I'm from Missouri

This site is named for the famous statement of US Congressman Willard Duncan Vandiver from Missouri : "I`m from Missouri -- you'll have to show me." This site is dedicated to skepticism of official dogma in all subjects. Just-so stories are not accepted here. This is a site where controversial subjects such as evolution theory and the Holocaust may be freely debated.

Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

My biggest motivation for creating my own blogs was to avoid the arbitrary censorship practiced by other blogs and various other Internet forums. Censorship will be avoided in my blogs -- there will be no deletion of comments, no closing of comment threads, no holding up of comments for moderation, and no commenter registration hassles. Comments containing nothing but insults and/or ad hominem attacks are discouraged. My non-response to a particular comment should not be interpreted as agreement, approval, or inability to answer.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Scientist complains about Panda's Thumb's censorship

Correction: Pellionisz's comment was probably filtered out by PT as suspected spam because the number of URL links exceeded four.

An article by Casey Luskin on Evolution News & Views says,

The best way to rewrite history is to delete the views of those who remember it personally. The Scientist's editor Richard Gallgaher's recent article on "junk"-DNA mentions that Dr. Andras J. Pellionisz suggested that The Scientist publish an "obituary" for "junk"-DNA. Gallagher wrote:

Andras J. Pellionisz, to whom I am grateful for bringing this notable 35th anniversary to my attention, suggested that The Scientist publish an obituary to "formally abandon this misnomer." Pellionisz's objection is that scientific progress is being inhibited, and declaring junk DNA dead would align us with his own organization, the International PostGenetics Society (postgenetics.org), which disavowed the term on the 12th of October last year. Pellionisz is not alone.
(Richard Gallagher, "Junk Worth Keeping," The Scientist, Vol. 21(7):15 (July, 2007).)

Dr. Pellionisz sent me an e-mail regarding his recent experiences at Panda's Thumb. Pellionisz reports that Panda's Thumb is refusing to print his stories about how he has personally witnessed how the Darwinian consensus rejected suggestions that "junk" DNA had function . . . . With his permission, I reprint Dr. Pellionisz's e-mail below:

From: Dr. Andras J. Pellionisz
To: Casey Luskin
Subject: Integrity of Panda's Thumb

Dear Casey Luskin,
Under the heading of "Unintelligent move" by Panda's Thumb, obviously appearing as an attempt to "back-pedal" by citing claims that "a strict application of the Darwinian paradigm, also known as “panselectionism” or “adaptationism”, led many prominent evolutionary biologists to initially resist the idea that some DNA may be non-functional"

I tried to post my following note, as one of the first in the debate. I cited the case of my friend and fellow-pioneer Dr. Simons (a Darwinist) who bet his life more than one way since 1987 that "Junk DNA" was not junk at all.

My posting never appeared as the reply screen claimed "protection". This was the *third* time that my opinion was suppressed in Panda's Thumb . . . . . .

The name of the PT article is "Another unintelligent move," not "Unintelligent move."

As I said, one of the problems with arbitrary censorship of blog visitors' comments is that blogs are being authoritatively cited by court opinions, scholarly law journal articles, the official news media, etc.. Arbitrary censorship of comments should be avoided in order to ensure that a blog is fair and as accurate and reliable as possible. Panda's Thumb is listed in a scholarly scientific database, Thomson-Scientific's ISI Web of Knowledge. PT has been cited in a law journal article by Jay Wexler, and an August 2006 report listed 489 citations of law blogs by law journal articles. And PT has been cited in an article in the general media -- an editorial in the Daily Camera of Boulder, Colorado said,

The packages containing veiled threats that were slipped under the doors of labs at the department of evolutionary biology at the University of Colorado appear to be part of a larger campaign being waged by one man against the department.

Content on the blog www.pandasthumb.org suggests that e-mails that preceded the packages threatened to "take up a pen to kill the enemies of Truth," and stated that the writer would file charges of child molestation against the professors for teaching evolution. The writer believes that these professors are "the source of every imaginable evil in our society: drugs, crime, prostitution, corruption, war, abortion, death..." He appears to have been inspired by the words of Pastor Jerry Gibson, who allegedly spoke at Doug White's New Day Covenant Church in Boulder, saying that "every true Christian should be ready and willing to take up arms to kill the enemies of Christian society."

The cited PT article is here.

Casey Luskin himself is partly to blame for the Panda's Thumb censorship problem here. He did not join my protest against Thomson-Scientific's listing of PT in the ISI Web of Knowledge scientific database. He did not join my protest against Jay Wexler's citation of Panda's Thumb in a law journal article. Right now Casey is ignoring my protest against arbitrary censorship on Wikipedia's bio of Cheri Yecke, even though this is a golden opportunity to fight Wikicensorship because the censorship here involves a violation of Wikipedia's IRS 501(c)(3) tax status. Maybe sometime in the future, Clueless Casey might have a problem with arbitrary censorship on Wikipedia and he'll ask, "what happened"? Well, it's like this, Casey . . .

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Anonymous W. Kevin Vicklund said...

Hint: count the number of links in Pellionisz's attempted comment.

Monday, July 23, 2007 8:44:00 AM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Gosh, you're right, Kevin. Comments with more than four links are filtered as "spam" by PT, and Pellionisz's comment has five. Furthermore, PT does not give the reason for filtering. BTW, ScienceBlogs has sometimes filtered my comments with more than one link!

Of course, I naturally suspected arbitrary censorship as the reason.

I will tell Casey immediately.


Monday, July 23, 2007 9:12:00 AM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

BTW, if these blogs did not practice arbitrary censorship, there would be no reason to suspect arbitrary censorship as the reason for the non-appearance or disappearance of comments. If that happens to comments on this blog, you can be pretty darn sure that there is a software problem.

Also, limiting the number of links is really stupid -- links provide important references. The best way to avoid automated spam is word verification.

Monday, July 23, 2007 9:35:00 AM  
Anonymous Voice in the Wilderness said...

> The best way to avoid automated spam is word verification. <

Who was talking about automated spam?

Monday, July 23, 2007 11:37:00 AM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

>>>>>> The best way to avoid automated spam is word verification. <

Who was talking about automated spam? <<<<<<<

For some strange reason -- and I don't know why (it's probably another one of those old wives' tales) -- having a lot of links is supposed to be a common feature of spam. Also, to me, five links per comment (not accepted by PT) and two-three links per comment (not accepted by ScienceBlogs) are not a lot of links.

Monday, July 23, 2007 2:02:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: old wive's tales

Maybe people at blogs with more traffic see more spam, and therefore know what spam's telltale signs might be? Just a thought.

Captchas are cool, though.

Monday, July 23, 2007 3:13:00 PM  

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