Whom to Believe?


 

 

Whom to believe?

Reason separates man from animals and politicians

by Mustang

Founded in 1968 at the Academia den Lincei (the Lincean Academy), the so-called Club of Rome is an association of 100 full members from among former and current heads of state, high ranking members of government, United Nations officials, diplomats, scientists, economists, and business leaders from around the world.  Today, the Club of Rome is based in Winterthur, Switzerland.

Stop laughing — it matters.

One of its founders was a gentleman named Alexander King (1909-2007), a British chemist and a pioneer of the so-called sustainable movement.  King’s concern was the impact upon the environment of “unprecedented economic growth.”  He argues that economic growth is a good thing, but too much of it has a deleterious effect on the environment.  To my mind, such a claim seems wholly sensible.  The problem, on this one issue, is the answer to the question, “Who gets to ‘regulate’ the global economy to mitigate its environmental impact?”

The real subject is the development and use of the chemical with the rather ridiculous sounding name Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane.  With any name exceeding the number of letters in the alphabet, it seems prudent to shorten it to DDT.  One may recall that DDT was developed as a cure for insects known to cause serious illness and death among human beings.  It was developed in the 1930s, and came into use during World War II.  In 1962, Rachel Carson’s book “Silent Spring” was able to persuade John F. Kennedy to ban the product owing to her claim of birth defects to humans and the extinction of wildlife.

Alexander King (left) (1987)

Dr. Alexander King might have agreed with Carson to ban the product, but for entirely different reasons.  According to King in 1990, “My own doubts came when DDT was introduced for civilian use.  In Guyana, within two years, it had almost eliminated malaria — but at the same time, the birth rate had doubled.  So my chief quarrel with DDT in hindsight is that it has greatly added to the population problem.”

Dr. King was a chemist.  Rachel Carson had a Master’s Degree in Zoology.  I make this point because while we may give credit to her work as an undersea biologist, she was out of her depth in matters of pesticides.  Her only practical work beyond university study, never quite making it to a doctoral level, was that she worked for the U. S. Bureau of Fisheries.

Why this matters (primarily to me, I suppose) is that I recently read a post at Pacific Paratrooper, whom I admire for her work respecting World War II, wherein G. P. Cox told the story of DDT’s development and how it materially served the interests of our combat troops in protecting them from virulent illnesses and diseases caused by insects.  While reading this article, I remembered as a youngster the DDT truck making a pass through our neighborhood on base housing at Camp Pendleton, California in 1952-53.

One commenter at Pacific Paratrooper, self-identifying at Jet Eliot, wrote, “I enjoyed this essay, GP, reading how the malaria and insects were dealt with in war times. A sign of the times, they created what they thought was a great thing to remedy their problems. Fortunately Rachel Carson and others were able to demand deeper investigation into these lethal chemicals and their detrimental effects on humans and the planet. We have pelicans and bald eagles and numerous other wildlife species now, all these years later, that were close to extinction due to DDT. And we are the generations of humans who have developed and benefitted from the curtailment of these strong chemicals. We live and learn, and fortunately our species continues.”

Unfortunately, Ms. Eliot’s argument is greatly contested in the scientific community, but it is a lie told so often that claims that DDT is harmful to humans is generally accepted as true.  It is what we’ve been told for the past 60 years.  Scientists today assure us that the lie is actually a damn lie.  Carson’s claim, they say, was based on emotion and junk science, and if this were not bad enough, the cost of such claims have been, quite literally, millions of lives.  This was the point made by Dr. King — whose only complaint was that DDT so effectively saved lives that we ended up having too many people on planet earth.

Of course, there a few issues with DDT that most people are unaware of.  For example, there is an issue with how the US Agency for International Development (USAID) went about forcing poor countries to stop using the product.  Essentially, USAID refused to fund any international projects that used DDT.  Around the world, poor countries were told that if they continued to use DDT, then they wouldn’t get any more monetary aid from the United States.  So, because many of these regimes were corrupt and put a higher value on access to the American people’s money than they did on the lives of their own citizens, they stopped using DDT.

Another issue is/was, the question of whose lives were saved through the use of DDT — mostly people of color living within the third and fourth world countries.  Since the suspension of the use of DDT (we are told), more than 100 million people have died in Africa alone due to  malaria (and other insect-borne diseases).  Apparently, the lives of one-hundred-million people do not matter quite as much if they have a darker complexion than the rest of us.

A third (but not last) issue is that Rachel Carson’s science was so fraudulent and distorted that one’s only rational conclusion is that she may rank along with Margaret Sanger as one of humanity’s greatest monsters, far above Joseph Stalin and Adolf Hitler.

Modern scientists now tell us that the tragic irony of the tens of millions of deaths attributed to the banning of DDT is that all central claims made by Carson (and others) are patently false.  For example, in order to cause cancerous tumors in mice, the animal would have to be exposed to DDT 10 times its body weight over an extended period of time.  There is, today, no correlation of Carson’s data.  According to the World Health Organization, numerous studies have failed to show ‘any convincing evidence’ of patterns of associations between DDT and cancer.  A US study corroborated the WHO findings.

Carson claimed that the effect of DDT on wild birds was so severe that one day, all the birds on earth would be dead and we would experience the “silent spring.”  It was pure poppycock.  Scientific data reflects that between 1941 and 1960, when DDT was regularly used to thwart infectious diseases from insects, bird populations actually quadrupled.  Among Robins, whom Carson specifically singled out, the population of these animals between 1941-60 increased twelve-fold.

Worse than this was Carson’s (and Charles Wurster’s) claim that DDT was dangerous to phytoplankton in sea water.  Wurster, co-founder of the Environmental Defense Fund, conducted his experiments in salted water with alcohol added, not sea water.  So again, the science was skewed from the beginning.  Again, more than 100 million people have died because we stopped using DDT.

So far, at least, I suspect there may not be much interest in this topic, especially since malaria is not a problem most Americans have to deal with.  Dengue fever is, though.  But here’s the real point of this tirade.

If we cannot trust science on a matter such as DDT, then how can we have confidence in any other scientific product — where there are agendas to pursue.  Shall we, then, blindly trust science on matters that DO affect us — such as immunology and COVID-19, climate change as a man-caused phenomena, or that the oceans will soon cover all of our coastal cities?

You tell me.  Whom do we believe — and why?

 

Mustang also blogs at Fix Bayonets and Thoughts From Afar

26 Responses to “Whom to Believe?”

  1. Ed Bonderenka Says:

    As I pointed out in my latest post , following the science entails choosing which science to follow.
    And the science chosen by the left is often their faith driven religious choice.
    DDT, Climate Change, Covidocracy, the left is pan-theistic.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. peter3nj Says:

    The goodness that was once the United States was little more than a bump in the road. Onward and downward people. In modern times was it Woodrow Wilson or was it FDR or was it the assassination of JFK giving us LBJ or was it The Swimmer’s reign in the Senate or was it George Bush Sr’s taking a dive in 1992 that propped open the gates of today’s hell we find ourselves in? No matter, the die has been cast more than once and now there is no turning back.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. kidme37 Says:

    I can only say I’ve lived through at least 10 such dire predictions from new ice age to no more oil to be found by the year 2000. All of it was obviously bullshit and created to serve an agenda centered around making money. When I look around today, and not too hard at that, it is easy to see we are all swimming in bullshit in every subject known to man plus more.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. the unit Says:

    Yeah, I remember DDT. Used it in the early-mid ’50s. Did a DIY canister devise that dripped a mix of kerosene and DDT into the exaust pipe of a Clinton lawn mower motor to fumigate my parents yard on the MS Gulf Coast. Sure I got fumigated back then, and still kicking. 🙂
    There’s a history why we were concerned, beside just being bothered by pesky bugs flitting in our faces.
    Following link probably longer than anyone wishes to read, but gives some insight into the lockdown we experience now. At the end it mentions the “Congressional quarantine law”, which I suppose is still on the books. Which a search of can take one to Am. Bar Assoc. site discussing right of governors decrees in these times.
    http://sites.rootsweb.com/~msalhn/yellowfever.html
    P.S. I’ve gotten the double dose of Covid vaccine (NW Florida). Don’t know long term effect, but ain’t got too much longer anyway. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  5. nrringlee Says:

    Some thoughts from a source I admire and refer to:

    https://breakpoint.org/why-defining-justice-is-necessary-for-doing-justice/?_hsmi=110064464&_hsenc=p2ANqtz–t95CFkWwI0KvTC1TlD6whLiCLD-bKcMsD6Ztuclj8ECEjtrbvsBGffKp31a1jWtGsrjtj6L09nPWG3PmCOmnibioTtw

    So the question to the Progressive New Left and other collectivists is this: is justice an end or is it a process. If it is an end, define that end. If it is a process what is the desired result? I have been educated to believe that justice is a process and the desired outcome it truth. So how can we use that process when truth is rejected by over half of our society? Question to all. Thanks

    Liked by 4 people

    • Mustang Says:

      I find philosophy interesting, but not so much that I dwell on it. It is mostly a lengthy construct of words generated by people who mumble and who are far too fond of the sound of their own ramblings. The problem we have with such concepts as truth and justice today is that eggheads have over-complicated the essential concepts – and “faith” is completely removed from any discussion. So, what is truth? According to the eggheads, truth depends on each individual’s concept of truth. What is true for one may not be true for another … they argue that there is no universal truth; the truth is relative to one’s circumstances — that sort of thing. I suppose in making such an argument, we might conclude that humankind leans toward self-delusion. The proof of this might be that some people can argue that regressive behavior is socio-politically progressive.

      In matters of justice, it depends if one is speaking about corrective or distributive justice, or conservative vs. ideal justice, procedural vs. substantial, comparative vis-à-vis non-comparative justice. It becomes more curd for philosophers to chew on and never arrive at a lucid conclusion. Does justice apply to everyone equally, or is this too relegated to our inadequate understanding of almost everything we believe true? And then, of course, there is legal justice — where some people are more equal than others. Heck, some of us even think that non-human animals deserve justice — mining chickens for food is unjust to the chickens; beyond the PETA organization, chickens have no spokesmen. So, I suppose if we’re looking for truth, it is that chickens taste good, and they are routinely denied justice. It’s a crappy world.

      Good read at the link … thank you for providing it.

      Liked by 3 people

      • nrringlee Says:

        Very few do philosophy today. In modern classrooms you find ideology parading as philosophy. We find the disciplines of philosophical exploration in ancient texts. My thinking on that leads me to believe that we are blinded and deafened by contemporary information overload. The ancients saw their world in a form far closer to the natural state and as such the laws of Nature and Nature’s God were more apparent.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. Bill Heffner Says:

    One point not mentioned was the role of DDT in eliminating Malaria in the United States. Most people today think that Malaria is a disease that was contracted in the tropics overseas, but is a mosquito-borne parasitic illness that was a serious problem in the southern US until it was essentially eradicated by the US Health Service in the mid-20th century. What did they use? You got it – DDT.

    Liked by 5 people

  7. nrringlee Says:

    In promoting ‘climate justice’ the conversation has intentionally lacked any intelligent discussion of nuclear power. This is so for the same reasons as applied to the DDT issue. Junk science, appeals to emotion and not reason and progressive group think peppered with a healthy dose of eugenics fuels the fire. Meanwhile the current regime undercuts the second best alternative, natural gas, without proposing a viable solution.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Mustang Says:

      We remember Montesquieu as the man who theorized that guarding democratic society against corruption might be achieved through a system of separation of power and checks and balances in government. Each division of government would have authority over the others prevent any one group from gaining too much power.

      Our enlightened framers implemented a theory to separate and check the power of one government institution over another and guard against an abridgment of the liberties and rights of the people. But even in our founding years, the notion wasn’t favored because the argument for the separation of powers, which came to us through British institutions, was already frequently disregarded within colonial governments long before the Constitutional Convention.

      We may wonder about this today. Separation of powers may not be possible when presidents can “stack” courts and bureaucracies with political devotees – people who are favored with fat government paychecks because they believe, or profess to believe, the same things that the president, who appointed them, believes. But I feel this problem far exceeds the base issue of separation of powers. DDT, nuclear energy, climate change, abortion, as separate issues, illustrate this point far better than politicized courts and many agencies (DOJ, FBI, CIA, NSA, HHS).

      It would seem that our country would be capable of greater accomplishments in the long run were we to pursue more separation of power, influence, ideation. Today, no voices are clamoring for justice among the indigent poor who routinely die from insect-borne diseases that could have been and should have been long ago eradicated. Similarly, there are no credible voices for the slaughtered unborn – a program so insidious that it openly identified black populations as its primary target and has since been extended to include everyone below an artificially drawn “poverty line.”

      So effective have the politicians been in stifling other points of view – the views they disagree with — that today no scientist, no matter how brilliant he or she may be, and no matter what this person may have discovered in his or her research, if the issue is contrary to what “progressive” people think they know, it would be nothing short of professional suicide to champion it. I do not believe the USA can recover from this woeful condition. This treasonable intransigence will be our ultimate downfall.

      Liked by 5 people

      • bunkerville Says:

        There is no truth since there is no critical thinking. The days of debating a position is gone. Only the Truth police know what it is and we dare not question. YouTube now deletes certain congressional hearings as they may contain “untruths.”

        Liked by 4 people

      • lgbmiel Says:

        Bunker…

        My son, rather matter-of-factly, smacked me in the face with that fact — the days of debating are over — when I arrived in Webster, NY this past weekend. We had an eye-opening (from my perspective) discussion. I was not prepared for such wisdom from my son.

        Then my daughter and I were the perfect example of the two sides not being able to ‘debate.’ She thinks I’m alt right! Me!!

        Anyway, my son gave me an attitude adjustment! I got to meet who’s important in this world! My Sweet Lucy!! She’s who matters, she and Henry – due may 26th!

        Liked by 3 people

  8. markone1blog Says:

    Oh, what’s the consideration of truth in promotion of climate “justice?”

    Liked by 5 people

    • lgbmiel Says:

      So frustrating, Mark. There is no such thing as ‘climate justice.’

      No such thing as social justice, racial justice, etc.

      The only ‘justice’ there can be is our legal system…and that doesn’t work very well.

      When people talk about other kinds of ‘justice’ what they really mean is taking from one to give to others. That’s not justice. That’s called something else. We all know what that is…

      Liked by 6 people


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