Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Logical Fallacy of the Day!

Base rate fallacy


Base rate fallacy, also called base rate neglect or base rate bias, is a formal fallacy. If presented with related base rate information (i.e. generic, general information) and specific information (information only pertaining to a certain case), the mind tends to ignore the former and focus on the latter. [1]

My List


Formal Fallacies



 

Former Intelligence Officer: The Utter Stupidity of Hillary's Actions

She was plucked like a ripe plum!

Joe A. Gilbertson

As a former member of the intelligence community I felt a deep shadow fall over me as I read about Hillary Clinton's use of an outside email service instead of the more secure and private State Department system. She did this for obvious reasons, to keep her communications out of official channels and away from the prying eyes of her political enemies (the Republicans...).

One might sympathize with a politician in her situation. However, the Secretary of State of the United States of America is the number two intelligence target IN THE WORLD, behind only her boss, the President. To tap into her communications guarantees lavish rewards and promotions to the intelligence team who does it.

All eyes are on her, like vultures, waiting. Yes, it really works this way. An email system such as the one described is considered "easy pickings." After seeing the details in the press, my first conclusion is this:
  • Russians and the Chinese were reading her emails. In real time.
  • I'm not saying maybe or perhaps
  • They were.
The Russians and Chinese have sophisticated intelligence services, with sophisticated spotting, assessing, targeting capabilities. They have thousands of people who work these issues. Ms. Clinton may say that she didn't talk about classified matters, and she may think this is correct. But any intelligence professional knows its impossible to "talk around" a topic effectively (despite what you might see in spy movies...). With a high value target like Ms. Clinton, an intel service will have teams of analysts and psychologists analyzing every word she says, with absolutely clear context ......To Read More….

Islamic State: Coalition forces kill 9,500 fighters; 400 soldiers to be deployed to train Iraqi troops

ABC News Australia

Coalition forces have killed more than 9,000 Islamic State fighters, and the forces will soon be joined in Iraq by 400 more soldiers to train local troops, the Australian military says.  Australia is one of several Western nations that have joined the fight against the Islamic extremist group.  Chief of Joint Operations in the Australian Defence Force Vice Admiral David Johnston said the effort was working.

"In the past we had seen territory captured and then lost; that means that it had to be recaptured," Vice Admiral Johnston said. "That's occurring less now, and increasingly both in the north, the operations up and towards Tikrit and the west I think is still more contestable than other parts of Iraq.  "But when territory is captured, it now tends to be held in a better manner than it was in the past."……… It is estimated Islamic State has 31,000 fighters, of whom 18,000 are foreigners ……..
"The Islamic State is using its propaganda to generate large numbers of volunteers who really become poorly trained cannon fodder in taking the fight in Syria and Iraq," he said.  "I think that it's highly likely that if one was silly enough to be recruited for that type of activity that you face a high likelihood of being killed on the battlefield."……To Read More…..
 

 

Barry University Officials in Florida authorize Pro-ISIS Club: JUST CHANGE THE NAME

Pamela Geller 24 Comments

University and college campuses are critical weapons in the left’s arsenal to destroy America. It’s not just the obvious horror of ISIS or CAIR or the MSA being welcome on college campuses. It’s that voices who oppose their savagery and carnage are banned.  My colleagues and I are rarely invited to speak, and when we are, the blowback is deafening, even violent. Ayaan Hirsi Ali was uninvited from Brandeis, if you recall.  It’s not just terror groups and hate preachers welcomed on US college campuses; Jewish students are routinely harassed and bullied on campus by Muslims and their leftist lapdogs…….Read More ›

 

NBCI Breaks Fellowship with PCUSA over Sodomite Definition of Marriage

Posted on Michael Ware 4 Comments

One of the most difficult thing for a Bible-believing church is to perform discipline on a sinning member. To say to a person that you have loved and worked with, that they are showing themselves to be non-believers. That they can no longer participate in the means of grace of communion, and fellowship is heart-breaking. But, there are two very important reasons that this must be done.

“The National Black Church Initiative (NBCI), a coalition of approximately 34,000 churches representing an estimated 15.7 million African Americans and Latinos, has cut ties with the Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA) after a majority vote was reached among the denomination’s regional presbyteries to redefine marriage.”
 
The most important thing that we must recognize is that both Christ and Paul command discipline. It matters little what we think it will accomplish or how it makes us feel, we must obey our master. Christ tells us how and when this is to be done in Matthew 18. When we follow these steps, we are calling our brother to repentance and protecting the purity of Christ’s bride. Which is the second reason that Christians must preform this duty……..To Read More….

Climate Poker: Most Governments Delay UN Climate Pledges

Benny Peiser’s Global Warming Policy Foundation Reports
Earth Hour Interest Declining Worldwide
 
Editor’s Note:  I have to agree.  Normally when Earth Hour approaches I turn on every light in my house, inside and out.  I missed it this year because I didn’t know about it until it passed.  As Martha Stewart says: “ It’s good thing”!

 I abhor Earth Hour. Abundant, cheap electricity has been the greatest source of human liberation in the 20th century. Every material social advance in the 20th century depended on the proliferation of inexpensive and reliable electricity. The whole mentality around Earth Hour demonizes electricity. I cannot do that, instead I celebrate it and all that it has provided for humanity. Earth Hour celebrates ignorance, poverty and backwardness. By repudiating the greatest engine of liberation it becomes an hour devoted to anti-humanism. --Ross McKitrick

The United States will submit plans for slowing global warming to the United Nations early this week but most governments will miss an informal March 31 deadline, complicating work on a global climate deal due in December. Other emitters such as China, India, Russia, Brazil, Canada and Australia say they are waiting until closer to a Paris summit in December, meant to agree a global deal. Late submissions complicate the Paris summit because it will be far harder to judge late INDCs. --Alister Doyle and Valerie Volcovici, Reuters, 29 March 2015


Less than a week before the United Nations deadline for countries to file greenhouse-gas pledges necessary to keep a global climate change deal on track, it looks like most of the world is missing in action. Ahead of the March 31 target, only the European Union and Switzerland have unveiled plans, representing about 10 per cent of global emissions. The United States has promised to hit the deadline. The rest of the world’s major economies, including China, India, Australia and Japan, are unlikely to complete submissions in time, according to environmental groups tracking U.N. climate talks. --Alex Nussbaum and Alex Morales, Bloomberg, 25 March 2015


India wants a global agreement that will address intensified efforts to tackle climate change between 2015 and 2020 and has questioned the single-minded focus on finalising a global compact for the post-2020 period, which is to be inked in Paris in December. Industrialised countries are required to provide financial support, which was agreed in 2009 and 2010 to be to the tune of $100 billion a year, and were also committed to provide technology to developing countries to address climate change. India's demand has the broad support of developing countries. --Urmi Goswami, The Times of India, 30 March 2015


This Saturday, the world marked the one of the biggest environmentally-friendly initiatives – Earth Hour. However, while a record number of countries and cities participated in the 2015 campaign, people in many part of the world showed less interest in saving the planet than ever before. The Earth Hour campaign registered a massive decline in interest. Although participation continues to be high, the meaning of Earth Hour has begun to blur. Media coverage in the country focused more on saving electricity than on saving the planet. --Dubai Chronicle, 30 March 2015

In 2007 we were told on all sides that, by the end of the summer melt in 2014, the entire Arctic would be “ice free”. Polar bears were disappearing. The mighty Greenland ice cap was melting. Even as late as 2013 the National Geographic warned that the great expanse of Hudson Bay was warming so fast that it would soon reach “tipping point”, changing its ecosystem forever. How have all those predictions turned out? In fact last year’s Arctic ice melt was the smallest in nine years and its thickness is now back to its level in 2006. Several studies show that across most of the Arctic, polar bears have never done better. --Christopher Booker, The Sunday Telegraph, 29 March 2015

Cold snaps like the ones that hit the eastern United States in the past winters are not a consequence of climate change. Scientists at ETH Zurich and the California Institute of Technology have shown that global warming actually tends to reduce temperature variability. --Reporting Climate Science, 27 March 2015


The geopolitics of oil go round and round

By Marita Noon

Many complicated factors contribute to the global price of a barrel of oil, but two of the leading components are supply and risk-and both have the potential to escalate in the days ahead. The current region-wide sectarian war could easily bump oil prices up dramatically. And, the expected nuclear deal with Iran could drop them-dramatically.

Oil price predictions today play like a game of roulette, or a carnival barker of days gone by, round and round it goes, where she stops, nobody knows.

A few weeks ago, addressing the need to open up access to mid-Atlantic oil resources, I wrote:

"With the current oil abundance, it may seem like an odd time to be going after more. However, the legal wheels that could allow limited access to the vast, untapped oil resources move very slowly. Today's market conditions will fluctuate between now and 2035 when the global demand for energy is expected to spike. Not to mention the increasingly volatile situation in the Middle East, where new coalitions are already being formed: Iran and Iraq, Saudi Arabia and South Korea-just to name two. If one more beheading takes place or a bomb hits the right (or wrong) target, the region could erupt, and the entire energy dynamic would change. Considering the variables, American energy security is always something worth pursuing."

Well, now the "entire energy dynamic" has changed.

First, the obvious: war in the Middle East.

Middle East unrest has historically sent oil prices soaring. With the recent regional conflicts involving ISIS, however, prices have continued to drop due to OPEC's increased supplies, led by Saudi Arabia, in response to the new American energy abundance that changed the entire energy dynamic.

That dynamic has just changed again.

Referencing ISIS and the growing terrorism throughout the region, Jordan's King Abdullah said in December, "this is our world war three." At the time, pundits reacted with something akin to "well, maybe." But that was then. Now, Saudi Arabia, backed by King Abdullah-who has declared "Jordan is fully committed to the Arab military effort in Yemen"-and an Arab coalition including the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, Egypt, and Kuwait, plus Morocco and Pakistan, who've expressed interest in joining, with intelligence and logistics support from the U.S., is bombing Yemen's Houthi rebels, who have received training, weapons, and advisors from rival Iran.

As a result of the offensive, CNN Money reported: "Oil prices bounced higher on Thursday as Saudi Arabia launched airstrikes in Yemen, raising concerns that a regional conflict could disrupt supplies." It added, "Saudi Arabia is the world's largest oil producer, and investors fear its involvement in the unrest could have a negative impact on production."

In one story, the Financial Times (FT), pointed to Yemen's limited oil production and stated: "The attack is not expected to cause any major disruption to supplies." And, in different coverage: "even as some observers raised concerns, others were more muted due to the size of Yemen's oil output."

Obviously, no one knows where "she'll stop." But the factor of "risk" which according to Richard Mallinson, geopolitical analyst at the London-based consultancy Energy Aspects, the markets had "since last year turned away from paying attention to," is back. The FT quotes him as saying: "The reality is that geopolitical risk is as high as it has been in a long time." Increased risk means higher prices.

It gets more complicated.

The Obama administration continues to negotiate with Iran with the intent of crafting a nuclear deal that will, ultimately, lift the sanctions against the oil-producing county-which would allow it to increase oil exports. Because of the sanctions, Iran's oil exports have been cut in half-resulting in a "severely strained economy." Iran has large amounts of oil already in storage and, according to the FT, "will fight for its market share."

Iran wants the sanctions lifted immediately. If that happens, the FT reports there will be "an injection of hundreds of thousands of barrels a day into the oil market already struggling with a crude overhang"-which "could depress prices further." Increased supply means lower prices.

Energy economist Tim Snyder explains it this way: "The Iranians will be free to put another 1 million barrels of crude oil production on the world market. The Iranian production will represent a doubling of the current oversupply vs. world demand and will put additional downward pressure on the world crude oil price."

Frequently calling us "the great Satan," Iran continues to hate the U.S. Falling oil prices could serve as a death knell to America's oil abundance (not to mention countries, such as Venezuela, that depend on oil revenues). However the low prices would, overall, be good for western economies-but bad for Iran and its friend, Russia.

The way to better benefit the Iranian economy, once sanctions are lifted, is to raise oil prices-which Iran can do through the war in Yemen.

Perhaps Saudi Arabia jumped the gun in its attacks in Yemen. Perhaps, Iran thought it would have the deal with the P5 +1 group (U.S., U.K., France, Russia, China, and Germany) signed before the unrest pushed up the prices.

With Iran calling the shots in Yemen, it (not the friendly-to-the-west president) could control the Bab el-Mandeb strait and the million barrels of crude oil that pass through the strait each day, not to mention, the goods that transit the strait coming from the Far East. CNN Money notes: "Adding to the uncertainty is Yemen's strategic location on a shipping route linking the Mediterranean and the Indian Ocean." Each day, upwards of 3.8 million barrels of oil and refined petroleum products flow through the Bab el-Mandeb strait to the Red Sea-making it one of the world's key oil chokepoints. Blocking the strait could cause a major disruption in global crude oil prices.

But there is more.

Iran can impede the flow of traffic through the Strait of Hormuz, which is the world's most important oil chokepoint with 17 million barrels of oil a day (representing more than 30 percent of the world's seaborne-traded oil) flowing through it.

With the ability to disrupt both straits, Iran would have the ability, if the sanctions are lifted due to the Obama administrations' eagerness for a deal, to potentially escalate the price of oil to $200 a barrel-which would, not only change the geopolitics, but world economies as well. (Remember, Iran didn't support OPEC's November decision to keep production high and prices low.) Iran would be controlling a large part of the worldwide flow of oil and the high prices would boost, not only its economy, but Russia's as well-while the limited access punishes Saudi Arabia and the high prices could badly damage Western economies. And, neither Iran nor Russia has to increase production to benefit-but if they do, their economic return becomes even greater.

Will Iran sign the deal and have its sanctions removed, allowing it to inject millions of barrels of oil into an already glutted global market? Whether or not it signs the deal, Iran can still penalize the U.S. and Saudi Arabia, and as a result the rest of the world-making Yemen a spot on the map we should all care about.

Round and round she goes, where she stops nobody knows. "Considering the variables, American energy security is always something worth pursuing."

The author of Energy Freedom, Marita Noon serves as the executive director for Energy Makes America Great Inc.and the companion educational organization, the Citizens' Alliance for Responsible Energy (CARE). Together they work to educate the public and influence policy makers regarding energy, its role in freedom, and the American way of life. Combining energy, news, politics, and, the environment through public events, speaking engagements, and media, the organizations' combined efforts serve as America's voice for energy.

 

Monday, March 30, 2015

What is an Islamic Scholar Studying?

By Rich Kozlovich

There was an interesting exchange on Pam Geller’s Atlas Shrugs by two participants corresponding about what the term Islamic scholar means.  I’ve wondered about this myself since so many of those who are the most irrational and virulently violent have been referred to in the western media as “Islamic Scholars”.  Here is a paraphrased summary of that conversation with some thoughts of my own.   

The thread starts out saying how confusing the term Islamic scholar is.  Well, what does that mean?  It does seem to be oxymoronic since the Koran is supposedly complete, inviolable, never to be investigated, criticized or taken apart.  So what are they studying and just exactly what kind of methodologies are they using?  What system do they utilize to award Ph.D.’s?
 
Perhaps merely attending some Koranic school or other qualifies, provided that school teaches justification for finding more and better ways to kill unarmed civilians with bombs, or cutting off the heads of those who can’t fight back, or burning prisoners alive while trapped in an iron cage.  I would have to assume they also teach that attacking the weak, harmless, helpless and hopeless is less dangerous than attacking armed troops, especially since they keep losing those battles with enormous losses. 

And why are they using western academic credentials to claim legitimacy while declaring everything western as so evil it needs to be destroyed?   So, is it possible the term Islamic scholar is an oxymoron since there is no western style investigation permitted regarding the Koran as it’s a complete & inviolable work, not to be investigated, criticized, and taken apart?” Yet there has been a centuries old argument among “Islamic scholars” over which Koran is the legitimate, the Median or the Mecca version.  Typically these “scholarly” arguments have been augmented and reinforced by murder, mayhem and destruction especially since over the centuries there have developed a number of different versions. 
 
Is it possible this “scholarly” infighting is merely an excuse to kill people with whom they disagree?  Especially since the Koran allows Muslims to murder, rape, steal, enslave and generally commit mayhem by calling it Jihad.   They not only perpetrate these actions against those who fail to appreciate the alleged wonders Islam can bring to the world, but also those who profess to be Mulsim but disagree on who should be in charge and which sect is the right sect.  What the Koran calls duties, responsibilities and obligations - the rest of the world calls crimes.  So why is that scholarly?

One of the correspondents made an interesting comparison based on real life actions of "Islamic scholars".  Being an "Islamic" scholar is like being a murderer or a thief who spends a lot of time studying how to murder and steal more effectively and then acting on those studies and calling it "research".  After years of this “research” this “scholar” can then write a paper on how effective he’s been at murdering and stealing from helpless people in order to be awarded a Ph.D.  
 
There is one final thought.  Is it possible Islam isn't a religion at all, but a group of political criminal organizations masquerading as a religion?  Just a thought! 

From Pam Geller's Atlas Shrugs

Thumbnail

Muslims Behead 23 on Eve of Election Including Lawmaker, Nurse, Set Fire to Village - Because Islam is peace. For years, President Obama wouldn’t designate the Muslim group “Group of the People of Sunnah [example] for Preaching and Jihad” (more commonly known as Boko Haram) a terrorist group because they had “legitimate concerns.” Yes, like the heads of non-Muslims. How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides […]READ MORE

Top U.S. Islamic Cleric Dr. Salah Soltan Sentenced to Death in Egypt - Longtime readers of Atlas Shrugs remember the long hard fight we waged to save Rifqa Bary’s life. Rifqa was an Ohio teen who converted out of Islam in secret. Her mosque, the Noor mosque, spied on her and told her devout parents, who threatened to kill her. It was a long, ugly struggle. Rifqa’s […]READ MORE

Media aide to Iran’s president defects in Lausanne, says “US negotiating team mainly there to speak on Iran’s behalf - The US capitulation to Iran in the nuke talks is obvious to the world. The Iranians see it and celebrate with screams of “Death to America.” “Pro-Hassan Rouhani Iranian editor defects while covering nuclear talks in Lausanne,” by Ahmed Vahdat and Richard Spencer, the Telegraph, March 27, 2015: A close media aide to Hassan Rouhani, […]READ MORE

Islamic State In Illinois Planned Another Ft. Hood Jihad Massacre - More “workplace violence,” Mr. President? American Muslim soldier: “We would love to do something like the brother in Paris did.” “Islamic State In Illinois Planned Another Ft. Hood,” Investors.com Terrorism: An Illinois National Guardsman sought to fight with Islamic State as his cousin plotted to kill scores at an Illinois National Guard facility. If they […]READ MORE

Shot dead as they try to swim for their lives: Jihad video shows civilians being forced into the sea, brutally gunned down and left to rot on the Somali beach - The Islamic State has become the role model for Muslim groups the world over. Islam is peace. Inshallah. Shot dead as they try to swim for their lives: Al-Shabaab video shows civilians being forced into the sea, brutally gunned down and left to rot on the Somali beach Al-Shabaab video shows militants coldly executing civilians […]READ MORE

Muslim siege at Somali hotel popular with Westerners ends, 24 dead - Brace yourself for more speeches about how Islam is a religion of peace. This al Qaeda satellite has begun releasing Islamic State-style jihad porn videos as well. Somali police take position after Islamist group al Shabaab attacked Maka Al-Mukarama hotel in Mogadishu, March 27, 2015. “Official: Al-Shabab siege at Somali hotel ends, 24 dead,” USA […]READ MORE

Muslims Arrested in Gang-Rape of Nun in India - Gang-raping a nun — monstrous. Do these Muslims think they get extra brownie points for that with Allah? Is it up there with killing a Jew? The Associated Press reports that two Muslims were arrested Thursday in the gang rape of an elderly nun in a Catholic missionary school. Other Muslims are being sought in […]READ MORE
 
Philippine President: Give Muslims their own Islamic State or count body bags - The majority Catholic nation has been under siege by Muslims waging jihad. Bloody terror. President Aquino is saying, terror wins. But if the President thinks the Islamic war will end, Aquino knows nothing of Islamic history. It will never be enough. There will always be more demands. The jihad for an Islamic state has claimed […]READ MORE

Israel: Muslims on School Field Trip Beat Jewish Guide - This story speaks only of “Arabs,” but these savages didn’t attack the Jewish tour guide because they were Arabs. They attacked him because they are Muslims, and they know that they must wage jihad against Israel. “Arabs on School Field Trip Beat Jewish Guide,” by Yishai Karov and Gil Ronen, Arutz Sheva, March 26, 2015 […]READ MORE

Amnesty International: Palestinians Committed War Crimes, Killed more Palestinian civilians than Israel - Truth is irrelevant. Truth is the enemy of evil, which is why there is a prohibition on the truth. Amnesty International said Thursday that Palestinian rocket fire during the 2014 summer war in Gaza had killed more civilians in the Gaza Strip than in Israel. Such deadly attacks on civilians on both sides constituted “a […]READ MORE

 

The Latest From the Energy and Environmental Newsletter

By John Droz, Jr., physicist & environmental advocate

Energy and Environmental Newsletter, is now online.

Since I've received quite a few requests for Solar information, I've now added a Solar page to our WiseEnergy.org website. If you have any suggestions for additions or improvements, please let me know.

Some superior articles in this issue, are:

Carmen Krogh's Turbine Health Studies Synopsis (a repeat as the url was wrong in the last Newsletter)

A very good graphic for Wind Energy Noise


Here are some other key Energy related reports:


Some excellent audio files demonstrating wind energy noise


Below are some of the most interesting "Global Warming" related reports:


PS — Some other recent articles of general interest —

Opt out of online ads: Here and Here

Must read article - Former Intelligence Officer: The Utter Stupidity of Hillary's Actions

As always, please pass this on to open-minded citizens. If there are others who you think would benefit from being on our energy & environmental email list, please let me know. If at any time you'd like to be taken off the list, please let me know that too.

 

Taxonomy of Logical Fallacies

Double Click Here for a clear image. 

Acknowledgments: Thanks to David Goodey and Kent Gustavsson for pointing out missing links.  How to Use the Taxonomy | Main Menu

 

Logical Fallacy of the Day!

Argument from fallacy

Argument from fallacy is the formal fallacy of analyzing anargument and inferring that, since it contains a fallacy, its conclusion must be false.[1] It is also called argument to logic (argumentum ad logicam), fallacy fallacy,[2] fallacist's fallacy,[3] and bad reasons fallacy.[4]

Fallacious arguments can arrive at true conclusions, so this is an informal fallacy of relevance.[5]

Example

Tom: All cats are animals. Ginger is an animal. Therefore, Ginger is a cat.

Bill: You have just fallaciously affirmed the consequent. You are incorrect. Therefore, Ginger is not a cat.

Tom: I speak English. Therefore, I am English.

Bill: Americans and Canadians, among others, speak English too. By assuming that speaking English and being English always go together, you have just committed the package-deal fallacy. You are incorrect. Therefore, you are not English.

Both of Bill's rebuttals are arguments from fallacy. Ginger may or may not be a cat, and Tom may or may not be English. The fact that Tom's argument was fallacious is not, in itself, sufficient proof that his conclusion is false.

Counterargument

Joe: Bill's assumption that Ginger is not a cat uses the argument from fallacy. Therefore, Ginger absolutely must be a cat.

That one can invoke the argument from fallacy against a position does not prove one's own position either, as this would be an argument from fallacy itself, as is the case in Joe's argument.

Appeal to probability – is a statement that takes something for granted because it would probably be the case (or might be the case).[2][3]
 
 

Are people who distrust troublesome minorities wrong in the head?

Posted By Jon Ray @ Dissecting Leftism

I would have thought it obvious that people who TRUST troublesome minorities are wrong in the head -- but I am just a cautious old conservative so I guess my views don't count in the fairytale world of Left-dominated academe.

The New York Times does push the view that people who distrust troublesome minorities are wrong in the head. But they do so amid such a flood of words that is difficult to pin down any clear claims. I am referring to the article "The Brain’s Empathy Gap" of March 19, 2015. It was so difficult to pin down any clear assertions in it that I initially gave up any attempt to write some sort of critique of it. Answering it seemed like doing battle with a giant marshmallow. So, initially, I simply referred readers to what the excellent Steve Sailer had to say about it. I do think however that I have a few things to add to Steve's comments so I am going to tackle the challenge after all.

The article moves from stories about gypsies in Romania to a disquisition on brain scanning and then back to stories about gypsies in Romania. Romania is a poor country and Romanian gypsies are apparently the poorest of the poor. And it's all caused by "discrimination", of course. The jump between brain scans and Romanian gypsies is rather startling -- but whatever floats your boat, I guess.

What the brain scans showed were some clear patterns but the article itself admits that interpreting such patterns is still speculative. Here is a typical sentence from the article:

"And in both groups, a small region of the brain, the medial precuneus, which may be associated with the theory-of-mind network, responded more strongly"

And it also may be associated with airborne pork, I guess. I have been writing about such scans for some time and, at least among Leftist writers, they seem to be little more that a Rorschach Ink Blot test: What you see in the thing before you tells us more about you than it tells about the display before you. The NYT writer, Jeneen Interlandi, who is said to be a frequent contributor to the NYT magazine, soldiers on anyhow and proceeds to interpret the brain scans. She relies on some work by Emile Bruneau of MIT. It was he who found the enigmatic patterns in brain scans.

It was however an anomaly in the brain scans that caused the excitement. Three Israeli peace activists showed scans similar to Arabs. I can't imagine any Israeli being surprised by that but surprise it apparently did. The article goes on quite rightly to concede that the non-random and tiny sample precludes any generalizations from the findings but then goes on to make some mushy generalizations anyhow

When we get back to the gypsies there is a reasonably fair account of how the gypsies are in part the authors of their own problems. Their high level of petty crime and their unsavoury lifestyle are repellent to other Romanians. And the article admits that government programs designed to uplift the Gypsies have failed. We also read however that "racial prejudice was thwarting efforts to assimilate the Roma" -- where "Roma" is the politically correct word for Gypsy.

And, despite all its admissions, the article ends with a claim that by studying people's brain scans we might somehow be able to see where all that nasty prejudice is coming from and stop it -- presumanbly by sending the people with "bad" brain scans to Siberia or some such. That the main problem with gypsies is their known very low IQ is not of course mentioned. Leftists often give me cause to point out pachyderms in rooms.

And a final point I would like to make is that in elite thinking both inside and outside traditional gypsy lands, gypsies have long been appreciated. Despite their general intellectual limitations, many gypsies are brilliant musicians and their music is a substantial source of income for them. It is undoubtedly a rather eerie talent. There have been accounts of gypsies graduating from high-level music schools without being able to read a note of staff notation. They just memorize everything.

And in classical music circles, there have been many expressions of admiration for gypsies by reason of their musical talent. In the most famous opera of all time -- "Carmen" -- the leading lady is a gypsy, and she is certainly portrayed with overall admiration. And the gypsy lifestyle is also portrayed as admirable. And another well-known opera is "La Boheme", where "Boheme" is a French term for a gypsy. And the "Bohemian" lady is treated sympathetically there too. And in Lehar's operetta Zigeunerliebe, the gypsy lifestyle is again admired. And Kalman's operetta Graefin Maritza is one extended hymn of praise for gypsy music. And Kalman was a Hungarian -- and Hungary has a substantial population of Gypsies -- so it is unlikely that he had any illusions about them.

You can see the Moerbisch performance of Graefin Maritza online here. It's infinitely more entertaining than the NYT and the expressive Dagmar Schellenberger in the title role is a pleasure to watch and hear. She is both a most accomplished soprano and a superb actress.

So I would argue that in elite European opinion at least there has been much favourable disposition towards gypsies. That gypsies have been unable to parlay the favourable disposition towards them into any general uplift at all suggests that their own limitations are the problem -- rather than something bad in the heads of others.

"Red Wolf" News from North Carolina

Jim Beers

I just received [an] e-mail that follows my note here from the men in North Carolina who are giving their all to rid North Carolina of the “red” wolves that have always been no more than hybrid dog/coyote/wolf mongrels. The name “red” is about as biologically significant as is “red” Doberman.

These hybrids were forced into South Carolina and then North Carolina with all the “experimental”, “only on federal lands” crapola, secrecy and federal bureaucracy acting as occupying force as is happening in the Great Lakes States, the Southwestern US and the Northwestern US. Today these hybrids are mostly (they wander a lot) in North Carolina where the feds want no coyote hunting at night (when control is most effective); where these protected hybrids interfere with dogs of all uses and stripes; and where they generally cause great distress to rural residents and landowners.

These hybrids were ONLY supposed to be released on federal land but, as is common, the government kicked them loose on private lands for all the usual, arrogant reasons. When called on it; the himming and hawing, the deniability, the broken promises about “providing information”, etc. made all the recent scandals in Washington look like case studies in model transparent government for Civics Textbooks.

This man (Jett Ferebee) and his associates have led a coalition of concerned North Carolinians composed of federal and State politicians, rural residents and the state wildlife bureaucracy that is a credit to American grit. Their record and tactics are something we can all learn from. It is with this in mind that I am doing something I have never done before in forwarding a donation request. If he says this is a significant matter as he describes it, it may spur some federal reform legislation.

I recently sent a video of the Secretary of the Interior being called to account about these hybrids by US Congressman Cynthia Lummis at a Hearing of the US House of Representatives’ Resource Committee. Rural America and especially those with forced wolves and grizzlies have no better friend in the US House than Representative Lummis. Her resume tells it all:

She was raised on her family ranch in Laramie County and graduated from the University of Wyoming with bachelor degrees in Animal Science and Biology. In 1979, Cynthia became the youngest woman ever elected to the Wyoming Legislature. She returned to the University of Wyoming for a law degree, which she received in 1985.

So I ask you to consider at least writing an e-mail of support to Mr. Ferebee. He hopes to get the same level of publicity as given to others that posture with their faux concern about wildlife and make great waves about how concerned they are to protect wildlife from all human presence and human activity. Simply a strong show of support will make it more feasible to give the Cynthia Lummises of the Nation (yes there are others) what they need to take concrete action in the US House to support rural North Carolinians in ways that may well be applicable to all of the land from the Great Lakes to Texas and westward to those “great Pacific shores”.

If Jett is right about who did this, then that knowledge and the open, equal treatment of American jurisprudence will have far-reaching precedence for all of rural America.
 

Guys,

We, landowners and sportsmen, are offering a reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person who killed the Sept. 30th wolf. We have a good idea who killed this wolf and it will be worth the reward for this to go public.  Please go to the red wolf scandal thread and add to the reward:

Small amounts are fine. If you do not want to go online to do this, just email me your offer amount. We really just want to go public with a large reward offered by hunters for this particular kill. USFWS will be forced to publicize the reward offer as they did for DOW, RWC, etc. USFWS will likely have to a answer as to why hunters are offering the reward. The answer will be devastating to them.   Hunters are always blamed for these kills. This is the kill to turn the tables on USFWS!

Thanks,
Jett