JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Thursday Open Thread

8.9 out of 10 based on 8 ratings

23 comments to Thursday Open Thread

  • #
    David Wojick

    New York can’t buy its way out of blackouts (my latest):

    https://www.cfact.org/2020/12/24/new-york-cant-buy-its-way-out-of-blackouts/

    A fun read for the Holidays.

    Enjoy yourselves!

    David

    50

    • #
      David Wojick

      Speaking of laughs, I have always liked this H L Mencken quote:

      “The liberation of the human mind has never been furthered by dunderheads; it has been furthered by gay fellows who heaved dead cats into sanctuaries and then went roistering down the highways of the world, proving to all men that doubt, after all, was safe – that the god in the sanctuary was finite in his power and hence a fraud. One horse-laugh is worth ten thousand syllogisms. It is not only more effective; it is also vastly more intelligent.”

      30

    • #
      David Wojick

      Correction! My article numbers are for New York State, not City.
      My source just said New York which I mistook for NYC.
      Here are the New York City numbers:
      Peak power = 13,000 MW
      13,000 MW x 168 hours = 2,184,000 MWh of battery backup capacity
      @ $1,500,000 per MWh of capacity = $3,276,000,000,000
      or roughly THREE TRILLION DOLLARS. Still impossible.

      They are building 400 MWh of capacity
      2,184,000 MWh divided by 400 = 5,460 so 5,459 to go
      or 400 divided by 2,184,000 = 0.00018 = 0.018%

      Sorry for the confusion.

      10

  • #
    Geoffrey Williams

    Well Xmas day dawns here in Sydney cool and overcast-such a contrast to recent years. Actually I love it like this. So what’s happened to climate warming this year I’d like to be asking my friends. But they won’t be amused because they’re stuck in a world of leftist climate change and they will never believe different. So in fact I won’t be mentioning the subject but I shall be quietly smiling inside in the knowledge that perhaps I’ve been right all along ..
    Merry Xmas all
    GeoffW

    90

    • #
      el gordo

      La Nina spins her magic, world temperature and sea level are going to fall momentarily. Never let a chance go by to put in a good word for natural variability.

      41

  • #
    el gordo

    Donald introduces the idea of universal basic income for the masses, but the Republicans rejected it.

    ‘House Republicans have shot down a Democratic bid to pass US President Donald Trump’s longshot, end-of-session demand for direct payments to most Americans.’ (SMH)

    He is laying the groundwork for his return in four years.

    11

    • #
      el gordo

      ‘A narrow majority of U.S. adults (54%) say they would oppose the federal government providing a guaranteed income – sometimes called a universal basic income (UBI) – of about $1,000 per month for all adult citizens, whether or not they work; 45% favor the proposal.’ (Pew Research)

      11

    • #
      robert rosicka

      If true it sounds desperate although it’s basically our equivalent of the dole or pension but ours tapers off the more you earn , I have no problem with it under this system but handing out free munnay is fraught with economic damage .

      30

      • #
        el gordo

        The dole system in Oz acts as a safety net, but a real job can’t be beat. The US government spends around $780 billion a year on the military and they could shave some of that off for universal health care and UBI.

        11

  • #
    dinn, rob

    behind the scene–FSB agent Konstantin Kudryavtsev gets a phonecall
    https://balance10.blogspot.com/2020/12/behind-scene-fsb-agent-konstantin.html

    10

  • #
    greggg

    The WHO have changed their explanation of herd immunity on their website.

    From this:
    ‘Herd immunity is the indirect protection from an infectious disease that happens when a population is immune either through vaccination or immunity developed through previous infection. This means that even people who haven’t been infected, or in whom an infection hasn’t triggered an immune response, they are protected because people around them who are immune can act as buffers between them and an infected person. The threshold for establishing herd immunity for COVID-19 is not yet clear.’

    To this:
    ‘‘Herd immunity’, also known as ‘population immunity’, is a concept used for vaccination, in which a population can be protected from a certain virus if a threshold of vaccination is reached.
    Herd immunity is achieved by protecting people from a virus, not by exposing them to it. Read the Director-General’s 12 October media briefing speech for more detail.
    Vaccines train our immune systems to develop antibodies, just as might happen when we are exposed to a disease but – crucially – vaccines work without making us sick. Vaccinated people are protected from getting the disease in question. Visit our webpage on COVID-19 and vaccines for more detail.
    As more people in a community get vaccinated, fewer people remain vulnerable, and there is less possibility for passing the pathogen on from person to person. Lowering the possibility for a pathogen to circulate in the community protects those who cannot be vaccinated due to other serious health conditions from the disease targeted by the vaccine. This is called ‘herd immunity’.
    ‘Herd immunity’ exists when a high percentage of the population is vaccinated, making it difficult for infectious diseases to spread, because there are not many people who can be infected. Read our Q&A on vaccines and immunization for more information.
    The percentage of people who need to have antibodies in order to achieve herd immunity against a particular disease varies with each disease. For example, herd immunity against measles requires about 95% of a population to be vaccinated. The remaining 5% will be protected by the fact that measles will not spread among those who are vaccinated. For polio, the threshold is about 80%.
    Achieving herd immunity with safe and effective vaccines makes diseases rarer and saves lives.’

    The WHO – pandering to big pharma.

    https://www.aier.org/article/who-deletes-naturally-acquired-immunity-from-its-website/

    40

    • #
      Candy

      Aahh… the pandemic. How are supposedly intelligent people still falling for this? Do they not see that this is just about population control? Changing rules every 5 minutes to cower us into compliance and obedience.

      10

  • #
    MP

    This document is from the CDC.

    Pay attention to this part, **unable to perform normal daily activities, unable to work, required care from doctor or health care professional. This is 2.79% of all Rona Vaccinations.

    https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/acip/meetings/downloads/slides-2020-12/slides-12-19/05-COVID-CLARK.pdf

    ?

    40

  • #
    Kevin a

    What’s the best way to boost the economy? Invest in high-voltage transmission lines.

    Our near-term recommendation is to guarantee Project EnergyConnect, a 900-kilometre cable between NSW and South Australia due to begin construction next year. The network operators got approval in January, but there is now uncertainty over whether they will get the funding.

    The $6 billion upgrade we propose would have as its centrepiece 15 projects the Energy Market Operator has already identified as essential.
    https://theconversation.com/whats-the-best-way-to-boost-the-economy-invest-in-high-voltage-transmission-lines-151921

    “Billions paid in transmission lines for power you will not be generating at night?”

    50

  • #
    robert rosicka

    Good news for the coral reefs of the world with a new discovery on how to supercharge regrowth .

    https://bigthink.com/surprising-science/fast-growing-coral-discovery-could-revitalize-oceans?rebelltitem=1#rebelltitem1

    10

    • #
      el gordo

      That is an extraordinary accidental discovery, the quick regeneration is obviously a survival mechanism after being pummelled by cyclones and hurricanes.

      00

  • #
    Orson

    Vitamin D is the best and cheapest preventative and treatment for Covid-19.

    You can find over a dozen of Dr. John Campbell’s daily programmes devoted to that subject. Last August, he declared the relevance of this to pandemic crisis management and the public health authorities neglect of it, practically criminal.

    Perhaps going around the “authorities” is the answer? That’s the Impression ion I get from the Netherlands Times, reporting that doctors there and perhaps Germany, are taking the lead back from failed “leaders.”

    EXCERPT:

    Scientists urge government to issue Vitamin D advice, “arrogance that the government wants to wait”
    A group of scientists and health experts have criticized the government for their wait-and-see approach to taking vitamin D. According to the experts, more and more studies show that Vitamin D can decrease the chance of getting Covid-19 or minimize the symptoms. In an interview with AD, experts argue that the government should use this knowledge.

    Almost two months ago, scientists and health experts called on everyone to take vitamin D as a precaution against coronavirus. They received overwhelming support from GPs, pulmonologists, and other doctors. For example, the leading professor of Nutrition and Health at the Vrije Universiteit, Jaap Seidell, said that “waiting for absolute proof on vitamin D seems unwise given the large number of people with low vitamin D levels and the important role vitamin D plays in the immune system.” He urges people to follow the advice of experts, as was published in The Lancet, to take vitamin D as a precaution.

    Other studies have since supported this claim. Leading German cancer researcher Herman Brenner argues that “vitamin D deficiencies may be responsible for almost nine out of ten corona deaths. That’s a tremendous number!”

    MORE DETAILS
    https://nltimes.nl/2020/12/26/scientists-urge-government-issue-vitamin-d-advice-arrogance-government-wants-wait

    20

  • #
    Bob Cormack

    It is inconceivable that, considering how simple and safe it is to take vitamin D supplements, and the evidence of its efficacy against Covid-19 infection; that doctors still are uninformed about it.

    Christmas day my wife and I facetimed a niece and her husband, who are a nurse and doctor in Oregon. They were just getting the vaccination against Covid, and remarked how worried they had been about being exposed to so many people sick with it. We asked if the had been taking vitamin D supplements, and they had heard nothing about it! (My wife had to explain it to them, along with some of the evidence.)
    The effort that the media and politicians (except Trump) have made to prevent people from knowing about simple preventives and successful therapies is truly remarkable.
    According to them, a largely untested vaccine is the only thing that can save us.

    It’s hard not to think that something is going on besides just incompetence and hatred of Trump.

    40

    • #
      MP

      I don’t know what’s scarier, A doctor and nurse that have not looked into it, they have worked for 10 months in the worlds most infectious environment with the most infectious disease of all times, and have not caught it, yet think an untested syringe of snake oil promoted by the manufacturer of snake oil is their only hope.
      They are advising others as researched health care professionals, or so their patients would believe.

      Repost this on the weekend unthreaded Bob

      10

  • #
    Bob Cormack

    It is inconceivable that, considering how simple and safe it is to take vitamin D supplements, and the evidence of its efficacy against Covid-19 infection; that doctors still are uninformed about it.

    Christmas day my wife and I facetimed a niece and her husband, who are a nurse and doctor in Oregon. They were just getting the vaccination against Covid, and remarked how worried they had been about being exposed to so many people sick with it. We asked if the had been taking vitamin D supplements, and they had heard nothing about it! (My wife had to explain it to them, along with some of the evidence.)
    The effort that the media and politicians (except Trump) have made to prevent people from knowing about simple preventives and successful therapies is truly remarkable.
    According to them, a largely untested vaccine is the only thing that can save us.

    It’s hard not to think that something is going on besides just incompetence and hatred of Trump.

    10