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Archive for February 10th, 2011

Popular Science sometimes means not having to say you really thought it through.

Ok, so that was a bit harsh.  I like Pop. Sci.

What Could Possibly Go Wrong:  Blotting Out the Sun

Filling the stratosphere with sulfur aerosols could cool the globe, but it could also cause widespread drought and destruction – Jamie Sneddon

Well, I’ll tell you what could go wrong.  According to the logic of Al Gore, by cooling the Earth we could make it warmer. Why the hell not?  By warming it we’re making it colder, he has as much as said so.

But in my heart of hearts, I agree with Sneddon, that actively seeking to change the albedo of the Earth isn’t something one f***s around with lightly.

And LiveScience where sometimes there’s cool neat stuff and sometimes there’s pure idiocy, they actually uttered this about forest fire severity and the correlation to global warming:

While it’s melting glaciers and creating more intense hurricanes, global warming also seems to be heating up forest fires in the United States. In western states over the past few decades, more wildfires have blazed across the countryside, burning more area for longer periods of time. Scientists have correlated the rampant blazes with warmer temperatures and earlier snowmelt. When spring arrives early and triggers an earlier snow-melt, forest areas become drier and stay so for longer, increasing the chance that they might ignite.

It misses the most glaringly evident root cause of what is making wildfires worse, burning more areas for longer has been correlated with not letting regular fires clear out the undergrowth, so when there IS a fire it’s hot enough that the largest trees don’t survive – they die.  You can’t hardly wade through the stuff.  And when it dries it dries completely and it burns extremely hot.

There’s absolutely no doubt that hot weather increases the risk of fire – that’s a no-brainer – but to try to pin fire duration on “global warming” without mention of the other man-made problem, which is caused by the fact that we can’t leave well enough alone, is misleading at best and deceptive at worst.

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Recusations.

Justice Thomas is being accused of being unable to hear a case without bias.

House Democrats feel that he must recuse himself.

“The appearance of a conflict of interest merits recusal under federal law,” the letter said. “From what we have already seen, the line between your impartiality and you and your wife’s financial stake in the overturn of healthcare reform is blurred.”

Seriously?  A Supreme Court Justice is unable to separate himself from his wife’s viewpoints?  I wouldn’t want someone like that hearing ANY case – that doesn’t display sufficient strength of character to perform that job satisfactorily.

But Justice Thomas does have the level of character required.

“It’s up to the individual justice to determine whether he believes that, in fact or appearance, there’s sufficient concern about his impartiality to make recusal appropriate,” said Deborah L. Rhode, a legal ethics scholar and professor of law at Stanford University. “So he [Thomas] should be considering whether he believes he can act in a disinterested manner, but also the court’s credibility with the public, and will Americans, who may differ with him… believes he comes to the table with an unbiased view.

This is a very pronounced peeve of mine and I’ve presented it multiple times.

The idea that any judge could ever be without bias is without merit.

Bias is FINE.  Prejudgment IS NOT.

Bias says “if I can rule in a certain way, I will”.   Prejudgment says “I will rule in a certain way regardless of the case merits.”   See the difference?

The argument that bias is unacceptable is completely at odds with the desire to appoint “Wise Latina Women” or a black or asian person to the bench.  They are chosen because they will bring different viewpoints and biases with them.

I call BS on the bias naysayers.

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You know what?  I’ve worked a lot of backbreaking hard jobs.  And this guy talking about whites and blacks don’t work as hard as hispanics?  Well, he can kiss my ass.

An African-American lawmaker in South Carolina said Tuesday that stricter illegal immigration laws would hurt the state because blacks and whites don’t work as hard as Hispanics.

State Sen. Robert Ford made his remarks during a Senate committee debate over an Arizona-style immigration law, eliciting a smattering of nervous laughter in the chamber after he said “brothers” don’t work as hard as Mexicans. He continued that his “blue-eyed brothers” don’t either.

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Ah, I don’t buy it.  People that find their job to be a tremendous honor don’t besmirch it by behaving like asses.

“It has been a tremendous honor to serve the people of Western New York. I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and my constituents. I deeply and sincerely apologize to them all. I have made profound mistakes and I promise to work as hard as I can to seek their forgiveness,” [Rep. Christopher Lee (R, N.Y.)] said in a statement.

Way to go, nipplehead.

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Said John Crighton just prior to expiring.

Take a gander at this ‘un.

What are those things?

Ice.  Ice holding our windowshades down – three inches from the window.  The window is a sheet of ice.   I’m thinking I’ve fallen behind a bit in the insulating department.  Plus it is currently 0.1 degrees F out there right now, which is a pretty harsh load of global warming to swallow in one sitting.

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