“Old South Asia” and “Old Europe”: New DNA Research Suggests Tantalizing Relationships by Carol P. Christ

When European scholars began to study Sanskrit they were surprised to discover linguistic similarities between Sanskrit and Greek and Latin. Old Persian was found to be even closer to Sanskrit. Scholars thus began to speak of related groups of Indo-European languages stemming from an earlier language they called Proto-Indo-European.

Tracing the earliest incursions of Indo-European speakers into Europe from the north along the Danube River, Marija Gimbutas hypothesized that the Indo-European homeland was in the steppes north of the Black and Caspian Seas. DNA research has confirmed Gimbutas’ view: Indo-European-speaking men from the Yamnaya cultural group who carried the YDNA gene R1b–which now is the largest YDNA group in Europe–arrived in large numbers about 2500 BCE from a homeland north of the Black and Caspian Seas.

Until now DNA evidence confirming the Indo-European incursion into India has been lacking. Hindu nationalist groups and some scholars have rejected the Indo-European…

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But He Is A Motherf-cker

Mike the Mad Biologist

If you haven’t heard, last week recently elected Democratic congresswoman Rashida Tlaib used the phrase “impeach that motherfucker”, referring to Trump. Needless to say, Very Serious Pundits wailed and gnashed their teeth over the incivility. Others worried that this would undermine the legitimacy of impeachment. But Tlaib, even if inadvertently, did something very important.

Consider that Trump has done the following–and this is a short list that does not refer to his policy decisions:

  • As president*, he argued that Nazis had a legitimate point of view (“many sides”). Actual Nazis. We fought a goddamn war against the Nazis. You never go Full Nazi.
  • He has cheated on each of his wives.
  • He leers at his own daughter.
  • He thinks he’s entitled to walk into a room of half-dressed teenagers (girls).
  • By his own account, he “grabs [women] by the pussy.”
  • He has been sued, successfully, for defrauding people…

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Who Needs Government Anyway?

hecatedemeter

mailcarriers

With the current Trump government shutdown mere hours away from entering its second week, I find myself thinking of the last time the Republicans capriciously decided to shut the government down for an extended period: October 1-17, 2013 (the Affordable Care Act battle). During that time, I happened to be gathering with my right-wing family, where my father and brother proceeded to crack “jokes” about who would even notice and federal workers are all a bunch of lazy bums who don’t do any work anyway, and take cushy civil service jobs where they can’t be fired, har-de-har-har.

I pushed back. I named friends of mine they know who are civil servants and asked: “Would you say that to X, who’s a whiz of a budget analyst for the Department of Transportation? What about to Y, who’s a highly skilled programmer in the Executive Office of the President?” I also pointed…

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