[extropy-chat] re: embedded in open hearts (Meta/EP)
avantguardian2020 at yahoo.com
Sun Apr 17 01:03:48 UTC 2005
--- "kevinfreels.com" <kevin at kevinfreels.com> wrote:
> There's a very good example of such a group of
people in the
> Middle East in the book
> "Mapping Human Histpry" by Steve Olson. I wish I
> could remember the group,
> but right now I have too many other things going on
> to look it up. As it is,
> most Americans can trace just about anyone they know
> back to about 8th
> cousins twice removed.
Not to mention the Pharoahs of Egypt, Hapsbergs, and
other royal families in Europe. If they were really
THAT unfit, how could they possibly have ruled for so
long? Not that I condone inbreeding but its
deleterious effects are actually very dependent on the
quality of the starting genetic stock. i.e. if two
siblings were blessed with no recessive deleterious
genes, then inbreeding would result in children that
were more fit than a random mating. As it is, it is
highly unlikely that neither sibling would have NO
recessive deleterious alleles. This is borne out in
millions of labs around the world that use inbred
mice. Some of the mouse strains are truly crippled by
their inbreeding, yet others that have been sibling
mated for hundreds of generations are for the most
part, the fitness equivalent of a wild-type mouse.
The confounding factor however is that fitness is
relative to an environment. A gene that would give you
a large advantage in the arctic, may well be very
deleterious in the tropics and vice-versa. Thus inbred
families should stay at home, hope the climate doesn't
change, and vote republican.
alt email: stuart"AT"ucla.edu
"The surest sign of intelligent life in the universe is that they haven't attempted to contact us."
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