Archive for October, 2012

Tugboat Bob’s Schoolboy Essay

October 30, 2012

This is so awful that it almost makes Pendergast look like an expert! Tugboat must spend all of his time surfing loony-tune and ‘popular science’ websites, for all that he has done is to vomit up all of the half-digested half-truths to be found on the ‘disinformation highway’. If only he had access to the work of academic writers on the history of science but, of course, he does not: he is cut off by access charges and his ‘crackpot-closedmindedness’. But why should we complain? Ron endorses him and thus makes himself look (more) stupid. Or is it just pure deception that makes these nutters confuse the greenhouse effect with the RUNAWAY greenhouse effect?  The former is essential for human survival; it is the latter which is a threat. Never mind, these crackpots all undermine each other and cripple their own hobby-horses. Ron’s new friends out themselves as sots by adopting Ron, and the whole rabble together highlight why direct democracy would be a bad idea. Just imagine what a disaster it would be if the sort of idiot observed every day on the internet were to have a direct influence on the running of a country!

Can Ron Get Nothing Right?

October 29, 2012

We have previously pointed out that Ron incorrectly calls conic sections ‘conical sections’ and calls the three-body problem the ‘three-particle problem’. But he has difficulty even with everyday things. For instance, by our count he has managed to spell Lord Carlile’s name correctly only once!

Another Loser

October 28, 2012

Tugboat Bob again gives that link to the loony-tunes at MIT  (or, more probably, SRI: the crackpot-friendly MIT spin-off). We note that Dennis Cravens is involved. Could that be the same DC who declared that Stanley Meyer’s water-powered car was genuine?  Unfortunately the law did not agree, and Meyer was indicted for fraud. He then dropped dead and, of course, the lunatic fringe claimed that he had been assassinated by ‘Big Oil’. Well, we would certainly like to think so. But then we, like Caligula, wish that all of the hundreds of crackpots had but one neck.

Media Note: during a ‘Science Week (Weak?)’ some 2 decades ago, the BBC saw fit to screen a documentary about cold fusion even though, at that time, it had already been completely discredited. Nevertheless, the programme took a relentlessly ‘open-minded’ approach that made the sole skeptic, Frank Close, look isolated. As if that were not tendentious enough, this travesty included a ‘sub-documentary’ about Stanley Meyer. Could this explain why Meyer was invited to present his invention to a select committee at the House of Lords (only the indictment prevented him)? Ron is indeed correct about the media and governments being scientifically inane, but that clearly works both ways. 



LENR Casualties

October 27, 2012

Ron is a lost cause of course, and has no career to ruin, but one has to feel sorry  for some of the other victims of pseudoscience. Just look at poor Steve Bannister, an economist who thinks that money can be made out of perpetual motion* (oops, ‘free energy’ in the modern crackpot vernacular); no wonder that we suffer such financial disasters if he is a typical example of an economist. Then there is poor Peter Hagelstein who is certainly very successful academically and would have done much better but for falling for cold fusion. In 1989, he started to investigate LENR when it was still thought to be plausible. However, it was not and due to his stubborn persistence he never obtained a full professorship and, indeed, lost his own laboratory (B.Daley, Boston Globe, 27th July 2004).

*To be precise, one can make money out of pretending to invent perpetual motion. Just ask John Searl (follow the link on Ron’s AIAS site).

Ron’s Hilarious Helm (and Shield)

October 19, 2012

At this time of year, with Guy Fawkes night and Christmas approaching, the AIAS homepage always seems to us to be particularly festive. This is thanks to Ron’s coat of arms. Firstly there is the hapless heraldic lion, who (like Ron) has forgotten to ‘retire immediately’,  and consequently suffers from a ‘Vesuvius’-style firework blowing up in his face. Then there is that green hat with the white spots (snowflakes?) and the thick pure-white trim (snow?) sitting atop the helm. Of course, some viewers might not see it that way at first but – now that we have pointed it out – they will (as with a Necker cube) be unable to see it any other way. We are surprised that the College of Arms did not spot this possibility.

Open Letter to The Royal Society

October 9, 2012

We note that a Dr Myron Evans has approached you with regard to funding the activities of his group. We put you on notice that, should any such funding be made available to Evans and his gang of pseudoscientists, we shall complain strongly  to the Charities Commission on the grounds that monies, collected by a registered charity, are being squandered on a search for perpetual motion.

LENR (Loony Explanation for Nonsense Results)

October 1, 2012

According to Ron,

Horst Eckardt, Dougas Lindstrom and myself have understood the basics of low energy nuclear reactors using conventional theory. As usual we have done this voluntarily as a service to humankind, and university or corporate support is now needed. In addition we have available a mechanism for spacetime absorption.”

Er, no. They have taken dubious results which certainly have a conventional cause (experimental error, wishful thinking, unexpected chemical or physical changes) and have ‘explained’ them using the carrot’s ‘shoe-horn’ theorising technique. No doubt he will be explaining next how sunbeams really could have been extracted from cucumbers in Laputa.