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A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism

"A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism" was a statement issued in 2001 by the Discovery Institute, a conservative Christian think tank based in Seattle, Washington, U. S. best known for its promotion of intelligent design. As part of the Discovery Institute"s Teach the Controversy campaign, the statement expresses skepticism about the ability of random mutations and natural selection to account for the complexity of life, encourages careful examination of the evidence for "Darwinism", a term intelligent design proponents use to refer to evolution; the statement was published in advertisements under an introduction which stated that its signatories dispute the assertion that Darwin's theory of evolution explains the complexity of living things, dispute that "all known scientific evidence supports evolution". The Discovery Institute states that the list was first started to refute claims made by promoters of the PBS television series "Evolution" that "virtually every scientist in the world believes the theory to be true".

Further names of signatories have been added at intervals. The list continues to be used in Discovery Institute intelligent design campaigns in an attempt to discredit evolution and bolster claims that intelligent design is scientifically valid by claiming that evolution lacks broad scientific support; the statement is misleading and ambiguous, using terms with multiple meanings such as "Darwinism", which can refer to natural selection or informally to evolution in general, presenting a straw man fallacy with its claim that random mutations and natural selection are insufficient to account for the complexity of life, when standard evolution theory involves other factors such as gene flow, genetic recombination, genetic drift and endosymbiosis. Scientists and educators have noted that its signatories, who include historians and philosophers of science as well as scientists, were a minuscule fraction of the numbers of scientists and engineers qualified to sign it. Intelligent design has failed to produce scientific research, been rejected by the scientific community, including many leading scientific organizations.

The statement in the document has been criticized as being phrased to represent a diverse range of opinions, set in a context which gives it a misleading spin to confuse the public. The listed affiliations and areas of expertise of the signatories have been criticized. "A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism" states that: We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged; the statement, its title, refer to evolution as "Darwinism" or "Darwinian theory", can lead to confusion, due to the terms having various meanings, but meaning evolution due to the mechanism of natural selection rather than the broader definition of evolution, the change in a species' inherited traits from generation to generation. The terms have meant different things to different people at different times. In terms of the history of evolutionary thought, both "Darwinism" and "neo-Darwinism" are predecessors of the current evolutionary theory, the modern evolutionary synthesis.

However, in the context of the creation-evolution controversy, the term "Darwinism" is used by creationists to describe scientists and science teachers who oppose them, to claim that scientific disagreements about the specific mechanism can sometimes be equated to rejection of evolution as a whole. Intelligent design proponents use the term in all these ways, including the idea that it is a materialist ideology, the claim that as it proposes natural processes as an explanation for evolution, Darwinism can be equated with atheism and presented as being incompatible with Christianity. Charles Darwin himself described natural selection as being "the main but not exclusive means of modification" of species; the modern theory of evolution includes natural selection and genetic drift as mechanisms, does not conclude that "the ability of random mutation and natural selection" accounts "for the complexity of life." Southeastern Louisiana University philosophy professor Barbara Forrest and deputy director of the National Center for Science Education Glenn Branch comment on the ambiguity of the statement and its use in the original advertisement: Such a statement could be agreed to by scientists who have no doubts about evolution itself, but dispute the exclusiveness of "Darwinism," that is, natural selection, when other mechanisms such as genetic drift and gene flow are being debated.

To the layman, the ad gives the distinct impression that the 100 scientists question evolution itself. Skip Evans of the National Center for Science Education, noted that when interviewed, several of the scientists who had signed the statement said they accepted common descent, he thus suggests that this confusion has in fact been engineered. By promoting a perception that evolution is the subject of wide controversy and debate within the scientific community, whereas in fact evolution is overwhelmingly supported by scientists, the list is used to lend support to other Discovery Institute campaigns promoting intelligent design, including "Teach the Controversy", "Critical Analysis of Evolution", "Free Speech on Evolution", "Stand Up For Science". For example, in its "Teach the Controversy" campaign, the Institute claims that "evolution is a theory in crisis" and that many scientists criticize evolution and citing the list as evidence or a resource; the Discovery Institute asserts that this information is being withheld from students in public high school science classes along with "alternatives" to evolution such as intelligent design.

The I

Gizzeria

Gizzeria is a comune and town in the province of Catanzaro in the Calabria region of Italy. The center of town is 625 metres above sea level. Monte Mancuso is the town's highest point at 1,290 metres above sea level. Gizzeria shares borders in common with the municipalities of Falerna, Nocera Terinese, Lamezia Terme and the Tyrrhenian Sea; the town's territory is within 5 minutes driving distance from the Lamezia Terme International Airport, as well as 10 minutes driving distance from the Lamezia Terme Centrale train station. Gizzeria is located 60 kilometres from Catanzaro, its provincial capital. Lago La Vota Media related to Gizzeria at Wikimedia Commons

Marcel Clech

Marcel Clech was a French agent in the French section of the Special Operations Executive during the Second World War. He worked as a wireless operator in two different networks before his arrest, was executed at Mauthausen Concentration Camp. Marcel Rémy Clech was born in Brittany on 11 October 1905, he lived in London working as a taxi driver. He joined the Special Operations Executive, section F, as a wireless operator in the rank of Lieutenant. On 1 August 1940 a motorboat attempted to land three Frenchmen, Clech and Victor Bernard at Carentec in Brittany but had to abort after coming under fire. Clech became the radio operator of the AUTOGIRO network of Pierre de Vomécourt «Lucas». In Operation DELAY II Peter Churchill’s mission was to land four SOE agents on the French Riviera by submarine. On 26 February 1942 Churchill flew from Bristol to Gibraltar with two radio operators, Isidore Newman «Julien» for the URCHIN network and Edward Zeff «Matthieu» for the SPRUCE network, where they were joined by Marcel Clech «Bastien», radio operator for the AUTOGIRO network, Victor Gerson «René», an SOE agent on a special mission to organise the VIC Escape Line.

They travelled in HM Submarine P 42 “Unbroken” to Antibes where on the night of 21 April 1942 Churchill took Newman and Zeff and their radios to the shore by canoe, led them to their contact Dr Élie Lévy. Churchill returned to the submarine and dropped off Clech and Gerson by canoe at Pointe d’Agay near Fréjus before returning to the UK. Arriving in Lyon in early May, Clech learnt that Pierre de Vomécourt, the organiser of the AUTOGIRO network, had been arrested on 25 April, his mission was modified and he was sent to Tours, where he was assigned to the MONKEYPUZZLE network of Raymond Flower «Gaspar». He worked there from 3 August. On the night of 14 April he was brought back to London by Lysander, piloted by Henri Déricourt. Clech became the radio operator of INVENTOR network of Sydney Jones «Élie», with Vera Leigh «Simone» as courier. On the night of 14 May 1943 he was brought by Lysander piloted by Henri Déricourt with Sidney Jones and Vera Leigh to set up the INVENTOR network. Julienne Aisner became courier of the FARRIER circuit.

The INVENTOR network was betrayed by double agent Roger Bardet, on 30 October Vera Leigh was arrested. On 19 November Clech was arrested after his transmissions in Boulogne-Billancourt had been located by the German direction-finding service. Jones was arrested the next day. Clech was deported to Mauthausen concentration camp where he was executed on 24 March 1944. Leigh and Jones were executed, Leigh at Natzweiler-Struthof concentration camp, Jones at Mauthausen. France: Médaille de la Résistance As one of the 104 agents of section F who gave their lives for the liberation of France, Marcel Clech is honoured at The Valençay SOE Memorial, France. Brookwood Memorial, panel 21, column 3; the F Section Memorial, Gerry Holdsworth Special Forces Charitable Trust, 1992 Hugh Verity, We landed by Moonlight, Crecy Publishing, 1978. ISBN 978-0947554750

Occupation of the Baltic states

The occupation of the Baltic states involved the military occupation of the three Baltic states—Estonia and Lithuania—by the Soviet Union under the auspices of the 1939 Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact in June 1940. They were annexed into the Soviet Union as constituent republics in August 1940, though most Western powers and nations never recognised their incorporation. On 22 June 1941, Nazi Germany attacked the Soviet Union and within weeks occupied the Baltic territories. In July 1941, the Third Reich incorporated the Baltic territory into its Reichskommissariat Ostland; as a result of the Red Army's Baltic Offensive of 1944, the Soviet Union recaptured most of the Baltic states and trapped the remaining German forces in the Courland pocket until their formal surrender in May 1945. The Soviet "annexation occupation" or occupation sui generis of the Baltic states lasted until August 1991, when the three countries regained their independence; the Baltic states themselves, the United States and its courts of law, the European Parliament, the European Court of Human Rights and the United Nations Human Rights Council have all stated that these three countries were invaded and illegally incorporated into the Soviet Union under provisions of the 1939 Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact.

There followed occupation by Nazi Germany from 1941 to 1944 and again occupation by the Soviet Union from 1944 to 1991. This policy of non-recognition has given rise to the principle of legal continuity of the Baltic states, which holds that de jure, or as a matter of law, the Baltic states had remained independent states under illegal occupation throughout the period from 1940 to 1991. In its reassessment of Soviet history that began during perestroika in 1989, the Soviet Union condemned the 1939 secret protocol between Germany and itself. However, the Soviet Union never formally acknowledged its presence in the Baltics as an occupation or that it annexed these states and considered the Estonian and Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republics as three of its constituent republics. On the other hand, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic recognized in 1991 the events of 1940 as "annexation". Revisionist Russian historiography and school textbooks continue to maintain that the Baltic states voluntarily joined the Soviet Union after their peoples all carried out socialist revolutions independent of Soviet influence.

The post-Soviet government of the Russian Federation and its state officials insist that incorporation of the Baltic states was in accordance with international law and gained de jure recognition by the agreements made in the February 1945 Yalta and the July–August 1945 Potsdam conferences and by the 1975 Helsinki Accords, which declared the inviolability of existing frontiers. However, Russia agreed to Europe's demand to "assist persons deported from the occupied Baltic states" upon joining the Council of Europe in 1996. Additionally, when the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic signed a separate treaty with Lithuania in 1991, it acknowledged that the 1940 annexation as a violation of Lithuanian sovereignty and recognised the de jure continuity of the Lithuanian state. Most Western governments maintained that Baltic sovereignty had not been legitimately overridden and thus continued to recognise the Baltic states as sovereign political entities represented by the legations—appointed by the pre-1940 Baltic states—which functioned in Washington and elsewhere.

The Baltic states recovered de facto independence in 1991 during the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Russia started to withdraw its troops from the Baltics in August 1993; the full withdrawal of troops deployed by Moscow ended in August 1994. Russia ended its military presence in the Baltics in August 1998 by decommissioning the Skrunda-1 radar station in Latvia; the dismantled installations were repatriated to Russia and the site returned to Latvian control, with the last Russian soldier leaving Baltic soil in October 1999. Early in the morning of August 24, 1939, the Soviet Union and Germany signed a ten-year non-aggression pact, called the Molotov–Ribbentrop pact; the pact contained a secret protocol by which the states of Northern and Eastern Europe were divided into German and Soviet "spheres of influence". In the north, Finland and Latvia were assigned to the Soviet sphere. Poland was to be partitioned in the event of its "political rearrangement"—the areas east of the Narev and San Rivers going to the Soviet Union while Germany would occupy the west.

Lithuania, adjacent to East Prussia, would be in the German sphere of influence, although a second secret protocol agreed in September 1939 assigned the majority of Lithuanian territory to the Soviet Union. According to this secret protocol, Lithuania would regain its historical capital Vilnius subjugated during the inter-war period by Poland. Following the end of Soviet invasion of Poland on 6 October, the Soviets pressured Finland and the Baltic states to conclude mutual assistance treaties; the Soviets questioned the neutrality of Estonia after the escape of an interned Polish submarine on 18 September. A week on 24 September, the Estonian foreign minister was given an ultimatum in Moscow; the Soviets demanded the conclusion of a treaty of mutual assistance to establish military bases in Estonia. The Estonians had no choice but to accept naval and army bases on two Estonian islands and at the port of Paldiski; the corresponding agreement was signed on 28 September 1939. Latvia followed on 5 October 1939 and Lithuania shortly thereafter, on 10 October 1939.

The agreements permitted the Soviet Union to establish military bases on the Baltic states' territory for the duration of the European war and to station 25,000 Soviet soldiers in Estonia

Western Power Corridor

The Western Power Corridor was a project to construct and supply energy from two hydroelectric power plants to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Namibia and South Africa. The hydro power was to be supplied form the Democratic Republic of the Congo's INGA III project. Inga III was supposed to be replaced by Angola's Cuanza River and Cunene River projects or by the new project in the Democratic Republic of Congo. An inter-governmental memorandum on the Westcor was signed on 22 October 2004 in Johannesburg, South Africa, followed by the shareholders' agreement signed by the national electricity companies; the pre-feasibility study was completed in 2005. In 2009, Democratic Republic of the Congo decided to develop the INGA III project by using private investments and the project was redesigned to involve Cuanza River and Cunene River projects in Angola. In 2010 the Democratic Republic of Congo indicated it will propose a new project involving Mozambique and Zimbabwe; the project was aborted by shareholders when unforeseen changes were proposed to the founding agreements.

The total length of Westcor will be over 3,000 kilometres and the capacity will be 3,500 megawatts. INGA III will be connected with the Capanda Power Station in Angola via two 400-kilovolt high voltage alternating current lines. INGA III will be connected with Kinshasa via another 400 kV HVAC line. From Angola, two multi-terminal high-voltage direct current systems will run to Namibia and South Africa; the system will consist of five converter stations: Kuanza in Angola, Auas in Namibia, Goborone in Botswana, Omega and Pegasus in South Africa. The expected cost of the project is about € 5 billion; the Westcor company was registered and incorporated in Botswana in 2003. The shareholders are Empresa Nacional de Electricidade de Angola, Botswana Power Corporation, the Société nationale d'électricité of the DRC, Eskom of South Africa and NamPower of Namibia. CEO of the company was Pat Naidoo. Project presentation at Namibia Power official website

Level (music)

A level "tonality level", Gerhard Kubik's "tonal step," "tonal block," and John Blacking's "root progression," is an important melodic and harmonic progression where melodic material shifts between a whole tone above and a whole tone below the tonal center. This shift can occur to both neighboring notes, in either direction, from any point of departure; the steps above and below the tonic are called contrasting steps. A new harmonic segment is created which changes the tonality but not the key; each level is based on a foundation note. A melodic or harmonic-melodic third, triad, or seventh may be built off this foundation. A "change" in levels is called a shift. We see this in double-tonic tunes such as "Donald MacGillavry". Shifting is more emphatic than chord changes, but not as emphatic as modulations: The foundation is the most important note and accompanying chords are always built in root position; the fifth is next in importance, consecutive fifths are most emphasized. The third is less important and blue, neutral, or changing from major to minor.

This characteristic is common in the English virginalists music such as William Byrd's "The Woods so Wild" theme, an example of levels being elaborated through cadence, melodic divergence from the accompaniment, subsidiary chords, reaching a complete cadential phrase. Levels are found in African folk music, it is believed that they arose out of this culture. They are combined with unresolved harmonic progression that gives music a feeling of perpetual motion without any noticeable cadence. Runs and sequences link new harmonic segments of the music to the previous ones; each new harmonic sequence is related to the previous through the melodic line. The music ends without any musical preparation in the middle of a phrase. Sometimes the music descends to a "point of rest" in which the note below the tonal center gets extended to allow an ending. Tonal variety and melodic unification is achieved by repeating similar phrases on different steps of a pentatonic mode. Semitonal and hemitonal root progressions can be found.

Tonality levels or "root progression" are the most important structural feature found in African folk music. The internal organization of this music demands occasional shifts between levels unless the music is based on a consistent drone; the tonality level shifts several times making it hard to find a piece of African folk music without tonality levels. Most between three and five tonality levels can be found within a composition. Levels can be found in Asian, Celtic folk musics, in European Renaissance music. Levels and other musical traits found their way into American jazz harmony and blues tonality through spirituals. Levels can be compared to a traditional root progression in western music with a tonic - subdominant - dominant relationship. Levels give chord changes in Baroque music; the harmonic practices between these cultures are so similar that urban African composers incorporate western root progression into their local harmonic practices. As this combination traveled to America, it helped create new genres such as jazz, big band, blues.

In the twentieth century, chords give way to levels in the blues, completed with the V-IV-I progression, which spread to all popular music. For instance, In the blues - influenced style, the boogie-woogie bass, levels occur in shifts from primary triads rather than neighboring tones; this can be directly tied to the tonality levels found in African folk music discussed earlier. A level, or "tonal step," coincides with cross-rhythms in the melody and entries in vocal melody. A new tonality level and harmonic shift is very vague and hard to identify in a vocal texture. However, it is much easier to identify in thick instrumentation. Phrase modulation Theory of levels