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The Biden Administration Is Blaming Trump For EPA Siding With Environmentalists Against Agricultural Science

Feb 24 2021 - 14:02

A small fish in central Texas, a freshwater mussel in the Mobile River basin, and another mussel in Alabama’s Coosa and Cahaba Rivers have something strange in common; they appeared on an EPA list of threatened species “likely to be adversely affected” by a popular herbicide named atrazine.

I don't see how could things get worse for the San Marcos gambusia, the Upland Combshell and the Southern Acornshell. They're all extinct. I lived in the southern US in the early 1970s and never saw a Southern Acornshell. It would have been impossible, it was gone by then.

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New RAND Paper Argues Government Control Of Health Care Pricing Will Reduce Costs Better Than Competition

Feb 23 2021 - 11:02
Rather than making affordable health care reality, the Affordable Care Act sent costs for many privately-insured people up as much as 700 percent. The federal government allowed insurers to pass through their new losses to everyone else and even with that, many insurers fled states due to the program being insoluble.

Perhaps the solution is not to have people pay 700 percent more, but to force hospitals to be transparent about costs. And that would mean more realistic pricing without a reduction in quality.

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Is God “Bound” By The Laws Of Physics, Or Can Physics Disprove Her?

Feb 22 2021 - 10:02

I still believed in God (I am now an atheist) when I heard the following question at a seminar, first posed by Einstein, and was stunned by its elegance and depth: ‘If there is a God who created the entire universe and ALL of its laws of physics, does God follow God’s own laws? Or can God supersede his own laws, such as traveling faster than the speed of light and thus being able to be in two different places at the same time?’ Could the answer help us prove whether or not God exists or is this where scientific empiricism and religious faith intersect, with NO true answer? David Frost, 67, Los Angeles.

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Trophy Hunting Delivers Environmental And Social Benefits, Finds Study

Feb 22 2021 - 06:02
The Pennsylvania Game Commission manages 1.5 million acres of land for its citizens and all "public land owners" are able to use it for hiking, hunting and various activities.

Despite such an enormous responsibility, the Game Commission receives no General fund appropriations. The Game Commission and state biologists instead get to be stewards of nature thanks to nearly all of its $120,000,000 in funding coming from licenses like deer hunting. 

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Old Time Seed Breeding Benefits From A Science Boost

Feb 18 2021 - 10:02
Once upon a time, it was important that farmers - the first agricultural scientists - create seeds that were larger, more nutritious, and more resilient to environmental stress. Nature might bring rain, it might not, pests were going to eat their way through whole fields if they could. 

As agriculture improved, civilization followed. Seeds such as wheat, rice and corn directly provide about 70% of the calories eaten by people every day. What isn't directly eaten is still contributing, either by providing feed for livestock or by being grown into fruits and vegetables. 

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Coca-Cola And Disney Succeeed Because They Have Linguistically Feminine Names, Says A New Paper

Feb 17 2021 - 16:02
Coca-Cola and Disney do not simply share being on Interbrand's Global Top Brands, says a new paper, they also share linguistically feminine names, and that helps their success with men and women. In fact, the highest-ranking companies have, on average, more feminine names than lower-ranked companies, they claim.

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The Biden Administration Should Eliminate EPA's Strange New Unscientific Approach To Pesticide Evaluations

Feb 16 2021 - 13:02
Imagine you hire a plumber and he needs to work on your plumbing and instead of coming over to fix that he sends his cousin who owns a lawn service.

That is analogous to what is happening at EPA regarding a common herbicide (the second most popular in the U.S.) named atrazine.

There is nothing wrong with it scientifically, it is causing no harm, but EPA is still going to hand it over to a group like the US Fish and Wildlife Services and let them just decide whether or not it might harm endangered species. No science needed.

They are even blaming it for extinctions that occurred nearly 50 years ago.

The Forever War on Science story has been in development...forever...but this is the first time they introduced time travel.

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Fast Answers Are More Likely To Be Believed

Feb 16 2021 - 12:02
'The right thing, the wrong thing, do it with authority is a common' is a common statement for leadership behavior.

Humans take comfort in confidence. Even in things like facts; the faster the answer the more likely others will believe it

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Cosmic Messengers (Part 2): A Multi-Dimensional View Of The Universe

Feb 16 2021 - 09:02
[This is the second part of a two-part article on Cosmic Messenger astrophysics. For part 1, please click here.]

We can also "see" showers of secondary particles from cosmic rays thanks to the Cherenkov light they produce. Cherenkov light is emitted when charged particles travel in a medium at speeds higher than the speed of light itself! Light, in fact, slows down a little when it traverses a medium; energetic particles do not, so they create a conic "shock wave" similar to the boom of supersonic airplanes. 

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Why Did It Take Dinosaurs 15 Million Years To Reach The Northern Hemisphere?

Feb 15 2021 - 16:02
In the age of the dinosaurs, you could have walked from one pole to another. At that time, the continents were all joined together, forming the supercontinent Pangea. 

Yet they didn't.Though sauropodomorph dinosaurs first appeared in Argentina and Brazil about 230 million years ago, it took them 15,000,000 years to migrate to the northern hemisphere.

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The 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic Had Up To Four Waves - The Last Was 18 Months After The Third

Feb 12 2021 - 09:02
Do you think food is medicine? While Whole Foods imagery touted that in 2019, the coronavirus pandemic that began in Wuhan later that year punctured efforts to convince the public that health is a moral or economic issue - you owe it to your kids to buy overpriced food. SARS-CoV-2 and the COVID-19 pandemic showed that eating expensive onions won't save anyone from anything. 

What may help save people is remembering the past rather than wishful thinking about the present. In this case, looking back at the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic which killed far more than COVID-19.

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Most Don't Need Social Authoritarianism When It Comes To The Environment, Asking Works Just As Well

Feb 11 2021 - 14:02
If a tourist doesn't know messing around with a coral reef is bad, they may try to touch them or pet turtles, but after being told by someone local that it has risks for the nature they are there to see they far less likely to do so.

A new paper found that such "nudges" works well. Which would mean we often don't need government 'ignore of the law is no excuse' type shaming policies to change behavior.

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Cosmic Messengers: A Multi-Dimensional View Of The Universe

Feb 11 2021 - 09:02

Have you ever looked up to a clear sky on a moonless night, in a place away from large cities? If you have, you will remember seeing hundreds of bright stars, and maybe even the faint collective glow of 250 billion more within the Milky Way, our own galaxy.

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It's Just Correlation, But Linking Coffee To Reduced Heart Disease Is At Least Delicious Wishful Thinking

Feb 10 2021 - 13:02
There are a few known risk factors for heart disease; age is the big one, and then genetics and smoking. Everything else is instead a risk factor for a risk factor for heart disease or even more circumstantial. So butter was a risk factor for cholesterol which was a risk factor for high blood pressure which was a risk factor for heart disease.

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Dams Are The Largest Source Of Hydroelectric Power And Water For Farmers - Environmentalist Should Stop Opposing Them

Feb 08 2021 - 12:02
At the turn of the 20th century Carrie Nation smashed up a saloon in Kansas, gold was discovered in Alaska, and New York City's boundaries became set with the inclusion of Queens and Staten Island.

America had five new states and they had a big problem.(1)

Water. 

Homesteaders wanted to move out west, and government wanted to help, but there was a water issue. When rain was happening things were fine but nature is fickle. Weather was less predictable then and even if you lived near a river, there was no guarantee you'd have water.

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Genes For Facial Features Identified - Including What We Share With Extinct Denisovans

Feb 08 2021 - 09:02
A new study has identified nine new regions that influence facial features such as nose, lip, jaw, and brow shape

The analysis of genetic data from more than 6,000 volunteers across Latin America was designed to find genes that determine the shape of a person's facial profile but also learned that one of the genes appears to have been inherited from the Denisovans, an extinct group of ancient humans who lived tens of thousands of years ago.

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The World Has Spent $2.6 Trillion On Solar And Wind Power Subsidies - And Gotten Little Energy

Feb 05 2021 - 12:02
The Global Trends in Renewable Energy Investment 2019 report stated that in the previous 10 years the world had spent $2.6 trillion on solar and wind power subsidies - which they framed as a good thing. Since we need to get billions off wood and dung, the largest sources of pollution, that so much money only led to 1,650 gigawatts(GW) of energy should have environmentalists concerned.

Instead of focusing on how we can get energy, and therefore water and sanitation. to the poorest, activists continue to create propaganda about natural gas and nuclear while claiming solar and wind are ready.

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Challenge: Measure Muons Energy With High-School Math And Win A Mug!

Feb 05 2021 - 07:02
Today I wish to offer you, dear reader, the chance to contribute to scientific research in particle physics. And I claim you can do that by only leveraging basic high-school knowledge in mathematics and geometry. Let me explain what the problem is, first of all, and then I'll put you in the conditions of contributing!

Muons are subnuclear particles of high interest in collider physics. I could write about muons for ages, but it would not be of relevance for our problem of today, so let's just say they interact feebly with matter, so they traverse thick layers only depositing in them small amounts of energy (mainly in the form of electromagnetic radiation).

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19 Years Late And 800% Over Budget, Will The James Webb Space Telescope Finally Launch?

Feb 04 2021 - 11:02
A few short years after NASA got money for the successor to the Hubble telescope, they told Congress that 11 years would not be enough time to build it. They told the public they couldn't put a telescope into space by 2002, even though that was more time than it took to start from nothing and have living breathing humans walk on the moon.

The James Webb Space Telescope is named after the NASA manager who oversaw that moon landing. Were he alive today he'd probably wish they had chosen Gene Kranz for the name instead. He'd certainly be skeptical that modern NASA can do any Big Science. Cute robots on Mars, sure, but not big stuff like this.

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Moving The Apocalypse Goalposts: Goofy Doomsday Clock Now Invokes Coronavirus In Risk Of Nuclear Destruction

Feb 01 2021 - 14:02
The Doomsday Clock, a marketing gimmick of the anti-nuclear group Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, gets an unreal amount of attention from political allies in journalism in a way that scientists can't understand any more than how Environmental Working Group's so-called "Dirty Dozen" list of foods (that strangely exempts organic food pesticides their corporate donors sell) gets so much corporate media coverage.

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