Today’s Interesting Stuff

Beginning with a quote from the gibbon, I mean a quote from Gibbon:

In the end, more than freedom, they wanted security. They wanted a comfortable life, and they lost it all – security, comfort, and freedom. When the Athenians finally wanted not to give to society but for society to give to them, when the freedom they wished for most was freedom from responsibility, then Athens ceased to be free and was never free again. – Edward Gibbon

How salient to our current situation in America is that statement. I definitely want to read Gibbon now, though I’ve heard his tomes (Rise And Fall Of The Roman Empire is his most famous) are quite, ummmm, thick.

Iterations of Complexity: The Continuing Argument for Intelligent Design

You’ve heard of single layer dependencies between various creatures in the kingdoms of nature. One beastie hitching a necessary ride on some unsuspecting host beastie. These dependencies befuddle evolutionary biologists who cannot explain methods by which these organisms evolved separately or the chances necessary for them to have evolved together.

Now see this:

As the sun rises over a grassy pasture, and the morning light glints from the countless clinging drops of dew, a single snail resolutely inches toward a mound of steaming nourishment. But unbeknownst to the armored gastropod, this seemingly ordinary heap of cow dung conceals a legion of tiny Dicrocoelium dendriticum eggs, each of which contains the embryo of a sinister mind-controlling parasite. As the snail gorges itself on the fibrous feast, it unwittingly sets the collection of unborn lancet flukes on a miniature adventure which will lead them through slime, zombies, and bile to ultimately find their own unique kind of utopia

These Flukes will live consecutively in the Snail, in an ant (which they will control to suicide through its nervous system), and finally in a cow. Catch that, at least four separate organisms in a dependency cycle, each step a necessary part of the growth process and life cycle of this Fluke.

My bet is the chance is impossibly slim that this cycle evolved.

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