Saturday, July 22, 2017


"The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected. Even when the revolutionist might himself repent of his revolution, the traditionalist is already defending it as part of his tradition." --G K Chesterton

A new study by Concordia economics professor Ian Irvine shows that subsidizing EVs in the North American context will not reduce GHG emissions in the short-term, and may even increase them—at a cost to taxpayers.
Recently published in Canadian Public Policy, Irvine's study compared the incentives for producing EVs that are found in the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, North America's fuel-efficiency regulations, with new EV subsidy policies in Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia.
He found that, while the subsidies encourage the production of more EVs, they undermine the efficiency requirements of existing incentives for conventional vehicles. This results in a zero or negative near-term GHG benefit.
"Sometimes you have more than one policy aimed at a particular goal, and usually those policies are complementary," Irvine notes. "But in this case, they work at cross purposes."

And another Canadian report:
Subsidizing the purchase of electric cars in Canada is an inefficient way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that is not cost effective, according to a Montreal Economic Institute study released Thursday.
"It's just a waste," said Germain Belzile, one of the authors of the study, which examined electric vehicle subsidies offered by Canada's two biggest provinces Ontario and Quebec, which can rise to as much as a third of a vehicle's purchase price, depending on the model.
"Not only do these programs cost taxpayers a fortune, but they also have little effect on GHG emissions," he said.

Who is...David Gelernter?

"Life has no meaning a priori. ... It is up to you to give it a meaning, and value is nothing but the meaning that you choose." - These are the words of Jean-Paul Sartre, writer and philosopher. It is a belief that creates a rat's nest of options. People, of course, can not live this way but he is taken quite seriously. The French never have recovered from the Second War. It drove them all nuts.

Speaking of nuts, here is a quote from Bernie Sanders: “The American dream is more apt to be realized in South America, in places such as Ecuador, Venezuela and Argentina.”
Some people can just say these things. Ditto the writings of Trinity College Professor Johnny Eric Williams. He's from Trinity College!

An interesting question was asked in the hearing yesterday about the Russians' hacking the DNC: If this was such a big deal, why did the DNC refuse to allow the feds to examine the hacks?

Garry Kasparov, the international chess champion who was beaten by an AI machine, has given the issue of AI a lot of thought. Last month he released a new book called Deep Thinking: Where Machine Intelligence Ends and Human Creativity Begins. He says that the IBM machine that beat him "was anything but intelligent. It was as intelligent as your alarm clock. A very expensive one, a $10 million alarm clock, but still an alarm clock. Very poweful -- brute force, with little chess knowledge. But chess proved to be vulnerable to the brute force. it could be crunched once hardware got fast enough and databases got big enough and algorithms got smart enough."

A guy ran through a group of people at a London mosque in a car. This will, as usual, be taken seriously when it is just another wacko in religious/political drag. Fear the Bell Shaped Curve!

Golden oldie:

A 36-year-old Spanish bullfighter died after he tripped on his cape in the ring and was gored by the bull during an event in France, according to the Guardian. Ivan Fandino was hospitalized, but later died from his injuries.

The damage to human society, and to “the planet”, from the projected rise of a few degrees of global temperature, while commonly described as apocalyptic, would be minor compared to the results of all-out nuclear war.  More to the point, the degree of human responsibility in climate change is more disputed among serious scientists than the public is aware, due to the role of such contributing factors as solar variations.  But the degree of human responsibility for nuclear weapons is unquestionably total.--Diana Johnstone

A case of malpractice recently concerned the removal of the wrong testicle (the good one removed, the diseased one left behind).
A 2006 study supported by the public Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality analyzed nearly 3 million operations over nearly two decades, and found that wrong-site surgery occurred in "only" about 1 in 112,994 cases.

Rizzo injured catcher Austin Hedges during a home plate collision recently. Rizzo is getting justified criticism but it is the exact kind of play Pete Rose was famous--and revered--for.

Carrie Fisher had cocaine, heroin and ecstasy in her system when she died last December, according to an autopsy report obtained by The Associated Press. "Sleep apnea."

In a ruling that could have broad impact on how the First Amendment is applied in other trademark cases in future, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday threw out a federal prohibition on disparaging trademarks as a constitutional violation in a ruling involving a band called The Slants. From a report: The opinion in Matal v. Tam means that Simon Tam, lead singer of an Asian-American rock band called "The Slants," will be able to trademark the name of his band. It's also relevant for a high-profile case involving the Washington Redskins, who were involved in litigation and at risk of being stripped of their trademark.

Israel has been secretly supplying Syrian rebels near its border with cash as well as food, fuel and medical supplies for years, a "secret engagement in the enemy country’s civil war" aimed at carving out a buffer zone populated by friendly forces, the WSJ reported.
And, if that were not enough madness, the Saudi information ministry said the Saudi Royal Navy allegedly stopped an attempted terrorist attack on a major offshore oilfield in the Persian Gulf on June 16, when it captured three members of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps from a boat as it approached the kingdom's offshore Marjan oilfield. The Saudi Center for International Communications added that the boat carried explosives, and the Iranians aboard "intended to carry out terrorist act in Saudi territorial waters."
Something is going on with the Saudis.

The worst thing you can do is to convince yourself, or be convinced by others, that you are somehow a victim and therefore  unable to achieve success through your own effort and initiative.  Some people start out with fewer advantages than others, but even those who are less advantaged can do extremely well if they make the effort and apply themselves intelligently….  No one cares more about your personal success than you do.  Neither does anyone else know more about your interests, skills, and goals. (From Common Sense Economics)

[E]nvironmentalism has become a dogmatic, fundamentalist, persecuting religion that will keep us from ameliorating our environmental problems. --Paul Heyne


On Thursday, the country’s military said that a Canadian Special Operations sniper had shot an Islamic State fighter in Iraq from more than two miles away, purportedly breaking a world record for the longest confirmed kill shot in history, according to the Globe and Mail. The Murder Olympics.

In 1993, Yale University computer science professor David Gelernter was seriously injured while opening his mail when a padded envelope exploded  in his hands. The attack just came two days after a University of California geneticist was injured by a similar bomb and was the latest in a string of bombings since 1978 that authorities believed to be related. This bomb went off in his kitchen, in his family's home. The perpetrator was Theodore Kaczynski, the so-called “Unabomber.” These bombings were included with 14 others since 1978 that killed 3 people and injured 23 others. A close reading of this story is interesting. The Left has always held Kaczynski in some regard because they agree with his environmental position and he was an academic. It is worth reading about, more for the surrounding politics than the madman himself.
Gelernter wrote a book called Drawing Life about this and it gave several academics the opportunity to savage him.

According to the website Wired UK, as of June 5, there were 535 terrorist attacks around the world -- with 3,635 fatalities -- since the beginning of 2017 alone.

"...the great divide in America today is between those who do believe, as the founders did, that “first come rights and then comes government,” and those who believe, as progressives do, that “first comes government and then comes rights.”--Will's intro to Barnett's Our Republican Constitution

Several of his former law clerks have said they think Justice Kennedy is contemplating stepping down in the next year or so.

AAAAAaaaaaaaaannnnnnnnndddddd.....a graph:

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