The UK's Daily Mail has an article out today, allegedly containting an 'alarming prediction' of humanity's genetic future. According to 'evolutionary theorist' Oliver Curry at the London School of Economics, humans will split into two separate species- a tall, intelligent breed of super-foxy people, and a troll-like genetic underclass. Said Dr. Curry:
"The report suggests that the future of man will be a story of the good, the bad and the ugly. While science and technology have the potential to create an ideal habitat for humanity over the next millennium, there is the possibility of a monumental genetic hangover over the subsequent millennia due to an over-reliance on technology reducing our natural capacity to resist disease, or our evolved ability to get along with each other. After that, things could get ugly, with the possible emergence of genetic 'haves' and 'have-nots'."
An interesting theory, to be sure. But there's something fishy here. First, Curry is not a biologist, so I suspect his predictions need to be taken with a grain of salt. Second, his report was made for a men's satellite TV channel, Bravo. It features 'Dog: The Bounty Hunter' and a healthy assortment of half-naked women. So perhaps their publication standards aren't as high as say, oh, any reputable peer-reviewed scientific journal.
And the kicker: he's clearly stolen the idea for his report from H.G. Well's classic novel The Time Machine. You know, the one with the genetically superior Eloi ruling over the beastlike, subterranean Morlocks in the distant future. Sound familiar? My theory is that Doc Curry was a bit behind on his deadlines and decided to cannibalize a novel, pad it our with some tepid science, and call it a report. Lame.
Lucky for him, H.G. Wells never built an actual time machine. Otherwise, a pissed-off Victorian gentleman would be beating Curry with a crowbar somewhere in downtown London.
UPDATE [28/10/2007] The Bad Science blog has a go at ol' Doc Curry.