Archive for October, 2009
Sounds about right. Via Brainshavings.
$219,000 to study the sex lives of female college freshmen?
I know some guys who’d do that for free– might even pay you for the privilege.
But perhaps [SuperFreakonomics authors Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner's] biggest sin, which is also the central point of the chapter, is pointing out that seemingly insurmountable problems often have cheap and simple solutions. Hence world hunger was largely conquered not by a massive effort at population control, but by the development of new and sturdier strains of wheat and rice. Hence infection and mortality rates in hospitals declined dramatically as doctors began to appreciate the need to wash their hands.
WSJ: Health insurance premiums for St. Louis small businesses expected to increase 91% under Obamacare
The story is largely the same from state to state, though the increases are smaller in the few states that have already adopted the same mandates and regulations that Democrats want to impose on all states. For the average small employer in high-cost New York, for instance, premiums would only rise by 6%. But they’d shoot up by 94% for the same employer in Indianapolis, 91% in St. Louis and 53% in Milwaukee.
A family of four with average health in those same cities would all face cost increases of 122% buying insurance on the individual market. And it’s important to understand that these are merely the new costs created by ObamaCareâ€”not including the natural increases in medical costs over time from new therapies and the like.
Allahpundit has more on this silliness.
Nothing so epitomizes President Obama’s own contempt for American values and traditions like trying to ram two bills through Congress in his first year– each bill more than a thousand pages long– too fast for either of them to be read, much less discussed. That he succeeded only the first time says that some people are starting to wake up. Whether enough people will wake up in time to keep America from being dismantled, piece by piece, is another question– and the biggest question for this generation.
Global cooling, in the 1970′s.Â Global warming, in the 1990′s.Â Today environmental alarmists have finally settled upon language that allows no room for debate:Â “climate change”.Â If we have an especially warm summer or cool winter, an especially scary tornado or hurricane season, earthquakes, dry spells, floods or fires, then the debate is won and all nations must bow to the will of the environmental alarmists (to be imposed upon us by the Intergovernmental PanelÂ on Climate Change,Â the environmentalÂ cudgel wielded by the United Nations).
Now any distemper of Mother Nature provides proof of the evils of modern society, and portends disaster in theÂ immediate future for mankind…unless! we listen to Al Gore and the gang.Â What does he have to say?
The planet has a fever.Â If your baby has a fever, you go to the doctor. If the doctor says you need to intervene here, you don’t say, ‘Well, I read a science-fiction novel that tells me it’s not a problem.’
I wasn’t aware that science-fiction novels were the only remaining voice of dissent in the global warming – sorry, “climate change” – debate.Â More Gore:
This is not a partisan issue, this is a moral issue, and our children are going to be demanding this.
Most parents don’t allow the demands of children toÂ determine their grocery store purchases, much less international government policy.Â And really, isn’t it a science issue?Â “Do it for the angry children” is not a convincing scientific argument.Â Then again, “the science is settled”, right?Â From The Deniers, a book written by a Canadian environmentalist and author:
In the real world, as measurable by science, CO2 in the atmosphere and in the ocean reach a stable balance when the oceans contain 50 times as much CO2 as the atmosphere.Â ‘The IPCC postulates an atmospheric doubling of CO2, meaning that the oceans would need to receive 50 times more CO2 to obtain chemical equilibrium,’ explains Prof. Segalstad.Â ‘This total of 51 times the present amount of carbon in atmospheric CO2 exceeds the known reserves of fossil carbon – it represents more carbon than exists in all the coal, gas, and oil that we can exploit anywhere in the world.’
When the facts don’t fit theÂ agenda-driven presentation of the IPCC, they decide to change them.Â Approximately three dozen studies from fifty years of scientific work concerning the nature of CO2 determined that it persists in the atmosphere for somewhere between 5-10 years.Â The IPCC, in order to conform carbon dioxide to their alarmist models, decided that CO2 must persist in the atmosphere for 50-200 years.Â
Does fundamentally changing the nature of carbon dioxide “settle” the scientific debate?Â Actually, it does not.Â Freeman Dyson, for example,Â disputes the effectiveness of the very computer models used to portray mankind’s impending doom (you know, the ones that say Miami will be underwater inÂ five yearsÂ if you keep driving your SUV?).Â Dyson says of the models, “they do not begin to describe the world that we live in”.Â As long as one credible scientist exists who will stand up against the thuggish, agenda-driven actions of the UN-IPCC, the science is not “settled”.Â Consensus is not a scientific method.Â The very nature of the advancement of science has been listening to voices of dissent from scientists making intellectual leaps beyond currently accepted knowledge.Â Where would we be if Newton or Einstein were worried about “consensus”?Â What if Al Gore were around to lock them away inÂ a scientificÂ dissentor “lockbox”?
It seems to me that humanity hasÂ been fairly conscientious aboutÂ accepting the advances of science and listening to the voice of reason ever since the Enlightenment.Â Are we going to trade that for the dictates of a global government, guilting Western society into obeidiance?
It is certainly true that ‘fewer people equals a greener planet’ is simplistic. In 2050, 95% of the extra population will be poor and the poorer you are, the less carbon you emit. By today’s standards, a cull of Australians or Americans would be at least 60 times as productive as one of Bangladeshis.
This is from Alex Renton, a British…journalist?Â I’m not sure what to call someone who calls for the “culling” of Western civilization.Â Totalitarian mass-murdering wannabe?Â Maybe he’s angling for the job of gate guard at the prison where the totalitarian one-world government will definitely have to send people like me.Â Because I certainly wont take a “culling” lying down.
So is the science “settled”?Â Far from it.Â Nonetheless, climate change isÂ already being usedÂ as an excuse to to put limits on individual freedom.Â For now they’re still testing the waters, but clearly the concept of climate change and “environmental justice” will be a useful tool for fledgling totalitarian governments looking to infringe upon the rights of the individual.
“Don’t drive that car, its carbon footprint is too large.Â Downsize your pet from a dog to a cat, large pets are destroying the planet.”Â
“Abort that second child, we need to cull the population a bit“.