It’s sad to see an experienced journalist and several pathetic commenters completely naive on the fact that taking sides isn’t the only or the best option for a reporter to inform the readers.
Candidates subject to Rosen’s Persistence or Confrontation will clam up, for example, and the public will know less about them than they should.
In practice the best way to handle any situation is by treating it as unique and devising the strategy that will bring about the best journalism on the there and then. Ideology and prejudice won’t ever work in that respect.
In fact, each of Rosen’s four ways assumes that the journalist goes out there with some Truth in his/her mind and has to protect the public from exposure to some particular Untruth.
What I’m saying is that this is not an approach that will elicit great pages of campaign journalism, especially as it automatically and prejudicially isolates the politician from the journalist.
What if anything genuine will those politicians do and say when this Truth Holder of a journalist is around, I cannot fathom. At best, he or she will be considered by the candidate and the entourage as an eco zealot buffoon, somebody who should be fed made-up morsels of non-news.
The only way for a campaign journalist has to be to find the best way to extract news from candidate and campaign, considering the uniqueness of each situation. To go around with pen, paper, microphone and a lot of self-important grandstanding, isn’t good journalism.
Was there a global crisis in the 17th century? Mr Parker’s basis for a book is left mostly unchallenged. If there has been one, for example, how was such a “fact” overlooked as recently as “over the last two decades“, when, in the words of Mr Parrott,
“the issue has vanished so completely…that today otherwise well-read students are baffled by any reference to it”?
The fact that many places suffered from wars and famines, or that Voltaire said so, is no answer.
Was it a time of crisis? Was it global? One would have to show the 17th century as truly special compared to the centuries before and since. The Sack of Rome, however, happened in the 16th century. The American and French Revolutions changed the course of Western politics in the 18th century. China and India succumbed to the Europeans only in the 19th century, when also the Irish perished in the millions because of the potato famine. Even the Wikipedia contributors failed to find more wars in the 17th century than in the 16th or 18th.
Furthermore, Mr Parrott’s focus continually oscillates between local and global causes and consequences of the “global crisis” of the XVII century. We are told that
“there are no general, let alone monocausal, answers to explain the diversity of outcomes”
– and yet –
“it’s..unsatisfactory to deny long-term and structural factors”
Or is it? I am under the impression that Mr Parker’s book should demonstrate the existence and importance of those factors, so his readers should not be expected to take those for granted.
Again: contrarily to Mr Parrott’s assertion, in the states of Northern Italy “warfare and its burdens were” not “kept in check“. The War of the Mantuan Succession (1628-1631) brought several local and foreign armies into open warfare with each other in the Po valley, including the infamous Landsknecht. Famine and a devastating plague brought Lombardy to its knees, in a mass tragedy that inspired Manzoni’s Promessi Sposi two hundred years later.
Finally (in order to leave this comment short), Mr Parrott’s finds
“more convincing” the idea that
“in many areas the Global Crisis eliminated surplus population”.
Or did it? Where are the scholarly works showing a dip in the number of people alive on any given year between 1650 and, say, 1750? European population for one did increase almost continuously during those hundred years – or so we have been told until now.
Maybe Mr Parrott and Mr Parker are aware of new data showing otherwise – in that case, we should be shown those. It’s the same point as before: a new and remarkable thesis is presented as an established fact not needing a proper demonstration.
One is left wondering if Mr Parrott is just too partial to the ideas put forward by Mr Parker.
“Oil was $14 a barrel in 1998 and has now dropped to $83 from $115 (Brent). With costs of production at $60 or $70 a barrel, oil prices are not going back to $14 or even $40 (at least until renewables displace it more or less completely in a few decades). “
“Under glut conditions, oil (and natural gas) is uniquely sensitive to declines toward marginal cost (ignoring sunk costs), which can approach a few dollars a barrel – the cost of just pumping the oil.”
Yesterday I had noticed that casual readers would only get the message that a climate researcher was somehow involved with undeclared corporate interests. This is because the online article was titled “Ties to Corporate Cash for Climate-Change Researcher” with no reference to the outside-of-the-consensus position of Willie Soon, who found himself representing literally any climate scientist.
Given what happens with politicians, it would then be expected that the same casual readers would conclude some form of corruption be endemic to climate science. Not exactly the Narrative favored by the New York Times.
Turns out the same online article has since been changed, at least in the title, that now reads “Deeper Ties to Corporate Cash for Doubtful Climate Researcher“. Apart from the dramatizing use of “Deeper”, the important bit is the addition of “Doubtful” – removing at last the apparent smear against all climate scientists of every opinion.
A last-minute correction following a blog post? It’s not so simple. Here’s the story as I can see it now
1. The original article (“Ties to Corporate Cash for Climate-Change Researcher“) appeared online before 2AM EST Sunday Feb 22, as per Wayback Machine. It was timestamped “3:05PM”, presumably Saturday Feb 21
2. The same title appeared on the official Facebook NYT pages, timestamped 12:53AM Sunday – AFAIK, that’s GMT, or in other words, 7:53PM Saturday EST
3. Same title got propagated by various news outlets and blogs
4. Then something happened. The printed (US) edition of Sunday showed the new title (“Deeper Ties to Corporate Cash for Doubtful Climate Researcher“). I do not know if more than one printing is done on Sundays: assuming it is not, the change was made in a real hurry as one can only presume 2AM is already a little late for the printers
5. Whoever ordered the change, forgot to distribute it in full. So the International New York Times, printed for delivery on Monday, still carried a version of the old title (apologies for the small size of the picture)
6. Both versions of the article are visible on the International NYT archive – in fact I am not aware of any material change in the text between one title and the other
7. Yesterday I then noticed that the original “Ties” version was on the NYT website – another misdistribution of the correction. But by sometimes in the AM GMT, the online title was changed to the new “Deeper” version too.
Some of the Leading Scientists Agree Upon an Important Subject.
It is not only natural but just that proof should be demanded by the public for every statement or claim that is made to the public”
The piece continues:
“When, therefore, it is asserted that a certain article is not only pure and palatable, and a most delightful beverage, but also that it possesses qualities almost invaluable for the human system, people are right in demanding the proof.”
Say what? Actually, it concludes so:
“Do not be persuaded by any druggist or grocer to accept anything but the pure, the real Duffy’s malt.”
Oh wait. It’s just an ad. Of course. Why, it’s the same New York Times that on Sunday, April 28, 1912, page 43 told its readers that, according to “the leading microbiologists of the world”,
“To take a bath only leaves one’s skin in a dirtier condition than before, from the medical point of view. “
Asinine deference to mad scientists long predates the climate change scares. Unless there is some whisky to sell.
I wake up in the morning to one temperature, only to find that it goes up and up during the day. Naturally extrapolating the day’s progression I have a nervous breakdown around 3PM, and I’m incapable of speaking as the rest of the afternoon confirms that we will all boil to death before the week is out.
Then evening rolls around, and just as things are returning to a stable state the temperatures plunge inexorably toward (and sometimes beyond) freezing. By the time I hit the sack I can’t close my eyes, since my calculations tell me we will surely all be lifeless blocks of ice before the next day’s end. Exhausted and paralized by fear I finally pass out until the cycle starts over.
Anti-vaxxers are stupid but the answer “trust the scientists” is just as unscientific. “Scientists are a special group of people” is risible to anybody who’s ever been one.
Never mind the problem of who’s uttering that stuff. Why should we believe a paleontologist telling us to believe in what astronomers say, when the paleontologist is just as alien as anybody to the matters of astronomy?
There is no point in arguing that we should believe in the Most Optimal Caste of Science Priests instead of in google searches. Obviously we should believe in neither and be scientific ourselves.
Eg if A is true then B is expected so if B isn’t observed then A is unlikely to be true. In this case A is the anti-vaxxers propaganda and B is children falling into autism in the millions worldwide. This approach doesn’t depend on scientists being Good People. And that’s another characteristic of a scientific approach.
And by the way, MJ’s description of Climategate is just plain wrong. As usual, and forever.
Sad isn’t it when both SoD and Kloor find it necessary to go for brownie points, and clarify, clarify and clarify again that they ARE part of the Good Guys Brigade indeed, and have NO DOUBTS about the greenhouse effect, or the fact that increasing anthropogenic GHGs has been a significant contribution to rising temperatures of the last 100 years.
You are missing a very important point.
I have been labelled a D many many times. I have even collected all the insults received during a brief period in the Greenfyre blog
The insults haven’t gone away…they just resurface whenever I say anything in “warmist” blogs.
What’s the issue? The issue is that in my About page there is a text from 2007 where I clearly state that I have no doubts about the greenhouse effect, or the fact that increasing anthropogenic GHGs has been a significant contribution to rising temperatures of the last 100 years.
It’s from eight years ago. Yet the “concerned heretic watchers” would not and will not accept my membership of the Good Guys Brigade.
And who wrote that text? Why, Willis Eschenbach of WUWT fame. This should obviously and clearly and definitely destroy Kloor’s defense. WUWT is not the Very Bad Place he tried to describe in order to get brownie points.
Know what, the vituperated Bishop Hill has a blog owner who I suspect would subscribe to the same – that is, he has no doubts about the greenhouse effect, or the fact that increasing anthropogenic GHGs has been a significant contribution to rising temperatures of the last 100 years. There is a category of self-style Lukewarmers: Ridley, Lomborg, Lawson among them.
However, as seen countless times and for at least seven years and again in this thread, and about Ridley and Lomborg and Lawson, this does not matter. The people who utter the D word do not care about what the objects of their ires actually think: because the issue is not one’s opinion on the GHG properties of CO2, and not even what the temperature record says, or what the equations may indicate, or how good the numerical solutions we call Models are.
The issue for those who want/need to use the D word has been indicated by the Guardian some time ago: a skeptic is somebody who thinks at least some of the alarming claims made about climate change are exaggerated.
Conversely, a Believer is somebody who thinks no alarming claim is exaggerated.
In other words, a Believer does see the world as destined to a fiery and burning death. With the catastrophe approaching, anybody who doesn’t agree we’re a few years away from total collapse of civilization and more, is put in the D category.
You guys, (SoD and Kloor) are hovering about, almost ready to fall in the B camp. Maybe you should make it clear to yourselves and to your readers.
Are some claims of what is going to happen about global warming and climate change, exaggerated?
Since it’s Veteran’s Day in the USA, I am posting a recap of the story of Charles J Morabito, killed in the proximity of the Berga extermination camp in the last weeks of World War II, and whose temporary resting place appears in a relatively famous picture taken shortly after the war.
Plus I’ll mention brothers Anthony “Tony” F. Morabito and Frank A. Morabito, Purple Heart both of them, killed in action in December 1944 and February 1945 respectively and currently next to each other at the Épinal American Cemetery and Memorial, France.
I feel particularly attached to these stories having researched them for more than four years before being able to collate some information. BTW I have had the privilege to visit Tony and Frank in France and plan to go see Charles as soon as I can arrange a trip to his cemetery in Cuyahoga County, OH.
I will also travel one day to what remains in Berga.
Described by fellow prisoner Joe Mark as “reckless”
Escaped in March 1945, probably on the 15th. Was captured while milking a cow not far from the camp, a reckless act indeed but still done after having been starved for weeks (the cow, has it happens, made a noise)
Killed by his captors, probably shot on the spot with wooden bullets
Charles’ tomb in Berga (where the body was transferred after the camp was liberated) was photographed by NARA (see photo at the top of this post).In 2006, by pure chance that same picture got printed on the pages of the International Herald Tribune and that’s where I noticed it, kicking off all the search to collect this information
Sons of Frank Anthony Morabito and Maria Nicola Salvatore.
Last US address: 161 West Avenue, Spencerport, Monroe County, NY
Tony enlisted on May 22, 1944 at Fort Dix, NJ. Service #42142051 in the 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division, U.S. Army
Frank enlisted on April 14, 1944 at Fort Dix, NJ. Service #56374374 in the 274th Infantry Regiment, 70th Infantry Division, U.S. Army
Both ranked Private First Class, noted as mechanics, single, without dependents.
Tony and Frank “died of wounds” during action in Germany and France respectively, only 11 weeks apart
They had at lest two brothers: Arthur Carmelo Morabito, veteran of WW II, Korea and Vietnam, retired a Lt. Colonel from the U.S. Air Force; and Joseph Bruno Morabito, veteran of WW II as a Tech. 5, 154th engineers and awarded four battle stars having seen combat in Peilelu, Saipan Leyte Gulf and Iwo Jima.
This means their family might have had four siblings fighting in WWII at the same time
[…] Overy’s account of the ignominious defeat of Italian airpower is utterly fascinating, especially in current circumstances, because – permit me a brief diversion – it was a result of the same pathologies that today condemn the Italian economy to relentless decline under the euro, that most un-Italian of currencies, which Italy’s ruling élite is obliged to hang onto whatever the cost, in order ‘to be able to look Germans in the eye’, as one of that élite recently confessed to me. In other words, Italy should accept impoverishment because the ruling élite has to pretend that it is far more efficient industrially than it is or could be. In the process, the peculiar but very real talents that continued to raise real standards of living for decades after 1945 must be nullified in the hopeless attempt to compete with the Germans exclusively on German terms. The nation of Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati must compete only with Volkswagen. […]
Instead of accepting Italian aviation talents for what they were – artisanal rather than mass-produced, with individualist ace-pilots rather than mass-trained war pilots – Mussolini just had to compete with the Germans. The disasters started as soon as German-style air fighting started, with the arrival of the Corpo Aereo Italiano at Ursel in occupied Belgium in late September 1940, to participate in the bombing of Britain. […]
because of consistently unrealistic plans, utterly irresponsible command decisions and absurd priorities, 2293 Italian pilots were dead, invalided out or prisoners of war by the autumn of 1942, while only 1920 new pilots qualified in 1940-43 – and all for naught, since Italy could neither attack by air nor defend itself from air attack.
Radar, searchlights, anti-aircraft guns and night fighters: all were in short supply and incompetently used. Civil defence preparations relentlessly favoured form over substance as is still the Italian habit. In spite of very strict blackout regulations and years of theatrical drills, when RAF bombers arrived over Turin on the night of 10 June 1940, the city was entirely illuminated […]
There was a commenter at a blog I shall not mention who simply could not get anything I mentioned. Anything at all.
There was the blog owner at another unmentioned site who simply could not see anything wrong in people describing a prominent climate skeptic’s work as non accidentally cherry picked bad statistics [that] generated misleading graphs – all in the comments section of a blog post allegedly questioning where the dividing line stands between scientific criticism and libel (on the back of Mann’s latest juridical foray).
There was the anti-GMOer who turned pro-GMO for reasons that virtually coincide with all that’s good in climate skepticism, and still refused to abandon the “planet is doomed, skeptics are evil” party line. And he was not alone.
There was the accidental Nobel Prize winner who wrote column after column about how fearful climate change is, and how wrong it is to live in fear. Sadly, those points never appeared in the same column.
There were countless climate scientists who were so specialized in their own little field, they started reading and linking to the almighty pile of scientifically sounding garbage written by a cartoonist and the climate blogger with the biggest conflict of interest imaginable, a site where no research was safe from manipulation.
When climate alarmism is around, rooms really look clever.
It shows that there is little dry land on Earth where the antipodes are dry land as well, instead of just ocean. This can be explained at least partially by there being only 29.2% of land.
In theory then, every piece of land has only 29.2% chance of being a place where “if you drill through the globe, you’ll hit land on the other side” (as written by a commenter on Twitter to describe the situation very briefly). However, since the land is concentrated in huge continents the actual number is likely smaller.
For example Africa covers 20.3% of the Earth’s land, i.e. 5.9% of the total surface. The simplified chance of finding land on the other side of Africa is therefore (remaining land)/(ocean surface+remaining land), i.e. (29.2-5.9)/((100-29.2)+(29.2-5.9))=22% (this is because Africa cannot be at its own antipodes).
End of story? Not quite. A comprehensive look at the situation reveals it as full of tantalizingly curious details.
The picture above (click to enlarge -hope it’s clear enough even if a bit rough!) uses transparency to show what’s on the other side of the world (original Mercator projection by Google Maps -used here as I’m interested in directions – the map by Amazing Maps uses the Peters projection instead).
Among the amazing peculiarities:
Australia seems cut out of the lower North Atlantic ocean. Its coastline follows the contours of the eastern US coast, then the coasts of Venezuela, the Guyanas and Brazil, and even partially the western coast of Africa
Likewise North America has the perfect shape to fit in the Indian Ocean, roughly following the south-eastern coast of Africa and then curving as if to “avoid” Australia
The northern coasts of Russia and Alaska eerily follow (on the other side of the world) the same path as much of the coast of Antarctica: what is land to the north is ocean in the south, and vice-versa
The antipodes of Africa and of most of the Eurasian continent sit comfortably in the Pacific ocean. Europe manages to just touch New Zealand, and only partially so (mostly, this concerns the volcanic northern island of NZ)
The entire path of India’s migration from Madagascar to the Himalayas is antipodal to and follows the contour of the ocean to the west of Mexico
The odd ones out are (a) the area of Chile and Argentina, corresponding to central China and eastern Mongolia; (b) the Antarctic Peninsula, just to the south of Chile and Argentina and jutting towards them and (c) Greenland and the Canadian Archipelago
Note also that almost exactly on the other side of the narrow strip of land known as Central America, there is the elongated archipelago known as Malaysia and Indonesia.
If confirmed with a more accurate map, my impression would be that there is a hitherto-hidden physical law at play here. It seems that continents cannot simply hang about at random locations, and their place in the Big Schema of the Planet depends on something that has been overlooked until now.
For example, consider that Pangea was constituted 300 million years ago and began to break up 200 million years ago. Now, if we reduced 100 million years to just one year, Earth would be spinning at more than 1,000 revolutions a second. From the point of view of a continent, our planet is like a centrifuge. This has to have its consequences.
What Steven Goddard, suyts, WUWT, the Bish, McI and many others are writing about (and myself at times during the years) is not so much what climate science should be and actually isn’t. Climate science is obviously being done somewhere else. You need time, money, political support, access to mainstream media, and much more, in order to do public health policy-affecting climate science.
They/we are describing the elusion that has taken over much of what passes as climate science.
It was surface temps before it was heat hiding in the deep oceans. It was decreasing snow before it was increasing snow. It was ice extent before it was ice volume. Etc etc. Whatever happens, there is always a new story devised/concocted to “explain” that whatever is happening is wholly compatible with AGW and especially with the “it’s worse than we thought” meme.
And sadly that’s all true. Whatever happens _is_ wholly compatible with AGW. We all know that there is no possible observation that would disprove the idea that the climate is changing for the worse (if anybody knows of of any, please do tell). This has made the whole enterprise extremely foggy, and constantly bordering between science and faith.
We have no way to tell what is scientifically plausible to think about future climates.
An urban heat island (UHI) is a metropolitan area that is significantly warmer than its surrounding rural areas due to human activities. The phenomenon was first investigated and described by Luke Howard in the 1810s, although he was not the one to name the phenomenon. The temperature difference usually is larger at night than during the day, and is most apparent when winds are weak. UHI is most noticeable during the summer and winter.
Does UHI have a large role to play in global warming? Maybe. Maybe not. But it surely has a very visible impact in the Po Valley in Italy.
This is a Eumetsat picture from sometimes on Dec 8, 2013. Can you spot where the city of Milan is?
It turns out that Tetra Tech has a subsidiary company called Tetra Tech Construction, Inc. And what do they do? For example, they do “energy” (of the ALTERNATIVE variety that is):
Tetra Tech Construction expertise in the alternative energy field allows us to support and deliver energy-related projects using engineer-procure-construct (EPC), design-build and/or bid-build models. We provide design and construction services for wind, solar, hydroelectric, cogeneration, geothermal, natural gas drilling and extraction, combined-cycle, waste-to-energy, and electric transmission projects. […]
Surprise, surprise, they are also big in…”wind energy“:
Tetra Tech Construction brings our expertise to support and deliver energy related projects using engineer-procure-construct (EPC), design-build, bid-build models. We provide design and construction services for solar, hydroelectric, cogeneration, geothermal, natural gas drilling and extraction, combined-cycle, waste-to-energy, and electric transmission.
[…] We have completed construction services to clients on 19 wind construction projects in the past two years valued at more than $340 million. These projects supported nearly 1,700 MW of power, over 1,000 foundations, and over 600 turbines installed in states from New York, Alaska, Wyoming, Kansas, Oklahoma, Washington, Texas, Idaho, to Oregon. In fact, the Tetra Tech family of companies has experience on more than 250 wind projects in 34 states and Canada, totaling more than 20,000 MW of wind power generation. Our experience in the construction of wind facilities provides a more practical understanding of front-end activities, including environmental compliance and engineering, thus providing a more complete perspective for achieving project goals.
Wind power is so important for Tetra Tech Construction, it takes special pride of place in their Projects portfolio map:
It also means Tetra Tech Construction is in trouble if wind power subsidies disappear, as mentioned in a newspaper article published just two days ago. In what has to be a fantastic coincidence, Tetra Tech is juxtaposed to “interests” linked to “fossil fuels” and the “XL pipeline”:
Renewal of the wind tax credit, which can provide up to $1 million to developers of a large turbine, is a politically contentious issue. In addition to tea party congressional Republicans, opposition to continuing the wind credit comes from the American Energy Alliance, a Washington, D.C.-based industry group linked to petrochemical interests that promote expanded drilling for fossil fuels, including in the protected Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska, and approval of the proposed XL pipeline to bring Canadian tar sands oil to refineries in Texas and the Gulf Coast.
“This lack of certainty over the wind credit creates a boom and bust cycle, which is really detrimental to wind project developers,” said Valerie Strauss, executive director of Alliance for Clean Energy New York, an Albany-based lobbying group for alternative energy companies.
One such local business is Gloversville-based Tetra Tech Construction. Its website says it has built 21 wind projects in the U.S. It is currently involved in building the Orangeville wind farm outside of Buffalo, owned by Chicago-based Invenergy, and the only wind farm project under construction this year.
A Tetra Tech official declined comment, referring questions to a corporate office; phone calls to that office were not returned.
The article continues revealing another fantastic coincidence: Tetra Tech’s fortunes go down with the expansion of fracking.
Wind energy plans have been shrinking in the state, as the industry faces a glut of cheap natural gas from hydrofracking, uncertainty over federal support and dwindling financing. The amount of wind power expected to one day plug into the state’s electrical grid has fallen by more than two-thirds since 2009 as developers shelve projects.
I’ll let readers decide how much such an individual can be trusted with speaking anything near the bare, honest, transparent scientific truth in anything climate change, global warming or even energy in general.
Disclaimer: I never blog or tweet or write on facebook about my day job exactlyto avoid any conflict of interest. Because if you write positively about the company you work for, everybody will be entitled to believe you’re brown-nosing or worse. And if you write negatively, you’re immediately out of a job.
Plenty of gnawing of teeth by newly-famous heat-discoverer Robert Way, having been found out as a McIntyre Supporter, or rather, as a singularly scientifically well-prepared SkS “secret forum” member who behaved in public very, very differently.
In the course of today, Steve McI decided to remove a comment of mine, here reproduced for future reference.
Mr Way may have a point. This thread allows him to bring himself into disrepute, if only because duplicity and lack of integrity is the opposite of an excuse. Whoever thinks any good of Albert Speer?
You see, somebody like Buzz [see thread at CA] can always find refuge in ignorance and inability to understand. For example I have demonstrated him that “secret” doesn’t mean “private” because a forum of strangers cannot be considered as “private”. Yet his answer completely misses the point.
That’s different from a person who we now know was fully aware of what was going on. Way’s intellect is way above the SkS average, that is, his behaviour is way below.
As for motives, I find this assertion [by Way] particularly revealing: “I was speaking reflectively on the history of exchanges with climate scientists as a whole rather than this individual case”. So Way’s Crusade has been fuelled by a desire to defend “climate scientists”, with whatever means one suspects. In other walks of life, it is not hard to imagine Eugène Terre’Blanche possessed a very good intellect too, and put it to work to “defend” people he believed to deserve defending with whatever means was necessary. And whoever thinks of any good of Eugène Terre’Blanche?
And just to clarify, when Way asked “Really? Comparing me to a white supremacist?” I replied (comment also removed)
No. Comparing your behaviour to the behaviour of some other people, notorious for their behaviour. As for who is the real you, I have no idea.
(For some reason, Way didn’t find issues regarding the mention of Speer)
This being my blog, let me state that I am not too comfortable with Steve McI’s approach to the topic. First of all, given that he wasn’t born yesterday, he surely must have know that the revelation that Way had supported CA’s stance time and again, would have put Way in deep trouble and caused him the aforementioned gnawing of teeth. As per another comment of mine:
Imagine [Way’s] PhD discussion…a large room with a giant desk, a small army of stern-looking professors sitting as if to surround Candidate Way.
A balding, goatee-sporting professor starts roaring with an even sterner voice: “Tell me, boy…what do you agree with MCINTYRE on?”
A sound of thunder fails to break the icy silence. In the boy’s mind, a portion of fries, and a customer to serve…
I suspect this comment is still live because Way didn’t understand the obscure references especially at the end.
Secondly, Steve McI went way out of his way for Way…to the point of meaninglessly snipping comments a-way:
All these snips are meaningless. These guys [Way and friends at SkS] think the worst of the author of this blog, and deserve protection from imaginary abuse as much as a rhino needs band-aids after stampeding through a china shop.
Anyway, since … cannot be named and … cannot be named either, does anybody know of any historical figure that has been found to be secretly candid and publicly a follower of the party line? WIth 1933-1945 … impossible to mention, I shall presume the state with Moscow as capital is out of bounds as well.
I would just like to know how people who behaved similarly in the past, went on to become great citizens and pinnacles of their profession, that’s all.
(I am still looking for such individuals)
The end result is that we do not have any idea if the CA post was the coldest of revenges, or an invitation to work together in the future.
I’m writing a fund-raising letter. The secret to getting donations is to depict everyone who disagrees with you as the enemy. Then you explain how they’re systematically working to destroy everything you hold dear. It’s a war of values! Rational discussion is hopeless! Compromise is unthinkable! Our only hope is well-funded antagonism, so we need your money to keep up the fight! How cynically unconstructive. Enmity sells.
Calvin is writing a fund-raising letter. He tells Hobbes the secret is to depict everyone who disagrees with you as the enemy. You explain how they’re destroying everything you hold dear. It’s a war of values. Rational discussion is hopeless. We need your money to keep up the fight. Hobbes says that’s cynically unconstructive. Calvin informs him that enmity sells.
Dramatic foretelling by Bill Watterson of why the IPCC has become such a risible failure. It also explains why so many unknowledgeable people are so enthusiastic about the work of “scientists” when it suits their pet causes:
(original run: Sep 21, 1993 – above taken from a recent copy of the IHT)
Calvin (looking at a book):
The more you know the harder it is to take decisive action. Once you become informed, you start seeing complexities and shades of gray. You realize that nothing is as clear and simple as it first appears. Ultimately, knowledge is paralyzing.
Calvin (throwing the book away):
Being a man of action, I can’t afford to take that risk.
Nothing can hurt Islam like the awful behavior of those who pretend they’re defending it.
That’s quite a general statement. Replace “Islam” with whatever else highly-held concept, and it works just as well. Nothing hurt Communism like Stalin. Nothing hurt Roman Catholicism like Torquemada. Nothing hurt Anthropogenic Climate Change like Michael Mann. Etc etc.
And yet that is a valid point mostly if not only from a propaganda point-of-view. There comes a point when one has to stand and state that the same awful behavior is no indication of there necessarily being anything intrinsically wrong with Islam, Communism, Roman Catholicism or Anthropogenic Climate Change.
The actual flaws, if there are any, must be discovered and argued for what they are. A simple labelling “Some of their supporters are up to no good” cannot demonstrate if Milwall is or isn’t a good team. Likewise the millions killed by Tamerlane have zero logical relationship with the standard of behavior of the average Muslim citizen. And the fact that France and Germany started a war 99 years ago that led to more than 100 million dead, does not necessarily mean there is something very wrong with France and Germany.
There could be, but we cannot know before finding a proper argument above and beyond the behavioral one.
The above is an introduction to a series of comments I have made in another blog, where the diffuse anti-Islam propaganda has unfortunately found some new victims. I’m posting most of the comments unedited or slightly so.
Complaint Summary: ‘Tree of Life’ false, misleading and non-scientific
Full Complaint: The programme makes extensive use of a ‘Tree of Life’ pictorial device depicting species as branches on a tree, with the vertical dimension showing time. All thousands of branches are continuous and ultimately end up together in the present time. This is false, because we all know most species died out long ago (so the vast majority of branches shouldn’t reach the present). It is also misleading, as the viewer will think the present time is much richer in species than the past. It is finally non-scientific, using an antiquated metaphor long ago disproven by the likes of Stephen Jay Gould. Please insert a correction/disclaimer at the beginning of future broadcasts and for the rest of the first showing of the series.
I screen-shot three examples for future memory.
First image comes from 56’50” in the episode. As you can see all the branches above a certain line continue unbroken to the present
I went back to see wherever else the multicolored tree of life was popping up. Interesting, at 20’41” some branches give at least an impression that those species went extinct (look under the first L of “250 MILLION”)
No worries though, five seconds later those very same dead branches spruced forward again
Please tell us more about why you say this giving examples of programmes and content. We want to know how well BBC News and Current Affairs (TV, radio and online) is doing in these areas and welcome your suggestions for improvement.
The “Today” presenters have the habit of verbally assaulting politicians only then to go soft on all sorts of other people making all sorts of strange claims.
The lineup of news is curiously and disappointingly similar to what one can find in privately-owned newsmedia.
There is too much emphasis on presenting the negative side of everything, and in finding something to scare people with.
On the environmental side we’re inevitably treated to a series of half-thoughts pieces by activists masquerading as journalists. That cannot be right.
Reports from foreign lands are often ruined by the journalist taking side in foreign politics, and thereby distorting the news. There is also too much reliance on interviewing locals who speak English very well, a very limited and self-selected subset of the population in most countries.
How well do the following words describe BBC News:
Trustworthy: Not well
Accurate: Not well
Impartial: Not well
Up-to-date: Quite well
Please tell us more about your answers, giving examples of programmes. We want to know how BBC News (TV, radio and online) is doing in these areas and welcome your suggestions for improvement.
The BBC is partial to itself. In particular BBC News behaves like a cheerleader for the whole BBC, and is often impermeable to criticism or corrections.
Due to its location near the mouth of numerous canyons, the Boulder area is a major flash flood risk. Following are descriptions compiled by Elizabeth Black of some of the flash floods that have occurred in the region beginning with the flood of 1894. Such floods– and many larger– have happened before the area was developed…. and will sooner or later happen again.
1894 (100 Year Flood– over 10,000 cubic feet per second on Boulder Creek)
Yes! There’s some silver lining in watching the initial stages of the giant Costa Concordia salvage operation…
11. Expect a vast increase in tourism as treasure hunters will flock to the area when the ship’s gone
10. Everybody knows now about Giglio island
9. The sea looked spectacularly beautiful on TV, metal parts aside
8. Plenty of thriving sea life attached itself to a million different artificial reefs for a year
7. It’s a marvel of Italian engineering (in the field of marine rescue). Navigation skills might need a review.
6. Everybody knows their way around the Costa upper-deck leisure bits (useful if they have the temerity of trying themselves)
5. Something meaningful at last, in the 24h news cycle
4. At least it wasn’t Titanic-size
3. Dismantling to come – you will soon be able to get your own Costa Concordia original plastic seat on eBay
2. Stuff under the mud will still turn up in 2,000 years’ time telling people then the way we were now (due to series of misunderstandings, statues will be erected and babies named after hero Capt. Schettino)
And the top reason is…
1. Widespread discovery there’s more to life than Candy Crush
They hang on awaiting vindication of their idea, that’s what happens…
George Kukla (born 1930) …became [in 1972] a central figure in convincing the United States government to take the dangers of climate change seriously. Kukla and geologist, Robert Matthews of Brown University, convened a historic conference, themed: “The Present Interglacial: How and When will it End?” Kukla and Matthews then highlighted the dangers of global cooling in Science magazine and, to President Richard Nixon.
The Nixon administration reacted swiftly to their letter, which described calamities such as killer frosts, lower food production and floods, to come. By February 1973, the State Department had established a Panel on the Present Interglacial, which advised Drs. Kukla and Matthews that it “was seized of the matter” and numerous other government agencies were soon included.
Kukla was co-author of a chapter in the book “Natural Climate Variability on Decade to Century Time Scales” published by the National Research Council.
Kukla believes all glacial periods in Earth’s history began with global warming (understood as an increase of area-weighted average global mean temperature). He believes Earth’s recent warming is mostly natural and will ultimately lead to a new ice age.
Who knew? In 1999, long before selling its soul to climate catastrophism, the BBC had no problem in letting its listeners know that scientists in the 1970s were convinced about Global Cooling. And that contemporary scientist-activists about Warming are just recycling arguments used agains Cooling.
Or consider where we stand with world climate change. Most scientists well versed in the field believe that global warming is occurring and that measures should be taken against it. Yet only about 25 or so years ago, orthodox scientific opinion was that the world was in a phase of global cooling. Much the same evidence that was deployed to support the hypothesis of global cooling is now brought into play to bolster that of global warming – heat waves, cold spells, unusual types of weather. Is global warming occurring, and does it have human origins? Probably – but we won’t, and can’t, be completely sure until it is too late.
In these circumstances, there is a new moral climate of politics, marked by a push-and-pull between accusations of scaremongering on the one hand, and of cover-ups on the other. If anyone – government official, scientific expert or researcher – takes a given risk seriously, he or she must proclaim it. It must be widely publicised because people must be persuaded that the risk is real – a fuss must be made about it. Yet if a fuss is indeed created and the risk turns out to be minimal, those involved will be accused of scaremongering.
Giddens’ solution is not complicated really, the total opposite of many’s attempts at shutting down debate by proclaiming “scientists say”:
We cannot simply ‘accept’ the findings which scientists produce, if only because scientists so frequently disagree with one another, particularly in situations of manufactured risk. And everyone now recognises the essentially sceptical character of science. Whenever someone decides what to eat, what to have for breakfast, whether to drink decaffeinated or ordinary coffee, that person takes a decision in the context of conflicting and changeable scientific and technological information.
Giddens (now Baron Giddens) is a sociologist, obviously from an era when sociology didn’t just produce a Lew.
Is computing rapidly turning itself into a hi-tech version of Howard Stern’s famous “Who Wants to be a Turkish Billionaire?” ?
My son asked me [seven years ago, so he was four] to explain what is a “Gigabyte”. I tried to describe the meaning of a little bit more than a billion tiny little things hidden in a PC. But then I stopped quickly: how was I going to clarify the meaning of having 40 of those “gigabytes” in my laptop’s hard drive alone [500 since 2011]? And 200 of them in my desktop computer [1,024 since 2013 – but I also have a 4TB external HDD]. And a thousand of them (a terabyte) in the latest high-spec PC [you can buy a 8TB internal HDD in 2013].
From there onwards it’s going to be exabytes in 2035, zettabytes in 2050 and I’ll be turning 100 literally in yoda-yoda-land (yottabytes, some million billion billion bytes that will grace our computers in the middle of the 2060)
There is however no need for all this aggravation…let’s learn from Chemistry and dear old Avogadro Constant. So here’s my proposal:
1. Dig the Giga, Tera, Peta, Etcetc-bytes asap
2. Define a Mole of Bytes as 6.023×10ˆ23 of them
3. Resize the capacities now. Say, a 100 Gigabyte disk becomes a mere 166 femtoMole. To sport even 100 Terabytes of storage area, will only mean less than 200 picoMoles of Bytes.
This will surely give some renewed perspective to the whole business of visualizing trends in computing, and show that there is a long long way ahead before we can declare ourselves satisfied with our computational powers.
[for those with a mathematical disposition: 1 mole of bytes would contain more than 11.2 trillion blu-ray discs, corresponding (at 9h/disc) to 11.5 billion years of HDTV recording, the entire history of the universe. Alternatively, it would contain around 2 hours of HDTV recording from cameras spaced apart so that each of them would cover 10 square meters, or 110 square feet of the Earth’s surface, oceans included. If the capacity increase rate is sustained, the first disks with a mole of bytes will be shipped around the year 2067]