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Jansen Meckz



Member since August 06, 2013

  • Here’s looking at you: Why America spies on its allies (and probably should)

    By MAX FISHER — The Washington Post

    A week now after the initial revelation that the United States might have monitored the cellphone of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, there’s little doubt that the story has been damaging for this country and for the National Security Agency, which earned the wrath of even longtime defender Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who oversees it as the Senate Intelligence Committee chair. At the same time, though, the initial anger appears to be giving way to debate: Is it, in fact, a bad idea for the United States to spy on friendly foreign leaders such as Merkel? That question might sound counterintuitive, even cynical, a sign of the depth of Americans’ hubris that we would even consider it. After all, friends don’t spy on each other, right? But I’m going to let you in on a little secret: The international system is, and always has been, inherently adversarial, even among allies. To paraphrase the 19th-century British statesman Lord Palmerston, countries don’t have friends, they have interests. Spying on friendly foreign nations does not actually violate the standard practices of international relations and in many ways is consistent with those norms. The close U.S. allies France and Israel are particularly known for it. Still, something as explicit as tapping Merkel’s cellphone is a big and legitimately surprising step, one that may well go too far.

    Here is an...

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    Flawed reasoning and junk science in ideology of climate-change denial The prospect of writer Frank Gue (Climate-change skeptics responsible scientists, June 22) and his select group of "responsible climate-change skeptics" rolling the dice on Mother Earth is not a reassuring thought. He decries the term "climate change denier", but he presents as a devoted disciple of the denier industry. Gue states that, "No one has proven that this (global climate) change is man-made." I would suggest the correct statement is "No one has proven that climate change is not man-made." The deniers certainly have not proven it. In fact, the deniers never prove anything, because they cannot. They exhibit wilful blindness or, in scientific parlance, "observational selection." It is impossible to study even a small cross-section of the research available on global climate change by qualified and credible multidisciplinary researchers and organizations and then to honestly deny there is a serious problem looming on our very doorstep. It is flawed reasoning — some might say junk science — to point to the injection of higher levels of CO2 into greenhouses, so-called "CO2 fertilization", as proof that the global climate needs more CO2. Gue neglects to mention that in the controlled greenhouse microclimate, ideal air temperature for most food crops is in the range of 25C; over 30C is considered the danger range. How does a brave new world of g...