Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Gimme Shelter - Gaza's just a shot away

Israeli's like to bang on about how small and fragile Israel is - one factoid oft mentioned is that it is a rifle shot across (from the occupied west bank to the meditterranean).

Well, how do they think people in Gaza feel? its narrower still, and blockaded and bombed.

The continuing hypocrisy of Israel's use of the history of the holocaust as a blanket excuse for perpetrating current war crimes (300 people so far in response to 1) is really astounding.

I don't like petitions, but this one
http://www.avaaz.org/en/gaza_time_for_peace/?cl=161516404&v=2605>from Avaaz seemed as worth signing as others.

Why are western "leaders" so muted in their condemnation?

Monday, December 22, 2008

science versus faith

there is more meaning in entropy than religion
there is more entropy in religion than meaning.

go figure

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Campaign for Real Money.

I expect everyone is getting thoroughly sick of yet more financial service downturn news
whether its Madeoff-with-it, sub-prime, short-selling, etc etc

While I don't have a concrete theory to offer to underpin the idea, I would claim that economists are intellectually now as bankrupt as their concrete bemodiements of their ideas and the time has come to get rid of all this stuff they have produced - we (as medics, scientists, engineers) have MADE stuff that works (better longer lives, more cheaper travel, safer food and water, more sources of entertainment, even self-generated entertainment, communications, safer cheaper nicer buildings you name it) - a century of stock markets are NOT why this all worked - we exponentially improved medicine and technology - the market returns go up and down, up and down, and lurch into criminally in competent (or just plain criminal) collapse at the drop of a hat - Ben Goldcre's wrath at nutritionists and liberal arts journalists and so on could easily be redirected (by me:) at economists - they have been proven WRONG - their models dont work - why do governments seek to bail out the market ?

SHUT IT DOWN. NOW. FOREVER. do something new based on new thinking. Hey, we have the compute power - maybe a combination of Sharia Law Venture Capital, and central planning and barter would work

Vote for a new system - down with the old....out with a 100 years of rubbish!!!!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

MMR-- => measles++ and autism??

So one thing occurred to me reading the chapter in Bad Science on the MMR fiasco.

We can thank Wakefield for causing the UK to do one experiment no
ethics committee would have let us do - which is to massively decrease
the level of vaccination against measles, mumps and rubella, and see
how long it takes for the diseases to pick up abgain in the
population. This must be a source of invaluble data for

But (I didn't see this in the book, maybe its there and I was
laughing at the funny bits too much to spot it) we also ought to be
able to detect any other changes - crucially for example, if the
MMR-gang were a tiny tiny tiny bit right, then the drop in MMR levels
(proved by the current measles outbreak) would lead to a drop (or
slowdown in increase) in Autistic spectrum kids....has anyone done
this study? [I know I know it shouldn't be necessary) - hey though, what if autism went up even more and it appeard MMR protected people slightly from autism or else the people that worry about things like MMR are more likely to have autistic kids and some element of the way the kids are treated or the spectrum is diagnosed or whatever other effect) could be fascinating to find nothing or something!

how to stop people wearing hoodies

start a rumour that they are all people on the sex offenders lists (i.e.
"All Hoodies are Paedos" maybe write a letter to the Sun and Mail about it
that ought to see if go out of fashion faster than Guy Ritchie britgangsta movies... :-)

Monday, December 15, 2008

today's random 3 thoughts before jetlagged breakfast

1. there should be celebrity celebrity charts

2. we need to have counterfeit economists

3. sex is basically a programme for recursive replicating meat machines

4. Heroes is Lost (I mean that televisually, literally , and metaphorically)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The Bicameral Nativity

with apologies to xkcd and Julian Jaynes

Mary had a real friend (Joseph) and an imaginary friend (the Holy Spirit)
and she oscillated between them until one day, she underwent a singular transformation
on the plane of Gallilee
and finally wound up in a stable relationship.

No-one, not even the shepherd, could figure out the problem of the three wise bodies.

I got the "no blues" blues...

in wisconsin
all gods children
cannot play the blues


Monday, December 08, 2008

intelligent design proved

the bbc reports that religious people are shunning nanotechnology. Aside from the idea of shunning technology being rather surreal ("LCD TV, I refuse to talk to you - I am sending you to Coventry with the iPhone"), stranger still is the idea that people who need all the help they can get would avoid any evidence that intelligent design is actually feasible...

I suppose the same thing might be true of GM too...