Archive for the ‘Philosophy’ Category

My thanks to Patrick Moore, co-founder and ex Greenpeace leader, and since 1986 ‘the sensible environmentalist’, for his permission to repost this article printed in the Australian recently. The name of Patrick’s own venture - Ecosense reflects his logical and humanist approach to the climate debate.

Patrick Moore: We Need More Carbon Dioxide, Not Less

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Australian politics has been more influenced by the climate debate than any other country. Yet Australia is responsible for only 1.5 per cent of global CO2 emissions. Perhaps this speaks of Australia’s extraordinary commitment to the international community. Yet Australia has threatened to hobble its own economy while much larger ­nations take a pass while making pious pronouncements.

I am sceptical that humans are the main cause of climate change, and that it will be catastrophic in the near future. There is no scientific proof of this hypothesis, yet we are told “the debate is over”, the “science is settled”.

My scepticism begins with the warmists’ certainty they can predict the global climate with a computer model. The entire basis for the doomsday climate change scenario is the hypothesis that increased CO2 due to fossil fuel emissions will heat the Earth to unliveable temperatures.
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Talkshop contributor Cheremon emailed me earlier to say that today is the centenary of the birth of Adventurer and anthropologist Thor Heyerdahl. Here’s a short Biography of this remarkable man. I visited the museum and ‘ethnological park he built on Teneriffe (with Fred Olson’s money) some years ago, and marvelled at the similarity of the ancient artifacts from both sides of the Atlantic on display next to the pyramids he excavated from a pile of rubble. This from Biography.com:

 

Thor Heyerdahl Biography

Writer, Academic, Archaeologist, Explorer (1914–2002)
Born in 1914, Thor Heyerdahl grew up in Norway. He attended Oslo University, where he studied zoology. In 1936, Heyerdahl went to live on the Pacific island of Fatu Hiva. He made his world-famous voyage from Peru to French Polynesia aboard the Kon-Tiki in 1947. His book about this adventure became an international hit. In 1953, Heyerdahl led an archaelogical expedition to the Galapagos Islands. Two years later, he traveled to Easter Island. In his later years, Heyerdahl excavated pyramids in Peru and the Canary Islands. He died in 2002. (more…)

I’ve been out of the loop for a while, initially due to being away on holiday, then by a round of job interviews I had to prepare for (no success there), and finally by the hospitalisation of my dear old dad (he’s improving now). I’m immensely grateful to my co-bloggers Tim, Stuart (Oldbrew) and Andrew, who have been minding the shop and putting up lots of interesting articles during my absence – thanks guys.

This period has shown more than ever that the talkshop isn’t a one man band, but a vibrant community of bloggers, contributors, commenters and readers. The theory we are working on is moving along in the background as well as on the blog, along with a couple of other related developments I’ll be able to disclose in due course.

Evening light at Vannes harbour - South Brittany

Evening sunlight at Vannes harbour – South Brittany

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Bob Fernley-Jones asks an important question needing wide discussion.

First, let’s quickly review the basics of the existing four or so laws.
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Credit: Marc de Falco [1] (click full size)

  • Zeroth Law: According to Arnold Sommerfeld, Ralph H. Fowler invented the title ‘the zeroth law of thermodynamics’ when he was discussing the 1935 text of Saha and Srivastava. They write on page 1 that “every physical quantity must be measurable in numerical terms”. They presume that temperature is a physical quantity and then deduce the statement “If a body A is in temperature equilibrium with two bodies B and C, then B and C themselves will be in temperature equilibrium with each other”… [Source Wikipedia]
  • Law 1: The first law of thermodynamics is a version of the law of conservation of energy, adapted for thermodynamic systems. The law of conservation of energy states that the total energy of an isolated system is constant; energy can be transformed from one form to another, but cannot be created or destroyed… [Source Wikipedia]
  • Law 2: …The German scientist Rudolf Clausius laid the foundation for the second law of thermodynamics in 1850 by examining the relation between heat transfer and work.[17] His formulation of the second law, which was published in German in 1854, is known as the Clausius statement: Heat can never pass from a colder to a warmer body without some other change, connected therewith, occurring at the same time. [Or] Heat cannot spontaneously flow from cold regions to hot regions without external work being performed on the system… [Source Wikipedia]
    This is the form of law 2 that has been well defined by the humorous fun of Flanders and Swann (1963) , but ordinary folks should be alerted that despite the truth of the above, there have been “definition refinements” that maybe could be renumbered to Law 2.1:

    • Law 2 Updated: The second law of thermodynamics states that the entropy of an isolated system never decreases, because isolated systems always evolve toward thermodynamic equilibrium, a state with maximum entropy… [And much more: source Wikipedia]

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davey-taxes

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Words fail me. Hopefully talkshop comments will be witty, erudite and stay within the bounds of legality.

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A letter has been sent to the president elect of the EU by Sense about Science, urging him to reject the call of anti-scientific NGO’s such as Greenpeace to abolish the post of Chief Scientific Advisor. You can add your name by clicking on the link at the bottom.

Scientific scrutiny in Europe is essential

We and many organisations across Europe have written to President elect of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker to ask him not to abolish the post of Chief Scientific Advisor. Our letter is in response to a call from environmental NGOs to “scrap this position.” We strongly object to this proposal and to any attempt to undermine the integrity and independence of scientific advice received at the highest level of the European Commission. We wanted to respond quickly so we have sent the letter. If you want to add your name your name you can do that here. If organisations feel strongly about this, please write to Mr Juncker yourselves.

Many other organisations are sending their own letters including nine European medical research organisations and the European Plant Science Organisation representing 227 public research institutions across Europe.

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The Spectator has a good analysis on the BBC climate reporting bias debacle which coins a new phrase – ‘Climate Correctness’. A few excerpts:

gagging-ordersIt is only a matter of time before Nigel Lawson — if he is allowed on the BBC at all — has to have his words spoken by an actor in the manner of Gerry Adams at the height of the IRA’s bombing campaign during the 1980s. In the case of Mr Adams, whose voice was banned from the airwaves by the government, the BBC stood up for free speech. But it is quite a different story with Lord Lawson. The BBC has effectively banned the former chancellor (and former editor of this magazine) from appearing on its programmes to debate climate change, unless he is introduced with a statement discrediting his views.

When people try to close down debate rather than engage with it, there is a pretty clear conclusion to be drawn: they lack confidence in their own case. The suppression of debate was shown again this week when Vladimir Semonov, a climate scientist at the Geomar Institute in Kiel, Germany, revealed that a paper he wrote in 2009 questioning the accuracy of climate models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was effectively censored by the scientist to whom it was sent for review.

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Guest post from Tony Thomas following up the GWPF story from yesterday about the degree to which schoolchildren are being propagandised by climate activist material and teaching practice.

 Climate Catastrophism For Kiddies
by Tony Thomas 9-4-14

kid-polar_bearGet ‘em young and fill their heads with warmist propaganda — that seems to the unofficial motto of Britain’s education establishment, which has just been warned by the Home Secretary that peddling propaganda as fact is a punishable offence

Alarming climate  and eco-activist messages are saturating the British school system, according to a report by noted UK bloggers Andrew Montford and John Shade. On the same  day of the report’s publication, April 8, the response of UK Secretary of State for Education Michael Gove was to warn   teachers they are breaking the law if they fail to provide balanced coverage of climate change and similar issues.

The affair suggests a similar independent inquiry into “climate teaching” in Australian schools would be worthwhile. Anecdotal accounts of brainwashing by activists masquerading as teachers in our primary and secondary schools are legion.

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From Benny Peiser at the GWPF:

brainwashLondon, 8 April: A new report published today by the Global Warming Policy Foundation is calling for Michael Gove, the Secretary of State for Education, to institute an official inquiry into the way environmentalism and in particular climate change are being taught in schools.

In the report, authors Andrew Montford and John Shade describe how environmentalism has come to permeate school curricula across the UK, featuring in an astonishing variety of subjects, from geography to religious education to modern languages. Passing examinations will now usually involve the ability to recite green mantras rather than understanding the subtle questions of science and economics involved.

The authors review in detail the climate change teaching materials currently used in British schools, with disturbing results. There is ample evidence of unscientific statements, manipulated graphs, and activist materials used in class and even found in textbooks.

The report also describes how activist teachers try to make children become the footsoldiers of the green movement, encouraging them to harass their schoolmates and pester their parents to bring about “behaviour change”.

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tallbloke:

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Fenbeagle at his brilliant best

Originally posted on fenbeagleblog:

View original

farage-cleggRound two of the Farage vs Clegg EU in or out debate was high on rhetoric and entertainment from Nick Clegg. Farage did call Nick a liar at one point, but mostly kept his cool while Clegg became increasingly shrill, mentioning the EU as vital in our fight against  climate change. He even channelled Stephan Lewandowsky, calling Farage a fantasist who doesn’t believe the Moon landings happened.

“He’s one of those people who see conspiracy theories everywhere!” cried Mr Clegg, gesturing impatiently at the Ukip leader. “I wouldn’t be surprised if he tells us next that there wasn’t a Moon landing, Obama isn’t American, and Elvis isn’t dead!”

Mr Farage, furthermore, lived in “a fantasy world”, yearned to “turn the clock back to a bygone age” when “women knew their place”, and promoted views about the EU that were “a dangerous fantasy” and “a dangerous con”.

Nigel let him carry on, interjecting a sotto  “oh dear oh dear” as  Clegg ranted.

The outcome? The Guradian gave it to Farage 69 to 31. Yougov around the same. The LBC poll has Farage over 90%

The writing is on the wall for the parties which have denied the British people a voice for 40 years. Revolution is in the air. Farage’s parting words were:

Join the people’s army, let’s topple the establishment.

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Reposted from Battsby’s blog:
apocalypse

Do you remember Up Pompeii? Frankie Howerd, as Lurcio, regularly encountered a series of unlikely characters who dragged him into their deranged world with increasingly far-fetched but ultimately pedestrian plots, almost always relying on deception and the concealing of truths on pain of death. None of Lurcio’s encounters were met with such dread and derision as those with Senna the Soothsayer. “Woe, woe and thrice woe…”? Well, that’s the climate change lobby, that is.

 

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Bloggies 2014 finalists

Posted: March 23, 2014 by tchannon in Blog, People power, Philosophy

A gentle reminder to our readers. There are still a few days left to vote  Voting ends tonight in this years Bloggies. We have been selected as finalists in the ‘Best European Weblog’ section. Thanks for your consideration.

Voting for the Bloggies 2014

  • Saturday, March 1
    Finalists are announced and voting reopens to all to choose the winners.
  • Sunday, March 23
    10:00 PM EDT (early Monday morning European time)
    Voting closes.
  • Monday, March 31
    8:00 PM EDT
    Winners are announced and the Weblog of the Year receives a prize of 2,014 US cents (US$20.14).

Lets have a look focussing on blogs we know well, no offence meant to others.

Bloggies 2014 finalists (list at end of page there)

Weblog of the Year
*JoNova
*No Frakking Consensus
Quirky Chrissy
Travel Geek Magazine
The Modern Nomad
*Watts Up With That?

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The press release from BICEP making claims regarding detection of gravitational waves which inform us about the origin of the cosmos has been doing the rounds of the world’s media organisations.  Hans Jelbring comments:

Big Bang – The greatest fairy tale ever told
Hans Jelbring – 18-3-2014

big-bang-theoryThere is freedom of choosing religion in our country so there is no problem what you or I believe. On the other hand there is a problem when scientists mix facts supported by evidence and laws of nature with fantasy, unfounded hypotheses and faith.

There is no qualitative difference being a creationist believing that earth and our galaxy was created 6000 years ago or believing that the universe was created from a small cosmic egg 14 billion years ago. From where did this egg originate and what existed before that? There must have been something more (or rather, less) than a nuclear bomb within it since at that point not even matter are believed to has existed. None of these beliefs are or can be supported by scientific methods or verified experience. Hence, it cannot be classified as science.

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We held our local UKIP branch AGM last night where I was elected as vice chair and webcomms officer. I’m looking foward to working more closely with my committee colleagues Craig Sweaton (chair & media comms), Anne Murgatroyd (secretary) and Phil Banks (treasurer). The mainstream media is mis-portraying what UKIP stand for, so I thought I’d republish this short piece from Stuart O’Reilly at Oxford University to counter the misinformation:

Stuart O’Reilly

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There seems to be an awful lot of misinformation about UKIP. And believe me, if the discourses were true, I would certainly not be a member. We’ve had a few problematic characters: Godfrey Bloom and David Silvester being those that Oxford students will probably be the most familiar with. But our goals are far too important for us to be deterred by such people.

‘UKIP dislikes immigrants, right?’ Wrong. The vast majority of immigrants come to Britain to contribute, socially and economically. But our immigration system is flawed. We have a huge oversupply in the labour market, particularly in relation to unskilled and low skilled workers. It cannot be right that our government increasingly adds to this problem by having an open-door policy. The result is that wages are driven down, people are exploited and unemployment remains relatively unchanged. UKIP want a points-based system that does not discriminate against people from Africa, Asia and South America as the government’s current policy does.

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dont-spy

We can do this. Today, people around the world are coming together to say no more.

GCHQ in the UK and the NSA in America are hoovering up your personal data when you visit websites, send emails and texts, make calls and use social media and sharing the data with each other.

When I first heard these revelations from Edward Snowden, it was overwhelming. Now though, we’ve got an ambitious plan to change UK surveillance for good.

The Day We Fight Back is today.

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On Tuesday, internet users all over the world are standing up to say no to GCHQ and the NSA’s mass surveillance. Over the last eight months we’ve heard plenty about how intelligence agencies monitor us on the Internet.

Our surveillance laws have let the intelligence agencies extend their reach deep into our private lives.Tuesday 11th February is The Day We Fight Back.

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Following HRH Prince Charles intemperate remarks about ‘headless chickens’ reported at the talkshop last week, Lord Monckton has written him an open letter, reproduced below.

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His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales,
Clarence House, London.

Candlemas, 2014

Your Royal Highness’ recent remarks describing those who have scientific and economic reason to question the Establishment opinion on climatic apocalypse in uncomplimentary and unroyal terms as “headless chickens” mark the end of our constitutional monarchy and a return to the direct involvement of the Royal Family, in the Person of our future king, no less, in the cut and thrust of partisan politics.

Now that Your Royal Highness has offered Your Person as fair game in the shootout of politics, I am at last free to offer two options. I need no longer hold back, as so many have held back, as Your Royal Highness’ interventions in politics have become more frequent and less acceptable in their manner as well as in their matter.

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Guest post by Tim Cullen covering natural philosophy from pre-historic Scotland, Plato and Kepler to a sub-atomic theory developed by an eminently well qualified nuclear physicist.

Phi in the Sky - As Above So Below

The renaissance of Natural Philosophy in the Renaissance period laid the foundation stones which enabled the construction of the modern scientific edifice.

The Renaissance also renewed interest in anti-Aristotelian theories of nature considered as an organic, living whole comprehensible independently of theology, as in the work of Nicholas of Cusa, Nicholas Copernicus, Giordano Bruno, Telesius, and Tommaso Campanella.

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josh-cheers_nigel_scrAs the majority of people in this country know, we urgently need out of the unsustainable EU. We also know better then to trust snake oil salesmen promising solutions to our problems; if we’ll just give them our trust and money now, they’ll cure our ills later. Sure.

Even if the House of Turncoats hadn’t blocked the private members bill for a 2017 referendum, passing one wouldn’t make it a done deal. Parliament cannot bind it’s successor. Which means the latest part of the charade whence David Cameron says he’ll use the Parliament act to force through an E.U. referendum Bill to be brought forward in the next session is just that. A charade.

Broken promises, delays, obfuscation, lies, double-dealings. Enough of that. Let’s turn the forthcoming three elections into referenda. If you want out of the E.U. superstate plan, vote UKIP, and keep voting UKIP. Vote UKIP twice on May 22nd, for MEP’s and local councillors. Then Vote UKIP again in the general election in 2015. Because we really do mean what we say about listening to the people.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Ls60Wbq_dk

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