From the archives: Parkinson’s and schizophrenia

Unlike my recent “From the archives” posts, this is a post I wrote way back in 2008. I had completely forgotten about it until recently, when a woman e-mailed me to thank me for it, because she had a mentally ill son and by showing her friends my post she could get them to better understand [Read More…]

You need alegebra and statistics to understand the world

Andrew Sullivan writes a post titled Math is Useless, then follows up with reader reactions. I’m definitely on the side of this guy: [Read more…]

In defense of evolutionary psychology, part 2: adaptationism and the reason human brains are so big

So in the first post of this series, I quoted the editors of The Adapted Mind as saying in effect that we can assume complex features of the human mind are evolutionary adaptations. And I know this is going to get them accused by some people of “adaptationism,” which is the alleged vice of assuming [Read More…]

In defense of evolutionary psychology, part 1: introduction and the pleistocene

Within the skeptic/atheist/rationalist internets, there seems to be a rather striking divide between folks who take for granted the basic ideas of evolutionary psychology and drop off-hand references to Steven Pinker and Cosmides and Tooby, and folks who disagree and drop off-hand references to the fact that evolutionary psychology is evil. I’m very much in [Read More…]

The more you know about science, the more likely you are to have accurate scientific views

Duh. But unfortunately, sometimes people deny the obvious. Russell Blackford links to this piece adapted from Chris Mooney’s new book, saying, “this article is rather interesting. I wonder whether it signals a return to form.” Mmm… interesting, yes, but the piece still includes the kind of bad arguments Mooney has become infamous for. The core [Read More…]

Respect isn’t about respect

I didn’t expect to say anything more about Andrew Breitbart, but then I saw some comments on Facebook from an atheist/libertarian friend of mine that I think are worth commenting on. He criticized the reaction of many liberals to Breitbart’s death, specifically linking to this article, but didn’t endorse a general “don’t speak ill of [Read More…]

Curious comment by Plantinga about evolutionary psychology

Alvin Plantinga’s latest book, Where the Conflict Really Lies, contains a brief discussion of evolutionary psychology. Not surprisingly, he’s suspicious of it. But there’s one especially strange comment that I missed when I wrote my review: [Read more…]