Originally posted on Watts Up With That?:

By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley

» Several members of the American Physical Society have contacted me to ask how they should respond to a tokenistic “consultation” by the Society’s “Panel on Public Affairs” about its proposed amendment to its existing daft “Statement on Climate Change”. They invited me to submit this to WattsUpWithThat for publication as a message to our American cousins. APS members, please send comments on the draft statement to APS before the May 6 deadline. Please copy them to Judith Curry’s website, Climate Etc., which has a thread devoted to the draft statement: http://judithcurry.com/2015/04/20/aps-discussion-thread/.

Climate change is now a political issue. It is not the business of the American Physical Society to take sides and make what amount to partisan political statements, particularly when the activists promoting the APS’ revised “statement on climate change” have taken care to restrict members to one comment each on the…

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via 23 maps and charts on language – Vox.

via FRB: Potential Output and Recessions: Are We Fooling Ourselves?.

Madonna – Live to Tell

Posted: April 21, 2015 by Jim Rose in Music

Chart Of The Day

Posted: April 21, 2015 by Jim Rose in economics

Originally posted on The Dish:


Tal Yarkoni takes another look at the Dunning-Kruger effect:

This is one of the key figures from Kruger and Dunning’s 1999 paper (and the basic effect has been replicated many times since). The critical point to note is that there’s a clear positive correlation between actual performance (gray line) and perceived performance (black line): the people in the top quartile for actual performance think they perform better than the people in the second quartile, who in turn think they perform better than the people in the third quartile, and so on. So the bias is definitively not that incompetent people think they’re better than competent people. Rather, it’s that incompetent people think they’re much better than they actually are. But they typically still don’t think they’re quite as good as people who, you know, actually are good. (It’s important to note that Dunning and Kruger never claimed to show…

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Housing and the Deputy Governor

Posted: April 21, 2015 by Jim Rose in economics

Originally posted on croaking cassandra:

I had been going to write something about housing this morning, but got distracted in the WEO database.  House prices, especially in Auckland, are a political and social scandal.

But now Grant Spencer, Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank with responsibility for financial stability, is out with a speech on housing, “Action needed to reduce housing imbalances”.  It is difficult to know where to start in commenting on the speech, although the title will do.  The tone  of “Action needed” seems to inject the Bank into politics, and the political debate, rather more than is prudent or than its two main statutory responsibilities, price stability and prudential supervision to promote the soundness and efficiency of the financial system would warrant.  For better or worse, the Reserve Bank has a variety of statutory powers it can exercise.  If it judges those powers should be used it should lay out its case…

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Why Was There No ‘Battle for Baghdad”?

Posted: April 21, 2015 by Jim Rose in economics

Originally posted on Political Violence @ a Glance:

Guest post by Charles Butcher

Iraqi soldiers march in Baghdad. By DVIDSHUB. Iraqi soldiers march in Baghdad. By DVIDSHUB.

In June 2014, the “Islamic State” captured a string of cites in northern Iraq and appeared to be threatening Baghdad. Although fighting did not reach Baghdad, other civil wars have transitioned into a ‘battle for the capital’, such as those in Afghanistan, Liberia, and Somalia. Understanding why this happens is important. Capital cities are often a county’s most populous and productive city, mediation efforts are less common and less effective when fighting approaches the capital, and this situation probably attracts foreign intervention.

I’ve recently published a study examining this question, using data on the proximity of fighting to capital cities in civil wars from 1975-2011. The study showed that ‘multipolar’ civil wars are fought nearest to the capital, while ‘bipolar’ conflicts are fought substantially further away and ‘unipolar’ conflicts are fought largely in the periphery…

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