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Comment: Re:Shocking... (Score 2) 539

by tbannist (#46824941) Attached to: The US Public's Erratic Acceptance of Science

I would guess that the source is an anti-vaccination site.

I found this dissection of his first quote, when I searched for "Dr. Bernard Greenberg". Basically, the good doctor appears to have been most concerned with how the media was overstating the effectiveness of the vaccine.

The other two quotes may be real as well, but both come from anti-vaccination campaigns, so while the quotes may be real, they are less likely to be truthful.

Comment: Re:Yes, Global Cooling (Score 1) 432

by tbannist (#46750779) Attached to: UN: Renewables, Nuclear Must Triple To Save Climate

Sure when you see the list of 70 articles, it looks compelling. However, a little thought should tell you that's it's pretty thin evidence for his claims. If you average it out, it's a mere 7 articles a year spread across the entire English speaking world. That not terribly surprising that some articles would be written about it, given the combination of some unusually cold weather and the not-yet-settled debate in the climate science about whether the long-term natural cooling trend (plus aerosols) or shorter-term anthropogenic warming trend would be the primary driver for climate change in the near future.

Of course, as I often find when I look at the Watt's Up blog, the evidence only passes a friendly cursory review. Several of those 70 articles are repostings of the same article in different newpapers, and even more troubling is that some of the articles in that list aren't even about global cooling. For instance, they list a 1977 Times cover story called The Big Freeze. Apparently, it's about a cold and snowy winter, not a coming ice age.

Of course, this is not unexpected. Anthony Watts always seems to hold people who disagree with him to a much higher standard than those he agrees with. Just look at his treatment of Mueller who was an unquestionable god of climate science right up until he tried to tell Anthony Watts something he didn't want to hear, then suddenly he was a turn coat who sold out.

Comment: Re:Five hundred years? (Score 1) 864

Think about it. Could you predict the sentiments of every human on the planet (over 4 billion) by asking the last 500 people born?

I think you need to think about this more. You are arguing that if I want to find out what people think about an issue now, let's say slavery, I should use a sample set that is spread across the entire lifetime of humanity. Is the opinion of someone who died 6000 years ago relevant to the modern view of slavery? Similarly, why would we care about the earth's climate 4 billion years ago, when determining if recent changes are man-made or not?

Comment: Re:more pseudo science (Score 1) 864

When you are asked to peer review an article do you take it on faith that the author is correct, or do you check his work to see if he made any mistakes?

The claim isn't that you're perfect or all knowing, it's that you don't blindly trust your fellow scientists and instead subject their claims to scrutiny, especially when they are within your field of expertise.

Comment: Re:more pseudo science (Score 1) 864

I'll keep denying until somebody can explain to me why going in and out of ice ages wasn't manmade

Milankovitch cycles

but now we should freak out and spend billions over 1 or 2 degrees of "manmade" "climate change" over the last hundred years

Food security

(when it has been going back down for the last 15 years straight).

Because it hasn't "been going down for the last 15 years straight"?. The decade from 2000-2009 was warmer than any previous decade on record, 10 out of the 10 warmest years on record have all occurred since 1998 (inclusive). Globally 2005 and 2010 were actually warmer than 1998. Lastly starting with an abnormal year (like 1998 which had an exceptionally strong El Nino effect) and not accounting for it's abnormality is either foolish bungling, or a deliberate attempt to deceive and manipulate others.

This is really basic stuff, if you don't know it, you're probably not knowledgeable enough to provide meaningful contributions to this discussion.

Comment: Re:The spokesman for the AHA said... (Score 1) 408

What we need is to account for the fact that the brain believing to have received a dose of medication has some effect.

Actually, there's no measurable effect from "the brain believing". Placebos have no effect on any actual measurable health outcomes, they only have an effect on self-reported health outcomes. People say they feel better. People say their hangnail is cured. People say that they can feel that their cancer is in remission. However, when the doctors take the actual measurements, there is no measurable difference between the control group (who got nothing) and the placebo group, no matter how much the placebo group claims they are feeling better and no matter how much the control groups claims they are feeling worse.

Comment: Re:Poor poor bigot (Score 1) 1116

by tbannist (#46703625) Attached to: Mozilla CEO Firestorm Likely Violated California Law

Imagine the sstate's smoking regulation being challenged by big tobacco and no the governor decides not to defend it. Imagine the off shord drilling ban having the same circumstances. They win by default and the law is overturned even if everyone in the state unanimousely voted for it.

The governor who did that likely wouldn't get re-elected if the law was important and popular. Would you care to provide a reason why free and fair elections are not a sufficent check against that behaviour?

Comment: Re:How about abortion, or the death penalty? (Score 1) 1746

by tbannist (#46664723) Attached to: Brendan Eich Steps Down As Mozilla CEO

In most cases it would dependent on the circumstances and whether the donation could be seen as compromising the figurehead's ability to lead. For example, the CEO of Chik-Fil-A will, most likely, be perfectly able to contribute to campaign against pornography, against religious freedom for non-Christians and against abortion without compromising his ability to lead, however, social conservatives would likely force him out for taking a stand on the opposite side of those issues (if they could, of course, I'm not sure how much ownership the CEO has). In this case, Eich donated money to a campaign whose sole purpose was to strip some people (including a number of the people working for him) of their rights, and it temporarily succeeded. That has to create some bad blood between him and the affected employees and that type of antagonism is not something to be taken lightly. Having done so and then having refused to recant his position, Eich had compromised his ability to lead and either they were going to go or he was going to go.

As I said, if he had been able to apologise and admit he had done something wrong, he likely would have been able to maintain the position, but if you can't publicly acknowledge that treating some of your co-workers as people deserving of fewer rights than yourself was a mistake, you aren't going to be able to lead them.

Comment: Re:Freedom of political activism (Score 1) 1746

by tbannist (#46663089) Attached to: Brendan Eich Steps Down As Mozilla CEO
It wasn't just his political activism from 5 years ago that was the problem. If he had disavowed that behaviour, apologized to his employees and make an act on contrition (such as donating a significant amount of money to a pro-gay marriage organization or campaign) they could have buried the hatchet. However, apparently he still does not believe that his gay employees should be fully equal to the heterosexual ones. Effectively, he chose to step down rather than admit he was wrong.

Comment: Re:I think this is bullshit (Score 1) 1746

by tbannist (#46662761) Attached to: Brendan Eich Steps Down As Mozilla CEO

Besides, if there really is supposed to be a "wall of separation" between church and state, why do we have a secular government recognizing a primarily religious ceremony? Not to mention that's the reason why most people oppose it.

You have it backwards, it's a religious ceremony around the secular activity of signing your marriage certificate. The religious ceremony has no legal standing if you don't sign the government's paper. Next you'll be telling us that only proper Christians should be allowed be married and that athiests, agnostics and those who worship the wrong god should also be excluded from marraige.

Comment: Re:I think this is bullshit (Score 1) 1746

by tbannist (#46662009) Attached to: Brendan Eich Steps Down As Mozilla CEO

There was a Constitutional amendment passed in the state that banned gay marriage, but somehow the courts decided that the amendment was unconstitutional!

This is very simple, the amendment conflicted with a part of the constitution that wasn't amended, thus the amendment was determined to be improper and tossed out. It's actually the job of the courts to do that type of thing, though it would happen less often if politicans wrote fewer stupid laws.

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