Sunday, April 24, 2011

Vicious persecution of environmental realist and his children

Confused visitors will be forgiven for thinking Oregon State University is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Congressman Pete DeFazio and the “progressive-socialist” wing of the Democratic Party. Or for likening what’s going on there to political retribution as practiced in Third World thugocracies.

The idea that three outstanding students – PhD candidates at OSU – could face dismissal, and worse, shortly before receiving their degrees, is simply shocking. That this could be happening because their father had the temerity to challenge an entrenched 12-term Democratic congressman (and OSU earmark purveyor) could make people think the university is in Zimbabwe, not America. Dr. Art Robinson is president of the nonprofit Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, located on the family farm in southwestern Oregon, 180 miles from Corvallis. OISM focuses on biochemistry, diagnostic medicine, nutrition, preventive medicine and aging – and improving emergency preparedness and basic education.

After his wife died in 1988, Robinson raised and home-schooled his six children – all of whom became remarkable scholars, collaborating on research and a popular DVD series on math and science for home-schooled students and their parents. Five of the children have BS degrees in chemistry; one a degree in mathematics. Two earned doctorates in veterinary medicine; one a PhD in chemistry.

The three youngest are all at OSU, working on PhDs in nuclear engineering. They entered the field at a young age, helping their father write and publish the “pro-science, pro-technology, pro-free enterprise” newsletter, Access to Energy, which explains and advocates nuclear energy. Dr. Robinson is perhaps best known for the Oregon Petition Project, which states that “there is no convincing scientific evidence” that humans are causing “catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere” or disruption of its climate. It urges Congress to reject the 1997 Kyoto global warming agreement – and has been signed by more than 32,000 Americans with university degrees in physical sciences (including yours truly and over 9,000 PhDs).

The petition, and Robinson’s support for DDT in combating the malaria pandemic, drew anger and outrage from the political Left, climate chaos industry and “mainstream media,” giving him his first brush with the politics of personal destruction. But it did not prepare him for the lengths and depths his opponents would go to “discourage” his political activities.

With our nation drowning in debt, energy prices skyrocketing, and unaccountable pseudo-scientific agencies like EPA and Interior hobbling business and economic growth in endless delays and red tape, Dr. Robinson decided to run for Congress. He was a scientist, with proven math and budgetary skills, a thoughtful, conservative, Christian family man – who could bring much needed skills and perspectives to the House of Representatives.

He challenged DeFazio, who initially figured he would have a cakewalk against this political neophyte. But Robinson raised $1.3 million from over 5,000 individual donors (against DeFazio’s $1.5 million from special interests, and other contributors), gave numerous speeches and ran a highly effective campaign. With polls showing his lead narrowing, an increasingly desperate DeFazio struck back.

Bristling with a sense of entitlement, the congressman ran print, television and radio ads, painting Robinson as a nutcase who would promote racism, put radioactive wastes in drinking water, end Social Security and Medicare, close schools, repeal taxation of oil companies and destroy Oregon jobs. With help from Rachel Madow and MSNBC, DeFazio claimed Robinson lived off Social Security in a survivalist compound and was funding his campaign with cash from money launderers and drug dealers.

Despite the libelous attacks, Robinson garnered a very respectable 44% of the vote – and promptly announced that he would run for DeFazio’s seat again in 2012. If the soft-spoken family man thought DeFazio’s campaign had been in the sewers, what happened next beggared belief. Now the targets became Robinson’s three youngest children.

During the election campaign, OSU President Edward Ray and other faculty and administrators illegally used the campus to campaign for DeFazio and against Robinson. Almost immediately after the 2010 election, they launched a series of despicable and unprincipled actions designed to ensure that Joshua, Bethany, and Matthew never receive their degrees – regardless of their outstanding academics, examinations and research, or the thousands of hours and tens of thousands of dollars they had invested.

Even though they have been working on their PhDs for almost five years at OSU, and have about a year to go, Joshua has been forbidden access to the equipment he built for his PhD work, and Bethany has been told she will be dismissed from school. Matthew, who turned down a nearly “full ride” from MIT to go to OSU, has been there for two years – but now is waiting for the ax to fall on his work and his thesis professor, Dr. Jack Higginbotham, who came to the students’ defense.

Nuclear engineering professor Higginbotham has been at OSU 24 years and is president of the OSU Faculty Senate and director of a large NASA program on the campus. His inside knowledge of what the Department of Nuclear Engineering and Radiation Health Physics deans and certain faculty were doing to railroad the Robinson children made him Public Enemy Number One to the department Torquemadas who are trying to destroy his career and get him fired for his impertinence. Right now, Higginbotham’s salary and career hang by a thread, preserved only by attorneys he has hired to protect himself from OSU attacks. The Robinsons’ studies have been severely disrupted. Meanwhile, however, public outcry in favor of Higginbotham and the students has grown in intensity, especially in Oregon, and a group of prominent alumni donors has offered to pay for the student’s remaining PhD work and legal costs to settle the dispute.

Rather than being chastened, though, President Ray and his staff have refused even to speak with the alumni group. University administrators have become incensed that their actions are now public knowledge, and that alumni and other donors are vocally supporting Higginbotham and the children.

Ray and his entourage have circled the academic wagons and stonewalled public inquiries. They appear to think they “own” the university, and “academic freedom” means they are entitled to deny academic degrees to children of parents whose politics differ from their own. As more alumni join this effort, however, and the university’s reputation becomes increasingly radioactive, OSU appears to be wavering. Perhaps a dose of sanity may yet take center stage. Oregon State is a prime example of what happens when educational institutions fall under progressive-socialist control, and dependency on taxpayer handouts from political overseers in Washington. DeFazio and his fellow congressional Democrats gave OSU a reported $27 million in earmark funding during the last legislative cycle alone. That’s $9 million per Robinson student denied a PhD.

No wonder President Ray and the Nuclear Engineering deans have given new meaning to “payback,” while DeFazio smirks in silence in the congressional office that he seems convinced should be his for life.

In depressing testimony to how far America has strayed from its Constitution and founding principles, we have reached the point where congressmen can lavish key supporters with tax dollars – and in return get votes, campaign contributions, rallies and volunteers on our campuses … and be assured of vicious retribution against the families of anyone rash enough to run against them.


Soot Emerging As Main Driver Of Arctic Warming

Pierre and I have both written about the effects of soot on arctic and sub-arctic ice and glaciers, read here "Glaciers - The Dark Side and Half Of Arctic Warming Caused By Soot". Scientists are recognising that CO2 is becoming less of a factor and that black carbon soot instead is being recognised increasingly as the a driver of warming in the Arctic. Time to go back and revamp the models – again.

Researchers from the Arctic Council, representing the eight countries that border the Arctic, are now seriously studying the subject. See the Associated Press article here. The photo and caption from the article reads:
"This undated handout photo provided by NOAA-STAD, Soot Transport and Deposition Study, shows Trish Quinn of NOAA in a first snow pit. An international research team is in the land of snow and ice in search of soot. Though the Arctic is often pictured as a vast white wasteland, that can be deceiving. And carbon deposited there as a result of activities elsewhere can have a long-term impact on climate.

’The Arctic serves as the air conditioner of the planet,’ explained Patricia Quinn of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, one of the research participants. Heat from other parts of the Earth moves to the Arctic in the circulating air and ocean water, and at least some of that warmth can radiate into space.”

At the same time, some of the incoming heat from the sun that tends to be absorbed in other locations is reflected by the ice and snow, allowing the polar regions to serve as cooling agents for the planet.”

Of course they need to insert the obligatory nod to CO2.
Cutting carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases is the backbone of any effort to combat warming, both globally and within the Arctic, Quinn said.”

The group has not published yet, as the research will not end until the end of May, and to have any hope of getting their paper or papers past “peer review” they need to get CO2 into the mix. But this study is a few steps in the right direction.

SOURCE. (See the original for links)

Another Green/Left misanthrope

This guy was a bit player. He only murdered one person. Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot murdered millions. But the lack of respect for other people is the common theme

Ira Einhorn was on stage hosting the first Earth Day event at the Fairmount Park in Philadelphia on April 22, 1970. Seven years later, police raided his closet and found the "composted" body of his ex-girlfriend inside a trunk.

A self-proclaimed environmental activist, Einhorn made a name for himself among ecological groups during the 1960s and '70s by taking on the role of a tie-dye-wearing ecological guru and Philadelphia’s head hippie. With his long beard and gap-toothed smile, Einhorn — who nicknamed himself "Unicorn" because his German-Jewish last name translates to "one horn" —advocated flower power, peace and free love to his fellow students at the University of Pennsylvania. He also claimed to have helped found Earth Day.

But the charismatic spokesman who helped bring awareness to environmental issues and preached against the Vietnam War — and any violence — had a secret dark side. When his girlfriend of five years, Helen "Holly" Maddux, moved to New York and broke up with him, Einhorn threatened that he would throw her left-behind personal belongings onto the street if she didn't come back to pick them up.

And so on Sept. 9, 1977, Maddux went back to the apartment that she and Einhorn had shared in Philadelphia to collect her things, and was never seen again. When Philadelphia police questioned Einhorn about her mysterious disappearance several weeks later, he claimed that she had gone out to the neighborhood co-op to buy some tofu and sprouts and never returned.

It wasn't until 18 months later that investigators searched Einhorn's apartment after one of his neighbors complained that a reddish-brown, foul-smelling liquid was leaking from the ceiling directly below Einhorn's bedroom closet. Inside the closet, police found Maddux's beaten and partially mummified body stuffed into a trunk that had also been packed with Styrofoam, air fresheners and newspapers.

After his arrest, Einhorn jumped bail and spent decades evading authorities by hiding out in Ireland, Sweden, the United Kingdom and France. After 23 years, he was finally extradited to the United States from France and put on trial. Taking the stand in his own defense, Einhorn claimed that his ex-girlfriend had been killed by CIA agents who framed him for the crime because he knew too much about the agency's paranormal military research. He was convicted of murdering Maddux and is currently serving a life sentence.

Although Einhorn was only the master of ceremonies at the first Earth Day event, he maintains that Earth Day was his idea and that he's responsible for launching it. Understandably, Earth Day's organizers have distanced themselves from his name, citing Gaylord Nelson, an environmental activist and former Wisconsin governor and U.S. senator who died in 2005, as Earth Day's official founder and organizer.

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Sen. Gaylord Nelson created Earth Day in the spring of 1970 as a way to bring national awareness to the fact that, at the time, there were no legal or regulatory mechanisms in place to protect the environment. About 20 million participants at various Earth Day events across the U.S. made Earth Day a success, and in December of 1970, Congress authorized the creation of a new federal agency to tackle environmental issues — the EPA.


Sterilizing Those Pesky Humans: Earth Day with Paul Ehrlich

Every April 22 is Earth Day. As one who studies Soviet Russia, I can’t help but notice that the day coincides with the birthday of Vladimir Lenin. The inaugural Earth Day occurred April 22, 1970, no less than Lenin’s birth centennial.

This is most ironic. Lenin is a decaying symbol of central planning, which, regrettably, is the ideological preference of many of those filling the streets on Earth Day. Although Lenin was a collectivist, not an environmentalist, he is frequently recycled, as mortuary specialists from Russia’s health ministry regularly re-embalm him in his tomb.

Lenin had no respect for life. He declared certain people “harmful insects.” In Lenin’s deadly worldview, pesky humans were not precious, special, unrepeatable; they were disposable.

That brings me to a living symbol of Earth Day: Paul Ehrlich. Dr. Ehrlich’s explosive bestseller, The Population Bomb, inspired the freshman class that first Earth Day, embodying the wildest fears of apocalypse mongers. The great Johnny Carson was, sadly, one of Ehrlich’s dupes, giving him a platform on “The Tonight Show” dozens of times.

Much has been said about Ehrlich’s book. But as author John Berlau reports, one item has been conveniently sunk into a land-fill. “He [Ehrlich] flirted with a proposal to require adding contraceptive material to all food items in the United States,” writes Berlau in Eco-Freaks. “But Ehrlich’s most drastic—and contemptuous—measures were reserved for the third world. Ehrlich advocated that all men in India who had three or more children be forcibly sterilized.”

Really? That was something I needed to see for myself, certainly never learning this in my public education. So, I tracked down a September 1971 edition of The Population Bomb.

What Ehrlich wrote is jaw-dropping. Dealing first with pesky Americans, he wrote (pages 130-31):

"[T]he first task is population control at home. How do we go about it? Many of my colleagues feel that some sort of compulsory birth regulation would be necessary to achieve such control. One plan often mentioned involves the addition of temporary sterilants to water supplies or staple food. Doses of the antidote would be carefully rationed by the government to produce the desired population size. Those of you who are appalled at such a suggestion can rest easy. The option isn’t even open to us, since no such substance exists. If the choice now is either such additives or catastrophe, we shall have catastrophe. It might be possible to develop such population control tools, although the task would not be simple. Either the additive would have to operate equally well and with minimum side effects against both sexes, or some way would have to be found to direct it only to one sex and shield the other."

As for pesky (non-white) folks in places like India, Ehrlich was less patient. On pages 151-52, he favored “sterilizing all Indian males with three or more children,” and with the direct help of the U.S. government. “We should have volunteered logistic support in the form of helicopters, vehicles, and surgical instruments,” advised Ehrlich. “We should have sent doctors to aid in the program by setting up centers for training para-medical personnel to do vasectomies.”

Was this “coercion?” asked Ehrlich. Of course, but it was “coercion in a good cause.”

Immediate action was imperative, assessed the professor. It was, after all, 1970, and the human race had precious little time. Ehrlich warned of humans metastasizing all over Mother Earth. He said stoically:

"I wish I could offer you some sugarcoated solutions, but I’m afraid the time for them is long gone. A cancer is an uncontrolled multiplication of cells…. Treating only the symptoms of cancer may make the victim more comfortable at first, but eventually he dies—often horribly…. We must shift our efforts from treatment of the symptoms to the cutting out of the cancer. The operation will demand many apparently brutal and heartless decisions. The pain may be intense."

To borrow from other scaremonger imagery of the era, such as the hysterical propaganda film Soylent Green, it was only a matter of time before the helpless masses started consuming one another. Only government action by anointed elites could save us from Armageddon.

Today, Ehrlich remains an icon, holding a plum spot at Stanford as the Bing Professor of Population Studies. Because he’s a liberal, a “progressive,” the 78-year-old has gotten away with this, much like Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood matron, who ran a “Negro Project,” spoke at a KKK rally, labeled certain pesky people “human weeds” and “imbeciles” and “morons,” and preached “race improvement.”

For icons of the left, there’s no need to say “I’m sorry.” The sins of the fathers and mothers of the progressive left are buried with the trash, never to be recycled, especially at Earth Day.


On Earth Day, Thank a Hunter

‘In 1970, a Senator from Wisconsin named Gaylord Nelson raised his voice and called on every American to take action on behalf of the environment,” read President Obama’s Earth Day proclamation last year. “In the four decades since, millions of Americans have heeded that call and joined together to protect the planet we share.”

Well, I’ve got news for our President. Millions of Americans who had never heard of Gaylord Nelson “took action on behalf of the environment,” decades before the good Senator “raised his voice.” More newsworthy still, most of these belonged to those insufferable rustics who “cling to guns and bibles.” To wit:

The Pittman-Robertson Act (1937) imposed an excise tax of 10 per cent on all hunting gear. Then the Dingell-Johnson act (1950) did the same for fishing gear. The Wallop-Breaux amendment (1984) extended the tax to the fuel for boats. All of this lucre goes to “protect the environment” in the form of buying and maintaining National Wildlife Refuges, along with state programs for buying and maintaining various forms of wildlife habitat.

For the last couple of decades hunters and fishermen have contributed over $1.5 billion per year towards Senator Gaylord Nelson’s lofty goal. To date, hunters and fisherpersons have shelled out over $20 billion “on behalf of the environment.” A study by the National Shooting Sports Foundation found that for every taxpayer dollar invested in wildlife conservation, hunters and fishermen contribute nine.

So please note: to "preserve nature," they don’t tax Birkenstock hiking boots and Ying-Yang pendants – but do tax my shotgun. They don’t tax Yoga manuals and Tofu tid-bits wrapped in recycled paper – but do tax my 30.06 deer rifle. They don’t tax binoculars or birding Field Guides with cutesy photos of the red-cockaded woodpecker and spotted Owl – but do tax the shotgun shells I blast at Mallards before arraying on my grill as Duck-K-Bobs (cooked rare and lovingly basted with plenty of butter, Cajun seasoning and teriyaki sauce).

Going further, they don’t tax Kayaks and rock climbing picks and ropes – but do tax my compound bow and rifle scope. They don’t tax the plastic water bottles on Mountain bikes (or the mountain bike itself, come to think of it) or the cutesy spandex shorts these yo-yos wear – but do tax my duck decoys and camo pants. They don’t tax Yanni and Enya CDs – but do tax the arrows I fling at Bambi before he sizzles on my grill as Bambi-burger (lovingly draped with thick bacon slices that dribble their appetizing fat into the meat while cooking. Then a chunk of cheddar cheese melted on top.)

You talk about a "Cheeseburger in Paradise," Jimmy Buffet! Try one from Bambi!

Ten cents of every dollar I spent on my hunting and fishing toys (I'd cite the total but my wife might read this) funds Federal and State "conservation" programs. From my guns and ammo to my duck calls and decoys, from my rods and reels to my lures and gaffs, from my trolling motor to the very fuel for my outboard – ten cents of every dollar in this ghastly expenditure funds habitat for Spotted Owls, Red Cockaded Woodpeckers, Bald Eagles, Ospreys, Manatees, Snail darters, Black-Footed Ferrets, California Condors, Florida Panthers and Sea Otters.

None of these creatures (from what I hear) make a decent Gumbo or even a passable Chili. I must be crazy. But I have no choice. And this avalanche of tax dollars comes on top of those I fork over for the stacks of licenses, and permits, and stamps I'm required to have before I set a foot afield or set my boat afloat. Last season these totaled $500. (But sweetie! There are huge fines for hunting and fishing without them!)

And all the above is on top of my voluntary dues and assorted donations to such as Ducks Unlimited. (But snookums! I thought you loved the duck print I brought home at 2: 45 AM from the DU Banquet/auction? And especially the picture of me with the nice Hooters girl who worked the keg in her camo bikini?) According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation these donations to such as DU, Pheasants Forever, etc. total $300 million a year.

As mentioned, just last year, hunters and fishermen (not birdwatchers, not rock-climbers, not kayakers, not nature-hikers) "contributed" $1.5 billion "big ones" “dollarinies,” “donuts” (to quote Steve Martin as The Jerk) to purchase and maintain places for greenie-weenies to frolic and nature-watch.

You'd think some thanks might be in order from these freeloaders – from the smarmy crowd not forced to buy any "Bird-Watching stamp" or "Hiking stamp," or "Kayaking stamp", or "Rock Climbing Stamp," or Yanni-Listening Stamp," or "Quartz-Crystal-Gazing-Stamp." You'd think Tofu-munchers might appreciate us hunters' funding habitat for their spotted owls, kangaroo rats, snail darters and louseworts, and bankrolling the scenery on their "nature trails" as they self-righteously plod along in their "earth-friendly" Birkenstocks and granola-flecked frocks., quartz crystals rattling in their pockets en route to a hillside Sunrise worship, crystal-gaze and Enya-listen.

We pay our way – in fact, we pay the hikers and bird-watchers way too. But rather than going afield as passive voyeurs, rather than regarding nature as a Disney cartoon, we accept nature's diktats. We revel in our role as full-fledged participants in her cycle of fang and claw (but add bullets, buckshot, broadheads, treble hooks and gaffs to the primal drama).

You'd think the voyeurs might throw us a bone every now and then? Well, think again. Here's the Sierra Club's official position: "Wild animals should not be valued principally in terms of whether they can serve as targets. As members of the family of life, we should respect the moral right of all creatures to exist, to be free of unnecessary predation, persecution, and cruel and unduly confining captivity."

Anyway, you’re quite welcome, Greenies!


EPA's Train Wreck Could Leave Many in the Dark

During a recent speech at Cleveland State University focused on small business in Ohio, President Obama described a goal of “knocking down barriers that stand in the way of your growth.” Unfortunately, his EPA couldn’t be more in the dark about how to translate that message into practice – with the agency poised to adopt more than 30 new, major regulations and over 170 major policy rules in the next several months.
Even with 14 million Americans out of work and an economy still searching for light at the end of the tunnel, the EPA is poised to enact a series of back-door mandates that will stifle economic growth. And with the speed that this runaway train is traveling, people in states like Ohio should be scared of the “Train Wreck” headed towards a town near you.

Unfortunately, everyday Americans may not realize the impact of the EPA’s “Train Wreck” of new regulations on jobs, the economy and price of essential energy until it’s too late. The truth is, even the EPA itself doesn’t quite know what these regulations might cost to implement – although various outside analysts seem to agree that, at minimum, the 10 major rules that the EPA issued in 2010 could cost the economy at least $23 billion and nearly one million jobs.

No one can say for sure how my home state,Ohio,will be impacted; we do know that Ohioans will not fare well. That’s because coal generates close to 90 percent of net electricity in Ohio and energy consumption in the state’s industrial sector ranks among the highest in the nation. Put another way, the EPA’s “Train Wreck” will destroy Ohio’s main electricity source.

According to analysts, this assault on Ohio’s coal-burning power plants transfers directly into at least 10 plant shutdowns and over 1,000 job losses. According to a report from the United Mine Workers of America, national job losses associated with the closure of EPA-targeted coal units could be significant, amounting to more than 50,000 jobs in the coal, utility and rail industries. With Ohio’s unemployment rate still above 9 percent, the EPA “Train Wreck” would clearly be a major blow to my state.

But the bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. and the environmental groups’ intent on stopping the use of coal in America aren’t worried about these good-paying, blue collar jobs in Ohio. Unfortunately for us, they consider the EPA’s “Train Wreck” to be an effective means to an end. An end to coal for sure.

But with America being known as the Saudi Arabia of coal, it’s clear that our nation – and especially Ohio – will need to continue relying on our extraordinary, domestic reserves of coal as a source of low-cost electricity capable of stimulating and sustaining long-term recovery. So with industry analysts estimating that 22 percent of existing U.S. coal-fired power plants could be shut down, with about 75 gigawatts lost (read: enough electricity to power 56.3 million homes), it is understandable why there is a mounting fear about when this wreck will be coming around the bend.

Unfortunately for the Buckeye state, the EPA has shown that it will blindly push ahead its agenda without regard for potential job losses, electric reliability issues or increased costs for everyday Americans. While there is still time for Congress to limit EPA authority and to thwart this imminent wreck, the bad news is that the train has already left the station and has shown no sign of stopping since this rulemaking process began years ago.

Ohioans can only hope that their state and federal government officials can help spread the word nationally about the repercussions of the EPA “Train Wreck” in time to successfully stop this runaway train. If not, there will be a price to pay, it will be significant, and it will be borne by the working families of Ohio and other impacted states.



For more postings from me, see DISSECTING LEFTISM, TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, GUN WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN. My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here. For readers in China or for times when is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here


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