Articles by James Brody


Upending Neodarwinism

Saturday, March 5th, 2011

The Selfish Gene got it backwards. Dawkins accepted Tennyson’s metaphor of “tooth and claw,” expressed W. D. Hamilton’s ideas in plain language, worked in synchrony with Hawk and Dove fans, and reinforced the image of selfishness “learning” cooperation. (Irony: all of this happened despite tenuous degrees of kinship between the investigators!) Strogatz (Sync) and Barabsi […]


Where’s the Money Go?

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

It Buys the Next Election… “I felt like a protester in Cairo yelling at Mubarak. This guy just doesn’t get it.” James Pethokoukis Last year’s radio ad featured a soft whisper, “I have what you need.” This year we get the same message shouted at Obama’s political rallies. Cell phones, health care waivers, college loans, […]


Logic and Human Destiny

Friday, February 11th, 2000

I’ve toyed for several years with using “complexity theory” to understand human interactions. It really does work and in some very powerful ways. Meanwhile, Robert Wright independently applied the ideas to human social evolution and wrote Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny, recently published by Pantheon. Thus, I’ve reacted to his ideas and dry wit […]


Diagnosis and Evolutionary Theory

Thursday, January 21st, 1999

Reminders of Our Past First, it was noticed recently that some of our female ancestors in Africa had smaller leg bones and a different ankle structure than the males, suggesting to modern scientists that women came to ground from the trees long after the males did. Observers next watched American children on playgrounds; surprisingly, the […]


Darwinian Fundamentalists and Trust

Tuesday, September 2nd, 1997

You need two sets of concepts.1 The first concerns K-Selection vs. r-Selection. K-Selection means that the environment is stable and filled to near capacity with a particular species. These conditions are associated with lower rates of reproduction, higher parental investment in offspring, more cooperation (immediate, mutual swapping of resources), and a tendency towards larger organisms. Sounds […]