Unfriendly cellphone contracts shine light on dangers of arbitration

By Martin Bosworth

This week’s Business Week has a look at how the wireless industry is being challenged over its notoriously unfriendly contracts, which demand consumers give up their rights to resolution by jury trial or class action in court in favor of arbitration:

One class action involving early-termination charges, a leading gripe among cell users, should get a trial date in the next several months, says Jacqui Mottek, a lawyer at Lerach Coughlin, a lead firm representing the plaintiffs. Continue reading

Debunking global heating denier myths updated

Nearly a month ago, I wrote a point-by-point debunking of the top 17 global heating denier myths I had heard. As a result of all the comments I received, I’ve decided to keep the original post updated with new information and data, improved arguments, clearer language, and additional denier myth debunkings as new myths appear.

I’m happy to say that I’ve recently completed the first significant update to Anti-global heating claims – a reasonably thorough debunking. Here’s a brief rundown of the updates:

  • Added Myth #18 – water vapor is more important than CO2, and since we can’t control water vapor concentrations directly, we must not be able to directly cause global heating either.
  • Added figures from the IPCC Working Group 1 technical report for Myth #5 so readers didn’t have to dive into the AR4 .pdf file if they didn’t want all the gory details.
  • Rewrote Myth #6 to more accurately address the “CO2 doesn’t cause global warming – just look at the times when there was WAY more CO2 and we had an ice age” myth I was trying to debunk.
  • Update some of the wording in general to address several general criticisms made in comments here at S&R and at various social networking sites.

Check it out.

Scroguely Works: Five Moral Pieces

Five Moral Pieces by Umberto Eco, first published 2001, 128 pages, ISBN 978-0156013253

“The modern world looks at war through eyes different from those with which it looked at the problem early in the twentieth century, and if someone were to talk today of the beauty of war as the only form of world hygiene, he would go down not in the annals of literature but in those of psychiatry.”

Umberto Eco is one of the world’s foremost moral philosophers. Many may not know his studies in philosophy and reason but will have heard of The Name of the Rose (1980) or seen the movie of it staring Sean Connery (in 1986). His writing is much more than that. Continue reading

Clergy trained to “quell” citizen unrest…St. Paul for, Jefferson against….

arbeit.gifWelcome to the camp/I guess you all know why we’re here…. – Peter Townshend

KSLA-TV in Shreveport, LA, reports that Homeland Security has enlisted clergy to help quell unrest in case martial law is declared. Specifically, clergy would be asked to help convince their congregations to allow themselves to be disarmed and to go quietly to “camps” (this is called internment, friends) in case of a terrorist attack or other “national emergency.”

Continue reading