Rafe’s Roundup 21 August

Post of the week. Don Aitkin, always a good read, on weather, climate and land use.

Event of the week. Opening Barangaroo Point Reserve this weekend.

Culture. The Spectator Culture House weekly. New release of remainders at Clouston and Hall. The London Review of Books. New York Review of Books

Strange professions, try a fork in your career path!

What about rodeo clowns? Lighthouse keepers? The voiceover guys for movie trailers? Somewhere out there someone whose job is comprised, at least in part, of naming lipsticks and nailpolish colors. I’d be great at that one. Ruby Rage. Galloping Consumption Rose. Um… Bland Beige. Revlon, call me!

Apparently, the people who herd, castrate and brand steers are called cowpunchers. How does one become a cowpuncher? Perhaps if you grew up in Wyoming, it’s perfectly natural, but to a westcoast city slicker, it seems like fiction. The mind boggles at how many forks on the road of life are possible to lead us to different careers.

Arthur Rackham, a great illustrator, with pics. Books available from Abe.

Pictures. Great Australian pics. Amazing pictures – aerial photos as economic indicators. Meet Skootie the octopus. Octopus 1 Sharks 0. Mongoose action.

Science. Get in touch with your inner octopus and some secretes to complex intelligence.

The elusive octopus genome has finally been untangled, which should allow scientists to discover answers to long-mysterious questions about the animal’s alienlike physiology: How does it camouflage itself so expertly? How does it control—and regenerate—those eight flexible arms and thousands of suckers? And, most vexing: How did a relative of the snail get to be so incredibly smart—able to learn quickly, solve puzzles and even use tools?

On campus. Seinfeld on the ongoing debacle of political correctness.

Climate. Friendly methane-eating bugs may save the world.

A significant concern among scientists is that higher Arctic temperatures brought about by climate change could result in the release of massive amounts of carbon locked in the region’s frozen soil in the form of carbon dioxide and methane…However, new research led by Princeton University researchers and published in The ISME Journal in August suggests that, thanks to methane-hungry bacteria, the majority of Arctic soil might actually be able to absorb methane from the atmosphere rather than release it. Furthermore, that ability seems to become greater as temperatures rise.

The researchers found that Arctic soils containing low carbon content — which make up 87 percent of the soil in permafrost regions globally — not only remove methane from the atmosphere, but also become more efficient as temperatures increase.

Naomi Klein does it again.

Dr Hertzberg, a respected scientist and author on climate change, writes:

It is tragic that what should have been a debate among objective scientists evaluating the data on weather and climate, has degenerated into a partisan political diatribe. Unfortunately, Klein’s most recent book only adds to the tragedy. In pursuit of her political agenda, facts are distorted and distinguished scientists are denigrated.

Cooling more of an issue than warming?

The recent cold winters and expanding polar ice caps are ominous signs of a global cooling that has already begun, maintains David Dilley, now President and Founder of Global Weather Oscillations, Inc. Claims of warming have not been properly founded.

Dilley has forty-two years of professional experience in the meteorology and climatology and many publications. He was with NOAA for twenty years. Not only is the government wrong with its claims of a coming warming, Dilley accuses the federal government of fiddling with global temperature data with the aim of producing a false picture of what is going on.

Around the town. Hendo and the media watchdog [Updated on Friday afternoon]. The Australian Liberty Forum, designed to supersede “Around the Town” for Australian events. The Australian Institute for Progress, (AIP) “because the future does not look after itself”. IPA HEY. The Sydney Institute. Australian Taxpayers Alliance, Quadrant on line, Mannkal Foundation, Centre for Independent Studies.

Don Aitkin. Jim Rose, feral and utopian! Jo Nova, climate realist par excellence. Sean Gabb’s site.

Sites of interest. Spiked on line . Richard Hammer, Free Nation Foundation. Aust NZ libertarian students. Powerline. The British libertarian alliance.

Education, accuracy in academia.

For nerds. Melvyn Bragg’s radio program. Stephen Hicks, always interesting for nerds. See his series of interviews with entrepreneurs.

Darwin’s finches. Heterodox economics newsletter.

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One Response to Rafe’s Roundup 21 August

  1. Rabz

    How did a relative of the snail get to be so incredibly smart—able to learn quickly, solve puzzles and even use tools?

    Not to mention their awesome powers of prognostication.

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