We’ve Been “Going Viral” For Billions Of Years

Way back when, 2 guys decided to write a book together and a damsel got distressed. And so she plied her wares, and fucked it all up.

This is a section from Chapter 3, Chemical Warfare. It's about the myriad ways that bacteria are in a constant state of warfare, and beyond just the quotidian synthesized chemicals they excrete, it really doesn't even contemplate Quorum Sensing, or Horizontal Gene Transfer. Viruses play in the gut biome, too. This was written and edited just about a year ago. Tim Steele, in North Pole, Alaska, was the collaborator, as most of you know, and links are candy.

In spite of a wayward cunt, it will get published; along with the other 8 sections of the same chapter, and the other 19 chapters.

~~~

ET TU, BRUTE?

The largest threat to every Establishment in the 10,000 or so years since man first waged war was itself. Complacency, corruption, and unrealistic growth at the expense of society's resources have toppled many regimes. Human governing systems attempted to solve this problem with layers of bureaucratic oversight, but it’s generally a hostile takeover that ends dictatorships. Our gut bugs must regard us as sheer amateurs. Our microbes, in their 3 billion year history of warfare, saw fit to build in a self-regulating, continuous coup d’etat.

Sidebar:

A common argument used by those who eschew animals as food sources for humans, in favor of various plant-based diets is the fact that humans don’t have claws, flesh ripping fangs, and they can’t run as fast as predators like big cats, wolves, and wild dogs. Such reasoning, however, doesn’t account for the chief predator of humans: other humans.

Humans are vicious predators, possessing the most marvelous weapon ever devised by evolution: a big brain. Rather than relying on physical attributes to engage in predation, man’s big brain allows for the development of tools, weapons, strategy, and tactics such as persistence hunting. Moreover, humans are masters of deception on all levels, both individual and socially collective.

...Anywhere bacteria are found, phages are not far behind.[22] Phages are viruses that prey on bacteria. There are 10 times as many phages in the world as there are bacteria, making phages the most abundant life form in numbers on the planet.[23] Seawater contains more phages than anywhere else. And there can exist over 900,000,000 phages in a milliliter of seawater!

The official name is bacteriophage, Greek for bacteria eater. In the human gut, phages operate on a principle known as “kill-the-winner.”[24] Any time a bacterial population gets too big, phages come along and knock them down to size—the world’s most brutal police force. By killing overpopulated bacteria, any single gut bacterial species is prevented from gaining too much control of the biome. This drives microbial diversity and guarantees there are sufficient different types of gut bugs to perform each specific role. A gut without this government regulation would soon be populated by just one or two global superpower microbes good at doing a few things, but completely unprepared to deal with contingencies or disasters.

Gut bugs must interact with each other to form a common defense and tackle shared duties, but they must also compete for space and food. Phages are the great equalizer. When everything is going fine, diversity is high, and populations are stable, the phages do nothing. They’re not indiscriminate killers. If an invading microbial population overcomes all defenses and is then able to grow rapidly, the phages jump into action and kill the intruders.

A phage does its dirty work in one of two ways: either exploding the bacteria outright, or infecting it with its DNA—forcing the microbe to become a breeder of phages. We told you this was going to get weird. The different types of phages can be differentiated by their knife-like tails, or lack thereof. The lunar lander-looking structure includes a capsule where the phage’s DNA is stored. [You can Google for images of what phages look like under an electron microscope.]

~~~

...So, I've had this tab up in my browser for days, unwilling to close it, unsure what to do with it, no inspiration to blog it until I recalled the foregoing.

Bacterial Microbiome Move Over: the Gut Virome Makes Its Debut

A new study reveals that eukaryotic viruses are able to both shape mucosal immunity and support intestinal homeostasis in mice. Specifically, infection with murine norovirus (MNV) appears able to replace the beneficial function of bacterial colonization in the gut.

Scientists have long known that RNA viruses are commonly found in healthy infants and children, as well as in individuals recovering from acute gastroenteritis. Such viral infections have generally been assumed to be detrimental to the host. The new study turns that assumption on its head and hints that these viruses may play a role similar to that of the bacterial microbiome. [...]

The new findings are the first strong evidence that viruses in the gastrointestinal tract can help maintain health and heal a damaged gut. Before this study, there had been very little investigation of the viruses that colonize the gut.

The team infected germ-free mice and antibiotic-treated mice with MNV and found that the infection triggered the repair of intestinal tissue damaged by inflammation, restored intestinal cell numbers, restored intestinal cell function, and normalized tissue architecture. The results were apparent after just 2 weeks of MNV infection.

Infection with MNV also helped restore the gut's immune system. The investigators do not yet know how the virus supports the immune system. They did find, however, increased signaling by antiviral type 1 interferon proteins, suggesting the virus was playing a key role in driving the immune response.

The investigators also documented a doubling of T-cell levels in the blood and detectable levels of antibodies in the gut and blood of antibiotic-treated mice after MNV infection. These measures were consistent with a normalization of the immune response. The authors conclude that viral infection of the gut may be helpful once antibiotic treatment has wiped out intestinal bacteria. [...]

"We have known for a long time that people get infected all the time with viruses and bacteria, and they don't get sick," senior investigator Ken Cadwell, PhD, also from New York University, noted in a university news release. "Now we have scientific evidence that not every viral infection is bad, but may actually be beneficial to health, just as we know that many bacterial infections are good for maintaining health."

Or, you know, go order up another free delivery of Paleo brownies and/or cookies, tell everyone you're "PALEOW!!!" Start a blog, hook up with affiliate accounts. It's a trend.

It's solid. It's bankable. For. A. While.

Or, just go long term view and get lafs. At you.

The Ominous Duck Dodgers Comment Grace Liu Deleted

She doesn't want to you to see it in her Jan 23, 2015 comment thread.

Duck Dodgers has left a new comment on the post "Lose Weight, Body Fat, Improve Blood Glucoses and ...":

I'll try again, P1, and hopefully Grace won't censor me this time. [The cunt did - Ed].

P1 said: "Duck, can you share some of the points about honey that you have learned?"

For starters, see: Honey as a Source of Dietary Antioxidants: Structures, Bioavailability and Evidence of Protective Effects Against Human Chronic Diseases (Free Download)

P1 said: "I think you are not giving Grace's points their due. She is just objectively pointing out which types of fibers feed known good families of bacteria, and she is also pointing out that RS2 largely feeds bacteria that are harmful."

I'm sorry, but the evidence that's been presented has been extremely weak and was mostly conjecture if you read it closely.

P1 said: "No one is really responding to or denying the truth of those claims, and she does provide links to research."

I suggest you read the evidence she presented more closely, and with a critical eye. The studies often do not reach the same conclusions being presented here.

P1 said: "If you accept those claims"

I'll stop you right there. Saying that something feeds "bad" bacteria or "good" bacteria is mostly marketing speak. Just about any food feeds "bad" bacteria. And there has been no discussion as to what levels of "bad" bacteria are helpful.

Raw honey often contains spores of some very pathogenic bacteria and pathogenic yeasts. Is that a reason to avoid honey given that is seems to provide significant benefits to those who consume it?

P1 said: "I think it is pretty fair to ask what would be the presumed health benefit of taking large amounts of RS2? And I think it is quite appropriate for her to evidence that question by further pointing out that recent human trials of RS2 fail to meet good endpoints."

The evidence in those studies is rarely as conclusive as it's been presented in Grace's posts. Again, it's mostly conjecture. Secondly, nobody advocates "high doses" of RS2 anymore. So, I fail to see what the point of these posts are about.

P1 said: "The dose makes the poison in all things, but the fact that everything has a toxic dose isn't really a response to her post."

Actually it is. You could literally write the same exact series of posts using any food, fiber or liquid.

Cheers.

What a laf. That's too much for her, even after she tried—in Fake Doktor ways—to claim Duck has chronic fatigue syndrome and how's that going in light of PS consumption (both are actually false).

Tell you what, go leave respectful, critical comments but copy them. If they get deleted, email to me and I'll post every single one, so long as they meet the respectful criteria. Slinging shit is my job, so don't encroach.

I'm still working on another post about honey that will be up soon.

Finally:

cunt
 

What Transactions Have the Royal Society of South Africa Been Up To?

OK, so after my post of day before yesterday juxtaposing Grace Liu being a normal inquisitive soul with cool ideas vs. whatever it is she's going on about on her blog, I was watching comments and seeing one after another deleted that inks to her own writing. Duck got one comment to stick.

You know I have a lot of respect for you, but your assertion that raw starches are not ancestral is extremely weak and is in no way supported by the anthropological literature. It's sloppy.

For instance, using 5 "ancestral" species of bacteria that are inherited from non-starch eating primates as proof that raw starch is not ancestral is a logical fallacy. It's very misleading.

Humans eat starch. Primates do not. Therefore, raw starch is not ancestral? I'm afraid you will need to do better than that.

It's well known that USOs are extremely important to human evolution, for millions of years, and it's more than a little odd that you would try to claim that only "cooked" USOs were eaten when they were perfectly safe to eat raw.

Tiger nuts are just one example of a sedge tuber that has had a close relationship with humans since the dawn of humankind. The tiger nut is safe to eat raw and was one of the first cultivated plants in Ancient Egypt. Even today, kids in Europe snack on raw tiger nuts as candy and the Valencians drink their raw horchata as a medicinal superfood.

Paleo Indians at Mashantucket were shown to have yellow nutsedge (weedy tiger nut) starch all over their tools. To suggest that these sedge tubers, which were perfectly safe to eat raw, were somehow only eaten cooked will require far more assertive evidence than a short poorly-researched paragraph engineered to needle your ex-collaborators.

Not only is there overwhelming evidence showing the importance of sedge consumption by our distant ancestors, but there are plenty of studies showing a variety of different sedge tubers consumed by H. Sapiens.

For instance, here is a study that was published last week!

Nuts for dinner? Cladium mariscus in the Middle Stone Age at Sibudu, South Africa

The Middle Stone Age ended ~50–25,000 years ago. To suggest that sedge tubers were only eaten cooked is like suggesting that pecans were only eaten roasted. It's preposterous.

As you can see, there are a wide variety of raw sedge tubers besides tiger nuts out there. I hope you don't plan on trying to discount the raw consumption of every USO that's ever been classified.

I was interested in the new study. Someone found the full text for me right under a tattered pillow with lots of dog hair stuck to it. The abstract is online.

Nuts for dinner? Cladium mariscus in the Middle Stone Age at Sibudu, South Africa

The sedge, Cladium mariscus, has been identified in Middle Stone Age deposits at the shelter Sibudu, South Africa, where the leaves were used as “bedding” – an informal floor covering for various activities. Cladium mariscus nutlets were recovered from layers 73,000 – 39,000 years old and are likely to have entered the shelter on the plants harvested for bedding. This paper explores the possibility that, in addition to the use of Cladium mariscus leaves for bedding, the nutlets were collected for food. The underground storage organs and nutlets of many sedge species are eaten by contemporary people and they are known to have been eaten in the past at other sites. Nutritional analysis of the nutlets and rhizomes of Cladium mariscus indicates their potential as a food source, notwithstanding the small size of the nutlets. Although there is no evidence for the preparation of Cladium mariscus for consumption at Sibudu, the abundant nutlets produced by the plants, their nutritional value and the ease of harvesting the nutlets indicate that they could have been a useful dietary item. At Sibudu, as early as 70,000 years ago, the complicated mastic recipes for hafting stone tools indicate that the shelter inhabitants possessed advanced pyrotechnological skills and sophisticated knowledge of the chemical properties of materials. It is possible that these abilities were applied to the processing of Cladium mariscus nutlets. Such activities could imply an early example of intensive collection and possible processing of a particular plant food.

Beyond that, I think the dogs would bark if I gave out the full text, so you'll have to be satisfied with my confirmation bias, unless you know the same dog owner.

INTRODUCTION

Ripe for the picking, would an abundant, easily harvested and nutritious resource have been ignored by people at Sibudu in the Middle Stone Age? The fruits of the sedge, Cladium mariscus (L.) Pohl subsp. jamaicense (Crantz) Kük fulfil these desirable criteria and were available in the uThongathi River, which flows at the base of the steep cliff in which the rock shelter Sibudu is situated. Approximately 12 km down- stream from Sibudu, the uThongathi River reaches the east coast of South Africa and flows into the Indian Ocean. Although Cladium no longer grows near or downstream from Sibudu, it was present in the past (Sievers & Muasya, 2011) and was used for “bedding” – plant material informally laid down on the dusty, stone-littered shelter floor to provide a clean and comfortable surface for a range of activities (Wadley et al., 2011). In this paper I argue that in addition to the use of Cladium leaves for bedding, Cladium nutlets (< 3 mm, single-seeded, indehiscent fruits) were eaten and that even though it is possible to crush and grind the nutlets between one’s teeth, processing of the nutlets at Sibudu is a possible scenario.

So, they ate them, maybe processed them.

The use of Cladium leaves as an informal mattress need not preclude the use of other parts of the plant for other purposes. Sedge nutlets, corms, tubers and rhizomes are widely reported as food in archaeological and ethnographic contexts, in southern Africa and further afield (e.g. Van Wyk & Gericke, 2000; Simpson & Inglis, 2001; Crawford, 2007; Sievers, 2011) and likely were an important dietary item for hominins even in early Pleistocene times (Van der Merwe et al., 2008; Wrangham et al., 2009; Sponheimer et al., 2013). The prolific production of nutlets on individual Cladium inflorescences indicates that the nutlets are an abundant food source and this warrants analysis of their nutritive value; the rhizomes are more difficult to harvest, but their nutrient values provide useful comparative data.

Need I even get into Dental Calculus Reveals Unique Insights into Food Items, Cooking and Plant Processing in Prehistoric Central Sudan?

The evidence extracted from the dental calculus has shown the use of fire, and possibly smoke, in all periods. Cooking on an open fire does not always fully gelatinize starch granules. Variable gelatinization of starch granules following open fire cooking). The Hadza, for example, are known to cook their tubers for a very short time, possibly to facilitate peeling and chewing, while leaving the interior of their food raw [38]. Therefore, despite the raw appearance of the starch granules in the pre-Mesolithic samples, they could have come from food items that had been lightly heated...Some of the ‘char’ observed in the calculus samples may also derive from exposure to fires for non-culinary purposes...In the pre-Mesolithic samples...all these starch granules appear undamaged. In some cases starch granules occurred in groups of two or three, still intact and lodged within remains of the thin cellular wall (Figure 2). This suggests little or no external processing...No diagenetic effects [20] are apparent and the granules display no evidence of any form of processing or heating either in the presence of water (which leads to swelling) or roasting (which leads to drying and cracking); this suggests the plant food may have been ingested raw or after only little heating.

Or, you know, there's lots of Paleo Brownies to Order ONLINE! Free Shipping!

Here’s Your “Gut Goddess” Right Here

There's other comments to highlight, but I'm on a roll. Haven't felt like blogging, I have a big post in draft on everything you never knew about honey, so this just hit me and I picked it.

I am one of those too that tried to follow Grace and take out the rps [Raw Potato Starch - Ed]. I did just inulin and acacia gum for awhile. And for awhile nothing. I became a bloated mess. I was constipated (again!) and just feeling blah. I added the rps back in a few weeks ago and my stomach is back to flat. I am not gassy. I look great. And feel great. I had done rps for a year before this. This time I am mixing in more variety and it is awesome. I am one of those people who when starting rps gained ten pounds but you couldn’t tell. It was, I believe, an increase in my gut bio dome. Rps helped make me regular for the first time in my life. Thank you and I look forward to being a beta tester!!!

Out of the blue, Duck goes to work, in his usual style with perfect html coding.

~~~

Unfortunately, Grace has become a fiber supremacist.

Furthermore, she has claimed that raw RS2 is only typically found in plants that aren't safe to eat raw. However, she's not done her homework in that regard, as there are important instances of non-toxic RS2 staple foods that she has not considered. Here are two:

In Ethiopia, the Ensete plant (Ensete ventricosum), also known as 'False Banana' is often cooked theses days, but it is an excellent source of RS2 when eaten raw. No doubt, it would have been a tremendous source of RS2, in Ethiopia, before cooking was invented.

From: Enset - The 'False Banana' as Food Security

Enset - what is it?

Also known as "false banana" due to its striking resemblance to the banana plant, Enset (Ensete Scitamineae) is a traditional staple crop in many parts of densely populated south and south-western Ethiopia. Records suggest that Enset has been grown in Ethiopia for more than 10,000 years. Indigenous hunter/gatherers of southern Ethiopia are thought to have been the first to cultivate Enset, and later introduced it to the Cushitic-speaking people of the northern highlands, only for it to be replaced by cerealbased crops due to the migration of the Semitic people. Enset is virtually unknown as a foodstuff outside Ethiopia and in western countries, variants are often grown as ornamental garden plants. The root of the plant provides food in the form of starch, the stem is used to produce a coarse fibre, and the leaves are fed to cattle, whose manure is in turn used to fertilise the plant. Although Enset is a protein-poor crop, its deep roots give it a greater resilience to drought than other cereal crops and consequently, a greater degree of food security to those who grow it...

...The major food products obtained from the Enset plant are kocho, bulla and amicho, all of which are simple to produce once the plant is harvested, and can be stored for long periods without spoiling.

While Ensete is now often eaten cooked, it is also safely eaten raw and obviously would have been eaten raw before cooking was invented. John Hame explains:

From: Humane Development: Participation and Change Among the Sadama of Ethiopia, by John H. Hame, p. 18

"To serve ensete as food a woman first removes it from the pit, wraps the mash in a handful of the stringlike fibers from the stem of the plant, and squeezes out the liquid content. She then kneads and sifts it into a fine flour. Transformation from raw material to food is now complete, and the finished product is referred to as wasa. It may be served as raw, sour-tasting flour mixed with vegetables, made into small pancakes, or occasionally baked into bread."

And here's the kicker... Enset starch has roughly the same amount of amylose as potato starch does.

Literature Review On Enset Starch: Physico-Chemical Properties And Pharmaceutical Applications, by Wondimu, et al. (2014)

According to a study by Gebre-Mariam and Shimidt the amylose content of enset starch was estimated to be 29.0%. Another study, however, indicated that the amylose content to be 21%. The variation could arise from differences in the methodologies used for determination of the amylose content. Both of the studies showed that the amylose content of enset starch was comparable with that of potato starch...

...The average granule size of enset starch was 37.7μm, which was comparable to that of potato starch (38.2 μm).

Basically Enset is the Ethiopian non-toxic version of a potato, and it's a major staple for Ethiopians. But, no, it doesn't end there. Those Peruvians that gave us potatoes full of hormetic glycoalkaloids apparently never bothered to tell the Spanish about Canna, the edible rhizome that is very high in amylose and is safe to consume raw.

From: Wikipedia: Canna Agriculture Group

The Canna Agriculture Group contains all of the varieties of Canna used in agriculture. Canna achira and Canna edulis (Latin: eatable) are generic terms used in South America to describe the cannas that have been selectively bred for agricultural purposes, normally derived from C. discolor. It is grown especially for its edible rootstock from which starch is obtained, but the leaves and young seed are also edible, and achira was once a staple foodcrop in Peru and Ecuador...

...Canna is still grown for human consumption in the Andes and also in Vietnam and southern China, where the starch is used to make cellophane noodles.

Rootstock - actually a rhizome - can be eaten either raw or cooked. It is the source of canna starch which is used as a substitute for arrowroot. The starch is obtained by rasping the rhizome to a pulp, then washing and straining to get rid of the fibres. This starch is very digestible. The very young rhizomes can also be eaten cooked, they are sweet but fibrous. The rhizome can be very large, sometimes as long as a person's forearm. In Peru the rhizomes are baked for up to 12 hours by which time they become a white, translucent, fibrous and somewhat mucilaginous mass with a sweetish taste.

We can learn more about Canna here: Eat The Weeds: Canna Confusion.

Here's a paper showing that the starch grains of Canna are higher in amylose than potato starch.

From: Characterization of Starch from two Ecotypes of Andean Achira Roots (Canna edulis), by Cisneros (2009)

"Achira (C. edulis) roots (70 kg of each ecotype) were obtained in the year 2001 from the San Gaban and Sandia regions of Puno in southeastern Peru...

...The amylose contents of San Gaban and Sandia achira starches were 39 and 33%, respectively. These values are relatively high when compared to traditional sources of starch such as potato (27%) and corn (24%) (Table 2). These results confirm the high-amylose values reported for achira starch in previous studies (12).

...In summary, achira starch showed some unusual properties, such as very large granules and relatively high amylose content"

It's not hard to see that RS2-rich staple foods were eaten raw by ancient Ethiopians and Peruvians. There are likely other examples, but I suppose it's apparent that Grace won't be looking for them.

~~~

Like I told you before, she ought not to have gotten herself all fucked up with me, then started harming people for spite. Richard hates that, especially the latter.

“Stalling” in Wheat Belly and LC Weight Loss After Amazing Strides

Subject near and dear to my heart, and if you're one who throws in the towel for a year, two, or even more, I'm your "authority."

There is one aspect that doesn't get enough attention, in my view. It's a fuzzy thing, because it's something that could happen in your 20s, but most likely won't. Could hapen in your 30s, but easy to catch for most (I came soooooo close—'cause I saw the nefarious progression but punted). In your 40s and beyond, you're most likely going to face real pain and adversity (give me a star!).

Let's just cut to the chase, and I'll follow up on the backside. Comment from a new reader, George.

I have been doing Wheat belly for 3 months. Lost 20 lbs in the first month and then nothing for 2 months, actually gaining a little bit. Not much, but a little bit. Dr Davis has a link to your site so that’s how I found out about the importance about resistant starches. I had a blood panel, have had high cholesterol for some time, and my values got better, a lot better. My question to you is, what is your take on the wheat belly “diet” with low carbs and high fat? I started on PS, green banana, green Mazango (name??) bananas, psyllium husk, probiotics in a milk shake with kefir in the morning and one in the evening. GREAT FARTS :) and getting really regular which hasn’t happened in years. I will have a new blood panel done to see the results. Hopefully a lot better. Thank for all the work you have done!

My reply:

George:

First, thanks for not just doing 4 TBS in a glass of water, but incorporating it into what you eat and using other stuff to target gut.

Smart move.

I like Bill Davis. He’s been good to me over the years.

Yes, the weight loss/stall story with low carb is legend. What happens is that when you cut out the grains and processed food in general, you aren’t feeding opiate receptors, so your natural hunger impulses moderate. It’s not perfect, because you still have weight to carry around. But anyway, you naturally take on an average caloric deficit without hunger, and thus drop weight. However, in very many people, especially those not in their 20s anymore, the caloric deficit you adopt doesn’t correspond to your resting metabolic high school weight, but more often your more couch potatoish self at 35 or something. So, you “stall” 10, 20, 30 pounds from where you’d like to be.

You’ve reached homeostasis.

That’s why those last pounds can be tough. Think of it this way. You raised your set point by just getting older: hormones don’t crank as well, cells have hearing loss. Add processed food specifically engineered to make you hungry and want more, you add another layer. Fortunately, that layer seems relatively easy to eliminate. But the elevation in set point, not so much.

Anyway, the end point here is that it was not about the low carb, it was eliminating the grains and the processed foods they came with.

I’d advise you become carb agnostic; but, eat your carbs from whole sources: rice, potatoes, beans. Also, be mindful of fat, especially added fat.

Think of it this way: engineering processed foods with grains, sugar, salt and fat to make you crave and smoke…sorry…eat more, is really just a technological advancement from the same thing in even ancestral diets, making food way more palatable and desirable by rendering or extracting fat from some foods, and adding them to others.

Heard of the potato diet that works like 100% of the time and everyone has to eventually stop or they’ll end up looking like a concentration camp survivor? …Yes, the absolutely most sure way to loose weight by stuffing yourself is a very high carbohydrate diet of potatoes with no (or minuscule) added fat, but instead: herbs & spices, or non-fat sauces (like veggie purees). Now, do the potato diet, but heap on butter, sour cream, and bacon bits (our proto-processed foods) and see how that diet works out. You’ll pour on pounds.

~~~

I'll just say that everything began to change pretty quickly and well for me when I recognized that fat gluttony is just gluttony, Paleo/LC, or whatever. Nobody should be phobic about fat. But, eat it primarily in real food the way it came (e.g., like whole milk instead of cream or butter) and if you add, then do so as you'd do herbs & spices, and just see what happens.

My final take is that I don't believe Bill Davis is truly a fan of gluttonous fat diets as celebrated by low carbers. I think it was a pragmatic decision on his part to come in under the LC umbrella, proposing they eliminate grains. You see, because of the LC requirement, mainstream LC has become processed enough to be in the Kellogg's Hall of Fame. It's a messy disaster. But one way to look at it is Bill Davis as a subversive influence. I think he wears a white hat in this. 

Well, Given a Gaudy Shirt, We Sure as Must Need to Put a Woman on Mars, Now

Jannet "Judgy Bitch" Bloomfield's post: It’s not advanced math and rigorous training that keeps women out of STEM. It’s sexist shirts. Watch feminists break the stupid meter.

STEM = Science Technology Engineering Math

Anyway, some geek scientist that helped happen an unwomaned lander land on a rapidly spinning comet in space, traveling at a bazillion MPH wore a shirt that a only a true geek, autistic savant, or Aspergers would wear in public. Or, perhaps an asshole like me, whilst sporting a grin and a middle finger.

Via Amy Alkon: David Burge with the nutshell on the furor:

@Iowahawkblog
"Man Forced to Apologize for Sexist Shirt After Successfully Landing Spacecraft on Comet" has to be the ultimate headline for our age.

JB frames it exactly right for my taste.

stupid meter
 

I love what Janet and others do in the men are men space, it's just not my quotidian bag. I've never been with A Stupid as man-woman deal (avoid plagues); and as an employer, I easily filtered out such Stupid from every person hired (I discriminate). Easy to filter. Just give 'em rope. My mom—and grandmother, and great grandmother, in their living days—lafs at the impotence of feminists and their childlike entitlement angle. ...My great grandmother dumped a number of men, raised two kids by herself during the Great Depression—had her first kid of two at 15. She was 58 when I was born, died when I was 29.

Sorry children-femmes: my great grandmother taught me what a real woman of adult determination was like. She never pouted about men. Actually, I don't think she ever worried much about them, untoward like. She adored her great grandkids, though. I know, firsthand. When I was a boy, a trip to see grandnanna was just the dessert of life, then.

But with feminism, it's those High-School Bitch films all over again.

This blue comet upon which we dwell is now simply swimming in meaningless feelings. Everybody has feelings. Feelings have become as ubiquitous and as faux "important" as the latest narcissist Facebook update you saw of someone's check-in, or what they happen to "think" about something.

I don't give a fuck about anyone's feelings. Not truly. Not when its unimportant; and the world I live in now is most focussed on the unimportant and facile.

Why should you? Care, I mean. If someone has some legit beef about something, U did them wrong in some way; ...or, perhaps they care about you enough to let you know that they think you're just wrong, but with actual adult-like reasons? We don't do that on this comet, anymore. We're all rushing to be narcissist, solipsist children as fast as possible—and there's many apps for that...

In short—and it's getting embarrassing to post about this anymore—dealing with feminism is simply an exercise in dealing with children. And, as you know, it's always, and always: for the children. THE CHILD...REN! Yea, 100% of feminists bought that pathetic wife of a public presidential philanderer line, and: It Takes a Village.

Feminists are a CAFO OF USELESS BULLSHIT FEELING.

CAFO = Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation

...I liked this JB riff the best:

A woman made the shirt for him. There’s your first clue, Einstein. That shirt does not offend or demean 50% of the world’s population. It offends joyless, petulant, irrational, victim worshipping feminists cunts like you!

Yeah, yeah, cunt is a bit harsh, but do you know why I like using those words, especially to describe feminists? It’s a way of iterating, forcefully, that their precious feelz matter not one fucking bit to me. Women’s feelings do not matter more than men’s feelings, women do not have the right to walk through life in a state of perpetual comfort, never offended by anything at any time anywhere. It is not wrong to offend women and most women know this already!

It’s feminist bitches who seem to think the world owes them permanent obsequious and obedience. Remember this pathetic attention whore? Tweeting out her butthurt over a Dongle joke that wasn’t even addressed to her?

As I said, this stuff is just not particularly in my wheelhouse (see the meter at the top). I've had my run ins, but they fade away. I never cared a runny shit for their feelings. JB can probably get away with using THE C-WORD, since she's a woman. Oh, wait. She loves and celebrates men, and derides feminists. Nevermind.

...The thing Janet is deriding, though, is the idea that things like a geek wearing a "sexist" shirt (rather than in simple bad taste, like your great grandmother taught you) is what's keeping women from pursuing STEM carriers.

They hear comments about “bitches” while out at a bar with fellow science students, and they decide to change majors.

stripper
Futre Stripper, Not STEM

From my perspective on this comet for nearly 54 years, women make it go round one way; and men, another. Neither orbits nor rotations are pristine. It's evolutionary and animal. It ought be free.

Thank doG.

I'll close with Amy Alkon.

Clearly, feminism is no longer about demanding that women be treated as equals, but as eggshells.

Build It And They Will Come

Scott and I had a pretty decent dorm room in Finley Hall, Oregon State, in 1981. Here's the floor plan, only our room was reverse. BTW, this is kind of a follow up from this post, the other day: I Loath General Covens of Ineptitude; And The Inept Generally Run Paleo.

Screen Shot 2014 11 10 at 10 46 52 AM
 

First year, Scott and I had a plan. I bought a couch, we did a bunk bed arrangement with no lower bed. The couch went under there.

It was OK, but not ideal. Here's what we did the next year, same room, 1981: A raised deck:

Scott and Chris
Scott and Chris

If you look at the floorplan and reverse, the cedar deck was built at the level of the window and desk, and it encompassed one of the closets (1/3 of the room was normal, 2/3 raised deck). We removed the closet doors for that one, and had a curtain made for the proper height.

See that door and handle in the pic? That opened and underneath was the few things we needed to store, as well as the two mattresses from our beds. Yep, that was the sleeping space. Oh, yea, that was the sofa I bought the year before, starving student budget. On the table is a pepper plant. So much dare-fun, there. No, you can't eat a pepper raw, as an Earthling.

Anyway, I built the whole thing. Scott bought the lumber.

The two folks in the pic are Chris Lamy and Joel "Scott" Lawler. The former a neighbor, the latter, my Alaskan roommate, Ketchikan (I fished salmon on his gill-netter, one summer; another story).

Chris did exactly what he told us he was going to do, became a podiatrist. At the time, the reasoning was like this: my dad's an MD; I want to do surgery; podiatry is the shortest route. I remember stuff like that forever. Unfortunately, Joel "Scott" Lawler didn't fare so well. Last time I spoke with him, early 2000s, it was plain to me that I ought not continue the relationship.

That deck created innumerable remembrances for me. I'd been tuning up my car for years, even switched out an engine, once. So many things, and I could clean fish and butcher a deer kill. But none of those routinely get you what the deck build did.

Girls
Girl

Her roommate is just to the right.

Monday Morning Laf & Mok

1. The United States, once considered a bastion of economic freedom, now ranks 12th in the world.

Either get by, get your asses out, or whatever. I don't really care. Well, the only thing I do care about is abject moron fucktards spouting that 'land of the free' meme. I don't even bother to capitalize it, anymore.

Question: would it be possible for cannibals to ever be #1 in economic freedom? Or, how about a people for whom voting (forcing others to pay for your shit) has become their greatest Super Bowl?

I understand that I am repeating myself.

2. I can die now. I've been exampled in an article—writ by a "syndicated journalist"—with Tucker Max.

Screen Shot 2014 10 13 at 10 53 15 AM
@BodyForWife

Well, with BOTH a twitter feed and a website called BodyForWife, it's just kinda too delicious to ignore for at least a few hours of Laf & Mok. I must stipulate, though: Both Tucker Max and John Durant advised me against this.

But, I'm a shameless whore.

Screen Shot 2014 10 13 at 11 09 27 AM
Shameless Whore

The fun is limited to Twitter, and this. No need for any further, with Laf and Mok. Plus, at least one pussy male in league has already given the "adult conversation" admonition. Aaron Fuller's Twitter profile (@AndreYoungPhD) indicates that he's a "Future NBA coach." So, perhaps I'm out of bounds.

You can see the poking, laf, & mok  beginning here for me. My favorite:

Richard Nikoley ‏@rnikoley 3h3 hours ago
@TuckerMax @johndurant @BodyForWife I cook for my wife: "FEED THE ANIMAL!"

Here's Tucker:

@johndurant @rnikoley @BodyForWife scrub toilets for wife, save a ho for wife, be a barista for wife, icy hot stunnaz for wife

And John:

John Durant ‏@johndurant 3h3 hours ago
@TuckerMax @rnikoley his handle and website is @bodyforwife, Hahhahahhahahaha

Alright, time to get back to work. Plus, I need to walk the dogs or, Free The Animals.

Sunday Random Hit & Run – Health & Fitness Edition

Just another mishmash of links and commentary

1. Am I imagining things, or did Dr. Mike Eades just dismiss by implication, a few dozen arctic and Inuit researchers going back over 100 years as "lack[ing] an understanding of basic biochemistry?" 

Eades
Eades

After all, it's quite clear, if one actually reads the post, that it's almost entirely a review of all the research literature going way back, including the research of August Krogh, winner of the 1920 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his discovery of the capillary motor regulating mechanism—nothing to do with biochemistry. Duck didn't assert anything. He merely quoted the literature, demonstrating that it was all reaching the same conclusion: that it either directly or by implication contradicts Stefansson's Friendly Arctic Fairy Tales and thus, contradicts Eades as well.

2. In contrast to Eades' confirmation bias and intransigence, here's Denise Minger's AHS14 presentation.

Lessons From the Vegans: What the Paleo Movement Can Learn From the Success of Plant-Based Diets

The paleo diet has a growing reputation for assisting in weight loss, managing or treating chronic disease, and boosting quality of life for those who follow its tenets. Yet low-fat, plant-based diets -- which are also gaining popularity in the mainstream -- appear to produce similar successes using a vastly different approach. How can such a dissimilar diet have health effects that mirror those of paleo? This presentation examines the reasons behind the success of plant-based diets, and discusses what the paleo movement can learn from them. In doing so, we'll gain a new perspective on the strengths and weaknesses of the paleo philosophy and question some common paleo "truths" that may not be as solid as we currently believe.

Had I not directly seen for myself and in my comments what the potato hack can do, I'd probably be highly skeptical of Denise's presentation. But I have, so I'm not.

3. What kids around the world eat for breakfast.

I had to find an excuse to post a pic of this adorable kid-face.

japansese girl
Natto is her favorite food

Saki Suzuki, 2 ¾ years old, Tokyo

The first time Saki ate the fermented soybean dish called natto, she was 7 months old. She promptly vomited. Her mother, Asaka, thinks that perhaps this was because of the smell, which is vaguely suggestive of canned cat food. But in time, the gooey beans became Saki’s favorite food and a constant part of her traditional Japanese breakfasts. Also on the menu are white rice, miso soup, kabocha squash simmered in soy sauce and sweet sake (kabocha no nimono), pickled cucumber (Saki’s least favorite dish), rolled egg omelet (tamagoyaki) and grilled salmon.

Check out the rest. Most of it puts most of what typical American kids eat to shame.

4. "This Video Of Second Graders Being Treated To A $220 Seven-Course Tasting Menu Is Utterly Delightful" (Digg)

Well, I find it depressing and sad, though their behavior is generally exemplary.

As part of their Food issue, the New York Times Magazine sent six second graders from Brooklyn's PS 295 to dinner at Daniel, one of New York's fanciest restaurants. Each kid was served a seven-course tasting menu that goes for $220 a person.

Now, imagine all the kids featured in #3 in the same setting.

5. Is eating behavior manipulated by the gastrointestinal microbiota?

Abstract

Microbes in the gastrointestinal tract are under selective pressure to manipulate host eating behavior to increase their fitness, sometimes at the expense of host fitness. Microbes may do this through two potential strategies: (i) generating cravings for foods that they specialize on or foods that suppress their competitors, or (ii) inducing dysphoria until we eat foods that enhance their fitness. We review several potential mechanisms for microbial control over eating behavior including microbial influence on reward and satiety pathways, production of toxins that alter mood, changes to receptors including taste receptors, and hijacking of the vagus nerve, the neural axis between the gut and the brain. We also review the evidence for alternative explanations for cravings and unhealthy eating behavior. Because microbiota are easily manipulatable by prebiotics, probiotics, antibiotics, fecal transplants, and dietary changes, altering our microbiota offers a tractable approach to otherwise intractable problems of obesity and unhealthy eating.

That about says it all and has everything to do with my approach to all of this. Now, when I see all this 'metabolic, hormonal pathway' masturbatory stuff out there that doesn't contemplate the astounding complexity of the gut, I just laf. It's like watching a bunch of people strut around showing off their candles, while LED floodlights are now available. Here's what the paper covers.

  • Evolutionary conflict between host and microbes leads to host manipulation
  • Evidence indicates many potential mechanisms of manipulation
    • There is a selective influence of diet on microbiota
    • Microbes can manipulate host behavior
    • Microbes can induce dysphoria that changes feeding behavior
    • Microbes modulate host receptor expression
    • Microbes can influence hosts through neural mechanisms
    • Microbes can influence hosts through hormones
    • Mucin foraging bacteria control their nutrient supply
    • Intestinal microbiota can affect obesity
    • Probiotics are associated with weight loss
  • Predictions and experiments
    • Changing the microbiota composition will change eating behavior
    • A consistent diet will select for microbial specialists and lead to preference for those foods
    • Cravings should be associated with lower parasympathetic (vagal) tone, and blocking the vagus nerve should reduce food cravings
    • Microbial diversity should affect food choices and satiety
    • Excess energy delivery to the gut may reduce microbial diversity
    • High gut diversity may inhibit density-dependent microbial manipulation
    • Interrogation of host and microbiota genomes should reveal a signaling arms race
    • Food preferences may be contagious
  • Alternative hypotheses for unhealthy eating and obesity
    • Lack of willpower is not sufficient to explain unhealthy eating
    • Mismatch with scarce resources in our ancestral environment is not sufficient to explain unhealthy eating
    • Nutrient deprivation is not sufficient to explain unhealthy eating

Conclusions

Modern biology suggests that our bodies are composed of a diversity of organisms competing for nutritional resources. Evolutionary conflict between the host and microbiota may lead to cravings and cognitive conflict with regard to food choice. Exerting self-control over eating choices may be partly a matter of suppressing microbial signals that originate in the gut. Acquired tastes may be due to the acquisition of microbes that benefit from those foods. Our review suggests that one way to change eating behavior is by intervening in our microbiota.

It is encouraging that the microbiota can be changed by many interventions, hence facilitating translation to the clinic and public health efforts. Microbiota community structure changes drastically within 24 hours of changing diet [14, 115] or administration of antibiotics [116]. Fecal transplants have shown efficacy in treating a variety of diseases [117]. The best approaches to managing our microbiota are still open questions. Many studies of the effects of gut microbes on health have focused on identifying individual taxa that are responsible for human diseases, an approach that has been largely unsuccessful in generating predictive hypotheses. Studies have identified conflicting different groups of microbes associated with various diseases, including obesity [118, 119]. In other domains, it has proven useful to shift the level of analysis from properties of the individual to properties of the population, e.g. diversity [120]. Until we have a better understanding of the contributions and interactions between individual microbial taxa, it may be more effective to focus interventions on increasing microbial diversity in the gut.

Competition between genomes is likely to produce a variety of conflicts, and we propose that one important area, impacting human health, is in host eating behavior and nutrient acquisition. Genetic conflict between host and microbiota – selecting for microbes that manipulate host eating behavior – adds a new dimension to current viewpoints, e.g. host-microbiota mutualism [11], that can explain mechanisms involved in obesity and related diseases.

[emphasis added - keep it in mind when reading some of the stuff I'm seeing now that I consider far too clinically focussed for most people, far too deconstructed and reduced. Shotgun is going to be best for most people most of the time.]

...Of course, I'm sure all the microbiome researchers 'lack an understanding of basic biochemistry.' ...

Update to #1: Here's a follow up comment from Eades in response to the same person pointing out:

The article quotes over 20 different studies on the Inuit—spanning a century—including from a Nobel prize winning scientist August Krogh.

You don’t seriously expect anyone to believe that all of those scientists don’t understand “basic biochemistry” do you?

Well, I guess he does expect everyone to believe it. Eades:

They didn’t understand about glycogen degrading back then. If you want to believe the Inuit weren’t on low-carb diets, be my guest.

Wrong again. Here's Duck—someone who actually digs up research—in comments below:

I'm disappointed that Eades is still stuck on the minimal glycogen the Inuit consumed, rather than the fact that every study on the Inuit shows they were too high protein to be in ketosis. Nevertheless, he seems completely uninformed about what researchers knew about glycogen, at the time. I'm beginning to wonder if Dr. Eades is even bothering to read any of the scientific literature on the subject. Yesterday, Eades wrote:

mreades wrote: They didn’t understand about glycogen degrading back then. If you want to believe the Inuit weren’t on low-carb diets, be my guest.

Well, first of all, nobody said the Inuit weren't low carb. The scientific literature states over and over again that they ate very high quantities of protein and weren't ketogenic. Second of all, it's patently false that researchers were unaware of glycogen's rapid degradation at the time. In fact, its rapid degradation observed in 1865 was how Bernard discovered glycogen in the first place.

From: Claude Bernard and The Discovery of Glycogen Discovery of Glycogen At this time Bernard's estimations of the sugar content of extract of liver tissue were made in duplicate by titration with copper reagent of Barreswil, a modified Fehling's solution. He relates (Bernard, 1865, pp. 2291-295) how one day he was pressed for time and was unable to make his duplicate determinations simultaneously. He made one estimation immediately after the death of an animal and postponed the other until the following day. The second estimation gave a value very much higher than the first, and the difference was so great that Bernard investigated the reason for this discrepancy. Hitherto he had not ascribed significance to the length of time which elapsed between the death of an animal and the determination of the sugar content of the liver tissue. He now found that time was of great importance. Immediately after the death of an animal the liver was found to contain very little sugar, but within only a few minutes the amount of sugar had substantially increased, and at the end of two hours a large quantity had usually made its appearance.

So, from day one, glycogen was known to degrade rapidly. But, Eades has so much confirmation bias running through his blood, he refuses to recognize that glycogen in marine mammals was observed to degrade differently.

From: Observations On The Glycogen Content of Certain Invertebrates and Fishes Until recently very little information existed concerning the presence of glycogen in the fishes. That some at least is present in the tissues of marine fish had been shown by Cl. Bernard, Pavy, Brucke, and others. It was stated by Bernard that this glycogen is unusually resistant to the influence of post-mortem changes, and that it does not readily disappear during hunger. During asphyxia, however, the glycogen rapidly disappears.

Even in 1970, researchers found high levels of glycogen in some species of fish after 7 days on ice, at 0ºC.

From: Postmortem Glycolytic and Other Biochemical Changes in White Muscle of White Sucker (Catostomus commersoni) and Northern Pike (Esox lucius) at 0ºC "...Glycogen content of pike was found to remain relatively high even after 7 days of storage in ice. This is in contrast to the findings with several other species, including white sucker, where the muscle glycogen is practically completely degraded in 3–4 days."

Eades is wrong on just about everything he stated in his "confirmation bias" post, but doesn't have the decency to read anything that might enlighten his biases. What a joke.

~~~

Well, I guess I can be thankful I wasn't imagining things. I'd expected to get hand-waving over that—HE WAS ONLY TALKING ABOUT "DUCKS DODGES!" So, thanks for clearing that up, Mike.

Random Monday Hit & Run

Yesterday wasn't enough.

1. William F. Buckley, Jr.

Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views.

2. Bill Maher and Sam Harris demonstrate in excruciating detail just how much of a Fucktard Ben Affleck is.

This is painful to watch. Revisit #1.

It's literally easier to talk to 3-yr-olds. Feel sorry for Jennifer. Here's a story in print.

3. The Olympics is all about The Nomenklatura,* now.

* The nomenklatura (Russian: номенклату́ра, Russian pronunciation: [nəmʲɪnklɐˈturə], Latin: nomenclatura) were a category of people within the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries who held various key administrative positions in all spheres of those countries' activity: government, industry, agriculture, education, etc., whose positions were granted only with approval by the communist party of each country or region.

FATSIS: Well, you have to consider the International Olympic Committee is this weird assemblage of aristocrats and sportocrats. They have tremendous leverage thanks to sponsorship and TV contracts. Now at least some cities are saying, enough, enough with the costs and the corruption and the voting scandals in groups like the IOC and soccer's FIFA. The past winter games in Sochi, Russia - $50 billion and a lot of that was slipped into pockets unknown. Spending on the Athens Olympics in 2004 pushed Greece into economic peril. These are all red flags for potential bidders. [...]

Yeah, the IOC doesn't take rejection well, we learned here. It issued this passive aggressive statement saying it is a pity that Oslo will miss out on this great opportunity to invest in its future. Poor Oslo. Norway's also going to miss out on a few other things, some demands that the IOC made. They were leaked to a Norwegian newspaper. And they read like a David Letterman top 10 list - cocktail party with the king, with the royal palace or the local Olympic organizers picking up the tab, separate lanes on all roads for IOC members - and I think it's important to point out that there are 105 IOC members - ceremonial welcome for the IOC president on the airport tarmac, meeting rooms set to exactly 20 degrees Celsius at all times. And number one of my top 10 list, IOC members shall be greeted with a smile when arriving at their hotel.

4. More evidence that a diet deficient in Animal Parts rots your brain.

This is as equally painful to watch as Ben is, above. Just remember: her name is "snow."

...More 3 yr-olds.