Over Easy: Monday Science

Papal Smackdown! Ooooo, that smarts!

Papal Smackdown! Ooooo, that smarts!


Well, I hope everyone enjoyed their visit from Bill. I got a lot of water, but not much wind and it was pretty much done as an event about 3:00 Saturday afternoon.

Well, the Asahi Shimbun has finally called BULL$#!+ on the JG. Sample quote:

it has become abundantly clear that the situation is anything but under control

This is a MAJOR Japanese newspaper, equal in status to the LA times or Chicago Tribune here. The JG is losing their veal pen.

7,000 people have requested $297m in damages from Fuku. About 10x that number were impacted enough to be able to file claims. So figure a minimum of $3B in claims, over and above what the government is paying.

TEPCO knew of the need to improve Tsunami protection as early as June 2008. They were forced by a court to disclose this information as a consequence of a shareholder lawsuit demanding roughly $45B. This is in addition to the $3B above.

The evac order for Naraha in Fukushima prefecture will be lifted not later than August. At this point in time, less than 50% of the population is willing to return. The JG will cut off their benefits anyway.

There are lots of tanks holding hot water is Fukushima. There are various reactions, both nuclear and chemical, that will cause the buildup of Hydrogen gas. It is thought that some of the leaks are being caused by increasing gas pressure inside the tanks. An internal hydrogen explosion would certainly rupture the tank and probably rupture it’s neighbors. TEPCO is going to have to vent those tanks and that will NOT be popular.

Rosetta is finding LOTS of water in the comet. This supports the theory that most of Earth’s water could have come from comet strikes.

The GOP is less than impressed by the Pope’s latest encyclical on Global warming. No real shock there, as it outright challenges climate denial and declares inaction against climate change as bad as causing it. This has resulted in the GOP declaring the Pope is NOT an expert, that they are not scientists and thus have no opinions of their own except “scientists” say it’s not a settled issue and we should wait for it to settle before we really increase costs to their campaign contributors. It’s becoming tougher and tougher to find scientists with reputations or peer reviewed publications that support that position. And will make life REALLY difficult for the GOP catholic candidates (Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Rick Santorum) .

Here’s an interesting editorial from the National Catholic Reporter on their view. The GOPers have criticized “cafeteria Catholics” for quite awhile since they didn’t support banning abortion or other GOP positions. Welcome to the cafeteria. And the writer is correct, it WILL be interesting to watch Boehner and Pelosi’s face when they sit behind the rostrum for the Pope’s speech to congress.

Japan will resume whaling again. This is basically a big “F**K YOU, we can do as we please” to the rest of the world, as Japan sure doesn’t need the whale meat ot survive and the market for whale in Japan is actually pretty slim and shrinking.

New record cold, 500 nanokelvins. Brrr.

Most Kangaroos are left handed.

Boxturtle (Hire the left handed! It’s fun to watch them write!)

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The Roundup for June 21-22nd, 2015




  1. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 7:49 am

    Good Morning All!

    Weatherman says that today will be the only day this week that does not suck.

    And correction to the above cartoon: The Pope has the equivalent of a Bachelors degree in Chemistry, not a masters. His masters is in Theology. I got caught by the same poorly sourced Forbes story and believed it without really checking because I liked the cartoon.

    Boxturtle (We all make mistakes. Sometimes after it’s too late for backspace to help)

  2. tjbs
    June 22, 2015 at 8:26 am

    Good morning all,

    A one lung Pope has a little more invested in climate than most.

    i like this Pope over the last one.

    What spells capitalism better than Fukushima ? Old farts take the initial profits and leaves a shit pile to clean up after they pass .

  3. karenjj2
    June 22, 2015 at 8:35 am

    good morning, BT and firepups
    got a kick out of leftie kangaroos: good that the article explained that the observations aid in figuring out “brain wiring.”.

    the iron ore rocks in the kangaroo photo makes me wonder how humans figured out how to get iron from them.

  4. Marion in Savannah
    June 22, 2015 at 8:37 am

    Good morning, pups. Today we have Blow and Krugman. In “In Charleston, A Millennial Race Terrorist” Mr. Blow says some are even hesitant to call the Charleston killings a hate crime, despite many signs that it was that and more. Prof. Krugman, in “Slavery’s Long Shadow,” says despite changing attitudes on several fronts, race in America is an issue that won’t go away. And today the New York Times is reporting that the campaigns of Ted Cruz, Rick Santorum and Rand Paul got donations from the leader of an extremist group tied to Dylann Roof, the suspected gunman in the attack at a church in Charleston.

    HERE they are, and

    HERE’s Krugman’s blog.

    The coffee, tea and cold drinks are ready, and the biscuits are out of the oven. Yesterday summer came in with a roar — it was 104° in the shade in the afternoon. Mercifully the humidity was low. And we’re supposed to be in for more of the same this week. Oh, goody… Have a great day.

  5. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 8:42 am

    I do too. I read somewhere that Benedict abdicated as part of a deal to avoid indictment in Germany for protecting Child Molesters. At least the current Pope is not tarred by that scandal.

    This pope is going to cause a LOT of heartburn on the GOP side.

    Hmmm…fracking spells capitalism at least as well as Fukushima. 🙂

    Boxturtle (Hopes the Pope turns round and looks Boehner dead in the eye during his speech)

  6. Marion in Savannah
    June 22, 2015 at 8:45 am

    Better he should fix Rick “I’m a better Catholic than the Pope” Santorum (has Charlie Pierce mentioned recently what a colossal dick he is?) with a fierce glare.

  7. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 8:46 am

    I can actually answer that: Cookfires. People surrounded their fires with rocks. Sometimes, the rocks were iron ore. If the fire burned long enough and got hot enough, some liquid Iron would form in the fire pits. Eventually, this was noticed.

    Boxturtle That’s also why copper came before Iron. Lower melting point)

  8. tjbs
    June 22, 2015 at 8:46 am

    It was a political assassination. The pastor was the one pushing for body cams in the Senate after the assassination caught on tape, the one with six bullets in the back . Now reverse this with a white politician opposed to say gay marriage and the assassination headlines would be three inch black letters proclaiming such.

  9. June 22, 2015 at 8:49 am

    Good morning.

    Temps call for 100°F by week’s end. Today, 80.

    I start my EECP treatments today at 8:30 AM. 1 Hr of being jousled. Shake a leg!

  10. Marion in Savannah
    June 22, 2015 at 8:50 am

    Good luck with the treatments — I hope they’re successful for you.

  11. Molly
    June 22, 2015 at 8:50 am

    Good vibes coming your way with that! Keep us posted.

  12. Molly
    June 22, 2015 at 8:52 am

    G’morning, all. Cloudy today again, more rain coming tonight. It has been a rainy June. And my plan today is to get some badly needed yard work done. I’ve showered with rosemary-mint soap, shampooed with rosemary-mint shampoo, and used rosemary-mint body lotion. (Mint and rosemary are natural insect repellants.) Hopefully that will keep the skeeters away so I don’t have to resort to the Off with DEET.

  13. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 8:55 am

    It would be really neat to have His Holiness show up unannounced at one of the Catholic GOPers campaign rallies to rebut the speech. 🙂

    Boxturtle (Yeah, I’m Evil. Why do you ask?)

  14. June 22, 2015 at 8:56 am

    I can give a weekly report here. It’s a good subject for Science Monday..

    The treatments go 5 days/week for 7 weeks. There is also a cardiac rehab program of which I have no info yet.

  15. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 8:59 am

    Depends on how hungry the bugs are and how many others are around for them to feed upon.

    As a young camper, I would carry OFF and Cutters insect repellents. Cutters was the only formula with DEET at the time. I would loan the OFF to any camper who was green enough to forget bug spray and use the cutters myself. OFF was like steak sauce for bugs, they’d eat the heck out of the greenie and leave us alone.

    Greenie would be told when he complained that Cutters was what he wanted and why.

    Boxturtle (and thus the cycle would continue)

  16. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 8:59 am

    Good luck!

    Boxturtle (Fingers crossed for you)

  17. June 22, 2015 at 8:59 am

    High B vitamins have worked for me especially when hiking in the wilderness

  18. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 9:02 am

    Someone ought to take a look at all the extremist groups that haave donated to the political campaigns and offer the candidates a chance to return the contributions BEFORE something awful happens. Wonder how many would return money? The details on the shooters hate group were well known when Cruz accepted the donation.

    Boxturtle (Wonder if the GOP could afford an election without help from hate groups)

  19. Marion in Savannah
    June 22, 2015 at 9:04 am

    They have enough billionaires to go around, I’m sure.

  20. June 22, 2015 at 9:04 am

    When I spent many weeks in AK years ago, I fortified myself on B vitamins, not because of the bugs but because I was carrying 80 lb or more when hiking. Bugs left me alone, a good outcome for Alaska!

  21. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 9:23 am

    Yeah, sadly. And Said billionaires don’t care about hate group donations.

    Boxturtle (Enough to go around currently. Clown Car is getting full)

  22. Beverly Lawson
    June 22, 2015 at 9:25 am

    Good Morning All, Charleston church singing “This is my story…”……such irony. Can the story change?

  23. June 22, 2015 at 9:26 am

    Evil? No way! It would be satan rebutting the Pope at that point.

    Think of it!

  24. Molly
    June 22, 2015 at 9:30 am

    Well, OFF has DEET now. And it is probably too late for vitamin B to work before I go out in the yard shortly. And I don’t have any vitamin B anyway AFAIK. I’d prefer not to use the OFF, but I’d rather use it than be eaten alive in my woodsy yard. I discovered the rosemary-mint effect a few years ago when my daughter-in-law brought me a fancy bar of soap from a special store in London. I loved the fragrance and then realized when I worked in the yard that mosquitoes left me alone, so I did a bit of research.

    This is hand made goats milk soap from a vendor in the Farmer’s Market. Wonderful stuff.

  25. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 9:35 am

    It can change IF enough people want it to change. First we gotta admit that the problem wasn’t that the parishioners were unarmed and it wasn’t because they were Christian. In fact, the entire affair is a symptom, not the problem.

    The problem is haters with weapons. And since you can make a lethal weapon out of a sheet of paper or a few paperclips, we kinda gotta address the haters.

    Is it enough reason to remove a child from a home if the parents are haters or is that too much interference? To put it another way, at what point should authorities be able act?

    Boxturtle (And that would open the slippery slope of thoughtcrime)

  26. Molly
    June 22, 2015 at 9:36 am

    From HuffPo:

    Despite erroneous reports that Pope Francis has lived most of his life
    with just one lung, the surgery actually only removed the upper part of
    his right lung, and his friends and family say he remains in good health
    for a 76-year-old man.

  27. oldhippiejan
    June 22, 2015 at 9:37 am

    I join Boxturtle, Molly, and Marion in wishing you good luck and better health.

  28. June 22, 2015 at 9:38 am

    Year younger than moi. I’d say he’s doing fine! I would not want to be doing his schedule.

  29. Beverly Lawson
    June 22, 2015 at 9:40 am

    Or putting up with his critics….ugh.

  30. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 9:42 am

    He’s got more than 20 years on me and is doing much better than I am.

    Boxturtle (His Holiness has the advantage of Clean Living over me)

  31. Beverly Lawson
    June 22, 2015 at 9:47 am

    And the coverage I had seen reported that the dad had bought the kid his gun….a culture I will never understand. The apparent level of hate does appear to be mental illness, from what I can tell = basis for removal.

  32. oldhippiejan
    June 22, 2015 at 9:51 am

    Sawed off shotguns become legal in Indiana today. No, we can’t stop someone hell bent on killing, but we don’t need to make it easier for them.
    Hate has been around since the beginning of time, I haven’t the slightest idea how to address that.
    If Japan doesn’t need the whale meat, why on earth slaughter something?
    Just wondering, does Japan have an equivalent to SCOTUS to reduce fines on TEPCO?

  33. oldhippiejan
    June 22, 2015 at 9:53 am

    You make an excellent point for that level of hate being a mental illness.

  34. disqus_tu7SEHpgGp
    June 22, 2015 at 9:55 am

    Though probably too late, it would have been better just to “fix” Santorum.

  35. karenjj2
    June 22, 2015 at 9:57 am

    wow! That is my kind of science! Observation + insight = “ok, what can we do with this dull, heavy rock stuff”?

    had an insight this a.m. after Raine (5# pom) got me up at his usual 7:20-40 depending how long I can hold out against intermittent howls, sharp barks and rare favorite: various conversational vocalizations as tho talking to himself.

    only sleeping 5+ hours a night in recent years has led me to conclude that I just don’t have that much processing of the day’s experiences to do any more. Fits well with an interesting NPR program on sleep recently. The most interesting part was analyzing brain activity during sleep in humans and mice: Pretty much demonstrated that human dream activity after an intense day’s experience, skiing for example, may lead to rerunning it with corrections or trying different movements at particular parts of the downhill. The mice ? had similar brain activity and improved maze ability next day.

    kj’s extrapolation: “daylight savings time” changes disrupt sleep and promote ineffective sleep processing; and in combination with visual only stimulation plus lack of working at chores and assisting adults at cooking, repairing, fixing, building, planting, caring for animals, etc. has led to an overall decline in “native intelligence” and family, community responsibility.

    Old adages: “idle hands make Jack a dull boy and idle hands leads to devils’ work” seem to be proven by events

  36. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 10:04 am

    Too late, he already has children.

    Boxturtle (Being a pet owner, I have a specific meaning for “fixed”)

  37. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 10:12 am

    I agree, however this story made me think again. Maybe mental illness IS a cop out, maybe the person is perfectly sane but hates.

    Boxturtle (Still thinking, several days after reading it)

  38. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 10:18 am

    Don’t worry about sawed off shotguns. They’re only good for close range and lose stopping power quickly. And only idiots make them. Worry when they make fully automatic shotguns legal.

    Hate can be addressed easily. Don’t let the haters dehumanize the targets. At the Charleston shooting, those weren’t people, those were blacks. The shooter didn’t know or care that there were families and friends behind those faces. He darn near walked out without shooting because he almost realized he was targetting people. It was probably one chance remark that triggered his hate and enabled him to proceed.

    Boxturtle (And don’t teach hate. Plenty of Bible verses that don’t hate)

  39. Boxturtle
    June 22, 2015 at 10:22 am

    Japan is doing it just to prove they can. Kinda like our conservatives feel the need to stand up to the UN every so often. They’ve had a maritime culture forever and don’t take kindly to people telling where and what they may fish.

    And in the case of TEPCO, it’s not the fines but the civil damages that they fear. The JG has already assumed a lot of TEPCO’s liabilities, but they’re not going to assume that.

    The JG may pay indirectly in order to keep TEPCO solvent.

    Boxturtle (Solvent on paper, at least)

  40. oldhippiejan
    June 22, 2015 at 10:36 am

    There are no shortage of idiots to address your first paragraph.
    But ‘how’ does one stop haters from dehumanizing the targets. That doesn’t seem so easy to me. Some people don’t believe in the Bible and many Christians pick and choose what parts of the Bible they want to beat to death to make a point while disregarding entirely other parts of it.

  41. Canyon2
    June 22, 2015 at 11:25 am

    Good Monday morning everyone.
    Thank you for the post BoxTurtle.
    If I had the option of returning to the site of the Tsunami at Fukushima, I would never endanger my family that way and as far as Tepco knowing in 2008, that should be in the realm of criminal activity but of course we are talking dollars here and we all know what happens to commoners when dollars talk.

  42. Canyon2
    June 22, 2015 at 11:30 am

    Good morning oldhippiejan.
    The more guns the easier the solution in a disagreement. Pretty hard to understand the reasoning of a sawed off shotgun though unless it is for evil purposes.
    I hope the legislature that passed that law and the Governor allow one to carry a sawed off shotgun into their meetings with those ladies and gentlemen (using the term loosely) in the future.

  43. Ruth
    June 22, 2015 at 11:41 am

    morning, pups, back from the Brit’s museum, full up on awe.
    Still am glad to see things collected from Nimrud, that will not be hacked to bits by Isis. It’s a sad history but things our colonials ‘collected’ from their owners you will have the chance to visit. Not the ones left there.

  44. metamars
    June 22, 2015 at 12:42 pm

    “It’s becoming tougher and tougher to find scientists with reputations or peer reviewed publications that support that position.”

    I don’t believe this. As a matter of fact, it contradicts what Princeton physics professor Dr. Happer has said relatively recently, namely that scientists (or physicists, in particular; I don’t remember which term he used) are growing increasingly skeptical of CO2 catastrophism, and also more outspoken. (Here is Happer presenting on the subject CO2 as alleged “pollutant” to the UC Berkeley Physics Department).

    Do you have a shred of evidence for this claim? (Hint: you need to do better than the garbage paper by John Cook, which was the absolute worst of the “97% Consensus” papers. See “The Myth of the Climate Change ‘97%'”

    This statement, BTW, seems straight out of the IPCC CO2 Catastrophism propaganda mill, wherein claims of increasing certainty have been made by the IPCC, even as the “holy (climate) models” diverged ever more widely from data. This divergence even led to “discounting” by an IPCC plenary session. I have a degree in physics (and math), and never heard of “discounting” a theoretical result. Apparently, this is a political “methodology”, designed to obscure actual science that isn’t conforming with political and $funding$ realities.

    Perhaps you are confusing the fact that debates between qualified scientists, and/or people knowledgeable on climate have been increasingly hard to find (though the CO2 catastrophists mostly started ducking debates since around 2007, so this is really not a new phenomenon.) ?

    BTW, the WSJ article referenced above also tells us:

    Rigorous international surveys conducted by German scientists Dennis Bray and Hans von Storch—most recently published in Environmental Science & Policy in 2010—have found that most climate scientists disagree with the consensus on key issues such as the reliability of climate data and computer models. They do not believe that climate processes such as cloud formation and precipitation are sufficiently understood to predict future climate change.

    Surveys of meteorologists repeatedly find a majority oppose the alleged consensus. Only 39.5% of 1,854 American Meteorological Society members who responded to a survey in 2012 said man-made global warming is dangerous.

  45. Ruth
    June 22, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    thanks for the comic relief.
    physicists choosing to make statements on climatology have as much worth as agronomists commenting on physics.

  46. Thurb
    June 22, 2015 at 2:40 pm

    Nice of you to correct it. But never forget that Bachelors is still one more science degree then Rick Santorum has. And still proves him to be an ill informed idiot.

  47. metamars
    June 22, 2015 at 4:49 pm

    Not so. For at least 4 reasons. One is that “climate science” is a multi-disciplinary field. Consequently, large swathes of “climate science” will be more accessible to physicists than, say, to “climate scientists” whose background is in biology. Secondly, at a Ph.D., level, the assumption is that an individual is capable of learning in a closely related field (though I doubt that’s generally what’s happened with the scientists that Happer has referred to. Too hard to keep up in one’s own field.) 3rd, some trumpeted “climate science” reports don’t pass the laugh test, when the fuller story is known. (E.g., reports about an Antarctic shelf melting at an alarming pace, that don’t mention underground volcanoes in region.) Another way to put this is: some “climate science” claims don’t even need a college education to warrant skepticism. You don’t get exposed to the unending stream of contrary-to-catastrophism papers and analyses that are out there on lefty blogs (just the opposite), but they’re out there, just the same.

    And last but not least, Happer has specifically stated the main reason why the scientists/physicists are increasingly skeptical as being that they’ve “looked at the data” and “nature has run the experiment”.

    I doubt any working scientist is fooled by “discounting” theoretical predictions…..

    BTW, I strongly support surveying retired scientists who worked in climate science, who have nothing to lose or gain, to find out to what extent they believe that anthropogenic CO2 is dangerous. Likewise, I’ve argued that surveying young academic scientists, who don’t have tenure, would be the worst ones to query (as they have the most to lost from a non-catastrophic POV).

    Would you support such a process, also? After all, if retired climate scientists turn out to be generally fearful of human CO2 emissions, that’d be far more of an honest wake up signal than the crappy “97% consensus” genre of “findings”.