There is no such thing as consensus science. If it's consensus, it isn't science. If it's science, it isn't consensus: Period.

"Aliens Cause Global Warming” is a rather interesting speech given by Michael Crichton which may have you thinking hard about your opinions on such things as global warming and the danger of secondhand smoke.

We often base our own views on controversial subjects on our understanding of what most experts think, but this sort of reasoning is fallacious, even if we don't have a real alternative.

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RE: "It doesn't involve hamsters and a superheated hamster wheel does it?"

Oh, so now you're probably gonna beat me to the patent office too --!

Not street legal in China? Any idea why they aren't?

I suspect David means that those vehicles are not street legal in the US, not that they are not street legal in China.

Here's an interesting little tidbit related to battery power:

Scientists Invent 30 Year Continuous Power Laptop Battery

To quote Will Smith from Independence Day, "I gotta get me one of dese!"

Uh, those that challenge the current orthodox are refuted quite often, but it takes quite an investment of time to refute every claim when thousands are made. It would be better if every individual had the critical thinking skills and skepticism to determine who was being honest. A pipe dream, I know =(

There are many things we can agree on with respect to science.  Some "consensus" science from my field related to hematopoietic neoplasia and genetic abnormalities -

t(9;22) is a recurring abnormality in CML

t(15;17) is is a recurring abnormality in APL

t(8;14) is a recurring abnormality in Burkitt lymphoma

and many others.


With respect to global warming-

Here is the problem I see with everything that I ever hear in the Global Warming debate: Everyone who wants to blame humans focus on the fact that the earth is heating up.  Whenever I research where humans are NOT to blame, I see facts about how the earth is heating up, why, the history of it, how it has happened in the past before the industrial age, how CO2 levels always follow temperature change (as opposed to leading it), things of that nature.

I have a tenancy to put Climate Change and Pharmaceuticals in the same category: Whenever there is money to be made in science, you have to look at the "science" very carefully.  I'm sorry, but Carbon Taxes, high gas prices and pill pushing AMA doctors that refuse to even learn the most basic things about how the body processes foods, the suppression of cancer cures because it will cost Big Pharm too much profit (look up the film Burzynski if you don't know about THIS government debocle) all make me highly suspicious of people like Al Gore pushing an agenda that will make him millions of dollars. 

After all, you really have to wonder why the gas companies are reporting record profits while receiving over $70 billion (yes, that is with a "B") in subsidies (2002-2008 - thanks so much, "W") while traditional renewables only received slightly over $12 billion over that same time frame.  Why is there not a push to get people in the southern half of the US to use solar power for water heating (after all, that is 20% of our energy use)? It saves energy, creates jobs, cuts those dreaded "greenhouse gases", and yet no one seems to care about that.  Why? Because it's not a huge money making industry. 

Bottom line is this: when there is big money to be made, you really have to pay attention to the details.  Is our climate changing?  Of course, you're an idiot if you think the climate always stays the same.  Is man more than 2% responsible?  Now THAT is the question you have to ask.  To put the emphasis on the first proves that you are trying to NOT answer the second.

The "business" of science is another issue.
All I know is I have technology that can diagnosis acute promyelocytic leukemia with t(15;17). This particular leukemia is highly curable. How everything is paid for, marketed, treated, etc., is a separate, but real, issue.
The point with respect to this post, however, is there is a scientific "consensus" about acute promyelocytic leukemia, t(15;17), and its treatment. The same could be said about t(9;22) and CML and t(8;14) and Burkitt lymphoma. And we can diagnose and treat these diseases because of scientific research and some "consensus."

I would think from a scientific standpoint that any smoke that enters your lungs is certainly not a good thing or even remotely beneficial.

Well, some anti-smokers have been passing around the "information" that second-hand smoke is worse than smoking directly is. That sounds false on the face of it. I'm not saying it's false, I'm saying that a statement like that is false in my mind till proven true.

I would have to ask for the research data that supports that claim. It would be hard to imagine how all the chemicals directly inhaled into one's lungs via a cigarette on the lips could be less harmful than ingesting the smoke wafting through a room.


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