Archive for the ‘Science’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Too Late Now

I just reread my “Dark Ages II” essay, where I make the case that we are inexorably sliding into another dark and uncivilized era, and that there is absolutely nothing we can do – that we would permit ourselves to do – to prevent it. Someday I should get around to tightening it up, as it is a bit of a wide ranging rant. It was actually just a lengthy post to a Freethinker group I was engaged with over two years ago. Most were ACLU type atheists, who had unwittingly adopted anti-Christian activism as their creed, and Progressivism as their dogma. Although I am a freethinking godless heathen, I was an enigma to them as a conservative leaning libertarian, who valued traditional American principles and values, and considers Marxism and Islam to be greater threats to America and my Liberty, than their preferred fear of a Christian theocracy.

My primary antagonist was a decidedly Marxist retired college professor, who was proud of his active participation in the ZPG movement back in the ’70s, which he had never outgrown. He saw politics as a purely Left/Right duopoly and considered anyone to the right of Ted Kennedy a reactionary Troglodyte. He was always trying to bait me into an off-topic political debate, by painting me as a mindless “Ditto-Head” for challenging PC orthodoxy. “Dark Ages II,” was the point when I finally unloaded – through the muzzle.

It had the intended effect of throwing the group into dismay and even shocked disarray for a time; but they soon regrouped and typically demanded cites to peer reviewed scientific papers to back up my assertions. I simply referred them to Google and Mark Steyn’s book, “America Alone”; but I sure wish I had this video clip I stumbled across last night available at the time:

Watching it is sobering. I note with some chagrin that once again of late, I have allowed my disdain for the Progressive movement to drag me back into paying attention to politics and rather passionate if feeble efforts to combat the scourge. As I occasionally point out in my posts here and elsewhere, I am a realist and deal with the world as I find it. I engage in my duty as a Patriot, not out of any false hope that I could make a difference to posterity; but for the sheer sport of it.

I do what little I can simply for the pleasure of throwing sand in the gears, and irritating over-schooled and under-educated Progressive fools. I do it out of the utter contempt I harbor for the altruistic Utopian dreamers, who have destroyed Western civilization in general, and are feverishly engaged in the final destruction of my country. Since I don’t believe in Hell, I yearn to make the pathetic leeches as uncomfortable as possible while they live. That most of them I encounter on the net are so bitter and angry pleases me, and I love to twist their tails.

It is as good a hobby as any for my retirement years; and as sad as reality is, in a way it is easier to indulge it knowing that it won’t make a damn bit of difference in the end. At least the Progressives won’t have the place very long before the Mexicans take over. Then the Mexicans will lose it to the Muslims. Just think, our great great… grandchildren will be saying their devotions to Allah five times a day in Spanish, and the oh so righteous altruists will still be spinning… in their graves.  🙂   ◄Dave►

Addendum:

Gabe’s link below in the comment section to J. R. Nyquist’s column, “The Investment Climate in 2059” is well worth the read. The concluding paragraph begs to be added here:

I am amazed by those who think the U.S. economy is going to recover, that global peace is attainable, that American liberties are going to survive American barbarism. Look at our culture today: men are no longer men, and women are no longer women; capitalists no longer uphold free market principles; constitutional government no longer adheres to the Constitution; enemies are treated as friends. Nobody reads the signs. Nobody sees what is coming. Look at the birthrate among Europeans. Look at the abandonment of European culture. Look at the Muslim birthrate. Europe will be Islamic in fifty years. Long before that, the Russians and Chinese will achieve nuclear dominance of the globe. What do you think the investment climate will be in 2059?

0

PostHeaderIcon Saving the Planet

The sagacious George Carlin understood “Earth Day” for what it was, and explained environmentalism as only he could. His unique species may now be extinct; but thanks to YouTube, his work remains immortal. If you are offended by Politically Incorrect thoughts, Piously Incorrect words, or Common Sense – viewer discretion is advised. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Ike’s Farewell

In a comment on another blog, a Lefty linked to Ike’s farewell address to make the familiar point about his warning regarding the military-industrial complex. Once there, I took the time to read the whole speech. Doing so, I noticed another warning he offered, which I have never heard repeated:

Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.

In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.

The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded.

Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.

It is the task of statesmanship to mold, to balance, and to integrate these and other forces, new and old, within the principles of our democratic system — ever aiming toward the supreme goals of our free society.

(bold emphasis mine)

Then, stunningly, was a paragraph that every one of the 535 fools currently ensconced on capital hill should be required to write one hundred times on a blackboard, before being allowed to vote on the spending bill they are currently ramming through congress over the ever growing objection of the public:

Another factor in maintaining balance involves the element of time. As we peer into society’s future, we — you and I, and our government — must avoid the impulse to live only for today, plundering, for our own ease and convenience, the precious resources of tomorrow. We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without risking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage. We want democracy to survive for all generations to come, not to become the insolvent phantom of tomorrow.

(bold emphasis mine)

The “Now Generation” blew this one big time. We have already mortgaged the future of our grandchildren, and now we are in the process of stealing from their children and grandchildren. Have we no shame? If the kids could only think for themselves well enough to realize what we have done to them, they would cut off our SSI checks tomorrow… and I wouldn’t blame them. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon “Not Lawyers Like America.”

I encountered a really profound and thought provoking comment on the Secular Right blog today. In a thread entitled, “Obama’s Science,” Heather Mac Donald said:

Obama says he will “restore science to its rightful place.” All very nice and anti-oogedy-boogedy. I’ll believe Obama’s self-congratulatory rhetoric, however, when he stands up to the radical green lobby and considers the case for nuclear energy, a power source conspicuously absent from his inaugural list of PC alternative fuels.

On the oogedy-boogedy front, Texas is once again debating the teaching of evolution.

This drew a surprising number of comments, including debate over AGW, along with the predictable gnashing of teeth over the Darwin vs. Creation/ID school subjects. Then,  commenter Daniel Dare (from Europe, I think) made the following mind opener at comment #44:

I don’t think American people understand the problem.

Even now USA can’t educate all the scientists and engineers it needs. I get the impression that every second scientist is foreign-born. High-IQ Americans choose law, they choose business. Science has low-status in your country. You culture despises nerds. You revere singers and actors and sport’s stars, supermodels, business people. Above all, so many of your religious leaders bad-mouth science at every opportunity.

Confucianism/Taoism is different. The scholar is revered. They are the saints, the immortals, the Xiān (hsien). Marxism has added to this, not reduced it. A Marxist state is a technocracy. Engineers dominate the government. Not lawyers like America.

You only get away with this because of low taxes, which allows higher elite income, and the fact that you are still a leader in many fields. And because your main competitors are Westerners with similar values to you.

Wait till you are number two in everything. And your taxes rise to pay for trillion dollar deficits. After President Obama, you will have a welfare state like Europe. Maybe like Sweden LOL. After inflation hits in a year or two, everyone will be in higher tax-scales. You think you can double base-money and not get high inflation? President Obama and Speaker Pelosi will have no difficulty funding their schemes. High inflation and progressive income-tax will solve the problem.

A decade or two from now, people will go to Beijing. USA will be the ones with the brain-drain. Even the few scientists you manage to train will go to Beijing.

That’s what it’s like for developing countries now. All their elite dream of going to America.

Wow! How could one argue with his logic? To me, this is just one more (as if I needed another) reason to despair for the future of this once great country. It is like a perfect storm is lining up to flatten us very soon, and most will not see it coming. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Classic Camille

Camille Paglia has become one of my favorite Leftist commentators, because she calls them like she sees them; rather than throwing away her credibility by defending the indefensible, as most of her contemporaries on the Left do nowadays. Her latest column, entitled “Obama’s early stumbles,” is classic Camille addressing many subjects in answer to reader’s e-mails.

On Obama:

However, you are quite right to call the controversy over the indictment of buffoonishly sly Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich a “mess.” That the normally deft Obama team mishandled its rapid response to it was obvious from the get-go. Obama’s first statements about his and his staff’s communications with Blagojevich were inadequate at best and misleading at worst. Then there was a second stage of needless blunders when Obama opposed the tarnished Blagojevich’s perfectly legal appointment of Roland Burris to fill Obama’s vacated Senate seat — a foolishly hard line that the president-elect inevitably had to reverse.

On congress:

On the other hand, I agree with you that Congress has come across lately like a clumsy, flea-bitten bunch of “bozos.” Its poll ratings are lower than stinking swamp mud. I have a soft spot for the nimble Nancy Pelosi, a master of the ladylike stiletto thrust, but Harry Reid is a cadaverous horse’s ass of mammoth proportions. How in the world did that whiny, sniveling incompetent end up as Senate majority leader? Give him the hook! As for the “radical change” that you fear, it’s hard to imagine (short of a crisis-driven imposition of martial law) how that will ever happen in our sluggish, consensus-driven political system.

On Palin:

As I have repeatedly said in this column, I have never had the slightest problem in understanding Sarah Palin’s meaning at any time. On the contrary, I have positively enjoyed her fresh, natural, rapid delivery with its syncopated stops and slides — a fabulous example of which was the way (in her recent interview with John Ziegler) that she used a soft, swooping satiric undertone to zing Katie Couric’s dippy narcissism and to assert her own outrage as a “mama grizzly” at libels against her family.

Ideology-driven attacks on Palin became clotted liberal clichés within 24 hours of her introduction as John McCain’s running mate. What a bunch of tittering lemmings the urban elite have become in this country. From Couric’s vicious manipulations of video clips to Cavett’s bourgeois platitudes, the preemptive strike on Palin as a potential presidential candidate has grossly misfired. Whatever legitimate objections may be raised to Palin on political grounds (explored, for example, by David Talbot in Salon) have been lost in the amoral overkill that has defamed a self-made woman of concrete achievement in the public realm.

On the “Fairness Doctrine”:

Instead of bleating for paternalistic government intervention, liberals should get their own act together. Radio is a populist medium where liberals come across as snide, superior scolds. One can instantly recognize a liberal caller to a conservative show by his or her catty, obnoxious tone. The leading talk radio hosts are personalities and entertainers with huge rhetorical energy and a bluff, engaging manner. Even the seething ranters can be extremely funny. Last summer, for example, I laughed uproariously in my car when WABC’s Mark Levin said furiously about Katie Couric, “What do these people do? Open fortune cookies and read them on air?”

On AGW:

In the 1980s, I was similarly skeptical about media-trumpeted predictions about a world epidemic of heterosexual AIDS. And I remain skeptical about the media’s carelessly undifferentiated use of the term “AIDS” for what is often a complex of wasting diseases in Africa. We should all be concerned about environmental despoliation and pollution, but the global warming crusade has become a hallucinatory cult. Until I see stronger evidence, I will continue to believe that climate change is primarily driven by solar phenomena and that it is normal for the earth to pass through major cooling and warming phases.

On the “gay gene”:

After the American Psychiatric Association, responding to activist pressure, removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders in 1973, psychological inquiries into homosexuality slowly became verboten. To even ask about the origins of homosexuality was automatically dubbed homophobic by gay studies proponents in the ’80s and ’90s. Weirdly, despite the rigid social constructionist bias that permeated the entire left, gay activists in and out of academe now leapt on the slightest evidence that could suggest a biological cause of homosexuality. The very useful Freudian concept of “family romance” (typified by the Oedipus and Electra complexes) is almost completely gone. Yet the intricate family dynamic of every single gay person I’ve ever known seems to have played some kind of role in his or her developing sexual orientation.

On vocational ed vs. college:

Perhaps there’s hope of change because of the tens of thousands of liberal arts graduates with expensive degrees who are finding themselves out of work and depressingly marginalized in a society where the manual trades offer guaranteed employment at relatively high wages. A dose of Buddhism might do people good: Sweeping garden sand into oceanic designs around ornamental rocks is considered a spiritual exercise in Asia. I say that landscaping, construction, carpentry, metalworking and all the other trades should be promoted by primary education as worthy careers for both men and women. The pre-college rat race is a sadomasochistic imposition on the young that robs them of free will and saps their vital energies. When will they rebel?

On humanities professors:

Why are American professors forcing American students to plow through a boneless blob of a book that is predicated on now totally passé French manners and mores? Why is egregious theoretical verbosity being force-fed to cyber-savvy, text-messaging young people who barely read as it is and who still haven’t found their own writing voices? The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind — yes, the big wind of elite school flatulence, which may be the true cause of global warming.

Her columns are only published monthly and I wouldn’t miss one. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Pravda on AGW

You know the world is upside down when Pravda will publish a scientific perspective that it is difficult to find anywhere in the American MSM. I followed a Drudge link to a Pravda article entitled, “Earth on the Brink of an Ice Age,” expecting to find new Russian data. There was nothing new in it that I had not read before, but it is a very well written and remarkably succinct refutation of the whole AGW political scam. The copyright notice implies that the whole article can be republished as long as linked to their site. I think it is worth saving a copy on this side of the pond, so here is the whole thing:

The earth is now on the brink of entering another Ice Age, according to a large and compelling body of evidence from within the field of climate science. Many sources of data which provide our knowledge base of long-term climate change indicate that the warm, twelve thousand year-long Holocene period will rather soon be coming to an end, and then the earth will return to Ice Age conditions for the next 100,000 years.

Ice cores, ocean sediment cores, the geologic record, and studies of ancient plant and animal populations all demonstrate a regular cyclic pattern of Ice Age glacial maximums which each last about 100,000 years, separated by intervening warm interglacials, each lasting about 12,000 years.

Most of the long-term climate data collected from various sources also shows a strong correlation with the three astronomical cycles which are together known as the Milankovich cycles. The three Milankovich cycles include the tilt of the earth, which varies over a 41,000 year period; the shape of the earth’s orbit, which changes over a period of 100,000 years; and the Precession of the Equinoxes, also known as the earth’s ‘wobble’, which gradually rotates the direction of the earth’s axis over a period of 26,000 years. According to the Milankovich theory of Ice Age causation, these three astronomical cycles, each of which effects the amount of solar radiation which reaches the earth, act together to produce the cycle of cold Ice Age maximums and warm interglacials.

Elements of the astronomical theory of Ice Age causation were first presented by the French mathematician Joseph Adhemar in 1842, it was developed further by the English prodigy Joseph Croll in 1875, and the theory was established in its present form by the Czech mathematician Milutin Milankovich in the 1920s and 30s. In 1976 the prestigious journal “Science” published a landmark paper by John Imbrie, James Hays, and Nicholas Shackleton entitled “Variations in the Earth’s orbit: Pacemaker of the Ice Ages,” which described the correlation which the trio of scientist/authors had found between the climate data obtained from ocean sediment cores and the patterns of the astronomical Milankovich cycles. Since the late 1970s, the Milankovich theory has remained the predominant theory to account for Ice Age causation among climate scientists, and hence the Milankovich theory is always described in textbooks of climatology and in encyclopaedia articles about the Ice Ages.

In their 1976 paper Imbrie, Hays, and Shackleton wrote that their own climate forecasts, which were based on sea-sediment cores and the Milankovich cycles, “… must be qualified in two ways. First, they apply only to the natural component of future climatic trends – and not to anthropogenic effects such as those due to the burning of fossil fuels. Second, they describe only the long-term trends, because they are linked to orbital variations with periods of 20,000 years and longer. Climatic oscillations at higher frequencies are not predicted… the results indicate that the long-term trend over the next 20,000 years is towards extensive Northern Hemisphere glaciation and cooler climate.”

During the 1970s the famous American astronomer Carl Sagan and other scientists began promoting the theory that ‘greenhouse gasses’ such as carbon dioxide, or CO2, produced by human industries could lead to catastrophic global warming. Since the 1970s the theory of ‘anthropogenic global warming’ (AGW) has gradually become accepted as fact by most of the academic establishment, and their acceptance of AGW has inspired a global movement to encourage governments to make pivotal changes to prevent the worsening of AGW.

The central piece of evidence that is cited in support of the AGW theory is the famous ‘hockey stick’ graph which was presented by Al Gore in his 2006 film “An Inconvenient Truth.” The ‘hockey stick’ graph shows an acute upward spike in global temperatures which began during the 1970s and continued through the winter of 2006/07. However, this warming trend was interrupted when the winter of 2007/8 delivered the deepest snow cover to the Northern Hemisphere since 1966 and the coldest temperatures since 2001. It now appears that the current Northern Hemisphere winter of 2008/09 will probably equal or surpass the winter of 2007/08 for both snow depth and cold temperatures.

The main flaw in the AGW theory is that its proponents focus on evidence from only the past one thousand years at most, while ignoring the evidence from the past million years — evidence which is essential for a true understanding of climatology. The data from paleoclimatology provides us with an alternative and more credible explanation for the recent global temperature spike, based on the natural cycle of Ice Age maximums and interglacials.

In 1999 the British journal “Nature” published the results of data derived from glacial ice cores collected at the Russia ’s Vostok station in Antarctica during the 1990s. The Vostok ice core data includes a record of global atmospheric temperatures, atmospheric CO2 and other greenhouse gases, and airborne particulates starting from 420,000 years ago and continuing through history up to our present time.

The graph of the Vostok ice core data shows that the Ice Age maximums and the warm interglacials occur within a regular cyclic pattern, the graph-line of which is similar to the rhythm of a heartbeat on an electrocardiogram tracing. The Vostok data graph also shows that changes in global CO2 levels lag behind global temperature changes by about eight hundred years. What that indicates is that global temperatures precede or cause global CO2 changes, and not the reverse. In other words, increasing atmospheric CO2 is not causing global temperature to rise; instead the natural cyclic increase in global temperature is causing global CO2 to rise.

The reason that global CO2 levels rise and fall in response to the global temperature is because cold water is capable of retaining more CO2 than warm water. That is why carbonated beverages loose their carbonation, or CO2, when stored in a warm environment. We store our carbonated soft drinks, wine, and beer in a cool place to prevent them from loosing their ‘fizz’, which is a feature of their carbonation, or CO2 content. The earth is currently warming as a result of the natural Ice Age cycle, and as the oceans get warmer, they release increasing amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere.

Because the release of CO2 by the warming oceans lags behind the changes in the earth’s temperature, we should expect to see global CO2 levels continue to rise for another eight hundred years after the end of the earth’s current Interglacial warm period. We should already be eight hundred years into the coming Ice Age before global CO2 levels begin to drop in response to the increased chilling of the world’s oceans.

The Vostok ice core data graph reveals that global CO2 levels regularly rose and fell in a direct response to the natural cycle of Ice Age minimums and maximums during the past four hundred and twenty thousand years. Within that natural cycle, about every 110,000 years global temperatures, followed by global CO2 levels, have peaked at approximately the same levels which they are at today.

About 325,000 years ago, at the peak of a warm interglacial, global temperature and CO2 levels were higher than they are today. Today we are again at the peak, and near to the end, of a warm interglacial, and the earth is now due to enter the next Ice Age. If we are lucky, we may have a few years to prepare for it. The Ice Age will return, as it always has, in its regular and natural cycle, with or without any influence from the effects of AGW.

The AGW theory is based on data that is drawn from a ridiculously narrow span of time and it demonstrates a wanton disregard for the ‘big picture’ of long-term climate change. The data from paleoclimatology, including ice cores, sea sediments, geology, paleobotany and zoology, indicate that we are on the verge of entering another Ice Age, and the data also shows that severe and lasting climate change can occur within only a few years. While concern over the dubious threat of Anthropogenic Global Warming continues to distract the attention of people throughout the world, the very real threat of the approaching and inevitable Ice Age, which will render large parts of the Northern Hemisphere uninhabitable, is being foolishly ignored.

Gregory F. Fegel

© 1999-2006. «PRAVDA.Ru». When reproducing our materials in whole or in part, hyperlink to PRAVDA.Ru should be made. The opinions and views of the authors do not always coincide with the point of view of PRAVDA.Ru’s editors.

Now, if the NY Times would just do the same thing… ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Rare Sagacity

In a thread entitled, “Who is pro-science, the Left or the Right?” on the Secular Right blog, I have encountered a 71 year-old sage, who has made several profound comments that are well worth reading. “Gene Berman” does not have his own blog; but he should, for his perspective deserves a wider audience. He prefers to comment at places where he finds people actually thinking. It is a long thread, so skip the other comments if you like, but treat yourself to the thought that will be provoked by reading his. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Mindpower

After avoiding it for days, I finally joined a discussion at the Secular Right blog in a thread entitled, “As an atheist, I truly believe Africa needs God.” It took a lot of turns and had gotten around to a disagreement over whether African natives were as intelligent as other races. Typically, the Leftists thereabouts bristled at any suggestion that all the “Bell Curve” studies and data might suggest that their dreams of creating an egalitarian world might not work out so well in practice. After one challenged another’s actual “on the ground in Africa” experience, I offered the following:

It happens that I have lived in Africa and worked closely with natives of both the well-educated and relatively uneducated varieties. I also have earned my living for the past dozen years assisting children from the age of 2.5 thru 6 years-old to create their minds, so perhaps I have some unique perspective to offer. Education cannot begin until a child acquires the faculty of language, and learns to name things.

Yet, we do not teach our children basic language and syntax, they absorb it out of the environment by listening to adults speak. This is the primary “work” of a two-year-old, and observing the rapidity with which they go from their first attempts to speak, to putting together whole sentences with surprisingly accurate syntax is breathtaking when one contemplates the difficulty of the achievement.

It was incredibly easy to learn “kitchen kaffir,” which is what the pigeon language used for communicating with the African natives was called. Since their language only had about 700 words and very rudimentary syntax, all one had to do was memorize those words and plug them into English syntax. Objects that had no native name were simply called by their English name. E.g. “Faga” was their word for “put,” and “lapa” meant “over there.” It didn’t much matter where one inserted “ashtray” in the phrase “faga lapa” to be clearly understood.

Without language, there could be no rational thought or even human consciousness. Words are symbolic representations of concepts, whether simple or extremely complex, and are the scaffold on which we construct our ideas. The quality and efficiency of our thinking is dependent on our vocabulary. Whole lifetimes of research and contemplation, which can and does fill volumes, can be expressed in the shorthand of a single word, e.g. Marxism or capitalism.

I don’t think it requires getting into the debates over genetics, or nature vs. nurture, to recognize that if a child grows up in an environment surrounded by adults that know and use only 700 words or less in their presence, while they are teaching themselves their native tongue and creating the scaffolding for thinking, they are not going to end up with much to work with.

This is true whether it is in the African bush, or our own blighted ghettos, where using proper English gets one accused of “acting White.” Unfortunately, the sensitive period for language acquisition in the stages of mind development for a child is long past by the time they start attending school, and learning a new language at that point, or even refining the one they supposedly know, is infinitely more difficult.

If then thrust into the typical teacher-centered environment, where they are expected to sit still and pay attention, while the all-knowing teacher fills their empty little heads with “age appropriate” knowledge according to a fixed curriculum schedule, the prognosis is not good. Children learn best by doing and exploring whatever interests them at any particular time, and Socrates was right when he said that true education is more like the kindling of a flame than the filling of a vessel.

All that said, I too reject the tabla raza hypothesis, and think not enough interest has been given the subject of temperament, which all evidence seems to indicate is somehow innate. We all know of siblings with personalities that could not be more contrasting, born of the same parents and raised in the same environment; perhaps intimately. A Meyers-Briggs test will tell one more about the efficacy and structure of a particular mind than any IQ test.

Finally, any suggestion that African natives would be anywhere close to the achievements of Western civilization, without our influence during the colonial period, is laughable. Even today, were all Westerners (and Easterners) to pull out of Africa completely, it would devolve in short order, into the superstitious netherworld, of disorganized tribal conflicts that the White Man delivered them from.

When I was managing that farm where I studied African culture back in ’74, Rhodesia was the bread basket of Africa, and Salisbury was one of the cleanest, safest, and most modern cities in the world. Today, after the hand-wringers and do-gooders of Europe and America used UN Sanctions to force the Whites to turn it over to the Marxist terrorists they were pleased to call “freedom fighters,” it is called Zimbabwe. Ask the now starving natives there if we did them any favors… I rest my case. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon New Political Spectrum Chart

I have been working (not very diligently) on an essay to explain my latest version of my political spectrum chart. Now that Orrin has resurfaced from being buried in his workload, I need to move it near the top of my to-do stack, as it was the discussion on his blog that instigated the change. Since I have the chart itself done, I have uploaded it as a teaser:

Think UP and DOWN - not Left and Right

Think UP and DOWN - not Left and Right

You can click on the diagram to open it full size, and suitable for printing, in another window. The main difference from my earlier efforts is that it emphasizes the nature of the vertical  Up/Down axis, and includes the economic systems as the principle sort for choosing the Left or Right path around the circle toward tyranny.

Yes, I realize that most of the political noise comes from the two opposing moralist camps, the Politically Correct activists on the Left and the Piously Correct activists on the Right; but I have deliberately downplayed them. Ours is and always was a secular government, and their attempts to enlist it to impose their moral dogmas on others who are not adherents to their competing “religions,” ought not to even be considered in serious discussion of good government.

I have added a new category of good guys at the top labeled “Secular Conservatives.” This label would apply to those who are heavily invested in what they consider small government “conservative” philosophy or principles and support free enterprise. While they may or may not be religious themselves, they recognize and appreciate the secular nature of our government, and oppose the use of Piously Correct litmus tests for candidates for elective office. If I understand him correctly, Orrin would fall into this category.

I’ll get busy on the essay, which is already entitled “Political Language,” and post it soon. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Missile Launch

I just watched the missile launched from Vandenberg A.F.B. I hope it hit the target, which was supposed to be a missile launched from Alaska. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon The Age of Metrosexual Puberty

Mommies, Daddies, and Kiddies didn’t used to be considered synonymous – nor were they meant to be.

I recently submitted several of my pages to the Gender Analyzer, and the underlying AI engine has always reported with a confidence level well above 70% that they were written by a man. Thus, I was surprised to find that according to their ongoing poll, it is only right 53% of the time. Why? It was reportedly “taught” the difference by submitting writing samples written by known women and men.

I have for years noted that the political Left seems to be dominated by emotion, and most actual critical thinking occurs on the political Right. I have noted that Talk Radio is owned by the Right, simply because those on the Left become viscerally upset and tune out. They generally feel their political truths, are easily offended by, and are thus largely uninterested in serious political discourse and debate. It has also not escaped my attention that the vast majority of political bestsellers are written by, purchased by, and apparently read by those on the Right. Readers are thinkers; emoters, not so much…

The very name for this website was an outgrowth of an experience a couple of years ago, when I innocently joined a “freethinkers” forum, thinking the word meant what it implied. I soon found myself almost alone as a rational thinker in a sea of ACLU type irrational emoters, bent on doing battle with their favorite bogymen, the fundamentalist Christians. They were constitutionally incapable of comprehending that their fundie Marxist dogma was every bit as irrational to a true skeptical thinker as fundie Christian dogma, and in many ways infinitely more dangerous to individual Liberty. Needless to say, I soon found myself unwelcome among them.

In my post below, I noted that Victor Davis Hansen’s sixth politically incorrect observation hadn’t occurred to me:

6. Something has happened to the generic American male accent. Maybe it is urbanization; perhaps it is now an affectation to sound precise and caring with a patina of intellectual authority; perhaps it is the fashion culture of the metrosexual; maybe it is the influence of the gay community in arts and popular culture. Maybe the ubiquitous new intonation comes from the scarcity of salty old jobs in construction, farming, or fishing. But increasingly to meet a young American male about 25 is to hear a particular nasal stress, a much higher tone than one heard 40 years ago, and, to be frank, to listen to a precious voice often nearly indistinguishable from the female…

It seems that it has to others. In, “The Voice of the Neuter is Heard Throughout the Land,” a blogger named Vanderleun offered nearly two years ago:

…What interestest me is how he speaks.

If you focus on it, you realize that you hear this voice every day if you bounce around a bit in our larger cities buying this or ordering that, and in general running into young people in the “service” sector — be it coffee shop, video store, department store, boutique, bookstore, or office cube farm. It’s a kind of voice that was seldom heard anywhere but now seems to be everywhere.

It is the voice of the neuter.

I mean that in the grammatical sense:
“a. Neither masculine nor feminine in gender.
“b. Neither active nor passive; intransitive,”

and in the biological sense:
“a. Biology Having undeveloped or imperfectly developed sexual organs: the neuter caste in social insects.
“b. Botany Having no pistils or stamens; asexual.
“c. Zoology Sexually undeveloped.”

You hear this soft, inflected tone everywhere that young people below, roughly, 35 congregate. As flat as the bottles of spring water they carry and affectless as algae, it tends to always trend towards a slight rising question at the end of even simple declarative sentences. It has no timbre to it and no edge of assertion in it.

The voice whisps across your ears as if the speaker is in a state of perpetual uncertainty with every utterance. It is as if, male or female, there is no foundation or soul within the speaker on which the voice can rest and rise. As a result, it has a misty quality to it that denies it any unique character at all…

Above all, it is a sexless voice. Not, I hasten to add, a “gay” voice. Not that at all. It is neither that gentle nor that musical. Nor is it that old shabby lisping stereotype best consigned to the dustbin of popular culture. No, this is a new old voice of a generation of ostensible men and women who have been educated and acculturated out of, or say rather, to the far side of any gender at all. It is, as I have indicated above, the voice of the neutered. And in this I mean that of the transitive verb: To castrate or spay. The voice and the kids that carry it is the triumphant achievement of our halls of secondary and higher education. These children did not speak this way naturally, they were taught. And like good children seeking only to please their teachers and then their employers, they learned.

This is not to say that the new American Castrati of all genders live sexless lives. On the contrary, if reports are to be credited, they seem to have a good deal of sex, most often without the burden of love or the threat of chlldren, and in this they are condemned to the sex life of children.

No, it is only to say that this new voice that we hear throughout the land from so many of the young betokens a weaker and less certain brand of citizen than we have been used to in our history. Neither male nor female, neither gay nor straight, neither…. well, not anything substantive really. A generation finely tuned to irony and nothingness and tone deaf to duty and soul.

If you have never heard Hugh Hewitt flay a Lefty in one of his well prepared, fast paced, and courtroom like interviews, it is a treat and I recall the referenced one well; but though Vanderleun’s piece was beautifully written and insightful, the whole impetus behind this post was his link at the end to:

The Pathetic Last Children of Nietzsche’s Pitiable Last Men,” by “Gagdad Bob” at the “One Cosmos” blog. Here in the metaphor of the decade, he compares the current American political system (since the ’60s) to a dysfunctional family, with the Mommy on the Left and the Daddy on the Right:

…One way of looking at it is that we are seeing a collapse of the covenant between mother and father as represented in the previous maternal/paternal two-party system. It is as if we are children living in a home where mother and father no longer get along and are bickering constantly. In fact, that is probably putting it too mildly, because the current situation has gone beyond mere arguing, to the point that the masculine and feminine spheres are no longer communicating at all and are going through a very messy and acrimonious divorce. Both sides are “lawyered up” and ready to go for the throat.

I believe we may trace this divorce to the 1960’s, when mother government started to become so all powerful that there was almost no role for father. Of course, this began to change in the 1980’s, when father began reasserting himself because of the cultural, political and economic chaos that hit bottom in Jimmy Carter’s gynocracy, but by then, something else had happened. That is, the age old distinctions between mother and father and adult and child had begun to attenuate, leaving many people confused about their primordial identity.

Then he discusses how we are crippling our children. Not just by confusing their gender identities, but by blurring the distinction between adults and children:

The other main psychological mutation that occurred beginning with the 1960’s was the eradication of the differences between adult and child. Up until then, there was a clear difference between the spheres of adult and child, and everyone knew it. When I was growing up in the 60’s, I had my interests and my parents had theirs’, and there was relatively little intersection between the two–for example, baseball with my father. But we dressed differently, listened to different kinds of music, enjoyed different activities, read different literature, liked different movies, etc. I knew that I wasn’t an adult or a man but that some day I would have to become one–someone like my father, who worked hard, didn’t whine, had honor and a sense of duty, and had feelings but didn’t necessarily give them much weight.

But that has all changed now. Here again it is critical to point out that there is nothing at all wrong with an adult maintaining contact with the child part of himself. In fact, doing so is vital for creativity, spontaneity and play. However, as in the blending of male and female, the problem arises when the differences between adult and child are obliterated, which creates a hybrid monster that is neither adult nor child but both at the same time. This affects both adults and children, for our society has become a plague of adult children and childish adults–that is, prematurely sexualized children who are burdened with all kinds of inappropriate concerns, and childish adults who psychologically do not grow beyond the age of 21 or so, and never enter the realm of the truly adult.

There was this profound and insightful paragraph:

The modern conservative movement is not just trying to preserve the traditional male element, but the traditional separation of the various spheres in general–civilized vs. barbaric, animal vs, human, adult vs. child–while the Democratic party is the party of mannish women (e.g., Hillary Clinton, Gloria Allred), feminized men (e.g., Bill Clinton, John Kerry, Al Gore), adult children (Howard Dean, John Edwards, Ted Kennedy, Joe Biden, et al), and even animal humans (PETA members who believe that killing six million chickens is morally indistinguishable from murdering six million Jews, radical environmentalists, etc.). And it is almost impossible to engage in rational debate with the adult child, who has the cynicism of a world-weary grown up but the wisdom of a child, or with the male-female hybrid, who possesses an emotionalized reason that is easily hijacked by the passions. This is not so much a disagreement between the content of thought as its very form.

Another, discussing the book, “Wimps and Barbarians,” by Terrence O. Moore:

Moore ties the phenomenon of wimps and barbarians directly to the culture of divorce and the absence of male role models in boys’ lives. “Half of American boys growing up do not live with their natural fathers. The sons of single mothers lack strong men to usher them into the world of responsible, adult manhood. Divorce, whether in reality or in the acrimonious rhetoric of the mother, impresses upon the boy an image of the father, and therefore of all men, as being irresponsible, deceitful, immature, and often hateful or abusive towards women. For sons, the divided loyalties occasioned by divorce actually create profound doubts about their own masculinity. As the boy approaches manhood, he is plagued by subconscious questions which have no immediate resolution: ‘Will I be like Dad?’ ‘Do I want to be like Dad?’ ‘What is a man supposed to do?'”

Now that I know it exists, I would have hated to miss this article. The comment section was good too. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in the changes taking place in our culture and political system. I am that much the wiser for having read it. Bless the internet and the blogosphere. ◄Dave►

—–

Update: 11/26/08  I suscribed to the RSS of the American Digest Blog after visiting yesterday, and lo today he reposted his “Voice of Neuter” post of 2006, which I referenced in response to VDH’s post above. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon NASA a National Disgrace

It is time for NASA to fire Dr. James Hansen and get out of the Junk Science business. Do not miss this report in the London Telegraph:

A surreal scientific blunder last week raised a huge question mark about the temperature records that underpin the worldwide alarm over global warming. On Monday, Nasa’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), which is run by Al Gore’s chief scientific ally, Dr James Hansen, and is one of four bodies responsible for monitoring global temperatures, announced that last month was the hottest October on record.

If there is one scientist more responsible than any other for the alarm over global warming it is Dr Hansen, who set the whole scare in train back in 1988 with his testimony to a US Senate committee chaired by Al Gore. Again and again, Dr Hansen has been to the fore in making extreme claims over the dangers of climate change. (He was recently in the news here for supporting the Greenpeace activists acquitted of criminally damaging a coal-fired power station in Kent, on the grounds that the harm done to the planet by a new power station would far outweigh any damage they had done themselves.)

Yet last week’s latest episode is far from the first time Dr Hansen’s methodology has been called in question. In 2007 he was forced by Mr Watts and Mr McIntyre to revise his published figures for US surface temperatures, to show that the hottest decade of the 20th century was not the 1990s, as he had claimed, but the 1930s.

Another of his close allies is Dr Rajendra Pachauri, chairman of the IPCC, who recently startled a university audience in Australia by claiming that global temperatures have recently been rising “very much faster” than ever, in front of a graph showing them rising sharply in the past decade. In fact, as many of his audience were aware, they have not been rising in recent years and since 2007 have dropped.

Dr Pachauri, a former railway engineer with no qualifications in climate science, may believe what Dr Hansen tells him. But whether, on the basis of such evidence, it is wise for the world’s governments to embark on some of the most costly economic measures ever proposed, to remedy a problem which may actually not exist, is a question which should give us all pause for thought.

Indeed. It will be interesting to see how our American MSM handles this story, but London is starting to realize that AGW is junk science that has more to do with politics than climate. NASA, once a revered source of national pride has become a national disgrace. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Tweaking Blue Balls

Here is another beaut from a blog called Iowa Hawk (that is begging to be explored further by me). Entitled, “Balls and Urns,” it boils down statistics and calls polling for what it is:

Statisticians love balls and urns. A typical Stats 101 midterm, for example, usually includes a question along these lines:

“You take a simple random sample of 1000 balls from an urn containing 120,000,000 red and blue balls, and your sample shows 450 red balls and 550 blue balls. Construct a 95% confidence interval for the true proportion of blue balls in the urn.”

After choking back a giggle about “blue balls,” you whip out your calculator and text your frat brother who has a copy of last semester’s midterm. He instantly recognizes the correct formula is

95% confidence interval for P = p +/- 1.96 * sqrt( p*(1-p) / n) * FPC…

Then he goes into the geeky math that I used to thrive on as a kid, but just haven’t found much use for in the real world for the past 45 years, before making his case:

But what if the thing you are studying doesn’t quite fit the balls & urns template?

  • What if 40% of the balls have personally chosen to live in an urn that you legally can’t stick your hand into?
  • What if 50% of the balls who live in the legal urn explicitly refuse to let you select them?
  • What if the balls inside the urn are constantly interacting and
    talking and arguing with each other, and can decide to change their
    color on a whim?
  • What if you have to rely on the balls to report their own color, and some unknown number are probably lying to you?
  • What if you’ve been hired to count balls by a company who has endorsed blue as their favorite color? 
  • What if you have outsourced the urn-ball counting to part-time temp balls, most of whom happen to be blue?
  • What if the balls inside the urn are listening to you counting out
    there, and it affects whether they want to be counted, and/or which
    color they want to be?

If one or more of the above statements are true, then the formula for margin of error simplifies to

Margin of Error = Who the hell knows?

Very well said indeed! He concludes with:

Because, in this case, so-called scientific “sampling error” is
completely meaningless, because it is utterly overwhelmed by
unmeasurable non-sampling error. Under these circumstances
“margin of error” is a fantasy, a numeric fiction masquerading as a
pseudo-scientific fact. If a poll reports it — even if it’s collected
“scientifically” — the pollster is guilty of aggravated bullshit in
the first degree.

The moral of this midterm for all would-be
pollsters: if you are really interested in how many of us red and blue
balls there are in this great big urn, sit back and relax until
Tuesday, and let us show our true colors.

Until then, fondle your own balls.

I couldn’t agree more! Mary would have loved this one. 😉 ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Sheeple Herding

Here is an awesome essay regarding the fallacy of trusting polls and their use as a strategy for sheeple herding. Entitled, “The Left’s Big Blunder,” it is both encouraging and seriously thought provoking; starting with:

Two campaigns are being waged right now for the presidency of the United States. No, I’m not talking about the Obama campaign and the McCain campaign. I’m talking about the real-world campaign and the meta-campaign.

The real-world campaign involves speeches and proposals and facts and scandals and political positions and news events. These details, however, are becoming increasingly irrelevant, and have become subsumed by the meta-campaign, which consists of perceptions, polls, reactions, analyses and summations. Until very recently, elections were decided by real-world facts — but not anymore. Facts and events in and of themselves are no longer important; what’s important is how everyone reacts to them. And how do we find out the public’s mood concerning this or that incident? Why, the media tells us, that’s how.

Or so we’ve been led to believe.

We’re all part of the campaign now. Every single one of us. Our opinions, our actions, are bundled together as a group and used as weapons in the race for the White House. When the media reports on what people think, either through public-opinion polling or reportage about anecdotal incidents, it becomes an endless feedback loop, in which the media’s representation of most people’s purported thoughts is supposed to influence everyone else’s thoughts. And then they take another poll to determine how effective the first poll was in influencing public opinion, and the cycle starts all over again. Since everyone now knows that any public expression of their political opinions might be reported by the media, even the most innocent activity becomes a calculated campaign action. Saying how you intend to vote is not simply an expression of how you intend to vote, but rather a component of the public barometer of how the majority intends to vote, which is then used by the media and the blogs to influence everyone else. Nothing is done in all innocence anymore.

Thinkers should definitely take the time to read the whole thing. I have bookmarked it for future reference. It covers the “Clever Hans Effect” and particularly the “Solomon Asch Experiments” extremely well (do watch the video). He then makes a credible case that, while the Bradley Effect is said to have dissipated over time, the focus on race in this election and the deliberate charges of racism toward all who speak against the Obamessiah, will have brought it back:

The situation is even more extreme in social interactions in liberal areas, where in casual conversation the race card is played almost continuously. I live in the San Francisco area, in an artsy/intellectual/academic circle, and never once have I heard anyone professing support for McCain. If your boss mocks McCain supporters, if all your co-workers express a desire to for Palin to be raped on national TV, if your family are all Obama volunteers, if the media tries to shame everybody into voting for Obama by stating implicitly and explicitly that only a racist would do otherwise, could you have the nerve to come out of the closet as a McCain voter?

In such an environment, where admitting to disliking Obama in the interpersonal sphere has become the equivalent of social suicide, it seems very likely that the Bradley Effect is not just back, but back with a vengeance. The more that Obama supporters go unchallenged in their blanket accusations of racism against McCain supporters, the less likely anyone will publicly admit to dislike of Obama. Hence, the Bradley Effect is not an artifact of racism, but rather an artifact of false accusations of racism.

So, when the phone rings and the pollster calls — and your Clever Hans social antennae tell you the pollster is young and liberal and likely an Obama supporter — would you have the nerve to tell the pollster the truth that you wouldn’t vote for Obama in a million years? I mean, they called you; they know your number. They know who you are. Can you be absolutely sure they aren’t putting a check mark in the “Racist” box next to your name in some mysterious database?

I must agree with his logic here. I have been surprised by a number of Lefty associates who will admit their concerns over Obama’s underpinnings to me, but wouldn’t dare mention them to their peers. I suspect the PUMAs (still angry Clinton supporters) are far more numerous than anyone dreams. I have spent time on their blogs and they are serious about their stealth campaign. Some even admit deliberately lying to polsters. He concludes with:

Now, it could very well be that, after all is said and done, Obama will indeed win this election — I can’t predict the future any better than can anyone else. The Obama campaign and its supporters are also engaging in many other strategies (unrelated to the exaggeration of his popularity) that have likely been effective — such as blanketing the airwaves with advertisements, disparaging McCain, insulting Palin, and so on. The unabashed and unapologetic Obama boosterism from the traditional media certainly isn’t hurting either. In prior elections, candidates worried about an “October Surprise,” some last-minute revelation or scandal that threatens to realign the entire race. But in 2008, two or three October Surprises seem to be cropping up every single day, and there’s no reliable way to predict what will happen next (other than that the media will try to emphasize the anti-McCain news and downplay the anti-Obama news). And it may be that less than 50% of the population was ever interested in voting for McCain in the first place, and that an Obama victory was a foregone conclusion long before the campaign even began; I simply don’t know. However, if Obama does win, it will be IN SPITE OF the counter-productive antics of his supporters, not because of them. I feel that all the exaggerations and bias polling and online poll-stuffing and comment-spamming have only served to increase a desperate come-from-behind energy in the McCain campaign, and induce a sense of complacency and inevitable victory among rank-and-file Obama voters. However: If McCain wins, then Obama’s supporters will only have themselves to blame.

Will the exaggerations become a self-fulfilling prophecy, as assumed, or are Obama supporters spinning further and further away from reality, constructing one unsupportable exaggeration on top of another — only to be stunned on election day when the actual results, once again, don’t match either their pre-vote opinion polling or their post-vote exit polling?

Yet it may very well be that an army of glum, dispirited and pessimistic conservatives will reluctantly trudge to the polls on November 4, each one imagining they are the only remaining person in the entire country voting for McCain, and lo and behold — they’ll turn out to be a silent majority after all.

Now, there is some hope for a change I could believe in.  ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Bovine Flatulence?

The evidence continues to mount that much of the Anthropomorphic Global Warming (AGW) hysteria is junk science. Now MIT is turning on them:

Boston (MA) – Scientists at MIT have recorded a nearly simultaneous world-wide increase in methane levels. This is the first increase in ten years, and what baffles science is that this data contradicts theories stating man is the primary source of increase for this greenhouse gas. It takes about one full year for gases generated in the highly industrial northern hemisphere to cycle through and reach the southern hemisphere. However, since all worldwide levels rose simultaneously throughout the same year, it is now believed this may be part of a natural cycle in mother nature – and not the direct result of man’s contributions.

Methane – powerful greenhouse gas

The two lead authors of a paper published in this week’s Geophysical Review Letters, Matthew Rigby and Ronald Prinn, the TEPCO Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry in MIT’s Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Science, state that as a result of the increase, several million tons of new methane is present in the atmosphere.

Methane accounts for roughly one-fifth of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, though its effect is 25x greater than that of carbon dioxide. Its impact on global warming comes from the reflection of the sun’s light back to the Earth (like a greenhouse). Methane is typically broken down in the atmosphere by the free radical hydroxyl (OH), a naturally occuring process. This atmospheric cleanser has been shown to adjust itself up and down periodically, and is believed to account for the lack of increases in methane levels in Earth’s atmosphere over the past ten years despite notable simultaneous increases by man.

Quick, somebody invent an afterburner for cows to save our planet. 🙂 ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Going to Hell

I saw this years ago, so it may in fact be a true story. In any case, it earned another chuckle when it just popped into my in-box:

I figured those of you strong scientific/math minds would appreciate the logic of this answer.

The following is supposedly an actual question given on a University of Washington chemistry mid-term. The answer by one student was so “profound” that the professor shared it with colleagues.

Bonus Question: Is Hell exothermic (gives off heat) or endothermic (absorbs heat)?

Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs using Boyle’s Law (gas cools when it expands and heats when it is compressed)or some variant.

One student, however, wrote the following:

First, we need to know how the mass of Hell is changing in time. So we need to know the rate at which souls are moving into Hell and the rate at which they are leaving. I think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets to Hell, it will not leave. Therefore, no souls are leaving.

As for how many souls are entering Hell, let’s look at the different religions that exist in the world today. Most of these religions state that if you are not a member of their religion, you will go to Hell.

Since there is more than one of these religions and since people do not belong to more than one religion, we can project that all souls go to Hell.

With birth and death rates as they are, we can expect the number of souls in Hell to increase exponentially. Now, we look at the rate of change of the volume in Hell because Boyle’s Law states that in order for the temperature and pressure in Hell to stay the same, the volume of Hell has to expand proportionately as souls are added.

This gives two possibilities:

1. If Hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate at which souls enter Hell, then the temperature and pressure in Hell will increase until all Hell breaks loose.

2. If Hell is expanding at a rate faster than the increase of souls in Hell, then the temperature and pressure will drop until Hell freezes over.

So which is it?

If we accept the postulate given to me by Teresa during my Freshman year that, ” it will be a cold day in Hell before I sleep with you, and take into account the fact that I slept with her last night, then number 2 must be true, and thus I am sure that Hell is exothermic and has already frozen over. The corollary of this theory is that since Hell has frozen over, it follows that it is not accepting any more souls and is therefore, extinct…leaving only Heaven thereby proving the existence of a divine being which explains why, last night, Teresa kept shouting “Oh my God.”

THIS STUDENT RECEIVED THE ONLY “A”

I wonder if this could explain the Expanding Earth Hypothesis? 🙂 ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Crash Report

OK, Scott, I had to take that ignoble pile of balsa out of the Jeep yesterday to go shopping. I got tired of looking at it this afternoon, so I stripped it. The aluminum prop adapter was tweaked; but I guess that saved the motor shaft, because the motor itself is fine and runs true. The motor controller, receiver, and all the servos are undamaged. I suppose that one of the additional advantages of the new 2.4 GHz radio control system is that I don’t have to worry about a faulty VHF crystal now either.

The cowl was history, but the canopy was unscratched. That, the magnetic hatch, carbon fiber spar, and misc. hardware was all I bothered to save. Even though everything aft and one of the wings was perfect, I just don’t have room for saving spare airframe parts anymore. It is just as well; back when I had a garage full of them, I rarely used them. Now all I need to do is glue up the new model, and reinstall all the electronics. I am on it, buddy; but don’t expect to be ready by Sunday. L

Btw: The problem we were having last night with the laptop was the mapping software desperately trying to get a GPS fix even though I had unplugged the receiver to bring it out to the picnic table. I am glad it happened, for I had been blaming Vista in my mind for my ever-busy and thus power hungry processor, and certainly don’t need to load it when I am sitting still. I also download a new Vista compliant driver for the touchpad which I hadn’t bothered to do yet because I use a wireless mouse on the desk. The sudden shutdown at the end was just a depleted battery, which Vista recovered nicely from. I guess we spent more time viewing Adams’ animations than I had thought. J Meanwhile, I have added some additional remarks on the subject to the forum debate on it HERE.◄ Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Global Warming Hype

It only took a year for them to catch up to the alternative media, but finally the New York Times had to publish “From a Rapt Audience, a Call to Cool the Hype” calling Al Gore on his “global warming” hype.

“But part of his scientific audience is uneasy. In talks, articles and blog entries that have appeared since his film and accompanying book came out last year, these scientists argue that some of Mr. Gore’s central points are exaggerated and erroneous. They are alarmed, some say, at what they call his alarmism.”

“I don’t want to pick on Al Gore,” Don J. Easterbrook, an emeritus professor of geology at Western Washington University, told hundreds of experts at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America. “But there are a lot of inaccuracies in the statements we are seeing, and we have to temper that with real data.”

“Although Mr. Gore is not a scientist, he does rely heavily on the authority of science in “An Inconvenient Truth,” which is why scientists are sensitive to its details and claims.”

“Criticisms of Mr. Gore have come not only from conservative groups and prominent skeptics of catastrophic warming, but also from rank-and-file scientists like Dr. Easterbook, who told his peers that he had no political ax to grind. A few see natural variation as more central to global warming than heat-trapping gases. Many appear to occupy a middle ground in the climate debate, seeing human activity as a serious threat but challenging what they call the extremism of both skeptics and zealots.”

“Kevin Vranes, a climatologist at the Center for Science and Technology Policy Research at the University of Colorado, said he sensed a growing backlash against exaggeration. While praising Mr. Gore for “getting the message out,” Dr. Vranes questioned whether his presentations were “overselling our certainty about knowing the future.”

“Typically, the concern is not over the existence of climate change, or the idea that the human production of heat-trapping gases is partly or largely to blame for the globe’s recent warming. The question is whether Mr. Gore has gone beyond the scientific evidence.”

“He’s a very polarizing figure in the science community,” said Roger A. Pielke Jr., an environmental scientist who is a colleague of Dr. Vranes at the University of Colorado center. “Very quickly, these discussions turn from the issue to the person, and become a referendum on Mr. Gore.”

This, of course, brings to mind my essay: “Dark Ages II” where I discussed the subject of junk science, the “Environmental Movement,” and mentioned these many dissenting scientists to the conventional wisdom about “global warming.” As I pointed out, the Kyoto treaty is nothing more than Marxism on a global scale and essentially a wealth transfer scheme from the “have” nations to the “have not” variety.

For those who have read my “Sacred Cow Science” essay and investigated the link at the end, another thought is almost inescapable. When one ponders the incredible geological history of our planet, the notion that somehow “man” could have much effect on its future is the height of arrogance. A cyber acquaintance once said it best:

“I am also amused when I read how mankind is destroying the Earth. We are not capable of any such thing and it only shows our arrogance and our ignorance to think we might be. Yes, we may be capable of hastening the extinction of humans but I really doubt the Earth would care all that much, given that it existed for billions of years before we came on the scene. Seems to me we humans are not only arrogant, we really enjoy scaring the poop out of each other with our doomsday stories. Darned if I can understand why when most of Earthly existence is so totally delightful.” – Troy Robinson

I couldn’t agree more. ◄Dave►

0

PostHeaderIcon Sacred Cows in Science?

I have noticed a tendency among many referring to themselves as freethinkers, to have perhaps too much faith in the pronouncements of renowned scientists. This seems odd considering there are usually raging debates going on within the scientific community itself over most of the hypothesis that are accepted as conventional wisdom by the general population. I would like to suggest a little mind-expanding (pun intended) exercise for your consideration.

I have prepared a mindboggling experience for you at:Sacred Cow Science.  Enjoy. ◄Dave►

0
Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Political Spectrum
Political Circle
Archives
Blogroll
Internal Links