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The more science you know, the less worried you are about climate
The Register ^ | 29th May 2012 12:04 GMT | Lewis Page

Posted on 06/04/2012 9:22:37 AM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach

('Abandon focus on sound science', say trick-cyclists)

A US government-funded survey has found that Americans with higher levels of scientific and mathematical knowledge are more sceptical regarding the dangers of climate change than their more poorly educated fellow citizens.

The results of the survey are especially remarkable as it was plainly not intended to show any such thing: Rather, the researchers and trick-cyclists who carried it out were doing so from the position that the "scientific consensus" (carbon-driven global warming is ongoing and extremely dangerous) is a settled fact, and the priority is now to find some way of getting US voters to believe in the need for urgent, immediate and massive action to reduce CO2 emissions.

A theory exists among some psychologists, sociologists and other soft "scientists" that it should be possible to convince the ordinary citizenry to accept the various huge costs advocated by environmentalists, by simply raising the level of scientific knowledge and numeracy. People would then be able to understand that there is a terrible danger facing the human race and so would support action to address it. Certainly it appears to be a fact that very few people in the general public – or indeed, in various architecture and industrial-design faculties – have enough basic physics and numeracy to join the debate at all (as the recent rash of human-powered "crowd farm" generator projects illustrates all too plainly).

Thus, in a just-published US National Science Foundation-funded study, participants' science knowledge and numeracy was tested and compared with levels of concern regarding climate change. The soft-studies profs were amazed, however, to find that as one moves up the scale of science knowledge and numeracy, people become more sceptical, not less.

According to the profs, this is not because the idea of imminent carbon-driven catastrophe is perhaps a bit scientifically suspect. Rather it is because people classed as "egalitarian communitarians" (roughly speaking, left-wingers) are always highly concerned about climate change, and become slightly more so as they acquire more science and numeracy. Unfortunately, however, "hierarchical individualists" (basically, right-wingers) are quite concerned about climate change when they're ignorant: but if they have any scientific, mathematic or technical education this causes them to become strongly sceptical.

As scientific/tech knowledge and numeracy appears to be more common among "hierarchical individualists" than among "egalitarian communitarians", this meant that in the sample as a whole the effect of more scientific knowledge and numeracy was to increase scepticism.

Given that the profs had assumed from the start that scepticism is wrong, this forced them to the conclusion that simply teaching people more science and giving them more facts and numbers is not a good idea as it will lead them into bad (sceptical) decisions. They write:

This form of reasoning can have a highly negative impact on collective decision making ... it is very harmful to collective welfare for individuals in aggregate to form beliefs this way.

One aim of science communication, we submit, should be to dispel this tragedy ... A communication strategy that focuses only on transmission of sound scientific information, our results suggest, is unlikely to do that. As worthwhile as it would be, simply improving the clarity of scientific information will not dispel public conflict ...

Thus it is, according to the assembled profs, that the US government should seek to fund a communication strategy on climate change which is not focused on sound scientific information.

It does not follow, however, that nothing can be done ... Effective strategies include use of culturally diverse communicators, whose affinity with different communities enhances their credibility, and information-framing techniques that invest policy solutions with resonances congenial to diverse groups. Perfecting such techniques through a new science of science communication is a public good of singular importance.

There's something of a push developing in psychology, sociology and other soft-science departments worldwide for this "new science of communicating science", which is supposed to galvanise the electorates of the developed world into demanding serious action against carbon emissions and acceptance of the serious sacrifices this would mean. We've compared this idea before to Isaac Asimov's science-fictional notion of the discipline of "Psychohistory" - a set of methods which could be used to manipulate populations on a large scale*.

This might be seen from an egalitarian communitarian viewpoint as a good thing, simply changing people's beliefs for the manifest collective good.

Your hierarchical individualist, however, might sneer cynically – first at the prospect of a shower of trick-cyclists managing to change his or her mind on climate change by means of spin rather than hard numbers. The hierarchical individualist might also view the "science of communicating science" push as a rather ignoble attempt by the soft-studies profs to get a share of the climate change research funding bonanza that has poured into the hard science and biology faculties in recent decades.

And anyone at all might be rather alarmed, perhaps, at the prospect of actual success in the matter of developing a working discipline of Psychohistory – which could and would surely be used in other areas than climate change policy, and would surely be a threat to democracy if it worked as advertised.

For all that there's no serious likelihood of the soft-studies profs genuinely managing to pump up climate fear successfully where legions of activists and climatologists before them have failed, US taxpayers of every political stripe might very well quarrel with the idea of spending their science budget with the aim of placing enormous political power in the hands of the trick-cyclist community.

The new study is published by Nature Climate Change here. ®

Bootnote

*Though in the Foundation saga this was only possible with vast galactic populations of the far future, with humans as numerous as gas molecules in a pressure vessel, and even then it was necessary to keep the existence of Psychohistory a secret.


TOPICS: Conspiracy; Science; Weather
KEYWORDS: climatechange; globalwarming; globalwarminghoax

1 posted on 06/04/2012 9:22:43 AM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

I ain’t worried about the climate anyway. There is nothing we can do about it. It is what it is and it is going to do what it wants to do. Always has, always will. Thus, why worry about something you can do nothng about. One less headache.


2 posted on 06/04/2012 9:25:37 AM PDT by RetiredArmy (Paul said the world would look like in the last days: See Romans 1: 13-32 for the examples.)
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To: TigerLikesRooster; landsbaum; Signalman; NormsRevenge; steelyourfaith; Lancey Howard; ...

Well...now what?


3 posted on 06/04/2012 9:26:10 AM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?)
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To: RetiredArmy

I agree. I’m not worried about the climate. I’ll recycle (throw bottles and such in recyle bin) and clean up for myself (Litter, etc) as long as they don’t charge me for it. But I’m not going to worry myself about something I can’t change. And I’m not going to force other people to adhere to my personal practices


4 posted on 06/04/2012 9:29:22 AM PDT by justice14 ("stand up defend or lay down and die")
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
I've been watching "Frozen Planet" lately.

The amount of melt-off every single year at both poles due merely to seasonal change is astounding. There is no way that we would have any sort of flooding even if both entire poles melted away.

5 posted on 06/04/2012 9:34:09 AM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

And we Freepers are like the Encyclopediasts at the far end of the galaxy, keeping alive the possibility of civilization regenerating after only 1000 years. I sometimes feel like we are the only ones that actually know how to make things work.


6 posted on 06/04/2012 9:36:03 AM PDT by Explorer89 (And now, let the wild rumpus start!!)
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To: justice14
You are lucky you don't live in Liberal Fort Collins Colorado where they want to put you in jail if you goof up on recycling.
7 posted on 06/04/2012 9:36:16 AM PDT by mountainlion (I am voting for Sarah after getting screwed again by the DC Thugs.)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

One man’s psychohistory is another man’s propaganda.


8 posted on 06/04/2012 9:38:21 AM PDT by toast
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

The more you know ABOUT GOD, the less worried you are about climate...

There fixed it!!


9 posted on 06/04/2012 9:39:40 AM PDT by wizr (Keep the Faith!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
Not needing to read this because, climate change is natural. Man is not responsible. Man couldn't do ANYTHING about it anyway. God is in control.

The BP oil spill is the grand example of man's impotence in dealing with grand scale events. It is just beyond man's ability.

First man could do nothing to stem the oil flow. A man converted a giant ship that could clean up all the oil in a few days, it didn't work. Even Kevin Cosner’s, of Waterworld fame, invention proved inadequate to deal with the problem. Oil kept flowing, and man kept failing.

Then God, who had created oil eating bacteria, came to the rescue. The biggest oil spill in U.S. history became a non issue because of oil eating bacteria that existed since the beginning of time.

Dealing with GLOBAL climate change, is exponentially more difficult than dealing with some puny oil sill, that man was totally incapable of doing.

Why would anyone with a brain think we could affect climate change? If you can't change a thing, then why worry about it at all?

10 posted on 06/04/2012 9:39:52 AM PDT by faucetman ( Just the facts, ma'am, Just the facts)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

My B.S. in Chemistry and Ph.D. in Biochemistry, but maybe more importantly my 71 years of living through hot and cold decades of “change”, makes me quite sure that we are not in any unusual or imminent danger from global warming/climate change.


11 posted on 06/04/2012 9:41:57 AM PDT by FairWitness (Everything is easy, once you've done it once)
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To: mountainlion

Yeah. It’s not the bad. I’ll do bottles and such. I don’t do paper, and won’t spend the time with that. Sometimes a stray bottle gets thrown in the normal trash. Oh well.


12 posted on 06/04/2012 9:47:06 AM PDT by justice14 ("stand up defend or lay down and die")
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

Well...We all knew anything Al Gore said had zero to do with science...


13 posted on 06/04/2012 9:50:22 AM PDT by AngelesCrestHighway
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To: toast

Precisely!! Perfectly put. A friend of my said recently, that those who denied climate change and it’s ramifications were exactly like “holocaust deniers”; I wanted to croak. I wanted to tell him that one is a HISTORICAL fact, the other a SCIENTIFIC theory; however, this article shows how one will become the other with a little help from the propaganda wing of the society (by the way he was a hollywood writer), “changing people’s beliefs for the manifest collective good.” I still can’t believe they’re going to “win”, but they are—I’ve got the stupid and germs and stinky “eco-bags” in my car to prove it!


14 posted on 06/04/2012 9:50:33 AM PDT by punditwannabe
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To: toast

Precisely!! Perfectly put. A friend of my said recently, that those who denied climate change and it’s ramifications were exactly like “holocaust deniers”; I wanted to croak. I wanted to tell him that one is a HISTORICAL fact, the other a SCIENTIFIC theory; however, this article shows how one will become the other with a little help from the propaganda wing of the society (by the way he was a hollywood writer), “changing people’s beliefs for the manifest collective good.” I still can’t believe they’re going to “win”, but they are—I’ve got the stupid and germy and stinky “eco-bags” in my car to prove it!


15 posted on 06/04/2012 9:50:49 AM PDT by punditwannabe
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

June 4 and it’s sprinkling here, if we’re lucky we get a good drenching.. knock all the dust and carbon down. ;-)


16 posted on 06/04/2012 10:05:18 AM PDT by NormsRevenge (Semper Fi)
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To: NormsRevenge
We need that down here too.....

See this ...I think I know why Mary Nichols CARB had the Webcast the other day.....see this:

hocker:GISS... rapid warming in recent decades has been driven mainly by non-CO2 greenhouse gases”

17 posted on 06/04/2012 10:16:49 AM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
Typo Alert....my link just above should start with

Shocker:


18 posted on 06/04/2012 10:19:16 AM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

I’m hardly surprised at all by the results of this polling. Just try sometime to engage a leftist type in a scientific discussion of Global Warming and you will get nowhere. The lefties are not interested in the science, could care less about the science but they “know” they are on the right side of the issue. They just “know”.


19 posted on 06/04/2012 10:27:04 AM PDT by InterceptPoint (TIN)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
Check out this informative video from the Australian Galileo Movement that puts CO2 in perspective. Video

The Galileo Movement is a group of Aussi scientist leading opposition to the carbon taxes enacted by the Labour government.

20 posted on 06/04/2012 10:35:25 AM PDT by The Great RJ
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To: faucetman
Even Kevin Cosner’s, of Waterworld fame, invention proved inadequate to deal with the problem. Oil kept flowing, and man kept failing.

Did they ever let Costner put his machine in the water? (actually not his invention he was just an investor) I recall that when he first showed up the FedMob put roadblock after roadblock in his way even though he was going to pay for the whole thing. Just like the FedMob rejected a fleet of the world's most effective oil skimmers from Europe because they didn't belong to a U.S. union. (the Netherlands specifically IIRC)

21 posted on 06/04/2012 10:46:43 AM PDT by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
The soft-studies profs were amazed, however, to find that as one moves up the scale of [hard] science knowledge and numeracy, people become more sceptical, not less.

So the folks who deal in real projects with physically demonstrable results don't believe the charlatans who are blowing smoke with theories having little connection to reality. I can buy that!

22 posted on 06/04/2012 10:51:52 AM PDT by brityank (The more I learn about the Constitution, the more I realise this Government is UNconstitutional !!)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
How much education does one need to read a couple of charts like this and realize that man-made Glowbull Warming is the biggest bunch of horse hockey that ever came down the pike?

Claim That Sea Level Is Rising Is a Total Fraud

Sea levels began to rise 18k years ago at the end of the last glacial period. They have risen about 135 meters since then which is an average of 7.5 millimeters per year. That is an average of 750 mm per century (29.5 inches) which is far more than the average over the last century.


23 posted on 06/04/2012 11:02:18 AM PDT by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: brityank

By jove I think you’ve got it! ;^)


24 posted on 06/04/2012 11:04:56 AM PDT by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: brityank

Our goobermint’s answer to this will to be:
deny grants,loans or scholarships for hard sciences students and increase those for women’s studies students.


25 posted on 06/04/2012 11:07:11 AM PDT by TurboZamboni (Looting the future to bribe the present)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
RE: "Well...now what?"
Al Gore must feel crushed. :)
26 posted on 06/04/2012 1:34:37 PM PDT by Marine_Uncle (Honor must be earned.)
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To: TigersEye

Back later to study the charts.....thanks.


27 posted on 06/04/2012 5:28:34 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

I’m sure you’ve seen them a hundred times. Just some basic temp and sea level history. Which makes the idea of runaway temps and catastrophic sea level rise look ridiculous but nothing new or extraordinary.


28 posted on 06/04/2012 9:15:33 PM PDT by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; 11B40; A Balrog of Morgoth; A message; ACelt; Aeronaut; AFPhys; AlexW; ...
DOOMAGE!

Global Warming PING!

You have been pinged because of your interest in environmentalism, alarmist wackos, mainstream media doomsday hype, and other issues pertaining to global warming.

Freep-mail me to get on or off: Add me / Remove me

Please ping me to all note-worthy threads on global warming.

Sorry Global Warming Alarmists, the Earth Is Cooling

Latest from CO2 Science

Global Warming on Free Republic

Latest from Global Warming News Site

Latest from Greenie Watch

Latest from Real Climate

Latest from Climate Depot

Latest from Junk Science

Latest from Terra Daily

29 posted on 06/06/2012 12:52:28 PM PDT by Tolerance Sucks Rocks (Occupy DC General Assembly: We are Marxist tools. WE ARE MARXIST TOOLS!)
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To: Marine_Uncle

Didn’t Al Gore get a ‘D’ in the only science class he took?


30 posted on 06/06/2012 1:50:43 PM PDT by GOPJ (Take your little hammer, little sickle and your scary red signs with a fist on it, and go home...)
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To: The Great RJ

Thanks for that.....may need to do a thread for the Californians ....course the powers here are rapidly changing from GW to say CO2 is instrumental in pollution...there is a thread on what the California Air Resources Board is doing propaganda wise.


31 posted on 06/06/2012 2:21:01 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach (The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?)
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To: GOPJ
RE: "Didn’t Al Gore get a ‘D’ in the only science class he took?"
I believe I had read that somewhere a few years back as well.
32 posted on 06/06/2012 2:42:40 PM PDT by Marine_Uncle (Honor must be earned.)
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To: Marine_Uncle; GOPJ

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2000/mar/25/20000325-011032-8259r/ excerpts:

Last Sunday, The Washington Post reproduced Mr. Gore’s Harvard transcript as well as his grades and scores at the elite St. Albans high school and later at Vanderbilt University’s divinity and law schools. In a word, the transcripts reveal that Mr. Gore’s post-secondary academic performance was rather dismal, particularly in the field of science.

In introductory economics, the only economics course Mr. Gore ever took, he received a C-

As a Harvard sophomore, scholar Al “earned” a D in Natural Sciences 6 in a course presciently named “Man’s Place in Nature.” That was the year he evidently spent more time smoking cannabis than studying its place among other plants within the ecosystem. His senior year, Mr. Gore received a C+ in Natural Sciences 118.

At Vanderbilt divinity school, Mr. Gore took a course in theology and natural science. The assigned readings included the apocalyptic, and widely discredited “Limits to Growth,” which formed much of the foundation for “Earth in the Balance.” It is said that Mr. Gore failed to hand in his book report on time. Thus, his incomplete grade turned into an F, one of five Fs Mr. Gore received at divinity school, which may well be a worldwide record.

In ... “Inventing Al Gore,” Newsweek correspondent Bill Turque writes that Mr. Gore’s “moribund academic career suddenly gained new energy and direction” at the beginning of his junior year in the fall of 1967. “The English student who plodded through Chaucer and pulled a string of Cs started getting As and Bs, and his academic program began to look more like a preparation for public life.” But as Mr. Turque also notes, it was at the beginning of Mr. Gore’s junior year that “the [Vietnam] War’s shadow lengthened.”

This is when grade inflation really took off. Not only had the Johnson administration announced an end to graduate school deferments, but the U.S. military presence in Vietnam had dramatically increased, reaching nearly 500,000 troops compared to 23,000 in early 1965. Flunking out of undergraduate school meant a visit to the local draft board. Rabidly anti-war professors, who dominated political science faculties across the nation, began handing out Cs for breathing, thus ratcheting-up the entire grading scale. This surely explains part of Mr. Gore’s academic improvement.

Mr. Gore’s high point of academic achievement at Harvard was his 99-page senior thesis, “The Impact of Television on the Conduct of the Presidency, 1947-1969,” which so impressed his father, then a liberal senator from Tennessee whom voters ousted from office the next year, that he sent it to the Nixon White House.

Presciently and ironically, in his thesis Mr. Gore used as his case study the evolution of the presidential news conference. ... Why prescient and ironic? Because Mr. Gore seems to have learned nothing from his own thesis. Recall the news conference disaster over which he presided when he attempted to legitimize his fund-raising calls from his White House office by declaring not once, but seven times that “no controlling legal authority” had barred him from making those calls. Then again, what would one expect from a law school drop-out who once achieved a D-level grade of 69 in Civil Procedure II?


To be fair, I believe Mister Gore has since read and absorbed several articles about global warming “science” posted on Wikipedia.


33 posted on 06/06/2012 8:38:11 PM PDT by ApplegateRanch (Love me, love my guns!©)
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To: ApplegateRanch
It is said that Mr. Gore failed to hand in his book report on time. Thus, his incomplete grade turned into an F, one of five Fs Mr. Gore received at divinity school, which may well be a worldwide record.

Divinity school must be very forgiving....

34 posted on 06/06/2012 9:36:11 PM PDT by GOPJ (Take your little hammer, little sickle and your scary red signs with a fist on it, and go home...)
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To: ApplegateRanch

Thanks for his profile.


35 posted on 06/06/2012 9:54:17 PM PDT by Marine_Uncle (Honor must be earned.)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
The reporter refers to "soft" science, but in fact this isn't really science at all. "Hard" scientists are concerned with what is truth; "soft" scientists in this sense are concerned with how best to influence people's thinking. The latter is actually rhetoric, not science, even if its methods appear to be scientific.

The intention of the study was not, in fact, to measure the relationship between mathematical and logical ability and a conviction that AGW is truth, it was to produce a document that is designed to suppress dissent on the topic by implying that dissenters are less intelligent than true believers. It failed because the only science in it wouldn't cooperate.

It also failed because those who are relatively numerate recognize this affair for the con game it is and tend to be less swayed by "consensus" in the non-consensual mechanism that is science. One and one is not three no matter how earnestly the rhetoricians insist that it would be beneficial to society to pretend that it is, and the skeptic may well be ridiculed for insisting otherwise but he will not be wrong.

36 posted on 06/06/2012 10:04:41 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: justice14

“I don’t do paper”

If you believe that CO2 is a problem, then there is a good argument that paper and such should be buried in landfills, thereby sequestering the carbon it contains. Of course, in reality recycling is not as much about conserving resources as it is about performing a daily ritual which affirms deep green environmentalism. In short, brainwashing.


37 posted on 06/07/2012 1:43:54 PM PDT by beef (Who Killed Kennewick Man?)
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To: beef

Same with “bio degradable” bottles. They don’t degrade b/c they need sunlight to do so.


38 posted on 06/07/2012 4:51:13 PM PDT by justice14 ("stand up defend or lay down and die")
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