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De Omnibus Dubitandum - Lux Veritas

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Green Notes

By Rich Kozlovich

Please enjoy the posts on Nuf Ced for the months of February, March and April dealing with Lyme disease, Global Warming, the EPA, Earth Day, Norman Borlaug, the man who saved a billion people, the Media and EWG's dirty dozen, Scare mongering, NPMA, manufacturers and more.  There's a lot here, but you can take your choice as may be your interest or whim, but it’s all profound, it's all provocative, and it's all factual. 

De Omnibus Dubitandum!

My Commentaries
Agriculture and Pesticides
All Natural
Author of Doom – Still Wrong
Borlaug the Great
Congress
Earth Day
EPA , Scott Pruitt
Gene Editing and GMO’s
Global Warming
Junk Science, IARC, Glyphosate and Monsanto
Media
United Nations

 

 

Green Notes

By Rich Kozlovich

Please enjoy the posts on Nuf Ced for the months of February, March and April dealing with Lyme disease, Global Warming, the EPA, Earth Day, Norman Borlaug, the man who saved a billion people, the Media and EWG's dirty dozen, Scare mongering, NPMA, manufacturers and more.  There's a lot here, but you can take your choice as may be your interest or whim, but it’s all profound, it's all provocative, and it's all factual. 

De Omnibus Dubitandum!

My Commentaries
Agriculture and Pesticides
All Natural
Author of Doom – Still Wrong
Borlaug the Great
Congress
Earth Day
EPA , Scott Pruitt
Gene Editing and GMO’s
Global Warming
Junk Science, IARC, Glyphosate and Monsanto
Media
United Nations

 

 

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Scott Pruitt proposes a regulation to keep ‘secret science’ out of EPA

by , 3 Comments @ CFACT

The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) plan to end the use of “secret science” to craft regulations will take the form of proposed regulation, making it harder for officials to skirt around or future administrations to repeal, The Daily Caller News Foundation has learned.

Administrator Scott Pruitt first announced his ban on “secret science” in a March interview with TheDCNF. Pruitt will unveil the new policy on Tuesday in the form of a proposed rule, which, if finalized, will make it harder for future administrations to repeal.

“We need to make sure their data and methodology are published as part of the record,” Pruitt told TheDCNF in March. “Otherwise, it’s not transparent. It’s not objectively measured, and that’s important.”

Pruitt is scheduled to announce the data transparency proposal Tuesday afternoon, in the first time releasing specifics of the new policy. A proposed rule must go through a comment period before it can be finalized.

Republicans have pushed for transparency in EPA regulatory science for years, especially in the wake of the Obama administration relying on non-public data to justify billions of dollars in health benefits from reducing certain pollutants.

Pruitt’s proposed rule would apply prospectively to future regulatory actions, TheDCNF has learned, but EPA officials could link the data transparency rule with President Donald Trump’s executive order on regulations issued in 2017.

Trump ordered the creation of task forces to identify existing regulations ripe for repeal or reform.  That order would nicely dovetail with a finalized EPA data transparency rule.

Once finalized, regulations put under review will have the transparency standard applied. That means EPA officials will take a close look at studies and regulatory assessments underlying existing rules, especially those imposed in the Obama years.

The proposal will be similar to Texas Rep. Lamar Smith’s HONEST Act, which passed the House in March 2017. That bill required EPA to only use publicly available data when considering rule making.

Democrats and environmentalists opposed Pruitt’s data transparency plan. Opponents argue the policy would restrict the amount of studies EPA can rely on to craft regulations and could expose legally protected patient health data.

“He and some conservative members of Congress are setting up a nonexistent problem in order to prevent the EPA from using the best available science,” former Obama EPA administrators Gina McCarthy and Janet McCabe wrote in a New York Times op-ed.

“It is his latest effort to cripple the agency,” they argued. Reported benefits from EPA rules are “mostly attributable to the reduction in public exposure to fine particulate matter,” according to the White House Office of Management and Budget report. That’s equivalent to billions of dollars.

Those estimated benefits rely on two studies to regulate on fine particulate matter, or PM2.5, in the 1990s. The studies — by Harvard University and the American Cancer Society — have not publicly released their underlying data. The Obama EPA argued requiring the data be made public would violate the confidentiality of individuals that participated in those studies.

However, EPA’s proposed data transparency rule will provide for privacy concerns and for concerns from industry over releasing confidential business information. Many scientific journals already require data to be made public, meaning researchers have ways of protecting confidential information.

“This sort of data is already routinely made public for research use,” JunkScience.com publisher Steve Milloy wrote in a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed.

“In 2012 I was desperate for a way around the Obama EPA’s secrecy on the PM2.5 issue, I found out in 2012 that I could get California death-certificate data in electronic form,” wrote Milloy. “The state’s Health Department calls this sort of data ‘Death Public Use Files.’ They are scrubbed of all personal identifying and private medical information. Some of my colleagues used this data to prepare a 2017 study, which found PM2.5 was not associated with death.”

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This article originally appeared in The Daily Caller
                  
About the Author: Michael Bastasch   
 

Monday, April 23, 2018

State Law, the Constitution and Your Rights!

By Rich Kozlovich

Forty years ago I was working for a construction company who was building what at that time was the largest coal fired power plant in the world, and safety was a major issue. I got to know the people from the Safety Department, which of course dealt with OSHA regulations, all of which I found more than a little interesting, and I kept paying attention to this issue as a result.

Around that time there was a factory in Washington state OSHA wanted to inspect and the company refused stating if they didn’t have a warrant they weren’t coming in. Of course, OSHA went after them in court – but here’s the rub – the company won. The company claimed their biggest problem was to pay for the legal fees.

Around twenty years ago I wanted to do a piece on what I consider violations of the 4th and 5th amendments of the Constitution regarding what seemed to me to be clearly unconstitutional searches by state government agencies. I spent hours looking for the case in Washington state, but I couldn’t find it, so all I’ve said on that is from memory, but that case was the foundation for my thoughts on this issue of illegal search and seizure of legitimate businesses property by overreaching, out of control government agencies.

Yesterday I received a “For Immediate Publication” press release from the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law entitled, Sixth Circuit Victory: State Cannot Inspect Ohioans' BusinessesRecords Without Warrant.

This started around four years ago dealing with a company dealing in precious metals, which falls under the Precious Metals Dealers Act ("PMDA"). This gave state authorities the “right” to ignore 4th amendment rights, by demanding “all books, forms, records, and all other sources of information with regard to the business shall at all times be available to inspection”. Furthermore, the statute gave the state “free access to the books and papers and other sources of information with regard to the business”, and that information shall “be open to the police upon demand.” They further demand: businesses at the end of the business day are be required to fax business records for that day to the police.”

I don’t know about everyone else, but to me those must be considered, “conveniently worded “writs of assistance”’,  just as were the King of England’s.  Statutes such as the one fought in court in this case couldn’t be considered anything less than “conveniently worded” rights of search and seizure that were extremely broad and general in scope, giving “broad powers” to state agents by any rational definition. Later we will see why that’s important.

Drug dealers, murders, and thieves would have their cases thrown out of court if they were dealt with in this manner, but legitimate businesses apparently have somewhere between less rights and no rights against illegal search and seizure.

Before we discuss the 4th amendment let’s discuss the Bill of Rights.

The Ten Amendments were adopted in 1791 for two reasons, the Constitution, as originally written, really didn’t have individual rights protections, and many in the States felt changes were required to the Constitution to guarantee those protections became rights, and to prevent the federal government from becoming all powerful and forgetting the government was the employee – and the people were the employer.

It was clear the Constitution didn’t address one of the major issues which prompted the Revolution - Search and Seizure by the King’s representatives. The Founding Fathers rightly believed there was no freedom if the government could march into your home and search and seize whatever they found. That principle wasn’t unique to America during the 1700’s. This is a foundational principle in English history as first outlined in 1604 by Sir Edward Coke who said:  
“The house of every one is to him as his castle and fortress, as well for his defense against injury and violence as for his repose.
The English government used revenue collection bills to steal as much from the colonists as possible. The colonists resented it and did everything in their power to overcome those laws through smuggling. In short, this became an extortion racket imposed on the American colonists by an all powerful central government.

The Boston Tea Party was not about the tax on tea. The British East India company was going broke, but they had tons of tea rotting on the docks of England, so it was decided to send it to America and sell it cheaply. So cheaply that even with the tax on the tea it would be sold more cheaply than could the smugglers. First, this would save the British East India Company, and secondly, this would get Americans used to paying the tax. John Hancock was the primary instigator of the Boston Tea Party – he was also a major player in the smuggling racket.

So, to overcome this the King decided to create “conveniently worded “writs of assistance”’, which gave his agents broad powers to “enter someone’s property or home with no notice and without any reason. Agents could interrogate anyone about their use of customer goods and force cooperation of any person. These types of searches and seizures became an egregious affront to the people of the colonies.”

That’s one of the things the Revolution was about, as a result the Founders saw the need for a 4th Amendment to prevent the Federal government from imposing the same kind of tyranny as did the British government.
The 4th Amendment: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
We also have to understand everything in the Constitution only applied to preventing the Federal government from abusing our rights – it didn’t prevent the states from doing so. The word State didn’t mean “province” in that time frame – it meant an independent nation, and those States had their own Constitutions that allowed for things we would be outraged at today. That changed with the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment adopted on July 9, 1868, as one of the Reconstruction Amendments saying:
The 14th Amendment: No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
The reasoning and actions of the Founding Fathers for a 4th Amendment were sound then, and are sound today, and based on a rock like foundation - the preservation of freedom. When we become uninterested in maintaining those rights we’re adopting a dangerous course to tyranny, which parleys well with the 5th amendment against self-incrimination.

Here’s the information from “the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law took up the case in 2012 on behalf of Liberty Coins, a coin dealer of Delaware, Ohio, and Worthington Jewelers, a retail jeweler in Worthington, Ohio. Each balked at the prospect of losing their business licenses and being fined and prosecuted for refusing to turn over cell phones, laptops, and paper records simply "upon demand" of state enforcement agents.”

According to the press release, the decision of the court is explained as follows:

"Business owners cannot be forced to choose between being arrested on the spot and standing on their Fourth Amendment rights." "[The challenged statutes] are both unnecessary to furthering Ohio's state interest and too broad in scope to withstand facial Fourth Amendment scrutiny . . . both statutes effectively allow searches of dealers' entire businesses . . . They therefore do not provide any standards to guide inspectors in the exercise of their authority to search." "The provisions' seemingly unlimited scope, along with the grant of free access to such information at all times, does not sufficiently constrain the discretion of the inspectors."

"This ruling essentially affirms that while government may request some basic record-keeping, reporting, and inspection of inventory purchased from the public that has been reported stolen, state officials cannot walk into a business without a warrant or evidence of wrong-doing and demand to review our papers, cell phones, laptops, or other business records," said Maurice Thompson, Executive Director of the 1851 Center. "No entrepreneur deserves to be arrested for questioning the authority of a state agent to show up at his business unannounced, without any evidence of wrongdoing, and confiscate or filter through these records."

Maurice Thompson of the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law added, "This precedent will guard warrantless searches of business records in all industries, since the Court of Appeals decision acknowledged that even 'closely regulated' industries are entitled to greater protection. Ohioans should feel free to decline invasive and costly government searches without fear of retaliation."

The pesticide and fertilizer industries of Ohio have had a very good working relationship with the Ohio Department of Agriculture, a relationship other states envy.  We like that relationship, and have no desire to upset it, but decisions are going to have to be made, and those decisions cannot be based on industry policy.  This is no longer a policy issue - it's a matter of law, and it's my belief every trade association for every industry in the nation should embrace this ruling to institute this kind of challenge in every state.

Will this be appealed to the Supreme Court, and if so how will they rule?  I don't know since the Supreme Court has ruled against 4th amendment protections regarding FISA searches, but those are national security issues involving foreign entities.  This is a domestic issue - and I think they would affirm this decision since it's patently obvious these kinds of 4th Amendment violations aren't much different that the extortion racket the King of England imposed on the American colonies. 

It's time to "Drain the Swamp".  We now have a window of opportunity - let's take advantage of if before it closes, maybe forever!

No, global warming is not causing Lyme disease ‘epidemic’

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Earth Day has embraced hysteria and abandoned science

by Henry I. Miller and Jeff Stier @ Foxnews.com April 20, 2018

Sunday is Earth Day, a celebration conceived by then-U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson and first held in 1970 as a "symbol of environmental responsibility and stewardship." In the spirit of the time, it was a touchy-feely, consciousness-raising, New Age experience. Most activities were organized at the grassroots level.

In recent years, however, Earth Day has devolved into an occasion for professional environmental activists and alarmists to warn of apocalypse, dish anti-technology dirt, and proselytize.

Passion and zeal now trump science, and provability takes a back seat to plausibility. The Earth Day Network, which organizes Earth Day events and advocacy, regularly distorts science and exaggerates fears in order to advance its Big Government agenda.

With a theme of "End Plastic Pollution," this year's event is no exception.

The Earth Day organizers have produced a "Plastic Pollution Primer and Action Toolkit," which enumerates all the scary warnings that activists should use to "empower journalists" to frighten the public and spur politicians to drastic regulatory action.

How dire is the plastics threat?

According to the Earth Day website, about as serious as you can possibly get: "From poisoning and injuring marine life to the ubiquitous presence of plastics in our food to disrupting human hormones and causing major life-threatening diseases and early puberty, the exponential growth of plastics is threatening our planet's survival."

Threatening our planet's survival? This isn't hyperbole – it's hysteria. Even Chicken Little didn't claim the falling sky would destroy Earth.

The Earth Day campaign forfeits a good opportunity by injecting a toxic mix of politics and junk science into "opposition to pollution" – that rare issue where we might have broad consensus. It turns genuine environmentalists (like us) into Earth Day skeptics.

The Earth Day campaign itself isn't about ending pollution; it's about ending plastics, foregoing their important applications – and stirring panic.

Consider Bisphenol-A, or BPA, the chemical component of many plastics that environmentalists love to demonize. One prominent environmental group claims BPA is "capable of interfering with the body's hormones, particularly estrogen, and scientists have linked BPA exposure to diseases, such as cancer and diabetes."

The above claim is not true. It is science fiction, not science.

Repeated independent studies have found that BPA poses no risk to humans at the levels at which we are exposed. The most recent analysis of a study conducted by the federal government and published in February by the Food and Drug Administration found "minimal effects" for the BPA-dosed groups of rodents. And the doses were far higher than humans are ever likely to encounter.

The various marches and demonstrations this Earth Day won't be limited to the supposed calamity of plastic pollution, of course; they'll feature many other causes as well.

But instead of a genuine concern for nature, many of those stumping for Earth Day on Sunday will more broadly oppose environment-friendly advances in science and technology, such as fracking, nuclear power, and genetic engineering to produce new crop plants.

And if past is prologue, another recurrent theme will be disdain for the capitalist system that provides the resources to expend on environmental protection and conservation.

This Sunday will likely also be heavy on vitriol toward the regulatory rationalization and reforms of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA's new leadership has begun to correct the incompetence, disdain for science and corruption of recent decades.

The Earth Day Network has a "Greening Our Schools" initiative, so it's not surprising that kids holding signs they're too young to understand are a fixture of Earth Day events.

A frequent Earth Day assignment kids get in schools is to read Rachel Carson's best-selling 1962 book "Silent Spring," an emotionally charged but deeply flawed condemnation of the widespread spraying of chemical pesticides for the control of insects.

As described by Roger Meiners and Andy Morriss in their scholarly yet eminently readable 2012 analysis, "Silent Spring at 50: Reflections on an Environmental Classic," Carson exploited her reputation as a well-known nature writer to advocate and legitimize "positions linked to a darker tradition in American environmental thinking: neo-Malthusian population control and anti-technology efforts."

Carson's proselytizing and advocacy led to the virtual banning of the pesticide DDT and to restrictions on other chemical pesticides, even though "Silent Spring" was replete with gross misrepresentations and scholarship so atrocious that if Carson were an academic, she would be guilty of misconduct.

Carson's observations about DDT were meticulously rebutted point by point by Dr. J. Gordon Edwards, a professor of entomology at San Jose State University. He was also a longtime member of the Sierra Club and the Audubon Society, and a fellow of the California Academy of Sciences.
In his stunning 1992 essay, "The Lies of Rachel Carson," Edwards demolished her arguments and assertions and called attention to critical omissions, faulty assumptions, and outright fabrications in the book. Consider this from Edwards:

"This implication that DDT is horribly deadly is completely false. Human volunteers have ingested as much as 35 milligrams of it a day for nearly two years and suffered no adverse effects. Millions of people have lived with DDT intimately during the mosquito spray programs and nobody even got sick as a result. The National Academy of Sciences concluded in 1965 that 'in a little more than two decades, DDT has prevented 500 million (human) deaths that would otherwise have been inevitable.' The World Health Organization stated that DDT had 'killed more insects and saved more people than any other substance.'"

One of the United Kingdom's great contemporary thinkers, Dick Taverne – also known as Lord Taverne of Pimlico – discusses in his book, "The March of Unreason," the New Age philosophy that underlies the organizers of Earth Day.

Taverne deplores the "new kind of fundamentalism" that has infiltrated many environmentalist campaigns – an undiscriminating back-to-nature movement that views science and technology as the enemy and as a manifestation of an exploitative, rapacious and reductionist attitude toward nature.

That eco-fundamentalism is out of step with current events. Congress, the Trump administration and many Americans are now firmly on the side of more sensible, more limited regulation. So it would behoove the Earth Day activists to collaborate in good faith and to support advances in environment-friendly technologies and business models.

Among these advances, we would include ridesharing services, Airbnb, modern genetic engineering applied to agriculture, and state-of-the art agricultural chemicals. All these things enable us to do more with less – but they have been vilified by activists.

Perhaps adding Lord Taverne's book to the Earth Day curriculum would allow students to consider the issues in a more thoughtful way. But we are not sufficiently naïve to expect that to happen.

Rather, we suspect that activists prefer that their eco-fundamentalism continue to go unchallenged. They don't want reason, science and respect for differing views to interfere with their agenda.

As far as Earth Day is concerned, a more egalitarian, evidence-based approach might advance civil society, alleviate human suffering and even help protect the planet.

Trial Lawyers Still Don't Have a Winning Case Against Monsanto

Apr 21, 2018 Brian McNicoll

Trial lawyers hoping to take a big bite out of food producer Monsanto’s bottom line with a lawsuit over its most popular weed-killer have run into a problem – the judge who they need to convince their arguments are valid is not buying it.  In 2015, the International Agency for Research and Cancer, based in Lyon, France, declared glyphosate, the main ingredient in Roundup, the world’s most popular weed-killer, a “probably human carcinogen.”

No other scientific body has reached that conclusion. Indeed, the Environmental Protection Agency says glyphosate is safe for humans when used in accordance with label directions, the National Institute of Health has concluded it is not a carcinogen and, as a Monsanto official pointed out, more than 800 scientific, medical, peer-reviewed articles have been published saying there is no association whatsoever between glyphosate and any form of cancer........To Read More.....