[Fwd: [BOBPARKS-WHATSNEW] What's New Friday July 28, 2006]
- Bob Park is always a great source for the rational perspective:
>From: What's New <whatsnew@...>
>Date: 2006/07/28 Fri PM 03:57:52 CDT
>Subject: [BOBPARKS-WHATSNEW] What's New Friday July 28, 2006
>WHAT'S NEW Robert L. Park Friday, 28 Jul 06 Washington, DC
>1. BLEEP: IT IS PHYSICS THAT UNLEASHED THIS PLAGUE ON MANKIND.
>Some suggested that I take refuge behind the Geneva Convention or
>the Eighth Amendment rather than watch the film What the Bleep Do
>We Know. It was penance for allowing myself to be used on ABC's
>Primetime, where Adam Dreamhealer attributed his awesome power
>to "quantum mechanics." In "Bleep" every spiritual claim becomes
>an example of "consciousness" acting through quantum mechanics.
>In physics, unfortunately, the word "consciousness" is invariably
>followed by bullshit. Having found a way to make incredibly
>precise predictions at the atomic level, we chose to ignore the
>fact that we don't understand it. After all, QM has transformed
>the world. We now flaunt the fact that no one understands
>quantum mechanics. We have begun to enjoy being high priests of
>a mystical religion. It's like giving Mass in Latin.
>2. THE CAST: PHYSICS IS NOT AN INOCULATION AGAINST FOOLISHNESS.
>Nor does it rule out mendacity. Two Ph.D. physicists, William
>Tiller and John Hagelin, who were in "Bleep," are afflicted with
>both conditions, and have been in WN in the past. Just look for
>them in http://bobpark.physics.umd.edu/search.html . In "Bleep,"
>Hagelin again claimed, as he has countless times, to have reduced
>violent crime in Washington, DC in the summer of 1993 by the
>meditation of 1,000 TM "experts" in unison. I was at the press
>conference a year later when he reported that the reduction was
>18%. "18% relative to what" a puzzled reporter asked? "Relative
>to what it would have been if they had not been meditating," he
>replied. In fact the DC murder rate during that period was the
>highest ever recorded. More on Tiller and Ramtha next week.
>3. KANSAS: WILL VOTERS WAKE UP FOR TUESDAY'S PRIMARY ELECTION?
>Voters don't pay attention to School Board elections unless there
>is a problem. Well, there's a problem: Creationists have a 6-4
>majority. It can be solved; 4 creationists are up for election.
>4. NASA: "OUR HOME PLANET" IS REMOVED FROM MISSION STATEMENT.
>On 3 Feb, after NASA climate scientist James Hansen told the NY
>Times he was being harassed for speaking out about greenhouse gas
>emissions http://bobpark.physics.umd.edu/WN06/wn020306.html ,
>NASA Chief Michael Griffin issued a "scientific openness" policy.
>However, on 6 Feb, the phrase, "understand and protect our home
>planet," was quietly removed from the NASA mission statement. It
>had been cited by Hansen to justify his remarks.
>5. GLOBAL WARMING: PASSING THE HAT FOR A FOSSIL FUEL APOLOGIST.
>AP today reports that Patrick Michaels, one of the last global
>warming deniers, told officials of Western coal-burning utilities
>that he's running out of money to "analyze" scientific critics.
>He's professor of environmental science at U. Virginia and senior
>fellow of the libertarian Cato Institute. It's OK to be a
>lobbyist, as long as you don't pretend to be a scientist.
>THE UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND.
>Opinions are the author's and not necessarily shared by the
>University of Maryland, but they should be.
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