Friday, September 20, 2019

Climate Marches

The title of the article reporting on these marches says, "We're Young, but we're not dumb."
https://www.npr.org/2019/09/20/762629200/mass-protests-in-australia-kick-off-global-climate-strike-ahead-of-u-n-summit?utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=news&mc_cid=519aa5d349&mc_eid=04c0268f4c

Actually, they are dumb. Most of these protesters have been led to believe it is just a matter of changing energy sources.

No easy solution exists, especially the misguided assumption that it is just a matter of adopting renewable energy.
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/09/17/why-todays-renewables-cannot-power-modern-civilization/

The greatest challenge to the climate change is human population. That is the fix.

Misleading TV Ads - Surprise Medical Bills

Had a recent hospital stay.  Went to a hospital within your insurance network or accepts your insurance as billed.  Paid your deductible and fees charged by the hospital and the medical staff with whom you had direct interaction.  THEN after you think all bills have been paid, you receive a BIG bill from some medical provider, not in your network, who claims to have been involved in your care.  

Since they are not in your network, they are not limited to negotiated fees with your insurance company. You probably don't even remember them, such as an anesthesiologist, a lab, or diagnostician, who offered services not provided by the hospital and/or its directly employed staff.

This is a Surprise Medical Bill and there is a bill in Congress attempting to block this practice loathed by the public..

https://khn.org/news/surprise-fixing-out-of-network-bills-means-someone-must-pay/ 

Naturally, this legislation is disliked by groups responsible for the billing. They have been running misleading TV ads in Tennessee opposing legislation.
https://www.nashvillepublicradio.org/post/tennessee-physician-staffing-firms-are-behind-ads-resisting-surprise-medical-bill-legislation?mc_cid=519aa5d349&mc_eid=04c0268f4c#stream/0 

Thursday, September 19, 2019

FAKE Climate News

      It's that time of the year when all eyes are on the hurricane activity in the Northern Hemisphere.  Dorian was a star performer.  Even contrary to warnings from Petteri Taalas, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization, the climate alarmists are not missing their opportunity to yell "the sky is falling."  NPR announced it is devoting the week on September 22 to discussed what they label as the Climate CRISIS.  But what is REALLY happening, starting with the hurricane picture?

    For the past several years this blog has been monitoring the frequency and strength of hurricanes and found no scary trends in either.  But Dorian has everybody thinking, "better check the statistics again."  We found the following graphs 

by research meteorologist Dr. Ryan N. Maue (website: http://wx.graphics/tropical/) who keeps track of hurricanes and tropical cyclones. His data show, that as earth warmed from the cold spell in the 1970s (when the media were predicting return to another ice age) there has been no increase in frequency nor in the overall trend of energy in these storms.

Even National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) says: 
In summary, neither our model projections for the 21st century nor our analyses of trends in Atlantic hurricane and tropical storm counts over the past 120+ yr support the notion that greenhouse gas-induced warming leads to large increases in either tropical storm or overall hurricane numbers in the Atlantic.  (Source)

Monday, September 16, 2019

WMO Secretary-General Rejects Climate ‘Doomsters and Extremists’

Petteri Taalas, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organization says that the alarmist narrative on climate change has gone off the rails and criticized the news media for provoking unjustified anxiety.
The IPCC reports have been read in a similar way to the Bible: You try to find certain pieces or sections from which you try to justify your extreme views. This resembles religious extremism.
Taalas hopes that mainstream media will become more critical and hopes more for a more diverse presentation of views and argues that all sides should be interviewed. 

https://www.thegwpf.com/wmo-boss-says-climate-discussion-has-gone-off-the-rails/ 

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

AP Fact Checks DEM's Climate Science

CNN town hall with Democratic presidential candidates Wednesday 9/4/19

ELIZABETH WARREN: “We’ve got, what, 11 years, maybe, to reach a point where we’ve cut our emissions in half. ... We’d better be willing to put the resources into it because the alternative is unthinkable.” .

AP FACTS: These statements are out of step with science. Climate scientists don’t agree on an approximate time frame, let alone an exact number of years, for how much time we have left to stave off the deadliest extremes of climate change.

PETE BUTTIGIEG : "For me and everybody I know, for the children that we hope to have, for the people who will be alive at the turn of the century, when if we don't change what we're doing, we could lose half the world's oxygen because of what's going on in the oceans. That is unthinkable." 

AP FACTS: This is not sound science.  Climate scientists told The Associated Press that Buttigieg's claim that half of Earth's oxygen is at risk is false. You and your descendants can breathe easy about the planet's oxygen levels. There are other things to worry about from climate change, fossil fuel combustion and Amazon fires."

BETO O'ROURKE, proposing U.S. leadership on climate change: "Convene those other top wealthy economies to make sure that this is our focus, to save the lungs of the planet that produce 6 percent of the oxygen that we breathe and to ensure that we do not trigger a crisis in the Amazon. Once it is set, we will never be able to roll back. " 

AP FACTS: Lands of the Amazon are not "the lungs of the planet." That's a familiar phrase but not an accurate one. Oxygen production comes primarily from ocean sediments, not forests, which indeed generate oxygen but also consume it.

https://apnews.com/9d6adce79a774aa195e9e33b745d9fa0 

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Don’t Let Chiropractors Scam Medicare Patients

      The Chiropractic Medicare Coverage Modernization Act (H.R. 3654) would force Medicare to cover all services that the chiropractic industry claims to be within its pseudoscientific repertoire and, ludicrously, define chiropractors as “physicians” in the Medicare program.
      This legislation would allow unqualified practitioners to deceive vulnerable patients into paying for a host of sham treatments that carry health risks while providing little or no medical benefit. It would endanger patients who need treatments that have been proven to be safe and effective in treating serious health conditions, and it would waste taxpayer dollars on snake oil. For the sake of patient health and safety, we can’t let this bill become law. But you can do something about it. Contact your representative now.

TAKE ACTION

Skeptical Inquirer against Fake Medicine

Skeptical Inquirer Goes in the Trenches against Fake Medicine

      Medical pseudoscience is rampant, promoted not only by obvious snake oil salesmen and self-help gurus promising all manner of cures from “natural” and “alternative” remedies but even by vaunted institutions of legitimate science such as the World Health Organization and the National Geographic Society. In a special expanded issue of Skeptical Inquirer, experts in science, medicine, law, and belief report from the trenches of the health wars, doing battle against the forces of fake medicine.
      Victor Benson, MD, takes on the deeply disappointing case of the National Geographic Society’s series of books promoting “natural healing remedies,” books that he discovers “are full of claims that lack scientific evidence, are inconsistent and internally contradictory, and don’t reach even minimal scientific standards.” Reviewing one particular book from the National Geographic collection, Nature’s Best Remedies, retired Air Force flight surgeon Harriet Hall concludes, “National Geographic let us down. They should be ashamed.”

Friday, August 2, 2019

Field Guide to Fake News

A Field Guide to “Fake News” and Other Information Disorders explores the use of digital methods to study false viral news, political memes, trolling practices and their social life online. 

It responds to an increasing demand for understanding the interplay between digital platforms, misleading information, propaganda and viral content practices, and their influence on politics and public life in democratic societies. 

It is a project of the Public Data Lab with support from First Draft.
 
The guide is freely available via the link https://bit.ly/FG2FakeNews

It is released under a Creative Commons Attribution license to encourage readers to freely copy, translate, redistribute and reuse the book. All the assets necessary to translate and publish the guide in other languages are available on the Public Data Lab’s GitHub page.

Monday, July 22, 2019

The Apocalyptic Green New Deal

This interesting article addresses the politics, the science, and the reality of the Green New Deal.
https://thsresearch.files.wordpress.com/2019/07/the-cost-to-society-of-radical-environmentalism-final.pdf 

We haven’t had time to validate all the claims.  Maybe some of you can share credible counter-point. We never trust any  article, right or left, that takes extreme positions.

Nevertheless, even the proponents of the Green New Deal do it “tongue in check.”
However, with all the political craziness in the last several years, don't assume anything.

Most politicians recognize the absurdity of many positions upon which they profess,
but most play to and few have guts to call out the ignorance of their “base.”

Thursday, May 9, 2019

The Ant and the Grasshopper - The True Story

The ANT AND THE GRASSHOPPER fable finds frequent updates on the Laughing Conservative blog.  It is really hard for any hardworking person to have any empathy for the grasshopper, until they learn that the grasshopper at one time was as industrious as the ant.  But the grasshopper was “flighty” and could only afford to rent land owned by the ant. It cultivated fields full of food that it could have easily harvested throughout the cold winter without hording.  Then the real estate crisis happened. 

The fields that the grasshoppers were sharecropping were foreclosed on by the Ant Bank.  Although the bank had made all kinds of promises for a future of sustenance, it confiscated the farms of the grasshopper claiming they were on ant land and with the grasshopper’s poor harvest prospects they were not sufficient to pay the Ant Bank.

Then came subsequent years and prosperity returned.  The ant returned with its promises of low rent farm land to the grasshopper.  The grasshopper remembered its prior losses to the greedy ant.  It remembered that none the ants were penalized for false promises to starving grasshopper sharecroppers.  In fact, these same ants were doing even better with all the food they had accumulated from the grasshopper. The grasshopper saw it had little future.  That’s when the grasshoppers became locust.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

FACEBOOK"S DESTRUCTION OF DEMOCRACY

, , , for looking the other way during election manipulations in the UK (and US).

This is a bold TED talk — a serious indictment of Facebook — given last month to an audience that included major tech leaders such as Zuckerberg, Sandberg, et al.

The talk focused on the UK Brexit vote and low-income white workers, but you could substitute the Trump election and low-income white workers. . . and all the points would be the same . . . including the consequences.

One TED talk executive said, “there’s never been a talk like that at TED before.”

I think it might be worth your time. The first 7 or 8 minutes give you the gist if you’re pressed for time . . . but I watched the whole 15 minutes.
 
(A somewhat long Guardian/Observer article by the reporter who did the video:  https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/apr/21/carole-cadwalladr-ted-tech-google-facebook-zuckerberg-silicon-valley )

--More from John Oliver--
COMMENTS RECEIVED IN ADVANCE OF THIS POST:

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Who's the Climate Liar?

Did Patrick Moore, a Doubter of Anthropogenic Climate Change, Co-Found Greenpeace?
 
President Trump thinks so.
Patrick Moore, co-founder of Greenpeace: “The whole climate crisis is not only Fake News, it’s Fake Science. There is no climate crisis, there’s weather and climate all around the world, and in fact carbon dioxide is the main building block of all life.” @foxandfriends Wow!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 12, 2019
Greenpeace USA‏Verified account;@greenpeaceusa
Replying to
Patrick Moore was not a co-founder of Greenpeace. He does not represent Greenpeace. He is a paid lobbyist, not an independent source.
Snopes says:
Moore’s anti-climate-change statement on “Fox and Friends” is a bad-faith argument, and attributing such statements to a “Greenpeace co-founder” is factually inaccurate.
https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/patrick-moore-climate-doubter/
However,  a web page quote directly from the Greenpeace website list Patrick Moore as a co-founder

http://web.archive.org/web/20021119050900/http://www.greenpeace.org.au/aboutus/founders.html

So who is caught in this lie?:

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Time to Get Scientific About Climate Change

Guy Sorman recently interviewed Judith Curry for the City Journal(1).  In it Curry talks bluntly without all the political spin about the real status of Climate Change. Curry is the former chair of the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the Georgia Institute of Technology.  Specifically, she states:

“There is warming, but we don’t really understand its causes. The human factor and carbon dioxide, in particular, contribute to warming, but how much is the subject of intense scientific debate.”

"Even if all the states respected this commitment [Paris Climate Accord]—an unlikely prospect—the temperature reduction in 2100 would be an insignificant two-tenths of a degree. And this assumes that climate-model predictions are correct. If there is less future warming than projected, the temperature reductions from limiting emissions would be even smaller."

"Since the Paris Climate Accord was concluded, no government has followed through with any serious action. India is effectively ignoring the agreement, and France “misses its goals of greenhouse-gas reduction every year. The accord is unenforceable and carries no sanctions—a condition insisted upon by many governments that wouldn’t have signed on otherwise. Most economists suggest that the only effective incentive to reduce greenhouse-gas levels would be to impose a global carbon tax. No government seems willing to accept such a levy."

"Almost half of the warming observed in the twentieth century came about in the first half of the century, before carbon-dioxide emissions became large. None of the climate models used by scientists now working for the United Nations can explain this older trend. Nor can these models explain why the climate suddenly cooled between 1950 and 1970, giving rise to widespread warnings about the onset of a new ice age."

"Sea level is rising, but this has been gradually happening since the 1860s; we don’t yet observe any significant acceleration of this process in our time."

"Climatology has become a political party with totalitarian tendencies. If you don’t support the UN consensus on human-caused global warming, if you express the slightest skepticism, you are a ‘climate-change denier."

"Climatology is becoming an increasingly dubious science, serving a political project. The policy cart is leading the scientific horse.” 

"In 2005, Rajendra Pachauri, the Indian railway engineer, who remade himself into a climatologist and became director of the IPCC told me, without embarrassment, that, at the UN, he recruited only climatologists convinced of the carbon-dioxide warming explanation, excluding all others."

“We’re always being told that we are reaching a point of no return—that, for instance, the melting of the Arctic ice pack is the beginning of the apocalypse. But this melting, which started decades ago, is not leading to catastrophe. Polar bears have never been more numerous and less threatened by the melting than by urbanization and economic development in the polar region."

Read whole interview at

(1) https://www.city-journal.org/global-warming 

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

What is the MOMO Challenge?

      The Momo Challenge and the Blue Whale Game are part of a folkloric tradition of what’s called a fear test - will teens be brave—or scared—enough to complete the challenge, even if they know it will end in their deaths?  The ultimate test is one that instructs the teen to commit suicide.

      However, there is little evidence that these games have actually led to teen suicides. For the most part the stories about suicides are nothing more than media caused panic paticularly in parents who may not be as tuned into the activities of their children as they should be. Its another form of stranger danger that have created a generator of helicopter parents who envision a threat around every corner.

     According to Benjamin Radford, a scientific paranormal investigator, a research fellow at the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. "It’s easy for grief and moral panic to override critical thinking. The evidence for the Blue Whale game and the Momo Challenge is built largely on rumor and conjecture instead of solid evidence. This is only the latest in a long series of similar moral panics and outrages shared on social media and aided by sensationalist news media"  Click here to read his whole article

John Oliver Takes on PSYCHICS



While on the subject of psychics here is another video.  https://youtu.be/faBIIFA5wng 
It wouldn't be such a big deal except - 40% of Americans believe in them - and THEY VOTE.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

No Compelling Evidence That Recent Sea Level Rise Is Abnormal

      Mean global sea level has risen at a slow creep for more than 150 years; since 1900, global mean sea level has risen about 7-8 inches. The implications of the highest values of projected sea-level rise under future climate change scenarios are profound, with far reaching socioeconomic and environmental implications. However, these projections are regarded as deeply uncertain and the highest of these projections strain credulity.
      Recent research has concluded that there is no consistent or compelling evidence that recent rates of sea level rise are higher or abnormal in the context of the historical records back to the 19th century that are available across Europe.
        In many of the most vulnerable coastal locations, the dominant causes of local sea level rise are natural oceanic and geologic processes and land use practices. Land use and engineering in the major coastal cities have brought on many of the worst problems, notably land-filling in coastal wetland areas and groundwater extraction.
       Local sea level in many regions will continue to rise in the 21st century – independent of global climate change. The appropriate range of sea level rise scenarios to consider for 2100 is 8 inches to 5 feet. 
      Values of sea level rise are contingent on the climate models predicting the correct amount of temperature increase. However, there are numerous reasons to think that the climate models are predicting too much warming for the 21st century

https://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2018/11/special-report-sea-level-rise3.pdf 

Website Breach Info

      "Have I been Pwnd" website came about after what was, at the time, the largest ever single breach of customer accounts — Adobe. The website creator often did post-breach analysis of user credentials and kept finding the same accounts exposed over and over again, often with the same passwords which then put the victims at further risk of their other accounts being compromised.
      His FAQs page goes into a lot more detail, but all the data on this site comes from "breaches" where data is exposed to persons that should not have been able to view it.

Identity Leak Detector

      Everyday personal data is stolen in criminal cyber attacks. A large part of the stolen information is subsequently made public on Internet databases, where it serves as the starting point for other illegal activities.

      With the HPI Identity Leak Checker, it is possible to check whether your email address, along with other personal data (e.g. telephone number, date of birth or address), has been made public on the Internet where it can be misused for malicious purposes.

CONSUMER and CYBERCRIME NEWS

Technology has hidden side effects -- BobSullivan.net reveals them and provides interesting commentary about:

Saturday, February 16, 2019

How Can Global Warming Accelerate if Effect of CO2 is Logarithmic?

      If scientists agree that the greenhouse effect is approximately logarithmic — which means that as we add more CO2 to the atmosphere, the effect of extra CO2 decreases, why does the IPCC projects that if we don't take steps to reduce our emissions, global warming won't just get worse, it will speed up?
      The answer can be found in a 28 March 28, 2018 post by DPiepgrass at 
https://skepticalscience.com/why-global-warming-can-accelerate.html