American Elephants


Seattle Just Had Two to Three Inches of Snow! by The Elephant's Child

Here in the Seattle area, we are recovering from a winter snowfall. It made the national news in USA today. Had a snarky message from an old friend in St. Louis, who had just talked to another friend from home in Idaho who said they had about four feet of snow on the level. Seattle made the national news on the basis of 2 to 3 inches! Fact! Seattle is a city famously built on seven hills. They plowed down some, and nobody counts anyway, but the problem is that there are slopes in every direction, and even small amounts immediately turn to ice. Lots of car crashes in every direction.

However, just across the mountains to the east the same winter storm produced a blizzard west of the Tri-Cities, and 1,600 dairy cows died in the blizzard. Hit the dairy farmers hard. They were not expecting such conditions. They prepared for the snow, but it just wasn’t enough. Cows normally do fine out-of-doors. Snoqualmie Pass was closed all day by avalanche and snow danger.

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Marijuana, Mental Illness, and Violence by The Elephant's Child

From the new issue of Imprimus from Hillsdale College:

Alex Berenson is the author of Tell Your Children: The Truth About Marijuana, Mental Illness, and Violence

The following is adapted from a speech delivered January 15, 2019 at Hillsdale College’s Allan P. Kirby Jr. Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship in Washington D.C.

*******************

Seventy miles northwest of New York City is a hospital that looks like a prison, its drab brick buildings wrapped in layers of fencing and barbed wire. This grim facility is called the Mid-Hudson Forensic Psychiatric Institute. It’s one of three places the state of New York sends the criminally mentally ill—defendants judged not guilty by reason of insanity.

Until recently, my wife Jackie­—Dr. Jacqueline Berenson—was a senior psychiatrist there. Many of Mid-Hudson’s 300 patients are killers and arsonists. At least one is a cannibal. Most have been diagnosed with psychotic disorders like schizophrenia that provoked them to violence against family members or strangers.

A couple of years ago, Jackie was telling me about a patient. In passing, she said something like, Of course he’d been smoking pot his whole life.

Of course? I said.

Yes, they all smoke.

So marijuana causes schizophrenia?

I was surprised, to say the least. I tended to be a libertarian on drugs. Years before, I’d covered the pharmaceutical industry for The New York Times. I was aware of the claims about marijuana as medicine, and I’d watched the slow spread of legalized cannabis without much interest.

Jackie would have been within her rights to say, I know what I’m talking about, unlike you. Instead she offered something neutral like, I think that’s what the big studies say. You should read them.

So I did. The big studies, the little ones, and all the rest. I read everything I could find. I talked to every psychiatrist and brain scientist who would talk to me. And I soon realized that in all my years as a journalist I had never seen a story where the gap between insider and outsider knowledge was so great, or the stakes so high.

I began to wonder why—with the stocks of cannabis companies soaring and politicians promoting legalization as a low-risk way to raise tax revenue and reduce crime—I had never heard the truth about marijuana, mental illness, and violence.

******

You might want to read this one. The whole issue is here, and you can subscribe to Imprimis at the end. I have enjoyed my subscription. Only comes once a month, and it’s completely free.



The Entertainer by The Elephant's Child
January 24, 2019, 11:34 pm
Filed under: Art, Entertainment, Heartwarming, Music | Tags: , ,

July 2018, Nashville. A Chet Atkins Convention: Richard Smith plays Scott Joplin, with Tommy Emmanuel in attendance.



The Media Misses Badly. And A Lesson in Successful Advertising by The Elephant's Child

This has been a day of extraordinarily bad behavior by the Left, provoked, as Joy Behar admitted, by Catholic kids wearing MAGA hats because the women on The View hate Trump and want him gone. A wee bit of Honesty.

It’s hard to remember that only a couple of days ago, the controversy was all about Gillette Razors and their attack on men and “toxic masculinity.” Turned out that the art director was a radical feminist well known for her hatred of men. The puzzle was why on earth a famous razor company  would approve such a commercial, but it seems that many businesses in our current climate have never learned the lessons of time and experience and do not have the sense to recognize that a wise business dealing with the American people does not choose to do politics instead of business, nor chooses to alienate half the country and all of their customers.

A competitor recognized the opportunity presented. And good for Barbasol.

And even a watch company saw a chance to speak out at Gillette idiocy!

Companies invest a lot of money in their advertising, hoping to please potential customers. Consider this a lesson in how it is done.



The “Green New Deal” and Other Lefty Fantasies by The Elephant's Child

alexandria_ocasio-cortez

Supposedly Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s “‘Green’ New Deal” is quite popular among the new far-leftists in Congress. Democrats remain enamored of the memory of FDR. Some believe that he saved the nation from the Great Depression, (he didn’t). But anything with the term “New Deal” will be more popular on the Left. Young Ms. Ocasio-Cortez has a veritable wealth of ideas that are just plain wrong. She is not stupid, as so many claim. She just has a lot of very, very bad ideas. Money is not a problem – “We’ll just pay for it.” she says. Raise taxes as high as 82% on the wealthy? Fine. Her Green New Deal would cost 8,000 times as much as President Trump’s Border Wall request, according to Tyler O”Neil at PJ Media.

The “Green New Deal” will cost approximately $49,109 trillion in the first ten years, enough to fund Trump’s border wall 8,616 times over. The president is requesting $5.7 billion for the wall.

PJ Media calculated the cost of the “Green New Deal” by integrating each of the cost aspects involved in a Power the Future analysis and calculating their cost for the U.S. over about ten years — and in one case through 2050.

According to Ocasio-Cortez, the “Green New Deal” will force America to transition to an economy run from 100 percent renewable energy. Christopher Clark, a physicist who has studied rapid deployments of renewable energy, told The Hill that building this kind of generating capacity would cost “at least $2 trillion.”

Her idea for “renewable energy” probably does not contain nuclear power, for there seems to be a lot of resistance to building new nuclear power plants, although California’s small Diablo Canyon nuclear plant produces more energy than all of California’s many solar farms and wind turbines put together. The website for the left-wing think tank Data for Progress explains:

The goals of the Green New Deal are nothing short of radical. As the website for the left-wing think tank Data for Progress explains, the Green New Deal aims to “transform the economy and the environment in ways that achieve sustainability, equity, justice, freedom, and happiness.” Achieving happiness has never been easy. Even harder will be the Green New Deal’s aim of completely eliminating the use of coal, oil, and natural gas by 2050.

How all this happiness and energy legerdemain will be achieved is anyone’s guess. Supporters are particularly vague about how they would find the hundreds of billions — or even trillions — of dollars needed to attempt such a plan. Nevertheless, there is one unassailable fact about the Green New Deal: It is not green. Indeed, the entire notion of an all-renewable-energy system is the antithesis of environmental protection and scenic conservation.

Promoters seem to assume that there are vast tracts of vacant land, territory that is just waiting to be covered with renewable energy projects. To fuel the U.S. economy, would require state-sized empty territories to be covered with nothing but wind turbines and solar panels. (All that territory where the Deplorables live) It would require stringing tens of thousands of miles with new high-voltage transmission lines. Vox featured an explanation of the Green New Deal, and the feature was the kind of solar plant that proved to be essentially worthless at Ivanpah, in the Mojave. Doesn’t work. Didn’t produce the energy required, killed birds by the thousands.

Two researchers from Harvard published a study that looked at energy-production data from 1,150 solar projects and 411 onshore wind projects. Meeting U.S. electricity consumption would require 12 percent of the continental U.S. land area for wind— or an area more than twice the size of the state of California. Not going to happen.

Here are some notable facts. Environmentalists and climate change activists want to believe in themselves as “social-justice warriors” fighting for the good, but the policies they promote would seriously harm people, especially the poor and disadvantaged. They are anti-human.

Here is a graph from a panel organized last month by the Heartland Institute, and the European Institute for Climate and Energy. Dr, Craig Idso , Founder of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change said:

[R]adiosondes’ [balloon] measurements shown in blue reveal that the actual warming rate is three times smaller than that predicted by the models [red bars show warming that should have occurred from 1979-2017, as predicted from 102 different climate models].

See the important graph here: It explains how and why the average of climate models has vastly overestimated the warming. Some climate scientists thought they could put the climate of the world into a computer, and get a program that would correctly predict the future climate. GIGO: garbage in garage out. But that became the “Scientific Consensus”.  They knew a few facts, added some estimates and some guesswork, and a significant bunch of mistakes, and lo and behold: “Science”
Do Read the Whole Thing



David Hobson: “The Holy City” by The Elephant's Child
December 24, 2018, 2:05 am
Filed under: Art, Entertainment, Music | Tags: ,

This is an old one, but I love it.  Enjoy.



So Much for a Productive Weekend! by The Elephant's Child

Sorry about the light blogging. We had a windstorm, The street sweeper came by yesterday, and we were delighted with the pristine streets. Today they are covered with leaves, needles, branches, cones, everybody’s grass clippings, and anything else that was loose and movable by a brisk wind. You have to feel a little sorry for the street sweeper – he must feel really good about making a neighborhood all shining and clean, and then this!

The windstorm took out our internet provider for hours, and by the time we got our connection back, it was too late to be up even for night owls. Looks like I’ll have to sweep up a bushel or so of douglas fir cones. Nothing new for the Pacific Northwest.

Oh hell, the internet connection just went out again.




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