Thursday, October 18, 2007

Racist Scientist Carpeted: His Brain is in a Pickle

Phew! Pickled Politics' medical Doctor Rohin brings news of the inexorable decline of the nutty Professor James Watson (right) who has added upfront racism to his previous upfront sexism, homophobia and support for eugenics.

Watson was one of the 1962 Nobel Laureate's credited with discovery of DNA. But the addled fool's brain has now shrunk to the size of a small walnut and swung round to face the far right. This is letting irrational racist prejudices and demonstrably culturally biased and unscientific IQ testing overpower reality. There may have been some astrology and homeopathy in there too.

Since this Times report the man's sell out gig at the Science Museum has been unceremoniously pulled amid condemnation from all directions.

Watson's shamanism reminds me of a "learned paper" I once got to tear apart in which a "scientist" had measured the volume of the cavities in various skulls - not actually a very good analogue for brain power in any case - and then used their white male middle aged racist sexist doh brain to support their idee fixee that his own kind were top of the tree intelligence wise.

Thing was his "science" was circular as he had attributed race and gender to the sample skulls on the basis of the size of the skull cavities in the first place! On the basis of his superior a priori knowledge of what his experiment would reveal!

VAGUE HAT TIP: Perhaps I'll find the links in due course. My hat tip at the time was to an item in a 1978 or 1979 popular academic journal possibly Geography, Nature or Science. I think the pen name was Ptolemy. And I believe the tragically flawed original article was in the Journal of Geology ca 1898 (give or take).

GRATUITOUS MARK TWAIN QUOTE: "The wonderful thing about science is the large return of conjecture on a small investment of fact." OWTTE


tory boys never grow up said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tory boys never grow up said...

This may be of interest, especially if Dale deletes from his Ashcroft thread - he seems to be taking an "Usmanov" type approach to blog critiscm of Ashcroft at present.

I totally agree that some of the comments you deleted, which I saw earlier today, were libellous - but some were not. It is very noticeable that you in effect deleted any comment that was critical of Baron Ashcroft or pointed to press articles that were critical. The overall result being that there is no criticism of what Baron Ashcroft is saying.

While it is admirable to to defend a friend by shielding him from criticism, and ultimately you can (rightly) allow whatever you want on your blog, I am not sure that it fits very well with your normal support for free speech.

There are a number of inaccuracies in what Michael Ashcroft says in the Telegraph Article

1) he has not made any donations to the Conservative Party (at least above the reportable threshold to Electoral Commission). All the donations have been made through Bearwood Securities, a company which he owns.

While it is perfectly legal to use such a mechanism - one has to ask why it is being used? If Ashcroft is not on the UK Electoral Register then he would not be able to such donations - we do not know whether or not this is the case - perhaps Ashcroft could enlighten us? One of the principles behind PPERA was not to allow those who could vote in UK elections to in effect influence the results through donations to political parties - it would be interesting to know if the Consrvatives support this principle or not or are prepared to continue to allow avoidance mechanisms. It should be noted that Ashcroft has also made a large donation to the Australian Tories - so it would seem fairly clear that he does not support the general principle.

2) Ashcroft says that he (and I am assuming by this he means Bearwood) does not give donations directly to Conservative Associations - well as already pointed out that was not true for the 2005 General Election and if you look at the Electoral Commission website this wasn't true even in 2006 when Bearwood gave donations to a number of constituencies.

What is interesting is why Ashcroft has changed his policy and started to direct all his donations to Central Office? It also begs the question as whether the expenditure of the 2005 donations was included in the national campaign expenditure totals as it should have been if it was used to promote the Tory Party or its candidates?
This may be of interest in case Iain Dale decides to delete it from the comments on his Ashdown thread.

Iain is also probably incorrect in saying that he received a £10,000 donation from Ashcroft before the last election (or if he did you should have reported it to the Electoral Commission by now). North Norfolk have actually disclosed receiveing 3 donations totalling c£17k in the run up to the General Election.

GW said...

Did "Lord" Ashcroft buy his peerage ?

Can you or I think of any other reason why he should be "Lord Ashcroft" ?

So lets use the Labour majority in the house to humiliate and impoverish Ashcroft, as he wishes to do to our people.

Chris Paul said...

Lord Cashcow ... One day soon I'll find the time to blog about this at more length. I would be interested to be pointed at any account of deleted comments on this at Dale's and elsewhere.

Probably should nab a few RSS feeds ... too much noise coming in already though.