Thursday, August 16, 2012

Through The Thinking-Glass...

...And out the other side, where it's more about feelings and fear-mongering. Somehow this morning I have stumbled over a website where most of the Big Scary Fears of the "Life was better before steam fire" set have been neatly bundled up into a blog and a book; I have already learned that (oh, horror!) lab rats fed GMO potatoes (no other ID given) have developed "undersized brains, livers and testes." (Translation: Eat GMO and you won't be able to think, drink or have ess-ee-ecks.) Does the writer even understand that the food we eat heads first and foremost to a churning cauldron of dilute hydrochloric acid? Or that the reported rat issues -- assuming the results cited are real -- are for a specific GMO vegetable and while the mods may be responsible, it's what the spliced-in genes expressed that did it, not the genes themselves.*

I've also learned about the U.S. military's secret plans for space dominance -- a "secret" revealed in a glossy, lavishly-illustrated, no-long-words PDF supposedly published online at /www.spacecom.af.mil/usspace, a URL that no longer exists. (Did it ever? I dunno. USAF Space Command uses a different one.) If you search for "Vision 2020 U.S. Space Command," you'll find ever'body from Prison Planet to Mother Jones was up in arms about it...in 2001. (Sheesh, I only wish the Pentagon had that level of seriousness about orbital ops.)

And on and on it goes, including a wistful musing about how much better people lived before the Industrial Revolution. I guess it was too much trouble to look up the infant and child mortality rates in those halcyon times, or the hours worked per day by your typical yeoman farmer, his wife and their kids, or even the way they had to boil all their food to mush 'cos they were fertilizing their crops with human waste. Not a word on the manner in which they were largely subject to the whims of a better-fed, better-armed ruling class. And it must have been way too much effort to look up the waves of plague (and "lesser" diseases like smallpox) that swept across Europe until they had steam and carbolic and sufficient excess production that a guy named Pasteur had time to dope out germ theory....

If your blood pressure is low or you need help reaching your target heart rate, see for yourself. Better move quick, before the ghits and elitists have you freezing in the dark...for your own good, of course.
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* For the record, I'm in favor of anything that makes rats dumber and less interested in reproduction. Oh, ratties... Free potatoes...!

13 comments:

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

WRT www.spacecom.af.mil/usspace , actually it did exist:

http://wayback.archive.org/web/19990615000000*/http://www.spacecom.af.mil/usspace

and if you go here: http://web.archive.org/web/19990202070604/http://www.spacecom.af.mil/usspace/

you'll see a link to a "Vision for 2020" PDF. And yes, that's from 1999.

Ed Skinner said...

Lemme get this straight: You wants the rats of America and their minions to be able to reproduce??? Get your thinkin' cap, girl, and put it on!

Robin said...

The utter ignorance of people with respect to GM food and its benefits can be astonishing. Of an order with the anti-vaccination hysteria.

og said...

Give the rats little TV's permanently tuned to "jersey Shore"

karrde said...

Ya'see, he wants to be one of the overlords in the return-to-pre-industrial societies.

Not one of the underlings.

Or, that thinking-cap thing just isn't screwed on too tightly...

Tango Juliet said...

It only stands to reason that where there's sacrifice, there's someone collecting the sacrificial offerings. Where there's service, there is someone being served. The man who speaks to you of sacrifice is speaking of slaves and masters, and intends to be the master. - Ayn Rand

Justin Buist said...

FWIW there's not that many GMO crops out there. Corn, soybean, and rapeseed (canola) are about it. Anything else is either still in testing or so pointless that nobody grows it. The later being the case with GM potatoes.

Robert Fowler said...

Years ago, when they said that artificial sweeteners caused cancer in rats. They did a study and figured out you would need to drink something like 30 cases of diet Pepsi a day to get cancer with the speed that the rats did. Want to bet that they overdosed the poor rats?

Bubblehead Les. said...

Good Old Days? Sorry, but I LIKE Penicillin, Electricity, Paved Roads, the Internal Combustion Engine, Fire Engines, 911, Ambulances, Anesthesia, Cell Phones, etc.

So how would this yahoo even Blog? Standing out in the Market in the Horse Crap, ringing a Bell, shouting "HEAR YE, HEAR YE?"

Idiot.

Firehand said...

Used to occasionally get into this when I was doing blacksmithing demonstrations: "Wouldn't it have been nicer back when?", etc. One of the better attention-getters for them was "Which forest do you want to cut down and burn?"
"What? What for?"
"Charcoal. If we don't mine coal, that means either we burn trees for charcoal to fire the forges, or do without metal."
"Em..."
Some simply had no idea, some refused to believe it. Of the latter, they thought antibiotics were Bad Things because they helped too many people live.

Though I seriously doubt they ever turned down a pill or shot in their lives after an injury.

Anonymous said...

If the USAF has secret plans for space dominance, then the women's uniforms had by God better have thigh length boots with three inch heels.

Not four inch--that would be stupid.

Mike James

Able said...

"it's what the spliced-in genes expressed that did it, not the genes themselves"

Er, not to be pedantic or anything (Oh Ok, it's what I do best) but it's got 'nuthin' to do wit them 501s at all'. It's to do with some poor ratty being force fed potatoes, and nothing but potatoes ie. a diet lacking in certain nutrients, proteins, fats etc. resulting in developmental deficiencies, not surprisingly.

Oh, and what's this "ss-ee-ecks" thing you mention? I seem to remember it had something to do with making someone you are attracted to 'feel some pleasurable sensation' and ends up with them hyperventilating. I do this regularly, at least the ladies I speak to usually stagger around laughing (pleasure?) and they're bound to hyperventilate after running that quickly (especially after climbing through the window). It's just not what I remember it being like (or is my memory going?) and seems a might of an over-reaction just because I ask them for a dance/date ;-(

Stretch said...

"If steam engines and gaslight were good enough for Sherlock Holmes they're good enough for me!" - Stretch

Have some of these "simplify" proponents spend a week at SCA's Pennsic gathering. They would so change their ... Ah, who am I kidding. They'd love the feudalism and court ceremony.