Thursday, August 6, 2009

Adults and Children:meeting on a rich field of data edition

The following NYT Editorial gave me great joy (particularly the paragraph I bolded), because it demonstrated adults getting together to work out differences in support of a common good. Everything beyond that is playground stuff by kids who didn't learn what everyone is supposed to learn in kindergarten.

NYT: Back From the Brink

When last this page quoted Boris Worm, a marine ecologist in Canada, in 2006, he was conjuring a frightening vision of a world without seafood. Overfishing, pollution and other depredations, he said, could obliterate almost all the ocean’s commercial fish species by 2048.

Last week, Dr. Worm, of Dalhousie University in Halifax, wrote in the journal Science that depleted fisheries can be saved if they are wisely managed, and that progress has already been made in five of 10 large fisheries where careful conservation measures are in place.

But what may be most encouraging about the new paper is how it came to be. It is a collaboration between Dr. Worm and a fisheries scientist who had been one of his sharpest critics in 2006 — Ray Hilborn of the University of Washington. Dr. Hilborn had accused Dr. Worm back then of cherry-picking facts and extrapolating wildly to reach baseless conclusions.

It was not a promising way to start a professional dialogue, but rather than hunker down in opposing camps, the two men met on a rich field of data. They agreed on new methods for assessing how many fish of a given species were being taken, compared with the total population. They compiled surveys and databases and other tools that both could agree on.

The authors not only reached agreement on the state of ocean fisheries — despite progress in some places, they said, about 63 percent of the fish stocks need rebuilding — but also on a course of action.

As a general principle, they said, it makes little sense to fish for the “maximum sustainable yield” — the fixed quantity of a given species that supposedly can be caught without endangering the resource. Year after year, officials have used that standard to set catch limits. The authors declared that setting more conservative targets was the smarter course.

They offered a familiar list of strategies — restricting destructive types of fishing gear, setting quotas for individual fishermen, establishing large “no-take” zones to allow species to breed and multiply. These can be used separately or in combination, they said, but in every case success will ultimately depend on two things: patience, and political will.

“The road to recovery is not always simple and not without short-term costs,” the authors said. But since the alternative is “further depletion and collapse,” it is the only good choice.
Pulling the strings of protest August 5: Msnbc's Rachel Maddow exposes the big money backers posing as average Americans behind the anti-health care reform event "Recess Rally."
Sgwhiteinfla: Who's Who
Rachel Maddow is doing an excellent job of exposing the people behind all these teabagging disruptions of Congressional Democrats' townhalls. She put a few more of them up on the summer jam screen tonight.
Now what sucks is that hardly any other news organizations are reporting this kind of stuff. As a matter of fact even other personalities on MSNBC aren't even reporting just how bogus these people are. But bigger than that there are even some ConservaDems who are convinced that these people aren't astroturfed at all. Take Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill for instance. Normally I am a fan of hers but at times she just doesn't get it. Here is her tweet from earlier this evening.

I disagree that the people showing concern over some healthcare proposals are "manufactured" Real folks, strong opinions.
Many people on twitter tried to change her mind but she seems to be brainwashed herself. I wonder what she will say when she finds herself on a youtube clip.

Well what it comes down to is what Rachel said at the end of the segment. This whole movement is totally bogus and the rest fo the mainstream media needs to be reporting it as such.

Update: It looks like these outbursts are starting to back fire.

From the conservative paper Napa Valley Register

Monday night’s health care forum in Napa grew unruly and wild, with some critics of the current health care proposals seeking to derail the event, harming their cause and nearly destroying a meaningful forum on a critical topic for Napa and the nation.

The display was unwelcome — and unsuccessful if it was meant to move health care reform supporters toward considering the concerns of the critics. Several callers to the Register on Tuesday reported they were repulsed by the aggressive tactics of some members of the crowd.
To the degree the catcalls, chants and shouts were organized — and it appears from events around the country that they were — we strongly suggest that the organizers find more constructive ways to get their message out.
But it seems that some of the demonstrators were primed for action no matter the viewpoints the speakers expressed.

It is to the moderator’s and the speakers’ credit that they kept the conversation focused and answered the questions posed.

Monday’s event was out of character for Napa County political clashes, even hotly contested ones. In our view, most politically active people here have better sense than to debase the debate that way.

Unbridled anger is not a substitute for intelligent discussion. Catcalls are not replacements for hard questions and criticism.
(h/t TPM)

And from ABCNews' Political Punch:

In talking to a few attendees afterward, one man said he now admires and respects his representative.

“He stood up, he took his shots, and did it like a man,” a man named Bill told me.

Two elderly women said they were embarrassed by their neighbors.

"They were rude! Oh, they were behaving terribly," one said, calling it a "disgrace to our community."

Said another of the anger, which sounded very much to her like what she hears on Fox News and conservative talk radio, "If it's not manufactured, they're brainwashed."

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