Envisioning, hindsight bias, plagiarism, or cheating

By John Lauerman – Aug 30, 2012 5:32 PM ET

Excerpt: “Harvard is using the incident to increase student awareness of the importance of academic integrity…”

My comment:

An example might help others recognize how likely they are to be caught if they are are tempted to plagiarize. Here’s the example: I detailed precisely how the epigenetic effects of nutrient chemicals and pheromones cause ecological adaptations. An antagonist: Clarence “Sonny” Williams, who has repeatedly denigrated my work, then said in a public forum: “... I envision some unconditioned stimuli to have been such a prevalent and regular feature of past environments that it makes sense to bypass the normal learning mechanism and encode the process in the DNA.” Does anyone recognize that statement as plagiarism?

In case you need help: Nutrient chemicals and pheromones are unconditioned stimuli, and they are also a prevalent and regular feature of all past environments in all species. Their epigenetic effects on intracellular signaling and stochastic gene expression bypass what most people consider to be normal learning mechanisms by encoding the molecular biology of learning in DNA, which actually is “normal” learning at the cellular level.  That’s how the epigenetic effects of nutrient chemicals and pheromones on stochastic gene expression in cells cause adaptive evolution from unicellular to multicellular organisms, or simply put, from microbes to man. Other sensory input from the environment plays a lesser role, via responses that are conditioned to occur due to nutrient chemical and pheromone exposure.

All organisms innately “know” how to acquire nutrient chemicals. Conspecifics also “know” whether or not to reproduce via their innate ability to recognize pheromones. How many different ways can someone say that — and then detail how nutrient chemicals and pheromones cause adaptive evolution — without exemplifying plagiarism.

I will add that this form of normal learning is innate, and not something that any organism must be trained to do, so that behaviorists and behavior analysts don’t bring up the importance of animal training experiments? I’ve already learned that many of them don’t know how to distinguish between Pavlovian (i.e., classical) conditioning, and operant conditioning (i.e., training).  Perhaps someone from Harvard can teach them.

Until then, if (e.g., in the context of adaptive evolution, which has nothing to do with training), I said that olfaction and odor receptors provide a clear evolutionary trail that can be followed from unicellular organisms to insects to humans (e.g., via ecological, social, neurogenic, and socio-cognitive niche construction), would I be plagiarizing myself or someone else? Has anyone else detailed how the epigenetic effects of any sensory input from the environment cause adaptive evolution? Has anyone else detailed this “eco-evolution?” So far as I know, it can only occur via the four stages of niche construction: ecological, social, neurogenic, and socio-cognitive.

Has anyone else detailed the required bottom-up / top-down reciprocity of the gene, cell, tissue, organ, organ system pathway, which is exemplified in the honeybee model organism that I used to link the adaptive evolution of microbes to man? If not, you will probably see more examples of plagiarism as more people become aware of the details of my model. Perhaps they too, will claim that they envisioned what I spent twenty years detailing in a series of presentations and published works. If it happens at Harvard, it’s probably happening elsewhere, and it may be more important to scientific progress than most people realize.

Why would anyone trained to integrate data from different scientific disciplines ever bother to do so, and publish their work, when there are people like Clarence “Sonny” Williams who stand ready and willing to blatantly claim it as their own vision after-the-fact?

Addendum: 2/6/14 A correspondent commented on this post and told me about another resource for information on plagiarism.

About James V. Kohl 1307 Articles
James Vaughn Kohl was the first to accurately conceptualize human pheromones, and began presenting his findings to the scientific community in 1992. He continues to present to, and publish for, diverse scientific and lay audiences, while constantly monitoring the scientific presses for new information that is relevant to the development of his initial and ongoing conceptualization of human pheromones. Recently, Kohl integrated scientific evidence that pinpoints the evolved neurophysiological mechanism that links olfactory/pheromonal input to genes in hormone-secreting cells of tissue in a specific area of the brain that is primarily involved in the sensory integration of olfactory and visual input, and in the development of human sexual preferences. His award-winning 2007 article/book chapter on multisensory integration: The Mind’s Eyes: Human pheromones, neuroscience, and male sexual preferences followed an award winning 2001 publication: Human pheromones: integrating neuroendocrinology and ethology, which was coauthored by disinguished researchers from Vienna. Rarely do researchers win awards in multiple disciplines, but Kohl’s 2001 award was for neuroscience, and his 2007 “Reiss Theory” award was for social science. Kohl has worked as a medical laboratory scientist since 1974, and he has devoted more than twenty-five years to researching the relationship between the sense of smell and the development of human sexual preferences. Unlike many researchers who work with non-human subjects, medical laboratory scientists use the latest technology from many scientific disciplines to perform a variety of specialized diagnostic medical testing on people. James V. Kohl is certified with: * American Society for Clinical Pathology * American Medical Technologists James V. Kohl is a member of: * Society for Neuroscience * Society for Behavioral Neuroendocrinology * Association for Chemoreception Sciences * Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality * International Society for Human Ethology * American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science * Mensa, the international high IQ society