science vs religion

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Clearest explanation of this I’ve seen, so far:

Cosmic inflation: ‘Spectacular’ discovery hailed

Researchers believe they have found the signal left in the sky by the super-rapid expansion of space that must have occurred just fractions of a second after everything came into being.

It takes the form of a distinctive twist in the oldest light detectable with telescopes.

Gravitational waves from inflation put a distinctive twist pattern in the polarisation of the CMB

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we are at our brightest in the afternoon, and dimmest in the evening.

Not what you’re expecting…

(been busy. sorry.)

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http://www.crispian.net/PTIR/Nonsense.html

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But, seeing as how tomorrow (12/12/2012) is the day the world ends, I guess this will be my last post.

Oh, wait. It’s already tomorrow in Australia, and there’s no story on Google news about them all being dead.

Hmmmmm…

Never mind.

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Starts at 10PM EST.

Edit: Here’s another link that’s live now. Seems to update periodically, but I can’t tell which object is Toutatis. Probably the one in the middle?

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On Tuesday, for the first time, government scientists are saying recent extreme weather events are likely connected to man-made climate change. It’s the conclusion of a report by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The report says last year’s record drought in Texas was made “roughly 20 times more likely” because of man made climate change, specifically meaning warming that comes from greenhouse gasses like carbon dioxide. The study, requested by NOAA, looked at 50 years of weather data in Texas and concluded that man-made warming had to be a factor in the drought.

The head of NOAA’s climate office, Tom Karl, said: “What we’re seeing, not only in Texas but in other phenomena in other parts of the world, where we can’t explain these events by natural variability alone. They’re just too rare, too uncommon.”

More at the link.

Up next: Famine!

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Faster-than-light neutrinos … aren’t, scientists conclude

I’ll let you read it for yourself, but there’s this, that absolutely contradicts the GOP “we make our own facts” POV:

The OPERA researchers weren’t sure what could explain their anomalous results, having checked and rechecked their work, so they released their findings to the larger community of physicists in hopes that experts around the world could help them figure it out.

I fuckin’ hate the GOP. The world isn’t flat, and other points of view are worth considering. Their rigid ideology, alone, disqualifies them from ruling the world.

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(This is a follow-up to Joe’s “Remember” post.)

Idiot America: How Stupidity Became a Virtue in the Land of the Free
By Charles P. Pierce.
Doubleday, 293 pages., $26

The pastor from Pennsylvania put it best. On the eve of a trial to determine the legality of a local school board’s decision to teach intelligent design alongside evolutionary theory, the Rev. Ray Mummert, a leader of the anti-Darwin brigade, made national headlines with a statement that cut straight to the heart of America’s culture wars. “We’ve been attacked,” he protested, “by the intelligent, educated segment of our culture.” In an increasingly divided nation, where one is asked to take sides on every issue from the creation of the universe to the first lady’s triceps, it was perhaps inevitable that people should be required to make a stand on the subject of being smart.

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And the dumbing down of America continues at a frenetic pace.

Alien-seeking radio dishes go dark
Budget crunch forces closure of key component in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence

(CBS News) Any number of headlines about E.T. not being able to phone home are already hitting the wires, but the hackneyed reference to everyone’s favorite pop culture alien figure underscores a more troubling reality: the decades-long search for extraterrestrial life suffered a blow with the announcement that a $50 million alien telescope array is being mothballed because of a lack of funding.

SETI, an acronym for the Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence, refers to a project that’s been underway to answer the not-so-inconsiderable question of whether humans are truly alone in the universe. The original plans called for the Allen Telescope Array, part of the Hat Creek Radio Observatory, to house as many as 350 dishes.

However, budgetary constraints have forced the SETI Institute to shut the first 42 telescopes which were installed in 2007 to scan the skies for evidence of alien life. It’s not clear when – or whether – the telescopes will return to operations. SETI received the bulk of its funding from a couple of sources: the National Science Foundation, and the State of California.

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Just clicking on links, not having had quite enough coffee yet, I ran across this:

The Precarious but Profound Middle Ground In The Struggle Between Religion and Science

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m going to click on a link like that. But in the closing paragraphs I found a gem that I think may help explain why “liberals” can’t hold together the way that “conservatives” do.

Read the rest of this entry »

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