Saturday, August 13, 2016

The New Global Financial Cold War

Suppose a country owes money to another nation’s government or official agency. How can creditors collect, unless there’s an international court and an enforcement system? The IMF and the World Bank were part of that enforcement system and now they’re saying: ‘We’re not going to be part of that anymore. We’re only working for the U.S. State Department and Pentagon. If the Pentagon tells the IMF it’s okay that a country doesn’t have to pay Russia or China, then now they don’t have to pay, as far as the IMF is concerned.’ 

Sunday, July 3, 2016

The United States is ham-handed and brutal

The historical record is unequivocal. The United States is ham-handed and brutal in conceiving and executing clandestine operations, and it is simply no good at espionage; its operatives never have enough linguistic and cultural knowledge of target countries to recruit spies effectively. The CIA also appears to be one of the most easily penetrated espionage organizations on the planet. From the beginning, it repeatedly lost its assets to double agents.
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Nothing has done more to undercut the reputation of the United States than the CIA's "clandestine" (only in terms of the American people) murders of the presidents of South Vietnam and the Congo, its ravishing of the governments of Iran, Indonesia (three times), South Korea (twice), all of the Indochinese states, virtually every government in Latin America, and Lebanon, Afghanistan, and Iraq. The deaths from these armed assaults run into the millions. After 9/11, President Bush asked "Why do they hate us?" From Iran (1953) to Iraq (2003), the better question would be, "Who does not?"

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Monday, May 9, 2016

"Long-term prediction of climate is not possible" IPCC


"In climate research and modelling we should recognize that we are dealing with a coupled-nonlinear chaotic system and therefore that long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible" IPCC 3rd Assessment Report (2001) Section 14.2.2.2 page 774.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Trials of mindfulness to improve mental health selectively report positive results

Power of positive thinking skews mindfulness studies


Researchers at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, analysed 124 published trials of mindfulness as a mental-health treatment, and found that scientists reported positive findings 60% more often than is statistically likely. 

Friday, April 15, 2016

The growth and decline of cryonics




Abstract

Cryogenic storage has become known as an alternative to burial. While a substantial fraction of the public finds cryonics acceptable, enrollment remains miniscule. One of the greatest unknowns is whether cryonics companies will be able to operate continuously until reanimation of those in storage becomes possible. Two failure modes are considered; organizational decline and political attack. The cryonics industry has adopted a strategy that implicitly targets atheist millionaires and alienates women. This is a result of neglecting science in its marketing efforts. American cryonics organizations have also incurred an avoidable political risk by refusing to use the funeral industry as a sales channel. Two alternative strategies are suggested that could minimize failure risk by reversing the stagnation of the industry. A “repackaging” of cryonics could accelerate growth and improve services, as well as the political position of the industry. This repackaging includes a restructuring of the channels for funding cryonics. Integration with the mainstream assumes using the funeral industry as a sales channel. While both political experiences and research results have made the need for these developments apparent, pioneers of the industry have resisted them.

Public Interest Statement

The search for a “fountain of youth” has occupied mankind since the beginning of human history. Cryonics (freezing at death) offers one of the latest solutions. Revival with a regenerated body is seen as possible, assuming technology has become sufficiently advanced. However, cryogenic storage must be maintained, probably for hundreds of years. This paper was written to alert cryonicists of the need for greater organizational robustness, if there was to be any hope that this experiment would succeed. Literature on organizational failure and on barriers to enrollment were reviewed. Two strategies for restarting growth were presented. Unfortunately, industry leadership refused to accept that there were problems and even censored earlier versions of this paper. While cryonicists consider themselves to be taking a scientific approach to life extension, this response to criticism suggests religious fanaticism. An analysis of leadership attitudes and behavior indicates that cryonics has become a religion for many.