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09/09/2014 · Budget grocery hypothesis ..
Wrangham’s hypothesis is more robust and subtle than this essay can do justice to, but I will survey some of the findings, implications, and controversy. Raw food has various nutritional properties that are superior to cooked food, such as vitamins, but because cooked food provides more digestible calories for humans than raw food, it represented an evolutionary advantage. Meat, starches, and seeds are far more digestible when cooked, and are much easier to chew. Today, chimps in will not eat raw seeds of trees, but when a fire passes through the savanna, they search the ground below the trees and eat their cooked seeds.
The decline in real wages per hour and attendant rise in real prices for gasoline and homes is only a financial measure of the decline in energy resources and consumption. At the family budget level, as energy prices increase, all goods needing energy to produce such as gasoline, food, housing, medicine, and the like cost more. If they can even hold their marriages together (if they even get married anymore), both parents in American households work outside of their homes today, when only one did during the . As businesses try to remain competitive, wages are lower for those fortunate enough to keep their jobs, social goods such as education are prohibitively more expensive, and less money is available for anything beyond survival. For example, in the late 1970s and early 1980s I received a nearly free college education. In 2014, a college education comes with crippling debt as each student's "graduation present," unless the student has parents from the affluent class.
Working Wife Vs. Non-Working Wife Families: a Basis …
One major problem with making a positive impact on a global level, ultra-elite machinations aside, is that almost nobody focuses on what is important, which I hope to help remedy with this essay. Almost everybody hacks at branches if they hack at all. Conspiracists tend to obsess on elite machinations, which is an exercise of dubious benefit to begin with, but they often become paranoid and also confuse retail elites or other interests with the GCs. Bill Gates and David Rockefeller are probably not members of the GCs’ organization. Also, I learned that ultra-elites can only play their games with the responsibility that almost all people have abdicated as they play the victim. The GCs are only a symptom of our malaise, not a cause. They cannot be beaten at their game, and it is counterproductive and can even be suicidal to try. Making them obsolete is probably the best that we can do. While conspiracists often fixate on ultra-elite machinations, intellectuals, academics, and scientists tend to deny that such activities even exist or are meaningful. It took me many years to understand their resistance to even acknowledging ultra-elite existence, and I think it partly relates to the mainstream scientific worldview that . They have an ideological aversion to the notion that anybody manipulates events on a global scale, and believe that what seems conspiratorial is only anarchic elites competing with each other, which is like Darwin’s view of evolution. They believe that conspiracists see a pattern where none exists, or that the situation can be explained without invoking conscious intent, like materialistic hypotheses of how the universe operates. Radical leftists have to the of such elites; such an idea scares them. Neither obsession nor denial helps people attain productive understandings of the issue. Conspiracists and structuralists are united in thinking like victims, and that, as I see it, . Until they relinquish thinking like a victim, they will not constructively engage the critical issues that humanity faces, and energy ranks above all else. Victims are reactive instead of proactive, and only and resulting action has a prayer of working, in my opinion.
The culture’s killing implements abruptly appeared in the archeological record and disappeared just as fast, after the easily killable megafauna went extinct. Today’s North American megafauna are , not North American megafauna that learned to avoid humans. Bison are the only significant exception, although they came from Asia, too, and explaining their survival remains a minor curiosity, but is about the only circumstance not neatly aligned with the overkill scenario. The “” paper concluded that although the South American extinction was the greatest of all, it is the most poorly investigated and that the overkill hypothesis cannot yet be attached to South American extinctions. That may be a prudent position for a specialist who pronounces judgment only when all the evidence is in, but I will be among the most surprised people on Earth if the pattern of 50 thousand years did not continue there, especially since it had no ice sheets. There can be no more pertinent example than comparing Africa to South America. They inhabited the same latitudes and have similar climates, separated by the Atlantic Ocean. Africa was the home of humanity, where its animals had millions of years to adapt to the human presence, and Africa only lost about 10% of its megafauna (probably to human hunters with their advanced weaponry) while South America lost nearly all of its megafauna, and quickly. Climate change did it? How could it have even contributed?
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The genetic testing that has been performed on humanity in the past generation has shown that the founder group’s pattern of migration was to continually spread out, and once the original settlement covered the continents, people did not move much at all, at least until Europe began conquering the world (and there were some ). There is little sign of warfare in those early days of migration, and the leading hypothesis is that people moved to the next valley rather than be close enough to fight each other. Any conflict would have been easily resolved by moving farther out, where more easily killed animals lived. Also, in those virgin continents, people need not have roamed far to obtain food. Today, an !Kung woman will carry her child more than 7,000 kilometers before the child can walk for himself/herself. If an !Kung woman bears twins, it is her duty to pick which child to murder, because she cannot afford to carry two. That demonstrates the limitations of today’s hunter-gatherer lifestyle, but in those halcyonic days of invading virgin continents (which had to be the Golden Age of the Hunter-Gatherer), those kinds of practices probably waned and bands grew fast. When they they split, and the new group moved to new lands where the animals, again, never saw people before. Unlike the case with humans, there would not have been a grapevine so that animals told their neighbors about the new super-predator. The first time that those megafauna saw humans was probably their last time. It is very likely, just as with all predators for all time, and as can be seen with historical hunting events such or , that those bands soon took to killing animals, harvesting the best parts, and moving on. To them it would not have been a “blitzkrieg,” but more like kids in candy stores. After a few thousand years of grabbing meat whenever the fancy took them, or perhaps less, those halcyonic days were over as the far coasts of Australia were reached and the easy meat was gone. When that land bridge formed to Tasmania about 43 kya, people crossed and were able to , until all the megafauna was gone on Tasmania. They also may have worked their way through the food chain, in which the first kills were the true mother lode. Nobody even deigned to raise a spear at anything less than a until they were gone. Then they started killing smaller prey, which eventually did wise up and were harder to kill, so humans had to work at it again and the brief golden age was over. The as they shaped the new continent to their liking, maybe recreating the savanna conditions that they left in Africa, may have also been used to flush out animals if they began to avoid humans.
Some scientists treat every proboscidean extinction as a unique mystery, unrelated to other proboscidean extinctions, and climate and resulting vegetation changes are hypothesized as agents of extinction (or other causes invoked), when the most probable cause stares at them each morning in the mirror. The devil in the details, but regarding the megafauna extinctions, some specialists cannot seem to discern a very clear pattern. Scientists, because they are human, have an inherent conflict of interest when attributing such catastrophes to non-human causes. During the remainder of this essay, it will become evident that there is a human penchant for absolving one’s in-group of responsibility for catastrophes and crimes committed against the out-group, and , scientists, and other professionals regularly engage in such interest-conflicted acts, whether they were defending their species, race, gender, nation, class, ideology, ethnicity, or profession. That in-group/out-group difference in treatment has a long history and probably goes back to the beginnings of territorial social animals.
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Report: South Korea May Ask US to Re-Deploy Its …
But the branch of the that readers might find most interesting led to humans. Humans are in the phylum, and the last common ancestor that founded the Chordata phylum is still a mystery and understandably a source of controversy. Was our ancestor a ? A ? Peter Ward made the case, as have others for a long time, that it was the sea squirt, also called a tunicate, which in its larval stage resembles a fish. The nerve cord in most bilaterally symmetric animals runs below the belly, not above it, and a sea squirt that never grew up may have been our direct ancestor. Adult tunicates are also highly adapted to extracting oxygen from water, even too much so, with only about 10% of today’s available oxygen extracted in tunicate respiration. It may mean that tunicates adapted to low oxygen conditions early on. Ward’s respiration hypothesis, which makes the case that adapting to low oxygen conditions was an evolutionary spur for animals, will repeatedly reappear in this essay, as will . Ward’s hypothesis may be proven wrong or will not have the key influence that he attributes to it, but it also has plenty going for it. The idea that fluctuating oxygen levels impacted animal evolution has been gaining support in recent years, particularly in light of recent reconstructions of oxygen levels in the eon of complex life, called and , which have yielded broadly similar results, but their variances mean that much more work needs to be performed before on the can be done, if it ever can be. Ward’s basic hypotheses is that when oxygen levels are high, ecosystems are diverse and life is an easy proposition; when oxygen levels are low, animals adapted to high oxygen levels go extinct and the survivors are adapted to low oxygen with body plan changes, and their adaptations helped them dominate after the extinctions. The has a pretty wide range of potential error, particularly in the early years, and it also tracked atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. The challenges to the validity of a model based on data with such a wide range of error are understandable. But some broad trends are unmistakable, as it is with other models, some of which are generally declining carbon dioxide levels, some huge oxygen spikes, and the generally relationship between oxygen and carbon dioxide levels, which a geochemist would expect. The high carbon dioxide level during the Cambrian, of at least 4,000 PPM (the "RCO2" in the below graphic is a ratio of the calculated CO2 levels to today's levels), is what scientists think made the times so hot. (Permission: Peter Ward, June 2014)
Energy and the Human Journey: Where We Have Been; …
During the Cambrian Explosion, an ecosystem developed in which life on the sea floor, surface, and water column all interacted for the first time. All but one of were energy dynamics, as the environment provided either too much or too little energy, and the nutrient hypothesis () will be revisited numerous times in this essay. A lack of nutrients, mineral and otherwise, always meant that the energy-driven dynamics that delivered the nutrients were curtailed. If enough energy is properly applied, all nutrients can be abundant.
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