Wednesday, June 30, 2010

(Even) More Evidence for Climate Change

This is a great piece of evidence to add to the mountain - great because it's a simple one that even people with no formal science can understand: There is a new and emerging field of research called 'ice patch archaeology' which is basically about finding out about the past from cool and interesting things that are dropping out of glaciers as they melt. It's new because before the glaciers were not melting before and melting glaciers are proof of global warming:

To the untrained eye, University of Colorado at Boulder Research Associate Craig Lee's recent discovery of a 10,000-year-old wooden hunting weapon might look like a small branch that blew off a tree in a windstorm. Nothing could be further from the truth, according to Lee, a research associate with CU-Boulder's Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research who found the atlatl dart, a spear-like hunting weapon, melting out of an ice patch high in the Rocky Mountains close to Yellowstone National Park.

Lee, a specialist in the emerging field of ice patch archaeology, said the dart had been frozen in the ice patch for 10 millennia and that climate change has increased global temperatures and accelerated melting of permanent ice fields exposing organic materials that have long been entombed in the ice.

"We didn't realize until the early 2000s that there was a potential to find archaeological materials in association with melting permanent snow and ice in many areas of the globe," Lee said. "We're not talking about massive glaciers, we're talking about the smaller, more kinetically stable snowbanks that you might see if you go to Rocky Mountain National Park."


Saturday, June 26, 2010

More Climate Creationism

Even more linkages between the voodoo cult of anti-evolution and the bat-shit crazy of climate change denial. Here's the new Texas Republican Party Platform on science teaching:
Realizing that conflict and debate is a proven learning tool in classrooms, we support objective teaching and equal treatment of all sides of scientific theories, including evolution, Intelligent Design, global warming, political philosophies, and others. We believe theories of life origins and environmental theories should be taught as challengeable scientific theory subject to change as new data is produced, not scientific law. Teachers and students should be able to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of these theories openly and without fear of retribution or discrimination of any kind.

Yeah - teach the debate: teach the science debate as to if the earth was formed by cooling gases and space debris or in fact created by the giant Mbombo. No science teacher should be in trouble for teaching the Mbombo theory as fact.

Fucking idiots; yes, teach this stuff in cultural studies, literature, history and/or religion classes but science? Mbombo says no.

In Science a Scientific Law comes from repeated observations that the same thing happens over and over and over. That's why it's a law and not a trend or tendency. If there was new data showing that what we thought happened under a law, did not happen over and over and over - then it ceases to be a law and becomes a a trend or tendency. I think the Texas Republican Party are confusing legal laws with the Scientific laws. Somebody who can't understand the difference between legal laws and Scientific laws should not be writing science policy.

I think the Texas Republican Party are confusing logic with dogma.

But then this is the Texas Republicans - and you don't mess with the Texas Republicans - even if they are bat-shit crazy ('cos they're armed).

They are also a nasty bunch of homophobic pricks too. Climate change deniers; with friends like there...

Friday, June 25, 2010

666 Science and the Method Machine Death Cult

Catchy title for a post about climate change. But I promise there will be a little Satanism later on... So there has been some important new research about the consensus on climate change:
Here, we use an extensive dataset of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data to show that 1) 97-98% of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the field support the tenets of ACC outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change; and 2) the relative climate expertise and scientific prominence of the researchers unconvinced of ACC are substantially below that of the convinced researchers.

Translated this means the more science a scientist does in the area of climate change (as indicated by publishing papers on the subject) the more they think that climate change is real, humans are causing it and we need to act. Simples. It also shows the less science a scientist does in the area of climate the less likely they are to think that climate change is real, humans are cuasing it and we need to act now. Not only that the different is stark - the dividing line between the two groups is 97-98% of active climate scientists think climate change is real,humans are causing and we need to do somthing and only 2-3% don't accept this view. It's not a 100% consenus, but it's within 2/3% of being one, and that is very, very strong for science. This study also confirms pervious studies looks at the same issues.

Now to the Satanism bit. (And this made me laugh out loud when I saw it) There is an Australian blogger called Jo Nova and she's not a climate scientist, nor does she do any research on science. But she thinks she knows best. She decided to comment on the above research using the same insightful and analystic techniques used by celebrity blogger Perz Hilton... To dismantle the evil warmist research, Jo re-created the cover of the science journal to stick it to the man!! Yeah!!! Here is the before:

And here is the Satan-inspired after:

Amazing - Super-dooper-Nova! Can you see what she's done there? Clever shit! It's now issue '666'. Rofl! 'Proceedings of the National Academy of Science' becomes (wait for it...) 'Proceedings of the National Academy of Sorcery' Fucking genius. Here's my fav bit... 'Evidence? Who needs it! We vote for Laws of Nature'...

Hang on? 'Evidence? Who needs it! We vote for Laws of Nature' Wtf?? That makes no this a view into her neo-con mindset? Crazy is as crazy does. The who thing is beyond parody. 'Tis said that any sufficiently advanced technology would be considered magic by more less technologically-advanced people. Here we see Jo demonstrating that any sufficiently advanced scientific method (all of it) would be considered sorcery by less logically-advanced bloggers.

Love the cover Jo - your photoshop skills are clearly considerably more developed that your logic and science ones.

Jo Nova is bat-shit nuts. (Yes I am name-calling - it's as sophisticated as Jo's cover re-desgin.)

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Climate Change Deniers Freeze Up

Back in March this year, the climate change deniers were crowing that there was slightly more sea-ice than in February...
But March brought good news for the Polar Bears, and bad news for the Catlin Expedition and any others looking for bad news. Instead of ice extent declining through March like it usually does, it continued to increase through the month and is now at the high (so far) for the year. If it keeps this trend unabated, in a day or two it will likely cross the “normal” line.

But then it went and dropped off a cliff and is now well below the average and the touted 'return to average' never happened. Instead we're tracking record lows. Reality's a bummer.

Here's how the denailist wanted things to look (on a pretty graph):

But here's how it ended up looking :(

(hattip to wottsupwiththat)

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Wikileaks Under Attack

Please the first casualty of war is not truth - that's always a casualty - but open information... WikiLeaks reporting the sad killing of civilians via US botched airstrikes - and rather than trying to find out what happened - the US is trying to shoot the messenger - Wikileaks:
One of our alleged sources, a young US intelligence analyst, Bradley Manning, has been detained and shipped to a US military prison in Kuwait, where he is being held without trail. Mr. Manning is alleged to have acted according to his conscious and leaked to us the Collateral Murder video and the video of a massacre that took place in Afghanistan last year at Garani.

The Garani massacre, which we are still working on, killed over 100 people, mostly children.

Mr. Manning allegedly also sent us 260,000 classified US Department cables, reporting on the actions of US Embassy's engaging in abusive actions all over the world. We have denied the allegation, but the US government is acting as if the allegation is true and we do have a lot of other material that exposes human rights abuses by the United States government.

Mr. Manning was allegedly exposed after talking to an unrelated "journalist" who then worked with the US government to detain him.

Some background on the Manning case:

[ note that there are some questions about the Wired reportage, see: ]

WikiLeaks a small organization going through enormous growth and operating in an adverserial, high-security environment which can make communication time consuming and the acquisition of new staff and volunteers, also difficult since they require high levels of trust.

To try and deal with our growth and the current difficult situation, we want to get you to work together with our other supporters to set up a "Friends of WikiLeaks" group in your area. We have multiple supporters in most countries and would like to see them be a strong and independent force.

Please write to if you are interested in helping with Friends of WikiLeaks in your area. You will receive further instructions.

We also have significant unexpected legal costs (for example flying a legal team to Kuwait, video production. Collateral Murder production costs were $50,000 all up).

Any financial contributions will be of IMMEDIATE assistance.

Donate if you can!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Telegraph Shamed By Bogus Rainforest Claim

In Torygraph world, up is down and down is up. Here's a extract from a 'news' story:
IPCC Shamed By Bogus Rainforest Claim by Jonathan Leake, The Sunday Times
A startling report by the United Nations climate watchdog that global warming might wipe out 40% of the Amazon rainforest was based on an unsubstantiated claim by green campaigners who had little scientific expertise.

Here's the truth from a retraction by the Torygraph:
The article "UN climate panel shamed by bogus rainforest claim" (News, Jan 31) stated that the 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report had included an "unsubstantiated claim" that up to 40% of the Amazon rainforest could be sensitive to future changes in rainfall. The IPCC had referenced the claim to a report prepared for WWF by Andrew Rowell and Peter Moore, whom the article described as "green campaigners" with "little scientific expertise." The article also stated that the authors' research had been based on a scientific paper that dealt with the impact of human activity rather than climate change.

In fact, the IPCC's Amazon statement is supported by peer-reviewed scientific evidence. In the case of the WWF report, the figure had, in error, not been referenced, but was based on research by the respected Amazon Environmental Research Institute (IPAM) which did relate to the impact of climate change. We also understand and accept that Mr Rowell is an experienced environmental journalist and that Dr Moore is an expert in forest management, and apologise for any suggestion to the contrary.

Wow - how could you get is so wrong - almost the total opposite of what was said - but then this is Jonathan Leake writing, for whom up is down and down is up. So let's help correct that article:
IPCC Telegraph Shamed By Bogus Rainforest Claim by Jonathan Leake, The Sunday Times
A startling An accurate report by the United Nations climate watchdog that global warming might wipe out 40% of the Amazon rainforest was based on an unsubstantiated a peer-reviewed substantiated claim by green campaigners an expert in forest management who had little scientific lots of expertise.

That's better. As for Jonathan Leake - Epic fail:

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Who Should Buy Blackwater?

Notorious mercenary firm Blackwater is reportedly up for sale. Wired has got a poll going suggesting who might buy 'em...

There are some fun suggestions...

British Petroleum
by Anonymous
Somebody is gonna have to keep all those sunbathers away from the beach.

Salvation Army
by ajl
They haven't been doing enough real fighting.

Cyberdyne Systems
by Adam Rawnsley
Face it, T-1000s are expensive -- you can only buy so many. So who's going to protect Skynet's Ambassadors from human insurgents when there's a shortage of endoskeletons? And with a corporate culture dominated by remorseless killing machines, it should make for an easy transition.

Church of Scientology
by Soy Jism
Talk smack about Xenu? It's on.

by S Nicewarner
Are you SURE you want to download that song?

by Anonymous
Think of how many whaling ships they could sink with their own air force! Give peace a chance...or else!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Extremism is Nasty

In all it's forms. Here, for example, we see pro-Israeli protesters behaving as a mixture of creepy toughing perverts and/or aggressive bone-heads as they demand that the IDF kill more people and chant "death to the leftists". Charming. Such a friendly bunch of democratic people, can't imagine how the world perceives Israel to be a rogue state... (and during the protest the cop sits there and does fuck all while the pro-Israeli protesters get nastier and nastier.

Remember all that killing and destruction the IDF does is to protect the world from extremist Islam... Ooops. Forgot about the home-grown extremists...

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Peace is Terror, Protest is Terror

"I'm a terrorist, you're a terrorist - we're all terrorist, la-la-la!" Yes the 'terrorist label is being thrown around to mean not "somebody who uses indiscriminate asymmetric violence to advance a political or religious cause" but "anyone who disagrees with me.." Hmmm:
Eric Blair, a.k.a. George Orwell, is often wrongly thought to have been writing science fiction in his seminal novel, 1984. In fact, he was simply warning about certain tendencies in governmental practice as actually observed not only in the mass authoritarian regimes but often in his own Britain.

Thus, newspeak, whereby the government calls things by their opposite, is an arrow in the quiver of the abject everywhere. So when the far rightwing government of Israel names anti-war peacenik Kenneth O’Keefe a “terrorist”, it is being Orwellian, but only in the sense of behaving as the worst governments typically do in contemporary times, not in the sense of resembling a dystopian future.

Rightwing Zionism is one of the more dangerous purveyors of newspeak nowadays. Former deputy secretary of defense Paul Wolfowitz tried to invoke anti-terrorism laws forbidding attacks on US troops to keep peaceful protesters away from US military bases.

And it isn’t just governments. Israeli music promoter Shuki Weiss referred to the rash of cancellations by Western bands such as the Pixies of their scheduled appearances in Israel this summer as “cultural terrorism.” The musicians are protesting the aid flotilla massacre, in which 9 innocent persons were killed and 30 wounded. Come on. I’m not big on cultural or academic boycotts myself, but ‘cultural terrorism?’ How is declining to come a way of inspiring fear in someone? Maybe you could call it cultural passive-aggression. But terrorism?

So, Israeli logic:
The Pixies = terrorists.
Gil Scott-Heron = terrorist.
Peace protester = terrorist.
Aid convoy = terrorist convoy.

FFS - what a crock of shit. See if you can spot the difference...

Tough call.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Telegraph Pulls Blog Failing to Toe the Party Line

Global Warming is a huge conspiracy and is not really happening. It's a Marxist Green Lobby plot. The earth is not warming and even if it is, it's not warming much so don't worry. But it's not warming, it's cooling so worry about that. But even if it warming it would be the sun doing the extra warming and not us, no way sir-e. At least that is the party-line in Telegraph-land. A true blue land of hope and glory and alternative rules of science.

Now, in Telegraph-land, the debate on climate change is over - it's not real (see above) but the debate is ongoing - and the evil Marxists Green Lobby are stifling debate.

Except that one of it's writers - had the audacity to speak freely:
Lord Monckton is a fantasist, a blethering popinjay useful only for amusement. He can be safely ignored in all serious scientific debate. But it reflects badly on those people who want seriously to argue against the science of climate change that this capering jester is among the public figureheads of their movement. If I were, for example, m’colleagues James Delingpole or Christopher Booker, I would publically wash my hands of Lord Monckton, and soon.

But now the post has gone from the Telegraph - go to the original link - and you'll just get the message:
Sorry, no posts matched your criteria.

Ooops. What is going on? Additional comments below the original post noted that Monckton had phoned the paper to complain about the article. And now it's gone. Airbrushed out of the site like a Soviet clean-up propaganda operation - no sign of it on the author's page. Still the memory hole that is the web means it is gone and yet not gone. And now it's removal is it's own story.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Monkton: Waht a massive, massive, massive co**

Yes indeed. Just when you thought stupid could not get any more stupid, Viscount Monkton comes along and ups the stupidity. Here's the back-story: Monkton is a classic scholar who fancies himself as an amateur climatologist. He's uncovered the Marxist plot behind climate science and has set about debunking it - except that somebody who knows the area (a real scientist, Dr. John Abraham) bothered to fact-check his Lairdship's presentation and found it to be full of shit - in fact there was so much shit there was nothing else.

Now Monkton has hilariously replied...
John Abraham, a lecturer in fluid mechanics at a bible-college in Minnesota has recently issued – and widely disseminated – a hilariously mendacious 83-minute attempted rebuttal of a speech by me about the climate last October in St. Paul, Minnesota. ... Here’s the thing. All of the sciences are becoming increasingly specialized. So most “scientists” – Abraham and, a fortiori, the accident-prone Monbiot among them – have no more expertise in predicting or even understanding the strange behavior of the complex, non-linear, chaotic object that is the Earth’s climate than the man on the Clapham omnibus.

Ooooooo slap my thigh! So Monkton is saying that his critic is not qualified nor expereinced enough to argue with the Vicount. He is.

So get this; Monkton thinks that Dr. John Abraham can't understand the complxities of climate science because he's not got enough expertise - yet Monkton can understand it because he's an expert in... well he's studied classics and invented a puzzle game. He advised Thatcher on science and she was one of the first world leaders to warn of the danugers of AGW and he also proposed an unworkable solution to AIDS; yeah! So put that in your pipe and smoke it Dr pointy-head-PhD man!

Dr. John Abraham replies:
Climate processes involve radiation, convection, and conduction heat transfer. In addition, fluid mechanics governs the flow of the atmosphere and the oceans. Chemistry is critical to understanding chemical reactions which take place in both the oceans and the atmosphere. Quantum mechanics deals with the interaction of airborne molecules and photons (radiation). Geology and its related subjects are important for many reasons, including the study of past climate (paleoclimatology). Skills in numerical simulation are essential for the creation and operation of models which allow scientists to predict climate change. There are other subspecialties which are also important; this is only a partial list.

I am a tenured professor at the University of St. Thomas, a private, Catholic university in Minnesota. I have taught courses in heat transfer, fluid mechanics, numerical simulation, and thermodynamics. Topics in my courses include radiation, convection, and conduction, the same physical processes which govern energy flows in the climate. My PhD thesis dealt with combined convection and radiation heat transfer. My thesis is held in the library at the University of Minnesota, it is available to the public.

My published works span many topics including convective heat transfer, radiative heat transfer, fluid mechanics, and numerical simulation. My work on numerical simulation is at the very forefront of computational fluid dynamic (cfd) modeling. I am an expert in non-linear fluid simulations. My background does not span the entire range of topics related to climate change (no one is able to claim this), it does cover many of the essential subtopics.

What a cheese-end Monkton is.

Monday, June 07, 2010

A Mind Map of Climate Science

This is a great article - a solid attempt to frame the scientific thinking and the surrounding commentary on that scientific thinking. Worth a read. I'll summarise bits here...

This is where the science is:

Where the red dots represent the position of scientist's published work - peer reviewed papers. If you are towards the top then you think the climate is warming. If you are towards the bottom then you think it is cooling. If you are towards the right then you think humans are doing it, towards the left you think it is natural. As you can see the vast majority of scientists are in the top-right: the climate is warming and we are to blame.

Into this mix we add other institutions - not science but idological/econmic - the blue being media outlets/blogs etc and the yellow being corporations, NGOs etc. Here's how that looks:

Now you can see the population of the bottom-left (it's not warming and even if it is, humans are not to blame) is now much larger - but the science backing this view has not shifted - it's still weak. It's just now it is make to look a more active place by the ideological hangers-on.

In essence the noise they all make is there to hide the decline of evidence for their point of view.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

The Marxist Plot of Science

I have written before about the psychology of climate change deniers and how they operate. Now along comes an excellent article that puts this mindset into a historic framework. It looks at the development of Relativity, the concept most attached to Einstein and how it was opposed, not on the grounds of science - but on the grounds of ideology:
Van Dongen details how Einstein’s theory was met with a wall of disbelief and hostility by some members of the scientific establishment, and was subject to attacks in the popular press and by conservatives.

Indeed during the 1920s they went so far as to establish “think tanks” in opposition and held rallies against Einstein and his theory. “Anti-relativists” established the “Academy of Nations” in 1921, publishing papers refuting Einstein theories and awarding prizes to themselves:

“Anti-relativists… built up networks to act against Einstein’s theory in concert. This led to some success. For instance, the clamour about the theory in Germany contributed to the Nobel Committee’s delay in awarding its 1921 prize to Einstein and to the particular choice of subject for which he finally did receive it: his account of the photo-electric effect, instead of the controversial theory of relativity.”

In fact, Einstein was so concerned by the vitriol of their attacks that he cancelled speaking engagements fearing an assassination attempt.

Initially Einstein and other scientists tried to engage them, but without success:

“Their strong opposition was not due to a lack of understanding, but rather the reaction to a perceived threat… Anti-relativists were convinced of their own ideas, and were really only interested in pushing through their own theories: any explanation of relativity would not likely have changed their minds.”

Sounds familiar?

Climate change denial; meet your older brother.
Creationism; meet another of your children.

Saturday, June 05, 2010

More Links from the Freedom Flotilla

Here's a few more articles I think worth a read...

This is a power analysis of the defence of Israel of is violent actions:
The Israeli hyper-nationalists argue from contiguity, from things being next to each other, demonizing entire groups and peoples rather than considering their actions in the real world. Thus, IHH, the fundamentalist Turkish charity that sponsored the lead ship in the aid convoy, sympathizes with the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. The ship was then branded a “Hamas” vessel. But none of the passengers is known ever to have actually engaged in anything like terrorism and the Turkish government would not allow it to operate if it were actually considered radical (look at the way Turkish security tracks down the Turkish Hizbullah).

And, since Iran sympathizes with Hamas, as well, and since IHH is a known sympathizer with the plight of the Palestinians in Gaza, actually the ship is not just a Hamas ship but is an Iranian one. Even though Iran had nothing to do with it and even though it had no weapons aboard. All of Gaza is transformed by this way of thinking (if you are sympathetic with a group, you are identical to that group and they are identical to you) into an “Iranian port on the Mediterranean.” In fact, of course, the Israelis do not allow the Gazans to have a port at all, much less an Iranian one. And, if that were the danger, then surely Tyre (in Lebanese Hizbullah territory) is already an ‘Iranian port on the Mediterranean,’ since Iran is a patron of Hizbullah. But wait, that situation already exists. And no one in Europe has been menaced by Tyre, of which most of them have not heard. Imaginary dangers in the future can always be dressed up as more menacing that mundane existing situations.

The fallacies of guilt by association, appeals to emotion, poisoning the well, etc., etc. reach such a crescendo in this Israeli discourse that the IHH charity is simultaneously accused of being a stalking horse for Shiite Iran and for Shiite-killing hyper-Sunni al-Qaeda. The absurdity of a whole host of European parliamentarians, former US diplomats, Nobel prize winners, and a Swedish novelist, being fronts for ‘al-Qaeda’ is so profound that it is like a Monty Python skit. ‘No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!’

Plus the Israli's are not doing themselves any favours in looking competent - first this botched raid and now botched propaganda:
The Israeli Ministry Foreign Affairs posted on its Flickr account pictures of the terrifying weapons they found on the IHH ship. You know, things like bulletproof vests for emergency services, pepper spray, kitchen knives, bits of wood and other weapons of mass destruction. Except that they did not realize that Flickr displays EXIF data, which is the information that cameras record when they take pictures: aperture, shutter speed, flash status... and the time the picture was taken.

Which, as Flickr commenters quickly pointed out, was sometime in 2006.

Now it is possible that the camera user did not set the correct date, which is why the camera is recording the wrong date on the photos - or it is possible that these photos are not from the flotilla - thus it looks either incompetent or dishonest.

Friday, June 04, 2010

Reframing the Climate Issue (Thanks BBC)

So here comes the next line of attack from the climate change deniers - the idea that somehow they are a legitimate voice and should be in the process. Roger Harrabin of the BBC gets taken as the patsy on this line of attack:

When at the launch of the Sir Muir Russell inquiry I asked about the credibility of the review panel in the blogosphere, Sir Muir dismissed the enquiry with the flick of a wrist - he had been a senior civil servant and he had run a university, his bona fides were beyond question.

But the blogosphere does not respect past reputations, only current performance. And some of the top performers in the blogosphere are critics of the establishment.

There is so much wrong with this I don't know where to start. The blogosphere is not a monolithic enterprise, so you can't make assumptions about what a platform (it's not a person) is/does/thinks. How do you asses 'top performers'? It's almost like you need some kind of criteria to asses the validity of information, else the 'top performer' just comes from selection bias. Something like peer-review? But we already have that and it's spoken. Clearly.

Not only that this article assumes that climate change breaks down into two factions:
Even at the Heartland Institute climate sceptics' conference in Chicago last week most scientists seemed to agree that CO2 had probably warmed the planet at the end of the 20th century, over and above natural fluctuations.

But they did not agree that the warming will be dangerous - and they object to being branded fools or hirelings for saying so.

This is simply not true. The Heartland Institute climate denials sceptics' conference had a mishmash of views; it's cooling, it's not cooling or warming, it's warming but only a bit etc. They had no consensus except a desire to stop any political changes in response to climate change. The bollox continues...
Steve McIntyre, for instance, is a mining engineer who started examining climate statistics as a hobby. He has taken on the scientific establishment on some key issues and won.

He arguably knows more about CRU science than anyone outside the unit - but none of the CRU inquiries has contacted him for input.

He arguably does not. His ham-fisted attempts at science have never passed a proper peer-review process because it's crap. Other bloggers have taken his rubbish to pieces (e.g. part 1 and part 2) concluding:
So parting questions are these: Why should anyone take Steve McIntyre seriously? And how long will it be before responsible journalists and commentators expose his baseless “analysis” for the nonsense that it is?

Clearly it is going to take Roger Harrabin longer to get the message that provably McIntyre is full of shit. But he goes on...
I have been told by the review teams that they can read McIntyre's blog if they want to learn about his views. But they can't have read all his blog entries surely? And they would have saved a lot of time and effort if they had asked him to summarise his scientific scrutiny on a couple of sheets of A4.

McIntyre submitted to the house of commons on the CRU hack - and they concluded that the CRU were right. Nothing has changed since - except more analysis of McIntyre's work showing more holes in it.

(Hat-tip dbmm)

PS. On a brighter note, it is good to see the Guardian starting to name people's area of expertise when quoting them:
Benny Peiser, a social anthropologist at Liverpool John Moores University who is the foundation's director, said in December last year: "We look out of the window and it's very cold, it doesn't seem to be warming."

Yup - what the fuck does a social anthropologist know about climate? Judging by his comments, zero.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Some Gaza Flotilla Reading

There is lots on the net about this story. Here's a few I'd recommend:

- Arthur Goldwag on Israel and Jewish Identity.

- Juan Cole on Egypt's difficult balancing act in being a US ally, avoiding conflict with Israel, it's own fear of Hamas and yet having a population who support freedom for Gaza.

- Wired's Danger Room on the military clusterfuck by Israel and the ensuring PR loss.

Plus, Democracy Now report on flotilla attack.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Israel Plans to 'Revoke' Citizenship

Chilling plans to remove the citizenship of people found guilty of 'terrorism':
Israel’s Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved a bill Sunday to revoke citizenship of Israelis convicted of terrorist activity or of espionage for terrorist organisations.

At first some people might be tempted to think 'well why not, they are terrorists...' except that first the definition of terrorism is getting ever broader from what people might agree is terrorism, say planting bombs to just disagreeing with you:
Use of the term implies a moral judgment; and if one party can successfully attach the label terrorist to its opponent, then it has indirectly persuaded others to adopt its moral viewpoint.' Hence the decision to call someone or label some organization terrorist becomes almost unavoidably subjective, depending largely on whether one sympathizes with or opposes the person/group/cause concerned. If one identifies with the victim of the violence, for example, then the act is terrorism. If, however, one identifies with the perpetrator, the violent act is regarded in a more sympathetic, if not positive (or, at the worst, an ambivalent) light; and it is not terrorism.

Second, it seems to me that the emotion that terrorism generates can often lead to wrongful arrests and convictions; think of the Birmingham 6 - a group of innocent people wrongly convicted of terrorism - now add to the injustice the remove of their citizenship...

Seems to me this is further evidence of a right-ward and Orwellian movement of the Israeli state.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

EDL Cancel Demo to Oppose New Mosque

The EDL - who seem to portray all Muslims as radical Muslims (see the recent Beeb documentary) have cancelled a demo to oppose the building of the new mosque - when they found out that the majority of people opposing it were.... Muslims...
The controversial English Defence League have called off a planned demonstration against a proposed mosque in Walsall after learning that the biggest single group opposed to the scheme are Muslims. George Makin reports.

The anti-Islamic EDL had announced they would hold a demonstration on June 19 against a scheme to build a new place of worship in Vicarage Close which had previously been denied planning permission by the Walsall council. Proposers of the development have announced their intention to appeal the decision.

The EDL’s proposed demonstration led to a joint statement by the leaders of all three party leaders on Walsall council, fearful of a repeat of violent clashes which have occurred at other EDL events, that the rightwing group was not wanted in the town.

During negotiations with police EDL organiser were surprised to learn the original planning application had been opposed by many Muslims in Walsall who claim there are enough mosques in the borough already.

Note to EDL - Islam; It's a bit more complicated than that.