If you believe in Net Neutrality, you must stands against the GOP

Patexia.com | GOP opposes net neutrality, internet piracy | Patexia.com

Receiving considerably less attention was the downright Orwellian naming of the “Internet freedom plank,” which opposes net neutrality. Unsurprisingly, the Republicans are looking to remove regulations in the telecommunications industry. Specific regulations are not mentioned.

Perhaps more surprisingly, particularly from the party of the USA PATRIOT Act, is a promise to protect your private data from the prying eyes of Big Brother. The Obama Adminsitration’s stance in favor of net neutrality is derided as “frozen in the past.”

The party that brought us the “series of tubes” we call the “internets” now plans to turn the tubes over completely to corporate America. This is not a good thing.

For those that don’t know or have been misinformed, “Net Neutrality” is the concept that all traffic on the Internet gets treated the same.  What many Telecoms and ISP’s want to do is filter traffic to allow those that pay more to have their content delivered faster and more reliably.  This has the obvious effect of slowing down and degrading the content of those who don’t pay the piper…or “tuber”.

It is the founding principle of the Net, and now Republicans are officially dead-set against it.

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Yo, I heard you like hot summers and droughts, so I added hot summers, melting sea ice, droughts and wildfires to your hot summers and droughts

Arctic Sea Ice Hits Record Low—Extreme Weather to Come? 

Arctic sea ice is thawing at a historic rate, scientists say. In fact, a recent analysis of satellite data “utterly obliterates” the previous record, set in 2007.

The chief culprit? Global warming. The potential upshot? Longer and more intense extreme-weather events such as heat waves, cold spells, and droughts.

On Monday, researchers at the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center said the rate of Arctic sea ice decline is now the highest that has ever been observed. In August, the sea ice disappeared at an average rate of about 39 square miles (a hundred square kilometers)—or about twice as normal, NSIDC scientists say.

Moreover, the area of Arctic sea ice around the North Pole had shrunk to 1.58 million square miles (4.1 million square kilometers)—the smallest measurement since 1979, when satellite observations began.

It’s a sick situation when science predicts something will happen, gets it wrong….but gets slammed because they were too conservative in their predictions.

Double irony…”conservatives” actually reject the entire notion this happening at all.

Pundit calls out political operative’s “Obama isn’t American” b.s.

GOP Convention: Chris Matthews tees off on Reince Priebus – Tim Mak – POLITICO.com

This has been a fairly consistent theme by Republicans. It’s a political move, built on rhetoric and repetition, designed to push the indredibly destructive idea that Obama isn’t really American and secretly hates the country.   The entire birther movement is predicated on this assumption about the current President.

The sad part is how well it resonates with low-information and low-intelligence voters who have no functioning political memory (I.e. Obama is European for passing a stimulus…but Bush’s stimuli were all fine and dandy...just like Paul Ryan said at the time).   Further to this point, if anyone brings up something Bush did in the context of Obama, it’s always about “blaming Bush”…even if one is simply pointing out what happened and what was said sometime during history.

Many of the idiot brigade now openly claim that Obama was trying to hide his birth certificate and didn’t release it until 2011.   That’s because they ignored him releasing it before the election in 2008.

One has to wonder if idiots, racists and Mormons will be enough to carry Romney in November. We shall see.

Update: Video segment.

BTW, note how as “evidence” Priebus cites the Political Lie of the Year, 2010.

That’s how bad it is…the point man for the GOP has a go to point…which is a lie…yet somehow it’s the guy pointing out he’s a liar that is the bad guy.    That’s a broken culture, right there.

Obama wants to pay more taxes, refuses to declare himself “Dictator for Life” and make it so

Washington Post

“I’ve got a question for Governor Romney: How many teachers’ jobs are worth another tax cut for millionaires and billionaires?” Obama said, prompting boos from the audience. “How many kids in Head Start are worth a tax cut for somebody like me who doesn’t need it?”

Yea…how many!

No really, there’s actually a number.  And don’t forget to count their teachers numbers too.

United States Total Employment By President 1977-2012 (Misleading Statistics Lesson)

I was recently going about my daily business when I was confronted on the Facebook with the following chart…

"Reason" Magazine Net Jobs Analysis...From the Mercatus Project of George Mason University*

Taking these raw numbers without any context leaves a bit to be desired on the “providing insight” part of statistical analysis.

During the ensuing discussion, I noted a couple of things…first that 5 months remain in Obama’s first term. At the current roughly 200K-job/mo pace we are gaining, that’s another 1M on his tally.  As we’ll see in a moment, looking at *how* these numbers came about can be quite enlightening.

As noted in the charts, all raw data is provided from here.

We’re going to start with Jimmy Carter.  In the following analysis, we are calling the inaugural month the first one they are responsible for, going through December of their last year.   A quick comparison shows this to be very close to how Veronique de Rugy of the Mercatus Center* did the original chart.

Non Farm Employment under Carter, Seasonally Adjusted

Non Farm Employment under Carter, Seasonally Adjusted, 1977-1980

From here you can see something that will be a consistent theme in the following analysis…a stagnant job market causing issues for a sitting President.  Employment peaked in March, 1980, having moving little since the previous summer.  The long, hot year and rising unemployment was too much for voters, and a change was made.

Enter the Reagan…

Total Employment Reagan, Seasonally Adjusted, 1981-1988

Total Employment Reagan, Seasonally Adjusted, 1981-1988. One can see how Reagan faced initial skepticism, but has gained long-term respect.

Here we see Carter’s “malaise” lasting well into 1983.  The lowpoint in unemployment, to Reagan’s great fortune, came late in 1982.  By the time the election rolled around in 1984, everything appeared to be on track.  Employment continued to expand throughout the rest of his term.  Then we had to pay for it, and the business cycle shifted again.

Total Employment, Bush the Elder, Seasonally Adjusted, 1989-1992

Total Employment, Bush the Elder, Seasonally Adjusted, 1989-1992. Here we see Bush the elder’s problem, employment peaking two and half years prior to the election.

Bush the Elder saw the peak of the Reagan “what’s debt?” economic expansion, and watched as nearly 2M jobs evaporated after peaking in Jun of ’90. Economic recovery in job form came only in the last few months before the 1992 election, not nearly enough to stop the new kid on the block from stealing heart and minds and electoral votes.

Next we get to *see* what the longest and largest and most stable economic expansion in U.S. history like…in bar graph form.

Total Employment, Clinton, Seasonally Adjusted, 1993-2000

Total Employment, Clinton, Seasonally Adjusted, 1993-2000. It really is pretty impressive, standing there all big and growing like that, Mr. President.

Like all the other graphs, I’ve marked the low and high point in employment during Clinton’s term. That’s how it’s done, folks.  Really can’t ask for more.  Well…maybe a bit less disgracing the Office of the President.  He did, however, get impeached for that.  Not sure if it was the peace and prosperity or the blowjob that got him impeached, but something sure made the Republicans mad.  It didn’t stick in the Senate, but did doom his VP.

Regardless, after so much peace and prosperity, we decided it was time for a change.   And oh what a change it was.

Total Employment, Bush the Lesser, Seasonally Adjusted, 2001-2008

Total Employment, Bush the Lesser, Seasonally Adjusted, 2001-2008. Bush was all over the map. First losing 3M jobs, then finding 9M building houses, then losing 4M in a year after the bust.

Oh George.  What can we do about this one.  If you want to see what a bursting real estate bubble looks like?  Click on that one.  First we see the extended era of peace end on 9/11.  Then we see the prosperity depart as we marched to war, hitting the  low employment point just as the mission in Iraq was “accomplished.”    Then we went on an easy-credit mortgage-fueled home-building binge, topping out with the greatest number of working Americans ever reported, 138,023,000 in January 2008.

By the end of 2008, 4M of those jobs had disappeared, and the Great Recession wasn’t nearly done.

Total Employment, Obama, Seasonally Adjusted, 2009-2012

Total Employment, Obama, Seasonally Adjusted, 2009-2012. Here we see the second half the Great Recession, with 4M more jobs going away in Obama’s first year. Since then there’s been a steady grind upwards, as we work to recover lost ground.

And this brings us up to the present data (Jul 2012).  Here we see the graphic and dramatic employment results of the Great Recession.  Four Million Jobs gone in the first year, reaching Obama’s lowpoint in February of 2010.  Since then (as the “failed” Stimulus package was implemented) we’ve seen steady employment gains over the intervening two years, finally within grasping distance of where from we started.

To wrap the whole thing together…here’s the whole thing together…

Total_Employment_1977_2012

Total_Employment_1977_2012. All of it. Together.

Here we see each and every year laid out side by side.  Now longer term business cycles become more apparent, and we see the huge dip created by the crash of 2008.

All in all I wanted to provide this analysis because I found the original chart to be so incredibly lacking in context as to be misleading.

* the Mercatus Project is funded (to a noticeable degree) by the Koch Bros, who have used some of the $100M they pledged to unseat the current President producing graphs like this…which don’t tell the whole story.  Often telling so little of the story, they might as well be lying.

"Reason" Magazine Net Jobs Analysis...From the Mercatus Project of George Mason University*

Taking these raw numbers without any context leaves a bit to be desired on the “providing insight” part of statistical analysis.

Battlefield 3 : Unboxing, Downloading, and Hardcore Mode

RPN is officially up to spec when it comes to games.  It has been something of a struggle to keep up in the ever crushening economy, but as per, it’s worth it.  Proof of point is in the following two videos.  This is significant as to the level of “virtual reality” 12.4 GHZ of processing power tied together with 8GB of superfast memory (2 of it dedicated solely to drawing and physics) can create in real time (for under $1G, mind you, 27″  monitor included ).   Computers of similar abilities will cost about half this much in 18 months, and be called consoles once again.

But enough preamble, RPN Gaming is live once again.  Here’s the proof.

Normally I like to try and finish a game before doing a full review. In this case, if you think about war as hardcore mode.  Here’s my full Battlefield 3 experience.

NOTE: The above video is also a nod to the curious, and some may say “flippant” nature of the curious crossover of the content of this site…that is…international politics and video games.   While the events portrayed and the re-imagined in the gaming world are never to be confused as the real thing, they can often offer a visceral insight into the nature of certain real life events.

Hardcore mode…IRL there’s no turning it off.

SIDENOTE: For some damn reason EA makes you install Origin (their “Steam-alike”) in order to install and play Battlefield 3.  This is, IMHO, utter crap.  It crashed updating, and wouldn’t let me install from the DVD’s forcing a 5-hour download of  a game I bought at the store.  Not to mention that, as present, Origin is in freaking BETA.   For those not familiar with software code words, that means “it crashes a lot and for no apparent reason, use with caution.”  As that software is the foundation of the B3 experience…right now it sucks.

Moderate Backyard Rant and a Flat Out Lie

Doing more video rants slowly and surely.    An Android is handy helper for a RPN, no doubt about that.

Here’s a couple from a few days back.  As per, this came a couple days before the perfect example of exactly what I was talking about (that’s the Flat Out Lie mentioned in the title).

The moderate rant, a two-parter…

[and no, I didn’t find that native Android video editor I wanted..any hints on where to find one can be submitted as comments]

So that happened.

Then later I’m doing my internet surfing (as we called it back in the day) and I run across this headline..

This is a flat-out lie.

Not only is this a flat out lie, it's logically impossible. (note the words "Gobal" and "North America"..think about it)

So it takes about two second to find what happened here….again….it’s just like this “normal” science reporting scenario but with a hardcore profit motive.  Here’s what the actual scientist said about this version of reality…

The study was only focusing on one aspect of climate change (impacts on agriculture) and looked only in the parts of the countries where and times of year when certain crops are grown. for example, if one looks at winter temperatures in these regions, it would paint a different picture. also, the lack of trend in any one region has very little bearing on whether global warming is happening.

[full story]

Not only that, but the study wasn’t even focused on plants that live longer that a single season.

Moreover, responding to an inquiry submitted to the Climate Science Rapid Response Team, Dr. Jacqueline Mohan of the University of Georgia’s Odum School of Ecology explained in an email that “modern crops and the vast majority of natural ecosystems are fundamentally different.” She explains that annual crops used in agriculture “do not “track” climate as closely as perennial plants which have much longer lifespans” and are more vulnerable to changes in climate. Mohan also points to recent research on ecosystems in North America that “has shown profound responses to changing climate.”

So we have study on a small subset of plants, in a relatively small region, studied over a limited part of the year, and this results are distorted into something completely unrelated, yet coincidentally perfectly aligned with the vast majority of the audience to which this lie was presented.

I’d show you some of the comments on Fox’s original reprint of the story.  But they closed them.  When I read them yesterday, there were a lot of people completely 100% in agreement with the headline, and they knew this because either  a) it snowed last winter b) they know it’s all a big lie anyway c) it’s a natural cycle (note how this has totally nothing to do with the headline, but a completely other non-explanation supported by nothing but blind faith) or d) something something Obama liberals bad.

It really was an epic cesspool of derp and served as a wonderful view into the type of intellectual company one keeps when one denies the facts staring one in the face.

And so I rant.  Moderately.  In the backyard.

And then register my disgust on the internet within days.

The [Annotated] Michele Bachmann State of the Union Response Speech

As prepared for delivery: [mouseover links for the good stuff, click them for the rest]

Good evening, my name is Congresswoman Michele Bachmann from Minnesota’s 6th District.

Two years ago, when Barack Obama became our President, unemployment was 7.8 percent and our national debt stood at what seemed like a staggering $10.6 trillion dollars.

We wondered whether the President would cut spending, reduce the deficit and implement real job-creating policies.

Unfortunately, the President’s strategy for recovery was to spend a trillion dollars on a failed stimulus program, fueled by borrowed money.

The White House promised us that all the spending would keep unemployment under 8 percent.

Not only did that plan fail to deliver, but within three months the national jobless rate spiked to 9.4 percent. And sadly, it hasn’t been lower for 20 straight months. While the government grew, we lost more than 2 million jobs.

Let me show you a chart.

Here are unemployment rates over the past ten years. In October 2001, our national unemployment rate was at 5.3 percent. In 2008 it was at 6.6 percent. But, just eight months after President Obama promised lower unemployment, that rate spiked to a staggering 10.1 percent.

Today, unemployment is at 9.4 percent with about 400,000 new claims every week.

After the $700 billion bailout, the trillion-dollar stimulus, and the $410 billion spending bill with over 9,000 earmarks, many of you implored Washington to please stop spending money we don’t have.

But, instead of cutting, we saw an unprecedented explosion of government spending and debt, unlike anything we have seen in the history of our country.

Deficits were unacceptably high under President Bush, but they exploded under President Obama’s direction, growing the national debt by an astounding $3.1 trillion-dollars.

What did we buy?

Instead of a leaner, smarter government, we bought a bureaucracy that tells us which light bulbs to buy, and which will put 16,500 IRS agents in charge of policing President Obama’s healthcare bill.

ObamaCare mandates and penalties will force many job creators to stop offering health insurance altogether, unless yours is one of the more-than-222 privileged companies or unions that has received a government waiver.

In the end, unless we fully repeal ObamaCare, a nation that currently enjoys the world’s best healthcare may be forced to rely on government-run coverage that will have a devastating impact on our national debt for generations to come.

For two years President Obama made promises just like the ones we heard him make tonight. Yet still we have high unemployment, devalued housing prices and the cost of gasoline is skyrocketing.

Here are a few suggestions for fixing our economy:

The President could stop the EPA from imposing a job-destroying cap-and-trade system.

The President could support a Balanced Budget Amendment.

The President could agree to an energy policy that increases American energy production and reduces our dependence on foreign oil.

The President could also turn back some of the 132 regulations put in place in the last two years, many of which will cost our economy $100 million or more.

And, the President should repeal ObamaCare and support free market solutions like medical malpractice reform and allow all Americans to buy any healthcare policy they like anywhere in the United States.

We need to start making things again in this country, and we can do that by reducing the tax and regulatory burdens on job creators.

America will have the highest corporate tax rate in the worldLook no further to see why jobs are moving overseas.

But, thanks to you, there’s reason to hope that real spending cuts are coming. Last November you went to the polls and voted out big-spending politicians and you put in their place men and women with a commitment to follow the Constitution and cut the size of government.

I believe that we are in the early days of a history-making turn.

Please know how important your calls, visits, and letters are to the maintenance of our liberties. Because of you, Congress responded and we are starting to undo the damage that’s been done.

We believe in lower taxes, a limited view of government and the exceptionalism of America. And I believe America is the indispensible nation.

Just the creation of this nation was a miracle. Who’s to say that we can’t see a miracle again?

The perilous battle that was fought in the pacific, at Iwo Jima, was a battle against all odds, and yet the image of the young G.I.s in the incursion against the Japanese immortalizes their victory. These six young men raising the flag came to symbolize all of America coming together to beat back a totalitarian aggressor.

Our current debt crisis we face today is different, but we still need all of us to pull together. We can do this.

And that’s the hope we hold tonight as Americans. We will push forward to reclaim the greatness of our country and to proclaim the liberty upon which we were founded.

And we will do so because we the people will never give up on this great nation.

God bless you, and God bless America.

UPDATE: This isn’t even close to the dumbest stuff she’s said before.   This woman is a walking, talking, cliche.   Which is to say, she’s the perfect representative for the Republican Tea Party.

BTW, here’s another takedown on her “Founding Fathers hated Slavery” comedy-bit.  At least we hope it’s supposed to be comedy.

Game Review ToDo

I mentioned in this post that this year was to be a bit more focused on gaming.    Below is my New Year’s Resolution Review List.  These are games that I’ve missed or not worked my way through and would like to give it a shot in 2011.  Many of these I came across in the Steam Holiday sale.  I figure these should hold me over for at least the next six months or so, if not longer.

There are a number of older games on the list.  I think this is more of a feature than a bug.  PC gaming, in particular affords a longer shelf life than most consoles can imagine.  One of the benefits of Moore’s Law is that each successive computing generation is easily capable of emulating the previous one.  Hence, with a bit of work, we can still enjoy those 2600 and C64 games to this day.  I’m not going to go back that far, but I wanted to get a good review of the decade in gaming, so there are certainly some elderly titles on the todo list*.

I’m hoping to spend an official week with each title (although my real life gaming will skew and Diablo 3 comes out this year, so at least one month is already spoken for) and do the review after that.

Here goes, in no particular order (other than alphabetical):

1) Alien Breed 3: Descent (have a weakness for these style games)

2) Amnesia : The Dark Descent (I like games that start off by telling you not to try and win them)

3) Arcania: Gothic 4 (almost done, should be an early review)

4) Archon Classic (a classic, like it says)

5) Batman: Arkham Asylum (very good, and a complete anomaly in major IP titles)

6) Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (oh yeah)

7) Battlestations: Midway (came in a publisher pack..no idea)

8) Battlestations: Pacific (see above)

9) blur (Rock’n’Roll Racing update)

10) Burnout Paradise (fun driving time)

11) Commander Keen (the id original)

12) Conflict Denied Ops (eh..no idea)

13) Counter Strike Source (my review will most likely be me getting slaughtered for a week, but there ya go)

14) Dark Messiah of Might and Magic (already gone halfway through this)

15) Depths of Peril (love the concept not sure on the execution)

16) Deus Ex GOTY Edition (yeah…just wanted to relive a classic and compare)

17) Deus Ex Invisible War (never did this one)

18) Disciples II : Rise of Elves/Gallena’s Return (softspot for these style games)

19) Doom 3 (I think I already have this review, have to dig it up…did a first person review, quite fun).

20) Evlen Legacy (various expansion…got this on a lark…we’ll see)

21) Empire : Total War (played the first few scenarios…wow).

22) Everyday Shooter (this’ll be an off week, I already have this one down).

23) Front Mission Evolved (Giant Robots, 3rd Person shooter)

24) Guardians of Graxia (again, softspot).

25) Gyromancer (RPG * Bejewled = Hours gone).

…second half coming tomorrow…

 

*Oh and by “review” I mean a bit more lengthy analysis of the qualities and weaknesses of particular titles.  In the PC gaming world, I think a more accurate picture can be taken once a game is *final*, not once it is *gold*.   So this isn’t the place to find  glowing reviews of the latest greatest slightly tweaked sequel, but more of a long-term view.  Like someone forced, forced I say, to play games until the end of time.

Big Brother loses one, ‘Jailbreaking’ iPhones legal, not felony

Apple loses bid to criminalize iPhone jailbreaking – Computerworld

http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9179694/Apple_loses_bid_to_criminalize_iPhone_jailbreaking

“When one jailbreaks a smartphone in order to make the operating system on that phone interoperable with an independently created application that has not been approved by the maker of the smartphone or the maker of its operating system, the modifications that are made purely for the purpose of such interoperability are fair uses,” Marybeth Peters, Register of Copyrights, wrote in the ruling approved by Billington (download PDF).

UPDATE: Here’s an excellent link of the updates, a bit of history, and a list of the other exemptions. (thanks, Derek).  This is probably the biggest news for most.

You can rip your own DVDs, and nobody will stop you.

First, and arguably most importantly, is an exemption for DVDs you legally own, giving everyone (not just film and media studies majors!) the right to break DRM for the purposes of “short” use in both “documentary filmmaking” and original “noncommercial videos.” The first is rather specific, of course, but the broadness of the latter is impressive—although for now you can’t appropriate the entire film. But as long as you aren’t charging money for it or profiting off it, it’s noncommercial. So go ahead, rip and remix a scene from Inception so that it actually makes sense.

Now, to be sure, most of the informed tech folk already were doing this (and committing a felony each time), but it looks like they are in the clear now.  I don’t know of anybody who was prosecuted for this, but as far as common-sense exemptions go, this was at the top of the list.

The Latest Bit of Evidence To Be Dismissed by 40% of the American populace….

….

Scientists from the Beijing Genomics Institute last month discovered another striking instance of human genetic change. Among Tibetans, they found, a set of genes evolved to cope with low oxygen levels as recently as 3,000 years ago. This, if confirmed, would be the most recent known instance of human evolution.

[full story]

The difficulty of identifying these shifts is also covered in the article (and the reason this is dismissed by so many…it’s hard).

One of the signatures of natural selection is that it disturbs the undergrowth of mutations that are always accumulating along the genome. As a favored version of a gene becomes more common in a population, genomes will look increasingly alike in and around the gene. Because variation is brushed away, the favored gene’s rise in popularity is called a sweep. Geneticists have developed several statistical methods for detecting sweeps, and hence of natural selection in action.

About 21 genome-wide scans for natural selection had been completed by last year, providing evidence that 4,243 genes — 23 percent of the human total — were under natural selection. This is a surprisingly high proportion, since the scans often miss various genes that are known for other reasons to be under selection. Also, the scans can see only recent episodes of selection — probably just those that occurred within the last 5,000 to 25,000 years or so. The reason is that after a favored version of a gene has swept through the population, mutations start building up in its DNA, eroding the uniformity that is evidence of a sweep.

So as soon as an “upgrade” is available in the gene pool, it changes the color of the pool, so to speak, and immediately new dyes start seeping in, searching for that next true hue. 

The theory also makes predictions that have also been observed, such as….

The fewest signals of selection were seen among people who live in the humid tropics, the ecoregion where the ancestral human population evolved. “One could argue that we are adapted to that and that most signals are seen when people adapt to new environments,” Dr. Di Rienzo said in an interview.

 To continue the pool analogy, those born in the the deep blue of the tropics and stayed, were good with that color.  But you start getting to more extreme environment (cold, altitude) that same color doesn’t cut the mustard anymore.

The second page is a basic discussion on skin color and how there is enough adaptability in the human genome for light skin to have evolved in at least two ways.

The difficulty in comprehending the theory (much less applying it) also lies in the complexity of the systems themselves.

Most variation in the human genome is neutral, meaning that it arose not by natural selection but by processes like harmless mutations and the random shuffling of the genome between generations. The amount of this genetic diversity is highest in African populations. Diversity decreases steadily the further a population has migrated from the African homeland, since each group that moved onward carried away only some of the diversity of its parent population. This steady decline in diversity shows no discontinuity between one population and the next, and has offered no clear explanation as to why one population should differ much from another. But selected genes show a different pattern: Evidence from the new genome-wide tests for selection show that most selective pressures are focused on specific populations.

However, within that complexity, one can expose new insights (again, in keeping with the theory).

One aspect of this pattern is that there seem to be more genes under recent selection in East Asians and Europeans than in Africans, possibly because the people who left Africa were then forced to adapt to different environments. “It’s a reasonable inference that non-Africans were becoming exposed to a wide variety of novel climates,” says Dr. Stoneking of the Max Planck Institute.

The final bit is about the “soft sweet” which continues to occur regardless of outside pressure.  

But the new evidence that humans have adapted rapidly and extensively suggests that natural selection must have other options for changing a trait besides waiting for the right mutation to show up. In an article in Current Biology in February, Dr. Pritchard suggested that a lot of natural selection may take place through what he called soft sweeps.

Soft sweeps work on traits affected by many genes, like height. Suppose there are a hundred genes that affect height (about 50 are known already, and many more remain to be found). Each gene exists in a version that enhances height and a version that does not. The average person might inherit the height-enhancing version of 50 of these genes, say, and be of average height as a result.

The article uses a primitive example of this, but I could just link here…and then draw the pictures….taller = more money, more money = more health/breeding partners, = taller species.  Although this last  (the money/height connection) has only been going on for 20-30 generations and only a couple generations for all people of all genomic heritage (in my country).  It will be interesting to see how these studies move forward in the future, as genome databases grow and more cross-testing is available.

It would be quite a thing to get a six-month gene therapy treatment before that next stint on Everest/in the Arctic.  Or at least it would be if that kind of stuff isn’t outlawed by people who don’t believe in evolution [search : Gene Manufacturing]

.