October 7, 2012 | David F. Coppedge

Survival of the Nicest

Baboons monitored for personality did best if they fell in the “Nice” category.

Science Now put up a headline that would have surprised Darwin: “For Some Primates, Survival of the Nicest.”  Three evolutionists watched 45 baboons for 7 years and classified their behaviors based on their grunts, and their hormones from droppings.

We identified three relatively stable personality dimensions, each characterized by a distinct suite of behaviors that were not redundant with dominance rank or the availability of kin. Females scoring high on the “Nice” dimension were friendly to all females and often grunted to lower-ranking females to signal benign intent. “Aloof” females were aggressive, less friendly, and grunted primarily to higher-ranking females. “Loner” females were often alone, relatively unfriendly, and also grunted most often to higher-ranking females. Aloof and Loner females were rarely approached by others. Personality dimensions were correlated in different ways with three measures previously shown to be associated with fitness: stress levels and two behavioral indices reflecting the closeness of dyadic bonds formed by individuals. Females who scored high on Nice had high composite sociality indices (CSI) and stable partner preferences, whereas females who scored high on Aloof had lower CSI scores but significantly more stable partner preferences. Loner females had significantly lower CSI scores, less stable partner preferences, and significantly higher glucocorticoid levels.  (Seyfarth, Silk, and Cheney, “Variation in personality and fitness in wild female baboons,”  PNAS73/pnas.1210780109 PNAS October 1, 2012.)

This finding seems to contradict over a century and a half of Darwinian thinking.  “By being a nice baboon, you increase the likelihood of having strong social bonds, which in turn translates to a better chance of passing on your genes,” Live Science wrote in “It pays to be a nice baboon.”  Actually, the experiment found both Nice and Aloof females doing about the same in terms of reproductive fitness.  The only losers were the loners.  Whatever the findings say about evolution appears ambivalent: “It remains to be determined which of the Nice or Aloof personality dimensions is more adaptive, or whether variation is maintained by contrasting effects on fitness.

Survival of the nicest.  Good grief.  All those genocides for nothing.

This is silly.  Did the researchers watch the baboons 24 x 7 for seven years?  Maybe the baboons did all their selfish Darwinian antics when the researchers were asleep and on vacation.  Why didn’t they watch the males?  Are they sexist?  We can’t let these so-called scientists get away with rewriting history by using bogus categories.  Even Science Now, supposedly a functionary of that bastion of Darwinism, the AAAS, said, “Females who scored high on the ‘nice’ meter were friendly to all females.”  How do you calibrate a nice meter?  How do you measure friendliness?  What is that, in Darwin terms?

No, we can’t let evolutionists get away with this.  Too much is at stake.  Darwin’s reputation must be preserved intact.  The triumph of German militarism and Russian conquest must maintain its scientific justification on true Darwinism.  Eugenics must not be undermined by those ID people.  No more Mr. Nice Baboon.  Give me survival of the fittest, and give me death!





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  • Donald Holliday says:

    This is humorous. Raw Animalistic selfish gene brutality has always been their religious affirmation, yet even as Suzanne Simard admitted in her video on symbiosis between fungal arrangements with trees and plants of varying different species, Darwin got it wrong.
    “These plants are not really indidivuals in the sense that Darwin thought of ‘Survival of the Fittest'” – Suzanne Simard.

    My my My, what a surprise, nature is actually organized and in balance with precision.


  • rockyway says:

    – I’m surprised our editor didn’t file this story under baboonery.

    Once upon a time nice used to mean simple, as in too simple to know any better. i.e. naive, gullible, etc. (e.g. a nice lad is one who believes what his teacher says about Evolution.)

    I wasn’t aware ‘nice’ was a scientific term, but I do remember that our teacher in grade three told us never to use the word nice as it had no real meaning. (She was perhaps thinking of Jane Austen.)

    “I am sure,” cried Catherine, “I did not mean to say anything wrong; but it is a nice book, and why should I not call it so?”
    “Very true,” said Henry, “and this is a very nice day, and we are taking a very nice walk; and you are two very nice young ladies. Oh! It is a very nice word indeed! It does for everything.” [“Northanger Abbey,” 1803]
    – just like evolution.

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