Lions and Tigers and Bears (and Swine and Bees), Oh My!

Like the cowardly lion, people just love to be afraid.  From bear attacks in Anchorage, to “pandemic” swine flu, to famine caused by a mass die-off of bees, to rampant child abuse and abductions, the news media, the government, and experts of various sorts constantly bombard us with warnings about current or imminent disasters.  Continue reading

The Inhumane Society

On June 8, 2007, the local newspaper carried a telling story.  It was about the experience of a baby moose that was apparently starving to death because it could no longer nurse after its mother had been killed by a bear.  The moose was picked up by a local group dedicated to increasing the alaskan moose population, treated for a couple of days by a vet, then turned over to the zoo which killed it when it appeared not be thriving.

The reason this all was considered newsworthy was because the state’s head wildlife cop wanted charges filed against the folks who “rescued” the moose because they had no permit to do so.  Continue reading

Plants, animals, and climate change: Some ruminations on the environment

A number of years ago I wrote a couple of pamphlets about the politics of AIDS.  At the time there was a vast amount of mis- and disinformation about AIDS, its causes, its methods of transmission, and the risks it posed to individuals being peddled as science and fact.  I argued that many scientists, much of the AIDS activist movement, and most of the mainstream media either ignored data that was inconvenient to their analysis or circulated “facts” that were simply untrue in order to scare people into supporting one political agenda or another.  Now that global warming has replaced AIDS as the current threat to the existence of humanity, if not the world, I see similar politicking, suppression of debate, misunderstanding, and manipulation of the scientific data being used to deceive and frighten people.

Such fear-mongering, however, would not be effective unless there was a large group ready and willing to be convinced that, this time and at long last, the sky really is falling.  Despite the fact that neither a sudden ice age, genital herpes, acid rain, AIDS, SARS, nor any one of the other disasters we have been warned about in the last 20 years or so has lived up to the hype, lots of people are worrying that this time the experts and news media are right. Continue reading