Showing posts with label Antiscience. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Antiscience. Show all posts

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Good Words

“It is only when the people become ignorant and corrupt, when they degenerate into a populace, that they are incapable of exercising the sovereignty. Usurpation is then an easy attainment, and an usurper soon found. The people themselves become the willing instruments of their own debasement and ruin. Let us, then, look to the great cause, and endeavor to preserve it in full force. Let us by all wise and constitutional measures promote intelligence among the people as the best means of preserving our liberties.” ~James Monroe, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1817

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Good Words

The party right now is a holding company that's devoid of a soul and it will be filled up with ideas over time and leaders will take their proper place. We can't be known as a party that's fear-based and doesn't believe in math. In the end it will come down to a party that believes in opportunity for all our people, economic competitiveness and a strong dose of libertarianism 

--(former Utah Governor, Ambassador to China and GOP presidential candidate Jon Huntsman)

 Agreed. But how long will it take to clear out the clown car?

Sunday, September 18, 2011

A Sunday Lesson

Since today is Sunday, I found a great quote from the Bible to go along with the Asimov quote that I put up recently.

Out in the open wisdom calls aloud,
she raises her voice in the public square;
on top of the wall she cries out,
at the city gate she makes her speech:
“How long will you who are simple love your simple ways?
How long will mockers delight in mockery
and fools hate knowledge?
Repent at my rebuke!
Then I will pour out my thoughts to you,
I will make known to you my teachings.
But since you refuse to listen when I call
and no one pays attention when I stretch out my hand,
since you disregard all my advice
and do not accept my rebuke,
I in turn will laugh when disaster strikes you;
I will mock when calamity overtakes you—
when calamity overtakes you like a storm,
when disaster sweeps over you like a whirlwind,
when distress and trouble overwhelm you.

---Proverbs 1 V 20-27

A nice set up for a climate change post later in the week.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Knowing What They Want To Believe

It's hard to not be terrified in reading Paul Krugman's recent piece regarding the GOP's emerging anti science campaign. A living example of this is the current front runner of the GOP field for president, Governor of Texas Rick Perry, saying that "more and more scientists are questioning global warming. Let's examine Perry's claim first.

To put it simply, he's wrong and here's exactly why he is wrong.

The IPCC, the US Global Change Research Program, and earlier this year the National Research Council and the National Academy of Sciences all are in agreement on the sources of climate change and why it is happening. The last two concluded that climate change is occurring, that it is caused primarily by the emission of greenhouse gases from human activities, and that it poses significant risks for a range of human and natural systems. It specifically rejected the view that that those findings are in some way questionable

This committee organized by the NRC and the Academy had this to say.

Although the scientific process is always open to new ideas and results, the fundamental causes and consequences of climate change have been established by many years of scientific research, are supported by many different lines of evidence, and have stood firm in the face of careful examination, repeated testing, and the rigorous evaluation of alternative theories and explanations.

Further, the Academy also did a study which found that 97-98 percent of those scientists actively publishing in the field agree that climate change that human beings are causing climate change. Other surveys reveal the same percentages.

Of course, Perry also hauled the classic "faulty or manipulated data" line which has been thoroughly debunked by three separate reviews. This brings us to Krugman's Anti Science piece.

I could point out that Mr. Perry is buying into a truly crazy conspiracy theory, which asserts that thousands of scientists all around the world are on the take, with not one willing to break the code of silence. I could also point out that multiple investigations into charges of intellectual malpractice on the part of climate scientists have ended up exonerating the accused researchers of all accusations. But never mind: Mr. Perry and those who think like him know what they want to believe, and their response to anyone who contradicts them is to start a witch hunt.

For those of you who are in the GOP or on the right, is this really the direction you want to head? It's honestly just another example of how there is literally nothing behind your ideology other than proving the other side wrong...your central credo being, "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."

Krugman points out where we might be headed.

We don’t know who will win next year’s presidential election. But the odds are that one of these years the world’s greatest nation will find itself ruled by a party that is aggressively anti-science, indeed anti-knowledge. And, in a time of severe challenges — environmental, economic, and more — that’s a terrifying prospect.

Amen, brother. And this is why I have this site.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A Nasty Climate

The subject of climate change has once again come up in comments so I thought I'd bring everyone up to speed on the latest which, in many ways, is sadly nothing new.

Basically, it comes down this: climate change is happening and the Chinese are moving ahead of us in green technology. Oh, yeah...and the right (as usual) is doing everything in their power to "prove" that man made climate change supporters are wrong by showing that it is a secret liberal plot to enslave and/or kill everyone.

Whether you agree that climate change is man made or not, it is happening. This means that parts of our planet are going to become unstable which will, in all likelihood, lead to national security concerns for the United States. Thankfully, our military has embraced the seriousness of the situation and is putting its resources to use.

As far as I'm concerned, it's probable that climate change is man made but I think we need more data and research. What we don't need is the pathological drive by the right to win the argument. Simply put, they are not being rational (surprise, surprise) and are hell bent to not give an inch on this issue. Worse, they seem to be turning more irrational. Take a gander at many of the conservative blogs out there that are offering this video and this video as "proof" of the liberal plot. Both of these shorts have been linked in comments here and emailed to me by hysterical conservatives. Read the comments below each video. Really guys? C'mon...

"Climategate" is over, folks. Factcheck dispensed with all of that hysteria quite nicely. They also addressed the "climate science slipping" meme as well. Again, all this demonstrates is that we need more data in my opinion. In the final analysis, I'm with Michael Mann on this one: time to take the politics out of climate science.

My employer, Penn State University, exonerated meafter a thorough investigation of my e-mails in the East Anglia archive. Five independent investigations in Britain and the United States, and a thorough recent review by the Environmental Protection Agency, also have cleared the scientists of accusations of impropriety.

But the attacks against the science must stop. They are not good-faith questioning of scientific research. They are anti-science.

My fellow scientists and I must be ready to stand up to blatant abuse from politicians who seek to mislead and distract the public. They are hurting American science. And their failure to accept the reality of climate change will hurt our children and grandchildren, too.

More specifically, time to remove those who have a pathological need to prove people wrong whom they don't like. In all honesty, that's what this is really all emotional reaction. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Ken Perrot has an excellent piece which basically torpedoes the naysayers and details that the only "gate" out there is "Skepticgate."

And, as I will continue to say over and over again, the Chinese are all in with green technology. If we want to keep pace with them, we're going to have to step it up. This could be an area that could keep jobs in this country (should we decide to lead the world in green tech) and, more importantly, spark our economy. You want to bitch about the deficit? Fine. Here's one solution to helping reduce it.

So, enough folks. I've got no problem with you if being a critical thinker is your raison d'etre. This is why we have peer review. But if you think that climate change science is part of a cabal whose goal is a power grab, I implore you to seek psychological help.