This is a repost from a few years ago at my blog.


Blame revere and doubledoc for this. But let’s bring it. DFH songs wooooot!

Live, so you’ll have something to watch. not my favorite though.

My canonical version is this one

and for the “ethnic, folk types” as one Clancy or another put it…a little visual meat.

If there is one thing that reliably pisses me off it is the reality that our Nation’s capital city has a NFL football team named the “Redskins”. I mean seriously. Our Nation’s. Damn. Capital.

MySpace Graphics
source

Every time I get super pissed off, you know what I do? I go buy some logo wear from my favorite college intramural team.

Gooooooo Fightin’ Whites!
A mousepad perhaps? Naah, I hardly every use those, and anyway it doesn’t have much provocation value. Maybe a t-shirt?

Yeah.

Still time to get stuff shipped by Christmas! Buy a few items for your favorite ‘ggers, whoops, ‘skins fan.

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For background, see the Fighting Whites Facebook page.

This is a repost of something I originally put up at my blog. It is still relevant. It is always relevant.

Sadly, this is probably news to you. Look at it.

it comes from the Wikipedia on the top marginal US tax rates from 1913-2009.

When did our fair country experience wonderful growth, prosperity, expansion of the middle class and overall good economic shit? When did we have recession, division into haves / have-nots and other bad things? hmmm?

dumb ass trailer park republican voters are to blame for this shit.

This originally appeared on October 17, 2007.



BikeMonkey Re-Post
I was reading one of the summaries of the CSR Peer Review open house roundtable things, from the “Neuroscience” one. The thing that struck me was that over 50% of participants had never had a grant triaged.
Now the first thing that comes to mind is the people that NIH usually drags in to give them an “authoritative” opinion on various topics of interest. The opinions are most frequently sought from research luminaries, heads of institutions and society officialdom, i.e. (very) senior scientists.

These PIs are utterly unrepresentative of the pool of NIH applicants (and potential applicants).

In this particular case, however, there is a possible alternate explanation which is that triage is not in fact the norm for “good” scientists and those of us getting streamlined with any regularity are just writing bad grants. Or are bad scientists. etc. This is the sort of thing that keeps junior (and not so junior) scientists awake at night. It would be nice to have some current and specific information on triage rates across the NIH. Trouble is, this is not a data set that is easily obtained. The specific questions of the day being, “What proportion of scientists (as opposed to applications) applying to the NIH are triaged? Have these numbers changed over time? What do the per-PI triage rate distributions look like?”.

I was discussing this a little bit with a colleague and came to the realization that this is the sort of information we don’t even get a clear bead on with our usual collegial chit chat. Mostly because it is hard to keep track in a bunch of casual conversations how many grants someone has put in, how many times they’ve bitched about a triage, etc. I realize also because it is ever so slightly taboo to really ask someone these sorts of things. I, for one, wouldn’t feel comfortable asking “So, how many grants have you put in and how many triages?” The few (two?) times someone has asked me for similar specifics on how many grants I’ve put in, I recall having a slight negative reaction. Like “Hey, that’s private dude!“. There’s another issue which I realized after quashing the first sentiment which is that even I don’t keep track of the numbers very well. I know this sounds strange to someone in year 2 of grant writing but after a while…

So, for today’s lesson and in the spirit of OpenScience, I’ve bothered to pull my grant submission data from Commons for your entertainment and derision. Be kind. YMMV, of course. And naturally, this only counts the stuff where I have been the PI for the submission.

I’ve been putting proposals in since early 2000. I count up 20 Type 1 and 2 Type 2 applications submitted. Yikes, has it really been that many? In that list I have 8 A1s and 2 A2s. Fifteen of the applications were scored and 7 were streamlined. Three were funded so far. (I will note that this is not sufficient in soft-money land, of course and the answer to “how?” is that I’ve acquired at least an equivalent portfolio through sub-components, pilots and the like.)

Of course, the question of individual “success rate” beyond simple definitional purposes is complicated. I’ve abandoned my Type 2 after two triages so there would theoretically have been a third chance that I’ve chosen not to take. I’ve lost interest in pursuing a particular line with two grants because a competitor in the field (and now at least two I note) has gotten funded to do very similar stuff. I have at least three that are in active revision mode, although these will trickle across several rounds as I get to them. I also have a few more that are somewhat promising after the -01 or A1 review but are a bit down my priority list. Never gone, of course. Especially the ideas. Nevertheless it is hard to determine what the denominator should be. As the DM is fond of pointing out, if you haven’t revised you haven’t really submitted an application.

I note something a little more subtle which is that I have, for the most part, taken at least two lines of attack on a given research area of interest to me. This means that one of the two usually gets abandoned if the other is funded or sidelined if the other has a more promising score. Sometimes a sidelined one later gets dropped because my own work has moved on, the field indicates different directions or a competitor gets a related grant funded.

What other fun things does this sort of review reveal?

  • So far, I’ve never had a grant triaged in an SEP review even though a couple of 250-280 range scores show that it was a close thing.
  • In the salad days of the early noughties a 170 was a 19%-ile and fundable, in this most recent round a 28.6%-ile and not even close.
  • I have 5 scores in the 160-175 range over the years. I might encourage people to view this range as a good indicator that you are being taken seriously as a scientist, you have good ideas and can write a grant. It may be a matter of luck to improve from this range. For example it is hard to show where my one 120/1.6% scored application is this dramatically/categorically different, say, from my 160-170 scored ones.
  • Of the 7 applications that have been reviewed in the most-frequent study section, I have 4 triages as well as a personal best score. This is relevant to theories that “that particular study section hates me”.
  • None of my proposals funded to date have gotten there after an initial triage. This stat is contaminated by the reduced chance that I will have revised a triaged proposal, of course.

So, nothing too surprising here since I had a pretty decent seat-of-the-pants recollection of how I’ve been doing. I think the most interesting thing is the fate of triaged applications. Mostly because a very common question from new applicants is “Should I abandon a triaged application?”. My default response to this is “No way”, mostly because of the way revisions are treated; DM has similar attitudes posted here and there. Also because of a sort of back-of-the-head suspicion that we’ve had applications triaged in our section which then are revised into highly competitive applications. But are they? Again, this is an area where some hard CSR data could be useful. The anecdote of me suggests at this point that perhaps it is wise to abandon a triaged application. This counters my gut feeling but the data are what they are.

The link regarding the 50% never-triaged also suggests that 23% of respondents had a previously triaged grant eventually win funding.


Looking again at Commons, it would appear that I have submitted four additional grants with myself as the PI since writing this- one new, one A1 and two A2. All were scored and two have been funded. I have also put in roughly a grants’ worth of effort on about 5 additional submissions over the time since the original post.

Caffeine

January 9, 2009

The 2007 WADA list has caffeine in the “2007 Monitoring Program” but it is not a “Prohibited Substance”. The 2007 US AntiDopingAgency (USADA) list seems to directly quote the WADA list on stimulants, so ditto. It used to be one of the threshold substances (under 12 micrograms/ml of urine and you were OK) but was delisted as of Jan 1, 2004.

HA! I just noticed this draft from 11/30/07! Dang if I can remember where I was going with it, just a stub and all. Reminded me about something over at Zuska’s diggity dogs. Caffeine really is a drug. Gee ya think?

no longer quite the n00b scicurious recently had something about adenosine and caffeine so I’ll just point you there for the science.

one of PalMD’s podcasts ( I think it was #2 or #4 but I could be wrong) talked about the wonders of coffee and how medicine can’t really find much to worry about. Sure, save the addiction part.

Anyway, I’ll just snap this up in case it jogs my memory of what I was thinking about. Probably some papers on cycling performance I guess….

Science Blogging San Diego

November 22, 2008

Are you a scientist in San Diego who blogs or (duh) reads blogs?

Time to tribe up my friends.

Why let all those nutballs in the North Carolina Research Triangle area have all the fun? Are we really lamer than the Minny-soooooootans?

email bikemonk at the google mail or drop a comment. let’s plan some stuff…on blog and IRL.

Everyone is already all over this but Abel Pharmboy liveblogged his vasectomy yesterday. As the DM noted at the new digs, this was a Public Service Announcement:

But the very serious part of this post is to educate men on how mild a vasectomy is relative to tubal ligation in their female partner. As I said, this is the least I could do in return for my wife’s true suffering in bringing our lovely daughter into this world.

What some people will do for the greater good…

DM, I’m looking in your direction. Anyway, Chris Rowan of Highly Allochthonous has a bit on the new Nature Geophysics journal. For the usual bioscience audience around these parts, I think you will see some familiar themes emerge and one comment that goes a bit off the path: Read the rest of this entry »

Knightie Knight

January 17, 2008

Sheep cloner Ian Wilmut, Knighted. Vision neuroscientist and recent MRC head Colin Blakemore, stiffed for being “too controversial”.

I don’t understand these British things…

I posted on John Edwards views on medical marijuana before, here’s Mike Huckabee fielding a similar question:

[h/t: Kendra Campbell of The Differential]

Wiener Blut

January 16, 2008

You just knew if it was such a profitable business, then the lab in Operación Puerto couldn’t be the only one didn’t you? Cyclingnews has the call: Read the rest of this entry »

Do you use a computer?

January 13, 2008

Then you should know a little something about this group of pioneering programmers of the ENIAC.

(h/t Coturnix)

When we last visited with Ms. Marion Jones, she was in the dock for lying to investigators about sports doping. Well, she just got 6 months in jail to start March 11. Read the rest of this entry »

Rock (of crack) Racing

January 10, 2008

okay that was a bit uncalled for. But US domestic pro cycling outfit “Rock Racing” has hired Tyler Hamilton and wants Floyd Landis for an “advisor”. And this team is coming to play, people:

With the addition of three-time national champion Freddie Rodriguez, 2002 world time trial champion Santiago Botero and former U.S. Postal Service domestique Victor Hugo Peña, as well as domestic standouts Doug Ollerenshaw, Mike Creed and Cesar Grajales, Ball has quickly built a team that has shaped up to be one of the strongest on the North America scene.

Plus Tyler? Damn.

Wait a minnit, Rock Racing the team is a sponsor of the Amgen “We make EPO” Tour of California? And they are going to come gunning with Tyler Hamilton who should be a top-5 favorite if he hits the start line? So they are sponsoring their own rider’s win? Oh, my head hurts…

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Update 1/11/08: And now an interview with Floyd Landis.  Conditioned on the journalist obtaining answers to Floyd’s questions of USA Cycling CEO Steve Johnson:

“I want short and direct answers, no spin or political bullshit,” he told me. “I made them yes/no questions and those are the answers that I want to hear. [Get those answers] and I’ll answer any questions you ask.”

Of course the science-y part comes up, as usual:

FL: Should strict liability be applied to the athletes and not the labs?

SJ: I think the labs have every obligation to manage these cases at the highest level. I think it’s fair to challenge the labs’ procedures and handling of samples. They should be able to produce documentation that they have followed their own rules in managing and testing doping samples. Frankly that gets right back to this balancing act between protecting the rights of the athletes and catching cheaters. You have to do it correctly, and the labs should be held to the highest of international standards.

FL: For example, is it reasonable that the panel admitted in the Scott Moninger case that he was not intending to cheat but convicted him, while the panel in the Landis case admitted to substandard lab practices and convicted him?

SJ: I don’t know enough information to make that comparison, frankly. I would assume in Floyd’s case that arbitrators determined that any substandard lab practices had no impact on the outcome of the test for exogenous testosterone, but I don’t know for certain.

FL (2): Here’s another way to ask it: Should the athletes be responsible and punished when they make a mistake and when the lab makes mistakes? Scott Moninger was banned as a cheater when there was no intent to cheat. In my case the lab followed none of its own rules, causing the result, and I am held responsible to explain what happened. What I’m trying to understand is why the athlete is judged as the only party who can be dishonest.