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Earth

Debunking a Climate-Change Skeptic 807

DJRumpy writes "The Danish political scientist Bjørn Lomborg won fame and fans by arguing that many of the alarms sounded by environmental activists and scientists — that species are going extinct at a dangerous rate, that forests are disappearing, that climate change could be catastrophic — are bogus. A big reason Lomborg was taken seriously is that both of his books, The Skeptical Environmentalist (in 2001) and Cool It (in 2007), have extensive references, giving a seemingly authoritative source for every one of his controversial assertions. So in a display of altruistic masochism that we should all be grateful for (just as we're grateful that some people are willing to be dairy farmers), author Howard Friel has checked every single citation in Cool It. The result is The Lomborg Deception, which is being published by Yale University Press next month. It reveals that Lomborg's work is 'a mirage,' writes biologist Thomas Lovejoy in the foreword. '[I]t is a house of cards. Friel has used real scholarship to reveal the flimsy nature' of Lomborg's work."
Image

Poll Finds 23 Percent of Texans Think Obama is Muslim Screenshot-sm 562

A University of Texas poll has found that 23 percent of Texans are convinced that Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama is a Muslim. Only 45 percent of the people polled correctly identified Obama as a Protestant Christian. Nationwide, the number of people who believe in the "Secret Muslim Conspiracy" is about the same as those who believe that the moon landing was faked (5-10 percent), which makes the high numbers in Texas unusual.
Privacy

As of October, FBI To Allow Warrantless Investigations 574

I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "Attorney General Michael Mukasey has agreed to allow Congressional hearings, but not to delay, the implementation of new FBI regulations that would allow them to spy on American citizens who are not suspected of any crime. As an editorial in the New York Times points out, this is a power that has a history of abuse. In times past, it was used to wiretap Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. and to spy on other civil rights and anti-war protesters." As Dekortage points out, "Several senators have formally complained that citizens could be investigated 'without any basis for suspicion,' which the Justice Department denies."

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