ebaumsworld.com/video/watch/81752461/

            1. What the fuck. Is it just me or is that the most scripted dialogue I’ve ever heard on the news?

              1. I am pretty sure it was taken from a recent episode of Luis CK’s show….it is not real news.

                the FX in the corner of the screen kind of gives it away.

                I thought I was funny that Red Eye did it.

            2. I’d gladly masturbate the blonde.

              1. Since she won’t do it herself.

          2. I understand some of her criticism of Paul, and I respect it. He does need to be more specific about actual numbers. Also give us a specific plan.

            However, to say Ron Paul is “fringe”, then reason is also fringe. Something here really stinks.

            “http://youtu.be/9KubADIr5vo?t=2m58s

            she actually asked whether some federal mandates on states on education can be good, as if she’s never heard of unintended consequences. and no, she wasn’t playing devil’s advocate. you can tell from this minute detail that she is a glass half full libertarian.”

            1. “you can tell from this minute detail that she is a glass half full libertarian.”

              Well she is a female…

            2. Of course Reason is fringe. Have you talked to an american in the last 5 years?

              Who says fringe has to be bad though? I’d rather be fringe than average.

              1. You might be both. Or worse.

          3. Based on that stupid logic they all should STFU because Obama can certainly win the election. I am sure that in 2007 you were certain that McCain was going to be the nominee even though he almost dropped out because he was doing so poorly and raising a limited amount of money. Can you please let me see your crystal ball that you obviously possess and won’t share with the rest of us.

            Oh and fuck you Katherine.

            1. I’m amazed how pissed off people got because Katherine dared to say something neutral about Ron Paul.

              1. That wasn’t “neutral”. That was a total dismissal of him.

      2. Reason does pick some curious times to be dismissive of paul. And yes they are dismissive in a way they would never be of say Gary Johnson or chris Christie. Gillespie seems to abide Paul. Welch less so.

        1. I’ll bet you 10 to 1 that Ron Paul doesn’t win. Same goes for Johnson and Christie (although Christie isn’t running).

          1. Christie isn’t running, and he still has a better chance than Paul.

          2. Then why does he poll so good against Obama? Why was he #3 nationally according to Gallup among republican voters?

          3. I’ll take that bet.

            I don’t know how Paul threw Johnson under the bus though. Johnson seemed to lack energy early on, which made it hard for me to feel like voting for him. He was the most horrible campaigner ever, easily.

            Also I’m quite sure Paul once said Johnson was the only person he might be able to support.

            Johnson threw HIMSELF under the bus. Not Ron Paul.

      3. Drink!

      4. Why don’t you ask Ron Paul why he threw Gary Johnson under the bus?

        If Paul gave a shit about the future of the libertarian movement he wouldn’t have done that. Clearly the guy just wants to head up a personality cult.

        1. Gary Johnson lazily and indifferently rolled himself under the bus.

          1. He didn’t have a prayer without Ron Paul’s support.

            And while Paul’s done a wonderful job building a libertarian base, he’s not a young man. He had an opportunity to pass the torch and he didn’t do it. Instead he essentially called Johnson an establishment phoney. He threw him under the bus.

            Now, when Ron Paul leaves the scene here shortly, he’ll take his movement with him and nothing will have been accomplihed.

            1. So, ya gonna blame him for throwing Bob Barr under the bus in ’08?
              He’s not dead yet, there is no GOP nominee for ’12.
              Furthermore, some Paulistas are independent minded enough that he doesn’t have to ‘annoint’ a successor for us to figure out who is a liberty minded politician and who is a carpetbagger like Bachmann or Perry.
              Come ’16 you’ll have a full term KY senator with the same name, Johnson will have time to polish his shtick to be more effective nationally. More important is that maybe in ’12 and the ’14 midterms we’ll get more pols like him in Congress.
              If his ‘movement’ goes with him, it wasn’t worth much anyway. It’s not about the man it’s the principles. Otherwise it’s ‘cult of personality’ bullshit only a hair better than Obamabots.

              1. Bob Barr =/= Gary Johnson

      5. Why don’t you ask Ron Paul why he threw Gary Johnson under the bus?

        If Paul gave a shit about the future of the libertarian movement he wouldn’t have done that. Clearly the guy just wants to head up a personality cult.

        1. Why can’t libertarians focus?

          Nature, people, nature!

  1. Nature is almost everywhere

    wait….so where isn’t nature again?

    1. In corporations.

      1. I said they were people not natures.

      2. Corporate zombies don’t have intestinal tracts?

    2. Ran Prieur does a good job of skewering the “everything is natural” Lie of Civilization in his essay Seven Lies About Civilization, as follows:

      Lie #3. Everything is natural. Happily most people recognize this as a silly pseudo-philosophical distraction, but I want to knock it down anyway. The argument rests on a semantic distortion, a redefinition of “natural” to include absolutely everything, because I say so. Civilization is natural because humans are animals, toxic waste is natural because it’s derived from stuff that comes from the Earth, bla bla bla.

      Real people do not use the word “natural” in this way. Maybe it’s “natural” if I take this club and bash your head in, but you would prefer that I didn’t, so you define words like “murder” to express and defend this preference. In the same way, people define “natural” to express and defend their preference for living trees over plastic trees, meadows over parking lots, rivers of drinkable water over rivers of dioxin. This is what “natural” really means, and if we don’t want to die of cancer and turn the Earth into a poisoned desert, we have a responsibility to linguistically separate the natural from the unnatural and choose the natural many times a day.

      If you want a tight definition, natural means in symbiosis with nature, and nature means the totality of symbiotic life on Earth, and symbiotic means related in ways that are mutually beneficial and beneficial to the whole, where wider benefit takes precedence. Defining “beneficial” pushes the limits of our impoverished language, but I’m going to say generating autonomous and diverse aliveness. And if you don’t know what aliveness means, look harder.

      Source:
      http://ranprieur.com/essays/7lies.html

      1. This kind of sounds intrinsically paternalistic to me.

        1. Hardly surprising from a crowd who, like the Marxists, fantasize about separating the State from the agricultural City-State (civilization.) That’ll happen about as soon as tree limbs can suspend themselves in the air without roots.

          If Progressives and Neo-Cons are the abusers, Marxist and Libertarians are ones who recognize the abuse (*golf clap for effort*,) but with a strong sense of Stockholm Syndrome.

          1. I kinda like this new troll. He’s oblivious to us making fun of him and he apparently smokes some good stuff.

            Can we keep him?

            1. I think he’s an adequate substitute until [HERC] returns from conquering the outer rim colonies.

            2. I think he is a sock puppet….we lost all our real trolls.

              =(

              1. In the marketplace of ideas, you get the trolls you deserve.

          2. Your constant links and appeal to those people who KNOW the RIGHT WAY to run things reeks far more of Marxist “planners” than most of the writing on this site. Re-wilding would involve massive social engineering to implement. Deal with it.

            1. You’re the one who thinks agricultural City-Statists are the only people who know how to run things, since they’ve killed off all nearly all other Non-State societies anyway.

              Do you even know what a Non-State society is? Humans lived in them for 2M years. But you don’t like Non-State societies, because you’re an agricultural City-Statist.

              Libertard.

              1. The Iroquois had nations.
                Why do you hate the Iroquois?

              2. Re: White Indian,

                You’re the one who thinks agricultural City-Statists are the only people who know how to run things, since they’ve killed off all nearly all other Non-State societies anyway.

                Your brand of paranoia reminds me of one of those preachers that believed the world had been corrupted by knowledge.

              3. “Humans lived in them for 2M years.”

                Yeah, for about 25 years each.

                1. Wrong as a Marxist.

                  For more than 99 per cent of human his? tory people have lived in groupings that social scientists call “non-state societies.”

                  NON-STATE AND STATE SOCIETIES
                  A summary of Elman Service’s sociopolitical typology.
                  http://faculty.smu.edu/rkemper…..ieties.pdf

                  1. And…? How exactly are libertarians against non-state societies?

                  2. Whitey: I don’t think citing Elman Service helps you nearly as much as you think. I have a copy of “Origins ofthe State and Civilization” sitting on my bookshelf right now and it doesn’t support any of your paranoid neo-primitivism.

              4. “. . . agricultural City-Statists are the only people who know how to run things, since they’ve killed off all nearly all other Non-State societies . . .”

                That’s the, uh, “natural” way to tell who really knows how to run things.

          3. Re: White Indian,

            Hardly surprising from a crowd who, like the Marxists, fantasize about separating the State from the agricultural City-State (civilization.)

            Wait untilt we come up with the ichthyocultural City-Island (Bassmaster civ.) That will be quite a sight.

          4. I thought you were off sitting on a sharp stick as per my suggestion on another thread about eminent domain…..
            I will have to pick the stick next time….I will make sure it is a natural stick and not an unnatural one.

        2. What is a amusing is the “nature vs man” dichotomy was first invented to show the divinity, and dominance of of man over nature…yet now you have statist greenies flipping the whole notion on its head to show the divinity of nature over man.

          1. “yet now you have statist greenies flipping the whole notion on its head to show the divinity of nature over man.”

            All bow to the mud mama!

            1. Typical of an abuser to call his Mother that.

              1. No baby, he was talking to me.

              2. “Typical of an abuser to call his Mother that.”
                Typical of a religious bone-head to claim mud mama as something other than dirt.

                1. You’re an abuser, a rapist, an anti-life hater of Mother Earth, with your mocking names of her.

                  1. “You’re an abuser, a rapist, an anti-life hater of Mother Earth, with your mocking names of her.”

                    Ecco-fundy stupidity on display.

                  2. “You’re an abuser, a rapist, an anti-life hater of Mother Earth, with your mocking names of her.”

                    No. Way. Absolutely, no way. This has to be a sockpuppet, troll, or whatever. There is no way a person actually writes and believes this stuff.

                    1. Oh he’s real alright. Know it and despair.

                    2. Despair I shall.

                    3. But maybe someday, when we learn,
                      Cherokee nation will return.
                      Will return.
                      Will return.
                      Will return.
                      Will return.
                      WILL RETURN.

            2. Do mud mamas have tar babies?

          2. You’re the Statist (even if in denial,) not me.

            1. You’ve got the Candy Shell! Shut up Richard!

              1. Yes HUH!

            2. Who was the asshole a few weeks ago calling us Christ fags?

          3. Not really. Judaism didn’t invent that dichotomy. In fact, God saying that in Genesis is pretty much just a fuck you to all the nature-worshiping pagans that preceded Judaism. So really it was Judaism that flipped the notion on its head.

            1. Judaism didn’t invent that dichotomy.

              And no one claimed they did, idiot.

              1. Yes, Joshua Corning did:

                What is a amusing is the “nature vs man” dichotomy was first invented to show the divinity, and dominance of of man over nature…yet now you have statist greenies flipping the whole notion on its head to show the divinity of nature over man.

                What would he be referring if not Genesis?

                Also, calm the fuck down.

      2. “Real people do not use the word “natural” in this way. Maybe it’s “natural” if I take this club and bash your head in, but you would prefer that I didn’t, so you define words like “murder” to express and defend this preference.”

        Appeal to emotion anyone?

        1. Nope.

          Do you even know what an appeal to emotion is? That isn’t one.

          1. From Wikipedia:

            Appeal to emotion is a potential fallacy which uses the psychological and encompasses several logical fallacies, including:

            * Appeal to consequences
            * Appeal to fear
            * Appeal to flattery
            * Appeal to pity
            * Appeal to ridicule
            * Appeal to spite
            * Wishful thinking

            Appeal to fear? Check
            Appeal to consequences? Check
            Appeal to spite? Check

            The whole argument in the end does not disprove that whacking me in the head is “not natural”.

            Maybe being “natural” is not so good after all.

            1. It’s not an appeal to emotions, but a grotesque example serving to state the obvious: whatever happens is natural, for only those things can happen which don’t contradict the laws of nature. Needless to say, this is not what people mean by word ‘natural’ in the context being discussed.

      3. I just read the rest of the article, man what a load of Luddite bullcrap…

        For starters the “Lie” #3 would self-defeat asking it what the hell exactly does “symbiosis with nature” means, who evaluates whats good for nature and what isn’t?

      4. If that’s what he considers a tight definition, then he gets an F in freshman logic class.

      5. White Idiot, your ideology is simply a childish and cowardly expression of suicidal and homicidal tendencies. Pining for a world before humans is fucking stupid. Grow up.

        1. The agricultural City State is what is proving to be childishly suicidal.

        2. And no, I’m not pining for a world without humans. Just without agricultural City-Statists.

          1. Re: White Indian,

            And no, I’m not pining for a world without humans. Just without agricultural City-Statists.

            That is, without food.

            Same shit, just different asshole uttering it.

          2. “Just without agricultural City-Statists.”

            Mmmm! Boiled rocks with lichen! Tasty!

            1. Original Affluent Society (Sahlins) was a Non-State society (Service.) I don’t think they boiled rocks, but you people who support the aggressive, invasive, and occupational agricultural City-State like to evade the truth.

              Sad they call it “reason” in these parts.

              1. “The “original affluent society” is a theory postulating that hunter-gatherers were the original affluent society.” (Sahlins).

                And the ‘theory’ has no other adherents, except nut-jobs.
                The rest of us would prefer living to something more than 25 years or so.

                1. Agriculture nearly halved human life span, and makes people more sickly. The Greeks still are not as tall as their Paleolithic ancestors’ bones archeologists have found, although they are catching up as we nutrient mine the soil. Agriculture is the fiat money of biology – and you’re addicted to it like Crack-boy Bernanke is to his fiat.

                  1. So paleolithic diet was better? Wonderful. We should eat more meat. Duly noted. But why troll us? Shouldn’t you be over at some vegan site then?

                    Anyway, you’re wrong about life expectancy. Median for both paleolithic and early neolithic was about 35 years.

                2. Pretty sure the Atlanteans were the first affluent society…

                3. “And the ‘theory’ has no other adherents, except nut-jobs.”

                  The Unabomber was not a nut-job!

              2. 2 out of 5 hunter-gatherers died by the hands of their fellow men.

                You would be a Dead White Indian in no time flat if you would find yourself in a contemporary hunter-gatherer setting, going by the display of your ignorance, naivete & gullibility.

                1. But they were egalitarian within their own tribe!

                  The neighboring tribe? Well, that’s a differerent story…

          3. Nah, just a world where 4+ billion people just sorta dissapear so the rest can enjoy a nice “natural” hunter/gather existence free from the tyranny of knowing where your next meal is coming from.

            1. “Nah, just a world where 4+ billion people just sorta dissapear so the rest can enjoy a nice “natural” hunter/gather existence free from the tyranny of knowing where your next meal is coming from.”

              And our new nut-case would have to scribble his rants on the cave wall in pictographs.

              1. And think about that oh-so-comfy stone floors he could be sleeping on! Damn agricultural City-Statist pussies with their new-fangled straw beds!

        3. heller|8.16.11 @ 6:38PM
          White Idiot, your ideology is simply a childish and cowardly expression of suicidal and homicidal tendencies. Pining for a world before humans is fucking stupid. Grow up.

          Hilarious! You’re like a poor-man’s Episiarch! Throw in a Simpsons reference and you’ll have it nailed.

      6. Re: White Indian,

        Lie #3. Everything is natural.

        Indeed, that’s a lie.

        Calling it “a lie”, is what’s lie, I mean. There’s nothing outside of nature except the angels and White Indian’s totally blown mind.

        If you want a tight definition, natural means in symbiosis with nature, and nature means the totality of symbiotic life on Earth[.]

        Around and around we go,
        Around in the question-begging
        merry-go-round!

        1. “Indeed, that’s a lie.

          Calling it “a lie”, is what’s lie, I mean. ”

          So it’s not a lie? Or you’re just incredibly shitty at making a point/joke?

          “There’s nothing outside of nature”

          Ah, so it is that you’re just incredibly shitty at making a point/joke.

          “Around in the question-begging
          merry-go-round!”

          No, it’s not begging the question. Ultimately we must conclude you’re just a fucking idiot.

          1. Re: White Indian,

            Oh, so you’re quite comfortable with the civilization-originated nick-changing, uh?

            No, it’s not begging the question.

            Yes, it is.

            “Natural means symbiotic and nature is symbiosis.” That’s begging the question.

            In a nutshell. I can’t help it if besides being a very unintelligent troll, you can’t argue.

      7. Actually your writer is completely wrong on where the “distortion” lies. The “distortion” comes from the notion that anything that originates before man must be natural. Therefore, man’s abilities are natural and so are there product.

        You are right that people prefer meadows to parking lots, but let me ask you, do they prefer the Bouchart Gardens or the swamps of Cajun country? I bet you’ll find they prefer the first, even though they’re a wholly human environment made by the wife of a cement tycoon who “recycled” her gravel pit in to a garden with imported soil. They won’t like Cajun country – it smells bad, they’re ain’t any trails, and the snakes and alligators will get you if you aren’t careful.

  2. “Are we so religious about this biodiversity ethic that we need to be called on it?” He answers his own question: “If you really dig down to why we should care, you end up with nothing. You are running on faith that we should care.”

    Why don’t non-ecologiests get credit for this “discovery”?

    it is not as if i could not find a quote from someone 20 years ago stating the same thing.

    one does not meed to be an ecologist let alone even a scientist to see whether a premise is normative or not.

    1. Why don’t non-ecologiests get credit for this “discovery”?

      Credential worship! The same reason why laymen who figure out that Keynesianism doesn’t work are scorned by the Krugabes of this world.

      1. PJ ORourke has riffed on this topic before, quite well imo

        His Thoureaux rants were awesome.

        I find that many libs do tend to get very “faith based” when it comes to nature. If it’s “natural” it has to be better, in their eyes. Of course when we lived in a state of nature, life was nasty , brutish and short

        Their reflexive distrust of “frankenfoods” , hormones in meat, etc. is also instructive

        1. If it’s “natural” it has to be better

          Nature should be untouched yet humans need to be constantly directed and controlled.

        2. dunphy, thorax ants aren’t “frankenfoods”

          1. you lost me.

        3. Nasty, brutish, and short describe life in the agricultural City-State. Archeology and anthropology have skewered Hobbes’ myth.

          But the myth lives on. Why? ABUSERS ALWAYS HAVE AN EXCUSE.

          1. Actually, the Noble Savage myth has been thoroughly discredited by real (i.e. scientific, non-Left-wing) anthropology.

            Wait. Are you a troll?

          2. “Nasty, brutish, and short describe life in the agricultural City-State.”

            Yep, why, we’re dying at our mid-70s from obesity.

            1. Those in the empire’s center do pretty well, but archeology proves that agriculture nearly cut in half the average life span.

              1. “Those in the empire’s center do pretty well, but archeology proves that agriculture nearly cut in half the average life span.”

                You………..
                Are full of shit.

                1. No, that’s the empirical data. The agricultural revolution nearly halved human life span.

                  But City-Statists don’t like empirical data that says the Non-State societies were healthier.

                  1. Damn, way to bend the truth Whitey! It’s true the early adopters of agriculture had shorter life expectancy than their H/G cousins but it wasn’t half. It varies from area to area, but the truth is more like .60 to .70 the expected lifespan. However this ignores the advantages of such a lifestyle. You can have a lot more stuff (oh horror!) including lots of children. An agricultural family is spitting out 10-12 kids to help run the farm, while the H/G family can only 2-3 kids. There is a big advantage to being fecund.

                    The whole argument is a non-sequitor anyways. As I said, the life span argument only applies to people in the past. You can live a long and relatively healthy life and be entirely agricultural. See: the entire 21st century Western world.

                    1. Having more kids is evil though, man. Cuz it’s like raping Mother Earth, man.

          3. Nasty, brutish, and short describe life in the agricultural City-State.

            I think people are a bit confused about what Hobbes was talking about.

            He was talking about the darkest days of the dark ages of Europe where the rulers prosecuted no justice and defended no peasant and bandits and wolves roamed the roads and woods.

            His whole thing was the importance of the government to impose the law and to retain a monopoly of violence…in the dark ages there was no law and if you were strong and/or smart enough you could rape and murder and steal without persecution.

            Stone age hunter-gatherers had it a bit better then your average person in the Dark ages still one has to wonder how Kennewick man got his multiple fractures and that 4 inch spear head embeded in his hip…

            Plus the fact that it is pretty easy to tell from teeth and bone fragments how long they lived….which was not much older then 30.

            1. The transition to agriculture cuts lifespan nearly in half.

              But City-Statists will claim the city-state is the best thing.

              How does it feel being a defender of the City-State, when all this time you thought you were against the State.

              Oops.

              1. So you’re saying that before agriculture, hunter-gatherers lived to be 140-160 years old?

                1. Adam lived to 640. It’s in the Bible.

                  1. I see the Statists don’t like being called Statists, so they must now copy my name. City-Statists are dishonest like that.

                    1. Answer my question please.

                  2. White Indian|8.16.11 @ 7:42PM|#
                    “Adam lived to 640. It’s in the Bible.”

                    Spoof on a nut-case? Or just a nut-case? Hard tellin’.

                    1. Who cares? He’s hilarious! So refreshing considering what boring buzz-kills Tony and Neu Mejican are.

                    2. Hey! What about me!!

          4. Hey, quit trying to rape anthropology with your diseased ideas. The discipline may be overrun with liberals but you can’t blame them for for your neo-primitivism.
            Seriously, did you take a intro to anthro class and then extrapolted what you learned into some wide ranging bizarre theory about Earth rape? Please leave decent anthropologists and archaeologists (any self-respecting member of my profession spells it “archAeology”) far out of your delusional rants.

        4. “nasty , brutish and short”

          Can I quote you on that ?

      2. Actually i was mostly bitching about Ron.

        How hard is it to insert a statement about how everyone but the ecologists knew about this long ago?

        This is certainly not new information to me…it is nice a few ecologists have woken up to it….still a day late and a dollar short is still a day late and a dollar short.

  3. There’s a big difference between a “pre-human or a pre-European baseline.” Ya think? Did somebody call Mr. Obvious? Jeesh…

    The Amazon rainforest is largely a human artifact. So was the oak Savanna of the eastern woodlands Indians.

    But they were gardening the Earth, not raping her to death like civilization is doing, and trying to come up with pretexts to dominate like this article presents.

    Anybody that can come up with LA being an example of vibrant biodiversity could probably come up with more libertarian bullshit like “voluntary slavery.”

    Voluntary Slavery. Oh right, they’ve done that.

    1. Hi Dave! How goes the bird watching?

    2. aw jeez, not this shit again

    3. “not raping her to death like civilization is doing,”

      All bow to the mud mama!

      1. What sort of a real man calls his mother that?

        1. What sort of effected mind thinks that the Earth is his “mother?”

        2. You kiss your mother with that mouth?

        3. “What sort of a real man calls his mother that?”

          A real man who doesn’t buy crack-pot neo-lithic nostalgia dressed as ‘morality’.

          1. A real man doesn’t call empirical evidence crackpot.

            1. What empirical evidence? You’re religious /aesthetic beliefs are only empirical evidence of your stupidity.

            2. “A real man doesn’t call empirical evidence crackpot.”

              Agreed.
              Got any?

    4. “But they were gardening the Earth, not raping her to death like civilization is doing,…”

      See, there’s these differences. You know, those civilizations weren’t really civilizations, ’cause I said so.
      And they were ‘gardening’ not ‘raping’, ’cause I said so.
      See, see?

  4. Kock-heads, serving their financial Masters well.

    1. it is spelled “Koch”

      1. And it’s “Koch-whores”, thank you very much.

  5. ‘Cane toad’ Bailey strikes again!

  6. White Indian:
    Dude, smoke’um peace pipe. You anger Great Spirit. Great Spirit bring big wind, blow down village.
    And also, here’s some whiskey for your land.

    1. Are you an agricultural City-Statist who hates the 2M years of humans living in Non-State societies?

      1. Is anyone?

  7. No disclaimer????

  8. For example, she visits Hawaii where half of the plant species now living on the islands are non-native. One brave younger ecologist, Joe Mascaro, studies novel ecosystems that are developing on Hawaii that incorporate both native and non-native species. Among other things, Mascaro “found that the novel forests, on average, had just as many species as native forests”

    I was standing by Kawainui Marsh, near where I live, with some lefty enviro-geek a while ago, and he was ranting about how the flood control wall we were standing on had “killed” the marsh, and it was “dying” rapidly.

    All while we looked at this beautiful marsh, chock full of thriving greenery, but species he didn’t personally approve of because they weren’t native, but “invasive”.

    He apparently missed the irony that the most conspicuously non-native, invasive species present was the two of us. Doubt he was calling for his own demise, just the inconveniently new to the scene green stuff.

    1. prolefeed, is Hawaiian food really as bad as they make it seem on the Food Network et al.? I will be in Waikiki in a couple of weeks and would like to avoid eating Spam sushi. Or any Spam, ideally.

      1. I would rather eat spam then pork in Hawaii…

        I would think there would not be many pig farms there….and pig flesh ships about as good as shrimp ships to Montana.

        1. They have this new technology called “refrigeration” that obviates that problem.

        2. Feral pigs are all over in Hawaii.

      2. Hawaiian food is great, and I’ve successfully avoided SPAM in over a dozen trips there. I personally loathe Waikiki so I can’t recommend anything good there. As far as I can recall, Waikiki is all shitty tourist-trap chains like Bubba Gump Shrimp and such. Try Kanak Attack Two or Da Kitchen for hearty and good Hawaiian. I also like Sam Choy’s on Nimitz; it’s right by the Hilo Hattie’s.

        1. hawaiian food is fucking awesome (former hawaii resident)

          on maui, pukalani country club of all places does it REALLY well

          squid luau, lomi lomi salmon, haupia, lau lau etc.

          i also love spam musubi fwiw

      3. Dagny, be on the lookout for a strange culinary amalgam called ‘Hawaiian Barbecue’. I experienced it for the first time a few months ago. The main portion can be different things, including fried spam and eggs. But it will always come with two scoops of steamed rice, and one scoop of macaroni salad. I figure the rice is Asian influence; the Spam is from WWII. The macaroni salad just seems trailer-trash Americana. Invasive cuisine.

        A friend who grew up on the islands assures me Hawaiian BBQ is ubiquitous there and calls it a ‘heart-attack on a plate’.

        1. also, if you speak da kine pidgin, it is “two scoop” not “two scoops”.

          it is also “shave ice” not “shaved ice” (another hawaiian staple)

          people in hawaii KNOW how to eat. also, many of the cultures there PRIZE their womenfolk BIG!!! i had a # of arrests in hawaii where i had to use ankle cuffs. handcuffs were not big enough for the wrists!

          the saying in hawaii is “we don’t eat until we are full; we eat until we are tired”

        2. This is what I’m afraid of! I will try this spam musubi business just to be adventurous, but after that I need some real sushi. And, like, some vegetables.

          1. classic hawaiian food isn’t big on da vegetables (cruciferous etc.), as much as starches – rice and taro.

            squid luau is a good example of a vegetable dish (uses the taro leaves)…

            they are also not really big on salads. iceberg lettuce is par for the course at your typical local backyard barbeque.

            you get a lot of filipino stuff (malasadas, adobo), japanese, chinese (to a lesser extent), native (taro, etc.), classic american (spam), etc.

            you MUST try imnsho – poke (raw fish salad heavy on the salt/so component), lau lau, squid luau, lomi lomi salmon and poi imo

            note: do not leave poi in your trunk for 2 days and then eat it unless you enjoy projectile vomiting as your ultimate abs workout

      4. Spam sushi is better than you’d think.

        The best real Hawaiian-style food I’ve had, though, has been in Boise, Idaho. High-quality (Kobe and Kurobota style) meats are readily available in Idaho, because high-end producers are headquartered there and send meat to fine restaurants around the world.

        That’s Hawaii’s downfall WRT food: the ingredients are extremely expensive, so quality can be hard to find. Waimea, on the Big Island, is the place to eat.

        It’s like a small, wealthy Idaho town in the middle of the Pacific. Waikiki, OTOH, is like Vegas merged with Oakland, in the middle of the Pacific.

        1. i disagree. “real” hawaiian food (which is of course not kanaka maoli food, but a fusion cuisine of a # of cultures , the spam, the rice, the taro, etc.) is mostly made from pretty cheap (for hawaii at least) ingredients…

          the dominant spice is salt, btw.

          1. Right.

            Now try that same plate-lunch fusion with world-class ingredients. Outstanding.

            1. yea, you can elevate anything. reminds me of the bourdain episode where he eats a world class hot dog with foie gras on top and fries cooked in duck fat.

              1. Hot Doug’s?

      5. Hey! I was raised on that shit. Look how I turned out.
        Make sure to visit my birth house.

        1. Isn’t that in Nairobi?

          Sorry, everyone. Couldn’t resist.

      6. Depends on what you mean by “Hawaiian food”. A lot of great restaurants downtown, some really awful local dishes like loco moco, and then there’s the classic food eaten by native Hawaiians at luaus such as lomi-lomi salmon or opihi or laulaus that are teh awesome.

        And, yes, spam spam spam if you want to eat it. I’ve lived here 17 years and never eat the stuff.

        1. I wen’ live dere ten year in seventies, and visit frequently. There’s lots of terrific restaurants in Hawaii, and you probably won’t even find Spam on their menus. Wonderful Chinese and Japanese restaurants, excellent Asian Fusion places, terrific dim sum. It’s been about a year and a half since I last spent time there, so names of restaurants don’t spring immediately to mind, but Chai’s in downtown Honolulu and Roy’s in Hawaii Kai are terrific. And actually try some real Hawaiian food at People’s Cafe or Kenneke’s (google them…)

      7. I lived there for 3 years and successfully avoided spam sushi. I will say that there is (was? Its been awhile) a fantastic Japanese steak house pretty close to Waikiki called Kobe Steak house.

        It is also possible that since it was my first Japanese steak house experience my memory of it is clouded.

        Do try a L & L Drive In, you can get a ton of pretty decent food for cheap. The menu is a hodge-podge of different Asian foods, Japanese, Philippino, etc.

    2. It is pretty easy to tell the claim is not scientifically backed when one uses terms like “invasive species”

      Why not use a term like colonizing species or immigrant species or bio-diversifying species?

      1. Undocumented species?

      2. Because many are actually invasive. When they destroy habitat for wildlife that has both aesthetic and objective value, that’s considered a negative thing.

        1. Couldn’t you call just about any evolutionary success story “invasive”?

          1. Couldn’t you call just about any evolutionary success story “invasive”?

            no…most new species do not compete or disrupt or push out other species when they are introduced….moving to new house and being a good friendly neighbor is not an invasion.

            1. I’m willing to bet that the ‘punctuated equilibrium’ seen in the evolutionary record is partially due to species that managed to escape their historical boundaries and disrupt the ephemeral quiescence of a neighboring ecosystem. Change drives adaptation.

              That said, I don’t think it would be ‘good’, in a practical sense for mankind, to eliminate historical boundaries between ecosystems. Invasive species can be damaging to both man’s interests and the interests of the ecosystem(see cane toads, for instance. Come on, Ron, write an article telling us how great cane toads have been for Australia.).

              Sure, there are cases where introduced species may help fill an ecological niche and promote diversity, but there are also cases where the species which developed in relative isolation are devastated.

              1. “Come on, Ron, write an article telling us how great cane toads have been for Australia.”

                Come on jasno, write a post that isn’t an appeal based on an outlier.

                1. What, do you agree cane toads are bad, yet most ‘invasive’ species introductions are good? That’s what I read from your description of the cane toad problem being an outlier. What criteria are you using make that judgement?

                  1. “Then again, maybe it’s just another outlier.”

                    Mostly that you’re a brain-dead ignoramus.

            2. So where does the mutation come from? Does it occur spontaneously or more likely from something out of the ordinary…something not usually in that particular stable environment?

        2. Because many are actually invasive.

          Actually it is very few. Most simply increase the diversity of the eco-system.

          Plus an invasion involves a plan. Species do not plan…they either accidentally hitch a ride or are put there by people….all they do is what they do which is try to survive.

          1. Of course, the term has nothing to do with intent. That should be self-evident. And it is subjective, as I said. As a general rule, “invasive” species do not increase the diversity of the ecosystem.

            Don’t get me wrong, I think there is a lot of irrational stuff going on with our thinking about these things. I got a degree in the subject when “biodiversity decline” was a bit of a wacko religion, akin to what “climate change” has become today. It’s hard to separate the wheat from the chaff.

            1. As a general rule, “invasive” species do not increase the diversity of the ecosystem.

              ecosystem

              ecosystem +1 “invasive” species

              ecosystem +1 > ecosystem

              As a general rule of elementary school math “invasive” species always increase the biodiversity of an ecosystem.

              Pretty easy to understand.

              1. Great, so when, say, chestnut blight effectively wiped out chestnut trees from north america that was a win for mother nature. Good to know.

                1. “Great, so when, say, chestnut blight effectively wiped out chestnut trees from north america that was a win for mother nature. Good to know.”

                  Care to show it wasn’t?

                  1. Well, without man’s intervention to fix a man-made problem, we would have lost a major species of tree. Is that bad? How about applying the same logic as you did to cane toads to answer your own question. Then again, maybe it’s just another outlier.

                    1. “Then again, maybe it’s just another outlier.”

                      Yes, it is.

          2. Plus an invasion involves a plan…

            Man vs Nature: The Road to Victory!

      3. It is pretty easy to tell the claim is not scientifically backed when one uses terms like “invasive species”

        Invasive is a more precise description of, say, the Cane Toad in Australia than “immigrant,” and “colonizing” seems to be a synonym for invasive. Not sure what your beef with the term is.

        1. the Cane Toad in Australia

          One extreme example does not describe the norm…the norm being that new species rarely cause problems and mostly increase the number of species….isn’t biodiversity a good thing?

          Also an invasion involves a plan…species do not plan.

          1. jc: Excellent point — the vast majority of introduced species that survive naturalize without posing much of a problem to the natives. A scientific point that I made in my column, Invasion of the Invasive Species:

            For example, more than 4,000 plant species introduced into North America during the past 400 years grow naturally here and now constitute nearly 20 percent of the continent’s vascular plant biodiversity.

            The fear among opponents of “invasive species” is the aggressive outsiders will cause a holocaust among the native plants. That might initially seem reasonable because there are a few species, like kudzu, purple loosestrife, and water hyacinth, that grow with alarming speed wherever they show up. But that doesn’t mean other species are in danger. “There is no evidence that even a single long term resident species has been driven to extinction, or even extirpated within a single U.S. state, because of competition from an introduced plant species,” Macalester College biologist Mark Davis notes [PDF]. Yet this spurious threat of extinction persists as one of the chief reasons given for trying to prevent the introduction of exotic species.

            Meanwhile, there are plenty more examples in which local and regional species richness has been increasing. Introduced vascular plants have doubled the species richness of the plant life on most Pacific Islands. In fact, the species richness of some islands has increased so much that they now approach the richness of continental areas. In New Zealand 2,000 introduced plant species have taken up residence with the islands’ 2,000 native species and only three native plant species have gone extinct. The opening of the Suez Canal introduced 250 new fish species into the Mediterranean Sea from the Red Sea which resulted in only a single extinction.

            Researchers find increases in species richness on the local level as well. Sax and Gaines cite studies [PDF] which find that a corner of West Lancester in Britain has seen a dramatic rise in plant species diversity over the past two centuries, gaining 700 exotics while losing 40 natives. They note that reptile and amphibian diversity has increased slightly in California. Mammal diversity has increased on many oceanic islands, and in Australia and North America. Freshwater fish diversity has increased significantly in many drainages throughout the U.S.

            1. So how do you quantify the loss of new species that would have developed in the ecological vacuums of isolated pacific islands? You’re never going to see another Madagascar or Australia now that we’re busy filling nature’s gaps.

              1. “So how do you quantify the loss of new species that would have developed in the ecological vacuums of isolated pacific islands?”

                Logic. How does it work?

              2. You’re never going to see another Madagascar or Australia now that we’re busy filling nature’s gaps.

                ummm why not?

                the planet has like 4 billion years to keep doing the crazy shit it does….and Madagascar and Australia are not getting any closer to Africa or Asia.

                Jesus it is like you think a land bridge or a super continent are peachy but international shipping is the fucking anti-christ!!!

                hey Jasno was it OK for birds to evolve wings? or was that also a catastrophe nearly as bad as humans evolving big brains?

                1. “hey Jasno was it OK for birds to evolve wings? or was that also a catastrophe nearly as bad as humans evolving big brains?”

                  Hey, it wasn’t “natural”!

                  1. It’s fun to watch you guys gang-rape a straw-man. If only I understood logic like sevo…

                    1. “If only I understood logic like sevo…”

                      You could try, but as an ignoramus, you don’t have a chance.

          2. One extreme example does not describe the norm…the norm being that new species rarely cause problems and mostly increase the number of species….isn’t biodiversity a good thing?

            Invasive species is typically reserved for the more extreme cases as far as I can tell from the literature I read. But, I certainly don’t read a lot of biodiversity literature, so maybe my impression is wrong. Typically I see “alien” species or “introduced” species.

            As for their effect, the idea that they lead to greater biodiversity at the local level is a bit of a red herring. The issue that most ecologist watch out for is biotic homogenization across larger regions. Think, for instance, of the North American Squirrel in the UK. Sure, now there are two squirrel species in the UK, but as the NA squirrel out competes the local variety, if it leads to extinction (which happens often enough), you end up with fewer squirrels across the globe. IF biotic homogenization is considered bad (a value judgment, surely), then the invasive species has a negative impact.

            Yadda yadda.

            1. See the argentinian ant for another example. The ant has taken over large portions of the globe, decimating some native ant species and causing agricultural damage from the plant pests they farm.

              Say what you will about subjective measures like species diversity, but many invasive pests have caused real economic damage – look at the effects of bark beetles and introduced fungus to western us forests.

              1. “Say what you will about subjective measures like species diversity, but many invasive pests have caused real economic damage – look at the effects of bark beetles and introduced fungus to western us forests.”

                Ever hear of someone called “Bastiat”? You should look it up before you make a bigger fool of yourself.

                1. Ok, I read his wikipedia entry. I don’t see the connection. Care to enlighten me?

                  Are you suggesting there are hidden benefits to bark beetles?

                  1. “Ok, I read his wikipedia entry. I don’t see the connection. Care to enlighten me?
                    Are you suggesting there are hidden benefits to bark beetles?”

                    Yep.
                    I’ll bet you’ll gripe when bark beetles are endangered.
                    Try reading it again and see how your focus on the ‘horrors’ are just so much alarums-and-scarums.

                  2. In order to protect the candles, or ants … block out the sun, or, end all shipping and travel. Now that it has been spelled out for you, do ya get it?

            2. “Think, for instance, of the North American Squirrel in the UK. Sure, now there are two squirrel species in the UK, but as the NA squirrel out competes the local variety, if it leads to extinction (which happens often enough), you end up with fewer squirrels across the globe.”

              Oh, the HORROR!
              Do we get more nuts in exchange? Or are you just posting more bullshit you can deny later?

      4. What would you consider poison ivy or bullbriar in New England? Both are native, but both will wipe out anything else in their quest for sunlight.

        The fig trees that I keep trying to overwinter are not native, but they also have a snowball’s chance of survival if I don’t dig them out and stick them in a pit each winter so that they don’t freeze.

        What people mean is “recently, anthropogenically introduced invasive”. Let’s at least get the words right; they do have specific meanings.

      5. What would you consider poison ivy or bullbriar in New England? Both are native, but both will wipe out anything else in their quest for sunlight.

        The fig trees that I keep trying to overwinter are not native, but they also have a snowball’s chance of survival if I don’t dig them out and stick them in a pit each winter so that they don’t freeze.

        What people mean is “recently, anthropogenically introduced invasive”. Let’s at least get the words right; they do have specific meanings.

    3. Invasive species have been identified by the World Conservation Union as the second most significant threat to biodiversity, after habitat loss. They can also affect local economies by causing losses in agricultural and forestry production, increased management costs, and loss of tourism and recreation revenue. If it were possible to quantify the cost of decreased biodiversity and species extinction caused by invasive species, we would find the economic impact of invasive species would be far greater.

      1. World Conservation Union

        With an agenda-less benign name like that what is there not to trust.

      2. SB: For the record the Convention on Biological Diversity’s SUBSIDIARY BODY ON SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL AND TECHNOLOGICAL ADVICE even grudgingly admits that there are no records of global extinction of a continental species as a result of invasive species. But it is true that the ranges of some continental natives have changed and so forth.

        1. “But it is true that the ranges of some continental natives have changed and so forth.”

          And of course, “change” is BAD!

        2. What about Zebra Mussels?
          http://www.invadingspecies.com…..page&PID=1

          1. Yep, what about them zebra mussels?
            Remember when lampreys were going to kill every fish in the great lakes?
            Remember “killer bees”?
            Sorry, I’m tired of invented crises-du-jour.

            1. Killer bees are still around, and they cause ongoing economic damage as beekeepers need to refresh their hives every few years to prevent africanized genes from taking over.

              1. “Killer bees are still around, and they cause ongoing economic damage as beekeepers need to refresh their hives every few years to prevent africanized genes from taking over.”

                Yes, and?

                  1. “and what?”
                    Jackass, you seem to think this matters. If so, tell us why, or chew on your boiled rock for dinner.

      3. Invasive species have been identified by the World Conservation Union

        I don’t care. I don’t trust them,. or you, so fuck off.

    4. invasive species

      Ecology is a science right?

      I mean wouldn’t you want a better description of species being introduced into an ecosystem?

      Most species cause no problems and add to the biodiversity of the ecosystem.

      most of the rest cause a little problems but no extinctions only a change in populations of competing or prey species for a short period.

      A lot simply die.

      A few cause some extinctions but only against competing species and simply take over the niche.

      Now a very rare few actually cause numerous extinctions and dramatically change the ecosystem….

      and yet the supposed science of ecology has decided to call all the species invasive despite only a very small minority of them actually demonstrate “invasive’ behavior.

  9. Look, LA is the epitome of biodiversity! Let’s pave ‘er some more!

    Look, she’s still breathing! Spunky little thing! Tie her down harder!

    Balance of nature is scientifically specious!

    So is the health and psychological well-being of rape victims! They even like it! She got wet, right?!

    ABUSERS ALWAYS HAVE AN EXCUSE.

    1. MORE PLEASE. STEVE SMITH THRIVE ON RAPE ANALOGIES. EVERYTHING CAN ALWAYS BE COMPARED TO RAPE SO IS PERFECT ANALOGY.

      1. You leave mother Gaia alone Steve!

      2. Rape is the perfect analogy for what the agricultural City-State does to Mother Earth and her children.

        1. And Mickey Rooney is a perfect analogy for how crazy you are.

        2. What are her children? Asteroids?

          1. An occasionally pornographic series of novels about Cro-Magnon man. IOW, all humans after that are tainted by the AGRICULTURRUL CITY STATEZ!!11!

            1. Anti-intellectual libertards, who never heard of the anthropological term “agricultural City-State” or “agricultural civilization.”

              Fundamentalist Creationists come across a whole lot smarter.

              1. “Anti-intellectual libertards, who never heard of the anthropological term “agricultural City-State” or “agricultural civilization.”

                You probably ought to complete the dependent clause before you accuse others of anti-intellectualism.

                1. Sure grammar nazi, since you can’t refute that you’re a agricultural City-Statist.

                  1. “Sure grammar nazi, since you can’t refute that you’re a agricultural City-Statist.”

                    I remember this! 3rd-grade recess, right?

              2. Funny you should talk about fundamentalist creationists, considering your wacky religious beliefs.

                1. At least i’m not a Statist like you.

                  1. “At least i’m not a Statist like you.”

                    Oh, oh! How…………..
                    Infantile.

          2. Abusers don’t really like identifying whom are Mother Earth’s children, and must mock.

            1. “Abusers don’t really like identifying whom are Mother Earth’s children, and must mock.”

              And nut-jobs can’t and are worthy of such mockery.
              Mock, mock, mock.

              1. Said the Statist.

                1. “Said the Statist.”

                  Mock, mock, MOCK, mock!
                  So, there!

    2. WI: Actually, the point that Marris is making is that nature and biodiversity can be found everywhere.

  10. For example, after people showed up about 14,000 years ago, North America lost 60 or so species of tasty mammals that weighed over 100 pounds, including giant ground sloths, mammoths, mastodons, cheetahs, camels, and glyptodonts.

    Several other animals, like the Hyaenodon -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyaenodon ) or the Andrewsarchus -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrewsarchus )were giant killers that would’ve eradicated homo erectus like chicken nuggets at a 7 year olds birthday party. Fortunately for us, they lost the evolutionary battle millions of years before we came in to our own and weren’t around to compete.

    As Carlin so eloquently puts it, “Besides, there is nothing wrong with the planet. Nothing wrong with the planet. The planet is fine. The PEOPLE are fucked. “

    1. That’s St. Carlin to you. God rest his Frisbeetarian soul stuck on a roof in Buffalo, New York.

      1. Carlin wouldn’t piss on you if you were on fire.

        1. carlin started out funny and insightful. he ended up a bitter, reflexively liberal idiot

          1. Used to love Carlin….threw a CD away at 70mph during “Lesbian Blowjob”!

            Sad.

            1. mother Gaia would not be amused!!!!!!

              1. “mother Gaia would not be amused!!!!!!”
                Does mud laugh?

                1. no, but brooks babble

                  1. “no, but brooks babble”

                    That’s GOOD! I’m gonna steal it.

    2. Haha, you said “homo”.

  11. The foundation of their theory involves man not existing. Niiiice. You go first, I’ll compost myself later.

    1. Wrong.

      That’s a lie you abusers of Mother Earth use. It’s a damn lie.

      1. you don’t have to spend much time around eco-wackos to hear comments about how the earth would be so much better off if mankind offed itself. they are also behind the myth that the earth is “overpopulated” (by humans) which is laughable.

        humans are fine with them, if they are “noble savages” who (allegedly but not really) are “stewards of the land” and oh so much more enlightened. although the whole whale hunting thang makes them itchy

        1. Did you know that Plains Indians used the whole bison carcass, except when they didn’t?

          1. Did you know the Plains Indians didn’t kill off the whole herd in a few years?

            ABUSERS ALWAYS HAVE AN EXCUSE.

            1. “Did you know the Plains Indians didn’t kill off the whole herd in a few years?”

              Yep, bad weapons.

              1. And they had other shit to do, like kill other Plains Indians.

                I didn’t kill off the bison, and I resent the stupid racism that suggests that I did. I’ve shot exactly one, and I used the whole thing. I wish there were still many around; they’re delicious.

                1. And they had other shit to do, like kill other Plains Indians

                  Read Empire of the Summer Moon and be forever disabused that the natives were peace loving nature worshippers!

                  1. The Plains Indians were a post-Apocalyptic society, adapting and surviving the agricultural City-STATE Invasion and occupation. Archeology proves it; bones from the area show violence went up drastically after 1491.

                    But Abusers like blaming their victims.

                    1. So, starting the year three European vessels landed on a island in the Gulf of Mexico, the Sioux, over a thousand miles away, sensed a disturbance in the force and started killing each other. Is that your thesis in a nutshell?

                  2. or the history of the kanaka maoli (native hawaiians) where the river iao ran red with blood during the wars kamahemeha fought to retain iron fist control

                2. Disagreed.
                  Tough and not nearly as tasty as a corn-finished beef cow.

                  1. Was it farm raised?

                    The farm raised bison I had recently was fantastic.

        2. Mankind isn’t the problem. Humans lived on earth for 2M years without the agricultural City-State. The City-State is the problem.

          You libertarians even got the problem *half* identified.

          1. Yeah. FUCK ancient Greece. Fuck those fucking fuckers.

          2. And how exactly do you plan to keep humanity from doing what it does naturally, changing its environment to suit its needs? You aren’t against civilization, you’re against the auto-evolutionary behavior that nature designed humans for. You’re one fucked up idiot.

            1. Civilization is anti-evolutionary.

              Evolution leads to diversity of life. Civilization leads to the Sixth Great Extinction.

              1. Re: White Indian,

                Evolution leads to diversity of life. Civilization leads to the Sixth Great Extinction.

                And to the Second Coming of the Great Prophet Zarquon.

                1. “Great Prophet Zarquon”
                  OK, had to look that up. I’m just not up on all the ‘saviors’.
                  But mud mama? Got that one.

              2. Evolution is the process that makes species living longer and procreate more. What do you think the purpose of human technology is? To allow humans to live longer and procreate more.

                Technology is simply the next step in the evolutionary process. Why else do you think humans evolved to the point where they could create technology? What you don’t seem to understand is that nature wants a species or multiple species to dominate it. That is the only outcome possible from the evolutionary process.

                If we are doing something that nature didn’t design us to do 9in other words, if we weren’t living and procreating) we would necessarily be dying. There is no need to go advocate for some arbitrary image of the world in the past. That is the real balance of nature.

              3. “Civilization leads to the Sixth Great Extinction.”

                So when is the rapture?

                1. When the Neil and Neil sci-fi cargo-cultists go to Pallas and pay to breath air.

              4. So solve the problem, end the part of civilization that you DO control. You can use a rope or gun, or anything else you want, no one here will stop you.

                Bye bye!

                1. It’s singular how Marxist and Libertarians are so interested in killing people. Or are you using the old NeoCon bromide, love it or leave it?

                  1. “It’s singular how Marxist and Libertarians are so interested in killing people.”

                    It’s ‘singular’ (whatever that means) that nut-cases have problems reading.
                    No one suggested you be killed. The suggestion is that you follow your logic and commit suicide.

                    1. It’s not my “logic.” Death is your logic.

                    2. Aren’t you raping the earth with your dirty coal electricity computation machine? Rapist!

                    3. White Indian|8.16.11 @ 10:56PM|#
                      “It’s not my “logic.”

                      Haven’t seen any yet.

              5. Well that’s probably your problem. Evolution is just what happens. There is no intention or specific outcome that defines evolution. It is just shit that happens. Things happen because of a cause, not for a purpose.

      2. I just like the irony of some doofus benfiting from technological civilization bitching about it so vehemently.

        1. Spoken like the rapist who feeds a victim and thinks better of himself.

          Agricultural City-State has aggressively invaded and occupied nearly every square meter of of the Earth’s surface.

          1. Bullshit.

            1. Said the sniveling agricultural City-Statist, just like his brother Al Gore.

              1. Actually, I’m a dirt-loving predator, and proud of it.

          2. Re: White Indian,

            Agricultural City-State has aggressively invaded and occupied nearly every square meter of of the Earth’s surface.

            Including the Aegean.

            No? You said “every”…

          3. STEVE SMITH NEVER FEED RAPE VICTIM. STEVE ALWAYS TAKE TWENTY BUCKS AND HAS RIBS AFTER RAPE. STEVE SMITH STILL FEED GOOD ABOUT STEVE SMITH.

          4. “Agricultural City-State has aggressively invaded and occupied nearly every square meter of of the Earth’s surface.”

            First, that’s just plain bullshit.
            But where we have succeeded in the ‘invasion’, we’ve made it possible for people to live long and cheaply.
            Unfortunately, some of those people are jackasses like you.
            Go suck your mud mama; get a disease.

            1. The hatred of a City-Statist, displayed.

              1. “The hatred of a City-Statist, displayed.”

                Not to mention the stupidity of a crack-pot.

                1. Supporting aggressive, invasive, and occupational agricultural civilization, the single State society of human existence, makes you a Statist.

                  Keep droolin’ on your bowtie.

                  1. Who said we support a single State? Oh just you?

                  2. “Supporting aggressive, invasive, and occupational agricultural civilization, the single State society of human existence, makes you a Statist.”

                    Lost my decoder ring; want to try that in English?

          5. Man, I had no idea Antarctica was so populated…

            What’s that?

            I’ve been told it isn’t.

        2. Beat me to it.

          This seems like a good time for an Organic Girl reprise.

  12. Bullet proof skin. via Hot Air. Would only stop a .22 but it’s a start.

    http://dvice.com/archives/2011…..-splic.php

    1. Why skin?

      Wouldn’t a t-shirt be much easier and have more utility?

      1. Why skin?

        Wouldn’t a t-shirt be much easier and have more utility?

        Because Ms. Essaidi is a scientist/artist. From her website:
        My artwork is about the recognition of the transience of matter and a human desire to keep and hold. In my work, I embed this desperate race against time by using living or organic matter, capable of decay or the product of decay.
        While I use a variety of materials and processes in each project, their roots are consistent. They are linked by nature’s genius, the fruits from three billion years of trial and error resulting in various ways of fighting transience, preserving information, recreating.

        By embracing new materials and/or knowledge resulting from biotechnology, I offer a view on the social, political, ethical and cultural issues resulting from this relatively new ability of humans to understand and manipulate the mechanism behind nature’s genius.

        1. They are linked by nature’s genius, the fruits from three billion years of trial and error

          Fruit of the Loom makes T-Shirts.

      2. By the way…

        Here is some fan-service of the attractive Ms. Essaidi holding a gun.

  13. For those who are interesting in this topic…

    http://yalepress.yale.edu/book…..0300053708

  14. Haven’t read this book, but the way Ron describes it, it sounds like an elaborate strawman. It is the equivalent of Obama saying “Some would tell you XXXX.”

    1. NM: Thanks for the link — it supports the notion that “wilderness” is basically an aesthetic construction having little to do with the science of ecology.

    2. NM: Sometimes even you amaze me with your unselfconscious confirmation biases!

      1. Ron:

        Regarding Oelschlaeger’s book, it is a more subtle argument than that, certainly. But I encourage you to read it. It is a good read and sounds like it would be a good companion to the book reviewed here.

        As for my confirmation biases: we’ve all got ’em, but whenever I see an argument start with “For many conservationists, XXX.” Sure for many, but HOW MANY? How hard do they push this idea of pristine nature? I just don’t see it as the dominant position among serious conservationists or ecologists. Ecologists almost always acknowledge that man is part of the interconnected web of interactions that make up an ecology. It is foundational to an ecological world view.

        1. NM: I am sure that the argument is more subtle, but what does it have to do with evaluating nutrient cycling and productivity of ecosystems?

          I don’t honestly know what to say in regard to your claim not to know that conservationists generally endorse pre-human and/or pre-European baselines when defining “pristine.” One sympathetic analyst has this to say about Oelschlager.

          It is often said that Palaeolithic hunter-gatherers lived in harmony with nature. In his book The Idea of Wilderness Oelschlager shows himself an adherent of this idea and for him it is the starting point of the evolution of the human perception of nature and wilderness. During the Palaeolithic time of harmony there was plenty of food and resources for humans and the conception of nature was that humans were part of it an that time and nature was cyclical. During the Neolithic period when agriculture was introduced a split between human culture and nature emerged. Humans increasinglu regarded themselves as separated from nature, and that nature was designed and created for their benefit. If land was not suitable, humans had the ability to alter it and make it useful. According to Oelschlager is this development the moment that natural degeneration began.

          Very subtle and scientific.

          With regard to the wide spread acceptance of the unscientific notion of the “balance of nature” the abstract from this article in the Public Understanding of Science reports:

          The “balance of nature” metaphor has been used to explain the functioning of natural systems from ancient times and continues to be invoked in popular culture, in spite of controversy regarding its use in the scientific community. We demonstrate that undergraduate students in the United States believe this term is descriptive of real ecological systems, and continue to do so after instruction in ecological science. A content analysis of students’ definitions of the “balance of nature” and its causes varied widely with multiple, often contradictory, interpretations. A second survey confirmed that the range of definitions generated by students was representative of the larger educated population. Common responses included population regulation, species interactions, absence of disturbance and Nature. We speculate that the lack of a fixed meaning for the balance of nature term could lead to problems in education, public policy, and the transmission of ecological concepts to the general public.

          And yet, in Rambunctious Garden, Marris quotes ecologist Daniel Botkin:

          “If you ask an ecologist if nature never changes, he will almost always say no. But if you ask that same ecologist to design a policy, it is almost always a balance of nature policy.”

          1. Having had long discussions with Max on this issue…I don’t think it would be fair to say he is an adherent to the view that paleo-lithic hunter gatherers lived in harmony with nature. If I had to sum his view up in a sound bite; he sees us as social apes that have always shaped our environment to meet the needs of the group. His book is a review of the historical change of the cultural concept of wilderness – looking for the roots of our modern conceptualization of humans as apart or separate from nature.

  15. What is so good about historical ecosystems? I too have noted that ecologists when asked this same question become almost inarticulate. They just know that historical ecosystems are better.

    How dare you question our great ecologists’ gnosticism?

  16. Libertarians are agricultural City-Statists.

    Libertarians hate Non-State societies in which humans lived successfully for 2M years.

    How stupid is that if you claim to love liberty? Oh, they don’t, really. What they really love is the City-State (civilization.)

    1. WI: I take it that you find the Malthusian Twaddle of Daniel Quinn persuasive?

      1. Are you an agricultural City-Statist who likes to denigrate the 2M years of successful human existence in Non-State societies?

        1. Does 2M years, refer to MILLION?
          Cuz’ that stretches my definition of human a bit thinner than I am willing to go.

          1. Re: Neu Mejican,

            Scratching your head makes you an agricultural city-statist… apparently.

            I don’t know, I defer to the self-appointed expert.

          2. “Cuz’ that stretches my definition of human a bit thinner than I am willing to go.”

            Hey, it’s a rounding error….

        2. “2M years of successful human existence in Non-State societies?”

          Yep, pretty successful. Why, neo-lithic tribes are all over the place.

          1. neo-lithic tribes

            What do you call a group of goblins?

            I want to call them a murder, like a murder of crows.

            A “murder” of goblins.

            Still it is probably lame like a “mob” of goblins or something.

            1. “What do you call a group of goblins?”
              Dunno, but I’ll lay claim to coining “a quarrel of starlings”.

              1. A mafia of racoons.

                1. Good! I’ll credit you.

              2. The actual collective noun for starlings is “murmuration”.

                1. “The actual collective noun for starlings is “murmuration”.

                  Which is the reason I coined the term “quarrel”.

          2. They were killed, wiped out, by aggression. And you’re on the side of the aggressors.

            Give me a big Libertard drooling grin.

            1. “They were killed, wiped out, by aggression.”

              So they weren’t very successful? Sort of like dodo birds? Do I have it now?

              1. Spoken like a rapist who blames the victims of his aggression for not being able to defend themselves.

                Wow – only on “reason.” LOL

                1. Yes, sevo there killed at least 500 neolithithic cavemen in his hay days. Boy that a grand old time.

                  1. “Yes, sevo there killed at least 500 neolithithic cavemen in his hay days. Boy that a grand old time.”

                    Hey, nukes weren’t available!

                2. “Spoken like a rapist who blames the victims of his aggression for not being able to defend themselves.”

                  Posted like, well, a nut job.

            2. They were killed, wiped out, by aggression. And you’re on the side of the aggressors.

              pretty sure you can say that about any animal species alive today…and about 99% of all the animal species that have gone extinct.

              Plants are not so nice either.

              And now for a Neal Stephenson quote:

              “Like every other creature on the face of the earth, Godfrey was, by birthright, a stupendous badass, albeit in the somewhat narrow technical sense that he could trace his ancestry back up a long line of slightly less highly evolved stupendous badasses to that first self-replicating gizmo—which, given the number and variety of its descendants, might justifiably be described as the most stupendous badass of all time. Everyone and everything that wasn’t a stupendous badass was dead.”

              1. Spoken like a rapist, trying to cover his aggression by calling it “natural.”

                1. Don’t you have any better lines than that? It’s getting old.

                  1. Sure it “gets old” – to an abuser.

                    1. You should know, being a chronic abuser of the English language.

      2. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

        I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

        Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

        Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

        Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

        He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

        So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

    2. Re: White Indian,

      What they really love is the City-State (civilization.)

      So you post with a computer out of pure penitence?

      1. Are you an agricultural City-Statist? I’d expect one of you to say something like that, after you rape the whole earth and her children and leave no place for a Non-State society of band or tribal life.

        1. Re: White Indian,

          Are you an agricultural City-Statist?

          Who cares? You’re the one lamenting the existence of civilization, so I take it you hurt every time you use a computer to post your shit. Either that or you’re just another imbecile who fancies himself the best troll ever.

          1. OM, it is an OK troll, compared to what we’ve had lately. Acceptable balance of crazy theory + ALL CAPS. I give it a gentleman’s C.

            1. Gotta love the agricultural City-STATISTS dodging and weaving.

              You’re Statists. Really, you are.

              I can tell by how you hate 2 million years of Non-State society.

              1. You might want to add a little variety to your shtick. Some [BIO]diversity, if you will.

                1. Re: Dagny T.

                  He’s not a smart troll, D. At least the sockpuppet shows a bit more coherence in his reasoning, even if wrong. This guy is instead a one-tune twit.

                2. When you quit giving excuses for the aggressive agricultural City-State, I will.

                  1. We can’t change things that only exist in your mind, sorry.

                    1. Just because you haven’t picked up a freshman anthropology text doesn’t mean that I’m the sorry one.

                    2. No, I am sorry that we can’t change things that only exist in your mind.

                      Language, how the fuck does it work?

                    3. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

                      I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

                      Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

                      Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

                      Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

                      He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

                      So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

    3. The Iroquois had nations.
      Why do you hate the Iroquois?

      1. They were not organized into State level politics. The Iroquois were a Non-State society.

        If you read your anthropology, Band, Tribe, and Chiefdom were Non-State societies, with the first two being egalitarian, and the latter being hierarchical transition to State societies. Go ahead, google the term “sociopolitical typology.”

        I love how Libertarians rally in support of the City-State. Scratch a libertard, find an agricultural City-STATIST.

        1. Re: White Indian,

          If you read your anthropology, Band, Tribe, and Chiefdom were Non-State societies, with the first two being egalitarian, and the latter being hierarchical transition to State societies.

          But only if you read your own anthropology. When I read mine, I find that people bunch together to form pot-luck parties.

        2. but they had agriculture.
          I thought you hated agriculture.

        3. Scratch a libertard

          As the parent of a mentally challenged child I find this incredibly offensive.

          Whatever pretense brought you here to post, take it and your prejudicial attitude somewhere else.

          You’re disgusting.

          1. He’s not a bastARD, is he? Would you know?

            1. No she isn’t.

              And as a poster who did nothing to you but point out your bigotry, what did I do to deserve that?

              1. I’m only bigoted, by God!, against Statists, of the Marxist or Libertard variety mostly, since they’re the most confused bastards on the planet.

              2. I tell ya what, you nail every bigot here calling me an IDIOT, at which you should also be offended if this was truly about being offended, and I’ll forgive your crocodile tear hypocrisy and apologize. Deal?

                1. Tell you what, you change your name from the offensive word INDIAN and I won’t scalp you.

                  1. It’s not offensive, unless you have a big chip on your shoulder – and then anything is.

                    It comes from a chapter called “White Indians” in the following book:

                    The Invasion Within: The Contest of Cultures in Colonial North America
                    James Axtell
                    Oxford University Press

                    1. This guy does NOT speak for me.

                    2. Hell, he doesn’t even speak for me.

                    3. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

                      I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

                      Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

                      Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

                      Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

                      He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

                      So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

                    4. You already said that.

  17. Re: Sacre Bleu,

    Invasive species have been identified by the World Conservation Union as the second most significant threat to biodiversity, after habitat loss.

    The first one being Evolution.

    We shall stop Evolution!

    1. If evolution means diversity of live, Civilization does do a good job of murdering evolution.

      1. Re: White Indian,

        If evolution means diversity of live [sic], Civilization does do [sic] a good job of murdering evolution.

        And WI does a good job of murdering good grammar.

      2. “Civilization does do a good job of murdering evolution.”

        (shaking head)
        A comment worthy of Tony!

      3. Diversity of life might be a side effect of evolution, or it might not, depending on the case. You are simply dodging what evolution is by talking about something you want it to cause.

      4. Civilization does do a good job of murdering evolution.

        nice…not only do you not understand civilization, how can you be a non-state society without being a civilization? but does not understand evolution as well.

  18. Invasive species don’t harm biodiversity. Ron Bailey told me so.

    http://extension.entm.purdue.e…..tInfes.jpg

    http://www.kingcounty.gov/envi…..mites.ashx

    1. And I’ll bet you actually thought that meant something.
      We’ll wait…….

      1. This isn’t even coherent.

        1. Well, I can’t help it if you can’t read.

    2. Ecol: First Kings County! Next the World! Of course some introduced species become pests, and they must be managed. But pesky and costly as it is, has Pale Swallow Wort killed off any species that you know of?

      1. “First Kings County! Next the World!”

        Thanks for the clarification.
        I had no idea WIH a photo of some plant life was intended to mean.

      2. King County not Kings County.

        But yeah if Pale swallow Wort strangled every person living there we would be net ahead.

        Sorry Epi but Seattle needs to die.

  19. In fact, Marris reports that there is precious little scientific support for the ideology that pristine nature is somehow “better” than the m?lange that humanity has created by moving species around the globe.

    Just as there is little scientific support for the idea that Bach was a better composer than Charles Mingus or Tony Iommi. What an odd sentence.

    1. Re: Neu Mejican,

      Just as there is little scientific support for the idea that Bach was a better composer than Charles Mingus or Tony Iommi. What an odd sentence.

      What an odd analogy.

      Ok, it’s just bad.

      1. Meh.
        It was composed quickly, but it is close enough. Science doesn’t tell us “better or worse” although once we determine what “better or worse” is, we can, perhaps find a way to objectively model it. But the question of what we value is not a scientific one.

        1. Re: Neu Mejican,

          But the question of what we value is not a scientific one.

          That’s the author’s point, that it is NOT a scientific question, rather an aesthetic one.

          1. But RON’s point seems to be that the author’s point is that “there isn’t scientific support” for one of the possible aesthetic choices. But how could there be? See what I mean?

            1. “See what I mean?”

              Yes, but as illustrated by our new crack-pot, that information is not commonly accepted.
              It deserves repeating.

              1. sevo,

                Based on what he wrote, however, it seems that Ron missed that point. He seems to think that the COULD BE scientific support for one value choice over the other.

                1. If he elaborated, and forwarded the idea that it is not an aesthetic question, but measurable, in terms of greater versus less biodiversity, what would you say then?

                2. NM: I am not the one missing the point. See response below.

                3. “Based on what he wrote, however, it seems that Ron missed that point. ”

                  Uh, I’d say that should be corrected thus:
                  “Based on *how I read* what he wrote….”
                  And I’d suggest another reading after you take off those lenses.

            2. I thought that was odd, myself. The term “natural” is unscientific by definition (note how meaningless it is as a food label).

              But some of us prefer the “natural” aesthetic, in the sense of large-scale spaces that are created and re-created by entities other than humans. Marris’ implication–(and Bailey’s nauseating slobbering over it — my God is he ever tiresome) that we don’t need to reserve spaces from human development and exploitation because we can appreciate “nature” in abandoned lots and our backyards–is depressing and dissatisfying, not to mention disingenuous.

              I’m betting neither Marris nor Bailey take vacations to abandoned parking lots, or to their own backyards. No, I’m thinking both of them enjoy beaches, mountains, national or local parks, lakes, and/or forests. And they’d hardly be alone.

              Just the top 10 national parks alone got more than 33 million visitors last year, so if Ron’s thinking that the lack of scientific benchmarks of what is “natural” means it would be OK to pave, strip-mine, and cover parks with giant cement phalli (for some reason, whenever I read one of Ron’s articles, I come away from it thinking that’s the type of architecture he’d appreciate), then I think he might have some opposition.

              IOW, I think it’s probably a moot point what Ron thinks about the importance of preserving “nature,” however poorly the term itself can be defined.

              1. Or we could just have a fair fight in which the government was neutral towards both sides. So you and the like-minded could buy up land and preserve it, while others could buy up land and develop it. Imagine that!

                1. Development is the abuser’s word for rape the land.

                  Abusers always have an excuse.

                  1. Do you get paid every time you misuse the word rape?

                  2. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

                    I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

                    Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

                    Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

                    Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

                    He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

                    So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

              2. “Marris’ implication–(and Bailey’s nauseating slobbering over it — my God is he ever tiresome) that we don’t need to reserve spaces from human development and exploitation because we can appreciate “nature” in abandoned lots and our backyards–is depressing and dissatisfying, not to mention disingenuous.”

                And of course, you’re an ‘evolved’ dipshit who knows what ‘nature’ is, right?

          2. If the author is claiming that “ecologists” believe that pristine nature is objectively better based on scientific criteria X, but that, in fact, X shows us that pristine nature is not better, then “scientific support” might make sense. But that is not what Ron seems to be saying. Hence my comment.

            1. Please see my previous question, I assumed, perhaps without reason, that your description was indeed how it was intended to be interpreted.

            2. NM: I am beginning to believe that you may be slipping over into willfully misinterpreting what I write. It is possible that I am not clear, but perhaps this paragraph from my earlier Invasion of the Invasive Species will make it clear:

              Nevertheless, aesthetic reasons are still reasons, and science can be validly deployed in their service. Some people may prefer landscapes restored to a condition prior to the introduction of outside species. As Davis and the Stony Brook University biologist Lawrence Slobodkin pointed out in a 2004 article for Restoration Ecology, architecture uses mathematics, physics, and engineering to achieve aesthetic and social goals. “Perhaps ‘ecological architecture’ might be a more apt characterization of the work of ecological restoration,” they suggest, “because the term acknowledges the central role played by both values and science.”

              I repeat the lines from the penultimate paragraph of this review:

              And if some of us choose to conserve some areas as “pristine” with regard to some preferred aesthetic baseline, that’s O.K. Certainly science can be used to help achieve that goal, but such areas become essentially wilderness gardens maintained by “perpetual weeding and perpetual watching.”

              Now do you understand?

              1. Ron…
                I am not willfully misunderstanding you. And your additional paragraphs don’t help me understand what you think the author of the book reviewed here is saying. Does she provide a scientific argument against the idea of “pristine nature being better”? Or does she point out that it is not a scientific question? Your description seems to implicate the first option.

                1. NM: You might want to re-read the whole the review, but her point is that is culturally ingrained in many ecologists that pristine must be “better.” This is a largely unconscious value that they have which distorts their scientific analyses. She supplies plenty of evidence for this claim, some of which I cite. And having hung out with lots of ecologists, attended many scientific meetings, and read lots of the ecological literature with regard to “invasives” over the last couple of decades, I believe that she is basically right in her characterization.

                  I cite again the review:

                  Marris contrasts Mascaro with another ecologist, Christian Giardina, who helps manage the Laupahoehoe Natural Area Reserve in Hawaii from which he wants to extirpate non-natives. Yet even Giardina muses over dinner, “Are we so religious about this biodiversity ethic that we need to be called on it?” He answers his own question: “If you really dig down to why we should care, you end up with nothing. You are running on faith that we should care.”

                  1. This is a largely unconscious value that they have which distorts their scientific analyses.

                    This, I doubt. Good scientists spend a lot of time trying to weed out their own biases. Sure, sometimes the miss, but one that looms large in a field is very much on their mind. Ecologists have long discussions about how to measure “pristine” and how to determine if an effect is positive or negative. How to quantify these abstract values. Etc.

                    1. NM: This I doubt. See how confirmation biases operate?

                    2. Ron: confirmation biases lead to “this I conclude.”

                    3. Neu Mejican|8.16.11 @ 8:02PM|#
                      “Ron: confirmation biases lead to “this I conclude.”

                      So you gave yourself some barely credible deniability.
                      Can we assume you’re a politico who spends most of your time carefully crafting statements so they can later be denied?

                    4. NM: With due respect, I don’t find your response credible.

                    5. NM, Bailey’s meaning was obvious, so you’re either too stupid to understand the obvious or you are purposely misrepresenting Bailey’s words. Which one is it?

                    6. Hi heller.
                      You still beating your wife?

                    7. Well what is the alternative to those two options? Are you saying it wasn’t obvious?

                    8. Heller,

                      If the meaning of my response wasn’t obvious to you, then I guess you are too thick to have a discussion with.

                    9. Ron Bailey|8.16.11 @ 8:46PM|#

                      NM: With due respect, I don’t find your response credible.

                      No skin off my teeth. I was responding to your lame attempt at a “gotcha.”

                      Some things I don’t find credible:

                      “most ecologists who are in thrall to the damaging cult of pristine wilderness and the false ideology of the balance of nature.”

                      “in the thrall”? “False ideology”?

                      Do you mean “most ecologists are in the thrall of a false ideology?” Or do you mean that “of those that are in the thrall of a false ideology, most will find this book troubling?”

                      If the first, bullshit, if the second, so?

                      “Only when the ecologically-correct ideologies that blind us are upended can we can see the real nature that is all around us.”

                      Blind us? who are you lumping together in that group?

                      And, actually, what does that even mean? The “real nature”? Ecologically-correct?

                      I am going to guess that Marris does not encase her arguments in a halo of such hyperbolic nonsense.

                    10. NM: No skin off my teeth Of course not – that’s how confirmation bias works. lame gotcha? No. Perhaps more evidence that you really do argue in bad faith. I had thought you were more than a troll.

                    11. Argue in bad faith? How so? You make a statement that I doubt has veracity. I explain why. You respond by saying that my reasons are evidence of “confirmation bias” – and I am the one arguing in bad faith when I point out that I am keeping an open mind on the question? Okay. I appreciate that you are willing to engage in discussion with the commentators here Ron, but the fact that you are more willing to sling insults than answer a straightforward question (see my comment at @ 7:34PM) is disappointing.

                    12. NM: Actually I did answer your question, but apparently you didn’t understand my response because of the confirmation bias blinkers that I strongly suspect that you are not aware that you are wearing.

                      In any case, Marris’ point (which she amply proves in the book) is that many conservationists and ecologists unconsciously allow their aesthetic preferences to cloud their judgement when it comes to scientifically evaluating ecosystems.

                      As for first “slinging insults” — I don’t think I’m thin skinned, but I do take some of your comments as amounting to an insult.

                    13. Ron – again with the confirmation bias. Confirmation bias is not an issue in this discussion as it has been about what you meant with a few specific sentences in your review.

                      I ask: do you mean to say that the author feels that an “ideology” can find scientific support for what is essentially a cultural value? (this would be a required option if she is citing a lack of scientific support).

                      Your response was not – yes, she gives scientific support, or no, she recognizes that it is not a scientific question. Your response was “I have written in the past blah, blah, blah…and in my review I say blah, blah blah.” The closest you came to answer the basic question is to say that the author feels that the scientists in ecology allow their value system to distort their science. This is a different issue/topic than the one I was asking about. You say she provides evidence of this distortion – okay, I’ll take your word for it. YOU state that the scientists are unconscious of how their value system impacts their work. I doubt that. I think they are more aware of it in a more sophisticated way than you are. It is something the most likely spend lots of time thinking about.

                      And, yes, I will admit that I am less than civil in many of my comments about your articles. I always give you the benefit of the doubt that the distortions in your science reporting come at least in part from a need to try and find a “liberty threatening slant” to the topic in order to make it relevant for an advocacy magazine like reason. But as I am not an employee my uncivil comments don’t reflect on the professionalism of your publication. Yours, on the other hand, do.

                      Anyway… as long as you continue to use gross over-generalizations, loaded empty language (ecologically-correct, cult of pristine wilderness) and ideological attacks in your science reporting, you should expect people to question you.

                    14. NM: Setting my “distortions” aside, all that I am trying to do here is to get you to recognize where your “distortions” are coming from. I have obviously failed in this endeavor.

                      In addition, you persist in asserting that I have not answered your question: do you mean to say that the author feels that an “ideology” can find scientific support for what is essentially a cultural value?

                      No. And I never said that she did. From the review:

                      “For many conservationists, restoration to a pre-human or a pre-European baseline is seen as healing a wounded or sick nature,” explains Marris. “For others, it is an ethical duty. We broke it; therefore we must fix it. Baselines thus typically don’t act as a scientific before to compare with an after. They become the good, the goal, the one correct state.”

                      As I stated repeatedly in this exchange, Marris’ view (and mine based on my experience and reading of the literature) is that ecologists/conservationists try to justify THEIR (unconscious) ideology of pristineness on allegedly objective scientific grounds.

                      As example of this ecological ideology (“ecologically-correct”)I quoted (again from the review) one of the many ecologists cited in the book by Marris:

                      Yet even Giardina muses over dinner, “Are we so religious about this biodiversity ethic that we need to be called on it?” He answers his own question: “If you really dig down to why we should care, you end up with nothing. You are running on faith that we should care.”

                      Let’s go back to your confirmation bias — “This, I doubt” — I suspect that you “doubt” not based on any evidence, but because the conclusions reached by Marris and those I reported make you intellectually uncomfortable. It’s pretty clear that you’ve spent this entire exchange trying to confirm what you already believe.

                      In the spirit intellectual exchange, might I suggest that you read Marris’ book and even more that you delve into the much more philosophically rigorous work of Marc Sagoff, e.g., The Economy of the Earth.

        2. “once we determine what “better or worse” is, we can, perhaps find a way to objectively model it”

          Shoot first, ask questions later.

  20. White Indian, just curious, in your non agricultural society what kind of punishment will be handed out to those that want to grow crops instead of going hunting ? Are you going to also create some kind of settlement police, to make sure that too many people do not congregate into one place and form cities ?

    1. What kind of punishment, if any, should be handed out for being aggressively invasive and occupational?

      1. “…being aggressively […] occupational?”

        Uh, what?

        1. Just because you haven’t studied the empirical data of how the agricultural City-State is aggressively invasive and occupational doesn’t mean there isn’t a vast library of anthropological study on the subject.

          1. “City-State is aggressively […] occupational doesn’t mean there isn’t a vast library of anthropological study on the subject.”

            Oh, I’m sure you can find a ‘vast library’ of bullshit.

  21. White Indian|8.16.11 @ 6:48PM|#
    Libertarians are agricultural City-Statists.

    Why, you say that as if it’s a bad thing.

    1. Said the Statist.

      1. Said the Malapropist.

        1. I’m not misusing any terms. Go to scholar.google.com and look up “agricultural civilization” or “city-state” or “agricultural city state.”

          They’re the same thing in anthropological and ethnographic literature.

          Unfortunately, you didn’t know that. Well, you’re the microbiologist who thought nuclear weapons were one of the diverse species evolved too. What else could one expect?

          1. I was referring to your use of the word statist, which is obvious since I replied directly to that comment. Why is it so hard for you to argue honestly? All the goalpost moving and putting words into people’s mouths your doing isn’t helping your arguments. Now everyone knows you’re a complete asshat.

            1. I’m not moving any goal posts. You’re just fighting blind, not realizing the State is an integral part of the agricultural City State (civilization,) never to be divorced in either Marxist or Libertarian fantasy.

                1. Sweet Jesus, a stefbot thumper.

                  1. How dare you invoke the name of a god other than Mother Gaia!

                  2. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

                    I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

                    Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

                    Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

                    Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

                    He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

                    So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

                    1. How’s that working out for you?

                    2. Turn off that phone bitch!

                    3. Persecution anxiety and delusional paranoia. Nice!

  22. For more than 99 per cent of human his? tory people have lived in groupings that social scientists call “non-state societies.”

    For more than 99 per cent of EARTH’S history there were no people.

    1. For more than 99 per cent of EARTH’S history there were no people.

      For over 50% of the universe’s history there was no Earth…

      Actually that one is kind of lame

    2. Strange how nobody is interested in Non-State societies around here, and defending the State vigorously.

      Nobody said Libertarians were any more consistent than their sister philosophy of Marxism, who also wanted the state to wither away and then came up with an example of the worst manifestations humans have endured under the agricultural City-State.

      1. Again, you have no idea what you are talking about.

        1. Again, you have no idea what you’re talking about.

          1. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

          2. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

  23. To sum it up: hybrid vigor is good, provided humans didn’t make it happen.

  24. White Idiot, please reply to this:

    White Indian|8.16.11 @ 6:58PM|#|show direct|ignore
    Civilization is anti-evolutionary.

    Evolution leads to diversity of life. Civilization leads to the Sixth Great Extinction.

    heller|8.16.11 @ 7:34PM|#|show direct|ignore
    Diversity of life might be a side effect of evolution, or it might not, depending on the case. You are simply dodging what evolution is by talking about something you want it to cause.

    heller|8.16.11 @ 7:22PM|#|show direct|ignore
    Evolution is the process that makes species living longer and procreate more. What do you think the purpose of human technology is? To allow humans to live longer and procreate more.

    Technology is simply the next step in the evolutionary process. Why else do you think humans evolved to the point where they could create technology? What you don’t seem to understand is that nature wants a species or multiple species to dominate it. That is the only outcome possible from the evolutionary process.

    If we are doing something that nature didn’t design us to do 9in other words, if we weren’t living and procreating) we would necessarily be dying. There is no need to go advocate for some arbitrary image of the world in the past. That is the real balance of nature.

    1. You obviously have no idea what evolution is.

      Are nuclear weapons simply the next step in evolution?

      Is a fascist state simply the next step in evolution?

      1. Dude, lay off the fire-water, you’re getting tedious!

        But actually, yes, nukes are just another step if we’re stupid enough to use them. A punctuation mark to life on this rock, but that’s coming soon enough anyway. All the ecologists on the planet can’t stop the fact that in about a billion years or so, the ‘cool green hills of Earth’ are going to get too hot for anything but archaea, and not too long after that, ole Sol is gonna really toast this place. But long before that, h. sap. is going to change into something else. So all that I’m gonna worry about is the time and place around me, try to treat others as I’d like them to treat me, and quit fretting about ‘destroying the planet’.

        Now I need a drink!

      2. “You obviously have no idea what evolution is.”
        Projection isn’t a valid argument.

        “Are nuclear weapons simply the next step in evolution?”
        No, they’re a technology developed by a life-form, sorta like Chimps using twigs to get at food.

        “Is a fascist state simply the next step in evolution?”
        No, it was a failed attempt at organizing the social arrangements of a life form.
        Dumbass.

        1. Oh, now you’re saying the fascistly aggressive, invasive, and occupational agricultural City-State is a failed attempt at organizing the social arrangements of life form.

          Cool beans, sevo.

          1. No, he was saying that fascism is. Can’t you read, dumbass?

            1. What’s the difference between a “fascist state” and a “fascist agricultural City-State,” pea-brain?

              Nothing, except for Liberarians and Marxists suffering from Stockholm Syndrome, who defend the aggressive agricultural city-state, while fantasizing the state aspect is something that can be divorced from the integrated system of domination.

              1. Where did you use the phrase “fascist agricultural City-State?”

                1. you might look around

                  1. I did, do Ctrl + f and you won’t find the phrase except in the two posts above.

          2. “Oh, now you’re saying the fascistly aggressive, invasive, and occupational…”

            I’ll bet you actually think this has some sort of meaning to those who have English as a first language. Brain-dead eco-jargon is an acquired taste, mostly acquired by nut-cases.
            Haven’t read this amount of bullshit in quite a while, but keep it up.
            During WWII, the allies by-passed various Japanese garrisons and later used them for target practice. You’re an almost too-easy target; can we call you Rabual?

            1. Come to reason to find out “fascist” and “state” are…ahem… “eco-jargon!”

              Whoodathunkit!?!

              1. “Come to reason to find out “fascist” and “state” are…ahem… “eco-jargon!”
                Whoodathunkit!?!”

                And here’s what you’re supposedly replying to:
                “Oh, now you’re saying the fascistly aggressive, invasive, and occupational…”

                Sorry, it’s been fun bombing Rabual, but outright lies really leave you beyond any reasonable comment.

                1. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

                  I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

                  Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

                  Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

                  Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

                  He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

                  So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

      3. LOL, I’m a microbiologist, and you’re trying to tell me I don’t know what evolution is? Please enlighten me: if not the mechanism by which species increase their lifespan and procreativeness, what is evolution?

        Nuclear weapons are indeed a result of the evolutionary process.

        The fascist state is not a technology and is irrelevant to the discussion.

        And please respond to the rest of my points.

        1. Appealing to authority? I’ve got credentials too. LOL

          Darwin didn’t write “On the Origins of the Species and Technology and Everything Else We Can Allude to by Analogy.”

          The agricultural City-State is a technique of domination and control just like nuclear weapons.

          Regarding diversity, which you seem to have never heard of:

          “It presented a body of evidence that the DIVERSITY of life arose by common descent through a branching pattern of evolution…The theory explains the DIVERSITY of living organisms and their adaptation to the environment.” en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Origin_of_Species

          So how about you quit dodging on diversity?

          1. What the fuck? I’m not appealing to authority, I’m appealing to my own knowledge and expertise on the subject.

            “It presented a body of evidence that the DIVERSITY of life arose by common descent through a branching pattern of evolution…The theory explains the DIVERSITY of living organisms and their adaptation to the environment.”

            Yes, evolution explains why there are different species. That doesn’t mean that the purpose of evolution is to increase diversity. Evolution will increase diversity when environments are differentiated enough to force genetic changes. Evolution can also decrease diversity through population bottlenecks. So you can’t say that diversity is the purpose of evolution, since it explains both increases and decreases in diversity.

            But you don’t know enough about the subject to understand that capitalizing the word diversity in a paragraph from Origin doesn’t prove your point.

            1. Ah, ya came around. We’re in agreement that evolution explains where there is a diversity of species.

              Not nuclear weapons or any other techniques of domination and control and death from the fascistly aggressive agricultural City-State.

              You’re not trying to dodge your previous assertion that nuclear weapons are one of the diverse species, are you?

              1. Ah, ya came around. We’re in agreement that evolution explains where there is a diversity of species.

                Nice attempt to move the goalposts of the argument. Here’s what you originally said:

                Civilization is anti-evolutionary.

                Evolution leads to diversity of life. Civilization leads to the Sixth Great Extinction.

                So you’re saying that civilization is anti-evolution because it decreases diversity. But as I said above, evolution is neither pro- nor anti-diversity. So you’re WRONG.

                You’re not trying to dodge your previous assertion that nuclear weapons are one of the diverse species, are you?

                So you’re either putting words in my mouth, or you legitimately can’t understand simple sentences. Which one is it?

                Nuclear weapons, like all technology, is a result of the technological abilities nature designed humans to have. Just like any other genetic trait, the result of our tool-making ability will either increase our lifespan and procreativeness or decrease it. Either way, the rules of nature are still in play, making your position that we must scale back our technological progress redundant.

                1. You’re being pedantic because I bested you. Now I will again:

                  “Evolution can lead to greater biological diversity…”
                  When Evolution Tends To Maximize The Diversity And Functioning Of Ecosystems
                  ScienceDaily (Apr. 2, 2008)
                  http://www.sciencedaily.com/re…..212514.htm

                  This stuff is so easy.

                  BTW, I couldn’t put as stupid of words in your mouth as your claiming nuclear weapons are a result of evolution. But I see you’re quickly backing off from that silly assertion.

                  1. Evolution can lead to greater biological diversity. It can also lead to less biological diversity. Thus evolution is neither pro- nor anti-diversity.

                    But I said all this already, you’re just to dense to argue honestly.

                    Nuclear weapons are the result of our evolved brains. Can you quote me saying anything different? No.

                    1. Anything humans can think of could be said to be a “result of our evolved brains.” Rape, war, nuclear weapons, the State, agriculture, communism, collectivism, torture, etc. etc.

                      But they aren’t a result of evolution, as you tried to assert previously.

                      Keep dodgin’ and weavin’

                    2. Rape is not a human trait that comes from our unique brains. Many animals commit rape. The same goes for violence and aggression. But technology is a unique result from our evolved brains.

                    3. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

                      I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

                      Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

                      Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

                      Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

                      He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

                      So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

          2. White Indian|8.16.11 @ 9:25PM|#
            “Appealing to authority? I’ve got credentials too.”

            Two degrees in be-bop, a PHD in swing…
            Sorry, high credentials in bullshit really don’t count.

            1. Thanks sevo, that’s exactly what I was saying.

              1. “Thanks sevo, that’s exactly what I was saying.”

                I know it was; and you’ve shown the high degrees in bullshit, if you’ve shown anything at all.

                1. Oh dear, channeling Al Gore again.

                  1. “Oh dear, channeling Al Gore again.”

                    ^?

                    1. White Indian thinks that’s a joke. Don’t ask me to try to explain what it means though.

                    2. Google Al+Gore+bullshit+Aspen+Institute. Big news today, funny as hell.

                    3. “Google Al+Gore+bullshit+Aspen+Institute. Big news today, funny as hell.”

                      And what about Elvis’ alien love-child, huh? What about that?
                      You can google it.

                    4. Who was saying “bullshit” every post, just like Al Gore? You.

                      Why do I have to spoon feed it to ya, sevo?

  25. The Greeks still are not as tall as their Paleolithic ancestors’ bones archeologists have found,
    “There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.” Genesis 6:1-4

    1. Why do they call this place “reason” with such horrible examples thereof? Jeeeesh!

      Jared Diamond, UCLA School of Medicine, wrote an essay called ” referring to the shorted lifespan and shortened stature of certain people, including the Greeks, when the agricultural City-State invaded and occupied a land.

      The Worst Mistake in the History of
      the Human Race
      By Jared Diamond
      http://www.scribd.com/doc/2100…..Human-Race

      1. “Jared Diamond, UCLA School of Medicine, wrote an essay called ” referring to the shorted lifespan and shortened stature of certain people, including the Greeks, when the agricultural City-State invaded and occupied a land.”

        What was that about ‘appeal to authority’? Care to repeat that?
        Or are you simply making the ridiculous claim that people lived better before the sedentary revolution?

        1. I cut and pasted from the referenced article. You don’t like referenced articles, and I don’t care.

          1. “I cut and pasted from the referenced article. You don’t like referenced articles, and I don’t care.”

            You posted some more infantile bullshit.

      2. Which begs the question, why did we ever start agriculture if hunting-gathering is easier and safer? It’s because hunting-gathering has never supported a group larger than a tribe. The human race can’t grow under a hunter-gatherer system because it is hopelessly inefficient. Thus we used the brains nature had given us to farm, allowing us to multiply past tribal numbers. Humanity realized that larger groups of people made for a better, more diverse marketplace of ideas and better lives.

        1. Growth of population is desired by the “emergent elite,” (scary anthropological term) for two reasons: more soldiers for conquering more land, and a labor pool to serve the emergent elite’s division of labor.

          And you think all that’s great. Once again, Libertarianism is demonstrated to be mostly just Neo-Con Statism, with the fantasy that they’ll quit raping, just as soon as raping is privatized.

          1. Actually, population growth is an inevitable force of nature. When technology and resources allow it, humanity will always grow, just like any other species. What you just said is as stupid as saying there is an “emergent elite” in the squirrel population that makes squirrels fuck.

            1. Population growth is a result of deliberate feeding and breeding for more soldiers and labor pool for the hierarchical elite playing their domination games of invading and occupying more land.

              Unless you want to argue that the fascist agricultural state itself is an inevitable force of nature. Is that what you’re saying? Last I knew, you thought nuclear weapons were somehow natural too, like a good little Statist would argue.

              Mentioning rodents, squirrels are getting by without an agricultural City-State, along with whales and elephants, and yet, strangely, their lives aren’t solitary, nasty, brutish, and short. Weird, eh?

              1. So mysterious “elites” are controlling humanity’s sex drive? Really? This is simply ridiculous. If you were truly familiar with the theory of evolution you would know that population growth is a direct result of the evolutionary sex drive. So which causes pop. growth? Evolution or a crackpot, nonsensical conspiracy theory?

                Unless you want to argue that the fascist agricultural state itself is an inevitable force of nature. Is that what you’re saying? Last I knew, you thought nuclear weapons were somehow natural too, like a good little Statist would argue.

                It’s amazing. You can’t make a single post without grossly misrepresenting your opponent’s words can you? I guess that’s the crutch you fall on when your argument is insufficient.

                As I said above, all technology is a result of the brain nature designed for humans. Nothing more, nothing less.

                Mentioning rodents, squirrels are getting by without an agricultural City-State, along with whales and elephants, and yet, strangely, their lives aren’t solitary, nasty, brutish, and short. Weird, eh?

                LOL, if they could create technology, they would. But since they can’t, your point is entirely meaningless.

                I ask you again: what causes animals to increase their pop. growth?

                I’ll give you a hint: the answer is not “emergent elites.”

                1. “So mysterious “elites” are controlling humanity’s sex drive? Really?”

                  “You can’t make a single post without grossly misrepresenting your opponent’s words can you?”

                  LOL I bet the irony is lost on the likes of you.

                  1. But that is what you said:

                    Growth of population is desired by the “emergent elite,”[…]

                    Population growth is a result of deliberate feeding and breeding for more soldiers and labor pool for the hierarchical elite playing their domination games of invading and occupying more land.

                    Can you just fucking answer the question?

                    1. Which other specie of animal has grown in population while it invaded and occupied the whole earth, annihilating other species to the point of being compared to a mass extinction by a meteor extinction event?

                      I don’t think squirrels have. Do you know any?

                      None? Then humans are the only ones that have been observed to have “emergent elite.”

                      Real simple, isn’t it?

                    2. Which other specie of animal has grown in population while it invaded and occupied the whole earth, annihilating other species to the point of being compared to a mass extinction by a meteor extinction event?

                      Irrelevant to the question. We are talking about what makes humans and animals grow in population. You seem to think that animals and humans do not procreate for the same reasons, when any evolutionary psychologist will tell you they do.

                      Animals grow when their environment and resources allow them to grow. There is no reason to think this does not happen with humans also. Thus there is no room for an explanation involving “elites” making billions of humans have babies.

                    3. Chimapanzees have been known to kill other chimpanzees and invade and attack other colonies for food and territory. Not only that, but the strucutre of these colonies are hierachial, and certain chimps have been observed organizing violent coups against the incumbent leader by providing grooming and other favors to the rest of the colony to build popular support.

                      So it’s pretty obvious that we aren’t the only species with a violent streak and you’re point is absurd.

                    4. I’m not talking about mere violence. We’re talking about constant population growth that annihilates natural Non-State human societies other species in a geologically-short, artificially-induced extinction level event as a consequence of the State.

              2. “their lives aren’t solitary, nasty, brutish, and short. Weird, eh?”

                But their wives are nasty, brutish & short.

        2. heller,
          It’s amusing making fun of troglodytes for some period of time, but you sound like you’re actually trying to present evidence.
          Dunno how much you’re dealt with fundies of other religions, but it’s not worth a lot of your time if you actually expect evidence to have an effect.

          1. It takes a dense rod to sharpen your blade sevo.

      3. BOOM!!! Jared Diamond. Called it.

      4. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

        I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

        Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

        Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

        Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

        He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

        So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

        1. Oh, okay!

          1. Rather, stfu already.

            1. Man, you rise to the bait easily!
              Don’t know what “Rather” is, sorry.

              But why do you feed the trolls? Is it a disease? Narcissism, maybe?

              1. It’s like porn addiction. You think YOU’RE the one in control at first. Then you find yourself staring at video of a 60 yo man fucking a cat at 3 a.m.

  26. Your blog gives us important information to take action.

  27. Why do they call this place “reason” with such horrible examples thereof? Jeeeesh!

    DRINK!!!

    1. Funny every time!

      1. Just like you, rather!

        1. Paranoid much? You can’t prove that I’m “rather,” and I can’t prove that I’m not! But it’s amusing–and by “amusing” I mean entertaining like a retarded child is entertaining–to watch you and your cohorts flail about, shooting at mirages and cursing the darkness. But hey…as long as you believe that I am someone who I am not, that’s all that matters. The real “rather,” if it exists at all, must be having a nice chuckle at your expense.

  28. I think White Indian just a grad student working out their thesis.
    Or performance art from a jezebel visitor.

  29. Heller, a self-professed microbiologist, was ROBBED. Really. Need a lawyer to sue to get your money back on that edumafication ya got?

    Heller sezzz: “But as I said above, evolution is neither pro- nor anti-diversity. So you’re WRONG.”

    Uh, huh.

    “Evolution can lead to greater biological diversity…”
    When Evolution Tends To Maximize The Diversity And Functioning Of Ecosystems
    ScienceDaily (Apr. 2, 2008)
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re…..212514.htm

    There ya have it folks. Next?

    1. Evolution can lead to greater biological diversity. It can also lead to less biological diversity. Thus evolution is neither pro- nor anti-diversity.

      But I said all this already, you’re just to dense to argue honestly.

      1. Unfortunately, you’re wrong. Evolution is all about diversity of species. And evolution isn’t about nuclear weapons, as you assert.

        I’d get a refund.

        1. Evolution is indeed all about diversity of species. But we are arguing whether it favors increases in diversity or does not favor either increase or decrease.

          White Indian|8.16.11 @ 6:58PM|#|show direct|ignore
          Civilization is anti-evolutionary.

          Evolution leads to diversity of life. Civilization leads to the Sixth Great Extinction.

          Again, nice attempt at moving the goalposts, but you fail miserably.

          1. I’m not moving any goal post. You posted assertions regarding evolution that are patently false. You got corrected. Deal with it.

            1. So your response to my argument, is “no, you’re wrong!”

              Can you actually point to an assertion you corrected? Because I have corrected your assertions, but you don’t seem able to respond to them. Projection, anyone?

              This is childish. I replied to your arguments, you haven’t replied to mine. Thanks for playing.

              1. I copied and pasted that response from you. LOL Alas, the irony is again lost on a dimwit.

                Go ahead, whack the chessboard when you’re losing and stomp off.

                I’d stomp off to get a refund.

                1. Just because you copied and pasted it from me doesn’t make it true for you. You haven’t corrected my assertions and you haven’t even responded to half of my points. You’ve lost and you know it.

                  1. Good grief, you’re a trip.

                    You said, “You’re WRONG.” Capitalized it. I have some fun and say it back to you…..

                    And now I’m lost. LOL

                    I’ve answered your stupid shit about evolution having nothing to do with diversity.

                    I’ve answered your stupid shit about nuclear weapons being one of the diverse species of evolution.

                    You were robbed on that “microbiology” education.

                    1. What you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

                    2. Is that your standard of a “reason”able retort? LOL

                    3. I’ve answered your stupid shit about evolution having nothing to do with diversity.

                      Evolution has everything to do with diversity, but it can increase or decrease diversity. I have said this from the beginning. You simply refuse to represent my argument honestly.

                      I’ve answered your stupid shit about nuclear weapons being one of the diverse species of evolution.

                      I never said that. If I did you could quote me, but you can’t. You must know that you are misrepresenting my words, or you are simply delusional.

                      That is why you’ve lost. You haven’t answered my arguments. You can’t even represent them correctly.

                    4. “Evolution has everything to do with diversity…”

                      Oh, now you’re going to quote me word for word – and call it your argument. Sweet.

                    5. I. Never. Said. Anything. To. The. Contrary. You braindead fuck.

                    6. And remember that you originally argued (and your entire argument is dependent on this) that the purpose of evolution is to increase diversity. That evolution has everything to do with diversity does not prove your original argument. It has everything to do with increasing AND decreasin diversity.

                    7. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

                      I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

                      Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

                      Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

                      Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

                      He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

                      So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

        2. “Unfortunately, you’re wrong. Evolution is all about diversity of species.”

          Heller, can’t pass it up:
          “The Cretaceous?Tertiary extinction event, which occurred approximately 65.5 million years ago (Ma) at the end of the Maastrichtian, was a large-scale mass extinction of animal and plant species in a geologically short period of time.”
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cretaceous?Tertiary_extinction_event
          No, bozo, evolution is all about what happened.

          1. Oh, now we’re back to evolution not being a theory that explains the origin and diversity of species to something that explains everything, including asteroids hitting the earth and nuclear weapons development.

            Like I said, you were robbed.

            1. Of course, bottleneck events like massive asteroids are not only a part of evolution, they are integral to evolution.

              1. Ah, changing what you said. Of course, bottle neck events are addressed in the theory of evolution.

                But you didn’t say that at first. Are you stupid or deliberately lying?

                You said: “No, bozo, evolution is all about what happened.”

                Hell, you’ve even told me evolution explains the “specie” of nuclear weapons.

                On that, you’re wrong. Keep it honest, won’t you?

                1. I did say it, right at the beginning of the discussion:

                  heller|8.16.11 @ 9:36PM|#|show direct|ignore
                  What the fuck? I’m not appealing to authority, I’m appealing to my own knowledge and expertise on the subject.

                  “It presented a body of evidence that the DIVERSITY of life arose by common descent through a branching pattern of evolution…The theory explains the DIVERSITY of living organisms and their adaptation to the environment.”

                  Yes, evolution explains why there are different species. That doesn’t mean that the purpose of evolution is to increase diversity. Evolution will increase diversity when environments are differentiated enough to force genetic changes. Evolution can also decrease diversity through population bottlenecks. So you can’t say that diversity is the purpose of evolution, since it explains both increases and decreases in diversity.

                  But you don’t know enough about the subject to understand that capitalizing the word diversity in a paragraph from Origin doesn’t prove your point.

                  So your first point is wrong.

                  You said: “No, bozo, evolution is all about what happened.”

                  No that was someone else. Try to keep up:

                  sevo|8.16.11 @ 11:19PM|#|show direct|ignore
                  “Unfortunately, you’re wrong. Evolution is all about diversity of species.”

                  Heller, can’t pass it up:
                  “The Cretaceous?Tertiary extinction event, which occurred approximately 65.5 million years ago (Ma) at the end of the Maastrichtian, was a large-scale mass extinction of animal and plant species in a geologically short period of time.”
                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cretaceous?Tertiary_extinction_event
                  No, bozo, evolution is all about what happened.

                  So your second point is wrong.

                  Hell, you’ve even told me evolution explains the “specie” of nuclear weapons.

                  Quote it if I said it! But you can’t because you’re a fucking liar!

                  Seriously, you’ve got nothing, just stop embarrassing yourself.

                  1. A microbiologist comes along and claims that nuclear weapons are one of the diverse species of evolution.

                    And also claims I’m embarrassing myself.

                    Whatever you say, pea-brain. LOL

                    1. So once again you have no response to what must be the hundredth time I’ve proven you wrong. I talked about bottlenecks in one of the first posts I wrote here. You said I never said anything about them. What is your excuse? You have no excuse, you are just going to move on to the next misrepresentation. This is idiotic.

                    2. “This is idiotic.”

                      Eco-fundy = ignoramus.
                      Amusing, but even your dense rod ain’t going make a blade sharp enough for, well, stupidity,

                    3. It’s idiotic alright.

                    4. I’m glad you agree. Does this mean you’ll start arguing like an adult?

                  2. Holy crap, heller has finally gone off the deep end.

                    1. rather, is it hard to scroll on your phone?

                2. “You said: “No, bozo, evolution is all about what happened.”
                  Yes.

                  “Hell, you’ve even told me evolution explains the “specie” of nuclear weapons.”
                  No, but your lack of reading skills is not at all surprising.

            2. But thanks for once again proving your ignorance of the subject.

            3. “Oh, now we’re back to evolution not being a theory that explains the origin and diversity of species to something that explains everything, including asteroids hitting the earth”
              Can you day ‘false equivalence’? I doubt you can, but you just did:

              “and nuclear weapons development.”

        3. Population bottlenecks actually REDUCE the diversity of species, this is rather evident from the observable trends in both human and other animal populations.

          And nuclear power (not neccesarily weaponized nuclear power) is no different than the invention of the wheel, so I’m not sure what you’re getting at when you say it’s not natural since either by design or accident we’re the only speices on this planet capable of complex thinking of that sort. What we do with it is the result of natural evolution of our knowledge.

          1. I’ve already been over this, he doesn’t want to accept it.

            1. Yeah, it’s kind of hard to accept that nuclear weapons are one of the wonderfully diverse species that evolved.

              1. Can you quote me saying that?

                1. heller|8.16.11 @ 9:12PM|# Nuclear weapons are indeed a result of the evolutionary process.

                  Which origin of the species did you read, heller? The one from the crackerjack box?

                  1. So you can’t find a quote of me saying that nuclear weapons are an evolved species? Thanks for proving me right.

                    1. Evolution has to do with life and species – not nuclear weapons.

                      Thanks for proving yourself totally dishonest and stupid at the same time.

                    2. How about you answer the question: So you can’t find a quote of me saying that nuclear weapons are an evolved species?

                    3. What else other than living organisms, the species, is evolution about?

                      We can put two and two together, heller.

                      Evolution is about the biological diversity of the species.

                      And then you come up with a totally asinine: heller|8.16.11 @ 9:12PM|# Nuclear weapons are indeed a result of the evolutionary process.

                      Then we watch you weave and backtrack. You later say nuclear weapons were from an evolved species mind.

                      Well, that doesn’t hold water, because you previously said the State was not from evolution, which in your parlance, means it must not be from an evolved species mind.

                      Maybe non-evolutionary a priori space aliens furnished it?

                      You’re digging yourself deeper, heller.

                    4. It’s simple: is the ability of certain jellyfish to glow in the dark a “living organism or species?” Is a bird’s nest a “living organism or species?” No, yet both of these things are a result of the evolutionary process. Jellyfish evolved to make proteins that allow them to glow. Birds evolved the instinct to create a nest. Humans evolved brains that allow them to create things like nuclear weapons.

                      Well, that doesn’t hold water, because you previously said the State was not from evolution, which in your parlance, means it must not be from an evolved species mind.

                      Quote me saying that the state was not from evolution.

                      Remember that this all came from you asking the question “Are nuclear weapons the next step in evolution?” I answered that they are the result of the next step in evolution: the technological ability of the human mind. I was defending technology and civilization from your claim that it was anti-evolutionary. I don’t need to defend the state as being evolutionary or not, why would I?

                    5. Also, I have never backtracked on a single thing I said. I have consistently repeated the same position on evolution, even though you said I flip-flopped on what it has to do with diversity.

                      I consistently repeated that nuclear weapons come from the evolved human mind, even though you claimed I said nuclear weapons were a “species.”

                      Now you are claiming that I said the State is not from the evolved mind, when I never said that.

                      So why should I take you seriously when you have misrepresented what I’ve said in every other post you make?

                    6. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

                      I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

                      Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

                      Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

                      Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

                      He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

                      So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

                    7. “We can put two and two together”

                      Yeah, and consistently come up with an answer of five. Or maybe three. Or any answer except four, ’cause that’s a Doubleplusbad answer.

          2. …”nuclear power (not neccesarily weaponized nuclear power) is no different than the invention of the wheel, so I’m not sure what you’re getting at when you say it’s not natural since either by design or accident we’re the only speices on this planet capable of complex thinking of that sort.”…

            You’re presuming our new nut-case can form consistent thoughts. Bad assumption; see nut-cases’ rants on mud mama. WI is a sort of a strange offshoot of troglodyte eco-fundy.

    2. So, when a species dies out naturally because it is maladapted, that isn’t evolution leading to less biological diversity?

  30. Agricultural = agRICKultuROLL

    1. LOL Love it, clever!

      1. imposter

        1. Honey… are you still trolling on the internet? Come to bed, already.

    2. Well I’m convinced!

      1. White Indian is displaying classic symptoms of Aspergers.

        1. Ah yes, the Soviet ability to diagnose psychological problems, just because they say so. So “reason”able.

          1. Drink? Drink!

        2. Oh god I sure hope not?I don’t want to be linked with this asswipe, even if only by sharing the same DSM-IV diagnosis.

        3. Don’t besmirch Aspies; White Indian is a psychopath.

  31. Uncontrolled anger can lead to acts of violence. (Genesis 4:5-8) A violent person cannot be God’s friend. (Psalm 11:5; Proverbs 22:24, 25) It is wrong to take revenge or to return evil for the bad things that others might do to us.?Proverbs 24:29; Romans 12:17-21.

  32. I nominate:

    “We’re talking about constant population growth that annihilates natural Non-State human societies other species in a geologically-short, artificially-induced extinction level event as a consequence of the State.”

    As an archetype of eco-stupidity.
    Do I have a second?

    1. Funny how being against the State is “eco-stupidity.” Only on “Reason.”

      1. “Funny how being against the State is “eco-stupidity.” Only on “Reason.””

        Funny how being an ignorant troglodyte is, well, a symptom of eco-stupidity.

      2. Funny how that’s not what sevo said but you are representing him as saying that. Actually it’s not funny, it’s just pathetic and predictable.

        1. Funny, but you’re too stupid to realize the State is just a facet, and inseparable part, of the agricultural City-State (civilization.)

          I’m against the State – the whole of it – and get called “eco-stupidity.”

          The misrepresentation is on your side, not mine.

          1. Colorless green ideas sleep furiously

            Colorless green ideas sleep furiously

            Colorless green ideas sleep furiously

          2. Funny, but you’re too stupid to realize the State is just a facet, and inseparable part, of the agricultural City-State (civilization.)

            Not according to Elman Service. See Origins of the State and Civilization.

            I’m against the State – the whole of it – and get called “eco-stupidity.”

            You are against the State and Civilization. The two are not synonymous.

        2. Colorless green ideas sleep furiously!

          Colorless green ideas sleep furiously!

          Colorless green ideas sleep furiously!

  33. And, as added evidence, we now have the nut-case quoting the bible:

    White Indian|8.17.11 @ 12:00AM|#
    “Uncontrolled anger can lead to acts of violence. (Genesis 4:5-8)”

    Hey, jackoff, why not tell us about the parting of the seas?

    1. That’s not me, it’s somebody else quoting the Bible.

      1. My father married a pure Cherokee;
        My mother’s people were ashamed of me.
        The Indians said I was white by law;
        The White Man always called me “Indian Squaw.”

        1. Please, Mother. Cover the Little Beaver, and let us speak no more of this.

          Shhhhh, now. Shhhhhhh.

          1. Heh. Oh, I covered that little beaver, all right…

    2. Sounds like a spoof.

      1. Could be a spoof. But it’s only because the troglodyte doesn’t have a text for the mud mama.

  34. I’m a stupid moron with an ugly face and a big butt and my butt smells and I like to kiss my own butt

  35. What I learned today:

    Libertarians typically fawn over and defend the City-State and all its aspects of behavior as much as any Neo-Con.

    The only thing that separates the NeoCon from the Libertarian is…well…that’s getting really hard to decipher.

    Libertarians definitely don’t like Non-State societies, as determined by sociopolitical typography.

    They’re in love with the agricultural City-State sociopolitical typography.

    I think Neo-Cons glory in the aggression of the City-State, and Libertarians have a bit of guilt about it, and thus develop complicated fantasies of how they’re going to ameliorate that abuse.

    Of course, their fantasies are just that, unrealistic fantasies, and nothing ever happens. The abuse goes on, and the ever-constant fantasies act as a pacifier, a conscience-assuaging pablum for those who are deeply beholden to the system of domination and abuse.

    1. What I learned today:
      ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

      FIFY

    2. Wow why am I not surprised that everything you said is completely and utterly wrong?

      1. Why am I not surprised that you’d say something sophomoric like that?

        1. Colorless green ideas sleep furiously

        2. I couldn’t tell you, not being familiar with the minds of the insane.

        3. Honey… are you still trolling on the internet? Come to bed, already.

        4. Honey… are you still trolling on the internet? Come to bed, already.

          1. We’re not actually a part of this joke string. It’s just that we haven’t had any real work since the mid-’70s, and figured a quick mention couldn’t hurt, y’know…?

    3. Correction: sociopolitical typology

  36. “Where have you gone, oh, Jay Silverheels?
    Our casinos turn their lonely eyes to you,
    Woo-woo-woo.”

  37. Libertarians definitely don’t like Non-State societies, as determined by sociopolitical typography.

    He determined that from the font we used? Typography

    1. Comic Sans is the only font that isn’t statist.

    2. Sociopolitical typology. My bad. Thanks for catching that.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S…..l_typology

      I suppose I was getting the “graphy” from “ethnographic.” Anyway.

      typology typology ethnography ethnography

      all fixed LOL

      1. Oh man, this is priceless. You’re using Elman’s typology? You do know that the central point of his Origins of the State and Civilization: The Process of Cultural Evolution is that the state is not a necessary element for civilization to develop. Which goes against your whole City-State, marxism = libertarianism bullshit.

        1. Yeah, while I tend to think Whitey is a real (albeit insane) troll, I don’t believe he has ever actually finished any book by Service or Sahlins. Maybe he read a Wikipedia page about them? Or perhaps watched a PBS special about “Guns, Germs and Steal”?

          1. Could be, but “Guns….” is weak tea anyhow.
            Maybe mud mama freak *did* read it.

  38. Anyone here want to see Custer On Ice, tomorrow night? I have a pair of tickets, but I’m scalping them.

    1. You know what? I gave them to you. But now I want them back.

  39. i>The fascist state is not a technology and is irrelevant to the discussion.

    Actually, it is, technically.

    1. In our discussion we were separating attributes from the State (example: fascism) from attributes of Civilization (technology).

      1. In our discussion we were separating attributes from the State (example: fascism) from attributes of Civilization (technology).

        But, of course, “the state” is an attribute of Civilization…and it is a technology.

  40. … oh, but on the other hand: I guess it’s too late for me to start having reservations now, isn’t it?

    1. Buy a house. It’ll be your 1/3 acre reservation. 😉

      1. Oh but unfortunately you won’t have Indian Health services. You have to be exploited by a large corporation to get that.

  41. Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

  42. Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

  43. This White Idiot asshole reminds me of the paleolithic food idiot that turned up in an “organic” food topic a while back, who kept bitching about the invention of agriculture.

    1. WI is just doing what people think invasive species do: shows up unannounced, populates the threads with its incoherent rantings to the point where those rants become one of the dominant species, and resists efforts to control and curtail it by reasoned species.

      It’s tragically funny. I’ve gotta wonder why it bothers. This isn’t exactly the sort of environment that’s nourishing to its kind.

    2. Actually, I’m just PMSing over the recent revelation that Johnny Depp is no longer slated to play my mom on the big screen, is all.

      My bad, people.

      1. Ronald Bailey, et al: Stop feeding the troll!

        I outted him over a week ago as an adherent of Malthusians Jared Diamond and Marshall Sahlins, and a probable member of the Global Footprint Network. Either that, or he is an excellent sockpuppet.

        Global Footprint Network is an eco-crazy, Malthusian, “sustainability” group that advocates exactly what he has been blathering about. Same language. Same concepts. I knew that I had heard his brand of bullshit before.

        Their grand thesis is that to sustain our current lifestyle, human beings “would require 1.4 planets”, and they advocate a return to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

        Only problem is, it takes about 10 square miles to support each person living as a hunter-gatherer. If 6.8 billion of us tried to live like that, we would need not 1.4 planets, but 18 (54 if we couldn’t exploit the ocean). This would reduce the world population to between 126 and 378 million. Apparently the idea is that the other 6.6 billion of us can just go quietly die somewhere.

        He also claimed that he used to lead the “Vegas-Vail-Acapulco private-bizjet lifestyle”, but that he dropped off the grid in disgust.

        So, Malthusian, sockpuppet, or Jared Loughner’s long-lost brother. Either way, you are giving him exactly what he wants.

  44. As a public service, someone should hang a warning label on White Indian. It should read: “Do not combine me with the Reason drinking game. May be hazardous to your liver.”

  45. In our discussion we were separating attributes from the State (example: fascism) from attributes of Civilization (technology).
    Nike Free 3.0 v3 Womens Running Shoes 2011 New Arrival – Pink/White Logo
    Nike Free 3.0 v3 Womens Running Shoes 2011 New Arrival – Blue/Red/White Logo

    1. That sounds very familiar, bot.

  46. Did I say that enough times? Pale Rider is
    a. troll
    b. sockpuppet
    c. certifiable

    DO. NOT. ENGAGE.

    1. I’ll say it’s “certifiable”…

    2. You’re not the boss of me!

  47. To sum up:

    “White Indian” cast some delicious bait and “heller” nibbled on it all night long. Nobody won this virtual battle (nobody ever does), and one person (“Kant feel Pietzsche”) demanded several times that they stop immediately (they didn’t). Eventually everyone went to bed, got up, read this tidy summation, and repeated the performance in a future thread. Nothing else happened.

    1. I was really hoping someone’s dog had been shot by now. Damn.

      1. White Indian sure acts like their dog was not only shot, but subsequently run over several times afterwards. By agriculture-city-state-lovin’ cops no less.

        1. I forgot to mention that “heller” thinks everyone who mocks him must be something called “rather.” Now…nothing else happened.

  48. Where does Mr. Natural fit in all this?

    1. Whereabouts of Mr. Natural?

      Funny you should ask. The photograph of ‘pristine nature’ (shown yesterday) just suspiciously looked to me to be a spot about 25 minutes from a greasy diner that serves a corned-beef-and-cabbage-special on Wednesdays. My mouth has been watering since yesterday just thinking about cabbage-and-butter and Mr. Natural’s astute observance of the finer things in life. If I remember correctly, it’s “A stroke of sheer brilliance!” (RE: steamed cabbage and butter). This is Wed, and if the ‘ol Natch were around, I’d say he’s about 25 minutes away (from photo origin).

      BTW, fishing sucks at that spot in the photo.

  49. Was the question ever answered as to whether a Non-State society could be built on rock and roll?

    1. According to StARShip, only CITY-states are built on R&R.

  50. Give me a break. Most people who enjoy the wilderness aren’t going there and counting the native trees. We’re trying to escape all the shitty humans we’re forced to live with in the city. I don’t give a shit if the city of LA has more tree variety now, it also has a greater variety of assholes.

    1. That’s a swell point, and I was actually just thinking about something similar. I don’t think nature in the end is what we’re trying to protect. What we’re trying to protect is places owned by no one, places where you ain’t a trespasser just because you don’t have the money to own it. I think that, really, is what people are trying to protect.

  51. “African cheetahs might chase after pronghorns, and elephants graze where mastodons once did.”

    Even the deepest parts of the central plains are far from unpopulated. I don’t know if that’s surprising to the coastal types who come up with these schemes. Maybe we should say it louder: Yo! Coasties! People *live* out on the Kansas and Colorado plains!

    Re-populating areas with top-level predators has always sounded like a dubious idea to me. Cheetahs?

    Do you really want an animal that can hit top speeds over 70 mph deciding that your child or your pet looks like a tasty meal? You don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of stopping or escaping one unless you are armed with a gun.

    1. Which thankfully most plains folk are! 😉

  52. I figured it out! White Indian is Ward Churchill!

    1. Actually I don’t think Ward Churchill has ever been the same degree of “poseur” as a man who calls himself “White Indian.” Ffs man the guys call themselves by their tribal name!

  53. There’s a major contradiction in eco assumptions. If we can disturb the ecosystem, that means we are not part of it, and if we are not part of it, then how can we base our morality upon it?

    1. There’s a worse one:
      If humans are not part of “nature”, WIH did humans come from? And if so, why should humans care?
      I blame Rousseau. And various other religions.

    2. Any animal that is sufficiently successful disturbs the ecosystem, with the end result of evolution.

  54. It’s all just freaking evolution… WTH?

  55. Give me a break. Most people who enjoy the wilderness aren’t going there and counting the native trees.
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  56. Fact: Biodiverstiy and plant/animal habitat are decreasing at an exponential rate. Ecologists care about this, and would wish to do something about it – is that really so bad? This whole article is just nonsense. We don’t need a ‘baseline’ in the ecological past to tell us whether plant and animal life has value.

    1. Biodiversity naturally decreases on average once every 65 million years. It’s called a mass-extinction, and it has never been verified that every mass-extinction is caused the same way. 😉

  57. Biodiversity is in fact increasing. You can prove
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dVmwoR24rc

  58. While this article is wrong in many ways, it is interesting that it goes about its conclusion almost identically to how ecologists would, and since the ecologists have (as the article rightly points out) all the logical errors in this case, it is the ecologists who are clearly not only wrong, but without any basis or foundation whatsoever.

  59. The author’s argument simply boils down to this:
    man is part of nature,
    so by definition no matter what we do, it’s natural.

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