Have you heard about the first female USSR cosmonaut that died on re-entry?
What about the man who supposedly wrote the official USAF book debunking Roswell, then disappeared?
This engaging short film discusses these and other scientific mysteries.
Click here to watch.
Sleep is a naturally recurring state characterized by reduced or absent consciousness, relatively suspended sensory activity, and inactivity of nearly all voluntary …
I recently reblogged an article from my friend MADD suspicions about male and female brain types.
Click here to have a go at the fun quiz he found.
Also I’ve been reading, laughing and learning psychology from the witty and suave but spiky PinkAgendist. Stop by if you enjoy perceptive pieces.
And of course other fine blogs I haven’t time to mention now, but will soon.
We all affect each other.
Their posts led me to think about thinking – always fun but a slightly weird experience as well.
In my more political posts I’m calling for a paradigm shift in human affairs to move from a male-managed world to a female- and child-friendly future.
With cooperation rather than competition as the guiding principle.
No violence. Local organisation of life. Less people.
Women managing human society and reproduction.
No nation states and therefore no armies, weapons of mass destruction and no National Security.
But for this argument to make sense there must be actual differences between the sexes – not just differences we learn in life – but innate differences.
So yesterday I argued that we are all Equal But Different.
The title of this blog is Different But Equal
Let’s look at some differences now and start with brains.
How often have you heard men say, “I just can’t understand women…” or “My wife doesn’t understand me…”
Do women find men equally difficult to understand, or do they, on average, have more empathy and so can work men out?
Is there such a thing as female thinking or awareness? Can there be a ‘male’ type of thinking?
Are men and women more different or more the same?
And what about the brains of homosexual folk?
All interesting questions.
That’s why the relationship between sex differences in the brain and human behaviour is so controversial in psychology and society generally.
If there are real differences between the sexes then the implications are immense.
Recent studies show there are measurable differences in female and male brains.
For instance, there is a difference between sexes in the transcription of a gene pair involved in brain development unique to Homo sapiens.
Consequently female and male brains show differences in internal structure.
One of the main areas studied is the proportion of white matter relative to gray matter.
Gray matter is made up of neuronal cell bodies. The gray matter includes regions of the brain involved in muscle control, sensory perception such as seeing and hearing, memory, emotions, and speech.
White matter is the tissue through which messages pass between different areas of gray matter within the nervous system.
So the gray matter can be thought of as the processing areas, while the white matter connects.
Blood flow is also different between women and men, with females able to move blood more quickly to the areas needed and not losing functions in old age as much as males.
There are also differences in the structure and size of certain areas in male and female brains.
Studies found men on average to have larger parietal lobes, responsible for sensory input including spatial sense and navigation.
Women usually have larger Wernicke’s and Broca’s areas, regions that are responsible for language processing.
Postmortem and imaging studies over the past two decades have revealed structural differences in both global structures and sexually-related brain structures between heterosexual and homosexual subjects.
Researcher Simon LeVay showed that parts of hypothalamus related to sexual orientation not gender.
The hypothalamus is an area known to be involved in sex differences in reproductive behaviour, mediating responses in menstrual cycles in women and the back of the hypothalamus regulates male-typical sexual behaviour.
These results were obtained from postmortem analysis of hypothalamic nuclei of known homosexual subjects compared to heterosexual patients.
The size of the brain’s hemispheres is a sexually dimorphic trait in which men tend to show asymmetry in the volumes of their hemispheres while women show more symmetry.
A recent study found homosexual men showed hemispheric volumes to be symmetric similar to heterosexual women and homosexual women showed asymmetry in hemispheric volumes as heterosexual men do.
However differences in brain physiology between the sexes and sexual preferences do not lead to differences in intellect.
This points to females and males taking different but equally successful routes to achieve the same outcomes.
Evidence for this was found in a 2004 study finding men and women achieve similar IQ results by utilising different brain regions.
So this suggests there is no singular underlying neuro-anatomical structure for general intelligence.
In simple language, different types of brains work equally well.
So, different but equal.
Equal but different.
FLOURIDATION – healthy or not?
What do you know about FLOURIDATION? Do you think it’s a good idea or are you worried about this process.
I’ve just watched a documentary and now I’m concerned the process is probably not such a great idea.
The flouride is added to water in the form of Hexaflourosilicic acid, a waste product from the industrial processes used in making fertilizers.
Hexafluorosilicic acid is also commonly used for water fouridation in several countries including the United States, Great Britain, and Ireland. In the U.S., about 40,000 tons of fluorosilic acid is recovered as waste from phosphoric acid plants, and then used primarily in water fluoridation, sometimes after being processed into sodium silicofluoride.
There’s scientific evidence to study and the economic, social and political background which leads me to think this is a massive con.
Edward Bernays, the man who has been called the father of public relations and who worked to promote smoking for women and the propaganda behind a coup in Guatemala, was employed to push this process onto the American public.
Anyway, don’t believe me, watch some of this movie,
a documentary film about the water flouridation controversy which arises from moral, ethical, political, and safety concerns regarding the fluoridation of public water supplies. Then see what you think.
The controversy occurs mainly in English-speaking countries, as Continental Europe does not practice water fluoridation. Instead, fluoride is added to most table salt in Europe.
In the UK, my area the West Midlands, is part of the 10% that uses this process.
This is a most important film and it might literally save your life…
Is there anything Kale CAN’T do?
Watch this – and yes, it’s long, but you’ll get the idea after about 15 minutes and might just be hooked.
And no, we’re not hardcore vegans, so I feel a bit guilty. We’re 95%-ers and striving for better without over-complicating things, but this is a good watch. And he’s pretty funny, though it’s probably a “preaching to the choir” sort of deal since I’m pretty sure my Carnivorous friends wouldn’t take too kindly too it.
I once heard that we’re constantly flooded by the answers we need, but if we’re not ready to hear them, they won’t find a home with us.
When I first stopped eating meat in 1982 it was for two reasons; partly because I didn’t like the factory farming system and also because it felt ethically and morally wrong to slaughter sentient mammals and birds for food when there were alternatives.
In those days climate change wasn’t on the agenda and carbon dioxide emissions weren’t considered crucial. Yet the UN asked us over two years ago to move towards a meat and dairy product free diet to save the world from the worst effects of global warming.
How many people do you know that listened to this advice?
Perhaps you never read about it at the time? Well I’m telling you now – meat is murder, for the animals, environment and the climate.
Professor Edgar Hertwich, the lead author of the report, said, “Animal products cause more damage than producing construction minerals such as sand or cement, plastics or metals. Biomass and crops for animals are as damaging as burning fossil fuels.”
As I learned more about farming methods I became more and more sure it was the right decision, especially when the Thatcher government allowed farmers to feed rendered carcasses of dead animals to cows to save money and increase profits. This terrible policy, for which I believe nobody was prosecuted or even censured, led to the deaths of over four and half million cattle in the UK alone and 200 humans globally.
Bovine spongiform encephalopathy or BSE was popularly known as Mad Cow Disease and led to British beef being banned for export to the EU for a decade.
It seems to me that this disease is indicative of all that is wrong with the present economic system. Profits come first, before health, happiness or morality. A small group, either farmers or capitalists, make decisions that affect millions or billions of others without caring for the outcomes and with the masses treated like farm animals.
As George Orwell showed in Animal Farm, we are living on a huge factory farm where we are the animals – our worth is measured by how much work we can do for the system and when we are no longer economically productive we’re put out to pasture in old folk’s homes, or left to rot on inadequate pensions. Those with disabilities have their benefits cut, even when it’s obvious these people cannot get jobs, while the media push propaganda that the poor are little better than wild animals that have no value to society and therefore can be safely ignored.
Well over 200 years ago, Jonathan Swift – the greatest satirist these islands has produced, wrote his ‘Modest Proposal’ which suggested poor folk’s children should be fattened up and sold as food for the rich.
It caused a great controversy then, but really, what’s all the fuss about? 30,000 kids die each and every day – that in itself shows we don’t give a shit about human life or we’d all be up in arms and most people don’t even mention it. People in this country are more concerned that some so-called princess’s tits are shown in a foreign magazine. Remember, tits evolved for feeding babies, not for selling newspapers and magazines.
So what’s the difference between eating humans and pigs, cows and sheep? It cannot be solely down to intelligence because it’s clear mammals are highly aware beings that feel pain and become upset when their young are taken away from them. If birds, fish and other animals are highly intelligent and resourceful, as recent studies have amply shown, then nobody could argue pigs are stupid enough to be slaughtered willy-nilly.
In this country we don’t eat horses, cats and dogs – why? In France folk feast on horsemeat and in parts of Asia dog is considered to be very tasty. Click here for online store. Only last week I had a conversation with a chap who told me that dog meat is quite sweet and unlike other more commonly devoured animals.
Apologists for meat eating claim they couldn’t live without regular helpings of flesh and that it is a viable, humane industry. Whenever I hear the word ‘humane’ I cringe. If bestiality is so bad then killing and eating must be much worse – especially as there are alternatives. How can slaughtering millions of chickens, cows, pigs and sheep be anything other than a continuing massacre?
Have you ever been to a chicken factory farm? Go to one then see if you can still stomach your cheap poultry from Tesco. Perhaps you like your animals killed ritualistically by a rabbi or imam? Would you like your throat cut while hanging upside down? If carnivorous aliens landed and fancied a bit of you, would you still think it okay to eat other animals, or would you say, “Hold on, God created us special…”
If you claim to be ‘spiritually inclined’ how can you accept so much suffering to consume your steak, chop and quarter-pounders or watch children eat shit like chicken nuggets?
Humans are animals and most of us care deeply about our fellow beings, whatever species they are.
So when are the majority of our fellow humans going to wake up and treat other animals with the same respect?
Channel 4 investigative programme Dispatches exposes what Michael “Groper” Gove and his rich chums are doing to kid’s dinners.
As usual with the ConDems, it’s all about saving money to give to the rich.
After Jamie Oliver’s high-profile campaign to improve school meals, millions of pounds were pumped into improving school canteens and tough minimum standards on food and nutrition were set and enforced. Reporter Tazeen Ahmad examines evidence that strategies to improve the food served in all our schools are fast coming undone.
A hundred and ninety local authorities and 108 Academy schools responded to a survey by the programme, which found massive variations in the amount spent on dinners, with some schools opting out of providing a daily hot meal altogether.
Dispatches visits one English primary school where the only hot food available to children is supplied by volunteers working from the local village hall.
Around half of our children now attend Academy Schools, free from local control. Education Secretary Michael Gove exempted them from nutritional standards introduced by the last government, promising that standards would not deteriorate.
However, the Dispatches survey provides worrying new evidence about previously banned products being made available to pupils. The programme speaks to one catering supplier who says that once again many schools are now looking to source cheap, low-quality products.
One parent did his own detective work to discover out of the £2.10 per meal charged by one council, only 59 pence was being spent on ingredients.
As a consequence many children are voting with their feet, either bringing their own packed lunches or going outside school and eating from take-aways.
Dispatches examines the councils trying to fight back and restrict the growth of fast food outlets near schools, and reveals the national chain reluctant to take no for an answer.