It would be quite a shock to know that he hid it from the public, I know.
28 November, 2009
27 November, 2009
Has anybody heard the CRU try to claim that the emails, code, and data posted by “FOIA” are false? Me neither.
The now non-secret data prove what many of us had only strongly suspected — that most of the evidence of global warming was simply made up. That is, not only are the global warming computer models unreliable, the experimental data upon which these models are built are also unreliable. As Lord Monckton has emphasized here at Pajamas Media, this deliberate destruction of data and the making up of data out of whole cloth is the real crime — the real story of Climategate.
It is an act of treason against science. It is also an act of treason against humanity, since it has been used to justify an attempt to destroy the world economy.
NB: I quote Tipler here in the belief that he’s right, or at least mostly right, on this subject. Like here:
I am automatically skeptical of any claim that by its very nature cannot be replicated by other scientists. What keeps scientists honest is not that scientists are more honest than other people — we aren’t — but that we know our colleagues are looking over our shoulders. Everyone is honest when he knows he is being watched.
I’m worried by one of his books, though.
25 November, 2009
As I suspected, it’s not what’s in the emails but what’s in the released code that damages the AGW alarmists’ case.
Sexing up a graph is at best a misdemeanor. But a Declan McCullough story suggests a more disturbing possibility: the CRU’s main computer model may be, to put it bluntly, complete rubbish.
Note that Dear Leader Himself probably ranks close to a 0. His only real job was a stint as an associate at a law firm, as I recall.
This needs to be edited down to a minute, tops, but it’s pretty good.
Michael Yon links to an analysis from Great Britain which looks like a worthy read.
It is a false dichotomy to say that we must continue as we are, or we just leave the place to revert to the dark ages. There is an alternative between these extreme positions. We can still prevent AQ returning as a threat to us out of Afghanistan without the deployment of tens of thousands of troops and the loss of hundreds of lives and billions of dollars. To achieve that, we need to have two clear policy aims.
- First, to maintain wide-ranging capabilities to find, fix and strike anyone presenting an international threat.
Second, to ensure that NATO’s rebalancing can not be painted as victory for the Islamists. We can not cut and run but must continue to support some sort of loose national government and make deals with locals in the Pashtoon belt.
Liberals, being the humorless, simpering beasts they are, not only believe there’s such a thing as a “hate crime”, but they can get their panties in a bunch over a cartoon which clearly illustrates why “hate crime” is an absurd notion.
Tinsley states the obvious defends himself here:
“The point my cartoon made was that the animus behind a crime matters far less (or sometimes, not at all) than does the real violence done to a real person or people, and that a ‘hate-crime’ mindset often trivializes that very violence by subordinating it to a political agenda.
This all reminds me of the line of dialogue I wanted to add to The Lion King. After Mufasa explains the circle of life Simba should have asked, “So… they don’t mind that we eat them, then?”
24 November, 2009
You’ve heard that heart-rending story about the guy in Belgium who was diagnosed with a coma 23 years ago and who turned out just to be paralyzed? I’m sorry to report that he probably really isn’t conscious, and angry to report that we’ve all been hoaxed by a “facilitator”.
For those who may need further evidence for my contention, the proof can be found at http://tinyurl.com/ye9d9lp — where it is clearly seen that the “facilitator” is looking directly at the keyboard, while the subject is asleep! There can be no further doubt. This FC claim is simply untrue, a farce, a lie – and the “facilitator” knows it! And no, this man is not going to write a book, but the “facilitator” is, and if this humbug is not stopped, she’ll make a fortune doing so. Put a stop to this, someone!”
There’s more from Science Based Medicine.
Meanwhile, this case stands as a cautionary tale – mostly about the dangers of the media discussing the implications of a story before the facts have been verified. It may also be a rare case of misdiagnosed locked in syndrome. My best guess is that Dr. Laureys is correct about the preserved cortical activity, but he is simply not familiar with the phenomenon of FC (he did not sound familiar on the interview) and has been deceived by it. If this is so, then the FC is an unfortunate distraction from this case (and getting disproportionate attention from the media). I am already reading science bloggers comment on the fact that the video of Houben typing calls the whole case into question.
You get brilliant diplomacy.
Who knows? Under a Commander in Chief like that, Navy SEALS might even go on trial for punching a barbarian they should have just killed. All on the word of the barbarian in question, of course.
Or you might even find rubes willing to spend five dollars on a button.
Some good points about the SEALs from an Army officer.
I suspect that by asking for a court-martial instead of non-judicial
punishment, the SEALs are maintaining that they are absolutely innocent of striking the detainee after he was subdued. They would be foolish to do this as a “How dare we get punished for one little punch” statement — they know that a court-martial will only assess the binary “did it happen/did it not happen” aspect and not whether it’s a big deal in the grand cosmic scheme of things. And being found guilty at court-martial, even for a single punch, would be devastating for anyone’s future. I think the SEALs will argue that the bloody lip was caused 1) by someone else at the detention center or 2) by the detainee himself, who knows the knots we tie ourselves in over these kinds of things.
Finally, I’d submit that someone who got punched in the face by a Navy SEAL would probably end up with much, much worse than a bloody lip.
17 November, 2009
Because we’re doomed.
2011 and 2012 will be very unpleasant years, as the Obama administration struggles to get closer to budget balance without pushing up taxes so far as to cause yet a third recession. Stock prices will be at or below their March 2009 lows, and will stay there even as earnings of export-oriented companies will be robust. (Conversely, retailers dealing in cheap imported goods, such as Wal-Mart, will be devastated.) Wages will be generally declining relative to prices, although may show some growth in nominal terms as inflation will be considerable. Foreign goods and services will be inordinately expensive in dollar terms.
The danger in those years will be that Ben Bernanke will attempt yet again to refloat the U.S. economy through inflation, buying government debt to fund the deficit and forcing short term rates well below the inflation rate. This danger is exacerbated by the Obama administration’s insouciance about deficits. Ben Bernanke on his own (and his predecessor Alan Greenspan) bears a large share of responsibility for the 2008 crash, but the Bernanke/Obama combination is potentially even more dangerous. If expansionary monetary and fiscal policies are pursued regardless of market signals, the U.S. will head towards Weimar-style trillion-percent inflation. That would make the government’s position easier as its mountain of Treasury debt became worthless, but devastate everybody else’s savings and impoverish the American people as Weimar impoverished 1920s Germany.
As I said, a train wreck. Probability of arrival: close to 100%. Time of arrival: around the end of 2010, or possibly a bit earlier. And at this stage, there’s very little anyone can do about it; the definitive rise of gold above $1,000 marked the point of no return.
16 November, 2009
and he is us.
But the years go by, and the mood shifts. You didn’t have to be “alert” to spot Maj. Nidal Hasan. He’d spent most of the last half-decade walking around with a big neon sign on his head saying “JIHADIST. STAND WELL BACK.” But we (that is to say, almost all of us — and certainly almost anyone who matters in national security and the broader political culture) are now reflexively conditioned to ignore the flashing neon sign. Like those apocryphal Victorian ladies discreetly draping the lasciviously curved legs of their pianos, if a glimpse of hard unpleasant reality peeps through we simply veil it in another layer of fluffy illusions.
I mentioned to my mom on the phone tonight that the fact Dear Leader bowed in Japan is no big deal. I stand by that. Bowing is not a breach of protocol. Presidents have been bowing overseas for over two hundred years.
But… It seems that The One continues to get cracking advice from those great protocol advisers He hired. Or He is just that dumb on his own. It’s so hard to tell anymore.
“Kyodo News is running his appropriate and reciprocated nod and shake with the Empress, certainly to show the president as dignified, and not in the form of a first year English teacher trying to impress with Karate Kid-level knowledge of Japanese customs.
I ask you: Would anybody even care if He bowed if He were a president who showed signs of liking the American flag?
Ramirez seems to wonder the same thing.
15 November, 2009
Here’s Lou Dobbs again (who, I confess, reminds me fondly of Ted Baxter) with a great idea involving bulldozers.
Having any kind of law on the books prohibiting blasphemy is antithetical to freedom and completely unconstitutional. All religions deserve criticism, and any religion which cannot tolerate criticism is a failed religion.
Islam needs to learn from Christianity. When a holy symbol of Christianity was famously – and not very artistically – displayed in a jar of urine (I’m reminded of Hitchens’ “not funny” barb) the Christians did the right thing: They complained. They expressed indignation. They said they were offended. And they didn’t behead anybody, set any cars on fire, or try to get anybody arrested.
This, along with the preceding three posts, was found languishing in “Drafts”. For some reason they all failed to launch, and I had blog posts there going back to last March. So you aren’t experiencing time travel if these don’t seem fresh. But this one, at least, is still quite timely.
A rule we can rely on to be unfailingly applied is this: No matter how much the government controls the economic system, any problem will be blamed on whatever small zone of freedom that remains. This of course is evidence of a rigged game.
Behold the Mandelbulb.
Here’s a version generated by a raymarcher written just yesterday by Iñigo Quilez:
13 November, 2009
If Khalid Sheikh Mohammed really is brought to trial in civilian court, his attorneys (and I’m not, for the moment, counting Eric Holder) can use the discovery process to gut our intelligence-gathering capabilities, KSM could be set free, or both.
Given that KSM is not a citizen, this is at least a breach of constitutional and military law precedent. Given that he is an enemy at war with us, either of the above scenarios constitute aid and comfort to the enemy.
So explain to me how Eric Holder and, by implication, his boss, Dear Leader, would not thus be guilty of treason.
Were a candidate for office to clearly state the following truths I can’t see how he would not be elected by large margins, in spite of the one third or so of the country that seems to be suicidally idiotic:
- We did not start this war.
- There are only two ways to end a war: Victory and defeat. Victory can not come if you do not name the enemy.
- We are at war with Islamic Jihadists: Radical Muslims who seek to impose Sharia law by force.
- Sharia is a great evil, an abuser of women, completely incompatible with democratic freedom, and should not be tolerated in any way, shape or form.
Our Dear Leader is, I am convinced, not only incapable of saying any of those truths in public, but does not believe a one of them in his heart.
That makes Him the enemy.
The most charitable reading possible is that The Messiah is a 9/10 man in a 9/11 world.
11 November, 2009
9 November, 2009
While his politics occasionally led him to make some silly pronouncements, Carl Sagan’s contributions toward popularizing science and germinating the modern skeptical movement make it worth celebrating his birthday today. He would have been only 75, which shows just how early we lost him.
7 November, 2009
Orrin Hatch (R-Kolob) has once again demonstrated his scissor-like grip of both science and the constitution.
Backed by some of the most powerful members of the Senate, a little-noticed provision in the healthcare overhaul bill would require insurers to consider covering Christian Science prayer treatments as medical expenses.
Hatch has a history of supporting quackery, possibly because Utah is home to a lot of people selling so-called “supplements”. Secular Right is, rightly, squealing about the “separation of church & state” issue. (Yes, I understand that there is no such separation in the constitution. I also understand that the Founders very carefully set up a secular government.) To me the bigger issue here is the separation of superstition and science, not to mention the separation of taxpayers from their money.
If you want to pray for people, that is your right and it is guaranteed in the First Amendment. If you want to charge people for praying, and can get them to fork over, more power to you. But you do not have a right to put a gun to someone’s head to make them pay for your prayers. Remember: Every single penny the government spends is taken at gunpoint from productive people.
If you don’t think so, just stop paying taxes and let me know who shows up.
If the government has no constitutional authority to spend money on health care (which it doesn’t) it certainly doesn’t have the authority to force private companies to spend it on woo.
Both Hatch and Harry Reid belong to a religion that believes “the constitution will hang as by a thread.” With friends like these the constitution doesn’t need enemies. I wish both of these clowns would put down their scissors, go home, and just shut the hell up.
But that would require them to have an actual sense of shame. And that’s just not allowed in the Senate.
What tattered remnants of the constitution that remained in the House of Representatives was swept out into the trash tonight.
Regardless of the merits of the bill there is no constitutional authority for Congress to offer health care.
There is no constitutional authority for Congress to require the citizens of this country to buy anything.
I take small comfort in the opinions that this monstrosity of a bill is dead in the Senate. Every single moron, thug and despot who voted yea on this thing just violated his oath of office. At least now we know exactly who should not be reelected.
But that doesn’t matter, because laws are for the little people.
Time to get involved, folks.
6 November, 2009
If you serve on a jury and either prosecutors or defense attorneys start throwing around statistics, like in a blood type or DNA match, remember that you need to apply Beyesian Mathematics.
Mathematics might seem a logical fit for the courts, then. Judges and juries, though, all too often rely on gut feeling. A startling example was the rape trial in 1996 of a British man, Dennis John Adams. Adams hadn’t been identified in a line-up and his girlfriend had provided an alibi. But his DNA was a 1 in 200 million match to semen from the crime scene – evidence seemingly so damning that any jury would be likely to convict him.
But what did that figure actually mean? Not, as courts and the press often assume, that there was only a 1 in 200 million chance that the semen belonged to someone other than Adams, making his innocence implausible.
It actually means there is a 1 in 200 million chance that the DNA of any random member of the public will match that found at the crime scene (see “The prosecutor’s fallacy”). The difference is subtle, but significant. In a population, say, of 10,000 men who could have committed the crime, there would be a 10,000 in 200 million, or 1 in 20,000, chance that someone else is a match too. That still doesn’t look good for Adams, but it’s not nearly as damning.
Read the whole thing, including the part about O.J. Simpson.
George Burns and Gracie Allen had an old bit about how she wanted to adopt a child from France, except that she’d have to take French lessons so she could understand the baby when it grew up.
It turns out she was more right than we suspected.
Poor Gracie. In a shocking turn of events it seems that the popular press has completely misrepresented the science. And the science wasn’t so hot to begin with.
This technique of cherry-picking atypical “typical” values for rhetorical effect is fairly common in scientific writing, but it should alert us to the fact that the authors are perhaps not trying quite as hard as they should to disprove their own hypothesis.
5 November, 2009
Universities have an internet bomb in the basement.
In less than two months, she had finished four complete courses, for less than $200 total. The same courses would have cost her over $2,700 at Northeastern Illinois, $4,200 at Kaplan University, $6,300 at the University of Phoenix, and roughly the gross domestic product of a small Central American nation at an elite private university. They also would have taken two or three times as long to complete.
The whole article is well worth reading. It misses an elephant or two in the room, though. First, a significant part of the meteoric rise in tuition is government interference in the market in the form of guaranteed student loans. In general, if prices are going up you’ll find the not so invisible hand of government.
The article further laments what might happen to universities once they go the way of newspapers.
But other parts of those institutions will be threatened too—vital parts that support local communities and legitimate scholarship, that make the world a more enlightened, richer place to live. Just as the world needs the foreign bureaus that newspapers are rapidly shutting down, it needs quirky small university presses, Mughal textile historians, and people who are paid to think deep, economically unproductive thoughts. Rather than hiding within the conglomerate, each unbundled part of the university will have to find new ways to stand alone. There is an unstable, treacherous future ahead for institutions that have been comfortable for a long time. Like it or not, that’s the higher education world to come.
That’s a feature, not a bug. Universities have become hidebound cauldrons of left-wing indoctrination. When they are no longer able to milk the public teat to pay for the brainwashing of undergrads education – actual education – will improve. As for those deep thinkers, I don’t worry for a minute that they’ll find a productive place in a vibrant, free economy. It’s an economy that will be less burdened by ivy-league parasites.
Bring it on.
1 November, 2009
The “Flying Imams” won in court. I’m shocked – shocked – that they found a judge this stupid.
Reading the opinion elicits a question: Can we reasonably rely on law enforcement authorities to be so capable and diligent that they will arrive at appropriate determinations within a matter of a few minutes–when fifteen out of fifteen law enforcement professionals handled the case of the flying imams as they did?
The decision raises perhaps an even more basic question: What was law enforcement to do? Judge Montgomery believes the authorities were required to release the imams after a brief investigatory stop to go on their way and catch their flight or board another. The next time around, it will be the imams who fly and the other passengers who stay behind.
You can bet that nobody’s going to get me on the plane with guys who look and act like that. And that’s a very reasonable position.
Mark Steyn on the inverted way The Messiah’s droids speak truth to power and the bravery of modern artists.
Meanwhile, Larry David is now doing televised NEA exhibits on his HBO show “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” Christians are said to be “angry” at him because of an episode in which, after he accidentally sprays his urine on a picture of Jesus, his assistant mistakes the droplets for tears and calls in her mother to witness the miracle of Christ weeping. Ha-ha! Oh, those brave transgressive artists! Of course, Christians aren’t “angry” in the sense that two U.S. residents arrested last week are. The pair one an American citizen, the other Canadian were so “angry” about the Muhammad cartoons published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten that they hatched a plot to kill the artist and his editor. As many commentators pointed out, Mr. David’s splashy stunt is a dreary provocation: It’s easy to be provocative with people who can’t be provoked. If he were to start urinating in a more Mecca-ly direction, he’d find an entirely more motivated crowd waiting for him at the stage door.