Glen Allport's blog

Obama's "$2500" price drop for health insurance became a $4865 increase

Zerohedge reminds us that when government promises something, it pays to remember Ringo's Law: "Everything government touches turns to crap."

Scientists Ask Obama To Prosecute Global Warming Skeptics

Having just read Mark Steyn's "A Disgrace to the Profession" (see my previous blog entry) I was even more horrified than I otherwise would have been to see that the cabal of "the science is settled" climate scientists (20 of them, in this case) is asking Obama to use the RICO act against their critics. I've written about the corruption that government involvement brings to science (and to everything it touches), but this is a new low.

A Disgrace to the Profession

That's the title of Mark Steyn's newest book -- although Steyn wrote probably less than 10% of it, since it's mostly a compendium of long quotations by scientists from all over the world, including Nobel Winners. Topic? Climate scientist Michael Mann, who -- as a newly-minted Ph.D. -- published the infamous and now thoroughly discredited "hockey stick" climate study in 1999. More recently, Mann was foolish enough to sue Steyn for libel, and this book is "Volume 1" (so the cover proclaims) of Steyn's response.
Wow. Page after page of climate scientists, physicists, and others -- each with his or her credentials and various positions, awards, etc. listed -- many who believe in global warming but hate what Mann and others have done to science -- on the topic of not only the error-prone, poorly conceived, and often outright fraudulent "science" that Mann has been putting out, but also on his character and personal behavior in regards "deniers" (anyone who questions him or points out his mistakes), on the horrific corruption of peer review, of scientific journals, and of science itself.
I didn't read the famous hacked email dump on the topic from 2009, but bits of many of those emails, and commentary by scientists about them, show up here. In all, this is a most incredible volume, just destroying Mann and his small group of fellow conspirators (a characterization that those emails and this book amply justify). I also read the Wikipedia page on Mann, and the self-serving, hide-the-truth nature of that page really leaps out after having read Steyn's book. 
Both educational and huge fun -- my wife is enjoying the book also -- A Disgrace to the Profession is something no scientist and no honest person of good will should miss, regardless of their politics or views on global warming.

Germany struggles with nuclear waste disposal
After the plan to use an old salt mine for nuclear waste storage was found to be unsafe (as in the United States, where the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, or WIPP, in a New Mexico salt formation has failed in unexpected fashion), Germany is looking at other locations. German Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks points out that "There is no safe permanent disposal site in existence anywhere in the world," she told reporters. Not only that, she added, Germany has a comparative advantage: since it has a fixed deadline for shutting down its last reactors, authorities can estimate how much waste they will be dealing with. "Those countries that continue to use nuclear power should really be further along."
But nearly everywhere, including in Japan, nuclear power continues as if there WERE some safe way to dispose of the ever-growing mountains of waste. There isn't; not yet and possibly (probably?) not ever. Nuclear power and its long-term consequences may be the single most harmful symptom of Statism and its violations of the Non-Aggression Principle.

Nuclear Testing and the Rise of Global Cancer Rates

The report discussed in this article is not new -- I referenced it in a column years ago -- but the article is a reminder that the report deserves more widespread attention in this age of Fukushima. Other sources give MUCH higher figures for bomb-test-related mortality -- it would hardly be surprising if the government fudged downward its figures for the number of civilians killed in the gov't's pursuit of a weapons program that could end all life on Earth. --  Glen
"A little noticed investigation from 2002 spells out the grim toll. Radioactive fallout from nuclear weapons testing has killed more than 15,000 Americans and caused at least 80,000 cancers.  Ominously, the report concluded that decades of open air nuclear blasts have exposed to radiation nearly everyone who has resided in the United States since 1952.


"The report, conducted by the National Cancer Institute and Centers for Disease Control, is remarkable for several reasons, not least because it represented the first time the US government released an assessment of the spread and consequences to human health of radioactive fallout from nuclear weapons testing. It was also the first time that the government owned up to the fact that a substantial number of cancer deaths have been caused by nuclear testing."

The Kafka-like Persecution of Julian Assange
[Remember when WikiLeaks was new and some libertarians -- including a few at STR -- insisted it was a disinformation / distraction tool of the power elite? Well, Assange is still on the run, in a "can't leave the premises" kind of way, and WikiLeaks continues to oppose and expose the power elite. -- Glen]
"In an era when powerful institutions demonize decent people – and the mainstream media joins in, piling on the abuse – legal proceedings have become another Kafka-esque weapon of coercion. Few cases are more troubling than the persecution of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, as John Pilger describes."

Law changed so nuclear waste dumps can be forced on local communities


Nuclear power is no more workable as a free-market industry in Britain than it is in the U.S., and a new law makes the point by letting the government force communities to host nuclear waste dumps whether they want to or not. 

All of Japan is contaminated; Japan responds by passing state secrets law

This post at at Energy News is from last December, and things have gotten even worse since then, especially after the recent, and epic, typhoon. But things were already horrifying -- and just as the U.S. government and Soviet government lied to their own people about the dangers of nuclear testing and nuclear power, the Japanese government is doing everything it can to hide the fact that ALL of Japan is contaminated, and quite a lot of Japan is SO contaminated that health effects -- thyroid problems, many unusual types of health problems, and even, at this very early stage, increased cancer rates -- are already showing up in the general population. What will happen over the next few decades will be far worse than the effects of Chernobyl, which has already killed about one million people. Below is the headline from the link at top; there are typically several new posts at Energy News every day; if you want to know what's happening with Fukushima and with other radioactive hot-spots (Hanford in Washington state, for instance) -- and you should, you're breathing it in and eating it in your food -- I recommend checking Energy News frequently.
Nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen: All of Japan is contaminated, gov’t covering up enormous exposures to public; Epidemic is just beginning — Evacuee: We are in fact dying in Fukushima; What happened to us will soon affect all Japanese people (VIDEOS)

New English nuke plant (like every other) can't be built without aggression

In EU approves funding for UK’s first nuclear plant for 20 years, we learn that ". . . the project has been highly criticised due to the government guaranteeing EDF a price per energy unit of more than twice the current wholesale cost in compensation for building the plant." Nuclear power has NEVER been a cost-effective way to generate electricity, and without government coercion (including the 1956 Price-Anderson Act in the US) we would have a LOT less radioactive contamination in the world and much more quickly-growing renewable power generation industries.

Atlas is Shrugging in California

Variety bemoans that "Hollywood Continues to Flee California at Alarming Rate." Of course, it isn't just the movie industry where business is leaving for greener, or at least less kleptocratic, pastures. But Hollywood has always been the one industry best able to dramatize and publicise its own perception of the world, and while producers and film investors aren't being hurt by California's fiscal insanity (because they can, and do, film their productions elsewhere), the Little People -- meaning the Hollywood working class, the thousands of people behind the scenes doing everything from building sets to creating CGI -- are increasingly unemployed, as film-making happens in other states or other countries. 
The same is true for almost every major industry in California, and indeed throughout America. Freedom and prosperity go together, and the United States is rapidly losing ground in both. Not often said is that compassion is ALSO tied to freedom; rarely does one find a compassionate police state. In all, not a positive situation for those of us living in the former Land of the Free.

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