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1

Slogger Big SVEN supports Hillery Clinton and Hillery ClinTon supported teh war in Iraq. Nearly 4,000 troops have died in BIG SVEnís war. When will big sVen apologui9ze for supporting Hillery cLinton?

Cpl. Thomas L. Hilbert, of Venus, Texas, a small town 30 miles south of Dallas. Hilbert, 20, and two other soldiers serving with the 9th Cavalry Regiment based at Fort Bliss, near El Paso, died after their vehicle was hit by an improvised explosive device on Sept. 6. Hilbert's sister, BillieJo Alexander, told the El Paso Times that her brother had already reserved a hotel room in Las Vegas to celebrate his 21st birthday with his family in January.

So why don\\\'t we apportion Big Sven his fair share of the carnage in Iraq? Let\\\'s arbitrarily assign him responsibility for the death of, say, an eight year old Iraqi girl. That sounds about right doesn\\\'t it? That still leaves 649,999 dead Iraqis to be apportioned out to Bush and the neo-cons and other war supporters.

Posted by Big Sven's War | March 14, 2008 12:10 PM
2

Slogger Big SVEN supports Hillery Clinton and Hillery ClinTon supported teh war in Iraq. Nearly 4,000 troops have died in BIG SVEnís war. When will big sVen apologui9ze for supporting Hillery cLinton?

Cpl. Thomas L. Hilbert, of Venus, Texas, a small town 30 miles south of Dallas. Hilbert, 20, and two other soldiers serving with the 9th Cavalry Regiment based at Fort Bliss, near El Paso, died after their vehicle was hit by an improvised explosive device on Sept. 6. Hilbert's sister, BillieJo Alexander, told the El Paso Times that her brother had already reserved a hotel room in Las Vegas to celebrate his 21st birthday with his family in January.

So why don\\\'t we apportion Big Sven his fair share of the carnage in Iraq? Let\\\'s arbitrarily assign him responsibility for the death of, say, an eight year old Iraqi girl. That sounds about right doesn\\\'t it? That still leaves 649,999 dead Iraqis to be apportioned out to Bush and the neo-cons and other war supporters.

Posted by Big Sven's War | March 14, 2008 12:11 PM
3

huh?

Posted by elenchos | March 14, 2008 12:17 PM
4

What if they think its kind of funny? Because, honestly, thats kind of how I see it.

Posted by Giffy | March 14, 2008 12:19 PM
5

What if they find it interesting scientifically, but have no real emotional response to the information?

Damn it, I guess I am unlovable.

Posted by spencer | March 14, 2008 12:20 PM
6

Big Sven, I'm so ten-hut for you right now.

Posted by fluteprof | March 14, 2008 12:22 PM
7

Big Sven - man, you'd be hard to live with. I'm surprised anyone would bother ...

Posted by Will in Seattle | March 14, 2008 12:22 PM
8

@5, That too. I wonder want effect this would have had on our species overall. These kind of bottlenecks are pretty important evolutionarily speaking. And if memory serves it was around that time that human brain size began increasing and the first societies were born, though it would be a long time until agriculture really kicked off civilization. Perhapses this catastrophe and the ice age around that time contributed to our evolution into modern humans by making social skills and intelligence vital to survival.

In that case one could see this as one of the coolest things to ever have happened.

Posted by Giffy | March 14, 2008 12:27 PM
9

I'm at work, Sven. If I try to fuck my partner's brains out, he's going to deck me.

Posted by Fnarf | March 14, 2008 12:34 PM
10

You don't have to go looking halfway around the world for a supervolcano - you've got one practically in your bacj yard. Virtually ALL of Yellowstone National Park is the caldera of an active supervolcano. It blows on average every 650,000 years. Three guesses how long it's been since the last eruption.

Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty | March 14, 2008 12:36 PM
11

Sven, whatever you smoked before you posted this, can I have some?

Posted by Hernandez | March 14, 2008 12:39 PM
12

@10 is right, you know.

And when that one goes we'll all be toast.

Posted by Will in Seattle | March 14, 2008 12:44 PM
13

@10, there was a made for tv movie about that not too long ago. Thankfully, while its 'due' in this case that means it could happen anytime over the next hundred thousand years.

Posted by Giffy | March 14, 2008 12:48 PM
14

What if two "huh"s are together? Should they leave each other and find people that think this means something? Because it doesn't. It is, scientifically, neat, and that's about it. (And yeah, the world would be better off if it had killed all the humans. I better hope my wife doesn't read your post.)

Posted by Levislade | March 14, 2008 12:49 PM
15


not meaning to troll, but "little tests" are kind of "giant red flags" to both me and my partner.

Posted by quilsone | March 14, 2008 12:53 PM
16

@13, there have been several movies made, some better than others. But you're right, it could be many thousands of years off. Or it could be next week.

Posted by Fifty-Two-Eighty | March 14, 2008 12:56 PM
17

@15 FTW.

Posted by spencer | March 14, 2008 12:59 PM
18

@8 Modern humans (indistinguishable anatomically from folks today) showed up significantly before that eruption, about 200K years earlier. Who knows, though, what kind of unbelievable genetic diversity there may have been without that Toba-induced bottleneck.

Posted by Mittens Schrodinger | March 14, 2008 1:19 PM
19

Will@7, you were there when Toba went off, right? What was it like?

Posted by Big Sven | March 14, 2008 1:23 PM
20

I'd laugh.

Maniacally.

Then I'd make you get me a beer.


Posted by NapoleonXIV | March 14, 2008 1:30 PM
21

maybe it's because I'm prone to sentementality but that was the most beautiful thing I read all week.....be thakful for your great to the 10th power grandpartents.as soon as katie get home I'm testing her.

between you and me...given the state of the gene pool, we could use another eruption...not to wipe out humanity, just to clean things up a bit

Posted by linus | March 14, 2008 1:31 PM
22

i love the test! thanks sven.

Posted by Suz | March 14, 2008 1:33 PM
23

@18, Sort of, there is some evidence suggesting that our brains didn't really become 'modern' until around 50k years ago, though its not without controversy.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Behavioral_modernity

A major global catastrophe could have rather quickly selected for those of us best able to make tools, work together, etc. For example, the ability to make fishing equipment would give one a tremendous advantage in an environment hostile to land based creatures.

Posted by Giffy | March 14, 2008 1:37 PM
24

Linus@21 & company- wow. Thanks.

Posted by Big Sven | March 14, 2008 1:43 PM
25

I like you more than ever.

(And I always did.)

Posted by V | March 14, 2008 1:54 PM
26

just for the record, it WOULD have been much better for non human people if the volcanic eruption had wiped out human people. 15,000 species face extinction right now from civilization & industry and untold tens of thousands have already gone extinct. i would not want to date someone that so carelessly discounts the unspeakable, irreparable tragedy that has befallen this planet's inhabitants during the last 10,000 years of "progress."

Posted by Zach | March 14, 2008 1:54 PM
27

Uh, Zach? Are you familiar with how evolution works? Niches get filled. Humans would be back.

Posted by Fnarf | March 14, 2008 2:02 PM
28

@26, though to be fair, we are the only species who give a fuck about the effect we have on other s. Every other lifeform will pretty much max out its environment and consume everything absent some kind of control mechanisms.

We are just really successful at it.

Posted by Giffy | March 14, 2008 2:03 PM
29

Toba is just a drop in the bucket (a byte on the Interweb?) compared to the three billion years of living evolution on this planet. Mammals were essentially rodents as late as 70 Million years ago, and any small deviation (caused by disasters, etc) in our evolution would have resulted in a drastically different outcome, possibly with a sentient race not as the result.

@26- I think you need to reconsider the construction "non human people". Also, I'd probably assert that humans have not had a planet-altering affect on the environment and other species until the late 1700s, definitely not as far back as 10,000 years.

Posted by Tdub | March 14, 2008 2:07 PM
30

@29, well we did burn Australia to the ground.

Posted by Giffy | March 14, 2008 2:12 PM
31

Some of our best traits could indeed have been removed from the gene pool as that small population grew. After a bottleneck, because of the increased effect of genetic drift, allele frequencies can have little connection to the traits that would normally be selected for. A population this small that survived is certainly important enough to merit some wonderment.

I worked on stochastic models of evolution in a lab for two years (it was one that originally got picked up to do the work for the Genographic Project). The comings and goings of our ancestors are many, and our very existence is amazing.

Posted by V | March 14, 2008 2:24 PM
32

@30 - Well, not the whole thing. Controlled burning's been an essential part of agriculture worldwide since the beginning: it's a good way to remove vegetation quickly as well as reap the benefits of its nutrients, if not particularly sensitive to your surroundings. Small areas (relative) of Australia were burned for this purpose by the Aborigines in the early Holocene, but nothing that truly changed the face of the continent until much more recently.

Posted by Tdub | March 14, 2008 2:34 PM
33

If humans haven't had a major effect on the environment and other species until the last couple of hundred years, how do you explain the disappearance of the entire continent of Hyplasiadon?


Posted by leek | March 14, 2008 2:37 PM
34

@32, fire is one of the theories for the extinction of most marsupials around 45k years ago. The extinction coincides with the arrival of humans and that suggests we may have been the cause though the evidence is far from conclusive.

Posted by Giffy | March 14, 2008 2:41 PM
35

Congratulations, you just explained the materialistic motivations of the American baby boomers that have turned our nation into an economic aristocracy destined for failure.

If I were a woman, I'd have crossed you off my list too.

Posted by Gomez | March 14, 2008 2:44 PM
36

whats that latin qoute that means
"out of bad comes good"
the story of human evolution/civilisation
and my life
who knows? maybe some good will come out of our alteration of the eco-system in the long run evolutionary? like the comit that wiped out the dinosors and most life led to the rise of mammals and thus us.

Posted by linus | March 14, 2008 2:45 PM
37

I love this post.

Posted by giantladysquirrels | March 14, 2008 3:02 PM
38

Aboriginal Australians also extincted a number of very large marsupial animals before the white folks got there.

Posted by Fnarf | March 14, 2008 4:05 PM
39

I love this post too!

Posted by It's Mark Mitchell | March 14, 2008 4:06 PM
40

"Extincted"?

Did they use tinctures to do that with?

Posted by Will in Seattle | March 14, 2008 4:28 PM
41

Big Sven, are you a chick? Seems like it sometimes. Get that doughy chest of yours augmented a little, and you could be the white Oprah on Prozac. I love you big Sven. Not a bad post. This reduction in the population, the shrinking of the gene pool, does it have a lot to do with why the human race is failing as a species? Does it explain the Bush presidency, and the inability of the Democratic party to stop Bush?

Posted by Obamatron | March 14, 2008 5:25 PM
42

Oh my god, I can't believe how many people don't get you, Big Sven. Great post!

Posted by Irena | March 14, 2008 7:50 PM
43

The lake that is in the extinct volcano's crater, Lake Toba, is a nice place.
The island in the middle is inhabited by ex-cannibals, who are now safely evangelical Christians, but they will still give you a tour of the sacrificial slabs and the outdoor thrones of former Kannibal Kings.

I took the boat out and stayed a few days, very quiet and peaceful. Except for the occasional loud Dang-Dut music.

So, a few of those 10,000 breeding pairs not only didnt hold it against Toba, but decided they liked it so much they would move right in.

Posted by Ries Niemi | March 14, 2008 7:57 PM
44

Thanks, Irena. Enough people got it that I'm really, really happy.

Ries, thanks for the "local color". I thought about including a picture from the shore, because the lake looks really beautiful. I want to go to Bali at some point (a friend who spent a year going around the world said it was the most beautiful place on Earth,) and would love to include Toba in the trip...

Posted by Big Sven | March 15, 2008 9:30 AM

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