Biochemical Soul Musings on Nature, Science, Evolution, Biology, and Education

24Mar/04Off

Loss of Truth: How the Government is Killing Science

Everyday lately, while listening to the news and watching the world around us disintegrate into war, chaos and malcontent, I see and feel the deception pervading the information fed to us by our government and media outlets. It seriously sickens me. This PDF is a report put out by Rep. Henry A. Waxman to Congress listing many of the incomprehensible (and I would call downright evil) manipulations, lies, and dictatorial eliminations of truth the Bush Administration has committed in obvious contempt of the American people. This administration is single-handedly destroying science in America.

And by science I simply mean the basic human understanding of the reality around us (not to be confused with technology which is the application of scientific knowledge). Many of you likely agree with the administration's positions on some of the key issues being discussed such as embryonic stem cell research, and understandably so. This article does not focus on arguing the issues themselves but mainly focuses on exactly when where and how the Bush administration lied or manipulated (or sometimes even completely falsified data). I do not believe any American can truly read these acts of manipulation and falsification and not feel betrayed by the folks supposedly working for our benefit, regardless of your political position. I guarantee you will be shocked by what you read.

So please at least read the summary at the beginning of the article if you don't care for the details, and pass this along if you feel as upset as I do.

I would also like to point out that almost all of the sciences are being negatively affected by this administration including my own lab. We are doing research to understand how the human body creates a heart. The potential benefits to humanity are obvious considering 1 out of every 100 are born with a heart defect. Unfortunately we and many other labs are losing much of our funding due to Bush's slashing of the science budget (to pay for his war).

I know most of you probably couldn't care less what I think about the Bush administration's science policies. But I feel that by trying to reach as many as possible, I am least doing what I can to affect the world around me. I think it would be unpatriotic of me not to expose as many Americans as possible to the lies and deceit of this administration.

And no matter what "issues" you may agree or disagree with the administration on, NOTHING excuses them from feeding us patently false and manipulated information to achieve their ideological goals.

10Mar/04Off

Nematodes

This is a story for you to read while eating lunch.

So as you all know I went fishing this weekend.

What you don't know is that in the process of catching fish I saw one of the most disgusting things I've ever seen.

I was catching small bream (sunfish) to use as bait to catch catfish when I noticed that the first bream I caught had eyes bulging way out of its head. I chalked it up to just being a sick fish. So I then caught ten more only to find that all of them had the same thing. And around their bulging eyes I could see what looked like inflamed blood vessels. The weird thing was that the "vessels" were moving.

I think "what the hell is going on here?" and proceed to take one of the fish and cleanly pop out its eyeball (after removing the head first of course). Underneath the eyeball I found the most horrific thing I've ever seen. Each fish had within its eye cavity (behind the eye - not in it) hundreds of small red roundworms. The eye socket was FULL of them all squirming around.

Needless to say I didn't eat any of the fish. So when I got home I popped on the web, found the organization in charge of the pond and sent them a little letter. I just got off the phone a few minutes ago with the guy in charge. It turns out they know about the parasites. They are caused by the hundreds of geese shitting in the pond too much. Fortunately they are completely and totally harmless.

The guy actually called to thank me for sending the email to a higher up person in the bureaucracy. He said that I scared the shit out of all the administrators with the thought of their pond infecting hundreds of people with red worms in their eyes. The guy in charge has been trying to get something done about the infestation for two summers now and my email sparked the administration to pay attention to him. Pretty funny if you ask me.

Apparently Charlotte, NC had a similar problem, so they used a huge net to catch all the geese and haul them to Louisiana and released them. Unfortunately Carrboro can't afford to do that. Plus all the hippie activists in Carrboro won't let them get rid of any of the geese. But they are working on other options to fix the problem such as an oxygenating water fountain that will reduce the bacterial load (which the wormies feed on).

That's my story for the day.