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About IslandHead

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  1. Wahhabism isn't the problem. Islamic fundamentalism is the problem; wahhabism falls under that broader umbrella. India and Pakistan do matter. Both countries have nuclear weapons. India is the 2nd most populous country and Indonesia is the 4th most populous country. India, Indonesia, and Pakistan have the a history of religious violence and Islamic terrorism. A change in the demographics in India will have political ramifications, both domestically and internationally. India just had the largest strike ever recorded in history (180 million people). There are politically motivated people in India who are living in complete and utter poverty. They are also living in communities with a history of religious violence; in a country that has political parties associated with religious and nationalistic movements. Changing demographics could easily increase the tensions between Hindus and Muslims.
  2. 1 out every 8 muslims is from Indonesia. Most muslims are not Arab. This trend is mostly a reflection in the population growth in Pakistan, India, and Indonesia. These three countries host roughly 1/3 of the current muslim population in the world. The global growth in Islam is will probably be more politically important in South East Asia than in other parts of the world. The article projects that: This maybe geopolitically important given the tension between Pakistan and India. What happens if Islamist gain political power in India? What will happen domestically between Hindus, Sikhs, and Muslims? It seems more radical and fundamental strains of Islam are against the use of contraception. http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/islam/islamethics/contraception.shtml
  3. Satoshi Kanazawa... Not only is he the author of this PsychologyToday article, he is also on the editorial board for the journal that published this "research". The guys is a complete hack. I don't know how he has career or why evolutionary psychology is even a field....
  4. There are issues with your source. The man in the video is a geologist, he can't speak with any level of expertise on the matter of climate. Secondly, he is on the board of several resource extraction companies, including oil and gas companies1. These companies have the most to lose if policies for climate change were implemented. It is fair to say he has a conflict of interest. 1. http://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/people/person.asp?personId=6226016&privcapId=30719904
  5. You could say that about most major US newspapers and news organizations. Their primary business model is to be an effect vector for advertisements, not to report the news.
  6. I think the older mac computers were worth the extra cost. You got a great OS, nice hardware, and great design. The older models you can upgrade and repair yourself. The new models are getting more and more restrictive. This makes them consumer products. For example, the new mac mini has its ram soldered to the motherboard. The macbook air has an integrated battery, which is hard to replace. They are making increasing difficult for the end users to fix the failure of component or the upgrade their computer. This means that the products are being designed to be replaced with newer models in a sorter cycle. I don't plan on replacing my macbook pro anytime soon; I can still repair an upgrade several of the components in it. However, if it died, I would not replace it with another apple computer.
  7. I think there isn't a right-left wing divide in politics. This is mostly a facade. The NYT does support "left-wing" policies more than "right-wing" policies, but more importantly it supports establishment politics. They are often the mouth-piece for the US government. A notable example is during the Iraq-war. Where they pushed the WMD narrative. The reporter involved said: http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2004/02/26/now-they-tell-us/ The NYT times also appears to be given access to classified information to act as a mouth piece for any given US administration. This has can be seen for various topics spanning from Stuxnet to the killing of Osama Bin Laden, where they are given information to report on by the US government.
  8. I think it is somewhat concerning. The children of muslim immigrants seem to not integrate well into western society. There could be problems manifesting from this movement of people for the next 25 years. Many children of these immigrants will grow up dirt poor, while they are caught between two opposing world views. Islamic theology is not compatible with Western values; then you have the spread of Wahhabism that exacerbates this issue. Several signs of the end of the world in Islamic eschatology are celebrated in by Western countries (drinking, music, religious freedom etc.). Many of the migrants are coming from Afghanistan, which is rather concerning as well. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/07/22/muslims-and-islam-key-findings-in-the-u-s-and-around-the-world/ My main concern is how many of these "moderate-muslims", condone violence. Why should Europe allow anyone from a country that has a population where 99% of people support Shira law and 39% think acts of violence in the name of Islam is justifiable? Germany has given refuge status to people fleeing Islamic motivated murder in Bangladesh, why should they also give the same status to those who think it is okay to kill atheist-bloggers? I don't think a declining population in Europe is an issue; this would increase wages and automation. A smaller population also consumes less, which is good for fighting global warming. The only benefit is to drive down wages, but that doesn't help the average worker. Most of these people are economic migrants, not refugees, so there is very little moral argument for allowing 80% of them to stay. I think Britain's strategy of funding refugee camps in the Middle East is the best to tackling the problem.
  9. I think it is intentional. The new cycle has completely ignored the failed Never-Trump people trying to get a floor vote on the rules. This will also over shadow a lot of the stupid red meat that the GOP will throw at their base.
  10. They didn't say anything about the Middle East.... You also have Indonesia as another example of a democratic, Islamic, nation, but they do not share Western values nor guarantee secularism.
  11. One of the live updates I was reading quoted Erdogan as saying this was a "new independence day". I would bet that this failed coup will be used by the AKP to push through constitutional reforms; this may be the end of secular Turkey. Some of the live feeds I watched had massive crowds chanting about Allah in the streets. What is concerning is the the neo-ottomanism in Turkey. We do not need sunni-state with imperialistic ambitions to rise up next to an unstable Middle East and a fragile Europe. Some very dangerous seeds have been sown this evening. You also have Tunisia. Many of the recent terrorist attacks in Tunisia are a result of their acceptance of secular democracy after their Arab Spring Revolution.
  12. There are more substitutes now that researchers can use in place of embryonic tissues. IPSC are like 10 years old. We didn't even have a draft of the human genome in 1992.... I wish they posted the doi for the paper.
  13. CNN, FOXnews, NYtimes, etc. explicitly said they wouldn't show the cartoons when I was watching the channels/reading articles. http://www.politico.com/blogs/media/2015/01/internal-cnn-memo-we-are-not-at-this-time-showing-200711.html http://publiceditor.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/01/08/charlie-hebdo-cartoon-publication-debate/?_r=0 Al Jazeera complains about the Charlie Hebdo magazine here: http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/listeningpost/2015/01/reaction-charlie-hebdo-attack-20151109475501508.html Western media are slightly hypocritical. How can you say Je suis Charlie but not post the content Charlie Hebdo produced? The cartoons that made Islamic terrorists murder them. By not publishing them because they are offensive is basically allowing the terrorists to win. The terrorists wanted to silence the cartoonists, and the Western media is censoring the cartoons. TheGuardian for example is happy to publish photos of "Piss Jesus", but won't publish the cartoons. Reports Without Borders wants everyone to publish the cartoons. I'm in agreement with them: http://en.rsf.org/france-rwb-appeals-to-media-outlets-to-07-01-2015,47454.html One of the few paper that did republish the cartoons was attacked: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jan/11/german-newspaper-muhammad-cartoons-firebombed-hamburger-morgenpost
  14. There isn't a universally accepted definition. Some definitions work better for some organisms than others. However, a species is ultimately a taxonomic rank, and thus species are very nominal. They allow us to make sense of the world, but we can't make a universal definition that works both for bacteria, pineapple, and turtles. This doesn't undermine evolutionary theory. Evolutionary theory is about how populations become different from one another, this can be observed regardless of our arbitrary categorizations. What is difficult is when to decide when two populations are two species. For example a Chihuahua is only a subspecies of wolves (Canis lupus), not a new species merely due to how these things are defined. However no one disputes their shared ancestry.
  15. You can have double stranded RNA, and four stranded DNA (see the image below) DNA is less reactive than RNA due to it having less alcohol groups (-OH) on the sugar. The backbone of the polymer is less likely to be broken a part due to chemicals in the environment so it is a better at long term information storage. It has to do with shared biochemistry and genetic information. A carrot, bacteria, and hippopotamus have similar enzymes, chemical pathways, genetic information etc.