Monarchs and Monoculture in southern Michigan

Neil Jones neil at
Sat Aug 27 12:35:57 EDT 2005

On Saturday 27 August 2005 11:03, Kenelm W Philip wrote:
> Neil responded to my query with:
> > The data cannot be relied upon to provide the results you are looking
> > for because there aren't enough of them.
> First, I have no ax to grind here--and am not looking for any results.
> I was merely asking how Neil's comment about tag recovery being
> determined by local weather at the overwintering sites had any
> relevance to the problem at hand, which concerned the ratio of eastern
> to mid- western tags. That question he did not answer.

Actually Paul Cherubini's earlier posting made no mention of the ratios.
We cannot make any firm conclusions as I said. I can think of a number of 
reasons of why monarchs from different places could produce distorted results 
in both directions but I would just be speculating. I prefer to stick to what 
I can prove.

Of course I saw the ratios when I looked at the origninal data. I just ignored 
them because they were obviously irrelevant. I just couldn't imagine anyone 
trying to form conclusions on such an obviously dodgy basis.
Of course I underestimated his scientific depravity. He did go and use them. 
Only someone as hell bent on deception as he is would do that.

 I hold to the point that one can only accept that something is correct when 
the evidence shows that. He has a  long history of posting dodgy data.

> I agree that the numbers Paul found and reported are small, and make
> firm conclusions about trends hard to support.

So we agree on the central  point.

It is obvious that they are hard to support. His data always are. This is his 
modus operandi. He dredges up some dubious set of data and then blows them 
into a huge conspiracy theory. What you seem to have missed is the 
significance attack on Dr Taylor and Monarch Watch in the beginning.  It is 
the part of a _political_ agenda that he constantly promotes by dishonest 
means. We all have ourviews and position and I have always,Ken , respected 
your honesty in putting yours forward. I can, however have no faith in 
anything said by Paul Cherubini.

The moment I see anything by him now my first reaction is what scientific 
truth is he setting out to pervert now. It isn't as if these are honest 
mistakes. Something gets comprehensively debunked  on one list and a few days 
later you see the same daft ideas somewhere else.  One gets the distinct 
impression that he would swear that the Pope  was Jewish if he thought it 
would advance his political aims. :-)

It isn't his politics so much as his dishonesty. If he was using the same 
tactics to agree with me I would be telling him to shut up.

> There are, however,
> clearly more midwestern than eastern recoveries (subject to change
> when all the data are in).

Yes, but figures are too small to show any effect which would be caused by GM 
crops to any provable degree EITHER WAY. Except when you use Paul Cherubini's 
"Creative Science".

> As to whether GM crops are harmful or harmless to butterflies (or to
> other organisms--they are certainly as hard on weeds as they are
> designed to be!)--that depends on the specific organism, and also
> requires one to take a long view of the situation.

As to the long view the picture of pre-columbian America is too confused to 
make definate conclusions. Yes, of course it depends on the organism but 
first of all you accept that it works on the weeds. The weeds are destroyed.
But look at this rhetorical question. You are conducting an experiment to find 
the effects of herbicide use on populations of general lepidoptera which feed 
on the weeds. You spray herbicide on the weeds. The weeds die. What do you 
expect to happen to the lepidoptera that feed on these weeds? 

If Roundup Ready Soybeans are being cultivated as they are supposed to the 
weeds are supposed to disappear.Anything that feeds on those weeds must be 
affected.  Now of course one needs to study precisely what the changes are in 
order to get figures, but what one cannot do is use the dodgy data that Paul 
Cherubini puts forward to say there is no effect. Let alone build it into the 
massive conspiracy that he claims. 

I know what it is:-) They spray the crops with special "Black Helicopters" :-)

> > You know Ken up there in Alaska you don't seem to understand what
> > modern agriculture is doing to butterfly populations.
> Well, although that kind of thing is not a major problem in Alaska, I
> _do_ read, and have visited the lower 48 states a number of times
> since I moved to Fairbanks. I recall reading about the effect that loss
> of the hedgerows had on English butterflies, for example...

It isn't just the hedgerows. While of course there are still places to see 
butterflies they are becoming fewer all the time. Particularly with any 
species that has specialised habitat requirements.

> 		Ken Philip

Neil Jones- Neil at


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