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Oily lollipops, carbonized brains

Pederasts of the mind: Of kids, lies and Oil. The American Petroleum Institute partners (in 2004) with The National Science Teacher's Association (NSTA) and Scholastic (see: Scholastic's creedo) to provide K-12 lesson plans, on energy and oil, which resemble the API's own "Teacher Lesson Plans" and snappy flash presentations such as Progress Through Petroleum! which are bundled with fun stuff and cool facts. The NSTA/API lessons teach all about energy and oil except the global environmental impacts. Didactic bonus from NSTA's oil-friendly curriculum : a surrealistic gallery of oil industry imagery for kids to download.

Recent glacial melt speedup in Greenland and Antarctica shocks researchers, while the Pentagon games scenarios of Abrupt Climate Change : Don't worry, says the DOE's Energy Ant - oil's good, like cows, m'kay ? . Extra credit : Play the Oil and natural Gas Crossword Puzzle, or the "Industry Lesson Plan Game" (that, and more, inside)
posted by troutfishing on Oct 5, 2004 - 21 comments

 

Flat as a pancake, happy as a clam ?

"Just for the record, do you believe the Sun goes around the Earth or the Earth goes around the sun?" : Ages before "Intelligent Design", a bold PaleoCreationist pseudoscientific gobbledygook - embodied by Tom Willis, Creationism's man in Kansas and head of the Mid Atlantic Creation Research Society - strode the Earth. The AAAS dissected the mess in "Lions, Tigers and APES, Oh My! ; Creationism vs. Evolution in Kansas" ( Google cache) and one writer concluded : "The War between the creationists and the public schools is over. The creationists appear to have won" : now, in a Kansas that's scientifically proven flatter than a pancake, Mona Lisa is as happy as a clam, and Kissing Frank's ass and appeals to mysterious watchmakers predominate, while on the national stage, God is a real estate developer.

Meanwhile, a new group proposes better zoning bylaws : Scientists and Engineers for Change
posted by troutfishing on Sep 30, 2004 - 22 comments

Big heads wobbling on wee necks?....

Nootropics ("smart" drugs) - all wish to be smarter, correct ? And - while exercise, nutrition, learning, travel, and social interaction (the last 3 via release of neurotrophins) effectively do this, Nootropic drugs have been researched since the 1950's and have been shown to cause at least short term cognitive function enhancement. Piracetam, the first of this drugs, shows promise in the treatment of Alzheimer's and Attention deficit Disorder. Alas, as with poor little Algernon, the effect seems temporary. Nootropics can be a little difficult to acquire in the US. Beer is not a nootropic, but sex on the other hand.....
posted by troutfishing on Mar 5, 2004 - 20 comments

So, umm.....about that oil in Iraq....

Wind Power cheaper than coal, electric car does 0 to 60 in 3.7 w/300 mile cruising range

It's official: wind power is now cheaper than electricity from Coal, Stanford Researchers report in a study published in the Journal Science. Quiz for Metafilter science wonks: how much of current US energy consumption could be supplied by spending 200 billion dollars on wind turbines?

Meanwhile...Powered by 6800 lithium-ion batteries, the Tzero "from zero to 100 and through the quarter mile, will run with, or beat, the $281,000 Lamborghini Murci
posted by troutfishing on Sep 24, 2003 - 53 comments

Hold still. This won't hurt a bit.

The shrunken head page describes how real ones are made and has instructions so you can make your own fake shrunken head! From Wonderfull and Wierd Science, which has links to other gems such as Kitchen Science Experiments ( make your own Tesla Coil! ), and to the creepy Nocturnal Assault Research Center.
posted by troutfishing on Jun 29, 2003 - 3 comments

They grin at me from the trees

First Birds with teeth in 70 million years. Vicious toothed, flying microraptors once darkened the Jurassic skies. Now, scientists have learned to activate the dormant, vestigal avian "tooth gene" and so coaxed chicken embryos into growing teeth. From the grave, Alfred Hitchcock enviously quips - "a messy thing indeed when toothed birds kill a man". Meanwhile the French are appalled: “quand les poules auront des dents”, which translates to “when hens have teeth”, is analogous to the English “pigs might fly”. Coming soon: flying pigs. But there might be a baldness cure in this new research. I'll remember that as the flocks of mutant raptor-fowl move in for the kill.
posted by troutfishing on Jun 4, 2003 - 18 comments

Waving their strange limbs, beckoning....

Synthetic Trees could purify the air - "It looks like a goal post with Venetian blinds," said the Columbia University physicist...synthetic trees could help clean up an atmosphere grown heavy with carbon dioxide..."You can be a thousand times better than a living tree...There are a number of engineering issues which need to be worked out," he said. (BBC) Hurry up, then - "Ice dams are blocking Latvian ports, winds and storms are battering Europe, Portugal is freezing, Vietnam has lost one-third its rice crop, and the cold has caused close to 2,000 deaths in usually temperate South Asia."
posted by troutfishing on Feb 23, 2003 - 18 comments

Tornado in a Can

"Tornado in a Can" "To test their theory, the Vortex folks have thrown in rocks, diapers, tomatoes, sweet potato rejects from the farm down the road, 400 pounds of Oreo cookies, frozen pizza dough, even a dead bird.....The jellyfish, however, are a first." picture of "Tornado-in-a-Can" that sure is a big can. don't try this at home, folks
posted by troutfishing on Dec 13, 2002 - 17 comments

Reality check from Swiss Re and UNEP

Reality check from Swiss Re and UNEP "The increasing frequency of severe climatic events...has the potential to stress insurers, reinsurers and banks to the point of impaired viability or even insolvency." "Climate Change and the Financial Services Industry", a UNEP report supported by 295 banks and insurance and investment companies around the world. The report concludes that, worldwide, loses from Climate related disasters are doubling every decade . NOAA generally concurs. Dr. Bob Gagosian, Director of Woods Hole, has even worse news. Should we take the scientific mainstream seriously? Or is it all "Junk Science"according to the industry funded Steve Milloy or the CEI, or even a New Age Pagan Conspiracy? Play on little humans......play on.....
posted by troutfishing on Oct 9, 2002 - 15 comments

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