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Mars Attacks: Oops WSU Deadly Force Racism Study Doesn’t Follow the Script

by Mars ( 66 Comments › )
Filed under Barack Obama, Bigotry, Blogmocracy, Crime, Democratic Party, DOJ, Education, Eric Holder, Free Speech, Guest Post, Hate Speech, Political Correctness, Politics, Racism, Second Amendment at September 4th, 2014 - 8:00 am

Apparently Washington State University wanted to find out why racial “minorities” are shot more often in police incidents. The study did not go quite as the liberals in this country would have wanted it to. My explanation why the disparity exists will be at the end of the article.

WSU ‘deadly force’ lab finds racial disparities in shootings
Blacks more feared, but shot less quickly

SPOKANE, Wash.—Participants in an innovative Washington State University study of deadly force were more likely to feel threatened in scenarios involving black people. But when it came time to shoot, participants were biased in favor of black suspects, taking longer to pull the trigger against them than against armed white or Hispanic suspects.

The findings, published in the recent Journal of Experimental Criminology, grow out of dozens of simulations aimed at explaining the disproportionate number of ethnic and racial minorities shot by police. The studies use the most advanced technology available, as participants with laser-equipped guns react to potentially threatening scenarios displayed in full-size, high-definition video.

The findings surprised Lois James, lead author and assistant research professor at Washington State University Spokane’s Sleep and Performance Research Center. Other, less realistic studies have found people are more willing to think a black person has a gun instead of a tool and will more readily push a “shoot” button against a potentially armed black person.

The findings also run counter to the public perception, heightened with the recent shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., that police are more willing to shoot black suspects. Statistics show that police shoot ethnic and racial minorities disproportionately to their population.

But the last comprehensive look at the racial makeup of justifiable and non-justifiable shootings was a 2001 study (pdf) using more than two decades of U.S. Bureau of Justice data, said James. And while statistics show black suspects are shot at more frequently than white suspects, the 2001 study found black suspects were also as likely to shoot at police as be shot at.

“At the moment, there are no comprehensive statistics on whether the police do inappropriately shoot at black males more than they do at white males,” said James. “Although isolated incidents of black males being shot by the police are devastating and well documented, at the aggregate level we need to understand whether the police are shooting black unarmed males more than they are white unarmed males. And at the moment, nobody knows that.”

Shootings in the field are particularly difficult to study because they can have a multitude of complex, confounding and hard-to-control variables. But WSU Spokane’s Simulated Hazardous Operational Tasks Laboratory can control variables like suspect clothing, hand positions, threatening stance and race, while giving observers precise data on when participants are fired upon and how many milliseconds they take to fire back.

James’ study is a follow-up to one in which she found active police officers, military personnel and the general public took longer to shoot black suspects than white or Hispanic suspects. Participants were also more likely to shoot unarmed white suspects than black or Hispanic ones and more likely to fail to fire at armed black suspects.

“In other words,” wrote James and her co-authors, “there was significant bias favoring blacks where decisions to shoot were concerned.”

When confronted by an armed white person, participants took an average of 1.37 seconds to fire back. Confronted by an armed black person, they took 1.61 seconds to fire and were less likely to fire in error. The 24-millisecond difference may seem small, but it’s enough to be fatal in a shooting

The recent study analyzed data from electroencephalograph sensors that measured participants’ alpha brain waves, which are suppressed in situations that appear threatening.

The participants, 85 percent of whom were white, “demonstrated significantly greater threat responses against black suspects than white or Hispanic suspects,” wrote James and her co-authors, University of Missouri-St. Louis criminologist David Klinger and WSU Spokane’s Bryan Vila. This, they said, suggests the participants “held subconscious biases associating blacks and threats,” which is consistent with previous psychological research on racial stereotypes.

However, the current study only measured the alpha waves of participants drawn from the general public, not law enforcement or the military. Consequently, wrote the authors, “results from this sample are not generalizable to sworn officers.”

“However,” they added, “there is some evidence from the field to support the proposition that an officer’s threat bias could cause him or her to tend to take more time to make decisions to shoot people whom they subconsciously perceived as more threatening because of race or ethnicity. This behavioral ‘counter-bias’ might be rooted in people’s concerns about the social and legal consequences of shooting a member of a historically oppressed racial or ethnic group.”

James said she has data on subconscious associations between race and threat from law enforcement subjects, and she awaits funding to analyze whether these biases predict decisions to shoot in the simulator. Like study participants from the general public, she said, “they were still more hesitant to shoot black suspects than white suspects. They took longer and they made fewer errors.”

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2014-09/wsu-wf082914.php

Ok, has anyone here figured out the real reason more “minorities” are shot in police incidents even though this study shows the opposite should occur? It’s pretty simple, the reason is right in the article, buried under a bunch of other information. Here’s the money quote.

the 2001 study found black suspects were also as likely to shoot at police as be shot at.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen. Right in the article it shows that a previous study proved that black suspects were far more likely to shoot at the police than any other group. Yet, somehow with that information there is still a mystery here that this research team needs Scooby and the gang to help figure out. Oh, and maybe the bit about police thinking that african americans might be more violent. Well, I’m not sure where they would get that Idea.

https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/ojjdp/228479.pdf

In 2008, although black youth account­
ed for just 16% of the youth population
ages 10–17, they were involved in 52%
of juvenile Violent Crime Index arrests
and 33% of juvenile Property Crime
Index Arrests

http://ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/crime/JAR_Display.asp?ID=qa05261

The Violent Crime Index arrest rate in 2011 for black juveniles (627) was 5 times the rate for white (125) youth, 6 times the rate for American Indian juveniles (105), and 15 times the rate for Asian juveniles (41).
In the 1980s, the Violent Crime Index arrest rate for black juveniles was 6 times the white rate. This ratio declined during the 1990s, holding at 4 to 1 from 1998 to 2004. Since 2004, the racial disparity in the rates increased, reaching 5 to 1 in the late 2000s.

My advice to people is if you want the cops to stop shooting your minority group “youths”, then you should get your children to stop killing cops and other people. It would go a long way to changing the perception of potential violence seen by the police responding.

I’m trying to put this information out there without coming off insensitive, but I think we’ve hit the point where the majority of violent crime is committed by one group in this country, and that same group screams racism anytime that the police are forced to stop a violent criminal. I don’t get how this solves anything. Believe me when I say that 99% of the police out there have no interest in killing someone. That is a situation that leaves scars that few ever fully recover from. (Their leadership with their militarization goals are something else entirely, it’s always easier when you aren’t the one pulling the trigger.) If people would take the time to stop blaming others for doing their job and actually take the time to engage with their own families (or in many of these cases even admit that they have a family) a lot of this could be solved.

Shootout at the Cold Stone Corral: The Arizona Republican Gubernatorial Primary

by The Osprey ( 79 Comments › )
Filed under Barack Obama, Business, Corruption, Democratic Party, DOJ, Economy, Election 2014, EPA, Eric Holder, Health Care, immigration, Immigration, IRS, Janet Napolitano, Misery Index, Politics, Regulation, Republican Party, taxation, The Political Right, unemployment at August 24th, 2014 - 6:02 pm

AZnObamaTruck

Damn. The Arizona Republican Primary is Tuesday, and I have still not been able to make up my mind who I am going to vote for to be our contender for Governor in November. There are 6 – count ‘em – 6 candidates!

Nicknames in quotes are mine :lol:

I break them down like this:

The Corporates – pushing their experience in the private sector:

Doug Ducey. “The Ice Cream Man” : Current AZ Treasurer. Founder of Cold Stone Creamery, the upscale ice cream chain. Has gotten endorsement of Republican heavy hitters from outside the state – Scott Walker, Ted Cruz, radio talker Hugh Hewitt. On the hand, he has been endorsed by John McCain and there have been questions of impropriety raised around some of his dealings with Cold Stone franchisees. UPDATE: It appears that Doug Ducey has been endorsed by Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

Christine Jones. “Go Daddy’s Girl”: Kind of a dark horse, or should I say, ginger horse. (She’s a red head). Was corporate attorney for Scottsdale based internet hosting company Go Daddy – they of the racy Superbowl ads and Danica Patrick ad campaign. Claims to be for strong border enforcement, but recent revelations of her social media posts from a few years back supporting Obama and other liberal positions, resume embellishments (she claimed to have worked as a prosecuting attorney prior to her Go Daddy days) have made me skeptical of her.

The Politicos – claiming the voice of moderation:

Ken Bennett: “Cool, Calm Ken” Current Arizona Secretary of State. Long term AZ politico seen by many as a balancing force in AZ Republican politics. Presents a “cool calm and collected” image but may be a RINO. Many Arizonans who support Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Cold Case Posse investigation of Obama’s document fraud feel Bennett allowed himself to be bamboozled by Democrat officials in the Hawaii State Dept. of Records, and his lack of experience outside government has caused some criticism as well.

Scott Smith: “Mayor McRINO” Current Mayor of Mesa. Presents himself as a moderate Republican. Has a pretty good record as Mayor, but his support of Brewer’s Obamacare associated Medicare expansion which was passed in the dead of night by RINOS and Democrats and his participation in national Mayors conferences heavily influenced by Democrats has left a sour taste in the mouth of small government and balanced budget advocates in AZ. Endorsed by Jan Brewer.

The Lawmen- For border security and state’s rights :

Frank Riggs: “Marshall Dillon” Frank is a California transplant who moved to AZ in 2001. An army veteran and former police officer, he represented a conservative district in California in the Reagan years. This is his first foray back into politics since moving to Arizona. Has the endorsement for former State Senator Russell Pierce, author of SB 1070. A Border hawk. Those who object to him site a congressional voting record that is not quite as conservative as Riggs claims it to be.

Andrew Thomas: “The Boy Scout” Former Maricopa County Attorney. Defended Sheriff Joe’s immigration law enforcement in court, exposed and lead prosecution of various corrupt State representatives and Maricopa county supervisors. This gained him many enemies in the liberal Democrat run AZ Bar Association, who filed a lawsuit against him that while ultimately defeated, nonetheless lead to him being disbarred. He is very well liked in among AZ conservatives, but even many who like him feel that he is “damaged goods” and vulnerable to a Dem lead smear campaign in the General.

My initial thoughts back in February or March favored either Doug Ducey or Christine Jones. Having someone in the Governor’s office with private sector experience could help Arizona divert a lot of those California companies fleeing that state’s regulatory environment to Texas, into Arizona instead.

However, with the Bundy Ranch vs. Fed Gov showdown in April, the ongoing controversy over Sheriff Joe’s investigation into Obama’s document fraud, the “Camp of the Saints”/”Children’s Crusade” on the border, and the threat of ISIS infiltration via the border, has me leaning now towards one of “The Lawmen”. I don’t think the “Corporates” would have enough spine to stand up to Obama and Holder.

Polls are all over the map, there are some in the media who say the race is Ducey’s to lose, but I think there is a strong undercurrent for Andrew Thomas, as an F-YOU! to the Dems locally and nationally.

Curious to hear what other Blogmocers either in AZ or out of state think. We, along with Texas are on the front lines of the border crisis, Obama and Holder have been meddling in our local politics and the economy here has been struggling since 2008.

UPDATE: It appears that Sheriff Joe Arpaio has endorsed Doug Ducey.

Sunday At The Movies: Bill Whittle’s, “What We Believe,” Full Version

by Flyovercountry ( 107 Comments › )
Filed under Climate, Environmentalism, EPA, Global Warming Hoax, Science, Weather at July 27th, 2014 - 3:09 pm

So, here’s this weeks submission for a replacement hour of network television over your weekend. Think of it as an alternative to that hour long conservative bash fest that all Hollywood produced crime dramas seem to have become. It’s all seven of the excellent Bill Whittle, “What We Believe,” videos put together in one shot. Personally, I’d not seen all seven previously, as I missed one or two of them. As the sunspot activity this week is actually something that’s been labeled an, “All Quiet Event,” you may have noticed that the weather in much of the country will not match the typical hot sunny out doorsy model we’re used to seeing this time of year.

Cross Posted from Musings of a Mad Conservative.

Mars Attacks: Ten Most Harmful Books of the 19th and 20th Centuries

by Mars ( 376 Comments › )
Filed under Abortion, Academia, Bigotry, Blogmocracy, Censorship, Communism, Corruption, Democratic Party, Education, Environmentalism, Fascism, Free Speech, Global Warming Hoax, government, Guest Post, Hate Speech, Hipsters, History, Leftist-Islamic Alliance, Liberal Fascism, Marxism, Multiculturalism, Nazism, Patriotism, Political Correctness, Politics, Progressives, Racism, Socialism, Tranzis at June 26th, 2014 - 12:00 pm

Ten Most Harmful Books of the 19th and 20th Centuries

By: Human Events
5/31/2005 03:00 AM

HUMAN EVENTS asked a panel of 15 conservative scholars and public policy leaders to help us compile a list of the Ten Most Harmful Books of the 19th and 20th Centuries. Each panelist nominated a number of titles and then voted on a ballot including all books nominated. A title received a score of 10 points for being listed No. 1 by one of our panelists, 9 points for being listed No. 2, etc. Appropriately, The Communist Manifesto, by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, earned the highest aggregate score and the No. 1 listing.

1. The Communist Manifesto

Authors: Karl Marx and Freidrich Engels
Publication date: 1848
Score: 74
Summary: Marx and Engels, born in Germany in 1818 and 1820, respectively, were the intellectual godfathers of communism. Engels was the original limousine leftist: A wealthy textile heir, he financed Marx for much of his life. In 1848, the two co-authored The Communist Manifesto as a platform for a group they belonged to called the Communist League. The Manifesto envisions history as a class struggle between oppressed workers and oppressive owners, calling for a workers’ revolution so property, family and nation-states can be abolished and a proletarian Utopia established. The Evil Empire of the Soviet Union put the Manifesto into practice.

2. Mein Kampf

Author: Adolf Hitler
Publication date: 1925-26
Score: 41
Summary: Mein Kampf (My Struggle) was initially published in two parts in 1925 and 1926 after Hitler was imprisoned for leading Nazi Brown Shirts in the so-called “Beer Hall Putsch” that tried to overthrow the Bavarian government. Here Hitler explained his racist, anti-Semitic vision for Germany, laying out a Nazi program pointing directly to World War II and the Holocaust. He envisioned the mass murder of Jews, and a war against France to precede a war against Russia to carve out “lebensraum” (“living room”) for Germans in Eastern Europe. The book was originally ignored. But not after Hitler rose to power. According to the Simon Wiesenthal Center, there were 10 million copies in circulation by 1945.

3. Quotations from Chairman Mao

Author: Mao Zedong
Publication date: 1966
Score: 38
Summary: Mao, who died in 1976, was the leader of the Red Army in the fight for control of China against the anti-Communist forces of Chiang Kai-shek before, during and after World War II. Victorious, in 1949, he founded the People’s Republic of China, enslaving the world’s most populous nation in communism. In 1966, he published Quotations from Chairman Mao Zedong, otherwise known as The Little Red Book, as a tool in the “Cultural Revolution” he launched to push the Chinese Communist Party and Chinese society back in his ideological direction. Aided by compulsory distribution in China, billions were printed. Western leftists were enamored with its Marxist anti-Americanism. “It is the task of the people of the whole world to put an end to the aggression and oppression perpetrated by imperialism, and chiefly by U.S. imperialism,” wrote Mao.

4. The Kinsey Report

Author: Alfred Kinsey
Publication date: 1948
Score: 37
Summary: Alfred Kinsey was a zoologist at Indiana University who, in 1948, published a study called Sexual Behavior in the Human Male, commonly known as The Kinsey Report. Five years later, he published Sexual Behavior in the Human Female. The reports were designed to give a scientific gloss to the normalization of promiscuity and deviancy. “Kinsey’s initial report, released in 1948 . . . stunned the nation by saying that American men were so sexually wild that 95% of them could be accused of some kind of sexual offense under 1940s laws,” the Washington Times reported last year when a movie on Kinsey was released. “The report included reports of sexual activity by boys–even babies–and said that 37% of adult males had had at least one homosexual experience. . . . The 1953 book also included reports of sexual activity involving girls younger than age 4, and suggested that sex between adults and children could be beneficial.”

5. Democracy and Education

Author: John Dewey
Publication date: 1916
Score: 36
Summary: John Dewey, who lived from 1859 until 1952, was a “progressive” philosopher and leading advocate for secular humanism in American life, who taught at the University of Chicago and at Columbia. He signed the Humanist Manifesto and rejected traditional religion and moral absolutes. In Democracy and Education, in pompous and opaque prose, he disparaged schooling that focused on traditional character development and endowing children with hard knowledge, and encouraged the teaching of thinking “skills” instead. His views had great influence on the direction of American education–particularly in public schools–and helped nurture the Clinton generation.

6. Das Kapital

Author: Karl Marx
Publication date: 1867-1894
Score: 31
Summary: Marx died after publishing a first volume of this massive book, after which his benefactor Engels edited and published two additional volumes that Marx had drafted. Das Kapital forces the round peg of capitalism into the square hole of Marx’s materialistic theory of history, portraying capitalism as an ugly phase in the development of human society in which capitalists inevitably and amorally exploit labor by paying the cheapest possible wages to earn the greatest possible profits. Marx theorized that the inevitable eventual outcome would be global proletarian revolution. He could not have predicted 21st Century America: a free, affluent society based on capitalism and representative government that people the world over envy and seek to emulate.

7. The Feminine Mystique

Author: Betty Friedan
Publication date: 1963
Score: 30
Summary: In The Feminine Mystique, Betty Friedan, born in 1921, disparaged traditional stay-at-home motherhood as life in “a comfortable concentration camp”–a role that degraded women and denied them true fulfillment in life. She later became founding president of the National Organization for Women. Her original vocation, tellingly, was not stay-at-home motherhood but left-wing journalism. As David Horowitz wrote in a review for Salon.com of Betty Friedan and the Making of the Feminine Mystique by Daniel Horowitz (no relation to David): The author documents that “Friedan was from her college days, and until her mid-30s, a Stalinist Marxist, the political intimate of the leaders of America’s Cold War fifth column and for a time even the lover of a young Communist physicist working on atomic bomb projects in Berkeley’s radiation lab with J. Robert Oppenheimer.”

8. The Course of Positive Philosophy

Author: Auguste Comte
Publication date: 1830-1842
Score: 28
Summary: Comte, the product of a royalist Catholic family that survived the French Revolution, turned his back on his political and cultural heritage, announcing as a teenager, “I have naturally ceased to believe in God.” Later, in the six volumes of The Course of Positive Philosophy, he coined the term “sociology.” He did so while theorizing that the human mind had developed beyond “theology” (a belief that there is a God who governs the universe), through “metaphysics” (in this case defined as the French revolutionaries’ reliance on abstract assertions of “rights” without a God), to “positivism,” in which man alone, through scientific observation, could determine the way things ought to be.

9. Beyond Good and Evil

Author: Freidrich Nietzsche
Publication date: 1886
Score: 28
Summary: An oft-scribbled bit of college-campus graffiti says: “‘God is dead’–Nietzsche” followed by “‘Nietzsche is dead’–God.” Nietzsche’s profession that “God is dead” appeared in his 1882 book, The Gay Science, but under-girded the basic theme of Beyond Good and Evil, which was published four years later. Here Nietzsche argued that men are driven by an amoral “Will to Power,” and that superior men will sweep aside religiously inspired moral rules, which he deemed as artificial as any other moral rules, to craft whatever rules would help them dominate the world around them. “Life itself is essentially appropriation, injury, overpowering of the strange and weaker, suppression, severity, imposition of one’s own forms, incorporation and, at the least and mildest, exploitation,” he wrote. The Nazis loved Nietzsche.

10. General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money

Author: John Maynard Keynes
Publication date: 1936
Score: 23
Summary: Keynes was a member of the British elite–educated at Eton and Cambridge–who as a liberal Cambridge economics professor wrote General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money in the midst of the Great Depression. The book is a recipe for ever-expanding government. When the business cycle threatens a contraction of industry, and thus of jobs, he argued, the government should run up deficits, borrowing and spending money to spur economic activity. FDR adopted the idea as U.S. policy, and the U.S. government now has a $2.6-trillion annual budget and an $8-trillion dollar debt.

Honorable Mention

These books won votes from two or more judges:

The Population Bomb
by Paul Ehrlich
Score: 22

What Is To Be Done
by V.I. Lenin
Score: 20

Authoritarian Personality
by Theodor Adorno
Score: 19

On Liberty
by John Stuart Mill
Score: 18

Beyond Freedom and Dignity
by B.F. Skinner
Score: 18

Reflections on Violence
by Georges Sorel
Score: 18

The Promise of American Life
by Herbert Croly
Score: 17

The Origin of Species
by Charles Darwin
Score: 17

Madness and Civilization
by Michel Foucault
Score: 12

Soviet Communism: A New Civilization
by Sidney and Beatrice Webb
Score: 12

Coming of Age in Samoa
by Margaret Mead
Score: 11

Unsafe at Any Speed
by Ralph Nader
Score: 11

Second Sex
by Simone de Beauvoir
Score: 10

Prison Notebooks
by Antonio Gramsci
Score: 10

Silent Spring
by Rachel Carson
Score: 9

Wretched of the Earth
by Frantz Fanon
Score: 9

Introduction to Psychoanalysis
by Sigmund Freud
Score: 9

The Greening of America
by Charles Reich
Score: 9

The Limits to Growth
by Club of Rome
Score: 4

Descent of Man
by Charles Darwin
Score: 2

The Judges

These 15 scholars and public policy leaders served as judges in selecting the Ten Most Harmful Books.

Arnold Beichman
Research Fellow
Hoover Institution

Prof. Brad Birzer
Hillsdale College

Harry Crocker
Vice President & Executive Editor
Regnery Publishing, Inc.

Prof. Marshall DeRosa
Florida Atlantic University

Dr. Don Devine
Second Vice Chairman
American Conservative Union

Prof. Robert George
Princeton University

Prof. Paul Gottfried
Elizabethtown College

Prof. William Anthony Hay
Mississippi State University

Herb London
President
Hudson Institute

Prof. Mark Malvasi
Randolph-Macon College

Douglas Minson
Associate Rector
The Witherspoon Fellowships

Prof. Mark Molesky
Seton Hall University

Prof. Stephen Presser
Northwestern University

Phyllis Schlafly
President
Eagle Forum

Fred Smith
President
Competitive Enterprise Institute

http://www.humanevents.com/2005/05/31/ten-most-harmful-books-of-the-19th-and-20th-centuries/

Mars Attacks: Psychology says it’s okay if you are evil, it’s not actually your fault.

by Mars ( 108 Comments › )
Filed under Academia, Blogmocracy, Communism, Corruption, Crime, Democratic Party, DOJ, Fascism, Free Speech, Guest Post, Hate Speech, Hipsters, Leftist-Islamic Alliance, Liberal Fascism, Marxism, Multiculturalism, Political Correctness, Politics, Progressives, Racism, Second Amendment, Socialism, Tranzis at June 19th, 2014 - 8:00 am

Here is another case of Psych “experts” trying to excuse behavior because “you’re just programmed that way”. Hey, but there’s good news. According to this self-serving article, the more you read articles like this, the less you believe in prison and capital punishment. So, see there is a silver lining.

Free will is just a myth according to these people you are just a preprogrammed set of impulses so it’s wrong (and probably racist) to insist that these people be locked away or executed where they can’t continue to harm those around them.

Hey, maybe this is the basis behind Obama’s catch and release terrorist program.

Enjoy this exercise in absurdity in it’s entirety.

Minimizing belief in free will may lessen support for criminal punishment

Exposure to information that diminishes free will, including brain-based accounts of behavior, seems to decrease people’s support for retributive punishment, according to research published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

People who learned about neuroscientific research, either by reading a magazine article or through undergraduate coursework, proposed less severe punishment for a hypothetical criminal than did their peers. The findings suggest that they did so because they saw the criminal as less blameworthy.

“There is no academic consensus on free will, but we already do see discussions of brain processes and responsibility trickling through the justice system and other social institutions — for better or worse,” says psychological scientist and study author Azim Shariff of the University of Oregon.

While research suggests that most people believe in free will, Shariff and colleagues wondered whether increasing exposure to information about the brain, which suggests a more mechanistic account of human behavior, might have consequences for how we reason about morality and make moral attributions.

They hypothesized that exposing people to information that diminishes belief in free will — neuroscientific or otherwise — would, in turn, diminish perceptions of moral responsibility; ultimately, this shift in belief would influence how people think about crime and punishment.

So, for example, if people come to believe that the brain drives behavior, they may be less likely to hold others morally responsible for criminal actions, eliminating the need to punish so that they receive their “just deserts.”

In an initial experiment, Shariff and colleagues had college students read a passage and then read a fictional scenario about a man who beat another man to death. Some of the students read a passage that rejected free will and advocated a mechanistic view of behavior, while others read a passage unrelated to free will.

Those students who read the passage rejecting free will chose significantly shorter prison sentences, about 5 years, than did those who read the neutral passage, about 10 years.

The effect also emerged when the manipulation was more subtle: Students who read an article about neuroscience findings that only implied mechanistic explanations for human behavior chose shorter prison sentences than did their peers who read about nuclear power or natural headache remedies.

Not only that, they also placed less blame on the transgressor. Further analyses revealed that decreased blameworthiness actually accounted for the relationship between diminished belief in free will and lighter sentences.

Interestingly, students who freely enrolled and participated in an undergraduate course in cognitive neuroscience also showed the effect. Students who took a neuroscience course chose a lighter prison sentence at the end of the semester than they had at the beginning of the semester; this decrease in recommended sentence was associated with self-reported increases in knowledge about the brain over the course of the semester.

Students enrolled in a geography course, on the other hand, showed no change in their sentencing recommendations over time.

“These results show that our students are not only absorbing some of what we’re teaching them, but also seeing implications of that content for their attitudes about things as fundamental as morality and responsibility,” says Shariff. “It underscores the consequences that science education — and perhaps psychological science education, in particular — can have on our students and, ultimately, the broader public.”

Shariff and colleagues believe that their findings could have broad implications, especially in the domains of criminal justice and law.

###

This project was supported in part by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation (Award 07-89249-000-HCD), by the Regents of the University of California, and by the John Templeton Foundation.

In addition to Shariff, study co-authors include Joshua D. Greene of Harvard University; Johan C. Karremans of Radboud University Nijmegen; Jamie B. Luguri of Yale University; Cory J. Clark of the University of California, Irvine; Jonathan W. Schooler of the University of California, Santa Barbara; Roy F. Baumeister of Florida State University; and Kathleen D. Vohs of the University of Minnesota.

All materials have been made publicly available via Open Science Framework and can be accessed at osf.io/dy3pm. The complete Open Practices Disclosure for this article can be found at http://pss.sagepub.com/content/by/supplementaldata.

This article has received the badge for Open Materials. More information about the Open Practices badges can be found at https://osf.io/tvyxz/wiki/view/ and http://pss.sagepub.com/content/25/1/3.full.

For more information about this study, please contact: Azim Shariff at shariff@uoregon.edu.

The article abstract is available online: http://pss.sagepub.com/content/early/2014/06/09/0956797614534693.abstract

We’re All Racists Now!

by coldwarrior ( 43 Comments › )
Filed under Bigotry, Economy, government, Islam, Open thread, Politics, Progressives, Racism, UK at May 29th, 2014 - 5:00 pm

It was, after all, just a matter of time!

RAAAAACIST!

 

Are we all racist now?

As a survey of British social attitudes reveals a shocking upturn in prejudice, Allison Pearson argues that the political elite’s desire to advance multiculturalism with mass immigration has backfired

With impeccable timing, the children chose Mother’s Day lunch to tell their grandmother she was racist. And what vile abuse had my poor mother bandied about? She had asked her grandson if his choir sang Negro spirituals.

“Raaaa-cisst,” chorused my junior Thought Police with more than a hint of witchfinder glee.

“I’m not racist,” said my mother, clearly shocked. “What did I say that was racist?”

“You’re not allowed to call them Negro spirituals any more,” my Daughter informed her.

“What do you call them, then?” asked Grandma.

“African-American spirituals,” announced Daughter, a creature of such impeccable liberal certitude that she makes Nick Clegg look like Oswald Mosley.

“People of Colour spirituals,” hazarded the Boy. He obviously didn’t have a clue, but was enjoying his generation’s favourite baiting game: More Politically Correct Than Thou.

“Grandma is not racist,” said Himself. “Heinrich Himmler is a racist. Grandma, not so much.”

“Who’s Henry Himmer?” asked the Boy.

“Heinrich HIMMLER,” said Himself, “was a foul, Jew-exterminating, Nazi fiend whom your grandmother’s parents and their whole generation fought a world war to defeat in order that she could sit here 70 years later and be called racist by her sanctimonious and ungrateful grandchildren. Anyone for crumble?”

When my mum had gone for a nap, I explained to the kids that racism was not as black and white as they seemed to think. During their grandmother’s lifetime, the UK had seen vast social changes. Certain words once in common usage were now regarded as toxic, and rightly so. I blenched to think that, as a child myself, I went down the “Paki” shop to get some Blackjacks (inky toffees in a wrapper decorated with the faces of, then unremarkable, golliwogs). Miss Leyshon, my lovely primary school teacher, taught us to count with the help of three toys, Teddy, Dolly and Golly. In 2014, she would be considered guilty of inciting racial hatred.

I told the kids that, over the past 15 years, my mother’s town in South Wales had seen a huge influx of Eastern Europeans. It was possible for Grandma and her friends to note that the character of their birthplace had changed, and express some unease about it, but also for them to enthuse about their excellent Romanian dentist. Tolerance was not a one-way street. Tolerance meant treating elderly people who used outdated language with understanding, not finger-pointing and yelling “Raaa-cisst!” Real racism – the ugly, frightening, visceral kind – would flourish if people’s tolerance was taken for granted, and their communities changed too fast without any regard for the consequences.

That was two months ago, and I wish I were more surprised to learn that a new British Social Attitudes survey has found that more than a third of Britons admit they are racially prejudiced. Prejudice fell to an all-time low in 2001, but the latest figures show that the problem has returned to the level of 30 years ago. More than 90 per cent of those who say they are racist want to see immigration halted. More interestingly, 72 per cent of those who do not consider themselves racist also want to see immigration cut drastically.

As shell-shocked politicians from the main parties struggle to discern the causes of Ukip’s deafening electoral success, here’s a tip: look in the mirror, chaps! It is politicians, not the British people, who are to blame for a resurgence in racism; politicians who have ignored public opinion and created the conditions in which resentments fester and grow. Specifically, though not exclusively, it is New Labour who welcomed workers from the new, accession countries of the EU at a time when countries such as France and Germany wisely exercised their right to keep them out for another seven years. According to Jack Straw, this was a “spectacular” error. And Jack should know, because he was Home Secretary at the time. The plan of Tony Blair’s government, as laid bare by Andrew Neather, then a Blair speechwriter, was to banish that old, hideously white, retrograde England and usher in a new, vibrant, multicultural country which, rather conveniently, would vote Labour. Mr Blair now works in international conflict resolution, having stored up enough conflict in his homeland to keep future generations busy for centuries.

You bigoted xenophobic nazis can read the rest here.

Conservative?

by coldwarrior ( 123 Comments › )
Filed under Anarcho-Capitalism, Conservatism, Debt, Economy, government, Immigration, Libertarianism, Open thread, Politics, Regulation, Republican Party, taxation, Tea Parties, unemployment at May 16th, 2014 - 1:12 pm

Then I guess I ain’t one. No mention of deregulation at the federal level. No mention of any fiscally conservative issues like, oh, I don’t know, getting the budget and spending under control to avoid the obvious wall we are going to hit in a few years. No mention of tax reform. No mention of State’s rights. No mention of personal liberty. No mention of limiting the Federal Government’s role in our lives. These should be the ‘Agenda’ for the GOP. These should be Bedrock Issues.

 

But, predictably, No…It’s Abortion, ‘the family’ (not sure why fedgov needs to be involved in that), and illegal immigration. Now, if its up to me, abortion is up to the states where they could really make some headway like is being made on the second amendment. Mexico would be read the riot act and forced to close their side of the border, we would seal our southern border and the northern border. Hiring managers and HR and CEOs would do hard time for hiring illegals. There would be a path to citizenship, but it would be hard, and there would be work permits but they would only seasonal. Easy fix. took me 5 minutes.

 

Instead the usual crowd met and they talked about family values and abortion and fags. THE ECONOMY IS WRECKED!!!  WE HAVE 25% REAL UNEMPLOYMENT!!! WE ARE GOING TO RUN OUT OF MONEY IN A FEW YEARS!!! REGULATION IS KILLING US!!! FEDGOV VIEWS THE CITIZENS AS CATTLE!!! But no, let’s beat our chests about abortion and fags.

I have begun to ask myself, why does this  GOP ‘conservative wing’ not want to focus on why America is becoming poorer and losing ground by the minute while stacking up debt by the minute that will enslave our kids and grand-kids? Do they not see or not care about the train wreck that is coming for the economy? Why does this group have a willful disregard for economics and liberty? Having Grover Norquist natter on and subscribing to the economically illiterate idea of a balanced budget amendment does not address the serious fiscal issues that we face. Not even close. If these guys were the board and GOP was a corporation, they would be fired by the shareholders for negligence.

Although many Republicans are optimistic about their chances in this year’s elections, some of Washington’s leading conservatives gathered Thursday to privately vent frustrations about what kind of party they will be left with after November.

The group, alarmed by a resurgence of the GOP establishment in recent primaries and what activists view as a softened message, drafted demands to be shared with senior lawmakers calling on the party to “recommit” to bedrock principles.

Some of those principles laid out in the new document — strict opposition to illegal immigration, same-sex marriage and abortion — represent the hot-button positions that many Republican congressional candidates are trying to avoid as the party attempts to broaden its appeal.

Several attendees said they fear that elected Republicans, even if they succeed in retaining control of the House and winning the Senate majority, would cast aside the core conservative base.

“Conservatives ought not to delude themselves that if Republicans win the Senate majority, it will somehow be a conservative majority,” said L. Brent Bozell III, president of the Media Research Center, which monitors perceived media bias. “We should have no expectation whatsoever that they will listen. That’s why we’re fighting.”

Others worry that a toned-down campaign message by the party would dim GOP turnout and undercut Republicans in competitive races.

“I’m terrified that Republicans will blow this election if they are not going to stand for something,” said Michael A. Needham, the chief executive of Heritage Action, a conservative group.

Stand for something!?! How about standing for State’s rights, personal liberty and less regulation/federal control as ‘Bedrock Issues’? Why not restrain Fedzilla and get them off of our backs as a Bedrock Issue? They can start with USDA agents with machine guns and bullet proof vests then move to the BLM and ATF and EPA. How about standing for not selling our kids and grand-kids into debt slavery as a Bedrock Issue?

Debt is slavery and regulation is the whip.

Liberty is a gift. Liberty is a real and universal family value.

Debt and Liberty weren’t on the agenda.

 

*SO, this is what drives me mad about these people who call themselves conservative* Where is the liberty? Where is the reduction of enslaving debt?   Makes me crazy…so don’t get all out of whack over this post. It is for illustration purposes only.

 

Oh well…have a great friday and weekend yinz!

The Administrative Assault On The Constitution: Why Electing Third Party Candidates Won’t Matter Either

by Flyovercountry ( 163 Comments › )
Filed under Economy, EPA, government, Progressives, Regulation at May 6th, 2014 - 3:09 pm

Political Cartoons by Henry Payne

On February 4, 1887, President Grover Cleveland signed into law, the very first piece of legislation that created a regulatory agency. On that date in our nation’s history, the Interstate Commerce Commission was created. This event represents in many ways, the birth of the progressive assault on the U.S. Constitution. The ICC for those of you who aren’t familiar with its impact upon the daily lives of every person living within our borders, was granted the power and authority of all three branches of our federal government. Its creation represents perhaps the single most important step in destroying the checks and balances system so thoughtfully put into place by our nation’s founders. The theory was that our nation had become to large and complex to govern in the manner proscribed by the constitutional form of governance created close to 100 years prior to that date. A new system was needed where independent regulatory agencies would be able to take a more proactive role in the specific areas of their purview. These independent agencies would provide, where necessary, a more efficient address of problems needing solution than the designed gridlock built into our constitutional architecture. This belief was born out of the gridlock of the 1860′s, 70′s, and 80′s, in which the railroads were the target of a concerted effort to gin up complaint in regards to the prices charged customers who might seek passage on the short hauls. During the entire decade, endless debate was held in Congress, and shockingly, a solution could not be agreed upon. (It is worthy of note that Milton Friedman highlighted this very debate and ensuing solution as a part of his, “Free to Choose,” series, specifically, episode seven. His argument, and one that I happen to agree with, was that a solution was not necessary, since the problem was overblown, not real, and would have been better addressed by simply allowing the market place to sort itself out, as it always had previously. It should also be noted that rail travel in the United States at that time, even on the short hauls, was far cheaper than in the European nations, where government intervention was far more prevalent.)

As a direct result of the Interstate Commerce Act of 1887, the disparity of the long haul versus short haul rates was solved by raising the former to reflect the latter, rather than the other way around. It took about a decade for the consumer advocates of the day to move on to their next crusade, and left the control of the ICC completely up to the industry experts of the time, who were of course the very owners of the railroads that the Commission in question was supposed to be regulating in the first place. The ICC was used as a regulatory bludgeon to keep smaller companies from entering into the already very competitive railroad market, and when Trucks became a viable economic alternative, and quickly grew into a superior economic alternative, the trucking industry got itself added to the purview of the ICC. Today of course, as a result of this, there are trucking companies in America which make large profits without owning or operating a single truck. They simply buy and lease ICC licenses, adding a layer of cost to every item purchased by any citizen anywhere in America at any time.

Worse than that however is the fact that as is almost always the case, the specific problems sought to be solved by this particular agency were only made worse. By the time the 10th birthday candle was placed on the top of the ICC cake, the original intention was ignored and or forgotten completely, and a whole new scope of regulatory authority and control was fabricated, by the agency itself. This by the way is a real danger to anyone wishing to live free from the yoke of government tyranny. The ICC had failed completely in its original mission, as almost every agency does. That failure however was never accounted for, nor was any accounting sought. Instead, the agency simply wrote itself a new mission, which was of course completely opposite of the intended purpose. The progressive model so expertly thrust upon us, to the point where we’ve missed its implementation entirely, is that the Legislators draft a law with extremely vague language. A broad vision is laid out in terms of the area of our society that they wish to see placed under the control of said agency. The details of the new law are proscribed to be filled in later by the newly created government agency. An example of this in action is the Dodd/Frank Law that created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Congress passed a law which said, we want to regulate how our credit markets will operate, so that the credit consumer would be protected against greedy money lenders looking to do harm to the little guy. It was pretty much that vague, except that a new government agency, The CPFB, would write the rules necessary to place the entire financial services sector of our economy under complete control of the newly formed regulatory authority. Here we are some 5 years later, and Richard Cordray, the former Ohio Attorney General that Ohioans got tired of after only 4 short years, has carte blanche to rewrite how an entire sector of our economy will function. Never mind fellow little people, that he has not one second’s experience in the function of our capital market place, nor will he have any bothersome oversight to interfere with him as he writes those rules, nor even what those rules will ultimately be. If you wish to purchase a house, ever, it’s up to Richard Cordray now, how or if that will happen.

The agency you see, not only comes with the power to write its own rules, but also with the power of the Executive Branch, since this is where all agencies reside, to manage how those rules are enforced. Beyond that however, in all but the most severe cases, the courts have by and large simply abdicated their own place in this process by allowing these entities to adjudicate their own disputes. For the most part, the answer of the Judicial Branch has been to allow the agencies wide leeway in terms of settling any differences that private citizens may have with the management of agency business. So much for separation of power, one of the principle tenets of our constitutional republic.

Every four years in this nation we hold national beauty pageants designed to choose the leaders of our Executive Branch. Invariably those leaders come from one of two major political parties, and any belief that this will change any time soon is simply the worst form of naive wishful idiocy. Sorry Gods of the Third Party, but that is fact, and no amount of whining combined with coercive bullying will change that. The system is rigged in favor of the two major political parties, and that state of being rigged has been codified into our national election law. If you expect the apparatchiks of the two major political parties to ever work together in order to relinquish their grip on power, I happen to own a bridge that spans from Brooklyn to Manhattan in the State of New York that I’d be willing to sell to you. Short of an Article V convention, this state of Democrats and Republican owning a choke hold on our national political scene will not go away. (Here by the way is an excellent addition to the Article V list, for those interested.)

Even if however, a Libertarian Candidate for President let’s pretend, actually manages to win an election, that President would still be stuck with managing Federal Agencies who have been previously granted the authority to act on their own behalf and govern their individual fiefdoms as they see fit. George W. Bush did succeed in some small measure to curb the activities of the federal behemoth, but mostly, all of the independent regulatory agencies operate in mostly the same fashion whether there’s an R or a D following the Chief Executive’s name. So, while I singled out George W. Bush, simply because he was the last one with an R, the same could be said for every Republican President from 1887 onward. They simply do not have the means available to get a hold of the monster created, as the laws as written have created these individual heads of the Hydra to operate outside of any possible constraint. (I am seeing yet another good argument for an Article V Convention here. I would also like to point out that one President did actually try to place legal limits upon agency authority and scope in our country, and that man was Richard Nixon. He failed spectacularly, and found himself chased from town.) The point is, that no matter what promise may or may not be made, getting hold of the monster and curbing its scope is impossible without repealing the existing law that created it, and it will take much more than electing one single Libertarian with the right rhetoric in order to see this accomplished.

We on the political right won’t get our way until we get our collective crap together and begin winning a lot of elections. Until that day, be prepared to live life in the Worker’s Paradise my friends. I’ll see you in the reeducation camps.

The previously mentioned episode of, “Free to Choose.”

Cross Posted from Musings of a Mad Conservative.

A Checklist from 1958

by Bunk X ( 100 Comments › )
Filed under Communism, Cult of Obama, Democratic Party, government, History, Politics, Progressives at March 30th, 2014 - 5:00 pm

Congressional Record–Appendix, pp. A34-A35

January 10, 1963

Current Communist Goals

EXTENSION OF REMARKS OF HON. A. S. HERLONG, JR. OF FLORIDA

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

Thursday, January 10, 1963

Mr. HERLONG. Mr. Speaker, Mrs. Patricia Nordman of De Land, Fla., is an ardent and articulate opponent of communism, and until recently published the De Land Courier, which she dedicated to the purpose of alerting the public to the dangers of communism in America.

At Mrs. Nordman’s request, I include in the RECORD, under unanimous consent, the following “Current Communist Goals,” which she identifies as an excerpt from “The Naked Communist,” by Cleon Skousen:

[From "The Naked Communist," by Cleon Skousen 1958]

CURRENT COMMUNIST GOALS

1.   U.S. acceptance of coexistence as the only alternative to atomic war.

2.   U.S. willingness to capitulate in preference to engaging in atomic war.

3.   Develop the illusion that total disarmament [by] the United States would be a demonstration of moral strength.

4.   Permit free trade between all nations regardless of Communist affiliation and regardless of whether or not items could be used for war.

5.   Extension of long-term loans to Russia and Soviet satellites.

6.   Provide American aid to all nations regardless of Communist domination.

7.   Grant recognition of Red China. Admission of Red China to the U.N.

8.   Set up East and West Germany as separate states in spite of Khrushchev’s promise in 1955 to settle the German question by free elections under supervision of the U.N.

9.   Prolong the conferences to ban atomic tests because the United States has agreed to suspend tests as long as negotiations are in progress.

10. Allow all Soviet satellites individual representation in the U.N.

11. Promote the U.N. as the only hope for mankind. If its charter is rewritten, demand that it be set up as a one-world government with its own independent armed forces. (Some Communist leaders believe the world can be taken over as easily by the U.N. as by Moscow. Sometimes these two centers compete with each other as they are now doing in the Congo.)

12. Resist any attempt to outlaw the Communist Party.

13. Do away with all loyalty oaths.

14. Continue giving Russia access to the U.S. Patent Office.

15. Capture one or both of the political parties in the United States.

16. Use technical decisions of the courts to weaken basic American institutions by claiming their activities violate civil rights.

17. Get control of the schools. Use them as transmission belts for socialism and current Communist propaganda. Soften the curriculum. Get control of teachers’ associations. Put the party line in textbooks.

18. Gain control of all student newspapers.

19. Use student riots to foment public protests against programs or organizations which are under Communist attack.

20. Infiltrate the press. Get control of book-review assignments, editorial writing, policymaking positions.

21. Gain control of key positions in radio, TV, and motion pictures.

22. Continue discrediting American culture by degrading all forms of artistic expression. An American Communist cell was told to “eliminate all good sculpture from parks and buildings, substitute shapeless, awkward and meaningless forms.”

23. Control art critics and directors of art museums. “Our plan is to promote ugliness, repulsive, meaningless art.”

24. Eliminate all laws governing obscenity by calling them “censorship” and a violation of free speech and free press.

25. Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography and obscenity in books, magazines, motion pictures, radio, and TV.

26. Present homosexuality, degeneracy and promiscuity as “normal, natural, healthy.”

27. Infiltrate the churches and replace revealed religion with “social” religion. Discredit the Bible and emphasize the need for intellectual maturity which does not need a “religious crutch.”

28. Eliminate prayer or any phase of religious expression in the schools on the ground that it violates the principle of “separation of church and state.”

29. Discredit the American Constitution by calling it inadequate, old-fashioned, out of step with modern needs, a hindrance to cooperation between nations on a worldwide basis.

30. Discredit the American Founding Fathers. Present them as selfish aristocrats who had no concern for the “common man.”

31. Belittle all forms of American culture and discourage the teaching of American history on the ground that it was only a minor part of the “big picture.” Give more emphasis to Russian history since the Communists took over.

32. Support any socialist movement to give centralized control over any part of the culture–education, social agencies, welfare programs, mental health clinics, etc.

33. Eliminate all laws or procedures which interfere with the operation of the Communist apparatus.

34. Eliminate the House Committee on Un-American Activities.

35. Discredit and eventually dismantle the FBI.

36. Infiltrate and gain control of more unions.

37. Infiltrate and gain control of big business.

38. Transfer some of the powers of arrest from the police to social agencies. Treat all behavioral problems as psychiatric disorders which no one but psychiatrists can understand [or treat].

39. Dominate the psychiatric profession and use mental health laws as a means of gaining coercive control over those who oppose Communist goals.

40. Discredit the family as an institution. Encourage promiscuity and easy divorce.

41. Emphasize the need to raise children away from the negative influence of parents. Attribute prejudices, mental blocks and retarding of children to suppressive influence of parents.

42. Create the impression that violence and insurrection are legitimate aspects of the American tradition; that students and special-interest groups should rise up and use ["]united force["] to solve economic, political or social problems.

43. Overthrow all colonial governments before native populations are ready for self-government.

44. Internationalize the Panama Canal.

45. Repeal the Connally reservation so the United States cannot prevent the World Court from seizing jurisdiction [over domestic problems. Give the World Court jurisdiction] over nations and individuals alike.

Remember When NASA Concerned Itself Primarily With Space Exploration?

by Flyovercountry ( 139 Comments › )
Filed under Democratic Party, government, Progressives, Science, Space Exploration at March 24th, 2014 - 7:00 am

So I found this one originally when I traveled to Investor’s Business Daily. All I could think in the immediate aftermath was this. Exactly how far into the crapper does the current Administration wish to sink the once proud agency? The answer must be pretty God Damned far, since institutionalized madness seems to be the rule there, and not the exception.

We should have known that something was up when Barack Obama decided to buck the trend of every single President who had a NASA in his Administration prior, and not appoint his Vice President to head the agency. Not that Joe Biden would have been good at the job mind you, but it shows that the Bamster had something else in mind. Something else is indeed what it has turned into.

You can not make this stuff up, it’s truly too bizarre. From the IBD article linked to above:

As odd as this report is, it seems less strange when we consider that just four years ago President Obama told NASA administrator Charles Bolden, in Bolden’s words, that “perhaps (his) foremost” priority should be “to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science … and math and engineering.”

Recently, NASA has done little beyond publishing papers that tow the leftist line. It’s gotten so bad at the former space agency that last week, a group of NASA rocket scientists who were not the politically connected bureaucrats chosen to manage the decline, banded together and told us all that this global warming nonsense was indeed a hoax, and that we shouldn’t take anything said by the Science Director, James Hansen, seriously, should he venture into the field of science. You may think that it really couldn’t go down from there, and you’d be wrong.

This my friends, is what the IBD article pointed me to. Putting aside for just one moment that this recreation of the Communist Manifesto penned by Karl Marx combined with the C.W. Mills Power Elite Theory, and sprinkled with some Thomas Hobbs on the side has not one thing at all to do with space or the exploration of space, one might possess just the slightest amount of curiosity as to the validity of the underlying study that has predicted the end of human existence on our planet within just a few years. Who is the author, Safa Motesharrei, and what exactly are his qualifications to make such an horrific prediction, and then have that prediction taken so seriously by supposedly educated men?

Safa Motesharrei, as it turns out is an electrical engineer, with a masters of some kind in mathematics, and a doctoral candidate at the University of Maryland. He wrote this thesis while working for SESYNC, a lefty activist organization predisposed to stop all fracing, the Keystone XL Pipeline, GMO Farming, and every other lunatic left environmental position which has plagued free societies for the past six decades. My bet, they had a lot to do with incandescent light bulbs being declared verboten. I’m not certain here, and I’m only spit balling, but I’d be willing to go out on a limb and suggest that maybe the conclusion for the apocalypse prediction might have been drawn prior to any actual research having taken place.

I’m certain that Mr. Motesharrei is a fine engineer and mathematician, but he is decidedly not an economist, or an historian. NASA, by putting their name and reputation behind this crap has managed to lower their stature to the level somewhere decidedly south of cocktail party joke. I wouldn’t blame the Russians one bit if they refused to continue giving our suddenly hitch hiking astronauts rides to the International Space Station. Based on baloney like this, it’s obvious that they’ll not be doing any actual science up there anyhow.

Cross Posted from Musings of a Mad Conservative.