Archives for the month of: October, 2013

Here is another interesting looking book:

How to Cure a Climate Change Denier (Kindle Edition)

by Paul Caruso

Amazon is selling it as a Kindle edition for four bucks.

Anthony points it out on his most-excellent blog, Watts Up With That

The “Look inside” selection has a passage that caught my eye. Since the text is configured to protect it, I’m typing from memory, and my quote below is inexact. Mr. Caruso points out that the “97% consensus” lacks force, and he explains what it is, then he says (approximate quote), “Even if the majority of climate scientists believe in global warming, the majority of priests believe in God.” He then asks what this proves? Does it prove God exists? He wonders if it rather indicates that those who believe in God are more likely to enter the priesthood.

Seems an apt analogy. I like it.

I’m pretty sure that nearly 100% of all holy men (and women) believe in god. They are experts in most every regard, and they are true authorities in the matter. Of course, this variety of holy man disagrees with that variety, but we can major on the similarities for the moment.

What has me irked is I am likened, in anti-Semitic fervor, to a Holocaust denier, while evangelical atheists strut smugly as skeptics, as though the label can only be used in their special sense, as the “It” religion of the day.

Mr. Caruso also points out that researchers follow available funding. At least clergy don’t generally do that. (With some exceptions, of course, some even horrid. That is why the Lord cautioned that one cannot serve both God and money.)

I think I will read this. I do think most people just don’t care how (or why) others think the way they do. Most just decide and suppose others are wrong. It is rather instinctual. If we tried hard regarding our opinion, or we made a noted effort arriving at it, or if there was some positive or negative emotion associated with the opinion, we tend to be stuck on it. Only pain persuades most otherwise.

Big Picture News, Informed Analysis

People see the world differently. If we’re going to do more than preach to our respective choirs in the climate debate, we need to recognize this.

I was a speaker at a conference in downtown Toronto yesterday called Liberty Now 2013. A gathering of interesting and diverse people, the discussion was wide-ranging.

The point in which we all intersected is that we believe passionately in freedom. Previous generations laid down their very lives to ensure our liberty, yet these days freedom is often treated cavalierly.

Speaker Gerry Nicholls drew my attention to a short e-book called The Three Languages of Politics. Written by economist Arnold Kling, it explains that people see the world in profoundly different ways, speak different languages as a result, and therefore often have no clue how to connect with individuals outside their own group.

As an Amazon review observes:

The gist of the…

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Elizabeth Scalia has written an insightful article at First Things,

She makes the point that we must, as adults with offspring, act as grownups and live for our children. Of course, we are all ill-equipped for this when we begin. Nearly all of us manage if we try. Some become quite good at it.

“A parent becomes [a parent] within the act of learning to be a family-unit, amid the constantly changing dynamics of individuals advancing through life-stages together. One could argue that as parents raise the children, the children, quite paradoxically, raise the parents. When parents resist being raised, families break down and collapse.”

We learn while we do, and one of the most important things we must know from the very beginning is that we are each individuals. We each are that special one. From the beginning, we are in a relationship with our child. Mothers have a relationship distinct from fathers. Mother knows the child from conception. Mother is affected by the child directly from the beginning and much more than Father.

Read the rest of this entry »

Oxford PhD student, Andrew Bissette, writing for the Conversation:

He recounts research that had proteins spontaneously form by just mixing the right stuff. I’m not sure this means “life is not a fluke” as indicated by the title, but it does show that all of the cosmos works quite well.

A BBC article by Peter Crutchley about religion and science with Lord Kelvin as the focal point.

In my opinion, Ralph Nader is personally responsible for more human pain, suffering, and death than any other person in all of history. It makes no difference his motives. He was and is wrong, especially regarding all things nuclear.

The common everyday poison nicotine is far more dangerous than plutonium. Even the dreaded dihydrogen monoxide accounts for more deaths per year. In fact, nothing accounts for more destruction than when that substance (water, to be clear) cooperates with life-giving oxygen to corrode our metals and deteriorate our structures.

Again, Ralph is wrong.

I routinely say that persuasion is an illusion. We will power our world with nuclear once the pain associated with doing the other things is greater than the fear of nuclear. I cannot persuade poor Ralph, nor anyone else, but we will wise up once the harm is obvious. (Hat tip to Homer–the Greek poet, not the yellow dude.)

The tried and true saying is “Follow the money.” Might this have anything to do with why our President opposes pipelines? “Berkshire Hathaway’s CEO, Warren Buffet, announced that profits jumped 7.8% to $2.37 billion on strong railroad profits at their Burlington Northern subsidiary.” (August 2013)

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While I’ve said this before, it is worth emphasizing.

Truth above all.

Wow. This review of Daniel Amos’ latest work is absolutely worth your time to read. If you already have album, you know what the reviewer says. I’ll warn you that you might have to slog through a paragraph or two. Fred Sanders’ writing style doesn’t quite suit my tastes, but he says things well, and he says about the album and band much of what should be said.

I consider Terry Scott Taylor one of the true musical geniuses of our time. His work deserves much more acknowledgement than it has ever received.

By the way, “Now that I’ve Died” says “I’m never cynical, but still a little sarcastic”. I hold that as the key to the song. Mr. Taylor is imploring us to do what we can here, and not wait for our coming perfection.

“Babe, I’m happy now, and much more grateful
Not to mention less contentious, vengeful and hateful
Guess I’m what you would call childlike and playful”

I’m renewing my commitment to bring a bit more heaven to earth in my own life, in the here and now, for myself and all I may touch.

Musically, and in other ways as well, that is what this album does.

Origins News Roundup | The BioLogos Forum.

Stanley Kurtz, writing for the National Review Online, which the Climate Change Dispatch reproduced here,, (a less cluttered page than the original, here, –Ads don’t bother me. I’m happy to see them all in all, but some of the nonsense gets sad, and pop-ups, lay-overs, and things that start playing automatically are too invasive and presumptive in my opinion.)

The article is about the book, The Fanaticism of the Apocalypse: Save the Earth, Punish Human Beings, by “French intellectual gadfly Pascal Bruckner” where he “does the most thorough job yet of explaining the climate movement as a secular religion, an odd combination of deformed Christianity and reconstructed Marxism.”

My point here is that modern alarmism in all its stripes, is simply religion. Man is religious. We can no more be irreligious than we can be nonhuman. (We can be inhuman in our actions toward our fellow man, and inhumane, but human we remain. Likewise, religious.)

It helps to acknowledge this fact.

It is good to take account of the underpinnings of movements, and the way global warming alarmism plays out, it cannot be denied that it is a fundamentalists religious movement. One can identify point for point every aspect of young-earth creationism in global warming alarmism. Even the victimhood and “nobility” of persecution, real and imagined, are the same.

Stand for something, or fall for anything.

Thorough thinking is required. The unexamined life is not worth living. Far too many of us fail to notice this fact.

Alarmism is reactionary, not rational.

At BioLogos,  John Walton, makes a most interesting point. Namely, a biblical literalist is doomed from the git-go. We know the sun cannot stop in the literal sense, since from modern knowledge we know its apparent movement is due to the orbit of the earth around the sun. Thus trying to take the text at a simplistic, literal meaning, one must abandon the literal reading to get anywhere.

Of course, thinking of the earth stopping rotation is an overt miracle. It is quite impossible in all regards. Every atom of the entire earth-moon system would have to simultaneously lose all inertia in a coherent, coordinated way, and regain it unnoticeably. We know that inertia is a property of matter. Thus the miracle would require a complete violation of multiple laws of physics, and a thorough disruption of the space-time continuum on a local, but relatively large scale. It is mind-bending to consider what might have to happen to a thrown spear in flight as earth suddenly halted. How might the spear not simply halt in mid-air as the earth halted in orbit? Hmm… It really seems there can be no possible explanation. If it was a miracle, it is utterly inexplicable, and equally unmistakable. It would certainly be the most recorded miracle of all time, as it would have been experienced by every soul on earth. Hmm… Genesis 8:22 also comes to mind. Wouldn’t a severely extended “day” be a disruption in the “never cease” proclamation?

His rendering and interpretation are appealing, but he goes out of his way to point out the difficulties.

It seems clear this is a biblical text for which we must simply admit we do not know exactly what it says nor what it means, except for the obvious description of God supporting the Israelite war effort.

Nice Review:

It is a review by Fr. Edward Oakes, S.J., of

The Experience of God: Being, Consciousness, Bliss by Hart, David Bentley (Sep 1, 2013)

I intend to read it. It looks good. If I read it, I’ll write something.

Thanks to Anthony Watts! The world is a better place because of you, Anthony. Also, thanks for the perspective.

Watts Up With That?

I regularly get angry emails from people who are convinced that I’m single-handedly destroying the world with my opinion which is supposedly funded by “big oil” and the Koch brothers. Of course, having nothing else, that’s all part of the huge lie people like Dr. Mann likes to push, like this bit of libel over the weekend:


I’m dealing with Dr. Mann’s libel separately, but for the record I’ve never gotten a dime from the Koch brothers, or “big oil”, nor am I a “denier for hire”, and Dr. Mann knows this because he backed down from a similar claim in the past when challenged on it. Now, knowing that, he’s demonstrated malice, fulfilling one of the tests for libel.

That aside, and along the same lines, I recently got an email that included this claim:

“…your pathetic little attempt at pushing climate denialism isn’t working. Places like Real Climate…

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