Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Science Matters: Temperatures Rising?

NOPE, temps are not rising.  Planet Earth is actually on course for a little "Ice Age" in the next few years.  Surprise, Surprise.  Read all about it below:

Ever since December temperatures in the Arctic have consistently been lower than minus 20 C. In April the extent of Arctic sea ice was back to where it was in April 13 years ago. Furthermore, whereas in 2008 most of the ice was extremely thin, this year most has been at least two metres thick. The Greenland ice cap last winter increased in volume faster than at any time for years.
As for those record temperatures brought in 2016 by an exceptionally strong El Niño, the satellites now show that in recent months global temperatures have plummeted by more that 0.6 degrees: just as happened 17 years ago after a similarly strong El Niño had also made 1998 the “hottest year on record”.
This means the global temperature trend has now shown no further warming for 19 years...

Research shows a natural cooling cycle that occurs every 230 years began in 2014 and will send temperatures plummeting even further by 2019.
Scientists are also expecting a “huge reduction” in solar activity for 33 years between 2020 and 2053 that will cause thermometers to crash.
Both cycles suggest Earth is entering a global cooling cycle that could have devastating consequences for global economy, human life and society as we know it.
If predictions of the world-wide big freeze come true, the plot to 2004 film The Day After Tomorrow would not be far from reality during winter. ...
from the  Danish Meteorological Institute (DMI)

Link to article:  Earth has Not Warmed in the Past 19 Years

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Chrissy Tiegen: Beauty & the Beast Within

Thou shalt not revile the gods
nor curse the ruler of thy people.
 Exodus 22:28 

Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Model Chrissy Tiegen blames President Trump for her severe anxiety.  How I wish that the source of people's anxieties were that easy to figure-out. From reading the article and her very long-term trolling of Mr Trump,  I am guessing that her problems are quite deep seated; have multiple causes and tangled roots that go back many, many years. Simply impeaching the POTUS will not be the answer.

I hope she gets better, and does not get nuttier.  I pray that her baby comes to no harm. I happen to think that her husband, John Legend, with his horrid words against our President, adds to her anxiety issues. Together, their daily conversations  must be like water that gets murkier and murkier as they stir each other up to hate, hate, and more hate. (BTW, he's got  a concert at our local venue this June. Not that I would waste my money on such an outspoken POTUS-basher; but even if I were to change my mind, it's already sold-out).

Anyhoo,  here are 10 suggestions for Ms Tiegen -- some of which I've personally tried because EVERYONE has anxiety issues. #10 is most important:

1. See your Psychiatrist.  You obviously need to Up the number of visits judging by the article
2.  Have your doctor adjust/tweak/change your meds accordingly
3. Go on a vacation with hubby; leave baby Lulu with your parents; Enjoy
4.  Rest.  Sleep 8 hours a night at the very least
5.  Be active.  Take longer walks.  Join an exercise class. 
6.  Do what you do best: gourmet cooking
7.  STOP the vulgar language with which you pepper your conversations/posts. You upset others. If others around you are not happy, that will rub off on you. 
8.  STOP complaining so much.  Tell John too.  You both need to be more thankful for the super-abundant blessings with which you've been bestowed by God (good looks, good health,wealth, influence,  and talent, to name a few). 
 9. Read the following short article. Fill that pretty head of yours with research on the link between complaining and re-wiring your brain.

10.  If you can  do only ONE thing, Ms Tiegen,  read  the short passage below and pay special attention to the words in bold:

 Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. 
Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance
of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.

Did you see that, Ms Teigen? Read it again: ... they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation ...  
What does the word damnation entail?  I can think of a few -- unhappiness, depression, anxiety, confusion, pain, and so on. Aren't these some of your issues? 

Thus, I strongly and seriously suggest that you stop with the complaints, the negativity, the hatred, the insults of the POTUS.  If God has pronounced damnation on this type of behavior, common sense would indicate that to cease said behavior would alleviate some, if not all, the problems that you currently suffer.  You may even avoid worse problems in the future.  

Remember: it was the almighty God who gave us Mr Trump as U.S. President. The full reasons may never be known; but he is to be respected for holding that office.  Take heart that his role is but for a season (4 years, 8 years, or less).

If this "curse" were mere words -- meaningless & frivolous, an outright lie -- then the God I worship would not be the one true God.  Atheists would have my attention. However, I have so much confidence in His Word that I see nothing but good things ahead for you if you follow my suggestion.

 Thou shalt not revile the gods

nor curse the ruler of thy people.
 Exodus 22:28

---->  Chrissy Tiegen Meltdown

Friday, May 26, 2017

Commander in Chief: Alpha Male in Action

Hahaha!  Get out of Mr Trump's way. With our POTUS, it's definitely no more kowtowing a-la Pres. Obama. Good riddance.  That so-called Mr Nice Guy with low self esteem has left the office and taken a vacay; and will return only when the next President voted in is a cowardly-big-government-is-your-hope Democrat.  God forbid. Not wanted. No way, no how.  I want America to come first once again. No more wimps. Confidence begets Confidence.  It's been a long 8 years, and we've finally got a real man at the White House. 

The wicked flee when no man pursueth: 
but the righteous are bold as a lion.
Proverbs 28:1

 #MAGA #AlphaMaleBehavior #LoL #WhereIsYourSenseOfHumor  #NoToBigGovernment  #NoWhining #LowerTaxes #First! #BalanceTheBudget  #NoRussianToldMeForWhomToVote #ThankfulDaily #Happy #Celebrate #MoveToCanadaWhyDontYou #BuildTheWall #OurPresident #RespectYourself

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Science Matters, Part 4: Scott Adams of DILBERT fame is a Sceptic

Scott Adams is a climate denialist.  His cartoon, and his very well-written essay need to be re-shared here, there, everywhere:

by Scott Adams

I don’t know much about science, and even less about climate science. So as a practical matter, I like to side with the majority of scientists until they change their collective minds. They might be wrong, but their guess is probably better than mine.
That said, it is mind-boggling to me that the scientific community can’t make a case for climate science that sounds convincing, even to some of the people on their side, such as me. In other words, I think scientists are right (because I play the odds), but I am puzzled by why they can’t put together a convincing argument, whereas the skeptics can, and easily do. Shouldn’t it be the other way around?
As a public service, and to save the planet, obviously, I will tell you what it would take to convince skeptics that climate science is a problem that we must fix. Please avoid the following persuasion mistakes.
1. Stop telling me the “models” (plural) are good. If you told me one specific model was good, that might sound convincing. But if climate scientists have multiple models, and they all point in the same general direction, something sounds fishy. If climate science is relatively “settled,” wouldn’t we all use the same models and assumptions?
And why can’t science tell me which one of the different models is the good one, so we can ignore the less-good ones? What’s up with that? If you can’t tell me which model is better than the others, why would I believe anything about them?
2. Stop telling me the climate models are excellent at hindcasting, meaning they work when you look at history. That is also true of financial models, and we know financial models can NOT predict the future. We also know that investment advisors like to show you their pure-luck past performance to scam you into thinking they can do it in the future. To put it bluntly, climate science is using the most well-known scam method (predicting the past) to gain credibility. That doesn’t mean climate models are scams. It only means scientists picked the least credible way to claim credibility. Were there no options for presenting their case in a credible way?
Just to be clear, hindcasting is a necessary check-off for knowing your models are rational and worthy of testing in the future. But it tells you nothing of their ability to predict the future. If scientists were honest about that point, they would be more credible.
3. Tell me what percentage of warming is caused by humans versus natural causes. If humans are 10% of the cause, I am not so worried. If we are 90%, you have my attention. And if you leave out the percentage caused by humans, I have to assume the omission is intentional. And why would you leave out the most important number if you were being straight with people? Sounds fishy.
There might be a good reason why science doesn’t know the percentage of human-made warming and still has a good reason for being alarmed. I just haven’t seen it, and I’ve been looking for it. Why would climate science ignore the only important fact for persuasion?
Today I saw an article saying humans are responsible for MORE than 100% of warming because the earth would otherwise be in a cooling state. No links provided. Credibility = zero.
4. Stop attacking some of the messengers for believing that our reality holds evidence of Intelligent Design. Climate science alarmists need to update their thinking to the “simulated universe” idea that makes a convincing case that we are a trillion times more likely to be a simulation than we are likely to be the first creatures who can create one. No God is required in that theory, and it is entirely compatible with accepted science. (Even if it is wrong.)
5. Skeptics produce charts of the earth’s temperature going up and down for ages before humans were industrialized. If you can’t explain-away that chart, I can’t hear anything else you say. I believe the climate alarmists are talking about the rate of increase, not the actual temperatures. But why do I never see their chart overlayed on the skeptics’ chart so we can see the difference? That seems like the obvious thing to do. In fact, climate alarmists should throw out everything but that one chart. 
6. Stop telling me the arctic ice on one pole is decreasing if you are ignoring the increase on the other pole. Or tell me why the experts observing the ice increase are wrong. When you ignore the claim, it feels fishy.
7. When skeptics point out that the Earth has not warmed as predicted, don’t change the subject to sea levels. That sounds fishy. 
8. Don’t let the skeptics talk last. The typical arc I see online is that Climate Scientists point out that temperatures are rising, then skeptics produce a chart saying the temperatures are always fluctuating, and have for as far as we can measure. If the real argument is about rate of change, stop telling me about record high temperatures as if they are proof of something.
9. Stop pointing to record warmth in one place when we’re also having record cold in others. How is one relevant and the other is not?
10. Don’t tell me how well your models predict the past. Tell me how many climate models have ever been created, since we started doing this sort of thing, and tell me how many have now been discarded because they didn’t predict correctly. If the answer is “All of the old ones failed and we were totally surprised because they were good at hindcasting,” then why would I trust the new ones? 
11. When you claim the oceans have risen dramatically, you need to explain why insurance companies are ignoring this risk and why my local beaches look exactly the same to me. Also, when I Google this question, why are half of the top search results debunking the rise? How can I tell who is right? They all sound credible to me.
12. If you want me to believe warmer temperatures are bad, you need to produce a chart telling me how humankind thrived during various warmer and colder eras. Was warming usually good or usually bad?
You also need to convince me that economic models are accurate. Sure, we might have warming, but you have to run economic models to figure out how that affects things. And economic models are, as you know, usually worthless.
13. Stop conflating the basic science and the measurements with the models. Each has its own credibility. The basic science and even the measurements are credible. The models are less so. If you don’t make that distinction, I see the message as manipulation, not an honest transfer of knowledge.
14. If skeptics make you retreat to Pascal’s Wager as your main argument for aggressively responding the climate change, please understand that you lost the debate. The world is full of risks that might happen. We don’t treat all of them as real. And we can’t rank any of these risks to know how to allocate our capital to the best path. Should we put a trillion dollars into climate remediation or use that money for a missile defense system to better protect us from North Korea?
Anyway, to me it seems brutally wrong to call skeptics on climate science “anti-science” when all they want is for science to make its case in a way that doesn’t look exactly like a financial scam.* Is that asking a lot?
People ask me why I keep writing on this topic. My interest is the psychology around it, and the persuasion game on both sides. And it seems to me that climate scientists are the Hillary Clinton of scientists. They think facts and reason will persuade the public. Even though science knows that doesn’t generally work.
* Or a Chinese hoax. They look similar.
by Scott Adams, March 8, 2017

link:  Dilbert Disses Global Warming  by James Delingpole

link:   Climate Alarmist are not to be easily believed, by Scott Adams

Monday, May 22, 2017

While I Was Driving, 8: Cars and License Plates

I drive my son to school daily which is the reason I cannot help but keep an eye-out for interesting license plates. That, and the accessibility of my cell phone is why I have many pictures.  Here are a few more: 

Any which way you look  ...

You've just answered my question

Hungry much?

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Cloud Eggs: An Anytime Recipe

Cloud Eggs Are the Latest Brunch Craze
Taking Over Instagram -- by House Beautiful

If you're a fan of   sunny-side-up eggs, you might want to make them partly cloudy the next time you brunch.

Instagrammers are taking the egg and sky metaphors to new heights with the latest craze — nestling a runny yolk right in the center of an egg white "cloud." Affectionately dubbed "cloud eggs," this fluffy breakfast concoction just might be eggs' best look yet.

Full Article: Eggs-in-a-Cloud


Thursday, May 18, 2017

How to Make your own Spherical Tetra Lamp

Really cool - looking.  Held together by paper clips!  A friend of ours made it; Another friend expertly crafted the wood  base.  It's a seamless "marriage" made in heaven. Looks easy to make the lamp,  right?  Nope.  I still can not get the hang of it.  Will need to begin with a real-life craft class first.  Then, it looks repetitive, but not too difficult. Just time consuming, which I don't mind.


Step 1:

Step 2: 

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Australian Shepherd Dog

Met Max the Aussie while on a dog walk. He and owner live in the neighborhood.  We notice and try to get to know the dogs that happen to cross our paths during walks.  Maxie is friendly (his owner, even friendlier), a pure-bred, and purchased at the local-mall Pet store as a pup for a whopping $1800 a couple of years ago. However, you somehow get over the sticker shock when the price includes all of his medical needs for the first year: Vet check ups, neutering, inoculations, I.D. chip;  plus a warranty of his overall good health. Till I met him, I had not known that some Australian Shepherds are born with short -- seemingly intentionally cropped/bobbed -- tails.  So unlike the emailed picture from DogVacay below.

Look, Ma, no tail!

bushy tail

Max is a cutie, and really beautiful.  I have toyed with the idea of a mall pet-store purchase in the past. For now we've been spared that route with our pure-bred Shih Tzu whom we were able to snag at our local animal shelter for the measly price of $100; which included her DIVA personality; and everything else that  Max came with, sans doc visits and hair ribbons. 

Shih Tzu


Sunday, May 14, 2017

Danse Macabre Piano Duo by Camille Saint-Saëns

Danse Macabre Op. 40  

Daughter plays same beautiful & "fun" Piano duet, 4 years apart.  Can you spot the difference between the 2 versions? 

Version 1 Jill is happiest with this version;   played with a friend -- a Piano grad student -- April 2017

Version 2 Jill playing  in year 2013.  Aaaaah, this brings back good  memories.  We will forever miss the multi-talented JP 

Friday, May 12, 2017

Clarinetist, then and Now

Our son began his Clarinet lessons back in year 2009 of which I wrote about HERE.  This was in addition to his ongoing Piano lessons which began in year 2005.  His focus since Fall 2016 is on majoring in Clarinet Performance while in college ... the very same college where he began his Clarinet lessons via the Community School of the Arts.

We  recently bought him, as promised, a brand new Bb clarinet by Royal Clarinet.

Christmas kids' concert in PJs

Clarinetists + Professor, Year 2016-2017

Music  store display

sign at Music Store

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Womens' Health: Your Healthiest YOU

  Celebrate Women’s Health!

It’s never too early or too late to work toward being your healthiest you! This National Women’s Health Week, May 14–20, is a great time to empower all women to make their health a top priority.

pc: Shakell

Women often serve as primary caregivers for their families, putting the needs of their spouses, partners, children, and parents before their own. As a result, women’s health and well-being can become secondary. National Women’s Health Week brings together communities, businesses, government, health organizations, and other groups in an effort to promote women’s health. So remind all the women in your life to be sure they are taking care of their own health along with all the other people they care for.

Build health by building healthy habits

National Women’s Checkup Day is May 8. Follow these tips to help stay your healthiest.
GET PREVENTIVE SCREENINGS. Visit a health care professional to receive regular checkups and preventive screenings. Important screenings for women include an annual physical, blood pressure test, and screenings for cervical cancer (pap test), cholesterol, and thyroid function. Starting at age 50, women should get screened for breast cancer every one to two years. And after menopause, women should get a bone density test to be screened for osteoporosis. Don’t forget to ask about nutrition screenings. You don’t have to guess if you are deficient in vitamin D or B12.

GET ACTIVE. Regular activity is one of the most effective strategies for maintaining a healthy weight. Regular physical activity helps to improve your cardiorespiratory (heart, lungs, and blood vessels) and muscular fitness, helps with mood, and can help reduce your risk of cognitive decline. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity activity daily. An example would be brisk walking—activity that raises your heart rate and during which you could talk but not sing. Also aim for strength-building (resistance) exercise 2-3 days per week.

EAT HEALTHY. Eating healthy isn’t really that difficult—and the health payoff is incredible. To reduce your risk of chronic diet-related health issues:
  • Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables—at least seven servings per day. Smoothies can be a delicious way to increase your fruit & vegetable intake.
  • Eat whole grains, such as whole wheat, oatmeal, and brown rice—and avoid white grains
  • Eat lean proteins, including fish, skinless poultry, lean red meats, dry beans, and eggs
  • Cook primarily with monounsaturated fats, such as olive oil, and limit fried food
  • Limit saturated and trans fats, cholesterol, sodium, and excess sugars
  • Drink alcohol in moderation—for women, that means no more than one drink per day
  • Take dietary supplements to close remaining nutritional gaps

GET ENOUGH SLEEP AND MANAGE STRESS. Try to get a good night’s rest every night. Adequate sleep makes you more productive and energetic—this means 7–8 hours per night. Develop a sleep routine that includes limiting computer screen time at night. Recognize the signs of stress and take action to address it. Focus on controlling what you can, and let the rest go.
AVOID UNHEALTHY BEHAVIORS. Smoking, texting while driving, not wearing a seatbelt or bicycle helmet, and other unhealthy or unsafe habits can severely damage your overall health.

Most of us go many days between trips to the doctor, a fact that makes it clear that we must take day-to-day responsibility for our health. Whether it’s pushing ourselves a little harder at the gym or calling our doctors to make sure we’re up to date on our screenings, we can all truly make a difference—not just for ourselves, but for all the people we love.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Dumpster Roses: Sad Conclusion

Uh oh, could this be the same young man for whom there was a  makeshift memorial  at our HOA dumpster ? 

 Looks like Michael was arrested in year 2013 during a major Heroin bust. In year 2015 he passed away.  I will take a wild guesas at the cause of death and say it was by Heroin overdose. How awful. How very sad.  *Cue heroin death scenes from Breaking Bad

It's also terrifying: unless Michael found Christ as Lord and Saviour while in the land of the living, he has sin/guilt on his hands for selling this stuff. No other recourse is available --not even thru others' prayers -- as evidenced by God's Word below. He now faces the ultimate Judge of all people (which includes me and you), and His name is Jesus Christ , the Lord.  

It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment ... 
But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons.
 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Someone obviously loved him dearly in life, though -- maybe even tried everything to help him -- as evidenced by the red roses and gummies.  I bet it was his momma. 

Bottom Right: Same name & birthdate 


Authorities ID Heroin-ring Suspects

Red Roses and Gummies

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Science Matters, Part 3: What IS the Scientific Method?

FYI:  How to fairly assess what any Scientist says or claims --

Identifying 8 necessary criteria for a work to be considered useful science:

What is the “Scientific method”?
March 1, 2017's March for Science calls for “robustly funded” science and “political leaders and policymakers to enact evidence-based policies in the public interest.”  But is this just an attempt to dress up the marchers’ political beliefs as science? And what do they mean by science?
Fortunately for those who care, there is a remarkable level of agreement in the writings of scientific pioneers such as Francis Bacon, Isaac Newton, and Benjamin Franklin on the nature of the scientific method. That agreement is also reflected in the definition provided by the Oxford English Dictionary.
We have expanded on the established definition and identified eight necessary criteria for a work to be considered useful science. The criteria include objectivity and full disclosure. We expect that most scientists would agree with these criteria as obviously true and important.
The pioneers of science charted the way by describing how to comply with the criteria. To be objective, according to Newton, the study should compare all reasonable hypotheses by using a fair and balanced experimental design.
We have summarized the eight criteria on a one-page checklist (available at guidelinesforscience.com  ). You can easily refer to it to assess whether something you are looking at is a work of science. By using the checklist, you do not have to depend on an authority to tell you “this is what the science says.” Knowing and agreeing with the criteria in the checklist does not help. To be useful, the checklist must be used.
The checklist is concerned only with the scientific method, so one does not need to be an expert in the field or topic to use it. In fact, experts may have difficulty rating the scientific compliance of works in their own field.  They are likely to be biased against findings that challenge conventional wisdom.
We found that the ratings of raters who did not use the checklist were unreliable. Their ratings differed substantially from those derived using the checklist. When faculty and students raters used the checklist, their ratings were remarkably consistent. The checklist is available at guidelinesforscience.com .
The checklist is badly needed. One cannot rely on the fact that a purported discovery was published in a high-status scientific publication. When we used the checklist to rate papers published in leading scientific journals, we found less than one percent of them to be compliant with the scientific method.
We suggest that you try out the checklist at the March for Science rallies. Show your respect for the scientific method and, as Newton emphasized, be willing to consider alternatives. Be fair in evaluating alternative hypotheses. You have to ask yourself the question, “Can I imagine any evidence that would prove my favoured hypothesis is wrong?” If you can’t, you are not approaching the subject with an open mind. You also fail Newton’s criteria for understanding science.
Speakers should comply with science. Listeners should be respectful and request of the speakers, “Please show us that you have complied with science.” It’s not enough for them to say that they have followed the scientific method.
Progress in all fields relies on the scientific method. Science is a never-ending, never-settled process.
Voting has no place in science. Scientific laws always eventually prevail over the political laws created by our elected officials.

The March for Science should not simply be another way for us to express our opinions. It should not be an effort to pressure scientists and voters to agree with us. The scientific method is the best way we have of engaging in factual disputes.
Written by: 
J. Scott Armstrong (jscottarmstrong@upenn.edu ) is a professor at the Wharton School at the University of PennsylvaniaKesten C. Green (kesten.green@unisa.edu.auteaches managerial economics in the University of South Australia Business School.
Science Matters, Part 1

Science Matters, Part 2