Team Kimberlin Post of the Day

One of the false narratives that Team Kimberlin kept trying to spin was that they were being lied about. The Bonus Prevarication Du Jour from six years ago today dealt with one of Bill Schmalfeldt’s whoppers.

* * * * *

If the Cabin Boy™ were to make the effort to thoroughly search Hogewash!, he would find that I have never said that he is a child pornographer. Rather, I have suggested that the Gentle Reader should listen to the audio of the implicated Schmalfeldt skits or read the versions he included as exhibits in a LOLsuit VI filing, and make up his own mind.

Similarly, I have never posted anything on Hogewash! stating that the Cabin Boy™ does not have Parkinson’s disease. Indeed, I have specifically stated that I am not qualified to diagnose him, and that he has presented symptoms consistent with Parkinson’s disease while he was in my presence.

I have never publicly expressed any opinion as to whether Bill Schmalfeldt is a child pornographer or whether he suffers from Parkinson’s disease, and I intend to keep my opinions on those matters to myself.

* * * * *

The Cabin Boy’s™ whining about Parkinson’s disease has occurred just before several of his “retirements.” This week he’s complained about symptoms so severe that walking about his house had him thinking about a wheelchair.

I’m Not Making This Up, You Know

In an apparent effort to prove the saying that no man’s life or property is safe when the legislature is in session, a bill has been offered in Massachusetts that would allow a prisoner to receive up to 360 days off his sentence by donating bone marrow or an organ.

BTW, the National Organ Transplant Act makes it illegal to “knowingly acquire, receive, or transfer a human organ for valuable consideration for use in human transplantation.”

Gil Hamilton, call your office.

Safe Cooking

According to a report published on the National Institutes of Health website, there is an association of cooking over an open flame and asthma, but the effect depends upon which fuel is used. The report’s abstract states:

Background: Indoor air pollution from a range of household cooking fuels has been implicated in the development and exacerbation of respiratory diseases. In both rich and poor countries, the effects of cooking fuels on asthma and allergies in childhood are unclear. We investigated the association between asthma and the use of a range of cooking fuels around the world.

Methods: For phase three of the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC), written questionnaires were self-completed at school by secondary school students aged 13-14 years, 244,734 (78%) of whom were then shown a video questionnaire on wheezing symptoms. Parents of children aged 6-7 years completed the written questionnaire at home. We investigated the association between types of cooking fuels and symptoms of asthma using logistic regression. Adjustments were made for sex, region of the world, language, gross national income, maternal education, parental smoking, and six other subject-specific covariates. The ISAAC study is now closed, but researchers can continue to use the instruments for further research.

Findings: Data were collected between 1999 and 2004. 512,707 primary and secondary school children from 108 centres in 47 countries were included in the analysis. The use of an open fire for cooking was associated with an increased risk of symptoms of asthma and reported asthma in both children aged 6-7 years (odds ratio [OR] for wheeze in the past year, 1·78, 95% CI 1·51-2·10) and those aged 13-14 years (OR 1·20, 95% CI 1·06-1·37). In the final multivariate analyses, ORs for wheeze in the past year and the use of solely an open fire for cooking were 2·17 (95% CI 1·64-2·87) for children aged 6-7 years and 1·35 (1·11-1·64) for children aged 13-14 years. Odds ratios for wheeze in the past year and the use of open fire in combination with other fuels for cooking were 1·51 (1·25-1·81 for children aged 6-7 years and 1·35 (1·15-1·58) for those aged 13-14 years. In both age groups, we detected no evidence of an association between the use of gas as a cooking fuel and either asthma symptoms or asthma diagnosis.

Interpretation: The use of open fires for cooking is associated with an increased risk of symptoms of asthma and of asthma diagnosis in children. Because a large percentage of the world population uses open fires for cooking, this method of cooking might be an important modifiable risk factor if the association is proven to be causal.

Funding: BUPA Foundation, the Auckland Medical Research Foundation, the Health Research Council of New Zealand, the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation of New Zealand, the Child Health Research Foundation, the Hawke’s Bay Medical Research Foundation, the Waikato Medical Research Foundation, Glaxo Wellcome New Zealand, the NZ Lottery Board, Astra Zeneca New Zealand, Hong Kong Research Grant Council, Glaxo Wellcome International Medical Affairs.

Note the finding of no evidence of an association between the use of gas as a cooking fuel and either asthma symptoms or asthma diagnosis.

The report was originally published in Lancet Respir Med in 2013.

Sex and the Immune System

MIT Technology Review has an article about the quest to show that biological sex matters in the immune system. It centers around the work of Sabra Klein, a Professor of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Both the biological and behavioral difference between the sexes are important. For example—

Despite a historical practice of “bikini medicine”—the notion that there are no major differences between the sexes outside the parts that fit under a bikini—we now know that whether you’re looking at your metabolism, heart, or immune system, both biological sex differences and sociocultural gender differences exist. And they both play a role in susceptibility to diseases. For instance, men’s greater propensity to tuberculosis—they are almost twice as likely to get it as women—may be attributed partly to differences in their immune responses and partly to the fact that men are more likely to smoke and to work in mining or construction jobs that expose them to toxic substances, which can impair the lungs’ immune defenses.

How to tease apart the effects of sex and gender? That’s where animal models come in. “Gender is a social construct that we associate with humans, so animals do not have a gender,” says Chyren Hunter, associate director for basic and translational research at the US National Institutes of Health Office of Research on Women’s Health. Seeing the same effect in both animal models and humans is a good starting point for finding out whether an immune response is modulated by sex.
But you can’t find sex differences if you’re only studying one sex. Klein remembers a meeting where a researcher on nematodes, a type of parasitic worm, mentioned that his experiments were done only in male mice, because female mice didn’t get infected. She recalls being flabbergasted that he never thought to study why the nematodes couldn’t infect the females. “Oh my God, you might have a cure for these nematodes that wreak havoc!” she recalls thinking.

BTW, given the politics of many of the likely readers, the article wisely provides this definition—

When referring to people in this article, “male” is used as a shorthand for people with XY chromosomes, a penis, and testicles, and who go through a testosterone-dominated puberty, and “female” is used as a shorthand for people with XX chromosomes and a vulva, and who go through an estrogen-dominated puberty.

Well, at least MIT may have a reasonable working definition for woman.

Read the whole thing.

Political Science v. The Real Thing

I made a B in POLSCI101 55 years ago. One of things I learned in the course was Bismarck’s definition of politics: the art of the possible. Another thing I learned was that what is called “political science” has essentially no connection to or use for the scientific method. As Bismarck noted, politics is an art, and the study of it is no more a part of science than is the study of music or any other art.

That’s not to say that politicians don’t claim to be basing their action on science. Marxism, for instance, claims to be “scientific socialism.” The history of the 20th Century shows what happened every time the marxist hypothesis was tested against Reality.

“Scientific” Covidicism has had its test against Reality, and its Narrative hasn’t done well. Indeed, it’s done so poorly, that even the blue states are beginning to  return to the Real World.

The science hasn’t changed. A bit of pseudoscience has failed, and  it’s an election year. The art of politics says that the way to survive an election is to stay on voters’ good side. And the voters have had enough of covid restrictions that didn’t work or were actually harmful.

Honk! Honk!

Everybody Blog About Mass Formation Psychosis Day

My podcasting partner Stacy McCain has declared today to be Everybody Blog About Mass Formation Psychosis Day with the following objectives—

1. Call attention to the censorship campaign by which COVID-19 panic brigades are attempting to suppress criticism.
2. Explain what “Mass Formation Theory” really means.
3. Most critics of COVID-19 policy are not “anti-science.

Now, I suspect that most of Gentle Readers of this blog are aware of the various forms of censorship that have been deployed against people raising questions about or objections to the alleged public health measures imposed on us over the past two years. Some of those measures have been well intentioned. Some have been the result of petty tyrants trying to hang onto control. Some have been virtue signaling.

Today, I’d like to point, laugh, and mock at one example of virtue signaling: Neal Young. It’s been years since I actively listened to any of his music, and now, I won’t have to worry about stumbling across it on Spotify.

I’m not going to attempt to get into a definition of “Mass Formation Theory.” It’s a subject that’s well outside my expertise. (In spite of our experience over the past couple of years, it’s still smart to listen to the experts sometimes.)

However, I will talk to the point that many critics of COVID-19 policy aren’t “anti-science,” Indeed, I’ll start by noting that many of us do Science for a living and that it’s the scientific method that underlies our questioning of policy. When an experiment produces the “wrong” result, the scientific method directs us toward at different approach. Continuing a demonstrably incorrect or ineffective approach and expecting a different result is crazy, and as Stacy has noted, Crazy People Are Dangerous™.

Meanwhile, Florida has been free for a year, and masks are being eliminated in the UK schools. There are even free counties inside of blue states like Maryland. Perhaps the body politick is getting over its psychotic episode.

Gain of Function/Loss of Credibility

Project Veritas is reporting that they have copies of DoD documents which contradict Anthony Fauci’s sworn testimony to Congress concerning gain of function experiments with viruses.

Among the documents is a report to the DoD Inspector General written by Marine Corp Major Joseph Murphy, a former Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Fellow, stating that an NGO, EcoHealth Alliance, approached DARPA in 2018 looking for funding to conduct gain of function research of bat borne coronaviruses. The proposal was rejected by DARPA because of safety concerns. According to the documents published by Project Veritas, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases went ahead with the research in Wuhan, China, and at several sites across the U.S. Anthony Fauci is the Director of NIAID.

Someone’s been lying.

Covid and Murphy’s Law

I started the New Year off with a cold which took a few days to get over. Of course, I had a covid test. It was negative, verifying that it just a cold. Although I’m fully vaxxed and boosted, I was hoping that it was covid so I could claim natural immunity as well. Nope. Just a cold, and I got over it.

So I went about my normal routine over the weekend.

This morning, I took another covid test even though I’m asymptomatic. It turned out positive.

Given that I’m elderly, I suppose an asymptomatic case isn’t such a bad deal, but being placed on hold for the next few days is going to be a real inconvenience.

OTOH, I can now claim natural immunity on top of being vaxxed and boosted.

Today at The Supremes

I listened to the oral argument in the OSHA mandate cases today. I’m in a bit of a quandary about how to comment. (Before I go any further, let me remind the Gentle Reader that I am not a lawyer; I’m an engineer, and I’m not your engineer.) As multiple commentators have pointed out, Justices Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan made several factual statement that were simply wrong. It is possible for vaccinated individuals to catch and spread covid. There aren’t now—nor has there be across the entire pandemic—100,000 acute pediatric cases. The omicron variant is not deadlier than the delta.

I suppose it is possible that being kept in a bubble by handler/clerks could explain a certain level of ignorance, but when the cat’s so far out of the bag even outlets such as NPR are having to begin truthful reporting, it’s hared to imagine those justice really believe what they were saying.

If they do believe what they said, that’s kinda scary.

If they don’t believe it and said it anyway, that’s even scarier.

UPDATE—Typo corrected.