Loss of GMO cotton makes Burkina Faso farmers poorer

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I have enough trouble remembering names so what chance with pronouns

When people demand you respect their chosen pronoun, they seem at least to forget how difficult it is to even remember surnames.

Speaking from experience, I had enough trouble remembering names when I was young. This became crystal clear after sharing a coffee with a friend at graduate school, we encountered someone outside the coffee shop and I plain forgot his name. We shared the same first name.

When I was at graduate school in Japan, there are over 20 nationalities among the student body. At the suggestions of the professors, we just focused on learning each other’s nickname.

Do not go on about how we should try and learn to pronounce each other’s name. Japanese, despite learning English at high school, often pronounce my name Jimu Rosu. That became important when a guy called Ross was paid my salary at University I was working on the side. Rose and Ross are written the same way in katakana.

People who are good at languages are more arrogant than those who are good at maths. They think something wrong with you because they by accident of birth have a natural gift for languages. Members of many language groups cannot hear certain sounds because they are simply filtered out in the way the brain processes sounds.

That is before we get to face blindness with some people simply cannot see people’s faces in the way other people process the information of the whole face. They see the nose and the mouth but not the whole picture.

Going back to graduate school in Japan, Korean friends were quite insistent of being called by their family name. As the majority of their country is called Kim, Lee or Park, I really do not know how they keep track of each other. How do you work out if you have a friend in common, much less who to vote for?

Then we come to the many friends who had no family name. What more, some came from countries where you could change your name at will such as Burma.

With Japanese, it was important to remember to add san after speaking to them because otherwise they would not realise you were speaking to them. Many of their names have other meanings unless the honorific is added at the end. Japanese developed family names in the 19th century. Many are related to place or occupation as are many old English names.

If you want someone to remember your name, or other details about you, most people use a bit of charm to win cooperation. Going back to forgetting my friend’s name despite him having the same first name as me, the cause was the stress of having to remember it. People do not remember names well when under stress.

The mechanisms for winning cooperation and friends are well known. Badgering people is not one of them . Why people choose to badger people rather than use charm and patience is not a mystery.

Shocking! The SEC rules that activist shareholders can’t force oil companies to stop being oil companies!

Watts Up With That?

Guest hyperbole by David Middleton

Since, someone will very likely comment that the article doesn’t say that activist shareholders were trying to force oil companies to stop being oil companies, I will answer preemptively:

  1. You don’t know what an oil company is or does.
  2. The thread title was intentionally hyperbolical.

One of the two answers above may be hyperbolical.

However, my thread title is not nearly as misleading as the title of this Axios article:

Amy Harder Apr 2

Investors stunned over oil producer’s climate-change exemption

A new twist is unfolding in the fight between activist investors and the oil industry: an unprecedented move by federal regulators allowing a major producer to preemptively kill a shareholder resolution on climate change without a vote.

Why it matters: The Securities and Exchange Commission’s support of oil producer EOG Resources is emerging as a flashpoint in what has become America’s central battleground over climate…

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In California Everything Causes Cancer, So Labels Say

Science Matters

Best attempt at a scary cup of coffee.

An update on left coasters freaking out about cancerous items is provided by Sara Chodosh in Popular Science California needs to stop saying everything causes cancer

Unsurprisingly, it is the nanny state doing the fear mongering. Excerpts below with my bolds.

You may have heard that coffee gives you cancer. Or that everything gives you cancer—if you live in California.

The reason: Proposition 65. It’s a California state law that requires businesses with 10 or more employees to provide reasonable warning about the use of any chemicals the state has decided could cause cancer, birth defects, or other reproductive harm. One of these chemicals is acrylamide, which a rodent study pinned as a possible carcinogen. It’s found in almost everything that’s cooked at a high temperature. And because a particularly litigious law firm recently sued the state for not properly warning…

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Climate Change in the Courts

Big Picture News, Informed Analysis

SPOTLIGHT: Environmentalists have long used the courts to achieve their goals – rather than doing the hard work of persuading the rest of us to share their latest concern.

BIG PICTURE: Australian journalist Tony Thomas has written an informative and entertaining account of a lawsuit currently underway in California. Titled Warmism Gets a Courtroom Thrashing, it’s a great 10-minute read.

The cities of San Francisco and Oakland are suing oil companies for alleged climate damages. Anyone who has ever driven an automobile, used natural gas to heat their home in the dead of winter, or boarded an airplane knows that fossil fuels are essential. Without them, life as we know it would screech to a halt.

Nevertheless, companies that do the difficult and dangerous work of making fossil fuels available to the rest of us are being dragged into court. In this instance, they’re being accused of “unlawful public…

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The Declaration of Breda.

European Royal History

On this date in History: April 4, 1660. Charles II, King of England, Scotland and Ireland issues The Declaration of Breda.

IMG_2272

The Declaration of Breda (dated April 4, 1660) was a proclamation by Charles II of England, Scotland and Ireland in which he promised a general pardon for crimes committed during the English Civil War and the Interregnum for all those who recognised Charles as the lawful king; the retention by the current owners of property purchased during the same period; religious toleration; and the payment of pay arrears to members of the army, and that the army would be recommissioned into service under the crown. The first three pledges were all subject to amendment by acts of parliament.

The declaration was named after the city of Breda in the Netherlands. It was actually written in the Spanish Netherlands, where Charles had been residing since March 1656; however, at the…

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