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Date: 2006/06/23 06:38:21, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Would you think it unfair if a rich man invited the whole town to a party and only a few people showed up?

Not at all. The unfair part would be if the rich man then tortured everyone who didn't show up for all eternity. Its a small distinction, but somewhat valid, I think.

Date: 2006/08/15 05:35:29, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Another lurker.
Hey, BooBoo!
I consider myself to be only slightly smarter than the average pick-a-nick basket, but even I am able to recognize that afdave has the brains of a duck, and the duck was glad to be rid of them - the brains, that is.

He is awfully entertaining though, and the responses! I am way behind on my real work because I am learning so much from all of you who take the time to explain things. It's much more fun and educational than my job.

I am anxiously awaiting dave's explanation of where all the flood water came from. Will I have to wait a long time?

Back to lurk mode.

Date: 2006/09/21 08:53:21, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Paley has posted about 100 times per month and he STILL hasn't provided a shred of evidence for any of his cockamamie ideas.
You guys with the brains to do the debunking are pretty darn cool.

Date: 2007/09/20 00:42:38, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Quote (supersport @ Sep. 18 2007,16:04)
Quote (Erasmus @ FCD,Sep. 18 2007,16:02)

phenotype is not the corner of ToE and has not been since Weldon and Bateson argued about nothing.  It's like you have never heard of 20 century biology.  

buuuuuuuuttttttt.....  since you have revolutionary views that will completely transform the face of science, here is a journal that will be receptive to them.  they need help.

SuperSpunk's Nobel Prize Is Waiting...

well it should be....bodies and minds get passed down, not genes.

August Weismann figured out that bodies don't get passed down in the 1880s.

A HUGE, unending experiment continues to this day that disproves the inheritance of acquired characteristics:

Primary factors of organic evolution

If you want to start a real fight, mention "forced circumcision"  in certain circles, make some popcorn, grab a beer and a folding lawn chair and watch the fun.

So far, supersport, you have been only moderately entertaining here, despite some high quality tard you may have spewed on other fora. Your descent into inanity has been far too common: First the idiotic challenge that took no time at all to be answered. Then the shifting goal posts. "that's not what I mean by a mutation causing a blah blah blah' Then came the geological refutations. Then you start having a go at relativity. What's next? Whither the assault on entropy? I am very fond of second law arguments against evilution. It makes for some totally sweet, and by sweet I mean awesome, first-rate, blue-tees, hyphenated TARD.

Date: 2007/12/18 12:16:28, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Quote (J-Dog @ Dec. 18 2007,10:06)
Quote (Mr_Christopher @ Dec. 17 2007,15:17)
Since Dipski believes irreducible complexity is the evidence of an intelligent designer, and he believes the intelligent designer is the "christian god", can we conclude he believes malaria is the christian god's gift to mankind?

Yes, I am sure you are correct.  So if you are a True Christian™, you just have to grin and bear it and chant on: "Thank You Lord, may I have another?"

Scarry stuff.

Oh, I know the answer to this one!
There wasn't any malaria until after "Adam's Fall." 'Twas SIN wot done it!
Can I join the death cult now?

Date: 2007/12/19 23:18:06, Link
Author: MrsPeng
OK, I just read the drivel at the fte site. I've looked at some of the reviews at Amazon for this sciencey book. I've lurked here, and at Pharyngula and The Loom etc for over a year now. I've read Dr Forrest's (on whom I have a very very bad crush indeed) Trojan Horse, Dawkins' The Ancestor's Tale and Climbing Mt Improbable,, wossname's Endless Forms Most Beautiful, the other wossname's Why Intelligent Design Fails, Eugenie Scott's Creationism Vs Evolution,  every issue of Natural History for the last 18 months, plus as much creationist claptrap I can stomach at UD, and as far as I can tell, ID has contributed exactly NOTHING NEWER than Paley's Watchmaker argument. Nothing. Not even doodly squat. The best they can manage is a bunch of carping about things that haven't been figured out yet.

I've seen some of the most amazing Tard evar from lurking here, but it always just seems to boil down to the "design inference," or some obfuscated way of rephrasing it.

So when do you guys who do the actual work of figuring things out, you know, the actual science, get to tell the cdesign proponentists to have a big warm glass of shut the hell up? How many more times do they get to be completely wrong before they have to depart a lot and let the real scientists get back to work?

I read some of the excerpts available for The Design of Life and I found that I knew where to look on Talk Origins to refute the load of horsehockey Dr Dr D was spewing. His "arguments" are so bad that a guy like me, who only reads these things because the Tard Takedowns are so priceless, can remember where to look in the index of claims to refute the swill being offered as "Groundbreaking" in a "Brand New" book! Gah! Feh! Poot!

It's warmed over worm poop. When will it stop? Please, make it stop. I'm begging you.

Oh, and sorry about the Mrs Peng, for some reason I wrote Mrs when I mean Mr. I'm not a Mrs, although I play one on TV. No, not really. I'm a Mr, but I don't play a Mrs on TV. Although I would. I've got the legs for it, When they are shaved that is. Not that I shave em. much. er, OK I'm going back to lurking now.

Date: 2007/12/20 10:55:00, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Quote (J-Dog @ Dec. 20 2007,09:27)
"Mrs" Peng, or whatever you are.... You should get along quite well with Louis, who is currently unavailable, being on Holiday in the Sub Continent, India.  

Louis is the Brit with the riding crop and kepi, beating off the natives.  So to speak.

Well, I hope our friend Louis isn't beating off the small native  dogs in India and at least allows them to boldly leap where they may.

Date: 2008/01/04 15:38:37, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Quote (Annyday @ Jan. 04 2008,14:27)
Quote (Kristine @ Jan. 03 2008,23:03)
I'm in total agreement about Freud. (He thought coke was the real thing because he wanted to get rich.) Thing is, we had to take that Meyers-Briggs thingie (again) for my management class this past semester. Yes, hello, the proper answers are situational. Am I an introvert? Mostly, but I belly dance - am I an extrovert, then? I must be either-or! Right? :)

Ugh. But I found the three personality styles (informative, normative, and diffuse/avoidant) to make intuitive sense. Really though, I haven't studied psychology since my freshman year of college a million years ago.

I find education theory and child development interesting, particularly Piaget and Vigotsky, but really, I'm out of my league here. Skinner was torture to read, too, but I must say, behaviorist methods help if you have OCD (as I do).

I think psychology without biology is a bunch of thrown darts at a target.

The interesting and intuitive parts of the Myers-Briggs test are pure Carl Jung. The problem is that it hasn't advanced scientifically since the twenties, and Jung's original writings from that time are more like literary theory (or possibly mysticism) than anything else. Since the Myers-Briggs people want to be Real Scientists, they kind of sweep Jung under the rug, even though everything they've added is nothing but baggage and salesmanship on top of Jung's initial thoughts, IMO.

Skinner and the behaviorists (that would make a great band name) advanced research methodology a lot, but a lot of what they thought more broadly about thought was painfully stupid. There's many mountains of criticism for behaviorism going back to the fifties or thereabouts. On the off chance you have the will and time to slog through it, I think this review of Skinner by Chomsky is right about where it begins. In any event, the Chomskian approach seems to have won. :p


When I was in grad school I had to do a critique of Chomsky's critique of Skinner's Verbal Behavior. (I will have to look for it.) It may have gone unchallenged in the broader psychological community, but it is something that people studying applied and theoretical behavior analysis have to cut their teeth on.
The elegance of selection by consequences is "misunderestimated" by all sorts of psychologists. I've been out of the loop for too long to provide all the cites and links etc that I should, but that Chomsky review is like a red cape to a bull for me.
I sort of kind of think that selection by consequences is the great unifying driver of life on earth. It works at every level of life from the chemical to the social, from genes to neurons to individual behavior to cultural memes. It drives everything.
So it is a shame to me that because Skinner may have over-reached with some of his broader "painfully stupid" observations, that much of his work, and that of those who have followed, is discarded as too mechanistic. Well, Madison Avenue LOVES operant conditioning.

Date: 2008/01/05 16:27:41, Link
Author: MrsPeng
I did not locate my critique (which exists in hard copy only) of Chomsky's critique, but I did find Maccorquodale's, from which, as I haven't had an original idea in my head since I was 4 years old, I most likely cribbed any relevant objections.
I'm still reading Maccorquodale, so I haven't gotten much past his initial complaint that Chomsky was a big meanie head so no one responded, and that Chomsky was critical of someone else's science of behavior, not Skinner's. Reading the first bits of both, I can see that indeed, Chomsky does some fairly significant pooh-poohing of things as ill-defined, which are in fact rather well defined. He is not at all happy with the fact that reinforcement happens in real life, without requiring careful arrangement as it does in the lab in order to demonstrate it. Seems a bit akin to creationists complaints about evolution, actually. Not completely analogous to, but very similar to the "sure, microevolution happens, but macroevolution is impossible." In terms of "Sure, reinforcement can be shown with rats in a box bar-pressing for food, but human behavior is far too complicated for reinforcement to work."

I'm looking forward to finishing both.

If I may also make some bold, sweeping generalizations, I've always though most of psychology was full of baloney. Especially the cognitivists who create all sorts of things in our heads without any sort of way of demonstrating that they actually exist, and then going on to create all sorts of treatment paradigms based on those fictional things in our heads. But that's just my behavior analyst talking. We did not worry about the things in peoples' heads, we worried about the things in their environment, and arranged the environment to best prevent the sort of unpleasant things our clients had learned in their home environments. We had good rates of "success" too. I was often able to assist people who had violent, or other uncivilized sorts of behaviors to transition from isolated environments back into mainstream situations where they could successfully interact with the general population.

Date: 2008/01/05 17:27:05, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Mr Christopher said:

"For the most part the only psychologists who make any sense come from the David Burns or Albert Ellis schools of thought.

Secular religionists like Freud, Jung, or even Skinner to a degree require way too much faith.

For the most part psychology is not that complicated but it is certainly a rich area for secular religions (and assorted nonsense) to flourish.

When these goons talk about the "unconscious" they might as well be talking about the soul. "

It is somewhat dismaying that you lump Skinner in with Freud and Jung. How does it require faith to accept that much of what we do has been reinforced by our environments? It is demonstrably true. Every frequent flier mile one accrues is a testament to this fact.

Date: 2008/01/05 19:23:16, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Quote (Mr_Christopher @ Jan. 05 2008,18:08)
Quote (MrsPeng @ Jan. 05 2008,17:27)
Mr Christopher said:

"For the most part the only psychologists who make any sense come from the David Burns or Albert Ellis schools of thought.

Secular religionists like Freud, Jung, or even Skinner to a degree require way too much faith.

For the most part psychology is not that complicated but it is certainly a rich area for secular religions (and assorted nonsense) to flourish.

When these goons talk about the "unconscious" they might as well be talking about the soul. "

It is somewhat dismaying that you lump Skinner in with Freud and Jung. How does it require faith to accept that much of what we do has been reinforced by our environments? It is demonstrably true. Every frequent flier mile one accrues is a testament to this fact.

For clarity, Skinner made some meaningful yet limited contributions.  But you don't read Skinner and learn anything about how to actually understand or help someone, but you're right Skinner is not a quack like Jung or Freud.

Jung and Freud are interesting kooks, at least in the realm of psychology.  They go best with a fattie, bowl or hallucinogen.  Neither used a scientific approach and both require an enormous amount of faith or at least uncritical thinking.  Best to read them on those nights when you're having a "have you ever REALLY looked at your hand?" moments.

If you want to watch a Jungian/Freudian blow a fuse simply say "prove it" to anything they propose.   And their "unconsious" looks/acts an awful lot like satan.


Don't get me wrong, Freud had some good criticisms regarding religion, but why pollute those observations with a psychologhy that is/was just as irrational and idiotic?

And Jung was an entertaining mystic, let's just not confuse mysticism (transpersonal religion?) with psychology.  

Back to Skinner, the fact that we are sometimes influenced by our environement does not mean we are controlled by it or somehow powerless.

All these guys seemed to over look our frontal lobe and failed to give credit for people's conscious decision making process.  

When it comes to mental health I'll take reality and common sense over myticism, magic and assorted goofiness soaked in faith.

I am going agree and at the same time be picky about reading Skinner and not being able to help someone directly from his work. The entire field of Applied Behavior Analysis, which is rather fruitful, and in my experience helped many many children and adults with severe mental health and developmental issues. While I would not have been a able to apply differential reinforcement techniques based on a reading of  Beyond Freedom and Dignity, the principles I applied,  the behavioral shaping techniques I used, and the successes I had with people who, before Skinner, were warehoused in appalling conditions, makes your apparent dismissal of Skinner go up my nose.

Skinner did overlook the frontal lobe, but not because he didn't think it was important, but because at the time with the techniques available, it was close to impossible to do much of anything with it in terms of reinforcement. Again, you can't read Skinner and come away with anything useful about how your frontal lobe works but you can read
this or this and see that despite the inability in the 30s and 40s to study the effects of reinforcement on the brain, these days it is a rather fruitful avenue of study. Reinforcement occurs at biochemical levels, with contingent relationships among neuronal pathways in our frontal cortexes (cortecies? cortexae? me spelling checker likes none of them).

And I think I must disagree with your assertion that we are not controlled by our environments. There may be some semantical things going on here, but we are integral bits of our environment, inseparable from it, steeped in it, and very much "controlled" by what has happened to us in it, what is happening now, and what we "think" will happen later. Where, exactly, do our conscious decisions come from?  From the brain/environment interaction as mediated by our senses and bodybags.

But then I was steeped in all this stuff 20 years ago, and drank the Skinnerian Kool-aid. It doesn't matter so much what people think about where control for our behavior lies. We still have to behave ethically toward each other, and, one hopes, kindly as well. It is a bit much to ask for people to accept that, while we are responsible for our own behavior, our environments are actually in control. It is counter intuitive, and seems just plain wrong. How can we be both out of control and responsible for our actions? As Curly of the Three Stooges used to say "I'm a victim of circumstance!"

So, anyway, I agree that Skinner himself did not come up with much in the way of practical applications of his science of behavior, but his research opened up very fruitful and useful technologies that help millions of people in very real ways.

Date: 2008/01/05 19:54:57, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Very well said, Kristine, and apologies over here for hijacking your emergent evolution thread over there with my ramblings.

Date: 2008/01/06 00:45:25, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Quote (Annyday @ Jan. 05 2008,23:46)
On another note, I think this whole line of rambles about psychologists is approaching the point wherein it needs to be put down.

Quite agree. Sorry about all that Skinner stuff.

Kristine quoted:
"Individuals high in Openness to Experience can be characterized by an active motivation to seek out the unfamiliar, which goes hand in hand with tolerance of ambiguity and open-mindedness, and which leads those high in Openness to Experience to endorse liberal socio-political values (McCrae, 1996b)."

Is Openness to Experience a "fixed" personality trait? Where does it come from? How is it measured? The preceding sentence is the sort of thing that bothers me about personality psychology:

"...these relations are typically low (Saroglou, 2002b), and sometimes even absent (Saucier & Goldberg, 1998; Streyffeller & McNally, 1998; Saucier, 2000). Regarding the other factors, no clear relation with religiosity emerged (Saroglou, 2002b). Nevertheless, McCrae (1999) has urged attention to Openness to Experience in order to understand religiosity."

The five personality traits under discussion are supposedly well enough defined, and well enough related to each other  to - it appears - fall along some sort of continuum. Yet it seems that if one is able to find a relationship (albeit a negative one) between one of the elements in the array (Openness to Experience) that, if the concepts in question were all measuring some well enumerated and related aspects of personality, that those factors on the other end of the spectrum would therefore be positively associated to religiosity, and yet there doesn't appear to be any relationship at all (at leasts according to Saucier and Goldberg).

So I ask again. What are they measuring? How reliable are the measurements? I get very frustrated because it seems as if there are jumbles of ad hoc categories that seem to make some intuitive sense sometimes but that in general are fairly unreliable in terms of making any decent predictions about how people will actually behave in any given situation.

Getting back to the original topic - which I think is that despite creationist teaching from parents, children who come into contact with "real science" via studying fossils are somewhat inoculated against teh tard by that contact. Did I get that right?  "pre-adolescents' fossil knowledge blocked the overwhelming  effect of parents' creationist beliefs on pre-adolescents' expression of creationism."

So the ability to understand concepts like selection by consequences emerges around the same time as the formal operational stage of development. Seems to make sense.

Date: 2008/01/06 18:46:48, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Thank you very much RB. Very succinct and understandable. I appreciate the explanation. I suppose I ought to make the effort to read up on these things before I start yapping, eh?

Date: 2008/07/01 21:44:28, Link
Author: MrsPeng
Hee hee!
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