Hot Air

Scientists: Come Out Of The Closet!

Hey, kids, I realize we live in the most informed, brilliant, and sensitive burgh this side of Berkeley, California, but still some of us might come up against a simian thinker who, say, doesn’t believe all this socialist, bike-riding propaganda about climate change.

Baboon

What Do All Those Scientists Know?

You know, it’s all a plot to destroy America and so on.

So you might have a need to destroy his ignorance and put him in his proper place (A zoo cage? A mental institution?) should you run into him bleating his views in a bar or at your coffeehouse headquarters.

Many of us emerge from such a tête-à-tête ruing our inability to deliver just the right bon mot that would send him scurrying out of the place, humiliated to the point of wondering whether he should just end it all. (Imagine, too, using pretentious Gallicisms to finish him off — pure bliss, no?)

Anyway, Bill Moyers this morning offers us a good guide to winning these “arguments” via Penn State U. climatologist Michael Mann. He runs PSU’s Earth System Science Center. He thinks climatologists and other scientists ought to get out into the arena more and fight the good fight for knowledge and investigation.

Which I agree with. These days, we have what I’d call science’s designated hitters: Bill Nye and Neil de Grasse Tyson. Their Q-ratings nearly approach those of fictional brains such as Frank-n-Furter, Dr. Strangelove, and Professor X.

Movie Scientists

Scientists

Don’t get me wrong, I dig NdGT and Nye the most. Still, to the gen. pub., they’re pretty much the alpha and omega of smart guys. OTOH, we get all sorts of un-scientists spewing their mouth refuse about things scientific. People like Sen. James Inhofe, Rep. Michelle Bachmann, and Rush Limbaugh — and there are dozens more where they come from. Corporate news purveyors find these chuckleheads by the score whenever there’s a climate debate or an evolution debate or even a flat-Earth debate.

Guys like Michael Mann toil in anonymity in their labs and classrooms, discovering things, learning things, and being, well, all scientific while the populace of this holy land learns about the physical world from Steve Doocy and Elizabeth Hasselbeck.

So, go, go. go, M. Mann et al. As for you, loyal Pencillista, read his piece on climate change and go into your next argument on that topic armed with the best info.

The Old Pro

My complete interview with Charlotte Zietlow is now up on The Ryder website. It’s a long one but it’s a good one. Take some time and read it — and feel better about politicians for a brief moment, armed with the knowledge that that vocation’s roster has included decent souls like CZ.

Zietlow

Charlotte Zietlow

If you’re pressed for time, catch my eight-minute mini-interview with the Dem doyenne that ran on WFHB’s Daily Local News a couple of weeks ago.

End of commercial.

All The News That’s Old

Now we learn that 40 percent of the Indiana University student pop. is from out of state. This thanks to the Daily Beast‘s ranking of the decade’s “hottest” schools (via the Herald Times).

IU, acc’d’g to the D. Beast‘s rankers, is the third most thermal institution of higher education in Murrica, after USC and Vanderbilt.

Good journalist that I am, I googled “hottest schools decade IU daily beast,” just to verify the story and, perhaps, to provide a link to the Beast’s piece (which the H-T hadn’t).

Lo and behold, I found that the DB‘s list of hot colleges was done in 2009. It ran December 13 that year, which makes sense, considering it was an “of the decade list.” Such things aren’t done in the middle of a ten-annum.

NYT

Didja Hear The News?!

So thanks, Herald Times, for the five-year-old news. If I’d paid the $8.95 the paper wants every month for an online subscription, I’d be steaming about now. Luckily, I’ve figured out a way to get it free, which is what it’s worth.

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