Friday, August 28, 2009



Yup. I hate people and wish there were fewer of them squeezed onto my little island. There's an interesting little ding-dong going on CiF at the moment below this article about the soaring birth rate in this country. There's some pretty good comments on there.

Please address all accusations of eugenics and population control to "Your Mum, My Bed, My Room, The Shag Palais, Devon". I thank you.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

the essence of manliness


Its testosterone, of course. A paper covered in New Scientist found reduced levels in fathers and in older Senegalese men and higher levels in men with multiple wives. The conclusion was that fatherhood lowers levels. There's an interesting circle of casue and effect here that they might have got the wrong way round. Testosterone is associated with dominance in men (pdf), as anyone who has been threatened with a slap by a two metre wide bouncer knows. Could it be that the domestic servitude of diligent and conscientious fatherhood stifles our inherent manliness in a manner akin to the subordinate life of an omega-male and quenching release of the man-essence? (No sperm-related puns, please).

Addition 02-09-09:

Female gorillas imitate oestrus and engage in copulation when pregnant in order to obstruct fertile competitors mating with them.

manifest awesomeness


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

tragedy or triumph?


New Scientist article from fluffy pseudo-scientist with a very positive message. I can't help but feel slightly sceptical. Especially when there's these sort of exchanges going on. My own personal gripe is with the first"i": Information. Van Vugt seems to think that if information is just made available to people then they will act upon it rationally and Western Democracy will give birth to Ecotopia. This ignores that little thing called "teh interweb" which currently supplies answers to pretty much any question you want to ask. The problem is that, unless you are dedicated enough to the pursuit of objective truth, it can also simply reinforce any and all of a peasant's prejudices. I am not in the least ashamed to voice my honest opinion that the vast majority of decisions made by humans across the globe are based upon misinformation, delusion and prejudice. Raising all children to be committed free thinkers is a goal which continues to elude our society to this day. The majority of the general public are still anally retentive, bigoted fucktards. Maybe Van Vugt should apply a little of his pseudo-science to this problem before trying to convince us that he's found a solution to all humanity's environmental problems.

Monday, August 24, 2009

UK government ignores potential of marine renewable generation in favour of coal


As I keep pointing out, the UK government is shit. Particularly so when it comes to combating climate change. And even more so when it comes to marine renewable generation technology.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Q: What happens when the state fails to regulate polluters?


A: Anarchy.

There is a lesson here for all governments.

smell the bullshit


Today we have a special serving of Graun-flavoured BS:
"Coral reefs support a quarter of life on Earth"

No they don't. Don't be so fucking stupid.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

why peer review isn't perfect


Listen to Doctor Ben now, children.

One of the jobs of a reviewer is to ascertain that, where claims are made in a manuscript, they are backed by reference to original research that contains evidence to support the claim. Where such evidence is not present- where there may be a hypothesis proposing what has been ascertained or where there is circumstantial evidence to support it- the claim must be challenged, the manuscript corrected prior to publication and the author rebuked. It happens in every manuscript. It has happened to me. If reviewers aren't scrupulous in researching the evidence for such claims then an unfounded assertion slips through into the empirical literature and becomes a foundation from which further assertions can be propagated. In my (limited) experience this is now far more common than it was twenty years ago. It is certainly the case that I see manuscripts published today that contain appalling errors of experimental design and incredibly poorly evidenced assertions which ignore the depth of empirical data and cherry pick sources to fit a preferred narrative. I can do nothing but promise to challenge such unscientific practices wherever I find them. Believe me when I say that when I rule the world it will all be much better.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Yes Men


Never heard of these guys either either? Well, let New Scientist educate you. They have a film out which I am going to pay money to watch. If it comes to my town, that is.

The moral of this story?

"we need to change the rules that allow the market to reward bad behaviour"

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

the UK government is not, quite, a complete and utter sack of useless shite


Thirty years after the French showed how it should be done, the UK government has finally paid lipservice to the supremacy of high speed rail over short-haul flights in the national and global interest. Now we just have to wait another thirty years to see these words turned into action. Useless cints.


And, unsurprisingly, the backlash from the airline industry is led by none other than the High Chief Sociopathic Wanker himself: Michael O'Leary, who brands Lord Adonis's proposals "insane". I can't be arsed to address the frothing hypocrisy of this moron's denunciation except to observe that airlines, unlike rail operators, don't pay tax on the enormous quantities of fuel their little rocket ships burn.

Monday, August 03, 2009

this is awesome


From a list of "Products of The Year" on the New Scientist site comes this- your own personal cycle lane:

Cycle lanes are a good way of keeping bikes away from cars and minimising accidents, but they aren't available on every road.

Evan Gant at the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) and Alex Tee of Altitude Inc in Somerville, Massachusetts, have designed a portable cycle "Light Lane" that straps to the back of a bike.

A laser projects an image of a cycle lane onto the road directly behind the cyclist to remind approaching cars to leave room.