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De Omnibus Dubitandum - Lux Veritas

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

'GMO Free USA' Attacks World-Famous Biochemist Bruce Ames

 By Alex Berezow — September 21, 2018  

Microbiologists and toxicologists are quite familiar with the Ames test. It is literally textbook science that is taught to students all over the world.
 
The Ames test is brilliant in its simplicity. It was designed to assess how mutagenic (and therefore, potentially carcinogenic) a chemical might be. The test uses a bacterial strain that was purposefully mutated so that it is unable to grow on Petri plates that lack a particular nutrient. Every once in a while, bacteria spontaneously mutate back (so called "revertants") and are able to grow again. This is the natural background rate of mutation.


In the Ames test, this natural background rate of mutation is compared to what happens in the presence of a specific chemical. If the chemical is a mutagen, it will increase the rate of mutation; if it is not, the mutation rate will not change. And it's easy to see if a chemical is a mutagen: More bacteria will grow.
(See figure. Credit: Wikipedia/Histidine)

As mentioned above, this test is so well-known, that it is taught to students and employed in laboratories all over the world. The inventor, biochemist Bruce Ames -- who was once an advisor to ACSH -- is a world-famous and award-winning scientist who helped lay the groundwork for modern carcinogenicity studies. As a result, he is one of the most cited scientists in the world. He never won the Nobel Prize, but he probably should have.

GMO Free USA Attacks Bruce Ames

None of that matters to the anti-GMO crowd, however. A man who is internationally lauded for his contributions to science is entirely written off. "We aren't impressed by industry apologists," GMO Free USA said.


Industry apologist? What did Dr. Ames do to deserve that smear? Nothing. He believes that people shouldn't worry about trace chemicals in their food or the environment. He once wrote a paper underscoring this: 99.99% of the pesticides we eat are made by the plants themselves.
For the crime of using evidence-based science to tell people to calm down, he's been painted as a villain by the anti-GMO movement.

Do Not Debate the Deliberately Ignorant. Defeat Them

It's one thing to debate a person who doesn't know any better. At least in theory, they can be convinced once they are shown the error in their thinking. But it's an entirely different matter debating a person who is deliberately and maliciously ignorant.

How do you debate somebody who insists against all evidence that 2 + 2 = 17, vaccines cause autism, and GMOs cause cancer?

I've come to the unfortunate conclusion that it is simply not possible. Some people are entirely immune to facts and knowledge. They cannot be reasoned with. So, the solution is not better science communication or more education funding, as is commonly asserted.

No, the solution is just to defeat them. Defeat them politically, and defeat them financially. In the arena of ideas, we must ensure that anti-GMO, anti-vaccine, and other anti-science activists are resoundingly humiliated and their lies tossed into the dustbin of history.

EPA Takes Steps to Ensure Regulatory Reforms Advance

Fred Lucas / /     

A political appointee will become the No. 2 lawyer at the Environmental Protection Agency, in a change announced Thursday aimed at ensuring that someone committed to President Donald Trump’s agenda is in charge.  This change puts the EPA in line with several other federal departments and agencies.

The move comes as news reports indicate parts of the federal bureaucracy—including some who had key jobs during the previous administration—have rebelled against the elected president........Historically, the second spot in the EPA general counsel’s office has gone to a career employee, although that’s not the case among other federal government departments........The change advances Trump policies and the goals of acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, EPA spokesman John Konkus told The Daily Signal in a statement..........Political appointees in the U.S. government serve at the pleasure of the president, or under the politically appointed agency head or Cabinet secretary. These employees may be fired at will..............To Read More....

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Gore calls for centrally planned civilization in San Francisco

September 14, 2018 by , 0 Comments @ CFACT


“We have to make the decarbonization of the global economy the central organizing principle of human civilization,” said former Vice President Al Gore at a San Francisco forum organized in conjunction with Governor Brown’s “Global Climate Action Summit.”

CFACT is at the summit, where national sovereignty and individual freedom do not seem to part of the conversation.

Gore called for the United States to remain subject to the UN’s Paris Climate Accord despite President Trump’s decision to withdraw and President Obama’s failure to submit the “agreement” as a treaty to the Senate for ratification.

Gore said that, “under the law the first day that the United States of America could actually leave the  Paris agreement is the day after the next presidential election… and under the terms of the treaty if there is a new president… a new president could give thirty days notice and we’re right back in.”

Gore never misses a chance to attribute naturally occurring events to global warming and used this forum to attribute both California fires and Hurricane Florence to climate change.

Take a look at the graph climate scientist Dr. Roy Spencer posted earlier this week which shows that while the cost of hurricane damage has risen as a result of intense coastal development, hurricane intensity has not.

Sorry about the inconvenient facts, Al.
________

Friday, September 14, 2018

Media sounds alarm on crop insects despite record yields

by

Environmental activists have published a study claiming global warming will cause a decline in crop yields because warmer temperatures benefit crop-feeding insects. The media made the study its highest profile story last week, with NBC News, Inside Climate News, and Voice of America among the many media outlets writing doom-and-gloom stories based on the study. A look at objective crop data, however, shows crop yields continue to set new records virtually every year as the earth continues its modest warming.

The new study claims global warming is especially impacting temperate regions of the globe such as the American Midwest where much of the world’s food is grown. Shorter winters and warmer growing seasons will benefit insects, some of whom feed on agricultural crops, the study claims.
“Climate change will have a negative impact on crops,” said Scott Merrill of the University of Vermont, a co-author of the study.

“We’re turning the dial up in the temperate zones, and insects, for the most part, thrive in a warmer climate,” added study co-author Josh Tewksbury of Future Earth in Colorado. “It gets better and better for them.”

The study, however, overlooks the fact that shorter winters and warmer growing seasons make things “better and better” for crop yields also. As the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization reports, global cereal production set a new record last year, which is merely the latest in a long line of recent global crop production records.

According to the new study’s theory, the warming of the past several decades should already have increased insect activity and ravaged crop production. To the contrary, crop yields continue to set record after record as the planet warms.

Score this one Objective Scientific Data 1, Alarmist Global Warming Predictions 0.

Well done! EPA lost more than 1,500 workers in first 18 months of Trump administration

By John Bowden -

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reportedly lost 8 percent of its staff in the first 18 months of President Trump's administration due to high numbers of departing staffers and a low number of new hires. The Washington Post reported Saturday that nearly 1,600 workers left the EPA during that time, while fewer than 400 were hired. The agency's employment has shrunk to its lowest levels since the Reagan administration, the Post noted.

According to data retrieved by the Post under a Freedom of Information Act request, the EPA has lost as many as 260 scientists, 106 engineers and 185 “environmental protection specialists," numbers which include both longtime veterans of the department and less experienced employees...........“With nearly half of our employees eligible to retire in the next five years, my priority is recruiting and maintaining the right staff, the right people for our mission, rather than total full-time employees,” he said.............To Read More......

Obama's slimy little Deep State environmental cabal is at it again

By Monica Showalter September 12, 2018
Under President Obama, the Environmental Protection Agency grew to gargantuan proportions, issuing 4,000 regulations, adding more than 33,000 pages to the Federal Register, and dumping $50 billion in compliance costs on business, making itself one of the biggest and most powerful agencies in the U.S. government – quite a feat for an organization without a Cabinet seat.

With all that power, it was also famous for its incompetence and corruption, in that it had a problem obeying rules other people obeyed and always got away with it.  Gold King Mine on the very yellow Animas River, anyone?  That also applies to the behavior of its Obamaton leaders, who communicated with secret email accounts (remember Richard Windsor?) and got rewarded with fabulous Silicon Valley social media jobs in the revolving-door aftermath.  They were amply augmented in their activities by the Obama State Department and the Obama National Security Council, which conducted business pretty much the same way.

Now it turns out this same corrupt bunch is at it again, in a new Competitive Enterprise Institute report called "Government for Rent," put on by the respected Christopher C. Horner.

According to the Washington Examiner's Paul Bedard:............Read more

EPA’s Non-Politicized Science Benefits Americans

A direct challenge to the hardcore enviros who heretofore controlled and corrupted the agency.

H. Sterling Burnett September 13, 2018

President Donald Trump committed to fundamentally transforming the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from an agency producing politicized science to one instilling sound scientific standards for research. By doing so, Americans should expect improved environmental and health outcomes.

Currently,regulatory costs top $1.9 trillion annually, which amounts to $14,842 per U.S. household. That’s nearly $15,000 less for Americans to pay for health insurance, medical bills, education expenses, groceries, gasoline, or entertainment. Because the economic and social implications of regulations are profound, the science they are built upon must be impeccable.

Over the last few decades — under Republican and Democratic administrations — EPA formed a cozy relationship with radical environmental activists and liberal academic researchers. With the support of environmental lobbyists who despise capitalism (expressed by consumers’ free choices in the marketplace) EPA bureaucrats, in pursuit of more power and expanded budgets for the agency, funded researchers who, because they were largely dependent on government grants for the majority of their funding, were only too happy to produce results claiming industry was destroying the earth.

Of course, the only way to prevent environmental collapse was more government control of the economy. However, these reports were produced despite the fact poverty and hunger have steadily declined and people are living longer and more productive lives than ever before........To Read More....

My Take -- I enjoyed the article, but I would state that in spite of the early achievements EPA had in cleaning up the air, land and water, that doesn’t change the fact EPA was founded in corruption from the very beginning of it’s creation by President Nixon and it’s first administrator William Ruckelshaus with the direct intent of banning DDT, irrespective of the science. The only true fix for EPA is its elimination since eventually another administration will come and may have a different view of what EPA should be doing. The hard core greenies in the agency will merely hunker down and wait for that to happen, and when it does they’ll come roaring back with a vengeance.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Roundup on trial: Everything you need to know about the glyphosate herbicide controversy

| | September 5, 2018

A California jury awarded two hundred and eighty nine million dollars …. to a former groundskeeper for a California school district who claims that he contracted non-Hodgkins lymphoma from exposure to a commercial preparation of glyphosate …. The jury decision elicited extensive commentaries from experts and non-experts, both pro and con ….

First of all, let’s point out that this trial dealt with occupational exposure to glyphosate and had nothing to do with trace amounts of the chemical in our food supply. Nevertheless, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) …. took the opportunity to …. publish a report about traces of glyphosate in oat products and suggested that these were a threat to health.

The highest concentration EWG found was 760 parts per billion. That would mean that a small child eating 100 grams of the cereal would consume 0.076 milligrams of glyphosate ….The 0.076 mg consumed is 1/66th of this …. By comparison, Health Canada has set a maximum residue level of glyphosate in oats at 15,000 parts per billion!

[S]cience is on the side of glyphosate’s benefits outweighing its risks, but emotion is on the side of the plaintiff. And we have often seen that emotion trumps science. Furthermore, the defendant in this lawsuit, Monsanto, was essentially challenged to prove that Mr. Johnson’s lymphoma was not caused by glyphosate. That is an impossible task.........To Read More.....

Peak Oil: A Lesson in False Prophecy

By S. Fred Singer September 5, 2018

As recently as 10 years ago, we were told that the world was running out of oil soon. Horrors! Then, directional drilling and fracking opened up the prolific resource of “tight” oil shale. New production records are being set daily; the U.S. now leads the world in oil reserves, ahead even of Saudi Arabia. Hubbert’s Peak Geophysicist and noted pioneer of ground water flow in aquifers Dr. M. King Hubbert was being celebrated as a prophet.

He had predicted that U.S. oil production would peak around 1970 – and it did! Of course, the price of oil was then only around $2 a barrel; it is now around $75, and will surely go higher. The National Petroleum Council [NPC], made up of the leaders of the oil industry and other experts, told us, in 1970 as I recall, that if oil prices ever reached $3 a barrel, the vast resource of the Colorado kerogen would become commercial. Some oil companies actually mined some kerogen and retorted it to extract the locked-up but uneconomic oil. The world oil price is now around $75 a barrel -- and sure to rise further.............Read more

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Endangerment Finding delenda est

Replacing Clean Power Plan with less harmful ACE rule does not fix fraudulent CO2 science
 
Paul Driessen
 
As the Punic Wars dragged on, Cato the Elder reportedly concluded every speech to the Roman Senate by proclaiming “Carthago delenda est” – “Carthage must be destroyed.”
 
Ample evidence suggests that the Obama era Environmental Protection Agency’s “Endangerment Finding” was devised in violation of basic scientific and transparency principles that ignored or excluded extensive evidence that contradicted its preordained outcome. The EF was then used to justify anti-fossil fuel rules that seriously harmed the energy security, jobs, health and welfare of millions of Americans.
 
The Finding must be reexamined. If these contentions are validated, it must be reversed and demolished.
 
In its 2007 Massachusetts v. EPA decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that EPA must determine whether emissions of carbon dioxide and certain other atmospheric gases “cause or contribute” to “air pollution” that may be “reasonably anticipated to endanger public health or welfare.” If the agency found the answer was yes, then it had to regulate those emissions. The Bush EPA failed to take action.
 
However, candidate and President Obama had promised that he would eliminate coal-based electricity generation and “fundamentally transform” America. It was thus a foregone conclusion that his EPA would quickly find a dire threat existed. On December 7, 2009, EPA issued its Endangerment Finding (EF): that carbon dioxide (CO2) and five other “greenhouse gases” (GHGs) were pollutants that did indeed “threaten the public health and welfare of current and future generations” of Americans.
 
The Obama EPA then promulgated its “Clean Power Plan,” which shut down numerous coal mines and coal-fired power plants, eliminated thousands of jobs and severely impacted factories, families and communities across the United States. The CPP also spurred the shift to unreliable wind and solar power.
 
However, any CPP climate change, health and welfare benefits are at best undetectable, in part because the rest of the world – from China, India, Indonesia and Southeast Asia to Australia, Germany and Poland – continue to build thousands of coal-fired power plants and put millions of vehicles on the road.
 
Recognizing this, President Trump pulled the USA out of the Paris climate treaty. His EPA has proposed to replace the Obama Clean Power Plan with an “Affordable Clean Energy” (ACE) plan that lets states take the lead in devising GHG emission reduction programs that best serve their individual energy needs.
 
These are important steps. But they are not enough, because they perpetuate the false claim that plant-fertilizing carbon dioxide is a “dangerous pollutant.” Even worse, leaving the EF in place would enable any future anti-fossil fuel administration to impose new economy-strangling, welfare-degrading rules.
 
Worst of all, leaving the Finding unchallenged and ignoring the way it was concocted and implemented would sanctify some of the most fraudulent and dictatorial Deep State bureaucratic actions in history.
 
In devising its EF, the Obama EPA did no new research and made no effort to examine the full range of studies and evidence readily available on natural versus manmade climate change. It just cherry-picked Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports; deliberately excluded studies that contradicted its predetermined finding; and relied on temperature and extreme weather predictions by computer models.
 
The IPCC itself had long ago ended any pretense of trying to understand the interplay of natural and human influences on Earth’s climate. Instead, for political reasons, it had decided to focus on human fossil fuel use and GHG emissions as the only important factors influencing modern climate change. Its reports reflect that approach – and ignore the growing and readily available body of contrary studies and evidence, such as volumes of studies summarized by the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change.
 
The Obama EPA team even removed one of its most senior experts, who had prepared a contrarian report.  “Your comments do not help the legal or policy case for this decision,” his supervisor told him. EPA consulted with alarmist scientists and environmentalist groups, but ignored moderates and IPCC critics.
 
The computerized climate models relied on by EPA are programmed to reflect the assumption that rising atmospheric CO2 levels are the primary factor determining climate and extreme weather. However, the average prediction by 102 models is now a full 1 degree F above what satellites are actually measuring.
 
In fact, even as atmospheric carbon dioxide levels climbed well above the supposed 350 ppm “tipping point” (they reached 405 ppm in 2017), except for noticeable short-term temperature spikes during El NiƱo ocean warming events, there has been virtually no planetary warming since 1998 or at least 2002.
 
Moreover, Harvey finally ended a record 12-year absence of Category 3-5 hurricanes making US landfall. Tornados are no more frequent than in the 1950s. Droughts differ little from historic trends and cycles. Seas are rising at just seven inches per century, and Antarctic and Arctic ice are largely within “normal” or “cyclical” levels for the past several centuries. Indeed, reports of vanishing Arctic ice go back nearly a century and low ice levels were documented by Francis McClintock and other explorers long before that.
 
In many cases, older temperature records were adjusted downward, modern records got bumped upward a bit, and government-paid scientists relied on measurements recorded near (and contaminated by) airport jet exhausts, blacktop parking lots, and urban areas warmed by cars, heating and AC vents.
 
Humans might well be “contributing” to temperature, climate and weather events, at least locally. But there is no real-world evidence that “greenhouse gases” have replaced natural forces or are causing unprecedented climate chaos or extreme weather; no evidence that those emissions are “endangering public health and welfare” or that humans can control Earth’s perpetually fickle climate by controlling emissions.
 
Far from being a “pollutant,” carbon dioxide is the miracle molecule without which most life on Earth would cease to exist. The more CO2 in the air, the faster and better crop, forest and grassland plants grow, and the more they are able to withstand droughts, diseases, and damage from insects and viruses.
 
In fact, a slightly warmer planet with more atmospheric CO2 would be tremendously beneficial for plants, wildlife and humanity. A colder planet with less carbon dioxide would greatly reduce arable land extent, growing seasons, wildlife habitats, crop production and our ability to feed humanity.
 
Equally important, over 80% of US energy still comes from fossil fuels – and the countless benefits of those abundant, reliable, affordable fuels (and their CO2 output) exceed the EPA’s alleged “social costs of carbon” and “human health and welfare impacts” by at least 50 to 1, and perhaps as much as 500 to 1.
 
On a closely related matter, contrary to the “97% consensus” myth, scientific debate continues unabated over recent and future global warming, cooling, storms, droughts, sea levels and other “adverse effects” from oil, natural gas and coal use. Computer models and alarmist climate specialists say the threats are serious. Real-world observations and moderate to skeptical climate experts vigorously disagree.
 
The Obama EPA’s Endangerment Finding ignored all of this. It likewise dismissed the extravagant raw material requirements of expensive wind, solar and biofuel “alternatives” and their adverse impacts on wildlife and wildlife habitats. That makes the 2009 process even more suspect and fraudulent.
 
There is no demonstrable, much less dire or unprecedented, danger to American health and welfare from continued CO2 emissions. The danger is from anti-fossil fuel policies justified by the EF and IPCC. 
 
Simply put, in concocting its Endangerment Finding, the Obama EPA violated the cost-benefit analysis policies and basic standards for honest, open, informed, replicable science. With so much of America’s energy, economy, environment, health and welfare at stake, this cannot be allowed to continue.
 
The Trump Administration must disavow the “CO2 drives climate change” tautology and stop viewing the Endangerment Finding as “established” law and policy. It is no more established or acceptable than were the Supreme Court’s reprehensible 1857 Dred Scott and 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson decisions.
 
It is time to reexamine the Endangerment Finding, give it the intense Red Team scrutiny it deserves, and relegate it to the dustbin of history. The Endangerment Finding delenda est.
 
Paul Driessen is senior policy analyst for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow and author of books and articles on energy, climate change, economic development and human rights.
 

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Prof touts 'ecosexuality' as 'environmental activist strategy'



 A St. Mary’s College of Maryland professor published a scholarly article exploring how “queer environmentalism” and “ecosexuality” can make environmentalism more appealing.

Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies professor Lauran Whitworth wrote “Goodbye Gauley Mountain, hello eco-camp: Queer environmentalism in the Anthropocene,” a study which seeks to convey the “effectiveness of queer environmental ethics in the Anthropocene, a word increasingly used to describe the anthropogenic destruction of ecosystems that marks our current geological era.” The academic journal Feminist Theory published the article.

"Many ecosexuals encourage erotic encounters that are not just nature-friendly but with nature itself."
 
“What do ecosexual encounters with nonhuman nature offer current discussions of environmental ethics?” she asks. “Can ecosexuality’s posthumanist tendencies queer our speciesist modes of belonging and foster an environmentalism that is not foundationally anthropocentric nor steeped in ‘reproductive futurism’?”

“Ecosexuality celebrates the carnal and grotesque, particularly in some of its campiest moments,” Whitworth explains, offering the example that some “wedding performers wear dildos outside their clothing and don costumes that accentuate and exaggerate their genitalia.”...........To Read More.....

Saturday, September 1, 2018

California approves measure to pass on wildfire costs

By JONATHAN J. COOPER, Associated Press        
 
The California Legislature voted Friday to allow power companies to raise electric bills to cover the cost of lawsuits from last year's deadly wildfires amid fears that Pacific Gas & Electric Co., would otherwise face financial ruin.

The measure is part of a wide-ranging plan to reduce the threat of wildfires, which have killed dozens of people and destroyed thousands of homes in recent years.
Consumer advocates and large energy users blasted legislation they say is a bailout for PG&E, which expects to pay billions of dollars due to fires started by the company's equipment in Northern California last year. The company would be allowed to charge their customers even if the fires are linked to mismanagement by the company............To Read More....

My Take - It is amazing how they totally ignore the real cause of these massive conflagrations - their greenie inspired mismanagement of the forests. 

Environmental groups ignore science with grizzly bear lawsuit