Check out this article on Sarah Palin. Speculative, anecdotal and ridiculous but I wouldn’t put it past her saying something like this.
“Palin said “she had seen pictures of human footprints inside the tracks,” recalled Munger”
Really? No…really? What pictures? Did she draw them with her crayons in grade 2? WHERE?! WHEN!? WHAT!? I’m hungry.
Most people in Australia would know of the Thylacinus cynocephalus, more commonly known as the Thylacine or the Tasmanian Tiger. For those of you that don’t know what the creature is let me give you a quick run down.
The Tasmanian Tiger is not a tiger at all, and despite its looks it isn’t a canine either. It was a marsupial predator that roamed Australia, and more recently, the small state in Australia, Tasmania. It bears a striking resemblance to a common dog and is defined by its tiger like stripes on its back towards its hind legs that continue down its long tail.
The last Tazzy Tiger died in 1936 in captivity.
Well, the ol’ taz tiger may be set to walk the forests of Australia once again with new advancements in cloning technology. Dr Andrew Pask and Professor Marilyn Renfree from the University of Melbourne have managed to insert a Thylacine gene into a mouse embryo. The gene used was the proα1(II) collagen (Col2a1) gene which controls the growth of bone and cartilage. The embryo continued to grow with the gene in place so that is definately good news for extinct species.
However, this doesn’t mean that the whole creature can be resurrected and there is still a lot more work to be done before that can be achieved. Even though it may never happen, damn its fun to think about. Dinosaur cloning is probably out of the question but if the technology is developed then you can be sure it will be possible to see Mammoths and other extinct mammals in reserves and parks (à la Jurassic Park). That would kick ass!
Check out these links.
The Research Article http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0002240
Human culture holds many old traditions that we have entertained for thousands of years. While some of these cause no harm at all, others have become out dated and some are just dangerous to begin with.
Lets just say that everyday for thousands of years my ancestors went hunting in the forest to catch a deer, boar or some other tasty looking critter or to forage for some vegetation. Back then this practice would have been considered necessary to survive and prosper. Many of these traditions still stand today as something that we continue, and with good reason. For example, agriculture is a tradition that advanced the human race a huge amount. Hunting is another skill and tradition that benefited our ancestors. While it is important that we remember tradition and record it we shouldn’t always keep practicing a tradition.
Some traditions are so outdated they actually do harm. I could point out religion for this quite easily but instead I wanted to bring up the topic of “Scientific research”.
I’m not talking about legitimate research. I’m talking about the slaughter of innocent creatures under the guise of tradition and an outright lie distorting the scientific method. I am talking about the Japanese whalers.
Today the whalers returned back to port in Japan after continued harassment by the activists that lurk around their hunting grounds in the Antarctic. While they slaughtered many innocent animals (551 Minke Whales) their efforts were severely hampered by the men and women who braved the freezing oceans to stop the massacre.
These magnificent creatures are like humans, victims of tradition. Only they aren’t the ones who practice it. They are just on the receiving end. Just because Japanese culture has been killing whales for a few hundred years they think they can just continue it due to tradition even with no real necessity?
Tradition can be a dangerous thing when left unchecked. Maybe it’s time we started re-evaluating our ancient ways.
RIP to all the whales killed in the name of tradition.