Women in science

May 27, 2008

This article is unintentionally hilarious for the way it words some of the findings:

But if these researchers are right, then a certain amount of gender gap might be a natural artifact of a free society, where men and women finally can forge their own vocational paths.

Isn't the problem that a significant number of people believe that men and women exactly equal?  Then, a logical conclusion is that preferences would average out over the whole population.  Therefore a systematic tendency for women to embrace some careers in larger numbers than men would mean that there were innate differences between men and women.  Since this is unacceptable, many people will conclude that different numbers of women in certain fields is necessarily evidence for discrimination.


Global warming as religion

May 27, 2008

From Freeman Dyson:

All the books that I have seen about the science and economics of global warming, including the two books under review, miss the main point. The main point is religious rather than scientific. There is a worldwide secular religion which we may call environmentalism, holding that we are stewards of the earth, that despoiling the planet with waste products of our luxurious living is a sin, and that the path of righteousness is to live as frugally as possible. The ethics of environmentalism are being taught to children in kindergartens, schools, and colleges all over the world.

Environmentalism has replaced socialism as the leading secular religion. And the ethics of environmentalism are fundamentally sound. Scientists and economists can agree with Buddhist monks and Christian activists that ruthless destruction of natural habitats is evil and careful preservation of birds and butterflies is good. The worldwide community of environmentalists—most of whom are not scientists—holds the moral high ground, and is guiding human societies toward a hopeful future. Environmentalism, as a religion of hope and respect for nature, is here to stay. This is a religion that we can all share, whether or not we believe that global warming is harmful.

Unfortunately, some members of the environmental movement have also adopted as an article of faith the be-lief that global warming is the greatest threat to the ecology of our planet. That is one reason why the arguments about global warming have become bitter and passionate. Much of the public has come to believe that anyone who is skeptical about the dangers of global warming is an enemy of the environment. The skeptics now have the difficult task of convincing the public that the opposite is true. Many of the skeptics are passionate environmentalists. They are horrified to see the obsession with global warming distracting public attention from what they see as more serious and more immediate dangers to the planet, including problems of nuclear weaponry, environmental degradation, and social injustice. Whether they turn out to be right or wrong, their arguments on these issues deserve to be heard.

On motherhood

May 27, 2008

Alice Walker's daughter (ouch)

Thoughts on beltway libertarianism

May 27, 2008

In the WSJ.

Back from Tokyo

May 27, 2008

I'm back from spending a week in Tokyo for work and fun.  I enjoyed Japan a lot.  Everyone was incredibly polite and helpful.  Service over there was infinitely better than anything I've ever gotten in the US.  The food was great too.

Mrs. Loving

May 16, 2008

A tribute

An experiment in democracy?

May 15, 2008

Which doesn't go so well for democracy [via UR]?

People say democracy is just slowing us down, and that we’d be better off if we were more like Dubai,” said Waleed al-Sager, 24, who is advising his father’s campaign for Parliament.

TCS interview with Tom Wolfe

May 15, 2008


I think the fundamental motive of every person is to live by a set of values, which if written in stone would not make you yourself, but rather your group, the supreme group on earth.

Intellectuals do this every day. "We're up here at the top of a mountain and look at all those smarmy politicians, presidents, kings, how vulgar they are."

But also good old boys from the south will do the same thing. My brother-in-law happened to be present in 1943 in a general store, and here were three good old boys who were too old to go into the armed forces, talking about the war.

And one of them says, "You know, this whole war — the whole problem here is this man called Hitler. I don't know why we just don't go over there and shoot him."

And his friend says, "Well, I'm sure it's not that easy. I don't know how you can just go over there and shoot him."

And the first says, "Look, you get me over there in a boat, I'll shoot him."

"How are you going to do that?"

He says, "Well, I'll go to the front door and I'll ring the bell."

His friend says, "Are you crazy? He's not going to come to the front door. The whole place has probably got a big wall around."

He said, "Okay I'll tell you what I'll do. I'll wait until its dark, I'll go around to the wall and back, I'll climb over it and I'll hide behind a tree with my rifle. And in the morning when he comes out in the yard to pee, I'm going to shoot him."

These were Scotch-Irish people. They loved guns and guns mean a lot to them. And they hated officials and they hated all the layers of bureaucracy. They believed the government can't get anything done right. It's all so simple. You just have to go over there and do it yourself.

Flag pins

May 14, 2008


I don’t know what I find more depressing–that the GOP is so absolutely, unspeakably intellectually bankrupt that this is all it has to offer, or that this sort of tactic might very well win them the presidential election.

Congressional wealth

May 14, 2008

I got to this via something Instapundit linked to.  It's pretty shocking.