Monday, December 30, 2002


THE CLONING SCARE

By: Tim Gillin

I think all this clone stuff is a storm in a teacup, ... or just maybe a cheap and easy way to play for Christian conservative votes whilst ignoring them on everything else.

My guess is when someone does it we will wonder what all the fuss was about. The clone won't be a chip of the old block in terms of personality or individuality and when grown up probably won't give a damn about all the people 'standing up for the rights of the clone'. I want to hear a clone's opinion on cloning before we ban it !!! Not all this anti-clone talk from non-clones. Isn't that racist??

Todays grown up test tube babies don't care about the fuss way back in 1978 when the first test tubers were born. IVF is pretty common today, although there were folk saying test tube babies would not have a soul (see here).

Assuming cloning is even possible, a big IF, you have to remember the source cells from an adult have accumulated a lifetime's worth of mutations, so they would be even less alike than natural identical twins, ... and once born certainly would have their own identity and personality. Cloning could be of benefit to agriculture (they will just have to try it and see, no one can predict this stuff beforehand) and may assist childless couples.

The odd dictator or millionaire may try it out but so what? These guys try to brainwash their own kids anyway at private schools etc and it doesn't always work, and I don't recall any famous tag teams of identical twin dictators or millionaires from history. In fact they are conspicuous by their absence. Maybe the other twin knows the powerful twin's secrets too well !!

I suspect the whole thing is a make work exercise by the ethics police. There was a great hue and cry in the 19th century about the use of anaesthesia in child birth. Somewhere in the bible there is some passage about the pain of birth. So it was seen as 'unnatural' to have painless child birth, until Queen Victoria made it fashionable. A lot of these "it-ain't-natural" things remind me of this ... Maybe if a Lady Di clone existed.. (no let's not go there!!)

Some of the story is outlined here and here

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Wednesday, December 25, 2002

PROFESSOR SHOCKLEY’S EXPERIMENT

(Reproduced from: Mankind Quarterly, Vol. XXXVII, No. 1, Fall 1996).

Glayde Whitney
Florida State University, Tallahassee

One of the experiments that Professor Shockley suggested to the National Academy of Sciences at its Spring Meeting of 1968 ("Proposed research to reduce racial aspects of the environment-heredity uncertainty") has been conducted; the results are in, but you won't hear about it in the mainstream media. If recent history is a guide we will first wish the results the death of silence. Pretend they do not exist. If that fails, then yell and scream and call names. Outrage at insensitivity; heap acrimony upon ad hominem (see Pearson, 1991).

The unfortunate truth that no one was particularly hoping for is completely at odds with the revealed wisdom of the egalitarian left: when black babies are adopted into middle class bright white families they grow up to function intellectually and emotionally like blacks.

Professor William Bradford Shockley (1910-1989), you will recall, was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1956. That was for research conducted at Bell Telephone Laboratories where he was director of solid- state physics research. It was in 1948 that his three-man research team created the point contact transistor; Shockley personally invented the junction transistor, the analog and the junction field-effect transistor, thus ushering in the age of solid state electronics. He and his co-workers shared the Nobel Prize. Shockley left the Bell Laboratories in 1958 and in 1963 was appointed to a named chair at Stanford University. From the mid-'60s until his death in 1989 he devoted much of his scientific efforts to questions of heredity, intelligence, and the welfare of western civilization. He spoke out repeatedly against the "entrenched dogmatism" which prevented open discussion and unbiased research concerning some of the most important issues facing our civilization.

For his humanitarian efforts he was excoriated by the left-leaning press and "politically correct" academic scientists alike (Pearson, 1992). While it has become de rigueur to complain about an uninformed and biased media, they merely reflect a deeper problem. The power to destroy civilization lies with the scientists and intellectuals, our modern secular priesthood, who have given up the canons of science - objective observation of the real world combined with honest reporting - in order to accomodate the dogmas of a secular religion. An irrational ideological zealotry that emphasizes the dogmas of socialism at the expense of scientific knowledge has already brought about the downfall of one of the two great superpowers. Can we be far behind if we pervert truth to follow the precepts of the same secular religion?

Roger Pearson has well summarized Shockley's thesis, which scared the political Left. It was simple: intelligence is a quality which is of prime importance to humankind in the struggle to survive - but it is not evenly distributed between individuals and races. The available scientific evidence indicated that the level of an individual's intelligence is predominantly determined by heredity, and also that the less intelligent members of the American population are reproducing more quickly than those genetically better endowed in this vital area of human competency:

Shockley's attempts to bring these facts to the attention of the public, and his campaign for a top-level, government-funded scientific enquiry into the question of human quality, was anathema to liberals and to those on the political Left. The liberals felt that his ideas challenged the doctrine of equality to which they were wedded, and the political Left quickly recognized that they challenged their traditional argument that poverty was due solely to class (and race) exploitation rather than, as Shockley implied, the low intelligence of the inhabitants of the inner city slums who were unable to find employment they could handle in the increasingly technical world of modern America. (Pearson, 1992, p. 18).

It was in the 1960s that the Great Society's War on Poverty got going, in the 1960s that Arthur Jensen first got into trouble for pointing out that Head Start programs had not been successful in raising the intelligence of black youth, and in 1968 that Shockley suggested a "research proposal that might reduce the environment-heredity uncertainty regarding racial differences".

Shockley's Proposal
Shockley told the Academy "I have heard that the drastic environmental change of adoption from a Negro slum into a middle-class New York Jewish family has actually occurred for some 70 orphans."(Shockley, 1968, p. 102). Of Course. The adoption design is the closest that you can come with humans (for ethical reasons) to conventional scientific procedures for separating genetic from environmental causes of the traits of individuals. It's the human analog of the cross-fostering experiment: Take a Pit Bull puppy and have it be raised by a Cocker Spaniel mom (and dad) in a Cocker Spaniel-provided home and social milieu. If the Pit Bull grows up to think like a Cocker Spaniel, or to act like a Cocker Spaniel, then you know that the environment of rearing influenced the traits in question. Now, if the radical environmental change of cross-fostering does not change the Pit Bull into a Cocker Spaniel, then what hope is there for the less drastic and less complete interventions of Head Start and other "enrichment" type programs?

Since 1965 over $5.4 Trillion dollars have been spent in the Great Society War on Poverty (Rector & Lauber, 1995), and we find ourselves bracing for the arrival of the Super Predators (Dilulio, 1995). In the meantime, Shockley's experiment has been conducted, more or less, and the results are in.

Adoption Study
For the experiment we are indebted to the eminent child psychologist Dr. Sandra Scarr (recent President of the American Psychological Society and a Past President of the Behavior Genetics Association, among other accolades), and her colleagues (Scarr & Weinberg, 1976). The experiment began in the early '70s when Scarr and her original collaborator Richard Weinberg were faculty at the University of Minnesota. They have pointed out that "The intellectual and social climate of Minnesota is generally conducive to liberal and humanitarian movements such as interracial adoption" (p.727 ).

In 1966 an influential organization named the Open Door Society of Minnesota was formed by adoptive parents of black children. The founding president of the Open Door Society was a leading columnist for a Minneapolis daily newspaper who frequently wrote about his multiracial family. In this auspicious social climate Scarr recruited 101 families that lived within a 150-mile radius of the Twin Cities (Minneapolis-St.Paul) metro area. Many of the participating families were recruited through the Newsletter of the Open Door Society.

The 101 families included 321 children who were 4 years of age or older when originally tested in the 1970s. There were 145 biological offspring and 176 adoptees, of whom 130 were black and 25 white. The remaining 21 consisted of children of Asian, American Indian, and Latino ancestry. Further, many of the "black" adopted children could be grouped as to whether they had 2 black biological parents (black/black kids) or one black and one white biological parent (black/white kids).

When originally evaluated the average age of the children was seven, and the results were happily reported in many media outlets and reviewed in many standard psychology and child development or educational psychology textbooks. A follow-up study was conducted 10 years later, at an average children's age 17 (Weinberg, Scarr, & Waldman, 1992). Don't expect to see the results of the follow-up study in the textbooks or the mainline liberal media.

National Dilemma
The national dilemma that provides the backdrop for Professor Shockley's experiment is the large gap between black's and white's average intelligence. It is important to note that among serious scholars the IQ gap has never been an issue: It is the reason for the gap - cultural deprivation, genetic differences, etc.- that has been the issue. The racial gap in average IQ is large and important: About 15 points separate the black average of 85 from a white average of about 100. These 15 points represent about one standard deviation of the bell curve of the intelligence distribution. From this it follows that only about 16% of blacks equal or exceed the average of whites, thus by white standards fully 84% of blacks are of below average intelligence. The racial discrepancy is larger the further one gets from the average - blacks are very much over represented among the intellectually disabled and very much under represented among the exceptionally gifted.

These facts are essentially what is behind the perceived need for affirmative action and other black preferential social policies, although it is generally quite incorrect to mention outside the confines of the ivory tower - as Charles Murray discovered in the firestorm of criticism for having written (with the late Richard Herrnstein) The Bell Curve.

Faced with the racial gap, as well as a wide range of individual differences within each race, the egalitarian priesthood has waged one of the most successful disinformation campaigns in the annals of modern propaganda. IQ went from being one of the brightest stars in the firmament of applied psychology to being deemed useless, misleading, evily oppressively racist, and even outlawed in many settings. (If the race is important and Cocker Spaniels regularly run substantially faster than do Pit Bulls, then viciously attack the stop watch). Antidotes to the ideological zealotry include The Bell Curve (Herrnstein & Murray, 1994), as well as Arthur Jensen's Bias in Mental Testing (1980) and Stanley Burnham's America's Bimodal Crisis (1993). Of course intelligence is important and of course IQ well predicts performance in many settings.

Childhood Results: Environments Matter [Blacks will be Whites]
Against this anguishing national (and international) backdrop Scarr and Weinberg (1976) reported that when evaluated at an average age of seven, the 99 black and interracial children adopted in the first year of life had average IQ scores of 110. Wonderful. The egalitarian liberals literally jumped for joy. Quickly into virtually all the introductory textbooks in the relevant fields went the findings and the interpretation: Blacks raised in the favorable home and cultural milieu provided by bright middle class white parents not only did well, they actually did substantially better than the national average for whites. Clearly the interpretation was that the abysmal conditions and performance of blacks in general was correctable by the liberal agenda of environmental treatments. Improve the home environments, schools, and general social milieu of blacks and their intellectual performance will substantially benefit. Scarr and Weinberg (1976) interpreted their results thusly: "One reason for the substantial increase in test performance of the black and interracial adoptees is that their rearing environments are culturally relevant to the tests and to the school .... [the] black children in this study have been fully exposed to the culture of the tests and the school,"(p. 737). "There is no question that adoption constitutes a massive intervention, as noted earlier, and that it has a favorable impact on IQ" (p. 738). "The major findings of the study support the view that the social environment plays a dominant role in determining the average IQ level of black children" (p. 739). Of such findings and interpretations are myths created and liberal heroes made.

Although not emphasized, usually not even mentioned in the secondary reports, there were disquieting patterns in the data of the seven year olds. And in fairness to Sandra Scarr and Richard Weinberg it should be noted that they presented the data in an apparently unbiased manner; they are of course free to emphasize whatever interpretations they find appropriate for whatever reasons. The final words of their 1976 report are "that both social and genetic variables contribute to individual variation among them" (p.739).

Other critics found in the study results which were interpretable from a genetic perspective. For instance, the adoptees with two black biological parents (b/b kids) averaged IQ of 98.6; for b/w adoptees the value was 109.0, while white adoptees (w/w) had average IQs of 111.5 and the biological offspring of these unusual middle class parents averaged 116. Well. Here we have approximately 13 IQ points difference, not so far different from the 15 points that separates blacks from whites in the general population: [w/w 111.5] - [b/b 98.6] = 12.9

Give the b/b a dose of white genetic parentage (b/w) and the average IQ goes up about 10 points. Raised in a white family environment so advantageous that the children born to those white families average an IQ of 116, b/b adoptees only manage an average of 98.6. Of such politically incorrect observations are doubts made.

Well, answered the authors, in effect, no single experimental study is perfect in all respects and this one is no exception. There were unfortunate confounding variables in the data that could perhaps have been responsible for the discrepancies. For example, b/b kids tended to have been placed for final adoption somewhat later than others, thus perhaps early perinatal experiences were somehow detrimental to IQ, or, perhaps "expectancy effects" were at play and parents adopting b/b kids didn't expect as much of them as from b/w or w/w kids.

The possibilities for equivocation are seemingly endless. But, however, it seemed clear that the b/b value of 98.6 was higher than the black population average of 85, and 98.6, by golly, is awfully close to the general population average value of 100. Bottom line for the interpretations widely accepted from the study conducted at average age seven: Environments matter and "good" environments like those provided by bright white middle class parents increased the IQs of black children. In other words, Pit Bull puppies raised by Cocker Spaniels acted like Cocker Spaniel puppies. But what of their behavior as adults?

Limits of the Family Influence
While questions of racial inequalities and what to do about them, or indeed, what can be done about them, have been festering in the national agenda, quite remarkable progress has been made in the general sciences that deal with human development and behavior genetics. From new data have come new and quite surprising interpretations. The new data are mostly from studies of adoptees evaluated when they are adults, rather than as in most older studies where adopted children were studied in childhood. Also there are many new data concerning adult twins, raised together or raised apart, and other kinds of family arrangements. It now seems that for many physical and psychological traits, including measures of personality, intelligence, and psychopathology, identical twins that have been raised apart in different families resemble one another very closely in adulthood. At the same time, adoptees, although sharing a common family environment across many years, do not resemble each other in adulthood. Quite amazing and quite surprising, even to the scientists who have conducted the studies.

Geneticist David Rowe in his recent book The Limits of Family Influence (Rowe, 1994) points out that: Mmost people believe that different rearing experiences have something to do with differences in the way children turn out. ....... A social scientist opposing this cultural belief would be dismissed as uninformed and possibly dangerous. In response, many people would recount stories from their own lives. Social scientists would mention the massive research literature showing influences of rearing on behavioral development. Nonetheless, many societies once accepted a flat earth; both experts and cultural beliefs, on some occasions, may be wrong. ( p. 1).

This is pretty heady stuff, and Dr. Sandra Scarr has herself been an influential theorist in these new directions.

The traditional view in the social sciences, with roots in centuries-old philosophical speculations, has been that family environments, the social fabric in which individuals grow up, have important and lifetime cumulative influences on how the individuals turn out. Different societies or social class experiences caused differences among the individuals that grew up in them.

The problem has always been that by-and-large genetically different people raise their children in their own differing ways, so that when the children grow up to resemble their family and to be different from others, it was impossible to separate the genes from the environments as causes of individual differences. To put it somewhat crassly, it has been known for centuries that, in general, poverty and stupidity tend to go together. The liberal catechism has taken it as central that poverty causes stupidity.

However, that may be mostly, if not entirely, wrong. To an important extent stupidity causes poverty, and the "root cause" may be largely genetic. Such heretical thoughts are usually branded as evil, even "racist", by the enforcers of liberal ideological orthodoxy. But science accumulates knowledge, sometimes even in hostile intellectual environments. It takes a cross-fostering experiment - an adoption study, to separate genes and family experiences as causes of individuality. Now that a number of such studies have been done, the newly emerging interpretations run something like the following:

In childhood, adopted children tend to correlate somewhat with the parents who are raising them. This is because children are very importantly under the care, guidance, and coercion of their parents. At average age seven or ten, whether a child plays the piano or shoots hoops on a street corner, depends largely on the interests and involvement of the parents. Does the child know and enjoy camping, fishing and the great outdoors, or music, concerts and the symphony, or beer, booze and dope? It depends very much on what the parents are into and to what the parents expose the child.

So, in childhood, adopted children tend to somewhat resemble each other and to resemble the people who are raising them. However, around adolescence/puberty some major changes take place. Biologically some genes active in children turn off and other genes active in adults turn on. One of the consequences is physical and mental maturation: Sex organs grow and sex fantasies grow apace. Another consequence is the "dispersal stage" common to most mammals and manifested among humans as adolescent "rebellion", mild or severe. Most young people begin to more- and-more control their own interests and choose their own activities and their own friends.

At 10, who you play with is largely determined by what the parents allow; at 16 most youths much more choose and select their own friends from among a wider field of possibilities, often to the consternation of their parents. Play the piano? At 10 it is parent's choice, by 18 you quit if you wish.

The upshot of all this becoming-adult is that individually different people seek out their own individually compatible lifespaces. The surprising outcome is that as adults, individuals that were raised together but are not genetically related (adopted siblings) correlate zero on many measures of intellectual and personality functioning.

Similarly, the adopted children, when adult, do not resemble (the correlations are zero order) the parents that raised them. There is little or no evidence for cumulative effects of family environment. Rather, family resemblances, and differences, are importantly influenced by genes. Heresy.

Adult Results: Blacks will be Blacks
In this minefield of theoretical readjustments Professor Shockley's experiment sits, waiting to detonate. A ten-year follow-up was done, the children evaluated at an average age of seventeen (Weinberg, Scarr & Waldman, 1992). The results and their interpretation have created a bit of a tempest, so far largely confined to the academic teapot as reported in the scholarly journal "Intelligence".

Initially the authors maintained an interpretation of the evidence as supporting environmental influences on the malleability of black's IQ: "These results (demonstrate) the strong effects of the rearing environment on IQ." (p. 131), "the results of the longitudinal follow-up continue to support the view that the social environment maintains a dominant role in determining the average IQ level of black and interracial children" (p. 133).

To some it looked like spinning through Alice's mirror, or theoretically jumping through the Politically Correct environmentalist hoop twice. But, after all, genetic interpretations of human race differences in IQ will not get you elected president of the American Psychological Society; they will get you defamed and shunned, at least.

After challenge, especially by Richard Lynn of the University of Ulster and Michael Levin of City College of New York (Levin, 1994; Lynn, 1994), the authors wrote that "it is not possible to reach definitive conclusions .... Our findings do not speak directly to genetic and environmental etiologies of racial differences in IQ," (Waldman, Weinberg & Scarr, 1994, pp 41, 42).

On the contrary, the results not only speak, they literally shout, but very Incorrect Politically.

When retested as young adults (average age 17) the b/b adoptees displayed an average IQ of 89.4 while the w/w adoptees averaged 105.6 and the white biological children of the adopting middle class white parents scored 109.4. Recall that generally the racial IQ gap nationally is about 15 points, whereas here the gap is:
[w/w 105.6] - [b/b 89.4] = 16.2

This is substantially similar to the previous result when the children were young. What is different in this testing of older adoptees is the b/b average of 89.4. Where is there any evidence for a role of the social environment? Remember the earlier quotation: "There is no question that adoption constitutes a massive intervention .... the black children in this study have been fully exposed to the culture of the tests and the school," (Scarr & Weinberg, 1976, pp 738,737). A lifetime of immersion in middle class white family life sufficient to produce average IQs of 109.4 (biological offspring) and 105.6 (white adoptees), for an average black outcome of 89.4. This may appear to be above the nominal national average for blacks of 85, yet Levin (1994) points out that Minnesota blacks score somewhat above the national average. Parenthetically, the white biological parent dosage effect was maintained in that b/w adoptees averaged an IQ of 98.5: [b/w 98.5] - [b/b 89.4] = 9.1

As noted above, no single experimental study is perfect, and Scarr and colleagues now emphasize that there were some differences across adoptee groups in pre-final placement experiences. Perhaps Professor Shockley's experiment is important enough that an attempt should be made to replicate it on a large scale and without equivocal confounds. In the meantime, in the main these results are very clear, and very consistent with a wealth of other data and theory. Unfortunately these real data are completely at odds with the revealed wisdom of the egalitarian left. Here in the real world, as a young adult the Pit Bull, after being raised by Cocker Spaniels, acts like a Pit Bull.

An early abstract of the follow-up experiment conducted when the adoptees averaged 17 years of age mentioned social deviance and psychopathology at higher levels than had been found in other adoption studies (Scarr, Weinberg & Gargiulo, 1987). Languishing in two unpublished doctoral dissertations completed by graduate students are some potentially interesting findings. One dissertation, by Kimberly DeBerry (1991), was completed at the University of Virginia where Sandra Scarr is now a Professor. Among other things, the DeBerry dissertation reports the results of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) testing at average age 17. Fully 2/3 of the interracial adoptees that took the test are said to display evidence of maladjustment by having at least one clinical scale elevation on the MMPI. Moreover, the white biological offspring of the middle class white adoptive parents fared just as poorly. These data require some speculative interpretation: Do they mean that Pit Bulls raised by Cocker Spaniels grow up to be at increased risk of psychological maladjustment? Could it be that Cocker Spaniel pups are harmed by being raised in mixed litters with Pit Bulls?

To interpret the MMPI results from the adoptees requires a consideration of the characteristics of the test. The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory was one of the most reliable and most widely used assessment devices for identifying abnormalities of personality. However, like any psychological test it was not perfect and has been revised to become MMPI-2. The first version of the MMPI was used in the DeBerry version of Professor Shockley's experiment. The normative group for the original MMPI was 724 people at the University of Minnesota hospital tested in the late 1930s and early '40s. It was reportedly a good match for the 1940 Minnesota census. Dr. Ned Megargee, a noted MMPI expert, once checked those census data and estimated that there might have been 1.5 black people included in the 724 (Megargee, 1996).

It is well established that generally blacks tend to have elevated scores relative to the standardization norms. Also, younger people tend to have elevated scores on some of the scales. Of the 10 basic MMPI scoring scales, the four with the most reported elevations in DeBerry's dissertation were, in order of frequency, 9, 5, 8, and 4. The standard characterizations of high scorers on these scales are: 9 (Ma) Mania - High scorers are called sociable, outgoing, impulsive, overly energetic, optimistic, and in some cases amoral, flighty, confused, disoriented; 5 (MF) Masculinity-Femininity - High-scoring males are described as sensitive, aesthetic, passive, or feminine. High-scoring females are described as aggressive, rebellious, and unrealistic; 8 (Sc) Schizophrenia - High scorers are often withdrawn, shy, unusual, or strange and have peculiar thoughts or ideas. They may have poor reality contact and in severe cases bizarre sensory experiences - delusions and hallucinations; 4 (Pd) Psychopathic Deviate - High scorers often are rebellious, impulsive, hedonistic, and antisocial. They often have difficulty in marital or family relationships and trouble with the law or authority in general. (adapted from Rosenham & Seligman, 1984, p.163).

Without a matched age and race comparison group it is difficult to know what to make of the finding that 2/3 of the tested transracial adoptees had clinical elevations relative to the norms. It could simply be that these young people, although raised in the home and social milieu provided by middle class white parents, are performing like typical blacks raised under usual conditions. In other words, as was the case with the IQ data, the personality results indicate that Pit Bulls raised by Cocker Spaniels grow up to be Pit Bulls.

Does it Hurt Whites?
The elevated scores of the white biological children of this sampling of middle class white parents are problematic. Of the many possible interpretations, three likely possibilities come to mind. One is that it is hard on the white biological children to be raised alongside black adopted siblings. It would not be the first time that well-intentioned liberal humanitarian endeavors turned out to have unanticipated consequences (a fascinating book-length account of the effects of The Great Society is titled Paved with Good Intentions (Taylor, 1992)). We really don't know the consequences for the white siblings. We do know that there are many physical traits and maturational rates that are different between black and white children, beyond the psychological variables that were the chief focus of the study. Would it affect the personality of a bright white child to be raised with a different race sibling that tended to be stronger, had denser bones and better physical coordination, matured sooner and was more boisterous and less intelligent (Rushton, 1995)?

A recent report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (concerned with nutritional needs in childhood) reports that black children experience their growth spurt two to five years earlier than white children. By age 7 for boys and 6 for girls, blacks have accelerated muscle and bone development. They sooner grow taller and heavier and mature sexually about three years earlier than whites (Nando.net, 1996).

A very extreme across-species adoption study was conducted back in the 1930s by the animal psychologists Winthrop and Louella Kellogg. They reported their findings in a 1933 book The Ape and the Child: A Study of Environmental Influence Upon Early Behavior. When their first child Donald was born they located a baby Chimpanzee named Gua. Donald and Gua were raised together as siblings and treated as alike as possible, until being separated when Gua was 16.5 months of age and Donald was 19 months. We have no way of knowing if there were any long range effects of this experience for Gua or Donald. Anecdotally, a scientist who knew him has reported that Donald had a gait with a definite simian lope. Tragically, Donald committed suicide as a young man.

A second possibility to account for the elevated clinical scales on the MMPIs of the biological children of the middle class white parents that took part in transracial adoptions would be to invoke normal familial relationships. Unfortunately we do not have the data for the biological parents and thus cannot make the necessary comparisons.

However, a likely possibility is that these youth are simply displaying the well-known phenomenon of familial correlations. Without casting any aspersions on the adopting adults, one must ask what kinds of middle class white couples in the social environment of 1960's Minnesota initiated cross-racial adoptions? Undoubtedly caring adults who felt a social commitment and followed through with quite unusual behavior. Such adopting was a very rare event and was "not normal" in just this sense of being rare. People who engage in very unusual behaviors, whether socially desirable or socially undesirable, tend to be unusual in a wide variety of ways, including personality traits. Thus it is entirely reasonable to hypothesize that the MMPI results of their biological children might simply reflect the well known familiality of personality characteristics. This parental- resemblance hypothesis is less likely to account for the elevated deviancy rates of the black adoptees because in other studies personality characteristics of young adult adoptees have been found to not correlate with those of their adoptive parents or adoptive siblings (Rowe, 1994).

The third possible interpretation of the elevated rates of psychopathology reported for both black adoptees and the white biological children in DeBerry's dissertation is simply that the findings may be spurious. That is, they may not replicate nor generalize. These results could be due to any number of quirky events that might be unique to this particular study. For instance, at the 17-year old follow up, not all of the adoptees or biological offspring from the original study took the MMPI. Was there selective participation that led to the particular pattern of findings reported? Because the results and interpretations are of potentially great importance, Professor Shockley's experiment probably should be replicated.

In a dissertation completed at the University of Minnesota, L. Fischer (1991) related patterns of family functioning to MMPI characteristics of both the transracially adopted and the biological offspring. She noted generally that the white "Biological children showed significantly more psychopathology than transracial adoptees" (p. 73). So again an indication that Cocker Spaniels do not thrive when raised as littermates with Pit Bulls.

Two of the dimensions of family environment are labeled "Adaptability" and "Cohesion". Cohesion has to do with the emotional bonding among the family members. The members of high cohesion families are said to be "enmeshed", while low cohesion families are "disengaged". When measured by deviancy of MMPI scores, the white offspring seemed to be better in highly cohesive families and worse with low cohesion. For the transracial adoptees, family cohesion was not as important as was adaptability.

The adaptability dimension has to do with the tendency of a family to change its rules and relationships (power structure, roles, etc.) in various situations. Adaptability involves the discipline, roles, rules, and control systems of the family. Very high adaptability is called "chaotic" which grades through "flexible" to "structured" to "rigid" for low adaptability families. The transracially adopted young adults clearly did better, as measured by MMPI deviancy, with low adaptability. With rather rigid, structured roles and rules they appeared better overall and for them cohesion was unimportant. Without getting into the conundrums of directionality of causation (psychologically healthy adoptees create rigid family rules, or families with rigid rules tend to develop psychologically healthy adoptees, or both are parallel manifestations of genetic predisposition), it is potentially important to note that the relationship between kind of family structure and the apparent well-being of the children was different for the white biological offspring and the transracial adoptees. Consistent with the historical observations of such disparate commentators as Albert Schweitzer and traditional Southern County Sheriffs, one interpretation is that Pit Bulls do best with rather strict and inflexible rules. On the other hand Cocker Spaniels respond favorably to emotional bonding.

What is to be Done?
One of the experiments that Professor Shockley suggested to the National Academy of Sciences at its Spring Meeting of 1968 has been conducted and the results are in. What is to be done? As suggested at the beginning of this article, if recent history is a guide we will first wish the results the death of silence. Pretend they do not exist. If that fails, then yell and scream and call names. Outrage at insensitivity; heap acrimony upon ad hominem.

The unfortunate truth that no-one was particularly hoping for is completely at odds with the revealed wisdom of the egalitarian left: When black babies are adopted into middle class bright white families they grow up to function intellectually like blacks. Less clear is what happens emotionally and in terms of personality adjustment. Whatever, there is no evidence that either the white children or their black adopted siblings grow up better adjusted, and there might be substantially more social deviancy and psychopathology than without the mixed-race adoptive experience. These data are consistent with a large and growing body of other findings.

In a rational civilized and civily humanitarian culture there might be a call for further investigation and study of the implications of the best scientific information that is available. In a civilization that is experiencing a phase of irrational ideological zealotry the response would be quite different.

In 1961 a president of the American Psychological Association, Henry Garrett, called the egalitarian dogma that blacks and whites are genetically equal in cognitive ability the "scientific hoax of the century" (Garrett, 1961). In 1967 the Nobel laureate William Shockley lamented the "entrenched dogmatism of inverted liberals" that prevented open discussion and unbiased research (Shockley, 1967). In 1995 the sociologist Robert Gordon referred to the "degradation ceremony" which is held to heap acrimony on anyone who deviates from "one-party science" (Gordon, 1995). The Canadian psychologist J. Philippe Rushton has experienced attempts to criminalize him because of his research (Whitney, 1996). Charles Murray in his "afterword" for the 1996 soft-cover edition of The Bell Curve opines "The social science that deals in public policy has in the latter part of the twentieth century become self-censored and riddled with taboos - in a word, corrupt." (Murray, 1996, p. 575) The inquisitional zeal with which the secular priesthood attacks any apostate from the egalitarian fiction would be ludicrous if the consequences were not so serious.

Science and Socialism
The current state of affairs in the social sciences is not unprecedented in recent scientific history. The conditions of soviet science under socialism are only just now becoming known in the west. There have been a spate of books, one is the 1994 Lysenko and the Tragedy of Soviet Science by Valery N. Soyfer (translated by Leo and Rebecca Gruliow). Under socialism, the genetics that forms the basis for individual and race differences was first attacked, then ridiculed and essentially outlawed as an anti-egalitarian invention of Western capitalists that was inherently evil because it was inconsistent with Marxist-Leninism. In America The Science and Politics of IQ, or Not in Our Genes, or Ever Since Darwin will give you the flavor (Gould, 1977; Kamin, 1974; Lewontin, Rose & Kamin, 1984). The absurd anti-factual structure which developed was able to dominate all of the biological and social sciences in the Soviet Union and its client states for a period of decades. This perversion was not the work of any one man, not the great Lysenko, rather it required the active involvement and support of many of the leading scientists and intellectuals. It is a fundamental structural flaw of socialism, to claim to establish reality on the basis of the scripture according to Marx. Genes and heredity did not influence differences between individuals, or races, or eventually even species. Instead, conditions of rearing were all-important. Everyone knows fertilizer is important, so manipulate the early experiences of the puppies in order to change their development. "Vernalization" was the name for one sort of head start program, sure to transform winter wheat into spring wheat. No need, or time for basic research, there was a pressing national need that called for intervention now. So, throw money at nice-sounding intervention programs. Then, without evaluation introduce nation-wide applied programs. Discourage any mention of genetics - it represents the Hell of Capitalism, the Devil's work in total contrast to the Paradise of Egalitarian Socialism. Inheritance and genetics is Nazi-tainted evil; its practitioners must be despicable racists. When one program after another fails, simply give them more rubles, or quietly close them down while touting with much fanfare yet another enrichment. It is truly scary; the parallels between Soviet practice under socialism and environmentalist - egalitarianism in American social policy. Egalitarian agriculture and the food shortages it caused played no small role in the demise of the Soviet Union.

Soyfer says it well:
In any society, there are charlatans and people who are simply mistaken. They may try to deceive their fellows, either by design or out of ignorance. But in a healthy society, others will call attention to their errors, test their assumptions, and make objective appraisals. Shams are exposed, and no one punishes those who do the exposing; members of the government or secret police do not hurl political accusations against seekers of scientific truth. But that is what happened when an alliance of the Lysenkos, the Stalins, and the Berias was part of the onrushing, bloody chariot of socialism.(p.300)

One of Professor Shockley's suggested experiments has been done and the results are in. Now after 30 odd years and over $5.4 Trillion dollars, perhaps it is not too late to dust off some of his other suggestions.


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Acknowledgment: I gratefully acknowledge the encouragement, and suggestions from earlier drafts by Tom Markin.


REFERENCES

Burnham, S.
1993 America's Bimodal Crisis: Black intelligence in White society (3rd. Ed.). Athens GA: Foundation for Human Understanding

DeBerry, K. M.
1991 Modeling ecological competence in African American transracial adoptees. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation. Charlottesville VA: University of Virginia

Dilulio, J. J. Jr.
1995 The coming of the super-predators. The Weekly Standard, November 27, 1995, 23-28

Fischer, L.
1991 The relationships among family functioning, IQ and mental health outcomes in transracially adoptive families. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, Minneapolis MN: University of Minnesota

Garrett, H. E.
1961 The equalitarian dogma. Perspectives in Biology and Medicine, 4, 480-484

Gordon, R. A.
1995 The irresponsible abuse of colleagues. The Johns Hopkins Newsletter, December 8, 1995, A13

Gould, S. J.
1977 Ever Since Darwin. New York: W. W. Norton

Herrnstein, R. J. & C. Murray
1994 The Bell Curve. New York: The Free Press

Jensen, A. R.
1980 Bias in Mental Testing. New York: The Free Press

Kamin, L. J.
1974 The Science and Politics of IQ. Potomac MD: Erlbaum

Kellogg, W. N. & L. A. Kellogg
1933 The Ape and the Child. New York: McGraw-Hill

Levin, M.
1994 Comment on the Minnesota transracial adoption study. Intelligence,
19, 13-20.

Lewontin, R. C., S. Rose, & L. J. Kamin
1984 Not in Our Genes. New York: Pantheon Books

Lynn, R.
1994 Some reinterpretations of the Minnesota transracial adoption study.
Intelligence, 19, 21-27

Megargee, E. I.
1996 MMPI data in DeBerry's dissertation. Personal communication, Florida State University

Murray, C.
1996 Afterword. In: Herrnstein, R. J. & C. Murray, The Bell Curve. New York: First Free Press Paperback Edition. pp 553-575.

Nando.net
1996 USDA studies body composition in ethnic groups. June 7, 1996, Washington DC: Reuter Information Service

Pearson, R.
1991 Race, Intelligence and Bias in Academe. Washington DC: Scott-Townsend. 1992 Shockley on Eugenics and Race. Washington DC: Scott- Townsend.

Rector, R. & W. F. Lauber
1995 America's Failed $5.4 Trillion War on Poverty. Washington DC: The Heritage Foundation

Rosenham, D. L. & M. E. P. Seligman
1984 Abnormal Psychology (2nd. Ed.). New York: W. W. Norton

Rowe, D. C.
1994 The Limits of Family Influence. New York: Guilford Press

Rushton, J. P.
1995 Race, Evolution, and Behavior. New Brunswick NJ: Transaction

Scarr, S. & R. A. Weinberg
1976 IQ test performance of black children adopted by white families. American Psychologist, 31, 726-739

Scarr, S., R. A. Weinberg & J. Gargiulo
1987 Transracial adoption: A ten-year follow up. Behavior Genetics Association, 17th Annual Meeting, book of abstracts, June 24-27, 1987, Minneapolis MN

Shockley, W.
1967 The entrenched dogmatism of inverted liberals. Document 4 in: Pearson, R., 1992, Shockley on Eugenics and Race. Washington DC: Scott-Townsend, pp 105-123.

Shockley, W.
1968 Proposed research to reduce racial aspects of the environment - heredity uncertainty. Paper read before the National Academy of Sciences, April 24, 1968. Reprinted in: Pearson, R. 1992 Shockley on Eugenics and Race. Washington DC: Scott- Townsend, pp 94-103.

Soyfer, V. N.
1994 Lysenko and the Tragedy of Soviet Science (L. Gruliow & R. Gruliow, Trans.). New Brunswick NJ: Rutgers University Press

Taylor, S. J.
1992 Paved with Good Intentions. New York: Carroll & Graf

Waldman, I. D., R. A. Weinberg & S. Scarr
1994 Racial-group differences in IQ in the Minnesota transracial adoption study: A reply to Levin and Lynn. Intelligence, 19, 29-44

Weinberg, R. A., S. Scarr & I. D. Waldman
1992 The Minnesota transracial adoption study: A follow-up of IQ test performance at adolescence. Intelligence, 16, 117-135


Sunday, December 22, 2002

YOU HYPOCRITE, PHIL

By: Andrew Bolt

Phillip Noyce made us feel ashamed to be Australian. But the director of Rabbit-Proof Fence can hardly point the finger

I WAS thrilled to be honoured at last weekend's Australian Film Industry awards, and must repay Phillip Noyce this huge favour. Noyce it was who praised me for promoting his Rabbit-Proof Fence, winner of the AFI best film award, by writing several articles arguing this ``true story'' of the ``Stolen Generations'' was, ahem, false.

Noyce raved how he owed me a ``special award'', because every time there was ``one of those articles there was a blip and attendances would immediately go up''.

Seeing Noyce welcomes accurate criticism so much, it is only right to give him an award of my own in return. So my 2002 prize for Hypocrite of the Year goes to . . . tadaah! . . . Phillip Noyce.

I know, it's been a crowded field, with a late and strong challenge from Carmen ``Principles'' Lawrence, but I have information about Noyce and the star of his film, Everlyn Sampi, which I feel closes the case. With a snap.

It proves Noyce has done, in effect, what his film condemns a former chief protector of Aborigines, A.O. Neville, for doing -- ``stealing'' Aboriginal children.

Because Noyce himself ``stole'' 12-year-old Everlyn Sampi. Much as Neville ``stole'' Molly Craig, the girl Everlyn plays in Rabbit-Proof Fence.

Noyce's film opens with the claim: ``This is a true story.'' And the story it purports to tell is of Molly, who was 14 when she was taken from an Aboriginal camp at Jigalong, Western Australia, and sent to a boarding school at the Moore River Native Settlement. The film portrays her escape from there -- with cousins, Daisy, eight, and Gracie, 11 -- and her trek all the way home, 2000km south.

That much is indeed true, but what isn't true, as I've outlined before, are many of the key details Noyce added to the story which backed up the ``Stolen Generations'' myth -- that hundreds of thousands of children were brutally stolen from caring parents in a racist plot to end the Aboriginal race.

BUT here I'll go over just those untruths in the film which to me make Noyce a hypocrite, given the parallels between the case his film makes against Neville and the real ``true story'' -- of this rich director and poor Everlyn Sampi.

Claim: The film shows young Molly in a nice, peaceful settlement, in the bosom of a loving tribe.
Fact: As her daughter, Doris Pilkington, wrote in the biography on which the film is based, Molly was in fact treated ``like a mongrel dog'' by other children of her tribe because she was half-caste. She had no father to protect her and no school to go to.
Parallel: Everlyn Sampi, who plays Molly, also has a white father who does not live with her. Her mother shifted home a few times, and then sent Everlyn to Broome in the hope she would go to school there. She couldn't read.

Claim: The film shows a policeman ripping Molly from the arms of a crying mother. She is stolen because the state's chief protector of Aborigines, A.O. Neville, wants to stop her ``mating'' with Aborigines, a race he hopes will vanish.
Fact: Molly was taken without a struggle and with a nod of apparent consent from her ``stepfather''. This occurred after local people sent Neville letters warning that Molly and her cousins were ``running wild with the whites'' and were treated badly by full-bloods. Worse, Daisy, just eight, had been promised in marriage to an adult Aboriginal man.
Parallel: Noyce is worried Everlyn will return to Broome and its temptations. ``She hasn't had a stable life,'' he said. Just 11 when removed by Noyce -- with her mother -- to South Australia to do his film, she already smoked and had missed too much school. Worse, as Noyce told one journalist: ``The only thing she has been rewarded for is being a pretty girl with feminine charms. One day on the set, she said to me, `If you do that, I will give you a kiss on the lips', which is an odd thing to say to a 50-year-old.'' Odd? He said it was one of many chilling encounters he had with Everlyn that ``makes you want to protect her, adopt her''. As Neville wanted to protect Molly.

Claim: The film shows Molly at Moore River. The light-coloured children are sent on to another school near Perth. Molly is told this is because fairer children are smarter than dark ones.
Fact: Fairer children were given special vocational training in the belief they had a better chance of being accepted in white society and earning their own way. They also faced more rejection in black camps.
Parallel: Noyce has admitted he cast Everlyn, a pretty, light-coloured girl, partly on her racial appeal. ``I saw, well, it's a term which is racist, but it is used in the film industry, I saw `cross-over appeal','' he said. ``It means that the actor has the charisma and charm to appeal to African-American, white American and other audiences around the world.'' It means Everlyn -- or her film -- had more chance of earning well. Less chance of rejection.

Claim: The film makes Molly's new home at Moore River seem a jail -- or ``concentration camp'', says Noyce. The children may not leave, are treated badly and must work hard. Molly hates it and runs away.
Fact: Records from a 1936 Royal Commission into the treatment of Aborigines show 1003 of Moore River's 1067 children weren't ``stolen'' but voluntarily brought by their parents to get a schooling or be safe. For their own good.
Parallel: Everlyn was worked hard on the film, and a documentary shows her being physically stopped from leaving. ``I'm sick of it,'' she complains. Noyce accused her of showing ``signs of the worst behaviour that I've observed'' in his career, and has added: ``During the rehearsals, she ran away twice. We found her in a telephone booth ringing up inquiries trying to book a ticket back to Broome.'' She was caught and brought back to Noyce, of course. For her own good.

Claim: The film indicates Molly was taken from her happy family just because Neville was a racist.
Fact: Neville told the 1936 Royal Commission the only children he removed as state wards were taken ``because I desired to be satisfied that the conditions surrounding their upbringing were satisfactory, which they certainly were not.'' He also tried to give such children an education to help them thrive in white society -- an education Molly ran away from to spend the rest of her life in the squalor in bush camps.
Parallel: Today we still rescue Aboriginal children in tragically high numbers from abuse and neglect. And Noyce has been rightly worried about sending Everlyn back to the hazards of Broome after the filming. ``I found myself thinking, `I have to look after her. She can live with us. I'll send her to school.''' And he did, sending Everlyn, with her mother's permission, to a boarding school near Perth. ``It was impressed upon Everlyn that she needed to learn to read and write if she wanted to act again when she grew up,'' Noyce said. ``But she hated it and was flown home . . .'' She fled school, just as Molly did.

IT'S eerie, how closely Everlyn's story resembles that of Molly, the girl she plays in Rabbit-Proof Fence. And it should have been a wake-up to Noyce, how his attempt to give Everlyn a brighter future resembled Neville's bid to rescue Molly.

In a documentary shown on Channel 9 in February, reporter James Thomas confronted Noyce with this.
Thomas: Picture this: a white man enters a remote Aboriginal community with the best intentions, takes three girls out of their community and promises them fame and fortune. Does it sound familiar?
Noyce: Mmm-hmm.
Thomas: Are you aware of the irony that exists in what you're doing with this film and the actual topic of the film itself?
Noyce: Well, I suppose in one way you could say that in a different context, in a different time, I'm A.O. Neville promising these young Aboriginal children a better life, asking them to do things that are against their instincts, perhaps because it's for their own good. But we do live in a slightly different world...

HE'S right. It is a different world in some ways. It's richer and so our choices are wider. We're less racist, and Noyce tried harder than Neville could to keep Everlyn's link with her mother. But Noyce's desire to protect a young Aboriginal girl at risk and give her the opportunities all our children deserve is not new. I'm sure Neville felt that desire, too, and had to make harder choices than Noyce did to do the best for children facing the worst. Noyce could have made a film acknowledging that truth -- a truth Everlyn's own life should have alerted him to.

Instead, he made a hiss-boo pantomime villain of Neville and the other public servants and missionaries falsely accused of the racist theft of Aboriginal children. Children they tried to save, much as Noyce has. For that, Noyce has won prizes from the cultural elite. But to me, he is a hypocrite -- and not least because he tried so hard to help young Everlyn Sampi.

bolta@heraldsun.com.au

From: Herald Sun, Melbourne.
THU 12 DEC 2002, Page 019

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Posted by John Ray

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Saturday, December 21, 2002



ABORIGINAL MIGRATION INTO AUSTRALIA

by Tim Gillin




I must say I disagree with the view expressed on your blog that the negritos were first and "wiped out" by the "aborigines". It is a bit more complex. Jo Birdsell saw "aboriginal" people as a product of what he called "trihybridism" with three major groups negritos, "murrayians" (similar to ainu of Japan) and "carpentarians" (similar to Veddas of India) merging to produce the "aboriginal" population. He sees modern day South America as another society undergoing a similar "trihybridism" process, the indians are being merged with late coming European and African populations. A new physical type is emerging.

Whether Birdsell is right or not is still undetermined as the predominant school today is still unwilling to perform the crucial mtDNA tests he proposed in 1993. No one is interested in putting Birdsell's ideas to the test Birdsell himself proposed. When I was at uni this was called a falsification test. In fact today we could probably do better than Birdsell imagined as the techniques for testing mtDNA from old museum materials have improved. They seem reluctant to take the risk that he may be right.

The viewpoint of the predominant school is that Birdsell is outdated or outmoded, ...definitely 'out'..., but it is hard to find a 'silver bullet' that actually kills his hypotheses off. When I first heard of the people Birdsell labelled Barrines or negritos, I tried to track down all the material I could on this subject. Nothing really disproved him, as far as I can see it was fashion change, probably a by product of the massive changes in Aboriginal policy impacting Australia in the early 1970s that made Birdsell "out" but not down.

There are two or three main criticisms made. Craniometry is the main one and it is not an exact science. Java Man for example has at various times been classified into as many as 9 different species. The closest bet to an anti-Birdsell "silver bullet" is the computerised craniometry of Howells, one of Birdsell's fellow students under Harvard physical anthropologist Hooton. Another great in the field. The trouble with relying on this is that Howells methodology is quite routinely criticised these days. Computerisation doesn't ensure objectivity and anyone who works with computer systems (as I do) doesn't trust computers ...and they usually have even less trust in those folk who trust computers!! For example, there is an extensive critique made in Milford Wolpoff and (his wife) Rachel Caspari's RACE AND HUMAN EVOLUTION. So I'd say Birdsell dodged the bullet here.

The other criticism is that Birdsell's theory is part of his "racial anthropology" thinking and it is thus bad and by implication anyone who digs it up is a racist or some such crap. Guilty by association. Usually all sorts of 'nudge nudge wink wink' oblique language is used here to imply racism and thus get dissidents to shut up. This is just crap and people who use this have essentially given up science and should hand in their degrees. Wolpoff and Jan Klein make a better critique of this silliness than I possibly ever could.

Actually all physical anthros in the 1930s used racial anthropology, there were no real alternatives until the "cline" approach came along in the late 1940s, pioneered by the brand new neo-darwinian synthesis in biology then just getting going. Birdsell enthusiastically adopted this new cline approach. He became a major critic of earlier racial classification approaches but never dropped his three wave view of Ancient migrations into Australia. In fact he reiterates it on virtually the last page of his last book written when he was 83 after 50 or 60 years in the game. This last book is an amazing effort and his criticisms of his Australian academic rivals are sharp. He sees them as holding on to an elastic theory. Whether 20th century physical anthros use "races" or a chaotic patchwork of clines as part of their analytical technique is logically irrelevant to whether or not there was one or three or a hundred waves of settlers of Australasia in the deep past. My 11 year old niece can see this. Besides the idea that racial classificationism is dead is frankly just not true. For a devastating reply see the Max Planck Institute's Jan Klein's 2002 book WHERE DO WE COME FROM? He certainly doesn't think the approach is worthless or racist.

So as I see it rumours of the death of Birdsell's ideas are somewhat exaggerated. The default view, the one that is implicit in public discussion, is "single originism". This theory goes back to the old style racial anthropologies of Howells and Coon who imagined that the Australians / New Guineans were one of the five or six original races of mankind. In a sense the establishment is the true heir of the old time racial anthropology!! Birdsell's view is more sophisticated than this simplistic idea, and sees populations as dynamic, as a work in progress. The latest mtDNA findings that New Guineans and Aborigines have distinct mtDNA lineages esentially kills this idea. Howells, for example saw Tasmanian skulls as similar to Tolai skulls of NG, where other users of the same technique find a smooth gradient from Tasmania to NG. The new mtDNA stuff means this needs to be rethought. The real story of Ancient Sahul (Australia + NG + Tas) is however unknown and likely to be more complex and interesting than anyone has so far proposed. Birdsell may be simplistic but single orginism is super-simplistic!

As for the relevance of all this to frontier violence in the 19th Century. Hard to say. My guess is inter-marriage and conflict were part of the same package deal. Birdsell empirically charted inter-tribal intermarriage rates of up to 15% . Projected back into time inter-marriage (or exogamy) of this order could account for Birdsell's ideas. There is a great table in Cavalli-Sforza's textbook that shows the gene flow rate for "exogamy" of this order. The original population would be easily swamped in a few thousand years. Tindale, Birdsell's partner, the man who tracked down the Lake Barrine people with nothing more than an old photo to go on, has some tribal legend material discussing warfare between what he sees as different waves of people. He also sees these old conflicts remembered in mythology and lore. Warfare or inter-marriage? Love or War? As I see it there is no need to choose one idea over the other. If you check out University of Illinois anthro Lawrence Keeley's book WAR BEFORE CIVILIZATION he comments that conflict and inter-marriage often go hand in hand.

In any event the kind of conflict being discussed here is essentially decentralised violent clashes between clans and bands, oldcomers and newcomers might form local alliances with each other to fight other combinations of old and new bands. Although new waves of migrants probably came with new diseases and technologies as well. All this isn't the kind of thing we saw in the 19th century when tribal groups and the British Empire came into conflict. In the old days there was not the same degree of organisation. There is some interesting stuff on the 'tribal extinction rate' in New Guinea that may be relevant here too. My guess is that even if there were only one wave of indigenous immigrants that the conflict pattern between sub-groups would have been pretty much the same as if multiple waves came in. This is all pretty speculative of course!!!


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Posted by John Ray

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Monday, December 16, 2002



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I am reprinting the article below as it seems to have been censored in some way and is no longer available to all readers from its original source. There is a lot I disagree with in the article but I disagree with censorship even more.

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William F. Buckley Jr. and the John Birch Society - A Book Review

Miguel A. Faria Jr., M.D.
Friday, Dec. 13, 2002



A book authored earlier this year by John F. McManus, president of the John Birch Society, entitled "William F. Buckley, Jr. - Pied Piper for the Establishment," has not received the attention it deserves in the mainstream media and, surprisingly, the alternative, more conservative forms of communication in this information age.

Frankly, the information may be too disturbing for some readers, particularly those who think they know what is happening in the world from watching and listening to Dan Rather on CBS News, Peter Jennings on ABC World News, or Tom Brokow on NBC News - or, for that matter, to the more conservative Fox News Channel. Ditto for those also avidly perusing more conservative publications like The Washington Times and The Wall Street Journal.

Yes, gentle reader, you will be jolted out of your most comfortable reading armchair were you to engage yourself in carefully reading this highly disturbing but meticulously documented book. The 255-page tome (including index) describes assiduously the political career of William F. Buckley Jr., a man who has been considered "the patron saint of the conservatives" by orthodox liberal and authorized biographer John B. Judis.

Let me state from the outset that for more than a decade, I was also an admirer of the intellectual prowess and elegant (although sometimes bombastic) writing skills of Bill Buckley. In fact, I have read (usually cover to cover) every issue of National Review from the mid-1980s until 1997, when I came to understand that, while the magazine was beautifully written and certainly intellectually stimulating, something was still missing, something I sensed was terribly wrong with the message it conveyed to conservative readers.

One of the final precipitating events came when the magazine printed Forrest McDonald's review extolling the book "The Long Affair" by left-wing internationalist Conor Cruise O'Brien that trashed Thomas Jefferson and his legacy of freedom. Still I held on and kept subscribing and reading National Review until 1997, when I realized that the magazine, while calling itself "conservative," was lending its intellectualism to propounding ideas and subtle concepts that led to bigger government, federal intrusion into functions not authorized in the U.S. Constitution - and the building, step-by-step, of the scaffold of a socialist world government.

And yet, the message was so subtle I could not pinpoint exactly what specifically was wrong with the publication that Bill Buckley had nurtured so assiduously and made the leading publication of "respectable" conservative opinion - until I read "William F. Buckley, Jr. - Pied Piper for the Establishment."

But this book does more than just shed light on the life of Bill Buckley; it explains with crystal clarity why he was anointed "the patron saint of the conservatives," admiring conservatives who have now dwindled down to the Rockefeller "conservatives" of the eastern liberal Establishment, the internationalists at the Council of Foreign Relations (CFR), and sundry country club, moderate Republications, who have placed "respectability" ahead of duty and national sovereignty.

The book explains and warns that even today, as Bill Buckley fades in the twilight of his years, other up-and-coming "political personalities" will likewise bow to the Establishment and in a Faustian transaction pay their dues in exchange for personal advancement and ascension up the ladder of political and economic power. McManus names some of these personalities, and you will be alarmed, although perhaps not surprised, at who they might be.

One can only hope that this charitable admonition and constructive criticism may serve as a source of moral fortitude for the new generation of political and intellectual leaders. Perhaps this book may even dissuade them not to betray the truth of their cause and the moral and spiritual principles that have guided them in the idealism of their youth for the evanescent and fleeting acceptance, comfort and power provided by the ruling Establishment.

Consider how conservatism during your own life experience as a philosophic and political force has drifted from its core principles to the watered-down version of its former self. Consider some articles of faith in the old conservative movement (before they were reshaped with the help of Bill Buckley in the last four decades):

Free trade with all nations but non-intervention in the affairs of those nations that do not threaten our national security, and no forging of permanent, entangling alliances with any part of the foreign world;

Strict limitations on federal power as enshrined in the U.S. Constitution, the Supreme Law of the Land;

Freedom with responsibility as promulgated in Natural Rights theory prescribing that the purpose of government is to protect life, liberty, property, and allowing for all citizens to pursue happiness, as long as they do not infringe on the rights of others.

Modern conservatism, as shaped by Bill Buckley and the neo-conservative movement, McManus argues, has helped to create, nurture and advance big government at home, and internationalism and the submergence of U.S. sovereignty to that of the United Nations abroad.

Thus, leaders of modern conservatism, despite saying otherwise, have been conditioned to feel quite comfortable with the new path the country has taken and have allowed elected officials to circumvent the U.S. Constitution, a venerable document that those same officers have sworn to uphold and defend.

When was the last time you heard "conservative" personalities even in "right-wing" radio, not to mention politicians or academicians, forcefully debate on television or in print, the crucial questions:

Of whether a new law, federal spending or taxes levied by the federal government - e.g., in medical care, welfare or education - is constitutional and should be opposed primarily on that ground?

Of whether foreign aid to countries, many unfriendly, even hateful of America, should not be extended to those nations solely on the basis of unconstitutionality?

Of whether the U.S. should continue to pay the lion's share of the U.N. budget, and even more apropos, why should the U.S. remain in the egregious and corrupt U.N.? It could very well be argued that it would be in our best national interest to get the U.S. out of the U.N. and the U.N. out of New York!

Of whether the U.S. was founded as a constitutional republic, where individuals have God-given rights that cannot be taken away arbitrarily by the State, or as a democracy, where the populace is governed by majoritarian rule. The U.S. may be rapidly becoming a socialist democracy under an oligarchical rule of a power elite, but you don't hear that in "respectable" discussions, not even by major talk show radio personalities on the airwaves, perhaps with the single exception of libertarian celebrity Neal Boortz.

Buckley helped the Establishment media set certain boundaries beyond which "respectable" discussions would not be allowed to proceed. Trespass those limits and your career is "finished, finished for good."

This high-tech, "intellectual" censorship is not only taking serious topics out of the realm of public discussion, but is also stifling the free exchange of ideas necessary for the preservation of a free society. In American colleges and universities, it is leading to the loss of academic freedom, creating "educated" young people who cannot think for themselves but can only follow like automatons the Establishment's dogma and politically correct orthodoxy.

Again, you will hear the pros and cons about enacting certain federal laws but you will not hear a candid debate take place on whether the law, taxation or regulation is actually constitutional. Ditto for the debate on foreign aid. You will hear the pundits discuss whether Egypt, Israel or Pakistan should receive a certain amount, and what amount each should receive, but not the fact that such aid is not authorized in the U.S. Constitution.

You have heard discussions regarding how much is our "fair share" of monetary contribution to the U.N., but chances are you have not heard a "respectable" conservative utter clearly and unambiguously that we should get the U.S. out of the U.N. and the U.N. out of the U.S. You see, such a pronouncement falls outside the bounds of "respectable" discussion and at present is not tolerated by the media elite of the ruling Establishment.

Watered-down conservatism and internationalism, asserts McManus, are the legacy of Bill Buckley and neo-conservative confreres in the CFR and the shadow government of the ruling Establishment.

And this deception has not taken place by overt liberals but by counterfeit conservatives who, headed by Buckley, Henry Kissinger and other members of the CFR, have misled conservative Americans into accepting gradual socialism at home and the surrender of U.S. sovereignty, piece by piece, to the U.N.

Consider that our Congress no longer declares war as prescribed in the U.S. Constitution, but instead, the presidents of the U.S. ask permission from the U.N. body to retaliate against our mortal enemies - even when they have struck in our own country and killed Americans in our own soil!

Liberals by themselves could not have done it, but under the "conservative" cover provided by Bill Buckley, "the social darling of the Establishment liberals," all of these collectivist steps and defeats were inured by Republicans and conservatives with "wit, style, verve" and good cheer - while the country continued (and continues) to march to the drumbeat of socialism, less personal freedom, and world government.

And this, affirms McManus, is not due to the "blunders of liberalism" or "gross stupidity" on the part of Establishment leaders, but to a deliberate effort, an evil conspiracy to change our nation from a constitutional republic as envisioned by our Founders to a socialist world government, led by an elite, globalist establishment that ostensibly rules for our own good, an oligarchy that seeks to make America a subsidiary of the U.N.

As in the old conservatism, McManus cites a number of sources and lists a number of distinguished conservative personalities that parted ways with Buckley after they became dissatisfied with his "reshaping" of the conservative movement. Among them are the writers Medford Evans (now deceased) and his son M. Stanton Evans, the late free-market economist Murray Rothbard, and journalists Ralph de Toledano and Don Feder of The Boston Herald.

But why did Buckley want to destroy the John Birch Society? McManus provides answers and relates his own personal journey from being a Buckleyite to his eventual membership in the John Birch Society and becoming a follower of it

As to Buckley's motives, McManus cites the appraisal of Retired Army General Thomas A. Lane, a staunch conservative and also once a former Buckley ally:

"William F. Buckley, Jr., learned about the obstacles which confront every attempt to illuminate the liberal shadows. He made his peace with the liberal powers by launching an attack on the John Birch Society, bracketed with 'McCarthyism' as the bogeymen of the liberals. He created a cleavage between Republican highbrows and Democratic commoners, which effectively destroyed all prospect of concerted conservative political action. He was rewarded with liberal acceptance as the spokesman of 'conservatism.' "

Regarding the damage Buckley inflicted upon the conservative movement, McManus provides an exhaustive list, from which I will cite only the following:

1. Provide "conservative" cover for the give-away of the Panama Canal to communist dictator Omar Torrijos in a deal which included $400 million for the Panamanian government.

2. Provide "conservative" cover to sundry CFR internationalists such as Zbigniew Brzezinski (CFR), Henry Kissinger (CFR) and, notably, President Richard Nixon (CFR), who shocked genuine conservatives with his 1971 admission on ABC-TV: "I am now a Keynesian in economics" (followed by the imposition of wage and price controls, the severance of the last tie of paper money to precious metals and other socialist policies in the U.S.).

3. Provide a rationalization for the savage downing of Korean Airlines Flight 007 by a Soviet fighter in which 269 people were killed, including the chairman of the John Birch Society, U.S. Representative Dr. Larry McDonald. Buckley wrote: "The only thing we know for absolute sure that has come out of this is that never again will a Korean airliner carelessly overfly Russian territory. And that, ladies and gentlemen, was the point the Soviet Union sought to make. It has made it."

4. Provide "conservative" cover for continued U.S. aid to the USSR during the Cold War, aid that prolonged the collapse of Soviet communism. As a result, "Faced with peril from a U.S.-fed Soviet monster following World War II, the American people were persuaded to accept increased taxation, burgeoning federal controls, foreign entanglements, and steady contravention of the Constitution," writes McManus.

5. Provide "conservative" cover for the U.S. to remain in the U.N. "In the immediate aftermath of the UN General Assembly's vote to expel Nationalist China (Taiwan) and admit Communist China, Buckley advised that 'the United Nations has its uses, and the United States would be mistaken recklessly to withdraw from it.' " Instead, Buckley recommended that the U.S. refrain from casting votes in the U.N. General Assembly!

This book should be read by all Americans who value freedom, particularly those who have wondered, as I have, why - despite repeated turnover of Democrat and Republican administrations - no matter which political party wins, we continue our steady march toward less personal freedom, more government and more foreign entanglements - and thus more conflicts abroad.

Despite "partisanship," why do we continue our steady descent toward socialism and world government, no matter who is holding the reins of power? The answer might be that since the presidency of Eisenhower every administration, Republican or Democrat, has been loaded with members of the internationalist Council of Foreign Relations.

Prior to his suspicious death in 1949, Secretary of Defense James Forrestal had stated, "Consistency has never been a mark of stupidity. If the diplomats who have mishandled our relations with Russia were merely stupid, they would occasionally make a mistake in our favor."

In other words, all that continues to go wrong with our country cannot be the result of a series of "liberal blunders or gross stupidity," as posited by Buckley, but perhaps to deliberate betrayals to change our American way of life, as asserted by McManus.

When the reader has perused this book, perhaps he too will get confirmation about evils he suspected and come to understand why politicians say one thing but act another way, and observations that defy conventional wisdom will suddenly come into sharp focus.

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Miguel A. Faria Jr., M.D., is Editor-in-Chief of the Medical Sentinel (www.haciendapub.com) and author of "Vandals at the Gates of Medicine" (1995), "Medical Warrior: Fighting Corporate Socialized Medicine" (1997) and "Cuba in Revolution: Escape From a Lost Paradise" (2002). All three books are available from www.haciendapub.com.

Reprinted from NewsMax.com

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Posted by John Ray

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Sunday, December 15, 2002




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I am reproducing the article from The Boston Globe below because their articles do not seem to stay up for long. The article was originally published at: http://www.boston.com/dailyglobe2/349/oped/US_media_retain_their_liberal_bias+.shtml

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US media retain their liberal bias
By Jeff Jacoby, 12/15/2002

A GROANING SHELF of evidence bears out what many people know intuitively: The American mass media suffer from a left-wing slant. The data come in a variety of forms: classic studies such as ''The Media Elite'' (first published in 1986) and William McGowan's ''Coloring the News'' (2001), insider exposes like CBS veteran Bernard Golberg's recent bestseller ''Bias,'' and a thick sheaf of industry studies and public opinion polls.

Yet some liberals have always claimed that liberal media bias is a shibboleth.
''It's one of the great political myths,'' insisted Dan Rather in 1995. ''Most reporters don't know whether they're Republican or Democrat, and vote every which way.... And also, let me say that I don't think that `liberal' or `conservative' means very much any more.''

Peter Jennings offered much the same argument last year.

''I think it's just essential to make the point,'' he told Larry King, ''that we are largely in the center, without particular axes to grind, without ideologies which are represented in our daily coverage.'' Likewise, Geraldo Rivera, to take just one more example, contends that ''people who pretend the media has a liberal bias aren't really listening or reading.''

Comes now an even more cockeyed claim: Not only does Big Media not tilt left, it is in fact being shoved to the right.

''The media is kind of weird these days on politics, and there are some major institutional voices that are, truthfully speaking, part and parcel of the Republican Party,'' former vice president Al Gore recently declared. ''Fox News [Channel], The Washington Times, Rush Limbaugh - there's a bunch of them, and some of them are financed by wealthy ultra-conservative billionaires .... Most of the media has been slow to recognize the pervasive impact of this fifth column in their ranks - that is, day after day, injecting the daily Republican talking points into the definition of what's objective as stated by the news media as a whole.''

Gore's motion was seconded by a number of prominent media liberals. Paul Krugman of The New York Times pronounced it ''so clearly true.'' The Washington Post's E.J. Dionne averred that conservatives have won a ''genuine triumph'' - ''a media heavily biased toward conservative politics and conservative politicians.'' After all, he noted, when Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle publicly denounced Rush Limbaugh, two cable TV talk shows took the unheard-of step of interviewing Limbaugh.

One thing to be said about this ''new'' argument is that it's not new. The idea that conservative operatives are turning the media into a GOP echo chamber goes back at least six years, when it was an article of faith in the Clinton administration.
Everyone recalls Hillary Clinton sneering away reports of an affair between her husband and Monica Lewinsky as the ravings of a ''vast right-wing conspiracy.'' What most forget is just how gripped by conservatives-are-taking-over-the-media panic the Clinton White House was. In 1995 it produced a 332-page report purporting to prove - I am not making this up - that Republican politicians, conservative think tanks, certain ''British tabloids,'' The Wall Street Journal's editorial page, and The Washington Times were all linked in a plot, funded by the heir to the Mellon fortune, to get scandalous ''fringe stories'' about Bill Clinton ''bounced into the mainstream media.''

Well, conspiracy thinking is something of an American tradition. Some people believe the CIA funneled cocaine to the Los Angeles slums; others believe Richard Mellon Scaife is the root of all evil. It somehow comes as no surprise to find Al Gore resurrecting the Clinton-era fable about the right-wing tentacles that manipulate CNN, Time, The New York Times, USA Today, National Public Radio, NBC, and all the other influential outlets that make up the national mainstream media. It's not the only dotty theory cherished by the former vice president.

The hard reality, though, is that the media's few conservative institutional voices cannot hope to overpower the liberal bias that permeates the rest of the media. It is a simple matter of arithmetic. As Michael Kelly noted last week, Fox News Channel's viewers add up to about 3 percent of the ABC-CBS-CNN-NBC-PBS news audience. The Washington Times has one-eighth the circulation of The Washington Post. In the media world, power comes from numbers.

And so does media bias. The national media are largely left-of-center because those who go into the national media are largely left-of-center. ''Everybody knows that ... there's a heavy liberal persuasion among correspondents,'' Walter Cronkite has said. Inevitably, that liberal persuasion colors reporters' and editors' work. How could it not? When everyone in the newsroom shares a liberal worldview, conservative opinions become easy to dismiss. The result is that on a host of topics from capital punishment to tax cuts, Big Media usually speaks with one voice. It's hard to believe Al Gore can't hear it.

Jeff Jacoby's e-mail address is jacoby@globe.com.
This story ran on page C11 of the Boston Globe on 12/15/2002.
c Copyright 2002 Globe Newspaper Company.


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Posted by John Ray

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Thursday, December 12, 2002




ZOROASTRIANS, IRAN AND ISLAM

Email from Shishir Yerramilli

“Zoroastrian culture almost became extinct when Alexander ravaged Persia. If It wasn’t for India's Chandragupta Maurya who defeated Seleucus Nicator thus hastening the loss of Greek control of Persia,there would be even fewer Zoroastrians today. They would probably speaking a language that was a medley of Greek, Persian and Arabic! Oh wait, they actually do! Many Persians name their children Sikander (Alexander) when in India many traditional havent even heard his name (he is a footnote at best in Indian history).

Don’t get me started on their disastrous performance battling the Arabs. It took the Arabs barely 10 years to control all Persia. As popular Hindu fundamentalist intellectual Sita Ram Goel pointed out.. it took Islam 100 years to control Sindh (now in Pakistan) another 300 to control the region that is now Pakistan, yet another 100 to finally annex Afghanistan, 250 years to control the Gangetic plains and another 300 to control the southern tip of India. But as the quasi conquest of India was acheived under Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, it was forced to retreat under the Marathas and Sikhs. Muslims were in a very pitiable condition indeed before the British arrived to take advantage of the chaos.

On the newsgroups I have come across quite a few expatriate Iranians who harbor no love for Islam. By contrast Hindus would seem to be quite liberal regarding Islam. Thats just because we have not suffered as much because we fought much harder. Our society was also a lot more resilient (particularly as the much maligned caste system gave Hinduism a decentralized structure which made it hard to destroy).

Zoroastrians may have a lot of contempt for Islam but they have no idea how to focus the rage, indeed many of them lack courage. The Parsis in India are seen as mild mannered businessmen. Perhaps like the Jews they can change their personalities once they establish their nation but remember there is no equivalent of the Masada complex in Persians.

There's another reason I brought up the Greek and Arab invasions... The first time Persia fell was to the Greeks. Now we see a lot of turmoil in Iran and it is indeed the beginning of the end for the mullahs. Iranian culture will now be hijacked by the Americans, which though definitely preferable to the mullahs, will result in a loss of Iranian identity. I dont think Americans would be to blame though because Iranians had lost their sense of identity a long time ago. Believe it or not, it began with the Macedonian Greek invasion from which it had never completely recovered. Iranians will be caught between Christianity, Buddhism, Islam (Shia and Sunni), Judaism, Bahai, Mazdaism and Zoroastrianism. Under Islamic rule except for the Buddhists (who were vanquished) they got along together pretty well because as in the case of Eastern Europe (Russia), there was a big brother (Islam) to carry the stick (2nd class
dhimmi status) from preventing the others from going at each other. Forget about Zoroastrians reigning supreme, Iran will be lucky if does not end up as a giant Lebanon, destabilizing not one, not two but three volatile regions (South Asia, Central Asia and the Middle East).

Mind you, I like the Zoroastrian religion. Many Hindus and indeed many Zoroastrians consider the relationship between Vedic Hinduism and Zoroastrianism corresponds to Judaism and Christianity. I just think it is too damaged spiritually and politically to establish a stable, vibrant nation forget about imperial adventures like it indulged in the past
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Posted by John Ray

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Wednesday, December 11, 2002




OIL SPILLS

An email from J. Williams

I note your piece of November 23rd regarding oil spills in the Atlantic, most recently off Spain.

I am a retired Master Mariner and one time tanker officer.

The powers that be most certainly know what that oil will do at that depth without sending submersibles. Different oils have different characteristics which are determined ashore before it is loaded. One parameter that is vital for the ship, and known to the ship in advance, is the oil 'Pour Point'. This is the temperature at which the oil solidifies, thus rendering it un-pumpable. This temperature may be quite high, well over 20 degrees C. Some crudes and refinery residues have pour points well over 40 degrees. All ships bunker tanks and crude tanker tanks are fitted with steam heating coils to keep the oil above this temperature. Before ship bunker fuel can be burned in a 'diesel' engine, it must be heated by steam to usually about 110 degrees C. before being injected.

Some kinds of oil will not burn except under very great provocation, as the Great and Unlamented Harold Wilson found after he got both the British Fleet Air Arm and the RAF to attempt to make the "Torrey Canyon" burn. He suceeded in making a lot more holes for a lot more oil to run over a much greater area. This was hailed as a "Sucess", because he was seen to be doing something dramatic and 'exciting', and napalm burns OK with lots of smoke for the TV cameras so everyone was happy. Taxpayer didn't know, of course.

The water temperature in deep ocean is never very far from the temperature at which water becomes most dense, nearly 4 degrees C., and is easy to find if it is wanted. That ship will also have various other oils such as light diesel, lubricating oil, and hydraulic oil as part of her equipment. That is probably what is leaking now, and it could be anything up to about 250 tonnes for that ship, though not all of it would escape. In other words, what is going on in Europe is hysterical bullshit for money as usual.

If you get hold of charts of the English Channel you will see that the bed is literally carpeted with wrecks from two world wars. I mean carpeted. Your correspondent is quite right about the Atlantic WWII oilspills. You might also think of what happened in the Far East during that same war.

The greatest exponent of submarine warfare was America not Germany. The U-boat basically was beaten, in no particular order, by radar, air surveillance, convoy system and code-breaking/intelligence, none of which the Japanese developed, or at least nowhere near to the extent the British did. The Americans thus had near open go against the Japanese Merchant Navy and a merry time they had. In fact, a good argument can be mounted that Japan was beaten by the American submarine.

In all this oil bullshit that's spread all over us, there is one little fact that never ever gets a mention. The biggest oil spill ever in Australian waters occurred in 1970 in the heart of our wonderfully ecologically fragile Barrier Reef. The ship was called The "Oceanic Grandeur" and the rock she hit now proudly bears the name "O. G. Rock" on Australian Admiralty charts. It is right up the top, just in the eastern end of Torres Strait, and the ship was boarded for inspection by the then Premier of the Sovereign State of Queensland, the Right Honorable Joh Bjelke Petersen.

Nobody, even including some of the Barrier Reef pilots, seems ever to have heard of her. Yet there is a book published by the Queensland Department of Marine and Harbours (I think they call themselves) in the public libraries, that has quite a long article and a few tasteful photos of the event.

I heard about it when I lived in England (but I didn't know Joh got on board 'til recently). Granted that I was studying this kind of stuff at the time, but none of the locals seems to have heard about it: And certainly not any 'news organisation' in Australia.

The spill seems to have been of the order of 45,000 barrels according to the "Times Atlas of the Oceans" (q.v.). I have heard other lesser figures, but it is dreadfully difficult to get any authentic figure and I wonder why. Or rather, I don't wonder why, I am sure I know that hysteria and heavy breathing pays better than fact.

That quantity equates approximately to over 5,000 tonnes, of crude oil. Where is all this devastation that has been lying about unseen for 30 odd years?


In a later email, Capt. Williams expanded his comments as follows:

The 45,000 barrel figure comes from my copy of the 'Times Atlas of the Oceans' pub. Angus and Robertson in 1893. Originally pub. in London that same year.

I have gathered from conversations with reef pilots over years that the spill may have been around 2000 to 4000 tonnes. I believe it to have been the biggest, but I don't know that for a fact. It must have been big, because the ship bottom was opened up by a rock spike, now blasted flat so I understand, over a considerable length.

Anyway, 45,000 barrels = ~ 7,150 cubic metres; at density say 0.85 = ~ 6,000 tonnes thereabouts, but all such oil spill figures should be treated with great caution. Even when there is good faith it is hard to estimate. And there is never good faith where oil spills and tankers are concerned, there is always an agenda involving lots of folding green solvent.

The book is "Harbours and Marine. Port and Harbour Development in Queensland From 1824 to 1985" Published by Dept. of Harbours and Marine in Brisbane in 1986. Relevant pages 682 to 684. They state that the oil spill was 250,000 gallons crude oil from Dumai in Indonesia, which equates roughly to 1000 tonnes. Take your pick. Clean-up cost stated to have been $124,500, say a million in modern money. Things were a bit different then, hysteria lacking.


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Posted by John Ray

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Tuesday, December 10, 2002




IN DEFENCE OF SUVS/4WDS

An Email discussion with D. Williams:

Williams:

The basis for this is a federal study done deliberately to show 4x4 vehicles in a bad light. This is science answering to politics.

The left-wing wacko enviro-nazis have hated the 4x4s for some time now. Those nasty vehicles that go "Off Road" GAAAAK! Here is the source of the hatred for these vehicles. Nothing so enrages these nazis as people being able to explore our vast wild lands. Hence the considerable legal closings of many of our Federal wild lands to human tresspass during the Clinton administration.

But let's get back to 4x4s or SUVs if you will. I drive two, a Suburban and a Chevy sport truck. In Alaska, as in many cold climate communities across America, these vehicles represent an order of magnitude of increased safety, not to mention comfort, over ordinary vehicles. At sub-zero temperatures nothing gives confidence when traversing icy or snowy roads like a 4x4. Four wheel traction is not just an added 2 wheels, it is a driving system that balances out the power application in a way that allows these vehicles to do many things to maintain stability that a 2 wheel drive vehicle cannot achieve.

On icy roads at 50 MPH (or higher) if you want to stop quickly you simply pop the transmission into low gear and you will decelerate at a remarkable rate, under perfect steering control. This is something not even available to 2x4 automobiles. I can stop in one fourth the distance as they. Hurt the transmission? No. Not as long as the road is icy. Not everyone is aware of this "trick" but many up north are.

There are many attributes of 4x4s that I won't go into but the most important of them is safety. Artificial "scientific" studies by Federal Agencies, tasked with finding fault, will never convince me or millions of Americans that SUVs represent any safety problem at all. We drivers of them know better.

SUVs are a danger to small cars when the two meet in accidents, but Detroit wouldn't make these death traps if it weren't for Federal mandates. They are forced to make them in order to meet artificial mileage targets. Targets by the way were designed to eliminate large vehicles on our roads.

My advice to the ignorant is to take these childish claims for what they are, tantrums of the elite who can't stand Americans expressing their joie-de-vivre with large, capable off-road vehicles.


Ray

I am sure that you are right that 4WDS are better on difficult roads -- that is what they were originally made for. It is their suburban and highway use that is problematical.


Williams:

Difficult roads are just one instance and the easiest to see. However think about this too. Road control is superior with 4x4, witness it being used by the most sophisticated racing vehicles such as Formula 1 and Grand Prix types until it was banned. It increased adhesion and was safer to drive than two wheel drive. The same benefits accrue today on the interstate. There is no question that antagonism to 4 wheel drive is strictly driven by animosity to big automobiles, off-road ability and general perception of heavy fuel use. This last misconception is easy to see. Today's V-8 SUV gets better fuel mileage than any V-8 vehicle from 20 years ago and even some 6 cylinday engines. Not only that but today's SUV has only 1% of the polution of vehicles 20 years ago. The interstate is where SUVs rule. They are more comfortable, safer, no they don't roll over more often, and can actually let one carry the luggage one wants on vacation.

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