Proof of social pseudoscience

Where is the proof in pseudoscience?

Excerpt (with my emphasis): “It is characteristic of science that our knowledge, so expressed, has grown enormously over the last few centuries, guided by the reality check of experimentation.”

See for review: Chromosomal speciation revisited: rearranging theory with pieces of evidence  September 3, 2010:

“Dobzhansky [8] and Muller [9], partially preceded by Bateson [3,7,10] proposed that hybrid sterility and inviability are caused by incompatible alleles alternatively fixed in two previously isolated populations (BDM model). The BDM model is so straightforward that it became the null model of speciation [7] and except for a few strong proponents (notably [1,2]) chromosomal speciation was largely neglected.”

My comment: The theory of mutation-initiated natural selection in the context of mutation-driven evolution is a classic example of social pseudoscience. For comparison, biologically based science and experimental evidence have repeatedly shown that ecological variation links nutrient uptake to the physiology of reproduction via the metabolism of nutrients to species-specific pheromones in species from microbes to man. Ecological adaptations also link Increasing organismal complexity in model organisms via ecological, social, neurogenic, and socio-cognitive niche construction. Niche construction occurs via the conserved molecular mechanisms of nutrient-dependent base pair changes, alternative splicings of pre-mRNA, de novo gene creation and chromosomal rearrangements that lead to speciation.

See again for review: Chromosomal speciation revisited: rearranging theory with pieces of evidence  September 3, 2010:

“New models of chromosomal speciation incorporate both genic (BDM incompatibilities) and non-genic factors (CRs) into the same framework.”

My comment: The non-genic factors (CRs) are chromosomal rearrangements.

See again for review: Chromosomal speciation revisited: rearranging theory with pieces of evidence  September 3, 2010:

“However, it remains to be clearly seen how often CRs contribute to or facilitate speciation and what their role is in the process.”

My comment: In our 1996 Hormones and Behavior review, we included a section on molecular epigenetics and also linked nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled ecological adaptations to chromosomal rearrangements and sex differences in cell types. Fifteen years passed, and on January 1, 2011 this review was published: Roles of Mutation and Selection in Speciation: From Hugo de Vries to the Modern Genomic Era

Excerpt: “…we will not consider geographical and ecological factors because of space limitation. Our primary purpose is to clarify the roles of mutation and selection in the evolution of reproductive isolation…”

My comment: Ecological factors continue to be ignored — i.e., not considered, when they have already been linked to chromosomal rearrangements and to chromosomal speciation. No experimental tests of mutation-initiated natural selection were performed.

Did the social pseudoscientists / evolutionary theorists realize that no experimental evidence supported the BDM “null model”?  No! They didn’t even realize it was still just a ridiculous proposal until last year. The problem with the lack of experimental evidence was reported in An experimental test on the probability of extinction of new genetic variants.

Nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled speciation had already been reported in the context of amino-acid substitutions. Social pseudoscientists now seem unaware of that fact. No one has come forward to acknowledge what has been learned about systems biology since 1996 when we detailed what was known about chromosomal rearrangements in yeasts at the advent of sexual reproduction. Drum roll, please………………………………….

And now, see: Estrogen receptor α polymorphism in a species with alternative behavioral phenotypes

Abstract: The evolution of behavior relies on changes at the level of the genome; yet the ability to attribute a behavioral change to a specific, naturally occurring genetic change is rare in vertebrates. In the white-throated sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis), a chromosomal polymorphism (ZAL2/2m) is known to segregate with a behavioral phenotype. Individuals with the ZAL2m haplotype engage in more territorial aggression and less parental behavior than individuals without it. These behaviors are thought to be mediated by sensitivity to sex steroids, and the chromosomal rearrangement underlying the polymorphism has captured a prime candidate gene: estrogen receptor 1 (ESR1), which encodes estrogen receptor α (ERα). We therefore hypothesized that the behavioral effects of the ZAL2m rearrangement are mediated by polymorphism in ESR1. We report here that (i) the ESR1 promoter region contains fixed polymorphisms distinguishing the ZAL2m and ZAL2 alleles; (ii); those polymorphisms regulate transcription efficiency in vitro and therefore potentially do the same in vivo (iii); the local expression of ERα in the brain depends strongly on genotype in a free-living population; and (iv) ERα expression in the medial amygdala and medial preoptic area may fully mediate the effects of genotype on territorial aggression and parenting, respectively. Thus, our study provides a rare glimpse of how a chromosomal polymorphism has affected the brain and social behavior in a vertebrate. Our results suggest that in this species, differentiation of ESR1 has played a causal role in the evolution of phenotypes with alternative life-history strategies.

I wonder whether the social pseudoscientists will ever realize that the experimental evidence in the white-throated sparrow adds to the overwhelming experimental evidence that refutes their pseudoscientific theory of mutation-initiated natural selection. If they do, will they admit to their overwhelming ignorance of biologically-based cause and effect? I doubt it. That’s not what pseudoscientists do. They admit nothing, and hope that no one else will notice that they are not scientists and that they have never been scientists at any time in the history of scientific progress “…guided by the reality check of experimentation.”

Addendum: After a few days of discussion, one of the final comments made was “Behavioral changes as a result of the mutation!”

My response: Correction to McEwen (2012): “…on page 17184, right column, first paragraph, line 4, “effect” should instead appear as “affect.”

This link opens the pdf.  “Correction for “Brain on stress: How the social environment gets under the skin,” by Bruce S. McEwen

I mention this because it clarifies the fact that PZ Myers’ and his idiot minions do not know the difference between an epigenetic effect on hormones and affects of hormones on behavior. They say things like Maggnus did (above): “Behavioral changes as a result of the mutation!”

Does anyone else think that is a biologically plausible or ecologically valid statement?

If so, you will enjoy discussions of social pseudoscience with idiot minions on PZ Myers’ blog.

If not, see my blog at

Or see my Facebook page https://www.faceb…Research

Author: James Kohl

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