Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts,” Richard Feynman famously declared in 1966. Ever quick to challenge accepted wisdom, he distinguished the laudable ignorance of science, forever seeking unattainable certainties, from the dangerous ignorance of experts who professed such certainty.
Twenty years later, he would drop a rubber ring into a glass of ice water to show a panel of clueless rocket experts how willful ignorance of basic temperature effects likely caused the Challenger shuttle disaster (1).
Experts with delusions of certainty create imitative forms of science, he warned, producing “the kind of tyranny we have today in the many institutions that have come under the influence of pseudoscientific advisors.” (2)
Feynman’s warning against faith in the phony trappings of “cargo cult science” fell on deaf ears. Policies affecting every aspect of our lives are now based on dangerous forms of ignorance.
A prime case in point is the noble edifice of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, where a high-ranking EPA official was recently jailed and fined for collecting pay and bonuses for decades of non-existent work while he claimed to be working elsewhere for the CIA. Such long-standing fraud would hardly come as a surprise to Evaggelos Vallianatos, who toiled for a quarter of a century in the EPA’s Pesticide Division, ostensibly responsible for protecting human health and the environment from commercial poisons. His new book, Poison Spring: The Secret History of Pollution and the EPA, documents a culture of fraud and corruption infesting every corner and closet of the agency.
The EPA, created with much fanfare by Richard Nixon in 1970, was an agency crippled at birth by inadequate funding, political hypocrisy, and laws protecting industry profits above all. Vallianatos points out that one of the fledgling agency’s greatest handicaps was its initial staffing with personnel from USDA, steeped in the religion of corporate agriculture and lethal technologies. With USDA staff came also USDA’s outdated pesticide registrations, which were to be reviewed and reregistered by EPA. In addition, hundreds of new pesticide applications accumulated every year, each supported by industry-produced safety studies to meet new federal requirements. Hired as scientists, EPA staffers spent their time cutting and pasting industry studies and conclusions into rubber-stamped registration approvals. Under industry-crafted laws, once a pesticide was registered, it could never be unregistered without massive, unequivocal evidence of harm.
Anti-fracking protesters outside Governor Andrew Cuomo's policy summit in 2012.
(Photo: Credo Action/cc/flickr)
It's official. New York state will ban fracking.
After years of lobbying and aggressive public protest by state residents to make permanent a short-term moratorium on the controversial oil and gas drilling practice, Gov. Andrew Cuomo cited harm to public health as the key reason for the decision to announce an all-out ban. "The potential impacts of fracking on water, air, land resources, community and local services are significant," Cuomo said in a tweet just after the decision was made public.
In response to the news, Wenonah Hauter, director of Food & Water Watch, which has fought aggressively against fracking in New York and across the country, declared the development as the "Biggest fracking victory ever!"
The US government's "Green Revolution" is another covert attack on our collective health, wealth, and environment, largely using their mythical peak oil and man-made global warming hoaxes to do so.
The Dairy Queen ice cream-cone-looking compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs are a perfect example of this kind of subterfuge. These CFLs have become the symbol of the government’s Green Movement, but they should be using the skull and crossbones symbol instead.
These new light bulbs are not a bright idea, unless one needs ideas on how to reduce the health and happiness of millions of Americans.
While claiming these new CFL bulbs will reduce carbon emissions, "our" Congress passed legislation stating these light bulbs must completely replace our everyday incandescent light bulbs by 2014, without telling us of the serious dangers to health and environment that these mandated bulbs pose.
The environmental fascists believe that if people are allowed to have large amounts of freedom and liberty that the planet will literally be destroyed. That sounds crazy, but that is what they actually believe. Left to our own devices, they are fully convinced that global warming and out of control pollution will transform the earth into an uninhabitable hellhole. Therefore, they believe that it has become necessary to strictly manage human behavior “for the good of the environment”.
Image: Wikimedia Commons.
With each passing year, the control of the social planners gets even tighter. Today, they have banned certain kinds of light bulbs, they are putting mandatory “smart meters” into our homes, and they have instituted all kinds of ridiculous regulations concerning what you can do with your own land. Tomorrow, they plan to put “black boxes” into our vehicles and move most of us into “stack-and-pack” housing that has communal bathrooms and no elevators. There is a reason why these people are called ecofascists. The “true believers” of the environmental fascism movement actually believe that they are “saving the world” by being control freaks. They truly believe that they know better than the rest of us, and they love to get into positions of political power so that they can impose their will on everyone around them.
An emergency short film from Josh Fox, the Oscar-nominated director of GASLAND addressing the urgent crisis of drilling and fracking in New York state. Go to NYAgainstfracking.org for more info and to get involved.
“The nation that destroys its soil, destroys itself.” --- Franklin Delano Roosevelt
In light of this quote, had Monsanto been around during Roosevelt’s time, he would not have taken too kindly to their business strategy. After all, in 2007, 176 million lbs of an extremely toxic herbicide known as glyphosate,1 first created by Monsanto, was sprayed onto the soil (and everything standing between it) in this country, with untold environmental and human health fallout.
Untold, that is, until now...
Roundup (Glyphosate): The Science Vs. Marketing
2011 was a watershed year, as far as scientific revelations into the nature and extent of the damage associated with glyphosate-based herbicide usage and exposure is concerned. An accumulating body of peer-reviewed and published research now indicates glyphosate may be contributing to several dozen adverse health effects in exposed populations. And as we shall see, human exposure is as universal as is the contamination of our food, air, rain and groundwater with this now ubiquitous chemical.
Microsoft founder Bill Gates continues to pour millions of dollars into high-risk geoengineering projects that purport to offer a solution to global warming yet have been savaged by environmentalists as potentially posing a greater threat than climate change itself.
“Concern is now growing that the small but influential group of scientists, and their backers, may have a disproportionate effect on major decisions about geoengineering research and policy,” reports the London Guardian, quoting critics who allege that Gates’ funding has enabled geoengineering advocates to “dominate the deliberations of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.”
In 2010, Gates was criticized for ploughing $300,000 dollars into a sea trial of cloud-whitening technology which involved spraying clouds with microscopic particles in an effort to make them reflect more sunlight, an experiment dubbed “dangerous” by environmental campaigners.
The report reveals that Gates has backed Professors David Keith, of Harvard University, and Ken Caldeira of Stanford, to the tune of $4.6 million dollars to fund studies based around the premise of injecting sulphur particles into the upper atmosphere designed to reflect sunlight.
By Abrahm Lustgarten and Nicholas Kusnetz ProPublica
On a summer evening in June 2005, Susan Wallace-Babb went out into a neighbor's field near her ranch in Western Colorado to close an irrigation ditch. She parked down the rutted double-track, stepped out of her truck into the low-slung sun, took a deep breath, and collapsed, unconscious.
A natural gas well and a pair of fuel storage tanks sat less than a half-mile away. Later, after Wallace-Babb came to and sought answers, a sheriff's deputy told her that a tank full of gas condensate -- liquid hydrocarbons gathered from the production process -- had overflowed into another tank. The fumes must have drifted toward the field where she was working, he suggested.
The next morning Wallace-Babb was so sick she could barely move. She vomited uncontrollably and suffered explosive diarrhea. A searing pain shot up her thigh. Within days she developed burning rashes that covered her exposed skin, then lesions. As weeks passed, any time she went outdoors, her symptoms worsened. Wallace-Babb's doctor began to suspect she had been poisoned.
"I took to wearing a respirator and swim goggles outside to tend to my animals," Wallace-Babb said. "I closed up my house and got an air conditioner that would just recycle the air and not let any fresh air in.
Regulators have known since 1980 that Roundup, the herbicide manufactured by U.S. company Monsanto, causes birth defects, and have done nothing to make the information public, according to a new report released June 7 (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/…).
The report, “Roundup and birth defects: Is the public being kept in the dark?” by Earth Open Source, found that regulators knew the chemical on which Roundup is based, glyphosate, can cause birth defects in laboratory animals. Earth Open Source is an organization that aims to use open source collaboration to engage people in programs that help nourish humanity, increase equity, support food security, and preserve the Earth.
Regulators also misled the public about the safety of the chemical, according to the report. In one instance, the German Federal Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety, the German government body handling the glyphosate review, told the European Commission there was no evidence the chemical causes birth defects.
This is not the first instance of accusations against the world’s best-selling herbicide. Earlier this year, researchers found that genetically modified crops used in conjunction with Roundup contain a pathogen that may cause animal miscarriages. Don Huber, professor emeritus at Purdue University, wrote an open letter to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack regarding the newly discovered pathogen, in which he requested a moratorium on deregulation of crops that are genetically modified to withstand heavy applications of Roundup, commonly called Roundup Ready crops.