We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Smart guys do not tolerate fools or BS, and Lindzen doesn't. How about a Nobel Peace Prize for Prof. Lindzen's lecture videotape? It's long. It's about data vs. models.
Richard Lindzen PhD, the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology: The Peculiar Issue of Global Warming.
Think of Greece as California: Every year an irresponsible and corrupt bureaucracy awards itself higher pay and better benefits paid for by an ever-shrinking wealth-generating class. And think of Germany as one of the less profligate, still just about functioning corners of America such as my own state of New Hampshire: Responsibility doesn't pay. You'll wind up bailing out anyway. The problem is there are never enough of "the rich" to fund the entitlement state, because in the end, it disincentivizes everything from wealth creation to self-reliance to the basic survival instinct, as represented by the fertility rate. In Greece, they've run out Greeks, so they'll stick it to the Germans, like French farmers do. In Germany, the Germans have only been able to afford to subsidize French farming because they stick their defense tab to the Americans. And in America President Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are saying we need to paddle faster to catch up with the Greeks and Germans. What could go wrong?
You're the engineer of a great big freight train. Nothing stands in your way! What's that? There's a huge 18-wheeler stalled on the tracks up ahead? No problem! You'll cut that tin can in two and just keep on goin'! Nothing stands in your way!
Well, unless you attempt to drive through a tornado, of course.
It would be an enormous relief if the recent attacks on the science of global warming actually indicated that we do not face an unimaginable calamity requiring large-scale, preventive measures to protect human civilization as we know it.
Somehow I doubt that it would be "an enormous relief" to Al. He is doubling down. It's his familiar hysteria and fear-mongering accompanied by many factual errors.
Al Gore sees himself as a redeemer - as Jesus Christ. And where is there room in a democratic republic for someone who thinks that the rule of law should be an "instrument of redemption?" Holy Mother, that is the scariest idea ever to drool from Gore's mouth. The rule of law is just that - the rule of law. There should be no special qualities that animate the enforcement of the law - certainly not a drive to "redeem" anything or anybody. That smacks of titanic hubris to use the law to enforce your idea of "redemption."
... inertia is what gives the climate cynics ground to operate. That's what we need to overcome, and at bottom that's a battle about data, but also about courage and hope. In the last year, we've rallied millions of people in almost every country to demand action on climate change, and to start building the world beyond fossil fuel. The truth will out.
Bill McKibben is the author of a dozen books, including the forthcoming "Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet." He's a scholar in residence at Middlebury College in Vermont and the founder of 350.org, a global grass-roots climate campaign. A longer version of this article can be read at tomdispatch.com
Normal science made the world believe that scientists should and could provide certain, objective factual information…The guiding principle of normal science – the goal of achievement of factual knowledge - must be modified to fit the post-normal principle…For this purpose, post-normal scientists should be capable of establishing extended peer communities and allow for ‘extended facts’ from non-scientific experts…In post-normal science, the maintenance and enhancement of quality, rather than the establishment of factual knowledge, is the key task of scientists… Involved social actors must agree on the definition of perceptions,narratives, interpretation of models, data and indicators…scientists have to contribute to society by learning as quickly as possible about different perceptions…instead of seeking deep ultimate knowledge.
Looking forward to fishing season, and hoping Capt. Tom will have some fresh info for us, especially about fly fishing in Yankeeland. In the meantime, I will dig up some of our archival bamboo fishing posts -
That's Editor Bird Dog in the distance, happily fishing in the rain on an April Saturday on the Eleven Mile Brook in CT, with a Haney 7'4" quad bamboo, on Beat #4. Plenty of mostly hatchery Brook Trout, all sizes. Which are not trout, as I am regularly reminded. Called trout, look and act like trout, but Brookies are, in fact, a species of char, not trout.
The Jewish celebration of Purim began tonight.The story (Megilah) of the Book of Esther is read.Persia’s King Ahasuerus’ new queen, unknown to him Jewish, Esther, relays to the king the plot overheard by her cousin Mordecai by the king’s councilor Haman to exterminate the Jews.Esther reveals to Ahasuerus that she is Jewish, and the king learns that Mordecai previously saved his life.Haman is ordered hanged.Jews are given the right to defend themselves.There’s much more to this exciting story of intrigue and integrity found, well worth rereading at least annually.
As important is what’s missing.There is no appeal to or intercession by G-d.This is the all the workings of man and woman.
America don't need no steenkin' noblesse. But, re the elites, Liberals are smarter. I knew that! They are smart and I am dumb. But not too dumb to be able to support my family and my wife's dumb animals in some degree of comfort and pleasure.
Thank goodness for the equality of one dummie, one vote. I have two Ivy degrees but always doubted my brains. Guess I was right about something.
A reader sent in this photo ofPhragmites australis, aka Phragmites, aka Common Reed, from a southern New England marsh yesterday. This presumably non-native, invasive reed has spread like a cancer in marshes across the US, crowding out native marsh species and, in many areas, creating hundreds or thousands of acres of sterile "monoculture" marshland (eg the vast and once-biologically-bountiful New Jersey marshlands).
I'm glad Republicans have held firm, but let's not be under any illusions about what that means. In the Democrat leadership, we are not dealing with conventional politicians for whom the goal of being reelected is paramount and will rein in their radicalism. They want socialized medicine and all it entails about government control even more than they want to win elections. After all, if the party of government transforms the relationship between the citizen and the state, its power over our lives will be vast even in those cycles when it is not in the majority. This is about power, and there is more to power than winning elections, especially if you've calculated that your opposition does not have the gumption to dismantle your ballooning welfare state.
I call on those that call me son, Grandson, or great-grandson, On uncles, aunts, great-uncles or great-aunts, To judge what I have done. Have I, that put it into words, Spoilt what old loins have sent? Eyes spiritualised by death can judge, I cannot, but I am not content. He that in Sligo at Drumcliff Set up the old stone Cross, That red-headed rector in County Down, A good man on a horse, Sandymount Corbets, that notable man Old William Pollexfen, The smuggler Middleton, Butlers far back, Half legendary men. Infirm and aged I might stay In some good company, I who have always hated work, Smiling at the sea, Or demonstrate in my own life What Robert Browning meant By an old hunter talking with Gods; But I am not content.
It didn't sadden me, but rather impressed me with the use of graphics software. How do they perform this theatrical magic?
When I consider it, our lives are packed with incoming lies and virtual realities: the news, stories and fiction writing, advertising, photoshopped photos, politicians' statements, theater, legal "theories," activist's anecdotes, fantasies and imagination, memories, dreams (and the tales our patients tell us about their lives).
Mr. Plato had plenty of thoughts on the subject of human perception of reality, and he was darn well aware of the human distorting component too.
Some good blogger (I forget who) recently commented that she (I think a she) was sick of the term "narrative." I sympathise, but I am not sick of it yet. I find it useful. The overused term "authentic" is the one I am sick of.
I have not yet entered a pomo solipsistic world in which reality is a pure mental construction or, worse yet, a pure social construction (see the wonderful Berger and Luckmann). Reality does exist: Just hit your thumb with a hammer or stub your toe on something in the dark to be reminded of that. Many of us, fortunately, do not distort things very much to ourselves, or to others.
However, I do live in a world in which meaning is indeed a human construction, both personally and socially.
A "narrative" is an effort, conscious or unconscious, to ascribe meaning: designed to deceive, to manipulate, to entertain, to seduce, to support one's wishes or self respect, to indulge, to self-justify or to rationalize or serve some other defensive purpose, etc. - or just to try to make sense out of the stuff that seems to happen - more or less regardless of its objective validity. Every song, picture, poem, film, and book is a "narrative" too. Like any blog post. "I" am a narrative, I guess, and right now, presenting a narrative about narratives.
One of the many interesting things about being a shrink is to contemplate a person's "narrative," whether it is just a report of something that happened, or a life story. When somebody is engaged in an exploratory, depth treatment, these narratives change over time - which is why we never take them at face value. We assume a narrative meets some present want, or need, or fantasy. Our always-challenging and endlessly-interesting job is to probe the meaning of the narratives we see or hear in the work of untangling what ails a person's heart and soul.
One of our luxuries as people in the psychoanalytic psychotherapy field is the reliable consistency of the human personality "structure" (another term I hate - shrinks often use fancy latinate terms and complex conceptualizations for ordinary things): like a jigsaw puzzle, there is always a picture of something in there somewhere. Another is the luxury of not worrying too much about the literal truthfulness of things (unless dealing with undiagnosed sociopaths).
I could go on and on about this, but that's enough for now.
Forty billion dollars. That's roughly how much cash Toyota has on its balance sheet, a fat bogey for trial lawyers. Think this was not the animating purpose of the congressional hearings held this week?
It is astonishing that any administration could make such a mess of both domestic and foreign policy in barely more than a year. One wonders whether we will have any allies left by the end of President Obama's term in January 2013.
SCOTT adds: See also Nile Gardiner's Telegraph column ("Even by the relentlessly poor standards of the Obama administration, whose doctrine unfailingly appears to be 'kiss your enemies and kick your allies,' this is a new low").
Is anything more inviting than a cozy Dunkin' Donuts early on a cold snowy morning? Hot chocolate or coffee? Or both?
The friendly and cheerful legal Hispanic gals there know what you like and they manage to get to work on time no matter what the weather or "climate" offers. I am usually game for a plain stick. And a medium milk no sugar.
Then to the shoveling as the wind whistles and moans through the trees. A good workout. That chest pain is just in your imagination...
The week of March 1, if you or yours is on many college campuses, “Israeli Apartheid” week will seek to spread a hateful and dangerous canard.Its propagators are the most virulent and unprincipled liars, whose purpose is to delegitimize Israel’s right to exist and to support its same enemies who target the United States.
If you want to know more about actual conditions in Israel or to help turn the light on the darkness of the apartheid “big lie”, a good place to start is this website from a respected credible organization, CAMERA (Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America).
Man, do I agree with Ramesh in Time. One quote from his piece of the above title:
We could probably increase the number of high school seniors who are ready to go to college — and likely to make it to graduation — if we made the K-12 system more academically rigorous. But let's face it: college isn't for everyone, especially if it takes the form of four years of going to classes on a campus.
To talk about college this way may sound élitist. It may even sound philistine, since the purpose of a liberal-arts education is to produce well-rounded citizens rather than productive workers. But perhaps it is more foolishly élitist to think that going to school until age 22 is necessary to being well-rounded, or to tell millions of kids that their future depends on performing a task that only a minority of them can actually accomplish.
The good news is that there have never been more alternatives to the traditional college.