Dedicated to exposing conspiracy theories and outright lies

"Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?" (Galatians 4:16)

"Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own fact." - Sen. Daniel Patrick “Pat” Moynihan [D-NY] (1927-2003)

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Exaggerating the Exaggerators

Here we go again. Yet another "scientific expert" who is supposedly going to expose the "myth" of climate change...

According to an article on Sydney, Australia's Herald Sun) (which is also reported on Alex Jones' Prison Planet), "IPCC external reviewer Dr Madhav Khandekar says the UN body has exaggerated the costs of global warming."

In the article, Exaggerators: IPCC accused by its own, written by Andrew Bolt:

"The full paper, kindly sent to me by Dr Khandekar, a former research scientist with Environment Canada who holds a PhD in meteorology and has worked in the fields of climatology," makes the following claim:

"The exaggerated claim of GW impacts by the IPCC has led to a distortion of the reality of climate change and its future impact. The earth’s climate has changed and is changing continuously, a fact accepted by most climate scientists on both sides of the present debate. Is the present climate change deleterious to human societies? Are there beneficial aspects of climate change that have been overlooked? Do adverse impacts outweigh beneficial impacts? We do not have all the answers yet. There is a definite need to carefully analyze climate change impact on world-wide human societies. The IPCC assessment is far from objective and needs to be critically re-assessed."

Permit me to express my thanks and appreciation to "KarmakazeNZ" for bringing up the following points that I will post below:

Dr Khandekar is a member of the Friends of Science Scientific Advisory Board.

“In an August 12, 2006, article The Globe and Mail revealed that the group had received significant funding via anonymous, indirect donations from the oil industry, including a major grant from the Science Education Fund, a donor-directed, flow-through charitable fund at the Calgary Foundation. The donations were funnelled through a University of Calgary trust account research set up and controlled by U of C Professor Barry Cooper. The revelations were based largely on the prior investigations of, which had reported on the background of FoS scientific advisors and Cooper’s role in FoS funding.”

“Following an internal audit and review begun in March of 2007, the University determined that some of the research funds accepted on behalf of the Friends of Science “had been used to support a partisan viewpoint on climate change”. As a consequence, the University advised FoS “that it would no longer accept funds on the organization’s behalf”, according to an email from University legal counsel Elizabeth Osler sent on December 24, 2007. On February 17, 2008, CanWest News Service reported that U of C officials had shut down Cooper’s “‘Research on Climate Change’ trust account”, and were about to advise Elections Canada of the University’s ongoing review of the matter. In the wake of the revelations, Liberal public works critic Mark Holland called for parliamentary hearings to investigate the source of donations. A few days later, CanWest reported that the targeting of the FoS radio ad campaign to key Ontario ridings was directed by then FoS media contact Morten Paulsen (later a vice-president at Fleishman-Hillard), who also served as volunteer spokesperson for the Stephen Harper led Conservative Party of Canada during the election.”

Strike One!

"The journal Energy and Environment is a social science journal published by Multi-Science. The journal’s editor is Sonja Boehmer-Christiansen, a reader in geography at the University of Hull in England and climate skeptic.

Energy and Environment is not carried in the ISI listing of peer-reviewed journals. Its peer review process has been widely criticised for allowing the publication of substandard papers. Numerous climate skeptics and contrarians have published in the journal and these studies have later been quoted by Republican critics of global warming science such as Senator James Inhofe and Congressman Joe Barton.”

Strike Two!

What else has Dr Khandekar been involved in?

Well, there was the “2008 International Conference on Climate Change”.

“The 2008 International Conference on Climate Change was a conference held at the Marriott New York Marquis Times Square Hotel in New York between March 2-4 . The conference was organised and “sponsored” by the Heartland Institute, a U.S. think tanks that in preceding years received substantial funding from Exxon for its work downplaying the significance of global warming.”

“The conference was described by Washington Post reporter, Juliet Eilperin, as “a sort of global warming doppelganger conference, where everything was reversed.” At the event, skeptics unveiled their response to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) report, edited by corporate-funded skeptic Fred Singer, argued that “recent climate change stems from natural causes.” Eilperin notes that “while the IPCC enlisted several hundred scientists from more than 100 countries to work over five years to produce its series of reports, the NIPCC document is the work of 23 authors from 15 nations, some of them not scientists.”

The New York Times reports that while the Heartland conference “was largely framed around science ... when an organizer made an announcement asking all of the scientists in the large hall to move to the front for a group picture, 19 men did so.” The conference invitation identified its goal as “to generate international media attention to the fact that many scientists believe forecasts of rapid warming and catastrophic events are not supported by sound science.”

The Heartland Institute offered “$1,000 to those willing to give a talk,” and “a free weekend at the Marriott Marquis in Manhattan, including travel costs, to all elected officials wanting to attend,” according to the RealClimate blog.”

Strike Three! Yer OUT!

To quote "Karmakaze", "I hope Dr Khandekar and Andrew Bolt enjoy their blood money."

Friday, July 25, 2008

Whoops! Looks Like Dick Cheney Was Right!

Back in 1994, before he was Vice President, he said that invading Iraq would be a "quagmire"!

Maybe he should have listened to himself, no?

Fox "News" In Denial and organized a petition drive against Fox News Channel's racially tinted commentary on apparent Democratic Party Presidential Candidate Barack Obama. First it was the 'fist bump' between himself and his wife Michelle supposedly being a "terrorist fist jab". Then it was Michelle Obama being referred to as Barack's "baby mama". So, organized the following petition campaign directed to NBC, CBS, ABC, MSNBC, CNN and other media outlets:

"FOX is a Republican mouthpiece, not a legitimate news organization. Real news organizations must reject FOX's smears of Barack Obama, not parrot them and distract Americans from the pressing issues of the day."

What did Fox do on 23 July when 620,127 signatures on the petition was delivered to their offices in New York City, accompanied by the rapper Nas? They refused to accept them! I guess sometimes the truth hurts.

News of Fox's refusal hit Rolling Stone, Billboard Magazine and MTV news sources, but not Fox, which chose not to report the incident. Steven Colbert on Comedy Central's ''The Colbert Report'' invited Nas on his show and brought the petitions. You can see the video here. It includes Nas performing his track "Sly Fox" which tears the "fair and balanced" network a new one.

Want to know more about Fox News Channel and its notorious bias? Visit Fox Attacks. They watch Fox... so you don't have to.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

APS Position on Global Warming Remains Unchanged

On 18 July 2008, the conservative blog American Thinker has posted an article entitled "You were saying something about a Global Warming Consensus?". In a gloating manner, the article states:

"The American Physical Society representing nearly 50,000 physicists "has reversed its stance on climate change and is now proclaiming that many of its members disbelieve in human-induced global warming," according to an article in The Daily Tech. The leadership of the society had previously referred to global warming evidence as 'incontravertible.'
What does this mean? It doesn't mean that the APS has abandoned its position on man made climate change. What they have done is perhaps more significant; they have opened the subject up for debate once again. And once the facts can be judged on their merits and not on who is submitting them, at the very least global warming deniers have a powerful platform to present their findings."

Even conspiracy monger Alex Jones saw fit to repeat this posting in its entirety on his website Prison Planet.

But has anyone bothered to check the website of the American Physical society about this? If you did, you'd see on their website's front page (which I accessed on 20 July 2008), the following statement:

"The American Physical Society reaffirms the following position on climate change, adopted by its governing body, the APS Council, on November 18, 2007:

'Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate.'

An article at odds with this statement recently appeared in an online newsletter of the APS Forum on Physics and Society, one of 39 units of APS. The header of this newsletter carries the statement that 'Opinions expressed are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the APS or of the Forum.' This newsletter is not a journal of the APS and it is not peer reviewed."

Even Fox News had to admit it!

The July 2008 disclaimer listed here reads as follows:

The FPS Executive Committee strongly endorses the position of the APS Council that "Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate." The statement in the July 2008 edition of our newsletter, Physics and Society that, "There is considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for the global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution" does not represent the views of the Executive Committee of the Forum on Physics and Society.

If you'd like to read the APS statement on Anthropogenic Global Warming, simply click here.

So all I can say to you deniers is: "Close, but no cigar."

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Baldfaced Lie: "And not a drop (of oil) was spilled!"

Taken from the Center for American Progress Action Fund:

Offshore drilling advocates know that the specter of oil-slicked beaches would doom their campaign, so they are desperate to wish its environmental impact away. Yesterday, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) claimed "not a drop of oil was spilled during Katrina or Rita." This myth has been told again and again by the likes of Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA), Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne, Mike Huckabee, George Will, and Bill O'Reilly. There were, in fact, major onshore and offshore spills due to the hurricanes. According to the official Minerals Management Service report, the hurricanes caused 124 offshore spills for a total of 743,700 gallons, six spilling 42,000 gallons or more. The largest of these spills dropped 152,250 gallons, well over the 100,000 gallon threshhold considered a "major spill." In addition, the hurricanes caused disastrous spills onshore throughout southeast Louisiana and the rest of the Gulf Coast as tanks, pipelines, refineries and other industrial facilities were destroyed, for a total of 595 different oil spills. The nine million gallons reported spilled were comparable with the Exxon Valdez's 10.8 million gallons, but unlike the Exxon Valdez, they were distributed throughout Louisiana, Mississippi, and other Gulf Coast states, many in residential areas.

If you go to the original article, you'll find two other myths refuted: The "Drill Here, Drill Now Pay Less" myth and the "China On Our Coasts" myth.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

More Proof That Fox Isn't "Fair & Balanced"

Okay, this is just plan nutty. Media Matters ran a report on this, but let me just post the article from UPI in its entirety.

NEW YORK, July 2 (UPI) -- A New York Times (NYSE:NYT) editor Wednesday said a Fox News Channel graphic in which images of two Times reporters were altered was "beneath comment."

Fox aired photographs of Times reporter Jacques Steinberg and television editor Steven Reddicliffe on its morning show, "Fox & Friends," in a segment firing back at a June 28 Times report that referred to "ominous trends" for Fox News's ratings.

The liberal Web site Media Matters posted the photos of Steinberg and Reddicliffe, which appeared to have been manipulated to yellow their teeth, add dark bags under their eyes and distort other facial features.

The photos appeared to have been altered using graphics tools, Editor & Publisher magazine said Wednesday.

As the photos aired, "Fox & Friends" personalities Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade chatted about the Times article and called it a "hit piece" on Fox News. They also derided Reddicliffe's tenure as editor of TV Guide -- owned by Fox News's parent company, News Corp. (NYSE:NWS)

Neither Steinberg nor Reddicliffe was available for comment Wednesday, E&P said. Times Culture Editor Sam Sifton called the Fox graphic "disgusting."

"This was a hit piece by Fox News," he said. "It is beneath comment."

Neither Fox News nor News Corp. had commented by Wednesday afternoon, E&P said.

Further info on the story can be read here. I've said it before and I'll say it again, "'Fair and Balanced', my ass!"

Friday, July 4, 2008

Jesse Helms Dies on the Fourth of July!

Jesse Alexander Helms, Jr., five-term Republican US Senator from North Carolina, heralded as a hero by the Neo-Conservatives, died on July 4th at the age of 86.

Heralded as a "staunch conservative" by today's right-wing, he was also an ardent segerationist back in the 1950's and '60's. During his years as an editorial commentator on WRAL-TV in Raleigh, he once referred to the University of North Carolina, a bastion of liberalism during the years of segregation, as the "University of N*gg*rs and Communists". In his later years, he made openly homophobic statements. Jerry Falwell's Liberty University opened the Jesse Helms School of Government in 2005 (Talk about birds of a feather flocking together!).

He was the subject of a number of songs, such as Todd Rundgren's "Jesse", Loudon Wainwright III's "Jesse Don't Like It" and MC Hawking's "Why Won't Jesse Helms Just Hurry Up and Die?"

Here's hoping that the "Old South" dies with him.

Here's some fitting music: Todd Rundgren's "Jessie".
(WARNING: Harsh Language. Not Safe For Work!)

Lyrics to the song are here.

A family safe song, Loudin Wainwright III's "Jesse Don't Like It", is here:

And some nerdcore by MC Hawking:
(WARNING: Harsh Language. Not Safe For Work!)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Red, White and ...what?

No, this is not an American flag taken from the Bizarro world of the Superman universe. This is supposedly the "United States Civil Flag of Peacetime" that has supposedly been suppressed from public knowledge. There's even a website promoting it and another website selling the flags.

There's just one little problem. It's wrong. Very, very wrong. It's based on a description of the United States Customs Service flag in Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel "The Scarlet Letter". There is an excellent webpage refuting the idea of a "civil flag" entitled "The Civil Flag - Forgotten Flag or Flag of Fiction?".

No, it isn't legit. There's never been a "Civil Flag of Peace" in the USA. Save your money and fly the real Old Glory with the horizontal stripes and white stars in a blue field. If you're pissed off at something, fly the Gadsden Flag instead. Thank you.

Something positive

After all my ranting and complaining, here's something positive. A remix of Sharif Ezzat's Global Mind Change meme by way of "The Pinky Show".

Thank you, Sharif & Pinky!


After subscribing to it since the very first issue, I've canceled my subscription to WIRED magazine. I've been reading less and less of it, since it was quickly becoming a techie version of Playboy, seemingly more interested in promoting the newest gadget that will be outdated before the month is up. The editorials were sliding into a heavy Libertarian mindset, and after briefly being a member of the Libertarian Party of New Jersey, it was leaving a bad taste in my mouth (Who was it who wrote that Libertarians worship Liberty the way Christians worship Christ, or that Libertarians believe in "all the freedom money can buy"?)

Well, what got stuck in my craw was Matt Power's article Inconvenient Truths: Get Ready to Rethink What It Means to Be Green. While they do have a number of (glaringly obvious) truisms (nuclear energy deserves a second look, Urban living can be better for the environment), they got their math horribly wrong on the carbon footprint of air conditioning and harvesting of old growth forests.

I strongly urge you folks to read Real Climate's article Wired Magazine's Incoherent Truths.

Besides, I get more enjoyment reading MAKE and CRAFT. Those are magazines that I truly look forward to (I even keep them in slipcases!).

So long, Wired. It's been nice knowing you.