Saturday, January 06, 2007

Storks: Do they explain human reproduction better than... S.E.X.?

` Unwilling subjects; in case you were wondering where I've been, I am actually going to school to study how to be a mad scientist, and have otherwise been busy, so being online has been rare for me. (I've also since stopped snorting bath salts; my sinus troubles have passed.) I just thought I'd poke my head in here to show you I'm still alive.
` What have I got to show you this time? A while ago I found some very interesting material you might just think were a bit... loopy, even beyond genetic papers about Harry Potter. It would appear that sexual reproduction theory is in for a loop! The alternative? That Storks are actually the ones who bring babies!
` Not familiar with what's going on? This comic strip should help. (Thank goodness I found it online! It's so much better than writing a 'screenplay' for it!)
` You see, I used to just assume that when sperm swims into an ovary, it fertilizes an egg. But gee, I thought, what proof is there of this? (It hasn't even happened to myself, despite the fact that my birth control devices are not always sound!) Now I see the light, and I believe that Dr. Charlatan explains it quite well!

Reproductive Biology - A New Synthesis
by M. A. Charlatan, M.S., Ph.D., D.Phil, M. Div
(A position paper commissioned by the Indescribable Institute)
Abstract
Commonly-accepted theories in science are not subject to radical re-evaluation except in rare instances (see Kuhn for a fuller discussion). We here at the Indescribable Institute believe that the time is ripe for such a major paradigm shift in the current field of Reproductive Biology - namely, challenging the notion that reproduction (commonly defined as the "production of new individuals" or "perpetuation of a given species") occurs via currently-accepted mechanisms such as "fertilization of egg by sperm" and "36-38 week gestational period" which come under the umbrella of "Sexual Reproduction."
` Given the numerous inherent problems with the Theory of Sexual Reproduction, we propose that alternate theories such as the Stork Theory, the Cabbage Patch Theory and the Found Beneath a Bridge Hypothesis are deserving of fuller investigation, and should be taught as part of any meaningful biological curriculum at the high school or college level.

The Challenge
A general survey of the academic literature (Medline searches, the membership list of the Society of Reproductive Biologists) reveal that the current landscape of Reproductive Biology is dominated by "Sexual Reproductionists." This is true not only in universities and other research institutions in the United States and Canada, but also in Europe, Asia and elsewhere around the world.
` Sexual Reproductionists are individuals who believe fervently - and at the exclusion of all other theories - that the production of new individuals occurs by 1) the biological intercourse between a male and a female of a given species (which is necessary but not sufficient); and 2) a subsequent event whereby an entity known as "sperm" fuses with another entity that is called "egg." We will turn to the problem of the Theory of Sexual Reproduction shortly.
` However, we must first note that the field of Reproductive Biology is dominated by these Sexual Reproductionists. They are characterized by a monolithic acceptance of every facet of their theory, and they seem unable to entertain any heretical re-evaluation of their sexual orthodoxy in any form - and often react in fury when such ideas are proposed.
` In part, this is simply intellectual arrogance characteristic of individuals who define themselves as "scientists", but it can also be attributed to a need to fanatically defend what they consider "their area." Indeed, the Sexual Reproductionists dominate the research funding landscape (not only in terms of state and federal monies, but also research dollars allocated by the private sector - drug companies, nonprofits etc). Therefore, it is not surprising that these individuals would react unfavorably to radical challenges to their pet ideas, or any potential encroachment upon their turf.

Case Study
Take, for instance, the example of John Pellembell - Associate Professor of Biology, Euphoric State University. Two years ago, during a course in Developmental Biology (an undergraduate class for life sciences majors), Professor Pellembell speculated that "the current bias towards sexual reproduction may have components that are problematic" and that "an evaluation of the correlative evidence vis a vis the Stork Hypothesis may be warranted at some future time."
` Clearly this was a highly modest and tentative proposal - the barest suggestion of an alternate theory. Yet, the reaction of the Sexual Reproductionist ideologues was swift as it was brutal. Professor Pellembell was immediately placed on a forced sabbatical - and the chairman of the Biology Department - Dr. Peter Fisham (a well-known militant Sexual Reproductionist) would not entertain appeals of any sort. Dr. Pellembell's Developmental Biology course was cancelled and concerns raised by the students in the class were ignored.
` Corey Strobeski, a junior in the class stated that he was, "very concerned with the cancellation of this class. And it's got nothing to do with Professor Pellembell giving out a lot of A's. I'm just outraged by, you know, the freedom of speech and stuff." The retributions even came from beyond the academic institution per se.
` His grant application entitled, "Possible Ornithological Basis of Human Reproduction - the role of genus Ciconia in conceptus formation" was denied by the National Institutes of Health - a governmental bureaucracy with a well-documented hostility to non-Sexual Reproduction theories.
` Compounding the outrage, the Society of Reproductive Biologists rescinded his membership. The example of Professor Pellembell makes it abundantly clear that any challenge to the Sexual Reproductionist orthodoxy will be met with a furious response from those favoring the staus quo. Hence, we do not take up this challenge lightly.
` Taken up with this article? (It gets better!) Go to the original post to continue reading! ...Of course, to be fair, come back when you're done!
` As with most budding new theories, there are a few problems with some of the details. For example, the article states that; 'Much like the sperm-egg fusion conjecture, this is merely correlative evidence. Proving a conclusive causative relationship will require further investigation.'
`
According to this article I found in PubMed:
Hofer T, Przyrembel H, Verleger S.

Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, Berlin, Germany. thomas.hoefer@bfr.bund.de Data from Berlin (Germany) show a significant correlation between the increase in the stork population around the city and the increase in deliveries outside city hospitals (out-of-hospital deliveries). However, there is no correlation between deliveries in hospital buildings (clinical deliveries) and the stork population.
` The decline in the number of pairs of storks in the German state of Lower Saxony between 1970 and 1985 correlated with the decrease of deliveries in that area. The nearly constant number of deliveries from 1985 to 1995 was associated with an unchanged stork population (no statistical significance).
` However, the relevance of the stork for the birth rate in that part of Germany remains unclear, because the number of out-of-hospital deliveries in this area is not well documented. A lack of statistical information on out-of-hospital deliveries in general is a severe handicap for further proof for the Theory of the Stork.

PMID: 14738551 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
` So, apparently The Stork Theory is as of yet definitely unsubstantiated. Because I am an open-minded person, I will consider that Sexual Reproduction Theory as well as Cabbage Patch Theory and the Found Under a Bridge Hypothesis may also be valid, as long the evidence points their way.

20 comments:

G-Man said...

HuH?

G-Man said...

First AND second?

On your last posts comment, You had a link(sexy post), and on that last scroll down picture was sort of a collage, was that naked fat guy in the corner Aleister Crowley?

Galtron said...

Ha ha! You're so good at confusing people, Quine! And I'm seriously laughing here! I cracked up at the final insult, though I thought this was important also;

...These are events that have completely and utterly baffled sexual reproductionists, and have left them stumped. No complete, satisfying, absolutely coherent theory has been proposed to answer these questions - and the best offered are small, qualified conditional theories based on excruciatingly-detailed, molecular-level experiments (possibly overkill, in our scientific opinion) which seem tepid, tentative and inadequate to say the least.

I was amazed at how 'professional' it sounded -- then I saw that it was written by a professor! No wonder! That is genius!

Gareth said...

I think I may need some sort of visual stimulus for all this to make sense. HA HA HAHAHAHA ;)

S E E Quine said...

` G-Man, that is not Aleister Crowley - in fact it is a ten foot tall sculpture with the face of one of us bloggy peoples superimposed on it.

` Galtron, glad you are as impressed with the article as I have been.

` Gareth, knowing me I would come up with something if only I could figure out what 'Stork Porn' would look like.

Gareth said...

Oh I could show you what stork porn looks like. Hahahaha j/k :P
You seem to have developed some sort of super natural power of pulling everyone who begins with 'G' to your blog. You must get confused with it sometimes :D

G-Man said...

Stork Porn? (Brit..uh huh)

S E E Quine said...

` Y'know, I do get confused with all the G's. And where is everyone else? Perhaps there is some kind of internet barrier that blocks them and draws you guys in?

G-Man said...

Stop it.
Nothing confuses you, so stop lowering yourself to the human level.
I do believe your are some futuristic apparition. A superior mind floating around in a corporal state.

S E E Quine said...

` *looks left* *looks right* "Ya got me. Mua ha ha ha haaaa! Muaa haaaa haaa haaa haaa haaa haaaaaa!!! So, can I apparate into your house and make more suggestive comments?"

G-Man said...

Anytime!!!!!

S E E Quine said...

` Ohhh yeah... this is gonna be such fun!

G-Man said...

Promises Promises...

S E E Quine said...

` Forget about making comments! *reaches into G-Man's shorts*

Gareth said...

She mentions sex in her post title and now it's all she can think about ;)

S E E Quine said...

` You know it, baby!

Gareth said...

Yeah I read that post yesterday when I was looking through your blog. Very interesting ;)

Ok I'm going to bed now, it's almost 2am here lol. Hopefully I'll find something to dream about :P

S E E Quine said...

` "Glad you like!" she said after having wild and watery sex. While in the middle of commenting on Gareth's blog. ...And to top off the irony, the water was full of this stuff!

G-Man said...

( big contented grin)
Thanks Baby....You were awesome!

S E E Quine said...

` Did you like the part where I stuck my finger up your... uh, nevermind.