Happy 4th, everybody (including you all not in the US). Today is a day where Liberty is celebrated. Throw off the yokes of your oppression and stand tall in the freedom of the spirit. Limited time offer, may not be available in all districts, YMMV.
And since we're discussing it, yes I do believe our liberty is at stake (in general it always is, but with this election we're driving with one tire over the cliff's edge). While the Constitution still stands, we are flirting dangerously close to the edge of tyranny (and not just because "my side" didn't win), and it's all being done in the name of "freedom." I see the dismantling of institutions that made this country a pillar of freedom throughout the world and put us in the lead among nations. I see decades of social progress being rolled back. And I see a dangerous yearning for "the strong man narrative" in the general populace (especially in those libertarians who claim to be for individual independence and instead will sacrifice their individualism to a strong man who supports their "issues"). The Fall of Rome (and Greece) is very applicable here. Caesar's and freedom are not compatible, and they hardly ever give up power willingly. In my head I often hear "Sit Down, John!" As well as the opening lines of the next song, "But no, you sent us Congress. Good God, sir, was that fair?"
There's this myth about quitting opioids cold-turkey. It is a myth. Opioids are both a psychological and physical dependency. For all the talk of the "life-saving naloxone injections", coming down that way can be just as rough. There's also this myth of "once you're through the DTs, you're cured." As they say, the craving never goes away. Hell, even quitting cigarettes is hard to do cold-turkey.
So where are we on the "Trump Administration will alter records and testimony on Climate Change" scale? "The Environmental Protection Agency’s chief of staff pressured the top scientist on the agency’s scientific review board to alter her congressional testimony and play down the dismissal of expert advisers, his emails show." Oh, that far along already?
So, climate deniers leaned heavily on satellite temperature readings because they showed less warming that ground station (and gh altitude ballon) data. So what do good scientists do? They reviewed the data. "Mears and Wentz said the corrections were necessary because earlier satellite-based estimates of temperature did not accurately account for satellites making measurements at different times of day. Satellite-based temperature records draw data from not just a single satellite but an entire constellation, which has evolved over time." So, sorry we miscalculated before. Thanks for pointing it out. (Grokked from Joshua Parker)
"The Multnomah County Republican Party (MCRP) has formally decided to pair up with right-wing militia groups to run security at local events." Yeah, that'll go over well. Blackshirts hiring brownshirts has always worked out well in the past. (Grokked from Ann Leckie)
Can you tell fake news from real news? Okay, try Factitious, the game that tests your assumptions. Note, I haven't tried it yet, but I will.
"Scott Pruitt is hatching a new plan to turn his personal and unreasonable denial of the accepted science on climate change into official federal policy: He’ll employ military tactics to review climate science to assess the 'truth.' Or, as a new report in E&E News’ ClimateWire put it, Donald Trump’s EPA chief is 'leading a formal initiative to challenge mainstream climate science:'" Once that fails to determine that Climate Change is false, he'll organize paintball tournaments to "find the truth." Because having scientists reach consensus with a greater than 93% acceptance for over two decades obviously isn't as good as organizing a debate team. (Grokked from Jeff VanderMeer)
"The Pentagon is considering pulling out of a deal it made with thousands of noncitizen recruits with specialized skills: Join the military and we'll put you on the fast track to citizenship." Or shorter, "The Pentagon tells recruits, 'Psych!'". Remember when we were a nation of our word?
It's a matter of trust. And apparently, we Americans don't have much of it anymore. Which, depending on where you stand, is either a harbinger of troubled times or "mission accomplished."
Another study. "In our models, racial attitudes towards blacks and immigration are the key factors associated with support for Trump." (Grokked from Michelle)
That may give you some context for Jim Wright's post about the election fraud insanity of the right.