Archives for January, 2009

Headline: BART eyes higher fares, reduced service. This is very, very dumb. Higher fares will reduce ridership at exactly the time BART is weaning people off of their addiction to driving. That’s bad policy, and it’s bad for BART revenue. While shifting from trains every 15 minutes to a 20 minute gap on weeknights and…

The anatomy of nonsense

DaveScot, the semiliterate sycophant who used to administer Bill Dembski’s ID blog, is in a tizzy. In addition to being an evolution denier, DS is a climate change denier and a promoter of medical woo, you see, and he thinks there’s evidence that “[James] Hansen?s former boss at NASA declares himself an AGW skeptic.” He…

But it’s OK in Louisiana!

The endlessly entertaining Zero out of Five collects catastrophically wrong test answers. This one got 0 points, but I think that a recently passed law in Louisiana (and similar laws introduced in Oklahoma and elsewhere this year) might make that grade illegal: I think that illustration was copied from a Discovery Institute meteorology textbook. Surely…

Did they invest with Madoff, too?

Tough economic times are squeezing university budgets in Europe, creating tension between sceintists and their governments. French President Nicolas Sarkozy is unhappy with French scientists. In a recent speech Sarkozy lambasted the [French] research system as “infantilizing and paralyzing,” argued that French scientists aren’t productive enough, and announced that after decades of failed attempts at…

An epitaph for Mayor Dellums

I suspect that when history remembers my Mayor, I expect they’ll just quote Chip Johnson’s summary of his state of the city address: To say the least, if Dellums had a theme, it was lost in the chaos that converged around him. I gotta say, focusing on crime was not the best move for Ron…

Slacktivist has an interesting plan for abstinence education: Two things I’ve never been able to figure out about “abstinence only” sex education. 1. Isn’t it necessary, at some point, to describe what it is, exactly (or even generally), that they’re supposed to be abstaining from? 2. Since the goal here seems to be to put…

The new science standards survived without reinserting “strengths and weaknesses.” That phrase has been abused by creationists in the past, and its removal is a giant victory. Disco. is trying to hustle a win out of some random changes to the evolution section of the Biology TEKS, but, as they say down here, that dog…

A moment of light

President GOBAMA! closes Gitmo, rebans torture, and says of the struggle against al Qaeda: We intend to win this fight, and we intend to win it on our terms. Damn straight.

An amendment by Cargill is being passed around. It changes ESS standards. Will it change the age of the earth? Oh, I’m so anxious I could plotz. Amendment is on the page listing “(4) Earth in space and time.” She says it adds qualifiers. Seeks “humility and tentativeness.” She wants to insert “differing theories about”…

Liveblogging Texas: McLeroy

Ecto crash cost me a liveblog. Leo offered BS amendments which don’t do much ultimate harm, but do hurt treatment of evolution. Each part of biology 7 gets “analyze and evaluate” at the beginning of the standard. This makes some sections ungrammatical or irrelevant. McLeroy passed an amendment requiring students to know the definition of…