happy veterans day 2013!

thank you veterans!

veterans day 2013

previously: happy veterans day, 2011! (i think i forgot last year. =/ )

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15 Comments

  1. Oops, for some reason just accidentally posted this on the one for 2011.

    And Remembrance Day to everyone in Britain and Commonwealth countries..

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  2. There are all sorts of veterans. I’m a sort of veteran.

    As it happens I’m right on the cusp of getting veteran benefits. I was in the National Guard. That means six months active duty and five and a half years reserve duty. They wrote the qualifying rules for who is a real veteran around the figure 180 days. Less than that number of days active duty and you don’t qualify. As I remember they tried to hustle the Army reserve and National Guard people out before they hit that date. But for some bureaucratic glitch I had 181 days active service not 179 like so many others.

    So I am a real veteran but not quite as real as most others. My pal Donald who enlisted in the Regular Army for four years refuses to acknowledge that I ever really served at all. I went to meetings and a couple summer camps but I managed to avoid ever having a job. I hid out.

    I always felt a little diminished when I contemplated how little I had done relative to others. But all that changed when I saw the National Guard march across the viaduct to restore order to New Orleans after Katrina. I swelled with pride.

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  3. OT again — but first I guess I should apologize for that blasphemous song I linked to above, which praises everything I don’t believe in. I’m a Lincoln lover of the worst kind!

    Anyway, I was just thinking about Fisher’s book, The Genetic Theory of Natural Selection, which I read years ago. In it he does the math on the chances of a point mutation going to fixity in a breeding population. As I remember the chances were slim: only something like one in fifty mutations were positive for fitness (as opposed to being negative or neutral) and even for those rare positive ones the chances were still small: only something like one in fifty those would spread spread throughout the whole population (depending on how positive they were of course). In other words the same unlikely positive mutation would have to occur over and over again before it ever became universal.

    But this was all calculated on the basis of a fairly large effective population, I think maybe even a species as a whole. I’m wondering how the results would change for a much smaller population — like, say, a highly inbred extended family for instance? :)

    Intuitively think the chances might go way, way up — in which case there could be some powerful theoretical support for hbd*chick’s hypothesis that inbreeding selects for new mutations favoring more kin selection. Has anybody done the math?

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  4. Addendum to the above: keep in mind that in a clannish society there are many, many clans. Thus the chances for these mutations occurring one or another of these clans would be the same as in an equally populous outbred society. If that mutation gave that one particular clan (and its descendants) an advantage in its competition with all the other clans, this would might be enough for it to prevail. Or maybe not. So the question is I suppose, would the odds be any different for such mutations to go to fixity than in an outbred society of equal population?

    Or is this all beside the point because most human societies have been inbreeding since time immemorial?

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  5. @luke – “…only something like one in fifty those would spread spread throughout the whole population (depending on how positive they were of course)…. I’m wondering how the results would change for a much smaller population — like, say, a highly inbred extended family for instance? :)

    Intuitively think the chances might go way, way up…. Has anybody done the math…?”

    good questions. don’t know if anyone’s done the math. probably.

    as far as i understand it (which isn’t very far at all), inbreeding in and of itself does NOT alter gene (allele) frequencies. it just shuffles them around in a population and concentrates them in certain lineages.

    but inbreeding — like a caste system, for instance — ought to slow down selective sweeps. it’s obvious, if you think about it: if some people in a population consistently avoid mating with other people in that population, then they’re not going to pick up very rapidly on any new and improved genes floating around in the population.

    however…

    @luke – “If that mutation gave that one particular clan (and its descendants) an advantage in its competition with all the other clans, this would might be enough for it to prevail.”

    …this is where i think that the selection and spread for “genes for altruism” (or maybe even “genes for intelligence”?) might be a bit different than just “genes for blue eyes” or something like that, since a large part of the selective pressures for altruistic behaviors ought to be the other clans themselves.

    if your clan suddenly gets a genetic advantage in the form of some allele that makes your clan members more altruistic towards one another, you’d think all of you would be able to out compete all of those other guys in the competing clans. this is what i think wade and breden found in their modelling — they found that the frequencies of altruism genes shoot right up in inbreeding populations (under certain circumstances). (note that they thought that group selection was in play in their models — i don’t think we have to invoke group selection to explain the success of one clan vs. another — it’s really just a bunch of individuals succeeding at the expense of another bunch of individuals. there is a difference, if you think about it.)

    would this arms race in inbreeding populations, therefore, ultimately (unexpectedly) accelerate the spread of point mutations related to altruism (selective sweeps are slowed down in inbreeding populations, but not stopped altogether)? dunno.

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  6. You’re welcome, I joined to protect the real America, the sort of people that read this blog. However that didn’t quite work out, as the real threat wasn’t overseas. I was in for four years, one of which was in Iraq. When I got back my industry had filled up with immigrants from south Asia. It seems that intelligent white men aren’t really in demand much anymore, so I withdrew my labor from the system and now I am a house husband. The work that I do at home is more valuable and fulfilling than any job that I would have done.

    Thanks for running this blog! Please write a book.

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  7. Wars at best are necessary evils. But most wars fought by the US and UK have been unnecessary evils. Celebrating the armed forces in either nation means, at present, celebrating the destruction of the two nations and the triumph of cultural Marxism and neo-conservatism. You can see that from the politically correct inclusion of ethnic minorities in the poster. But that looks like an old poster. Today it would have more ethnics, more women, some homosexuals and at least one person in a wheelchair.

    The real attitude of the American and British governments to veterans is simple: “Thanks a bunch, suckers!”

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  8. No need to apologize, Luke Lea! That was a great song, even though it was pretty straight forward and not very poetic. I hadn’t heard it before. Thanks to you, and the HBD Chick blog, I have now. It’s amazing what you can learn in here! I’m playing it on my guitar now.

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  9. @t – “You’re welcome”

    (^_^)

    @t – “When I got back my industry had filled up with immigrants from south Asia.”

    this is so annoying. =/

    @t – “Please write a book.”

    there is an outline! or two-thirds to three-quarters of one. (~_^) it’ll be more of a booklet than a book, but there will be something! (^_^)

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  10. @see no evol – “But most wars fought by the US and UK have been unnecessary evils.”

    agreed. i haven’t been particularly fond of america’s recent wars (prolly not of many of the past ones, either, if i thought about them enough). but i AM reeeeally glad that there are men out there who are willing to join the armed forces to protect our country (which happens to include me and my loved ones, so i/we would directly benefit), and i’m more than happy to offer them gratitude!

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  11. …i AM reeeeally glad that there are men out there who are willing to join the armed forces to protect our country…

    Like an immune system, no? But immune systems can be subverted and turn on the organism they’re supposed to protect. The US definitely has AIDS. If the armed forces were protecting the US, they’d be on the Mexican border and helping with mass deportations. As it is, they’re being prepared for something a little different:

    “There is no doubt he (Obama) is intent on emasculating the military and will fire anyone who disagrees with him” over such issues as “homosexuals, women in foxholes, the Obama sequester,” Brady told WND.

    http://www.wnd.com/2013/10/top-generals-obama-is-purging-the-military/

    The targets include “pregnant woman threat,” “older man with shotgun,” “older man in home with shotgun,” “older woman with gun,” “young school aged girl,” “young mother on playground,” and “little boy with real gun.”

    http://www.infowars.com/dhs-supplier-provides-shooting-targets-of-american-gun-owners/

    By posting this, I add to my file at the NSA, of course. Another entity charged with protecting America from its enemies.

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  12. Happy Veteran’s Day aka Remembrance Day? Here’s the opinion of a leftist scold (retired history professor from Montreal, but an anglophone). He rambles on at a forum of the über-liberal United Church of Canada (a merger of Methodists, Presbyterians and Congregationalists in the 1920’s).

    I shall be sad – and angry.
    Our remembrance day has turned into a very selective rememberance. It’s become thoroughl militarized and inane.
    the majority of casualties in World Ware One were NOT soldiers. They were innocent men, women and children who were murdered, starved of sickened to death. that wass even truer of World War Two.
    And we were lied to with the myth we were defending our freedom. In fact, the only country that has ever threatened our freedom is the US. There was never the slightest possibility of an invasion of North America in WW1, WW2, Korea, Libya, or Afghanistan. Don’tpeople every catch on that the US stayed out of both ward for a long time? Do Americans not appreciate freedom as much as we do?
    And don’t feed me the line that we had to help the Jews. Canada was almost as racist as Germany, and it did nothing to help the Jews.
    As for Korea, we weren’t there to protect an innocent country from an aggressor. If we were, then why didn’t we send troops to protect Vietnam against the US?
    Now, in recent wars, we are seeing the biggest civilian death rate ever. Iraq is a good example. And we have people starved and impoverished by wars for generations after. And we have people, innocent people, thousands of them, killed by leftover cluster bombs, agent organge and radioactive ammunition every year.
    Is it heroes who are killing all those civilians? Do we clap hands for the heroes who bombed Tokyo and Hiroshima and Nagasaki, kllling hundreds of thousands of civilians?
    Then you have the boys as young as twelve who were drafted by Hitler to fight trained troops in the last days of the war. If a 17 year old who goes to war is a hero, then a 12 year old who does must be a super hero. So let’s have a cheer for all thos young Naziis.
    And if we were brave, then so were the Germans and Japanese and italians and North Koreans and Iraqis Afghanis who fought us.
    And those brave lads who went to war to save democracy? Most of them couldn’t spell democracy. The average education of a Canadian soldier in WW2 was grade 6. And if you walk among the miles of gravestones in our military cemetries in France, The Netherlands, Hong Kong, what’s striking is what a high proportion were 17, 18, 19,,,
    We have turned November 11 into a circus of babble about glory and heroism.

    We need to grow up and take a serious look at what our wars have been really about. We need to talk about why so many heroes never fit into life again – ending up homeless or violent or as suicides.
    The churches should be leading this serious look. But too many of the clergy are out in the field waving pom poms and cheering for the home team.
    We are not committed to generations of war without end. And only a fool could see glory in them. They are, for all sides, festivals of murder and rape and torture and theft. And they’re all fought solely to make a few very rich people even richer.

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