Open Thread, 02/04/2019

Most of you know about The Insight, my podcast with Spencer Wells. Some of you may not know about the BrownCast, associated with the Brown Pundits. I’m on about two out of every three podcasts, but it’s a group effort. We cover a diverse array of topics. The latest episode was a conversation between myself and Carl Zha, and we talked about Chinese colonialism (or lack thereof), casual racism among Asians, religion, and what American publications cover China well.

Rommie

Because editing and hosting the podcasts cost some money, we set up a Patreon page. One podcast that I recorded this weekend has already been posted there for “patrons”, involves discussion with a Hindu nationalist about their viewpoints. We didn’t resolve anything, but it was nice to get to the point of understanding the sort of questions that need to be asked in the first place!

That cast will probably drop by the end of this week.

In the near future, I will be having a chat with Zack Stentz. Though most of you might think “oh, he was involved in the screenplay for X-Men: First Class,” I’m more excited about the fact that he was involved in Andromeda!

The New York Times has an op-ed up, Why You Should Be Careful About 23andMe’s Health Test. It’s not a bad op-ed, though I think it definitely is slanted. But this sentence jumped out at me: “But doctors and geneticists say that the tests are still more parlor trick than medicine.” First, unless the M.D. works in genetics who cares? But the term “parlor trick” has too strong a connotation for me, and I think most geneticists would agree. I think this part of the op-ed is plain misleading to the general reader. Steve Salzberg probably reflects the views of most geneticists, NY Times, Why Are You So Worried About 23andMe’s Genetic Tests? He has the exact same issue that I do: ‘Who are these geneticists who call DNA testing a “parlor trick”?’

Evidence of Austronesian genetic lineages in East Africa and South Arabia: complex dispersal from Madagascar and Southeast Asia.

Ancient human genome-wide data from a 3000-year interval in the Caucasus corresponds with eco-geographic regions.

Ancient human genome-wide data from a 3000-year interval in the Caucasus corresponds with eco-geographic regions.

The influence of gender stereotype threat on mathematics test scores of Dutch high school students: a registered report.

Compound-specific radiocarbon dating and mitochondrial DNA analysis of the Pleistocene hominin from Salkhit Mongolia.

Can War Foster Cooperation?

Mysterious human relatives moved into ‘penthouse’ Siberian cave 100,000 years earlier than thought.

Neanderthal introgression reintroduced functional alleles lost in the human out of Africa bottleneck.

Many years ago I read the book The Cultural Creatives. One aspect of the book was how old people have a lot of information and knowledge that Western cultures ignored. I thought it was funny at the time. But perhaps because I’m getting older…I appreciate it more. I think part of it is the fact that so many older scientists are now dying who are taking with them a lot of knowledge.

Speaking of old scientists, Robert Trivers’ Twitter account is lit.

I predict that by next weekend it will become clear that what we were told happened to Jussie Smollett is not what happened. The press won’t care, and neither will the politicians.

14 thoughts on “Open Thread, 02/04/2019

  1. “To be very blunt, I worry that women who undertake testing from 23andMe could believe that they do not carry a mutation when in fact they do, and as a consequence could die of breast or ovarian cancer,” says Mary-Claire King, a University of Washington geneticist who helped identify the breast cancer genes. “I do not want to see that happen.”
    Quite a few other people in the clinical genetics / genetic counseling fields similarly believe that the 23andMe’s trial which demonstrated, to the FDA’s satisfaction, that the customers understand the test results correctly, has been rigged in some way (because their own patients too often fail to understand even far simpler things about genetics, I suppose)

  2. Second link “Ancient human genome-wide data from a 3000-year interval in the Caucasus corresponds with eco-geographic regions.” actually points to a bioarxiv on malaria susceptibility.

    The first link has been (unfavourably) reviewed by Davidski at Eurogenes blog. I am not competent to evaluate the paper or its review, but Davidski has been solid on IE origins elsewhere.

  3. I am not competent to evaluate the paper or its review, but Davidski has been solid on IE origins elsewhere.
    I don’t think Davidski is infallible necessarily, but I’ve also found him to be pretty prescient on this stuff.

  4. Brown pundits? Brown cast?

    Really Razib? You do realize that those names connote feces? Is this some kind of bathroom humor I’m not getting?

    How about the “Indu Pundits”, “Indus Stream” or the “Real Aryans”?

    If you insist on a skin color reference, then how about “Melanin Men”?

  5. You do realize that those names connote feces?

    Back in my college days, I went to visit a friend at Brown and we saw the Dartmouth-Brown football game. The Dartmouth crowd cheered, “What is the color of shit? BROWN!”

    Since then, Brown has been the “color of shit” school in my mind. 🙂

  6. i do like real aryans!

    Perhaps the sub-heading should be “We do Aryans right!”

    Steve Sailer keeps describing the Yamnaya as blue-eyed, blond-haired, Arnold Schwarzenegger-looking “Aryans.” Surely he knows better. Is he just trolling or pandering to the alt-right portion of his audience?

  7. finished “The Great Alignment”: Trump’s election was overwhelmingly about white racial animosity, irrespective of education

  8. Trump’s election was overwhelmingly about white racial animosity, irrespective of education

    2012 Obama vs Romney

    Whites: 39-59 blacks: 93-6 Hispanics: 71-27 Asians: 73-26

    2016 Clinton vs Trump

    W: 37-58 B: 88-8 H: 65-29 A: 65-29

    Trump received a lower percentage of white votes and higher percentages of black, Hispanic, and Asian votes than Romney, a liberal a Republican did.

    The real difference was where Trump got white votes – in the Midwest. It’s Reagan Democrats all over again.

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