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View Diary: Romney couldn't order a hamburger without insulting the ketchup or the mustard. If not both. (304 comments)

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  •  and doesn't have anything to do with Darwin (5+ / 0-)

    himself. He gets blamed for it, though.

    We're not perfect, but they're nuts! -- Barney Frank

    by Tamar on Mon Jul 30, 2012 at 10:15:28 AM PDT

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    •  People who thought they understood Darwin (5+ / 0-)

      saw in Social Darwinism an answer to the eternal question of conservatism: "How can I justify selfishness?".

      In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra En théorie, il n'y a aucune différence entre théorie et pratique, mais en pratique, il y a toujours une différence. - Yogi Berra

      by blue aardvark on Mon Jul 30, 2012 at 10:21:11 AM PDT

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      •  Yes -- misuse and abuse of a theory that had (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bythesea, blue aardvark, Matt Z

        nothing to do with how well people do economically.
        And "fittest" never meant smarter, or better, or harder working, etc. It meant best fit to the environmental niche.
        A fellow student, when I was in grad school, responded to my envy for her fast metabolism that kept her so nice and thin, that if there were a food shortage, my slower metabolism would help me survive far better than her. One is not better than the other across the board. It depends on the specifics.

        We're not perfect, but they're nuts! -- Barney Frank

        by Tamar on Mon Jul 30, 2012 at 11:06:54 AM PDT

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        •  The other very very very important thing (4+ / 0-)

          is that it is a random process and fitness can be very very arbitrary. One example: if you have an ocean where no one can see color, and there is one fish that is in every imaginable way the fittest species going - but their eggs are bright red, and one totally inferior little vermin evolves the ability to see color - super fish goes extinct while vermin flourishes. A species can go extinct because of one flaw that is relatively unimportant in the big picture but a predator evolves a way to take advantage of it for one or two generations.

          Another random example: genetic mutation occurs in an egg. The Fish Before Whom All Other Fish Shall Tremble pops out of that egg. And swims 1 meter and gets bagged by a predator before those superior genes get passed along.

          Romney economics: Feed our seed corn to the fattest pigs and trust them to poop out jobs.

          by blue aardvark on Mon Jul 30, 2012 at 11:27:01 AM PDT

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          •  very good and very interesting point. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            blue aardvark, Matt Z

            The other day (this is totally off-topic, BTW) I was wondering whether there was a way birds could have evolved into the highest intelligence on earth. Could wings have made it impossible for them to evolve past a certain point? Does evolution depend on developing one set of limbs to do fine motor work while the other set gets you to where you're going?

            We're not perfect, but they're nuts! -- Barney Frank

            by Tamar on Mon Jul 30, 2012 at 11:48:34 AM PDT

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            •  I think a certain amount of brain matter (2+ / 0-)

              is required to be intelligent. And it would be difficult to get that amount of brain matter airborne.

              Romney economics: Feed our seed corn to the fattest pigs and trust them to poop out jobs.

              by blue aardvark on Mon Jul 30, 2012 at 11:51:00 AM PDT

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              •  maybe. But parrots have significantly less (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                blue aardvark, Matt Z

                brain matter than dogs, for example. But I'd bet on a parrot being smarter any day. (even though I'm a dog person and love my two dogs dearly, they can't do what some parrots I know can do.)

                We're not perfect, but they're nuts! -- Barney Frank

                by Tamar on Mon Jul 30, 2012 at 12:04:04 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

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