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Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Mussels evolve in only 15 years / Thinking about Satan

Watch out for them mussels: "Mussels Evolve Quickly To Defend Against Invasive Crabs".

Scientists at the University of New Hampshire (UNH) have found that invasive crab species may precipitate evolutionary change in blue mussels in as little as 15 years. The study, by UNH graduate student Aaren Freeman with associate professor of zoology James Byers and published in the Aug. 11 issue of the journal Science, indicates that such a response can evolve in an evolutionary nanosecond compared to the thousands of years previously assumed.

While this sort of rapid evolutionary response to predators has been exhibited in some other species, all have been vertebrates. The blue mussel, which Freeman describes as the lab rat of marine biologists, is an invertebrate "that people assume is not very bright," he says. Yet his findings indicate that within the brief span of 15 years, it has evolved an inducible response to a new predator.



"Sephetus" has a few things to tell us about Satan in "Respecting Other People's Beliefs". He makes some excellent points about the temptation of Christ:

4:5 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in [their] hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

Here Satan exposes the same truth again by asking Jesus to prove that he is a god-man by throwing himself off a cliff. If he were a god-man angels would come to his rescue or something magical would happen that defies the laws of gravity. Jesus again counters this same kind of rationalism typically used in exposing people who claim to be psychic - he does this by extoling the false virtue of power. God is an authority figure and he is evil, he will punish you for testing him by causing gravity to do what it would already do anyways. How convenient. So you shouldn't test your beliefs and expose truth is the lesson here, but rather believe in a fantasy while ignoring the possibility of observing the evidence.

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