We have a natural bias when we classify the animals around us. Humans believe that animals with backbones are the rule rather than the exception. Nature has found many ways to solve the problems of life.
The first national remembrance of Juneteenth has come and gone in the United States. But, if you thought that slavery ended with the Emancipation Proclamation or with the condemnation of slavery by the United Nations, think again. Mauritania had legal slavery until 1981, and after its abolition, it imposed no penalties for it until 2007.Continue reading “How many slaves do you have?”
Scientists are willing to forgive a lot of things, including getting an incorrect result or interpretation. Anyone can make a mistake. Statistical analyses are just that: by chance alone, we sometimes get things wrong. Acknowledging that you are wrong can even win a standing ovation at a scientific conference. In science, intentional fraud and misrepresentationContinue reading “The Unforgivable Sin in Science: Fraud”
Corporations and politicians have used lies, misinformation, and deceptive marketing campaigns to erode trust in the data and analyses of science. Tobacco marketers knew this when they weaponized their approach to “science.” They confused correlation and causation to make people doubt the link between smoking and cancer. Many corporations that depend upon fossil fuels wantContinue reading “Eroding Trust”
OK, so this particular set of passive aggressive images is technically not really lying or deceit, but, in the the trickster, they are lots of fun. I think Loki would approve. Remember, deceit isn’t just about lying, it’s about what is said, what is left unsaid, and twists in understanding. Yes, Loki would definitely approveContinue reading “Passive Aggression Can Be Fun”
As I’ve always said, plants are dirty, rotten liars. But sometimes, we are the blame for their bad behaviour. One of the first documented examples of plants lying to survive was that of a weedy grass that mimicked wheat. Eventually, we put enough selection pressure on it that it became a fine cereal crop, rye.Continue reading “Humans Drive Mimicry in Crop Plants”
Immunologists and epidemiologists know that disease casusing organisms can make proteins that the body assumes belong to it. They use these forged molecular pass keys on the cellular docking ports that allow hormones and other messengers to regulate body activities. It now looks like their deception has another consequence: the body’s messengers can get caughtContinue reading “Germs (Pathogens) Pretend to be Part of us”