A Climte Change Conference with an actual debate of the science

What a concept!

‘The Heartland Institute’s Seventh International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC-7) will take place in Chicago, Illinois from Monday, May 21 to Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at the Hilton Chicago Hotel, 720 South Michigan Avenue. The event will follow the NATO Summit taking place in Chicago on May 19–21.’

This is one Climate Conference which promises to actually address the science and not just the politically correct rhetoric.  It is also likely to address the issues arising from faulty or downright fraudulent science on the topic of Anthropogenic Climate Change:

‘On November 22, 2011, a second batch of emails among scientists working at the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit was released by an unknown whistle-blower. “Climategate II” revealed prominent scientists concealing data, discussing global warming as a political cause rather than a balanced scientific inquiry, and admitting to scientific uncertainties that they denied in their public statements. ‘

Did I mention that Vaclav Klaus, the Czech President, will deliver the first dinner speech, on Monday, May 21st?

Of course, not everyone is planning to be there.  Donna Laframboise of NoFrakkingConsensus, for one, has distanced herself from this event over concerns about Heartland’s ethics.

Brian Doherty on Why Young People Love Ron Paul

…lost shipments of bubonic plague…

Who needs bio-terrorists with immunology researchers like we have?

But many epidemiologists and public health experts say poor handling inside laboratories, rather than bioterror, is the real threat. More than 100 accidents in high-security labs took place between 2003 and 2009, involving everything from flu-infected ferret bites to dropped vials of encephalitis, slips with Ebola needles and lost shipments of bubonic plague. The 1977 “Russian flu” epidemic may have involved a lab escape. Less accidentally, anthrax used in the 2001 attacks almost certainly originated in U.S. military laboratories.’

Of course, there have been a lot of questions about the origins of some recent epidemics:  say, from Mexican neighbourhoods right next to immunology research facilities….

In the mainstream media, we have – of course – not heard enough to put the pieces together, and only those epidemics for which there were already developed vaccines got any press at all, even though some much more virulent and deadly epidemics occurred.  (Example:  4 strains of hemorrhagic fever epidemic occurred almost simultaneously at one such Mexican neighbourhood a few years ago…thousands got sick, hundreds died – but most press has not deemed this news-worthy.)

From when, in my student days, I had an opportunity to peek into immunology labs, I have been a strong critic of their lack of rigorous adherence to proper scientific procedures and their flawed governance.  But, if I start ranting on that topic, I will be typing for days and never post this…

Let me just say that it was sufficient to make me highly skeptical of the scientific validity of any claims to come out of specifically ‘medical’ laboratories.  Most people working there have such an inflated sense of purpose that they don’t think that regular rules of proper science apply to anyone of such exulted status as theirs.

On a related note…

Have you ever read a novel where some rogue group develops a deadly virus in a dastardly plot to kill everyone but the chosen few, whom they protect with a vaccine?

No immunologist would go for this!

Why?

Because vaccines just aren’t that effective.

The best estimates are that the efficacy rate (how they actually protect people in the real-world) of vaccinations is less than half their effectiveness as measured under laboratory conditions.  In Canada, vaccines with as low efficacy rates as 17% have been approved. (Yes, I cannot support these numbers, but know this directly from an immunologist who resigned in disgust over the approval…and who is still active in the field, so it is imperative that I protect this source.)

That means that less out of 10 people vaccinated, between 2  and 5 will actually derive any protection as a result of having been vaccinated.  (Since the efficacy rate is about half the rate in labs, so even the best vaccine will not give any protection to half the people who receive it.)

Remember, the purpose of vaccination is sufficient ‘herd immunity‘ to slow down transmission, not individual protection!

While even many run-of-the-mill MD’s are unaware of these statistics, most immunologists are.  So, the novels with the ‘vaccinate ‘our people’ and release a deadly virus’ would not be carried out by any immunologist, because they understand the limitations of vaccination.

Which, really, is something we should all be educated about.

After all, if we think we are protected from a disease, we will not take the same precautions against catching it as if we were aware that we may – or may not – be protected…a very important distinction with real-life consequences.

Don’t get me wrong:  I am convinced that vaccines are a very powerful tool.  I just think that any tool, if used improperly, has a potential to do more harm than good.  Vaccines are no different!

Net Neutrality Becomes the Law in the Netherlands

This is indeed positive news:

In addition, the law includes an anti-wiretapping provision, restricting internet providers from using invasive wiretapping technologies, such as deep packet inspection (DPI). They may only do so under limited circumstances, or with explicit consent of the user, which the user may withdraw at any time. The use of DPI gained much attention when KPN admitted that it analysed the traffic of its users to gather information on the use of certain apps. The law allows for wiretapping with a warrant.’

 

Bits of Freedom goes on to explain that with passing this law, Netherlands becomes the first country to implement the EU guidelines on Net neutrality.

This comes shortly after we have had a tangentially related – but nonetheless noteworthy – ruling from EU Court of Justice: No Copyright on Computer Functionality or Computer Languages.

Which only makes sense.

Scientific American raises concern about unpublished source-code

Scientific American has sounded the alarm about the dangers of ‘doing science’ and then presenting the results without permitting anyone to see the code which was used to ‘massage’ process the data.  (Global Warming apocalypse-predicting ‘computer models’ pop into my mind:  ‘Yeah, our computer models predict catastrophic climate changes – no, you can’t see how!  Just take our word for it!’)

Pseudo-scientists hide behind the ‘copyright on source-code’ to present bad research – and many genuine scientists are truly limited by it, too.  The result is that, without the source-code, it is impossible to replicate their research:  an essential step in the actual real scientific process.

Without this step – replicating one team’s research by another, unrelated team to either verify or disprove their results – we will not be able to tell ‘good science’ from ‘bad science’ – or, indeed, downright scientific fraud. This will not only undermine people’s trust in all ‘science’, it will lead to people getting seriously hurt as ‘bad science’ becomes public policy.

This is yet another example of how copyright has been taken to a level which is harmful to us all.