RE: Parody of Science

Mark M. Mills (
Sat, 14 Aug 1999 20:09:15 -0500

Date: Sat, 14 Aug 1999 20:09:15 -0500
From: "Mark M. Mills" <>
Subject: RE: Parody of Science
In-Reply-To: <>


At 04:26 PM 8/13/99 -0700, you wrote:

>At this time I
>am not prepared to state that all behavior might not eventually be
>explainable via memetic theories only that I have no interest in pursuing
>such a grand thesis.

Got it. What convinces you the answer to this simple question would
distract you from your goal?

>I would not consider a kick reflex to be behavior
>since it is exhibited even when no higher brain functions are involved.
>Perhaps you could consider it memetics but my personal semantics don't.

Most people and Webster's dictionary make no connection between brain
function and behavior. I commonly hear statements such as 'the ship
behaves well' or 'the stock market behaved badly, today.' I don't think
ships or stock markets have higher brain functions.

Can you defend your requirement that behavior requires 'higher brain

>I think it is interesting that you think of sexual behavior as a purely
>genetic one.

I don't. I was suggesting there might be some that hold the belief,
though. Many people think sexual activity in fish or reptiles entirely
sourced by genetic code. Many people in the US use the term 'sexual urges'
interchangeably with 'sexual instincts.' I agree that most people would
have a difficult time identifying purely instinctual sexual behavior, though.

>As a specific example of what I am thinking about, consider child and
>spousal abuse. These are specific behaviors that passed through early
>childhood experiences and are often only changed with some form of therapy.

I suspect from your comments that you would rather not defend your
incidental use 'non-memetic behavior' and get back to the main point of
your post.


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