Damned Heretics

Condemned by the established, but very often right

I am Nicolaus Copernicus, and I approve of this blog

I am Richard Feynman and I approve of this blog

Qualified outsiders and maverick insiders are often right about the need to replace received wisdom in science and society, as the history of the Nobel prize shows. This blog exists to back the best of them in their uphill assault on the massively entrenched edifice of resistance to and prejudice against reviewing, let alone revising, ruling ideas. In support of such qualified dissenters and courageous heretics we search for scientific paradigms and other established beliefs which may be maintained only by the power and politics of the status quo, comparing them with academic research and the published experimental and investigative record.

We especially defend and support the funding of honest, accomplished, independent minded and often heroic scientists, inventors and other original thinkers and their right to free speech and publication against the censorship, mudslinging, false arguments, ad hominem propaganda, overwhelming crowd prejudice and internal science politics of the paradigm wars of cancer, AIDS, evolution, global warming, cosmology, particle physics, macroeconomics, health and medicine, diet and nutrition.

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Henry Bauer, Peter Breggin , Harvey Bialy, Giordano Bruno, Erwin Chargaff, Nicolaus Copernicus, Francis Crick, Paul Crutzen, Marie Curie, Rebecca Culshaw, Freeman Dyson, Peter Duesberg, Albert Einstein, Richard Feynman, John Fewster, Galileo Galilei, Alec Gordon, James Hansen, Edward Jenner, Benjamin Jesty, Michio Kaku, Adrian Kent, Ernst Krebs, Thomas Kuhn, Serge Lang, John Lauritsen, Mark Leggett, Richard Lindzen, Lynn Margulis, Barbara McClintock, George Miklos, Marco Mamone Capria, Peter Medawar, Kary Mullis, Linus Pauling, Eric Penrose, Max Planck, Rainer Plaga, David Rasnick, Sherwood Rowland, Carl Sagan, Otto Rossler, Fred Singer, Thomas Szasz, Alfred Wegener, Edward O. Wilson, James Watson.
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Many people would die rather than think – in fact, they do so. – Bertrand Russell.

Skepticism is dangerous. That’s exactly its function, in my view. It is the business of skepticism to be dangerous. And that’s why there is a great reluctance to teach it in schools. That’s why you don’t find a general fluency in skepticism in the media. On the other hand, how will we negotiate a very perilous future if we don’t have the elementary intellectual tools to ask searching questions of those nominally in charge, especially in a democracy? – Carl Sagan (The Burden of Skepticism, keynote address to CSICOP Annual Conference, Pasadena, April 3/4, 1982).

It is really important to underscore that everything we’re talking about tonight could be utter nonsense. – Brian Greene (NYU panel on Hidden Dimensions June 5 2010, World Science Festival)

I am Albert Einstein, and I heartily approve of this blog, insofar as it seems to believe both in science and the importance of intellectual imagination, uncompromised by out of date emotions such as the impulse toward conventional religious beliefs, national aggression as a part of patriotism, and so on.   As I once remarked, the further the spiritual evolution of mankind advances, the more certain it seems to me that the path to genuine religiosity does not lie through the fear of life, and the fear of death, and blind faith, but through striving after rational knowledge.   Certainly the application of the impulse toward blind faith in science whereby authority is treated as some kind of church is to be deplored.  As I have also said, the only thing ever interfered with my learning was my education. My name as you already perceive without a doubt is George Bernard Shaw, and I certainly approve of this blog, in that its guiding spirit appears to be blasphemous in regard to the High Church doctrines of science, and it flouts the censorship of the powers that be, and as I have famously remarked, all great truths begin as blasphemy, and the first duty of the truthteller is to fight censorship, and while I notice that its seriousness of purpose is often alleviated by a satirical irony which sometimes borders on the facetious, this is all to the good, for as I have also famously remarked, if you wish to be a dissenter, make certain that you frame your ideas in jest, otherwise they will seek to kill you.  My own method was always to take the utmost trouble to find the right thing to say, and then to say it with the utmost levity. (Photo by Alfred Eisenstaedt for Life magazine) One should as a rule respect public opinion in so far as is necessary to avoid starvation and to keep out of prison, but anything that goes beyond this is voluntary submission to an unnecessary tyranny, and is likely to interfere with happiness in all kinds of ways. – Bertrand Russell, Conquest of Happiness (1930) ch. 9

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Crash crushes McCain chances, highlights Obama appeal

With mindless markets now revealed as Republican time bomb, Barack’s calm intelligence seems reassuring

Perhaps ability to think will become valued by voters, not seen as defect

Need for new President to realize that science has fallen into the same hole

stockfreefall.jpgWith manufacturing indices falling everywhere, the global recession has arrived, and the credit seizure threatens an aura of oncoming economic depression will surround the Presidential election in less than a month.

The dead heat that some analysts were predicting as a real possibility only a few days ago, making voting machine mischief aimed at flipping votes to McCain possible if not likely, now seems more and more out of the question. We predict a landslide in Obama’s favor, as we hopefully forecast many months ago, and as the 7/11 coffee drinkers poll confirms.

Long live smart presidents

In this light, it now becomes clear that some fundamental principles long emphasized by this blog are not anachronistic after all, but rule the world of politics and good government as strongly as ever. Among them are the simple propositions that greed needs regulation and oversight, and that if crooks take over the first lamb to be sacrificed is truth. Most victorious of all, to our mind, is the principle that complex 21st Century problems require analytical intelligence and an objective temperament which is inclusive rather than partisan or clubby, and Obama incarnates all of this and more.

In particular we would emphasize analytical intelligence, which we believe is wrongly the most underemphasized competitive quality in American public life. For some reason it seems to be considered essentially undemocratic to call attention to whether someone is smart in the academic, analytical and abstract sense, except by disparaging him or her as professorial, wonky, geeky or snobby. In general a high level of intelligence seems to be suspect, as if it indicates an antisocial personality, one of “them” rather than “us”. Such is the narcissism of American voters that one must get elected by pretending not to be too bright, so they can see the candidate as sharing their own unwillingness or inability to think clearly and unemotionally.

We feel differently. We highly value analytical intelligence, and the willingness to apply it to politics as much as science. Faced with the raft of global problems that will face the next president, we are glad that Barack Obama has the kind of intelligence which goes with articulate and fluent speaking and writing, the capacity of thinking on his feet in addressing major issues and the ability to see many sides of a debate and draw on a wide range of smart advisors and other sources in coming to his own conclusions.

Seems to us that the great contrast between Obama and Biden as a team and McCain and Palin as their opponents is a matter of mind. On the one hand you have two good minds, one exceptionally capable and one sure in his grasp of topics in which he, Biden, has been immersed for many years and on the other two very mediocre minds, which McCain shows with the verbal and grammatical stumbles – “Ahkmenidandydad”! – which still beset his speech on topics like the economy and defense in which he should be able to show how seasoned he is, and which Palin shows not only with her mindless “You betcha!” and “Doggone it!” fillers but with her revelation that she cannot name a single paper or periodical she reads.

Now the economic free fall has stripped away the petty election scoreboards of the media it is possible to see all this more clearly. People are fearful now and in that state they see what really matters, and in this case we believe that more and more are finding the eloquent, thoughtful, earnest, cool, dignified, careful and judicious style of Obama suggests the presidential substance they need, and rejecting the essentially irresponsible modern Republican propaganda emphasis on the markets solving all our problems and making us all rich – some more quickly than others – and the corollary that we don’t even need an intelligent and literate President because after all Reagan was successful while he slept through Cabinet meetings and Bush Junior can save Iraq and the Middle East even though famous for his literal inability to talk straight.

Science also has its foolish greed

In many ways this only seems to mirror the situation in HIV/AIDS where a large field of science has gone galloping off in the wrong direction for twenty five years followed by the entire country and world, which to a large extent has happened mainly because second rate minds have occupied the leadership positions of the field and their position has been continually strengthened and shored up and protected from criticism by the vast pyramid of money which has accumulated under them.

We suspect that their reign would end in a few weeks if sufficient money could be applied to reviewing their program and performance in the manner that democracy funds a reassessment and review of presidential performance here every four years.

9 Responses to “Crash crushes McCain chances, highlights Obama appeal”

  1. Baby Pong Says:

    TS assumed that, if vote rigging occurred, it would be in order to elect McCain. How wrong he is. The establishment want Obama to win, for reasons I explained earlier — he will put a “liberal” patina on right wing militaristic policies that will be little different from those of Bush. And that liberal patina will enable him to get away with brutalities and other crimes that McCain would be pilloried for. So any rigging will be done in Obama’s favor.

    But, I agree that Obama will win easily, rigging or no rigging. And then, we can all celebrate, because Obama will end the Hiv-Aids fraud once and for all, as I think TS suggested some time ago, because Barack is a man of real integrity, with a fine education!!!

  2. Truthseeker Says:

    What an extraordinary level of paranoia you seem to work out of, Pong Baby, Sir, which allied to your ineffable intelligence results is such remarkably upside down theories. So you think that the secret puppet masters want Obama installed? What a mistake they are going to make with that one. This man is another Abraham Lincoln.

    He will lead America over the horizon of the rising run and into the Promised Land of Freedom and Justice for all. We know this because when he could have gone from Harvard into a fat cat law office he instead went into the slums to rescue the disadvantaged crackheads of Chicago.

    Character tells all. You naively judge that his electioneering performance implies he will sell out when installed into the highest office in the world, but you mistake the tea leaves. When you are both white and black you have the meta level vision of a liberated human being – liberated from prejudice and power and freed to do good.

    Obama shows this in spades.

    We know this for sure because we were brought up in Kenya and in England, bestraddling two continents, one the oldest of all, the other the most Enlightened of all. We identify.

    That is why our motto is Mark Twain’s apt comment that…

    “To be good is noble, but to show others how to be good is nobler and no trouble”.

    O ba-ba-ba-BabObarama! is now the cheerleader chant of Science Guardian.

    How can a man that has just raised $150 million in a single month lose? There are not even any TV slots for McCain to buy.

    The only recourse the Republican operatives have is to hack.

    The truth of the matter is Obama will be flipped as per the above post but there will be such a row over it that the true results will be reasserted.

    Mark Crispin Miller was featured in Bill Moyers on Friday evening. The good guys are alert!

  3. Baby Pong Says:

    I am so relieved that you have explained this to me. Okay folks, let’s all be happy! President Obama is going to put an end to “HIV/AIDS” !!! The fraud has only a FEW MORE MONTHS to run before it will be OVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh frabjous day, callee callay….

  4. Truthseeker Says:

    Given that the only other world class politician to detect HIV/AIDS is frabjous scientific outgrabing was a rather impressively literate South African black economist revolutionary named Thabo Mbeki who seems to have an equal distaste for ignorant rant, it is at least arguable that the thoughtful and somewhat wary Obama might give the Enron of science a second look, even if he is still under Samantha Power’s sway from afar – and please recall that her point is that genocides have often called for American succour in vain,

    So our song is Obababa, Bababarama! Please remember that this man will have managed to go from nowhere to the White House in less than two years, passing every obstacle with ease and reducing a senior Senatorial rival for the same seat to a doddering dunce with a trophy running mate who will now be one of tv’s biggest hotties.

  5. MacDonald Says:

    You betcha Obama’ll give the Enron of science a second look; the same second look he gave the Enron of lawbreaking tele-companies: the dreaded retroactive-amnesty stare.

    Palin will have had her 15 minutes and the delightful, intelligent women parodying her will be the hotties on our screens in months to come.

    You, Sir, will join the ranks of political hacks, like Billy Kristol, who make lucrative careers out of being doggone wrong about everything.

  6. Truthseeker Says:

    One hopes not. Kristol just predicted an Obama win, according to Wikipedia:

    According to a report published in The Daily Beast on October 10, 2008, Kristol is among the few conservative commentators who support John Mccain’s choice of Sarah Palin as his running mate in the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election. “Kristol was the among most prominent in pushing Palin—arguing that she was young, popular, vigorous, unknown and had the right connections to the Religious Right bloc which had proven so important to Republican wins in 2000 and 2004.” His American opinion magazine, The Weekly Standard, which serves as “Palin’s chief defender” against attacks, hosted a cruise in June 2007, where Standard editors Kristol and Fred Barnes first lunched with Governor Sarah Palin. [5]

    On the October 19, 2008 edition of Fox News Sunday, on which Kristol is a political commentator, Kristol predicted that if the Tampa Bay Rays were to defeat the Boston Red Sox in game 7 of the American League Championship Series (ALCS), which was to take place on the evening of October 19, that Barack Obama would defeat John McCain for the Presidency of the United States on November 4. [6]

    The Major League Baseball, 2008 World Series, will host the Philadelphia Phillies vs. the Tampa Bay Rays, as the Rays defeated the Red Sox in game 7 of the ALCS by a score of 3-1. [7]

    If this prediction of an Obama victory takes place, we’ll see if you are right about how he behaves then, but it seems that you judge the future President Obama by his concessions made to win. Did you object to Clinton on the same basis? Do you deny that Obama knows how to get elected?

    Isn’t Bill “I regret the error” Kristol’s abysmal record in political analysis and forecasting a perfect demonstration of a Harvarad magna cum laude who doesn’t know enough about people ie the American electorate, or have a clue about the Iraqi and other Mid Eastern cultures? Obama is someone who takes to this stuff yet retains the capacity to think things through carefully, take a variety of advice and keep enlightened principles (compassion, saving the Earth) in mind.

  7. Baby Pong Says:

    I might also point out that McCain did something very very rare for a politician. He actually said that there’s a lot of evidence that thimerosol causes autism. This was a while back, and he’s probably renounced it by now under drug industry pressure, but i’m certain Obamaham Lincoln would never take such a position. Like Bill Clinton, President Obama will be the drug industry’s best friend.

    Obama, I think, supported the Patriot Acts, the Military Commissions Act (also known as the “Thoughtcrimes bill”, under which they’ll doubtless start prosecuting us dissidents soon). Where do you get your wacko idea that he’s a “liberal”?

    And have you checked the record as to how much he’s received from the drug industry?

    I actually much prefer Palin to that sleazy political plagiarising hack, Biden. Even if I don’t agree with her silly positions, I like the fact that she seems to be a real person. How many big time politicians have a son that fights in Iraq? Wrongheadedly, of course, but how many politicians would let their own kids fight and die? Very very few. Fighting and dying is for the little people, not for the families of important world leaders. She got someone fired for apparently personal reasons…very human thing to do, and certainly not as bad as hundreds of petty things Obama and company have done, such as real estate deals with alleged gangsters.

    As for her lacking experience, a president doesn’t need experience. He (or she) just needs strong solid bone structure to securely hold the screw-eyes that his (or her) strings are attached to.

  8. MacDonald Says:

    Everybody with half a brain cell knows experience means nothing, as Pong says. It’s bad enough as it is, but imagine if someone like Bush, had really been running this country the past 8 years, instead of merely fronting it! We’d all be living in caves – those of us who had survived the accidental nuke-lear war – and praying to Allah in Chinese. There’s only the vain hope that a different candidate might represent (slightly) different puppet masters.

    If TS is right that supporting all kinds of Orwellian measures shows that Obama “knows how to win” (the reasoning being that nobody would vote for a candidate who doesn’t routinely rape the Constitution) and therefore is THE ONE, sink me if I perceive the difference between the First and the Last – which confusion might signal the Second Coming of course.

    Ther is no real difference since “knowing how to win” is simply code for knowing how to dance on one’s strings even as the nose grows longer. Or do you think that the necessity for “winning” somehow ends with the election? Say it ain’t so, TS.
    .
    What a peculiar argument to say that Clinton was a “practical” politician as well. Clinton has not yet been canonized in my neck o’ the woods I’ll have ye know. Maybe they have learned to love him in Sudan. In the meantime he is pallin’ around the world with his New World Order friend Bush Sr. I don’t know what Clinton sees when he dotes on that gaping void behind Bush’s eye, but I see a C and an I and an A.

    I’m not surprised Kristol has taken to tea leaves rather than reasoned argument. Regardless, since he has been on most sides of the presidential issue, one has to grant him the same measure of prescience as the proverbial stopped clock I suppose.

  9. Baby Pong Says:

    OBAMA CLARIFIES HIS “CHANGE” PROMISE.

    By B.X. Pong

    UniNews Service
    November 12, 2009

    President Obama today responded to critics who say that very little has changed since he took office. Obama won the presidency on a promise of “change” but his detractors say that the war with Iran, which has already claimed over 2,000 American soldier’s lives since Obama invaded in March, Obama’s new Patriot Act 3, which restricts Americans’ freedoms even more than its Bush-initiated predecessors, and Obama’s call for a revived military draft in order to continue the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, amount to a wholesale abandonment of the “change” promise.

    The occasion of President Obama’s rebuttal was a rose garden photo opportunity with ex-tennis great Michael Chang, who played a few games with the president at the White House tennis court.

    “You in the media misunderstood me. I never said I would bring change to Washington. I said I would bring Chang to Washington. And now I’ve fulfilled that promise.”

    Several reporters challenged the president. Helen Thomas of the AP said “If that’s the case why did you have ‘Change you can believe in’ on all your campaign advertising?”

    “We meant ‘Chang you can believe in,’ sweetie,” said the president. “Michael is the kind of player you can really believe in, everybody knows that. And, like me, he’s a role model for how ethnic minorities can succeed in America if they have talent and perseverance.”

    “My advertising people couldn’t spell, are you blaming me for that?” said Obama. “Dan Quayle spelled ‘potato’ with an e at the end, well, my people made the same mistake. Simple human error,” he said.

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