Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Advances in Deception

Those pesky creationists are at it again.

"'Last fall, Commissioner Yecke received a letter from Congress stressing that this guidance in the No Child Left Behind Act Conference Report was the official position of Congress on science education. The letter was signed by Minnesota Congressman John Kline and Congressman John Boehner, chairman of the U.S. House Education and the Workforce Committee.'

You would never guess from this passage that the wording about evolution was cut out of the act before it became a bill. It is not Congress's official position.

Finally, the press release ends by urging Minnesota to 'teach the controversy.' The Discovery Institute would like to pretend that their specious claims are actually part of a scientific controversy. If that were true, then you'd expect them publishing new findings in Cell or The Journal of Biochemistry, and being invited to give talks at major scientific venues like the Federation of American Societies of Experimental Biology. Instead, they whine with their bogus claims of censorship. Having been unable to make a dent in the scientific arena, they create a political controversy, through which they hope to get from high schools what they can't get from real science: credibility."

Friday, January 23, 2004

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Congressional Republican Hackers

Via Joshua Micah Marshall, the Boston Globe is reporting on a congressional computer hack which gave the Republicans access to confidential Democratic leadership files.

"It's creeping DeLayism. No rules -- only power."

What "compassionate conservatism" really means

Michael Kinsley:
"So, to sum up: Talk loudly. Carry a big stick anyway. Spend money. Borrow to pay for it. Fiddle the books. I guess that's a governing philosophy of sorts."

Cheney still smokin' the koolaid

Just because the WMD haven't been found yet doesn't mean that they will never be found. Heck, give this administration another 4 years and they will probably plant some "throw-down" WMD.

Ballots of the future

will be paper.

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

Maher Arar Archives

It's a basis for a good movie. Especially scary because it's true.

Immigration Mess

The combination of our convoluted immigration laws and Homeland Security is a classic case of Calvinball. It's produced needless tragedies. It makes it look like our country is run by a bunch of idiots. Duh!

SOTU Talking Points

from the Center for American Progress

More Talking Points

Josh Marshall's interview of George Soros

The environment is MIA in the SOU

Timothy Noah:
"The word 'conservation' appeared once in a plea to pass the energy bill, which takes various steps to encourage more oil drilling. This in a speech where Bush found time to call for an end to steroid abuse in professional sports, an issue completely outside the realm of government at the federal, state, or local level. Apparently Karl Rove has decided that the environment isn't even worth paying lip service to anymore."

Monday, January 19, 2004

Evolutionary Theory Adds Up

From the University of Alberta:

All living plants and animals are likely derived from two primitive species of bacteria, a mathematics professor at the University of Alberta has shown.

Sunday, January 18, 2004

The real root of the Dean movement

By Bill McKibben:
"Dean's a good guy. Not the second coming, not Martin Luther King, not Abraham Lincoln, but a good guy. In Vermont, every kid in the state had access to good health care by the time he was done. That shouldn't be such an accomplishment, but in our America it is. Environmentally, he did straightforward, sound things: conserved a lot of land, made real efforts on energy conservation. Budgets were balanced, but not on the backs of poor people. And his plans for the nation seem sound too. Like most of his Democratic rivals, he could be expected to at least do all the obvious things, and some of the not-so-obvious."

Saturday, January 17, 2004


Wouldn't be wild if various intelligence agencies had spooks in such deep cover in the Islamic terrorist organizations that in order to confirm their own bona fides they needed to make runs at at least planning some attacks and these efforts are what is generating the chatter that has set off the Home Security alarms? Pogo would have struck again. "We have met the enemy and he is us."

More on O'Neill

from Arianna:
"Struggling to reconcile the ever-widening gulf between what the Bush administration claims to be true and what is actually true is getting harder by the day. Scientists at M.I.T. have apparently been having some success using string theory and particle accelerators, but where does that leave the rest of us? Fortunately, Paul O'Neill has a timely, if disturbing, diagnosis, backed up by some 19,000 pages of lab results: The White House is being run by a band of out-and-out fanatics."

Friday, January 16, 2004

Blumenthal on O'Neill

He cannot tell a lie

Why some obesity may be in the gene

Ancient DNA Mutations:
When heat and cold are managed by technology, not metabolism, and people from warmer climates are eating the high fat and calorie diets of northern climates, there is a rise in obesity and the age-related degenerative diseases,' Wallace said. 'The caloric intake and local climate of many individuals are out of balance with their genetic history. Thus, our genetic history is linked to our current diseases, resulting in the new field of evolutionary medicine.

Sunday, January 11, 2004

Sadly, no surprise here

"So, what does O'Neill reveal? According to the book, ideology and electoral politics so dominated the domestic-policy process during his tenure that it was often impossible to have a rational exchange of ideas. The incurious President was so opaque on some important issues that top Cabinet officials were left guessing his mind even after face-to-face meetings. Cheney is portrayed as an unstoppable force, unbowed by inconvenient facts as he drives Administration policy toward his goals."

Bye bye Social Security

Bush plunders Social Security:

"The International Monetary Fund, which usually frets about runaway fiscal policies in developing countries, yesterday released a report that warned of the dangers to the global economy posed by the United States' lack of spending discipline, its reliance on foreign creditors, and its failure to plan adequately for future government liabilities."

Hydrogen Details

Even the fuel of the future has problems.

True Faith

I always put a hand on my wallet when someone begins to make an emphasis of their faith. But genuine faith is lived out instead of talked out.

The UN Inspections were working

But the cowboy who couldn't shoot at all was characteristically clueless.

"An unprecedently intrusive and well-funded search by the US since the fall of Baghdad has found little more than UN inspectors did before the war. The Carnegie report says continued 'coercive' UN inspections, a tactic it has long advocated, would have eventually verified this without war"

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

The biology of anorexia

The mechanisms that come into play in anorexia may be an adaptation that allows the human race to better function while starving.

Coffee Consumption Significantly Reduces Diabetes Risk

Another reason to enjoy your cupa Joe.

Mad Cows

This Mad Cow incident may not be so bad in the long run. It appears that the safeguards currently is placed worked well enough to catch the problem before meat actually became a risk. But more importantly the scare may result in the meat industry actually cleaning up its act.