Category Archives: Science And Society

Climate Jihadists

California is currently at their mercy:

Meeting the new target of an 80 percent cut by 2050 would require the use of even more speculative technologies, including those that the CCST reserachers considered to be “in development, not yet available” or merely “research concepts.”

Yet such problems do not seem to impinge much on Sacramento’s political class. Any group willing, as is most egregiously the case with the Latino caucus, to wage war on their own people, are not going to worry too much about such subtleties.

So then, who wins? It’s certainly not the environment, but some of the oligarchs in Silicon Valley may benefit as they have been feeding at the renewable-energy trough at the expense of less-well-off ratepayers. Then there’s the whole bureaucracy, and their academic allies, who can enjoy profitable employment by dreaming up new ways to make life in California more expensive and difficult for average citizens – envisioning schemes that the taxpayers have to finance. And, certainly, the climate change agenda could benefit multifamily housing builders, who will seek to force often-unwilling Californians into residences in which most would rather not spend their lives.

At some point, people are going to get fed up, but we don’t seem to be close yet.

Low-Fat Milk

…is the new sitting:

In 2006, a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition looked at the role of dairy consumption in weight regulation for 19,352 Swedish women between the ages of 40 and 55. Data was initially collected between 1987 and 1990, and then again in 1997. It found that for the women in the study, eating one or more servings a day of whole dairy products was “inversely associated with weight gain,” with the most significant findings for normal-weight women consuming whole milk or sour milk.

In 2013, the Scandinavian Journal of Primary Health Care published findings from a study that tracked the impact of dairy fat intake on 1,782 men. Twelve years after researchers took the initial measurements, they found that consumption of butter, high-fat milk, and cream several times a week were related to lower levels of central obesity, while “a low intake of dairy fat… was associated with a higher risk of developing central obesity.” (Central obesity means a waist-to-hip ratio equal to or greater than one—i.e. big in the middle.)

As I’ve said before, Michelle’s “healthy” school lunches, with low-fat milk, actually constitute government-sponsored child abuse.

Gender Feminists

…are science deniers:

Ms. Benenson explains that there’s an “inherent conflict in unrelated females’ relations with one another.” They very much want one another’s support—as coalition partners and for help with childcare—but “they must invest first and foremost in their families.” In fact, because we are driven to pass on our own genes or at least those of people closely related to us, it really doesn’t make evolutionary sense for a woman to invest in an unrelated woman, except as a form of self-protection.

How this plays out among women leads to some “very confusing” (and often ugly) relationships, with women as covert competitors, using tools including gossip and social exclusion to push down other women, especially any who dare to stand out.

Men, on the other hand, are direct and domineering with one another from boyhood on in a way that women are not. Men come together in groups, while women form dyads—groups of two. Men love competition and contests to see who’s best, whereas women get insulted if one woman seems to be asserting herself as better than the others.

In fact, research finds that women bond through sharing their failures and vulnerabilities—an essential bit of information that helps explain what Sandberg merely laments: women’s not proclaiming their greatness in the workplace and not finding it natural to just march right up and “sit at the table.”

Although Ms. Sandberg, like other business advice writers, repeats the stereotype of women as “communal,” it is actually men who evolved to be cooperators in a way that women, ever-vigilant that another woman might get one over on them, did not. When men aren’t fighting each another, they are quick to band together against a common enemy. Or, after kicking each other’s asses, they’ll go and have a beer.

Sure, it’s 2015, and we’re marching through the workplace with iPhones instead of pawing in the underbrush for berries, but this evolved psychology is still driving us, and it’s to the detriment of the women who read Ms. Sandberg’s book that it is ignored instead of taken into account.

People should be treated as individuals, not members of groups, but it’s foolish to deny the intrinsic differences between men and women. In a sense, they’re almost different symbiotic species.

Climate Change “Consensus”

“When it’s a consensus among the uninformed, it’s not worth much“:

What can we take away from all this? First, lots of people get called “climate experts” and contribute to the appearance of consensus, without necessarily being knowledgeable about core issues. A consensus among the misinformed is not worth much.

Second, it is obvious that the “97 per cent” mantra is untrue. The underlying issues are so complex it is ludicrous to expect unanimity. The near 50/50 split among AMS members on the role of greenhouse gases is a much more accurate picture of the situation. The phony claim of 97 per cent consensus is mere political rhetoric aimed at stifling debate and intimidating people into silence.

Yes. Anyone who cites that number at this point is either a liar or appallingly ignorant.

[Update a while later]

Related, I was going to post about this interview with Jerry Taylor, formerly of Cato, who seems to aspire to be continually out of synch with reality:

I began to change, maybe five or six years ago, for several reasons.

One, the scientific evidence became stronger and stronger over time. A lot of conservatives think of climate change as similar to the population issue. You have to remember, in the ’60s and ’70s people were frantic about population growth. And it just peeled away as an issue, simply because it was wrong — or the projections were. And so I would say the same thing: [climate change] is just one in the endless parade of environmental apocalypse stories.

That’s simply not true. The scientific evidence has not become “stronger and stronger over time.” In fact, particularly with the pause, and the complete failure of the models, the uncertainty is growing.

Judith Curry addresses it:

…it is interesting to see Libertarian arguments about climate change policy they [sic] don’t seem overly caught up in the UNFCCC/IPCC ideology, or its antithesis ideology. The Climate Hawks (e.g. Dave Roberts) love this kind of libertarian ‘conversion’ story. But to my mind, Jerry Taylor’s argument for a carbon tax doesn’t really hold up.

Nope.