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Armando Perez's picture
Almost all felines share some

Almost all felines share some behaviors like marking territories, poor involvement of males in raising children, etc. Most cannids (dog-like) share hierarchical group behavior and care of pups by the whole group, etc. So, no, it is not silly to compare and contrast behaviors of similar species.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
You can compare and contrast

You can compare and contrast all day long, in fact, in order to do so means you've studied each species independently and then looked for similarities post hoc. It does not mean you investigate lions in order to understand the behavior of snow leopards. Lions are the most social felines out there, and snow leopards are probably the most solitary.

Armando Perez's picture
When you go to study snow

When you go to study snow leopards, you can expect them to mark territories to communicate as lions do. You cam also assume they will be closer in behavior to standard leopards as they are closer to them, juts like apes behave more like us than marmosets. So, yes, you can use what you know of one species to guess what another similar one would do. Of course that it is harder to transfer behavior from ants to humans as they live very different environments and life styles but from apes, elephants, dolphins, even some birds? Yes, they share a lot with us. Humans are not that different from the rest of the animal world and it has been proved animals have many of the emotions and can suffer many of the same traumas people do, as we all share similar basic brain functions. The human mind did not happen overnight. It has a long history of precursors starting from fish, which also show what can be called individual personalities.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
No, why would you expect that

No, why would you expect that? There's not even anything in evolutionary theory to tell you what similarities to expect across species. That's a hypothesis you made up because you already know the answer, what the OP called HARKing. Now, I agree we share similar brain structures with many animals, but those similarities must first be established before inferring further function and behavior; you shouldn't infer function and behavior simply for the sake of being "evolutionarily close" to another species.

As an example consider the fact that every single species of primate, that's over 200 species, don't have an easily noticeable sclera in their eyes. That´s over 200 species of primate without clearly visible whites in their eyes. That has some interesting implications on social behavior. It means all these species don't follow each other's gaze, they follow each other's head movement. A chimp can fool its fellows by looking in a direction that differs from that of its head (Insert random post hoc evolutionary explanation about cheater detection).

Great, now what then would you expect to know about humans based on such observations? Are you going to infer the behavior of every single one of our primate "brothers" on us, just because you think we're evolutionary related? Then you'd be wrong. We have a clearly visible sclera, moreover, unlike our primate "brothers" human infants naturally follow a person's gaze as opposed to their head movements. That alone makes us socially distinct from many other primates:

"It is inconceivable that you would ever see two chimpanzees carrying a log together" -Michael Tomasello

Armando Perez's picture
Why go to the extremes? I

Why go to the extremes? I have not and no scientist has said animals behavior is the same as human behavior, so please stop making inferences about my statements. I said that there are similarities in behavior and that the closer two species are, it is more probable their behavior share commonalities. I already gave you the example of felines and how leopards and snow leopards are more similar than lions and snow leopard, although they still share some behaviors. Studies on dogs for example show that when they see their humans similar parts of the brain, that in human show pleasure, are lighted. So, yes, we share many neurological paths and it is now accepted that humans are nor the only sentient, emotional beings in the planet.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Well I agree you haven't said

Well I agree you haven't said animal behavior is the same as human behavior, although I'm not sure why given than humans are considered primates, as much as leopards are considered felines. But as I understand it, you are saying you can hold reasonable expectations on one species behavior, based on another's. That's the part I disagree with.

Sushisnake's picture

"It is inconceivable that you would ever see two chimpanzees carrying a log together" -Michael Tomasello

Why? We’ve watched them pull a rope together for 90 years.
The Nissan Crawford chimpanzee cooperation trials, 1930.

And we’ve discovered a 4300 year old site where groups of chimpanzees gathered together to use tools to crack nuts.

Archaeologists Find Signs of Early Chimps’ Tool Use

And does this sound like lack of cooperation to you?
“An old female, Peony, spends her days outdoors with other chimpanzees at the Yerkes Primate Center’s field station. On bad days, when her arthritis is flaring up, she has trouble walking and climbing, but other females help her out. Peony may be huffing and puffing to get up into the climbing frame in which several apes have gathered for a grooming session. But an unrelated younger female moves behind her, placing both hands on her ample behind to push her up with quite a bit of effort, until Peony has joined the rest. We have also seen Peony get up and slowly move toward the water spigot, which is at quite a distance. Younger females sometimes run ahead of her, take in some water, then return to Peony and give it to her. At first, we had no idea what was going on, since all we saw was one female placing her mouth close to Peony’s, but after a while the pattern became clear: Peony would open her mouth wide, and the younger female would spit a jet of water into it.”
Frans de Waal chapter 1 The Bonobo and the Atheist (kindle edition) location 75-82

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
To be honest, I'm just now

To be honest, I'm just now starting to get into Michael Tomasello's work. But the explanation given by another psychologist that used that quote is this: "Chimpanzees can recruit a collaborator to help them get food in a task that requires two chimps to get any food (Melis, Hare, and Tomasello 2006) but they don’t seem to be sharing intentions or truly coordinating with that collaborator."

Sushisnake's picture
"Chimpanzees can recruit a

"Chimpanzees can recruit a collaborator to help them get food in a task that requires two chimps to get any food (Melis, Hare, and Tomasello 2006) but they don’t seem to be sharing intentions or truly coordinating with that collaborator." My first thought reading that was then what DO they seem to be doing?

If two humans are collaborating to get food- if I reach up and take the cocoa tin down form the high shelf so my short mother can make us both some cocoa, for instance- there'd be no dispute that we collaborated to get food.

Why is the same behaviour for the same result deemed to be something different entirely in our closest relatives?

David Killens's picture
I am aghast that even you

I am aghast that even you would make such an untrue assertion. Anyone who knows the true history of different scientific disciplines knows that the bulk of the data, procedures, and discoveries comes from the grunt work of thousands of unknowns. If one was to graph scientific progress, it is a relatively straight line, with the occasional spike.

Of course we are aware of geniuses like Einstein and Newton, and how their "thinking outside of the box" brought about major changes in their respective sciences. But the work of most is never in the public consciousness.

And you do not understand how the scientific process works. Anyone, no matter their age, can publish a paper for peer review. At the age of 29 Einstein was recognized as a leading scientist in Germany. At the age of 24 Newton was a fellow at Trinity College, and thus began his illustrious career, having a powerful influence on almost every scientific discipline.

And if one does know much about the history of scientific discipline, they are very aware many greats made their breakthroughs early in their careers but did not publish their books or papers until well into their later years because they feared reprisals from organized religion. It was not because the older generation died off, it was because almost everyone who had a good idea had to wait until they were on their deathbed before they published their papers, for fear of reprisal by religion.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
That's great and all. But

That's great and all. But then what do you make of Thomas Kuhn's, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions?

David Killens's picture
@John 6IX Breezy

@John 6IX Breezy

We suffer a vast gap in how we manage our personal realities. You appear to grasp at complex subjects and wrap them up in flowery prose. For myself, I strip away the BS and dig right down to simple explanations.

The greatest advances in science come during periods of war.

I disagree with Kuhn, he was full of BS. Academics attempted to explain naturalistic events, and they had to start somewhere in their intellectual journeys. Some began with the proposition that the universe had to operate under the guidance of magic numbers, the "harmony of the spheres", or certain mathematical ratios. Such connections did provide motivation, but in the end, the data proved such connections false.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
You can disagree with Kuhn,

You can disagree with Kuhn, but then what's the alternative, treating science as a cumulative process? I'm not sure what it means to graph scientific progress and have it be a relatively straight line with the occasional spike. Is that line showing an increase or is it flat?

If you do think science progresses through accumulation, then what do you do with out-of-date beliefs?

David Killens's picture
@John 6IX Breezy

@John 6IX Breezy

In science, there are no "out of date beliefs". Science is based on the best explanation for something, and it can supplant a previous theory or proposition. Newton's concept of "space" as a stage was crushed when Einstein introduced his concept of relativity.

Science is a cumulative process.

In the 18th century garlic syrup was used to break up “phlegms of the chest.” But we now know that garlic is a weak antibiotic. The current course of action for a similar symptom could be an antibiotic. You could still take garlic syrup today, and it would probably work. But it would take longer to have an effect and it's results are not as consistent or quick as antibiotics.

As for the rate of scientific progress, it is climbing like a rocket. The population grows larger, research is constantly expanding, and with such tools as the scientific method and internet that provides a quick exchange of information, this is the golden age of discoveries.

Do you have a cellphone? Not long ago all cell phones had an awkward antenna the user had to extend to ensure a good link. With the discovery and refinement of fractal math, now the great majority of cell phones do not require an external antenna.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
For something to be

For something to be cumulative it must build on whatever precedes it. If science is cumulative, then new information builds on top of old information, and doesn't replace it. When you say Newton's concept was crushed by Einstein's concept, it seems like you're saying it was made obsolete and consequently replaced by it, not that Newton's concepts form the foundation for Einstein's concept?

I think its important to distinguish between scientific knowledge and technological advances. Such advances can occur for the wrong scientific reasons. As you pointed out, the people that used garlic syrup, had no concept of antibiotics; they thought it worked for a completely different reason. The leyden jar, a predecesor of the battery, was invented because an early theory thought electricity was a fluid, which could potentially be contained in such jars.

I agree technology is cumulative, but science is not:

"Science makes progress funeral by funeral: the old are never converted by the new doctrines, they simply are replaced by a new generation." -Max Planck

Sheldon's picture
As you pointed out, the

As you pointed out, the people that used garlic syrup, had no concept of antibiotics; they thought it worked for a completely different reason. The leyden jar, a predecesor of the battery, was invented because an early theory thought electricity was a fluid, which could potentially be contained in such jars.

I agree technology is cumulative, but science is not:
Of course science is cumulative, very occasionally someone will make a more profound increase that my be based more on their ability than what has gone before, but then science carries on and builds on that. You seem to be implying science can ONLY progress by discarding what has gone before, that's simply untrue. It can happen, but rarely does as most scientific progress is cumulative.

Interesting article here, about the cumulative nature of science and Thomas Kuhn's ideas.

Here's an interesting abstract you will like...

"In a certain trivial sense, facts are invariably cumulative. Existing facts may be emphasized or deemphasized, but they are only stricken out when they’re discovered to be the result of misunderstanding, experimental error, or fraud, none of which is common. What can change is the body of facts inferred by theory. Evolution, even speciation, is an observed fact, but the large-scale evolution of phyla and kingdoms—including, for example, events like the Cambrian Explosion and the Permian Extinction—is merely inferred from a gigantic body of geological evidence. Advances in technology can promote inferred facts to observed facts, as the discovery of the parallax effect promoted heliocentrism. More rarely, they can overthrow inferred facts that are based on relatively little evidence; in the early 1920s, physicists considered it a fact that the Sun was primarily composed of iron, based on faulty inference. But they cannot overthrow directly observed facts, and have yet to impeach any fact based on overwhelming inference such as the fact of evolution or the existence of black holes."

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
I agree facts accumulate and

I agree facts accumulate and also disagree that science progresses ONLY by discarding what came before.

In my previous response to you I said the nature of normal science is fact-gathering and puzzle-solving. I've said in other places that raw data and observations are the only thing we can all agree on. The problem is that science isn't just gathering data, it involves interpreting that data.

For example, Lavoisier is often credited with the discovery of Oxygen. But in what sense did he discover it? Other scientists had previously collected it in much the same ways that Lavoisier did. In other words, they had "directly observed the fact" that a unique gas had been extracted from the air. The issue is that they thought the "fact" they had gathered was phlogiston, not oxygen. Its the same gas, but they are not normally credited with its discovery because their interpretation of that gas was wrong.

I didn't read the link, only the abstract you posted. I don't have any noteworthy disagreements with it.

David Killens's picture
@John 6IX Breezy

@John 6IX Breezy

Please take your time and read my post. I stated that Einstein's theory of relativity crushed Newtons' concept of space as a stage. That was just one area of Newton's work, and this new theory by Einstein did not destroy all of Newton's work, it only offered a new interpretation of our concept of space.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
I read it; that's why asked

I read it; that's why I asked what you meant by crushed: did it replace or build upon it? Or if it merely provided a new interpretation, then in what way was there progress?

Nyarlathotep's picture
Breezy - Clinical

Breezy - Clinical psychologists don't prescribe medication...

Can't even get the facts right in his own field! WOW, just WOW.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Are you sure about that Cathy

Are you sure about that Cathy Newman?

CyberLN's picture
Some states do, in fact,

Some states do, in fact, allow it.

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
Its not an issue of allowance

Its not an issue of allowance. Clinical psychologists are simply not trained to prescribe medication, their focus is on therapy. Their entire profession is built on that approach. To imitate psychiatry by prescribing medication destroys clinical psychology’s very uniqueness and training

At the time my textbook was written (2013) only two states allowed clinical psychologists to prescribe a limited number of medication and only once they personally took additional training to do so. My university's PhD program does not train clinical psychologists to administer medication, and I do not know of any program in the nation that does. That's a certification people must get on their own at the postdoctoral level. Until such training becomes embedded into the training of a clinical psychologist and forms part of their curriculum, the distinction remains: psychiatrists prescribe medication; clinical psychologists do not.

Looks like a few other states have extended allowance since the publishing of the textbook, and not without controversy.

Old man shouts at clouds's picture
@ Breezy

@ Breezy
That is a strange system.

What is the norm in Australia and I would think in the US is a Clin psyche works closely with the GP or other point of first contact (Emergency room, registrar, evaluating clinician, therapeutic psyche) and they work out a common therapy that includes non prescription therapies and prescription therapies according to individual assessments.
In Australia certainly, it is the GP in most cases who, after consultation with therapeutic or Clin Psyche will prescribe the recommended drugs. Remember most patients referred by GP's or First Responders already have a system full of various medications.

Those referrals where there are obvious symptoms of acute disorder are referred to psyche wards/hospitals/outpatients for specialist evaluation. In Australia people (especially health professionals) tend to be working together for the benefit of the patient and society.

You seem to be working from a divisive perspective. Is that societal or just your perspective?

Nyarlathotep's picture
Notice what John has told us:
  1. Breezy tells us clinical psychologists don't prescribe medication.
  2. Then he tell us that in 2 states they do (2013).
  3. Then he tells us that clinical psychologists don't prescribe medication (again).
  4. Then he tells us that more states have started allowing it since 2013.

And he managed to pull this off in just 2 posts!

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
That's all your silent

That's all your silent treatment lasted lol one day? I gave your method a name btw:

The Cathy-Nyar Heuristic

CyberLN's picture
John, you wrote, “Clinical

John, you wrote, “Clinical psychologists are simply not trained to prescribe medication...”

Are you sure that’s correct?

In order to prescribe, according to

“In Louisiana, psychologists must complete a post-doctoral master’s degree in clinical psychopharmacology.New Mexico requires a minimum of 450 hours of didactic instruction along with a 400-hour supervised practicum as part of its eligibility criteria.In Illinois, psychologists seeking prescriptive authority must complete advanced, specialized training in psychopharmacology as well as full-time practicum of 14 months of supervised clinical rotations in various settings such as hospitals, community mental health clinics and correctional facilities.Psychologists must pass a certified exam in psychopharmacology.After completing their formal training, psychologists must coordinate care with a patient’s primary care physician.Psychologists are also trained to know when to refer patients for the evaluation of other health problems.When all the training – doctoral and post-doctoral – is completed, prescribing psychologists have more training in diagnosing, treating and prescribing for mental health disorders than primary care physicians.”

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
That validates what I said

That validates what I said lol, so yes now I'm even more sure.

CyberLN's picture


How is this training insufficient? Please be specific.

Additionally, are there any studies that indicate that a medical doctor, who has the medical training you mentioned earlier, who prescribes meds those considered for mental health, is any more successfully than the clinical psychologists who prescribe them?

ʝօɦռ 6IX ɮʀɛɛʐʏ's picture
I do think you're confusing

I do think you're confusing legislation with qualification. If a state's legislation allows accountants to administer medication, that doesn't suddenly make accountants qualified to administer medication. In the case of clinical psychologists they're about as qualified as accountant when it comes to prescribing medication.

What these laws are basically saying, is that someone with an accounting degree (clinical psychologists), doesn't have to become a medical doctor before prescribing medication, they can take a shortcut: you showed that in Louisiana they just need a masters degree in psychopharmacology. The point I'm making however, is that these people are going beyond their clinical psychology training in order to administer medication. They are not administering medication on the basis of being clinical psychologists.

To your second question, I'm not sure why a clinical psychologist wouldn't be as successful as a medical doctor at prescribing these medications. It seems like they would be receiving more or less the same education at that point.


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