Friday, October 31, 2014

Random Stuff Since I'm Too Busy to Blog Properly

"Tim Wigley, president of the Western Energy Alliance, drew groans from the crowd when he mentioned U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, D-Boulder, who is bankrolling two ballot measures opposed by a broad coalition of Coloradans for fears of what they will do to the state's oil and gas industry.

"'There are forces that are coming to Colorado who want to gut the oil and gas industry in this state," he said. "They are big out-of-state interests ...'

"Wigley elicited nervous laughter when he borrowed a line from Rush Limbaugh to describe those collecting signatures to put the [anti-fracking] measures on the ballot as "long-haired, maggot-infested hippie freaks.''

-- Denver Post
"Caring for the poor does not make you a communist."

-- Pope Francis
"One day the AIs will look back on us the same way we look at fossils."

-- trailer for Ex Machina
"Texas has been a conservative state since dinosaurs roamed it 6,000 years ago."

-- Jon Stewart
  

Monday, October 27, 2014

Ebola No Longer Growing Exponentially

Though the Ebola virus is still devastating Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone, from a global view it's actually starting to look like the efforts to control it are working -- neither cases or deaths are rising exponentially any more, and perhaps not linearly either:


Except people have thought this before. 99.7% of these cases are (or have been) in Liberia, Guinea and Sierre Leone.

Now, sadly, the very few cases in the U.S. are the overwhelming focus of the media, at the expense of West Africa. I can't look at pictures like this and not think that the human project is a complete failure:





with responses like this the icing on the cake.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Steve Goddard Now Just Outright Lying

Tony Heller (@SteveSGoddard) isn't even trying very hard to cover his lies anymore.

He has a headline, "US Having Its Coolest Year On Record." It even got pickup up by another climate liar, Drudge.

Click to Enlarge
NOAA's USA48 data says the US isn't even close to its coolest year on record -- in fact, through September the year-to-date average for 2014 is very average: the 57th-warmest since 1895 (120 years).

On what basis does Goddard build his lie? That
"the percentage of US HCN stations to reach 90 degrees was the smallest on record this year..."
which is, of course, isn't even how monkeys define the "coolest year." They (and the higher primates) define it as a real, actual average, not the percentage of stations below or above some arbitrary value.
"USA48 in tie for warmest year -- highest percentage of US HCN stations above 52 degrees!"
To that lie Heller adds

...with four of the five coolest years occurring above 350 PPM CO2.

which, of course, isn't right either -- 2014 is 63rd-coolest out of 120 years.

Besides, doesn't Heller claim (falsely) that the surface station data are manipulated or something? Yes, he does.

I'm seeing more and more deniers doing this -- simply lying, without any care about their credibility. Even they seem to know they have none left. Still, how do you counter outright lying when those lies are what some people want to hear?

And I'm seeing more about how the data are manipulated on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but the show the Pause on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

On the weekends, all bets are off and all lies are on.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Today's Partial Eclipse

From Portland, OR (maximum was at 3:04 pm PDT). Taken with my iPhone 5c through a solar filter. Not nearly as good as I hoped, but my 7-year old niece said "I see it!" when she first saw the curvature of the Moon on the Sun, so it was all worth it. The upcoming total eclipse on August 21, 2017 should be much better -- likely few-to-no clouds here in Oregon during August, and it will be total rather than partial.






Monday, October 20, 2014

No Doubt About it, the Strangest Animal I've Even Seen

Discovery News says it's a basket star -- a group of brittle relatives of the starfish.


Via the Huffington Post

Friday, October 17, 2014

Falcon in the Infared

This is really cool -- a video of the launch and descent of SpaceX's Falcon 1, filmed in the infrared. It was taken in September, but only released today by Elon Musk on Twitter. One thing I never realized was how on ascent the released first stage flies in the plume of the second stage rockets for a good while. That makes sense -- when the first stage is released it's traveling at the same speed as the rocket, except for (I'm guessing) a couple of booster rockets to give it a little push. But in the movies and TV shows you only ever see a few seconds of the first stage release, and from close up it looks like it's falling away fast.

Be sure to see the descent, a picture of which is the cover screen.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Shorter Mark Steyn

Shorter Mark Steyn: It's OK for me to defame him because Michael Mann is a public figure. And what's worse, he doesn't behave like the "real man" that I am.

--

A) Anyone that has to call himself a "real man," isn't one.

B) Is it really true that Mann's lawyer says "Ca Ching!" every time Steyn rants online?