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HuckleB's Journal
HuckleB's Journal
August 16, 2014

It goes WAY back, but I grew up with Fishbone: Slow Bus Movin' (Howard Beach Party)

And, if you have a problem with the lyrics, well ...

that's your white honkey problem. (Oh, and I am a white honkey. And it is my problem.)


Born in the 1940's, my parents couldn't vote
X and king was on a march for power true
Black power that is, panther's and their attitudes
Were fresh new business suits, yes, yeah, yeah

Stricken with determination to rise above the slave
The mayo men used firehoses
To spray the monkeys back in their cages
To spray the monkeys back in their cages

Round and around and around they go
The bus is goin' mighty slow
Brothers in the back seat come to the front
People gettin' hostile wanna kill someone

Well the overlords thought it would be a good idea
To mix the black with the white
But if you're a fly in the buttermilk they'll chase you all through the night
So go ahead and burn your cross and rape our women in the night
'Cause the tables are turned
When your cream coated daughter will be my wife

Round and around and around they go
The bus is goin' mighty slow
Brothers in the back seat come to the front
People gettin' hostile wanna kill someone
August 14, 2014

A little more valuable information for you:

From: http://fafdl.org/blog/2014/08/14/what-the-haters-got-wrong-about-neil-degrasse-tysons-comments-on-gmos/


What we are talking about here is herbicide resistant crops, most notably Monsanto’s RoundUp Ready crops. These have been bred so that they don’t die when the herbicide RoundUp (glyphosate) is applied to the fields to kill weeds. The reason that RoundUp was chosen is that it is much more effective than other herbicides while being relatively non-toxic and easy on the environment IN COMPARISON to other herbicides. In fact, for acute toxicity, RoundUp is less toxic to mammals than table salt or caffeine. Again, this has to do with ‘mode of action’. The reason it is incredibly effective as an herbicide is also the reason it isn’t a poison to mammals.

Glyphosate works by inhibiting photosynthesis. For critters that don’t rely on photosynthesis, it is just another salt with the normal toxicity of salt (less than sodium chloride). If you are a plant that relies on photosynthesis for energy, it’s literally ‘lights out’.

So while use of glyphosate is up, use of other more problematic herbicides is down. It works so well that it allowed many farmers to adopt what is known as conservation tillage. Tillage is an important tool for controlling weeds. Prior to planting the farmer tills the soil to interrupt weeds which would cause problems during the growing season. While this may seem like a good way of avoiding using herbicides, it releases lots of carbon into the atmosphere, uses plenty of tractor fuel and cause problems with erosion and soil structure. The judicious use of a low environmental impact herbicide like glyphosate is often the environmentally friendlier strategy.

Consider this chart taken from the same study showing trace amounts of herbicides in air samples. Raise your hand if you’d like to return to the 1995 herbicide profile (keeping in mind that the category of ‘other herbicides’ that have fallen out of favor, nearly universally had a higher environmental impact).


There are some very important bottom lines in this piece. Please read it. Thanks!

August 13, 2014

The history of the science knowledge of the matter is often ignored by that trope.

Not that said trope has anything to do with the six conspiracies listed in the OP.

Tobacco and the global lung cancer epidemic

Regarding the “science made mistakes” tropes? Debunked by real science

August 13, 2014

Context is everything.

Antifluoridation Bad Science

Does Fluoride Make Your Kids Dumb?

Fluoridated Water Safe To Drink, Harmless To IQ; Will The Evidence Quiet Conspiracy Theorists?

Any more anti-fluoride routines to throw on the fire?

August 13, 2014

Cherry picking, and failing to see the full consensus leads to wrong conclusions.

That's what Google often leads people to do, especially when their goal is to support a preconceived notion, and several important scientific concepts are not in their knowledge base. I used to buy into what you now buy into, but I challenged by preconceived notions. Studies on cells in a lab, tell us almost nothing, btw, though they are the prime feature of the fear mongering community. Of course, glyphosate is an herbicide, not a GMO, though it appears to be a fall back tool for the anti-GMO, when they have no actual arguments against GMOs.

Full reviews of the matter of glyphosate (and any topic) are far more valuable than cherry picking and cell only studies.

"Reviews on the safety of glyphosate and Roundup herbicide that have been conducted by several regulatory agencies and scientific institutions worldwide have concluded that there is no indication of any human health concern. ... This review was undertaken to produce a current and comprehensive safety evaluation and risk assessment for humans. .. It was concluded that, under present and expected conditions of use, Roundup herbicide does not pose a health risk to humans."

"These data demonstrated extremely low human exposures as a result of normal application practices. Furthermore, the estimated exposure concentrations in humans are >500-fold less than the oral reference dose for glyphosate of 2 mg/kg/d set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA 1993). In conclusion, the available literature shows no solid evidence linking glyphosate exposure to adverse developmental or reproductive effects at environmentally realistic exposure concentrations."

And another review of the literature that shows no correlation to disease and glyphosate:

And one should, of course, note that the EPA has looked at the full literature:

And an independent consortium of several universities shows that it's quite safe:

As for those lab tests:
Debunking pseudo science “lab testing” health risk claims about glyphosate (Roundup)

And just for kicks, this graph shows glyphosate toxicity compared to other common substances. It quiet enlightening.

Of course, if one want to cherry pick, one can find a study that shows glyphosate killing cancer cells, without killing healthy cells, in a lab setting: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23983455

In other words, when you look at the whole of the literature, well, you find out that those who are spouting extreme hyperbole about glyphosate are not being accurate.

August 12, 2014

Study: Reward and Punishment in the Brain (And its relationship to depression)


"In a recent study, scientists looked at the brain with high resolution fMRI scanning while they showed subjects pictures. Following each picture was a painful electric shock, or a money reward, or no response, or a random response. Subjects quickly learned which pictures would be followed by which stimuli – positive, negative, neutral, or unpredictable.

Scientists do this sort of thing not because they like to torture people but to study the brain’s response. In this case they were particularly interested in a small deep structure called the habenula. What they found, for the first time in humans but consistent with prior animal research, is that the habenula would light up when subjects saw a picture that would be followed by a shock, and the activity in the habenula increased the more certain the subjects were that negative stimuli were following.

The researchers conclude that the habenula is a critical structure for the processing of negative stimuli, in fact it seems to be the hub of the neural network involved in learning to anticipate negative stimuli.


Specifically this helps us understand the neuroanatomical correlates of predicting negative outcomes. In animal research, hyperactivity in the habenula has been associated with depressive behavior. Further, deep brain stimulation of this structure has been used to treat depressive symptoms.



I just found this all the more interesting in light of recent events.

Take care.
August 12, 2014

EFSA rejects French move to ban GM crop in Europe


Science 1 - Political Silliness (well, I'm sure it's still in the lead) ...

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