Open Thread (happy Thanksgiving.)

ct-bildwaaiwyofHello, my friends! Today we get to celebrate (one day early) the American holiday of Thanksgiving.

I don’t really like holidays, Thanksgiving included, though I wish I did. It seems like other people enjoy the holiday aesthetic, the turkeys and cranberries and Pilgrims and whatnot. They act like they do, anyway, but the things people do and the semi-mythic stories connected with the holiday seem so disconnected–why don’t cities have big communal feasts where they exchange gifts with the nearest Native American tribes? (Or if not cities, then churches or fraternal organizations.) I suppose it doesn’t help much that rather few of us today identify with either the Pilgrims or the Indians, and I imagine the Indians have rather mixed feelings about the day.

So what about you? What do you get out of Thanksgiving? Do you enjoy holidays?

picture-14cSome good news: Rates of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia appear to be declining among the elderly (one theory: fat may be protective, so getting fatter has made our old people smarter.)

In the intellectually exciting department: Underwater Stone Age Settlement Mapped Out:

Six years ago divers discovered the oldest known stationary fish traps in northern Europe off the coast of southern Sweden. Since then, researchers have uncovered an exceptionally well-preserved Stone Age site. They now believe the location was a lagoon environment where Mesolithic humans lived during parts of the year.

picture-15cAnd some food for thought: New Study links Church Attendance to ‘Conservative Theology’:

When asked to agree or disagree with the statement “Jesus rose from the dead with a real, flesh-and-blood body leaving behind an empty tomb” 93% of growing church pastors agreed, 83% of growing church attendees agreed, 67% of declining church attendees agreed, and just 56% of declining church pastors agreed.

When asked if “God performs miracles in answer to prayer” 100% of the growing church pastors agreed, 90% of the growing church attendees agreed, 80% of the declining church attendees agreed, and just 44% of the declining church pastors agreed.

And in the Anthropology department: How Gypsies have Moved from Fortune-Telling to Fervent Christianity:

Huge numbers of Gypsies and travellers in England now say they’ve joined a new movement called Light and Life. Those who join have given up drinking alcohol and fortune-telling, and many have even abandoned their traditional Catholic faith.

The Pentecostal movement, which is Gypsy-led, has grown rapidly in the past 30 years – it says up to 40% of British Gypsies belong to it. There’s no way to prove that claim, but most Gypsies and travellers will agree that there is a surge in people joining.

It’s centred on charismatic preaching, praying in tongues and miracle healing.

About 6,000 Gypsies and travellers attended to the Church’s UK convention.

On to Comment of the Week: We had some great posts on “Why are Mammals Brown? (and part 2)

with the thoughts you’d be thinking informs us that:

…seeds from plants that appeal to mammals in general tend to be dull coloured and smell, while seed that appeal to birds tend to be brighter and such. Avocados are an example of an evolutionary anachronism in that they evolved to be eaten by mammal mega fauna [that are now extinct.]

Robert M. Sykes:

Back in the 70s while I was at Union College, I had a biologist colleague who was interested in the vision of insects and birds. He used a tv camera to record flowers and other plants because the tv cameras then in use recorded will into the ultraviolet. Most flowers look quite different in the uv, and even some drab looking stuff (to us) really stand out in uv.

And Dave:

Chickens have five-color vision, so instead of a one-dimensional “rainbow” of hues, they see a three-dimensional hue-space (that is, not counting brightness and saturation).

The downside of this is that they are struck blind the moment the sun dips below the horizon.

Jefferson has an interesting perspective on Noah’s Twitter Deluge:

Torah is clear that Gnon/Hashem selects against density. Cain was a city builder (and farmer vs. shepherd), Abraham was super salty towards the cities he visited because he thought they might kill him to rape his wife. Furthermore, it’s not modernity, but the plenty that comes with it that we are warned against. “You will grow fat and kick,” Moses warned us. As we are relieved of a marginal existence in which our normal signalling is best suited (signaling material plenty indicates a genuine improved survival rate for offspring), holiness signaling replaces physical status signaling. …

And Tim P. clearly put a lot of thought into his response on What if Dems actually Know they’re Lying? His comment is long, so I’m only excerpting a piece of it and you can RTWT there:

…as stated in the OP, obviously a glut of labor (assuming an economy ‘operating at capacity’) will lead to greater opportunities for capital to exploit workers through breaking collective bargaining systems, driving down wages, cutting corners on safety and such, and this phenomenon has no a priori connection to immigrants of a particular ethnic background. It seems sensible to me to include immigration controls as part of a plan to slow the pace of economic change and give people a chance to get their feet under them so to speak. Bernie Sanders called open borders a “Koch brothers proposal” and I tend to agree.

However, I feel it would be a great moral calamity to uproot the lives of millions of people currently living in the US, some of whom have been here for decades, some of whom have no memory of another land or skills with which to make their way abroad. …

Well, happy day before Turkey day, everyone!

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16 thoughts on “Open Thread (happy Thanksgiving.)

  1. I loved all the holidays before things went crazy. Now it’s all about what they can con dumbasses into buying on credit.

    Now? We mostly sit ’em out. We did make a big deal out of them last year because myself and Ton2.0 where stateside for them. Hadn’t been the case in sometime.

    I’ll do more Christmas, Easter and Halloween stuff as Ton Spawn grows, but won’t do much in the way of gifts, and he’ll understand Christ was born in the spring and that Dec 25th was chosen as a way to compete with pagan festivals.

    Thanksgiving, as it is understood these days, is yankee propaganda, so fuck it. The Spanish did a Thanksgiving in Fla in like 1560 or some such. Many years before my forefathers had Thanksgiving in Jamestown, which was years before the pilgrims showed up.

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    • Whoa, whoa whoa. December 25th was not chosen to compete with any pagan festivals. Christmas is nine months to the day after the Feast of the Annunciation (March 25th), which is when the Virgin Mother was told by the angel Gabriel she would give birth to Jesus. The Feast of the Annunciation is on March 25th because that’s when Mary told the early Church (probably John, possibly Peter) it was.

      Now, yes, there’s some variation in the dates for Christmas (see: Copts, Orthodox) but that’s not because of any fundamental disagreement about the timing. Rather, it’s a difficulty of calendars and how long you celebrate Christmas. (The Western tradition of late has settled on the 25th and only the 25th instead of the more historically normal end-of-Advent-til-Epiphany).

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    • The insane iterations on holidays over the last ~20 years was a solid tip-off that our social environment was unmoored. Buying holiday accouterments on credit because one’s neighbor has turned his up to 11 suggests that we have an excess of purchasing power combined with overly restricted opportunities for safe status signaling.

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  2. However, I feel it would be a great moral calamity to uproot the lives of millions of people currently living in the US, some of whom have been here for decades, some of whom have no memory of another land or skills with which to make their way abroad. …….

    How about the calamity those fuckers wrought on us?

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    • I think you two are disagreeing about intentional vs. unintentional harm; diffuse vs. specific harm.
      IE, a child born here to illegal alien parents does not intend to do harm (it cannot “intend” to do anything, as it is an infant.) Nor does it cause direct, immediate harm to some specific person. The harm is spread over society, and due largely to government policies that spread such harm.
      Whereas deporting that child and their family may do specific, intentional, immediate harm.

      Intentional vs. unintentional harm is the difference between homicide and manslaughter, iirc.

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  3. I like Thanksgiving still, because it makes few demands on me. I ignore all the commercialism around it. I never shop for anything anyway.

    We always go to an uncle’s house for the big meal, and it’s just an hour away. Food is good! I get to see all the family on that side, who I rarely see otherwise, and they are all super-nice albeit flaming progs. I am curious what conversations will happen this year of Trump. Perhaps I can get some bets as to whether Trump will fire up the ovens, but I doubt it; they’re smarter than that. I think.

    Now, Christmas kind of sucks. I hate buying stuff for people just to have something to give. And I hate getting gifts that I don’t want just so that they can have something to give. I do like the eating part though.

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  4. Sorry to bother again. I wonder if there is any way to determine marital cheating? It is often assumed that men cheat quiet often and I wonder if there is any date (genetic or otherwise) to confirm this?

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      • I once got told by a geneticist that rape places little of a role in population genetics. Usualy the children concieved by raping foreign conquerers dont have a high survival rate. It is most times only marrieges that count. What is your opinion here?

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      • Aside from Genghis Khan, whose children seem to have done fine…

        Outright rape of the violent conquering army variety probably results in a lot of babies with their brains bashed out nine months later, or at least abandoned to die. I’d expect more survivors in a case where the conquering army takes a bunch of women as extra wives/concubines. We might also call this “rape,” but it’s obviously a different situation.

        There’s a big male DNA bottleneck around, IIRC, 8,000 years ago? When it looks like only a few of the men reproduced, at least in Europe, which implies a big conquering event with a few winners impregnating all of the women. And historically, it looks like something close to 80% of women typically managed to reproduce, vs. only 40% of the men (not historically as in 1800s, but going rather further back.) That 40/80 ratio was probably mostly consensual, but I’d wager also involved a lot of male-on-male violence.

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  5. Some things about Nrx do surprise me. For instance why does Ozymandias from Thing of Things get quiet a bit of attention and respect in the Nrx sphere? He/she/it seems to be a rathe typical SJW but the standart SJW beliefs (besides didnt he/she/it claim that only feminists should be able to participate in a debate on gender because all others believe “crap”?). Is it because He/she/it isnt as hysterical as other SJW? Or just because everything asociated with SSC is in some way sacred to Nrx?

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    • I was not aware that Ozymandias gets much attention/respect around NRx. (Perhaps I hadn’t noticed?) I have read one of their essays and disagreed with it pretty fundamentally. Perhaps someone who has read more than me can answer 🙂

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